The big sound of Milagres is built from small, simple elements: the boom of the kick drum, the clack of the claves, the repetitive tap-tap-tapping of a piano. This is a band of selective minimalism ? which, in the end, somehow gets me thinking about the big sounds Phil Spector made. It's all about attention to detail, and Milagres is a band that cares.
The opening track from Milagres' Glowing Mouth, "Halfway," was one of my favorite songs of 2011 for just that reason, so I was a bit worried about how the spareness would translate when I invited the group to perform at the Tiny Desk. Frankly, I worried more when the band's list of gear didn't include a single amp and its members said they didn't need to use our keyboard. They came armed with a red toy piano, an autoharp, a shaker egg, a melodica, a glockenspiel, a few acoustic guitars and not much else.
But in the end, that same attention to detail made this a great Tiny Desk Concert. In spite of the tiny sound, the songs were big and strong ? delicately built, yet sturdy enough for the emotive sounds of Kyle Wilson's voice.
- "Hard To Stay"
- "Glowing Mouth"
Producer and Editor: Bob Boilen; Videographers: Michael Katzif and Doriane Raiman; Audio Engineer: Kevin Wait; photo by Emily Bogle/NPR