Monday, July 21, 2008

Band of the Week: The Mudbloods

[July 21-27]
The Mudbloods
Sounds Like: Wizard Rock
Drinking Buddies:
Oliver Boyd and the Remembralls, Catchlove, The Remus Lupins
Synopsis: Folk-pop infused wizard rock that blends with modern Muggle music.
Makes You Want To...: Sing!; Read Harry Potter; Dance the Hippogryff.

One week, one band. You know the drill.
This week, the featured artist is The Mudbloods.

I can't help it, honestly. Texas is a country all it's own, no matter what the silly Union of the United States of America or world history tells anyone. After all, Texas is the only state in the Union to ever have been its own country. Texas has nearly every sort of environment one can imagine, from prairies to the Hill Country; from barren, parch near-desert conditions to dense pine forests. And to make this all prevalent, the music scene in the Lone Star State can be described in two wholesome words: Unique and unrivaled.

Though quite a few bands in the next few weeks are Texas-based (this was honestly not planned), there was one I have been a fan of for an especially long time now. Graced by the gift of guitars and the power of love and magic is a wholesome wizard rock band hailing out of Austin, Texas, humbly (or rebelliously, depending on your point of view) named The Mudbloods. Now, when you are a group of wrockstars - whether you're trekking across the Texas highways or those of the nation - if you're going to name yourself after one of the nastiest, foulest racial slurs in the wizarding world - designated especially for those of non-wizard decent - you're definitely going to need some musical talent to back up your band.

This is where The Mudbloods shine. This trio of tricksters brings a different sort of sound to the world of wizard rock. Whereas many wrock bands tend to revolve around a style of electronic-based lyrical endeavours, The Mudbloods stand out with a style, sound, and passion that seperates them from their peers. First off, they have the full band going, which is a definite plus. Their lyrics are of course tied to the Potterverse, but unique in that they aren't necessarily directed toward narration or specific events like many other wrock bands (okay... there was a song about the eulogy for Hagrid's giant spider, but that's different).

Their final badge of honour comes with their unique sound. Wizard rock is still a VERY new genre, and thus, is still having those terrible growth spurts seen when something's growing up. By terrible, I mean good, as this offers for tons of eclectic variety in bands, whom may share a genre and common bond for their love of magic, but who contrast in completely unique musical styles. The Mudbloods bring a more folky, quote-unquote "indie" sound to the wrock table. If bands like The Shins, The Decemberists, and Clap Your Hands And Say Yeah were put in a blender with a few Hogwarts alumni, you'd probably end up with something similar to The Mudbloods. From pop-ish hits like, "Ginny and Me," to stirring folk-pop ballads with songs such as, "Freedom Is Only A Hippogryff Away," and of course, wild and new experimental tracks like "The War" show exactly how unique these Muggle wrockers can be. Needless to say, they're one of my absolute most favourite wizard rock bands around right now.

But I digress, The Mudbloods offer a cool collection of Potterverse music for your eager ears. They have a debut album, Out of the Forbidden Forrest, where they have a song entitled, "Concerning the Dementors on the Shore of the Black Lake, or, If the Dementors Should Take Me in My Sleep, Give My Invisibility Cloak to Ron," which for some reason unbeknownst reason reminds me of Sufjan Stevens. Then they have their Animals That Have Left Me EP, all about wizarding world animals, and is probably a favourite of Hagrid. If that wasn't enough of a treat, The Mudbloods have one of the latest featured albums on the Wizard Rock EP of the Month Club, - which is an excellent organization that I will let explain itself right here - happily but forebodingly entitled A War Amidst Pop Songs.

Present day, The Mudbloods have hitched their brooms up to their trailer, and are drifting around North America on a wonderful tour with fellow wrockers The Remus Lupins and The Whomping Willows, concluding in Chicago for the crazy wizard party, Wrock Chicago (or Terminus, whichever name you prefer). Of course The Mudbloods have a Myspace. And as it happens, you can catch their brand new songs recorded from A War Amidst Pop Songs right now. I sincerely recommend "I Wish You'd Be My Witch." If you are ever so interested in my life, you can find me listening to that on repeat until my EP arrives. 'Til then, to quote the lovely Dumbledore, "I would like to say a few words... Nitwit! Blubber! Oddment! Tweak!" Have a great (and hopefully Potter-filled) week, dear reader.

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