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Before Today [CD]

Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti Audio CD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
Price: £10.80 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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West Coast natives Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti present Mature Themes, the follow-up to 2010’s hugely successful album, Before Today.

Before Today was the band’s 4AD debut, offering the first sign that the intriguingly scatalogical music Ariel had been making for over a decade was finally ossifying into a coherent form.

Indeed, the lead song from Before Today - ... Read more in Amazon's Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti Store

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Product details

  • Audio CD (7 Jun 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: 4AD
  • ASIN: B003G7DSHQ
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 37,663 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
Listen  1. Hot Body Rub 2:26£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  2. Bright Lit Blue Skies 2:25£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  3. L'estat (Acc. To The Widow's Maid) 4:26£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  4. Fright Night (Nevermore) 3:35£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  5. Round And Round 5:08£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  6. Beverly Kills 3:56£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  7. Butt-House Blondies 3:27£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  8. Little Wig 5:46£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  9. Canít Hear My Eyes 3:19£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen10. Reminiscences 2:34£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen11. Menopause Man 4:00£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen12. Revolution's A Lie 3:49£0.99  Buy MP3 

Product Description

BBC Review

Surely even normal kids growing up in Hollywood must, at times, feel like they're missing out on something–transplant the most mundane memories from your youth to a town 20 car minutes south of those famous cinema hills, with all their fun and iconography, and imagine the envy and frustration that'd rot at your gut whenever you had to spend the night at home alone babysitting. Ariel Pink, aka Ariel Marcus Rosenberg, grew up in Pico-Robertson, a town of aforementioned ilk, and his first memories of pop music came from the radio he'd hear every day driving to Beverley Hills High School. Without wanting to play dumb Freud, it's rewarding to view Pink's arrival at this point in his recording career through the filter of his Hollywood childhood, and all the associations with Alicia Silverstone's emerald green eyes the phrase conjures up.

Before Today is supposed to be Ariel Pink's breakthrough album. Primarily that's because it was made in a real studio, paid for by a real label with real money–'til now, all of his music has emerged from his bedroom, where'd he kneel to record albums like The Doldrums and House Arrest, much of the time playing 'the drums' with his mouth. These albums sounded like retreat into an own world–they were covered in a thick film of lo-fi noise hum and melodies were evasive, often flitting and strafing through that fuzz as if an infant was mad with control of a car's AM radio dial. Fortunately, they were also insanely good records–the extent of Pink's pop nous has been clear for a while now, and much of Before Today does sound like an unleashing of that, particularly lead single Round and Round with its 10cc-recalling synths and bassline stolen from Sade's Hang On To Your Love. The album's highpoint arrives in its first bridge, as Ariel 'answers the phone' amid guitar waft that sounds like billowing net curtains on a hot summer's day.

Other highlights arrive in the 70s Bowie funk snark of opener Hot Body Rub, Bright Lit Blue Skies' quietly euphoric pop radio charge, L'estat's synth whirl and Reminiscences' pleasant, aquatic drift. In fact, every track on this superb album is a winner–and, draped in the quiet glamour, fun and stateliness of bygone radio pop-rock, evidence that Ariel has emerged from his bedroom to exact his revenge on Hollywood's Hills. --Kev Kharas

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Colour Me Pink, 2010 Has A New Hero 11 Jun 2010
Format:Audio CD
Ariel Pink (real name: Ariel Marcus Rosenberg) has always been a bit of an outsider. Since the mid-90's he's recorded over 500 songs using only a primitive 8-track, a guitar, casio keyboards, bass and his strangled voice. Three albums worth of this material has been previously released through The Animal Collective's Paw Tracks record label, but here he is with his first 'proper' release (with his own band in tow, no less) 'Before Today'.

Opener 'Hot Body Rub' really sets the tone. It is pure white funk of the Frank Zappa variety. The use of a saxaphone is prominant and Pink's minimal lyrics speak of his great hot tub ('Hot tub, get into my hot tub') before deflaming the mood somewhat ('Hot tub got a disease, Uh spread it in grease'). This pretty much sums the entire album up. On the one hand it sounds like a lost relic from the 80's mainstream (think Hall & Oats on acid) which would have been comfortable on daytime radio and yet a feeling of deprevity surrounds the whole thing, with Pink flippantly talking of drugs, incest and castration. But don't let that put you off for this is a record full to the brim with potential hits. 'Fright Night' with it's 'konck, knock on the door three times/and you knock knock on the door!!!' refrain is pure adrenilin-fuelled lunacy delivered completely irony-free, lead-off single 'Round And Round' with it's 70's languid jazz leanings and grandose vocal arrangements, the 80's hair metal romp that is 'Butthouse Blondies' and the quite frankly show stopping (future hit?) 'Can't Hear My Eyes'.

'Can't Hear My Eyes' is possible the greatest love song that this young century has yet thrown up.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You're trying too hard to be yourself... 17 Jun 2010
Format:Audio CD
I've long been a fan of Ariel Pink's decaying radio/culture vulture schtick and was worried that this `full band' LP would shave away his ramshackle charms. But, against all odds, `Before Today' is the perfect distillation of his queasy listening spook pop. Unlike earlier albums which display fitful bursts of genius and require the odd bit of skipping and good will, this is all killer, no filler. It's difficult to pick out highlights but a few current favourites are the scuzzy video nasty vibe of `Fright Night' (Nevermore) followed by the perfect pop of single `Round & Round'. Both hark back to the schizophrenic volte faces of the past which is something like flicking between songs but so much more accessible and clever than that sounds.

`Bright Lit Blue Skies' is the perfect downer summer tune with a beautiful harmonic chorus. `L'Estat (Acc. To The Widow's Maid)' is like a prog Kenny Loggins playing with cod reggae. It's the way that these disparate elements gel, fragment, disappear, re-appear that makes Ariel's sound so addictive. The sleazy, treble-heavy slap-bass funk of `Beverley Kills' is another standout. `Can't Hear My Eyes' is the kind of stalker pop you imagine the Tooth Fairy in Manhunter kicking back to. The instrumental `Reminiscences' has an odd burbling synth sound that you'd imagine both Toto and Dam Funk would be proud of. The peerless `Menopause Man' is probably the most sinister song on the LP, a weird meditation on sexuality.

Of all albums I've bought and loved recently, `Before Today' is getting the most spins and is the most multi-faceted and revelatory with repeat listens. I would never have thought I'd have said this a few weeks back but this is by far my favourite Ariel Pink LP.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Passed the Repeated Listening Test ! ! ! 18 Jun 2011
Format:Audio CD
I think this is a really great record. I heard it in a back street record store in Soho and thought it was an old album as it has a retro sound but was surprised to find it was a new release.

I have lots of music on my ipod but this is an album I often return to, I guess it has a good vibe to it and I find it interesting as it is quite out there in places which I find a turn on in music.

Musically it has an ambience, seventies style keyboards, thumping bass lines and for Ariel Pink is quite tight and coherent. Lyrics are quite Bowie and Lou Reed and although he isn't a great singer he has something distinctive in his voice.

Highlights for me include the haunting 'Fright Night', and the smooth sun kissed retro sound of 'Can't Hear my Eyes'

I hope this is the start of much bigger things for Ariel and I hope this band stays together and release more material, I for one will look forward to it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Musical Magpie 30 May 2011
Format:Audio CD
I stumbled across this album a few days ago and was immediately impressed with the way in which it references numerous past bands (Fleetwood Mac, 10CC, Big Star...) and musical styles (80's hair metal, 70's AOR...) in an effortless, passing way, without appearing to try too hard.
Ariel Pink has obviously absorbed a massive amount of previous rock and pop music, but has filtered and refracted it through his own idiosyncratic, humour tinged, anarchic creative lens. The album reminds me in places of the band Love, with its kaleidoscopic, psychedelic approach.
An amazing album that rewards repeated listens, and which sits very nicely next to last year's equally impressive Cosmogramma by Flying Lotus.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Dreaming
This is a new type of experimental music.
You must give it a chance. The more you listen, the more beauty is coming out.
It becomes hypnotic. What a great album!
Published on 3 April 2011 by atyca
3.0 out of 5 stars Unusual and doubtless a grower if you've got the time
Bought on a friend's recommendation, I can honestly say I've not heard anything like this. At least not anything that isn't from the seventies. Read more
Published on 24 Mar 2011 by President Kang
2.0 out of 5 stars Pastiche
I've had this record for a number of months and my opinion of it has plummeted. When I first heard it, I thought it was quite interesting, but I've liked it slightly less on each... Read more
Published on 8 Dec 2010 by Mr. Mark Wilkinson
5.0 out of 5 stars beautiful frenzy
what a frenzy this album is...the opening saxophone reminiscent of UB4O when they were actually good....zappa mixed with EARLY prince...mashed up with Hall and oats... Read more
Published on 1 Nov 2010 by 1treehillbilly
5.0 out of 5 stars Kind of just perfect.
What would the Velvet Underground have sounded like if they had hailed from California? I reckon they might have sounded like Ariel Pink's 'Before Today'. Read more
Published on 28 Jun 2010 by K. Doyle
3.0 out of 5 stars Ear syringe urgently required
Aerial Pink assembles a great bunch of songs then appears to record them on a cheap C90 cassette that was bought in Woolies in 1982.
Oh, its meant to be lo-fi? Read more
Published on 24 Jun 2010 by Kevin Stapleton
4.0 out of 5 stars Mr Pink's Finest moment has arrived..
Finally Mr pink has made the album he's been threatening to make for quite some time. great selection of songs, it's very 80s throughout and very Zappa in parts. Read more
Published on 19 Jun 2010 by Mr. M. A. Estevens
4.0 out of 5 stars He's Created A Monster (8/10)
Just like Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti themselves, Before Today is ostensibly comprised of two parts. Read more
Published on 13 May 2010 by Gannon
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