Missed Music

Music you didn’t know you needed…until now.

Smooth and relaxing pop from Sam Prekop, Kings of Convenience

Today I’ll be at the other end of the spectrum from yesterday’s hard rock post. These will help you unwind and relax a bit after a hard day.

Sam is your new professor

Sam is your new professor

You may or may not have heard of The Sea and Cake. I’ve listened to a couple of their CDs and, to be honest, they didn’t do a whole lot for me. The songs weren’t mellow so much as sleepy and, I’m sorry to say, kind of dull. That’s why I was surprised at how much I like the solo release from Sam Prekop, their guitarist and singer.

Who’s Your New Professor has a smooth and mellow vibe throughout, even through a few upbeat numbers. Intriguing lyrics are placed deftly in pretty melodies, backed by very appropriate base and drums. The guitar work is often understated but spikes into the foreground when needed. Check these four tracks:

  • Something – The band vamps patiently behind Sam’s sweet breathy vocals and a beautiful cornet conclusion.
  • Magic Step – This is jazzy instrumental’s frantic drumming and traded solos do not disturb the relaxed feel of the rest of the album.
  • Dot Eye – This one walks along pleasantly until about halfway through the song when it changes to an occasionally blistering, but somehow still mellow guitar solo for the rest of the piece.
  • C+F – This is my favorite track. The clean, twangy guitars, lyrics and harmonies, and handclaps combine to lay down the best groove on this album.

Maybe I have to go back and listen to more The Sea and Cake…

They're playing chess -- probably as they were writing these songs.

They're playing chess -- probably as they were writing these songs.

Kings of Convenience is described as an indie folk-pop duo from Bergen, Norway. I think they’re well summed up as Nick Drake meets Simon & Garfunkel. I recommend you get at least a few tracks from their 2004 release Riot on an Empty Street. Acoustic guitar and two part harmony are the bread and butter of this disc with occasional appearances by piano and strings. 

If you’re interested, their website can be found here.

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February 18, 2009 - Posted by | Indie, Popular

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