Quick Hitters:: wallscenery demos - half asleep. half awake.

Wallscenery Demos - Half Asleep. Half Awake.Having previously posted on a couple of James Hicken’s offerings under his wallscenery demos moniker, and hearing his latest release half asleep. half awake., I have to wonder why I haven’t seen his stuff around the ol’ interwebs more. I have to wonder if it’s due at all to the connotations that the “demo” in the name might have associated with it? Not sure, but even though it seems perfectly suited for the experimental nature of his songs, I can speak from a meager bit of experience and say that it’s always prefereable to deal with a final product for review & posting purposes, so maybe there’s some confusion there.


Well, even though I’m the genius that has likely just introduced it, there’s no need for any confusion where the wallscenery demos and this latest record are concerned. I think of Hicken’s three albums (well the ones I’ve heard anyway), this one is the least-demoish, with the experimentation pulled back as far as the sound collagey/found-sound elements he’d been playing with in the past are concerned (I should point out that if said experimentation is your thing, Hicken has started up another project called High Kids which fits that bill I’d say).


With pretty much one exception (the trippy, Dude-influenced “money lebowski”) the focus of half asleep. half awake. is blissfull, dreamy DIY guitar-driven songs that seem to possess a very melodic core under their fuzzy exterior. Some songs, like opener “gotta watch out for a year” almost sound as though someone took a pleasant alt-country sing-along and ran it through a homemade lo-fi funkifier. And I mean that as a good thing - Hicken and the folks he enlisted to help him record (Sheldon Kelly, Dean Marino & Jay Sad play on various tracks) have created a sound that is just as interesting, whilst perhaps being more traditionally “listenable” this time out.


So, if that sounds like something you’d be into, I suggest you check out the album (and Hicken’s other work) ASAP, and even if it doesn’t sound like something that’s normally your bag, I suggest you check it anyway - you might be surprised.

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MP3:: wallscenery demos - gotta watch out for a year
Web:: www.wallscenerydemos.com



Tags: James Hicken, wallscenery demos

This entry was posted on Tuesday, June 14th, 2011 at 1:32 pm and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

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