Wednesday, December 24, 2008


"Take this sinking boat and point it home, we've still got time..."

There's something exciting about falling in love with something you didn't even notice the first time around, isn't there? When I first listened to The Frames' The Cost, I didn't pay attention, didn't even notice their lead singer, songwriter and guitarist Glen Hansard. After watching half of his turn in indie movie "Once" (stopping only due to a crappy DVD player) with the fantastic Markéta Irglová, though, I'm going back to his output and listening to it in a complete new light.

Why am I so excited about these two? Both can hold a great well of emotion in their voice, and their writing (best when together, in fact) is some of the best I've heard in a while, drawing out a lot of emotion.

Both worked together to create "Falling Slowly", so beautiful it managed to score its own Oscar for Best Original Song. It's delicate, supported by both vocals, as well as guitar and piano. Perhaps even better than "Falling Slowly", however, is Hansard's amazing work on "Lies", a defiant accusation of betrayal. The sadness is wonderfully executed, and Hansard's writing keeps it from crossing the line to sappy or whining. At its core, it feels true in a way a lot of music doesn't. Markéta Irglová shows off her own chops in "If You Want Me", creating a haunting, echoing piece like a siren in the mists. Her sound here is similar to my beloved Lisa Hannigan, but perhaps shows an even stronger power despite Irglová's youth. Hansard proves himself as able to support as to lead here, as well.

Enjoy a smattering of tracks from "Once", as well as a track from Hansard's latest release with The Frames.

Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová - Falling Slowly (Once OST, 2007)
Glen Hansard - Lies (Once OST, 2007)
Markéta Irglová and Glen Hansard - If You Want Me (Once OST, 2007)
The Frames - True (The Cost, 2006)

And don't forget, search for more at The Hype Machine; purchase albums or mp3's at Amazon, Amazon Canada, Amie St., cdbaby, or Insound.

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