Monday, July 10, 2006

A Little Slice of Americana

It seems like one of the reoccuring themes of this Blog is me reviewing CD's about a month after the rest of the online music community. I'd like to say its because I like to spend my time digesting and thinking about the music before making a snap decision on it. But, the reality is that it's usually because I don't discover bands until after the initial hipster-music-nut tidal wave has already come and gone.

Regardless, in order to keep with this theme, I thought I'd mention Band of Horse.

Band of Horses is made up of members of the now disbanded Seattle group, Carissa's Weird, who I had the opportunity to see a couple times but who aren't currently available on Rhapsody. Unlike Carissa's Weird though, who's music was very intimate and meloncholy, Band of Horse have amped up the twangy guitar, and driven their music out into the lonely heartland of Americana.

Comparisons between them and My Morning Jacket and Neil Young are unavoidable and not inaccurate, but I'd also argue that there is more than a touch of Perry Farrell, y'know, without quite as many drugs. Regardless, it is one of the few cases that I've been digesting an album for a while before making a call on it, and in this case I'm glad I'm waited, as it grows on me more with each listen.

What did make me think about their album today was the discovery of another band that plays in roughly the same sandbox: The Theater Fire

The Theater Fire apparently has a new release out which hasn't popped up on Rhapsody yet; but reading about it made me decide to finally get around to checking out their self-titled release from last year.

And, I have to say I'm glad I did. The Theater Fire has a dangerously close name to another favorite band of mine, Arcade Fire, but the similarities pretty much end there. While Arcade Fire's songs chronicle an adolescence spent in the suburbs, the kids in the Theater Fire obviously spent their youth in a deserted bordertown. Their music has taken some of the best elements of country, rock and a healthy dose of mariachi and created an album filled with tales of drifter and lovers.

I might end up liking Band of Horses more in the long run, but the Theater Fire creates the sort of Americana I gravitate to like a moth (or better yet, a cowboy) to a fire.

Band of Horse's "Everything All the Time"

The Theater Fire's "Theater Fire"


generalfan said...

General--I need a new entry! You have been slacking! (OK, slacking at the blog, probably not at work.)

The General said...

Sorry fan! Work has been busy, so I haven't had the time to do an entry this week. I'm hoping to squeeze one in today though!