Monday, June 02, 2008

Songs That Might Otherwise Pass You By

Chairlift, "Evident Utensil" (Live from The Lounge, Woxy)

Chairlift's Myspace says they're from Brooklyn, but Carolyn, the lead singer, sings with a slight lilt reminiscent of Bjork (but less space odyssey-ish and more space kittenish) and the only partly-realized word formations of the German singer Nico--like she's singing more with her breath than her voice. She utilizes her voice full-force, though, when she's yelping, whooping and trilling. As if acting out the lyrics, her voice "crawls up the walls" and "rolls in the dirt"; her voice rips through the song in fully appropriate rock star fashion. Speaking of rock star fashion, she's wears some awesome rock star glasses. Musically, I love the hushed keyboard and guitar intro--it's the kind of intro that needs to be the first thing the fans hear at a show--you know, that moment when the audience isn't sure if the band is coming on stage yet, and they hear a few familiar notes and the dawning of realization hits them. The song is largely built on new wave keyboards that bring me back to the days of early Depeche Mode (Just Can't Get Enough? Dreaming of Me?) and there's a really cool background vocal--a male voice echoing the lyrics in a very sexy, somber German New Wave sounding way (Rock Me Amadeus). The lesson to be taken away from this, of course, is that I love songs that remind me of early 80's New Wave.


How come only one band member gets to wear leopart print pants? More leopard print pants!

Martin Royle & Pash, "If Time Ran Backwards" (Live from The Lounge, Woxy)

Apparently weird things happen when one watches The Sopranos backwards by oneself. Luckily I stopped watching that show years ago, so I never had the experience of "people recomposing" and "actors disremember[ing] their lines of backward verse". I appreciate his observation that "youth is wasted on the young"; in this song, since time is running backwards, youth is not wasted, but is enjoyed by those towards the latter part of their lives, and since time is running backwards, the latter part of a life is towards the beginning. Yeah, I'm confused, too. It's like Mork's son on Mork and Mindy--he was born older and became younger. I just dated myself. I'm not old--according to this song I'm sailing towards my youth.

Martin Royle's Website
Martin Royle's Myspace
Pash's Myspace
Pash's Website

Martin Royle and Pash, courtesy of Woxy

Sigur Ros, "Gobbledigook"

I don't think any song since 1999's "Vindrar Vel Til Laftarasa" can have the same effect on me--I remember I called them "Heaven born" when I first heard that song (I also thought His Name is Alive might actually be from another planet when I first heard them--I have an active imagination). "Gobbledigook" doesn't send me to another plane of existence like that early song did, but this song does keep the unique eclectism of their previous work while expanding to include heavier sounds like thundering, clapping drums, forceful, rushed backing vocals, and a staccato guitar, all culminating in a very chaotic, scattered, hyper-active mash-up of instruments. I never thought I'd say that a Sigur Ros song has a jungle sound, but here it is. It's like the boys went on the commune, and after several hits of something, came out with a new musical direction. It's not an unfavorable change, but it is different from the styles we've previously heard from them.

Other Sigur Ros mp3s

The gigantic members of Sigur Ros look at the tiny, tiny island of Iceland. (Or, that may actually be a moss-covered rock, and they may be average-sized).

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