ON THE COVER :: GALLERY
ON THE COVER :: INTERVIEW
Proficiency in music can be a blessing and it can be a curse. A curse to those destined to don Hawaiian shirts and jam/riff their hearts out at any local street fair or barbecue playing Yes songs note for note, but a blessing to those who know how to reel it in and attack the song with tact and with just the right amount of flourish. Brooklyn's Bell is a blessed group of classically trained musicians that use their powers for good and not evil. Centered on singer/pianist Olga Bell the songs on the highly regarded EP spin and reel around her elegant voice and entrancing lyrics.
"Echinacea" starts EP off with a cut up sample of a crowd's applause with IDM beats and live drums that build to the chorus of "You do me so well/In sickness and health/You do me so well/And I try to run/I look to the sun/But it just makes me sneeze,/And there's no-one to bless me." Reworked from a demo from the band's MySpace page the new fleshed out version showcases the scope of the capabilities of band mates Jason Nazary (drums), Mike Chiavaro (bass) and Grey McMurray (guitar) while also showcasing Olga's Bjork-esque vocal bursts. "Brown Bear" is a lesson in tension and release. Assembled on a twinkling piano melody and rhythmic vocal delivery the song explodes with Olga singing "It's so hard to carry on/When the currents carry you so far from home/And the blue you loved/Clouds shaped like bears/Was just water," perhaps referencing her upbringing (born in Russia, grown up in Alaska) but ultimately embodying the volatility of life in which these six songs become the variations on that theme.
The EP was recorded here and there, from bedrooms and various studios, and mixed with Olga "sitting right behind the engineer being really annoying asking him what everything does and whether he could make it sound like a purple gas slick on a snowy day in Japan. And he did it!" In Olga's view, the recording of the EP is similar to a well-furnished kitchen with granite countertops and Viking appliances, but somewhere on a counter is an Easy-bake oven.
With their proficiency with home recordings and studio work equaling their proficiency with their instruments we can look forward to a future full of earfuls of interesting and captivating songs.