Sunday, December 5, 2010

Native American Flutes Will Haunt You Too

It's important to me to remember the story behind something, intangible or not. Like the story of my scarf that went on an adventure around a friend's neck, how I got the broken pair of plastic red handcuffs, and the history of my subway token necklace. Music, although intangible, is no different.
I hadn't seen an old friend in probably over a year and we got together a month ago to catch up over wine in the dark den of his mom's house. Of course there was talk of music and as always, I wrote down some musical artists that he was inspired by. This list grew to about ten artists only one of which I've researched and instantly felt connected to, a Miss Mariee Sioux. The other nine artists I'll get to, just after I'm done being captivated by Mariee, which I hope continues for years to come. You know, I think I'm in the throws of a crush.
Mariee Sioux Faces in the Rocks 
2007 Grassroots Records
This, her first record-label release, instantly invaded my psyche. It was like the part in The Little Mermaid when Ursula steals Ariel's voice and like smoke, it slithers through the air into Prince Eric's eyes, putting him into a trance. Uh...Except this puts me in a good trance. I mean, look at the mystical album cover art. It's totally something I would fall in-love with. 
Although her last name Sioux and distinct use of the Native American flute denote a tie to that culture, from what I've researched, she not eligible for a Native American college scholarship. After hearing this Native American-inspired/folk/Fairy Tale journey I wish more artists would draw upon the sounds of our country's much-suppressed culture. Her delicate acoustic guitar picking style and breathy vocals always transport me to some mystic Rocky Mountain hillside only for me to realize at album's end, that here I am in the suburbs of Dallas. Next album, please! 

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Dance to THIS!

I've had this Neon Indian Psychic Chasms album for oh...four or five months and up until this week we'd been casually dating. Previously I would've said to questioning parties, "Well, it's nothing serious. Maybe we catch a movie on the weekend and then neck a little." But now it's serious and this week, we went all the way!
Neon Indian Psychic Chasms 2009

Neon Indian, from my research(ah hem), seems to be one guy, Alan Palomo from Denton, TX and now Brooklyn(go figure). Sure he's got his dudes to accompany him during live shows but he's the genius. On Lefse Records(home to School of Seven Bells), this, Neon Indian's first release is technically not a 2010 release here in the USA, as it actually came out in September 2009; But was released in the UK almost a year later about the time I discovered it so in my space/time continuum, it's a 2010 album. This album is equal to 2 large cups of coffee, a bowl of Fruity Pebbles, and a hug from mom on a Monday morning(when you are about to work a 10 hour shift with 18 2-year-olds). I know because that was my life this past Monday. It was on my morning power walk to work, with ridiculous large headphones, that I truly fell in-love with this brilliance.
As some of my friends will tell you, I am extremely picky about what I like to dance to. It's not me really, it's my body. It knows the sounds it likes. I can't help it if my body doesn't want to get down to Lady Gaga. Believe me, I've tried to trick it, but it knows and keeps telling me to stand still.
The first song on this album, or 25 second drum serenade/Galaga/vocal cry of coolness just makes me feel cool. It pulls me down into the rabbit hole of this album which is a bad ass dance floor complete with lazers, a disco ball,  and Kool-aid. Then during tracks like Deadbeat Summer and Terminally Chill we bust out the back door for some fresh air only to see a green field calling us to dance in pure bliss! But just you wait, it gets even better. With Mind, Drips you will do as the sound effect that starts the track tells you and BLAST OFF. The track is juicy with a synth bass line that'll make you close your eyes and groove. Even my goofy dance moves look sexy with this track. Mmmm. The entire album will give you 30.6 minutes of dancer's high. If you've ever experienced this phenomenon, you know what I speak of. It's an elusive high but oh so worth the search.

 Some people are missionaries in foreign countries, bringing water or education to those in need....So here I am , a missionary in the United States telling people about music that inspires. This little project of mine, Pet the Moss, is proudly dedicated to my lifelong friends with whom I grew up going to concerts, obsessing about bands, talking about music at our weekly coffee meet-up "Understood". Many of them still love music, they may just not have time to look for it. Well here I am, sifting through the boring stuff to bring you the creative, the groove-tastic, the thiiiiiiiick. Here's to being alive in a great time for music. Really.