“There is a powerful harmony in Grimes. It is a project which is both musical and visual, embodying the arts of 2D, performance, dance, video and sound. Claire Boucher weaves these together to a strong rhythmic effect”. This is what Arbutus records say about Grimes. I am not sure about all that but I do know that I like the album Halfaxa and I do know that Grimes hail from Montreal, Canada. The version I have from 2010 has a cover that is very similar to New Order’s ‘Technique’ (a later re-release had a different one). But strangely, Halfaxa doesn’t resemble that New Order album at all. I would say it is much closer to their earlier stuff – darker and moodier.
The track ‘Weregild’ is one of my favourites from the album, even though it is not the most accessible. Like most of the album it is atmospheric and slightly dark but is carried along by melodies that surface, disappear and reappear like drifting in and out of sleep. It has a nice mix of organic and electronic sounds (like New Order) and her voice, like many other artists, becomes more of a melody line as you struggle to identify what she is singing. It’s maybe not the sort of thing I would normally go for but I just like the balance of the elements and the albums consistency. The tempo often carries you along and before you know it, the albums done. I have heard a couple of newer bits that I haven’t taken to as much.
Playlist Friday 13th January
Today wasn’t really a walk to work, unless you count strolling from the car park to the building. My 18 month old son and I drove in and I played stuff from my mp3s on my phone – so little opportunity to skip. On first went ‘Weregild’ and, as often happens, it just seemed to frame the journey perfectly – driving down country lanes, still quite dark, headlights and taillights jumping. Then the protective parent took control of me as I started to think that it was a bit of a moody environment for the little man – particularly as when I looked back it seemed like I had sent him into some form of trance. So, at the first opportunity, I lightened the mood and popped on the last Memory Tapes album ‘Player Piano’. It’s not ground breaking but it does a job and always makes me smile and do a bit of dodgy dancing. So played through most of the album until I got near work where I slung on ‘Buy Nothing Day’ from the last Go Team album just to go out with a bang.
Playlist: Grimes – Weregild, Memory Tapes – Wait in the dark, Today is our life, Yes I know, Offers, Humming, Sun Hits (all from Player Piano), The Go Team – Buy Nothing Day.