Monday, February 18, 2013

Pitstop: Birthdays

                                                          (photo by Emily Reo)

"The Silent Barn is back!"

It's a exclamation I've heard a lot in a rather short amount of time as the Bushwick space made its triumphant return. Artists like Matty Fasano record albums there, art happens there, shows happen there. And that's more or less how I came to know about Boston's Birthdays. A random trip to the the Silent Barn website to see when a friend's band was playing and Birthdays caught my eyes based almost exclusively on name alone.

Thank heavens for that because the music of Birthdays' mastermind Sam Yager is exactly the breath of fresh air I needed. After feelings like I was pretty much listening to permutations of the same idea being spit out by band after band, Yager's sonic experiments were a pleasing change of pace. Layers of electronic fuzz give way to African-esque beats that eventually stabilize as something more than just mimicry on "Mating Falls". The very first track on his self-titled cassette, it was pretty clear the rest of the cassette would be a treat of interesting paths taken, decisions made, and good times had and Yager certainly doesn't disappoint.

Equal parts intricate layered bedroom experiments with a sunny psychedelic sheen and ear-catching pop moments and a wispy ethereal air ever present in the periphery, Birthdays manages to take a rather wide array of potential genre qualifiers and mixes them all together like a well-blended smoothie - no single influence or deviation making itself known; all sort of balancing upon each other to create this enjoyable, highly energetic, and engaging  label-less mass.

If you would so desire you can purchase the cassette here. For all others (non-tape collectors and what have you), you can buy the digital copy (which I strongly recommend!) on their Bandcamp here.

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