Tuesday, November 10, 2009

review: Tallest Trees--Hey There Little Nebula

Tallest Trees
Hey There Little Nebula EP

Download Tallest Trees here.

Tallest Trees: "Aloutte!"

Tallest Trees: "Learn"

Never was sure what a "buzz" band was until I heard Nashville's Tallest Trees. Not sure where I first downloaded their free album, but Out The Other threw it up on Twitter about a month ago and as I went to download it, I realized I already had it. Just never spent much time with it, never got to know it in a proper way, only that fleeting way which is the state of inboxes and status updates.

Here's another blog post for the wash of white noise over you--Tallest Trees is good and excellent in some cases, but still needing some refinement. Maybe Nashville is all atwitter because they finally have their own Animal Collective/Of Montreal to call their own. Tallest Trees is THAT type of band--instantly alluring, in that non-threatening way that indie stalwarts like Grizzly Bear, Dirty Projectors and the aforementioned bands have so, so, so perfected.

"Alouette!" is the strongest song, precisely because it depends so much on its percussive beats and the cascading French words step so perfectly right into tune, like a marching band of misfit string players. Theirs a high falsetto with intriguing lyrics--yes, Animal Collective is a strong influence and much of this 5-song EP feels like

Is that bad? Of course not. Too much of a good thing? Maybe. Though "Alouette!" is original, it's hard to find a "non-derivative" song after that one. "Non-derivative" is in quotes, because the quality is extremely high, it's just that Animal Collective has got almost a decade and several albums and side projects tucked in their pockets. Finding a niche in that scene will always be tough--too many parts, too many elements always teetering on the edge of failure. But I love the violin(?...never sure w/ instruments) in "Skinny Little Wrists," the deeper, darker beats of "Finally Home," the twinkling electronica melody on "Learn," and the clever lyrics on "All My Fears."

All the while there is more electronica swirls (not electronica ambiences) than on Animal Collective; combining some standard beats with indie rock strings and a compelling, but familiar sound is made--you know like getting Breyer's Ice Cream instead of Haagen-Dazs. It still tastes good, just very similar.

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