Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Yo La Tengo - I Can Hear the Heart Beating as One (1997)

At one point named by Pitchfork as 'The best band in the universe' (sorry if that put anyone off), Yo La Tengo are a band than can blend different sounds and styles of music effectively as they please. I Can Hear the Heart Beating as One is a hard album to describe because of its diversity. For Deerhunter fans, here's the Deerhunter of the 90's (and early 00's). For others, here's a unique, interesting rock record.

The album's sound is at times matched by its lyrics. On the dreamy, distant-sounding 'Deeper Into Movies', Kaplan sings "I've been getting messages from outer space; They expire light in the window in the sky; There goes my mind." On the more melancholy, low-tempo songs such as 'Stockholm Syndrome', lyrics like "You're heart is broken, and the doors are open" leave no misunderstanding. Homage to influences is not lost on them aswell, with very intriguing covers of the Beach Boys' 'Little Honda' and Lee Pockriss' 'My Little Corner of the World', as well as hints of Beatles on 'Autumn Sweater' with familiar toned whispers of "In the beginning..."

Thirteen years ago, Yo La Tengo packed 68-minutes of shoegaze and post-punk inspired music into an album and called it I Can Hear the Heart Beating as One. Today, that heart's still beating, because this album is just as unique and strong as it was in 1997. From the short and quiet opener 'Return to Hot Chicken' to the beautiful cover of 'My Little Corner of the World', this album is engaging music right to the end. The high points are 'Sugarcube' and the 10-minute noise clusterfuck 'Spec Bebop'.

Try it (Track 14 fixed)
Buy it


  1. Seems cool, I'll check it out. Song #14 is broken BTW.

  2. Damn, that's the best quality download I could find. Hang on