Sodom, South Georgia
Iron & Wine
Iron & Wine - Sodom, South Georgia
Sam Beam aka the frontman of Iron & Wine is one of the singer/songwriters of our generation for the following reasons:.
- His introspective lyrics are witty and poignant.
- His hushed singing voice is evocative, distinctive and totally unique
- His music is not only thought-provoking, profound and affective but also beautiful to listen to.
Sodom South Georgia is a story about Beam’s father passing away. Whether it is fictional or not, I’m not sure. Although the topic is dark, Beam manages to tell it in a way that is not depressing, but rather enlightening. His matter-of-fact depictions of scenery and a township at the time of his passing is vivid. By the end of the song, we are shown that life moves on - which reflects the theme of life on the album Our Endless Numbered Days, from which this song appears.
Elliott Smith - Angeles
Almost 9 years after his untimely passing, Elliott Smith's music still maintains a haunting beauty. My favourite track from the hushed songwriter would be 1997's Angeles.
The thinly veiled tension in this song might be a reflection on Elliott’s well publicized self-loathing destructive nature, or a depiction of the grimier side of Los Angeles - or both. Whatever your interpretation, it is evident that Elliott’s career was cut short by his alcoholism and drug use. The exact circumstances surrounding his passing is still a matter of debate, but regardless, his music lives on and captures the personal and introspective struggle of an artist at odds with himself - a tragic hero whose talents ended up being as much an affliction as a blessing.
Isbells - Baskin
Listen to this song before you go to bed tonight and you will have an amazing sleep.
The guitar chords reminds me of The Shins’ track Things to Come while the hushed vocals are evocative of the timeless music of Nick Drake and Iron & Wine. The Belgian group have only been performing as the Isbells since 2009 but they have alread recorded two albums together. This song is from Stoalin’ which came out in March this year.
I think the group have improved their songwriting since the last release and I’m really looking forwards to giving the album a proper listen soon.
(Source: wheniflysoloiflysohigh / Zealrecords)
Iron & Wine - One More Try (cover)
Out of the blue, Sam Beam from Iron & Wine announced that he is going to record and release a 7” of George Michael covers entitled Two Sides of George.
Beam’s hushed vocals capture the sentimental mood of the music beautifully. I admit, I’m not the world’s biggest George Michael fan, but I’ll gladly listen to Iron & Wine anyday.
Keep an eye out for the limited edition release of Two Sides of George which is due to be revealed (pardon the pun) next month.
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.
Communion Cups and Someone's Coat
Iron & Wine
Communion Cups and Someone’s Coat - Iron & Wine
Sam Beam is the man with the fearsome facial hair and man oh man can he play guitar. Not only can he play well, he has a beautiful whisper-like voice that accompanies his astute fingerpicking. The harmonies in the chorus of the song are heartwarming and get used to his music as I will definitely be back to talk about it. Here’s a download link and some lyrics
Talk of yesterday like baragain shoe strings
She will kick the car & find her friends.
Say tomorrow & then
She’ll describe some old communion cups
& someone’s coat.
But say today & she may look your way
& lead you home