Tuesday, November 30, 2010
A long time ago (earlier this year), Los Campesinos! released one of my favorite albums of the year Romance is Boring, along with a single of the title song. On said single's B-side was "Too Many Flesh Suppers", a personal favorite of the band that for whatever reason did not make it onto the album. Now due once again to whatever reasons, the band has released "Too Many Flesh Suppers" for free for the world to listen to without having to tracking down that hard to find single. An old track for sure, but still the same raw beauty, emotion, and just fucking great music that this band has made over and over again. "Too Many Flesh Suppers" is the closest the band has ever come to sounding like Xiu Xiu, both musically and lyrically, and probably ever will. The background music to these long desolate gray winter days and the dark emotions that come with it. You are not alone.
(mp3) Los Campesinos!-Too Many Flesh Suppers
Los Campesinos! Website
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Today, I have left for a Thanksgiving trip to the hub of all indie music, New York City! I cannot say how excited I am for this and will be indulging in everything the city has to offer, as well as keeping a tally of how many hipsters I see (I'm guessing about 1,000). So due to this situation of being cut of from a computer for a week, and a belief that people will probably want to do something better then read blogs over Thanksgiving, I will be leaving with a small little present. COOLRUNNINGS did a cover awhile back of "Road to Nowhere", one of the greatest and most under appreciated Talking Heads song of all time. Coolrunnings' more synth take on the track still has the same wonderful emotion and fun heartbreak of the original, with an added bonus of incorporating very cool Gauntlet Hair like guitars in as well. There is not a better song to leave people with on these increasingly darkening nights, for what other band could have made so such a sing a long about death?
(mp3) COOLRUNNINGS-Road To Nowhere (Talking Heads Cover)
And for those who have never seen the utterly creative, artistic, and surreal video...
Thursday, November 18, 2010
One of my favorite blogs, Get Off The Coast, has teamed up with his bud Dwight Pavlovic of Royal Rhino Flying Records to start Crash Symbols, another blog run cassette label. Nothing brings me greater joy when I get news of a blog starting a music label, because all the wonderful music that they have been telling people about for so long can finally bring it to the people in physical form. The first release is a preview of sorts, an digital mix tape titled Dope Mountain Fuck that contains 19 exclusive tracks by all the bands Crash Symbols plans to work with/release in the future. Get Off The Coast has also announced the first three cassettes in the work: the post-punk,tribal, nut job drum work Foot Village's World Fantasy; Hear Hums Psyche Cycles, a trippy synthy multi media project; and, of course, some off-skew pop/chillwave via Beggars in a New Land's Teething EP. Very excited for this brand new project and can't wait to hold these band's cassettes in my hand.
(mp3) Foot Village-Lovers of Iraqis
(mp3) Hear Hums-Change
(mp3) Beggars in a New Land-Barnyard
Dope Mountain Fuck Tracklist:
01 Bummer Sanders - Sunset Funset
02 School Knights - Never Needed
03 Closed Cassette - Alright
04 Wish - Take My Hand
05 D/R/U/G/S - Hathaways
06 Sports - Mind Has Changed
07 Fox Hands - Patella
08 The Fruhstucks - She Doesn't Know
09 Gay Boiz - Mat
10 Kohwi - Hobbies (ft. Mutual Benefit)
11 Great Beer - After Effects
12 Monster Rally - Sun Bum
13 Pariah Carey - Cold Flowers (Pry Them)
14 Pregnant - Dog
15 Mellows - Of Age
16 Cop Magnet - Glossy
17 Foot Village - Energy Hunters (Unicorn Hard-On Mystic Materials Refuck)
18 Beggars in a New Land - A Cool Way To Jog
19 Hear Hums - Mokom Wolos
Stream/Download Dope Mountain Fuck Here
It's been awhile since I've posted about No Joy, but these Montreal girls have not been resting on their laurels. They just put out their debut album Ghost Blonde on Mexican Summer, and it is a true show of how they've expanded on their potential. For instance the track "Hawaii" is a blistering tart noise pop tune, combining their love of shoegaze and Sonic Youth into an ethereal mix that still containers the tint of beauty that lays in all their music. The video manages to portray the darkened beauty of the track, it a very abstract way that all music videos seem to do these.
(mp3) No Joy-Hawaii
While we're on the subject of No Joy and their new album, a it should be noted that the band also dropped the equally as great "Headless" as well from that album. It's more on the dream-pop/shoegaze side of the band taking a page out of Lush's playbook, but if you shoved the vocals through a distorter. However, this is not at all a bad thing, and "Headless" may be the closest the band has come to making a straight (yet nosiy) indie pop song.
(mp3) No Joy-Headless
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
If there has emerged one label to turn to for your garage rock needs, you'd be hard pressed to find as good a source then Burger Records. For almost three years these guys have been issuing some of the best cassettes around, from simply pressing long forgotten classic albums onto high quality tapes like Cleaners from Venus, releasing odds and B-sides like Nobunny's Raw Romance, or dropping the debut albums of the likes of Cosmonauts, Burger has some of the best cassettes in the biz.
King Tuff-Was Dead
King Tuff was and still is the solo outing of Kyle Thomas, best know as the front man of the noisy guitar pop band Happy Birthday. And while that band and subsequent album produced some mind blowingly catchy gems, Was Dead might be Thomas' best work to date. King Tuff manages to mush multiply aspects of multiply subgenres into a wonderfully vital cocktail of post power-pop guitar...pop. Everything from '60s & '70s revival, garage, psychedelia, and '90s indie rock is either touched on or smashed together in as song. The high point being "Freak When I'm Dead", the perfect tongue-in-check tribute to the era.
(mp3) King Tuff-Sun Medallion
(mp3) King Tuff-Connection
The name says it all doesn't it? Modern garage firmly in the Nobunny and Hunx and His Punxs lyrical camp. It is actually a lot better then it seems on the surface, because if you can mange to get past all the the sex there are some quite catchy punk garage tunes incased within this tape. "Bachelor's Life" in particular has all the makings of a Back to the Grave comp classic, on par with Hunx's "U Don't Like Rock N' Roll". The case can be made that this music has been done before, or that the lack of class denotes any musical merit. However, sometimes an insanely catchy, stupid band is the prefect antidote to overtly pretentious art music that doesn't wind up sounding good in the first place. And Cum Stain might just be that antidote.
(mp3) Cum Stain-Bachelor's Life
(mp3) Cum Stain-Just a Kid
King Tuff on Myspace
Cum Stain on Myspace
Buy both cassettes here, from Burger Records
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
All the official news of Fight the Future's first release has finally come to light. I Am the Dot's debut cassette EP Bridges will be coming out later this month. The news also comes coupled with a brand new track from the EP. "Formaldehyde" really conveys the type of music that I Am the Dot those, i.e. constant genre switching. "Formaldehyde" is miles away from the off kilter pop that was "We Have Not Arrived". Instead "Formaldehyde" comes off as a lost studio session from Beck's Midnite Vultures album, completely covered in deep R&B style singing and a groovy little synth, even going so far to include soulful yelps in the song as well. It's almost a complete 180, though for anyone who has paid attention to all the different styles I Am the Dot has covered in his Bandcamp EPs, it's just another step in the right direction.
(mp3) I Am The Dot-Formaldehyde
Bridges Track List:
1. We Have Not Arrived
2. Honey and Vinegar
4. River of Solitude (Hades Revisited)
5. Quantum Thought (Raindeer Remix)
6. LQD GLD (Liquid Gold RxRy Remix)
I Am The Dot Bandcamp Page
Pre-order Bridges here, from Fight The Future
Thursday, November 11, 2010
For those who didn't hear, Sonny Smith of Sonny & the Sunsets fame, created one of the the most original art projects in San Francisco. Sonny asked artist friends of his to make the cover art for 100 different 7 inches of 100 fictional bands that Sonny had made up. Sonny then made music for each of these bands, pressed the tunes into vinyl, and displayed the whole project at an art museum, complete with a jukebox that played every single. One of the made up bands was Earth Girl Helen Brown, and now Sonny has decided to expand on this band with the help of members of The Sandwiches and Thee Oh Sees. "Story of an Earth Girl" is a wonderful quasi spoken word/stream of conscience song about Martains and space travel with a little psychedelia splashed in as well. The video is also a wonderfully cool and colorful paper cut out video that could be my favorite of the year. Little is known about this band for now, but more music, including a full album, and details are expected soon.
Sonny and the Sunsets' website
Information about the Earth Girl Helen Brown Single at 100 Records
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Last year, Benjamin Shaw released the very cool, creative, and horribly under appreciated debut EP on the very cool, creative, and horribly under appreciated Audio Anti-Hero. Now he's at it again, this time, self-releasing it onto the interwebs first. Rumfucker is nothing like the I've Got The Pox, or for that matter, almost anything Shaw has done in the past. Crafted in a self-imposed time limit of one month, the eight tracks here are largely piano based layered with perfectly inserted noise and noise collages, prodding and tinkering to make quite wonderful ambiance that still somehow manage to convey the same scope of emotions that has been displayed in all of Shaw's previous work. While, it does take a little adjusting to the such style shift and Shaw's previous folky undertakings, the mini-album that Rumfucker can still comfortably next to those M. Pyres tapes released earlier this year as creative endeavor into ambiance coupled with each band's own unique take on the genre, along with including their own musical style as well, in this case being pain and sadness from being drunk at 3 AM.
(mp3) Benjamin Shaw-Snookering You Tonight
(mp3) Benjamin Shaw-Johnny Come Home
Benjamin Shaw's Website
Hear and Dowload all of Rumfucker here, at Benjmain Shaw's Bandcamp
As I have talked about repeatedly, Cloud Nothings are a prolific bunch and will be dropping their debut album on Carpark in late January. "Understand At All" is the first single off the album and is noticeably without any of the wonderful lo-fi quality that got them all the attention in the first place. It has been all cleared up to prestine perfection and what's left is a FIZZ guitar blast of the same mind blowing infectious tunes that Cloud Nothings have been pumping out non-stop now for over a year. If "Understand At All" is any indication for what Cloud Nothings future is going to sound like" Cloud Nothings' debut is shaping up to to be one of the most anticipated releases of next year, at least for me.
Cloud Nothings on Myspace
Friday, November 5, 2010
Remember just a short while ago all the hubba I was making over No Demons Here and the wonderful music Luka was making? Well here now is some more, straight off his upcoming second cassette album In Aluminum Headache. "Station (is a Gift)" is a much darker track, creating an eerie vibe with the monstrous feedback as the base of the song, cuppled with Luka's baritone vocals. At its center though is still the same loss and beauty of No Demon's Here's earlier work. It's kind of like Sonic Youth circa 1987 got compressed into one person and tried to start performing folk songs at an open mic coffee house. Definitely excited for this tape, due out soon on No Demon's Here's own label Croatia Tapes. In the mean time however, all of In Aluminum Headache can be streamed over at No Demons Here's Bandcamp.
(mp3) No Demons Here-Station (is a Gift)
Thursday, November 4, 2010
Tom over at Fight The Future cassettes has just sent over the first mp3 for the label's very first release, the I Am the Dot EP Bridges. The six song cassette, with two remixs by fellow label mates Raindeer as well as RxRy, will be dropping very shortly in just one month's time. In the mean time, feed your ears with the wonderful "We Have Not Arrive", which is without a doubt I Am the Dot's best song to date. Picture the front man of Yeasayer trying to cover the new Panda Bear singles and you'll come close to what "We Have Not Arrived" sounds like. I Am the Dot has this wonderful tendency to build in a very quiet way with a brand new part, like a little piano line in the back round, the soar of the brass when it comes in, or the female vocals that come in on certain sections to give it more edge. A refection of life, it has a bit of a haunting quality to it. Not in a dark way, but in a sense it will stay with you long after you stop listening to the track.
(mp3) I am The Dot-We Have Not Arrived
I Am the Dot on Myspace
I Am the Dot on Bandcamp
Fight The Future cassettes
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
On the heels of School Knight's upcoming EP, tracks from Kevin's side project The Hairs have begun to trickle in. The Hairs are Kevin and Alex from Pains of Being Pure of Heart making wonderful little indie guitar nuggets."Balding College Girls" is a perfect example of the band's style, sounding like a more stripped down ca-USE co-Motion! with some Clean-esque kiwi pop thrown in for good measure. It’s something that would be on a $1 indie rock demo cassette found in Goodwill that you can’t believe someone decided to get rid of.
(mp3) The Hairs-Balding College Girls (via Sterogum)
"Duh x 12" is a slightly snotty (or is it silly) song about everything in your life spinning out of control with the same sort of feel of a classic Beat Happening song: sparse and simple, with a bare bones feel but still at the center is a stellar indie rock gems. Both tracks are off the band’s upcoming debut album Birds Shit, Then Sing coming out hopefully soon on Holiday Records.
(mp3) The Hairs-Duh x 12 (via Stereogum)
The Hair’s on Myspace
Holiday Record’s Website
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
A cinematic feel encapsulates every track, slow motion movie scenes unfold in the mind as they play out. This probably is aided by the band refusing to stand still with their songs, having them crescendoing and evolve within the song, stretching them out and then snapping them back into the original form. The way "Shadow" moves into a simple soft ballad of feeling empty, then shifting when the electronic style drum work comes in, with each section expanding in hurt while still encompassing the same sound that the songs began with illustrates what the album is trying to sound like. It's a dark and agonizing album encoded with dissonance, but crafted from beautiful guitar liens and pitch perfect voices. It's a juxtaposition that works.
This not even bringing up the single "Undertow". Hitting the apex of an album three songs in says so much about a band, the dark imagery piling on top of itself from the band mates' haunting vocals cooing and swaying so in sync while the Nirvana like line of "What's the matter/Hurt yourself/Open your eyes/It was somebody else" comes out. Goosebump inducing. It's a dark album with the tribal vocals and spidery guitar lines spinning webs of pain and heartache with no release, except for the momental acoustic beauty of "Baby". Even the lovely piano line of "Lessie's Heart Murmur" leads to more pain, with the explosive finale casts a downward spiral with the now mildly bombastic drum work and aquatic vocals equate to some of the same emotional feel of Slint's Spiderland, as if the claustrophobia is closing in and is inescapable. A yin yang of an album built on great beauty and great darkness, accumulating to something so much artful.
Get The Fool here, from Rough Trade