Hey, There’s a Bird in This Mirror!

Diversion Enthusiast Society, est. 2007

Posts Tagged ‘R.E.M.

Music Marathon 2009 Part 8 (The Pains of Being Pure at Heart – Shudder to Think)

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The Pains of Being Pure at Heart – s/t
The Pains of Being Pure at Heart may not be much more than a predictable sum of influences, but “Belle & Sebastian meets Jesus & Mary Chain” is far from the worst thing you can write about a band.  Occasionally, the J&MC distortion can get in the way of the gentle B&S melodies and (especially) lyrics, but the band fares far better overall than Magnetic Fields, who tried coating their understated pop in the same guitar buzz on Distortion in 2008.  At their best, TPoBPaH manage to make you overlook the fact that most of the songs rely on the same sonic tricks.  “Young Adult Friction,” for instance, touts a melody that no amount of guitar noise can disguise.  (And I’m reasonably sure that the librarian and aspiring librarian in the house haven’t simply been suckered in by lyrics about getting it on in a library – “You put your back to the spines,” indeed.) Read the rest of this entry »


Written by Dave

January 21, 2010 at 6:46 pm

Music Marathon 2008, Part 10 (Okkervil River – R.E.M.)

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Okkervil River – The Stand Ins
This review will be relatively short, since we have a little blog project coming up involving this album, but it probably deserves a few words here, as well.  The Stand Ins is the album I’ve listened to the most this year, and it’s most certainly my favorite.  Will Sheff continues the smart, poetic exploration of mid-level fame and artistic inspiration that he began on last year’s The Stage Names and his band further expands their musical palette into Dylanesque electric folk (“Singer-Songwriter”), low-key soul (“Starry Stairs”), and new wave pop (“Pop Lie”).  It both entertains on a first spin and yields additional rewards with every additional listen. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Dave

January 7, 2009 at 7:39 pm