Friday, April 14, 2006

Oh Oh Oh!

One of my favorite things about being a DJ at WRUW is having access to a pretty ginormous music library. Especially the new music!

Today, in my weekly perusing of the new-shelf, I got a chance to give Figurines' Skeleton a listen. Skeleton is the sophomore effort of the Danish band, who's been around since the 90's. Though I didn't get through all of it (so much new music, and so little time!), I must say that I quite heartily enjoyed the bits I sampled. I'm not familiar with their previous work, but what I heard today makes me very curious. They remind me a bit of Built To Spill--a real knack for astute melodies, vaguely poetic lyrics, and some delightful guitar playing. Not to mention that the singer's voice has a almost-whine very reminiscent of Doug Martsch. A few sample mp3s from Skeleton and their first album Shake the Mountain can be found on their website's media section.

A video for "I Remember", also from Skeleton, can be seen here (.MOV). I quite enjoy the song. It stands out from the rest of the album a bit, having a more straight-forward pop bounce to it. The video is amusing, and must have required epic amounts of time in the editing room. I've never seen this sort of live-action-stock-motion, jerk style taken to such extremes before. When the first few blips started, I thought it was due to poor video quality. But nope; it's deliberate. It can be a bit dizzying, but it's an interesting effect. It certainly fits the song well.

I don't understand how or why, but there seems to be an amazingly high concentration of pop-genius in the Nordic countries. Perhaps I should move.

Post Script
Speaking of Built to Spill, they too have a new album out: You In Reverse. I've listened to the whole thing once through, and I have mixed feelings. They haven't changed their style too much--after all, don't fix it if it isn't broken. But I feel like the new album has a few too many songs that drag on unnecessarily. Built to Spill is a band that can pull off both epic, vast songs (see "Velvet Waltz" on Perfect From Now On) and concise, delightful pop ditties. But with this album, they seemed to confuse those two aspects. Songs that would have worked well in the latter category are expanded until you just get a bit bored. Don't get me wrong, I still like much of the new album. It has a really great energy to it. But, I don't think it's my favorite.

Some of the new songs can be streamed off of Built To Spill's site. The entire album can also be streamed (via here.


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