A double dose of Americana is coming to Zürich the weekend of February 12th. Two contrasting views from two established bands.
Zürich – Rote Fabrik
Band of Horses
Touring their third full-length release Infinite Arms, Band of Horses presents a country-rock glimpse into an increasingly relatable Stateside life of economic depression and uncertainty. Beautiful harmonies anchored by the soaring voice of lead singer Ben Bridwell, bring to life the “day late and a dollar short” sentiment right in front of you. Their straightforward lyrics call forth images of drinking beers under mid-western skies and trying to forget a relationship in a town so small you can’t avoid your lost love. Thankfully Band of Horses is not completely composed of self-reflecting sorrow and also offer a few rocking choruses that manage to get lodged deep in your brain for unprompted recycling. One thing is for sure, this band knows what they do best, and they do it very well indeed.
Zürich – Abart
Cold War Kids
Contrasting to the group above, the Cold War Kids (as their name suggests) bring a postmodern indie rock view of American life with the gritty details of alcoholic fathers, doubt-ridden pregnancies, and stealing from the church offering plate. Their unique narrative-style lyrics and blend of soul and punk project a sound that demands your attention. However, their most recent release (Mine is Yours, January 2011) comes off as a more polished effort and aimed at radio ready releases. Certainly a good album in its own right, however it feels as if they polished off those delightful bits of grit and cleaned up those dirty smudges of soul which brought you to them in the first place. Of course one could never expect them to keep re-creating their amazing debut album (Robbers and Cowards, 2006), and perhaps we should not be surprised as their movement from obscure yet authentic to commercial economies of scale is more American than apple pie.