Hey KSSU listeners. It’s Brandi Marie coming at you with a review about a hot album that I have come across from a band by the name Thao & The Get Down Stay Down (which by the way is the best band name I’ve ever heard) entitled “A Man Alive”. I have never heard of this band in my life, but this is their fourth studio album and it was released March 4, 2016. If you have ever read a music review from me before, you know I like to go track by track. However, the album is twelve tracks long. I don’t want to take up too much of your time, so I’m going to choose a few tracks that stuck out to me and then I’ll reveal how I felt about the album overall.
Track One: Astonished Man
Considering the fact that I did not know what to expect from the album, this was a great way to kick off the album. I think that the lead singer’s vocals combined with the hip hop type drum beat made for a great sound. Also, I liked how the verses were pretty chill with just the drums, bass, and a little guitar, but when the chorus kicks in they add in some synth and make it sound a little more dynamic. Great track.
Track Five: Nobody Dies
The song starts out with the drummer counting off the beat with the drum sticks, suddenly the beat kicks into high gear. Then the guitar and bass come in to accompany the drums and complete the sound. The song is still slow/mid-ish tempo, but the song is still powerful. When it is time for the vocals to come in, the music stops and all you hear are hands clapping, keeping the beat while Thao begins singing. There’s nothing like a good “clap-your-hands-everybody” moment to get you feeling excited about a song.
Track Six: Fool Forever
The beat kicks off at a slower tempo than the tracks before it, which already stood out to me as different. The beat still has that hip hop/indie type influence. Thao’s vocals are not sung in the verses. It seems more like she is speaking/rapping over the beat, which made for a great sound. It was different because the previous tracks sort of blended together for me. They sounded sort of similar. This is not a bad thing, but Fool Forever was a refreshing track to hear because it had that change of pace.
Track 11: Hand To God
The song started off with just the guitar, background vocals singing “ooh ooh”, and Thao’s lead vocals. Soon, the bass and the guitar kick in with their funky riffs and the drums as well. The song had a nice, chill vibe to it with a hint of funk influence. However, part of me had hoped that the whole song would be stripped down and Thao would have sang the whole song accompanied by the guitar and her background vocals the whole time. I feel like that would have been great, but it was a great track nonetheless.
After listening to this whole album, I feel like I will keep an eye out for that Thao & The Get Down Stay Down will come up with next. The album has a laid-back, alternative/indie, hip hop influenced vibe that I am attracted to. However, I felt that sometimes some of the tracks would come together and sound a little similar. This is not a bad thing by any means. It is just an observation. I think that Thao’s soft vocals when she sings, yet her loud powerful vocals when she speaks is a great combination with the band’s instrumental sound. It was a dope album with a dope sound. I enjoyed it. Who knows? Maybe you will be hearing one of their tracks on Eargasms & Glitter Showers this Wednesday at 9pm…so stay tuned. 🙂
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