Monday, September 11, 2006

Brilliance in Los Angeles

So it's late at night and I was in a major funk due to my favorite baseball team's continued poor play when I went trolling the internet for new music. This has, in the past, led to some rather interesting finds. But when I stumbled across Cerulean I could not have been more pleased. First off, the name of the band is, I hope, a nod to the first album by The Ocean Blue (a MOZ fave). Second, they are damn catchy. Third, they are from LA. All of these are excellent signs for a new favorite band of mine.

The band seems to have collected several albums and ep's in their time together and the sampling of mp3's on their site are all high quality. So far in the past 10 minutes I have listened to "Quiet Release" about three times. This is from their latest record NO SENSE IN WAITING as is another track, the equally brilliant "Keep Repeating".

Cerulean are somewaht reminiscent of another local band The Killingtons in their use of ridiculously catchy hooks and very soft understated singing. These are songs that are great for their ability to continue to rise and fall then lift the listener up again. I can only imagine how they might be live. This band could be huge except their good which means no one in the music industry will give them the time of day. Even so, I wish them the best of luck and will certainly keep my eye on their future matieral.

Official Site (check mp3 section for some samples)

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Indie Pioneer -- Oingo Boingo

Although he will probably end up being famous as a composer for numerous films, Dany Elfman got his start in the band Oingo Boingo. In the 1980's, Boingo had a string of hits culminating with the Halloween anthem "Dead Man's Party". The band recorded a few more records in the early 1990's before disbanding and elfman launched his second career.
There isn't a good way to describe Oingo Boingo's music other than eclectic. From tribal drum beats to the liveral use of xylophones, Boingo mines unusual textures and sonic combiantions to find their signature sound. Over all of this is Elfman's otherworldy voice. His is a mix of demonic possession and pop troubadour that enfused life into his macabre lyrics. the muscial connections to Halloween and the Day of the Dead made them concert staples here in Southern California. The selections included here are from a variety of time periods starting with "Just Another Day", "Stay" and "Private Life" from their early work and "Glory Be" and "Skin" from the highly underrated DARK AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL. Though not as inlfuential as some other 80's bands, Boingo's sense of theatricallity in music certainly left its mark on bands of today.

(m4a) Oingo Boingo -- Just Another Day
(m4a) Oingo Boingo -- Private Life (highy recommended)
(m4a) Oingo Boingo -- Stay
(m4a) Oingo Boingo -- Glory Be
(m4a) Oingo Boingo -- Skin