Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Andrew Bird - Armchair Apocrypha

Brilliant, great, wonderful, lovely in every way. What a special album, one that is good from start to finish. There's an intricate sound to it. Some of the guitars sound very live, like a friend sitting casually strumming an electric guitar. That's a cool touch of informality. The rest of the sound, from a very subtle violin, whistling, an occasional female voice, drums, some thick stuff in there as well, along with Andrew Bird's beautiful voice is amazing.

And once you've heard the songs a couple times, some of the tunes are in your mind and you feel like you've known them forever. Speaking for myself, that is. The song titles are interesting, too, like the album's name, "Armchair Apocrypha." Titles like Imitosis, Plasticities, Heretics, Darkmatter, Scythian Empires... Some mystery in all that, but "Armchair" definitely sounds like a way to make the mystery more accessible.

There's also a lot going on in the background. The songs are layered and with some complexity, even with quickly picked up melodies and choruses. If you listen with earbuds, it's a rewarding experience. I haven't actually heard it any other way yet, but I really like the detail this way. I've heard the album four or five times, and love it.

Highly recommended.

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