The World of Fever Ray

•March 5, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Fever Ray – Fever Ray

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Fever Ray is the self-titled debut of The Knife’s Karin Dreijer Andersson. In my opinion, behind Animal Collective’s MPP, it is sure to go down as one of the best records of 2009.

Since I am more of an affective listener, I do not pay a lot of attention to the lyrics or the technical aspects of the record; instead, as the record plays, I come to a standstill and lay upon the hibernating world, slowly inhaling and exhaling–my lungs gently breathing in and out the cold whispering air. A hypnotic and repetitive synth beat stirs into a boundless loop as a disfigured voice declares “This will never end cause I want more / More, give me more, give me more”. A deep, droning base line resonates like the ebb and flow of brooding waves as I am transported to a Godless world composed of an endless oceanic swirl of melancholic affects and sensual desires. As the the smoke lingers slowly in the cold air of the abyss, bodies begin to dissolve into a rhythmic dance of dark shades and tones. The disembodied voice–blurring the lines between the masculine and feminine, the human and inhuman–reaches out beyond to the dark territories of imperceptibility. This is the world of Fever Ray. 

Ultimately, Fever Ray is an album heavy on repetitive, synthetic tribal beats that along with Andersson’s filtered inhuman voice, creates a dark underworld of primitive melancholy and sensuality.

Here is a crazy video of the beautiful opening track:

Handsome Furs – YESSSS!!!

•January 15, 2009 • 2 Comments

Legal Tender – Handsome Furs

Radio Kaliningrad – Handsome Furs

Saint Dymphna

•October 3, 2008 • Leave a Comment

 

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I got my hands on the new Gang Gang Dance album, Saint Dymphna and its sick! I’ve always been a little intrigued by Gang Gang Dance ever since I saw them live almost 3 years ago opening up for Man Man. It wasn’t their musicality that peaked my interest, it was more the fact that they sounded totally tweaked and people were really into it. They had beats, I’ll give them that but then there were these crazy fake laser gun kind of noises and a female vocalist that sounds more like an animal than a human, almost like a monkey. Combine tribal beats with a gorilla sounding lead singer and suddenly you feel like you’re in the Amazon. Their last album, God’s Money, has lyrics but I couldn’t hear any intelligible words coming from the lead singer when she got on stage. Then they release “House Jam as the first single off of Saint Dymphna and I’m shocked. It’s really good, totally danceable, and I can decipher the words! Amazing! Seems like Gang Gang Dance took a cue from their best track (imo) off God’s Money, “God’s Money V,” and ran with it. Saint Dymphna is a little less pure noise and little more noise into structured beats. “Afoot” and “Desert Storm” are still a little too weird for me to take seriously, but the rest of the album feels like such a huge maturation from their last. 

Favorite Tracks: Princes was another unexpected gem on this album. As soon as I heard it, it reminded me of this genre of music from the UK called Garage, pronounced Ger-rej, that was emerging and huge in late 90’s and 2000, which is actually pretty similar to London’s Grime genre that’s really big over there right now. I first learned of Garage during a trip over to Europe where a London boy said to me, “Garage music is really huge right now” and I was all like “you mean GARAAAGE” all dumb and American like. London’s Garage is very different from America’s garage band music. I learned of Grime last year, as my cousin was obsessed with youtube and came across London’s Grime music via random youtube videos. But I was totally right, the artist featured on “Princes” is a Grime MC from the UK! Holllaaa! You lookin’ mad young Tinchy Stryder, mad young. 

Besides the sexy “House Jam,” the other track I’m digging hard is “Blue Nile.” I like its consistent driving beat, with the chant and echo vocals. Nice Gang Gang Dance, NICE!

Indian Jewelry @ The Marvelous

•September 28, 2008 • Leave a Comment

 

© 2008 Michael Alan Goldberg

© 2008 Michael Alan Goldberg

So I have to post about the show I saw at The Marvelous in West Philly on Sept. 18th. A friend of mine had mentioned Indian Jewelry to me and I had never heard of them before. I really dug Invasive Exotics and still had yet to get my hands on Free Gold! Now if you’ve listened to either of these albums they’re fully tweaked. The first thing I thought was this could be amazing live or a train wreck, luckily it was the former. I mean the albums have songs where its just noise, screeching and droning sometimes and not in that My Bloody Valentine kind of way. I’ve been on this kick lately of really enjoying psychedelic rock live, like the Black Angels and now Indian Jewelry. There’s this sonic boom to the beat of the drums and bass in these bands that just pulsates through your entire body. Indian Jewelry is fantastic live, they majorly clean up their songs. This band is made to be a live act, not an in studio one. I also love the fact that there’s a chick (pictured top right) that absolutely drives Indian Jewelry. She plays everything as well as sings, you can tell she’s the heart and soul of this band. The show was so good I wanted to hear them play all night, and that doesn’t always happen. Getting that feeling from a band is one of the best, I tend to get it when I see Wolf Parade live.  I couldn’t have asked for a better setting either, a small record store standing in between stands of CDs with about 30 people in the room. They made me feel like I was still at a legit concert, which it was but could have been super awkward if they were bad. Tickley Feather went on before them and I thought it was absolutely awful. I don’t get her local hype, it’s a girl with a casio and a weird voice, not even good. I think most kids with casios do what she does when they’re home drunk having a good time with their friends. Music like that always makes me think that the person is playing a huge joke on everyone. I’m going to make the most ridiculous, awful music and see how many hipsters I can get into being a fan. Right? Anyway, back to the fact that Indian Jewelry kicked ass and I would pay to see them again anytime. “Lesser Snake” and “PowWow” off Invasive Exotics and “Hello Africa” off of Free Gold! are probably the closest you can get to their live sound on their albums but still not nearly as good. These guys really bring it live, and thats always refreshing.

First Aid Kit covers Fleet Foxes

•September 28, 2008 • 1 Comment

I’m a big fan of Fleet Foxes latest album and so are these girls! Here’s a treat, First Aid Kit covering “Tiger Mountain Peasant Song.” These teenagers from Sweden are mighty impressive. I’m usually pretty tough on female singer/songwriters cause they all tend to sound the same, but the fact that Klara(15) and Johanna(17) write their own songs that don’t sound like teenage pop and have the talent to back it up earns my respect. They’ve also recently been signed to The Knife’s label, Rabid Records. So someone’s definitely noticing. Check out their myspace for original songs.

Dear Science

•September 28, 2008 • Leave a Comment

 

Click to BuyThe last blog I started (mainly music based), for myself and not for work, was about two years ago right when Return to Cookie Mountain came out. Therefore, it only seems appropriate that I would start another one right around the time TV On The Radio decides to drop another new album, Dear Science. Now maybe my review will be a little biased as I’m a pretty avid TVOTR fan, but I gotta say this album is pretty kick ass in a subtle way. As my friend, Vadim, and I were discussing it earlier today we realized the guitar stylings make this album. You see when you listen to Dear Science, you immediately know its TVOTR but something’s just a little different, and its totally the guitars. Dear Science is meant to be listened to in its entirety. Unlike their previous records, I don’t feel like there are any major stand outs on this album like “Wolf Like Me” and “Staring at the Sun,” instead this album feels like a whole thats needs to be listened to chronologically from start to finish. If any of the songs were considered stand outs, I’d have to say its their first single “Golden Age” and as Vadim suggested “Love Dog”. But my thing with “Love Dog” on this album is that its the song that most sounds like their old stuff. I’m also a fan of “Shout Me Out” and “DLZ” but I’ve listened to this album about 7 times and every time I could only listen to it in its entirety. So to me Dear Science is definitely a full album experience. I’m not really a big lyrics person, but none of the lyrics on this album have hit me as much as “Province” from their last album. Anyway, if I decide to write any concert reviews on here they’ll mostly be from the Philadelphia area, so I feel it only makes sense for me to say that TV On The Radio is coming to Electric Factory on October 10th. Since I’ve never seen them live, I’m pretty hyped about this show. I hear they’re great live!