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. Today’s featured selection, chosen by Morning Show host John Richards, is “Vacationing People” by Foreign Born from the 2009 album Person To Person on Secretly Canadian.
There is a hilarious video on Foreign Born’s blog that show’s guitarist Lewis Pesacov taking up arms alongside one of Seattle Center’s many performers, offering up his best Jimi-Hendrix inspired rendition of The Star Spangled Banner. Apparently the guy asked, as he probably does twenty times a day ” do any of you guys play guitar?” And then BOOM, homeboy grabs the guitar and starts railing off the hot-licks. In the background you can hear Pesacov’s band mates letting the Seattle local know that he should “watch out” because he [Pesacov] would soon be lighting his the guitar fire. Hahaha. As if that were not funny enough, at the conclusion of this great American Anthem aforementioned band mates tell Pesacov that he should “take some of the tip-money.” He doesn’t but yeah, he probably should’ve.
Foreign Born is a quartet of gentleman that clearly shares a well-rounded sense of humor. It’s so important these days — amongst the gold lamay leggings, Ray-Ban shades and all over print — to remember to be stupid. Be an idiot. Do something funny. The hi-five at the end of the video is worth the price of admission. Isn’t the Internet GREAT? If there are two things in this world that I could never give up its high-fives and the internet.
Soooo, Foreign Born is a band currently running shop out of Los Angeles and recording music for the amazing Bloomington, Indiana label Secretly Canadian (Songs:ohia, Damien Jurado, Simon Joyner). Lead singer and guitarist Matt Popieluch is an interesting mish mash of Richard Ashcroft, David Bowie and perhaps most notably Bob Dylan. The lazy slur of Zimmerman alive and well, the drums really keep me thinking about My Bloody Valentine — the track here, “Vacationing People” pulses forward at some kind of itchy, downbeat “Only Shallow”esque pace. Sort of a folked-up psychedelic floater — I think it’s also the layers, understated but present that could leave even the most refined palate searching, like something’s missing, but after a touch of digestion, say 5 or 10 listens, one starts to feel the relaxed hint of afro-pop influences (remember Vampire Weekend?) — bongos, horns and jangly strings — all of which seem to meld so well with Popieluch’s delicate vocal attitude. Like a last minute trip to Bermuda right here in my yellow chair, “Vacationing People” reminds me of some of my most relaxed and carefree moments. Soak that shit in.
Foreign Born just finished their American tour with The Veils (check out a short review of the Seattle show here), but if and when they do hit the road again, you can be sure that info will be on their MySpace page. For now, check out their version of “Vacationing People” performed live in the KEXP studio: