Monday, February 4, 2013

Musical Monday: Drift into the Atmosphere

Sometimes you want music to speak to you, sometimes you want it to jar you out of an mood, or assist your descent as you wallow in one.  Sometimes you want to lyrics to surgically reveal your outlook, cutting deeply where you think you've hidden something too far within yourself. Sometimes you want it to lift you, propelling you higher than the clouds. But sometimes you want music to just carry you away, to be there almost insubstantially in the background, slowly drawing you in until you realize you have lost yourself in it, until you yourself are adrift in the atmospheric sounds, floating aimlessly. That's the music this week is dedicated to.

Explosions in the Sky: Postcard from 1952
You can't talk about atmospheric post-modern rock without talking about Explosions in the Sky.  This track is off of Take Care, Take Care, Take Care, released in 2011. The band did something new with this album and gave filmmaking friends small bits of money to create music videos (something Sigur Ros is also doing now, which you should check out as well... maybe that'll be another theme), which the band hadn't created for any songs before.
The almost achingly slow movement throughout this video it exactly what their music inspires in my own inner eye, moments turned infinite through musical expression.
If they sound familiar it's because they did the soundtrack for Friday Night Lights (the movie the show was based on), and their echoey guitars have seeped into other areas of pop culture as well.

Nosaj Thing: Eclipse/Blue feat. Kazu Makino
I initially found this video on a music blog called Dead Horse March (you can see their post here). It is a Creators Project backed piece with enchantingly complex light show (think about a conceptual art piece that inspired the Beyonce mega/mirror/floor/wall thing) and slow steady vocals.
It is directed by Daito Manabe, takcom, Satoru Higa, and MIKIKO, and you can see more about the creative process on the Creators Project YouTube channel.

Oliver Tank: Last Night I Heard Everything In Slow Motion
I found this through KEXP's Music That Matter's Podcast. Oliver tank is a music producer out of Sydneym Australia (big surprise, I like more Australian music). The electronic clicking percussion propels the violins through their melody and the minimal vocals create a chill vibe to escape into...
until it ends too soon.

Hammock: (Leaving) The House Where We Grew Up
Another KEXP find. I really depend on them for a lot of my new music mostly because I find that I like a lot of the stuff I find there.
From the album Departure Songs, released in October 2012. The two-man band out of Nashville, TN definitely has an Explosions in the Sky vibe and I don't flatter myself into thinking that's a groundbreaking assessment at all. I think their ambient, post rock sound is best experienced when driving long distances as the musical montage/soundtrack to your life, try it sometime.

Jonsi & Alex: Atlas Song
I used the album Riceboy Sleeps in my yoga class numerous times. It was wonderful, and you should definitely try stretching to the music, even if you aren't a yoga person. It definitely puts you in a place where you can relax and calmly enjoy whatever the task at hand is, although a few people did fall asleep during Shavasana so maybe it worked too well.
If there's one thing the Jonsi, the lead singer of Sigur Ros, and his partner Alex get, its gentle atmospheric melodies, created with conventional instruments and unconventional sounds, with swelling orchestras and choir voices, leaving the listener with a paradoxical feeling of contented longing.

1 comment:

P!nky said...

You've mentioned explosions in the sky before, I think i like them!