Wednesday 30 Jul

Sobering sounds

Copperheads with Depth & Current, Dudes of America and Oblivious

10 p.m. Saturday


113 N. Crawford Ave., Norman



07/30/2014 | Comments 0

Pony expression

Wild Ponies

8 p.m. Sunday

The Blue Door

2805 N. McKinley Ave.



07/30/2014 | Comments 0

Music Made Me: Josh Hogsett

Few, if any, Oklahoma bands have seen a rise as meteoric as Tallows over the past year, yet its seemingly overnight ascension didn’t happen by chance. The Oklahoma City four-piece is well-versed in the ways of modern pop songwriting, drawing from both glitchy electronica and cathartic indie rock in equal measure. Last year, the band pulled off a rare musical feat with its debut album, Memory Marrow, which was steeped heavily in the breadth of recent history yet managed to sound like nothing else before it.
07/30/2014 | Comments 0

Planting the seed

Chelsey Cope’s new band, Elms, is as earthy and native to Oklahoma as the trees that are their namesake. The soulful folk four-piece’s debut EP, Parallel Lines, was recorded at Bell Labs Recording Studio in Norman and is on its way in September. But the band has already given us a tease, with its first single, “Burn,” going live on SoundCloud on July 14.
07/22/2014 | Comments 0

Commercial rock

Center of the Universe Festival featuring Capital Cities, Young The Giant, AWOLNATION & more
Downtown Tulsa 

07/22/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Reviews · 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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