The very talented violin-wielding Owen Pallett has yet another EP that he is releasing before his third full-length as Final Fantasy drops. Following sharp on the heels of Spectrum, is Plays to Please a theatrical EP that plays more like the the soundtrack to a musical than an indie rock album.
The jazzy “Horsetail Feathers” starts the EP off with a jazzy mix of flute, piano and saxophone. The tremolo of the violin creates just the right amount of tension to keep listener’s hooked. “Ultimatum” follows with huge percussion and syncopated accents. The only thing more weighty than the sounds of the tuba are Pallett’s presentation of the lyrics: “Ddddamn, you prostrate in fear,” he stutters after he says that you can only “win the race with a six string bass.”
The solemn “Moodring Band” is next and then “I Saved a Junky Once.” These are fine tracks, but in comparison to the others it is a low point in the album. Things get picked up again as well as plucked up on “Nun or a Bawd,” a jazzy number sprinkled with pizzicato. “Crush-Love-Crush” rounds out the EP. It’s lush with cello, piano and flute. If the instrument combination doesn’t have you in love with this song, then I’m sure Pallett’s amazingly passionate vocals will. “Crush, love, crush, crush, love,” Pallett sings faster and faster until he runs out of breath and his voice breaks.
If Final Fantasy isn’t a part of your music collection, Plays to Please is a very good place to start. Plus, with support from fellow violinist Andrew Bird, you’d be silly to skip this one over.
01. Horsetail Feathers
03. Moodring Band
04. I Saved a Junky Once
05. Nun or a Bawd
Written by: Bethany