Thursday, February 18, 2010

Eisley - "Room Noises" : Magic, Melody and Muse

Ok, so it's not the White Album. Or Rumours. Or Thriller. And I have so many other blog ideas and other long lost albums to review, that I'm not sure why I'm wasting early blog space on this 2005 cd debut release from Eisley. It's certainly not going to gain me any cool points to not only commend this cd but to out and out heap lavish praise on it! But here goes.

The cd is "Room Noises" and the group is Eisley, consisting of 3 sisters, a brother, and a cousin. Home-schooled Christian kids at that! And surely nothing good can come from Tyler, Texas. Oh, but you would be wrong. Now my disclaimer is this: I am a melody guy all the way. Well, for the most part. And there is a fine, fine line - always - between genius in pop music, and real crap. And sometimes it's just this magical dust that's somehow sprinkled on the album, as Bono once described ABBA's music as containing. Who knows where that magic, that dust comes from. Sometimes it's in the songs themselves. Sometimes it's in the production. Or the harmonies. Or the passion and sincerity and soul in the vocals. Plus, sometimes music fans tend to immediately disdain the catchy or the lovely in exchange for the ambient and experimental and never give accessible music like this a chance.
Do you realize how hard it is to make a great pop song or craft a great melody? And capture it in a transcendent way? It is a gift. And Eisley executes all of the above on Room Noises. It is magical. Haunting. Innocent. Other-wordly. Lovely. And it's not a sweet sugary snack - it is a meal in itself. The Dupree sisters craft wonderful songs here - a torrent of inspiration. Sibling harmony abounds, the playing is superb, and the lyrics are compelling - given the fact that you realize you aren't listening to a jaded, world-weary 28 year old, but rather girls that are un self-conscious enough to write about subject matters that resemble chapters in Alice In Wonderland. Peaches it ain't. And the real evidence that Room Noises is one unique and wonderful record unfortunately came on their 2007 2nd release "Combinations" which, though it is a good enough record, is Ichabod ("the glory has departed") by and large. New production team, major label putting perhaps subtle expectations on them, whatever - it comes nowhere near to capturing the magic of Room Noises. But that's another story for another time. The girls have had a rough past couple of years personally, but now all seems to be righted thankfully, and I anxiously await their new cd coming out in the Spring. Know Hope. Make it your guilty pleasure or whatever you need to do, but if you don't have this cd, I recommend it as highly as anything I have heard in the first decade of this century. 8.3 out of 10


  1. Listened to this again for the first time in a few years this morning - had forgotten how good this is.