Posts tagged ‘indie’

January 11, 2012

Art Documentary: PressPausePlay

An unmissable documentary about art in the digital age for any passionate art and music lover: PressPausePlay. Fully available on Vimeo or their homepage.

As the production studio House of Radon describes the video:

“The digital revolution of the last decade has unleashed creativity and talent in an unprecedented way, with unlimited opportunities. But does democratized culture mean better art or is true talent instead drowned out? A Film About Hope, Fear and Digital Culture.”

It shows the various chances and benefits of the digitalization and democratization of arts and creative industry, yet it doesn’t neglect negative aspects and risks (yes, these actually exist!). 

“Cultural democracy or mediocrity?”

It is a high-quality, 1,5h video containing interviews with some of the world’s most influential creators in music, movies, photography and advertising, including Ólafur Arnalds, Apparat, Moby, Bon Iver, Hot Chip, Keith Harris, Lykke Li, Robyn, authors from Pitchfork, or Napster-founder Sean Parker, underlined with beautfiful tunes and  powerful eye-candy.

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January 2, 2012

Best of 2011

Without losing too many words, presenting the soundepiphany Best Albums of 2011!

Beware, it’s a colorful mix between Indie Pop, Folk, Electronic, Rock and even R&B and HipHop tracks.

The list is rather softly ordered and slightly biased since some albums grew on better over time and some diminished in its significance. Folk, female vocalists and electropop are dominant.

20. Jamie Woon – Mirrorwriting

19. Wild Beasts – Smother

18. Kimbra – Vows

17. Cloud Control – Bliss Release

16. Bon Iver – Bon Iver

15. Bombay Bicycle Club – A Different Kind Of Fix

14. Florence and The Machine – Ceremonials

13. James Blake – James Blake

12. Apparat – The Devil’s Walk

11. Lykke Li – Wounded Rhythms

10. Slow Club – Paradise

9. Drake – Take Care

8. Feist – Metals

7. Moddi – Floriography

6. Metronomy – The English Riviera

5. Oh Land – Oh Land

4. Bodi Will – What?

3. Fleet Foxes – Helplessness Blues

2. Laura Marling – A Creture I Don’t Know

1. SBTRKT – SBTRKT

Albums that didn’t make it: Plan B – The Defamation of Strickland Banks; New Look – New Look; Marian – Only Our Hearts To Lose; Those Dancing Days – Daydreams and Nightmares.

And some LPs that didn’t quite make it, simply because they’ve just recently been released or because I’ve discovered them too late – and don’t want to make quick judgements:

The Roots – Undun; PJ Harvey – Let England Shake; Girls – Father Son Holy Ghost; St. Vincent – Strange Mercy, Danger Mouse and Daniele Luppi – Rome; Destroyer – Kaputt; Frank Ocean – Nostalgia, Ultra.

In my humble opinion, 2011 has been an incredible for good music. Especially those artists mixing elements and styles of differents genres have grown in support. Considering female vocalists, several important artists have released new, brilliant LPs this year, from Lykke Li, Feist and Laura Marling to Oh Land and of course Florence and The Machine.

May the next year be just as good for music! Happy New Year!

November 9, 2011

Bon Iver – Blood Bank EP

“That secret that you know, but don’t know how to tell.
It fucks with your honor and it teases your head.”

One of Justin Vernon‘s most beautiful songs, again creating that distinct Winter atmosphere. His songs seem to be even more enchanting with chilly Winter air and snow surrounding you…

Blood Bank has only been released on an EP, but it might just triumph over Bon Iver’s long players, especially since it includes two more brilliant tunes:

Babys is dominated by a high-pitched piano, only giving rest for the words “Summer comes, to multiply!” The (almost) acoustic song Woods starts slow and with repetitive lyrics, then growing to immense heights.

Enjoy Blood Bank it with a well done fan video:

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October 6, 2011

Laura Marling: A Creature I Don’t Know

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Dear Laura,

you’re having the honor of this very first post. Yes, this is might be letter of admiration. (Hardly a secret anymore, though.)

I am inhaling every tune and verse of her recently released third album A Creature I Don’t Know – quite an output considering your debut album Alas, I Cannot Swim only dropped four years ago. Yet I’m amazed how a 21 year old can not only write unique tunes but is capable of telling stories most grandmothers would envy to have in their repertoire.

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So what’s new?

What has always enchanted me most is her mature voice, combined with her pragmatic view on love and life. “I know how you feel, I know it’s not right, but it’s real” as she sings in her latest single Sophia, is expressing this as much as her older lyrics: “Lover please, do not fall to your knees, it’s not like I believe in everlasting love” in one if her first songs, Ghost.

Hardly having much of a presence onstage, Laura Beatrice Marling has now grown into her role of a live singer, showing much more confidence than four years ago. There, her guitar had seemed like the companion she desperately needed to keep herself above ground. As she stated in an interview with The Guardian, this grown assertiveness is also reflected in the making of her latest LP where she is finally taking charge of her own production: “Well, I’ve got the confidence now, and I know what I want it to sound like, so before anybody else gets their grubby mitts on it, why don’t I put my stamp on it?”

Her distinctive metaphors and allusions to nature and death prevail, but Laura now shows much more strength and security in showing these darker sides. Her charismatic words may reflect this just as much as the way she sings them. The powerful contrast of her upper and lower voice, which can switch in a single line, is now carried with the appropriate confidence, making A Creature I Don’t Know a mature piece of art.

Selectives

The epic 6-minute-song The Beast, a “balancing act between wanting and needing” as she said herself, might be the most energetic of her new songs – leaving me breathless listening to it for the first time. Another, melodious and simplistic, yet again dark song, is Night After Night. A classic folkish one certainly is All My Rage, building up from a strong solo to a rattling orchestral ensemble. As Laura is telling a story throughout her album, the songs certainly appreciate not being isolated from each other, though.

Accompanied by strong tunes from pianos, cellos, tubas and even choirs, but much less banjo, Laura’s album is moving a bit more towards rock and away from her older classic folk songs, which have been much influenced by her fellow artists Noah & The Whale and Mumford & Sons. Now she is very much able to stand for herself, already selling out her concerts within days. In perspective, Laura Marling’s development as a singer and songwriter is astonishing, leaving me anxious for her future releases.

Yours truely ;)

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