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Musical Pairings: Typhoon – A New Kind Of House

May 1st, 2011

I found myself trying to formulate the words for today’s post, but strangely unable to so much as write the first word.  Just as I was going to sit down to write the post, I learned via Twitter that the President had announced an unusual surprise speech about national security to be delivered shortly. That’s kinda a unsettling announcement – and not entirely conducive to writing blog posts. And to be honest, even after the news was announced, I still was having trouble concentrating enough to write my post.  In part, I found myself wondering just what this news means, what is its significance, and what will happen next.  And yet, while I felt compelled to get that out of the way first, this post is not about that.  Instead, I want to get back to business as usual: bringing great music recommendations to our readers.  After all, when things are said and done – life is going on as usual today.

And my inspiration to do just that came when I realized that the perfect pairing for today’s recipe was Typhoon‘s latest EP.  In case you are new around here, you should know that we LOVE (yes – in all caps) Portland’s Typhoon.  I placed their debut album Hunger & Thirst at the number 5 spot in my Top Albums of 2010 list, and if I’m being honest, I actually think I can say that I may have underrated the album.  It is that good.  If I were to reconsider my list today – it’d probably end up in the Top 3.  What this means, is that you should definitely get that album if you don’t already have it.

Their latest EP is intended as a “sequel” to Hunger & Thirst.  It even contains the direct sequel to the track “Claws / CPR Pt. 2.”  And like it’s predecessor, A New Kind of House is a lushly orchestrated indie-folk album built around thoughtful “multi-movement” songwriting, intelligent lyrics and clever melodies with big, effective hooks.  For example, big brass horns swoon alongside crisp acoustic guitar on album opener “The Honest Truth” as frontman Kyle Morton’s sings in his woodsy, evocative croon: “I never said I was honest… but I am true.”  And on “Claws Pt. 2″ they continue to demonstrate the ability to slowly unfurl melodies and rhythms.  It begins gently and quietly enough, but continuously builds momentum and additional instrumentation with a great swelling tune that builds like an overpowering tidal wave that makes it very clear that this band deserves the name they chose for themselves.

It is an intuitively perfect pairing for Kasey’s Weeknight Roast Chicken and Potatoes recipe.  Both are straightforward but so full of unexpected flavor. Indeed, this is a weeknight album.  An anytime album.  An album for when you just want to listen to something good that you can happily enjoy as it plays in the background, but which will delight you with each note if you listen carefully.  Like the recipe, this album would be decadent if it wasn’t so unpretentious.  Buy it from Insound.

Typhoon – The Honest Truth

Head to the Kitchen to read Kasey’s recipe for weeknight roast chicken and potatoes.


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  • Brian

    Crazy day…

    Can’t wait to check Typhoon out!

  • Matthew

    Brian – I think you are going to love these guys. Definitely grab Hunger & Thirst if you can. They were offering a free download of Hunger & Thirst when you bought A New Kind of House from Tender Loving Empire when it originally came out. May still have that offer.

  • Brian

    Cool! I’ll have to look into that.

    Came into the office this morning to find that my ipod and headphones had been stolen. So I still haven’t had a chance to check out the track.

    This is shaping up to be an interesting week :)

  • Matthew

    Wow. That sucks about your iPod. I hope it turns up.