Monday, February 4, 2013

#MusicMonday 84: Charlotte Gainsbourg, The Replacements & more

What the CL Music Team is jamming this week (media included).

Posted By , , , and on Mon, Feb 4, 2013 at 1:03 PM

Find out what the CL Music Team is jamming to rocket launch the work week. Click here to check out previous entries.

Shae - William Elliott Whitmore and Jenny Hoyston, Hallways of Always EP (2012)
Boot-stomping and banjo-picking William Elliott Whitmore and improvising noise punk Jenny Hoyston (of Erase Errata and Paradise Island) sound like a strange pairing, doesn't it? And maybe it is strange, but it works on their album, Hallways of Always. Here, Hoyston shows off her folky side with a clear voice reminiscent of Maria Taylor or Judee Sill. Whitmore replaces his usually dusty bellowing with a softer croon and his banjo is more melancholy and tempered by a humming organ. Together, their voices blend into something angelic. The album's one drawback, if I can even call it that, is the track, "Black Iowa Dirt" which sounds as though it were an outtake from one of Whitmore's solo records, completely devoid of Hoyston.

Leilani - Thao & The Get Down Stay Down, We the Common (2013)
I fell in love, hard, and her name is Thao Nguyen. This is her project with multi-instrumentalist Adam Thompson; she, too, plays multiple instruments and sings like a sweet piping bird against richly-hued roots-folk songs with drunken melodies and eclectic sonic embellishments. Listen to a duet with Joanna Newsom, "Kindness Be Conceived," after the jump; review forthcoming.

Taylor - Ivan and Alyosha, All the Times We Had (2013)
The band's debut full-length has overtaken my regular playlists. Stirring yet intimate, it's just the kind of music that will transition us into spring.

Gabe - The Replacements, Pleased to Meet Me (1987)
I've been on a serious Replacements tear for the last few weeks now. It started when I watched Color Me Obsessed, the outstanding new documentary that recaps the rise and fall of the legendary Minneapolis band from those that knew them well and were well familiar with the scene that birthed them. To add to the mania, I'm currently engrossed in All Over But the Shouting, the entertaining book that again, gets the opinions and observations from friends, contemporaries and followers regarding the existence of a band that's often cited as being "the greatest band of the 1980s." Please to Meet Me finds the 'Mats at the crossroads of their all-too-short lifespan. Arguably their most accessible and instantly likeable album, it's a prime example of the many layers that chief songwriter and frontman Paul Westerberg is capable of. A balls-out rocker, a melancholy tune — makes no difference. Westerberg is comfortable tackling any subject matter in any style. I loved this band during their existence and all their fine records have aged well. Long live the Replacements!

Evan - Charlotte Gainsbourg, IRM (2009)
This album is French — French in that breathy, sexy way that has been parodied from here to there. Low voice, cooing, ménage à trois. But it's not a caricacture — Gainsbourg, a capable actress, is also a strong musician who fulfills the French pop tradition of her esteemed father, Serge Gainsbourg. There is a wistful power in these gentle, romantic songs, and the tracks are anything but slight.

Ray - Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr., "Nothing But Your Love"
It's either brilliant or the dumbest band name ever, but what's in a name. right? Right. This track from Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr's 2010 Horse Power EP should have reached the end of its internet-age shelf life already, but it's a go to for me when I need to get focused in the mornings. Maybe it's the subtle genius of the drum programming, ethereal keyboards and acoustic dancing with each other, or maybe it's the vocal harmonies and synthesized woodwinds working together. It might even be the asinine music video, but this one never grows old — and I hope it never does. Watch below.

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