Talkdemonic Mutiny Sunshine

[Lucky Madison; 2004]

Rating: 4.5/5

Styles:  folktronic-hop
Others: Four Tet, Menomena, Caribou, Explosions in the Sky

It's an effort these days to make an album with a completely unique sound. Talent and ability have now become so romanticized that musicians are integrating genres and making music with an abundance never seen before. In addition, with the growing affordability of recording equipment, any hard working kid can commit his or her music to a medium possibly accessible by many. Having a support system of friends, musicians, publications, and file sharing websites, unknown contemporary artists are finding it easier to, well, get their music out there. However, this availability to access does not always translate into good music. Sloppy production, a derivative (isn't using the word derivative kind of derivative?) sound, and an underdeveloped vision of one's own material has led to many artists releasing work that is nowhere near the potential of what independent music offers.

What Kevin O'Connor has managed to do with Talkdemonic's debut, Mutiny Sunshine, is provide an accessibly original album that is more mature than much of what is being released today. The general mood of Mutiny Sunshine is set with loops, synth, and samples. Further live instrumentation adds to the ambience with the addition of flute, viola, piano, bass, and guitar. However, what quintessentially sets this album to the side of many others is the live drumming on 8 of the 14 tracks. O'Connor has provided unique rhythms and beats to each respective track, without jettisoning them in the arena of drum solo fodder. The length of the tracks also allows the listener to remain engaged for the entirety of each respective song, providing the elements of a complete song without overstaying its welcome.

While much of the contemporary instrumental music today alienates the listener in its attempts at aural innovation, Mutiny Sunshine is an incredibly inviting album, offering an authentic human aspect to what could largely be considered an electronic album. O'Connor has used his drums to highlight the loops, samples, and instrumentation of Mutiny Sunshine, and that, perhaps, is one of the best things a drummer can do. The album, however, coulda used more cowbell.

1. I Am the Son and the Heiress
2. Dec27
3. Final Russian
4. In the Machinery of Night
5. Indian Angel
6. Blood Dripped from Yr Eyes
7. Mutiny Sunshine
8. Versus the Above
9. Starry Dynamo
10. Andean Twilight
11. The Last Untouched
12. Eardrum Symphony
13. When I Spent October with Erik
14. The Snow Melted, it was Goodnight

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