Thursday, February 21, 2008

2080 :: Yeasayer

I saw Yeasayer a couple weeks ago opening for MGMT. I only knew a few songs from each band, but the show was sold out, and I fell into a ticket. How could I say no?

Yeasayer is a Brooklyn-based band that is still pretty fresh to the national scene. They had amazing energy, and really jammed out. The lead singer was freaking with the mic and gesturing wildly, almost revivalist style. It was pretty great. As a side note, they provided excellent indie-style visual stimulation - there was a side ponytail, braided pigtails, moustaches, an a-shirt (a.k.a. wife-beater), a various patterns of layered plaid and check, a yellow hood, sunglasses for a brief period of time, a crustacean forearm tattoo, and a well-worn graphic tee. Terribly stylish. They also like Sriracha (note the green capped jar in image). Men of my own heart.

Anyhow, right now I am way into this song. They describe their sound as "middle eastern-psych-pop-snap-gospel". As much as I don't want to say it, there is something about this band that reminds me of the jam-drum bands I listened to in a previous, uh, Rusted Root. Yeasayer uses a lot of percussive, earthy rhythms, ambient sounds, world music harmonies, and and there is something just slightly new-agey about the lyrics. I kind of feel like I should be at a big hippie festival that has been displaced to a hip club, and instead of patchwork pants, all the kids are wearing expensive boutique denim. I told an enthusiastic, watered down version of this to frontman Chris Keating (he's the one chopping the zucchini). We were standing next to each other in the back while MGMT played. I couldn't help the opportunity to chat him up; I'm not sure what he honestly thought about my assessment, other than saying he'd never been to any of those festivals. He was gracious and introduced himself; if anything, hopefully it gave him a laugh.

Give it a listen! The song starts with a non-optimistic view of the future, celebrates the beauty of the current moment, and then pushes for communal farming with enthusiastic "yeah!"s yelled in unison. Take it as literally or as figuratively as you want...

I can't sleep when I think about the times we're living in,
I can't sleep when I think about the future I was born into,
Outsiders dressed up like Sunday morning,
With no Berlin wall what the hell you gonna do.

It's a New Year,
I'm glad to be here
It's a fresh spring,
So let's sing.

In 2080
I'll surely be dead
So don't look ahead,
Never look ahead

It's a New Year,
I'm glad to be here
It's the first spring,
So let's sing.

And the moon shines bright
On the water tonight
So we won't drown
In the summer sound.

If you find me I'll be sitting by the water fountain,
Picket signs, letdowns, meltdown it's Monday morning
But it's alright, it's alright, it's alright, it's alright
It's alright,
Cause in no time, They'll be gone I guess I'll still be standing here.


Yeah Yeah we can all grab at the chance and be handsome farmers,
Yeah you can have twenty one sons and be blood when they marry my daughters,
And the pain that we left at the station will stay in a jar behind us.
We can pickle the pain into blue ribbon winners at county contests.




.:m-e-g-g-o:. said...

i'm really diggin this song too now! great find!!!! what is MGMT?

Quaking Aspen said...

Wow, Kim!! That song is beautiful. I like it a lot.

Hello, my name is Kim Christensen. said...

yeah! glad you guys like this song.

MGMT is another electro-rock-experimental band from Brooklyn - OR

Check 'em out!