Tuesday, 9 November 2010

A dragon, some fever and loads of balloons...

Obscure title... yes maybe as my specialist subject this week has been not sleeping that well, leaving me overtired and brain power lacking,  fancies will be related to music, the food of love, and basically all I can muster for now...enjoy!

First is the lovely Yukimi Nagano of Swedish import Little Dragon, her beautifully woozy vocals make up for her very, very hairy band mates, however jokes about beards have got me in serious trouble in the past so I will resist...Here are Little Dragon doing the live thing with 'Feather', from Machine Dreams that came out last year and finally they are making some waves after some collaborating on Gorillaz current album 'Plastic Beach'. Yukimi's enchanting voice works so well with the  pop bleeping and swirling synths for this one...

The track featured below is my personal favourite, ‘Blinking Pigs’ is just hauntingly melodic with a great bassline, strangely enchanting lyrics about ‘phantom legs’, coupled with a fantastical Bjork esque video, what more could you ask for? Definitely ones to keep an eye on and do check out the track ‘Twice’ on their myspace which is just gorgeousness… enjoy!

This has served as a little reminder and prod to investigate ‘If You Return’ again, a collaboration with Maximum Balloon. Synth heavy pop material is coming from the debut from Maximum Balloon; a new direction and brainchild of Dave Sitek, jumping ship from alternative art rock to this new electronically focused pop, he is  the producer behind the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Foals, Scarlet Johannson and former member of TV on the Radio.

 For this new project, he has full writing credits but has featured ten guest vocalists among who are Karen O, Aku, David Byrne, Yukimi Nagano and Theophilus London. Sitek, famously a prickly character and quoted for citing his annoyance at bands for not opening up to new ideas, can’t be all that bad to get this line up for his first solo album. Having moved his studio from Brooklyn to L.A, maybe it has ‘sunshined’ up his music resulting in a collection of pop gems for his solo debut.

'If  You Return' has been around as a one and a half minute promo for a while but finally a full version is available on YouTube, no video as yet but hopefully the dancer from the promo will feature.Have a listen to its synth pop loveliness, Yukimi’s fantastic soulful vocals mixed up with some Vince Clarke style bleeping does have an exquisite Yazoo quality going on.

And finally, a huge influence on Little Dragon and the absolute Queen of Nordic electro, Fever Ray, with 'Stranger Than Kindness', yes the album has been out a year now but until this week I hadn't seen this video. How could this have happened?

Fever Ray covering Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds could only be just brilliant and the video is just fabulously noir electro creepiness with the set from her live performance mixed in. Directed by Andreas Nilsson, it mixes the lasers with skulls and shamanic imagery in such an eerily Fever Ray way, weird perfection; she is always one to mesmerise and confuse all at the same time.

Apparently there will be no more Fever Ray now but a little consolation is that she has started recording with her brother again so watch out for that if you're a fan of The Knife... I don't have enough lovelovelove for this track!



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