Featured Artist: Electric Owls “Ain’t Too Bright”

30Jun09

Electric Owls Cover Art

Honestly, this record started a year ago when I decided to stop playing music for awhile because being in a band was ruining my life.

-Andy Herod

“Ain’t too Bright” by the Electric Owls serves up something entirely different than most records today.  Rather than having a super new sound or one that was embraced by artists in the ’70s, Andy Herod of the Electric Owls was able to capture a multitude of musical genres in just ten tracks.  It is classically modern.  (Yes, this is a music article, not a fashion one.)

Oxymoron much?  Allow me to explain.

Together, the members of Electric Owls (insanely big, I know) are able to blend and create a harmony sound reminiscent of something music lovers may have found at the Woodstock Music Festival 40 years ago.  Now, clearly they do not have the same sound as Crosby, Stills & Nash, Jefferson Airplane or Santana, but the Electric Owls’ eclectic sound would have fit in with musical greats of the 1960s and 1970s with ease.

The best song to explain their classically modern sound is Halloween Mask, the second track on the CD.  Halloween Mask opens up with a clip of guitar torment and suddenly switches to a poppy, harmony filled tune with the same vibe as Cheer Up Sleepy Jean by The Monkees.  (It’s not thaaat bubblegum, but the harmonies and melody follow the same cheerful pattern.)  Also, just like most music of the ’60s and ’70s, it is heavily driven by the back-beat.  Despite the extremely noticeable old-fashioned feeling emanating off of the track, the brief  snips of modern computer sounds cannot be ignored.

As described by Andy Herod:

Another songwriting experiment for me where I refused to second guess myself and just let it be what it wanted.  Apparently it wanted to be very poppy and apologetic.  Don’t shoot the messenger.

Released on May 5th, 2009, “Ain’t too Bright” offers music to please a variety of music listeners.  Haint in the Holler, a song about a ghost in a small valley between mountains, offers a funky blues/bluegrass feeling and differs greatly from all of the other tracks on the CD.  It also stands as one of two non-biographical pieces on “Ain’t too Bright.”  The other is “Cannibal Superstar,” for obvious reasons.

A group with an electric, yet classical sound, the Electric Owls are able to blend classic harmonies with modern subject matter and technological elements.

To learn more about the Electric owls, head to their website, Myspace or to Vagrant Records Online to hear more Vagrant artists.

Magic Show:

Cannibal Superstar, live: (fyi, acoustics aren’t that great where this video was recorded)

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