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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon February 8, 2010
US trio Yeasayer are musical magpies, cut from the same colourful cloth as acts like MGMT or Santogold. "Odd Blood" is their sophomore disc, comprising catchy jittery electronic Pop with a myriad of influences.

The woozy "Strange Reunions" has a Middle Eastern feel as does "Madder Red" (with a hummed wordless chorus), while the psychedelic clap-filled ballad "I Remember" is remniscent of "Animal Collective". At 10 tracks, no two songs are alike. Their debut CD was beautifully fractured psychedelic Folk/Pop, and they retain their strong sense of melody despite the change in style.

Other standouts are the Radiohead-style "The Children" (with eerie vocodered vocals and clanking beats), the tribal-sounding "O.N.E.", the progressively trancey "Love Me Girl" (my favourite), the bouncy "Rome" with stabbing syths & the experimental ballad "Grizelda".

Otherworldly and highly infectious!
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on March 16, 2010
Yeasayer's newest album certainly caught me off guard. I only listened to their 2007 debut once and was pretty bored with it. But after hearing the singles, "Ambling Alp" and "O.N.E." and reading positive critical reviews, I decided to take a chance. I'm glad I did. Odd Blood turns out to be a truly awesome sophomore effort from these indie rock innovators. It is an album that may be labeled as indie rock, but actually transcends that genre to become a truly terrific pop record.

The band's songs seem to be a patchwork of several differnt sounds and styles. There is psychedelic folk, electronica, dance, world music, pop and rock among others. Yet this is no mere mash up of various styles for sheer experimentation. Yeasayer blend these different threads together to weave a cohesive tapestry that sounds familiar yet original and fresh at the same time.

But what really sets Yeasayer apart from the pack is their ability to write good songs. They could have just played around with their various influences and released an album full of sonic concoctions that were nothing but noise. Instead, these guys have written an album's worth of stellar songs. There are hooks and melodies aplenty, but the lyrics are emotionally resonant as well. In Ambling Alp, there is a passionate cry to "raise your head and wear your wounds with pride". I Remember delivers the lyric "you're stuck in my mind all the time", and on O.N.E., Chris Keating sings, "You don't love me anymore, and I'm glad that you don't, 'cause I can't have you anymore" set to a melody that Peter, Bjorn and John would have killed to come up with.

What more can you ask for from an album? Great songs, innovative sounds and emotional depth. It all coalesces into a marvelously enthralling indie rock/pop gem that grows richer and more satisfying with each listen and will be on the short list for the best albums of 2010.
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VINE VOICEon August 27, 2012
A recent analysis in Scientific Reports revealed that -- it's true -- all popular music these days sounds the same. You can look it up yourself; it was done by computers and scientists and everything. Lucky us, we live in the days of mass communication and internet technology, and although people who DON'T sound like everyone else aren't usually in the mainstream, they aren't that hard to find for those who know how to look. Hence, Yeasayer.

When I first discovered Yeasayer, I wasn't sure what I was listening to. It sounded like the soundtrack to a water park that runs on fever dreams and which caters to old souls inside young, sun-baked bodies. That's no good, though. It's poetic and all, but who really knows what I'm talking about? The point, really, is that they're good, unusual, and you should check them out.

ALL HOUR CYMBALS -- 5 stars
More raw instrumentation than you find in most bands, their first album has the coarse-granola-sensibility of a Rusted Root with the chaotic storytelling of an Animal Collective. Every song sounds like it was inspired by a bonfire, rocket launch, or church revival. There's an earthen, unwashed humanity to each tune, like the sound of a nerve being jangled and soothed at the same time. Standouts: "2080" (a bittersweet anthem with a bridge than never fails to give me goosebumps), "No Need To Worry" (another slow burning tune with an operatic and uplifting chord progression), and "Red Cave" (my favorite song of theirs so far; an incrementally aggressive mountain climber of a song that hits a dense joyful core at the end).

ODD BLOOD - 5 stars
The first song leads listeners to expect something darker and uglier than their debut record. "The Children" sounds like it was recorded in a flooded factory and then slowed down to give the vocals a mock-Waits-ish sound. I didn't care for it when I first heard it, and still don't. However, it was immediately followed by seven absolutely stellar tunes, starting with the playful, skip-to-my-loo beats of "Ambling Alp" and moving through to the retro-echoes of "Love Me Girl" and then on to my favorite of the album, the weird and slinky "Strange Reunions." Their sound is pulled closer to the chest in this album, and their vast collection of instruments is pared down in favor of more digitization, but the end result is no less uplifting or driven.

FRAGRANT WORLD - 4 stars
The electronic contraction that began in ODD BLOOD is fully realized here, and the end result is unfortunately a less approachable set of songs. It's almost as if they were attempting to parody some They All Sound The Same pop songs by skewering them with their trademark inventiveness, the end result being a lot of songs that sound like they could be great if only they'd settle down and figure out where they were headed. The backgrounds, vocals, instrumentation, and digitization is at a full frenzy, with none of it really cohering into something you can really sink your teeth into. I like grim-pop-propulsion of "Reagan's Skeleton," and "Folk Hero Shtick" is my favorite song off the album, with its bizarre braiding of a horror movie's mentality with a kid's show's pep tuned to an off key. There are only two songs I don't like ("No Bones" sounds like its insulting itself and "Glass of the Microscope" sounds like they slapped together remnants that they'd cut from four different songs), but the rest don't reach the same, grand heights as the group achieved in their previous two records. Still good, but no longer great. (Also, a head's up: I had serious downloading issues with this website's digital purchase for this album and had to get it via other means.)
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on March 25, 2010
This is totally new wave. It's just remarkable. Yeasayer blew my mind with their first album. Literally. I could not think for an hour, just trying to realize what I just listened to. This one is a little more clear. It's totally Eighties pop music. It's just groovy and new-wavey.

Let's get to the really good songs. I loved "O.N.E.," because it was just something you could make a hit record out of. Forget Ke$ha, who should never have stayed at #1 for that long, and listen to real pop should-be hitmakers.

"Ambling Alp" was also just as good. A highlight here, with such beautiful sounds and lyrics.

"Madder Red" was pretty weird, but really good.

Among other highlights on this masterpiece are "I remember," "Rome," and the awesome "Love Me Girl."

In conclusion, buy this album or I will put a bumper sticker on your car saying "I don't listen to real music. I suck and have no life in the real world. I am stuck in what's popular and not what's good."
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on February 13, 2010
I was a late comer (last summer) to "All Hour Cymbals" but I love that album and was really looking forward to this one. I have been desperately trying to like it since Tuesday and I have to be honest: this is nothing like the previous album and a huge disappointment. There are some catchy songs, but I cannot name one that comes close to having the staying power of nearly every song from the previous album. Worse still, I find about half the album just bad. I have no doubt it will appeal to a broader audience as much of it is probably pretty danceable and hummable, but it does not capture the subtle almost Sung Tongish grace of much of previous album. While "Cymbals" was reserved, subtle, catchy and beautiful, this is up front, in your face and sounds like it was produced for Top 40 radio play (I say that more in feeling rather than as a general judgment of the bands purpose).

I know musicians progress and often that progression leaves us yearning for the old while we learn to appreciate the nuances of the new, but in this case Yeasayer has progressed in a direction that I just cant get into.
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on February 13, 2010
Folks:

This is it! This is the new direction of music. Brooklyn, NY is the hotbed of music these days and Yeasayer is leading the pack in my opinion. The Brooklyn sound fuses an electronic sound that harks back to the 80s with a modern twist of great songwriting. You can easily tell that all the members in Yeasayer are highly skilled musicians and they know how to use their skills in effective songwriting techniques. Most importantly, the songs are catchy and don't require many listens before they creep into your brain and settle in. What a great band. VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!
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on August 7, 2011
I don't think you have to look much further than the album cover to find that this is one strange group of musicians. They use original sounds that are often the stuff of science fiction movies. They have a strange sense of melody. Yet, you'll often find yourself singing along to some of the memorable choruses, but my favorite thing about Yeasayer is their obsession with beats and vocals that would sound at home in the 80s with the likes of "Tears for Fears". Definitely worth a try, and definitely gets better the more you listen.
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on March 7, 2010
I want to start of by saying that if this review was based on the two singles from Odd Blood, Ambling Alp and O.N.E. it would be a 5 star + review. The first time I heard Ambling Alp (think it was on WOXY) a smile formed on my face and I went on a mission to find that Mp3. I then heard their next single, entitled O.N.E. - another funky track that is sure to elicit a smile. The thought and detail that went into producing these songs is most definitely apparent when you throw on a pair of good headphones and just sit in a quiet room and listen. Slight nuances that are not normally heard when blasting down the highway come out and really show what Yeasayer is all about.

So now that I've rambled on about why I think the two singles are so great, let's get into the rest of the album.

When I first popped the disc into my CD player I was instantly let down. Yes, "Children" could be considered a relatively effective intro track with its slowed down tempo and notions of "building up" for what is to come, but overall I wasn't really impressed. The beat and looped piano worked well, but it could have done without the distorted audio. "The Children" leads into "Ambling Alp", one of the catchiest songs of 2010 as of this writing. If by the end of this track you do not have the lyric "Stick up for yourself son" repeating in your head, this album is probably not for you. "Madder Red" is an epic sounding "indie rock ballad" with a solid hook and great vocals. It reminds me of their first album, All Hour Cymbals. "I Remember", and "O.N.E." are two more that are worth talking about.

The rest of the album is good, but nothing stands out in my mind as being something I want to hear repeatedly. Highlight tracks on the album include:

Ambling Alp
Madder Red
I Remember
O.N.E.
Rome

Odd Blood is the album that will help project Yeasayer more into the mainstream. While this album may be just a hair shy of commercial radio play, this is no indicator of success (by any means!). For those who have not heard their first album, it is definitely worth a listen - at a minimum, listen to the single "Sunrise."

As a side note, there is a "making of" studio tour video posted at Pitchfork, and if you are into the band go watch it, very cool.
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on July 29, 2013
This is the only Yeasayer album I've listened to, but from I've heard through the grapevine (i.e. other reviews), it's also probably their best effort so far (as of July 2013, which is when I'm finally reviewing this). Beautiful, dissonant melodies, with all sorts of exotic crowing and convulsing in the backgrounds...lyrics are standard nigh-incomprehensible indie stuff (aside from a couple tracks, which are pretty straightforward 'ins and outs of love' themes) but they fit the tone of each song pretty well. Recommended!
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on February 17, 2011
At first listen I was embarassed that I purchased this. Who could enjoy such hippy-tripping crap like this? Then I listened......and listened some more. I fell in love with the album, and I haven't gotten tired of it yet. It sounds pretty wierd and psychedelic in the beginning, but it reveals itself to be a tasteful, musical experience, motivated by creativity and love.

If I had to say which songs are the best, though I like them all, I would name "I Remember" as my favorite. It's what got me listening in the first place and it's still my favorite song. Even though I feel the word "epic" is overused, I call this song epic by the literal translation. The rest of the album doesn't have such power as that song, but each song is unique, amazing, and fun. My second favorite would have to be "Strange Reunions." Something about the Eastern Indian influence on this song has me listening to it again and again and again.

I could get into each individual song, but I know you don't want to read that. What you need to know is that each song is great for its own reasons. The album is so diverse and versatile, that there's not that annoying feeling that you're listening to the same stuff over and over. Don't trust your instincts or your first impressions. This cd is like an aquired taste that delivers when it finally washes over you. Definately one of the best albums of 2010.
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