Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part of our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased tracks, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Each and every Friday we offer songs by local artists. Today’s selection, featured on the Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole, is “Fallen and Falling” by The Ladybug Transistor from the 2011 album Clutching Stems on Merge.
Even with a constantly changing lineup since 1995, this Brooklyn group has consistently produced impressive solid classic pop. The Ladybug Transistor has said hello and goodbye to different members over the past 16 years, but none more heartbreaking than losing San Fadyl to an asthma attack before their 2007 release date of Can’t Wait Another Day, their sixth album. The seventh, Clutching Stems, was equipped with original member from the get go Gary Olson, as well as Kyle Forester ofCrystal Stilts, bassist/violinist, Julia Rydholm, and recent additions Mark Dzula and Eric Farber.
The latest is just as compelling and full, and pop classic as the previous albums, but carrying the weight of a loved one’s memory to boot. Subsequently, the album is a testament to the resilience of a talented collaboration that faces tragedy and make beautiful stories and profound arrangements around it. Today’s featured song, “Fallen and Falling,” has a familiar theme and an inviting organ intro to waft into Olson’s soothing baritone. The tightly executed instrumentation and the lyrical warmth transcend time from an early 90’s movie montage to modern day introspective pop arrangements, and it ends all to soon. The tune is modestly under three minutes, leaving listeners craving for much much more.
You can catch the live act at The Comet Tavern in Seattle on September 10. Go to their website to find more tour dates and information. Until then, check out their video of “Oh Christina, a live performance at The Strutt in Kalamazoo, Michigan.