With one easy fartlek behind me I have one more easy spin in the plan for this evening while HRH is at her Leader Corps thing. Nothing crazy mind you, just keeping the the legs turning the pedals over with a few accelerations just to keep things interesting. The good news is that I have a great album all queued up to make these 60 minutes as enjoyable as possible – well, as enjoyable as 60 minutes of on-the-spot cycling can be anyway – the self-titled EP by the Montreal trio Plants & Animals.
You might be wondering how I keep coming across all this amazing music given the number of albums I listen to/review through all these workouts. Well, I have a confession: I have some help.
A few friends and I have been passing around a USB stick (there’s actually 3) with which we share the current and most enjoyed albums we’ve listened to recently as well as providing each other with material that “fill in the gaps” so to speak in each of our own collections. I received this particular album from such friend (Daniel) which fills a gap in my own collection, being that this is the only Plants & Animals album/EP I have not yet heard…minus their anticipated upcoming 2016 release, of course.
Despite the fact that it’s nearly 52 minutes long, this is actually an EP as opposed to an album released in 2003. The band describes it as “an early epic instrumental folk [that] has little in common with their later work, beyond tight-arse musicianship”. Okay, first off, kudo’s for using the word “Arse”. Bravo, Prince Charles. Secondly, “epic instrumental folk” sure sounds interesting. I’m sure keen to hear what that’s all about for sure.
Comprised of only 5 tracks, all of the tunes are north of seven minutes with the opening track ‘Boyfriends and Girlfriends‘ being just shy of 16 minutes and ‘Working Man‘ just under the 12 minute mark. So this is exactly the kind of thing that I like to spin to.
It’s really a pretty collection of music. ‘Boyfriends and Girlfriends‘ grows organically from an acoustic jam session into this big crescendo of chaos complete with horns and brass and, well, it’s perfect for a slow build into a decent pace into the bike over the first 15 minutes and ‘Jacques‘ continues that momentum nicely. ‘Thundergongs‘ could be the soundtrack for a new HBO or Netflix Original Series easily and ‘Working Man‘ is another slow builder with some great moments to inspire some great spinning at the end. ‘…Making Us Wonder‘ was the perfect warm down tune. I totally think in the absence of an official title for this EP it should hereby be called ‘Music to Spin To‘.
If this is an indication of what was included on that USB stick, I have an excited few months of music to look forward to.