Friday, January 29, 2010

The Trials of Midlake

NPR’s Indie music blog “All Songs Considered” this week features a song from the new Midlake album The Courage of Others titled “Core of Nature”. As I anxiously made my way NPR’s Media Player, I hoped for something similar to their debut album Bamnan and Slivercork, an oddball of an album from 2004 which, despite its amateur imperfections, ultimately won me over with its charm and sincerity. However, bands rarely ever step backwards, and I doubted I would get the lo-fi indie pop and electronic sound with psychedelic undertones that marked Bamnan’s style, which you might describe as a hybrid between the full blown psychedelic synths of Black Moth Super Rainbow and the mellow songwriting and vocals of the Fruit Bats.

Instead, I expected something more along the lines of their sophomore album, The Trials of Van Occupanther, which in a sea change from poppy electronics, instead delivers a much darker acoustic sound, which I’ve heard compared to 70’s bands ranging from America to Fleetwood Mac. Trials, although generally very well received by critics, was a big disappointment for me, with the exception of the first track, “Roscoe.”

Courage, if “Core of Nature” is any indication, will continue the trend into an even darker, slower acoustic album. Below you can see the development of Midlake’s style with tracks from their first three albums, respectively.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

"A song to play us out...."

Props to everyone who recognized each of Ben Harper, Billy Gibbons, and Beck on stage playing Freebird during Conan’s last episode of the Tonight Show last Friday. I have a lot of good memories of Conan over the years, and he’s my favorite late night talk show host by a long shot, but for some reason I just can’t get that awful guitar solo he tries to play as the credits are rolling out of my head. (I couldn’t help but laugh to myself as Beck kind of looks over in complete confusion at one point.)

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Song of the Week: 1/17

Phoenix - "Lisztomania"