Music

Faun’s latest delights…

…ah, what a feeling when you discover a band has released an album without you being aware of it (or rather, you weren’t aware there was one coming out and voila, you find it). It means it is a total surprise and you didn’t have to wait and wait.

Here is the new album from German band Faun. As the album name, Märchen & Mythen, suggests, their songs are fairy tale and myth themed.

I absolutely love the sound of Hagazussa:

This one, Seemann is also pretty cool (aren’t all of them though?):

Thalia is also lovely:

As always, happy listening. And for my favourite, head on here: Musical Notes: Federkleid (Faun)

Strictly goes Nostalgic…

How absolutely awesome was last night’s version of Pump up the Jam? I must admit, I tried to listen to the original 80s Technotronic piece that was all the rage back in my day…I just couldn’t. But oh that Strictly Come Dancing rendition is just perfect and made me all nostalgic. Alex and Neil…great dancing you two:

And for those who want to listen to the Technotronic version…here it is:

Musical Notes: A Trip down memory lane with Kim Wilde’s Cambodia

Wow…I’d totally forgotten about this one and then it just appeared on a vintage music channel. And bam! I remembered it…very fondly. It took me back to school days and the days of my father’s massive vinyl collection (although, to me, simply “records”). And finally, blaring in my car these days:

Gosh, how music videos have changed over the years. I honestly didn’t even realise they were made back then, so it is quite fun checking them out these days. Ah, the 80s…what great times!

Happy Listening.

Oh…and I came across her with Nena providing some more 80s nostalgia albeit with a more recent performance together..perfect to start this Friday:

 

Friday’s Drive Home with Natural…

…not much to be said but turn it up full blast and enjoy the drive on the highway home!

I thoroughly enjoy this one…Natural by Imagine Dragons. It also has some “sentimental value” with a very specific time/association in my life…you know, when a piece of music coincides with life and thus becoming forever intertwined?

(Video might be disturbing to some so maybe just listen)

Friday’s drive home with Danger Zone

This is such a wonderful song to just turn up the volume and put your foot down (ok, not really as speeding fines here are just way too expensive) driving home after a satisfying day at work. Gosh…I remember those days of Tom Cruise and Val Kilmer…how young they were (as were we). And Meg Ryan! You’ve got to love those 80s movies…

Well…moving along swiftly…here’s Kenny Loggins with Danger Zone:

 

Musical Notes: Path (Apocalyptica)

I had the privilege of seeing Finnish band Apocalyptica in 2008 at The House of Blues in Las Vegas. And oh, what a superb concert it was. A perfect size venue with a huge amount of musical atmosphere. Brilliant! For me, it is always so inspiring to see other classically trained musicians (the three cellists are all graduates of the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki) make it in the rock and/or pop (or whatever derivative genre) music world.

I’ve always enjoyed their works and this one is no different. But what I quite enjoy here is the visual “mood”…their engagement with each other (or lack thereof) until finally, so it appears, Eicca Toppinen (front right) cracks a smile. Just watch the faces. Oh…the playing is great too!

Musical Notes: Uprising (Muse)

Wow, another week is over. And with that, here’s one of my favourite pieces…it has a wonderful sound…and the lyrics…well, we won’t go into them today. But, Muse, starting out as three kids trying to keep out of trouble, is always worth listening to. Here Uprising…

Have an awesome start to the weekend…

(oh, the music video might be a bit too creepy for some…maybe just listen)

Cameron Carpenter…modern organist of note

I love to play Bach. His piano works are absolutely wonderful but pulling out all the stops on the organ used to give me such a power kick. Such an amazing feeling. And I often miss giving my fingers and feet a good workout on my favourite instrument. I haven’t played in years but when I did I used to get such joy out of adding a modern slant to the pieces. Well..as I don’t really have a chance to play at the moment, listening to Cameron Carpenter is the next best option. Having recently seen him in live action at the KKL Luzern, I was just blown away by this wonderful artist and his international touring organ. Oh what a performance he gave. (Get rid of any preconceived ideas of boring organ music)

Marshall&Ogletree opus 8 - molto dramatico

Bach’s Goldberg Variations (BWV 988) had each of the 30 variations presented with a unique Carpenter-spin on it. Well, many might not appreciate this as a number of “purists” walked out fairly early on. What a pity. Isn’t art about personal interpretation? Anyway…each to their own. After interval, followed a contrasting Symphony Nr 2 (Romantic) by Howard Hanson and arranged for organ by Cameron Carpenter. It was so vivid that one could picture a movie unfold in the mind. Just stunning! I wish it hadn’t ended.

Well…here one of my favourite pieces by my favourite organist, albeit not what I heard at the KKL or on the touring organ…but hey… (turn up the volume to the full!):

Oh well…addendum…just found this performed on the touring organ…sigh…wonderful:

Beautifully haunting…

La Nuit de la Saint Barthélémy. I was first introduced to parts of this piece through my review of La Reine Margot (here). I’ve now heard it in its wonderful entirety. There’s this beautiful surreal feel to it. Just stunning. Composed by Goran Bregović, the music to this film was apparently the reason for entry to the Cannes Film Festival. I absolutely love the combination of sounds and, dare I say, effects. And some of those chord progressions…! With that underlying relentlessness… ah, have a listen – it will be better than I can explain…

 

Awesome Piece of Music – from the Slow West Trailer

So…how cool is this piece of music I stumbled over last night while giving the trailer of one of my favourite westerns, Slow West (2015), a watch…

Have a listen here –  this song (Come Alive by Hanni El Khatib) just rocks! It works so nicely in the trailer (further down).

If you haven’t seen this one, oh boy, give it a go…

Ahhh, what a movie. Refreshing. Brilliant. I was glued from beginning to end. Acting, cinematography, music…everything just right. Once again, a moderate-paced western (seems to be the trend these days) but not for a moment did Slow West ever feel slow. Jay Cavendish (Kodi Smit-McPhee) comes to America from Scotland to find his true love. Having managed on his own so far yet still “wet behind the ears” he comes across Silas Selleck (Michael Fassbender) (or, maybe it is Silas who comes across Jay), an outlaw, who so kindly offers to guide him across the dangerous country (naturally there are ulterior motives). Well, they encounter some interesting characters and things are, obviously, not what the seem. I did not see the ending of this one coming. Definitely one for the collection. Here’s the trailer to give you an idea…Michael Fassbender brilliant as ever. As is Ben Mendelsohn.

Musical Notes: Take a Bow (Cherry Pill)

It’s about time I send something musical your way that is very close to me. With an awesome sound like this…something unique and different…you can’t say I’m biased just because these two are very close friends of mine. “Roar” and “K”, love your sound. Love your music. Miss you guys.

Enjoy…Take a Bow…

Musical Notes (and Tribute): Breathe and Firestarter (The Prodigy)

Here one of the pieces that take me down memory lane of my student days…Breathe by The Prodigy. Front-man Keith Flint was today found dead in his home. Album The Fat of the Land had some interesting tracks…while not always “easy” listening, I always enjoyed what The Prodigy brought to music. Weird…I’ve been listening to it quite a bit in the car recently…here Breathe…

oh sod it…here Firestarter too…

Musical Notes: I Want to be Evil (Eartha Kitt)

I was first introduced to a cover of this song in the movie The Truth About Love but the original is absolutely wonderful. And what a delight to watch Eartha Kitt try to convince us that as much as she says she wants to do all the evil things, we know she’s a good girl…I love this video of one of 6 of her US Top 30 hits. I’m sure some of us have had a moment, or two, where we’d wish we could be just a tad “bad”…but not really…if you know what I mean…

 

Musical Notes: The Ballad of Lefty Brown (Maiah Wynne)

Great music is discovered in the most unexpected of places. Maiah Wynne is one of my latest findings…at the end of movie The Ballad of Lefty Brown…right there where the credits roll. The lamenting ballad hooked my straight away. That’s good music for you…

So, here is my newly discovered musician with titular song:

But don’t stop here…go see what else she has. Love her other piece The Devil in Disguise.

An excellent evening with Dada (Ante Portas)…

…ah, wow…that was so awesome! Such a fabulous concert. Don’t you just love those small, cosy venues? Those where you feel a band is playing just for you and a select few?

Oh man…it took forever for Sunday night to arrive (and funnily enough, it went past way to fast)…my tickets for “An evening with Dada” were fiiiiiiiinally valid. Whew…what a wait. For a band that I’d only recently discovered but who have been around for 22 years. How do I know this (aside from Googling)? Well…they told us…

…in this very unique evening. The band chatted and played us through their timeline. How they met (school sandpits are wonderfully social), how they thought they’d never get far at a band competition where everyone but them had “soundchecks” (along with lots of important looking pre-performance checks), the confusion between “Holland” and “Roland” (yes, a voucher for (to) Holland would have been awesome), personal space on stage in other countries and so much more. I had a big grin on my face from start to finish – it was sheer fun listening to their stories and music (acoustic). Gosh, did we all have a good laugh. And it all came across so natural. Perfect. No other words needed.

We were about 180 people (those few empty seats missed out big time) and had a vibe and atmosphere like no other. I’d say it will be a long time until I experience another concert (is this really a concert?) on this “niveau”. If at all, actually. There was something so special and so unique that repeated by someone else just won’t be the same.

If you get the chance to watch these guys – don’t hesitate, just go for it!