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New Music Mondays: Vols. 1 & 2
Dan Powers
| September 3, 2008
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[[image|file=birdmonster.jpg|width=250|align=left]]As a new feature on the '''Ausen/Powers Show,''' Meg and I have decided to introduce a few new tunes a week you guys every Monday at 6:30 PM. We're playing catch-up at the moment, so here are my first few picks: '''Week 1''' '''''The Artist:''''' Ben Folds '''''The Song:''''' "Hiroshima" '''''The Sound:''''' To thunderous applause, Mr. Folds rolls over the keys with a casual deftness that underlies his tongue-in-cheek, self-deprecating lyrics. Rarely do we hear a song about on-stage accidents, but this one, a power pop gem complete with ELO strings, distorted bass solos and tasteful falsetto, would clearly rock an arena of the biggest proportions...were it really a live track. It's part of 9 tracks that Folds leaked as something of a red herring, hinting at his upcoming September 30th album '''''Way to Normal.''''' The music is real, but most of the songs are silly stabs at what Ben calls "bad" pop music - but still remarkably catchy. This track is one of the real ones, though, and you can count it as his first single. '''''The Artist:''''' Alejandro Escovedo '''''The Song:''''' "Always a Friend" '''''The Sound:''''' Cheap Trick with strings. Bruce Springsteen with soul-inflected "oohs." Tom Petty, but more urgent. Driving and bathed in Americana sunniness, this latest track from San Antonio-based rocker Alejandro Escovedo comes straight off of '''''Real Animal,''''' his ninth solo studio album and further proof that a punk rocker can make delightfully upbeat tunes in the tradition of classic rock and roll, that a traditional songsmith can craft unique and surprising hooks, and that this 57-year-old renegade has got some vigor to spare. '''Week 2''' '''''The Artist:''''' Birdmonster '''''The Song:''''' "Born to Be Your Man" '''''The Sound:''''' Too poppy to be roots but too rootsy (and quirky) to pass for a conventional rock outfit, Birdmonster comes awkwardly soaring in on Peter Arcuni's earnest, rollicking vocals and the band's relentless energy. Acoustic guitar, piano and harmony vocals all find their place without being overbearing, and the arrangement suits Birdmonster's initially unwieldy - but ultimately endearing - flight pattern. This comes off of '''''From the Mountain to the Sea''''' and I really urge you to [[link|url=http://www.birdmonstermusic.com]]check them out.[[end- link]] So that's all for now! Check in next week for more great music.
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