A few weeks ago, I opened my email to find this:
If the text is too small, it was basically tickets to see Blonde Redhead kick off Fashion Week at the Tribeca Grand Hotel. And for those who don't know, Blonde Redhead is my most favorite band. How good Gilt City is at curating special packages like this should be a separate post entirely, but to give an idea, $80 would get you:
• A ticket to the (very small) show
• An advance copy of their new album, Penny Sparkle (scheduled for release a week later (today))
• An hour of open bar prior to the show (sponsored by Brooklyn Brewery and Tequila Avion)
• A reserved area at the after party
• Two immediate digital downloads of tracks from their new album
This is pretty much insane. Plus, the entire thing was to happen on the eve of my birthday, so I hesitated very little on getting two tickets.
All in all, I loved it. They have this kind of synced magic between the three of them that just kind of works. At one point all they could hear was fuzziness on their ends, and they weren't wearing ear pieces, yet they were still all exactly on beat with each other throughout.
Forgetfulness left my camera at home, but I did get two kinda neat shots with my phone that actually fit the sound of Penny Sparkle really well:
It wasn't until the next day that I got to take a good look at the CD. It's the nicest packaging I may have ever seen from something that doesn't get a lot of attention at all anymore; I can't wait to see what the vinyl looks like.
As far as the album itself, I got to sneak a listen a few days before the show, and it's beautiful. It's very different from the previous two or three releases, and at first I wasn't really sure at all what to think. But you know how sometimes you give a new album a couple dozen spins, you warm to it over time, and in the end you grow to adore it? The process was expedited with Penny Sparkle in a strange way that's never really happened before with any other album. The very next time I heard it, I was really into it. By the third time, elated. By the fourth, inseparable. I actually noticed the spikes with each listen. If 23 was like drowning in a goldish shimmery haze, Penny Sparkle is like drowning in a silvery brushed vapor (which I realize doesn't sound VERY DIFFERENT AT ALL, but trust me). I am not sure how else to describe it except please give it a listen. Here's a link to one of my favorite tracks off the album on The FADER, Not Getting There.