Friday, September 28, 2007

"At the foot of my rival"

I need to get the New Amsterdams' new album. You can listen to the whole thing (probably just for now) on their Myspace page. I remember they were the first band I went to see on my own when I was working in New York for the first time. This was before I graduated and was doing an internship. Then about 3-4 years later I saw them when they opened for the New Amsterdams. I was impressed that they now had an upright bass player.

Anyhow, likes about the new album: It's got a bit more of a faint folky, alt-country tinge to its indie rock and some songs have a mild "old" feel to them. One song, "Revenge," I'm really digging particularly. It's a bit muffled with a scratchy, tinny quality that makes it sound like either a song being played on a record player in a quiet house, or it sounds like a forgotten song recorded on a whim on a cassette tape found later in a shoe box. I also really like the repeating guitar melody. Especially the jerky way it bridges between the chorus and the second versus. Giving it more of that rough, bad-quality recording sound.

"Silverlake" is one of those songs that has a bit of the alt-country undertone while still remaining indie rock. I think Matt Pryor's voice is pretty key in this juxtaposition because his singing style when compared to something like Neko Case or even Oakley Hall, is still emo/indie rock and The Get Up Kids even as the instrumental after the lyric of "life is too rich wasting waiting around for you," twang and whine. They especially wail away at the end with an instrumental interlude.

I love the instruments for "Lost Long Shot," especially the opening. The sound makes me think of...broken down old toys forgotten and playing on their own in an attic. Like when you think of the lyrics and the music together, there's a sense of victory despite being worded with a bit of melancholy as the music plays on persistently. I don't know, I can imagine some old toys singing a song like this simply because they might be worn, faded and forgotten, but they had been loved and played with and chipped edges and faint paint where little hands touched mean more to them sitting in the dark attic rather than new and wrapped in plastic on a store shelf...yea, I know weird. I keep turning the lines "I've been a long lost shot, a prodigal son by trade" and "Only the fools rush in, but only the frightened wait, I would be foolish than scared of my own mistakes" in my head because I like them so much.


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