“Living Thing”

I didn’t get around to reviewing this album when it first came out, but I want to do a review on it while it’s still fresh.

The album is ‘Living Thing’ and the artist is Peter Bjorn & John. You may remember the song ‘Young Folks’, it was played everywhere and I’m still hearing around the place, well this album is a lot different in style to the song so be warned…

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Peter Bjorn & John - "Living Thing"

Peter Bjorn & John - "Living Thing"

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Peter Bjorn & John are a Swedish indie-pop band that have made their name from their release of the song ‘Young Folks’. They have released five albums, including this. “Living Thing” makes use of funny/strange beats that sound different to most other music, the beats actually make it sound similar to R’n’B music, but the song are a bit more clever.

The strength of the band is to make intelligent, yet deceptively simple pop songs. They are prepared to experiment with different styles and effects, which is very refreshing.

The song ‘Nothing to Worry About’ is a song that is influenced heavy by hip-hop, and the indie twist they give it is genius. The little things that are include make this track, especially the echoing steel drum that is featured throughout the song. It’s essentially a three note bass line, which is extremely minimalistic, even for this band, but again, the twist they give it is just amazing.

My personal favourite is ‘Lay It Down’, it mat never get airplay on commercial radio, as it features a fair bit of language, although that didn’t stop Spiderbait when they released the single ‘Fucken Awesome’. I love the way they transform a potentially simple arrangement to a really intriquite and complicated one. Plus it’s about as catchy as ‘Young Folks’, which I thought was an impossible song to replicate in terms of catchiness.

The album is one of those albums that is going to be one of your most listened to albums, without being your favourite, It’s got songs that you can listen to anywhere, at any time and it is a honest and interesting album. I would definitely recommend people to listen to it, because I for one really enjoyed it.

I’ll finish with an excerpt of a triple j review with Bjorn that sums up the album perfectly, “New album is spooky, dancey and I would say interesting in a not boring way. We tried to make everything what it doesn’t seem to be. Like a guitar should sound like a synthesizer and a snare drum should sound like an umbrella opening or stuff like that. Just messing up your mind.”

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~ by Michael Hodder on April 17, 2009.

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