Yeasayer – Odd Blood

Yeasayer – Odd Blood

As much of a surprise as Yeasayer was in 2007, looking back in retrospect, there is no doubt just how impressive they were in that they were able to combine so many elements of music into one sweeping plate of delightful food. It was a lot to consume and yet, they tidied it all up with an enchanting presence of craft and songwriting – not to mention a uniquely new take on Fleetwood Mac’s influence. But still, All Hour Cymbals took almost an entire year to catch wave of its startling excellence.

The band took to it the only they way they knew how, by touring the globe and playing at any festival that would have them. They were the first band I saw on an early Friday afternoon at the 2008 Austin City Limits Festival and their magnitude was nothing short of spectacular. And they continued to write new music, never settling for their past triumphs, they featured many of the new music in these live settings. So by the time “Ambling Alp” hit the airwaves, we knew they were going to make something special.

Challenging yourself and offering to create something excitingly new should always be rewarded and now, with Odd Blood, Yeasayer have completely created something brand new, different and luckily for us, it’s another great reason to love the band. The music that fills these walls is again influenced by everything under the bright sun but its brilliance comes in the way the Brooklyn band shapes these touches. “Love Me Girl” finds them delving into new psychedelic trances with amazing results. At first honoring a helter-skelter beat that never seems to fit in the pocket, they fuse a tumultuous amount of reverb and atmospherics into their scope. Unpacking the aesthetic they’ve mustered, there is a strong sense of liberation in their being, as if they’re more than aware of the possible impact in shattering brains with new ideas.

While it’s still the arrangements that will continue to impress, the words and overall sonic ability speaks paramount to what Yeasayer is capable of. And whether they’re dancing away to a bristled jam on “Rome” or singing about the lost moments with “You’re stuck in my mind, all the time” on “I Remember, ” each and every moment is one to remember.

A lot’s been said about how the music on Odd Blood is not only different from All Hour Cymbals but over-looking such obvious claims, it’s also centrally focused on building a foundation around melodies and hooks. “O.N.E.” is easily their best song to date, rivaling the very best songs we will hear the whole year. And although it’s 80s style is driven by Yeasayer’s own tribal drums and synth-heavy package, the lyrics are what make it such a remarkable listen. “No, you don’t move me anymore and I’m glad that you don’t, ‘cus I cant have you anymore,” sings Chris Keating before breaking into a keyboard happy melody. After hearing such skillfully superb music, it’s ever-so-clear why the band was unhappy with the leaking of their album three months before its release date. Preferring to shock everyone all at once, they wrote on their Twitter page, “Presents are always spoiled for those who open them before they are supposed to.”

The song they contributed to the Dark Was the Night compilation, “Tightrope,” continues to prove to be one of their finer moments and they’ve followed that path with ten songs of equal strength. The coverage is still sprawling and their ideas continue to explore the deepest ends of music: 80s synth-pop, alternative pop by way of communicative expression and as always, otherworldly adaptations. It continues to be their craftsmanship as musicians that will not only have fans gripped in their seats but will allow for new fans to jump aboard. The time couldn’t be better either with Odd Blood’s sublime demeanor to use as an anchor.

“O.N.E.” by Yeasayer

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