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Mumford & Sons at Terminal 5

November 20, 2010

Greetings CBC readers! I know I know, I have been away for like, 6 weeks. The final days of hectic prep leading up to my wedding was my life in October and then I went away to fabulous Hawaii. Not much has really changed in life, though now on the blog FH shall heretofore be known as “Hubs”.

Moving on, I am quickly becoming enamored with this band: Mumford & Sons.  The other night I went to see their final 2010 show at Terminal 5 here in NYC with a friend and my Best Dame (yeah, we had a Best Woman instead of a best man. You know you love it.) It was my first time at Terminal 5, and while I like the various levels and the roof deck, I’m pretty sure they oversold this concert, and I’m wondering if they do that every time. I lost my two friends in a swarm of hipsters only about five mintues into the show. Oh yes, the hipsters were in full swing that night, my friends. The horn rimmed glasses, the leggings as pants, the ironically draped Muslim scarves; it was all present.

I’m probably way behind the masses on discovering their coolness. Their first album Sigh No More came out in the U.S. in February and as you know I only first heard them back in August. While my iTunes mysteriously places their music in the “Alternative” genre, their own website describes them as a “old-time sound that marries the magic of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young with the might of Kings Of Leon,” whose members, “bonded over their love of country, bluegrass and folk.”  I myself definitely hear more of a bluegrass vibe in their music. While I had a definite Allison Kraus and Gillian Welch phase in  college I’m a bit worried about this country label. Does this mean I like country?? ::shudder:: I mean, there is a banjo. I guess it makes a difference that they’re English. American country is just a whole…other…monster.  Thankfully, Wiki labels them as English Folk Rock. While the often radio played “Little Lion Man” was my first hearing of this bluegrassy, folk rock quartet, I quickly learned the other night how truly beautiful their music is. Their gorgeous harmonies remind me much of one of my other favorite bands Carbon Leaf, and their instrumental versatility was fun to watch in a live show.

One of the things I love about these guys is their Old Timey, Depression era styling. Take a look at them.

I know this whole look is kind of all the rage these days. The muted colors and handmade vibe is very much back in trend. It’s as if with along with the recession came this resurgence of the 1930s as a new kind of bohemian style. It’s very prevalent in the wedding world,  especially with the rise of one of my favorite websites Etsy.

Their musical style very much echos the same era. It’s like Oh Brother, Where Art Thou? tunes meets John Steinbeck’s writing. In fact, one of the other things that I like so much about them is their use of literature as an inspiration for their lyrics. One of my favorite songs on the album “Sigh No More” takes lines directly from Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing.

M&S:

Serve God, love me and mend
This is not the end
Lived unbruised, we are friends
And I’m sorry
I’m sorry

Sigh no more, no more
One foot in sea and one on shore
My heart was never pure
And you know me
You know me

The opener “Serve God, love me an mend,” is line of Benedick’s and many lyrics reflect an identically titled tune in Much Ado:

Sigh no more, ladies, sigh no more,
Men were deceivers ever,
One foot in sea and one on shore,
To one thing constant never:

It’s a lovely song, take a listen:

 

Similarly, lyrics for their song “Dust Bowl Dance” are obviously heavily influenced on The Grapes of Wrath by Mr. Steinbeck himself:

The young man stands on the edge of his porch,
The days were short and the father was gone,
There was no one in the town and no one in the field,
This dusty barren land had given all it could yield.

I’ve been kicked off my land at the age of sixteen,
And I have no idea where else my heart could have been,
I placed all my trust at the foot of this hill,
And now I am sure my heart can never be still,
So collect your courage and collect your horse,
And pray you never feel this same kind of remorse.

One of my other favorites on the album is “Winter Winds”.  The harmonies and lyrics are lovely and come ON how freaking FUN is this video??

 

 

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