tag : bright yellow-green apples: letter from N.I.

"I see little point in persisting in a discussion with one so obstinate as you" Martin White

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

letter from N.I.

After mildly agitating, I also managed to get hold of a tape from Mary of her doing the acoustic thing. With few preconceptions (other than what I got from Martin), and only the desire to experience a friend's creativity, I was a pleasant surprised.

The first half, ranging through Hallelujah, Both sides now, Say hello wave goodbye, Peace on earth, and Hurt, is a fairly straight take on the originals with simple guitar accomonyment. What particularly marked them out to me was the vocals, which show a great range. I would hesitate to say it was a case of Mariah Carey-esc swoops, but the scope of effects showed great versatility - from restrained whisper to loud bursts (I was listening on a walkman so got the full volume effect!). Sensitive and restrained, after a couple of listens I can safely say I'll be putting them on with almost the regularity of my Aviator CDs.

The second half showed a more playful spirit. There was a self-penned creation, I, that shared some tone and theme with the preceding selection. However, it had a more clearly personal telling, with a fair bit of emotional pathos in the sound and lyrics - combined with the sharply various singing, they were quite affecting. I was walking in the snow at the time for full whimsical effect, as the last guitar noodlings played out. Then it was the much-anticipated cover of Brick in the wall, a collaborative effort with her sister. It's got lots of defiant umph and a wry attitude, somehow managing to make Pink Floyd sound less up their arse (always a good thing). And lastly there was an abstract vocal duet, Mr Zebmoo-a. It did a pretty good job of ranging around various attitudes and moods, like a condensed tribute to Medulla by Bjork spliced with Tori Amos. I might confess that this was my favourite piece, what with it being the most tangential of the tracks.

It came in a clear plastic case, and clearly needed some visual sprucing up. So this is a cover I've got on the go, adapted for the delights of the internet by the wonders of "paint". That's neither exhaustive nor coherent, but such were my initial impressions. Quick, everyone request their own tape at the same time!


Blogger mary said...

oh thankyou! *is dead chuffed and touched*

i love the cover too! :-) most arty and cool.

12:13 AM  
Blogger Martin said...

So long as it's only almost the regularity, chuck...

I suspect, although I've not listened, that Hurt, Say Hello Wave Goodbye and Hallelujah are probably covers of the covers rather than takes on the original (since only the covers are solo efforts, I doubt Mary's mastered the Spring Harvest drum machine tack that pollutes Cohen's original version of Hallelujah, or the nice gothic humming of Soft Cell's original of SHWG).

"And lastly there was an abstract vocal duet, Mr Zebrmoo-a. It did a pretty good job of ranging around various attitudes and moods, like a condensed tribute to Medulla by Bjork spliced with Tori Amos."

Or it might have been a bit of a laugh... :-p

Nice cover though

12:49 PM  
Blogger postliberal said...

Oh don’t worry Martin, you’ll always be my favourite...

Your typically anorak musical comments were not unexpected, I assumed most people would know what I meant ;P Thanks for the compliments on my picture, especially as it only took a few minutes to piece together.

“Or it might have been a bit of a laugh”

That’s what I meant, tsk!

3:16 PM  
Blogger Martin said...

Some might question the presence of any obvious synonymity between 'a condensed tribute to Medulla by Bjork' and 'a bit of a laugh', but I'm sure you'll worm your way around it somehow.

4:52 PM  
Blogger Rach said...

Mary totally rocks, her voice is amazing - the tape she sent me a good 4/5 months ago is yet to leave my tape player!!!


6:30 PM  
Blogger postliberal said...

They can question all they like, I don't need to squirm out of any fix - I just have a fairly unusual sense of humour at times ;P

12:04 AM  

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