28 November 2010

Keep Shelly in Athens - "Running Out of You"

The EP is titled In Love with Dusk, and is expected to arrive very soon. Possibly this week. It is being released by Gorilla Vs Bear's very own Forest Family Records. There are scant details regarding anything else about this music making entity. Whatever magic this may be, it is allegedly from Greece. It's beyond good, though. Smooth and slinky, and fresh at levels that approach spooky. Head-nod inducing along with hip shimmying vibes for when you're by yourself. It can be pre-ordered here, and here's a taste below.

(long long overdue, but thanks to gvsb for the discovery)

24 November 2010

I bought this on Amazon for less than a pack of cigarettes

The Acacia Strain - Wormwood (Prosthetic 2010)
(Writer's Note: I didn't buy this, but rather it was in the apartment. I smoked through several packs while listening to it though, so that at least counts for something.)

In the liner notes to Wormwood, on the last page there is a small note. It reads, "If you think you know what these songs are about, you're probably wrong." This may be true, and other than the four dudes in the band, no one can really say that they know for certain. There are two iron-clad facts, however. "The Hills Have Eyes" is about the scourge of reality television programming, and "The Carpathian" is a Ghostbusters reference.
There's a certain clarity to the lyrics, with no room for misinterpretation. However bleak, alarming, and shocking they may be, there is still a degree of validity to it all. It's unapologetic in this regard as well. "Jonestown" probably references the suicide massacre of the same name, and with that comes the common stigma of deathcore. Songs about total destruction and people dying. In the wrong hands, certainly problematic but if one keeps their shit together it isn't an issue. At the end of the day, music is still an outlet for expression and there is no denying that this is music. If anything, it would be irresponsible to pretend that the world is all peaches and cream.
"awareness is inevitable" - ("Terminated", track 5)
The guitar squall makes hair on the back of the neck stand up, and the bass and drums behind it keep everything grounded in an unshakeable reality. It can't be ignored, and coupled with vocals telling you everything you don't want to hear, its a very arresting experience. Without getting too specific, it has the power to make everything manageable. Good days and bad nights are melded together with each cut off this record. Pretend fantasy time is over, whether that can be admitted or not, and this album is the first step to accepting that. They've already seen the world fall apart.


Descended upon four bars tonight. Two were smoker's hangouts, one had craft brews, and one played Lou Reed on the jukebox. I ate an egg sandwich because I thought I was plunging into New Jersey, and then I had a slice because I didn't give a shit at that point. At the last bar, a guy wore a ceramic lion mask while another rocked pigtails. At another joint, a bald man complained about crime in the city. He identified bad parts of town, and I shook my head because thats exactly where I'm moving. Now a part of the corporate machine, things need to balance out somehow and a refill on danger seems necessary.
Probably won't go to any shows anytime soon as a result of being destitute. Finance, both personal and institutional, hurts my head. Hence the drink. At the second smoking bar, a girl bitched about the excess cigarette smoke and then asked for a menthol. At another, there were issues over the music. There was no point in explaining to the leering longshoreman that just because a bartender is female with tattoos doesn't guarantee she likes Slayer.
Missed connections on the subway line are meant to be. Don't expect anything else. On the regional ride home, not one but two parties violated the quiet car policy. They both acted as if no wrong was committed, and for that a swift kick in the head is deserved. Or at least thats what the conductor's look said as he shuffled by, with his head hung low as if he was wearing a prominent Southern rapper's chain underneath his emblazoned navy vest.
Going home early could represent defeat for most, but not this one. Twice as much booze will be consumed, and possibly a peanut butter sandwich.
The 11 PM subway crowd is all children, and old folks who can't handle their alcohol. They all look at my ass in a sexual manner which only confirms that there is something wrong with them. A mother worries about incurring roaming charges on her phone.

18 November 2010

Apparently, The Strokes are releasing a new album

Not to blow this out of proportion, but news is surfacing that The Strokes, a band that was a huge part of my teenage years and presumably yours as well, have just finished recording their fourth record. Lately, most internet reports had the band arguing and fighting with one another because allegedly they didn't like the sound of this new LP, due in part because they all have solo projects these days and the new album was just an amalgamation of those efforts. Presumably it was shit. However, Stereogum is reporting otherwise. Julian Casablancas and Nickolai Fraiture both posted on something called twitter to say that the band had finished recording a new album. Casablancas went as far to say that, "Still not going to be out for a months-mixing, etc, but just finally finished it yesterday actually." One word was capitalized in that, and singular exclamation and question marks were used but for editing purposes it has been posted in this space as it has just been typed. There's no title, and this won't hit ears until 2011, but still its nice to know that something is coming and not to apply too much pressure but it might be cool.


Twin Sister - "All Around and Away We Go"

All Around and Away We Go from Twin Sister on Vimeo.

(via gvsb)

14 November 2010

New Ghostface Albums

The internets is reporting that Ghostface is preparing to release several new records in the near future. The Apollo Kids will be the first to drop with a December 14th arrival date promised, and then sometime after that two more joints. One will be called Blue & Cream while the other will be titled Supreme Clientele Part II. Again, there are no release dates for these other two albums, but a Supreme Clientele sequel is exciting even in theory. There's no denying that Raekwon heroically saved us all last year by releasing Only Built for Cuban Linx Part II. It was the dopest thing that happened to hip hop in 2009, and it was a follow up to a classic, and now Ironman is following suit with a companion piece that has been years in the making. A track off of The Apollo Kids, (a Supreme Clientele reference in and of itself), is streaming over at the Def Jam website. It's called "Together Baby". Listen or not. Have a drink tonight because there is officially cause for celebration.

11 November 2010

I bought this on Amazon for less than a pack of cigarettes

Mika Miko - C.Y.S.L.A.B.F. (Kill Rock Stars/Post Present Medium, 2006)
Some, probably most, yearn to escape and start all over again in California, with its sunshine and beaches and burritos. As if, the crashing waves and relentless swell will eradicate an entire lifetime of personal demons and questionable decisions. Those who want it should go for it because there is honestly nothing wrong with pleasantness and civility. Just know that this writer is staying. The imperfections of the east coast are too ideal for a wallower. Things are supposed to be easy, carefree, and laid-back in the west. All in all, apparently pretty chill. Proposition 19 may have failed, but those vibes are still emitted from that side. There is absolutely no stopping the romanticization of California. Fine. Whatever. However, Mika Miko is far from easy breezy. There is no denying that fun is being had on this debut record, but its been birthed from piss, skunked beer, bad pick-up lines, and most importantly good times.
This band cut their teeth at The Smell, that one spot in L.A. with an alley for a door and the grounds where Wives and then No Age, HEALTH, and Abe Vigoda all made their names. Allegedly, the members of Mika Miko volunteered there and also put in work creating word of mouth hype with their frenetic fantastic live shows. When it was all over, they had released more cassettes than records. They broke up a little less than a year ago, and while that doesn't necessarily ramp up the value of this album it's sad because it means no more.
One can't help but wonder what would have happened if they hadn't broken up. The internets didn't seem to love their last album, or their first one for that matter, even though the last one had a song about turkey sandwiches. Did it all fade that quickly? According to either Walt Whitman or Phil Anselmo, there are two kinds of magic in this world: Those that can be prepared for and those that can't. Were listeners unprepared at first, and then suddenly became all-knowing by the time the second album dropped? If thats the case, then fuck em. This shit is special. Microphone telephone vocals should be treasured.
The record begins with "Take It Serious", and the opening guitar chords almost suggest very conventional and direct rock and roll. Then the vocals begin, and its clear that this is something totally different. "Capricorinations" follows, and its an insanely catch joint with dashes of organ for good measure. "Jogging Song (He's Your Mr. Right)" is pure fun streamlined into the system, with the added delight of hearing an all girl group saying "trying to make it easier for you to understand that I'm your mister right." This review could continue with talk about "The Dress", "Business Cats", and "Chron Liar", but for the sake of time and space just know that they're all great. In fact, that could be said about the entire effort. It's free of any shackles, and puts you on the edge of the cliff. No revelations, just reveling. "I Don't Like Your Widows Peak" is the longest song on the album, clocking in at two minutes and twenty seven seconds.
Online research seems to suggest that most reviewers are detractors, and all agree that this band was borderline unlistenable. If that's the charge being levied, then guess who is in love. Love, love, love.

05 November 2010

Bruce Springsteen - "The Promise"

Going back to New Jersey today. Don't know when I'll post again. (Probably Monday or Tuesday) Seems fitting to end the week of endless content with the Boss.

The Promise- The Lost Sessions: Darkness on the Edge of Town will be released on November 16th. NPR is streaming it as we speak.

(video via p4k)

(Writer's Note: This is probably one of those times where I'm talking to myself, but feel free to leave comments with weird and vile suggestions as to what I can write about next. This baby has been stagnant for awhile, and it's time for a revitalization. Again, I realize that I'm basically leaving this note for myself.)

04 November 2010

Bradford Cox assists Real Estate in singing a John Lennon song

Over the weekend in San Francisco, one of this site's favorites, Real Estate, opened for Deerhunter at Slim's. Then suddenly, this site's most favorite man of music Bradford Cox appeared on stage and what followed is documented below. (Writer's Note: Obviously, I didn't shoot this video, but rather I found it on the internets.) Visually it's a little blurry and fuzzy, but Bradford sings and bangs on the drums at one point. He also shouts "fuck real estate" a couple of time towards the end, but he's talking about some corporate shit and not the suburban Jersey dudes.
The song in question is "Mind Games", off of Lennon's 1973 solo record.

(via The Fader via)

New LCD Soundsystem Release

Reports had indicated that James Murphy & Co. were going to hang it up after touring for the stellar This Is Happening had finished. No more albums, no more records, nothing. Granted there are still stops in Europe, and as of 2011 they'll still be on the road but it was kind of understood that the end was near. However, the internets announced this morning that a new joint will be released next Tuesday on itunes through DFA/Virgin.
It's being described as a live in-studio effort, and will be called The London Sessions. Instead of the electronic awesomeness that usually accompanies an LCD studio album, this one will have the grit and glory that comes with their live performance art which is real rad on a whole other level. I caught a live show over the summer, and it made me feel many things. Many, many things.
Anyway, my point is that I reveled in the assault on my senses that occurred that night and now my childish mind believes that this record will duplicate those feelings.
It will be available starting on November 9th, but don't sleep because it will be gone by December 6th. Track list below.

1. Us V Them
2. All I Want
3. Drunk Girls
4. Get Innocuous
5. Daft Punk Is Playing at My House
6. All My Friends
7. Pow Pow
8. I Can Change
9. Yr City's a Sucker

(via p4k)

03 November 2010

Good News

Yo La Tengo are going on tour starting in January. They are once again doing the eight night Hoboken run that coincides with Hanukkah, but that sells out in mere minutes and tickets have been unavailable basically since last January. However in 2011, they will be on the road once again. It gets better.
According to their website, they'll play two sets each night. The second one will be fairly conventional, or at least as conventional as humanly possible. It's the first set that needs to be reported on.
The band plans on utilizing a spinning wheel of sorts that will be spun at the beginning of each show. What the wheel decides is what will be played for the first forty five minutes. There are a bevy of options. There are conventional ideas like performing tunes from the group's other rad band Condo Fucks or from bassist James McNew's solo joint Dump.
There are also other really awesome options like having a question and answer segment that might have music, or 45 minutes of Yo La Tengo songs that feature someone's name in the title, or perhaps exclusively playing songs that begin with the letter S, and finally... what is being dubbed as "Sitcom Theater" in which band and crew will act out a classic sitcom. They might also play the music from the instrumental record The Sounds of Science, but only half of it because presumably it's longer than forty five minutes.
William Tyler will be the opener for these shows, and the tour dates are below.
1/20: The Trocadero, Philadelphia PA
1/21: 9:30 Club, Washington DC
1/22: Cat's Cradle, Carrboro NC
1/23: Cat's Cradle, Carrboro NC
1/25: The Social, Orlando FL
1/26: Freebird Live, Jacksonville FL
1/28: Variety Playhouse, Atlanta GA
1/29: Tipitina's, New Orleans LA
1/31: WorkPlay, Birmingham AL
2/01: Exit/In, Nashville TN
2/03: The Vogue Theater, Indianapolis IN
2/04: Metro, Chicago IL
2/05: Mr. Small's Fun House, Pittsburgh PA

once again, this is fucking great

(news via YLT website, and p4k)

02 November 2010

New Tennis Album

Denver, Colorado based nautical adventurers and makers of gorgeous music, Tennis have announced details regarding their debut record. The recent Fat Possum signees will drop Cape Dory on January 18, 2011. Above is the cover art, and below is the track list.

1.) Take Me Somewhere
2.) Long Boast Pass
3.) Cape Dory
4.) Marathon
5.) Bimini Bay
6.) South Carolina
7.) Pigeon
8.) Seafarer
9.) Baltimore
10.) Water Birds

(via p4k)

And for kicks, videos for "Cape Dory" and "South Carolina"

San Francisco won the World Series last night, so go VOTE, and then spend the rest of the day listening to Thee Oh Sees

Have I ever told you about my most favorite band that isn't Pavement?

The Bitters - "Travelin' Girl"

The Bitters - Travelin' Girl from Mexican Summer on Vimeo.

This might be my most favorite video of the year. Additionally, it is becoming determined that this band is a powerhouse. This is undeniably rad, but it also makes me very sad. The record, East General, came out six months ago and today is the first time its been mentioned in this space. As a web journalist, I have failed. Then again, I've been a failure as a print journalist for over two years now.
The Bitters are comprised of Aerin Fogel and Fucked Up/Young Governor's Ben Cook. They call what they do 'Cave Pop', which sounds a whole lot better than me describing them as 'groovy, catchy, dig-worthy lo-fi' or whatever other lazy description I'd come up with on a Tuesday. According to research, for live shows Jonah Falco from Fucked Up does drums and various different bass players are utilized.
This is kind of just a briefing on what could turn into a new full-fledged obsession. The album can be purchased through all the proper channels, but Mexican Summer has a real dank overall roster and for my money is the way to go.

(most of what i learned today came via Mexican Summer with a dash of gorilla vs bear)

01 November 2010

Nite Jewel - "We Want Our Things"

You can draw your own conclusions about this one. Personally, its my belief that if this song had existed many moons ago then there would have been no confrontation with Zuul and the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man at the end of the first Ghostbusters movie. The track is off of the Am I Real? EP, available courtesy of Stones Throw.

(via gvsb)

Crystal Castles (feat. Robert Smith) - "Not in Love"

This is great, and it can be downloaded for free here or here. It comes out properly on iTunes on December 6th, and promises acoustic demos of "Celestica" and "Suffocation" as the B-sides. For the sake of thorough reporting, the song is a Platinum Blonde cover.

(via gvsb many days after the fact)

Rock and Roll Onstage Explosion featuring Women

Full disclosure: That was a very lazy headline meant to incite amplified amounts of traffic to this fledgling, little darling of a web address. There weren't even any women involved in this incident, but rather it was the Canadian band Women who apparently lost their collective shit the other day while in British Columbia. This wasn't a Wavves-like meltdown which involved loads of shit talking and drug consumption. This was more along the lines of the guitarist punching the bass player in the head, and other things of that ilk. P4K had the scoop this morning, and what it really boils down to is plain old exhaustion. The latest record, Public Strain, came out at the end of September and the other album came out mere months before (or at least so it seems), so this coupled with the fact that the current indie landscape has bands playing one thousand four hundred and sixty shows in a calendar year, it all kind of makes sense. The rest of the tour has been cancelled, and all the remaining stops were in Europe anyway. Playing guitar can be very draining, and playing the guitar well can be doubly draining so in a way these cats deserve some time off. (Writer's Note: I have to apologize. This seemed way more newsy when I started typing it out.)

(again via p4k)