The Earlies

These Were the Earlies (679 Recordings)

SXSW Records

The Earlies

These Were the Earlies (679 Recordings)

God and death are no strangers to art, but that doesn't mean they can't be explored with grace, which is exactly what the Earlies do on their epic psych-pop debut These Were the Earlies, quite possibly one of the best new albums … ever. A British collective of Polyphonic proportions, the Earlies employ nonrock instruments bassoon, oboe, and euphonium, and unlike the Dallas outfit, these folks never resort to cutesiness in their psychedelic treatise on living and dying. "In the Beginning" opens with a burst of sound swelling with samples of comforting words from a preacher and a child. It segues into "One of Us Is Dead," on which singer Brandon Carr – quite possibly the next pop prophet – evokes a mellower Wayne Coyne as euphonium floats plaintively above the music. Is it a call to arms or a beckoning home? The disc alternates between unsettling, exhilarating, and devastating in its emotional impact; it's also difficult not to get distracted by everything going on musically. Nevertheless, the Earlies' meditation on the gates of heaven is a deeply affecting one – perhaps even a masterpiece. (Thursday, March 17, 12:15am @ Maggie Mae's)

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