BIRN: Album + Songs of the Week

BIRN is a radio station run by students at Berklee that aims to supply music to the community within Berklee as well as the surrounding areas. Articles from BIRN are part of our Community Partner initiative.
Meet BIRN and learn more about them here

The BIRN Album of the Week:

When We Talk About Love

It’s always refreshing to listen to a well packaged and focused album. Less dance-y than some of Oh Mercy’s older music, “When We Talk About Love,” leaves not much left up to imagination with it’s title. Alexander Gow gives us singer-songwriter with ambient Indie touches,  an unapologetic conversation about those loved and lost, an album that is essentially a spectrum of emotions from melancholy to joyful. The first single, “Sandy,” has a chorus nothing short of dreamy. It’s a song about that anxious desire for someone to, “come closer,” to never let them slip out from your fingers again.

Aside from Gow’s lyric writing, the instrumentation in “When We Talk About Love” also speaks to us. The songs are clever and touching, replete with tension and release, climax, and structure.  The parts written for the string section on tracks such as, “Iron Cross” and “Catherine” complete the stories being told, written gorgeously and not simply to keep the listener’s interest. This is an album for a long drive home, a post-break-up routine, and one we can sing along to.

Check out the videos for “Sandy” and “Without You” on YouTube.

-Liz Klammer

BIRN Song of the Week #1


“Foolish” by Alpine is an absolutely contagious not-so-guilty pleasure off the brand new album, “Yuck.” But this is not just a pop tune. The Australian six piece band has filled this up with a number of different textures including that classic jaunty string pad, crisp acoustic guitar, and lush harmonies combined with just the right amount of danceability. It’s hook brings to mind some of the music of The Cardigans with an edgy vocal style similar to Karen O of Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Be sure to check out the video for “Foolish” here.

-Liz Klammer

BIRN Song of the Week #2

When We Talk About Love

Iron Cross is the seventh song on Oh Mercy’s new album, When We Talk About Love. This power ballad combines an acoustic piano and string section, tied together by the haunting tenor vocals of Alex Gow. As a listener you can feel the intensity of his laments. There is a drama to the song that creates a sentimental mood. Oh Mercy is a band from Melbourne, Australia originally started by Gow. The new album was released on June 19th so definitely check it out.

-Zoe Mitchell


Remember that Kaki King interview? Well check out this amazing live clip from the “birnCORE live” show at Cafe 939 this past April 23rd:




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