Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Artist of the Day: Rachel's

There is the under-appreciated and the underrated, and then there is Rachel's.  Rachel's is an instrumental band from Kentucky, and has been around for more than 20 years.  Since the band's inception, it has released five full lengths a split and an EP.  More mesmerizing is not the number of albums, but what is contained within.

Rachel's are not your average instrumental band.  There is beauty and melancholy, and just about every emotion in between, sure, but there is so much more that the band brings to the table.  Rachel's imbues a sense of experimentation to its music; a dark yet wonderful sound all its own.  Handwriting and Music for Egon Schiele--the band's earliest material--existed as extremely well composed neo-classical outings.  Both utilized strings and piano and guitar to make a lush and vibrant sound.  Later releases were decidedly different, although the difference were very subtle.  Rachel's began tinkering with atmosphere and dark sounds.  This is where the experimentation came in, and despite some mixed results, the new direction is what makes the band so legendary.  One cannot hear The Sea and Bells from any other band, because no other band could pull it off quite so perfectly as Rachel's.

It's been seven years since the band's last proper release, and nine since the last full album.  Since then, no other band has quite made music like them, and I fashion to guess that no one ever will.

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