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Sun Giant EP

April 8, 2008 | Format: MP3

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$4.49 to buy
Song Title
Time
Popularity Prime  
30
1
2:14
30
2
4:13
30
3
4:41
30
4
4:35
30
5
3:07
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Format: Audio CD
I listen to this band way too much. It's been months since Sun Giant was released and I still listen to it practically every day. Fleet Foxes are like no other band out there, despite the many easy comparisons that could be (and have been) made. Though one could write it off as easy listening, it ain't easy or dumbed down music.

Like anything really good, you might not be sure you like it at first, but it gets better with each listen. They may be in "acquired taste" territory for some, but if you like folk or folk-rock or any of their modern indie descendants, you should check them out.

Between their two releases, Sun Giant is the far better introduction to the band for the uninitiated. The two cd's were released within a few months of each other and Sun Giant certainly came first for a reason. The five nearly perfect songs throw down the gauntlet and always leave you wanting more. If you like this one, you'll be ready for the more challenging, but just as great, full length eponymous cd.
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Format: Audio CD
Since the early seventies, musicians have been trying to relocate that vein of rock and roll that reached its pinnacle in the sixties with CSN, the Incredible String Band, Canned Heat, The Band, Neil Young, (I'd say Bob Dylan too, but I'll never see him matched in my lifetime) etc. As far as I'm concerned, rarely, if ever, has anybody found it. The Fleet Foxes, on the other hand, have struck that vein dead on. With Sun Giant, as I'm sure their up and coming album will, they haven't merely rehashed old sounds, they have given the old sounds a new edge. Mykonos has to be their greatest achievement in this album, but every song is epic and beyond the years of such a young band. Sure they've got their heads in the clouds, but they're likewise grounded. Their sound goes back to the basics, and by so doing, is able to support the lofty harmonies, weaving rounds, and ambitious compositions. Whatever their future in music holds, I can tell from these five songs that it's going to be bright. I'm rarely a loyalist to any particular group or musician, but they have a returning listener in me.
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Format: Audio CD
"What a life I lead in the summer/ What a life I lead in the spring..." a chorale sings, solemnly echoing from the speakers.

Well, when a band is just starting out, they have to get your attention somehow. And the Fleet Foxes manage that at the start of their debut EP, "Sun Giant" -- a whirl of exquisitely baroque, elusively pretty rock-pop melodies. And most of it sounds like they recorded it inside a cathedral, or some other big echoey space.

It opens with the title track, a solemn harmony of choir-like vocals accompanied only by a plucked mandolin. "What a life I lead when the sun breaks free/as a giant torn from the clouds/what a life indeed when that ancient seed/is a berry watered and plowed," the Fleet Foxes intone, sounding very innocent and awestruck.

Then the tone shifts with the bittersweet "Drops in the River," with its eerie, vaguely medieval flavour ("On the shores, speak to the ocean and the sea"). "English House" drops into a catchy folk-pop number shimmering with woobly synth and nimble countryish riffs. Think a folksier Grizzly Bear, if you must compare it to something.

The rock sound becomes a bit more organic after that, with the smooth, tight pop melody of "Mykonos," but it's still punctuated with jangly guitars and soaring harmonies. And "Innocent Son" rounds the EP off with a subtle, wistful little folk melody that laments, "some twisted thorn tells me you saw me in the night with another..."

This dramatic intro to the Fleet Foxes -- as well as the whole EP -- does exactly what it's supposed to do: lures you in with beautiful music, and stokes excitement for their future music.
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Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
I got into Fleet Foxes by checking Amazon's list of comparables and upon the recommendation of a friend. But now I spend most of my music browsing time trying to find OTHER bands that I like as much as Fleet Foxes. The fact is that there isn't another band quite like them.

Fleet Foxes' music doesn't translate easily to a the iTunes/Amazon distribution method of "Here's a single, listen for 30 seconds and see if you like it". The album really becomes much stronger when you play it from front to back. That being said, tell one of your doubting friends to listen to "Mykonos" and see if they don't love it right away. Their two full length albums (Fleet Foxes - 2008; Helplessness Blues - 2011) are also very solid, but for $3.99, this is about as good as an EP can get.

For those who haven't heard them, the focal point has to be the rich, choir-like harmonizing. But there are sneaky bits to their musicality, such as the clever, understated use of guitars that really make this an excellent group. Try this EP first, and you'll probably be buying their other albums in a hurry!
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Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
This band is a slow burn. The songs I like get better and better as I listen to them more. You feel enjoyment and yet it is a very adult album with many classical and some Elizabethan structures smoothly integrated into a psychadelic framework. I find them more original than other bands that I like in this area like Foxygen. While you feel the influences, it doesnt go over into wholesale style copying like some of the other retro bands.
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