Second Stage: Little-Known Bands You Should Hear

Second Stage: Ernest Gonzales

Download "Dancing in the Snow" by Ernest Gonzales (Right-click or control-click to save to your computer)

I've often thought that music is the most effective way to communicate our grandest ideas, because words alone often diminish feelings that seem so spectacular on the inside. Take the latest release from electronic artist Ernest Gonzales. Been Meaning to Tell You is an entirely instrumental album, but its 13 intricately produced tracks convey as much tangled emotion and soul as you'd expect from more lyrical works.

Gonzales wrote the album as a musical love letter to his wife, inspired initially by a period when the two had to spend time apart.

"I was the type of person that could handle being alone, actually really enjoy it and take pride in my independence," Gonzales says. "Growing up as an only child, you learn to entertain yourself. For me, that meant spending a bunch of time drawing or trying to make bow and arrows out of tree branches. My wife went back home to Illinois during the past Christmas holiday. During that winter, there were horrible snowstorms in Chicago, and that delayed her stay longer than expected. What I found out is that it is very hard to be apart from her. 'Dancing in the Snow' is a song that I made when she was trapped in the snow while I was home in San Antonio. As I was making the song, I kept picturing the two of us slow-dancing in the middle of slowly falling snow."

Here's that cut, "Dancing in the Snow." It's the album's opening track.

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Been Meaning to Tell You includes a book of personal notes from Gonzales about each song, as well as some fantastic images from a number of different artists, including this one by Alexandre Szewinski.

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