Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The rarity of songs about nature

Lately I've been trying to listen to new music and I came across this band called Tennis, which are out of Denver of all places. This is strange because their album Cape Dory, is a musical document of the husband-and-wife duo's year-long trip on a sailboat along the eastern seaboard---far from landlocked Denver and the Rocky Mountains. The NPR write-up has more details, and several tracks have graced Pitchfork ,the AV club, and such. The music is not typical for what I listen to---indy rock doo-wop numbers about sailing---but I find the whole thing utterly unique and compelling.

You should have a listen:

Now if you want more about the band, check the links I provided above. I can't say anything new about them as a band, or what they're like, or their very self-aware WASPy vibe. But what I will say is that listening to Tennis made me realize that very little contemporary music is about nature. And this album Cape Dory is such an earnest homage to the natural experience. Now most artwork/writing/music that approaches the natural world tends to be bogged down in its preciousness and overly serious. Not Tennis. And I'm not a big fan of sailing or anything, but when listened for a while, I was completely taken in on how these two people (a couple) bonded and mutually experienced their surroundings---coconut coves, squalls, the surf, the sand, the tides. Yeah, it really works, and I wanted to be there too.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting...

    Have you heard Danny Michel? Witness:


    There are a bunch of neo-hippy bands too--especially from Canada and (of course) the Pacific Northwest.