Trevor Faville is a composer, writer, percussionist, educator, producer who operates as DateMonthYear, which is best described as “Way of making music in the 21st century”. He volunteered for this because of the amount of great music that he’s been introduced to this past year, mostly from band mates and students….so here are five albums he’s loving right now…
1 – Maisey Rika, Whitiora: She has such a strong melodic sensibility, and a way of working Te Reo into her material. The Maori language can be so effective as a singing language – easily good as Italian – but so many fall back on shouty, stompy faux hip-hop. She does not, and when you add the quirky soul/funk arrangements its just so compelling for the listener.
2 – Arcade Fire, Neon Bible: Goodness me, but can these people arrange music! The songwriting is strong to be sure, but how these guys place instruments and sounds and harmonies is just extraordinary. Both this and the subsequent album, The Suburbs, strain their production to the max – but watch and hear live and it really jumps at you. Live album please!
3 – Joaquin Roderigo, Concerto d’Aranjuez: Guitar concerto written in 1940 by a blind pianist who couldn’t play the guitar (true!) and covered by Miles Davis. The second movement defines the word “haunting” and to watch the version with John Williams playing it is 10 minutes of magic. Its on YouTube. Do it.
4 – Ryan Adams, Love is Hell: This man is in the “laundry list” club for me…that bunch of people- like Waits, Simone, Bowie, maybe Springsteen- who could sing any damn thing (like, you know, a laundry list) and be utterly compelling while doing it. If you add to this the quality lyrics on this album (like the two dead lovers who cant figure out why their house is for sale…or…the plaintive despair of Shadowlands), then it’s just unstoppable.
5 – Prince, Purple Rain: Perhaps a guilty pleasure, but history has been kind to this man. Look past the showbiz (if you want to, that is – goodness knows there’s enough to satisfy on its own) and there is some REAL music there –the neat little chromatic shift before the guitar solo in Lets Go Crazy or the epic guitar solo of the title track (but listen to how much space he leaves in that solo).