On Youth: Boards of Canada

This cover possesses such a pleasant, pleasant listening quality. I'd grown interested in Boards of Canada after watching—and then later purchasing and repeating too often as a strange teenage girl—Morvern Callar (one of Samantha Morton's early films). It's different and a bit of an art film; So if you haven't seen it, it's whatever. Nuttshell: "Have Walkman, dead boyfriend and unpublished novel; Will travel." I don't know where I read that, but it's quick and fitting.

Since I can't ever put into words my feelings about music, I like to post reviews. This one's from Pitchfork, when Music Has the Right to Children dropped. Please ignore the fact that the song I posted is a cover, and I'm writing about the album from where the original came. If the cover won't inspire you to give it a try, then maybe this review will:

Boards of Canada's sound was not wholly original… Boards used drum machines, samplers, and an unfathomable collection of analog and digital synths, like others in their sphere. Their chords were typically gauzy ambient, their beats head-nodding downtempo.

Properly speaking, they invented nothing. "And yet, the parts had never come together quite like this. The first thing to note is that Music Has the Right revealed Boards of Canada to be geniuses with texture, where god is in the details. The slow fade-in on 'An Eagle in Your Mind' is the lonesome sound of a gentle wind brushing the surface of Mars moments after the last rocket back to Earth has lifted off. The long history of the electric piano was nothing but a lead-in to the tone Boards used on 'Turquoise Hexagon Sun', the perfect evocation of a happy walk through the woods in an altered state….

What's it all about, then? 'Childhood' is the usual answer, but that's not as easy a connection as it seems on the surface. Music Has the Right to Children avoids the twinkling music box melodies that Múm has been coasting on for a while now. It's childhood, not as it's lived, but as we grown-ups remember it… The shades of darkness and undercurrents of tension accurately reflect the confusion of a time that cannot be neatly summed up with any one feeling or emotion.

If Boards aren't your thing, check out the cover's composer Keith Kenniff (or Goldmund) at unseen-music.com.