This is an mp3 blog attempting to document the gross amount of music I listen to. About once a day, I'll post something I like. If you're a copyright holder on anything I host, get in touch, and we'll settle things in a steel cage instead of a courtroom.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Tilly and the Wall

By all rights, I should hate this. Not only are these kids associated with Conor Oberst, they go for that cutsey thing. Plus, they're signed to a label called Team Love (*barf*), which regularly features indie scumbag graphics such as: ATTENTION INDIE AMERICA: STOP BEING DRUNK ON GARDEN STATE. THANK YOU.

"So, Matt," I can hearing you thinking/preparing to type in a poorly-written e-mail, "why don't you just cut off your dick and go listen to Architecture in Helsinki, and maybe that twee girl who knits her own scarves will give you the time of day." Well, as nice as it would be to eat out some timid twee girl (to go where no man has gone before), being forced to listen to Arab Strap ain't worth it.

The reason I like this is because it's fucking great. Instead of a drummer, they use hand percussion and a tap dancer. Yeah, it's a gimmick, but it's a pretty cool and unique gimmick. They also incorporate more than your typical twee influences - god knows how many crappy records I've heard where it's obvious the only groups they've ever listened to are the Softies and the Field Mice. The brass is a nice touch, adding a bit of mariachi flavor to the proceedings, and the harmonizing is above average. It's obvious these kids know how to read and play music, as opposed to just going on stage and being cute and librarianesque. Besides, the songs are just goddmaned catchy, and who can argue with a catchy song?

Summation - sometimes flowers can grow out of a pot of shit. Despite the odds against them being anything but yet more kids who thought they should be "artsy" and "cutesy wutsey" and all that other crap that makes 80% of all twee music fucking unlistenable, they managed to do something original and unique with the genre. Their new record, Bottoms of Barrels, is pretty good (some weak spots, but still a damn good listen), so go check it out, Chester.


Blogger AmyMeacham said...

Hoho, someone isn't drooling over "Garden State?" I don't believe it! I like Tilly & the Wall, but keep missing their live shows, damnit! Also, Arab Strap and Architecture in Helsinki were both really good the 2 times I saw each band play. The former's moroseness wasn't as suffocating when they rocked out a bit and the latter were interesting to see how they put all those musicians together, and yes the cuteness was actually infectious (don't know about the band's twee girls' sexual proclivities, however.) But then I usually prefer it live....good times were definitely had...

5:34 PM

Blogger Matt Ramone said...

Scroll down to see my review of the last Architecture in Helsinki album. I thought it had some good points, but it just sounded too much like enthusiastic fifth graders for me to get into - kinda like Kidz Bop: Indie Edition.

And I thought Garden State was okay, just a little too slow. Plus, it reminded me too much of the scene scumbags I know. That is to say, self-absorbed, self-medicated, angsty for no reason, and reading into things too much that they find depth in the mundane. You have no idea how many art majors I've wanted to kill while yelling "It's just a picture of a crack in the sidewalk! Just because it's black and white doesn't make it art!"

6:07 PM


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