I cannot add much more to the deep admiration we have shown in this blog for the music from The Antlers.
Since their "Hospice" masterpiece to their exquisite "Burst Apart" from this year we have followed the band very closely. Some of the MUSICAL SOULMATE folks have even had the pleasure of sharing great moments with the band during their recent trip to Mexico City... Unfortunately, I was not that lucky.
This week, Daytrotter released a session with The Antlers, which as always, can be fully downloaded from their site.
As always, their review is spot on, and when referring to The Antlers music they say "The trio of musicians reenact these sensations on their latest full-length album, "Burst Apart," putting you in a menagerie without the animals. The animals are replaced with conflicting emotions - the dreaminess of lead singer Peter Silberman's vocals, the praying mantis-like sizzles of Darby Cicci synths on "Parentheses" and the push along sleuthing of late night drums from stick man Michael Lerner - and they're all finding ways to coexist, to slide by and over one another, rubbing hides and causing friction. These are competing feelings that always seem as if they're moments away from turning into something else at any second. For now, they're fine. They feel stable and of gentle hearts, but like our threatening automobile, they give us this awful shaking every so often. We worry about what's going to happen. Then nothing happens and we let out a huge exhale. Most of the time, nothing happens when we're worried the most. We overreact and it causes our blood pressure to skyrocket. We make ourselves sick with it, but we usually feel as if we were right to have worried. Silberman, you can tell, is a worrier, and these are his shaking feelings. He's dressing them up in dashing suits and lustrous scarves, but beneath it all are these shakes. We can feel them, even if lightly, and they're menacing. We know it's just a matter of time before we feel the full extent."
Worth noting is that in these rough times, Daytrotter is also changing and evolving into a pay site that I personally recommend for your consideration based on the great bands, new music and information they have provided for almost six years now.
Below, I add the link to this great session and I leave you with a question this time...
Would "Burst Appart" be 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 in you list for best albums of 2011?...just give it a thought.
The Antlers-Daytrotter Session Nov 23, 2011
Youth Lagoon is a huge promise.
Led by extremely young though talented front-man Trevor Powers, the band had released, in my opinion, one of the most beautiful albums of the year. The Idaho native Powers fuels Youth Lagoon‘s music with an aching voice narrating lyrics of what we think as deeply personal and revealing autobiographical events. Lamenting experiences associated perhaps with his own anxiety disorders are combined flawlessly with impeccable rhythms crafted by keyboards and bass delivering soft aerial melodies. On stage, Youth Lagoon’s performance hides the childish and almost immature appearance of Powers, providing a collection of songs that are difficult to describe, but that for sure dance around the fine line between nostalgic and hopeful.
The band is capturing a lot of attention crafting their tour with small eclectic venues combined with sold-out presentations at renowned stages, including NYC’s Mercury Lounge. Last week, they played the small MilkBoy lounge in Center City Philadelphia. A short 8-piece set list comprised of most of his album “The Year of Hibernation” was played that night. Due to the bizarre set-up at the MilkBoy, there was no encore leaving “Daydream” out of the list for the night.
I have no doubts that we’ll hear more from Powers and Youth Lagoon in the future. The band is one of those rare jewels that we stumble onto from time to time. We’ll be anxiously waiting to hearing back from them.
I leave you as usual with the set-list for his recent show in Philly plus a couple of clips, one of “July” from a live session and one from “17” as played in a store in Los Angeles early this month.
Youth Lagoon – Setlist
Nov 16, 2011
I know this post is overdue…life moves fast these days.
Last week, I attended Fanfarlo's concert on the first of the month at the magic Johnny Brenda’s. This was the third time I had the pleasure to see the London-based band live. I should start by saying that when their previous album “Reservoir” was released in 2009, the band was questioned about their musical similarity to Arcade Fire. People had reservations on their originality and some completely disregard the beauty of the album, which in my opinion is among the best we have had in recent years.
This time, Fanfarlo is back with a set of new songs, which will eventually become part of their new soon to be released album (February 2012) entitled “Rooms Filled with Light”. Fanfarlo’s new approach is not just original; it is fresh and removes any doubt about the greatness of the band led by Simon Balthazar and Cathy Lucas. At the same time, and probably just to satisfy the skeptics, it clearly shows deep influences on well-known and established artists and music genres.
What remains clear of course is that the band is changing; it is morphing into something they might not even know what it is. But the evolution is evident in their sound, in their show, which incorporates great imagery, and even in their own appearance. Their new songs depart from their lighter, acoustic folk that we heard in “Reservoir”, incorporating instead a significant amount of electronic elements where synthesizers take over. Evidently the new album talks about their need to pursue new ways, to explore new and old recipes in search of their true sound. Their idea of "a nuclear submarine falling from space…", when referring to their new album, appears to gain credibility when you see them live these days.
But all this change is good. Simon Balthazar vocals remain infectious and Cathy Lucas soft chorus, keyboards and violins still provide a delicate balance to their music…
Trust me, this will be one of your choices for best albums in 2012.
The set-list of that night was decorated with new songs, including of course the recently released “Replicate” and “Deconstruction”, which mixed flawlessly with old favorites like “I’m a Pilot”, “Comets” and “Luna”. Among the new songs, “Tunguska”, “Bones” and “Shiny Things” are for sure worth noting. After leaving the stage for a couple of minutes, the band returned with a perfect encore including “Finish Line” and “The Walls are coming down”
I leave you with the set-list of that night and a clip from “Shiny Things” from their recent show at the Mercury Lounge in NYC (October 25).
Fanfarlo - Johnny Brenda’s – Nov 1, 2011
I’m a Pilot
Harold T. Wilkins
Shiny Things (NEW)
The Walls are Coming Down