Thursday, August 09, 2012

alt-j - 'breezeblocks'

i've been recently evangelizing quite a bit for this fledgling band out of the uk. their first album, an awesome wave comes out sept 18th in the us. it blends lush instrumentation, hushed vocals, and polyrhythmic percussion. 'breezeblocks' verses sound like drunken bluesy hymns joined with a plucky toy piano until the chorus sweeps in with backwards synths and driving bass all culminating at the climax 'please don't go, i'll eat you whole, i love you so' which should ring familiar, (lines from maurice sendak's where the wild things are). expect a review of the whole album shortly. 

the whole album is streaming at the moment on soundcloud - listen here.

the music video is perplexing and, in the same vein as a horrifying car accident in reverse, it's nearly impossible to not watch. somehow it strangely fits the song in it's beautiful cinematography and scope. perhaps they took the lyrics to the song too literally...

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

usher - climax

ok. just to state this before anyone starts ripping into me. i like usher. there you go, your opinionated/snobby/particular friend enjoys usher. there. now, maybe no one else will give me flack for listening to r&b; i highly doubt it.

the diplo produced 'climax' just came out officially and to me, the mix is near flawless. usher's high flying falsettos careen delicately above deeply embedded synths bouncing back and forth. i'm admittedly not a big fan of diplo in most cases, so the fact that he restrains killing the chorus with overblown instrumentation and epileptic drums displays an amount of maturity which i haven't heard from him before. the atmosphere on 'climax' is something like i'd expect on mercury; very sparse. the low end is reminiscent of burial with less percussion, (there's even the james blake double timed high pitch click track right before the chorus- hear it?). the package is wrapped in usher's gillette tones. please enjoy.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

ramona falls - 'spore'

'spore' is the first single off brent knopf's solo project ramona falls which had a great record in intuit. i'm happy to say if this track is any indicator, i will be very pleased. i appreciate the cut and paste technique knopf employs and all the little melodic threads tied together. the beginning sounds similar to something like we'd hear of thom yorke's solo stuff, (akin to 'hearing damage' perhaps?) and it builds to a synth/bassy bridge that piqued my ears. let's hope for more like this on may 1st.

Monday, February 13, 2012

starfucker - 'bury us alive'

big hat tip to my friend jacob for letting me know starfucker had a new album. ever since i saw them in austin just before austin city limits, i've been a big fan. their tight traps, bouncing bass lines, and shoegaze vocals. this is a favorite of mine off their newest release reptilians called 'bury us alive'. it manages to pull what seems to be a sample from my past, it reminds me of the music right after you beat a boss in the castle. short, sweet and poppy. enjoy.

Sunday, February 05, 2012

carousel - 'here now'

this is a song by boston based pop-dream outfit carousel. you will hear sufjan influences in the vocals with a bouncy postal service production. the keys sound quite aken to death cab's 'some boys' even though it's much lighter fare. also including the video for my favorite: 'games'.

Saturday, February 04, 2012

hélène grimaud plays rachmaninov piano concerto no.2 in c minor (1/3)

i came across this really moving version of one of my favorite classical performances of all time. rachmaninov was a master of crafting haunting dissonance while still resolving these progressions in a romantic manner. when i was sailing in the caribbean, we always listened to rachmaninov while raising the sails and i have so many fond memories of this piece. for muse fans, if you wanted to know where matthew belamy got inspiration for 'space dimentia' from, just listen in to about 1 min 32 seconds in :)


buke and gass - 'sleep gets your ghost'

i just recently discovered buke and gass, which despite the somewhat offputting name, are absolute ear candy. buke is in reference to a baratone uke which has been modified as a guitar and a gass is half guitar/half bass. the sound is very prog, think a low-fi st. vincent with less ballads and no loops. full of syncopated and riffing which not only will impress musicians, but just not in the "i like them in theory" way. check out their album riposte, which has been out for a bit.