Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The Top 100 Songs of 2011 -- #57: "Truth" -- Alexander

Alexander Ebert's career trajectory is simply the most amusing thing. Here's a guy who originally wanted a rap career, attained brief buzz as frontman of electronic rock band Ima Robot (for which he occasionally rapped), became disillusioned with LA party culture and withdrew from the world, and reemerged as hippie messiah Edward Sharpe, as whom he finally found worldwide acclaim and notoriety.

After he and his band The Magnetic Zeros' 2009 debut hit "Home" with plenty of listeners (HAH! SEE WHAT I DID THERE?), Ebert took a step back and released a solo record before recording his band's sophomore effort. The self-titled record was a bit more experimental than his past releases, though very clearly influenced by his work as Edward Sharpe. It seems Ebert has taken the messianic hippie figure thing and run with it. This is not necessarily a bad thing.

"Truth" was not only the first song released from Alexander; it was the album's best effort as a whole. It exudes the laid-back vibe Ebert's music tends to gravitate toward these days, both vocally and musically. Western-esque whistling begins the song, followed by harmonic group vocals from Ebert and company, over minimal instrumentation a la guitars and percussion.

When I first heard the song, I knew right away that Ebert's singing on the verses reminded me of another song. And then it hit me -- the cadence on the verse is reminiscent of M.I.A.'s "Paper Planes." Seriously, tell me it isn't. What has been heard cannot be unheard.

"Yes I'm only loving / Only trying to love," sings Ebert, fulfilling a theme well-documented within the song -- acceptance and adoration for all. Damn hippies. Oh, and of course there's truth. Truth is good. Love truth.

If anything, "Truth" only made the general population even more excited for a new Edward Sharpe record. The man has plenty up in his head right now, and the record is supposed to come out next year. Rejoice.

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