Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Indianapolis - Part 3:
Margot & the Nuclear So and So's

Fact 1: George Bush pronounces the word "nuclear" as "new-kew-ler"
Fact 2: Margot Helen Tenenbaum is super.
Fact 3: Unbeknownst to me, Indianapolis has handfuls of great artists.

Margot & The Nuclear So and So's become the third installment of our Indianapolis spotlight series. They are a band with a strong connection to Wes Anderson's masterpiece, The Royal Tenenbaums, and I can't blame them. Before the formation of his current band, guitarist and vocalist Richard Edwards was in the band Archer Avenue, which was named after the street the Tenenbaums lived on. Being a bit facetious and pulling inspiration from Bush pronunciation blunders and the legend that is Margot Tenenbaum, Margot & The Nuclear So and So's formed in 2005.

Margot & The Nuclear So and So's have that quintessential raw sound that the populous identify as "indie." Hold up - this is no disrespect to the band or a knock on their originality. In my book, it's still OK to be labeled as "indie" as that term lost it's meaning once Sub Pop signed their one-billionth artist and charged more for the film licensing of their "indie" artist than U2. I digress. One listen to the pop-rocked "As Tall As Cliffs," built upon beautifully mastered layers will have you humming along in no time and tapping the toes with confidence and smiles. The piano, lighthearted tempo and trumpeted silliness almost overshadow the seriousness of the lyrics. Due to the depth of the lyrics and instrumentation and the fact that I've played it over 12 times today alone, this is a track that will most undoubtedly grace many upcoming mix tapes. Then there's the opposite of Margot's artillery...the slower-paced and shadow brimmed "A Children's Crusade on Acid." It's a true breath of fresh air to hear the (I repeat) layering's and orchestral make-up that went into Margot and Co's songs regardless of theme or mood.

If you're in the mood for some lighter indie rock with an adventurous but balanced circus of noises, Margot & The Nuclear So and So's should fill the shoulder's chip. Think Boy Least Likely To with a few more members and deeper melodies. Think Arcade Fire or Bright Eyes stripped of some raw angst and darkness. Oh, I bet I get some heat for that one! Edwards is not shy of going falsetto and pushing his voice, which is few and far between on my current play list and deserves and extra high five. Margot Tenenbaum has lent her name to a deserving band but don't expect the musical group to deliver such a dark and uncomfortable comedy act...that's saved for Bush's influence! Margot and Co. release Not Animal via Epic Records on Oct 7. Here are two gems from the upcoming album that have been hogging my ears.

Margot & The Nuclear So & So's - As Tall As Cliffs

Margot & The Nuclear So & So's - A Children's Crusade on Acid

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