The first track that a band ever releases to the general public makes for a tenuous moment. No one is really entirely sure what to expect of such an experience. Will this track that the band has spent so much time working on be accepted or lost in the shuffle of mp3s inundating blogs on a daily basis? More often than not, the answer is the latter. In this day and age even more established bands can have tracks fly under the radar. It’s no surprise, then, that “Crystallized,” the outstanding debut single from Melody’s Echo Chamber, went wildly unnoticed when it dropped several weeks age.
It’s the timing that hurt this track more than anything, for certainly it’s not the track itself that caused it to get ignored. The one-woman-band lists Spiritualized and 90s indie-popsters Pram as influences, a combination that, if not immediately apparent in the track, works to align this track with artists of a greater longevity than your daily buzzband. Featuring the wispy vocals of Melody Prochet herself paired with a bassline and floaty guitar riff ripped straight from the pages of Ladies and Gentlemen, We Are Floating In Space, “Crystallized” represents a sort of psychedelia carried down carefully throughout the years. Present in the near-cliche mid-career works of Pink Floyd or in later years of Spacemen 3, the spaciousness that “Crystallized” embodies is just the latest in a long line of acid-burned pop songs. Where the track gains its uniqueness is in the way it filters these psychedelic influences through distorted drum samples that wouldn’t sound out of place on the earlier works of the Radio Dept. and through the syrupy sweetness of the krauty records Stereolab put out in the mid 90s.
All that may seem like a laundry list of influences, but it’s all there, and that’s what makes this track so special. “Crystallized” condenses sounds and reference points so diverse into a four minute pop song that is without a doubt one of the more interesting tracks to hit the internet this year. It’s a shame it had to hit the internet on the same day as new songs from Animal Collective, Passion Pit, and Cocorosie. If it hadn’t, I have a feeling you’d be hearing a lot more people talking about Melody’s Echo Chamber.
Plugging away since 1999, The National finally hit mainstream success with the release of their 2010 album High Violet. Of course, this entailed their first world tour, but in the new documentary Mistaken For Strangers, it’s only the backdrop for the relationship between lead singer Matt Berninger and his younger brother Tom, who had no idea that these short videos he was shooting would turn into a public document of their troubled, if still loving brotherhood.
We talk with Israeli rockers Vaadat Charigim about some of their favorite records.
We talk with Yvonne Ambree and Jesse Barnes of Take Berlin about some of the records which influenced the recording of their debut EP, Lionize.
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