A Live Saturday
Radiohead - Fog (Again) (live)
Andrew Bird - Masterfade (live)
My Morning Jacket - Golden (live acoustic)
Dear and the Headlights
Alright, back to business. These guys bring the goods. In this case, the goods are feel-good, fantastically woven pop ditties. Oh yeah and the singer sounds like the dude from Better than Ezra and occasionally meanders into Adam Duritz territory. If that's the kind of statement that scares you, I suggest you buck up, kiddo.
I'm Bored, You're Amorous
It's Gettin' Easy
[from Small Steps, Heavy Hooves|buy]
Failed Ben & Jerry's Flavors
by John McMurtrie
Peppermint Thai Stick
Newark Super Sludge Chunk
Hall and Oatmeal
Cookies 'N' Hemp
An Oversimplified list of Options in Iraq
Words Never Used in Remotely Good Movies
Mildly Disturbing Greeting Card Messages
Considered but Discarded names for the indie band Someone Still Loves You, Boris Yeltsin
Ineffective Lines Deleted from Final Revisions of Violent Box-Office Hits
Four Things I Would have said to Sylvia Plath if I had Been her Boyfriend
and probably my favorite:
Cancelled Regional Morning TV Shows
So there it is. McSweeney's. Bookmark that puppy.
The Kissaway Trail
Eloquence and Elixer
[from The Kissaway Trail|info]
Elliott's New Moon
[from New Moon (out 5.8)|buy]
The Hood Internet
R. Kelly and Broken Social Scene - I'm a Flirt (Shoreline)
The Shins and Crime Mob - Rock Yo Sea Legs
[more over at Missing Toof]
[thx to gvsb for the headsup]
Listening Assignments 4.23.07
St. Vincent - Now. Now. - It's a journey, this song. Things get really interesting at about the 3:20 mark with the sudden introduction of strings, then an out of control guitar solo. It's like late '80s Cyndi Lauper crossed with a less-breathy Bjork. She also happens to be in Sufjan Stevens' touring band and the Polyphonic Spree. [from Marry Me (out 7.10)|info]
A Quarter Century
Cloud Cult - Your 8th Birthday
[from The Meaning of 8|buy]
The Commodores - Easy (Like Sunday Morning)
Who Will Save Your Soul?
Kingdom of Rain
[from It's Not How Far You Fall, It's the Way You Land|buy]
Going to a Town
Nobody's Off the Hook
[from Release the Stars (out 5.15)|pre-order]
The Damnwells - Golden Days
The Damnwells are love in liquid form. The music flows like honey, sticky sweet and with deliberate movement. Unfortunately, they straddle an interesting fence: They write incredible ballads...and pretty much have stopped trying to do much of anything else, it seems. It's hard to pull that off commercially unless you're more folk-influenced (see Iron and Wine, Ida, a hundred others). Every one of their songs belongs on a soundtrack, where it can take a film to the next level. Any mixtape would be lucky to include a Damnwells song, regardless of theme. They've got it covered from the making to the breaking of a heart. Maybe this documentary will be another break for them. I know I'll be buying it.
The film, a full two years in the making, just won "Best Documentary" at the Phoenix Film Festival and will be screened again at the Maryland Film Festival (May 3-6).
more info: myspace.com/goldendaysmovie
05/11 - Portland, OR (Berbati's Pan)
05/12 - Ashland, OR
05/13 - San Francisco, CA
05/14 - Los Angeles, CA
05/15 - San Diego, CA
05/16 - Tucson, AZ
05/18 - Dallas, TX
05/19 - Austin, TX
05/21 - Mobile, AL
05/22 - Birmingham, AL
05/23 - Nashville, TN
05/24 - Atlanta, GA
05/25 - Charleston, SC
05/26 - Charlotte, NC
05/27 - Kill Devil Hills, NC
05/29 - Virginia Beach, VA (Jewish Mother)
05/30 - Alexandria, VA
05/31 - New York, NY
06/01 - Cambridge, MA
06/02 - Northampton, MA
06/03 - Philadelphia, PA
06/05 - Pittsburgh, PA
06/06 - Cleveland, OH
06/08 - Louisville, KY
06/09 - Chicago, IL
06/10 - Ann Arbor, MI
Golden Days (acoustic version)
I am a Leaver (alternate, stripped version)
Oh No! Oh My!
Jane Is Fat
[from Oh No! Oh My!|buy]
A Hokie Grieves
Dr. Kevin Granata
Dr. Liviu Librescu
Dr. G.V. Loganathan
Matthew La Porte
Mary Karen Read
Daniel Pérez Cueva
Listening Assignments 4.16.07
Rubber and Soul (Ane Brun)
Rubber and Soul
[from A Temporary Dive|buy]
Love and Misery (feat Tobias Froberg)
Are they Saying Goodbye?
[from Spending Time with Morgan|buy]
Born on the Cusp
Immaculate Heart 1
Cool Kids Keep
[from Set Free|buy]
Jenny Owen Youngs
Voice on Tape
F*ck Was I (ummm, there's profanity in this one, but if you don't mind, it's pretty amazing)
[from Batten the Hatches|buy]
The Tide that Binds
[and if not for indiechristoph, I never would have heard of them. props.]
[from Oh My God, I'm Not Free|buy]
Open my Bright Eyes
No One Would Riot for Less
I Must Belong Somewhere
[from Cassadaga|buy ($7.99 on amazon)]
"The Industry" by Steve Albini and John Vanderslice
1. The infamous Steve Albini rant addressed to aspiring bands. Bitter and profound.
2. The fantastic John Vanderslice giving an interview on the future of media and music. (thanks gvsb)
"Whenever I talk to a band who are about to sign with a major label, I alwaysNobody can see what's printed on the contract. It's too far away, and
end up thinking of them in a particular context. I imagine a trench, about
four feet wide and five feet deep, maybe sixty yards long, filled with
runny, decaying shit. I imagine these people, some of them good friends,
some of them barely acquaintances, at one end of this trench. I also imagine
a faceless industry lackey at the other end holding a fountain pen and a
contract waiting to be signed.
besides, the shit stench is making everybody's eyes water. The lackey shouts
to everybody that the first one to swim the trench gets to sign the
contract. Everybody dives in the trench and they struggle furiously to get
to the other end. Two people arrive simultaneously and begin wrestling
furiously, clawing each other and dunking each other under the shit.
Eventually, one of them capitulates, and there's only one contestant left.
He reaches for the pen, but the Lackey says "Actually, I think you need a
little more development. Swim again, please. Backstroke". And he does of
"At some point, the question has to be: Does spending this money do anything for my career in the long-term? Have you ever bought a record because of an ad or a print review? NEVER! You buy a record because someone you trust tells you the new Field Music or Lil' Wayne record is good.The goal for any band should be fostering a career, and on the scale of me and my label, and my band mates, and my manager, that means recouping.
If you aren't profitable,
1. Your crew is going to eventually give up on you.
2. You will lose your autonomy and you'll start doing weird things to make money.
3. You'll have to work. This is a big mistake!
The music will eventually suffer, and therefore your career will eventually suffer..."
Brett Dennen: Surprising Soul
When You Feel It
[from So Much More|buy]
Listening Assignments 4.9.07
The Tide that Left and Never Came Back
[from The Runaway Found|buy]
Advice for Young Mothers to Be
[from Nux Vomica|buy]
The Definitive Linesthroughlines Spring/Summer Road Mix V.1
`1. Broken Social Scene - 7/4 (Shoreline)
`2. Blitzen Trapper - Summertwin
`3. The New Pornographers - Use It
`4. The Changes - When I Wake
`5. Crystal Skulls - No Room for Change
`6. Citizen Cope - Nite Becomes Day
`7. Jamie Lidell - Multiply (in a minor key)
`8. Arcade Fire - Keep the Car Running
`9. Kings of Leon - King of the Rodeo
`10. Modest Mouse - We've Got Everything [mp3]
`11. The Fire Theft - Summertime
`12. Matt Pond PA - Measure 3 [mp3]
`13. Beirut - Elephant Gun
`14. The Kamikaze Hearts - Half of Me
`15. Butch Walker and the Lets Go Out Tonights - Bethamphetamine (Pretty Pretty) [mp3]
`16. The Colour - Devil's Got a Hold of Me
`17. The Format - The First Single (Cause a Scene)
`18. Days Away - God and Mars
`19. The Futureheads - Skip to the End
`20. Ray LaMontagne - Three More Days
The Definitive linesthroughlines Spring/Summer Road Mix V.1 [.zip]
*or your money back
Friday Morning's Regret
On to today's hottness, Friday Morning's Regret. Being that it's Friday morning, I thought it was fitting. I can't wait to buy this record. Gavin Gardiner's deep melancholy voice echoes around the room, accompanied by his acoustic guitar, some piano, cello, violin, harmonica, melodica, a banjo, and probably at least one other strange instrument. This is the missing link between Margot and the Nuclear So and So's and the new Bright Eyes record. This is a good thing and if you're in the right mood, it'll hit you right between the eyes, or another place where you've only felt numbness for as long as you can remember.
The Wooden Sky
The Lonesome Death of Helen Betty Osborne
[from When Lost at Sea|buy]
Back from Iraq
I'm down in Jacksonville, NC to see my brother (Cameron Nelson) who just got back from 6 months in Iraq. I'm unbelievably proud of him and it's amazing to see him and hear about what it's like over there. He also took some incredible pics and I thought I'd share them with you since I'm out of town and can't access my music files.
The Decemberists in Norfolk, VA
Playing to a sold out crowd of 2,000+ despite never having played within 2 hours of Norfolk, the 5-piece sounded as tight as a recording, if only their recordings went to 11. Unlike the Folds show, I didn't care as much that they only played songs from their last two albums because the songs they did play were great choices and the order flowed so well. Of the old stuff, they played "July, July" and "Here I Dreamt I was an Architect" from Castaways and Cutouts, and "The Soldiering Life" from Her Majesty, The Decemberists. That's it. No "Los Angeles, I'm Yours", no "Billy Liar", and certainly no "Red Right Ankle" were to be heard. However, this was made acceptable by stirring renditions of "When the War Came", "The Island, Come and See...", "Yankee Bayonet" (featuring Shara Worden of My Brightest Diamond), "16 Military Wives", and fan-favorite "The Mariner's Revenge" to close out the evening. At the end of "When the War Came", Colin Meloy pulled a Jimmy Page and destroyed his electric guitar in a perfect storm of geek and rockstar. He swung it against the stage, splintering the headstock, then pulled off a string and stepped on the neck. I wish I could afford to do things like that. I'm sure he gets all the girls.
Oddly enough, the only part of the evening I didn't go nuts for was their first song of the encore, a Fleetwood Mac cover that I'm pretty sure 90% of the audience didn't even know. It was proven to be moot when the next (and last) song (Mariner's Revenge) urged the entire audience, including myself, to scream their guts out. The lights came up, the crowd smiled below me, and a cloud of satisfaction hung in the air like a fog of invisible nitrous oxide.
They didn't play my favorite song, so here it is. Close your eyes and we can both get transported somewhere between here and wherever you are. Neither far, nor near. Somewhere in between.
and finally this: another amazing song they didn't play.
After the Bombs [b-side from The Crane Wife|buy]
A Friend Passes...
A little over a year ago we reconnected by chance when she happened to be meeting friends down at the New Belmont on New Years Eve of 2005, the same night I'd booked Hickey Necklace to play the venue. She couldn't believe how I'd grown and we ended up talking about life for about 2 hours. It was surprisingly grand. She'd gone back to school, taken up rowing, lost 120 lbs, and just looked overwhelmingly happy. She wore a striking red dress I never would have imagined her in, sipped rum and cokes and laughed uncontrollably about every other sentence. We did lunch at Ten Top about a month later and talked about girls and boys and astrology and chicken salad and literature. I recommended Chuck Palahniuk (and loaned her Choke) and she recommended Alex Grey (and printed out "The Vast Expanse"). We e-mailed a few times after that. She'd gotten into one of the bands on a CD I'd made and finished Choke the first day she started reading it. She came to see me play a show in Virginia Beach. Mid-March of 2006, she had invited me to her apartment in Ghent for some steak and salad and bade me bring my guitar. I played Mike and the Mechanics' "Silent Running" for her, she loaned me her only copy of Craig Thompson's award-winning graphic novel Blankets, and we agreed to meet up again in a month or so to discuss more books and progress. It was the last time I saw her.
I woke up today to an e-mail from my dad telling me that Devon had taken her own life. Reasons and details unknown. Her last e-mail to me contained the following passage: "I am trying out being my authentic self with the entities to whom I am drawn and enjoying those connections as I walk the path." I hope she found those connections and I hope they were like gold and silver and music and I hope she's in a better place reading this blog over my shoulder. She deserved a lot more than this. Rest in peace, my friend.
Regina Spektor - Field Below (live on BBC Radio)
Listening Assignments 4.2.07
A Classic Education - Stay, Son - I think it goes without saying that the weight of unsolicited musical material in my inbox usually falls on the side of "waste of my time", but every now and again I get something that I click and really get into. Because it's I've included it in the assignments, this is obviously the latter. This is not unlike the new Arcade Fire record sonically but has a more plaintive alto vocal along for the ride. The strings and the dark reverb are almost theatrical. [from s/t EP|info]
Tobias Hellkvist - Step Aside - You'll hear immediate Iron and Wine influences, but less low-fi and more pristine. This is the song that would be playing through those too-little speakers on the tour bus through heaven. [from Transports|info]
*for probably the first assignments ever, if you're interested in buying any of these songs, you're probably up a creek. The first two aren't even released yet and not even available for pre-order yet. The second two are from other countries, in addition to being reproduced in extremely short-run quantities (in this case, zero and 200). So enjoy, tell your friends about the songs and the site and godspeed. ~ drew
Chet Baker Sings and Plays...
Someone to Watch Over Me
Let's Get Lost
[from Chet Baker Sings and Plays...|buy]