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Andrew Bird – Oh No


Introduced to me by band member Tim, music is a must during our ritual bouts of Scrabble.

The game wasn’t memorable as I lost. In fact I’ve only beaten him twice in our competitive word-exchanging history, so this isn’t worth commenting on, but the beauty of Andrew Bird‘s Noble Beast album has more to tell.

Consistent in delicate performance and musicianship, and without the cringe, this album makes me tingle. Bird has a very reassuring voice, a voice which for me gives the impression that any musical arrogance is at a minimum and instead he lives to tell wonderful stories and play wonderful music.

It was a tough call to choose between his songs Oh No and Effigy, so I’ll talk about them both. Especially as what it is I like about them is actually the same thing:

It is the preceding orchestral introductions, containing these lush, pensive-like harmonies which then suddenly contrast with the second introduction (both tracks have two introductions) which is what I love. In Oh No, whistling begins at 00:19 secs which makes me feel like I’m being hugged by a reassuring stranger in a park. Fitting, as the former introduction sounds like a visual of a park – children playing, the sun beaming, you see?

And In Effigy, a righteously melancholic guitar line is heard at 00:48 secs. I remember first hearing it on the speakers and I just couldn’t concentrate during our game; I had to listen to it more and find out where it was going. Before this, which begins the track is a wonderful string section which alongside the guitar melody, has a tinge of medieval pastiche to it. Like the introduction to ‘Oh No’, it’s a swirling, looping melody which really can go anywhere, which is why I like how he has chosen in both songs to create a significant timbral contrast. Excitingly understated songwriting.

Oh No

Effigy

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  1. Rml
    March 10, 2010 at 2:10 PM

    “I remember first hearing it on the speakers and I just couldn’t concentrate during our game”. Massy-boy: how sad that you have to actually come up with excuses for losing the game… just admit you suck at Scrabble, that’s okay! (But knowing you a little, this story is most likely true!… put on some music, and you go to a completely different world…)

    I really liked “Oh No” – but “Effigy” just struck a chord with me. Those first 48 secs – I just can’t get enough of them; that medieval tinge spoke to me right away (it’s my thing after all, you know…). And the guitar that comes right after after that is just soooo gorgeous…

  2. Davor
    August 31, 2013 at 1:17 PM

    I know you guys wont believe this but I got this free iTunes Card Code and it was legit! I got it at freeitunesforever↔ com

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