Sometimes I get depressed listening to the radio. And yes, I fully realize the "musical snob" label this kind of statement leads to. I'm pretty sure that's not the case, of course. It's just that, as someone who has been part of the process of making a song from the ground up, I'm well aware of the time, patience and skill that goes into making a truly great song - and the cookie-cutter nature of a lot of what's on the airwaves these days.
But every once in a while something comes along and surprises me. Gotye is an artist that falls into that category. I don't know that his style of music is the kind of thing I'd normally listen to, but it's the songwriting and layers and textures of what he does that attracts me. It's obvious that a lot of thought and creativity goes into his stuff - and that means something.
The fact that "Somebody That I Used To Know" is getting heavy airplay these days is less a validation of Gotye as an artist, and more a sign that there is perhaps hope for radio and the "what's-popular-today" nature of the music industry.
Here are a few videos you should check out, courtesy of my friend Chad. I'm just intrigued by musicians who take the time to find a unique assembly of sounds - and, in some cases, totally new ones. This is what music should be about, in my humble opinion. Not quickly stringing together a beat and a catchy hook aiming for the next big hit, but using your musical creativity, God'-given smarts and patience with the process to assemble something truly beautiful.
Check out what he does with the autoharp on this video:
Who would ever think of sampling a fence sound and making it an integral part of a song?