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'Melody Day,' in More Ways Than One

Caribou is Dan Snaith, who's also released several albums under the name Manitoba.
Caribou is Dan Snaith, who's also released several albums under the name Manitoba.

Caribou's "Melody Day" sounds like the product of a different era — a song that might have been at home on, say, The Velvet Underground's Loaded, had Lou Reed been replaced by Brian Wilson (or The Polyphonic Spree's Tim DeLaughter) and incorporated layered electronic beats into his songwriting.

Caribou is Dan Snaith, an Ontario-based mathematician who began making music at 14 and released several albums under the name Manitoba until 2004, when The Dictators' Richard "Handsome Dick" Manitoba threatened a lawsuit. Shortly thereafter, Caribou was born, and in 2005 Snaith released The Milk of Human Kindness, which helped spawn a 140-city tour, as well as a rabid following among the Pitchfork set.

Hipster credentials aside, Caribou's music encompasses the most appealing elements of pop, rock and electronic music and fuses them together to form creative, catchy, timeless songs. About three minutes into "Melody Day," the song comes to a stop for several seconds before crashing back into a chorus of drums, harmonies and chimes, ending the song — and opening the band's fine new Andorra — with vibrant intensity.

Listen to yesterday's 'Song of the Day.'

This column originally ran on Aug. 22, 2007.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Lily Percy