Quick Hitters:: Mean Wind The guests are the guests are gone gone

There’s a minor plot premise in Punch-Drunk Love that sees Adam Sandler‘s character realize he can buy snackpacks of pudding as a part of an air miles promotion, and send in individual bar codes from each pudding container to essentially fleece the company and cash in on inflated travel mileage. For some reason, every time Mean Wind (or Long Long Long or the now defunct York Redoubt) puts out another free EP, I feel sort of like Barry Egan hoping to reap the rewards before Caleb catches on and closes the loophole.

 

And by closing the loophole, I don’t mean charging for his music (as that seems to be something he and his band mates are wholeheartedly against). I mean changing his style to make it even more obscure and challenging. I don’t know Caleb at all, but settling into stagnant, comfortable songs seems like the antithesis of why he writes music and I have no idea when he will push too far from my tastes. But for now, I’ll simply grab every song he writes and happily play them over and over again.

 

In the last year alone, Caleb has managed to put out 3 EPs and 1 LP of music (two with LLL and now two with Mean Wind) that are not only fantastic and free, they show a songwriter that improves and evolves every time he hits record. On the last EP, Mean Wind used a folk foundation as the base for their sonic explorations. Gentle picked notes and harmonies seemed timeless, but completely contrasted the static and quirky transitions. This time around, Caleb still explores the benefits of traditional folk - “Sunday Was a Writeoff…” and “City Full of (W)holes (pt. II)” could have been released in the 60′s and become classics - but TGATGAGG embraces ambient psychedelics and open space to mask the swoon the melodies inspire and test the boundaries.

 

I have no idea if the sounds Caleb experiments are a sneak peak into the future of the band or simply another idea he toyed with before evolving again, but the droning noise that thickens “The Guests Are Gone and the atmospherics he adds to “Equality Before the Law (The Guests Are Here)” expose possibilities and how effortlessly he transforms the the sparse beginning of “Kingdom Come” into a rollicking anthem is nothing short of genius.

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MP3:: Mean Wind - Kingdom Come
WEB:: http://meanwind.bandcamp.com/

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, December 8th, 2010 at 11:27 am and is filed under 2010, Best-of '10, Canada, Halifax, Music, Reviews. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

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