January 29th was a bright day for music regardless of the .2 inches of rain we had...
“Memories” from The Mars Volta’s new album “The Bedlam in Goliath”. I like their old stuff better… They went too chaotic for me on this album. I know they are probably just getting some angst out, as most of us need to at some point or another. My favorite thing about this band is what I read about them on via the internet: “On a trip in Jerusalem, Rodriguez-Lopez (guitarist/bands producer) purchased an archaic ouija-type talking board at a curio shop as a gift for Bixler-Zavala (lead vocal). They would return to their tour bus after shows to play with it during their 2006 tour with the Red Hot Chili Peppers, as it quickly became the band's post-show ritual.” I haven’t played the ouija board in years. One time four of my classmates got in trouble cuz they took the game into the church and played it while we were supposed to be at recess. Naughty catholic school kids…. We are SSOOOOO our reputation !!!!!
“Guild by Association” from Louis XIV from their new friggen sweet record “Slick Dogs and Ponies”. Great album title. Freaky album cover, but still inventive. I saw these guys open for the Killers last May, which was a pretty KILLER show. Seriousss. I like these guys. I am rooting for them to make it big. Grammy big. They are distinctive enough to have a name of their own, and not some reference to a dead king. They can be a bit naughty or rub you the wrong way, but that can be memorable too. Is that such a bad thing? Go Louis! Sorry I missed you playing with the Editors and Hot Hot Heat last week. I suck. No, you suck for not reminding me and wanting to go, too.
“Oxford Comma” from Vampire Weekend's self-titled album, which is their debut record. Very exciting, isn’t it. Well, it is, and here is why: if Rolling Stone Magazine is naming you the #67 best song of 2007 and you don’t even have an album out yet, you are pretty effin cool (this song would be “Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa”). They are influenced by African music! The song is really really good (I sorta downloaded a bunch of top songs from that list to check them out …) and it should probably be listed before some of the other crap above it like “Same Girl” by R. Kelly and Usher, or the song “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” by Miranda Lambert or “Bleed it Out” by Linkin Park… but most of the songs are really good and not all you know every word to (not by choice) like the top 100 Billboard hits. Go to the Doug Fir March 25th and see them for yourselves. Don’t take my word for it.
“Two Fifty” from Chris Walla’s new album “Field Manual”. The guitarist from Death Cab released his first solo album as himself (he had another solo project that I believe is dead in the water at the moment.). So his music really sounds like John Mayer. The good news is that throughout most of the album I don’t feel like I took a sedative (the way Death Cab for Cutie makes me feel). The track “Two-Fifty” starts the album off with a low key whimsical tune like the first day of snow. I don’t know if this was the best choice to open the debut solo career…. I wanted to see a bit more like his song “Sing Again”, but we can’t always get what we want, can we?
“Shed your love” from the Helio Sequence's excellent “Keep Your Eyes Open”. This song is sooo beautiful . The album art is exactly what you picture while playing this whole record (hands releasing crane like birds).
You know that movie “Winged Migration” ?? Well this album would have been a perfect fit of a soundtrack. Lovely album that I will put on my list to purchase. Right on. Bonus: They are from Portland (!!!!!!) and will be playing at the Crystal Ballroom on March 5th. Boo-yaaaa!
“The Killers 1964” from Ida's new album “Lovers Prayers”, just in time for Valentines day! Yeeee-ah. Very sweet and full of folk indie softness, Joni would be proud. The stories are intricate and the guitar picking precise and strikingly beautiful. Ida is a boy and girl duo fro NYC and have been playing sweet music since 1992. The girl, Elizabeth Mitchell, was in a duo previously with Lisa Loeb in college (Brown U.) and guess who was their guitarist? Their classmate Duncan Sheik of course!!!! How ‘bout THEM apples, eh?
“Banned from the Roxy” from Jeffrey Lewis's “12 Crass Songs”. Well of course I was intrigued by claiming the album was all crass. One may say that I am crass myself. I think there are a certain few out there who don’t know me that think all I do is make an ass of myself. You know who you are. Ahem. Anyway, fuck off. So I had to pick this song simply because I couldn’t fathom being banned from the Roxy!!! That place should be condemned today! Course where would Anne and I go after our shows at the Crystal if it were gone. Cassidy’s I guess. Or Ringlers. That’s besides the point. This Jeffrey Lewis is a silly silly guy with a very clever mind and a very big potty mouth. I don’t think he is really that crass tho. He is just politically incorrect and sexist, racist, and a bigot. Ok, guess that is the epitome of crass. He’s crass. But he’s funny!! Check him out. Just for kicks. You know you are crass-curious!
“You’ve really got a hold on me” from Thao's new album “We Brave Bee Stings and All”. I need this song on my pod right now. Right now, I say! It’s the sexiest rendition of an otherwise just another Motown one hit wonder. (ok the Miracles sang more than that. Be quiet, music snob. ) Their song “Beat Health” is really tribal yet resembles Cat Power, or at least Cat wishes. They have so much more to their sound, its crazy. I’m blown away by their cheeky lyrics and percussions, guitars, etc. Go see them at the Someday Lounge on March 7th with the following band (Xiu Xiu). I may have to as well for $8.00…
“No Friends Oh! ” from Xiu Xiu's “Women As Lovers”. This band has been experimenting with instruments and sounds since the year 2000. They strike the same chord as Pulp does for me, with that dark deep seductive voice. That Jarvis Cocker (lead singer of Pulp) always knows my buttons. Back to Xiu Xiu, they are a one of a kind indie-punk group San Jose. They seem to be more like they should be from a tiny rainy village in the U.K. They like to cover the Smiths and are influenced by the Cure and Joy Division. I think they were influenced by Pulp and don’t know it. That’s what I think. Jarvis got into their brains and meddled with their artistic cells, manipulating them into speaking in a baritone voice during the song. You should check out their “Kitten Revolution” song as well. Snap.
”Ready for the Floor” Hot Chip: (import single). You too will be ready for the floor when hearing this hit single by the one and only Hot Chip. I am enthralled by this band. I don’t know why. Maybe it’s because of their name, maybe its cuz we aren’t as obsessed with them as Americans as those hip Brits. I really don’t know. Go see them at the Crystal on the 23rd of April before they become untouchable. Trust me on this one. (p.s. they release a new album next blogggg… wooo hooo)
“The Bob Song” from Willie Nelson’s new album “Moment of Forever”. Willie covers some choice artists on this new record of his, from Kenny Chesney to Dave Matthews. The Bob Song is a cute little diddy that some guy named “Big Kenny” wrote., who is part of the Big and Rich duo (the BIG part…). Listening to their version its not a great song… but somehow Willie turns into a folky rant about a drunk named B-O-B. Fantastic cover, Nr Nelson. Keep up with the Bio-Willie fuel, the world will catch on in due course.
“Send me an Angel” from Dirty On Purpose’s new “Like Bees” EP. Apparently this song was on an episode of Australia’s Real Life. Shit, I don’t even watch the American version, so I had no idea. I’m noticing that a lot of bands get launched careers from Laguna Beach or Grey’s Anatomy, or likewise. I’d like to point out that Dawson’s Creek started that whole deal. Word. On purpose or not, this band is magnificent, even if they ARE known for being shoe gazers…
“Hearts of Crows” from the Radar Bros. new cd “Auditorium”. Ok, so if you thought that “shoe gazers” was a weird category, try “sadcore”. I am not lying here. The Radar Bros. are exactly that. Sadcore. I love it love it love it. I even HEART them. Oh no I didn’t!! These boys are from LA, but the fast pace of that city doesn’t show in their music. You would think they were from Boyden, Iowa or Blandville, West Virginia (real places, BTW)) instead. The mellow riffs and sleepy steel guitar clears the smog of the LA skies and transports you to the country, man. Pass the doobie, radar bro.
“In the Morning” from Quinn Walker’s new album “Lion Land / Laughter’s An Asshole”. Ok so he’s “alternative” but I’d stick him in the WTF genre, cuz that was my first thought. This choice song isn’t so weird, but the others (“Porcupine”, “Through the Skull of a Goat”, or “Warm in the Sun/Worn in the Sun”, take your pick.). He likes to sing in his falsetto, with sounds I can only describe as coming from a synthesizer… (moog?). His MySpace is really disturbing, as well as the cover art of the record. In the beginning I thought his music was like the drum circle at the country fair, but it’s really not. He likes to experiment too much, and I am pretty sure in all aspect of that word… Don’t think I will be downloading any of Quinn’s music after seeing this picture (at your own risk) on his page but I comment him for being… errr… original. !!! Ick.