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Band of Horses!
I finally sat down with my little negrito [I think that's the name I've settled on for my laptop] a while today and was able to do a much-needed activity: listen to some real good music. First I listened to the Yeasayer album [which incidentally has about a 99.75% chance of being on my Top 5 Favorite Albums of 2007 list, yet TBD], and then to the new Band of Horses. I read two good BoH stories over the break which totally inspired me to [a] pack a rucksack and hitchhike to a little shack in the middle of the southern sticks, overlooking a lake and do nothing but write poetry, drink tallboys and eat barbecued pork.. all day.. oh, and [b] listen to more Band of Horses. One little ditty was from November's Paste and a better writeup with short interview was in the latest Fader. If nothing else, there's a killer photo of Ben Bridwell and his pick-up, exposing [but not exhibiting] his tats and beard, both of which are no less than fifty-seven years old. Nope, he ain't no city boy.
In case you haven't heard the old news, Paste is still running a Radiohead-inspired promo-- go name your own price for a full year's worth of Paste goodness. I extended my subscription for the same amount I paid for In Rainbows; four bucks. Fader, still cooler than most in my book, is available for free, every month, in PDF format [have I recently mentioned that?]. Get #49 here. Buy a year of the old-fashioned paperback business here. And since it costs $20 [which is a great deal for this mag], you don't have to feel as guilty as you may for "buying" In Rainbows or Paste by filling in all the boxes with zeros.
ANYWAY.. this was supposed to be a FSo'07 post, and dammit that's what it's still gonna be, at least in part. After cycling through both All Hour Cymbals and then Cease to Begin, I went through some of my favorites of this past year, and these were just a few of the ones that stood out this time.
Spoon - "The Ghost of You Lingers", from Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga; 55%
I'm not gonna lie, by this point, I'm kinda totally over Spoon. Kill the Moonlight was awesome, with one of the best album openers of recent times, but c'mon; since then they've just been trying to repeat that. The 55% I just gave them for Ga Ga is really a lie; they don't have much chance of reaching my [possibly fictitious] Fave Albums of 2007 list. In all honesty, I don't even know if I attentively listened to it once all the way through. I did, however, listen to "The Ghost" and "Underdog" a lot. I hope you already have this song and don't need to download it; it's awesome.
Apostle of Hustle - "National Anthem of Nowhere", from National Anthem of Nowhere; 30%
Again, didn't give this album much chance, although I know I should have. I'm a huge fan of Broken Social Scene [ok, who isn't?], and BSS guitarist Andrew Whiteman's side project AoH does things much like BSS godfather Kevin Drew. This song really reminds me of two other related tunes-- BSS's "7/4 (Shoreline)", which shares the same 7/4 time signature and, although "Anthem" isn't blessed with any beautiful Leslie Feist in the background, it just generally sounds similar. It also reminds me of K-Os's "Valhalla", which features Kevin Drew's vocal cords.
Find all of my FaveSongs2007 posts here.
And since I talked so much about Ben Bridwell's Horses I feel I must share a tune of theirs, as well. "Is There a Ghost" may land on these pages someday before the end of the year as a favorite, but now I'll share "Ode to LRC" which I thought was a strange ode to the early internet chat system, before I realized it was L RC and not I RC. This song is awesome. It's the second track of the album [right after "Ghost"], which doesn't help the rest of the album's chances at getting much play, as I just keep repeating those two. But "Ode" is almost a perfect BoH tune; it's got a little bit of all of their magics.
You gotta love a dude who is not afraid to wail away [and repeat] the obvious: the world is such a wonderful place. And one can imagine him sitting there, on the steps of his southern porch, flannel shirtsleeves rolled up exposing his ink, smoking a cigarette, taking in this wonderful place. And dammit, if not for the awesome music, that's why I like him.
Wow. This really shoulda been two separate posts.