Thursday, December 11, 2008

The Sun and the Moon (Album Review)

Wow, I'm back! Please don't die of enthusiasm. I know it's been a while since I really posted anything of decency on here. I do apologize - it seems that working two jobs is really making me fatigued ( I seriously pass out at night, and caffiene is no good - what am I going to do when I get to college if Dr. Pepper is no longer working? Oh, wait, I know - expresso). But it's worth it -almost every dime goes into my college fund.

Anyway, this blog tonight is going to be me reviewing an album I just fell head over heels in love with. The album, like the name of this blog, is titled The Sun and the Moon by a group called the Bravery. But before we get into the meat of the album, let me tell you how I got into the Bravery.

Basically it started about a month or so ago when iTunes had a free single that I thought looked interesting. I'm one of those people who likes reading what people are saying about a give product before investing in it (even if it is free - I like having security), so I read the various comments people had left. There, amist the praise and criticism, someone made the comment of how the free single reminded them of a cross between the Bravery and the Killers. 'The Bravery,' I thought. It sounded familiar, but I couldn't put my finger on it. So I looked up their stuff on iTunes and found "Believe" which was catchy and put it on my iPod.

But then I saw the music video for "An Honest Mistake" and instantly remembered where I had heard of them. Flash back to the end of summer 2005. I, still feeling dazed and whatnot from our move to Denver from St. Louis, was sitting on the couch watching VH1 (screw MTV - not enough music, too much reality TV) when this music video full of dominos and some random guy with weird hair came on. I was sucked in and made a mental note to look the group up because the video was amazing.

Mental notes mean nothing when you are dazed or tired.

So that's how I rediscovered the Bravery. Their first album I got a few weeks ago from the library. Pretty good for the most part, and the videos are really creative. I was hooked; I checked their new CD. I have to be honest - this new album, The Sun and the Moon, blew me out of the water. And I'm not just saying that because I love Sam Endicott, either (although that does add to the effect).

The Sun and the Moon is just over all a good disk. You can tell that the Bravery has matured in musical ability and there is a variety of music styles to prove it. From the acoustic "Tradgedy Bound" to the orchestrated "The Ocean" to the pop-like "Time Won't Let Me Go" to the rock "Believe", this CD has something for everyone. Plus, Sam has done a wonderful job on vocals - there is a good use of tenor and bass ranges and you can hear the emotion in his voice.

What I love about this CD is that it's provocing. The lyrics are all fairly deep, and tackle the ever present human condition of longing and searching for things we can't always see yet know exist. I'm not sure if the guys in the Bravery were thinking about that when they wrote the songs, and it's always open for interpretation, but that's what I got out of it. It makes me feel like I'm a little less alone in the world.

Some of the songs are hard. "Tradgedy Bound" was one that I really wanted to turn off, but I just couldn't. I wanted to cry so badly when I heard it, especially the line about the girl harming herself (I have a history, and so that sort of thing really affects me). And yet the combination of the acoustic guitar and Sam's voice make the misery of abuse almost into a painstaking lullabye.

A song I felt I could really relate to is "The Ocean", where the lyrics talk of the constant comings and goings of those around you and decisions made along the path of life. "So many friends now and none of them mine..." How many times can you give a piece of yourself away and still be you? It's a question I think we have all faced at one point or another, and isn't it true how we always see things perfectly in hindsight? These are things I always find myself doing and now there's a song about it.

Of course there is "Believe" which is very catchy and very addicting. The more you listen to it, the more you seem to gain from it or discover about it. "Time Won't Let Me Go" again reflects upon hindsight, and has that irresistable beat that seems to flow through the Bravery's music.

All in all, I give The Sun and the Moon an A. I think there were only two or three songs I didn't care for, and the rest are on repeat right now on my iPod. My only question now is what happened to the mohawk or whatever that Sam used to have? Also, along with the cleaned up style, the music videos for The Sun and the Moon are now in color while the music videos for the self-titled album The Bravery were all black, white, and yellow. Just an observation; seriously, no complaints. I love these guys. Hopefully they will be working on a new album soon.

And that was my very, very long music review. I have to say, for it being after 9 at night and for me being ready to pass out, that wasn't half bad.

Until next time, Cyberland.

(Just in case you all become as obsessed as I seem to have.)

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