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Andrew Bird — Things Are Really Great Here, Sort of… (2014)

 Andrew Bird — Things Are Really Great Here, Sort of… (2014)

USA Flag Andrew Bird — Things Are Really Great Here, Sort of…

MASTER CLASS ALBUM Andrew Bird — Things Are Really Great Here, Sort of… & NOMINATED for 8th TAIS AWARDS/HARVEST PRIZE 2015
Θ≡   Classically trained Chicago violinist whose songwriting is a compound of indie rock, small-group swing, Gypsy, and folk elements.
Born: July 11, 1973, Chicago, Illinois, United States
Genres: Indie rock, indie folk, folk rock, chamber pop
Occupations: Musician, songwriter
Instruments: Voice, whistling, violin, guitar, glockenspiel
Location: Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
Album release: Jun 03, 2014
Record Label: Wegawam Music
Duration:     35:38
01. Cathedral in the Dell       3:59
02. Tin Foiled       3:26
03. Giant of Illinois       3:31
04. So Much Wine, Merry Christmas       3:32
05. My Sister’s Tiny Hands       3:44
06. The Sad Milkman       3:29
07. Don’t Be Scared       3:21
08. Frogs Singing       2:45
09. Drunk By Noon       3:02
10. Far From Any Road (Be My Hand)       4:47
2014 Wegawam Music Co.

Θ≡   Growing up, Bird was surrounded by classical music. As a child, he was interested in Irish tunes and bluegrass. He also cites English and Scottish folk music as an early influence. His early jazz influences were Johnny Hodges, Lester Young, and Fats Waller. Θ≡   He has also had a number of classical influences such as Claude Debussy, Maurice Ravel, and Béla Bartók. Other influences included jazz, swing, calypso, and folk. Bird has stated that, at 22, he found a lot of indie rock and pop music repetitive and boring, but now understands it better.
By Alan Ranta, Score: 8
Θ≡   Andrew Bird is one of those guys who have to make music. Trained in the Suzuki method since he was able to hold a violin, he has appeared on multiple releases every year since the mid-’90s, from his myriad solo albums and his work with Bowl of Fire and Squirrel Nut Zippers to his collaborations with Dosh, the Muppets and anyone else who needed a little extra soul in the strings department.
Θ≡   His latest project, Things Are Really Great Here, Sort Of… is a full album’s worth of covers of the Handsome Family, an alt-country band that has basically released an album every other year since forming in 1993.
Θ≡   Bird’s violin previously graced a few tracks on the Handsome Family’s 2000 album In the Air, and he covered their song “Don’t Be Scared” on his Righteous Babe debut Weather Systems in 2003, so it’s safe to assume he knows their music fairly well. The proof, for sure, is in the album, on which Bird freshens up his take on “Don’t Be Scared” and adds his perspective on the Family’s “Far From Any Road” (also the theme to HBO’s True Detective) alongside selections culled from across their catalogue.
Θ≡   Realized with the help of Bird’s fabulous backing band, the Hands of Glory, the arrangements on Things Are Really Great Here, Sort Of… are ornate and thoughtful, highlighting both the brilliant Americana song writing of the originals and the sweetly soulful execution of Bird and his band. It’s a natural fit; if you didn’t know they weren’t his songs, you might not have guessed. (http://exclaim.ca/)
Website: http://www.andrewbird.net/
Tumblr: http://andrewbirdmusic.tumblr.com/
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/andrewbird
Studio albums:
Θ≡   Music of Hair (1996)
Θ≡   Thrills (1998) (with Bowl of Fire)
Θ≡   Oh! The Grandeur (1999) (with Bowl of Fire)
Θ≡   The Swimming Hour (2001) (with Bowl of Fire)
Θ≡   Weather Systems (2003)
Θ≡   Andrew Bird & the Mysterious Production of Eggs (2005)
Θ≡   Armchair Apocrypha (2007, Fat Possum) #76 US
Θ≡   Noble Beast (2009, Fat Possum/ Bella Union [Europe]) #12 US
Θ≡   Break It Yourself (2012, Bella Union [Europe]; Mom + Pop Music [US]) #10 US, #46 CAN
Θ≡   Hands of Glory (2012) #52 US
Θ≡   Things Are Really Great Here, Sort Of… (2014)

Andrew Bird — Things Are Really Great Here, Sort of… (2014)



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