Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Snoop Dogg and The Streets

New York Times playlist including the Streets and Snoop Dogg. I cannot recommend the Streets enough. The song Weak Become Heroes is one of my favorites of recent times.

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/10/24/arts/music/24play.html

John Peel is Dead

Just read that John Peel died today. I have listened to his show for years and have a couple of discs of live sessions from his studio. Sad news. This is an interesting article including quotes from members of New Order and Damon Albarn.

http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/arts/AP-Obit-Peel.html?oref=login

Real Rhapsody

So I have been dedicated to the proposition that I should physically own all music. Whether it be in downloading form or in CD, tape, record. But I just signed up for Real Rhapsody and I must say that this service is flat out amazing. You can literally listen to thousands albums. I have been listening to old Rolling Stones, Miles Davis, and Dylan all day. Also put in some My Bloody Valentine, Oasis, Catherine Wheel.

Only concern is that the service is now 9.95 a month but they could raise it and then all that work spent assembling the album lists would go for naught if I changed services. What other sites have people tried and thoughts regarding the buy versus rent issue?

Monday, October 25, 2004

The Arcade Fire

Just found this band called The Arcade Fire and highly recommend the following songs:

Crown of Love
Une Annie Sans Lumiere

Here is the review from pitchforkmedia.com:

Earlier this year, Montreal-based The Arcade Fire's ferocious live show
secretly incited a bidding war that saw the band bouncing between three of
North America's most respected indie labels before finally landing with
Merge. While their demos offered virtually no indication of potential to
outsiders, those who witnessed the group in concert would vouch that the
band would soon prove to be of an exceptional caliber. Funeral is that
proof-- a profoundly catharic, sophisticated, and melodic debut that finally
restores "emotional" as a positive descriptor.

Sunday, October 17, 2004

I Can't Get Behind That!

Well, fall is here and college students across the land are flocking to their nearest indie record shop for the latest hot release by William Shatner. SAY WHAT?!?!?!?!? Yes, William Shatner. You may be aware that in the late 60's. William Shatner recorded an album that included trippy, overwrought, spoken-word versions of Lucy in the Sky w/ Diamonds and Mr. Tambourine Man
(Leonard Nimoy also recorded his own album). In the intervening years, Shatner's album has gone from travesty to cult classic. Finally, the Captain has put out a follow-up that's a collaboration with Ben Folds and various other artists. The only track I've heard is a hilarious pairing with Henry Rollins called I Can't Get Behind That. They rant about all of the things wrong with the modern world (leaf-blowers, student drivers, gasoline price fixing, global warming, and vengeful gods). It's hilarious! This time around, Shatner's in on the joke and is actually getting critical praise. I don't think I'll buy any other songs from the album but I recommend you check out the song on iTunes. It's well worth 99 cents.

Saturday, October 16, 2004

2 From Drew

Har Mar Superstar - From the Twin Cities, Har Mar (Sean Tillman) used to perform indie folk rock as Sean Na Na. He now has a somewhat comical act as a sweaty sexed-up R & B star - think middle-aged, balding white Rick James/Prince with love handles. It's all very tongue-in-cheek. He's blown up big in the last year or so and has been getting a lot of national/international attention. The 1st single from his new album is Cut Me Up, a duet with Karen O. (Yeah Yeah Yeahs). It's the best Prince song in 20 years! You can find it on iTunes.

The Black Keys - These guys will invariably be compared to The White Stripes because of their stripped-down, 2-person, guitar and drums approach to bluesy rock. Their new album Rubber Factory is great. The first single, 10 A.M. Automatic, rocks. Its sounds like All Right Now by Free.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Friends Like These & Lifter Puller

Friends Like These - 7th Street Queen. Minneapolis band. Good indie rock song with the added bonus of a guest "vocal" by Craig Finn, of dear-departed Lifter Puller, now of The Hold Steady (based in NY). Download it for free from here.

If you aren't familiar with Lifter Puller, I strongly recommend that you check out their great 2nd album, Half Dead + Dynamite, with the caveat that Craig Finn's voice (think Mark E. Smith of The Fall) and his gritty, barfly subject matter may not be for everyone. You can get some Lifter Puller stuff from iTunes, which has their last album (Fiestas + Fiascos) and a best of compilation called Soft Rock. Standouts from the latter include:

- To Live and Die in LBI
- Half Dead and Dynamite
- Mission Viejo
- The Candy Machine and My Girlfriend

I'll be curious to know if anyone else likes Lifter Puller. They were popular around here at the time but in the years since they broke up, they seem to be achieving indie god status. Craig Finn has done a few guest vocal spots, and I recently heard a local rapper cite him as a big influence. Musically, there's nothing rap about them but I can see why rappers might dig his free-association, narrative style.

Sunday, October 10, 2004

CMJ Returns

Yes one month between blogging...too busy with work and the Presidential campaign to find much time to listen to music. That is a problem.

However, finally after eight months of back and forth my CMJ subscription returns...

Here are three recommendations...

Party Crashers by Radio 4
Mass Destruction by Faithless - See Damian's recommendation below...
I Forgot by Human Television

Update from Damian

Quick recommendations from Damian...

No Roots from Faithless and Kaskade's "In the Moment." Both are good and a nice way to deviate from the singer songwriter world. Also if you've not gotten the "Garden State" soundtrack, you must pick it up. It's excellent...