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School of Seven Bells

Through their dense layers of played and programmed elements, School of Seven Bells brought dream pop into the 21st century. They developed a sound as woozy and unmistakable as that of the style's early masters, including My Bloody Valentine, Curve, and Seefeel, and incorporated inspirations that tended to originate earlier, including ambient Krautrock, the icier end of synth pop, and even electro and freestyle. Although much of their lyrical matter regarded fictional characters and spirits, School of Seven Bells were also unafraid to write direct, impassioned ballads that could be classified as artful adult contemporary. The band began as a trio. Benjamin Curtis met Alejandra and Claudia Deheza when his Secret Machines shared a bill with the twin sisters' On!Air!Library! as openers for Interpol. The three musicians left their respective acts and debuted in 2007 on Sonic Cathedral with the 7" recording My Cabal, which featured a B-side remix from Robin Guthrie -- the guitarist/producer's Cocteau Twins being another apparent touchstone. Additional singles, as well as a short-form collaboration with Prefuse 73, preceded the debut album Alpinisms, released on Ghostly International in October 2008. The relatively muscular and direct Disconnect from Desire followed in July 2010 through Ghostly and Vagrant and debuted at number nine on Billboard's Top Electronic Albums chart. Claudia Deheza left the group during a subsequent tour, and her sister and Curtis, who had been a couple, broke up later the same year. School of Seven Bells continued, however, without suffering any loss of creative power. Ghostory was issued in February 2012 and peaked on Top Electronic Albums at the same position as the album that preceded it. Put Your Sad Down, a download-only EP featuring a 13-minute title track and a cover of Silver Apples' "Lovefingers," was made available during the band's gigs that year. Early in 2013, Curtis announced that he was diagnosed with lymphoma. That August, a benefit concert took place in New York with performances from the Strokes' Albert Hammond, Jr. and Interpol's Paul Banks, and members of Radiohead and Coldplay were among those who donated items to a concurrent silent auction. Curtis died that December. A few months later, Alejandra Deheza released a School of Seven Bells cover of Joey Ramone's "I Got Knocked Down (But I'll Get Up)" that was recorded while Curtis was in the hospital; Ramone himself died of lymphoma just over a decade earlier. A fourth School of Seven Bells album, nearly finished at the time of Curtis' diagnosis, was later completed by Deheza with help from producer Justin Meldal-Johnsen. It was issued in February 2016 as SVIIB. ~ Andy Kellman
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School of Seven Bells


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Albums by
School of Seven Bells

Top Songs by
School of Seven Bells

  1.   Song
  2.   Half Asleep
  3.   Windstorm
  4.   Heart Is Strange
  5.   The Night
  6.   Open Your Eyes
  7.   Secret Days
  8.   Lafaye
  9.   I Got Knocked Down (But I'll Get Up)
  10.   Chain
  11.   For Kalaja Mari
  12.   Wired for Light
  13.   Face to Face on High Places
  14.   On My Heart
  15.   I L U
  16.   Dust Devil
  17.   Joviann
  18.   Camarilla
  19.   s.Ada.Licht
  20.   This Is Our Time
  21.   Signals
  22.   A Thousand Times More
  23.   Ablaze
  24.   Unnature
  25.   Painting a Memory
  26.   Lovefingers
  27.   Show Me Love
  28.   The Wait
  29.   Sempiternal/Amaranth
  30.   Trance Figure
  31.   Limb by Limb
  32.   Sempiternal/Aramanth
  33.   Love From A Stone
  34.   Caldo
  35.   Confusion
  36.   Music Takes Me
  37.   Elias
  38.   Faded Heart
  39.   When She Was Me
  40.   Kiss Them for Me
  41.   When You Sing
  42.   White Wind
  43.   Reappear
  44.   Low Times
  45.   Love Play
  46.   Bye Bye Bye
  47.   Babelonia
  48.   Crescent Gold
  49.   Iamundernodisguise
  50.   White Elephant Coat
  51.   Connjur
  52.   Prince of Peace
  53.   My Cabal
  54.   If I Had Glass Hands and Glass Feet
  55.   Dial
  56.   Put Your Sad Down
  57.   My Camarilla
  58.   Scavenger

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