12.14.2006

late again, but a post

So I started this post ages ago, sometime like the 5th or something ... and I'm finally getting around to finishing it.

Someone commented and wanted me to reupload the Sufjan rarities, so that is a coming post. More coming posts include the start of my best of 2007 and then my best of 2006, a little backwards, but you'll have to deal with it. The semester is ending so that's a ton of work and I may have a co-op over Christmas break, but I'll find time to make a few posts between working and writing music with Neal for Where There is Fire We Will Carry Gasoline. We're gong to try to write and record an ep and play some shows, so keep a heads up for dates and maybe a track or two from the ep. In the nearer future, I realized how much I like the demo acoustic recording of "Runner Up" so I'll be doing a little mastering work on that ... a tiny bit of compression and reverb to make it sound a little nicer. That should replace the old version on our myspace in a matter of weeks.

Here's my potential list for best albums of 2006. I'm sure I forgot a few but I'll add/narrow it down to 10 by early January...
Juana Molina – Son
Thom Yorke – The Eraser
Mogwai – Mr. Beast
My Brightest Diamond – Bring Me the Workhorse
M. Ward – Post War
Bob Dylan – Modern Times
Converge – No Heroes
Denison
Witmer – Safe Away (Re-Release)
The Velvet Teen – Cum Laude!
Yo La Tengo – I Am Not Afraid Of You And I Will Beat Your Ass
Isis
– The Absence of Truth
Unwed Sailor – The White Ox
Copeland – Eat, Sleep, Repeat
Jeremy Enigk – World Waits
TV on the Radio – Return to Cookie Mountain
Chad
VanGaalen – Skeliconnection
Beck – The Information
The Thermals – The Body, The Blood, The Machine
Tortoise – A Lazarus Taxon
The Long Winters – Putting The Days To Bed
The Album Leaf – Into the Blue Again
The Format – Dog Problems
The Decemberists – The Crane Wife
Joanna Newsom – Ys
His Name Is Alive – Detrola
Sound Team – Movie Monster
Islands – Return to the Sea
Band of Horses – Everything All The Time
Final Fantasy – He Poos Clouds
Built to Spill – You In Reverse
The Raconteurs – Broken Boy Soldiers
Liars – Drums Not Dead
Mono – You Are There
Wolfmother – S/T
Loose Fur – Born Again in the USA
The Flaming Lips – At War with the Mystics
Cat Power – The Greatest
Appleseed Cast – Peregrine
Anathallo – Floating World
Aloha – Some Echoes
Sparrows Swarm and Sing – Oh Shenandoah, Mighty Death Will Find Me

EP’s of note:
Foxhole – Push/Pull
Jesu - Silver
David Bazan – Fewer Moving Parts
Jose Gonzalez – Stay in the Shade

Two weekends ago ... was one those weekends of shows. Thursday was Anathallo and Page France in Baltimore, Friday was Owen, Appleseed Cast, and Copeland in Philli, and Saturday was a Roustabout in State College which was rather unmentionable, except for the playing of The Flaming Lip's Zaireeka (I think that's how it's spelled), which is 8 tracks of 4 simultaneously playing discs. It was none less than breathtaking.


I'm pretty sure Ottobar wasn't allowing pictures, and my camera was not cooperating so I didn't get any shots there. Both Anathallo and Page France were amazing. I try to see Anathallo once a year, and luckily that happened on Thursday, and I was as blown away as I was every other time I've seen them. They mostly played stuff from Floating World which is good, but I really love their older material. I got my wish and they played "Holiday at the Sea" and broke into a verse of Joanna Newsom's "Milk Eyed Mender" in the midst, which was really suprising, but pulled off perfectly. I love Page France for "Chariot" and "Junkyard," but watching the whole set, I got a little bored. Yet, the girl that play keys and does background vocals is really cute. All that said, it was a great show.

[mp3] Anathallo - Don't Kid Yourself You Need a Physician
[mp3] Page France - Junkyard

Then Friday night was Acute, Owen, Appleseed Cast, and Copeland at TLA. This show was beyond words. We missed Owen, Acute was fine for an opener ... entertaining enough. And then Appleseed Cast. No matter what they play, or how many original members remain, their shows are so emotive. They don't really play anything before Low Level Owl much anymore, but the newer stuff is still really good despite falling short in comparison to Mare Vitalis. Copeland put on an awesome show as well. I haven't seen them in years, and I wasn't sure how I'd react to seeing newer songs live and just how they perform in general. I was pleasantly suprised. Stage banter was a little lacking, but the set flowed entremely well and the show was great with the additional lights and backdrops. A couple pictures below of ASC and Copeland ...





I'm going to dip way back in my pictures for a few from the October 7th John Frances, M. Ward and Juana Molina show. M. Ward was great, but I most enjoyed Juana Molina. She plays solo live and builds up the her songs peice by piece with a sample pedal using voice, keyboard, and guitar. I was exteremly impressed with her performance; definitely look her up.

[mp3] M. Ward - Big Boat
[mp3] Juana Molina - Micael
[mp3] Juana Molina - Malherido
[mp3] Juana Molina - No Seas Antipatica

11.02.2006

back again

I’m so sorry to the five or so of you that haven’t given up checking on my blog every week. I’ve dropped the ball, but I’m picking it up and I’m ready to play kickball with you and all the neighborhood kids, so make sure you invite them. As much as I’d be up for it everyday, I think I’ll only dust off the bases once a week or so, maybe twice. Along with the weekly frequency I’m promising you right now, I’ll also promise that posts (or kickball games, if you are still running with that) will be of substance and include 3 or so bands/songs/news items/albums/whatever I feel like talking about. So see you around … On with the post.

Wincing The Night Away leaked about 2 weeks ago. That’s the new Shins album for those of you that think you’re cool enough to not keep track of those sort of things. But everyone is desperately in love with The Shins and has no reason for you to not have new album within your clutches, actually due from Sub Pop January 23. I listened to this record every waking minute for the entire week after I got it, and promptly got extremely sick of it. I actually started telling myself it was so bad that it was probably something thrown together just to leak to the material hungry fans and then make fun of those fans when they thought their new record was so great. I mean face it, The Shins take forever to release new material. But, then I gave the record a rest and forgot all that nonsense and it is great, fantastic, phenomenal, and amazing beyond belief again. I was debating on whether to share the first or second song with you, since they are both so good, and I really can’t think of a better way to start the record than with those two songs … well, “Austrailia” won out against “Sleeping Lessons” and there you have it.

[mp3] The Shins - Australia

Yo La Tengo wants to be your favorite band ever. I feel like I Am Not Afraid of You and I Will Beat Your Ass sounds loosely reminiscent of older material from the ranks of Belle & Sebastian, Broken Social Scene, The Magnetic Fields, and of course Yo La Tengo themselves. It’s no Summer Sun, and no Nuclear War EP (my introduction to YLT, which turned me off to them at first until I really figured them out), but it lays somewhere beautifully and gracefully balanced between their flat-out weird material and the spaced out days of And Then Nothing Turned Itself Inside-Out (my favorite YLT record). I just got the record this week after having some older YLT records heavy in my rotation and realizing the idiocy in my ways … so I tracked it down. Nothing has sunk in too much, and the 10+ minute bookends on either end of the album are a little bit of a turn-off, otherwise I really love the album. My favorite song so far has to be “Daphnia,” mostly because it reminds me of And Then Nothing… It’s not really characteristic of the rest of the album; sorry to those looking to find that song. Noting this fact to myself after I typed that and intended to upload “Daphnia,” here’s more representative “Beanbag Chair" instead. .

[mp3] Yo La Tengo - Beanbag Chair

It’s usually your instinct to ignore those friend requests on myspace that look like they are just lame bands employing some stupid scripts to increase their exposure and friends counts. I thought Glassacre was one of those bands, but damn was I wrong. They call new Australia-based web label Hidden Shoal Recordings home. I haven’t had a chance to listen to the other artists on Hidden Shoal but I’m sure I’ll be pleased when I get around to it. The songs they have on their myspace are atmospheric and spacey while still retaining enough of a pop element to catch your ear. I’m keeping an eye on them, you should too.

[link] Glassacre's Myspace

There was some blog buzz surrounding Tokyo Police Club maybe as far back as the spring. And since that buzz, their EP A Lesson In Crime, has sat very lonely in my itunes begging for a listen. Well I finally did a couple weeks ago, and I really enjoy it. I call it Bloc Party meets Ted Leo and that seems to work while not being too accurate whatsoever. See what you think.

[mp3] Tokyo Police Club - Citizens of Tomorrow

And as far as me and making music, there is new material coming. Where There Is Fire We Will Carry Gasoline is a little dormant, but the awesome remix of “Something About Maps” featuring samples from The Joseph Albers Experiment “4” is still up on the myspace. Neal and I have tentative plans to record an EP and do some brief touring this winter and hopefully that will pan out, but I am still saying tentative in front of plans. We did record something about a month ago … nothing formal, but something. We did a collaboration, improvisational piece with Brendan Sullivan under Neal’s temporary solo moniker of Windows, but it’s 45 minutes long. We might burn a bunch to CD-R’s sometime in the future, throw them in some creative home-made packaging, and sell them for a couple bucks. For now, you’ll just have to wait for me to have the motivation to take 2 minutes to make a clip of the piece and throw it on our myspace. There’s another up and coming project I just heard about. A good friend of mine, currently living in Southern California, has asked me if I would like to write some music to back a CD of his poetry. I have no idea what direction this is going, but I’ll keep you posted. I’m currently working on chopping up, sampling, and using a couple little songs Neal recorded himself in his Windows project. One of these finished products will most likely be the first thing you’ll here from me via the Where There Is Fire We Will Carry Gasoline myspace.

9.14.2006

yorke

So The Eraser is old news, but I can't get enough of this album. It is seriously laptop rock at its finest and I wish I could program like this album. All the car windows down, stereo at max, 60 degrees, backroads, and this album. Things can't get much better than this. "Atoms for Peace" is my personal highlight of the album. Yorke's vocals continuing soaring higher and higher, never gaining edge or making their way to the realm of harsh or annoying. The beats and melodies (as with the rest of the album) are so fresh, ethereal, and ... there's a part of it that cannot be explained. Enjoy.

[mp3] Thom Yorke - Atoms For Peace (yousendit uploaded 9/13)

9.12.2006

i'm back ... into the blue again


Into the Blue Again, The Album Leaf's new lp, hit shelves today. It's as brilliant as anything you'd expect from Jimmy Lavelle, and if you liked songs with vocals that were few and far between in previous albums, there's actually more than one. The signature complexly layered tracks, unique and quiet beats, and general synthesized excellence remains from previous albums, growing and progressing in sound only very subtlely. Into the Blue Again is an amazing follow-up to In A Safe Place, and will only further satisfy and impress those who loved the previous album. I'm sure I'll have more to say as my full listens increase from my initial three.

[mp3] The Album Leaf - Always for You
[mp3] The Album Leaf - See in You (Yousendit uploaded 9/12)

Well it's good to be back. I'll most likely start posting semi-daily again now that I finally broke down and posted again. There is a possibility I may start doing an album review once a week as well as posting my regular findings within the music world and mp3s. Hopefully people are still reading this...

7.12.2006

the summer continues

So I've been having a glorious summer working at Philmont Scout Ranch despite no time for new music. What new music I have been listening to has been mostly of the bluegrass/folk persuasion. If your current tastes don't include these genres, I suggest you track some down. I don't really have too many suggestions since most of what I've been listening to has been played be friends/people around. So track down some bluegrass and folk and start listening ... until the end of the summer, Sean.

5.07.2006

parting words

I'm headed off to New Mexico tomorrow, so that means there is a good chance Where There is Fire will be going dormant for the summer (at least until Aug. 22 when I'm back). I'm working at Philmont Scout Ranch on Conservation staff and I'm really excited to be backpacking all summer and getting paid for it. There's a chance my partner in crime musically (Neal from Where There is Fire We Will Carry Gasoline) will start posting duties, but I don't know if I'll be able to fill him in on how to do this via email. The Rescue EP is uploading as I'm typing so that will be available again to everyone who wants it. Otherwise, this is a goodbye, have a great summer, see you in the fall from me. In the meantime...

I'd like to introduce you to an amazing band that calls PSU its surrogate home (while Erie is their true hometown). Jimi Jive (and the Coefficients of Friction) sounds sketchy as a name, but once you listen, all assumptions going along with the name will disappear. I don't know exactly how to describe them, but it will definitely catch your ear.

[myspace] Jimi Jive


Here's a band plug for another project involving my friend Neal. Along with a few other helpers of the art school variety, The Josef Albers Experiment is just that, an experiment. Sound and music aren't written, they are inspired in each moment. Every 20 to 30 minute piece is captured by the mere internal mic of a mac, but sounds completely the opposite, like each instrument was carefully mic'ed and then the fourtrack started rolling, capturing a sprawling lo-fi symphony. One of the "members" is Brendan Sullivan who does his own equally impressive, rather different solo work.

[myspace] The Josef Albers Experiment

[myspace] Brendan Sullivan


And finally Explosions in the Sky's The Rescue EP. And a link to the rare Sufjan tracks I uploaded a bit ago. See the tracklist in this post.

[zip] Explosions in the Sky - The Rescue (rapidshare)

[zip] Sufjan Stevens - Rarities & B-sides (rapidshare)


Signing off, Sean.

4.18.2006

a rant

I just looked at some of the hundreds of comments on the recently closed blog TheIndieConnection. The site used to post whole albums free for the downloading of the general public via rapidshare. I don't know the whole story, but appearantly a band found out about their whole album being posted, got pretty pissed, and a whole shitstorm ensued. (If anybody knows the whole story, I'd kind of like to know.) Anyway, there was a lot of arguing about the ethics of posting whole albums for download in the music community.

I've thought this for a long time ... how is it hurting business if a lot of the people that download these albums are not listening to them that much and wouldn't even buy them in the first place. 99% of the time, if you like something enough that you listen to it consistently, you'll buy it, you'll make an effort to see the band, and you'll buy their merch. Most people don't have the kind of money to throw around that they are going to go buy the more intruiging new releases of the week without really hearing them. For the most part, artists only get a small portion of the actual cd cost and make most of their money touring. As an artist, what's the cost of having your album sit on a computer as mp3s to be sparingly listened to? At most, the album will eventually grow on the listener and they will want to support you. If people aren't going to buy music in the first place, how's business hurt by downloading? Those who only illegally download are still a minority by far. The music business as far as album purchasing is still thriving, but it's obvious the business model is changing. In a hypothetical world without non-purchase downloading, would there be a significant boost in album sales? I think it would be an insignificantly small gain, and exposure would be lost. Hype within the advertising and review domain can only go so far.

People trust their own ears above all.

I'm sorry to go political per-se for a post and forego the mp3s, but I think it's an appropriate topic, especially for those of you reading this, in this niche of music listeners and internet users. I'm neither condoning nor supporting this slippery subject. Just offering my perspective from where I sit, reading the blogs, seeing what goes on, and yes, downloading albums.

I'm up for convincing; comments welcome.

4.11.2006

onlelinedrawing live

Onelinedrawing is more a name for the ongoing musical work of Jonah Matranga than it is a band name. Yes, he did record under that name, but currently he is touring and playing songs from all of his past projects. Onelinedrawing implies limits, but Jonah has none. He's been writing music for over a decade and he's incredibly humble about it. Jonah is no rock star. He just loves playing music and seeing people enjoy it and relate to it.

Seeing him live was amazing. He's been playing solo, no longer associated with a band since Gratitude split. I haven't heard much about why that happened, but he gave the impression that he didn't like being in Gratitude at all. It was too rock and roll or something of that nature. The show was in Alumni Hall (here at PSU), which is huge, so the small crowd spread out in the front quarter of the room. Being such a big room, the presence was great while Jonah still managed to keep the show really intimate. He even brought a battery powered amp outside when they started to tear down. When I say solo, I mean not entirely. For a few songs, he was backed by Jersey emo/punk outfit Pick an Exit. It was cool that they learned the songs, but they weren't really cut out for it.

If you've never heard anything Jonah has touched, you need to. His voice is like nothing I've ever heard before. You need to hear it, trust me. There are more mp3s in the scrapbooks section of his website.

[mp3] Onelinedrawing - We Had a Deal *Highly Recommended
[mp3] Onelinedrawing - A Ghost
[mp3] Far - Man Overboard

Jonah also played a cover of The Deftones' "Be Quiet and Drive" live. If you want to hear a live recording, check out this post on onehundredscenes.


The pictures are pretty good, so i put them at the end of the post so they can be big and don't overlap with the blog links and stuff.
Photos from the Alumni Hall Show (04.07.06):




4.07.2006

indie conspiracy theories


According to certain notoriously unreliable sources, full of pompus "journalists" (a-hem pitchfork) and spread around by some innocent bloggers, Sufjan Stevens and Rosie Thomas are having a baby. Also, the two recorded a collaborative album with Denison Witmer to be released this summer. Well, sorry to get all your hopes up for cute children and uber-folk, but that is what we call a little white lie. Give Mr. Witmer's name a click and see what the first item in his news says, not to mention that he's been telling the funny story about was spoon feeding pitchfork stories at his recent shows. Indie's too uptight, we do need to joke more.

[mp3] Rosie Thomas - Red Rover (feat. Sam Beam)
[mp3] Denison Witmer - 24 Turned 25

Some of you that read this personally know me, and if you do, you may have heard my theory that Sufjan will actually never release another states record. In combination with the announcement of the release of The Avalanche: Outtakes and Extras from the Illinois Album, the info stunt provides all the info I need to try and convince you Sufjan is done with states.

If you can joke about being pregnant, you can joke about making albums for all 50 states. If you release a b-sides record adding on to the all ready hour topping super sucess of an album you released last year, it probably means you don't feel like writing any more songs about states so you'll just record the ones you have and move on. After A Sun Came, Sufjan made a complete genre jump with Enjoy Your Rabbit and it may be time for that again after Illinois. We have not seen an EP release from Sufjan yet, only albums. That's my prediction on what's to come as far as new material: an EP or two. He'll probably explore some different corners of his songwritting abilities and record them with instrumentation done by himself. Afterall, he has been hopping around with the Illinoismakers for quite a while and most of them have their own bands and projects. Several just saw pretty major new releases and could really benefit from some time touring to support the releases.

In conclusion, the 50 states thing is a bulff. He thought it up and ventured to throw it out there that it might be a cool ambition to have and his fans changed that ambition to a burning expectation. Now, I think he just laughs when he's setting up for a show and he hears two fans arguing about whether the next album will be New Jersey or Arkansas (both with their basis in only a single piece of evidence). It's all hype, and I think it's really funny.



[zip] Sufjan Stevens - Rarities & B-sides (rapidshare)


As if that weren't enough Sufjan for the day, I've uploaded a zip onto rapidshare containing all those compilation tracks you really wish you had. To find out about everything he's ever touched, so you can find it all, check out this fansite - All Good Naysayers, Speak Up! The only things not inculded are really old Sufjan associated tracks (like Marzuki stuff), the Chicago remix that was an iTunes bonus track (because it just wasn't that good, and remixes abound ... better ones), live stuff (because there's tons of that and you can find it everywhere) and the 5 Michigan bonus tracks because they only exist in vinyl form, so I think they should only be listened to in vinyl form (I'll only listen to rips if the LP is really hard to find and the songs exist nowhere else, but I have the Michigan 2xLP). In case you missed those links ...

[link] All Good Naysayers, Speak Up! (All the Sufjan info you've ever wanted to know)
[link] Confabulators: Illin'-Noise! Remixes by mcDJ (if you loved Illinois, you'll love this)

These songs are all so good. Sufjan can never dissappoint. If you've only heard one or two, you practically have an entire new album to fall in love with clocking in at 53 minutes of unheard Sufjan. The order I'm assigning is arbitrary - all the tracks have the proper tags for what album they are from and the track number on that album. They are all mp3s of various bitrates unless noted.

01 - I Can't Even Lift My Head [To Spirit Back The Mews]
02 - The Avalanche (AAC) [Illinoise iTunes Bonus Track]
03 - Woman At The Well [8.21 Blue Bunny Compilation]
04 - Opie's Funeral Song [Mew's Too]
05 - Far Physician's Son [8.21 Blue Bunny Compilation]
06 - Variation On "Commemorative Transfiguration & Communion At Magruder Park" [I Am The Resurrection: A Tribute To John Fahey]
07 - God'll Ne'er Let You Down [To Spirit Back The Mews]
08 - She Is [Dream Brother: The Songs of Tim & Jeff Buckley]
09 - The Lord God Bird [All Songs Considered]
10 - All Delighted People [Eye of the Beholder, Vol. 1]
11 - Borderline [Hope Isn't a Word]
12 - Bushwick Junkie [To Spirit Back The Mews]
13 - Damascus [Seen/Unseeen]
14 - What Goes On [This Bird Has Flown: A 40th Anniversary Tribute To The Beatles' Rubber Soul]
15 - The First Full Moon [To Spirit Back The Mews]

4.04.2006

shameless promotion

I don't think it's too typical for bloggers to post their own music on their mp3 blog, but I'm going to dip into shameless self promotion for a post. I decided to make a myspace for the ongoing project I have going with my friend Neal that has the same namesake as this blog. We started Where There Is Fire We Will Carry Gasoline in the fall of our senior year of high school so we could play a battle of the bands and provide something other than the usual bands that show up at those sorts of things. We wrote one song and did a cover (to never be mentioned again because it kind of sucked). We've collaborated ever since to produce sprawling, epic musical pieces blending many genres including indie, electronic, experimental, and ambient among many others. Hopefully we can get our two polished and 100% complete songs "Runner Up" and "The Apocalypse Will Not Be In Tune" recorded in some manner before I head to New Mexico for the summer, but I don't know if that will happen. Cross your fingers.

Anyway, the song I have up on the myspace is something I started back in February from some samples I decided to play with and pulled out the other week with the goal of actually finishing it. I have too many skeletons of songs just sitting around that just need a lot more work structure-wise. I guess my problem is I'm pretty comfortable and familiar with Fruityloops, but I haven't really mastered it yet, nor have I taken the time or effort to expand my VST plugin and sample library to have the tools to be able to tackle putting what I'm thinking in my head onto the screen. A lot of times ideas don't translate to samples and sequencing so that's a problem too, since I don't own recording gear or have really easy access to any.

Where There Is Fire We Will Carry Gasoline on myspace

Add Where There Is Fire We Will Carry Gasoline to (myspace) Friends

3.27.2006

lewis & clarke, not the explorers


I came upon the track "Bare Bones and Branches," this fall and it struck me as one of the most beautiful and delicate songs I have heard in a long time, while still being extremely poignant and memorable. I searched far and wide for more songs by Lewis & Clarke with no luck whatsoever. I finally have the album, and it turns out it has another track that makes me feel exactly the same way - "Dead and Gone." Lou Rogai is the sole penman of the debut Bare Bones and Branches and I was really impressed to find that this intricately crafted album was largely the work of one man. Once I found out he was from Northeast Pennsylvania, it added a whole new dimension to his music, associating sprawling images in my mind of so many lovely parts of that area with the songs perfectly crafted to accompany these scenes.

This is truly a timelessly breathtaking album. Even if you don't normally follow up with songs you download on my blog, please take the time to look at the website and consider buying the album and/or seeing him live.

[mp3] Lewis & Clarke - Bare Bones and Branches
[mp3] Lewis & Clarke - Dead and Gone (yousendit, expires 4/3)

I happened upon a Black Keys "mini-album advance," as it was labeled (Chulahoma). I wasn't too impressed ... it's typical Keys material with nothing we haven't seen before. There were no hits or anything particularly catchy, but four of the six songs push the four minute mark, which seemed to be about the limit for previous Keys material. I actually like the longest (6:52) best and I've uploaded "My Mind Is Ramblin'" on yousendit. Enjoy!

[mp3] The Black Keys - My Mind Is Ramblin' (yousendit, expires 4/3)

I posted some tracks off The Yeah Yeah Yeah's Show Your Bones a couple weeks ago, and Gorilla vs. Bear recently had a post with Zinner's remix of Gold Lion. It's definitely a noble b-side (from the Gold Lion EP) and I highly recommend it.

[post] Gorilla vs. Bear: Yeah Yeah Yeah's - Gold Lion (Nick Zinner Remix)

3.24.2006

i don't know about you ...

... but I am excited for snakes on a plane. If you haven't heard of this yet, you must live in a hole. Search YouTube to see a bunch of funny fan-made trailers that surfaced before the official trailer was available. Other than the concept of this movie being completely genious, the only other reason I'm posting is because in my searches for more knowledge pertaining to snakes on a plane I found the code to put the trailer on a site. So here it goes...







php hit counter

Get your copy of the player here

3.23.2006

forgotten associations ... new loose fur (!!)

I now remember splitting 'THE EXQUISITE DEATH' and 'saxon shore' shortly after my protective manilla envelope with the distinctive Insond logo arrived in October to find minimal album credits and among them...

VOCAL SAMPLE ON "SILENCE LENDS A FACE TO THE SOUL"
TAKEN FROM: "juterna" by circa urvive courtesy of equal vision records

I didn't make much note of it then, but at the time I had not devoted much attention whatsoever to Circa Survive. Since then I've given them quite a few more listens, as they deserve. Juturna is a solid album that holds steady through all of the failing points that most bands in their genre sphere fall into. I have no idea what song the samples are from - they are so faint it's really hard to tell. "In Fear and Faith" begins with a similar sound to "Silence Lends a Face to the Soul," and that's about the closest association I can make. I'll assume my guess is as right as any other and maybe one day I'll actually find out and be a better man for knowing.

[mp3] Circa Survive - Act Appalled
[mp3] Circa Survive - The Great Golden Baby

Something else major slipped by me this week... Loose Fur's new album Born Again in the USA released this Tuesday. I didn't even know Loose Fur was intended to be a project beyond the first ep. With a complete lack of Wilco news as far as their recent activities (other than the small blip on the radar along with the release of Kicking Television), I didn't think I needed to be paying attention to much of what Tweedy and O'Rourke were up to. I figured anything significant would make it's way quickly thorugh the blog community and I'd know. I guess not. A few of the songs are familiar as Wilco b-sides or Tweedy solo fodder and I'm glad to see them laid out in a formal recording. If you liked the ep or consider yourself much of a Wilco Fan, you need this album.

[mp3] Loose Fur - The Ruling Class (yousendit expires after 3/30 or 25 downloads)


{Graphic above combining Saxon Shore's and Circa Survive's cover art by me ... some quick self photoshop for fun ... and I feel the need to note it here to make up for the 20 extra minutes I spent on it and could have been sleeping}

3.21.2006

upcoming releases

Here's a track from each of the four upcoming albums I noted in my last post plus one more. They are uploaded on yousendit so they will expire in a week. I hope you enjoy these tracks as much as I do and buy the albums when they release.

TV on the Radio - Return to Cookie Mountain (4/21)

Everyone is waiting for this... After TVOTR's debut Desperate Youth Bloodthirsty Babes exceeding all expectation established by the equally dazzlling first EP Young Liars, virtually everyone who lists "Indie" as one of the genres they listen to hold TVOTR in high regard. Within Indie, it is extremely hard to put a finger on what genre their music is ... it's almost as if they have created a whole new niche of their own. The New Heath Rock EP only added to the anxiousness to hear a new full length as it continued to expand the sound of TVOTR, but still leave so much more to be desired. Other than the leak itself, there isn't much info on Return to Cookie Mountain and it's been hard to determine just how many versions of the leak there have been and what state of mastering each one is in. All complications aside, the new album in any state is what we've all been waiting for - brilliant, soaring, dark, atmospheric, and heavy, the songs are a new, more mature, better than ever TV on the Radio.

Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Show Your Bones (3/28)

Personally, I didn't care for a lot of the tracks on Fever to Tell. But if the last three tracks had been released by themselves I would venture to say it would be the most brilliant EP to be released in the past few years. I loved Maps, Y-Control, and Modern Romance and hoped that newer YYY material would lean in the direction of those 3 songs. Luckily Show Your Bones does just that. Karen O remains more subdued through a lot of the material where I think her voice is showcases so much better. Zinner's pen has matured and moved away from a lot of the gritty, loud songs of Fever to Tell and has created a better album throughout. If you loved the gritty and loud sound of the last album, the new album is not for you, but if you long to hear Karen O and Nick Zinner use their talents in the way most suited to what they have to offer, Show Your Bones will probably be one of your top albums of the year.

The Appleseed Cast - Peregrine (today - 3/21)

Deep Elm to Tiger Style and now Militia Group. Their new home may not seem in character for Appleseed Cast, but it may be able to provide them with the exposure they need to get their amazing talent noticed. It worked for Lovedrug who re-released their debut Pretend You're Alive on Columbia in January. Hopefully, Militia can do the same sort of wonders for Appleseed Cast. As far as the album goes, it is still the Appleseed Cast we know and love. The sound draws from their entire catalogue and continues beyond it with the maturing you can only expect from album to album with a band of this calibre. It seems more polished and up front than their earlier recordings, but it still manages to completely immerse you in sound like the Low Level Owl's managed to do so well.

The Flaming Lips - At War with Mystics (4/4)

There was a lot of accusations floating around when the first single (The WAND) was released that it was a vast departure from their whole previous catalogue. I don't buy it. The album is great and picks up right where Yoshimi left off, in my opinion. There's no soaring anthem like "Do You Realize?" or dramatic first track like "Fight Test," but overall, I like the new album a lot.

The Secret Machines - Ten Silver Drops (4/18)

I'm still not sure how I feel about this album after absolutely adoring both Now Here is Nowhere and The Road Leads Where It's Led EP. The sound hasn't changed much, but I still haven't made a verdict on whether the songwriting has improved or not. It's going to take a couple more concentrated listens.

[mp3] TV on the Radio - Playhouses (yousendit - valid until 3/28)
[mp3] Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Cheated Hearts (yousendit - valid until 3/28)
[mp3] The Appleseed Cast - Song 3 (yousendit - valid until 3/28)
[mp3] The Flaming Lips - It Overtakes Me/The Stars Are So Big, I Am So Small... Do I Stand A Chance? (yousendit - valid until 3/28)
[mp3] The Secret Machines - Lightning Blue Eyes (yousendit - valid until 3/28)

3.17.2006

mogwai recap


As I mentioned in my last post, the Mogwai show was amazing. Mogwai themselves were what made the show, everything else was sub-par. Growing opened and I could not decide if I liked them or not. There were a lot of moments that were really tight, but they seemed to always be transitioning to their next theme. Nothing was concrete, but nor did it flow very well. For the most part I felt they were playing on a very elementary level. It was something I could do in my basement with a friend, two guitars, some gritty samples, loop pedals among a collection of others, and a little bit of creativity. When I hear something, I want to be initially perplexed by it and not think to myself that I could do that without much effort at all.

The lighting was terrible (rather dark at times to the point where they actually asked for more light to be able to see what they were doing) and the overzealous addition of fog in cooperation with a bit of distance from the stage made for mediocre pictures. Sonar is basically a warehouse with a stage along one wall and a bar along the side and back. By the end of the night, bottles were being kicked around at everyone's feet. Despite all of this, Mogwai still put on an amazing show and although I highly recommend seeing them, I'm not supporting sonar or growing too much. You can find out where Mogwai is playing shows and look at pictures and setlists from earlier on the tour at mr.beastmap.com.

[mp3] Mogwai - Folk Death '95 (from the new album Mr. Beast)

I also decided to change up the layout a little. I hope you like the new header ... feedback is welcome and appreciated. Otherwise, I've been listening to a lot of albums that aren't actually out yet which I recommend if you can find them now and when the do release ...

TV on the Radio - Return to Cookie Mountain (4/21)
Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Show Your Bones (3/28)
The Appleseed Cast - Peregrine (3/21)
The Flaming Lips - At War with Mystics (4/4)

3.16.2006

sorry for the delay

Sorry for the lack of posting over spring break, but I'm back now and I'll try to get a post up at least once a week. A happened upon a whole bunch of Seven Nation Army remixes, some of which were just really terrible and so repetitive ... they all have a heavy dance/drum and bass influence to them. I uploaded some of the better tracks and also included some covers and non-SNA bonus stuff. There isn't much more to say, the tracks are pretty straightforward and worth a listen, so here's the tracklist:

The White Stripes & Adam Freeland - 7th Nation Freeland
The White Stripes - Seven Nation Army (Chris Liebing Extended Remix)
The White Stripes - Seven Nation Army (Falcon Remix)
The White Stripes - Seven Nation Army (nostalgia 77 remix)
The White Stripes - Seven Nation Army (Slide Remix)
The White Stripes - Seven Nation Army (Tim Deluxe Vs White Stripes)
The Flaming Lips - Seven Nation Army
BONUS: The White Stripes - Blue Orchid (High Contrast Remix)
BONUS: The Raconteurs - Store Bought Bones

[zip] The White Stripes - Seven Nation Army Remixes (yousendit link, valid until March 22)

If you haven't heard, The Racontuers is Jack White's new project. The single is absolutely phenomenal, especially the second song. As with the rest of the indie world, I'm highly anticipating the full length.

Ten Silver Drops, The Secret Machines new album leaked. It's definitely a departure from the first album and I like it but I'm not exactly sure what to think of it. Hear the first single on their site, or if you are resourceful, find the album.

Also, I saw Mogwai over break at Sonar in Baltimore. The show was completely mindblowing. The setlist was perfect ... nearly half of the new album, 2 or 3 from Happy Songs, all the old classics, and of course to close off the encore, "Like Herod". If they are coming anywhere within 2 hours of you, GO SEE THEM! My pictures weren't that good so I didn't want to pollute the post with a few mediocre shots. I may put a few up later.

2.28.2006

honeymoon music, anathallo ...

I saw two amazing experimental/ambient/post-rock bands last Friday night at a free library show. Peacefeather and Niagara Falls both have releases on the Philli label Honeymoon Music (I found out today that they released a Thanksgiving cd, see my old post on Adrian and his amazing music). The merch table had a free 8 track compliation which I'm extremely impressed with. I think I'll continue to keep tabs on Honeymoon and their releases as I have with another great Philli label, Burnt Toast Vinyl, for the past couple years. Nothing but good could come of checking into the websites of both labels every once and a while as they continue to put out great music. The ambient and experimental nature of the show on Friday night reminded me a lot of the loose collective of Burnt Toast musicians and friends Reels of White Softly Flow, most notably containing members of Saxon Shore. Everything about Friday night's show was so epic and driving. The absence of a pre-set sturcture provides an amount of freedom in the music that easily translates into the beauty of something never played exactly as is being unfurled right in front of your ears. Definitely listen to the Niagra Falls and Peacefeather tracks I linked. It is really amazing stuff. Another artist on the compilation that I was thoroughly impressed with was The Amazing Trapeze. The last track of the compilation "This Isn't About Bending Over Anymore, Is It?" sounded live but was epic and I loved it.

All four pictures are of Peacefeather.



[mp3] Peacefeather - Peacekeeper

[mp3] Niagara Falls - Oviposit

Anathallo's new album Floating World is out as of this week if you preordered it. If you didn't, there's a much better chance of finding it in stores since Anathallo struck a management and distro deal with Nettwerk, home of Avril Lavigne, Guster, Josh Rouse, and Sarah McLachlan to name a few. Don't worry about these guys becoming the next pop-punk idols, they'll stay indie as ever, but now with the distro to get the exposure they deserve. The packaging is immaculate, beautiful, and delicate. As with all their releases, Floating World is worth owning almost for the amazing packaging alone. Although you can preview two tracks on their myspace, I'll upload them to yousendit because myspace pretty much sucks, only works half the time, and I'm just not much of a fan. So as yousendit goes, they'll be up for a week and then gone forever.

[mp3] Anathallo - Hoodwink
[mp3] Anathallo - Hanasakajijii (four: a great wind, more ash)

2.15.2006

new appleseed cast, wsc, bp...

I don't really seem to be having the time to post everyday, but I think I'm going to start to try to make a huge ass post once a week with a couple of bands and whatever else strikes my fancy at the time I'm writing.

Last night I saw Washington Social Club at the Crowbar with a couple of local openers (of most note, Bullet Parade, but also The Minor White, and North). It was a fantastic, amazingly fun show with the addition of randomly interspersed audience percussion thanks to Kleeb of Bullet Parade. Both were very high energy sets condusive to much movement. I had a lot of fun and took some pictures when I was not banging on a tambourine or shaking maracas. Here's a sample of some of the stuff my shutter caught:

Washington Social Club (above and the 2 below)
Bullet Parade (2 below)Anything that Bullet Parade has recorded is with their old line up and in my opinion isn't that great. The new band is awesome and will hopefully have an ep or something recroded soon. As far as hearing Washington Social Club, they have a couple live mp3s on their site which I'll link to.

[mp3] Washington Social Club - Are You High (live @ Schuba's)
[mp3] Washington Social Club - Modern Trance (live @ Schuba's)
[mp3] Washington Social Club - Charlie the Russian (live @ Schuba's)

The Appleseed Cast's new ablum Peregrine is due out March 21 on (if you didn't already know, you might not believe this but) The Militia Group. This (like Denison Witmer) was a very unexpected move in my eyes, but the label has great PR and seems to do a great job selling records so this might have been for the better even though Deep Elm and Tiger Style were such great labels. Despite the picture, they have not turned into a metal band and the new album is not a departure at all. Personally I love it. It seems a little polished and upbeat to be an Appleseed Cast album, but the progression of their sound grows on you fast and you find their classic signature sound settling in your ear when it's all said and done. I'll link a download for a zip of the album but it is someone's personal server space ... find it here (link from Indie Surfer Blog). Listen to "Here We Are (Family in the Hallway) on myspace before you get the album.

Show Your Bones (Yeah Yeah Yeah's) has been slowly leaking song by song. And I'm really like what I've heard so far. It definitely better than Fever to Tell which I solely adore for the last 4 songs. If I'm assuming correctly, Karen-O has mellowed out a little, which is so much better in my opinion. The guitar work of Nick Zinner continues to impress me... "Dudley" is the the slower mellower part of Yeah Yeah Yeahs that I adore and "Golden Lion" is upbeat but not to the trashy extent of a lot of the last album and the "Oooo, oo's" are catchy as hell.

[mp3] Yeah Yeah Yeah's - Gold Lion
[mp3] Yeah Yeah Yeah's - Dudley (yousendit link, expires in a week)


2.07.2006

65dos, vek, and new voxtrot

How can 65 Days of Static exist for so long without me knowing. Their sound perfectly blends all of my favorite post rock bands (GY!BE, Pelican, Mono, and Mogwai) into truely epic and amazing soundscapes. Every song is has such a driving element to it that does not repeat from song to song. They truely subscribe to the post rock genre rarely using instruments out side the traditional guitar, bass, drums, and keys. They manage to meld those four seperate entities into one solid, definied, and ethereal signature sound. I can't even choose a favorite song out of the five I'm going to post and I'm definitely considering picking up their latest full length, One Time for All Time, very soon. Check out the music subsection of the media section of their site for a few more mp3s and remixes.

[mp3] 65 Days of Static - Hole
[mp3] 65 Days of Static - I Swallowed Hard, Like I Understood
[mp3] 65 Days of Static - Await Rescue
[mp3] 65 Days of Static - Massive Star at the End of Its Burning Cycle
[mp3] 65 Days of Static - I am Robot


Yet another video I was exposed to this weekend via mtv-u was Tom Vek's "C-C (You Set the Fire in Me). As you can see, he seems to be adorned in a colonial era British soldier's uniform and tapping on his snare drum. He enlists two interesting looking forest creatures as walking tom stands. These little things sort of remind me of the fuzzy little marionettes in The Boy Least Likely To's "Be Gentle with Me" video. Both are really out there sort of videos that pull in an almost child-like imaginative fantasy memory nostalgia. You can find all of Vek's videos on his site. As for his sound, Vek is bound to be the next big thing for mid-fi indie pop. Think John Vanderslice, but not as dark both in voice and overall sound. C-C is the single off his new record We Have Sound and is as catchy as ever. Listen up...

[mp3] Tom Vek - C-C (You Set the Fire in Me)
[mp3] Tom Vek - A Little Word in Your Ear


Voxtrot has a new song on their site from their forthcoming EP. Their sound is definitely maturing and they are improving upon the already amazing Raised by Wolves [EP].

[mp3] Voxtrot - Mothers, Sisters, Daughters & Wives

2.06.2006

super what

First off, this is how I feel about the stupid Super Bowl and is also the away message I had up during the damn thing, which I did not watch. I was glad to hear the commercials were sub-par, so I didn't miss anything. It would have been nice if the Steelers lost so I could laugh at all the people crying and/or rioting because they care too much.

seattle is superior to pittsburgh as a city...

this statement has nothing to do with the
(rather meaningless) event occurring this
evening, nor my preference towards which
team i wish to win because, frankly, i don't
care...

so watch those commercials, buy those
products, buy the licensed merchandise, feed
into the extravagant lifestyles of these
"heroes" of the american lifestyle, and yell at
them like they are in front of you and it really
matters what your opinion is - the nfl probably
uses innocent looking polls to figure out which
team will provide a more lucrative victory and
then fixes the game...

the only good thing to become of this
(wretched) american "holiday" is that they
print winning products for both teams so it can
be bought right after the game (three cheers
for capitalism, consumerism), but the losing
team's stuff finds it's way to third world
countries to clothe the starving frames of
people we americans could care less about in
this moment of "great"american history...


Anyway, politics and social justice aside, the bleeding electrical outlet, an image I find quite striking and intriuging, above is from Metric's Moster Hospital video, which I saw for the first time this weekend. Another thing gained from otherwise useless time wasted watching mtv-u was an introduction to She Wants Revenge through their Tear You Apart video dirrected by Joaquin Phoenix. Another strikingly odd, but very well done video. Soundwise they are pretty much Interpol2, but pull it off very well. Search the mtv-u site to watch it. As far as I know, that seems to be the only place you can see it, but I don't feel like associating with mtv to the point of linking them on my blog (sorry to you really lazy people). Back to Metric, their first full length Grow Up and Blow Away was never released due to record label qualms but the songs are floating around the internet and you should be able to find all 11 with some considerable effort. I'll link two of my favorites: Torture Me and Wet Blanket. As far as songs from their newest album, Live It Out, they seem to be keeping a pretty tight hand as far as letting them leak, but I did find a remix of Monster Hospital by mstrkrft that is pretty cool. I'm waiting for their new album as well which looks very promising from what I've heard so far - you can hear some stuff on their myspace. I'll also link Calculation Theme from 2003's Old World Underground, Where Are You Now?

[mp3] Metric - Torture Me
[mp3] Metric - Wet Blanket
[mp3] Metric - Calculation Theme
[mp3] Metric - Monster Hospital (mstrkrft remix)

[mp3] She Wants Revenge - Spend the Night
[mp3] She Wants Revenge - Out of Control
[mp3] She Wants Revenge - These Things
Second and third songs linked from MusicGlob - great blog, check it daily


2.03.2006

apollo sunshine pictures

I finally downsized all the pictures I took of Apollo Sunshine I took at the show January 21 and uploaded them. I made an album on photobucket so take a look. Check my previous post about them for mp3s or visit the site to stream some songs. If you want to see the full size 5mp pics, tell me and I'll link you to where I have them uploaded on my filespace.

[pics] Apollo Sunshine (01.21.2006) in Heritage Hall @ psu

1.30.2006

lujo

I happened upon Lujo Records a couple years ago by chance when I bought The Fall of Troy's S/T. That CD was raw and amazing , especially for only being a three-piece, buy they've since moved on to Equal Vision and their sound went downhill with the move. Lujo is run primarily by one man: Erik Auccoin. He has been continually signing a wide variety of bands with two things in common: innovative sound and a great deal of talent. I recently picked up a bunch of releases from the sale on the website and I wanted to post to highlight some of my favorie artists on the label. There are some odds and ends on the Myspace site, but all of the mp3s I'm posting are from the media section of the website which I will link...

[link] Lujo Records media section

Suffering and the Hideous Theives is the the project upon which Jeff Suffering has been dwelling for the past couple of years. Suffering has found a much more mature and distinct sound then he ever had in previous bands Raft of Dead Mokeys and 90 Lb. Wuss which is definitely a change for the better. The sound is vastly indie with a certain twinges of alt country and folk. Although I have not heard the new release, Ashamed, the previous Rats in Heaven was simultaneously beautiful, epic, and excruciating. Soundwise think of a rougher, more brutally honest Ryan Adams mixed with aspects of Sufjan Stevens and Starflyer 59. That's the best I can do at describing them. The octave paired vocals in this song "The Potters Field" are one of my favorite moments of the record as well as parts of a semi-traditional rendition of "Amazing Grace" clocking in at 11:40.

[mp3] Suffering & The Hideous Theives - The Potters Field

Aforementioned The Fall of Troy put together an amazing debut for Lujo. This is probably some of the best hardcore of any sub-genre that I've ever heard. Amazingly complex rhythms and guitar and bass lines completely fill this record and there is never a lapse in the brutal talent.

[mp3] The Fall of Troy - The Circus ...

Now defunct Ateriavia pulled me in with a song that was never released anywhere that I know of and I'm guessing it was on the Lujo site ages ago for download called "Why are You Allergic to Bees, Bees are so Awesome;" you can hear and download that song on their Myspace. I'm pretty sure all of these guys were under 20. They had a really awesome sound going somewhere between At the Drive-In and Q and not U that I'm sure could have taken off with a little more touring, blood, sweat, and tears. I'm sure they had other things they needed to do with their lives, but I'm glad they at least released their EP Regarding the Midwest: Sleeping.

[mp3] Ateriavia - This Sierra Classic is of a Prestigious Fleet

I picked up the LP of The Evaluation's We Built the Gun That Causes This Unending Fear for a mere $3 when MakeBreak Records called it quits and cleaned out the closet. Now they are going the way of the buffalo too with their last show next week. In the same vein as MeWithoutYou, The Evaluation crafts catchy, but edgy songs and retains a distinctive sound.

[mp3] The Evaluation - Texas, Texas; No Tennessee

"Heart Like Locamotive" is infectiously catchy. It's the kind of song you can hear on the radio and have no idea who it is but still know all the words and the main guitar riff. Verona delivers straight up rock with the soaring vocals of Kyle Logghe that pull you in and make their 50 minute debut, Rumored to Whisper Suspicions, seem like 30 and having you wishing for more.

[mp3] Verona - Heart Like Locamotive

The Kidcrash pulls off pop-punk like they've released at least 5 albums. New Ruins has super slick production and songs catchy enough to be mistaken for the likes of Jimmy Eat World, but still holds a great deal of appeal for those who don't usually listen to the genre.

[mp3] The Kidcrash - Your Valley Is Our Volcano

Check out the rest of the Lujo Artists at the media page or their myspaces in the sidebar of Lujo's. If oddity is your thing, give Baby Teeth and Gena Rowlands Band a listen. Lujo has also made a bunch of releases for bands with quieter and acoustic material that is all really good. I recommend In Praise of Folly, Dame, and Hidari Mae.

1.26.2006

rescue revisited

A long, long time ago in a galaxy far, far away I uploaded The Rescue EP by Explosions in the Sky. It has disappeared from the portion of the Intraweb accessable from my blog and since EITS said it was perfectly okay to share the EP in a statement on their website by merit of it being such limited release (Travels in Constants Series or they had a few on their European fall tour), I decided to reupload it on Rapidshare. Enjoy this awesome EP and long awaited (kind-of) new EITS material. The songs are shorter, as are the song titles (Days One-Eight) and it's a little different from any of the previous albums but still retains the signature EITS sound.

[zip] Explosions in the Sky - The Rescue

Also, The Secret Machines released the first single for their new album Ten Silver Drops earler in the month. Find more details on Pitchfork in the news section (the only thing it's good for). You can find a link to the single, Alone, Jealous, Stoned, on a post from earlier in the month on LiveMusicBlog.

[mp3] The Secret Machines - Alone, Jealous, Stoned on LiveMusicBlog


1.24.2006

lumping

I'm going to lump a lot into on post today. Apollo Sunshine played here at PSU on Saturday night and it was an amazing show. I took a lot of pictures which I'll upload somewhere as soon as I take the time to do that. I'll throw a link in whatever post I'm on when I get around to that. Apollo Sunshine apparently just lost their fourth member, but they played an extremely lively and ecclectic set as a three-piece. You can stream songs from their new self titled on their site and I'll link two older songs. I was thoroughly impressed with them even though I hadn't heard of them before hearing about the show. It was organized by SOMA (students organizing multiple artforms) and I am slowly infiltrating the group and we might try to pull in Saxon Shore sometime this spring since I'm building their following here at PSU and everyone I introduce seems to love them. Also on that bill may be The Cassettes, from DC, but this is all still in it's very preliminary stages. Otherwise in the music world, I'd seen the name Akron/Family thrown around a bit this year in some best-of's and otherwise, but it wasn't until today that I took some time to dig up some mp3s and listen. It's kind of odd stuff, but that's expected when you are on Devendra Banhart's former label, Young God Records. Give them a try - it's all over the place musically, like you are bouncing back and forth between the last several decades, but by all means, that's a good thing. Especially since I'm starting off a classic rock kick that may continue well into the spring, but I don't think I'll be posting any Yes on here; I'll try to remain uninfluenced in what I post.

[mp3] Apollo Sunshine - I Was on the Moon

[mp3] Apollo Sunshine - May Day Disorder

[mp3] Akron/Family & Angels of Light - Dylan Pt. 2

1.17.2006

one week until the greatest

Next Tuesday I will have my hands (and ears) on Cat Power's The Greatest. Matador has been keeping a tight fist over the blogging and music trading community and I have not seen the album leaked in entirity yet, but you can now stream it on myspace. That player is always so finicky though, I still haven't heard the whole album. Before I heard tracks from the stream, I had heard The Greatest (you can download the title track on Matador's website), Hate (on the B-side of the 7" single that was released December 7 for $.99), Living Proof, and Where Is My Love (the only 2 other tracks I could find which I'll upload as a zip if anyone would like them). Here's the tracklist:

01 The Greatest
02 Could We
03 Lived In Bars
04 Islands
05 After It All
06 The Moon
07 Living Proof
08 Empty Shell
09 Willie
10 Where Is My Love
11 Hate
12 Love & Communication

[mp3] Cat Power - The Greatest

[zip] Cat Power - Living Proof / Where Is My Love (link pending)

Stream the album from myspace

I finally got Castanets First Light's Freeze as a birthday present today. I'm on my second listen as I type and it's only getting better. I've posted a song before but check out this old post at You Ain't No Picasso for another.

[post] New Castanets Songs (9.21.2005)

1.14.2006

more projects, ratatat

I got this sweet Moog t-shirt today and I'm pretty excited about the whole concept of owning a Moog shirt, let alone wearing it. Later on in the course of this lazy Saturday, I jammed with some people today since I'm back up at school and did the majority of my work during the week because as it turns out, the prof's assignments on Monday/Wednesday pretty much covered the next week worth of class. That gives me a three day weekend with very little work and that was a great use of my time. I'd say it's a little jazzy (cello and jazz, kind of a wierd combination), but prepare for your ears to be taken by storm with a whole new genre if we ever decide to play and you're in the State College area. The one guy is the drummer in the semi-local band Bullet Parade, which I may start to play with, but they seem pretty serious about getting non-local shows on weekends which would kill my grades if I went through with that. I would not have the motivation to buckle down and do extra work during the week.

Moving on to music you can download and not some boring anecdotes, I've had quite a few "hey, listen to this" run-ins with Ratatat this week. Drum machine, keys, and guitar in the indie fashion. It's infectiously catchy, but get all the Postal Service comparasons / expectations out of your head now because you are about to hear something else. Guitarist Mike Stroud played back up guitar for Dashboard Confessional and Ben Lee as they toured until he and his bandmate Evan mast got a proposal to release a record on XL Recordings. Reading interveiws, I also found out he played in Pony Express for a short time. I assume this is the same Pony Express that released their collection of EPs and singles, Oddballs, this year. But obvioulsy, just about anything is better than having to deal with the "emo"ness of Dashboard and the record was made. No need for vocals and weird Dntel antics of sampling, this is straightforward in terms of the technical realm. Their S/T released last spring and their website says they are working on another, so I'll be anticipating. There are also remixs in the audio section of their website that are worth a listen and a laugh.

[mp3] Ratatat - Seventeen Years