Along with releasing Moon Gazer, Brandon asked me to write something about the album. A review didn’t seem quite right, but what happened is that I ended up live-blogging my first listen. -h
1 – Moon Gazer
- starts off with a block-rocking sleep-beat!
- it sounds like shooting sunbeams from one’s eyes is commonplace in this world
- love the space at the end of the first verse/chorus
- i feel like this is going to be my favorite panda face album
2 – Lofty Eye
- yeah, i think so!
- this feels like all the things i like about panda face – sweetness and creepiness, the vocal stylings, weirdness and pop… ness – all cranked up four notches at once
- i’ll have to ask brandon how his musical adventures since the last record – renfields, millions, burns – have influenced this, and what order all that stuff happened in
- really proud this is going to be on MFR. brandon just emailed me out of the blue, “hey, i have a new record out, will you post it?” that is exactly what i hoped MFR would be!
3 – King of the Sun
- ooh, i wanna dance a bit. i’m doing kind of an egyptian neck movement thing
- AND HE JUST SANG “EGYPTIAN FANTASIES…” we have some connection going on
- is that “cesearian?” probably, there was a roman thing, too. fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck weareintrouble. i think i might get cut open, somehow.
4 – White Hawk
- i have been listening to brandon’s music since the blane “blair” EP, so, about ten years. i think we’ve only met once, and it was at a dark satellites/renfields show, and i’m terrible at hanging out at shows because i’m super-focused on my performance and my gear
- the sounds in this song are really cool, but the song doesn’t rely on them. i think brandon could make this work acoustic. that is a compliment. but i’m glad he didn’t, for this version, at least.
- another sort of unexpected, tight ending. i’m loving these arrangements.
5 – She Fell
- another great sound, that rubbery bass. it could almost be cheesy in someone else’s hands, but since it’s panda face, i know i’m going to end up hiding under a blanket, so it’s already kind of ominous
- sick deep filters, deployed very subtly. nice touch.
- is anything still sick when it’s cool? i don’t know. i might be out of touch. i didn’t start saying “snap!” until 2006.
- and i still do sometimes :-|
- this is def my fav panda face album. it seems fully realized; like brandon accomplished exactly what he wanted to, and i love hearing that. that’s what i always aim for, and only rarely, partially ever achieve.
6 – Mysterious Danger
- nice interlude. kinda british educational film strip-y. death is probably coming around the corner…
7 – The Down Low
- or not? this is funky and kind of twangy. two great tastes that i’m listening to right now together and they sound good.
- first line = perfect
- the little high keyboard on the chorus is making me laugh in a good way. with joy. that happens to me sometimes when a riff is just perfect and overwhelming. here, it’s like the musical idea is spot-on, kind of like something out of a ’90s Dre production, but it has this cracked kind of Pavement, played-it-wrong-but-left-it-in-whatever quality, too. both of those at once is magical.
8 – Lame to Try
- maybe we won’t die after all. i predict this will be a bit of a love jam.
- cool instrumental part under “i think you know exactly what we should do” (might have gotten the pronouns wrong)
- over the whole album, is this the least amount of guitar brandon’s ever had? might be. not good or bad, just observing. what guitar i’ve noticed has been well-deployed. and you know by now how i feel about the various synths.
- nice come-down ending