photo by Chona Kasinger
Every Friday, we deliver a different song from a local performer as part our Song of the Day podcast subscription. Today’s featured selection, chosen by Morning Show host John Richards, is
Keep Your Eyes Ahead by The Helio Sequence from the 2008 album Keep Your Eyes Ahead on Sub Pop.
The following discourse may be old news to you, but I can’t change the primary catalyst for the latest album from Portland duo The Helio Sequence. Following 2004’s Love and Distance, obsessive touring ensued with the likes of Modest Mouse and Kings of Leon — opening doors for the band while nearly closing off Brandon Summers (guitars/vocals) vocal cords. On a singing time-out, Summers delved into the more conversational style of Bob Dylan — easily recognizable on
Can’t Say No and especially the folk ballad
Shed Your Love. Benjamin Weikel (keyboards/drums) is still cranking out synth-happy beats, but the focus has shifted from robust layering to a more practiced variation in orchestration and songwriting. Is this all to cater to Summer’s pipes? Are there subliminal messages in Bob Dylan’s Chronicles? Either way, after ten years of cranking out jaw-dropping synth-pop, this inseparable duo has found its groove. According to the band’s MySpace page, ailing singers should consult Summers on the cure — a packed two-month tour kicks off shortly and I’m guessing that’s just the beginning of another big year for The Helio Sequence. Proving that chill is only relative, here’s a performance from the Showbox in November: