Album Spotlight of the Week: Wild Streaks and Windy Days

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Sometimes there are things that you are asked to do that, initially you think are a great idea, and then you realize that you’ve bitten off more than you can chew.  The task of reviewing Wild Streaks and Windy Days by The Boxing Lesson was one of those such situations.  I’ve resolved myself to go through with this, but in order for it to work you’ll have to understand that I’ll be reviewing this album as a listener – a fan of music – and not as a critic.

Where do I start?  Well, very generally, Wild Streaks and Windy Days is not an album that can be reviewed in one or two listens, and that means something to me.  There is a complexity to this album that is derived through the intricate layering of the music, and though there is so much going on, there is a spaciousness to the music.  I’ve often said that, for me, good music is much like a room and the instruments should be like the furniture in the room – able to stand-up on their own and able to be appreciated singularly; this album passes that important test.

The Boxing Lesson has also achieved something that many bands fail miserably at, and that is to provide an approachable album.  What they DON’T do here is make an album that trades essential musical qualities for artistic expression.  I think that over the last decade or so, the word ‘pop’ as it relates to music has developed a bad connotation because so much of what pop music has come to mean involves a sound that is artificial in either its sentiment or its production.  WS&WD is authentic, well-arranged, and technically well-crafted and it certainly doesn’t sound like it’s been put together by judges on a reality show.

One of the other ways this album works is that it is able to juxtapose light and dark, slow and fast, major and minor in a way that even the classical Greeks understood created a universal tension and release – a complicating action followed by a resolution that manages to cast aside the meaninglessness of the last decade of pop music and replace it with something that is both difficult and rewarding.

For me, highlights include the frenetic Brighter and its segue into the haunting undulation of Lower.  Hanging With The Wrong Crowd rocks and the energy feels more like a live setting – something that I’m much more accustomed to.  The introspective Muerta and Scoundrel combination are followed by the driving Freedom which picks you back up again and tells you that there is more in store.  Wild Streaks and Windy Days (the song) stretches out and pulls all of the elements together and resolves this album nicely.

The Boxing Lesson scores high marks here with Wild Streaks and Windy Days and though I might not understand all of it, I can’t help but marvel at the beauty and the texture of these musical tapestries that they create.  There’s a mystery to the music that keeps the listener on his or her toes and keeps you from thinking you’ve got it all figured out.  I’ll continue to listen to this one on my own and would suggest that you go out and listen to it too.

If you are interested in learning about The Boxing Lesson and finding out when they might be in your town, visit their MySpace page at http://www.myspace.com/theboxinglesson or you can check them out on Wikipedia.  If you are interested in purchasing the music you can go to ITunes, Amazon mp3, or CDBaby

Proving once again that we do more than just show you the best deals in the Phoenix real estate market; we show you how to get the most out of living in Arizona, and try to help you get the most out of what you are listening to.  If you have heard the music, please comment and let us know what you think.  Enjoy

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One Response

  1. Really cool release I heard some tracks.

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