Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti

The band's "Round and Round" is Pitchfork's best track of 2010.
This is music that gets over on its astonishing level of craftsmanship, which is something no casual Ariel Pink fan accustomed to his blown-out home recorded lo-fi output over the last decade would have expected from him in a million years. In 2010, Ariel Pink was the strange kid who fucked around all semester and developed a reputation as a hopeless loser who then proceeded to blow everyone's minds at the talent show. And in the end, "Round and Round" succeeds brilliantly for the same reason great Burt Bacharach songs work-- because every chord change and turnaround and melodic leap is in exactly the right place. "We'll dazzle them all," goes one line, and it's no idle boast; another goes, "Write the songs that say, 'I like that!'." Done and done.
Hell if I know. Pitchfork, like most every other publication about music, is beyond me. I'm very much out of the circle, though I do take some measure of satisfaction in track No. 9, Arcade Fire's "Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)." I've been pushing that song for months. "Ready to Start" comes in at No. 36.

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