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Friday, July 31, 2009

CD Review: The Lovely Feathers

The Lovely Feathers are anything but new to the music scene. Originally from Montreal (yes, they are another Canadian-indie band) the band got its first big break by touring with Metric. They would later go on to tour with other groups like Tokyo Police Club, Tapes n' Tapes, The Cribs, Islands, Dr. Dog, Spinto Band, The Sounds, and The Most Serene Republic.

I got this CD in my email a couple weeks ago, and I won't lie, I just kind of brushed it aside. I downloaded it and figured that I would get to it eventually. Well I gave Fantasy of the Lot a listen the other night, and I loved it.

Fantasy of the Lot was recorded in Montreal’s Studio Plateau with Dan Lagace (Stars, Dears, Death from Above). It features 11 new tracks written while the four members juggled various day jobs, budgets, break-ups, label changes, members relocating, and all the ups and downs in between. The result is a revealing, sincere twee-pop record which sweeps over you with quirky vocal harmonies that are complimented by the pleasing synth tones and razor sharp guitar riffs.

The high energy of lead singer Mark Kupfert’s vocal harmonies throughout his band’s thoughtful sounds, manically intertwine inside keyboard-synths that play within catchy pop songs. The album has a definite Anglo-pop feel to it. Elements of twee and Brit pop weave together to make some enjoyable, upbeat music.

Songs like the album opener "Lowiza" surge along with tight, efficient guitar riffs.

Lowiza by The Lovely Feathers

The record offers a more level pace, but one that is more enjoyable. Instead of a few songs that dominate your playlist the band offers up a record that demands a complete listen. The record is full of scintillating synth pop, and still offers up some sure fire hits.

Their third album, Fantasy of the Lot, was released in Canada on June 2nd, but it won't be released in the U.S. till August 18th.

01 Lowiza
02 Long Walks
03 Fad
04 Gifted Donald
05 Finders Fee
06 Fantasy of the Lot
07 Family That Doesn't Know the Game
08 Ossified Home
09 Argotaker
10 Loading Dock
11 Vaulted Documents

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Road Trip: Maryland

Just when young, disaffected males had cornered the market on angsty yowling, Velocity Girl – a group of sun-drenched, pop-rock heroes – emerged.

Velocity Girl, an up-tempo, female-fronted, indie rock band that formed in 1989 in College Park, Maryland, took its name from a Primal Scream B-side. They started out on an indie label but they eventually became a band that went big for a short period of time, creating buzz in the early to mid-’90s by marrying a blend of shoegazer guitar sludge with pixie-pop vocal melodies.

The lineup consisted of vocalist Sarah Shannon along with Archie Moore, Jim Spellman, Kelly Riles, and Brian Nelson. Dripping her sweet, wiry alto over tinny, feedback-laden guitars, Shannon charmed fans by commanding the middle ground between straight-up garage rock and saccharine twee pop.

While much 1990s rock music featured an abrasive vocal and instrumental style, Velocity Girl's sound, especially post-1993, was more melodic and typically featured "clean" (non-distorted) electric guitar sounds and two-part harmonies. Though Velocity Girl was fronted by lead singer Sarah Shannon, they often featured female/male vocals, sometimes simultaneously. In the group's recordings, Shannon's voice had a light, airy quality with a slight vibrato.

Being signed to Sub Pop in the early ’90s meant grinding, angst-ridden wailing, and Velocity Girl’s melancholy Catherine Wheel-meets-the-Smiths meditations like “Crazy Town” didn’t exactly fit that demo, no matter how hard the muddy production on their first album, Copacetic, tried to bury the pop in the mix.

Crazy Town by Velocity Girl

Their first singles were released on the Slumberland Records label. They would soon join the Sub Pop label, releasing three full-length recordings: Copacetic (1993), Simpatico (1994), and Gilded Stars and Zealous Hearts (1996). 1993’s Copacetic was, at the time, the second-highest seller in Sub Pop history behind Nirvana’s Bleach, helping to nudge the label out of its rather snug-fitting niche and giving a generation of young female rock fans a strong role model.

Velocity Girl disbanded in October 1996.

Honorable Mention:
16 Minus 71 by Avec

Thinking of a band from Maryland that I should know? Leave it in the comments section!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

New Arctic Monkeys: "Crying Lightning" Music Video

Why yes, it's another music video. Watch the Arctic Monkey's "Crying Lightning" music video below.

Is it August yet? I'm totally ready to go buy Humbug right now!

Monday, July 27, 2009

New Jack's Mannequin: "Swim" Music Video

Look what I found - a new music video from Jack's Mannequin!

It's for the track "Swim" off of their newest album, The Glass Passenger. Directed by Steven Murahsige, the video features friends and family of the band as well as fans and their artwork they designed for the video.

It's a simple song with a simple message. Love it!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

For the Readers

So I open my email and what do I find? Well, as part of the MOG Music Network I get all of these little updates every week. And here was this week's update:

If you can't read that, it says that Ruined By MTV came in third place this week for top gains in unique visitors. For that category alone, the site went from 183 unique visitors to 561. That's a 307% change. And if that weren't enough, the site came in fifth place for top gains in page views per week, going from only 321 views to 1,182 page views - that's a 368% change.

I'm amazed, and I just wanted to say thank you. It's nice to know someone is listening.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

We Got You Covered: "DARE"

I love the Gorilliaz and I love this track by Melpo Mene. DARE is a great song in general, and the cover isn't bad either!

DARE by Melpo Mene


Thursday, July 23, 2009

Kleerup: "Until We Bleed"

So I've been listening to Andreas Kleerup's song "Untill We Bleed," an amazing track that features Lykke Li, a whole lot in the past week.

Kleerup's music isn't exactly easy to come by in the U.S., especially if what you're looking for is this latest album. The album - released last year in Europe but getting a U.S. release July 28th on Astralwerks - has already struck gold overseas with singles like "With Every Heartbeat," a chart-topping collaboration with Swedish pop diva Robyn, and "Until We Bleed," a sleek, moody piece of electro-pop featuring vocals by Lykke Li.

Depressing lyrics about bad breakups and toxic relationships don't usually make for good dance songs, but the Swedish producer has somehow managed to defy this rule on his self-titled albumKleerup. Somehow the electronic sound makes everything seem almost warm, cheery, and playful.

"Until We Bleed" is - just simply put - a fabulous song. Li's performance, which is raspy, wounded, and utterly haunting. "I'm naked / I'm numb / I'm stupid / I'm staying / And if Cupid's got a gun, then he's shootin'," she sings against a lush backdrop of synth beats and sweeping string arrangements by composer Mikael Karlsson.

Untill We Bleed feat. Lykke Li by Kleerup

Maybe it's the beat, but for me this song manages to be incredibly soothing while giving me the distinct impression that the there is something rather somber and gloomy luring just around the corner. Either way, Lykke Li makes a frail yet powerful performance and Kleerup turns out a damn catchy song.

Give it a listen, you’ll be hooked.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Ironically the video is from MTV...

There really is no excuse for this. Supposedly, however, it'll be part of a big, new campaign for Coca-Cola.

This commercial is going to be so overplayed it's going to kill me. I bet everyone had a lot of fun making it, but I don't ever want to watch it again.

Hopefully this will also be my first and last post that labels "Fall Out Boy."

Monday, July 20, 2009

The Road Trip: Delaware

So many of you have probably heard of the Spinto Band, but I'm going to post about them anyway. Not only are they a good underrated band, but hey (I'll be honest) I can't really find any other bands from Delaware that I'm crazy about. Hopefully someone will prove me wrong and leave a band in the comments section :)

So yes, the Spinto Band is certainly more well known. Not only have they been around (as in actually heard by a larger audience) since the early 2000s, but they have also toured with bands such as The Strokes, Art Brut, the Kooks, and the Arctic Monkeys (and yes, subsequently the are far better known in the UK then the US). Not bad, especially when you're coming from Delaware!

After eight years and seven self-released albums, the Spinto Band is in the prime vein of musical prowess. An indie pop group whose electronica-tinged tunes nod to Pavement, Of Montreal, and Field Music, the Spinto Band formed in 1996.

The Spinto Band has a great ability to interlace rich, textured guitars, unconventional orchestration and multiple-part vocal harmonies into exciting new avenues of indie-pop. The music is at once outlandish, kinetic and luminous, while still restrained in a way that pays homage to the classic pop song.

Summer Grof by The Spinto Band

With rich guitars, and multiple-part vocal harmonies, the Spinto Band’s repertoire is indie perfection. It’s quirky, energetic, radiant, and aptly engaging.

Thinking of a band from Delaware that I should know? Leave it in the comments section!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

We Got You Covered: "Poker Face"

There have been remixes with Kid Cudi, Kanye West, and Common. There have been covers by Daughtry and (more importantly) Weezer.

Why is the world obsessed with Poker Face? Who knows. But if you're interested, here's another take on it.
Poker Face (cover) by Obra Squara

What can I say? She's just fierce!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Want to Hear the Dodos Album Right Now?

Well you can!

The Dodos have a new album, Time to Die, which will be released September 15. But it turns out you can (legally!) hear the entire album right now!

Frenchkiss (who is releasing the album) launched a new website that streams the album for free. In a video on the site, singer/guitarist Meric Long explains: "We want you to hear it, and we want you to feel it."

And though the physical LP's September 15 U.S. release date remains the same (it's out August 31 in the UK), the digital release date has been moved way up, to July 27 in the UK and July 28 in the U.S. For a week, the album will be available for digital download in the U.S. exclusively on Amazon.

Stream not good enough? Well you can download "Fables," a cheerily psychedelic acoustic banger right now
Fables by The Dodos

Enjoy the song and the stream!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

More Solo Projects...

This time, though, it'll be Alec Ounsworth, the leading man of Clap Your Hands Say Yeah!

On October 20, Anti- Records will release Ounsworth's solo debut, Mo Beauty. It was recorded in New Orleans with a murderer's row of Big Easy veterans backing him up: George Porter, Jr. of the Meters, Stanton Moore of Galactic, Robert Walter of Greyboy Allstars, and R&B institution Al "Carnival Time" Johnson, among many others.

I'm happy to hear it. Then there'll be more touring :D


01 Modern Girl (... With Scissors)
02 Bones in the Grave
03 Holy, Holy, Holy Moses (Song for New Orleans)
04 That Is Not My Home (After Bruegel)
05 Idiots in the Rain
06 South Philadelphia (Drug Days)
07 What Fun.
08 Me and You, Watson
09 Obscene Queen Bee #2
10 When You've No Eyes

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Road Trip: New Jersey

Lima Research Society. (yes, the period is intentional) is a three-piece progressive pop band from New Jersey consisting of the mysterious "researchers" Ellen, Michael, and Lima.

Lima Research Society creates tightly-woven, energetic pop rock that adventures into experimental and indie rock territories with raw talent and fascinating results. They take a whole mess of influences - indie rock, prog, psychedelia, disco, 60s girl groups, synth pop (and on and on) - and they somehow put them all together.

Their debut album Don't Give Up, Don't Get Down was released in February. Although I like just about every song on this album, some of the stand out tracks include the catchy, driving pop song "Our Nature is Relentess," the Black Sabbath-sounding rocker "Giant Moth - The Beauty of Things," and the jangly track "A Boy and His Genius."

Our Nature is Relentless by Lima Research Society.

Lima Research Society. harkens back to those twisted, slow nerve action days. They set their imagination to music, and I love it! Just go visit their wonderful world sometime - I think you'll love it too.

Honorable Mentions:
Fire on the Bridge and the Tunnel Below by The Static Jacks
My Time Outside the Womb by Titus Andronicus
The Afternoon Passed Like a Summer Cloud by Glad Hearts

Thinking of a band from New Jersey that I should know? Leave it in the comments section!

Julian Casablancas: Phrazes for the Young

I don't know if I entirely understand what's going on here, but I like it.

The Strokes haven't released an album since 2006, but frontman Julian Casablancas has kept busy nonetheless. Whether he's collaborating with Gnarls Barkley mastermind Danger Mouse or the guys from Saturday Night Live, the line "feat. Julian Casablancas" has cropped up regularly on iTunes. And now the garage rock poster boy is branching out on his own with Phrazes for the Young, his debut solo album out this fall.

For those keeping track, that makes him the fourth Stroke to go solo, following guitarist Albert Hammond, Jr., bassist Nikolai Fraiture (Nickel Eye), and drummer Fabrizio Moretti (Little Joy).

Casablancas previews the disc on his website with a short film (watch it below) that cryptically proclaims, "Drunkenness is cowardice. Sobriety is loneliness," alongside a series of zany special effects of city skylines and bee hives. Some futuristic synth music plays in the background.

Casablancas recorded the album's eight songs over the past year with producer Jason Leder (Elvis Costello, Jenny Lewis). The full tracklist hasn't been released, but accoding to, titles include "River of Break Lights," "Glass," and "Ludlow St.", not to be pushy or anything, but whatever happened to that new Stokes album that was supposedly in the works? I hear they're stil working on it, but who knows now. Casablancas will be touring to promote his new album, that's for sure, and it's not as if the other members of the Strokes are idly waiting for him.

We'll have to wait and see...

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Technical Difficulties...

Well, at least that's not my computer.

My apologies. The internet at my house hadn't been working since last Saturday morning, but it's finally back up as of about five minutes ago! More posts this week to make up for it...promise :)

Saturday, July 11, 2009

We Got You Covered: "Time to Pretend"

I love this song, and MGMT's original has been stuck in my head all week. It's a pretty cover for sure, but I'll admit that it lacks the intensity of the original. But I still like it. Plus it's interesting to hear covers. And what I will admit is that it's a great version if you're just driving around on a sunny day (even if it's one of the very few I've experienced this summer).

Time to Pretend (Cover) by The Power Cords

Enjoy the song, and enjoy your weekend!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

5 Drummers Start New Band...Called Drummer

Hey, it works.

That band is called Drummer and it features Black Keys stick man Patrick Carney (on bass) along with four other Ohio cymbal crashers: Teeth of the Hydra's Jamie Stillman (guitar), Beaten Awake's Jon Finley (vocals, guitar), Houseguest/Six Parts Seven's Stephen Clements (keyboards, vocals), and Ghostman and Sandman's Greg Boyd on, yes, drums.

So this band is literally made up of all drummers, and I find it fascinating. The drummer never gets that much credit either. I'll be honest - the first drummer that comes to mind for me is Travis Barker (don't worry, others come to mind too, but I'll admit that he was the first). At the end of the day, drummers - who, let's face it, they have a very important job that I could never do - are overlooked. People look to the singer, and then - if they're a fan of the band - then maybe the guitarist or a keyboardist. Heck, usually someone will know the bass player's name over the drummer's.

Well these guys have changed that. No more overlooked drummers! They created eleven songs of classic, feel-good rock. The five members of Drummer are your kind of people, and their debut album, Feel Good Together, is your kind of music.

Feel Good Together by Drummer

Drummer’s debut album, Feel Good Together, will be available September 29th from Audio Eagle Records. As they say on their myspace, "Whatever you need to do, it can probably wait ‘til tomorrow. For now, put the record on, sit down, and let’s just feel good. Together."


01 Lottery Dust
02 Feel Good Together
03 Serious Encounters
04 Mature Fantasy
05 Every Nineteen Minutes
06 Good Golly
07 Connect to Lounge
08 Buddyscapes
09 Diamonds to Shake
10 Summer Control

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The Cribs: Ignore the Ignorant

You might want to head over to The Crbs official website right now! They have the song "We Were Aborted," the first track from their fourth album Ignore the Ignorant up as a free download. But it's only available through tomorrow (July 8) till 10 AM GMT, or 5 AM EST. You'll have to submit your email address to get the download link, but it's totally worth it.

Ignore the Ignorant is their first album as a four piece band with the relatively new addition of guitarist Johnny Marr, and I'm really excited to hear how his sound has influenced the Cribs new album. Sadly I'll have to wait till late 2009 or early 2010 to know (or maybe I'll just get an import - it's released September 7th in the U.K.

But hey, there was that free download from their website!

Not surprisingly, Marr's guitar work on "We Were Aborted" ascends to peaks never before reached by the gritty, no-nonsense Jarmans, whose excellent but unrefined pub punk anthems leaned more on rowdy bravado than technical skill. Marr's sprightly lead riff recalls the mid-'90s indie rock. I like what I hear!

The tracklist:
1. We Were Aborted
2. Cheat On Me
3. We Share The Same Skies
4. City Of Bugs
5. Hari Kari
6. Last Year's Snow
7. Emasculate Me
8. Ignore The Ignorant
9. Save Your Secrets
10. Nothing
11. Victim Of Mass Production
12. Stick To Yr Guns

CD Review: E-603

Even though I am still reviewing for the station, it's been a while since I posted a CD Review (since February - yikes!). Thought I would change that...

After a yearlong wait, song-masher supreme E-603 has finally dropped his new album Torn Up. The highly anticipated sophomore release came out just the other day and I keep putting it on repeat. You can get a free copy at his website, and if you decide to buy the album (it’s pay what you want) you could be expecting a hand written love letter and a lock of hair from E-603 himself! (Haha and I’m not even kidding).

He now has two albums out (the first being Something for Everyone) and both are 100% free. The songs on Torn Up are longer than on Something for Everyone, but the tracks are still all mixed so that you can listen to the entire album straight through and it will sound like a single track.

Torn Up is a perfect example of some awesome culture jamming. Ethan (aka E-603) is able to sample sounds in some of the most creative ways. The mixing for this album makes everything play in a wonderfully constructed smooth progression; you’re not going to want to put this album on shuffle.

The second track, “Lights Out” is pretty solid, and from there, the mixing continues, with Ethan being unafraid to slow things down, using soul and older R&B instrumentals, and then switch back over seamlessly to having Ratatat backing up DMX on the transition from “The Right Kind” to “If You Wanna.”

Overall, the album is another great effort, and one in which E-603 showcases his skills with both chopping samples and his subtleness with samples in the background (listen for Crazy Town's “Butterfly” at the beginning of “Shake Your Rump”).

But who is better, E-603 or Girl Talk? Be prepared to hear that argument a lot in the future. Since E-603 is an up and coming mashup artist he will never escape comparisons to Girl Talk. That being said, if you love Girl Talk then you would be a fool not to jump on the E-603 party train. This album sounds and flows just like Girl Talk and just like Girl Talk there are so many killer moments. The only problem I have with E-603 (and Girl Talk) is because each track is always changing it never hangs long enough on those moments you love. I think it will be hard for E-603 to ever match Girl Talk in terms of showmanship or fan base, but musically, he’s right up there with him.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Hercules and the Love Affair will help you get Sidetracked

Are you an impatient child too? Well if you are, then that's okay. CLICK HERE to preview a 20 minute sampler from Hercules & Love Affair's newest album Sidetracked. If you're from the U.S. you won't be able to get it till July 13th, so you might want to bookmark that page.

Yeah, you're welcome!

For the tracklist/other information about the new album, click here.

Friday, July 3, 2009

We Got You Covered: "All My Friends"

I love LCD Soundsystem's song "All My Friends" - it's just so simple and fun, how can you not fall in love with it? It just hits you right there. That being said, Franz Ferdinand's version is a great cover. I'm not saying it's better (I know a lot of LCD fans HATE the cover) but I still really like both. Either way it's what the songs about and the beautiful lyrics behind it.

They're equally amazing tracks, so I'm going to give you both. It's completely neccesary, trust me.

All My Friends by LCD Soundsystem
All My Friends (cover) by Franz Ferdinand

I wouldn't trade one stupid decision for another 5 years of life either ;)

Thursday, July 2, 2009

The Road Trip: New York

Without a question there is far too much music coming out of New York, especially, New York City. (I'll have the same problem when I'm writing about California, but so it goes). That being said, I found some bands that I really liked and wanted to share with you. Though I will admit there are a LOT of other options out there. I realize this, but I want to make sure that you realize this too.

And now on to Tortured Soul...

Born of the simple yet adventurous belief that modern dance music can be performed completely live, Brooklyn’s Tortured Soul packs dance floors with their unique live performances, and their music pushes the genre boundaries of soul, dance, and pop. Combining elements of old soul and funk with a modern dancefloor sensibility, Tortured Soul’s style is both an echo of the past and a challenge to the future.

2004 saw the release of their highly praised first full-length album Introducing Tortured Soul which collected their early 12” singles with some new studio gems. They have also released numerous EPs. In early March 2009 Tortured Soul dropped their newest album Did You Miss Me on the band’s own newly formed TSTC Records.

The track "Did You Miss Me" off the album of the same name is by far my favorite song.

Did You Miss Me by Tortured Soul

Did You Miss Me itself is a great album. It winds its way through infectious disco grooves, heartfelt raw soul, and lyrical themes that range from melancholic love, infidelity, and party-going mirth.

I'm glad that I stumbeled on this band, and I hope you enjoyed them too!

Honorable Mentions:
S.O.S. by Earl Greyhound
No One Ever Dies Young by Favourite Sons
Stars Still Pretty by Aeroplane Pagent

All of the British spellings are a bit ironic since all of these bands are from NYC and I was trying to post more American music...

Thinking of a band from New York that I should know? Leave it in the comments section!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Hello July!

Here's to another great month of music! Hopefully I'll hae more sunny days to enjoy them!

Note: the release dates are all for the U.S.

July 7th
Big D and the Kids Table – Fluent in Stroll
Chris Garneau – El Radio
Discovery - LP
Kiss Kiss – The Meek Shall Inherit What’s Left
La Roux – la Roux (Import)
Minus 5 – Killingsworth
Oneida – Rated O
Son Volt – American Central Dust
Stellastar - Civilized
The Low Anthem – Oh My God, Charlie Darwin
The Rural Alberta Advantadge – Hometowns
Tiny Vipers – Life On Earth
We Were Promised Jetpacks – These Four Walls
Wonderlick – Topless at the Arco Arena

July 14th
500 Days of Summer – Music from the Motion Picture (Soundtrack)
Crosby Loggins – Time to Move
Miss Derringer – Winter Hill
Sick Puppies – Tri-Polar
Summer Cats – Songs for Tuesdays
The Dead Weather – Horehound
The Killer and the Star – The Killer and the Star
The Most Serene Republic - …And the Ever Expanding Universe

July 21st
Portugal. The Man – The Satanic Satanist
The Fiery Furnaces – I’m Going Away
Wheat – White Ink, Black Ink
Wye Oak – The Knot

July 28th
Howling Bells – Radio Wars