Somehow they seem to be on everyone’s radar right now. At least on those of the music press. There is something quite compelling in the mixture of the fuzziness of bands like Frog Eyes and Wolf Parade and an Anthony-voice. Their music is so weird that it catches your ears whether you want it or not. Let’s say they have refined the art of usual country/folktunes combined with Hayden Thorpe’s unusual voice that sounds like Anthony with a grater in his throat (which isn’t a bad thing in this case). Underlined, assisted or displaced with bassist Tom Flemings full and heavenly voice they play with dissonances that sound just right. Whether that formula works on an album is open to the individual (I am convinced, though) but this quirky music is definitely a holiday from “been there done that”-bands and should at least have the chance to be heard. And apart from that, it gives you the chills to have them delivering joyful songs like “Devil’s Crayon” (sang by both). How the hell they got two exceptional singers in one group is a miracle and a blessing for the world.
The Devil’s Crayon
Indie and Electro are no longer two separate genres. It is doubtful that they ever were but especially in the last couple of years they blurred into bands like Klaxons, Hot Chip and Who made Who. Bodi Bill from Berlin are on the same path and they do a quite good job getting back the baton of good electro for Germany. The debut of Fabian Fenk and Alex Amoon is a mixture of electro and folk tunes but instead of mingling them, like the previously mentioned bands, they just put a couple of folksongs and a couple of electrosongs on their album. It seems a bit schizophrenic and maybe they can only win with that concept because Indiefans listen to both but fact is that both attempts are well made. Personally, I miss the concept of the album and probably would have welcomed it if they would have made a double record or at least made the songs more homogenous but maybe that’s just me and I should stop being so addicted to coherent albums.
All in all, their songs are fantastic and with a title like “I like Holden Caufield” you should get some appraisal (although I don’t like Holden Caufield).
I like Holden Caufield (by the way, I think, only the guy in the yellow jacket can dance)
This band isn’t new on the market, they haven’t even put out a single or a record lately, but on my usual journeys through myspace I discovered them and was smitten. It seems as if it’s the typical misery of a band that is making great music more or less in the underground, while younger bands that sound very much like them are making thousands of quids with that sound a couple of years later and are called “new and fresh”.
It is obvious that a lot of psychedelic electro bands have listened to some Menomena. Although Menomena deliver much more than psychedelic dance pop. They rather combine this sound with the eerie and heavyweight atmosphere of Radiohead and even some jazz elements. There is a sweet melancholy throughout the music that is in constant battle with the grandiose musical elements of a sparse piano and disturbing sound bites. All that combined with a voice that is canny and resentful at the same time is an impressive experience for the listener. Not easy to swallow but oh so good for every music fan who likes to be surprised.
PS: Don’t miss out the side-project of singer Danny Seim; lackthereof, which is less artsy but has very strong songwriting and he did a fantastic cover of The National’s “fake empire”