Mutual Benefit Review: Love’s Crushing Diamond

Mutual Benefit

Love’s Crushing Diamond

mutual benefit

It is often said “familiarity breeds contempt”.  This phrase is most often directed towards people, but it also carries a lot of weight in regard to listening habits with music.  With a few exceptions, if a band that does the same thing over and over with every album, they will often lose my ear.  Or, if a band comes along and does something similar to what is trending at the time, that familiar trend will cause me to be dismissive of a copycat upstart.

Almost everything on Mutual Benefit’s debut, Love’s Crushing Diamond, is familiar to me.  The voice of the primary vocalist, Jordan Lee, is so reminiscent of The Antler’s Peter Silberman, that upon first listen I had to make sure Mutual Benefit wasn’t a side project of Silberman’s.  The string arrangements range from extremely delicate in the vein of Damien Rice to containing more punch like those used by Lost in the Trees.  There are even some hints of Sufjan Stevens in the collaborative vocals and overall song structures.

Love’s Crushing Diamond is about as familiar as it gets.  But there is such a warmth and genuine nature to the album, it would be almost impossible not to love.  Mutual Benefit has managed to make an album where I feel like I have heard every song before, but also feel lucky to revisit each and every one.  Its the type of familiarity akin to seeing some of your best friends from a previous stage of your life that you haven’t seen in years, and proceeding to pick up right where you left off.  It is very fulfilling.
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Top Ten Thursday: Best Live Acts of 2012

St. Vincent Best Live Act of 2012

Our best of the year coverage continues with our favorite rockers of the road, highlighting the ten best live shows we saw this year. This year LxL was able to get out to Coachella, Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, and the Pitchfork music festival, which many shows on this list stem from. So without further ado, here are our ten favorite live acts of the year.
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Lost In The Trees Show Review

Lost in the Trees

October 11, 2012

Blueberry Hill – The Duck Room

St. Louis, MO

picture of lost in the trees

Lost in the Trees experience with St. Louis didn’t start off too well.  They came in town early to make a visit to the City Museum, one of St Louis’ hidden gems.  While enjoying the adult playground their van was broken into, and all their laptops, ipads, etc. were stolen.  Fortunately, their instruments survived this rude welcome to our great city and they went on to perform one heck of a show.
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LxListening: Catch Up Time

catch up time, baseball, up, time, clock
 
So many good albums are released over the course of a calendar year that we don’t even pretend to be thorough in our coverage of current music.  Its even harder for someone like me to absorb the amount of music I would like to, whereas Wes and Todd are human encyclopedias of all things past, present and future music.  Wes in particular is usually able to listen to an album once and form an opinion I usually agree with, but would take me upwards of five or six listens to form.

Due to my mongoloid nature of absorbing new music, it often takes me weeks, or even months to decide that I like an album, sometimes putting it on the shelf for quite some time after a first listen, only to give it one more shot and come around on it.  Due to my deficiency, I would like to bring to you a song from five albums that I’m pretty sure we won’t be able to review in whole, as a sign of respect that they are more than worthy of review.  Some have been released this week, some are weeks old, and some months, but all these artists are worthy of note.  Let these five tracks be your Friday Sizzurp.
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