The Truth About Évariste Galois
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.


Early Day Miners - "Sans Revival"

Peter Gabriel's So has not, as far as I know, had a considerable influence on the indie-rock community. Yet, imagine "Sans Revival" stripped of its arrangement and production aesthetic - what you're left with sounds very much like a So-era Gabriel song. The vocal is unabashedly manipulative, pulling you in despite yourself, like the rousing romantic finale of a well-crafted Hollywood movie (I'm thinking specifically of Say Anything and the cheese-festival that is "In Your Eyes"). So has a few likable aspects, but these do not include the arrangements or production aesthetic. The Early Day Miners revise the So model in this respect, and ensure that their album will survive sans revision. Here the formerly ubiquitous John McEntire produces, and he succeeds in matching the emotion of the vocal line with the intensity of the instruments: thunderous bass, waves of chiming guitars, bell-clear notes rising out, ringing, fading back.

An open question: Since McEntire produced the record and there are no credits for arrangement, do we really have any reason to believe that the leader of Early Day Miners is anyone other than Peter Gabriel himself?

N.B. Don't send me pictures or personal anecdotes about the time you saw Daniel Burton and he definitely wasn't Peter Gabriel. I'm no Empiricist. I want analytic proof. [Info]


LMP - "Beautiful Noise"

I cannot recommend strongly enough that you never listen to this song on repeat. That's what I'm doing right now, and it's changing me. Since I started listening - about twelve minutes ago, now - I've cried several times, flown into one frothing, uncontrollable rage, and become interested in, subsequently mastered, and finally grown tired of archery. LMP's talent is only barely exceeded by their boundless pop ambition. There's something in this imbalance, in combination with the fact that the whole song seems slightly out of time, that makes this sweet pop treat rather madness inducing.

[From Tiny Idols Vol. 2, a compilation of obscure and out-of-print gems from the 90's indie rock scene, of which I will write more next week.]

Posted by Jordan at July 14, 2006 12:03 PM

LMP = La musique populaire? The guys who did the century of song box set? it kinda sounds like them.

Posted by david b at July 14, 2006 12:39 PM

Same band.

Posted by Jordan at July 14, 2006 12:44 PM

Mark also maintains a Tiny Idols blog here:

Posted by j at July 14, 2006 2:13 PM

As regards similarities between the Early Day Miners track and mid-period Peter Gabriel: according to the band's Secretly Canadian bio, Daniel Burton learned production from Daniel Lanois. And in fact, aside from the vocal stylings at the end, the track sounds a lot more like Lanois than Gabriel. (Though Gabriel also sounds like Lanois, as Lanois is one of his frequent collaborators.) Not a bad thing, as Lanois = love.

I think indie rock is totally antithetical, btw, to what Peter Gabriel was doing and still does, because: 1) he's interested in funk, and indie rock is rarely funky; 2) indie rockers think anything with African drums is hippie music; 3) it's much easier to dink around with a cheesy Casiotone and call it "electroclash" than to actually learn how to use your damn synthesizer; 4) Peter Gabriel actually listens to music made by non-white people who didn't record in their basement and didn't worship solely at the altar of Stephen Malkmus.

(There's my grumpy old man rant.)

Posted by Josh Ellis at July 14, 2006 2:30 PM

Where exactly is this aforementioned Malkmus altar and how can we go about making a pilgrimmage?

Posted by greg and jess at July 14, 2006 2:37 PM

I LOVE LMP! I haven't heard them since high school. I still think that their "Aunt Canada" album is one of the best I own. My friend Andrew even sang on a few tracks. Thanks!

Posted by Jodi at July 14, 2006 10:22 PM

There're hints that indie rockers are listening to Gabriel; just pre-So. Futureheads steal the riff for their 'Skip to the End' from PG's "Modern Love." Aloha makes records easily aspiring to early Gabriel. Gang Gang Dance gets wiggy with the hand drums and pseudo-third world rhythms. And TV on the Radio absolutely rewrites "Games without Frontiers" or "Shock the Monkey" everytime they go out.

Posted by J Frank Parnell at July 17, 2006 3:50 PM

In re, "indie rock is rarely funky," I give you ESG and Liquid Liquid on 99 Records, as indie as indie can be and probably a couple decades antecedent to whatever crap occupies your mind.

If to you that isn't funky and Peter Gabriel is, I am afraid I simply pity you.

Your critique in general is not wrong, but deploying it in defense of Prog Boy here is fundamentally misguided.

Posted by wcw at July 31, 2006 8:01 PM

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