August 27, 2007

Dazzer Musicology

Chartrigger reports that Darren Hayes has gone in at #14 on the British charts - quite good for an independent double album.

A good double album can keep you entertained for ages. You find something new each time you play it. Here are my Top Ten (Plus One) Musical Moments on the new Darren Hayes record, which was released one week ago. In no order, except for #1, which is #1. Can you hear these on the album?

11. The synths at 2:30 on Neverland.

10. The butt-slapping giddyup! on The Future Holds A Lion's Heart. I am less enamored by his pronunciation of "craft" as "croft" - haha!

9. Who Would Have Thought?'s chiming wedding bells (around 3:17).

8. The pulsing, Laurie Anderson-esque intro and phone-line vocal treatment on The Only One. What an elegant song.

7. Sing To Me's pretty choral middle eight at 3:25.

8. The chill-inducing backing vocals from 2:57 to 3:12 on The Tuning Of Violins.

7. The lyric "A shimmering diamond within a ring that was worn through two world wars" on The Sun Is Always Blinding Me. This song should be the next single, not Me Myself And I.

6. The Kate Bushisms throughout the album (references, intentional or not, to Lionheart, The Ninth Wave suite and the opening bars of A Coral Room)

5. The British locations name-checked on the album: Notting Hill, York, (bluebells over) Blackheath.

4. The final minute of Future Holds A Lion's Heart, with the drawn out hellowwwwwwws.

3. The classic Giorgio Moroder turbo synths on Step Into The Light, a specific reference to Donna Summer's I Feel Love. which all great discopop divas feel compelled to rip. It's a rite of passage.

2. Words/images Darren manages to squeeze into the album's lyrics: atypical, velocity, origami, "sheets and pillowcases seem to overtake your head", reference to Wilde's The Picture Of Dorian Gray, prototype, "bite into the onion" references to 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea, the imagery of "my hands fly off the steering wheel", A/C that does not work, bowler hats, "Paris in a new sports bra", violins tuned a little sharp, "little black rocks make televisions work", helicopter blades, peaches and cream, "I forgot to moisturize."

1. The spine-tingling moment in Casey (3:25) when beat comes in much stronger. The song sort of opens up at that moment. And the pretty synth piece at 4:43.

Check out Arjan's interview with Darren...
This Delicate Thing We've Made


countpopula said...

This post made my day. Such a great album so worthy of the praise. So moments I'd wish to nominate:

The great bit in "How to Build a Time Machine" where things slow down & go all reflective. You think the song is over. SURPRISE!

The fantastic part nearing the 4 minute (!) mark in "Walk Away" where the supporting music finally kicks in--up to that point, it is all Darren's vocals acappella. Fantastic!

The excellent spoken bit in "Me Myself & (I)" (sorry XO) where D demonstrates his ability to rattle off words at dizzying speed (remember "I Want You"?), plus some great key changes at the chorus to elevated levels.

Can "Bombs up in my Face", "Setting Sun", and "Sing to Me" all be by one artist? Shocking (as are the F-bombs dropped in "Bombs").

How does he hit those high notes in "I Just Want You to Love Me"? Eat your heart out Mariah!

Everything else I echo! One of the most brilliant pop albums to come down the pike in ages. Glad to hear it's doing well in some parts of the world. Thanks again XO for your beautiful post!

xolondon said...

I'll go back to Me Myself just for you petal!

As for the f-bombs, beware of this blog.

Thanks though... beautiful posts are made by beautiful bloggers. Natch.