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#albumoftheday NINETAILS: QUIET CONFIDENCE

Ninetails are a three piece band from Liverpool. As for what sort of band they are, well, that’s nearly impossible to say. Their songs are rather mold-breaking and don’t conform to the rules of any genre, so I suppose you could call them avant-garde, but then avant-garde artists tend to be really “out there” (read: weird) and I don’t think Ninetails’ music is quite that far out of the reach of comprehension the average listener has. To be sure, they’re certainly not for everybody, and most people will probably find their music inaccessible, but I also think that many listeners will “get it” if they give it a chance.

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Much of Ninetails music is sparse in the way that James Blake’s music is. It’s also quirky in the manner of These New Puritans. But if I was forced to assign it a genre I would probably go with trip-hop because the beats are in that vein more often than not, often calling to mind Tricky or even Massive Attack. Their music includes “various field-recordings, idiosyncratic samples, concrète textures, vibraphones, trumpets, acoustic guitars, and sample-based percussion crafted from found sound.” That probably makes it sound insane, but what it doesn’t tell you is that their music is very colorful and quite beautiful. If I had to compare them to other artists, the two that immediately come to mind are a couple of artists on the Kilk label out of Japan, Aureole and Ferri. Both produce haunting, rather abstract music that can prove to be a cathartic listen if you open your mind widely enough to absorb it. It’s almost like some sort of drug where most people can open their minds to it and enjoy it but then there are other people whose minds immediately clash with it, causing them to have terrible hallucinations, panic attacks, etc. If you try to just enjoy the ride then chances are you will. I’ve never done hallucinogenic drugs, but listening to their music, the feeling it gives me is what I imagine a pleasant acid trip must be like.

Normally, albums like this tend to be things I listen to once or twice and then forget about, but I’ve already listened to this one a few times, finding myself drawn to it because it’s so very rich in detail. Each time I listen to it, it’s like I’m hearing it for the first time, noticing sounds that failed to make an impression on me with previous listenings. You can’t say that about a whole lot of today’s music, so give this one a shot and prepare to go on a wonderful journey.

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Written by

Paris365

An entertainment journalist for 20 years, Michael McCarthy was a columnist and contributing editor for the magazines Lollipop and LiveWire. He co-created and wrote for Cinezine, one of the '90's most popular movie E-zines. The only time he's not listening to music is when he's watching television shows and movies or reading, usually music magazines.

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