Friday, October 8, 2010

I Don't Know Shit Mix


If you are reading this, it means you have probably enjoyed this blog in the past and have subsequently been disillusioned by my inconsistency. Well, you know what they say, bloggin' ain't easy. I was thinking about giving it up for awhile hence the lack of updates. Inspired by this post by a fellow Bostonian at Tongs and the article it linked to by none other than the great Steven Wilson (Porcupine Tree), I found myself fully engulfed in the futility of being a music blogger. This coupled with mounting personal and work related issues, my notes on shows have been piling up and review requests have been left entirely unanswered.

Today, I am feeling a bit more inspired; although, I'm not quite sure why. It probably has something to do with my acknowledgment that this blog is probably the best use of my free time. Since, I have stopped writing, I find myself gawking at the television as a self-loathing punishment to my intellect. This definitely needs to stop so I am taking all my notes and turning around some show reviews. I will also have some record reviews up shortly as well.

In the meantime, I present the I Don't Know Shit mixtape. If Sharon Van Etten can admit "I don't know shit" in the showstopping, heart-wrenching opener "I Wish I Knew" from her 2009 album Because I Was in Love, I figure I can confess to a sympathetic feeling. Besides the aforementioned track, there are some real gems to be found here. "The Story of Hip-Hop" is a must-hear sound-collage/trip-hop mix that shows why The Books are one of the most brilliant groups of our time (more on their latest and possibly best album, The Way Out, to come...). I also can't get enough of Menomena and the very underrated new album, Transit Transit, by Autolux, who I will be posting a show review for in the very near future. I should probably apologize in advance for "I'm All Fucked on Beer". You know how those songs from the loudness war get... One more thing, buy these damn albums! The vinyl edition of The Books - The Way Out in particular is well worth your dollar. Below is the mix so stream/download and enjoy:

Thursday, September 16, 2010

What They Missed: Pitchfork's Top Tracks of the 1990s


Pitchfork’s list covered a lot of ground but it was almost entirely missing punk, hardcore, emo and metal which, in my opinion, had greatly impacted and progressed music in the 90s. To supplement my examination of the 90s (via Pitchfork’s Top Tracks of the 1990s), the following is a list of my top 100 of my favorite tracks that they missed. It features some songs that I would consider glaring missing entries. Keep in mind when reading this list that they gave a spot (not even the last one) to “The Humpty Dance”. The cover for the article is from the forgotten classic I am an Elastic Firecracker by Tripping Daisey. The list was compiled as I thought of them so don’t look too much into it. A player with all the songs is below followed by the full list.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Best of Pitchfork's Top 200 Tracks of the 1990s: 20-1


There isn’t too much to say about the tracks that made the top 20 in Pitchfork’s Top 200 Tracks of the 1990s. It is a solid group of songs and I enjoy every one of them. There were some very cool surprises among the bunch like Belle & Sebastian’s sad-bastard-music classic “The State I Am In”. I also like the choice of My Bloody Valentine’s “Only Shadow” which certainly influenced countless future shoegaze bands. However, there were some selections seemed very suspect. The fact that Nirvana’s seminal 90s benchmark “Smells like Teen Spirit” didn’t crack the top 10 seemed like it was simply Pitchfork sticking their noses out at all the similar lists that had the track at #1.

Best of Pitchfork's Top 200 Tracks of the 1990s: 50-21


The artists featured in tracks 50-21 of Pitchfork’s Top 200 Tracks of the 1990s have the best music videos of the bunch. This harkens back to when Mtv actually played music videos and they still made an impact on the success of an artist. I know, it’s hard to imagine! As testiment to how great these music videos truly were, many of the directors (Spike Jonze, Michel Gondry) went on to become some of our greatest cinematic directors today. Some of the best of the best music videos can be found below.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Best of Pitchfork's Top 200 Tracks of the 1990s: 100-51


Songs 100-51 from Pitchfork’s Top Tracks of the 1990s have some of my favorite picks on the entire list. The first one that jumped out at me was “Start Choppin” by Dinosaur Jr. Not only is this one of my favorites but it is indisputably one of the greatest guitar-rock songs ever written. The solo that J. Mascis pulls off in the track is nothing short of astonishing and is sure to impressed anyone who considers themselves an admirer of guitar solos.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Best of Pitchfork's Top 200 Tracks of the 1990s: 150-101


Here is the second part of my coverage of Pitchfork’s coverage of the best tracks of the 1990s. This installment has a much better selection of songs and features many that I constantly keep on my playlists. The first of note is “Good Morning, Captain” by Slint. From the very first time I heard it, the song became one of my all-time favorites. Nothing sounded like it before and not much has sounded similar since. It’s unique in it’s spoken-word style telling the story of a sinking ship which is paired with a dark, ominous post-rock accompaniment. The breakdown includes what I consider one of the greatest screams in the history of rock when vocalist Brian McMahon cries out “I miss you!” in the song’s climatic peak. The lyrics alone make for a nice little narrative. The image above is the cover to Slint’s 1991 masterpiece, Spiderland.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Zuzu Reveals Doomstar!


I had never been to Zuzu, which rests between The Middle East upstair and downstairs, but I was anxious to check it out. It was an unusual space for a performance by energetic rock bands but worked out pleasantly. It was small and had no stage so the performances were quite intimate. The left wall was lined with mirrors which made for interesting effect and there was a bar located on the right. There was not much else to speak of in the small venue. It seemed more fit for DJs and dance nights which I was told is exactly the primary function of Zuzu.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Best of Pitchfork's Top 200 Tracks of the 1990s: 200-151


I have always been a big fan of lists that contain the top songs from an era. I may not always agree with the lists that Pitchfork posts but they always get a good discussion started. Their latest staff list, Top 200 Tracks of the 1990s, is of particular interest to me. I have been on a huge 90s kick and consider myself somewhat of an aficionado when it comes to a diverse knowledge of music from the period.

I have made my own best of the best list comprised of my favorite tracks from Pitchfork’s. This way you can weave through the obscure electronic crap and get right to the real gems. The 90s had a lot of blood-pumping, anthemic music and that’s definitely what stands out the most for me out of all the songs they have listed so far.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Getting Over The Hump


It's hump day and if you also live in Boston, you know it's a particularly miserable one. The sky has been a dark, ominous mess and rivers of rain have spilled from it for the past three days straight. It's the kind of weather that definitely affects your mood. Here are some videos that have kept my spirits up and hopefully will help you get over the hump as well.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Raising My Hands for New Sufjan Stevens


Today, Sufjan Stevens came out of nowhere to release an incredible 60 minute EP called All Delighted People. I don't want to ramble on about it too much but it is sure to elicit responses of "wow". The title track is a song of epic proportions that contains a refrain of "all delighted people raise your hands". I'm certainly raising mine. Note: this is well worth the $5 if you are willing to shell it out to show your support for this extraordinary artist. Listen below:

Take on the World Mix


Music can serve as the soundtrack to any moment. I needed a playlist for those moments when you look the world in the face, say "fuck it", and do your own thing. I had one of these moments when I recently climbed Mount Washington in New Hampshire on a whim. Probably not the smartest decision for my physical well-being but still one of the more rewarded endeavors I took on this summer. The whole time I couldn't help but think that I needed some music to accompany the 4+ mile hike into the sky and, sadly, I didn't have any. Still, it was tranquil to just listen to the sounds of the nature so maybe it is better that I compiled this after the fact.

For Your Precious Film


I recently watched a movie based solely on the description called Mr. Nobody and it turned out to be one of the best films I have seen in some time. Not many people know of it yet but it is bound to gain recognition as a cult classic in the years to come. Featuring a standout performance from Jared Leto and some talented young actors, the story is a mind-bending glance at life that blends sci-fi, fantasy, drama, and romance to come up with something completely original. My hat goes off to Jaco Van Dormael for the intelligent script and breathtaking direction. The strikingly beautiful scene below helped me realize what an incredible performance is given on Otis Redding's "For Your Precious Love". From the passion in his voice to the warm guitar solo, I don't know how anyone could listen to this without getting chills. Paired with the gorgeous cinematography, it is one for the ages.

Crystal Castles Shatter Expectations at House of Blues


The House of Blues is the Coldplay of the venue world. That is to say, the ones you love to hate. But sometimes, quietly, when no one is around, you admire what they have done. I hate venues that have seats and I can appreciate that House of Blues Boston gets the bigger acts who would otherwise play Agganis Arena or the Orpheum Theatre and allows them to performance in a space where the audience can dance and thrash about. This was abused to the full extent when I caught Rusko and Crystal Castles there on August 17, 2010.

Maps & Atlases are on Solid Ground at The Middle East


In my Mid-Year Report, I mentioned that Maps & Atlases had one of the most impressive full-length debuts to come out in 2010. I also mentioned that the lists featured were going to dramatically change. With the performances I witnessed by Russian Circles, Cave In, and Boris, I knew that my list of best shows had already changed. However, an unexpected entry has emerged into the top 5 shows I’ve seen this year. This one is brought about by the compelling performance I witnessed by Maps & Atlases at The Middle East upstairs on August 11, 2010.

An Explosive Showcase


On Sunday, August 8, 2010, I went to Church to pay homage to the gods of rock n’ rock and hops n’ barley. My friends at Exploding in Sound put on a showcase featuring some of my favorite up-and-coming bands and it was not to be missed. Grass is Green, RIBS, Solar Powered Sun Destroyer, and The Dirty Dishes came together to celebrate Sunday in the most blasphemous of ways: by playing the devil’s music. Seeing that it was my birthday, the only praying I did was to make it to the end of the show.

Boris Invades The Middle East


If you are a fan of progressive metal of any kind, I hope you were at the show on August 7, 2010 at the Middle East in Cambridge, MA. The lineup consisting of Russian Circles, Cave In, and Boris covered much of the metal landscape. Russian Circles impressed with their mathy post-rock onslaught; Cave In mesmerized everyone with their mix of space rock and technical metal; and Boris brought their distinctive noise rock and sludge from Japan.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Getting the Royale Treatment with The Rapture


Hey guys, remember The Rapture? Did you know they were still together? No, well, me neither. Apparently the band everyone was going apeshit over in the early 2000s and then subsequently forgot about is still together. Echoes was a staple of my listening back when it was released and established the band as one of the elite dance-punk bands when the genre was just beginning to boom. I actually loved their much less lauded second album, Pieces of the People We Love, where they began their decent off the face of the earth. It was a no-brainer that I was going to attend their free performance at Royale on August 4, 2010. The concert was sponsored by Amstel Light but I wasn't expecting the unlimited free Amstel Light that I was greeted with at the venue. The beer snob in me wanted to scoff at the fact that it was Amstel Light but I'd be a real asshole if I complained about free beer so I kept it to myself (until now). Surely, I thought the free beer was a recipe for disaster but it simply ended up being a really fun and interesting night.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Evacuation in Case of Exploding Sound


My good friends over at Exploding in Sound are back with another entry in their consistently solid compilation series. This time around there is double the pleasure. Open Hand, who I have been waiting to hear new music from for just about forever, kick things off with “Herrons”, a delicious slab of stoner rock. The glorious "A Far Cry" from We Were Promised Jetpacks, which is a song I've ranted and raved about before, finds is way onto the compilation as well.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Mid-Year Report


I'm a month late on this mid-year report but I'm still interested in getting a discussion going. There's been some great releases out in the media world in 2010. I wanted to list all of my favorites of this year so I can take a look back and compare at the end of 2010. After all, I am a big fan of lists. I'll try to keep the rambling commentary to a minimum so without further ado, I bring you my favorite releases of 2010 so far:

Monday, August 2, 2010

Summertime Mix


This coming weekend is projected to be another gorgeous one. The hot weather in Boston has been a staunch reminder that summer is still in full swing. It's about time that I put a summertime mix out there that anyone can listen to while doing all sorts of summertime activities or perhaps just lounging around. I have a couple of my all time favorites in this one (Manic Street Preachers, Jane's Addiction, The Flaming Lips, Thursday, American Football) and some new ones released this year which I thought are great examples of rising bands who have written excellent summer anthems.

Like any good mixtape, it flows effortlessly from track to track and even seems to have a running narrative from the desire to enjoy the Summertime to lamenting in its passing. I didn't include a Beach Boys song because that just seemed too easy. Although without one this does lean towards something that could be called 'A Hipster Summer'. Also not on the list are Mungo Jerry's "In the Summertime" or The Lovin' Spoonful's "Summer in the City". These are also obvious picks and wouldn't fit in with the flow of the mixtape. They are still incredible songs so go listen to them now! After you're done with that, give the mixtape below a spin...

Wolf Parade Comes Through the House of Blues


I’ve written many times on this blog about my admiration for both Spencer Krug and Dan Boeckner’s projects. It should go without saying that I am a huge fan of Wolf Parade. They have written three amazing albums and one of my favorite songs of all time in “I’ll Believe in Anything”. Their debut Apologies to the Queen Mary, produced by Isaac Brock of Modest Mouse, is one of the most highly lauded albums of the past decade. I was initially disappointed with their second album, At Mount Zoomer; however, when I was going over my dream set list, I realized that I had chosen more than half of that album. With “Fine Young Cannibals” from the aforementioned album being the song I said I wanted to hear the most.

In 2010, Wolf Parade has returned with their third and perhaps best album, Expo 86. This is a record that is sure to be on my, as well as several others’, best-of-the-year lists. I can’t stress enough the power and maturity displayed within the album’s robust 55+ minutes. Having followed this band for so long, it’s amazing that I haven’t seen them live yet but I could not be more excited since they are touring off such a great record. On July 12, 2010, I finally had the chance to see one of my favorite bands and in the next few paragraphs I will explain why you should make sure to see them if you have the opportunity.

I Must Dance Alone at TT The Bear’s


I first got to know about MiniBoone when I reviewed their debut EP Big Changes for DecoyMusic.com. They quickly became one of my favorite bands that I discovered this year and I’ve been spinning tracks like “Summer Jam” and “Rosalina Must Dance Alone” endlessly. The first time they came to town earlier this year, I was sick and, despite my best efforts, I couldn’t make it out to see them. I made sure that I dragged myself to the show on Sunday, July 11, 2010 despite an exceptionally raucous weekend. Let’s just say if you ever think about taking a last minute trip to New York City and the thought crosses your mind that “this is probably a bad idea”, go with that instinct.

Girlfriends bring Doomstar! to Great Scott


I’m all about discovering new local bands. Boston has a vibrant music scene as full as any other city in the country with bands about to blow up. Catching shows for up-and-coming bands is a great way to discover the music that's steadily gaining buzz plus it’s also a cheap way to have a great night out. On July 1, 2010, I seized the opportunity to see two of Boston’s most promising newcomers: Doomstar! and Girlfriends. The show was to celebrate the release of Girlfriends’ Gov't Seizure 7" single and to sendoff the group since they are about to embark on a big US tour.

Depreciation Occurs at Great Scott


The Pill at Great Scott is consistently awarded Best Dance Night by the Boston Phoenix. I hadn’t checked it out but when I heard that The Depreciation Guild was stopping by to play a set on June 25, 2010, I figured it was as good a time as ever. Their latest release, Spirit Youth, has been in heavy rotation for me and features one of my favorite songs to come out this year, "My Chariot".  Its chiptunes-meets-shoegaze style is something very refreshing in 2010. However, a red flag should have come up when I found out a shoegaze band was playing a dance night.

For Your HEALTH


For the longest time, I kept saying that I would never join Twitter. Well here I am 500+ tweets later and I'm totally addicted. So what finally got me to crack and create an account? Free stuff of course! I noticed that my friends kept winning free food, tickets, etc. I decided that I need to get in on this racket and lo and behold, I immediately started reaping the benefits. I've received free cds and tickets but nothing as sweet as winning a chance to see HEALTH on June 19, 2010 at Great Scott. A big thanks goes out to the great people at CitySearch Boston where I won the tickets for answering the question, "Why do you dance?" My answer? "I dance because its an uncontrollable and compulsive cathartic release."

Frog Eyes See The Middle East


Frog Eyes are one of those bands I've always wanted to see live but I never got around to it. I've praised Carey Mercer's manic delivery endlessly and their guitar tones are among the best in indie rock today. Their latest release, Paul's Tomb, shows that they are only gaining strength with age. The record spins with a consistent intensity that begins with a 9-minute sonic wave of guitars and refreshingly dynamic songwriting. On June 18, 2010, I took my chance to see if this translated to the stage when I caught them with up-and-comers Beach Fossils at the Middle East.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Thirsty Thursday Mixtape


My mind has been mush lately. I've been busy with work as well as other things and I have fallen behind on show reviews for the last five concerts I attended. Worst of all, I have been struggling with what some describe as the 'writer's block'. What does that mean for you, the unfortunately web browser, who stumbled upon this posting? It means a mixtape!

This one starts off fast, gets crazy, and mellows out at the end. It's the perfect soundtrack to those Thursday nights that you wish you didn't have come Friday morning. Reoccurring artists from my other mixes such as Unkle, Broken Social Scene, Wolf Parade, Foals, and Retribution Gospel Choir are the albums you should be running out to get right now. Others include impressive tunes from bands that I have seen recently such as HEALTH and The Depreciation Guild. I should have reviews up for those sometime soon. After all, this blog is basically a concert journal. Grab a drink and listen below!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Review: MiniBoone - Big Changes


Below is my take on the debut EP Big Changes by MiniBoone from Decoy Music.  Also, check out the interviews with the band here and here. It gives good insight into the group and presents them as intelligent, stand-up guys; although, I do disagree with their statement about the importance of the album as an art form and it's impending death. Give the EP a listen while reading to gain full effect.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Songs for Saturday


I decided to create a nice soundtrack to my weekend and figured I’d share it with my reader(s). This one has a couple of rare/hard-to-find tracks mixed in with some of the same culprits from my last mixtape. The bands who are making their second appearance are from the must-have albums released this year (The Hold Steady, Future Islands, LCD Soundsystem, and The Black Keys). I’m one of those suckers who still purchase music and I can tell you that the four aforementioned records are superb from front to back.

This compilation serves a nice soundtrack to any Saturday activity so burn it to a CD and enjoy! Don’t forget to buy these albums if you like what you hear.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Local Bands Get Dirty at Harpers Ferry


I had seen The Dirty Dishes before at Church and also in a more intimate setting with an acoustic set at The Loft. This time around I got a chance to witness them headline a gig alongside of some great local music at Harper's Ferry on June 8, 2010. It was a Tuesday and a modest crowd of people were looking to indulge in some hometown noise. The Dirty Dishes along with The Self Assembly and Grass is Green made sure to award those who ignored their work duties for the next day and the Celtics game that was currently taking place to come out and rock.

Hymn to the Immortal Mono


It's not every day that you get to see a band from Scotland or one from Japan. I got to see both when I caught Scottish indie rock band The Twilight Sad with Japanese post-rockers Mono at the Middle East on May 28, 2010. These are two bands that I have wanted to see for quite some time. They both have original, distinctive sounds and have made the cut for many of the mixtapes I've made over the years.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Hearts Race with Dr. Dog at Paradise


I had previously seen Dr. Dog four times (Langerado, John Havard's, Paradise, Middle East) and that's why I knew not to miss their performance on May 11, 2010 at Paradise Rock Club. The band released their latest album Shame, Shame earlier this year and it is one of the true standouts in 2010. I couldn't wait to hear the new material alongside their already rock solid back catalog. The performance was the first in a two night residency at Paradise and what a way to kick it off! I was lucky enough to secure a spot right up front on the left side of the stage where I was far from the infamous view-obstructing pole. Fortunately, Paradise is finally switching things up and making the pole less of a nuisance over the summer by rearranging the venue layout.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

To All My Friends... Memorial Mix


You can smell it in the air; it’s mixtape season. It’s about time I deliver a new mixtape to my friends/readers. I present my Memorial Mix featuring some of my favorite tracks released so far in 2010. I had been spinning it this past Memorial Day and these tunes make for a great little mix. Note to Google, Web Sheriif, etc.: Tell me if I need to take something down! Don’t just delete my blog as was done in the past with other blogs. As the great Henry Chinaski (author character of Charles Bukowski) said: “To all my friends…”



Listen below!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

No Sleeping at the Middle East


My forth show in six days, I was starting to wear down when I decided to check out For Sleeping or Jumping at the Middle East Upstairs on April 5, 2010. It was also my third in this period that took place at the Middle East. Perhaps they'll give me a room there or at least a frequent buyers card? Either way, I was still excited to see a different brand of noise at the show. Its been a while since I got to witness some music of the heavier variety but For Sleeping or Jumping aptly filled the void with their performance.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Bells and Lazers in the Middle East


I may not seem or look like the type of guy, but sometimes I crave a big dance party when I go to a show. That's exactly what I got when I caught Major Lazer at their sold out performance at the Middle East on April 4, 2010. It wasn't just any show. It was one of those rare circumstances where I liked every band on the bill so I made sure to get there on time to catch the openers. I was really hoping that the show lived up to my expectations since I didn't spend Easter with my family because of it as I traditionally do. Sorry, parents! As you'll soon read, I was not letdown.

Lights Out for Ben at Church


It was a sad occasion when Roman Traffic announced that singer Benjamin Greenville was leaving the band. He was a strong vocalist and a significant part of the music the group created. From the moment they announced his last show would be at Church, one of my favorite bar/venues in Boston, I knew I was going to be in attendance. The show was also an Animal Shirt Party with some great people/bands in attendance so it was not to be missed. On April 2, 2010, Ben took the stage one last time with his bandmates and put on a performance that was sure to leave a lasting impact. Below is the trailer for the show making sure that everyone remember to wear their animal shirts.

Japandroids Are Back in Town


It's time to catch up on my show reviews after falling waaay behind. How could I have fallen so far behind in my show reviews? I'm glad you asked. Over the period of my disappearance, my computer had a mystifying accident with some water. You're probably thinking, "What kind of idiot blogger spills water on his computer?" Well, I didn't exactly spill the water. In fact, I don't really know what happened. I woke up to the sight of water underneath my computer; something no man should ever have to witness. With no glass in sight and an apparently ruined hard drive full of potentially timeless writing such as this, I was quite baffled. The only explanation I could come up with was that my computer processed my writing and then proceeded to take its own life - but who knows, I may be speculating for ages. Onward to the reviews, the first of which is a look back at my second time witnessing the two man spectacle known as Japandroids.

If a band puts on a great performance, you will make sure to get tickets every time they come back into town. Japandroids hooked me when I saw them on October 5, 2009 at Great Scott. That show was one of the more memorable performances that I saw last year. With that said, when I heard they were bringing their anthemic garage rock to The Middle East on March 31, 2010, I had to jump on the opportunity to see them in a larger venue.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

New Track Rundown


It's been awhile but that doesn't mean I haven't been keeping up with the best tracks hitting the internet. The new track rundown has been getting better with each article this year and this one is absolutely carrying on that tradition. I believe this is my biggest one yet and it stuffed with great tunes deserving of your attention. It is released just in time to enjoy for the weekend, but its primary function is to serve as the soundtrack to my workday next week.

Many of my favorite bands are finally teasing their fans with tracks from their highly anticipated upcoming releases such as The National and Blitzen Trapper. I am happy to report that these have more than lived up to any expectations I had. I also stumbled upon some new bands that I had no prior knowledge of yet I've been spinning their latest release quite a bit which is the case with Cults. The image above is from the upcoming album from The National entitled High Violet due out on May 11, 2010. Check out everything below and, as always, let me know whether you found something good or you are highly disappointed with a new track. Sorry for the rambling intro, now get to listening!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

I Remember Yeasayer at Northeastern


Odd Blood by Yeasayer has been steadily gaining more spins in my playlist as each week of 2010 passes by. The album initially gave me a feeling of disappointment but as all the best albums do, it grew on me. With songs as strong as "Ambling Alp" and "I Remember", I figured that I had to catch their live show. However, when I went to purchase tickets, I discovered that the show at the Paradise on May 3, 2010 in Boston, MA had already sold out. As fate would have it, I was granted another chance to see the band when my friend informed me that there were performing a free outdoor show at Northeastern University on Saturday, March 27, 2010.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Making Excuses


This post could easily be a list of reasons why I have been slacking on posting new material. Fortunately, I just want to post some incredible videos for The Morning Benders' song "Excuses" which is being hailed as an instant classic. The first is a truly impressive cover by two friends, Andy Fitch and Brian Russo, who perform the song with a ukulele, a trumpet, an acoustic guitar, wooden chairs, and empty bottles of Tylenol, all while singing their hearts out in an attic. There are some seriously unnecessary covers of recent songs on YouTube but this is one that puts a smile on my face and makes me glad that people do these kinds of things.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Local Spotlight On: Bearstronaut


While perusing the Stereo Typing inbox, I came upon a synth-pop band from Massachusetts called Bearstronaut and I have to say that they peaked my interest. After sampling a few songs, I found myself bobbing my head in enjoyment to the propulsive, thumbing beats. The band could easily fit the bill among other Massachusetts up-and-comers such as Passion Pit and Yes Giantess. "Pink Ladies and & Sassy Babies" was an immediate attention grabber that could find a place on your next dance party mix. "Wire", however, was the track that sold me on the group. With a pulsing beat and a grandiose wall of sound, it positions the band to standout among the rest of the synth-shredders. You can hear these tracks on their ReverbNation page.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

New Track Rundown


I liked last week's New Track Rundown quite a bit. I listened to the playlist a few times at work (despite some seriously workplace-unfriendly songs) and it helped the day go by much quicker. This week's playlist, however, is miles above it. This is where some of my most anticipated albums start poking their heads out. The most significant of these is a new album by Broken Social Scene. I have been waiting for this since 2005 and I figured I would be disappointed. Thankfully, "World Sick" absolutely blew me out of the water. The song will be featured on their new album Forgiveness Rock Record which will drop on May 4, 2010 with the cover you see above. This is one record that just shot to the top of my most anticipated albums list. Additionally, I had the pleasure of hearing new songs from Fang Island, Joanna Newsom, Bonnie "Prince" Billy, and Portugal. The Man. All of these were able to meet or exceed my expectations. Let's see if they are able to do the same for you…

Exploding in Glorious Noise

 

My friends over at Exploding in Sound have compiled another impeccable mix of up-and-coming artists for their 5th compilation entitled Glorious Noise. The bands on this one generate some noise that is truly extraordinary, captivating, and fantastic. Yep, I think that is every adjective that can describe this colossal collection of credible creative collectives. Seriously, do not miss the tracks by Disco Doom, And So I Watch You From Afar, Let Our Enemies Beware, Apetka, Turbo Fruits, Sugar Army, and Ceremony. Those are just my favorites but everyone will have their own so read the press release below, grab the compilation, and enjoy!

Dirty Southern Ribs


Unwinding after a hard day's work with a concert of mellow music is something I always appreciate so on Friday, February 26, 2010 I jumped at the opportunity to see a few great Boston bands for free. The Dirty Dishes, Southern Belle, and RIBS played together as part of Berklee College of Music's Unplugged Series. I previously spotlighted The Dirty Dishes and RIBS as two of my favorite up-and-coming bands so I was obviously excited to see both of them on this bill in an acoustic setting. The only problem was that it was at 6:00pm so I had to rush right from work to get there but I'm glad I put the effort in.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Some Actual Stereotyping


Flavorwire posted an interesting article which stereotyped people by their music tastes. We are all guilty of doing this at some point or another but it can be a fun little exercise in perception. It was impossible not to contribute some of my own for obvious reasons. If you don't get it, refer to the title banner on this blog and the tag below it. The original article can be found here and I encourage you to leave a few of your own in the comments. Here are a few that I came up with:

Review: Harvey Milk - Harvey Milk (The Bob Weston Sessions)


My take on the new album Harvey Milk by Harvey Milk from Decoy Music:

Review: Spoon - Transference


My take on the new album Transference by Spoon from Decoy Music:

Monday, February 22, 2010

We Were Promised Valentine’s Day


There's no sappy Valentine's Day drivel here. Instead of spending money on some girl by purchasing questionable gifts that most likely give no indication as to how I feel, I bought a ticket to see We Were Promised Jetpacks at the Middle East in Cambridge, MA. While everyone wanted me to sulk in the vast vortex of loneliness that is my life (damn you media/Hallmark holiday/co-workers/friends!), I spent my February 14, 2010 seeing some great bands and having fun. Take that corporations who don't want me to be single because I only spend money on beer and concerts!

New Track Rundown


This week I am cutting to get right to the chase because there is a boatload of tracks that I have been digging that just came out. Since Mtv is no longer about music videos, I have plenty of them here too. I'm trying something new and putting some editorial notes/comments for each one. Let's get a discussion going, shall we? The image above is the cover to Paul's Tomb: A Triumph, the new album by Frog Eyes to be released on April 27, 2010. The band recorded all the album's tracks live and from the sound of the epic nine minute opener below, this one is going to be incredible.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Delta Spirit Soars at the Middle East


Typically, Mondays aren't too kind to me. I usually spend my weekends gallivanting around Boston instead of catching up on sleep and I always feel that I need more time to settle back into the work week. I knew I had a decent workload ahead of me and I was running on fumes but somehow my Monday turned out quite well on February 1, 2010.