Before The Review (feel free to skip this, fans of Pick A Piper):
A few months ago, I got all full of excitement and plans to add a ton more content on this site. I even reignited contact with the wonderful Mint Records, letting them know I was gonna be in the game again! Mint awesomely sent me three albums in MP3 to try out, and write up. YAY! And then a couple of months went by, as I realized bringing these plans to fruition required some organization, and then I complicated things with even MORE plans that (admittedly) make things awesome but meant some time in getting things done. I did manage to review one of the albums they sent, Jay Arner, recently. Pick A Piper, then, marks album no.2 of the three they sent to me ages ago. All apologies to Mint for taking so damn long.
And now, my thoughts on Pick A Piper:
Please bear with me: I have no frame of reference, really, for this kind of thing. My experience in this genre (is it EDM? Techno? Trance?) is exceedingly limited. I don’t know the correct nomenclature for it, but it sure is pretty. So I cheated and went to the internet for more information. I found this:
“Pick a Piper is a collaborative project by Caribou drummer Brad Weber with Angus Fraser, Dan Roberts and others. Combines dance-music structures, polyrhythmic percussion, atmospheric sound design, loopy melodies and a focus on electronics and production technique to create a sound poised between the organic and the synthetic. Debut LP out NOW on Mint.” (found on Soundcloud). There’s also more information on Mint’s artist page for them.
I certainly wouldn’t argue with it sounding electronic, though they do have “real” instruments in the mix as well. I imagine, with a swirling light show, that this would be a really great live act, especially if you like to go out and dance with your friends. It reminds me of the time I youtubed Thom York’s supergroup project, Atoms For Peace’s Amok, just to check it out. Only, these guys sound happier. Yorke always sounds so sad. Must be ‘cos most everything he does sounds like it’s done in a minor key. Anyway. This could arguably be comparable in style (if not in level of mope). And if it is, I hope that Pick A Piper takes it as the compliment it is meant to be. Or maybe I’m dead wrong – I really don’t know much about this stuff. I can only go with my gut.
My overall impression, though, is of high intelligence creating often fascinating soundscapes in which a savvy listener could lose themselves, of an evening. Especially with the good headphones on. I will require more listens to fully wrap my brain around this new (to me) type of music. And hey, isn’t repeat listens what every band hopes for? I expect Pick A Piper will grown on me even more, as we get better and better acquainted. Right on!