Gotye: Making Mirrors

When something so out of the norm catches on to Top 40 radio, my curiosity is too much to for me to handle. I can appreciate music from all walks of life, but I know how fickle Top 40 radio usually is and when an artist like Gotye manages to crack the catacomb, I’m intrigued. Don’t get me wrong, I love the song that’s flying through everything right now, and the performance on SNL was spot-on, but I can’t quite figure out why Top 40 has caught on to something actually musically decent for once, so I’m going to take a listen to the album in full and attempt to figure out the riddle.

Making Mirrors kicks off with the title track, a mostly instrumental ease into the album that’s reminiscent of a lullaby. Easy Way Out steps in and is a lovely mid-tempo song with some really interesting techniques and effects going on in the background. It’s a short song that I was surprised to hear end after a minute and fifty-eight seconds.

It quickly gives way to Somebody that I Used To Know, which I guarantee you’ve heard by now. It’s a beautiful track with some really interesting staccato notes happening from what I suppose are stringed instruments. The passion in this song is the thing that first blew me away. You can really tell when a song hits home with a musical artist/band. There’s a completely different tone when there’s so much passion behind the words. This song exemplifies that so much that the pain transfers through the vocals.

I Feel Better feels like some music from the 60’s was sprinkled over modern musical innovations and the vibe of Gotye was hand-tossed in. It’s an upbeat track that will have you snapping your fingers and wishing you knew a synchronized dance routine you could break out into.

Giving Me A Chance is my favorite track of the album. It’s soft and full of movement. All of the music and the vocals feel like they’re wrapped in luxuriously soft blankets.  It almost sounds as cheesy as one of those easy listening compilations they’ll advertise to you on a Time Life special, but with some kind of sophistication that makes it all okay. It also slightly reminds me of the song that’s playing when you’re driving the Rainbow Road course in Mario Kart 64.

Bronte wraps the album up with some interesting drumming techniques, proving Gotye can keep the interest twelve songs strong. This is a strong track, while remaining calm and steady. The lyrics on this album are intriguing, and this song making you feel safer than a few of the others.

I don’t think this album is quite what I expected. I’m not sure if I expected purely indie, or some kind of weird hybrid indie-folk-pop, or what. But it’s a pleasant surprise. It’s an easy record to listen to that surprises you at all the right times. It’s predictable at times, and totally out of the ordinary at others. For those reasons, Gotye has successfully cracked the Top 40’s interest. I hope he can ride the surge in popularity into another song. I’d love to see something like Giving Me A Chance hit the radio airwaves.

 

Key Tracks
Giving Me A Chance (track 10)
Somebody That I Used To Know (track 3)
In Your Light (track 7)

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