Tuesday, May 02, 2006

TBS Recommended: Liars- Drum's Not Dead

I enjoy pop music as much as the next guy, but it has its limits. 24/7 of verse-chorus-verse-chorus-bridge-chorus-chorus drives me insane. Every once in a while you need something to spice up your life. Dissonance, tension, ambiance and formlessness keep you on your toes. And most importantly, they make the consonance, release, melody and familiar form we've all grown up with sound so much more fresh and immediate.

This is where albums like Drum's Not Dead come into play. The band threw everything out the window in the making of this record. All sense of song structure is abandoned on this album, leaving only the basic, primal elements of music in its place. Drums are the center of this album, hence the title. But we're not talking Rock N' Roll drums, we're talking drums in the anthropological field recording sense of the word. The mostly-incomprehensible lyrics do nothing to change the feeling that this is a rare, unearthed recording of some ancient mystical civilization, packaged and sold for hipster consumption. The music is frantic like a soundtrack to a feverish nightmare.

So, given what we're gone over so far, this album should be terrible, right?

Like great experimental albums before it (Radiohead's Kid A and Animal Collective's Feels come to mind as recent examples), Drum's Not Dead takes time and effort to appreciate. I read someone on the Internets say that this is how music will sound in 30 years. I certainly hope not. I hope pop music lives on past our lives. I hope 400 years from now, people dig up old recordings of The Beatles and still find it mind blowing. Consonance only makes sense if you know what dissonance sounds like. And without consonance, dissonance loses its significance. (Maybe I should major in poetry too.) I think Liars grasp this better than any of us realize - that's why the ended their dissonant, wildly experimental album with a gorgeous, gentle, melodic piece, "The Other Side of Mount Heart Attack."

While it's certainly not for everyone, Drum's Not Dead is one of the more innovative and original albums to come out this year. Listen if you like: post-OK Computer Radiohead, Animal Collective, Akron/Family, etc.

Liars- Be Quiet, Mt. Heart Attack

Liars- The Other Side of Mt. Heart Attack


At 4:01 PM, Blogger Cameron Deyhle said...

I found your site via elbo.ws.

keep fighting the good fight!


Post a Comment

<< Home