Sunday, April 20, 2008

Sunday Music: Antony and the Johnsons

"Fistful of Love" by Antony and the Johnson.

Antony Hegarty's music was another discovery of mine from last summer. Sometime near the beginning of last semester, I Am a Bird Now made its way onto my work computer. Like "Fistful of Love," his songs often begin delicate and quiet then crescendo into a soulful shout chorus - which is exactly the sort of album I need in the morning when I'm still sipping my second coffee. Before you notice you're no longer yawning, you're singing along and hoping not to be overhead in the next office.

The abused but optimistic narrator of "Fistful" reminds me of Throwing Muses, whose songs often describe dysfunctional or one-sided romances. I detect more than a touch of early Smiths influence in Antony's work, not only lyrically but also in the smart but understated arrangements. However, I fear Antony may prove a one trick pony: although he has a great sense of melody, his songs are mostly interchangeable. I hope his forthcoming album shows some artistic growth and proves me wrong on that.

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