edward sharpe & the magnetic zeros – up from below

what’s so good?
“Alex ebert could easily double as some kind of indie-rock messiah. Fronting his new band, the 11- or 12-member strong Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros, Ebert appears onstage shirtless and barefoot, strands of shoulder-length hair tied back in a faux crown as he conducts his smiling, face-painted ensemble like a giddy choir director. At those moments, he is no longer Alex Ebert, hard-partying lead singer of the dance-rock band Ima Robot; he becomes Edward Sharpe, his boyhood alter ego, and his band is his family. His agenda, as 1960s as it sounds, is little more than love and honesty.” – the la times

initially, i wasn’t too gung-ho about these guys. another buddy had mentioned that they were great live, but their recording didn’t hash up. still, i felt obliged to look into it. so i headed to their myspace, where i was greeted by the music video you see below. for the first minute-and-a-half i was totally weirded out. it seems like something out of a monty python movie. however, once the music kicks in, the awesome videographic visuals (put together by ebert’s mother!) absolutely won me over. honestly, i highly recommend you watch this video.

during high school i was a big fan of ima robot. when i started listening to edward sharpe, i could have sworn that i recognized the vocals from somewhere, and pretty soon i’d pinpointed it to that oldschool dance-party band. still, i didn’t realize that it actually was the same guy until i started writing this article. since that discovery, my respect for this man’s versatility and full on metamorphosis has, well, increased dramatically.

haunting back to some older times, edward sharpe & the magnetic zeros bring a raw and emotional freak-folk feel reminiscent of devandra banhart, but all of it’s own. i won’t be half surprised if these guys gain some serious underground momentum one of these days.

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