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Yogi Binski

DRESDEN DOLLS

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The Dresden Dolls are a must for anyone with good taste in music. as featured in the Rolling Stone and in uncountable cult sites, they are really something for anyone who has the mind to appreciate good rock music with a creative spin.

the Dresden Dolls consists of only two people - a genius songwriter (and possible former child prodigy) pianist and rock volcalist who leads the duo, and her drummer boyfriend (who is also notably talented). their music is commonly referred to as "cabaret-punk," as the singer was greatly influenced by cabaret-type german musicals, and their often enthusiastic (though sometimes painfully gloomy) music falls under the very broad and undefined "punk" umbrella.

the singer/songwriter/pianist's intellectual nature leads her to exploring many interesting moods and ideas in her lyrics (the topics of which range from cars to hermaphrodites). combine the voices of patti smith, linda thompson, orenda fink, and possibly bjork and you have just a taste of what her voice alone sounds like.

though a humble person in interviews, the drummer is not afraid to flaunt his talent in his music. his skillful timing and ... interesting ... percussion (especially on "coin-operated boy" from their newest album) make for many incredible rock tunes.

i am known among my colleagues for having exceptionally good taste in music, and i can honestly say that this is the best band of its kind (if there are any others of its kind) that i have ever heard. buy the album, and be blown away as i was with rare talent and bizarre but catchy german-influenced themes. once you listen to their two brilliant albums the dresden dolls' music will take over you (don't worry, that's a good thing)...

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If there is a more lively, exciting, creative, witty and entertaining band than The Dresden Dolls out there right now...well, I haven't experienced them yet.

The Dresden Dolls are unique. As such, I think they're worth a few minutes of anybody's time, since there aren't so many "truly originals" around these days.

The Dresden Dolls have been fairly aptly described as a "Brechtian punk cabaret". Before you switch off, I should point out that the "punk" bit relates to their youthful exuberance, uncompromising approach, willingness to confront taboo subjects, gleeful rejection of stereotypes: a definite rebellious streak. They represent a distinctive alternative to the mundane.

On the musical front, however, there are no loud electric guitars, no tired three/four chord cliches, mob-choruses, etc. And this is where the "cabaret" bit comes in...The Dresden Dolls are a very striking duo, featuring Amanda Palmer on piano/keyboards, and Brian Viglione on drums/percussion. Yep: no guitars :o ......

You might imagine that a piano/drums/vocals format might be quite limiting and a bit tedious. Not a bit of it. Both attend to their instruments as if their lives depended on it, with boldness, finesse, slinkiness (as required), and steer well clear of the potential pitfall of mono-dimension. This is due in no small part to the sheer quality of Amanda Palmer's songs, which shift effortlessly between (amongst other things) sinister "bunny-boiler" vignettes, subtle and intelligent social commentary, critical introspection, humourous observations of the seedier aspects of modern life, etc. Amanda has a wry, tongue-in-cheek style, suggesting that beyond her occasionally intimidating persona, she's actually quite alot of fun...Ok, vocally, she's no Karen Carpenter: if you're looking for "crystalline purity of voice", you're looking in the wrong place. However, she exudes spontaneity, passion, vulnerability, drama, joie de vivre, etc. possessing a range of expression that suits the role-playing/story-telling nature of her songs. This is a cabaret, remember...She's also a really clever and astute lyricist. Am I making my admiration clear enough, I wonder??!

It seems that, in the "modern age", any bunch of modestly-talented, guitar-weilding, pretty-boy dullards in leather jackets stands a fair chance of achieving some recognition for their half-baked retreads of stuff that we've actually all heard a million times before. When, when, when will we, the music-consuming public, begin (as we once did) to embrace and cherish diversity, originality, wit and personality*?

*All of which The Dresden Dolls possess in abundance....

Stroll around their site: listen, download music, view videos, find out more, etc.

http://www.dresdendolls.com/

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Well, ummmm, as a student of human behaviour: fascinating that someone should film herself lip-synching to a song, then broadcast this to (potentially) millions on the Internet.

It felt wrong, I felt slightly degraded by the experience of watching. Surely lip-synching in one's bedroom is a private act , n'est-ce pas? :P

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Occasionally, when in my sometime role of 'psychotherapist' I encourage people to experiment with things like shouting in public, talking to frightening looking strangers, skipping down the street....etc. All designed to shed them of their social phobias.

Shame that I am a fearful recluse!

:crazy:

PS I think this is relevant to the debate...I think, maybe...ooooh, now I feel a fool.

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It may help. Shyness is often a by-product of irrational fear...what will people think? I am not worthy of their attention...they'll discover I'm no good etc. Some folk need to experience doing something weird in public to realise that

a) they don't die of shame

B) very few folk are taking any notice of them anyway and don't give a hoot what you do.

It's very liberating, especially to us tightly wrapped folk from the UK.

Remember, a stranger is only an enemy you haven't met yet...or something. ;)

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I thought these posts were meant to be 'threads'...developing conversations, not just bland opinionating. I picked up a 'thread' which you dropped and began to take the conversation somewhere...if you want to go back to Dresden then fine...I thought they were crap!

;)

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