Joanna Newsom - Jackrabbits
I have recently fallen in love with Joanna Newsom in a big way.
Her music is transfixing and lush and it speaks for itself. Many of her songs feature just Newsom’s vocals and her harp and it’s more than enough to listen to her triple disc album Have One on Me for two hours straight without getting tired of the sprawling melodies and cryptic lyrics.
Take a listen to this song from the middle of the second disc and maybe you’ll feel the same. Too bad she is recently became engaged to in February this year. At least he also has talent to match, although The Lonely Island are slightly different to her work. Maybe there will be a collaboration one day?
Active Child - Evening Ceremony
One reason to be thankful for Stephanie Meyer is that despite writing some inexcusably trashy vampire-romance books, her Twilight franchise has garnered some impressive soundtracks. The latest of her books to be remade into a movie will be The Host.
Active Child has released Evening Ceremony for the soundtrack and it is a low-key, ambient piece with a layered production style that makes for the perfect accompaniment to the falsetto of Pat Grossi.
Thankfully, you don’t have to like Twilight to appreciate this.
Falling Star - Kid Cudi (R3K Remix)
This track came out one year ago (almost to the day) and it’s resurfaced on my playlist.
Florence and The Machine composed the original track and the dreamy vocals of Florence Welch can still be heard through parts of Falling Star. DJ R3K has mashed Kid Cudi's vocals on the backing instrumental and the rest is history.
Kid Cudi's vocals compliment the synth and harp backing in an anthemic style typical of the American artist.
Download - Falling Star (R3K Remix)
Rhye - Open
The members of Rhye are keeping their identities secret. Apparently, both members live in L.A. and have European backgrounds. They both also are members of well-known bands.
Regardless of their previous musical endeavors, both members of Rhye have a musical chemistry and their debut single Open shows this. Open features strings, harps and etherial falsetto. These elements may have easily have let Open succumb to overproduction, but it maintains a simple structure and organic sound.
Share this track with a loved one or just keep it all to yourself.
Download - Open
Grand Salvo - Needles
I was taken by Grand Salvo’s soft delivery of Needles, the story of a lifetime, during his opening act for the Fleet Foxes in early 2012. Grand Salvo (Aka Paddy Mann) uses intimate lyricism to reflect his interest in how our thoughts and perceptions can alter over a lifetime.
Flowers are toys, Bees are old boys, She wears a dress like a song wears a voice
A terrible choice, A girl over boy, The boots of a man and the hooves of a horse
Incarnate hour, Surgical charm, Her eyebrows are just like the ink of a brush
Needles are thin and kept in a tin, Time is a wind sweeping everything clean
Left in the sun without its lid on, The texture is leached by the white of the sheet
The bed is unmade, It’s a wonderful day, The curtains behave like the soul of a wave
A house is deserted so nobody heard, The ring of a phone, it was starting to rain
Her makeup was leaking, She just didn’t need it, Her eyebrows are just link the ink of a brush
The texture explodes so deliciously slow, The curtains rejoice like the sea of a coast
Bow to the host, not to the toast, Glasses that sing when you rub them with skin
Back is across the cheek of a rock, Things live below with stomach of stone
Flowers arrive they live in the like, The base of a stone is a wonderful home
Mountains are pure they’re never unsure, They’re rocks are so old that they haven’t been sold
She told me a story bout how someone had hurt her, Her freckly face was full of kindness and grace
I love jumping rocks, it’s one thing I got, I jump like a doe, I wish I wasn’t alone
Help me to find the time to be kind, Give me a call I want to tell you it all
Needles are sly they hide from your eyes, All the buckets of blood from all the fingers and thumbs
Forests are free there’s nothing they need, I lie on the needles listening to its beetles
The scent of the worm the coo of a bird, The creak of the wood everything as it should
The clack of my bones the thought of blood as it flows, The tremulous heart as it falters and starts
Pieces of glass are no longer sharp, Bottles thrown into the sea long ago
Kids on the beach learning to drink, Eventually tossed into the foam in the rocks
Hearing a new song for the very first time, It started me sobbing like it pulled something from me
Listening to songs I used to when I was young, Remembering friends when we all hated our beds
We giggle and croon, cackle and swoon, Keeping each other close like sisters and brothers
I’ve been missing the past ever since I was cast, And now that I’m old
Now that I’m old
I miss it 10,000-fold
Words by Lilly.
Lana Del Rey - Video Games
Lana Del Rey has been creating a huge buzz in America since her debut single Video Games premiered a month ago on Youtube. Despite this song being heralded as a debut, it should be noted that before she became Lana Del Rey, she was Lizzy Grant, a singer with a much smaller profile. Back then, she did not have nearly as much collagen injected into her lips and not as many corporate sponsors funding her career. In an interview she is upfront in admitting her new artist’s name came from lawyers and managers who wanted to find a name that had ‘glamour’ to match the ‘cinematic’ style of her music. I am a fan of the song and video which seems to show the downfall of Hollywood and fame but for those of you who are skeptical of Del Rey, there has already been a parody of the video on the net. Expect the radio to catch on quickly.
Joanna Newsom - Peach Plum Pear (Live in Paris 2010)
Let me put a question to you - is there anything more mystical in the 21st century than a woman who can play the harp well? Joanna Newsom is one of the few artists I can think of who plays with a harp at the forefront of her music. Years before Florence and the Machine formed, Joanna was releasing albums.
Her voice has undergone changes after she developed vocal cord nodules in 2009. This is a bizarre throat condition that arises from straining your voice too often. She still sings wonderfully and continues to make her beautiful music. Oddly enough, she is currently dating comedian Andy Samberg of The Lonely Island. I wouldn’t have picked that but Wikipedia doesn’t lie! Check for the mesmerizing harp solo at the 3 minute mark.
Active Child - Hanging On
Lately I’ve been featuring music I have been enjoying for a while, but today I came across Active Child & I figured it was worthy of sharing.
The vocal layering is mesmerizing and there is a healthy combination of live instrument (I believe there is a harp somewhere in the mix) over synth.
Pat Grossi aka Active Child has quite the falsetto and manages to hold down the 5 minute song by weaving an intricate emotional soundscape. This song wont be for everybody, but then again that could be said of anything. Active Child's debut album was released one week ago on August 23rd.
Download - Hanging On