Tuesday EPs:: Milks & Rectangles, Baby Eagle and The Details

It’s been a bit hectic in the herohill camp lately, and admittedly, the releases are piling up. In an effort to keep the freshness high, we are going to quickly chat about three distinct EPs that sound nothing alike, but have occupied my ears in the last two weeks.

 


 

Milks & Rectangles - Dirty Gold

 

The latest EP from the PEI is still full of anthems that hint at the band’s dream of playing to a sold out Wembley Stadium, but Dirty Gold is less suits and crisply pressed pants and more scruff laden. The band stillraises the rafters with stomping drums and new wave-ish melodies, but seems just as happy to spend last call in the dirtiest, sweatiest clubs it can find, dancing until the lights come on.

 

The energy and interesting mix of polish and grit helps Dirty Gold explode out of the blocks, refusing to relent even as “Welcome Home, You Noisy Bastards” tries to spiral out of control. It’s hard to pick the highlight; “Gold Teeth / Diamond Ring” is one of the best lead off tracks I’ve heard all year and honestly, if you can stop nodding along to “Ultimatum” you are a better human being than I, but finding a misstep is even harder. Best of all…. they are free.

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MP3:: Milks & Rectangles - Gold Teeth / Diamond Ring
WEB:: http://milksandrectangles.bandcamp.com/


 

Baby Eagle & The Proud Mothers - Live @ CIUT

 

Not much you can say about this live recording that you wouldn’t have said about Baby Eagle‘s fantastic LP, Dog Weather. The band sits down and hammers out four songs for CIUT, and while the songs sound much like you’d expect (well, the kazoo that shows up on “Thistle in Bloom” in place of the horns not withstanding), Shotgun Jimmy‘s voice would make your most formal uncle smile and it’s nice to hear the band simply having fun.

 

It’s an all too brief set, but Steve and the boys could win me over in 30 seconds so 12-minutes of perfectly recorded live audio from a band certain to make my Best-of list is something I’ll never turn down.

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MP3:: Baby Eagle & The Proud Mothers - Thistle in Bloom
WEB:: http://www.myspace.com/dreambabyeagledream


 

The Details - The Original Mark

 

When we last heard from The Details, I predicted that radio play would be in their future. They successfully tip-toed through the minefield that is accessibility versus creativity, and managed to come out the other side with all their limbs in tact; a success for a debut LP to say the least. The Original Mark shows the band pushing along the same path, although this time they eschew most of sounds associated with Winnipeg’s chosen son, and in their place are precise arrangements littered with strings, piano and percussion, and a more big city sound. The title track is probably the show pony for this release, a surprisingly intricate arrangement built on a simple snare drum and John Plett’s vocals, that helps the band show their new sound.

 

But for me, the best moments continue to be when the band retreats to the heartache of the everyman (the surprisingly gripping, steel laced Yuletide carol “Strings and Ribbons”). The interesting choice to contrast the sadness of a solider returning home from war with a surf guitar melody (“Uniform”) and the touching Christmas tune show they can still connect with the listener and continue to hint at bigger audiences for the Manitoba band. If asked, I’d say the band’s new sound preferences don’t mesh 100% with mine - hopefully the full length offers more of the touching moments because they help the band stand out from the countless number of Toronto bands wrestling with the same emotions and crafting the same melodies - but the talent they possess continues to impress. Given the chance to be heard, The Details could convert the masses.

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MP3:: The Details - The Original Mark
WEB:: http://www.myspace.com/thedetail

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This entry was posted on Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010 at 9:13 am and is filed under 2010, Canada, EP, Milks and Rectangles, Music, Quick Hitters, Reviews. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

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