Beliefnet
Idol Chatter

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One of my favorite movies of the last few years has to be the indie music/romantic comedy
“Once.” One of the best things to come out of the movie is The Swell Season – a.k.a. Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova, the duo that starred in the movie. While promoting the movie “Once” through a series of concerts, the duo decided to come up with the name The Swell Season and start a recording career. Their follow up to the movie soundtrack, which included their hit song “Falling Slowly,” is entitled “Strict Joy.” While “Strict Joy” is not available for sale just yet, it is available for streaming in an exclusive feature over at NPR. Reminding me once again why this is the best year for indie music in a long time, “Strict Joy” has fantastic acoustic melodies and mesmerizing vocals and is unabashedly romantic without being sappy or angst-filled.


While each song on “Strict Joy” focuses on the ups and downs of being in love, none wallow in the excess of either the good or bad of relationships. They simply recognize the difficulty of all relationships to stay grounded in truth, respect, and fidelity.(The singers should know as they had a romance and have now parted agreeably offstage.) Songs like “Loved you wrongly” and “Two Tongues” show the fragile side of a tenous affair while “Love That Conquers” boldly celebrates the risk that is inevitable all love relationships. The individual songs actually weave together to create a story , perhaps a sequel of sorts, to the story of “Once.”
If you aren’t familiar with Hansard or Irglova, check out this mini-concert at NPR. Break-up or no break-up, I still see a lot of chemistry between them, don’t you?

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