20 Watts

20 Watts’ Best of 2009 by 20watts

20 Watts brings you the Best Albums of 2009!

So, the champagne’s out, the fireworks have stopped, the ball has dropped. The year 2009 may be long gone … But the music is still here — vibrant and waitng for masses who have yet to consume it! Naturally we want to help y’all out. Here’s 20 Watts’ list of the 20 best albums of 2009, from us to you! Enjoy!

Love and stereo,

20 Watts


20 Watts’ Best Of 2009: #14 Cymbals Eat Guitars’ Why There Are Mountains by 20watts

Cymbals Eat Guitars' Why There Are Mountains is #14 on our Best of 2009 List

PREVIEW: VISIT Cymbals Eat Guitars’ MySpace
TOP TRACK: “And the Hazy Sea”

From the triumphant screaming that kicks off “And the Hazy Sea” to the subtle acoustic guitar line that closes “Like Blood Does,” Cymbals Eat Guitars channeled the best of ‘90s indie rock and infused it with a 21st century spin on their March 2009 full-length debut Why There Are Mountains.

Few straightforward ‘90s-influenced indie rockers today have the stamina to last more than a few songs without sounding like derivative pastiches of Modest Mouse, Built to Spill or Pavement. Cymbals Eat Guitars proved they could do more with songs like “Indiana,” which opens saturated with guitar reverb and transitions (in a way somewhat reminiscent of Merriweather Post Pavilion‘s song divisions) effortlessly into “cleaner” guitar sounds, synthesized electronic manipulation, and even a few fleeting horn segments.

Innovation in instrumentation isn’t the only thing they’ve got going for them though. Cymbals Eat Guitars have a knack for crafting both strident, solo-heavy marathons like “Wind Phoenix (Proper Name)” and “Cold Spring” as well as shorter, more accessible songs like “Indiana” or “Some Trees.”

Musically Why There Are Mountains covers all of the bases a great debut should cover, and then some, and thematically, it works in much the same way. The penetrating lyricism of “And the Hazy Sea” make it one of the most interpretably dense lead tracks since Modest Mouse’s “3rd Planet.” Ambiguous references to the George Washington Bridge and the year 1999 steep the song and the band in a mystery which only makes them even more appealing.

Cymbals Eat Guitars did good this year, so let’s hope they continue to do so.

— Eric Vilas-Boas

Concert Review: Cymbals Eat Guitars, 5/27 @ Southpaw by carlywolkoff

When I first arrived at Southpaw, I instantly recognized Joseph Ferocious, though I was befuddled.  His demeanor was quite reclusive, as he stood alone at the back of the venue, blending in completely with the crowd.   I thought, “Ferocious….really?”  I expected greatness from the band I was hooked on after only one listen of their debut album, Why There Are Mountains.

But as soon as Cymbals Eat Guitars took the stage, the change in Ferocious’ persona was so drastic it was as if those few moments alone facilitated this morph from Joseph D’Agostino to Joseph Ferocious.  In fact, he shattered any and all inhibitions upon playing the first song, “And The Hazy Sea.”  His entire body convulsed along with the guitar, as if there truly was no distinction between musician and instrument—and thankfully, this energy never left.  The film of sweat that developed on Ferocious’ face only moments after taking the stage is a testament to his dedication and passion not only as a talented musician, but a captivating performer.

Continue reading

Comments Off on Concert Review: Cymbals Eat Guitars, 5/27 @ Southpaw