New Year/New Music: Crystal Castles

Hello all. It has been some time since we last spoke, and oh how I’ve missed you. Winter break was a crazy, and a well-deserved break. But now, schools back and so am I. With a new year, everyone seems to be trying new things. Whether it’s a new in your diet or attempting to go a year murder free, change is always present at the beginning of the year. So why not try out some new music? It’s a new year, and this week I’m going to introduce you to some bands that maybe you’ve never heard. These are bands that I’m trying to get into, bands I got into last year, or just bands I really want to talk about it. I hope everyone’s 2014 is going swimmingly so far, and be sure to drop in throughout the week to see which bands I decide to highlight. Enjoy.

Crystal Castles

It all started last April. My friend Ole dragged me to a show at The Beacham. I had never heard of the group, and going in I had my doubts. It turned out to be the best introduction to a band ever. The band was Crystal Castles, and I can honestly say that night was the most intense musical experience I have ever participated in. As soon as the lights went out, everyone pushed forward. I have never inadvertently touched that many people’s butts in my life, and hope never to do so again. I couldn’t control my body, and for most of the show I was at the mercy of the crowd. Everyone moved as one mass, ebbing and flowing with the music. The sounds that night were brutal. My ears could barely handle the thumbing bass, and gritty beats. Crystal Castles’ frontwoman Alice Glass was an animal, running about the stage, screaming sounds that brought both terror and sexual excitement, and throwing herself upon the crowd at least once each song.

Since then, I’ve had ongoing love affair with Crystal Castles’ music and Alice Glass’ face. Their three studio albums are full of experimental synthpop that varies from sampling video game effects to dark, ambient, evil club beats. All these fluid sounds are cloaked in Glass’ extreme-reverb vocals, if you can even call them vocals. Sometimes she’s sweet as sugar, and sometimes you want to cover your ears. If you can handle the brutality of a heavy metal band with the bliss of pop music, give Crystal Castles a listen. You’ll thank me.

Fans of music with traditional song structures should start with tracks like “Baptism,” “Plague,” and “Crimewave (Crystal Castles VS Health)”. These are the groups most well-known songs, each have catchy hooks that could be at home on radio. But, if you care for more hard-hitting experimental music with twisted vocals, give “Alice Practice,” “Doe Deer,” and “Love and Caring” a listen. On these tracks, Glass strains her vocal cords whilst releasing unhuman-like sounds. The beats are more aggressive, harsher on the ears, and kind of scary. While I’m mentioning scary, fans of darker sounds should listen to III. The whole album has a grey filter on it; it makes for great rainy day music. Lastly, if harsh vocals and sweaty beats don’t interest you, maybe you’re looking for something more sweet and floaty, try “Magic Spells,” “Celestica,” “Violent Dreams,” and “Not in Love”. Each one of these tracks shows the softer side of Crystal Castles. Glass’ voice is calmer, and the instrumentals are vast and open.

The moral of the story is no matter what kind of sound you’re looking for, Crystal Castles has something for you. And look! I made a playlist with all of the songs I mentioned in this blog, and others that I like. I’m so thoughtful. Have a great day everyone.

One thought on “New Year/New Music: Crystal Castles

  1. Pingback: New Year/New Music: The Raveonettes | The Vinyl Warhol

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