Last time out, we took a closer look at POWER POP in our analysis of the key genres that make up our preferred musical styles. Next, we look at POP.
Wow. Talk about a blast from the past! Today, Canada’s Label Obscura has reissued one of the best independent pop albums of the early 2000s – The Night And I Are Still So Young by The Heavy Blinkers. This is the first time this classic album will be released on vinyl.
Fly I Will Because I Can is the third album from My Favourite Things, founded in Brooklyn by Dorothea Tachler (formerly of Igloo, The Swirlies, Alles Wie Gross).
The Sharp Things is an New York City-based chamber pop collective, led by singer/songwriter Perry Serpa (born 1965). Current members include Jim Santo, Aisha Cohen, Michelle Caputo, James Pertusi, and Andrea Dovalle. EverybodyEverybody is the final instalment of an album series that began in 2013.
I met English singer-songwriter Ralegh Long last year when he visited Singapore and found him to be an unassuming, down to earth chap. You can listen to my interview with Long here. What I particularly liked about Long was the deep commitment to his craft and that he found inspiration from cult singer-songwriters like Robyn Hitchcock and Epic Soundtracks. This dedication can be seen in his songwriting, which can be best described as ‘traditional’ and ‘old-fashioned’ in that it relies on sophistication, orchestration and courageous musical choices to get the job done. Certainly not a bad combination! On his debut album, Hoverance, Long delivers a robust collection of deceptively simple songs that beg for closer inspection. Utilising tools of emotional resonance like pedal steel, a string quartet and woodwinds, Long imbues a baroque-like feel to the songs that engender a melancholy ambience that is impossible to ignore. I caught up with Long via email to get him to talk about how he put this gorgeous album of heartfelt songs together.
What were your inspirations for the mood and atmosphere generated for the album?
The mood and atmosphere came from sounds I’d had in my head for a while. I’ve always heard woodwinds in particular as a kind of synthesiser. I guess the pedal steel element came more accidentally. I asked Jack Hayter (Ex-Hefner) to play on a song called “Elizabeth” off my previous E.P The Gift and then we worked more and more closely together until he now plays in my band.