Saturday, September 24, 2011

Music To Discover: 67

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Grimes, is, to be frank, a strange cacophony of varying genres that is centered upon electronic stylings and whispering, gust-like vocals. From Vancouver but Montreal-based, Claire Boucher, also known as Grimes, cites her influences as "R&B, industrial, goth, hip-hop, and western medieval organum". Now, to be honest, it would be very difficult to identify any of these influences just by listening to Grimes' music. However, that isn't to say that at times, a semi-clear shadow appears from the ethereal mist Grimes' sound is akin to and it becomes obvious that there is a hint of R&B or goth or western medieval organum. Nonetheless, the sound that Grimes has crafted is one that is as equally unique as it is a amalgamation of different sounds and inspirations all tied together by Claire Boucher's dream like and wispy vocals.

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I can't declare a whole lot of knowledge, biographically of Grimes, so I am just going to talk about what I hear and how I interpret Grimes' arcane sounds. 

Crystal Ball is probably my favorite song by Grimes. Crystal Ball introduces itself as a soft, ethereal harp-strung song that slowly evolves with vocal melodies and layering. Lyrically, I'm kind of unaware as to what Crystal Ball is purposed to mean. Although, with the sprinklings of piano-type sounds that echo the likes of Eurythmics. It is a gorgeous layering of sounds, expressing a melancholy that is impossible to identify but expresses such emotion with child-like delivery. It is interesting though, how different Claire's vocals are in Crystal Ball than how her vocals are in songs like My Sister Says The Saddest Things. In Crystal Ball Claire can transform her vocals into a sound mirroring the chant of a young child but in songs like My Sister Says The Saddest Things she preserves this young-sounding voice but layers it with more robust vocals.

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My Sister Says The Saddest Things is a song of a completely different breed. Characterized by a heavily percussive and repetitive drum beat, the song plays off the same idea of layered vocals but in this instance, Grimes' namesake young-child like chantings are complimented and contrasted with deeper and more dynamic vocal arrangements. My Sister Says The Saddest Things is almost danceable in its beat but still glides above a homeostasis of wind blown singing and melancholic sounding lyrics.

Lastly, Vanessa is a slightly ominous but more simplified piece of dreamy pop. Vanessa is a song that reminds me most, vocally, of Alex Winston who, if you're all Hypemachine savvy or just peruse a lot of music blogs is considered one of this year's breakout acts, but, I have never been able to get into her sound. BUT ANYWAY. THIS IS ABOUT GRIMES HERE.
Grimes simultaneously evokes artists like Lykke Li, whom she has toured with, in Vanessa as there is just this very persuasive transience about the song. It's a gorgeous song, absolutely, and by far one of Grimes' best.

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While perhaps the genre "weird-pop" is the most accurately descriptor for an artist like Grimes. But that fact should not be taken in the negative sense. Grimes' unique vocals and resplendent range of vocal ability earns her the honor of being a genuinely unique musician. 
So give Grimes a listen and I can guarantee you that you'll be hypnotized by her audible talent and her esoteric sound will grow on you in a matter of listens.

If you like...
-Alex Winston
-Holy Other
then you absolutely have to give Grimes a listen.

Check out her songs
-Crystal Ball
-My Sister Says The Saddest Things

Crystal Ball

Remix(es) Of the Day
Now I don't really like doing this, but I'm going to feature 2 remixes of one song. Trust me though, they're both worth it.

Nero- Crush On You (Sound Remedy Remix)
Now, I'm really living for the original version of Crush On You. At the same time, though, I cannot deny the little place in my heart that loves it when djs convert Nero's music into a cross-genre hybrid of dance. Case and point here. Somewhat drum and bass somewhat dub step somewhat house somewhat a bunch of thing. Whatever you decide to call it, this remix is killer. 

Nero- Crush On You (Brodinski Remix)
Now I have to say that I do prefer this remix between the two.
I haven't got a clue, except for maybe the fact that this remix echoes hard hitting nineties dance-rave-type ish. I've been obsessed with this remix for a short while and, well, yeah.

Lana Del Ray- Video Games (Club Clique For The Bad Girls Remix)

The intro to the song, is just a blazing as the rest of the mix. With a simple string arrangement, snaps, and anachronistic vocals, the remix is set to be an ambient tribute to Lana Del Ray, who has been dubbed the "gangster Nancy Sinatra". But no, this mix very quickly forms itself to a dance floor-prepared, bass-heavy club track. 
I cannot say how well the slick bass and danceable vibes from the backing instrumental track compliments Lana Del Ray's contemporaneous and simultaneously anachronistic lyricism and voice. It is a unique marriage of sounds, smoky vocals with dance-y, jangled guitars, persuasive bass with sweet and classical melody. This is a strangely beautiful mix that will just as easily get you dancing as it will have you hand clapping and finger snapping along. Fabulous.

Florence + The Machine- Shake It Out (Benny Benassi Remix)

This is perfect because it lets me get two things done at once!
So, Florence + The Machine released a new track, Shake It Out and well, to me, it was a bit of a disappointment. In the same way her second most recent track, What The Water Gave Me, kind of disappointed me. I *like* both the tracks. But, unlike Lungs, there isn't the same kind of visceral lyricism, the same mild sense of macabre, the resplendence of Florence's voice.
What The Water Gave Me, was, to me slightly anticlimactic. While Shake It Out, I like much better, it shows that Florence still has that sense of visceral and austerely semi-macabre lyricism, despite it not being the most booming example of this.
This remix, by the world-renowned Benny Benassi adds a different dimension and it is pretty obvious that that dimension is the dance floor. This is an incredibly persuasive and dance-y remix, in the best way possible.

Other news!:

Marina & The Diamonds has released a second new song!
This one is called Scab & Plaster and it is just as spectacular as Radioactive is, perhaps even more.

I'm really appreciating this transition Marina & The Diamonds is making into electronic music. I will say that my biggest complaint with her debut album, The Family Jewels was the sing-song-y nature of most the songs and the somewhat worn-out usage of the same rhyme scheme. However, I still love The Family Jewels, it is just that these new songs Marina has been creating have shown a brilliant new development of Marina's lyricism. Not to mention the fact that her unique voice really melds well with electronic music.
Total brilliance!

In personal news:
-It was my birthday a week ago (the 17th)!
-I got my first tattoo!

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!
Much love!


  1. Yeahhhh Grimes!
    &happy birthday
    btw <3 the blog

  2. Thank you and thank you!
    I quite like your blog as well!
    All the best!


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