Caught in the Net: Through a Glasser, darkly
Friday 18 September 2009
When I wrote about LA musician Glasser in these pages a few months back, I tritely pitched her somewhere between Kate Bush and Björk.
While her voice does call to mind those esteemed performers, she can stand confidently on her own two feet as well: a beautiful singing voice combines with strange vocal yelps; electronic noises and live instruments mesh; dreamy ambience meets with childlike sounds. In May, Glasser, whose real name is Cameron Mesirow, released her debut EP "Apply" via True Panther Sounds, truepanther.com, on 12-inch vinyl (now sold out) and digital download. It's available through the usual outlets – iTunes, Amazon. At myspace.com/ glasssser are several lovely tracks – despite waxing lyrical about her voice, my current favourite is the instrumental "Helloa", made with what seem to be toy instruments. There are impressionistic videos for two of the tracks posted there too. With a debut album about to be recorded you can keep an eye on her efforts at glassery.blog spot.com. Read an interview with Glasser at independent.co.uk/lryan.
Up to now it was just teenage girls who were obsessed with the vampire film "Twilight", not to mention its star Robert Pattinson (sorry, RPattz). Now, however, the makers of the film's sequel "New Moon" have come up with a foolproof way of pulling in a wider audience: a classy soundtrack. The film is released in late November and among those rumoured to be on the soundtrack are Thom Yorke and Bon Iver. At last weekend's MTV Video Music Awards, the first song from it premiered. The track, "Meet Me at the Equinox", is by Death Cab for Cutie and features suitably emotive vocals amid swirling guitars. It's streaming on the MTV website – tinyurl.com/lvoav2.
Last week the Beatles entire recorded output was re-released, remastered, in two hulking beasts of box sets. Writing for AVClub.com, Chuck Klosterman imagines a world where the Beatles had recorded all this music but remained an obscure Liverpool band. He revisits the music as if hearing it anew (albeit with a knowing wink), celebrating the band as if they were only now getting attention they deserved, van Gogh-like, long after their demise – tinyurl.com/qkzhr3.
24-hour party people
KCRW is a public radio station in southern California, renowned for having some of the most influential music-programming on US radio. Thankfully one doesn't have to be way out west to sample it – thanks to the joys of the internet. Last week they relaunched their online music presence with a new music-only channel, Eclectic 24, to constantly stream the station's music output throughout the day. It's worth checking out: kcrw.com/music/eclectic24.
Heron flies again
I'm not sure many people saw this coming: XL Recordings recently announced that they will release Gil Scott-Heron's new album "I'm New Here" in early 2010. It's his first album of new material in 12 years. The singer, poet, author and activist was at his peak in the 1970s and is best known for his fusion of spoken word, soul, funk and protest song on unforgettable tracks like "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised". His influence on certain strands of hip-hop is indelible. Snippets of four new tracks are on imnewhere.net, and see him flit across numerous styles: experimental noises, electro, spoken word, folk, and bourbon-soaked piano crooning. The title track "I'm New Here" is a cover of a Smog song.
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