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Member Mixtape Review: Cosmic Harmony

Discussion in 'Album Reviews' started by Soot and Stars, Jan 28, 2012.

  1. Soot and Stars

    Soot and Stars I AM SOOT!

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    Member Mixtape Review
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    Cosmic Harmony
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    As a belated Christmas gift, for no other reason than to be nice, member Cosmic Harmony sent me a mix of songs that ranged in scope but all had elements of music she thought I'd like. She was right. It was a perfect mix of impressively arranged songs that I'd never heard before and I loved it. As a fun project I'm going to review it song by song and write what i like about the song and how I can see what she would've thought I liked about it. This is why I love the forum and as a tribute to the efforts she put forth I'll put the effort into exposing these great songs!

    P.S. I titled this mixtape review because it has a better ring to it! I don't miss blank cassettes! ;)
     
  2. Soot and Stars

    Soot and Stars I AM SOOT!

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    The Red Paintings-Seeds
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    When this c.d. kicked I knew I was in for a ride which is ironically when I threw it in on my way to see my family which was a 45 minute drive. I've never heard a song so influenced by The Smashing Pumpkins in my life and I ate it up. Seriously, if The Pumpkins did release this it wouldn't of been thrown in with their b-sides but would rather be an excellent companion piece/follow up to a song like Quiet. Every piece of guitar work in this sounds just like Siamese Dream/Pisces Iscariot era Pumpkins sung by Gary Lightbody of Snow Patrol. In fact while it's not a bad vocal but it just reminds me why Billy was the perfect vocalist for SP. This is missing his seamless whisper to signature snarl that's always worked in these transitional type songs. One change that this groups adds is the cello/violin additions towards the end where it really got heavy. Even sounded a little Daves Matthews-ish starting at 6:38. The group pulled me in through it's Pumpkin tribute but kept me by building upon it! Great track! ​
     
  3. Soot and Stars

    Soot and Stars I AM SOOT!

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    Noah and the Whale-Instrumental I/Love of an Orchestra
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    [Choir]:
    If you gotta run, run from hope.

    I know I'll never be lonely,
    I've got songs in my blood.
    I'm carrying all the love of an orchestra.
    Gimme the love of an orchestra.

    So now in my deepest sorrow,
    there's no need for despair.
    I'm carrying all the love of an orchestra.
    Gimme the love of an orchestra.

    [Choir]:
    If you gotta run, run from hope.


    From the shouts of "Melancholy, Melancholy" the prior song shouted (also possibly a Pumpkin reference :tongue:) comes a song that could blow those melancholy blues away for anyone who has a soul. I've seen Cosmic and others mention this group before and Cosmic in fact had it on her 2011 list everyone should be checking out. ;) I had liked that one but I reeeaaaally liked this one. :grinthumb This song has a cinematic 70's feel to me. I can almost hear it playing as the protagonist runs into the streets of a small town on a sunny day. Beautiful melody especially in the beginning instrumental part. Then it went a little musical theater on me but I could still dig it. I mean I doooo love an orchestra. :grinthumb I mean for upbeat songs this beats everything out there and I'd rather be "shuffling" to this than any of the electronic pop or dance music today! :grinthumb
     
  4. Soot and Stars

    Soot and Stars I AM SOOT!

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    The Avett Brothers-Ill With Want
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    I am sick with wanting and it's evil and it's daunting
    How I let everything I cherish lay to waste
    I am lost in greed, this time it's definitely me
    I point fingers but there's no one there to blame

    A need for something, now let me break it down again
    A need for something but not more medicine

    I am sick of wanting and it's evil how it's got me
    And every day is worse than the one before
    The more I have the more I think I'm almost where I need to be
    If only I could get a little more

    A need for something, now let me break it down again
    A need for something but not more medicine

    Something has me, oh something has me
    Acting like someone I don't wanna be
    Something has me, oh something has me
    Acting like someone I know isn't me
    Ill with want and poisoned by this ugly greed

    Temporary is my time, ain't nothing on this world that's mine
    Except the will I found to carry on
    Free is not your right to chose
    It's answering what's asked of you
    To give the love you find until it's gone

    A need for something, now let me break it down again
    A need for something but not more medicine

    Something has me, oh something has me
    Acting like someone I don't wanna be
    Something has me, oh something has me
    Acting like someone I know isn't me
    Ill with want and poisoned by this ugly greed
    Ill with want and poisoned by this ugly greed
    Ill with want and poisoned by this ugly greed


    I was trying the hardest to figure out this song on this mix because I usually corner the market on this genre in recent years. When I found out it was The Avett Brothers it clenched the deal. I had already listened to "You and I Love You" the single and thought it was a good track. Hearing this I know I'm going to really like the album. This track reminds me in places of little known songwriter Joe Firstman who I'm a big fan of. Also has a big Elton John feel to me with the folk/roots rock element making it stand out. Regardless I love what the vocalist does in this genre where he keeps a great tone without going too much in the twangy territory. I concede that these guys may not have as much of the folk harmonies as the Dawes group I like but I think they've done a better job at what Dawes is trying to go for.
     
  5. Tray73

    Tray73 இڿڰۣ-ڰۣ—

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    This is going to be another interesting thread Soots!

    Wow that Red Paintings song really is like a Pumpkins track, so it goes without saying I like it! I really dig the last minute or so when the pace kicks up a notch (or three!) and the violin is well and truly unleashed - great stuff :grinthumb
     
  6. Soot and Stars

    Soot and Stars I AM SOOT!

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    Yes, this is fun when we can really get members to cross that bridge and share music with others. I think Cosmic has been hiding this secret from Pumpkin fans for too long! :D Honestly, if anyone sent me a mixtape I'd be all for doing the same idea with it! :cheers2
     
  7. Cosmic Harmony

    Cosmic Harmony Senior Member

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    Well first of all I'm flattered that you're writing an entire review for this, Sooty. I'll be be looking forward to reading what you think about each one.

    I think I'll share my thoughts on them as you go along with posting them. ;)

    It's true, I have been hiding that Red Paintings song from you all way back from the Musical Thirst days in fact. Had someone put it up on Youtube before me (last night) however I probably would've spilled the beans a long time ago because that song was just calling out for you. :heheh: They also have a full time violinist as well as a full time cellist in the band so The Red Paintings always have a very strong emphasis on strings (as you noticed), which I love.

    I know you love big, full sounding vocals and what's fuller sounding than an entire choir? One thing I thought was interesting about this song was that usually when bands bring in a choir it's a more gospel or soul inspired one. Noah and the Whale however have a very (for lack of a better term) white sounding one on this song. :heheh:

    I've been trying my darndest to get you to buy that Avett Brothers album without flat out saying "Hey, go buy that!" because I know you'll love it so hopefully that'll be incentive enough. :D Really, all of the songs on the "I and Love and You" album are great and well written, both musically and lyrically, but "Ill With Want" has special stand out place for me. Also I don't know if you picked up on this but there are actually dual lead vocals in that song between the two Avett brothers, Scott and Sett, with the latter singing much of the song but Scott handling the "a need for something..." part and the higher harmonies.
     
  8. Soot and Stars

    Soot and Stars I AM SOOT!

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    Felix Riebl-They Don't Know Me Like You Do
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    Don't send me your photograph
    I'm over the other side
    your happiness makes me smile
    your happiness makes me sad

    Cos they don't know you like I do
    they don't know you like I do

    Don't send me your lovely sighs
    like death from another time
    your friends keep you warm at night
    your friends keep you warm at night

    But they don't know you like I do
    they don't love you like I do
    they don't know you like I do
    they don't burn for you like I do


    This is fitting as I just placed the Felix song I really liked from Cosmic in my 2011 best of list. While I definitely like the other Felix song better this is another solid track. It reminds me of tracks by Damien Rice when he uses that really slow, dark vocal:



    Anything that reminds me of Damien can't be bad. It's a loungy type bar song where you can picture a man there staying right until he has no choice but to go home.
     
  9. Cosmic Harmony

    Cosmic Harmony Senior Member

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    I can see your Damien comparison with that song though, being that it's longer it goes to more places than Felix's. His is just a soft little tune with painful lyrics and whispery vocals. Damien is all about those dynamics though and that's one of my favorite things about him. :)
     
  10. Soot and Stars

    Soot and Stars I AM SOOT!

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    Paul Simon-Silent Eyes
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    Silent eyes
    Watching
    Jerusalem
    Make her bed of stones

    Silent eyes
    No one will comfort her
    Jerusalem
    Weeps alone

    She is sorrow
    Sorrow
    She burns like a flame
    And she calls my name

    Silent eyes
    Burning
    In the desert sun
    Halfway to Jerusalem
    And we shall all be called as witnesses
    Each and every one
    To stand before the eyes of God
    And speak what was done


    Wow, I got a couple of surprises on this track. First, anyone who pays attention, like Cosmic, knows I'm a big Simon and Garfunkel fan. Now Paul Simon solo is a different story. I've never followed his career and never thought he'd be appealing without Garfunkels harmonies. I'm so off on my knowledge that until now I thought Harmony was trying to give me a track off the new Paul Simon album. I had no idea it was a 70's album. :omg: Anyway, I really like the track and it makes me want to hear more solo stuff. This almost sounds a little Peter Gabrielish to me. Pauls voice still has the quality I like from S&G but he plays it more straight hear and let's the music do the ambiance rather than the duel harmonies. The sparse piano is really brought out and the bass compliments it well. The choir adds the grandness to it and it's a simple song that's both subtle and epic in structure. Love it more and more with each listen! :)
     

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