Top Ten Tracks on Elbo.Ws Reviewed in 50 Words or Less: 6/16/08--6/30/08
(Tilly and the Wall)
Bi-Weekly, MFR Reviews the top ten tracks on music blog aggregator Elbo.ws. Here are the songs for the weeks of June 16th through June 30th.
1. Tilly and the Wall - "Pot Kettle Black"
Spunk and sass seem to be prerequisites for any 21st Century cutie pie, regardless of their gender. This White Stripes-esque reinvention of the twee folk-poppers has plenty of the former and the latter. But, the song also goes to show that a little of a good thing can certainly go a long way.
2. Wolf Parade - "Language City"
A shuffling beat and a minor, jangly chord progression keeps a solid, steady ground for a boogie piano line dance all over any malaise in the lyrics. "Language City" may not mean a thing to Wolf Parade, but he's gotta make a better case for listeners to stay away, because this track is quite good. Dig the tempo change.
3. Wolf Parade - "Call it a Ritual"
At Mount Zoomer's first leak track is still going strong. Indeed, music blogs frequently posting this song could be called a ritual of some kind. But when the songwriting is this consistently solid, the dark, syncopated riff that drives the track will always hold up.
4. MGMT - Electric Feel (Justice Remix)
Dance your ass off to a remix that we can't post anymore.
5. Girl Talk - "Set It Off"
The latest artist to set off New Wave of Internet Business Models discussions, Girl Talk's anything goes sample habits may make paranoid androids out of business executives. But listeners may have a hard time following along with the rapid and random changes in songs. Succeeds more as a concept, maybe as an experiment. But as an actual song...
6. Fleet Foxes - "White Winter Hymnal"
While groups like Band of Horses and My Morning Jacket may have beaten Fleet Foxes to the reverb-heavy indie-country-rock beat, the harmonies here (surely an influence of the Wilson family, if not Carters) are so impeccably arranged and delivered that any skepticism held melts away, like a white winter snow.
7. The Great Northwest - "Chief John"
Like Wilco in a cool (both in temperature and in terms of hip-ness), smoky lounge, this dreamy, acoustic-guitar and organ-driven song suggests the alt-country trailblazers taking a slow dive off the reverb plank. Like its namesake, this proves an ideal soundtrack for walking while daydreaming.
8. Sigur Ros - "Gobbledigook"
After nearly a decade of sustaining themselves on glacial, celestially orchestral soundscapes, Sigur Ros masterfully add thumping percussion and acoustic instrumentation, while retaining the ethereal mystique of their previous work. A long overdue change, but an incredibly welcome one all the same. One of my favorite tracks of the year.
9. Earlimart - "Song For"
Who know to whom this song is intended, but whomever it is, they should probably stand up and be counted, because this upbeat, cleaned-up-Elliot-Smith bit of sad folk-pop isn't half bad. It certainly isn't original, but it ultimately pleases all the same.
10. Shearwater - "Leviathan, Bound"
Melodrama has never been so compact. Shearwater's genius lies in making songs--and, telling stories--of epic proportion in the time that it takes to read a short story. "Leviathan, Bound", with its tale of hunter and hunted, unique instrumentation, and Jonathan Meisburg's Meismurizing vocals, is art-rock for people who don't like to fuck around.
Buy the music here, or at your local independent music store.