Thursday 17 Apr

Odyssey of the mind

Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey 

with Culture Cinematic and ADDverse Effects

9 p.m. Friday

Twisted Root Gallery

3012 N. Walker Ave.



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Frndz with benefits

Boyfrndz with Bored Wax and The Hitt Boyz

9 p.m. Sunday

Blue Note Lounge

2408 N. Robinson Ave.



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Saddle up

Horse Thief with Deerpeople and Pageantry

8:30 p.m. Friday

ACM@UCO Performance Lab

329 E. Sheridan Ave.



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High heaven

Glow God with Weed, Feral Future and Power Pyramid

7 p.m. Friday

Capitol House


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Darkened tones

Chevelle with Nothing More and Middle Class Rut

6:30 p.m. Monday

Diamond Ballroom

8001 S. Eastern Ave.



04/09/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · CDs · Indie · Piñataland — Hymns for the...

Piñataland — Hymns for the Dreadful Night

Beautiful arrangements, skilled players and excellent production. What more could you want?

Stephen Carradini July 7th, 2011

As a newly minted music producer, I’m now professionally invested in the way that recordings sound (which means I have even more distaste for the intentionally terrible recordings of the San Francisco garage-rock scene).


The chamber pop of Piñataland’s “Hymns for the Dreadful Night” caught my attention immediately, as it is immaculately captured.

“Island of Godless Men” is the best example of this. It’s a great song made better by the details of the engineering. Opening the piece is remarkably clear sound of the ocean, which gives way to a not-tinny-at-all accordion. Piano, drums, bass, acoustic guitar and violin mark the end of the intro, and each sounds full and real. The violin doesn’t shriek, the bass doesn’t buzz, the acoustic guitar doesn’t rattle, and the drums don’t sound brittle. The male lead vocals and female backups are round and sound as if the singer is sitting in the room with me.

It helps that the instrumentalists are skilled, and that the song is beautifully composed. It has a propulsive energy even before the foot-stomping fiddle section closes out the piece. You’ll be singing along, and having a blast doing it.

The rest of the tunes are equally as well thought-out, which is kind of amazing for a band that started out as a polka outfit. It is impossible to know that without reading their bio, I swear.

But once I read it, “The Death of Silas Deane” makes a lot more sense. Also, it explains why the bassist is awesome, and why accordion plays a role in so many of these songs. But I’m dead serious that these don’t sound like polka songs. Do not be afraid. These are well-crafted, absolutely gorgeous, memorable chamber-pop songs.

The nearly 40 minutes of wonderful tunes are best digested as a whole. It’s not a mood piece in the way that ambient works are, but the whole thing hangs together excellently. If you’re a fan of Americana, accordions, fiddle, or just plain beautiful things that aren’t wispy and sentimental all the time (!), “Hymns for the Dreadful Night” should be on your shortlist.  —Stephen Carradini
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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