I came home from work yesterday and sitting on the front porch of my house was the new album by Sigur Ros enttitled “Valtari” translated as Steamroller in American, as well as the “Madness In Miniature” by the band Mr. Gnome… which is an awesome splatter vinyl pressing as seen in the photograph above.
The pressings are, for the most part, quiet. I heard a few ticks and pops while listening to Valtari, but it could be time for me to replace my cartridge… Which could mean upgrade time! As I currently have an Ortofon 2m Red Cart… which has served me quite well for almost 2 years. Has it been that long already?
As expected, Valtari is an atmospheric masterpiece. The phrase ear candy comes to mind… but doesn’t do the album justice. Spread out on two LPS is 8 songs, 2 songs per side. So for those people who hate having to flip records you might have to get off your bum if you want to enjoy this album as a vinyl pressing. You can, of course, listen to compressed mp3s, or the CD. But come on! Actually people are being enticed to use their download cards that come with the LP as the downloadable version of the album comes with 2 tracks not on the LP: logn and kvistur.
The first single released from the album was Ekki Mukk and the remaining songs on the LP follow along the vein of that track.. which is great.
Madness in Miniature by Cleveland, Ohio band Mr Gnome was released in October of 2011.. I heard a track off the album while at work, listening to the local college station. I was intrigued.. and therefore I came home and ordered a copy of the album in LP format. Having listened to it entirely last night and also again as I type this I am very happy with what I hear. I believe Rolling Stone named this band as a “band to watch!”and I agree with that. Singer/Guitarist Nicole Barrille & Drummer/Pianist Sam Meister make up the band and they do a fine job at that. The best way to describe their sound if one hasn’t heard it would be to take the whimsical elements of Florence + the Machine and throw in the rough and raw edginess of the Kills and then combine them with Nicole and Sam’s own incredible talents you basically have Mr Gnome. I like this band a lot and I am now going to obtain a copy of their first album “Heave Yer Skeleton.” My favorite tracks off Madness in Miniature you ask? All of them. Just listen to it!
Mr Gnome’s blog: http://mr-gnome.blogspot.com/
Mr Gnome’s official website: http://www.mrgnome.com/index/
Sigur Ros’s official website: http://www.sigur-ros.co.uk/