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Break It Yourself / Hands of Glory (Deluxe Version)

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iTunes Review

This combines Andrew Bird's two 2012 releases (the 14-song Break It Yourself album and its eight-song follow-up, Hands of Glory) into one extended listen. Break It Yourself evokes memories of other classic singer/songwriters, with Bird's personal stamp of world music, jazz, folk, and pop balancing the act. "Danse Caribe" is redolent of Van Morrison's Astral Weeks (and side two of Into the Music, to be exact), with a violin casting its spell around an elliptical chord progression and swaying rhythm. "Give It Away" lopes with a country influence in its harmonies. Hands of Glory was recorded in a more stripped-down fashion, with an intimate group of likeminded musicians surrounding a single microphone. Bird adheres to tradition here, eschewing his artsy side for sounds and vibes from the Americana canon. A spooky spaghetti-western rendition of The Handsome Family's "When That Helicopter Comes" wanders slightly from the purely rustic feel, but surprisingly jaunty covers of Townes Van Zandt's "If I Needed You" and Alpha Consumer's "Spirograph" capture a balanced approach to country and folk.

Customer Reviews


He does it again. The new version of Orpheo adds so much more depth to an already thought-provoking tale.


Andrew sums up every good side to each genre he might be haphazardly placed in, the old and new. He's done an excellent of job of creating and combining so much wonderful music into incredibly accessible tunes. I don't know how he does it, really, but he does it well. Some great music to be reckoned with.

Great Again

Wow.... Not only do you hear it but you feel it. This is the work of geniuses. My hat goes off to you all.


Born: July 11, 1973 in Chicago, IL

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Chicago singer/songwriter/violinist Andrew Bird updates the traditions of small-group swing, German lieder, and New Orleans jazz, mixing Gypsy, folk, and rock elements into his distinctive style. Bird's projects include his group the Bowl of Fire (which also includes drummer Kevin O'Donnell, bassist Josh Hirsch, and guitarist Colin Bunn) and performing as an auxiliary member of the Squirrel Nut Zippers; in turn, the Zippers' Katharine Whalen and James Mathus appeared on the Bowl of Fire albums Thrills...
Full Bio