- By Request!
2013 Grammy Nominations:
- Record of the Year for "Somebody That I Used To Know" (feat. Kimbra)
- Best Pop/Duo Group Performance for "Somebody That I Used To Know" (feat. Kimbra)
- Best Alternative Music Album
This came in originally as a request by one of my best friends, Jess. We listened to a lot of the album last year while looking at bridesmaid dresses at her place for about two hours. Update to that: I have one, and it's a different color and length completely than original discussions entailed. =)
Wally de Backer is from Australia and… wait, yes - that is in fact his name. I KNOW. He got into what Jason Ankeny calls "cut-and-paste electronic music" after his band, Downstairs, resolved. He's had a few albums under his belt, but obviously the song "Somebody That I Used To Know" is what really launched the world's obsession.
There's a lot of art involved throughout these videos, and plenty of music to hear, so let's get right into this thing and learn more than one song.
"Making Mirrors" opens up the album in such a timid way for the first minute that I am almost sure I'm listening to the wrong album. Nonetheless, here we go with a smokey soft sound.
He picks up the pace though with "Easy Way Out." While the voice is one like Beck's (man it's hard for me to be okay with that), the music has a Cee Lo funk sound I wasn't expected, and harmonies in the chorus like the Beatles. Basically, I'm pretty much into what's happening, even if I have to strain to hear any of the verse lyrics.
WHOA wait, when did Gotye discover a voice and rhythm? "I Feel Better" is possibly the best thing I've heard so far in this session just due to how much fun and rock steady it is. The song's a pick-me-up for just about any down time I can think of, and completely necessary for that 'dance-around-the-room' soundtrack.
"In Your Light" seriously starts off like a good ol' church revival song, until that keyboard comes in with all its glistening goodness. Basically, think Coldplay, sans the vocals, at least for this first bit. Oh shit son, there's horns too? Please, don't let vocals come into this one - it's… oh, there they are. And they're… good! This is the most ridiculously happy sounding song done almost entirely with a computer I have ever heard. So much fun!
In a slight slow down, though just enough for a rockin' little sway reggae beat, we get "State Of The Art." Annddd I liked it till effect on the voice (namely dropping it way down low - and not in a sexy way) comes in and kills the vibe for me. I understand experimenting, and even understand other folks really enjoying this, but sorry - just not for me. So much so not for me that I won't even waste my time trying to fill up my paragraph space with justifications.
- "Somebody That I Used To Know"
- "Eyes Wide Open"
- "I Feel Better"
- "In Your Light"
- "Save Me"
I discussed this with two friends today, including Jess, before I finalized the review. We're all in agreement - the songs are completely and totally different from each other, and are each other completely hits or completely misses. This is sort of an awful way to lay out a full album, but when it works, it works well, and I'd say here it's like a well-oiled machine.