Manhattan may be home to Vampire Weekend, but it's just across the river in Brooklyn where the real magic is happening. From the borough is emerging a movement of young bands — led by Yeasayer and MGMT — that are making exciting and innovative new music.
Yeasayer's (right) first album, All Hour Cymbals, is a smorgasbord of eclectic inspirations, with equal parts Ravi Shankar, 60s hippie rock, barbershop quartet, and even Phil Collins. They have the hipster aesthetic, but there's nothing disaffected about their spirit-touching melodies. Intrigued? Four of their songs are available on their Myspace page, including their first single, "2080," as well as the mesmerizing "Sunrise" and the transcendent "Wintertime."
MGMT (pronounced as individual letters) is leading the scene in terms of hype. To see what I mean,
Comprised of two recent Wesleyan grads, MGMT just released their debut album, Oracular Spectacular. Their music makes you want to dance at an avant-garde disco, if such a thing existed, and their album is studded with lots of catchy tracks.
I especially love the funktastic "Electric Feel" and their tongue-in-cheek rock star anthem, "Time to Pretend." (Lyrics: "Yeah, it's overwhelming but what else can we do / Get jobs in offices and wake up for the morning commute?") Check out their kaleidoscopic video below.
MTV has a great video with interviews from both Yeasayer and MGMT, as well as a handful of other bands that make up the Brooklyn scene (and you may recognize the host, Kim Stolz from Cycle Five of ANTM). And check back soon for a review of the recent Yeasayer and MGMT show here in San Francisco.
MGMT's "Time to Pretend":