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Blonde Redhead
23

Blonde Redhead — 23 (April 10, 2007)

  Blonde Redhead — 23 (April 10, 2007)
Ξ   Entitled '23', it's a record of renewed energy, intense colours and bewitching melodies. Released on April 10, 2007, it debuted on the U.S. Billboard 200 at number #63, selling roughly 11,000 copies in its first week.
Ξ   Eclectic New York City indie rockers whose dissonant guitars and alternate tunings earned comparisons to a latter–day Sonic Youth. Formed: 1993 in New York, NY
Location: Kyoto, Honshu, Japan  ~~  New York, NY
Album release: April 10, 2007
Record Label: 4AD / Ada
Duration:     55:16
Tracks:
01. 23     5:19
02. Dr. Strangeluv     4:47
03. The Dress     4:01
04. SW     4:36
05. Spring And By Summer Fall     4:16
06. Silently     3:57
07. Publisher     4:02
08. Heroine     4:11
09. Top Ranking     3:27
10. My Impure Hair     4:50
11. Signs Along The Path*     3:46    
12. (We Are A Real Team) Harry And I*     8:04
℗ 2007 4AD
Members:
Ξ   Kazu Makino
Ξ   Amedeo Pace
Ξ   Simone PaceBackground:
Ξ   The album is the first the band self–produced, with additional assistance provided by Crowded House–producer Mitchell Froom on two tracks, "Silently" and "Top Ranking". In a press release accompanying the album, the band members acknowledged their goals to be more spontaneous in their song–writing, to aim for simplicity and clarity, and to create additional tensions. Drummer Simone Pace said he found it nerve–wracking to enter the studio with only loose ideas for songs. Singer Kazu Makino admitted it “wasn't an entirely enjoyable experience. Without a producer, a referee, we could really get on each other's cases. It got intense.”       © Blonde Redhead performed at the Roseland on Nov. 20. Photos by B.J. Enright.
Ξ   The bandmates admitted that until they reached the mixing stage they were unsure what direction the album was taking.
Ξ   Simone said it “sounds fresh because we are exploring new things. We get tired of doing the same thing all the time, so we search for other things to do.”
Ξ   The music video for single "Top Ranking" was directed by Mike Mills, and guests director/writer/actress/artist Miranda July as the main, and only, character. At the start of the video it says “One pose per second.” Following that we view July for the duration striking a different pose every second, creating the effect of a living statue.
Ξ   Artist Alex Gross created the album's cover art, "The Tragedy".
CHARTS
Ξ   Belgian Albums (Ultratop Flanders)     #52
Ξ   Belgian Alternative Albums (Ultratop Flanders)     #34
Ξ   French Albums (SNEP)      #77
Ξ   Italian Albums (FIMI)      #30
Ξ   Japanese Albums (Oricon)      #196
Ξ   Swiss Albums (Schweizer Hitparade)      #100
Ξ   UK Albums (OCC)      #152
Ξ   US Billboard Albums  200      #63
Ξ   US Independent Albums (Billboard)      #4CREDITS
Ξ   Blonde Redhead Audio Production, Composer, Producer
Ξ   Greg Calbi Mastering
Ξ   Chris Coady Audio Engineer, Engineer
Ξ   Rich Costey Mixing
Ξ   Mitchell Froom Help
Ξ   Alexander Gelman Creative Director
Ξ   Alex Gross Artwork
Ξ   David Heasty Art Direction
Ξ   Ed Horrox A&R
Ξ   Eddie Jackson Editing, Mixing Assistant
Ξ   Morgan King French Horn
Ξ   Alan Moulder Mixing
Ξ   Andy Savours Mixing Assistant
Ξ   Chris Sharp A&R
Ξ   Skúli Sverrisson Bass
Ξ   Brian Thorn Assistant Engineer
Ξ   Ted Young Assistant Engineer
AllMusic Review by Heather Phares;  Score: ****½
Ξ   With each album since Melody of Certain Damaged Lemons, Blonde Redhead has made huge strides forward with their sound. Misery Is a Butterfly pitted fragile melodies against dark, swirling arrangements, and its tragic glamour turned the album into a cult favorite. On 23, the band trades the cloistered chamber rock of Butterfly for tone–bending dream pop and subtle electronics; while the wide open spaces sound a little bare at first, this streamlined approach ends up making this Blonde Redhead's loveliest and most accessible work yet. The group begins each album with a bold statement of purpose, and 23 is no different. The epic title track's delicate electronic rhythms, swooping, shimmering guitars, and majestically bittersweet melody pitch it somewhere between My Bloody Valentine and Asobi Seksu, showing how a more restrained Blonde Redhead can still sound lush and haunting. "Spring and Summer by Fall"'s streaming, comet–tail guitars and "Silently"'s thorny melody hark back to Melody of Certain Damaged Lemons, while "Heroine"'s vocoders sound surprisingly fresh, giving the song a fairy tale–meets–sci–fi vibe. This more whimsical, if not exactly lighthearted, feel flows through much of 23, especially on "Dr. Strangeluv," which boasts playful percussion and sparkling synths, and "Top Ranking," which layers Kazu Makino's vocals into futuristic girl group harmonies. However, Blonde Redhead hasn't ditched the brooding beauty of Misery Is a Butterfly entirely. "The Dress" is just as darkly stunning as any song on that album, with looping gasps and insistent guitars circling lyrics like “the fear starts creeping up when you have so much to lose,” while "SW"'s melody and psychedelic brass interlude have a Butterfly–esque intensity. Ξ   And as always, Blonde Redhead has a flair for haunting melodies, particularly on "Publisher," the chorus of which sounds peculiarly like Aerosmith's "Dream On." 23 is stunning — in fact, its only flaw might be that its track listing is a little top–heavy, resulting in an album with an amazing first half and a flip side that is only very good. Ξ   Nitpicking aside, 23 is mysterious and modern, with an artfully strange beauty that is more memorable than perfection. •♦•   http://www.allmusic.com/
Editorial Reviews
Product Description
Ξ   As rich and densely layered as their last album, "Misery Is A Butterfly", but the overall mood of wistfulness, melancholy, and regret has been replaced by one of mystical wonder and renewed energy. “It's art music and heart music, with equal appeal to a Serge Gainsbourg fan as to a Sonic Youth fan, without ever sounding like either act.” — LA Times.
Amazon.com
Ξ   As if getting a spread in a popular home décor magazine just a month prior to this album's release wasn't enough of a tipoff, Blonde Redhead have come a long way since their days of mimicking Sonic Youth's brittle art–rock. Clanging guitars have been replaced by warm synthesizers and soft strings, while Japanese singer Kazu Makino's thin voice has become a ghostly moan on the grandiose opener and title track of the New York trio's seventh full–length release, 23. Their last one, 2004's Misery Is a Butterfly, was a lovely throwback to the dream–pop heyday of the Cocteau Twins and Lush. This one presses further down that road, only with a more experimental streak, as cascading guitars, military rhythms, and wobbly melodies shape opulent, otherworldly songs like "The Dress" and "My Impure Hair."” — Aidin Vaziri
Website: http://www.blonderedhead23.com/
MySpace: https://myspace.com/blonderedhead
Twitter: https://twitter.com/kazumakino
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/blonderedheadofficialKAZU MAKINO
Ξ   Kazu Makino (Japanese: カズ牧野; born December 31, 1969) is a Japanese singer–songwriter and musician known for her work as vocalist and guitarist in the New York–based alternative rock band Blonde Redhead. Since forming Blonde Redhead in 1993 with twin brothers Simone and Amedeo Pace, Makino has released nine studio albums with the band.
Notable instruments: Gibson SG Standard23 LYRICS
This song is performed by Blonde Redhead and appears on the album 23 (2007).
Refr:  23 seconds, all things we love will die
23 magic, if you can change your life
1.)  Your tainted heart, my tainted love, repent now
How many times? As long as you live
How many times? The world will go around
Refr: La la la la la la
La la la la la la
La la la la la la
La la la la la la
2.)  He was a friend of mine
He was a son of god
He was a son of god
He was a son of a gun
3.)  He was a friend of mine
He was a son of god
He was a son of god
He was a son of a gun
Refr:  23 seconds, in you I see a chance
23 magic, if you change the name of love
4.)  Your crazy heart, my crazy love, repent now
How many times? As long as you wish
How many times? The world will go around
How many times? As long as you want
How many times? The world will go around
5.)  He was a friend of mine
He was a son of god
He was a son of god
He was a son of a gun
6.)  He was a friend of mine
He was a son of god
He was a son of god
He was a son of a gun
23
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Blonde Redhead
23

 

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