Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Every Friday, the Song of the Day podcast spotlights local musicians. Today’s featured selection, chosen by Morning Show host John Richards, is “The Lusk Letter” by Seattle band The Kindess Kind from their self-titled 2008 album on their own label, Don’t Be A Lout Music.
The Kindness Kind – The Lusk Letter (MP3)
Before they got together to form The Kindness Kind in 2005, the band’s members were each pursuing individual and varied musical interests. Alessandra Rose was singing jazz, and Charles Larson and Nicolas Danielson had just returned from a tour with Seattle band Dolour. The Kindness Kind (also including Kevin Bray on drums and most recently Bryce Shoemaker on bass) released their first album, A Novel, in November of 2007 to resounding applause in the Northwest and beyond. The Toronto Star even called them “One of the best new groups emerging from Seattle.” While A Novel certainly set standards high for The Kindness Kind, this past November’s self-titled seven song album does not disappoint. The album, produced by Lucas Carlyle (who has produced albums for such bands as The Gossip and The Album Leaf, as well as the band’s own debut) is catchy indie rock, with a touch of electronic deliciousness, at its best. Alessandra Rose’s voice still takes center stage, recalling at times Feist, Regina Spektor, Blonde Redhead’s Kazu Makino, and even the Icelandic queen Bjork, who’s song “Undo” the band’s very name refers to. Larson and Danielson’s songwriting is more confident here — their keys and guitars intertwine, with neither taking precedence, and adeptly allow each other room for the appropriate lick or flourish. “The Lusk Letter,” in particular, showcases the band’s controlled dynamics and Alessandra Rose’s soaring voice while also haunting you with one of the most memorable vocal lines you’re likely to hear any time soon.
The Kindness Kind has a couple of shows coming up in Seattle. There is a show at Neumo’s on January 15th with The Fading Collection and Anomie Bell (21+) and one on February 6th at High Dive with Caught In Motion, The Globes, and Ivan and Alyosha (also 21+). Check out the band’s MySpace page and website for details. Here’s the band performing another song from the album, “Suckerpunch,” outdoors at Southworth, WA’s Tony Fest: