Friday, December 19, 2008

#11 (Falling Stars Glory Drums Edition)

"What a treat for all of us," squealed the children in the snow.

When the Chemical Brothers sonically met Midlake, it was kind of like Glory having a baby. She birthed the warm organ tones, tinny drumming, honey-dripped vocals, and buzzing machinations.

This song is a Calder mobile set below a nightscape of children's glow in the dark stars. Windchimes and xylophones abound. And yet, my favorite part is the steady, pulsing drumming on the tom drums. That, and the steady building that begins around the 3:30 mark. Crescendo comes, but not for another 2.5 minutes, after which falling stars synth lines bring us finally back down.

Well, that was fun.

Enjoy and let me know what you think.

The Chemical Brothers featuring Midlake, The Pills Won't Help You Now

Dutifully Yours,

Friday, December 12, 2008

#10 (Sleepyhead Edition)

Holy Recession Economy, Economists and Economistas,

Much like a Gray's Papaya Recession Special, I give you two for one this week (no mango drink, however).

Sparkly and jangly are two adjectives that I appreciate more and more with my music notes (perhaps it is inversely related with stock prices). This song is both in spades. I love this song because it is a sonic celebration of waking up groggy and miserable. You could never listen it and not be be excited to wake up and greet the day. Throw in some Alvin and the Chipmunk voices and one of the better synth lines of the year and you have a very winning combination.

Passion Pit are a band from Cambridge, MA that formed as a Valentine's Day present to a college student's girlfriend. His self-made mix tape got beyond the initial audience of one and has reached the mighty internet masses as the hype has grown. They were just in New York and return in February to the Bowery Ballroom. If anyone wants to go, please let me know. As of now, they have only a short EP called Chunk of Change with a full-length CD out in January.

Passion Pit, "Sleepyhead"

Our lonely hero Justin Vernon (better known with his band as Bon Iver) is back with a new EP called Blood Bank. After attending a brief but brilliant show at Town Hall last night, I'm happy to share one of the new tracks, called "Babies." It has one of those haunting melody/harmony combinations that make Bon Iver music so lovely. I hear more Jeff Buckley in this song than I've ever heard in Vernon's work in the past. Similar experimental song structures and heartache falsetto. The double keyboard harmonies are also soaring. Lay back and enjoy:

Bon Iver, "Babies"

As always, let me know what you think.

Hungry and Hopeful,