Sunday, April 22, 2007

The New Amsterdams

MP3: The New Amsterdams - Full Thunder Moon (old)
MP3: The New Amsterdams - Full Thunder Moon (new)

I can say I enjoyed "Killed Or Cured", The New Amsterdams' internet only/scraped album in favour of the uneven "Story Like A Scar". It was a depressing look at the evolution of leaving one band and creating another all in the same record. This Tuesday, Curb Appeal gives us the original KOC, as well as a new version with the full time band behind songwriter Matthew Pryor.

From the beginning, it's something familiar but presented very different. The replacement of the original opening of concert goers discussing someone getting shot is now sounds of water and birds. Immediately it almost sounds like a cover album: the original sadness is gone, as you can see Pryor feels great about his current direction with many songs becoming upbeat and full band, even sprinkled with a cheerful trumpet.

The only time he actually sounds melancholy is in my 2 favourite songs of the previous lp: "Maybe I'm A Fool", fueled by deep bass strings, slide guitar and lo-fi vocals. The other being "Full Thunder Moon". This song was one of the few upbeat gems on the original, now replaced with a harmonica, acoustic guitar and Pryor sounding at his best.

The records as a whole will have you picking and choosing different versions from each, but it's interesting to see a transition, and a rebirth of a man. It's amazing what certain players can do to change a song's direction.

{buy new amsterdams recordings from insound}

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