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Elf Power – A Dream in Sound

17 06 2010

Listened: Wednesday June 16

As I mentioned earlier, Elf Power is a big collective of hippie musicians from Athens, Georgia who play well-constructed but somewhat tripped out music. I think A Dream In Sound is even more similar-sounding to their Elephant 6 label-mates Neutral Milk Hotel than Creatures. In a way they also sound a lot like GZM, especially in that they have some dreamy instrumentals.

This is definitely the style of music that was considered indie and cool about 10 years ago. Though big collectives of musicians like Arcade Fire and Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros are still flourishing in “cool music” circles today.

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Embrace – Drawn From Memory

17 06 2010

Listened: Wednesday June 16

This is not the American hardcore band Embrace. This is the English band Embrace. I had no knowledge of the hardcore band until I started looking for the English band and kept finding the hardcore band!

Their sound is similar to Oasis (but much less in-your-face and charming) or Coldplay. Drawn From Memory was acquired back in my years of digging for obscure British music. The songs are very catchy and sing-alongy, but they never really stick with you for some reason. They also lean a little bit towards overproduction for a rock band – lots of strings and orchestration. I don’t know why they never came to America like so many other bands of the time did. They’re even still a band – unlike Oasis or the American hardcore band!





Matthew Jay – Draw

17 06 2010

Listened: Wednesday June 16

I don’t remember how I discovered Matthew Jay, but I am so glad I did. Draw is brilliant and sounds so effortlessly great. His sound can be compared to Nick Drake and Jeff Buckley. Sadly, this is the only album released when he was alive (his only other release is an EP, coming later in the project).

I was shocked as I checked BBC News during a break at work in 2003 and learned that he had died mysteriously in a fall from a high rise in London. We were nearly the same age, so it was distressing to hear of someone that young dying who wasn’t known for being troubled. It was ruled a suicide, but several inconsistencies surrounding the incident throw that into question. However, nothing new has come to light since then.

This album took on even more poignancy after that. It’s frustrating to think someone this good only got to release one album!





The Doors – The Doors

17 06 2010

Listened: Wednesday June 16

Like any teenager, I had to buy a Doors album. I don’t think I took enough drugs (try none) to really get into them, though. Plus they love the organ a little too much. That sound can get pretty old pretty quickly.

I can see the attraction though. When they were starting out, I am guessing a guy singing as plainly sexually charged as Jim Morrison did was unusual. Also, the darker edge to their music is unusual for the time for a popular band.





Various – Doob Doob o’ Rama: Filmsongs from Bollywood

17 06 2010

Listened: Wednesday June 16

Doob Doob o’ Rama is another album of crazy Bollywood songs; this is a collection of movie music from what sounds like the 60s and 70s. The song Jan Pahechaan Ho was used in the opening of Ghost World, which is one of my favorite movie openings ever. This album will have you singing songs to yourself for hours that you don’t even understand!