Monday, December 14, 2009

Album of the Day and Stereo Typing Elsewhere

My useless musings appear not only on this blog you see before you but also several other places on the internet. Please permit me in directing you to some of the more current ramblings jotted down by yours truly. The first is my album of the day: The Dismemberment Plan's Emergency & I. It is featured in the article Wherein There Is Much Discussion Of Media Enjoyed This Past Fortnight #5 in which I unknowingly or perhaps subconsciously create the egregious error of a typo. The article comes courtesy of my good friend Ben over at Rabbit Hole Music, a fine blog worthy of your time. A stream of the album can be found below. Again, it is very worthy of your time.

Church Gets Dirty

I finally got a chance to see The Dirty Dishes along with some other local bands on December 4, 2009 at Church in Boston, MA. I first have to mention that Church is among my favorite bars and small venues in the area. Located right outside of Fenway, it serves as a superb substitute to the stereotypical sports bars that plague the area. Church has nightly music as well as pools tables and brings in a diverse alternative crowd. It served as the ideal place to showcase the local bands that were performing. The Dirty Dishes opened the show and graced the modest audience with their catchy shoegaze tunes. Despite some microphone hiss, the band sounded great delivering tracks from their debut EP In the Clouds which I recently spotlighted. Songs like "Dear in the Headlights", their catchiest jam, showcased Jenny Tuite popping notes from her guitar amongst the timid delivery of her vocals. "Stolen Apples" was a punchier tune allowing drummer Mike Thomas to excitedly pound the skins in the background amid the dissonant synth. The live setting added strength to the soaring chorus of "In the Clouds" which was one of the highlights of the performance. In all, it was a solid set and I'm looking forward to catching them again soon.

An Evening with Kevin Smith

On December 3, 2009, I had the pleasure of spending an evening with Kevin Smith in Blackman Auditorium at Northeastern University. The notorious director spoke to students about almost everything for three hours in an open Q&A format. The length and talkative nature of the event was a little exhausting for some but I could have listened to him speak all night. I found solace and inspiration in his words as he told anecdotes about how he got to where he was today. I always love hearing the prominent voices of our generation speak and listening to the words of someone who has made a living by following their passion is certainly inspiring. It probably says something about me that I am inspired by a fat man in a bathrobe speaking crudely to a bunch of college students but, in its own bizarre way, it works. Clerks and Chasing Amy remain two of my favorite movies ever and I haven't disliked anything he has put out yet [although Jersey Girl was trying].

Denmark = Paradise?

Mew has always been one of those bands that my friends told me I had to get into and I would probably love if I gave them a chance. Nevertheless, I always ended up writing the band off; mostly because I couldn't get into the vocals. On December 2, 2009, I gave the band one last chance when I decided to go to their show at Paradise Rock Club in Boston, MA. I figured since they were one of the most critically acclaimed artists in recent memory and were traveling all the way from Denmark, I might as well catch the show. This decision ended up being one of the best I have recently made. The band absolutely blew me away with their live show and has made me a fan for life. As often only a live show can do, it gave me a greater understanding of the power of their music. On top of this, I was given a free ticket by a gentleman outside the venue. So a BIG thanks goes out to him in the off chance he ends up reading this.

The Big Pink Paradise

The Big Pink has been gaining tremendous buzz all year and their debut full length A Brief History of Love has managed to consistently stay on my playlist. Having already been impressed by their studio efforts, I finally got a chance to see what they could do on stage when they visited Boston, MA on December 1, 2009 at the Paradise Rock Club. The UK band did not let fans down as they played their captivating take on shoegaze music. The group had the stage presence of a band on a much higher level. The lighting and rock antics gave the impression that the performance could have also worked in a stadium setting. However, in the Paradise, some of the lights acted more as a blinding nuisance.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

New Track Rundown

Hello again faithful reader(s). It's time for another new track rundown and this time we are looking into the future; all the way to the year 2010. Sounds futuristic, eh? We're not even out of 2009 yet but 2010 is shaping up to be one hell of a year. I might even have to prematurely name Yeasayer's "Ambling Alp" song-of-the-year because it's just that damn good. Speaking of the tune, I have the video for it here and it is one of the most mind-blowing videos you will ever feast your eyes upon. Be forewarned, it is NSFW (that's not safe for work for all of you who are out of touch with the kids' internet lingo these days). I'm also bringing you live footage of new songs by Final Fantasy and Menomena, both of which are absolutely gorgeous. New tracks from Efterklang, Surfer Blood, Shearwater, Shout Out Louds, and Spoon serves as proof that 2010 will be a satisfying year for your eardrums. Also featured below is "Even Heroes Have to Die" the new song by Ted Leo & The Pharmacists who are releasing The Brutalist Bricks on March 9, 2010 with their new home, the always consistent Matador Records. The album cover is pictured above. If you haven't noticed, I also added a nifty little media player so you can stream songs that have download links right here on this very page by pressing the play button next to the track or by pulling out the player in the lower left-hand corner. With that, I'll advice you to stop reading and start listening.

Monday, December 7, 2009

A Letter from David Jones

The image above is a response to the first American fan letter sent to David Jones also known as David Bowie. The remarkably timid reply from September of 1967 comes from a 20 year old David Bowie that was a far cry away from his Ziggy Stardust persona. It is humbling to see how appreciative he was to receive the letter and to get a glimpse at Bowie before he was immersed in fame. Read more about it at Letters of Note, a really cool blog (at least for nerds like me) that compiles similarly significant correspondence.

Meytal Drumming

No, that is not a typo. Thanks to Ryan's Smashing Life, I have just discovered Meytal Cohen, an Israeli drummer (and candidate for my new musical obsession) who knows her metal. Remember to keep your comments mature (I know I couldn't) as you gawk at the picture of her holding wood [sticks]. Check out three lovely and talented ladies including Ms. (hopefully not Mrs.) Cohen manhandling System of a Down's "Toxicity" below. The video features Meytal on drums with Jennifer Lynn and Christine Wu on electric violin.

Free Sound: Exploding!

Nothing rings in your ears quite as pleasantly as that word 'free'. My friends over at Exploding in Sound are offering the ultimate ear pleasing opportunity by allowing you to grab their new compilation Circulatory System for free. It features a track from The Dirty Dishes who were recently spotlighted on this very blog. Fellow Boston favorites Constants and Irepress also make an appearance, both of whom have released excellent records this year worthy of your appreciation. Check out the press release below and download the compilation to experience the ultimate in auditory pleasure.

AfterHours with GZA

On November 23, 2009, I got to an experience an intimate show performed by GZA of the Wu-Tang Clan at AfterHours, a Northeastern University venue. One of the better and more prolific artists to grace the stage at AfterHours, GZA was paired with Break Science, comprised of a DJ with live drum and bass, providing the backdrop to his slick rhythms. The show started late because GZA hadn't even shown up until the moment he took the stage at around 11. He began slowly and had a few miscues with the band which was to be expected since he just got there and didn't have any time to set up. As the show progressed, he began mustering up speed and enthusiasm. At first he looked a bit perplexed performing in front of a crowd of predominately white college students but as the show went on, it seemed as though he realized he had some true hardcore fans in attendance.

The Middle East Experiences Cave In

I took the image above in 2003 when Cave In played the second stage of the Lollapalooza tour in support of their RCA major label debut Antenna. Since then, the band had been dropped from RCA, denounced Antenna, and went on hiatus. Fortunately for those of us who are familiar with the band, they have returned in prime form releasing the Planets of Old EP and performing a few shows for lucky audiences. In my previous post, I mentions how psyched I was to see the band on their November 22, 2009 date at the Middle East in Cambridge, MA. Now that my ears have finally recovered, I can recall the glorious return of one of my favorite bands of all time.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

New Track Rundown

Thanksgiving is this week and if you are searching for something to be thankful for, look no further than the free stream of Fall Be Kind, the new EP from Animal Collective. With the economic crisis and joblessness still plaguing America, free music is at least a small bright spot on otherwise trying times. The pan flute jam at the end of opening track "Graze" is sure to put a smirk on anyone's face. Be sure to pay attention while you are staring at the Pink Floyd-esque album cover pictured above or you are going to miss the rich sonic textures enveloping the record and the first ever legal Grateful Dead sample. The song that features said sample, "What Would I Want? Sky", has been a fan favorite since they began performing it live some time ago and the studio version does not let down in the least. Read more about it in this spot on review from Pitchfork. Although I had been listening to that song a great deal, my favorite on the EP is "I Think I Can". It flawlessly demonstrates why Animal Collective is one of the most intriguing and innovative groups of our generation. Listen to the EP and more excellent music after the jump.

Lady Before She Went GaGa

More news on pop artists? I have been inspired to do a short write-up about Lady GaGa after watching a pre-GaGa video of her performing. The video features Stefani Germanotta, now known as Lady Gaga, performing at Ultraviolet Live, NYU's annual talent show. I know a lot of people who like Lady GaGa but I have always been vociferous about my distaste for her. This video doesn't make me enjoy her Lady GaGa persona any more but it does help me respect her as a musician and displays the immense potential that she had. Unfortunately, said talent has been squandered on an extremely gimmicky image and overproduced accompaniments. The following performance encapsulates the incredible songwriting and unbridled musicianship she is capable of. If only, she decided to revert back to this style. I guess whatever sells records…

Fox News Have Heart

Fox News has posted a surprisingly insightful report on the straight-edge scene in New England. This is probably the most credible reporting Fox News has done in the last decade. The video includes great footage such as an interview with In My Eyes from 1999. It also covers noteworthy hardcore label Bridge 9 Records and Have Heart's final show which occurred on October 17, 2009; also known as Straight-edge Day. Unfortunately, I missed the performance which took place in Revere, MA but the event was told to be a great success and triumphant ending to an influential band. The photo above is from a very limited edition print they were selling at the show. I am posting Have Heart's final record Songs to Scream at the Sun which serves as an excellent example of how passionate this band was. It is sure to have you screaming along with every word (perhaps at the sun?) by the time it's over. It is available for cheap at the Bridge 9 store along with some other awesome merch so get yourself a legit copy!

Friday, November 20, 2009

The Big Pink Does Beyoncé

Continuing this week's theme of cover songs involving members of the Knowles family, The Big Pink have unleashed a cover of Beyoncé's "Sweet Dreams" which has been made available via Stereogum. The lyrics for "Sweet Dreams" are oddly fitting for the hazy atmosphere and style of The Big Pink. The stripped-down, raw version of the song presented here is an excellent departure from Beyoncé's version but they still can't hit the notes like she can when singing "My guilty pleasure, I ain't goin' nowhere". Give both versions a listen below:

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Gypsy from NEPA

It's not often I hear a group from Northeastern Pennsylvania, where I grew up, that is able to make an immediate impact on me but that's exactly what happened when I heard Gypsy. The band comes from Wilkes-Barre, PA and features members of Cold World, Blacklisted, Bad Seed, and Let Down. Their self-titled 2 song release features brash guitar rock that presents a distinctive 90s influence. "Relatively Distant" has the abrasive ringing guitar tones that were prevailing on Jawbreaker's seminal album 24 Hour Revenge Therapy. "Skeleton Parade" utilizes the sound of bands like Dinosaur Jr. to create an anthem complete with sing-along lyrics and a soaring guitar solo. This is a very mysterious release since I couldn't find any press or even a myspace for the band. I am really looking forward to hearing more about and from this band in the near future as they make a great addition to the NEPA scene. You can find the single at the link below. If you like what you hear, pick up the self-titled 7" from Six Feet Under Records which is a label out of Beverly, MA that has pressed some excellent albums.


Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Local Spotlight On: The Dirty Dishes, RIBS

The Dirty Dishes are a band quickly on the rise in the Boston scene. Possessing a sound similar to that of Silversun Pickups or Autolux, they exhibit excellent songwriting sensibilities and an intriguing sound. Singer/guitar Jenny Tuite, bassist Jay Marcovitz, drummer Kevin Lynch, and keyboardist Alex Molini meld their instruments together to create a dreamy blend that is sure to satisfy all the shoegazers out there. Songs such as the vibrant "Deer in the Headlights" or the atmospheric "Thin Air" warrant repeated listens and demonstrate much promise for the young group. Passion Pit has been mentioning them in interviews (here and here) and also picked "Stolen Apples" to be featured as the #1 track on their "Boston Bands We Like" Myspace playlist. You can download their debut EP In the Clouds for free for a limited time at the link below:

Solange Gets Dirty

I wasn't aware until recently that Solange Knowles is a bona fide hipster. First, she was getting her sister
Beyoncé and Jay-Z into Grizzly Bear
and now she has emerged with a cover of the Dirty Projectors song "Stillness is the Move" from their incredible 2009 album Bitte Orca. Unfortunately, Universal Records had requested that it be taken down. It's a shame because the track is pretty damn cool. Solange has done an excellent job of bringing out the R&B influence that was prevalent in the original. Both are not without their own unique charms. Since most people would benefit hearing each track, I'm including a link to hers as well as a stream of the original version. Also, here is her response to the song being taken down via@solangeknowles:

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

New Track Rundown

I'm back with another installment of the new track rundown and there are some serious gems circulating around the internet right now. The biggest news story of the week would be the release of the debut record by Them Crooked Vultures. The band features a dream ensemble consisting of Foo Fighters' Dave Grohl, Queens of the Stone Age's Josh Homme, and Led Zeppelin's John Paul Jones. Don't think that this one sounds too good to be true. I got my hands on this bad boy and it rocks as hard as you would hope considering the men behind the music. Songs like "New Fang", "Reptiles", and "Warsaw or the First Breath You Take after You Give Up" possess innovative songwriting and exceptional dynamics which allow them to fit comfortably alongside the band members' highly lauded catalogs. The album cover is featured above and you can check out "New Fang" after the jump.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Junior Boys at the Middle East

I hadn't been too familiar with Junior Boys aside from their pivotal electropop album So This is Goodbye released in 2006. Therefore, I wasn't quite sure what to expect when I went to see them on November 2, 2009 at the Middle East in Cambridge, MA. What I got was an unexpectedly enticing mix of chill yet danceable electronic indie rock. I know that's a lot of adjectives being thrown your way but it aptly describes the group's unique sound.

T.T. the Bear’s: Future of the Left

Anyone who has read this blog within the last few months will know that I absolutely love Future of the Left's latest album Travels with Myself and Another. I wrote the review for the aforementioned album back in June and it still hasn't lost any of its charm. That's why I jumped at the chance to hear the material live at T.T. The Bear's Place in Cambridge, MA on November 1, 2009. Since the band is coming all the way from the UK, it was quite the treat to see them in such an intimate venue. With the anticipation for the show on high, the band did not let down in the slightest.

The Middle East: A Place to Bury Strangers

Don't be fooled. The title isn't advice. On October 30, 2009, I subjected my eardrums to the unrelenting torrent of noise that is A Place to Bury Strangers. For those unfamiliar with the band, it is fronted by Oliver Ackermann who creates his own effects pedals and sells them under the name Death by Audio, a very appropriate name for some of the loudest pedals available. A Place to Bury Strangers is often known as "the loudest band in New York" and for rightful reasons. They decided to bring that loudness to the Middle East in Cambridge, MA and I'm very thankful that they did.

David Cross at the Wilbur Theatre

On Monday October 19, 2009 I had a chance to see David Cross, one of the greatest comedic minds of our generation, at the Wilbur Theatre in Boston, MA. For those who were wondering: Yes, the Wilbur is finally selling booze. Cross was featured on Mr. Show, the greatest sketch show of all time, and also played Dr. Tobias Funke on Arrested Development. The tour was to promote his new book of essays, I Drink for a Reason, and was also to be taped for a comedy special which I could only imagine HBO would be able to air. He performed for about 2 hours and the material lampooned everything from heroin junkies to the health care bill. In typical Cross fashion, his wry observations on life were as insightful as they were ridiculous. It would spoil most of the material if I described it in detail here but it was about as good as comedy gets. One anecdote even had him claiming to have snorted coke 40 feet away from the President. He also showed a five-minute clip of a new show that's going to be aired on the BBC called The Increasing Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret. It had a lot of potential and it is a shame that it won't be played in the United States for awhile. The show featured Cross's fellow Arrested Development cast member Will Arnett, which only added to its promise. I purchased I Drink for a Reason but I haven't had a chance to read it yet. The guy's a genius so I'm sure I'll find much to enjoy within its pages. If you need further proof, below are two classic skits from Mr. Show.

Built to Spill at the Middle East Night 3

On October 11, 2009, I caught the third night of Built to Spill's three night run at the Middle East in Cambridge, MA. I've seen a lot of concerts this year and have spoken highly about many of them but this is the one that will probably go down as my favorite. I hate to use the old cliché but seeing Built to Spill live is the closest a concert is going to come to a religious experience. The band's triple-guitar attack on indie rock is tailor-made for the stage and should be witnessed by anyone who considers themselves a fan of guitar-centric rock and roll. It could easily make a believer of even the most jaded music critic. To top things off, this particular night was the night to see if you were a long time Built to Spill fan. It was chocked full of my personal favorites as well as well known classics. The set lists for all three dates can be found at

Japandroids Take Over Great Scott!

On October 5, 2009, I had the chance to catch Japandroids as they invaded Great Scott in Allston, MA. Great Scott has firmly established itself as the venue to catch creative new bands on the rise. For those not in the know, Japandroids broke into the garage rock scene earlier this year with the release of their debut full-length Post-Nothing. The record is nothing short of impressive and contains nine catchy yet noisy tracks of rock including "Young Hearts Spark Fire" which was included in my article on the 250 Songs You Need to Hear from the 2000s. The two-piece from Vancouver took the opportunity to show attendees that they are just as powerful live as they are on record.

Friday, October 2, 2009

New Track Rundown

Believe it or not, bands are still releasing music on the internet (?!) and I've compiled the best of it here. Another surprise is that I am including a song by a rap-rock project (?!) established by the guys from ingenious blues-rock duo The Black Keys.

Blakroc's self-titled debut LP is out on November 27 and features an impressive guest list: Mos Def, RZA, Raekwon, Q-Tip, Ludacris, Pharoahe Monch, M.O.P.'s Billy Danze, Jim Jones, and the late Ol' Dirty Bastard. Together, the dudes are establishing their own label, Blakroc, to release the album. Check out a trailer for the record with Rae reading lyrics off of his Blackberry here. The cover is the image featured above.

Planets of Old Cave In

Cave In is easily one of my favorite bands ever and I was devastated that I missed their performance at Great Scott on July 19, 2009 since it sold out instantly. As luck would have it, I am getting another chance to see the band live and so are their other fans in the greater Boston area. This will be the first time I've seen them since their 2003 Lollapalooza appearance at The Tweeter Center in Camden, NJ. Cave In, Trap Them, and Narrows have announced the following mini-tour for November:

Song of the Day and 249 Other Songs You Need to Hear from the 2000s

"We've Been Had" is a song that I feel in love with from the first time I heard it at the beginning of the decade. The song begins with a glimmering piano vamp that gently eases itself into the mix and is complemented by jangly guitars amid sparse drumming and bass. Hamilton Leithauser's nostalgic lyrics delivered like a manic Bob Dylan complete the picture establishing the song as an instant classic. The song comes from The Walkmen's 2002 debut full-length Everyone Who Pretended to Like Me Is Gone.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Another Smoke-Filled World

I was watching a lecture given by Lawrence Lessig on the captivating intellectual platform In it, he explains the importance of the RW (Read/Write) style of artistic consumption or 'Remix Culture' as opposed to a RO (Read Only). I also am reading his book Remix and I couldn't agree more with a lot of his points on the state and future of copyright law. Below is the video of the lecture and an example of the importance of finding new voices through artistic remixing.

Engage in New Battles

Live video of three new songs by creative math rock outfit Battles have surfaced courtesy of We Listen for You. These serve as excellent teasers for their upcoming album and have me aching for studio versions. "Sanford and Son" especially embodies everything I love about the band.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Exploding in Free Music

My good friends at Exploding in Sound have released their new compilation Future Legendary and it is available for free! The compilation features songs from 19 up-and-coming bands including a great track from Boston's Junius. Speaking of Junius, their new album The Martyrdom of a Catastrophe which features such incredible songs as "Shoegazers & Gravediggers" has also generously been made available for the price of nothing! Who said people aren't generous these days?

A message from the band...

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

New Track Rundown

It's been awhile but it's time for another installment of the new track rundown. There's a lot of good stuff floating around the ol' 'net and this is the best of it. This time around I'm including a bunch of music videos because there are a lot of memorable ones such as the overtly psychedelic video for "Tooth Decay". The above image is the cover of the upcoming album by Converge entitled Axe to Fall which is due out on October 20, 2009.

Local Spotlight: Roman Traffic at the Middle East

On August 28, 2009, I had the pleasure of catching Roman Traffic (formally Gravehaven) at the Middle East Upstairs in Cambridge, MA. I had known the guys in the band for awhile and while it is strange to think of them as anything but Gravehaven, the music is quality nonetheless. I first met the group when I did a review of their debut EP Perceptions for the Colorblind for Decoymusic which you can read here. After that I was fortunately enough to produce a track with them called "Breach" as a recording project for a class I took at Northeastern University. The guys were super nice as well as easy to work with and I am proud to say that the track came out great. As a little shameless promotion, I am including a link to it below. Be gentle, it was my first attempt at producing.

Local Spotlight: We Met Aliens at the Middle East

On August 25, 2009, I visited the Middle East Upstairs in Cambridge, MA to check out a showcase of local metal bands. It's been awhile since I've been to a metal show and it is always nice to check out what is going on at the local level. Unfortunately, I missed the first band The Arkham White but from what I've heard on their myspace, they seem like a solid mix of death metal and thrash. The first band that I was actually able to see was The Bathory Silence. The band played a very technical leaning combination of death metal and hardcore that contained some excellent breakdowns and guitar soloing. The drums were solid and kept the songs chugging at breakneck speed. The only complaint I had was that the songs sounded like more of a jumble of parts than cohesive structures. In this way, they reminded me a lot of Glass Casket.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Suicide File Reunion Show at ICC

It's time to play catch-up on some shows I missed covering from August. The first and most significant would be The Suicide File reunion show with Bane that I was able to catch on August 13, 2009 at the ICC in Allston. I have been a fan of The Suicide File since their 2003 debut album Twilight and I never thought I would get a chance to see them live. I was stunned that they were playing a show and with Bane no less so I jumped at the opportunity to see these two classic hardcore bands on the same bill. The show was put together at the last second but they did a great job getting the word out because the place was absolutely packed. I guess in the rare instance that a great hardcore show does occur in Boston the entire community comes out to witness it.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Massive New Track Rundown

Here are the best new tracks currently floating around the internet. The above image is the cover of the upcoming album by Baroness called Blue Record which is due out on October 13, 2009.

All Points West Day 2: 8/1/09

The excitement leading up to All Points West has been building up for months before the concert. I purchased my ticket for Day 2 of the festival as soon as they went on sale. The opportunity to see Tool and My Bloody Valentine headline a fest was just too good to pass on. So of course when it came to the day of the show, there had to be multiple obstacles in my way. The first problem came when I went to print my ticket and it happened to be on the day that my printer decided to break. This meant that I had to drive somewhere to get it printed before the show resulting in my leaving of Boston almost 2 hours later than I wanted. The second big problem was that traffic on I95 was absolutely horrible around the New Haven, CT area where my roommate and I waited in bumper-to-bumper traffic for over an hour.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

New Track Rundown

There are so many new tracks being posted everyday on the internet that it's damn near impossible to keep up. For this reason, I am going to compile all of the ones I have been enjoying over the last week here for your listening pleasure in a segment that I will hopefully continue on a weekly basis. For those interested, the above image is the cover of the upcoming double album by The Flaming Lips called Embryonic which is due out on September 29, 2009.

Local Spotlight On: Hazard Adams

Some days there is nothing better than some relaxing roots rock and that is exactly what I got when I saw Hazard Adams on July 26, 2009 at Church in Boston, MA. The band fronted by talented axeman Jesse Friedberg played an enjoyable set of alternative country tunes that would please fans of Wilco or Ryan Adams. Songs such as "I Don't Wanna Be Friends" and "Time to Be Wrong" had a nice balance between twang and bluesy jangle. Guitarist Chris Perry kept thing interesting by integrating some electric mandolin effectively into some of the songs. The rhythm section of Chris Franzen's shuffling drums and Pete D.W's robust bass created nice foundation for the songs to rest on and kept things moving at a moderate pace. The group held the attention of the modest crowd and by the end of the show everyone was bobbing their heads and enthusiastically applauding. Hear for yourself at the band's MySpace.

I’ve Got a Love for Harvey Milk

I'm not talking about openly gay politician who was unjustly assassinated by Dan White although I have much respect for the man. In this instance, I'm referring to stoner metal mainstays Harvey Milk who seized the opportunity to destroy my eardrums on July 25, 2009 at the Middle East in Cambridge, MA. The band is touring on their album Life… The Best Game in Town, which was one of the best albums of albums of 2008 and I'm not the only one who thinks so. They have been active since the early 90s and have helped shape the current state of stoner metal yet they still remain relatively unknown and underappreciated except by their most passionate fans.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

It’s Alright at the Middle East

Hot off of their latest album, It's All Crazy! It's All False! It's All a Dream! It's Alright, Mewithoutyou was in rare form when I saw them on July 11, 2009 at the Middle East in Cambridge, MA. I am not a religious person but that hasn't impeded my enjoyment of the band's Christian-leaning lyrics and themes. Singer Aaron Weiss's words have always flowed like good poetry and the subject matter is identifiable regardless of your spiritual orientation. Check out the new album below and experience it for yourself:

Great Scott Gets Handsome

When it comes to my favorite of the two principle songwriters in Wolf Parade, it's no secret that I favor Spencer Krug (Sunset Rubdown) but Dan Boeckner has given me serious reason to reconsider. Not only did he write my favorite songs on Wolf Parade's last album, At Mount Zoomer, but he also has released one of my favorite albums of 2009 with Handsome Furs. The band consists of Dan Boeckner on guitar and vocals alongside his gorgeous wife Alexei Perry who plays keys and a drum machine. Their latest album, Face Control, is an unbelievably consistent collection of electronic rock and roll. Give it a listen below and support the band if you're digging it:

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Keelhaul’s Triumphant Return to Obscurity

Keelhaul, one of the most underrated metal bands and one of my favorites, have issued an intriguing press release about their impending release:

A Press Release Worth Cutting and Pasting (Courtesy of Solid PR):

Stream of Metal

There is a lot of good metal currently up to stream so I thought I would compile some it here:

…And The Hazy Great Scott

On June 29, 2009, I finally got to see Cymbals Eat Guitars play their sprawling indie rock live at Great Scott in Allston, MA. I was surprised to see that local band Magic Magic was headlining over them considering as how much buzz CEG have garnered. After taking advantage of all-you-can-eat wing night at Soul Fire and relaxing with a beer, I was ready to enjoy some good ol' indie rock and that's exactly what I got to do.

Bad Antics at Church

The headline could serve as an interesting news article but it is actually in reference to a show I recently saw. On June 28, 2009, I saw After the Fall, Legit!, and Bad Antics at Church in Boston, MA. Apparently, the only places that still have hardcore punk shows around here are Church, the bar in the Fenway area, or actually churches such as the ICC (International Community Church) in Allston.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

The Satanic Satanist Leaks and Portugal. The Man Responses

Portugal. The Man's latest album The Satanic Satanist has leaked to the internet. In response, singer/guitarist John Baldwin Gourley has issued a statement about his feelings towards the early leak. This isn't your typical 'you are hurting the artist' rant. Quite the contrary, he asserts that he has always been a proponent of downloading but understands the complexity of the issue. The lengthy statement can be read here and I highly recommend it because the statement touches upon a lot of the aspects involving how much the interaction between fans and music has changed since downloading has become a norm.

Finally a Sunny Day

The weather here in New England has been as bad as it gets. It's rained for almost two weeks straight with seemingly no end in sight and the effects can be seen everywhere. People are feeling depression set in, the streets have been empty, and the parks are dirty mud pits. Regardless, there is some news that will brighten the day (at least for fans of old school 90s emo music): Sunny Day Real Estate have announced that they will embark on a reunion tour with their original lineup; you know, the one responsible for creating the seminal 1994 record, Diary. To help celebrate, Sub Pop will also be reissuing re-mastered, bonus-tracked copies of Diary and LP2 on 9/15. Both will also include new liner notes. This might not be the best news in the world but it's certainly got me excited. I guess it is ironic being cheered up by emo music. Hopefully, there will be a sunny day here before the band comes to town. Dates below along with some videos of the band from the early 90s including the music videos for "Seven" and "In Circles", the first two songs on Diary. The songs have since become classics and were instrumental in the development of emo music. Also posted, a live version of "Seven" performed on the short lived Jon Stewart Show on Mtv as well as their perform of the song on 120 Minutes on the same network.

Out on the Farm

If you haven't heard the new Dinosaur Jr. album Farm, stop what you are doing and give it a listen. Don't worry if you have a very important report due this afternoon that your boss is all over you about. Listening to J. Mascis effortlessly blaze through scales on the guitar is much more important. The classic JLouMurph lineup is back with another timeless piece of grungy rock and they are taking it on the road. I can't stress enough how great their new album is and how amazed I am that they can retain the same energy that they had back in the 80s. They have solidified their position as the best aging rockers in music and the video for "Over It" also displays that they still know how to have fun as well. Below is the video, the tour dates, and standout track "I Want You to Know". Lou Barlow is doing double duty opening a number of these dates.

Dallas Cowboys Find New Way to Piss Me Off

Being a Philadelphia Eagles fan, I thought I already hated the Dallas Cowboys as much as I possibly could. Well, it turns out that the Dallas Cowboys have concocted a plan to anger me even more. Apparently, three members of the team felt the need to test my love of music by starting a shitty nu-metal/pseudo-metalcore band called Free Reign. The group features Marc Colombo, Cory Procter, and Leonard Davis of the Dallas Cowboys who banded together to test the limits of what can be considered music (see: the laughable vocals on "All in Vain"). Now if this is a joke, my hat goes off to them. Unfortunately, it will probably just serve as another reason for bros to like "America's team".