September 23, 2010

horse feathers

the lovely Thistled Spring album cover 

this evening i thought i caught a wiff of the onset of winter in the air. and i came home to play Horse Feathers. this one's for that space just between autumn and winter. it's apt because this elegant indie folk band is fantastic at doing just that - creating beautiful spaces in their songs for listeners to breathe and take it all in before they go on to the next verse. no, it's not music for the dying. that indie sound would never do that to you. point is that you've got to take time out to listen to Horse Feathers. but listen you must.

Horse Feathers is led by songwriter/guitarist/vocalist Justin Ringle and supported by multi-instrumentalists Nathan Crocket, Catherine Odell, and Sam Cooper. and each one is f****** talented. that indie sound strongly suggests getting both their albums Words are Dead (2006), and their latest Thistled Spring (2010).


that indie sound's good friend - an electro-trash, acid jazz junkie (god save his soul) - was holding on to Thistled Spring to pass it on to me. the sealed cd and the eloquent words (thistled spring) were slowly eating him up alive. then one day he ripped it open and put it on. i gave him the raised eyebrow when i finally picked it up from him and saw the plastic gone. he turned back to his computer but not before muttering, 'breathless'. enough said.

songs to look out for 'Starving Robins', 'Thistled Spring', 'Cascades', 'Cur in the Weeds', 'Belly of June', 'As a Ghost', 'Hardwood Pews', oh just go and listen to them all.

curs in the weeds

starving robins


thistled spring

big echo by the morning benders

twentieth reason why california rocks:
The Morning Benders

that indie sound had given their first album Talking Through Tin Cans the good nod. and they still have that indie sound nodding with their new album Big Echo.

there's brilliance in this album. a pop record where every song is laid out beautifully with sonic brilliance. this will be on top of everybody's list this year (maybe after the black keys). the tiny, hidden melodies is what got that indie sound. there are very few numbers that have that genius. for example that indie sound had the Big Echo playing on for a week. end of week, it discovers two layered harmonies in 'Excuses'. dont you love these tiny surprises?

song picks would include 'Wet Cement', 'Excuses' (of course), 'Stitches', and 'All Day All Night'.

here's what that indie sound's favourite reviewer had to say about the album:

'Remember that line in As Good As It Gets when Nicholson’s character used one of the greatest panty-dropper lines of all time, “You make me want to be better man.” The Big Echo makes me want to become a better reviewer of music.'

the sound:
Chris Chu: vocals, guitar
Julian Harmon: drums
Tim Or: bass
Jon Chu: guitar, keys