Wednesday, April 26, 2006

THUS FAR - Reviewing the first 4 months of CDs in 2006

I have to say, 2006 has been off to a rough start for me. There has been a lot of anticipation followed with a lot of let down followed by a few surprises getting through.

First off, the SURPRISES. With all of these bands, I really had no idea who they were til this year and they inspired me to find more music on them or even buy the album if I loved it that much.

the 1900s Plume Delivery
What I thought Belle and Sebastian were going to sound like.

COLD WAR KIDS (link)
What I consider the indie White Stripes. No proper release by these guys yet but you can get everything they recorded for only $12 at the above link. I am looking forward to these guys more than Tapes n' Tapes when I see them next month.

DERT Sometimes I Rhyme Slow
I think this guy did it right, going the Danger Mouse route of mixing great music to gain attention. Take the acoustic album Veneer by Jose Gonzalez and mix it with some of the hottest rap artists out here and voila - magic.

EDITORS The Back Room
The Euro band that did it right when it came overseas with a new sound. Go here over Hard-Fi if you have to choose. Also a great live show with some pounding, moving music.

And to make it a bit easier - I think that Blake Sennet and the Elected (Sun, Sun, Sun) out did Jenny Lewis and the Watson Twins (Rabbit Fur Coat) if you had an ear for indie folk pop this year.



Next, the LETDOWNS. You should be ashamed of yourself - get back in the studio.
MYSTERY JETS Making Dens
After promising singles like Alas Agnes, You Can't Fool Me Dennis and Zoo Time, I was pumped for this London group's new style of hippie indie. Unfortunately, going into the studio didn't just compile a lot of tracks for them but unfortunately added too many production effects and over done changes to songs I already liked.

GNARLS BARKELY St. Elsewhere
After the hype of Crazy, I think this album was set to fall. Only a few other solid tracks in my opinion and overall, a much quiter, less raucous CD than I was expecting.

The STREETS Hard Way To Make a Easy Living
After being fans of the past efforts of Mike Skinner, I again thought he would deliver another solid album. However, after listening to 'Hard Way To Make a Easy Living' twice, it has only gotten mildly better over time. It just doesn't go anywhere or feel like there is much diversity in the tracks.



And last, the DECENTS. Nice efforts - maybe better stuff in the future.
ARCTIC MONKEYS Whatever People Say I Am Thats What I am Not
Definitely didn't live up to the hype but a nice album with growing potential. I just wonder how much this has gone to the bands head before their sophomore album.

BAND of HORSES Everything All the Time
Can't say they lived up to the hype I had after hearing St. Augutine or The Funeral but has some growing potential with other good songs like Great Salt Lake



COMPLETE CRAPPERS. Don't make music for awhile.
HARD-FI: I think got mushed into everything else being sent across the seas and the album goes nowhere. NEKO CASE: I had never heard of Ms. Case before Fox Confessor Brings the Flood and while she did get my attention with just 2 songs, the album has a whole is too long and the good songs are very slim compared to the bad. the ZUTONS: This is another album like Hard-Fi where I just don't think much thought was given to the album before it went out. The Zutons really got my attention with their last album Who Killed the Zutons - a variety of sounds and speeds - this just stays flat.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

NEWS: Tapes n' Tapes with Cold War Kids coming to Cleveland

Awwww yeah, dawg. What a treat, what a treat! Tapes n' Tapes are touring with Cold War Kids and coming to MY neighborhood! Tickets are only $10 bones and that is definitely suitable to the Test Pilot.

Pitchfork just announced the tour dates, some touring with Figurines, some with the Wrens, etc.

04-28 Chicago, IL - Subterranean #
04-29 Chicago, IL - Schubas ^
05-05 Minneapolis, MN - 7th Street Entry @
05-07 Minneapolis, MN - Women's Club Theater %
05-18 London, England - Metro *
05-19 Nottingham, England - The Social *
05-20 Brighton, England - Great Escape *
05-22 London, England - Barfly *
05-23 Leeds, England - Faversham *
05-24 Glasgow, Scotland - Nice 'N' Sleazy *
05-25 Manchester, England - Music Box *
06-01 Madison, WI - The Journey *
06-02 Chicago, IL - Abbey Pub *
06-03 Cleveland Heights, OH - Grog Shop *
06-05 Cambridge, MA - Middle East Club *$
06-06 New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom *$
06-07 Philadelphia, PA - First Unitarian Church *$
06-08 Baltimore, MD - Fletcher's *$
06-09 Atlanta, GA - The Drunken Unicorn *$
06-10 Nashville, TN - The Basement *$
06-12 Dallas, TX - Gypsy Tea Room *$
06-13 Austin, TX - Stubb's Barbeque *$
06-15 Tucson, AZ - Solar Culture *$
06-16 Los Angeles, CA - Echo *$
06-17 San Francisco, CA - Café du Nord *$
06-18 Portland, OR - Berbati's Pan *$
06-19 Seattle, WA - Crocodile Café *$
06-22 Denver, CO - Larimer Lounge *$
06-23 Omaha, NE - Sokol Underground *$
07-29 Chicago, IL - Union Park (Pitchfork Music Festival) &

* with Cold War Kids
# with the Essex Green
^ with the Wrens
@ with the Future
% with the Brian Jonestown Massacre
$ with Figurines
& with Os Mutantes, Spoon, Yo La Tengo, Devendra Banhart, Mission of Burma, Aesop Rock, the National, Jens Lekman, Chin Up Chin Up, Diplo, Tarantula A.D., Tyondai Braxton, Bondo Do Role, more TBA

NOBODY & THE MYSTIC CHORDS fo MEMORY


I thought they were one group but I am slowly realizing that Nobody & Mystic Chords of Memory is a SUPERGROUP, collaborative effort between Nobody (Elvin Estella) and Mystic Chords of Memory (Chris Gunst and Jen Cohen). Building off of successful guest appearances on each other's past releases, the trio began collaborating on the latest project, Tree Colored See, in the spring of 2004. After a year-plus of road trips and mail-order production efforts, the result is a perfectly crafted blend of psychedelic hip-hop and sunshine folk-rock. Coming across like a very lo-key, folky Animal Collective with laid back grooves that will keep pace and also space out, the cosmic effects, thumping beats and 45-crackles result in a cool new sound for soaking up the sun or a long drive.

It will be available to you in May on Mush records in the states and on Rough Trade Records in Europe. There will also be a 12" EP for 'Broaden a New Sound' with a Dntel remix and remakes by Devendra Banhart and the Long Lost. No info yet on pre-orders.

mp3 - Broader a New Sound
mp3 - Coyote's Song (When You Hear It Too)
mp3 - The Seed

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

the 1900's


I can't locate much hardcore info on the 1900's. I first discovered them on Gorilla vs. Bear and became hooked. This band is what I always thought Belle and Sebastian was going to sound like when I heard so much about them. With Belle and Sebastian I was let down. With 1900s, I am all aboard. Out of Chicago, the 1900s are a nice blend of folk-pop with melody, organ, guitars, and vocal harmonies all wrapped up for a pleasant sound. The 1900s are one of the few bands that have gotten me to buy a EP in so short a time of first hearing them.

Their EP, Plume Delivery, is out May 30th on Parasol Records. You can pre-order it here for only $7.50.

My fave: mp3 - Bring the Good Boys Home
Also: mp3 - The Patron Saint of Mediocre

***BONUS*** My Plume Delivery CD just arrived in the mail today so expect a review shortly.

***UPDATE*** I listened to the EP twice today. I still think the strongest, jumpiest and catchiest songs off the album are the mp3's above with the rest of the CD being much more mellow and laid back. Probably a good start for a up and coming band. Again, the EP Plume Delivery, can be ordered here for only $7.50.

Monday, April 10, 2006

COLD WAR KIDS



Cold War Kids, out of Fullerton, California, are currently unsigned but I don't hear that will last long. Apparently after some strong showings at SXSW, they have started a minor war among record labels, hungry for their indie-rock blues. CWK remind me a bit of the Black Keys for their soft to loud guitar and percussion they kick out as well as the White Stripes for the vocals. Spin.com recently named the group Band of the Day, comparing the lead, Nathan Willett, to the likes of Jack White and Jeff Buckley, even.

Though unsigned and without a full length, this month sees the release of With Our Wallets Full and Up in Rags, a pair of EPs the band is putting out simultaneously. Buy both at Monarchy Music for $12 bucks, $7 individually. You can also download 2 more mp3's at their site.

mp3 - Hospital Beds
mp3 - St John
mp3 - Tell Me in the Morning

Cold War Kids tour dates:
4/12, Austin, TX (Emo's) *
4/13, Houston, TX (Walters) *
4/14, New Orleans, LA (The Republic) *
4/15, Birmingham, AL (The Nick)
4/16, Gainesville, FL (Common Grounds) *
4/17, Orlando, FL (Will's Pub) *
4/18, Tampa, FL (Tampa Transitions Skate Park) *
4/19, St. Augustine, FL (Café Eleven) *
4/20, Columbia, SC (New Brookland Tavern) *
4/21, Chapel Hill, NC (Wetlands Dancehall) *
4/24, New York, NY (The Bowery Ballroom) *
4/26, Waltham, MA (Chomodley's) *
4/27, Cambridge, MA (Middle East Upstairs)
4/28, Annandale, NY (SMOG @ Bard College) *
4/29, Bennington, VT (Downcaf) *
4/30, Providence, RI (The Living Room) *
5/5, Chicago, IL (Empty Bottle) *

*w/ Two Gallants

Friday, April 07, 2006

GRAND NATIONAL


I saw a article in SPIN the other day and Dodge also posted on these guys so I thought I would check 'em out. Grand National members both started in cover bands before joining up to do some writing on their own. When Rupert was able to work in some studio time through a conncetion with Primal Scream, the duo was off and running, producing their first single "Playing in the Distance". While most songs sound like they are backed by a full band, it is really just the two of them
kicking out the laid back party and funk beats sound like a LCD Soundsystem. I could definitely see 'Drink To Moving On' making a appearance on the OC or in some EA game down the road.

Their album is just making it's way state-side after being out in the UK since 2004 so maybe some new stuff will be available soon.

mp3 - Drink To Moving On
mp3 - Talk Amongst Yourselves

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

The PIPETTES


As best as I can tell the Pipettes are a trio of ladies from the UK who want to bring back the tween pop from it's heyday. They rock the matching outfits with retro dance moves, all the while singing pop and soul. Think The GO! Team mixed with the Supremes (or most any doo-wop female bands of th 60's and 70's). Rocking and shoop-shooping. This track is a total guilty pleasure.
mp3 - Your Kisses Are Wasted On Me

Check out their MySpace page for some pics of the lovely ladies and a few more tracks to preview as well as their website for more info.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

NEW BIRDMONSTER SINGLES


Dodge at MOKB has had the latest Birdmonster releases from the forthcoming album No Midnight up for awhile here. I am still reserving opinion on these tracks as I don't feel they get the heat that the BirdMonster EP brought but hopefully the album as a whole will bring it.

Pre-order what is hopefully the impending sweetness here.
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