Album Review: Yeasayer’s “Odd Blood”

NOTE: To my readers, sorry it’s taken me so long to put up a new post, I tripped on the stairs at Buffalo Exchange and have been out of commission ever since. But I’m back now, and have a bunch of albums to review, so keep checking in. Now, for the review of Yeasayer’s “Odd Blood…”

I admit, I was late getting into the Yeasayer game. I first heard them a couple months ago when they released the single off the new album. Ready for another admission? I was ready to hate it, especially after the opening instrumental. Immediately rubbed me as something trying too hard, something over-synthesized and forced. I gave it a shot and made it to the hook before hitting the “x” atop the Pitchfork tab in Safari. And, wouldn’t you know it, I was hooked. Pun intended. (Is that really a pun?)

If I wasn’t completely sold after the chorus, then I was after the Max Schmeling reference in the second verse – and bought and sold after the head-voice bridge.

So, when it came time to listen to the entire album, I was so impressed by the single that I decided that rather than stream it in piece for free, I’d just spend the $10 on iTunes. Good choice.

Yeasayer's Odd Blood

Anyone who reads this blog knows that I don’t like comparison and I don’t like going through an album track-by-track. But, I can’t resist saying that the opening track, “The Children,” immediately struck me as a song Bowie would have recorded when he just stopped giving a shit and was more interested in making a racket than writing a song. (I’m eluding to the Lodger-era, and know that I’m as big a Bowie fan as there is.) It was very refreshing, though, and rather brave, to start an album off in such a way. Keating’s voice is a perfectly-poppy combination of masculine and feminine, even if he does occasionally slip into a bit of a Rick Roll-esque register.

I can’t decide whether this is a gay dance collection, an 80’s pop/synth revival, or an ambient-prog album, but one this that’s for sure is that it’s fucking great. It will infect you with a similar illness as Lady Gaga: you try not to fight it, but it’s getting under your skin and you’re going to like it. Now, the real test comes when I go an see them live. I have no fear that they’ll deliver just what was on the record, but I fear that a) the crowd may creep me out, and b) they just might not have a performance, but a DJ-set. Either way, this is one impressed dirty hipster. Kudos, Yeasayer, you’ve made a really good album. -DFH

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2 Responses to “Album Review: Yeasayer’s “Odd Blood””

  1. jessica Says:

    A great post for a amazing album of 2009.

  2. New Video from Yeasayer: They’ve Done Weirder « Life, liberty and the pursuit of strangers' old clothes Says:

    […] It seems that in the several months since the release of Odd Blood [read the review here], Yeasayer have taken a half-step toward reality. That is not to say that the band's marketing […]

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