Sunday, June 08, 2008

Songs That Might Otherwise Pass You By

Jaymay, "Gray or Blue"

This is one of the prettiest sort of-maybe requited love songs I've heard. The xylophone accompaniment to the xylophone lyric is a nice touch and I love the change in the end (the "crazy eyes have u" part). It's wistful, but not wimpy. The emotions are strong: she's lamenting a would-be lover, making her case to him, though he may not even notice through his hooded eyes. She's waiting for him* to make the move, but she warns "I think its very dangerous if we do not take what's ours". She's anxious ("last night I watched you sing because a person has to try"), yet hesitant to destroy whatever they have ("are you too nervous to be lovers--friendships ruined with just one kiss"). There's no clear path for the lyrics, no clear ending to her predicament...much like that type of situation is in life.

*I usually don't assume gender, but she talks about "another boy", so I'm assuming the subject of the song is male.

"Gray or Blue" lyrics

Jaymay says "I asked you a question! Gray or Blue? Or red? I like red, too."

In Flight Radio, "Red Flags" (Thanks to Filter Magazine for introducing me to the band)

The reviews I've read of In Flight Radio mostly focus on Piera's soaring vocals; they're right to praise her range and versatility; however, the music and the vocals work together to form an accomplished, solid composition. The guitar soars for most of the song, appropriately matching the building tension of the song, but the guitarist knows when to sparcely dole out the notes, complimenting the singer's voice when the vocals soften. The bass supports the song well and the drums add a layer to the already nuanced song. It's appropriate that the name of their label is "Last Broadcast": I'm really reminded of the full sound of the band Doves. Both bands feature clear, strong vocals and instruments that reach beyond any structure attempting to hold them, breaching the surrounding space.


In Flight Radio look down on inferior radio choices.

We Were Promised Jetpacks, "Quiet Little Voices"

I remember the pain of being promised jetpacks, and the promise not being fulfilled. Fifth grade. Our science books had pictures of technology of the future. Of course when I was ten years old, I wondered how the textbook writers were able to get pictures of items from the future, but it didn't occur to me that they just made them up. This was science class, after all. Nothing is made up in science class. So, I waited for the gray, bulky jetpack with the rocket fire coming out the posterior. It never showed up. I lost some of my faith in the world that year, and especially my faith in science text book writers. Oh, I was supposed to get a one-person egg-shaped car, too, but now I realize that wouldn 't be energy efficient (no way to carpool) so my disappointment over that has abated. Also I don't drive so it's moot. I could certainly use a jetpack though.

This all has nothing to do with the song, of course. The name of the band is "We Were Promised Jetpacks" (one of the greatest band names ever), but the name of the song is "Quiet Little Voices". The song isn't quiet; it's actually hits the senses hard. It has the drive and the intensity of The Walkmen and Interpol--loud and intense with guitars that will tear the paint off. Yes, We Were Promised Jetpacks has declared ownership of your eardrums. Hopefully with them in charge we'll finally get our jetpacks.

(No website listed)

Anxiously awaiting their jetpacks...they look so listless, so lost without them...

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