New Music Tuesday: Aqualung’s Memory Man

Sometimes an artist gets lost in a shuffle. This could mean the way I shuffle 25400+ songs in iTunes and sometimes get surprised when a really great song comes on that I may have missed years before. This also could mean when record labels consolidate and conglomerate and the artists end up feeling the pain of what be a good thing for shareholders of the corporations. Matt Hales (Aqualung) might qualify for both ways…or it might be a fear that Aqualung is a Jethro Tull tribute band. Aqualung might not be as powerful as Paul Hewson’s nickname, but it works. As you may remember I saw Aqualung open for Pete Yorn last month, and of course ACL 2005. There are parts of his career that look like the formula for success. As Julie Moffitt mentioned in her responses to my questions, one of the measures for success in today’s music industry is to be featured on a soundtrack or one of the hot TV shows. Aqualung has been featured on the wildly popular Wicker Park soundtrack and a VW commercial (see Nick Drake’s [posthumous] record sales spike). His music has been featured on indie loudspeaker The O.C. and Scrubs. If you don’t already know who he is, you’d recognize “Strange and Beautiful (I’ll Put a Spell on You)”, “Easier to Lie,” and “Brighter than Sunshine.” It’s straight up Piano-Pop, but there’s energy and craftsmanship in the music. Back in February at the Fillmore, Aqualung played a couple of songs that would be on their upcoming album, Memory Man. “Pressure Suit” stood out as his next hit and I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that it’s featured in an upcoming episode of Grey’s Anatomy, or October Road or whatever the next big show that I won’t watch will be…or at least the next Zach Braff film. Memory Man is very enjoyable and worth it to have in my shuffling.

Buy Aqualung – Strange and Beautiful
Buy Aqualung – Memory Man
Buy The Wicker Park Soundtrack

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