Yeasayer – Ambling Alp

Nov 27th, 2009
| posted by: David |

I’ll tells you what. This is going to be the song of summer (or winter, depending on where you live). It does sort of scream out as a bit more of a white Christmas classic, what with its spooky undercurrents, moralistic foundations and Chris Keating’s (you might remember him from such classic songs such as the fucking incredible Simian Mobile Disco hit, Audacity of Huge) warbling vocals. Either way, it’s a bold move to release new material as one of the band’s to watch in 2010 in what is traditionally music’s ‘Back in 5’ or ‘Gone fishin’ in Hawaii’ period – the holiday season. Just as free-to-air gets infested by NBCs sloppy seconds over December/January, most music people (crumbling, pasty and in many other ways just like the worst meringue you’ve ever eaten) vacate their posts for a couple of weeks in the sun. Ie. Don’t release stuff now because nobody cares and your interesting and original material will be lost in the yuletide(s).

According to Keating and mob (from Brooklyn, who seem to be going hard [like Santogold, not premature ejaculation patients] on the music front of late) those haters, doubters, poseurs can get fucked. Yes, the track was released a couple of weeks back now, but the sentiment still prevails. Experimental, psychadelic and freaking catchy, Yeasayer have thrown caution to the wind, their fan base into disarray (with a dramatic departure from the more rocky sound of 2007 release ‘All Hour Cymbals’) and the codes and conventions of the music video clip out with the baby and the bathwater. Keating is on song on this, the first single off next year’s ‘Odd Blood’, imparting his words of wisdom with a tone dominant yet not arrogant enough to put punters off. Plus, the crazy animal sampling and off-kilter percussion is enough MGMT and Passion Pit to get those indie mothers (always conscious of the ‘sell outs) on side.

Not that the song in its own right isn’t a masterpiece, but the accompanying video, released yesterday, pretty much redefines the term NSFW. A bit of a nip slip, some close-up crotch action perhaps. But fully-blown (no pun intended) 70s style nudity with young (what one assumes are) New Yorkers frolicking care-free, sans clothes through lunar-esque landscapes takes porn at work to a whole new level. For some reason, though, this blogger found the wide-shot wagging wangs and merely mid-shot muffs to qualify for something more then just gratuitous nudity. In an era in which every pseudo-Scandinavian dance crew picks up some Latvian prostitutes off the side of the Autobahn, makes them strip and fondle each other in the shower and calls that a video, Yeasayer’s piece is confronting in that it seems genuinely artistic. It’s not about TNA but something more, something deeper. Whether that has something to do with plate-glass-mirror-face boxing or horses galloping across Saturn, we might never know. In the meantime, watch this video and get into this song. It’ll seem like all your Christmases have come at once.

Yeasayer – Ambling Alp

Yeasayer – Ambling Alp [Video]

Yea, go to their MySpace


[…] answer to practically everything and creators of possibly the best slice of weird pop music – via ‘Ambling Alp’ – the summer of 2009 ever witnessed have managed to make something so casually great that I […]

[…] most straight-ahead, radio-friendly singles, it’s still delightfully weird in the same way Yeasayer (used to be) weird. Which is great, because if you told me you were starting a five to eight piece dance-funk band […]

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