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Wednesday, May 4th, 2005

Open Season

I remember listening to a song or two by Brighton’s British Sea Power a couple years ago when they released their debut The Decline Of British Sea Power, but don’t think I was overly impressed and soon put them out of my mind. But based on the recommendations of Paul, Bruce and others in this post a little while back, I checked out some of the stuff from their recenty-released sophomore album Open Season, and hot diggity dog am I glad I did.

Whereas I remember what I heard off of Decline as sounding a little too de rigeur post-punk/new waveish (and I’m planning on giving the record a second chance so my opinion may well change), Open Season really surprised me with it’s huge, warm sound. I’ve read some reviews that complain about the band rounding off all their edges on this record, but I rather like it. There’s plenty of other acts out there doing the spiky, angular guitar thing right now, I personally find it refreshing that someone remembers that the British were also producing wonderfully anthemic, expansive and unabashedly romantic rock music in the 80s. Only an Englishman could sing, “I wrote elegiac stanzas for you,” and make it work. I don’t have a huge number of reference points from that era to draw on, but I am reminded of The Psychedelic Furs, Echo & The Bunnymen and, um, OMD?

I hear the band puts on an insane, flora-friendly live show, so I’m pretty keen to see them at Lee’s on May 17th. For further edification, check out these articles in Exclaim! and The Guardian, or visit one of many fan sites. You can also see the video for the first single off Open Season, “It Ended On An Oily Stage”, at MP3.com.

Update: And this just in – MTV has banned their video for “Please Stand Up” for what it deems inappropriate lyrics. Apparently it’s okay for MTV to show girls with low self-esteem getting doused with whipped cream or whatever the hell they do at Spring Break, but you can’t say “wetter and wetter”. Bravo, America.

Being There offers a fond farewell to Scotland’s Delgados.

Wilco talks to MTV about keeping their Coachella date a year late, the forthcoming live DVD/CD and plans for their next studio album. Also available in streaming video format! Via Largehearted Boy.

CMJ has a brief interview with Britt Daniel of Spoon. Merge is streaming a new song from Gimme Fiction everyday until the album’s release next Tuesday.

Zoilus is a little uncomfortable with the directness of some of the lyrical content on the new Mountain Goats record. I still haven’t heard it. Hell, I haven’t even been in a record store for what seems like ages.

Shivaree’s Ambrosia Parsley tells Chart about “Ambrosia Sings The News” on Air America.

np – Bloc Party / Silent Alarm

By : Frank Yang at 9:11 am
Category: Uncategorized
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  1. Michael says:

    I saw BSP at the Horseshoe about a year ago. Definitely one of the better shows I’ve seen. Lots of energy and not unlike the controlled chaos of an Arcade Fire show.

    I hadn’t heard their music before, but I noticed a Joy Division / Cure / David Bowie influence.

  2. Five One Seven says:

    You need that Mountain Goats record Frank. Today!!

  3. Gary Campbell says:

    Frank, that’s what happens when you move… you forget to go to record shops, and then those shops, owing to lack of spending, close up. That’s right Frank! It’s all because of you that Soundscapes, Rotate This and Sonic Boom are no more! Oh, and the Annex is a lot quieter now.

  4. brads says:

    Totally agree with Michael… saw a fantastic BSP show last year, and heard the same influences. Loved the first album, too.

  5. solace says:

    haven’t really gotten into the new BSP too much to be honest. LOVED 3-5 songs off the first one though. Carrion & I Remember rule. very much a Bowie influence on that first record.

    new one is a bit more accesible (and likely why it’s gotten more widespread praise), but i prefer the edgier stuff from the first record.

    would love to see them live, if they’d ever come to Minneapolis

  6. Yan says:

    Unfortunately BSP have retired the onstage greenery, the WWI uniforms, etc. Unfortunately they’ve also retired the giant bear costume–which wasn’t allowed through customs on their last North American visit. So don’t expect too quirky a show. Hopefully they still end things in utter madness.

    I always thought there was much more Furs in their sound than Joy Division. Maybe some Catherine Wheel.

  7. Frank says:

    There you go, Five. Went to Soundscapes after work, bought the Mountain Goats. I will continue to do your bidding, but please, please, don’t make me kill again.

  8. Paul says:

    Yan’s right. BSP totally draws from the early Furs (and maybe early-mid Bunnymen) more than anyone else.