Showing posts with label first aid kit. Show all posts
Showing posts with label first aid kit. Show all posts

Monday, January 22, 2018

video review: 'ruins' by first aid kit

So it looks like I'm going to be in the minority big time with this one just being lukewarm on it instead of more excited... eh, I wish I liked it more, I'll be very honest about that!

Anyway, next up is Billboard BREAKDOWN and who knows what sort of wackiness is to come after, so stay tuned!

album review: 'ruins' by first aid kit

Can you believe it's been four years since the last First Aid Kit album? Can you believe it's been a decade since they first gained a bit of virality with that Fleet Foxes cover on YouTube before becoming the sort of folk act that can move a truly surprising amount of units - seriously, the fact that Stay Gold moved around two hundred thousand copies in 2014 kind of blows my mind. And part of it is that First Aid Kit don't really seem to attract huge buzz, not quite blowing your mind but building real groundswell as they expand their sound.

And to be fair, it's not like the sisters duo went away - throughout the past several years they've been releasing covers and tributes and singles and touring extensively, bringing on another new drummer and even a keyboardist/trombone player for their backing band last year. Now this didn't surprise me much - given the sounds that are becoming more prevalent in the modern folk and alternative country scene, this could well be an interesting expansion, especially if they played more in country tones. What definitely caught more of my interest was a change in producers, swapping out Mike Mogis for Tucker Martine, who has worked with everyone from The Decemberists to Modest Mouse to Spoon to R.E.M. to even that case/lang/veirs project that was underrated by entirely too many people! So with a veteran further guiding the sound, coming off of Stay Gold - which going back to it now is really just as great as it was four years ago - I had high hopes for this - did Ruins live up to it?

Friday, June 20, 2014

video review: 'stay gold' by first aid kit

I'd argue this isn't one of my better videos, but I wanted to make it all the same. Damn good band, damn great album.

And speaking of great, Sage Francis is coming up soon - stay tuned!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

album review: 'stay gold' by first aid kit

So when I reviewed Sharon Van Etten's pretty damn solid album Are We There a few weeks back, I made reference to the acoustic musical genre that I cheekily branded 'white girls with acoustic guitars', and how while there are more acts in this vein I like than their male counterparts, I couldn't say I was a huge fan of the genre. I wasn't saying you couldn't make good music with just a girl and an acoustic guitar, but that sort of basic, minimalist setup requires every element to be on point or it'll get distracting. 

So what do you get when you get two white girls with acoustic guitars put together? Well, you get First Aid Kit, a Swedish country folk duo of two sisters that started on YouTube and was first discovered through a coincidental connection to one of the members of The Knife. After a cover of theirs of the Fleet Foxes went semi-viral, the duo began to release albums, starting in 2010 with The Big Black & Blue. And while I was struck by some of the intriguing songwriting that showed flavour beyond their years, it was an album that did suffer from amateurish production and a fair number of rough edges. Their second record The Lion's Roar was much stronger, with richer and more diverse production that leaned more towards country, and some of their best songwriting to date. This was a duo with serious melodic chops, and when fused with wryly clever songwriting and measured delivery, it was enough to set First Aid Kit away from the crowd and get me intrigued about their new album, Stay Gold. And honestly, as good of songwriters as they were, they were still just an acoustic duo and I wasn't sure how their signing to a major label would turn out for the band. Was I concerned for nothing?