Friday, May 23, 2014

new (to me) music:The Velvet Teen/ a "man with body and soul, moments of ecstasy, and who sang with burning sparks."

It's too early to say if this band, The Velvet Teen, is going to be a life-changer for me.
All I can say is I'm intrigued.

Thank God for Rasputin.
Not the bizarre Russian mystic/televangelist, but the record-store chain named in his honor.
Racks and racks of CDs for 50 cents means one can find classic gems amidst the skubala..
and risk something indie, gulty pleasure or new..... based only on the CD cover, a  holy hunch,  a sign of God-hauntedness and/or a quick googling or in-store listen.

So I grabbed what turned out to be The Velvet Teen's first CD.
Any of the following factors would've been enough to sell me (at even twice the price!):

  • -Amazon reviews suggesting fans of Radiohead, Athlete, Jeff Buckley, The Postal Service and Yes (harmonies) might like them; a synthesis of indie, emo, prog and....Ok, I've read enough to buy!
  • -A C.S. Lewis reference in the song title (not always enough to guarantee quality, lol) and other cues to spirituality
  • -Each song was linked to a painting on the back cover, and the concept of this concept album felt a bit like The Violet Burning's "The Story of Our Lives" opus (Like The Violets, the band is largely the project of frontman Judah Nagler)  I find out later all three members on this album are graphic artists by day.
  • the Henry Miller quote  (from Tropic of Cancer) featured inside: "I am one who was lost in the crowd, whom the fizzing lights made dizzy, a zero who saw everything about him reduced to mockery. Passed me men and women ignited with sulphur, porters in calcium livery opening the jaws of hell, fame walking on crutches, dwindled by the skyscrapers, chewed to a frazzle by the spiked mouth of the machines. I walked between the tall buildings toward the cool of the river and I saw lights shoot up between the ribs of the skeletons like rockets. If I was truly a great human being, as she said, then what was the meaning of this slavering idiocy about me? I was a man with body and soul.  I had a heart that was not protected by a steel vault.  I had moments of ecstasy and I sang with burning sparks."

They have three  albums (and one in the can) each quite different from the other;
kudos and abrazos for the risk and leap:

There are no neatly representative songs from each album/era...but this may get you started, one from each:

the albums:

The Velvet Teen - New Album 2014


    New album coming 2014. 11 brand new songs, digital + vinyl. Release date and details announced soon. No Star by The Velvet Teen. Cum Laude! by The ...
    You visited this page on 5/23/14.

  • The Velvet Teen - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


    The Velvet Teen is an indie rock trio from Sonoma County, CA. Contents. 1 History; 2 Discography. 2.1 LPs; 2.2 Singles & EPs; 2.3 Imports & re-releases.
    History - ‎Discography - ‎References - ‎External links

  • EPs:

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