Carl Sandburg Visits Me In A Dream
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Carl Sandburg Visits Me In A Dream

Carl Sandburg Visits Me In A Dream will serve as a blog for me to share my thoughts and musings, with a special emphasis on music. The music that will appear in this blog is for evaluation/sampling purposes only, and is designed to promote up and coming bands. Remember, if you like the artist(s), buy the CD! If you are the owner of a sound file and would like it removed, please contact us and we will kindly take it down.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

#7 - #5

The pulse is quickening...the anticipation is heart-racing...the music is sweet.

7. Belle and Sebastian-The Life Pursuit
Maybe this album should be ranked higher than it is, because everybody and their mother in the blog scene has rated this album pretty high. I've always had this aversion to listening to Belle and Sebastian because I just thought it was that kind of music. I don't what the hell that means or what the hell I was talking about. Damnit, The Life Pursuit is one of more complete albums I've heard in a long time. This album makes me feel that everything in the world is good. It makes me feel that music can make you happy and not be cheesy. It makes me want to go up to random people on the street and give them a great big hug. The Life Pursuit is chock full of cheery falsettos, clarinets, bopping organs, and jangly (my new favorite adjective) guitars. The Life Pursuit is that summery-sounding rock album that grabs influences from the likes of Marvin Gaye and The Doobie Brothers and sounds a little like a more accessible version of The Flaming Lips or The New Pornographers (although neither of these really pinpoint the sound). Don't be fooled-this album is a lot smarter than it may appear at first.
Buy The Life Pursuit here.
Listen to "For The Price of a Cup of Tea" as part of Sandburg's Top 20 Playlist.

6. Sufjan Stevens-The Avalanche
From the man who brought you the inspiration behind the name of this blog, comes the B-sides (!!) from Illinois, one of the best albums I've ever heard. For those of you wondering who the hell I'm talking about: Sufjan Stevens is a prolific indie-darling, whose album Illinois in August of 2005 shot him to superstar status in the indie music world. You'll be hard pressed to find anybody who doesn't really like him. Illinois was originally slated to be a 50-song double album, but Sufjan decided to package it as a 25-song single album. After receiving such praise for Illinois, Sufjan decided to release The Avalanche, the other half of the double album.
Essentially, The Avalanche begins where Illinois left off. The beloved banjos and trumpets stay, only to be complemented by his characteristic weird conglomeration of sounds at the ends of a few of the songs on the album. One of the greatest songwriters today, Sufjan doesn't disappoint on The Avalanche--just about every song is a masterpiece in itself. Call him over-hyped, call him whatever. With three different versions of the now-famous "Chicago", and nearly twenty other tracks that range from the uplifting to the gentle-sleep-inducing ballads, this album of B-sides is much better than a collection of A-sides from a boat-full of bands this year. The bottom line is that Sufjan's formula works:
1 part quivering vocals
1 part introspective and thoughtful lyrics
12 parts instruments
An album that's worth listening.
Buy The Avalanche here.
Listen to "No Man's Land" as part of Sandburg's Top 20 Playlist.

5. Josh Rouse-Subtitulo
Who needs medication? All it took for Josh Rouse to go from the melancholic Americana songwriter to the hip, rootsy optimistic singer was a trip across the Atlantic. A former inhabitant of the great states of Kansas, Nebraska, and Tennessee (among others), Rouse decided to move to a small town on the Atlantic coast of Spain. He immersed himself in the small town culture and just wrote songs. After two years of searching and writing, he released Subtitulo. Rouse is a true folk-hero--and a prolific one at that! He sticks to acoustic guitar based songs, laced with subtle strings and a gentle piano. This album is like a blanket that wraps you up as the sun dips below the horizon on a cool summer's eve. Rouse is always frank, but it's his voice that lets the whole package go down smoothly. The vocals are soothing--sonic therapy, if you will. When listening to these songs, I start to get a feel for who he is...that takes some real talent. There are a few songs on the album that lack greatness, but "His Majesty Rides" (you can tell Rouse gets into this one) and "It Looks Like Love" (just listen to the piano!!) are some of the greatest songs I can remember in a long time.
Buy Subtitulo here.
Listen to "His Majesty Rides" as part of Sandburg's Top 20 Playlist.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm waiting to see Mastadon's Blood Mountain....

11:49 AM  

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