A sporadically-updated music collection blog. Send questions to twitter or email me.

Sunday, 31 March 2013

Lanterns On The Lake - Gracious Tide, Take Me Home

Let's keep this going, shall we? Slightly more recently (the start of this month, to be precise), I celebrated payday with a visit to Avalanche, of course. I'd spotted this in the record section a week earlier, and had made a mental note to pick it up when I could. Fortunately, no-one got in there before me and here we are.

Ooh yes. This will do. A nice minimalist cover, and the gold lettering is a really good choice. It's almost like a hardback book cover, isn't it?

Fairly minimal back cover to match, and there is a RAD SHIP on this side too. Excellent. Part of me thought this release was on white vinyl, but apparently I was mistaken. The labels are pretty nice though, so that makes up for the lack of colour a bit. Also I am always appreciative of a free CD of an album, so that definitely puts Bella Union in my good books.

Lanterns are a delightfully sleepy band. They mix borderline-post rock with slightly breath-y vocals to make songs that I think are best appreciated on a rainy Sunday with a mug of tea. A pity today's quite dry then. This is their first full-length album, released in 2011 (way to keep up to date, Adam), and it's pretty good. In parts it drags ever-so-slightly, but that feeling tends not to last too long. The highlight of the album for me is probably the delicate Ships In The Rain, a mournful little song with the nicest lyrics. I think the band have the potential to be really good, and I'm interested to see what their next release is like. It must be coming soon, surely?

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Frightened Rabbit - Pedestrian Verse

...whoopsy. That week stretched to over a month and now this post is way overdue. My bad. To make up for it, there's a lot of pictures here (and quite a few words too). This is another purchase from Avalanche, which meant I walked over and picked it up on the day of release. The snow that accompanied my walk home was pretty appropriate.

Another great cover. The triple-barred cross appears again and a slightly different worn label with the band's name on it. Consistency, nice placement etc etc. All the things I've come to expect from a Frabbit cover.

It's a gatefold LP again, opening it and looking at it sideways we get this lovely scene. Pretty sure those are the same metronomes from the cover of The Woodpile (which is rad), and I love those pennants. Can someone more artsy than me make one for my wall? Thanks in advance.

I feel like I'm just going to end up repeating myself all over again if I start talking about the back cover. It's nice, that is about all I need to say. What I like a lot, that was slightly less expected, is the dust sleeve having the lyrics to the whole album printed on it. Excellent.

Another black record (one day they'll do a colour pressing and I will buy every single copy), more lovely labels. There was also a download code that came with it, which is ace but for once I didn't actually need it (since I bought the album on CD as well).

Album chat time now. Is it really necessary for me to tell you how much I love it? Yes? Well then. Of course I love it. It is, after all, a Frabbit album. There's everything I love about the band in this album, and yet it feels distinct from each of the three that preceded it. Musically it is most similar to The Winter Of Mixed Drinks, but in parts it definitely feels... louder. Perhaps this is an active reaction to the (incredibly lazy) Mumford & Sons comparisons that seem to follow the band around, I can't be sure. Holy, for example, rockets by at the kind of pace you wouldn't expect of Frabbit. Dead Now has something vaguely resembling a guitar solo in the middle of it. There are lots of little unexpected moments in the album that make it an absolute treat to listen to, and I'm sure there are more things that I'll discover in it the more I listen. At present I'd say my favourite tracks are probably the previously mentioned Holy, State Hospital and The Woodpile plus Oil Slick, the delightful closer to the LP (and standard CD) version of the album. It comes across to me as a song about Scott's inability to write pleasant songs, which is an absolutely glorious reason to write a song. Note I said the closer to the LP, the deluxe version of the CD has three bonus tracks that are absolutely brilliant and it's a real shame they aren't on the LP. Ah well.

Now, here is where the post would usually end but today we have EXTRA THINGS. Pre-ordering the album meant I got a few extra goodies, which was lovely. Here we have a mini-print of the album cover, a little badge of the cover and a bonus 7". Get in. Yet more lovely themed artwork. I really do love this band.

Yep, so the 7" features Dead Now from the album. A really enjoyable track, and I'm never going to say no to a bonus 7". Notice it's only one-sided though. What's on the B-side then?

....yes. Oh yes. More singles with etched B-sides, please (even if they're almost impossible to photograph). Love you always, Frabbit.