Death Cab for Woody

Monday, August 07, 2006

DCfW Suggested Listening...Bel Auburn

While this thing called "work" has hampered my ability to post as much material as I would like over the last few weeks, I have been fortunate enough to listen to a lot of music. Recently, I received a friendly email from a band named "Bel Auburn" out of Ashland, Ohio. I used to drive by Ashland on a daily basis, during a stretch of time (2002) when I commuted from Columbus to Akron (dont ask) for a long...long...painful project. It was a daily ritual to try and tune into the morning show on Ashland's University Radio station. This station introduced to bands, such as "The Sea and Cake" and helped me get ready for my on-slaught in Akron. The fact is that this area, while may not seem like a breeding ground for good music, is one of many areas of Ohio that has decent music coming out of it, but you would never know it.


Back on Topic....Bel Auburn.

I visited its website,read the Bio, and listened to all of the tracks that were available on the website. I also perused some other blogger reviews of the band. The band still resides in the Ashland-area, which is a unusual for bands that are trying to get its music heard by the masses. However, I appreciate the members' reasoning for such a bold move, which is the simple fact that they really enjoy the pace of life in Ashland and like the idea of having a house with a front porch. I understand the front porch concept, having grown up in a small town myself.

The great thing about this band is the music. The music is fantastic, and just makes you wonder if there is something in the Ashland water that can spark this kind of creativity. The first song that I listened to off of the band website was Metropolitan (Watercolor), and proceeded to listen to all of the website music a few times. I was impressed. From a musical and production standpoint, these songs are very polished and all of the components are very complimenting to one another. I generally critique music, based on its musical content, not the creativity of the lyrics. However, the lyrical tone and delivery from Scott and Mark melts into the pieces and really compliments the songs, while not overpowering them.

I have seen comparisons of Coldplay with Bel Auburn's work, but unlike Coldplay's music, Bel Auburn's music has a genuine feel to it. It doesnt feel like it was made out of a cookie-cutter. The musical composition is very fluid and really feels like a mix of Verve tracks spanning "A Storm in Heaven" and "A Northern Soul." The guitar action between Jared and Scott is very naturally "Nick McCabe-ish", and this a high compliment to any guitarist that prefers to set a mood with their music rather than see how many hammers and pull-offs they can do in 0.18 seconds.

While I really liked all of the songs on the website, songs that really seem to stick out to me are Metrpolitan (Watercolor), Blind Ward, and Burn Unit.

I would suggest checking these guys out sometime in the near future at their website. The band's album "Cathedrals" is available on eMusic. Hopefully, I will be able to see them someday when they make it to the West Coast.

Thanks for the email Jared and Good Luck!!!

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