Artist of the Week: Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah is an American indie band from Brooklyn that, amongst other acts such as Arctic Monkeys and Tapes ‘n Tapes, became known due to what one might call the second wave of Internet Buzz (mostly bloggers and MySpace users). Their first and eponymous record was initially self-released in 2005 and was immediately praised by the likes of Rolling Stones and Pitchfork who compared their sound to classic acts such as Talking Heads and indie totems such as Yo La Tengo and Neutral Milk Hotel.
Even more interesting though was what happened next: wanting nothing to do with the online hype typhoon attending Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, rock mythology spread the idea that leader Alec Ounsworth did his best to kill his band with a Very Difficult (Though Absolutely Fascinating) Second Album: 2007’s Some Loud Thunder. He unfortunately pretty much succeeded: after an hiatus for a solo releases and ephemeral collaborations, the band releases in 2011 the rather bland Hysterical that threatened to alienate most of their fans.
Only Run, their fourth and recently released fourth album, recaptures the sheer energy and originality of their first two records via the departure of three fifths of the band’s formative line-up, leaving just the core of Ounsworth and drummer Sean Greenhalgh. It won’t be easy for you to hear another electronically infused rock album as thrilling as this one in 2014.
João Pedro da Costa is a web studies scholar and a music fan.