The Blow: From Paper Television to The Blow (S/T)

Tuesday, October 15th, 2013


Occasionally, new interns that come to K like to dig deep into the archives to expose themselves to new music that they might not have heard before.  Luckily, they’re willing to write a review of what they enjoyed, and hopefully, are introducing (or re-introducing!) you to something you may not have heard in a while.  Our new intern, Nathan Gibson, decided to check out 2006’s Paper Television, and compare it to the new Blow album, The Blow, out on Kanine Records.  Enjoy!

It’s been nearly seven years since we’ve heard from Khaela Maricich. As an overview, in 2004 Khaela teamed up with Jona Bechtolt of YACHT. Together they recorded their 2006 release, Paper Television for K Records. Later in 2006 Melissa Dyne became part of the project. Since working with Jona, Khaela’s work has grown to include more rhythm, melody and overall structure. It seems to have grown from an experimental performance to what we hear on Paper Television; a dancy, charismatic run of feelings and beats. “Pile of Gold” is a rhythmic tease at men, minimal and hip hop influenced. “Parenthesis” is a romantic throwback, filled with warm synths, with a still minimal pop beat. The album takes its course becoming more developed, melodic and structured. The final track on the record, “True Affection” carries on a synth bass and a sentimental hook. On this record, The Blow mature musically and become something cute and danceable. This record is pop, pop that’s stuck in your head, pop you put on a playlist. But then we don’t hear from them for a long while.

It’s 2013 and The Blow have just released a new self titled record. In many cases a self-titled record is a way for artists to re-define themselves, marking a new direction. And the distance between releases would theoretically support this trend (2006-2013). This isn’t so much so for the new Blow release. They maintain similar characters that were written all over Paper Television; minimal soundscapes, electronic drums and vocal overlays.  “I Tell Myself” is a pop track, reflecting on Khaela’s masochistic tendencies in relationships, switching between dry monologues and vocal melodies. Maricich and Dyne go on this time without Bechtolt. What stands out as an over all character of the record is a departure from the lo-fi nature of Paper Television. There is a clear development to cleaner sounds and introspection, which is less “pop” oriented than their last release.

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