Friday, December 21, 2007

--Discovery of the Year

Cold War Kids

I had the Cold War Kids debut Robbers & Cowards firmly placed in my Top 10 for this year. And then I did a little research as I was sorting out the list…and discovered the album was released in October 2006. (Oops. That messed up my calculations for a while. And yes, next time I do plan on doing a little more research.) I guess it took a while for singer Nathan Willett’s vocals to get into my brain. Willet’s voice comes from the same DNA as Neil Young, Bob Dylan, Conor Oberst and those guys from Okkervil River and Modest Mouse—it’s high pitched, kind of whiny at times and definitely can rub people the wrong way. That being said, you’ve probably realized by now that I love all those voices, so Cold War Kids are right up my alley. I think what I dug most about this band is that they fill in some of the spaces in their music with a healthy dose of percussion. Tambourines and shakers are all over the place, adding accents to these oddly rhythmic and (dare I say it?) very dancy tunes. (Now that I look at that line, I guess I could say the same thing about my beloved Spoon.) I spent an early spring day wandering around downtown Manhattan listening to Robbers and Cowards and the herky jerky songs were a perfect fit the beat of that still evolving part of city. I was pretty impressed that a bunch of kids from the LBC could make such a fitting soundtrack to an island 3,000 miles away from there studio.

No comments: