In my constant search of interesting and engaging indie music, occasionally I come across music that is so unique, it stops me in my tracks. For example, Tune-Yards would fit in this category because their music is almost impossible to categorize.
Tune-Yards are a duo with Merrill Garbus and Nate Brenner (bass, some percussion). Primarily, the sound comes from the soulful and creative vocal stylings of Merrill. I would describe her as, "the singer with a thousand voices" because her vocals are so unconventional. Essentially, she could be yodelling one minute, rapping the next, and crooning in a 50's sweet melody.
When I heard Tune-Yards for the first time, it compelled me to listen more. In most cases I could describe the artist's music to a reader quite confidently, but in this case you should just listen to it yourself to gain your own impression (3 videos underneath, as well as their Myspace.). They have toured with U.K's Dirty Projectors and both bring that art/indie aesthetic to their music.
Merrill Garbus of Tune-Yards, originated from Oakland, CA. Tune-Yards are signed to the British independent record label 4AD. Tune-Yards have one LP "Bird-Brains", which garnered critical praise in the U.K.
One of the most interesting aspects of Tune-Yards, is that like Owen Pallett, Merrill incorporates recorders and software to double, triple her sounds (make a band out of her sounds). If you have no clue what I'm talking about, just watch some of the video clips below.
Garbus described her sound:
"a patchwork of sound snippets, of history in a present tense. It is a composer's commitment to the preservation of stories, however small and unassuming."
Although Tune-Yards may not be for everyone, it is exciting to know that Toronto (June 13th at Horseshoe Tavern) and Montreal (June 12th at Il Motore on their North American/U.K. tour. So, if you're interested in checking out Tune-Yards, their upcoming shows at either Il Motore and The Horseshoe may be your only chance in the near future.