Theo Bleckmann: Hello Earth! - The Music of Kate Bush (2012)
Vocalist Theo Bleckmann is a man of numerous modalities and ambitions. He's covered classical composer Charles Ives, teamed with heavyweight guitarist Ben Monder for experimental and improvised sojourns and, more recently, has performed and recorded with the always hip jazz unit, The Claudia Quintet. Here, Bleckmann treks into the pop-rock realm as he imparts a personalized touch to the music of iconic British singer/songwriter, Kate Bush. Bush's use of electronics, layered vocal parts, and futuristic production processes are also noted by Bleckmann as influences, as he alludes to a holistic perspective of her artistry.
Among these fourteen pieces is Bleckmann's succinctly endearing cover of Bush's "The Man with the Child in His Eyes, which was released as a single on her debut, The Kick (EMI, 1978). With sublime beauty and a calming rock pulse, Bleckmann adds dreamy and reflective qualities to Bush's ballad and lives the song, as the old adage goes.
Henry Hey's quaint piano intro launches the storyline, laying the groundwork for Bleckmann's intimation of beauty and wonderment, shaped with understated lyricism and utmost conviction. Tempered by a calmly drifting theme and the memorably melodic hook, the band projects an air of innocence amid a modern twist on an old classic. Hello Earth! parlays a source of wonderment as each piece radiates an impressionistic take on Bush's musicality, incited by the band's mutable arrangements and divergent instrumentation.
Personnel: Theo Bleckmann: vocals, electronics, toys; Henry Hey: piano, harpsichord, Fender Rhodes; Caleb Burhans: electric five-string violin, electric guitar; Skuli Sverrisson: electric bass; John Hollenbeck: drums, percussion, crotales.
Record Label: Winter & Winter
Style: Modern Jazz