22 April 2013

22nd April - Yo La Tengo's I Can Hear the Heart Beating As One

Artist – Album: Yo La Tengo – I Can Hear the Heart Beating as One
Released:  22nd April 1997
Sounds Like: Shimmering indie greatness

Whatever it is, Yo La Tengo have got it*. Being one of the music’s principal purveyors of hazy indie noise pop, they have spent the last twenty-seven years releasing consistently excellent and highly influential albums. One reviewer at the time went as far as to call them The Greatest Band in the Universe, which may be going slightly over the top, but they could well be the greatest band on this planet at least. They may never have troubled the charts but they seem perfectly happy simply keep putting out gorgeous music regardless. Which is just great.

There’s plenty of contenders, but I’d like to forward I Can Hear the Heart Beating As One as the best album they’ve released in the nearly three decades since their debut. It has it all – a blissed out adventure into an eclectic variety of genres, from shoegaze (‘Damage’)to bossa-nova (‘Centre of Gravity’) to noisy power pop (‘Sugarcube’); wonderful takes on cover songs (the feedback driven version of the Beach Boys’ ‘Little Honda’ and the lovely closing acoustic ditty ‘My Little Corner of the World’); wry lyrics delivered as a hushed almost-whisper on gorgeous love songs such as ‘Autumn Sweater’.

Alongside the recently reviewed Guided By Voices and Pavement, Yo La Tengo have been one of the driving forces in the direction of alternative rock in recent times. Their warm blend of noise rock and poppy melody has seen them taken to heart by critics and gushing fans alike. They’ve got it alright.**

* This was a clever pun – “yo la tengo” is “I got it” in Spanish you see. Check Google translate. Gosh, I’m so funny...

** I made the same pun again. This was a bad idea, as really you shouldn’t repeat jokes. I might not actually be that funny after all.

Albumaday... rating: 9/10

1.       Return to Hot Chicken – 1:38
2.       Moby Octopad – 5:48
3.       Sugarcube – 3:21
4.       Damage – 4:39
5.       Deeper into Movies – 5:23
6.       Shadows – 2:27
7.       Stockholm Syndrome – 2:51
8.       Autumn Sweater – 5:18
9.       Little Honda – 3:07
10.   Green Arrow – 5:43
11.   One PM Again -2:25
12.   The Lie and How We Told It – 3:19
13.   Center of Gravity – 2:42
14.   Spec Bebop – 10:40
15.   We’re an American Band – 6:25
16.   My Little Corner of the World – 2:24

Listen to ‘Autumn Sweater’: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UIkMeaAfIRw

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