Thursday, March 6, 2008

A Weather's 'Cove'

I recently sent an email to a few of my close friends, attached was a song by A Weather. I told them they had to listen to it immediately. I don't do this too often, but when I find a band I truly love, I have to tell everyone. So I told them first, and now I can tell you. Below is my review from CMJ today. Please listen to the band, they are so good.

There's a reason why Portland's A Weather isn't a household name—their hometown won't allow it. Unfortunately, with a debut this good, Oregon's precious secret, in the form of a bedroom pop quintet, may not be a secret for much longer. On Cove, frontman Aaron Gerber and drummer/singer Sarah Winchester quietly lead a nine-song odyssey, complete with whispered vocals, jazz-infused bass lines and carefully crafted beats. There's no wall of sound here—instead, the band equally highlights every part, thanks in part to the well-known production work by Adam Selzer (M. Ward, the Decemberists). The dueling vocals avoid love-struck lyrics, instead, Gerber and Winchester's chemistry feels natural and rare.

Cove opens with an impressively five-minute-plus track "Spiders, Snakes," that sets the pace and ambition for the rest of the album. In fact, although only nine-songs long, Cove clocks in at over 45 minutes, with some tracks over seven-minute long. Not track out of place, A Weather seems to have focused as much on order as the sound. Not relying on heavy production or unnecessary sound effects, the band allows the songs to create a self-reflective mindset. From the bass heavy, playful "Screw Up Your Courage," to the retrospective "Small Potatoes" and the fuzzy, angsty "Pinky Toe," Cove refuses to shine a spotlight, instead stepping aside to engage listeners from start to end. So that by the time Gerber and Winchester sing, "It's good to know when good things arrive," in the final track, "It's Good To Know," we already know that they have, indeed.

A Weather - Spiders, Snakes
A Weather - Screw Up Your Courage
A Weather - Oh My Stars


piers said...

Very nice! I love the boy/girl dynamic, and a refreshing chnage from that Moldy Peaches song from Juno, which Sirius seems to play every 10 minutes lately.

Welcome back to blogger!

a said...

Hi Rachael,
This is Aaron from A Weather. I stumbled on your cmj review at work today and then later this. Thanks so much for your kind words. It's great to hear what people think of the record and it's even greater to hear that people like the record.

Moving Rushmore said...

nice find

Edgar said...

A friend of mine just turned me on to this album. I love it. I think the thing I like the most is the way it "refuses to shine a spotlight," as you so poetically pointed out. ;) My favorite tracks are "Spiders, Snakes," "Small Potatoes," and "Pinky Toe."

Anyway, keep up the good work... to you and A Weather.



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trailzy said...

I just re-read this blog entry because I got an email regarding the above spam. I didn't even remember posting a comment before, and when I saw the date I realized why. I can not believe that I have been listening to this album for almost two years. It is still one that I listen to over and over. The more I listen to it, the more I appreciate it. Actually, now that I think about it, this album does seem more like an old friend than just a collection of good songs. It has seen me through some pretty tough times and has helped me through a pretty awkward relationship with it's very wise perspective on the inner workings of a relationship that is bound to end. And now, it continues to remind me that, "it's good to know when good things will arrive."

-- Trey

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samrx said...

a weather is a an excellent band why you don't post more albums?

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