Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Awesome Music Week: The Shins

I've decided that Awesome Music Week will now last indefinitely. As such, this will be the last time I justify squeezing a band into awesome music week even though it ended like a year ago.

Most interesting part about this post: My suspicion is that, despite his uppity musical tastes, I really feel like LJT would like this album. That should be enough of a review, but, inexplicably, I'll keep typing.

The third album from The Shins, Wincing the Night Away, is awesome. Their first two albums are also very good, but, right at this moment, Wincing has hit me in the sweet spot. The thing about the sound of this album is that it's poppy and catchy and melodic while at the same time having a drama and maturity about it. Ok, I'm officially a pretentious douchebag for using the word maturity to describe a band, but that's the best I can come up with at the moment. The thing about this is that it sortof takes a pop type formula but turns it on its head.

I'm really having trouble putting this sound into words, so I apologize. It's a bit like if a band from the 80s evolved from a fluffy new wave type thing into a band who learns to play their instruments and use other sounds. The mellow vibe of this album really lets it stand on its own without the sense that the band is trying too hard. It's slickly produced, but not overproduced.

I'm guessing that I'm the only who has the album by The Script, but you may have heard their song Breakeven on the radio, if you still do the radio thing. The Script album is really good, but what you notice most about it is how polished it is, in particular for a debut album. Again, while it is a good album, they were trying too hard. This album by the Shins is just as polished, but with a deftness that reflects the actual level that the band is on.

I had trouble picking just two songs to represent this album, but I think these two do it well.

This song is called Sea Legs. Good example of the melodic thing mixing with the drama thing.

This one is called Split Needles.

1 comment:

Open Bar said...

Good luck getting "Phantom Limb"'s chanting-chorus thing out of your head: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4tuVq_BCrf8