Saturday, October 22, 2011

Intuit: Ramona Falls

In general, I don’t like reading music reviews before I listen to an album, and, as usual, I didn’t find Ramona Falls through a review (though the Pitchfork one is SPOT ON), or look for one before I spent time listening. And I’m so glad. The thing about Ramona Falls is that you have to let the full force of the layering that’s happening hit you without anybody else telling you first that it’s going to happen.  I know that this post completely contradicts what I’ve just told you, and I might be better off just posting links to the songs, but the music is so incredible that it might be worth spoiling it for you just a bit in order to make sure you experience it. This stuff is absolutely like nothing I’ve ever heard before, and I listen to a heck of a lot of music.
Brent Knopf comes from the Portland-based band Menomena (also really good, with some of the same weaving of unexpected instrument combinations), striking out on his own in 2009 with Intuit. I don’t know why he hasn’t become famous, but thank goodness, because now I get to surrender to that one completely ridiculous hipster behavior in which I shamelessly indulge: claiming obscure musicians as my very own, and getting really, really fussy when anybody else claims to have discovered them. Oh yeah. 
I’m not going to say any more about the music, other than that it’s gorgeous, and that the emergence of each “impromptu choir,” each surge of electric guitar or violin, brings the listener to an all new level of ecstasy that can’t possibly be surmounted, until, of course, it is. As Pitchfork writer Joe Tangari sums it up, Ramona Falls is “a combination of Where the Wild Things Are, a fever dream, a pagan woodland ceremony, and a notebook doodle.” Check it out.

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