Reviews:: Tim Gilbertson Palisades

While reading Eric Weiner’s interesting search for happiness, The Geography of Bliss, I was consumed by the most casual mention of Francium (the least stable, naturally occurring element; BLAM, just used my Chem degree) and the perfect description often attached to the element.


Vanishingly rare.”


Limited by it’s own stability - a half-life of just 22-minutes - and impracticality, Francium mimics the same characteristics as a good indie pop song. Gone before it can be properly contained and bottled, the painstaking task of combining simple chords with a catchy chorus to keep feet tapping and the lyrics to keep people singing along seems to be beneath the majority of musicians these days. Why bother putting in the effort for something that fades so quickly?


Edmonton’s Tim Gilbertson is one of the few that still believes the harnessing the simplest of sounds is harder than overwhelming the listener with arrangements stuffed thicker than a junk mail-out. Gilbertson - with huge contributions from Graeme Mellway, Cam Grier and Drew Malcolm - has spent the last few years writing a collection of power pop gems that shimmer and burn up all too fast, refusing to let you get your hands around them. The crunch of the guitars, the plucky bass line and soaring harmonies of Losing Sleep come together to create as enjoyable and straight ahead classic indie rock anthem as I’ve heard in years but as soon as it starts, it’s gone and I want it back.


The band isn’t concerned with superfluous layers, complex transitions and proving that they are smarter than the listener. When new textures are added, it’s to add to the mood of the song (case in point, the big bended guitar notes and xylophone on the spacey You’re Out There), but for the most part the Edmonton quartet likes to plug in and surge forward with confidence. As soon as Chipped Teeth starts the LP, your head nods uncontrollably and you feel like you are part of the song, wishing you could scream along. The ear pleasing chug that starts Holga 120s puts a smile on your face using only a solid rhythm section and some fret board squeaks before exploding into full gear complete with a Jables-esque face melter.


Using his adolescence as inspiration and to set the energy levels high, Gilbertson and his band still manage to deliver a record that sounds more mature than it should considering they are still in their early twenties. Palisades bridges the gap between the innocence of youth and the mature reflections of nostalgia, leaving you with an experience that even at 41-minutes, seems to end before you can properly appreciate it. In a scientific context, such an event is unfortunate, but that fleeting intensity is exactly what pop music is missing these days.



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MP3:: Tim Gilbertson - Losing Sleep



Tags: Tim Gilbertson

This entry was posted on Friday, May 7th, 2010 at 9:51 am and is filed under 2010, Canada, Edmonton, Music, Reviews. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

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2 Responses to “Reviews:: Tim Gilbertson Palisades”

ebomb May 12th, 2010 at 4:46 pm

i love this shit. epic album boys

Dara May 23rd, 2010 at 4:41 pm

Heard them last night. Wow.

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