Posts tagged ‘Music’
WE ALL GOT CLOTHES: Yeah okay, so Gobble Gobble has joined the ranks of some of the strangest named groups around. But listen to the track “Lawn Knives” below. It’s hard-pounding, anthemic and full of fuzzed out sythn, skittered beats and catchy vocals. It’s such a fun track. Visit the Gobbler Gobbler tumblr page, where you can order a 7″ of the song released through Royal Rhino Flying Records out of West Virginia. Note: Photo taken by Landon Speers. – David D. Robbins Jr.
WARMING TREND: Seabear, a seven-piece Icelandic band, softly swirl their hushed powers around the voice of lead singer Sindri Már Sigfússon. The band will release its 11-track sophomore effort, “We Built a Fire” sometime soon, as a follow-up to 2007’s “The Ghost That Carried Us Away”. It’s no wonder the new album was recorded in the band’s basement studio, with apple-carton covered walls built to keep out the sounds of the world. It’s an intimate bedroom affair. In a way, listening to this album feels a bit like eavesdropping. You’ve heard the old cliched question, “Does a tree falling in the woods make a sound if no one is there to hear it?” This is an album that puts the question to rest. It does. “We Built a Fire” feels distilled — created without worrying about whether or not there are listeners. It simply is. Some could argue the tracks carry the same tone throughout. In terms of a movie, it could be said this album lacks plot development. But it also couldn’t be made any other way. Too much change or dissonance would kill the mood. Much like building a fire, it takes some patience to get it going. And if you put enough effort into it — you’ll be around for the blaze to come. “We Built a Fire” is rich with pretty experimental melodies, harmonies and strings. One of the best cuts, “Fire Dies Down” starts off with piano, a sullen saw and accordion — which leads into these lush lyrics sung with crumbling fragility, “A fire dies down / Carrying death into the house / Un-close your eyes / Let it all glow / One day this body will break / One day these hands will shake.” – Words by David D. Robbins Jr.
SHHHHH!: Secret Cities’ two tracks are harder to pin down than mercury. The songs sound like something familiar, only to transition into something else. Like the xx, Secret Cities seem to mix the best of 80s old-school with new-school instrumentation. The band creates dark synth-pop, ethereal dreamscapes of white noise, found sounds, slick grooves, extended synth notes, and whispered falsetto in compositions that evolve, twist, turn and deconstruct throughout. It’s a wonder their two released tracks sound so clean, with so much musical collage going on. North Dakota’s Secret Cities started out with founders Charlie Gokey and Marie Parker sending 4-track cassette tapes back and forth to each other across the length of the state. Each would add their own parts or manipulate the others’ work until they carved out dark, multi-layered gems. Later, they added drummer Alex Abnos, frontman for his Kansas City freewheeling, computer-blip bopping, ukulele-loving band Tut Tut. (Listen to his tracks “Over/Under (CEEGO remix)” or “Pins on Purse”. They’re gorgeous.) Secret Cities lists on their MySpace Page, minimalist composer Terry Riley, as an influence. It’s easy to hear his spacey computerized repetitions in the foundation of Secret Cities’ two tracks. The band recently signed to Austin, Texas record label, Western Vinyl — home of J. Tillman, The Dirty Projectors, and Balmorhea. Secret Cities released a digital double A-side (Bright Teeth/Pink Graffiti Pt. 1) to be followed by a debut LP, “Pink Graffiti”, in June. If you listen to Riley, Tut Tut and Secret Cities, somehow it all begins to make sense how this trio connect and evolved into the unique style they have. Without a doubt, this is a band to watch. – Artwork and words by David D. Robbins Jr.
Secret Cities “Pink Graffiti Pt. 1″
A LOOK AT SEAN HAYES
Artwork & Words by David D. Robbins Jr.
Upcoming Album: Run Wolves Run • Release Date: March 2, 2010
(Artwork uses web photo and elements from Hayes’ album covers)
It’s too bad San Francisco-based singer-songwriter Sean Hayes isn’t better known, because he’s been one of the best musicians in America for some time now. In a fair world, Hayes’ sixth album, “Run Wolves Run”, would be an early candidate for album of the year.
On “Run Wolves Run”, this master crooner manages to infuse his amorous side with a jolt of the carnal — giving glimpse into the raw, urgent, desirous side of love. If the yearning in “All For Love” was a smooth brandy, than this is a 21-year-old Bushmills elixir. His tales of “epic romance gone astray” mix with more flesh-charged songs like “So Down” — where Hayes sings out to a lover, “Put on your high heels and give it to me, baby. Ohhhhhhhhhaaaaa! Put on your high heels, and nothing else.” Melodic Wurlitzer, driving crisp drums, and siren noises build into a frenetic shirt-tearing, skirt-ripping, sweaty, skin-to-skin steamfest — that would even move gutbucket crowds to dance as if they were listening to Willie Dixon’s “Spoonful”. Hayes rocks out on one of the album’s best tracks, “Gunnin'”:
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Artwork & Words by David D. Robbins Jr.
HIGHLAND SPIRITS: There’s no doubt this Glasgow five-piece band are trying for a fuller, heavier sound on their third album, “The Winter of Mixed Drinks”. (U.S. release date, March 9, 2010) It’s the kind of album intended to fill stadiums with strong hooks, melodies and old-fashioned rock-outs. Frightened Rabbit have created a chord-heavy, anthemic record that will certainly catapult this Scotland favorite into the mainstream, if that’s what they want.
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