The Happiness Project by Charles Spearin

As a founding member of KC Accidental and Do Make Say Think, as well as regular contributor to Broken Social Scene, multi-talented Charles Spearin has quite the musical background. His new release, The Happiness Project, is no doubt the most interesting album I have heard all year. The concept behind the album is to find music in everyday life and to blur the lines between singing and speaking. In each song, Spearin takes clips from interviews and talks he had with friends and family and sets them to music. Not in an Auto-Tune The News way, but more like a film score. The music emphasizes the natural ebb and flow of the voice, turning the cadence and inflections of the words into backbones of songs, building off them and exploring. The music itself ranges from upbeat jazz to moody and dark, but the subject of each song/interview is, as you might expect from the title, happiness and this gives the album genuinely heartwarming feel to it.

This is a short review -- for a short album, it clocks in at 32 minutes -- as it is incredibly hard to quantify; I can't think of anything else like it, and it really just needs to be heard to understand it. It may not really be one that you can listen to over and over, and I'm not sure where it will end up in my favourite albums of the year, but it is the most fascinating, and definitely worth a listen. And I urge you all to take a listen.

Download Mrs. Morris

Download Marisa

Download Ondine

Or better yet, take a look at this video in which Spearin himself describes the project much more eloquently than I.

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