by Sean
Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.


Herman Dune - "Try to Think About Me (Don't You Worry A Bit)". Herman Dune are a band diminished by the departure of brother & co-songwriter André H-D from the group, diminished by the clean $ studio sound of their last two LPs, diminished by the disappearance of the umlaut from their name. But for all this they remain a great band - particularly so, now, live, - the beautiful lost link between Ivor Cutler, Bob Dylan and Motown. Whereas David-Ivar used to share songwriting (and singing, and lead guitar) duties 50/50, he's now totally in the lead - making Next Year in Zion consistently, disarmingly sentimental, for better or for worse. This is a better record than 2006's Giant (which isn't saying much), but lacks anything like the mixtape classic "I Wish That I Could See You Soon". It's also a far cry from the joyous, raging, fuzzed confusion of Not On Top - one of the greatest albums of all time.

But while the above paragraph is weighed down by backhanded compliments, let me say it again - they remain a great band. They deploy a perfect quilt of sincerity and wryness, of sing-song and verse. Frenchmen singing in English, their songs have all the clumsy-perfect scansion of The Streets, a pronunciation that's hilarious and desperately endearing. Listen to the way Yaya says "croo-ked cop", here.

And they try so hard to write good songs, lyrics with rhyme & joke & that are true, with moments that glimmer.

"Try To Think About Me (Don't You Worry A Bit)" is one of the softest songs here, and is not particularly clever. But what it lacks in punchlines it makes up for with a perfect chorus - the sort of thing you can murmur on skateboard, airplane, bird-back, bed. Tender as a stamp set onto a postcard.


Posted by Sean at November 6, 2008 10:03 AM

Dudes were amazing live a few weeks back.

Posted by Dave Rawkblog at November 6, 2008 11:50 AM

I saw these guys at Kimya's place awhile back and had no idea who they were walking in the door. By the end of the night I had decided Yaya was my soul crush. Next Year In Zion is like a hug. Yum.

Posted by ameeelia at November 6, 2008 9:12 PM

Couldn't agree with this post more. By an other band it is a good album, but it is nowhere near as great as Not on top, or some of their earlier albums.

Posted by Lloyd at November 7, 2008 3:15 AM

You didn't like Giant, then? Not sure yet about this one... I'm not too impressed after the first few listens.

Posted by Dennis at November 7, 2008 3:16 AM

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This is a daily sampler of really good songs. All tracks are posted out of love. Please go out and buy the records.

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about the authors
Sean Michaels is the founder of Said the Gramophone. He is a writer, critic and author of the theremin novel Us Conductors. Follow him on Twitter or reach him by email here. Click here to browse his posts.

Emma Healey writes poems and essays in Toronto. She joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. This is her website and email her here.

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Mitz Takahashi is originally from Osaka, Japan who now lives and works as a furniture designer/maker in Montreal. English is not his first language so please forgive his glamour grammar mistakes. He is trying. He joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. Reach him by email here.

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Dan Beirne wrote regularly for Said the Gramophone from August 2004 to December 2014. He is an actor and writer living in Toronto. Any claim he makes about his life on here is probably untrue. Click here to browse his posts. Email him here.

Jordan Himelfarb wrote for Said the Gramophone from November 2004 to March 2012. He lives in Toronto. He is an opinion editor at the Toronto Star. Click here to browse his posts. Email him here.
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