Saturday, November 10, 2012

#112: The Head and the Heart - The Head and the Heart (2011)

The Head and the Heart is still a relatively new band to the majority of the US. They're from Seattle and were declared 'Seattle's Best New Band' in 2011. They've had their music featured on 'How I Met Your Mother', 'Beaver Falls', and 'Chuck'. My buddy, Mike introduced me to them and for that I'm very, very grateful.

Coeur D'Alene
I really love the bridge - it's got this quick quarter note piano pounding away. The harmonies throughout this album are phenomenal. The lead singer has this very folky, strong, yet fragile sound to it and when he goes a bit higher in his register it really opens up and it has a wonderful quality to it. Drums push the song along but it's the piano that really makes this track, it's well written and recorded. It's not my typical style of piano but it makes me debate whether it should be. It does a marvellous job of taking chord structures, creating a rhythm, and also introducing trills and embellishments all without distracting from other instruments.

This album is making me reconsider the role of the piano in a group such as this. It doesn't do anything too overwhelming and it doesn't control the feeling or the style of the song, that's left to the harmonies, drums, and bass. While there's plenty of harmonies throughout the song, they're blended in such a way that they're completely complementary and never distracting. However, what I really enjoyed about this album so far is their lack of fear to switch styles mid song and their return to the original theme in such a fluid way.

Lost in My Mind
The harmonies are absolutely gorgeous, I love the piano, I love the guitar, I love the bass, I love the drums, I love everything about this track. The instrumentation stays static but the bass keeps the track moving along. It provides the best moments on the album and it is the best track on the album. I'm impressed at how they keep things interesting throughout the album, nothing gets old. The moment your ear is ready for something new it magically appears before you can finish your thought and it's nothing like you had imagined.

All in all, I'm surprised by how much I enjoyed this album. They do so many things right, why am I just hearing about them? I've really enjoyed the lyrics, they deal with very personal matters and relationships. The writer has a very unique way of looking at things, nothing is an easy rhyme, and you never see anything coming. Yet when he sings the words everything makes sense - even though you never would have thought of it yourself. It's not that the lyrics are incredibly well written, it's the manner in which they're said that I truly appreciate. They are greater than the sum of their parts; no aspect of the music is awe-inspiring but together they create something very unique.

Tomorrow's album: The Byrds' Mr. Tambourine Man.

No comments:

Post a Comment