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best indie albums 2008
Melpo Mene enjoyed a spike of indie blog love last year with the release of the gorgeous and delightful love song titled "I Adore You." Although many people know the song because it was featured on a popular Volvo TV commercial last year, most of them could not tell you who sang it. Nevertheless, the commercial helped fuel Mene's brush with fame. The song reminds me very much of another gorgeous song, "Such Great Heights" by Iron & Wine (one of my favorite artists).
While some indie purists might cast Mene's music aside simply because it was featured in a popular television commercial, the fact is that Melpo Mene is one of the best indie singer and songwriters of our time. The proof is in the pudding.
With rich, soothing vocal arrangements, Paul Westerburg-style melodies, pop, country and rock infusions, Melpo Mene created one of the best under-rated releases of 2008. His songs are sad, introspective, heart wrenching and purely delightful from start to finish.
While "I Adore You" is a magnificent, even addictive, song that will likely be played years from now at high school reunions, it's surprising that the album which hosted the track - Bring The Lions Out - received such little praise, making it clearly one of the most overlooked albums of 2008. In fact, it could be one of the most under rated albums of the past decade.
The album is a breath-taking accomplishment of magnificently composed and produced songs featuring piano, guitar, flutes and perfect percussions on songs like the endearing "We Were Kids" and the alt-indie psychopop of the dreamlike "Snakes and Lions".
Melpo Mene's music oozes with rich choruses, breath-taking musicianship and tinges of electronica throughout. One intoxicating track after another easily makes Bring The Lions Out one of those must-have albums I sometimes recommend strongly.
The song "Klick Klack Clock" sets out on a musical journey lush with layers of instruments and a driving melody reminiscent of chamber pop mixed with folk rock. On songs like "Under The Moon", Mene turns to a lo-fi country rock ballad with near-whisper vocals - think of Mojave 3.
In 2007, Mene released his stellar debut LP titled Holes (listen to featured songs below), a potent example of an artist that would become heard, if not by name, around the world.
Fans of Sufjan Stevens, M. Ward, Bill Ricchini, Andrew Bird and other comparable contemporaries, are most likely to enjoy Melpo Mene's music. And, if you're like me, you'll find yourself going back to it again and again.
It's frustrating when music this good doesn't receive the huge buzz it so much deserves. However, on the other hand, it's good, as alluded to above, because it's kind of like our little secret. But this is a secret we don't mind sharing with others: Melpo Mene is simply brilliant!
"I Adore You" - Melpo Mene from Bring The Lions Out
"Jedi" - Melpo Mene from Bring The Lions Out
"Snakes and Lions" - Melpo Mene from Bring The Lions Out
"Don't Save Me" - Melpo Mene from Holes (2007)
"Wait Up" - Melpo Mene from Holes
Lyrics to "I Adore You"
Lost in a daydream of blue
And I feel so free
And then It's like I fall from the sky
Everything that I see is you
And you should know that I'm
Thinking about what you said
When you held my hand
Oh I adore you
Now we are older and
Things disappeared somehow
And I was thinking that maybe
We'd stand a better chance If we met today
I find myself talking to sharks
On my way to an island and still
I adore you
I adore you
I adore you
I was young I was old
And we were in we were out
I wanna see I wanna see it all
I wanna die I wanna die
I thought I saw I thought I saw a
See it now see it now
Melpo Mene on MySpace
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