In the midst of composing lists and reviewing Kanye West releases, I forgot to alert all y’all to some new Alex Body tracks. I’ve been kicking back with these two new numbers for a few weeks now, and I can say, without hesitation, that Body continues to get better. The initial hype and excitement which bubbled around his solo debut and first few live shows a year ago almost refuses to dissapate as he continues to further hone and improve his craft. I’ve detailed Body’s exceptional growth before, so I won’t expound on his meteoric trajectory, I’ll merely drop these two new gems on you and let the bobbing of your head to the rest.
“The Light in the Mirror” is the what “Let the Circle Be Unbroken” would sound like if it were the outro music to Zelda. When I asked him, early last year, what his influences were, he didn’t hesitate to say Neil Young. Body had been listening to almost nothing but Neil Young when he began his solo work, and save his vocals, that influence wasn’t really all that noticeable. This past fall, with tracks like “Cup Overflows” and “You Will Ride With Me,” Body began flashing his country/alt-country roots. While “The Light in the Mirror” wouldn’t register to many as even close to alternative country, the elongated organ swells and Body’s overdubbed, whispy harmonies and vocals give the tune a boot-scuffed, dusty quality that plays in wonderful contrast to the electric pulses of the bass line.

Looking at Body’s table of keys and gadgets above, “The Field of Cloth and Gold” is probably a bit closer to the sounds you’d imagine him creating. “Cloth and Gold” rides a static bass-drum, high-hat beat, a bed for whirling synths and burbling keys all whizzing around Body’s falsetto. But in being a bit more conventional musically, Body’s working toward creating an off-kilter ear-worm like his Iowa City freak-“folk” comrades Samuel Locke Ward and Edward Gray. While I’ve enjoyed most of Body’s output so far, this may be his first chorus I could find myself signing on the way to the train in the afternoons.

Both cuts above are available for download, for free, on Alex Body’s bandcamp site.

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