Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Reviews - 800Beloved - Bouquet (Mikel OD); Darling Imperial - I Know Everyone You Know

800Beloved - Bouquet
(words: Mike Pfeiffer)

Recently I was discussing with my friend how the instant access to the overflowing fountain of music has lead me to a lesser appreciation of it. When music today flows like water from a leaky tap, it's easier to leave the tap dripping. Why bother to even drink from it? It's better to just let it puddle on the floor and maybe some will manage to latch onto my pant cuff as I stumble through it on the way to take a leak.

Of course, just to prove I'm full of shit and like to pontificate fancy verbiage, an album like 800Beloved's "Bouquet" comes along and the water suddenly turns purple with a sugary, syrup taste coaxing me to lap it up like a man that hasn't had a good drink in ages. I could go through a breakdown on just how good each of "Bouquet's" 11 tracks are with moments that echo New Order with a shoegaze twist, but that would just be an exercise in tedium as the whole album is glorious in it's decadent, rich darkness.

reviewer: aka Mikel O.D. more info:

Scouring the gulch of Detroit music, with all its weird indie experimentalism or electro-pop born from an almost reactionary distancing from the bluesy shred-garage stuff of early 00’s, one risks getting weird-genre-spliced-tunnel-vision and missing the band’s that are doing, radical as it sounds, more of a straight rock take – guitars, rolling rhythms, catchy choruses, blazing solos – the good ol chop, churn and burn.

Not that that is merely what sextet Darling Imperial are all about – but it lessens the esoteric and puts focus on talent and collaboration. Particularly highlighted on their debut EP, I Know Everyone You Know, is the intertwining styles of each player. At its core, it has the soul, throaty growl and stage-side fist clenched feeling of those garage days, but reaching back to the jangly-fied melody-heavy rock of 60’s brit-pop. Take all this tambourine-tapped, hand-clapped, head-bopped goodness and give it the wings of classic 80’s new-wave college rock and add in rocket power of those burning grimace, pedal-pushed guitar solos and you get quite a swirled serum decanted into the cracks of this 6-song EP.

Punchy beats, grooving rhythm guitars, monster-rock riffs that often blaze into solos and soulful moaned vocals that can bite and bolster over anthemic rock runs (“Baton Rouge”) or swoon and sway in heartbreaking repudiation over the organ-pulsed jangly waltz (“Where Do You Go At Night?”). The opening guitars of “Company You Keep” set a this glitzy and surfy tone immediately feeling at home with many other art-punk revivalists, but its given extra guttural girth by its deep crooned vocals rolling into these soft oooooh’s before the rest of the guitars bust in and everything starts twirling faster and faster before the walls catch ablaze with this spacey guitar solo. Be it a rough shimmied waltz (“Emily”), a foot-stomping ballad catching that classic grimy bar night vibe (“Sticks & Stones”) or a marching drum beat under a dreamy, sad-and-soothing ballad “Don’t Close Your Eyes” – it’s a wide arc of ideas, styles and talents coalescing, but the sextet always feels comfortable and stitched in…
more info: Darling Imperial myspace

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