The Best Songs of 2010: #2: “Home” by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros

29 Dec

From the lyrical epic of #4 to the Motown obscenities of #3 and now on to “Home” by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, a song that relives a Hair-like (on a lesser scale) 60’s anthem, catchy and pleasing. Generally I expand on where we are at before I get into the song’s review but “Home” is way to good to wait for. So, to quote Rex Ryan, “Let’s go get a snack.”

Artist: Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros

Song: “Home”

Yes, the band consists of all of them

Out of the all of the songs on the top four, I knew right away that “Home” would have a spot in the 2010 elite. While it was on Up From Below which was released July of 2009, the song did not become a single until 2010 and therefore can and does have a spot on the countdown. I knew the song would have a spot on the countdown because not often does a song come around that successfully presents music that is so different and mold it into a popular and creative song. I would even venture to say that the indie/pop song is not starkly different, but, rather an ode back to 60’s music where “Home” would have fallen into a verdant music scene where new music blossomed, even when it was different. It is funny. “Home” is fresh new look at indie music even as an ode back to songs created 4o years ago, and it maintains a quality that many 60’s bands mastered in their success. Simplicity.

Listen:

The beginning of the song immediately grabs your attention. A bubbly whistle follows a repetitive guitar riff and some hand percussion. “Hey” separates the verses sung by Alex Ebert and Jade Castrinos. Ebert and Castrinos are so out of the 60’s hippie culture it is scary. Seriously, they toured the United States with their band in a fashion most similar to the acid laden journey of Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters on their bus “Furthur.” Look at the picture above. Tell me that does not send your mind back 43 years to the summer of love.

I can really describe Ebert with one statement he made. After leaving a 12-step program he stated that he skedaddled because he wanted, “to live in a more honest reaction to the truth of the moment, not be bound to certain behaviors by fear-based dogma,” This is from Wikipedia. Southpark would agree.

Jade Castrinos was recently interviewed by Under the Radar and when asked about “Home” she said,

“It grabbed me the moment I heard it. I played on it for a long time, so after that for it to reach other people and get into their bloodstream. I loved it, I really loved it. It was one of the first things we laid down. I thought it was cool, it’s cool that it has caught on.”

I think she describes it well here. It most certainly gets in your bloodstream. It gets in your head. The traded verses emit an awesome effect. The song is like a conversation (and at the end it actually does spark an odd conversation between Ebert and Castrinos where Ebert describes how he fell in love with Jade after she hit her head and almost died). The conversation changes each time they perform the song live which adds a whole new cool element to the song.

The chorus is infectious. It’s like a disease. For days you are singing “let me come home.” And then the band adds an instrumental breakdown. The horns are matched with shouts of home and then a vocal end. An open A, B, C# (what it sounds like to me) and we are back into the whistle. The song can repeat a thousand times and not get old. It is a 5 minute piece that seemingly can narrate any upbeat commercial.

A listener to the song on the Youtube video above writes, “I think those 4,424,028 views are just me replaying replaying replaying this song!” That is perhaps the best description of the song. It is the catchiest song of the year, by far. And I believe #2 is a good spot for it. Tomorrow I will reveal #1.

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