This is an interesting song I encountered one day in the army. They were doing a little educational thing about the Six Day War (1967) and they played this song and I was totally captivated by the accordian that gives the song its character. That’s what caught me at first, but then it turned out that the melodies in the song were really interesting also, and I started asking people, “What’s this song? Who’s it by?” And everyone was just like, “It’s the Six Day War song”. Apparently this song – which is actually called “Ammunition Hill” if you translate it – is the song everyone associates with the Six Day War. Indeed, it is about the Six Day War.
The video above is good because you get the full English translation of the lyrics as well as footage from the war or places from the war. Altogether, it gives a very good ‘feel’ of the IDF in a way, especially if you understand Hebrew. Sure, a lot of what we do isn’t very glorious (and the song actually doesn’t really glorify anything…) and it’s rarely every as tuneful, but there’s a vibe that I can relate to now in this song after being in the IDF for a while. I’ll probably relate to it even more by the time I’m done.
Some dudes from Stockholm, Sweden call themselves Alexandria and make big, bright dream-poppy music. This is what the sound like (see below…)
Princess Century is actually Maya Postepski – a Toronto-based artist who is also in Austra and Trust. So if you guessed that 0n her own she also makes dark, broody, sexy, goth music…you guessed correct. Apparently she was inspired to write the songs off her upcoming album by spending time in the Topanga Mountains and learning about the Manson Family murders that took place in the area.
The world’s greatest chiptune band – and noted Scott Pilgrim video game soundtrackers - Anamanaguchi return (finally!) with another full-length – Endless Fantasy. It drops May 14th. The new single from the album, “Planet”, however, moves the band in a more glo-fi direction, sounding something like the follow-up to Neon Indian‘s Psychic Chasms that we all kind of wanted. Luckily though, the ADHD melodies that made the band so bad-ass in the first place remain. And it’s also not as if they suddenly traded in the 8-bit sounds wholesale – there’s still plenty of them. The Game Boy fetishes will be satisfied.
However, the band has also put out another song from the album (+video) and “Meow” sounds pretty much like their last album Dawn Metropolis except maybe a bit more full-bodied. Also, that video is awesome.
In any case, Anamanaguchi show no sign of slowing down or starting to suck – just a great band getting a little bit more interesting while losing none of what made them awesome in the first place.
The Cautioneers. They’re from Toronto. Make like…dreamy pop stuff.
So, this is a video I saw a couple weeks ago while I was hanging out with one of my friends from the army in his town, Zichron Ya’akov. Everybody gathered around someone’s iPod and laughed as they watched it – I’m assuming it’s been making the rounds with the Israeli youth who can all, of course, personally relate to it.
The title of the song translates to “The Most Beautiful [Girl] In Infantry”, and it’s a jokey song about a girl soldier in infantry. In it, the singer, Noam Barak, sings about how beautiful this girl in infantry is, with her machine gun and her battle-vest pressing against her breasts.
While the image of a hot chick soldier is something of a fantasy for us in North America, in Israel you see them on the street everyday, and the amount of them who are downright stunning is confounding. Unfortunately, they seem to have managed to fit all the not-good-looking ones in this video, leaving the rest out…
The Strokes were one of the bands that made me fall in love with music, so whenever they release a new album, it’s a big deal. Are people talking about this back in North America? Hasn’t been the stuff of much discussion in the IDF, believe it or not. Maybe it’s because it’s coming so soon after the underwhelming Angles. In any case, let’s get into this.
So, it looks like we’re gonna have to get used to The Strokes 2.0. Comedown Machine is clearly the new The Strokes that we got on Angles – less NYC cool, more simple, old-school pop-rock band with great guitar-arrangements and a frontman that keep things interesting. But they’re more confident and comfortable in their new skin this time, and they sound good…most of the time. The songs are by and large better and more consistent than those on Angles, and the band feels more engaged in them. The first half of the album particularly impresses – as with Angles, that’s where they stuff most of the straight-on killer tracks, saving the more experimental but less-actually-good for the bottom half.
At this point I feel like I can live with and even enjoy these middle-period Strokes – I even half to give them credit for still sounding relevant while their old-school peers The Hives and even Jack White sound out of place in 2013’s bandiverse. Most of the credit, however, goes to Julian Casablancas, who sounds rejuvenated here – he continues to stretch he vocal abilities and expand his signiture singing territory with a lot more falsetto than we’re used to from the famously baritone-voiced frontman. The production – though similar in feel to Angles – is also a bit better, credit owed to producer Gus Oberg.
Like everyone who remembers 2001, I miss the Strokes of Is This It and Room On Fire and would prefer them – even solo Julian at his best – to the new Strokes. But I can still enjoy the band for their numerous strengths that remain on Comedown Machine.