Saturday, December 31, 2011

My favourite albums of 2011

For me, this year was both good and bad for music.

Good because some of my favourite bands released new music, and I got to see loads of great concerts this year (The Strokes a couple of times, Arctic Monkeys, Delta Spirit, Arcade Fire, The National a couple of times, Beirut, Telekinesis, etc).

Bad because I didn't really get into any new bands this year. Partly because new music tended to bore me and partly because I've been swamped with life, law school and everything which falls in between.

So, without futher ado, here's my list of my favourite albums of 2011.

10. Foo Fighters - Wasting Light

9. Radiohead - The King of Limbs

7. Girls - Father, Son, Holy Ghost

6. The Black Keys - El Camino

5. Andrew Bird - Norman Soundtrack

4. Fleet Foxes - Helplessness Blues

3. Beirut - The Rip Tide

2. Arctic Monkeys - Suck it and See

1. The Strokes - Angles

Sunday, December 18, 2011

She & Him - Baby It's Cold Outside

"Baby It's Cold Outside" is possibly my favourite holiday tune and I simply adore Zooey Deschanel's version from Elf, but I'm currently listening to the excellent She & Him Christmas record A Very She & Him Christmas, and they did a version where M. Ward sings the girl's part and Zooey does the guy's part. It's really cute, compare the two songs below.

Leon Redbone & Zooey Deschanel - Baby It's Cold Outside [mp3]

She & Him - Baby It's Cold Outside [mp3]

Friday, December 9, 2011

The National debut two new songs for Canadian Radio ("Rylan" and "I Need My Girl")

The band played these gems for Toronto’s Q1 LIVE. I love the direction the band is taking, but I want more! Listen and download below:

The National - Rylan [mp3]

The National - I Need My Girl [mp3]

Thursday, December 8, 2011

The National + Local Natives + Wye Oak - Vanderlyle Crybaby Geeks (acoustic)

this is so beautiful. I woke up with this version stuck in my head this morning.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Andrew Bird announces new album + tour

how exciting!
Break it Yourself will see a March 6th release in the US. and, to make things sweeter, Andrew Bird is offering the following goodies to anybody who purchases a ticket to a gig between March 15 and May 12:

Break It Yourself US Tour Ticket Bundle Exclusive
So check this out, when you purchase a ticket to one of the upcoming US tour dates from March 15 - May 12, you will receive a one-of-a-kind music & ticket bundle. Here’s what you’ll get:
1) the five-song live EP Fake Conversations delivered to your inbox in the next day or 3
2) a digital copy of the new album Break It Yourself one day before its release date
3) a second five-song live EP from the 2012 tour delivered next spring.

(tickets on sale Dec 9th)

DateCity, State
Jan 12Honolulu, HIHawaii TheatreTickets
Mar 5London, UKBarbican CentreTickets
Mar 6Paris, FRLa CigaleTickets
Mar 8Brussels, BECirque RoyalTickets
Mar 9Amsterdam, NLParadisoTickets
Mar 15Dallas, TXMajestic Theatre *Presale
Mar 16New Orleans, LAThe Howlin' Wolf *Presale
Mar 17Atlanta, GATabernacle *Presale
Mar 19Nashville, TNRyman Auditorium *Presale
Mar 20Columbus, OHSouthern Theatre *Presale
Mar 22St. Louis, MOThe Pageant *Presale
Mar 23Kansas City, MOThe Uptown Theater *Presale
Mar 24Milwaukee, WIRiverside Theater*Presale
Apr 9Seattle, WAParamount Theatre #Presale
Apr 10Vancouver, BCThe Vogue #
Apr 11Portland, ORArlene Schnitzer Concert Hall #
Apr 13Oakland, CAFox Theater #
Apr 18Mesa, AZIkeda Theater at Mesa Arts Center #
Apr 19Santa Fe, NMLensic Performing Arts Center #
Apr 20Tucson, AZRialto Theater #
May 3Philadelphia, PAUnion Transfer ^
May 4New York, NYBeacon Theatre ^
May 5New York, NYBeacon Theatre %
May 6Boston, MAHouse of Blues ^
May 8Washington, DC9:30 Club ^
May 9Baltimore, MDRamshead Live ^
May 10Detroit, MIThe Fillmore Detroit +
May 12Chicago, ILAuditorium Theatre +
June 6London, UKField Day 2012Tickets

To Support
* Eugene Mirman
# Laura Marling
^ Patrick Watson
% Tift Merritt
+ Mucca Pazza

Friday, December 2, 2011

new Delta Spirit album in March + tour dates

the band will be opening for My Morning Jacket for the following gigs:

December 6th Tulsa, OK Brady Theatre
December 7th Dallas, TX Verizon Theatre At Grand Prairie
December 8th Houston, TX Verizon Wireless Theatre
December 10th Boca Raton, FL Sunset Cove Amphitheater
December 11th Orlando, FL Hard Rock Live
December 12th Greensboro, NC Greensboro War Memorial Auditorium

Further, their third full length album is due March 13th. Lead singer Matt Vasquez explains why the album will be self-titled:

"We found the sound that we've been looking for, that we've been growing into, and as soon as we hit on it, we ran with it. That's why it's a self-titled record, so we could connect our identity with what we think Delta Spirit is."

you can grab their very first (FANTASTIC) ep, I Think I've Found It, for free below:

The Black Keys announce tour, Arctic Monkeys to support


The Black Keys 2012 tour dates:
1/23 Antwerp, Belgium, Lotto
1/24 Lille, France, Zenith
1/25 Paris, France, Zenith
1/27 Hamburg, Germany, Sporthalle
1/28 Berlin, Germany, Arena
1/30 Milan, Italy, Alcatraz
1/31 Zurich, Switzerland, Maag Hall
2/1 Eindhoven, Holland, Klokgebouw
2/3 Nottingham, England, Capital FM Arena
2/4 Edinburgh, Scotland, Corn Exchange
2/6-2/7 Manchester, England, O2 Apollo
2/9-2/10-2/11 London, England, Alexandra Palace
3/2 Cincinnati, OH, U.S. Bank Arena *
3/3 Detroit, MI, Joe Louis Arena *
3/4 Columbus, OH, Jerome Schottenstein Center *
3/6 Portland, ME, Cumberland Co. Civic Center *
3/7 Boston, MA, TD Garden *
3/9 Washington, DC, Verizon Center *
3/10 Philadelphia, PA, Wells Fargo Center *
3/12 New York, NY, Madison Square Garden *
3/13 Montreal, Quebec, Bell Centre *
3/14 Toronto, Ontario, Air Canada Centre *
3/16 Indianapolis, IN, Conseco Fieldhouse *
3/18 Grand Rapids, MI, Van Andel Arena *
3/19 Chicago, IL, United Center *
3/20 Cleveland, OH, Quicken Loans Arena *
3/23 Norfolk, VA, Constant Convocation Center *

* = shows with Arctic Monkeys

tix on sale 12/9 to the general public and 12/6 for mailing list members

more info HERE

Monday, November 28, 2011

The Black Keys - El Camino (leak)

oh thank the heavens. this will get me through finals. hopefully. make sure you buy it next week!


Sunday, November 20, 2011

Monday, November 7, 2011

Radiohead announce 2012 Tour

02/27 – Miami, FL @ American Airlines Arena
02/29 – Tampa, FL @ St. Pete Times Forum
03/01 – Atlanta, GA @ Phillips Arena
03/03 – Houston, TX @ Toyota Center
03/05 – Dallas, TX @ American Airlines Center
03/07 – Austin, TX @ Frank Erwin Center
03/09 – St. Louis, MO @ Scottrade Center
03/11 – Kansas City, MO @ Spirit Center
03/13 – Broomfield, CO @ 1stBank Center
03/15 – Glendale, AZ @ Arena

tickets for all shows go on sale Wednesday, except the February 29 Tampa, FL date, which will go on sale November 19.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Black Keys - Lonely Boy (video + mp3)

here's the hilarious video for the band's awesome new single

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Brandon Flowers wants you to be Mormon and make babies

this remains the best thing The Killers have ever done:

maybe The Killers should cover The Book of Mormon?

Andrew Bird - Fever Year

as per Chicago's International Film Festival,
I saw Fever Year today.
It's a documentary about Andrew Bird. The title comes from the unfortunate fact that he sustained a fever/illness/chills for basically an entire year of touring, nearly 170 shows' worth.
Anyway, the film was brilliant. There were plenty of concert clips, and features about his fascination with horns, but best of all, it focused a lot on Bird's songwriting process at the gorgeous Bird Family Farm. It traces back to his early, unknown roots until present day. He talked a lot about how important improvising on stage is, and why he now prefers writing simpler songs so that he can have more freedom in the live setting.
The movie made me have all that much more respect for him.

additional screenings are forthcoming.

Colorado Premiere
Denver Film Festival

SAT. NOV 5, 1:15 PM
SUN. NOV 6, 9:30 PM
Tickets Here
European Premiere
Copenhagen Intl Documentary Film Festival

In Competition
"Sound & Vision Award"
THURS. NOV 10, 22:30
Missouri Premiere
St. Louis International
Film Festival

SAT. NOV 19, 8:30 PM

West Coast/California Premiere
Confirmed for early 2012
Details TBA
Pacific Northwest Premiere
Seattle, Washington
FRI. FEB 17, 8:00 PM
Details TBA

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Christopher Owens posts tour diary

explore the world of the Girls frontman below:

video: Beirut - East Harlem on Letterman

could this song be any more perfect? I think not. a lovely performance of a gem from The Rip Tide.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Radiohead to head back to studio in December

via COS
Thom Yorke has just announced that, in addition to the new Atoms for Peace album that is in the works, and the impending 2012 RH tour, the band will head back to studio for a couple of months in the winter to work on material
this is happy, happy news.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Andrew Bird, age 6

I came across this the other day. It's too cute.

video: Ryan Adams - "Lucky Now" (acoustic)

this is gorgeous:

Monday, October 10, 2011

The Black Keys to release El Camino on December 6th

a new album! HUZZAH!!

album art + tracklist

01. Lonely Boy (forthcoming single on Oct 26)
02. Dead and Gone
03. Gold on the Ceiling
04. Little Black Submarines
05. Money Maker
06. Run Right Back
07. Sister
08. Hell of a Season
09. Stop Stop
10. Nova Baby
11. Mind Eraser

Saturday, October 8, 2011

SPIN: "Homophobia Haunts Indie Rock"

In light of a recent attack on garage-punk band the Young Lovers, the magazine profiled frontman Brontez Purnell and also placed the spotlight on other gay musicians in indie rock. The article discusses homophobia and stigma often associated with being a gay musician. Head over HERE to read it

bonus trivia: "Diplomat's Son" by Vampire Weekend was written about Rostam.

"Last night I smoked a joint
With my best friend
We found ourselves in bed
When I woke up he was gone..."

Thursday, October 6, 2011

free download: Andrew Bird - Hospital

why yes, Mr Bird, you may sign me up for your email list. wait, I'm already on that. a free mp3 you say? why, don't mind if I do.
this comes from the soundtrack to Norman

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

video: Death Cab for Cutie - "Title and Registration"

this video needs more views. NOW.

I've been spinning Transatlanticism a lot lately.

Girls to play a free in-store at Amoeba SF on Sunday

I miss Amoeba.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

watch: Radiohead's special on The Colbert Report

Radiohead visited Colbert two nights ago. Hilarity ensued. Watch below:

watch: Beirut - The Akara in Chicago

On Monday night, I saw Beirut perform at Congress theatre. It was beyond spectacular. Zach Condon is literally perfect. I took some videos on my phone, and I'll upload them as soon as I figure out how. In the meanwhile, watch this:

set list:

Monday, September 26, 2011

Ryan Adams announces a new tour

Tour Dates:
10/11 – San Diego, CA @ Balboa Theater
10/13 – Big Sur, CA @ Henry Miller Library
10/14 – San Francisco, CA @ Herbst Theater
10/15 – Napa, CA @ Uptown Theater
10/17 – Santa Cruz, CA @ The Rio
10/18 – Sacramento, CA @ Crest Theatre
10/20 – Eugene, OR @ The Shedd
10/21 – Seattle, WA @ Benaroya (City Arts Festival)
10/27 – London, UK @ Union Chapel
10/28 – York, UK @ York Grand Opera House
10/30 – Edinburgh, UK @ Edinburgh Festival Theatre
11/02 – Paris, FR @ Le Trianon Hall
11/05 – Brussels, BE @ Cirque Royale
12/02 – Philadelphia, PA @ Academy of Music
12/04 – Baltimore, MD @ Lyric Opera House
12/06 – New York, NY @ Carnegie Hall
12/08 – Boston, MA @ Orpheum Theatre
12/10 – Toronto, ON @ Winter Garden Theatre
12/11 – Chicago, IL @ Cadillac Place
12/13 – Minneapolis, MN @ State Theatre

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Friday, September 23, 2011

Telekinesis make television debut on Fallon with "Please Ask for Help"

The band, which is now a confirmed three piece with Cody Votolato and Jason Narducy, played a song from 12 Desperate Straight Lines last night. Watch it below:

The band will support Death Cab for Cutie on their new tour

Girls to play a free in-store in Chicago next Thursday

Girls will visit the Broadway Reckless location on Thursday, September 29th at 2PM to warm up for their sold-out Lincoln Hall show that night. Deep dish pizza is involved, although I'm unsure how...

on a sidenote, the Reckless on Broadway has the biggest selection of records out of the three Chicago locations. The clearance section is fantastic...I found the first AC/DC album there for 25 cents. Make sure you browse through those bins if you go.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

stream: Dum Dum Girls- Only in Dreams

Only in Dreams is the followup to their debut, I Will Be. It's cleaner, less angry, and sounds more like LA. Maybe they've been watching Glee? I like the first album better, but by all means, listen away and make your own decision.

new video: Girls - Honey Bunny

I love how they always film their videos in San Francisco.

Thom Yorke announces new Atoms for Peace LP + Radiohead tour in 2012

via CoS

Atoms for Peace have made an album together. The band, composed of Thom Yorke, Flea, Nigel Godirch, Joey Waronker, and Mauro Refosco originally toured with Thom for The Eraser. The record is being wrapped up by Godirch. A release date is forthcoming.

Radiohead will finally begin a proper tour for King of Limbs early next year. I'll post info as it comes

Monday, September 19, 2011

Radiohead to play Roseland Ballroom in NY + SNL + The Colbert Report

Road trip?
Radiohead will play two nights at New York’s Roseland Ballroom, on September 28 and 29. Tickets on sale September 26th at 10AM via Ticketmaster

The band will also play on the season premiere of SNL on September 24th.

Better yet, Radiohead will visit The Colbert Report on September 26th where Stephen will honor them by devoting a full hour to the band. We can expect four songs from The King Of Limbs as well as their new song, “The Daily Mail.”

I'm very much looking forward to seeing how Thom reacts to Colbert's...humour.

video: Arcade Fire at Austin City Limits

I always liked Arcade Fire, but after The Suburbs, I began to love them. my infatuation with them runs deep, for personal reasons. but holy wow, are they an epic live band. this video includes "Ready to Start", "Keep the Car Running" "No Cars Go" and "Haiti". enjoy.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

watch: Telekinesis + Chris Walla perform two songs for SPIN

Michael Benjamin Lerner performs "50 Ways" and "You Turn Clear in the Sun" from his sophomore album, 12 Desperate Straight Lines. His voice cracks a little, but that's okay. Walla joins in on guitar.


Friday, September 16, 2011

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

finally, the lyrics to Machu Picchu

as much as I adore Angles, I can't stand the fact that there are no liner notes in the album. this makes my life better:

presale password: The National at the Aragon (+more)

The National will visit Chicago on December 6th at The Aragon. Local Natives and Wyk Oak will open.

presale tickets will be available on Friday at 10AM. presale password: VIOLET
buy tickets HERE

look below for more on-sale times and passwords and visit The National's website to find links to buy them

November 2011:



30: SEATTLE, WA / NEPTUNE THEATRE // w/ LOCAL NATIVES + WYE OAK // PRE-SALE: 9/15 @ 10AM - 9/16 @ 10PM Password: STG / ON-SALE: 9/17 @ 10AM

December 2011:
01: SEATTLE, WA / NEPTUNE THEATRE // w/ LOCAL NATIVES + WYE OAK // PRE-SALE: 9/15 @ 10AM - 9/16 @ 10PM Password: STG / ON-SALE: 9/17 @ 10AM


04: AUSTIN, TX / AUSTIN MUSIC HALL // w/ LOCAL NATIVES // C3 Concerts PRE-SALE: 9/22 @ 10AM Password: NATIONALLOCAL / KROX PRE-SALE: 9/22 @ 10AM-10PM Password: 101x / KGSR PRE-SALE: 9/22 @ 10AM-10PM Password: 933KGSR / ON-SALE: 9/23 @ 10AM

ACC PRE-SALE: 9/12 @ 130PM - 9/13 @ 5PM / COLLECTIVE PRE-SALE: 9/14 @ 2PM - 9/15 @ 10PM Password: fakeempire / ON-SALE: 9/16 @ 11AM





15: NEW YORK, NY / BEACON THEATRE // w/ WYE OAK // AMEX PRE-SALE: 9/14 @ 11AM / ON-SALE: 9/16 @ 11AM

Monday, September 12, 2011

stream: Girls - Father, Son, Holy Ghost (highly recommended!)

I was planning on listening to this over the weekend but I got caught up doing other stuff...I only just listened to it today
this album is really spectacular, and it shows much progression from their debut, Album

stream it HERE

the record officially drops tomorrow. review forthcoming.

The National announce a new tour, fans rejoice

well, I rejoiced.

11-06 Singapore – Esplanade Concert Hall
11-09 Tokyo, Japan – Duo
11-12 Melbourne, Australia – Harvest Festival
11-13 Sydney, Australia – Harvest Festival
11-15 Adelaide, Australia – Thebarton Theatre *
11-17 Perth, Australia – Metro City *
11-19 Brisbane, Australia – Harvest Festival
11-29 Vancouver, British Columbia – Orpheum Theatre #
11-30 Seattle, WA – Neptune Theatre #
12-01 Seattle, WA – Neptune Theatre #
12-03 San Francisco, CA – Bill Graham Civic Auditorium #
12-04 Austin, TX – Austin Music Hall !
12-06 Chicago, IL – Aragon Ballroom #
12-08 Toronto, Ontario – Air Canada Centre ^
12-09 Montreal, Quebec – Bell Centre ^
12-12 New York, NY – Beacon Theatre &
12-13 New York, NY – Beacon Theatre %
12-15 New York, NY – Beacon Theatre $
12-16 New York, NY – Beacon Theatre @

* with the Walkmen
# with Local Natives and Wye Oak
! with Local Natives
^ with Neko Case and Wye Oak
& with the War on Drugs
% with Sharon Van Etten
$ with So Percussion
@ with Wye Oak

Chicagoland Record Collector's show this Sunday

via TVD

$3 gets you into "the midwest's largest vinyl show"

50-60 dealers that manage to fill 80 tables with vintage albums, 45’s and more. The overwhelming stock spans a range of genres including, Rock, Jazz, Soul, R & B, Country, Folk, Alternative and Metal.

The Chicagoland Record Collectors Show is this Sunday, September 18, at the Best Western Hotel Chicago in Hillside – 4400 Frontage Road Hillside, IL 60162. The show runs from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM

visit the official website HERE

Friday, September 9, 2011

video: Beirut - Santa Fe

this is depressing but gorgeous:

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Arcade Fire, Foo Fighters, Beck, Eddie Vedder, and Neil Young to play at Bridge School Benefit

The annual charity festival held in Mountain View, CA (halfway between San Francisco and San Jose...and home of the Google headquarters) will feature an impressive lineup this year (big surprise). The full lineup includes:

Arcade Fire
Dave Matthews
Diana Krall
Eddie Vedder
Foo Fighters
Jenny Lewis
Los Invisibles (Carlos Santana etc)
Mumford & Sons
Neil Young
Tony Bennett

all of whom will be performing acoustic sets for charity. The festival will be at Shoreline Amphitheatre on October 22-23rd. Tickets go on sale via livenation on Fri September 16 at 10AM PST

Monday, September 5, 2011

video: The Strokes - Juicebox (ft Eddie Vedder)

I went to Wisconsin yesterday to see The Strokes, Queens of the Stone Age and Pearl Jam. And it was fucking grand. Eddie Vedder pointed out that Julian and Jesus have the same initials. Good man. There was plenty of man-love around; Julian joined QOTSA for "Sick Sick Sick", Josh Homme played guitar during "NYCC", Eddie came on for "Juicebox" and Julian sang "Red Mosquito" with his heroes.

I can't find any decent video from yesterday, but the video below (from Saturday night) is fucking awesome and is exactly what they sounded like yesterday.


Sunday, August 28, 2011

Sunday Morning Covers

The Strokes ft Jarvis Cocker - Just What I Needed (The Cars cover)[mp3]
everything you ever dreamed of, and more. I love it when Julian is happy and smiley. "The Jarv" sounds like a dance from the 50's. I like this a helluva lot more than "Two Kinds of Happiness". sorry, Julian. but that's probably the worst song you've ever written. download a zip file of the entire Reading performance HERE

Lightouts – “All I Want / Heroes” (LCD Soundsystem / David Bowie Cover) [mp3]
this sounds like The Killers in their early years.

The Morning Benders - Outlaw Blues (Bob Dylan cover) [mp3]
Chris really nails Bobby's nasally undertones

Grand Lake - The Tourist (Radiohead cover) [mp3]
it's an ambitious move, covering a band like RH, but Grand Lake bring a new meaning to the lyric "slow down"

Editors - Road to Nowhere (Talking Heads cover) [mp3]
I just love this one

this is so funky and psychedelic. I love it.

Tokyo Police Club covering "Under Control" by The Strokes and reggae-fying the hell out of it:

Saturday, August 27, 2011

watch: rare short Smiths documentary from 1992

The following documentary, which was made in 1992 but never got a proper release, has currently resurfaced in light of the new Smiths box set due for an October release (pricey, too...250 British pounds)
it's seventeen minutes long but has some cool clips and info and context into what The Smiths really did to the world of music. watch below:

watch: trailer for Martin Scorsese's "George Harrison: Living In The Material World"

the documentary is set for a release via HBO and dvd in October

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Dodos give away free live album + tour dates

enter your email below to receive a free live album from The Dodos

Tour Dates:
08/26 – Big Sur, CA @ Henry Miller Library #
08/27 – Los Angeles, CA @ Heritage Court at The Autry
08/28 – Costa Mesa, CA @ Detroit Bar #
08/31 – Norman, OK @ Oklahoma Memorial Union #
09/01 – Dallas, TX @ The Loft #
09/02 – Austin, TX @ Antone’s #
09/03 – Houston, TX @ Fitzgerald’s #
09/04 – New Orleans, LA @ One Eyed Jacks #
09/06 – Tallahassee, FL @ Club Downunder #
09/07 – Birmingham, AL @ The Bottletree #
09/08 – Atlanta, GA @ Buckhead Theatre !%
09/09 – Raleigh, NC @ Hopscotch Festival
09/10 – Harrisonburg, VA @ Clementine #
09/11 – Baltimore, MD @ Sonar #
09/12 – Brooklyn, NY @ Music Hall of Williamsburg #
09/15 – Burlington, VT @ Club Metronome #
09/16 – Quebec City, QC @ Le Cercle #
09/17 – Ottawa, ON @ Mavericks #
09/18 – Hamilton, ON @ Casbah #
09/20 – Ann Arbor, MI @ The Blind Pig #
09/21 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Mr. Smalls Theate *
09/22 – Cincinnati, OH @ MidPoint Music Festival
09/23 – Champaign-Urbana, IL @ Pygmalion Music Festival
09/24 – St. Louis, MO @ Off Broadway #
09/25 – Lawrence, KS @ Bottleneck #
09/27 – Boulder, CO @ Fox Theatre #
12/09-11 – Minehead, UK @ ATP’s Nightmare Before Christmas

# = w/ The Luyas
! = w/ Times New Viking
% = w/ Superchunk
* = w/ The Felice Brothers

visit their WEBSITE

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Sunday Morning Covers

Nirvana - Lake of Fire (Meat Puppets cover) [mp3]
you know when you meet someone new and they have great taste in music and they make you listen to brilliant things you never knew existed? that's how I heard this Nirvana track.

Vampire Weekend - I'm Going Down (Bruce Springsteen cover) [mp3]


Sunday, August 14, 2011

Beirut - Untitled

I was listening to Beirut on shuffle today and a song came on from Zach Condon's early project, The Joys of Losing Weight. Mega fans are well aware that all of the songs on the album are untitled, this one happened to strike me as Elliott Smith-esque but also quite like Explosions in the Sky. A quieter Explosions in the Sky. I thought I'd share it.

video: The Strokes - Hard to Explain at Paleo

This might be the greatest song ever written.
I've been binging on Phrazes more than The Strokes lately but when I listen to this song, I remember the early days of becoming obsessed with this band, watching youtube for hours on end and just being filled with so much happiness.
I feel exactly the same way when I watch Strokes videos now. Everything in this stupid world is fleeting but "Hard to Explain" is eternal.

Sunday Morning Covers

this is brilliant:

Friday, August 12, 2011

record review: Beirut - The Rip Tide

When Sufjan Stevens started making music, he proposed that he would devote an album to each of our great country’s fifty states. And while Michigan and Come on Feel the Illinoise are stunning and gorgeous albums, there wasn’t much of a chance (from a time-constriction point of view) for Mr. Stevens to complete his task—unless he grouped states together.

On the other hand, Zach Condon—the heartthrob prodigy behind Santa Fe-based Beirut presented an equally compelling yet much more doable task. Since his breathtaking debut, Gulag Orkestar, Condon’s musical vision has been to fuse world music with indie sensibility and plenty of lush, layered sounds—horns, percussion, strings—one country or world region at a time. Gulag was inspired by the music of the Balkans; The Flying Club Cup nodded toward France; the double EP March of the Zapotec/Holland simultaneously tackled Mexican music and the Netherlands.

On his third full length album, the one thing that ties each of Condon's songs together is that they all give you the unshakable feeling that you are at a beach. It all starts with the lyrics in opener “A Candle’s Fire” that mention the allure of campfires. Indeed, the lyrics found on The Rip Tide are the strongest and clearest that Condon’s ever written. This is especially striking in light of the fact that Condon has insisted time and time again that his lyrics are more a mode of vocal delivery than anything else—he used to mumble because he wanted his voice to be heard as an instrument rather than a way to deliver poetry.

Perhaps the most striking thing about this record is Condon’s vocals. They’re clearer and more precise, and they really set the mood for the entire album. As always, Condon’s songwriting is simply superb; “East Harlem” and “Port of Call” are two of the strongest things he’s ever released (although “East Harlem” has been kicking around for a while, creeping to the surface for air every so often at concerts). All in all, The Rip Tide is an unquestionably wonderful album, and irritatingly listenable. It’s also much more accessible than his previous albums, because he leaves the baroque-elements to the music and adopts a more normative approach to singing. Yet, it still sounds like Beirut.

That being said, Condon’s musical evolution on The Rip Tide is both swift and natural; he sounds as he always has—at ease and in control, yet the musical progression that he’s made here is vast. Condon is no longer only experimenting with what makes a country’s folk music interesting—he’s actually emulating nature. The Rip Tide is the perfect way to encompass the ocean. The Rip Tide—therefore, isn’t simply the reflection of a certain ethnic group’s music: it harmoniously blends together all of the wonderful elements which contribute to the unparalleled happiness we gain on those weekends at the coast. And for a person who misses the Pacific Ocean like a junkie misses their needle, it’s a much needed source of comfort and joy.


The Rip Tide is now available for purchase digitally on itunes. You can stream the entire thing HERE. It hits your local record store on August 30th.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Garage Voice - Blood on The Door Post

from: Seattle
signed to: Upbeat Child Records
sounds like: a slightly more refined, slightly more complex take on the garage-blues revival heralded by bands like The Black Keys and The White Stripes

if you're in San Francisco, they'll be stopping by Rickshaw with Cannons and Clouds. ten bucks will get you in. more details HERE

here's their WEBSITE and MYSPACE