Thursday, January 31, 2008

Keep Your Eyes Ahead

Only 31 days into the new year and I'm happy with the music thats been released so far, solely because of this album Keep Your Eyes Ahead by The Helio Sequence. It didnt grab me like 2004's Love and Distance at first, but I think i will end up with more appreciation for this one.

At first listen, the songs didnt seem very challenging or as complex as their prior work, but this album was supposed to be just that. Simple.

I think it sounds less complex because there isnt as many noticeable bleeps and bops from computers effects. The electronics have been toned down significantly and play more like a backing vocal than anything. I like this.

Favorite tracks are Back to This and Broken Afternoon. They're available below for listening if you'd like. The first Back to This has just enough mellow synth over whining guitar slides, with double vocal tracks which makes a sound milkshake for my ears...

The second song Broken Afternoon has some blatant hints of Dylan, which i guess every artists has to try and replicate at some point in their career. Not meant to be a shot, i dont think its a bad thing. From what I can gather, its a song about not the best of luck...but everything turns out okay in a Broken Afternoon. Its a pretty tune.

Good Album. Poppy, golden age type of music.

Definitely worth owning.

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The Helio Sequence- Back to This.mp3

The Helio Sequence- Broken Afternoon.mp3

Monday, January 28, 2008

Instant Smile of '07

I choose "You've got Yr. Cherry Bomb" by Spoon for this category. Saxtastic..
Nuff Said.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Saddest song of '07

I dont mean for this post to be a downer (its actually meant to be a positive). The greatest thing about music is when you can say it touches you and makes you reflect on things that happen throughout your life. This song does just that for me.

I remember my first time hearing this song. I remember being really touched by lyrics and having that "i know how that feels" moment. It truly is a great song.

When I hear this song now, it doesnt so much remind of loss or sad tings, its thankfullness. Thankful to have the opportunity, freedom and capability.

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Someone Great.mp3

Best Opening Track on an album in '07

Maybe it was all the buzz, maybe its because of the "pay what you want" initiative, maybe its because anytime Radiohead comes out with an album the anticipation and expectations are all over the board. You dont know what to expect, because they're constantly reinventing themselves. You also dont know if it will be an album that will immediately grab your attention or if it will take time to grow on you.

"In Rainbows" captured all of those, but the opening song grabbed me immediately and initially, i was excited to continuely listen on to this fabulous record. I think we'll be hearing more about this album throughout the year.


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Radiohead- 15 Step.mp3

Best "Face Melter" of '07

For this self-made category (Best Face Melter), I have to go with the White Stripes "You dont know what love is (you just do what you're told)" off of 2007's Icky Thump. The entire song is great, but the last 45 seconds has to easily be my favorite guitar solo of the year.

I'm not even embarassed to admit that each time I hear it, I incorrectly air guitar to it.
My fingers going up and down on a what would be neck of a shitty Fender knock off (Its all i could afford)

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Sunday, January 6, 2008

Prettiest Song of '07

I didnt want to make an entire "best of list" cause its kind of late and might be a bit stale at this point. Instead I wanted to choose specific songs and put them into my own categories. I will try to get them all in this week.

The first category I wanted to start with is- The Prettiest song of year. This could be lyrically, musically or both. The song i have chosen encompasses both. That song is "A Sunday Smile" by Beirut. This song was not a clear winner, "Someone Great" by LCD Soundsystem was a close consideration, but this may fall into another category.

The thing that pushed this song to the top of the shelf is the music, itself. It's such a simple and familiar background, but Zach Condon's voice layered on top of each other creates a full choir on this song. Also, the addition of the horns with the gorgeous lyrics produce something very powerful.

This song is off of The Flying Club Cup whis was released in September of last year.

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Beirut- A Sunday Smile.mp3

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Keep Your Eyes Ahead

A little late to post on this, but I'm still getting over the 10 day work break I lay off.

The Helio Sequence released their first single "Keep Your Eyes Ahead" last week. The new album (with the same title) will be released in just a few more weeks, 1/29/08 to be exact.

The new song took me a few listens to really get into it, but after a few listens I'm digging it. For some reason it didn't immediately grab me like most of their other songs, but I've been anticipating this new album for several months now so my expectations have been as high as the sun. Also, both members said this new album is stripped down and is minimalistic, or a simpler sound. Cant wait for 1/29/08.
Its a good song to bring in the New Year with. Happy 2008 everyone and please download the new single below, thanks to Sub pop Records.

Something else I thought was very cool - I wrote the drummer Benjamin Weikel a few weeks ago to ask him a few specifics about the drums he plays (Sidenote- watch this man drum, hes amazing). Over the holiday break he personally replied and I thought that was nice. As busy as artists are on tour..its nice when one of them takes the time to respond personally.

Off to watch some Iowa caucus coverage and a little KU vs VTech football

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