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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

New Music Tuesday: The Shimmies

This New Music Tuesday you have got to check this band out! They are a rockin' indie garage group from California, and they're called the Shimmies.

Their new release, titled To All Beloved Enemies, is like a wonderful combination of Grizzly Bear meets Fleet Foxes meets a Jeff Buckley-fronted Band Of Horses. High-arching guitar build-ups, resonating vocals and drum skins hit like they’re going out of fashion make their To All Beloved Enemies sound like a truly genuine and emotional take on well-written rock music.

The four-piece indie rock band consists of brothers Jimmy Galloway (guitar and vocals), Sean Galloway (guitar and vocals), Stephen Galloway (bass) and friend Jack Gingerich (drums). The band describe their music as “home-school rock”, with big emphasis on home and rock.

Check out their track "Judas" below:
The Shimmies - "Judas"

The song is wonderfully layered with beautiful harmonies, piano and guitars with some great distorted riffing and solos.

Don't forget, if you want to check out all the new music released this month take a look at Hello July!

Monday, July 26, 2010

New Blonde Redhead

Yay! New music from Blonde Redhead!

The New York trio will be releasing new music this fall with their album Penny Sparkle. The album was recorded between Stockholm and New York with production duo Van Rivers and the Subliminal Kid (Fever Ray, Glasser) with Alan Moulder.

You can download the album opener, "Here Sometimes," from the band’s website now.

Keep an eye out, the new album will hit shelves September 14th.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Lee Butcher

I don't know about where you are, but it has been raining a lot in Massachusetts! Well, this seems like perfect rainy day music to me.

Lee Butcher - "The Acrobat"

Maybe I've just been in a folk mood lately, but something about "The Acrobat," a track from Butcher's newest debut All in Good Time really hits the spot.


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

New Music Tuesday: Frazey Ford

If you want to see the other options feel free to peruse Hello July!, but this week you definitely should check out Frazey Ford's new release Obadiah.

If the name sounds familiar, that's because the singer-songwriter is a member of The Be Good Tanyas. And if you’re a fan of the new folk sounds of the Vancouver group, then you’ll absolutely love Ford's debut. Frazey’s voice can handle soulful melodies and easily offset twang and back porch sing-alongs. Without a doubt, Obadiah is a collection of charming and soulful songs. She’s more than just another talented folk singer.

And you can download the single "Firecracker" below for free!

It's just folk the way it should be!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

What Would You Do With Only 1000 Minutes of Music?

This is another cool thing to enjoy on your (hopefully) relaxing Sunday.

The website is called Tympanogram, and it's creators, Andy and Dave, had one cool idea.
The idea is simple – we’re both stranded with an mp3 player that never needs charging and can never be updated again. These players hold exactly 1000 Minutes of music – bit rates and file size don’t matter.
It must be hard (but fun) to do! I can't imagine only taking 1000 minutes of music. My iPod currently holds weeks of music in it, let alone minutes! Neither of them have decided what they will do with all of their minutes yet, so you can still follow along with Andy's list or Dave's list (or you know, both).

Monday, July 12, 2010

Cruel Black Dove

I really love this song! It's chock full of blues, a crunchy rift, and thick layers. It's been stuck in my head for days!

Cruel Black Dove - "Love Song"

Hopefully you enjoy it too.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Fun Theory

This is cute in so many ways!

We have one of these at the Museum of Science in Boston, but I wish it was everywhere (like in the subway) too. It was always my favorite part of the museum as a little kid.

Check out for a lot of other great videos (my other music related favorite being the Scratch Mat. As the video creators put it, "Most people enter a building without cleaning their shoes, often resulting in dirt all over the floor.
Could this nuisance be removed by making the activity fun to do? We think so.") The site's actually pretty cool. It's dedicated to the thought that something as simple as fun is the easiest way to change people’s behaviour for the better.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

A Letter to Kele Okereke

Dear Kele,

How are you? I hope all is well. Now, I understand that you are going solo. I understand that “Kele” is not Bloc Party, but I still don’t know what to do here. I’ve been with you since the start with the Bloc Party EP, welcomed your crunchy guitars in Silent Alarm, felt that incredible emotional connection in A Weekend in the City, and I even stuck by you through Intimacy when fans said that Bloc Party had moved in a new direction (and not necessarily in the best of ways).

Kele, I'm not totally against the more electronic direction. I think it's important for you to do it, but I still don’t know exactly what to think with The Boxer. And although I understand that this is a solo album and has absolutely NOTHING to do with Bloc Party (and I am glad that you are is experimenting with your own sound), I can’t help but have certain Bloc Party-esque expectations.

In a way at the end of the day I’m glad that you got this out of your system. I guess I’ve been expecting this, Kele. You’ve been acting out for a while now. Somehow you went from guitar frontman to king of the dance floor. I saw the signs, but I let them slide because at the time the crunchy guitar rifts and the electronic elements worked. In almost every interview I’ve read you always talk about how you love dance music and how you wanted to release a dance album. (That and that “I never listen to indie anymore, I find it boring.” Pot. Kettle. Black. But we can save that for another time).

From the opening 10 seconds of “Walk Tall
” I realized that we needed to sit down and talk. It was a cry for help from the start. I’m listening to the lyrics, Kele, and I understand. “Rule number three, forget where you've been,/ Cut your ties to the past and wave them goodbye.” But maybe that’s not the best road to go down, friend. And either way, let’s face it: you’ll never fully be able to separate yourself from Bloc Party.

My favorite thing about you has always been your voice, Kele, and what do you do? In “On the Lam” you change the pitch of your voice (your beautiful voice!) into something unrecognizable and processed. The emotion feels gone. Stick to what you know, and we both know what an amazing voice you have. Like in “Tenderoni” ou really showcased your vocals, but I liked the music better when Bodyrox did it.

I feel like “New Rules” had promise, but you should have kept it simple. On one hand the plucked strings are beautiful, but the repeating sample of a robotic telephone operator repeating the phrase “please hang up and try again” ruined it for me. “Rise” could have been a standout track as well. The song used dance beats without being cliché, and then, out of nowhere, the gem is ruined by female vocals chanting “I’m taking over.” Kele, you could have handled those vocals!

As for “All The Things I Could Never Say
” - well I honestly don’t know what to think about it. The song has some beautiful layering, but I don’t know how to feel about the female vocals. Maybe it’ll grow on me.

Kele, I’m sorry for being so negative. I hope you aren’t mad at me and we’re still good friends. All these comments aren’t meant to be harsh or mean that I hate the album. I actually enjoyed “On The Other Side.” It was a win win really – I still got a forceful guitar rift (even if it is sampled) and you got to make a dance track with exotic percussion like claves and agogo mixed with a rumbling synth bass. “Yesterday's Gone
” is another track that meets me somewhere halfway with the synth melody and the beat shifting to an R&B pattern. To be honest, I think it would have fit perfectly on Intimacy.

I also really thought you did a great job with “Unholy Thoughts.” The brooding track made me think of “Hunting for Witches,” one of my favorites. And then I also really enjoyed “Everything You Wanted,” probably because it also sounded similar to Bloc Party. This could even be the second single! I’m digging the kiddie piano, that’s for sure, and the chorus is simple but perfect. “Everything You Wanted” really brings Boxer's best elements together all at once: mournful lyrics, a massive chorus, and real feelings that work with the electronic background.

I can tell you had fun with The Boxer, Kele, that’s for sure. It seems like you were able to do all of the things stylistically that you were trying to fit into the last Bloc Party album. But at the same time each song was such a hodgepodge mish-mash of styles and influences. It feels like you were trying to cram way too many (electronic) genres into one record. You had a rave with your computer, sampling synthesized backing yelps, annoying samples of automated phone messages, and every other shiny plaything in the toybox. But can we go back to Bloc Party now?

Hopefully by getting the chance to finally make the dance album that you always wanted you will be able to create a more focused Bloc Party album in the future. I know that I would sincerely appreciate it.

Forever Yours,

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

New Music Tuesday: The Chap

It's the first official Tuesday of July! How exciting! To check out all of the albums being released this month check out Hello July! But if you don't want the overwhelming list, well New Music Tuesday is here to help you figure out which album you must must must listen to for the week. And for this week you should really check out Well Done Europe by the Chap.

I'll admit that I had never heard of the band before, but when it comes to the Chap's new release Well Done Europe, well I am liking what I am hearing! As the Chap puts it, "[the album] contains 12 top notch pop tunes about love and death and bars and arts funding and stuff like that. there are also several i-phone solos and at least one guitar solo." Ahaha I love that there is an iPhone solo. I'll have to find out which track that's on.

Check out their catchy single "We Work in Bars" below:
"We Work in Bars" by The Chap

It's the group's fourth album, so I'll have to check out their earlier stuff as well. Enjoy!

Well Done Europe Tracklisting:
01 We'll See To Your Breakdown
02 Even Your Friend
03 We Work In Bars
04 Obviously
05 Gimme Legs
06 Well Done You
07 Nevertheless, The Chap
08 Pain Fan
09 Torpor
10 Maroccan Nights
11 Few Horoscope
12 Chalet Chalet

Monday, July 5, 2010

New Music From Carl Broemel

This is exciting news!

Apparently Carl Broemel (guitarist from My Morning Jacket) is going to release a solo album! His solo debut, titled All Birds Say will hit shelves August 31st via ATO Records.

The album will be a contemporary folk album, feauting instruments like the auto-harp, pedal steel, and dobro. What makes For All Birds Say even more interesting is the fact that Carl Broemel's father, Robert Broemel (a former musician in the Indianapolis Symphony) contributes clarinet, baritone sax, and bassoon to the record.

Tracklisting For All Birds Say:
01 All Birds Say
02 Life Leftover
03 In The Garden
04 Carried Away
05 Enough
06 Heaven Knows
07 Questions
08 Different People
09 Sunday Driver
10 On The Case
11 Retired

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Hello July!

Holy shiz, there will be a lot of releases this July! I don't know what I'm most excited for, there are so many options. Here's to another great month of music!

Note: Unless noted, the release dates are all for the U.S.

July 6th
Au Revoir Simone - Night Light
Fol Chen - Part II: The New December
How To Destroy Angels [Trent Reznor, Mariqueen Maandig and Atticus Ross] - How To Destroy Angels [EP]
Kelis - Flesh Tone
Ed Kowalczyk [Live] - Alive
Kylie Minogue - Aphrodite
Robert Pollard - Moses On A Snail
The Chap - Well Done Europe
Thieves Like Us - Again & Again

July 13th
Admiral Riley - I Heart California
Crowded House - Intriguer
Danger Mouse And Sparklehorse - Dark Night Of The Soul
The Love Language - Libraries
Tony Lucca - Rendezvous With The Angels
The Maine - Black & White
M.I.A. - /\/\/\Y/\
Mystery Jets - Serotonin
Panda Bear - Tomboy
P.S. I Love You - Starfield
School Of Seven Bells - Disconnect From Desire
Sun Kil Moon - Admiral Fell Promises
Wavves - King of the Beach

July 20th
Sheryl Crow - 100 Miles From Memphis
Department Of Eagles - Archive 2003-2006
Frazey Ford - Obadiah
The High Confessions [Sonic Youth drummer Steve Shelley, Chris Connelly of Ministry, Revolting Cocks] - Turn Lead Into Gold With High Confessions
Honor Bright - Action! Drama! Suspense!
Lower Dens - Twin-Hand Movement
Max Richter - Infra
These United States - What Lasts

July 27th
Best Coast - Crazy for You
Dean & Brita - 13 Most Beautiful...Songs for Andy Warhol's Screen Tests
Menomena - Mines
Red Wanting Blues - These Magnificent Miles
The Shimmies - To All Beloved Enemies