Owen Pallett – I Am Not Afraid
I credit Owen Pallett for helping to get my foot in the door of the indie music scene many years ago. I still remember hearing and falling completely in love with “This is the Dream of Win and Regine”, one of my favorite tracks still to this day. Now when I first discovered this absurdly talented loop violinist, he went by the moniker Final Fantasy, but due to some video game copyright issues he made the switch to his birthname, Owen Pallett. And while 2010 saw one of the best years in music ever, it was Pallett’s Heartland that might have stuck out above all the rest.
It’s the way he bridges strings, synths, and his strangely compelling lyrics all into one that distinguishes this Canadian artist from the rest. And with that, I was beyond excited to get my hands on his sophomore LP as Owen Pallett, In Conflict. The opening track “I am Not Afraid” tackles some dark existentialist themes, but as the title demonstrates, this is really more of an uplifting song about the acceptance of self. As is with most of Pallett’s work, I forsee this record taking many, many listens before it can be fully understood and appreciated — but even at just a couple times through it’s safe to say that In Conflict is one of my favorite new records on the year.