#3 on the 2012 Musical Bacon Calendar
Gossamer by Passion Pit
I’ve been on the Passion Pit bandwagon for many years now. Their debut album “Manners” was #1 on the inaugural Musical Bacon Calendar (then called the “Musical Advent Calendar”), because that album defined 2009 for me. After spending most of 2010 and 2011 touring on the heels of that album, I had my doubts that the band was going to be able to come out of the recording studio with something awesome.
After all, a lot had changed since the release of that first EP and consequent album. Lead singer/songwriter Michael Angelakos tore his vocal chords to shreds while singing his high-powered falsetto day in and day out during the grueling touring schedule. He suffered from huge amounts of self-induced pressure in trying to capture his former greatness on the new record. He’s bipolar, according to this article from The Guardian earlier this year, which apparently resulted in a long drunken haze when the writer’s block was at its worst.
But when he pulled it all together, he had created “I’ll Be Alright,” the awesome song heard in the video above. And then the rest of the Gossamer fell in line. I think a lot of people, including myself, had written the band off as a one-hit wonder, or at least a one-album wonder. So when this album came out, I think “cautious optimism” would probably be too strong a statement for what I approached the album with. I was damn near reluctant to listen to it, for fear it would blow up my high opinion of the band.
And it wasn’t an immediate love. Other than “I’ll Be Alright,” which was mind blowing the first time I heard it, the rest of the album needed time to plant itself in my brain before I liked it. Once it found purchase, it began to grow in presence, taking over all of my available listening time. There was an eventual period late in the summer where I listened to nothing but this album.
If you’ve liked Passion Pit in the past, pick up Gossamer. If you’ve not heard Passion Pit before, don’t start with this album. Look for Manners. It is and will always be the best album this band has produced. But Gossamer sure gave it a run for its money, and went a long way in proving that they aren’t just a flash in the pan. Check it out the next chance you get.
(There’s also a nice little iPhone app you can download, featuring a couple songs from the album in a new and interactive way. Pick it up here.)
4. Lion’s Roar by First Aid Kit
5. Maraqopa by Damien Jurado
6. Shallow Bed by Dry The River
7. Valtari by Sigur Rós
8. The Heist by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis
9. Heaven by The Walkmen
10. State Hospital EP by Frightened Rabbit
11. A Thing Called Divine Fits by Divine Fits
12. Some Nights by fun.
13. Tramp by Sharon van Etten
14. Fear Fun by Father John Misty
15. Love This Giant by David Byrne and St. Vincent
16. To The Treetops! by Team Me
17. The Master: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack by Jonny Greenwood
18. There’s No Leaving Now by The Tallest Man On Earth
19. Transcendental Youth by The Mountain Goats
20. A Church That Fits Our Needs by Lost In The Trees
21. Hospitality by Hospitality
22. Free Dimensional by Diamond Rings
23. History Speaks by Deep Sea Diver
24. A Different Ship by Here We Go Magic
25. Negotiations by the Helio Sequence
26. Moms by Menomena
27. The Sound of the Life of the Mind by Ben Folds Five
28. Shields by Grizzly Bear
29. Every Child A Daughter, Every Moon A Sun by The Wooden Sky
30. Fragrant World by Yeasayer
31. Reign of Terror by Sleigh Bells