The beautiful voice of Kazu Makino with shimmering behind her, staccato clavinet and various string instruments plucked & picked, sweep the opening track, the symphonic 'Elephant Woman' "No don't insist I'm already hurt", into a majestic start. Now it is the turn of Amedeo Pace to sing on 'Messenger' - perhaps not the world's strongest vocalist, but he is effective in a despairing manner "Behind those clouds I'm almost home". Now it's back to Kazu on the fragile 'Melody' - and so it carries on alternating this way between these two lead vocalists. 'Misery Is A Butterfly' where Kazu takes us into a strange world with her friend Jane! 6th track 'Falling Man' which contains some brilliant lyrics "I know a ghost will walk through walls yet I am still learning how to fall". With 'Anticipation' there is perhaps a slight boredom entering, but then 8th track the strident & urgent 'Maddening Cloud' picks up again the magic. 'Magic Mountain' seems auto biog for Kazu - she was under great psychological stress (nervous breakdowns and all that). 'Pink Love' is a duet (one of the more unusual that you'll ever hear) & keeps the album in top gear. The album ends as it begins in sublime brilliance with 'Equus' with Kazu's anguished vocal over a melancholic backdrop.
I saw Blonde Redhead before i'd ever heard any of their stuff and it was definitely one of the best gigs of the year. what a fantastic band. This is the only album of theirs that I own and I think it's wonderful! This is an album that I would buy for friends and no matter their tastes I'm pretty sure they'd have only good things to say. Little bit like Bjork meets Deerhoof
This record deserves a lot more exposure than it received on it's release in 2004. Blonde Redhead's sound has evolved so much. Sonic Youth were once their sonic template, but the songs on 'Misery...' owe more to the orchestral pop of Jane Birkin & Serge Gainsbourg or Scott Walker. The melodies and arrangements are beautiful. Baroque keyboards and strings dip in and out of the weaving guitars and the whole sound has a fantastic clarity (Guy Picciotto of Fugazi produced it). This isn't the sort of band that the media thrust into our faces, so it's our secret - OK?
I took a chance with this band, having not heard any of their previous material, but finding one song (Equus) off this CD on an HMV freebie and knowing I had to hear more. The music here is absolutely exquisite with a wonderful mixture of styles and ideas. The closest comparison which springs to mind is Goldfrapp's Felt Mountain, but without the boring bits - and that's more in thematic style rather than musical similarity. Now I've got to seek out the rest of their stuff. Highly recommended!
I picked up this after hearing Elephant Girl on Radio 2 - it's strange how it sounds a bit like a lo-fi Muse, though the songwriting throughout is fresh, original and lush. Kind of reminds me a bit of Goldfrapp's Felt Mountain too. Listenable if you need a bit of a chilling out period after overwork and underjoy.
I first saw Blonde Redhead In NME magazine and thought I could give them alisten. I was very suprised and filled with glee when I first heard theopenening track "Elephant Woman". My favourite songs on the album are;Melody, Elephant Woman, Misery Is A Butterfly, Messenger and Eqvvs.Musically they are very soothing and the guitars sound quite mediterranean(especially on Elephant Woman)and invigorating. The album Is sweet enoughfor the chicks and cool enough for the guys.
Thank u firstly to those nice young men who go by the name of the red hot chili peppers for recommending this group and secondly to blonde redhead themself for the gorgeous textured lovleiness that is this album, instant classic. They also deliver live and are very nice people to boot! There is no reason not to enjoy and love this album, if you consider yourself a devotee of quality music. Enjoy