Archive for January, 2010
I keep saying that the water in sweden is magic, and JJ you are just furthering my belief. I know a post was just done on the new buzz band but this song really caught my attention and has been stuck on repeat every since so I had to show it some love.
Ohh where to start, the use of rap and hip hop elements combined with this dreary vocals you guys got going on is pure magic. When the song takes a turn for a slower a more fairy tale like sound comes through and its probably my favourite part of the song and I hope is more reflective in the album that everyone and their moms best friends mailman is waiting to drop.
Well JJ we have a date on April 4th, no matter what I will find a way to get to that show. That show will be without a doubt be the show to be at this spring and I know the more I hear from these guys the more excited I get.
The Touques latest self-titled EP is my first foray into their brand of eclectic syncopated music. The Reno, Nevada trio has changed slightly over the past few years and their music reflects it. During the first couple of playthroughs I found it difficult to latch or on relate to the type of music they were conveying. In immediacy the focus felt sparse and confusing. The first song to shed some light as to their insight was ‘White Elephant (Settling)’. It sounds like a three minute intermission with chorus guitars and background conversation. This ambient atmospheric moment was a lens into the style of the EP.
The majority of the songs on the album have odd timing rhythms and out of tune instruments, and while it doesn’t make a good first impression; it does work. The chorus in ‘4’ and the final minutes in ‘Roy Stampler’ are great highlights of fast beat energetic music. To the contrary ‘HRPM’ and ‘Goodbye Monsieur’ sound much darker and I didn’t feel the vibe in much of the same way as I did at the beginning. The greatest limitation here is the band’s ability to make contrasted styles of music. There’s plenty of evidence in smaller aspects but as an overall cohesive whole it may be lacking. The band has made their EP free to download. To check it out hit the link at the bottom.
The indie folk duo, She & Him, released Volume One back in the Spring of 2008. Volume One was an exquisite album featuring a mixture of melodic tunes that are hark back to early folk music. Many of their songs are melancholic but hopeful at the same time. Zooey Deschanel’s vocals are distinct and undeniably beautiful. They have Volume Two set to release in March 2010. The pair debuted their first single, “In The Sun” from Volume Two on their myspace on January 22, 2010. “In The Sun” features guest vocals from Omaha twee brigade Tilly and the Wall. The tune begins with some upbeat plunking on the piano held by the steady beats of the drum. The mildly sad lyrics are overshadowed by the cheerful and optimistic tone of the song. From the sounds of it, She & Him has stayed true to their indie folk roots. Volume Two is definitely an album I am looking forward to buy (yes, I still buy my cds) and listen to.
Anyone who’s been around, listening and paying attention to the scene over the last ten years would be well aware of the work being put out there by Minneapolis’ own Motion City Soundtrack. Honesty time though, just cause I was aware of it, didn’t mean that I liked it. MCS always had a catchy sound, and there was nothing offensive about the music they were putting out into the world, but it also never grabbed me, never made me want to move beyond a cursory listen and delve deeper into their catalogue.
While they, like everyone else have their solid fan base who all soak their panty’s over 2003’s I am the Movie and 2005’s Commit This to Memory, my panties always remained dry to the sounds of Justin Pierre and co. There were even those who would rush to the defense of 2007’s train wreck, Even If It Kills Me. There’s something to be said for the loyalty of a fan base like that. Even more can be said about converting one of your biggest detractors.
My Dinosaur Life, has already gotten a perfect rating from Alternative Press, and the words album of the year seem to be swarming around like flies to shit, and we aren’t even a full month into the current year. For praise like that to be heaping itself onto an album, I had to figure that it was worth at least a spin or two on the ol’ juke box.
What greeted me was an odd blend of dark lyrics braided together with catchy, classic pop punk from opening to the track on through.
With the track Delirium I immediately wanted to hate the poppy staccato delivery that greeted me, but I persevered and by the chorus the catchiness had gotten me. The track’s dark lyrics belie the catchy nature of there delivery, as Pierre sings about caterpillars raining from his ceiling fan and the voice in his head telling him he’d be better of dead. By the time he swears to pharmaceuticals I’m wondering what else Dinosaur has wrapped up in it’s shiny track list.
The next track, Disappear, has a retro alt-punk feel to it, is that even a thing? If it’s not it is now. The speed lacking from Delirium finds it’s home and the guitar driven track bursts forth while Pierre trades the catchy delivery for a more straight up croon, and it still works, complimenting both the catchy speed and the continuing of the darker themes introduced on the first track.
A Lifeless Ordinary feels like classic Midtown with a more modern flare just to even out the proceedings. When Pierre lays it all on the line with “Sometimes quicksand has a massive appeal to me. I want to be somewhere else.” It rings true in a way that so few songs seem t o anymore.
It is that level of dark honesty matched with an obvious ability to recognize a catchy riff brought to the table by producer Mark Hoppus that elevates Dinosaur far above the rest of MCS’s catalog. I’m not about to start through around the words perfect, or album of the year, but it is still an enjoyable listen and a disc that I’ve already gone back to a couple of times. Meaning that no matter what way you slice the pie that is My Dinosaur Life, you’re going to be happy with it.
“She said, I don’t mind if you don’t mind, cause I don’t shine, if you don’t shine.”
There’s a slight guarantee that this post will not make your day. Many bands this year are full of promise and fresh material, but the Killers are not one of those bands. After their current tour ends in February, the band is following up with an indefinite hiatus. The concept of a hiatus for such a strong band is a tad puzzling. From the super indie Hot Fuss, to the more alternative Sam’s Town, to the pop in Day and Age, to the b-sides in Sawdust, to extraordinary Bright Eyes cover in the Spaceman EP, The Killers have succeeded across the board. Maybe it IS time for the band to break from their daily routine. Guitarist Dave Keuning, however, revealed that this break was not permanent “as far as [he] know[s].” We can only hope that there’s a bright side to this all. A Brandon Flowers side project maybe?