Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Nathan Asher and the Infantry

Update: Ok, so I listened to the other songs on their Myspace, and they do indeed kick ass. I highly recommend you go listen to them, especially "Sex Without Love." They're very different from "Turn Off the Faders," so if that song didn't quite click, try the others out. Those of you who check often have no doubt clicked on today's feature, Nathan Asher and the Infantry. I myself usually don't click on every link I see there, seeing how often certain bands are heavily promoted, only to find that they are nothing but ordinary emo (or whatever you'd like to call it) bands. However, the fact that the group nagged the grand prize in both the John Lennon International Songwriting Contest and the Great American Songwriting Competition left me very intrigued and dying to listen. I was quite surprised to find such great material from a band very different to the likes of what the website usually focuses on. Their artist profile features the song "Turn Off the Faders." Now you'd have to be pretty much braindead to dismiss any similarities between the vocals of the band and Conor Oberst. Yet NAATI doesn't have the whine of Oberst, the trait that usually gains him the title of "pussy emo bitch." Unlike Oberst, the vocals in this song sound more direct and strait to the point, more poetic than emotional. And just when Asher's vocals may (although they shouldn't) begin to bore you, they either fall into a more singy style reminiscent of mewithoutYou vocalist Aaron Weiss' wails, or go so fast that you would almost think Asher's about to spit some rhymes. Although the instrumentals of the song may seem layered, I didn't find it much of a bother at all. "Turn Off the Faders" begins with ambient keyboard sounds, after which piano is added, and then a dancey high-hat/bass-drum beat. There isn't anything too surprising about it (except maybe for the piano in the end), but it still works and goes along perfectly with Asher's vocals. I find it very hard not to like this song, simply because of its lyrical beauty. The words are well crafted, and Asher's straightforward voice emphasizes the meaning of each one of them. If spoken word isn't your thing, then maybe this song isn't quite your thing. But nevertheless, give it a chance. It's clear why the band won the aforementioned awards. This song is definetly worthy of, at the very least, one listen. Nathan Asher and the Infantry - Turn Off the Faders I can't really say anything for their other songs, seeing as they didn't work when I tried to play them on their Myspace. But check it out anyways, maybe they'll play for you. -Adrian


Anonymous said...

I love this band and I am so happy they are finally getting some recognition. Their other songs are definitley less "spoken word" and are beautiful both lyrically and instrumentally. I love "Storms" and "Sex Without Love" which are both on their myspace page.

Anonymous said...

Keep up the good work
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