Elevate Difference

Four Songs

This New York-based instrumental sextet is unlike your typical rock band. Experimental and percussive in approach, Blue Velvet’s image is organic and minimal: Their music has no vocals, no electric bass, no standard rock-drum kit and no loops or samples. Is it then worth listening to? Hell …Yeah! “Docile 1” and “Docile 2” from their EP Four Songs has a Hitchcock-style to it: strings cut harshly and are repetitive, producing a drony and eerie quality. Definitely music suited to a scene in the classic Psycho. “Untitled (Two)” resembles these tracks, but is less grating and more perplexing in its use of instruments.

As if to declare their oddness, the artists in “Blue Cannon” thread a sound that is inconsistent with the above three pieces. Folkier, it’s gentler on the ear and can be placed within the blues genre. With the exception of this single, it’s easy to picture the album accompanying a psychological thriller as the music imagines an atmosphere of suspense, danger and confusion; its rhythm and fast tempo lingering long inside your head.

The band’s desire to be regarded as real and natural is reflected in its prettily printed cardboard CD case - also known as a discfolio. The whole package is adorable in its simplicity.

Their influences are The Zombies, The Velvet Underground, Sonic Youth and Tony Conrad, among others. The record is noisy, strange, interesting and distortion-free. Four Songs challenges the boundaries of convention – all the more reason to give this post-rock band a chance.

Written by: Payal Patel, May 2nd 2007