South China – Washingtons
Peapod Recordings 2009
[tags: acoustic, folk, pop, no pop, orchestral, 2009, great]
Listen while reading:
I wrote about South China before and I had the impression that Washingtons will be one of the best albums of 2009 – and well, today I received my copy of the album and what can I say: I was totally right with my first impression and Washingtons is one of the most intense listening experiences I had over the last time.
The band around Jeremy and Jerusha Robinson from Biddeford/Main writes music in its own unique style combining acoustic guitar, electric guitar, bass guitar, accordion, cello, piano, ebow, glockenspiel, trombone, vibraphone, viola, clarinets, percussions and Snuffy the cat to an impressive mix of folk influenced, mostly acoustic orchestral pop with indie flavor gving you the impression of listening to something special that is neither folk nor pop or indie at all. I think they created their own little niche and I bet if they continue to make such great music they will be known to everyone in a short while.
On the album you find tracks with vocals as well as instrumental tracks (Shiny Their Shoes, Squirrel or Sister (even though not completely instrumental)). And if you ask me, they could not have made a better decision as to not include lyrics to some of their tracks because the pure beauty of the instruments speaks for itself and Shiny Their Shoes is one of the best tracks of the album. But speaking of best tracks maybe sounds like that there are weak tracks – and this is clearly not the case.
They simply can’t do wrong – the instrumentals, as I said, are a great success, more experimental tracks like Sun Sets On Washington Ave. with the little improvised sounding part in the middle or the gigantic 8 minute ending song Terryhead, that grows to a shockingly thrilling uber tune, are just example of their feeling for melodies, rhythms and arrangements.
One thing is clear for me: if you want some of the finest music of 2009 and clearly on of the best releases of the end of the year, you don’t have a chance to not buy this album. Check South China’s MySpace for more details and free streaming and order your copy of Washingtons right here. (Note: if you love the sound of cellos this is something you want to hear.)