PHW Album of the Month - 2/08

Technically speaking, my favorite album released this month is Bon Iver’s For Emma, Forever Ago, but since it's a re-release of an album from last year, Beach House’s brand new best new music christened Devotion is the PHW Album of the Month for February, and it may be just as deserving. The spooky, slow burning “Gila” first caught my ears way back in late 2007 and I’ve been waiting (not so) patiently to hear the rest of this release from Carpark Records ever since. OK, maybe not ever since, since I cheated and have had it for a few weeks, but you know what I mean.

Quite the opposite of last month’s favorite (the whiskey-and-sin-and-redemption soaked 19 songs of Brighter Than Creation’s Dark), Devotion is an album that allows you to play the songs straight through from start to finish - completely engulfing you in its warm, hypnotic mood. There is no filler here, just 11 haunting torch songs filled with ghostly organ and (perfectly named) Victoria Legrand’s muted vocals. Multi-instrumentalist Alex Scally adds all sorts of beautiful flourishes to the songs, including the sonar-like guitars on “Gila”, that deepen and fill out the dream-like, hazy chamber pop of this very promising young band.

MP3 :: Gila
MP3 :: Heart of Chambers
(from Devotion. Buy here)

And here’s the first video, for “You Came To Me”:


Two other records released this month that I’ve enjoyed very much are Samamidon’s collection of traditional folk songs, All Is Well, and the Team Love released self-titled debut from Flowers Forever - both of which I’ve posted about before (here and here). I’d highly recommend either to any regular reader of this blog. Look for songs from each in a day or two to be included among my favorites of the month.

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