Monday, October 31, 2011

Superchunk-Where Eagles Dare (Misfits Cover)

There is nothing that needs to be said. Superchunk have covered The Misfits, the best Halloween band ever, on Halloween, and their best song as well, "Where Eagles Dare". As if this Halloween could not get any better. Danzig has nothing Mac McCaughan. Enjoy.

(mp3) Superchunk-Where Eagles Dare (Misfits Cover)


Superchunk's Website

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Parenthetical Girls-A Note to Self

Parenthetical Girls get better with each Privilege EP they release. This is not just a blogger's opinion, just an indisputable fact. Case in point with “A Note to Self” from Privilege IV: Sympathy for Spastics. Jaunty would never be a word to consider when describing a Parenthetical Girls song, but from the Neutral Milk Hotel style of the intro mandolin chords, “A Note to Self” has a strangely upbeat vibe to it, though coupled with a macabre undertones thanks to the synth whirls as well as the dancy yet pounding drum line that play throughout the song. But that is what makes some of the best Parenthetical Girls songs; their ability to juxtapose elements of their songs to unimaginalbe degrees of greatness.

(mp3) Parenthetical Girls-A Note to Self


Parenthetical Girls' Website
Pre-order Privilege Pt. IV: Sympathy for Spastics here, from Parenthetical Girls

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Guided By Voices-The Unsinkable Fats Domino

The "classic" Guided by Voices reunited for a full year; a tour that everyone said was awesome and I unfortunately missed. However, the best news of said tour was saved until the end, when it was announced that the line-up had recorded a brand new LP and was going to release it (dubbed Let's Go Eat the Factory) in January. Now the band has released the first tastes of the album with "The Unsinkable Fats Domino".

It's initially hard to say what separates "The Unsinkable Fats Domino" from every other musical project that Robert Pollard has been a part of since Guided by Voices broke up in 2004. There's no lo-fi sound to it, no direct attention to making it stylistically a Guided by Voices song (if Guided by Voices even had specific style to begin with). What makes the song good is just that it's a great song: catchy, wonderfully nonsensical, and short and sweet like any classic GBV song. "The Unsinkable Fats Domino" will be on a 7" with double AA-side "We Won't Apologize for the Human Race", and both songs will be on Let's Go Eat Factory.


Guided by Voices'/Robert Pollard's Website
Pre-order the 7" here, from Matador Records

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Los Campesinos!-Hello Sadness

Don't quite understand why it takes me so long to break down why a Los Campesinos! song is so good. They are quite possibly my favorite band of right now, yet despite that fact I am always stuck on what to write about for the track. Case in point when "Hello Sadness" hit the web a few days ago. It's such a magnificant track that I wanted to just type "FUCKING LISTEN TO IT ALREADY!" and be done. But I can't do that, not to mention with the cynisim that abounds on internet, I doubt few would believe me.

"Hello Sadness" reaches that zenith of greatness from the lyrics. While the same amount of metaphors and inside jokes are as ever present, there is a utter clarity. "Hello Sadness" mimics another song by the band in terms of structure and sound "Straight in 101", a song about getting laid among other things. "Hello Sadness" plays as the near exact opposite. It's over, it's done, the happiness is gone so bring on the sadness. And as this realization hits the guitars build along with it, finally exploding in beauty and discord at the end to match the emotion of the moment. It's heart breaking and stupendous, and the reason Los Campesinos! are the best indie-pop band of today.   


Los Campesinos!'s Website
Pre-order Hello Sadness here, from Arts & Crafts

Friday, October 14, 2011

Video: Parenthetical Girls-A Doughnut in My Hand

I will freely admit that I will post nearly anything concerning the Parenthetical Girls, whether to fanfare or complete general apathy of my viewers. However, even if I was not the massive fan of the band I already was, I would have still posted this video for how outstanding it is. Using the band's song "Doughnut" (from their 2009 10" of Ivor Cutler reinterpretations), the video is on the surface just a standard lyric video. Deeper though, it is one of the greatest tributes to vinyl fans/music lovers the world over who happily spend hours digging through crates of music to find that one hidden gem. As an added bonus, see how many different covers you can recognize/name.

(mp3) Parenthetical Girls-A Doughnut In My Hand


Parenthetical Girls' Website

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Album Review: Total Control-Henge Beat

Total Control has built a nice reputation for itself over the past 3 years; releasing four equally acclaimed 7" of post-punk greatness. However, if it weren't for the band name being printed on the sleeve, one would think each single was by a different band. The first was manic herky-jerky guitar play, the second traced out synth post-punk, the third descended into pure minimal wave bleakness, withe the fourth concluding the saga on two tracks of synthy ambiance. The different styles actually worked though, spread out over the singles (and if one had an open mind to what was next to come). However, there comes the problem with creating their debut album Henge Beat. Which of the sounds created over the many singles is the one they choose to represent them on the LP? And the band came up with the perfect strategy: shove all their styles onto the grooves, and balance it by making all the songs great.

First, it needs to be said that Hedge Beat is a very cohesive record. Everyone of the eleven songs works in the context album, working very hard to avoid a large amount of juxtaposition (more on that in a second). It just doesn't achieve this through a singular sound. What the album does is present the songs, and bathes them in the same atmosphere and tone; that being one of paranoia, darkness, and claustrophobia. The harrowing and sparse "Meds" encapsulates this perfectly, a total sense of ;despair and nothingness. This in turn allows something like the synth built tension of "See More Glass" to exploded into the post-punk berserkness of "Retiree" despite how much the different styles would usual poorly contrast the album. Pretty much every of the band's past styles is represented in some form on Hedge Beat from the quiet, instrumental of "Shame Thugs" to the spaced out synth of "The Hammer". The only time the band's various sounds collide is with Hedge Beat's centerpiece "Carpet Rash", a sprawling 7+ minute track that shouldn't work within its context, but like a lot of moments on the album, does. It has the same angular and trebled guitar work of the post-punk tunes, but also the distant and robotic feel of the more synth based ones; mending both styles perfectly in combination to everything Total Control is.

One of the strongest debuts of the year, wildly different than everything that is usually being promoted (but would you expect anything different from an Australian band?). Wild and cathartic, yet controlled and precise: a mixture of contrasts that results in perfect post-everything style music.

(mp3) Total Control-See More Glass
(mp3) Total Control-The Hammer


Total Control on Bandcamp
Get Henge Beat here, from Iron Lung Records

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


(Picture via disappears...)

Back when everyone and their mother (me included) was going crazy over iceage's New Brigade, nearly everyone included a comparison to Pink Flag-era Wire in some fashion. This is brought up because I think this is the track that is the root of all those comparisons, even if it didn't appear on the album. "IIIIIIII" just hit the internet, being a part of a Japanese release of the album. It's actually a cut from the band's debut single, but that's unimportant. It's a manic and knotty tune at the same time, with mini-tension built around and up like any of iceage's great blitzkrieg of a song, releasing into mild melody with the chorus, then starting all of that again in less than a minute. It's an excellent track that fits perfectly within New Brigade's structure, and I'm glad that the rest of the world is able to hear another near-perfect iceage track.


iceage on myspace

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Pineapple Head-Never Let Go

This was the greatest little gift to receive in my inbox. The email was unassuming, just the band name with a song link. However, despite the simple and minimalist set up, the magnitude of greatness contained within the song was mindblowing.Pineapple Head’s "Never Let Go" is probably the front runner for best guitar song of the year. That is in no way hyperbole. A perfect fusion of Young Governor’s intense-but-not-too-intense new punk and the brattiness that made up Cloud Nothings debut in the beginning of the year, “Never Let Go” is manic, yet not annoying. Simplistic, yet not cliché. While the majority of the song is the same riff and lyrics in both the verses and chorus, not to mention an uber simple drum beat (drum machine?) that pounds into one’s skull, it all mashes together so perfectly it side-steps any sense of being repetitive and morphs into a perfect indie-punk song for ages to come. The band is expecting to release a 7” soon, so expect to buy more than one copy; you will wear out the grooves faster than you think.


Pineapple Head's Facebook