Archive for May, 2010

Damien Jurado

May 30th, 2010 | Features | 0 Comments

This week’s artist of the week is laid back, mysterious, otherworldly, and awesome. The artist of the week is…

DAMIEN JURADO!!!

Caught the review of this guy’s latest album, Saint Bartlett, on Pitchfork, and since it was produced by one of my favourite artists, Richard Swift, I figured it was at least worth checking out. I wasn’t disappointed. Though Jurado’s brand of almost-but-not-quite folksy, mystical pop(?) is a long way from Swift’s pop/rock classicism, one could see how the collaboration might make sense, and Swift does lend a deft hand to the proceedings, resulting in Saint Bartlett’s sturdy but subtly strange and creative sound.

The closest precedents I can think of for Saint Bartlett would be Neil Young‘s After the Goldrush, and Terry Reid‘s The┬áRiver. Yeah, basically the mystic vibe of the former with the almost I-wrote-these-songs-somewhere-grassy feel of the later. It’s definitely chill-out music, something you might imagine hearing in some indie movie right before the leads have sex. By the way, they’re also smoking a J in said scene.

If you’re some director looking for that song in particular, look no further than “Beacon Hill”. That’ll work and it’s plain enough to work in something like “Gilmore Girls” without this happening, which is what I assume happens when mainstream kinds of people listen to anything that’s not radio prescribed. The tracks to really look out for though are the twinkling “Arkansas”, the lonely, breathtaking “Rachel and Cali”, the clever heaviness of “Wallingford” (no getting around the Young comparisons on this one), and the lumbering “The Falling Snow”.

There are some people I know who are really gonna get obsessed with this album. Find out if it’s you by checking it out.

Damien Jurado – Arkansas

http://www.myspace.com/damienjurado

Awesome Album Covers!

May 28th, 2010 | Features | 0 Comments

Um…is that supposed to be a hat?

The Zoltars

May 26th, 2010 | Mp3 Posts | 0 Comments

I stumbled onto this band The Zoltars in my internet searching and thought they were a good ol’ time of awesomeness. They’re from Texas. The song below is called “Party at the Batcave”. Nuff said.

The Zoltars – Party At The Batcave

http://www.myspace.com/thezoltars

Nico

May 23rd, 2010 | Features | 0 Comments

This week’s band of the week began her music career by recording a single with Jimmy Page, before singing with the Velvet Underground, after which she made a series of acclaimed solo albums with names like John Cale, Brian Eno and Phil Manzanera. The artist of the week is…

NICO!!!

So yeah, talk about a solid resume. You could also throw in “small part in Fellini‘s La Dolce Vita” if you really wanted to blow it over the top. And then there’s the laundry list of everyone she slept with: Bob Dylan, Brian Jones, Jim Morrison, Lou Reed, Iggy Pop and Jackson Browne. Already that’s enough to make this chick a solid entry for the history books, but add to that that she was a actually an incredibly talented singer/songwriter and yeah, maybe now you can understand why people still hold such reverence for the German ice queen.

Of course, none of the music she made (with the exception of what’s on the Chelsea Girls soundtrack, none of which she wrote) sounded even remotely like what one think’s of when one think’s of singer/songwriter music. No. Nico was…different.

Most of the time people time, people talk about The Marble Index, easily Nico‘s most difficult solo album. Though the vast majority of her solo work is the darkest, most abandoned-sounding music you’ve ever heard, The Marble Index is it at it’s apex of difficulty and ability to disturb. Like finding yourself lost in a creepy forest at night, it’s disorienting, terrifying, but at the same time, kind of boring.

Despite it’s legendary status, The Marble Index may be the worst of Nico‘s classic first four albums. Desertshore‘s respite from darkness in songs like the stunning, open, harmony laden “My Only Child” and the exciting, Eastern-sounding title-track make it perhaps her most listenable album after Chelsea Girls, and The End actually manages to make Nico‘s super-gloom kind work more as great songs than auditory weirdness.

I love Nico‘s music, even at it’s weirdest. You can’t deny a personality as strong and strange as Nico‘s, and it’s fortunate that we have her albums as a testament to that personality, otherwise we might just think of her as the chick who was on the Velvet‘s first album when she was that and so much more.

http://www.myspace.com/christapaffgennicomusic

Thee Oh Sees

May 21st, 2010 | Mp3 Posts | 0 Comments

Got into these guys recently. I know everyone and their mom is playing old-school lo-fi, psych/garage rock, but Thee Oh Sees definitely sound the most tripped out of the bunch. Like. Seriously. Really cool shit.

Thee Oh Sees – Block Of Ice

http://www.myspace.com/ohsees

Awesome Album Covers!

May 19th, 2010 | Features | 0 Comments

I think Atlantic‘s trying to sell Janelle Monae as the funky, black Lady Gaga…from space…

The Hold Steady

May 17th, 2010 | Features | 0 Comments

This week’s band loves rock and roll. The band of the week is…

THE HOLD STEADY!!!

I’ve been a fan of The Hold Steady for a long time now, ever since I heard “Cattle and the Creeping Things”. Frontman Craig Finn‘s rambling beatnick stories spewed over classic rock riffs and chord clashes was something I could totally get into, and I did. Then, of course, Pitchfork decided they were like the greatest band of all time, and when Boys and Girls in America came out, it got that huge 9.4, which I thought was a little too much, but it was a good album. And Pitchfork wasn’t the only one: there were tons of sites out there raving about how The Hold Steady was like the greatest thing ever. At the time, I couldn’t quite understand it. I mean, I thought they were good, but I wasn’t fanatical about them. But now I think I get it.

When I saw them on the Colbert Report the other night, talking about how rock music gave people from their generation direction and inspiration in regards to how they live their lives, I got the sense that these guys truly love rock and roll, these guys truly live for rock and roll. And you could see when that writer came up and asked to introduce them, that their love for rock translated into something more, something that fans came to truly love and cherish as well.

The Colbert Report Mon – Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
The Hold Steady
www.colbertnation.com
Colbert Report Full Episodes Political Humor Fox News

With their latest album, Heaven is Whenever, it seems like The Hold Steady have moved on from being the band that’s way cooler than you’ll ever be, to the band that wants to be your older brother, or your dad. I can see how some fans might be disenchanted by the changes, but at the same time, I sympathize more with the band because they want to make music for everyone now, they want to make music for 14-year-olds who’ll be replaying Heaven Is Whenever until they’re 40.

The Colbert Report Mon – Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
The Hold Steady – Hurricane J
www.colbertnation.com
Colbert Report Full Episodes Political Humor Fox News

“Heaven is whenever/We can get together/Lock your bedroom door/And listen to your records,” sings Finn in “We Can Get Together”. That’s probably one of the greatest lyrics ever. Hopefully there’s some Hold Steady in that record collection.

www.myspace.com/theholdsteady

I’m bored…

May 15th, 2010 | Features | 0 Comments

Robert Pattinson pretty much is Robert Smith (from The Cure) except with less makeup…and talent…

Awesome Album Covers!

May 14th, 2010 | Features | 0 Comments

Everyone’s wearing a mask except for Jack White, who’s wearing a…guitar…way to be a lame sport, bro…

The Bitters

May 12th, 2010 | Mp3 Posts | 0 Comments

The Bitters are one of the many kick ass bands of Ben Cook/Young Governor, who’s also in Fucked Up and The Marvelous Darlings. Debatably though, the hero of sorts of The Bitters is Aerin Fogel, the femme fatal lead who’s vocals are the aural equivalent of an eagle swooping down upon helpless pray and tearing it to shreds. The fact that they open their album East General with a song called “Wild Beast” seems only too fitting.

The Bitters – Wild Beast

http://www.myspace.com/bittersband