Thursday, September 22, 2011

Fair Warning

Song: Fair Warning
Artist: Penguin Prison
Album: Penguin Prison

I've been really digging the self-titled debut album by New York's Penguin Prison.  An 80's throwback of synths, catchy chorus', Michael Jackson-esque vocal melodies, and best yet... consistent songwriting.  It's one great track after another and quite a surprise.  I initially heard Grum and Miami Horror, as contemporary touchstones, but the more I listen to the album I hear 80's influences that go beyond a semi-ironic wink, I'm hearing ernest George Michael reaching, a bit of Prince, and even a little Talking Heads quirkiness.  This album went from "oh this is pretty good" to "this might be great."

Chris Glover, AKA Penguin Prison, is a New York City native whom got his start singing in choirs, and then writing jingles at the age of ten.  He went to Bard college where he started a boy band-ish hip hop act that had a bit of local success at the school.  He sent a demo to Q-Tip of Tribe Called Quest who got him a meeting in LA at Interscope.  He recorded a full album there under his real name, which the label didn't know what to do with.  The Penguin Prison moniker happened in early 2009, and he began remixing for the likes of Passion Pit, Marina and the Diamonds, and Goldrapp.  You can read a full bio here.

The album starts with the amazing "Don't Fuck With My Money," and continues strong with the single-worthy Golden Train (there's George Michael) and Multi-Millionaire (there's Prince.)  "Something I'm Not" has a nice MJ-ish stuttered quality to it... a bit dark and menacing, yet pop-ish.  Sounds cray cray... but it's good.  "The Worse it Gets" is all synth buoyancy and sunny verses, and "Fair Warning" sounds like a true lost 80's classic.

Man, this is a great record I HIGHLY recommend.  Check it out.


Fair Warning
Golden Train

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