Band To Watch

Band To Watch: Beirut

And now that the MP3 blogs have done Tapes ‘n’ Tapes a solid, we collectively turn our attention to Zach Condon’s Beirut. GVB and Catbirdseat first alerted us to the project of this Albuquerque-bred 19-year-old, now up to his elbo.ws in free publicity. And deservedly so. We never knew ukuleles could rock. In fact, there are NO GUITARS on the debut album Gulag Orkestar (out 5/9 on Bada Bing Records). That may sound like a gimmick, but you won’t miss ‘em: with so many instruments in the mix, Beirut have hit on something wholly unique, never aping any band, nor any genre we could think of. And yet with all that lush Middle Eastern orchestration, Condon’s hypnotic warble never leaves center stage.

Beirut – “Postcards From Italy” (MP3)

Another download, but if you’re not sold by “Postcards” you’ll hate it.
Beirut – “Mount Wroclai (Idle Days)” (MP3)

Still intrigued? Check out Said The Gramophone for two more tracks. “That makes four from an album of eleven,” Sean admits. But he’s not worried ’cause he’s so confident you’ll buy it.

What do you guys think?

UPDATE: OK kids, how about we stop arguing about which blogger was first to discover the band … and actually see Beirut live in concert instead? Stereogum’s giving away three pairs of tickets to the upcoming Knitting Factory show (Beirut will be supporting Irving, who we love too).

Irving plus Group Sounds, Beirut, Boulevard
Knitting Factory, NYC 5/10 8PM

No fancy entry form. Just the 20th, 21st, and 22nd readers to leave comments on this thread (use a real e-mail address so we can contact you).

Tags: Beirut