A quick overview of this year's nominations:
- Record of the Year - "Holocene"
- Song of the Year - "Holocene"
- Best New Artist
- Best Alternative Music Album
Full album listen link on Spotify's right there if you want to check it out.
So we start things off with "Perth." Immediately, you know you're in for something different here. We're lulled into this sense of calm, but there's horns playing in the back. To carry through. Here's the first of the videos posted to the boniver YouTube page.
Something I'm noticing almost immediately from the videos is that this album is supposed to flow from one some to another - there is a connect. "Minnesota, WI" pick up the pace a bit with some interesting use of string sounds and a sweet little bass line before the lyrics kick in. Thus far, not entirely sold on the vocals, but the instrumentals are fascinating.
"Holocene" is the big single to come from this. I guess it's been played on mainstream? I just know that this is the song that got people talking about the band. I like that the vocals take more control over this song, as the harmonies are enchanting. This songs got a weird sense to it. There are stops where you think it will end, but it picks right back up. There are these jarring clicks that shake you awake just as your drifting away.
Moving on. "Towers" almost didn't play for me because Spotify's being weird about me pausing and starting tracks. -_- Jerks. Okay, listening straight through, then we'll get back to videos. So, vocals are a little high on this one, but I like the movement of this piece. It's a little more contemporary, and probably the one people would know in the concerts. It just has that feel. The drums add in this kickin' beat that folk music has so uniquely to itself.
I don't have an explanation for this, but "Michicant" is totally the song I'm most familiar with for no real reason from this album. It's just got the most familiar sound. Again, we get a very natural sound, as though we're meant to listen to this amongst the trees, but the usage of instruments and voices gets interesting without being overwhelming. The up-turns of the vocals are almost like birds taking off from the branches... see where I go at the weird times of night?
"Hinnom, TX" has this almost... how do I put this.. I feel like we're under water, not in the good ol' state. It's wafty in an unexpected way, given the title, but maybe it's supposed to be on the wind. The echo usage worked so well at the beginning of the track, to a point where I had to stop what I was doing and strictly listen. But then the voices got to be too much.
"Wash." (and there's a period at the end of the song title, so shut up grammer/punctuation crazy friends) is back to the higher pitches but with this light airy piano in the background. There's this interesting point a little while in where what I can only label as a vocal bridge builds, and you begin to thing there's going to be some intensity, but no worries, we remain calm.
"Calgary" immediately sounds like a Sing song - just the opening chords. The organ's a little intimidating as an instrument on any song, so the sound of it on something like this wasn't entirely welcoming. The slight drum that comes in does help things though. Actually the song picks up a lot as it goes on, almost enough to be classified as a lite rock song. It's kind of interesting, the progression of it I mean. That is not the direction I expected.
At only a minute and a half long, if you're not paying attention, you might miss "Lisbon, OH." It almost sounds like a film score piece, meant to be behind something, not on as a track. Almost like a cleanse-the-pallet track before the big finish (my foodie friend could better term that than I can right now).
The final song is "Beth/Rest." Oh sweet jesus that is an 80's ballad sound leading in if I've ever heard one. Damn it, I thought this was indie folk?? Even the saxophone? How did we get here? This isn't bad sounding, but doesn't leave the best taste in my mouth for the album's end.
Added to My Playlist: