Friday, December 25, 2009

The Friday Thing: Last Christmas by Arctic Monkeys

You all, those who read, know that I saw Arctic Monkeys earlier this month and thought this performance was great. I know I posted this same video in that review, but hey, today is Christmas. Last year, my Christmas Friday Thing was Arctic Monkeys Christmas message, and quite frankly I can't think of a better way to show holiday spirit than through Arctic Monkeys. Merry Christmas everyone, and if you don't celebrate, happy holidays!

Last Christmas

As a special treat-here's Julian Casablancas performing "I Wish it was Christmas Today" on Jimmy Fallon

I Wish it Was Christmas Today

Sunday, December 20, 2009

LINES OF ORATION PRESENTS: The Top 20 Songs of 2009

I've been attempting to pay very close attention to new music this year, and here's my top 20 of '09:
#20. Actor out of Work by St. Vincent-I heard this song a while back, and I really think she's got something going. I don't know much about Annie Clark (except that she's a former member of the Polyphonic Spree), but "Actor Out of Work", with its upbeat and very electronic sounding guitars with her really sounding like she's gone 'mad', convinced me to keep an eye out for future releases.
#19. Nothing to Worry About by Peter, Bjorn, and John-"Nothing to Worry About" is the epitome of weird. It's nothing like their crowning achievement "Young Folks", in fact it's like it's a different band. The chorus is so violently annoying and it almost sounds like they are trying too hard to make it strange, but I love it. The clapping/drums along with the verse have been grilled so far into my head that I cannot deny its wonderful oddness.
#18. Games for Days by Julian Plenti-Interpol have been on a break for a while, and Paul Banks naturally decided to pursue a side project he entitled Julian Plenti. I only bought the album recently, but I've been living with "Games for Days" for awhile. I love how Paul adds just enough creepiness to his vocals, but what really makes the song for me is that it sounds as though he's trying to create a sound different from Interpol, but not so different that he abandons what he's come to be known for.
#17. Animal by Miike Snow-My local radio station played this song to death thus beating it into my head. I've come to adore it, and it's mix of Genesis-sounding vocals along with a simple synthesizer is just catchy enough to keep it in your head for a few weeks. I mean, to this day I still can't get "I'm still I'm still an animal" out of my brain.
#16. All is Love by Karen O and the Kids-When you saw commercials for Where the Wild Things Are, do you remember hearing the absolutely adorable and cutesy songs that delighted your ears? Well, I do. I don't think it was the song that made me go see the movie, but I will forever associate this song with that lovable movie. It's the cutest song of the year, and if it doesn't make you gush with joy, nothing will.
#15. Sleepyhead by Passion Pit-Passion Pit were deemed the next big thing for 2009 in 2008, and it's this song that made me understand why. I heard it first from the Palm Pixi commercial, and it's the only song I've ever heard in a commercial that I haven't gotten sick of after hearing 40+ times and that hasn't destroyed the song in the process: I actually look forward to seeing the commercial.
#14. Daniel by Bat For Lashes-For some reason, I don't really listen to a lot of female musicians: I don't know why. I really like Natasha Khan's voice in this song. I can't stand it how a lot of the female singers today sound the same, but she seems different. "Daniel" has enough weirdness to it, with the strings and the fantastical aura, that sticks with you and her soft voice fits in really well.
#13. Say Please by Monsters of Folk-I was going through a little Bright Eyes phase when I heard "Say Please" on the radio. It's that song alone that convinced me to buy the album. I love the way the three of them swap vocals and furthur how their distinct voices meld perfectly. The wholesomeness is undeniable (and so are the Traveling Wilburys comparisons) which makes for an all around feel good mood.
#12. In the Flowers by Animal Collective-I pop in Merriweather Post Pavilion for the first time. I'm completely new to them, I've never heard one song by them before this song. It starts off a little slow to me, but I'm quickly intrigued when the vocals come in. Then, the most beautiful magical thing to ever grace my ears comes half way. Happiness and pure joy fills me. The line "then we could be dancing and you'd smile and say I like this song" tells all. To this day, whenever I hear it, shivers rush through me.
#11. Lisztomania by Phoenix-Other than 1901, this, to me, was the second best song from "Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix"; many argue that it's the best. I love the general bright, summery feel it gives, and because I decided to review the album during the summer months, I will forever associate this song with care-free summer days. Also, how could you not love how seemingly composer crazy they are?
#10. Secret Door by Arctic Monkeys-This song was one of the few steps forward, to me, on "Humbug". After the strangely not creative "Dangerous Animals", "Secret Door" comes through like sunlight peaking through window cracks. It is a beautifully arranged piece with a very intriguing structure that builds to a magnificent ending. It's very different from what they've done before (and on the album), but it was definitely a genius work.
#9. Two Medicines by The Dodos-As a whole, "Time to Die" was not a terrible album. Most of the songs were very (sometimes painfully) similiar, but they were well performed. The song that stuck out the most was " Two Medicines". I never listened to a song that embodied the feeling of autumn as well as this one. It's pounding drums and trance-y guitar will make you beyond stoked for the oncoming cold months, not dreadful.
#8. Pretty Visitors by Arctic Monkeys-On "Humbug", there were really only two really brilliant songs: "Secret Door" and "Pretty Visitors". This song came at you like a ton of bricks-from start to finish, it doesn't stop. It's the most upbeat on the album and possibly the heaviest they've ever done. In keeping with the sound of the "Fluorescent Adolescent" single, it's everything I had hoped the album would've sounded like and more.
#7. My Girls by Animal Collective-On my first listen of "Merriweather Post Pavilion", this song was the one song where hours afterward I found myself singing it. Now, after listening to more than half their catalogue, I still think it's a genius song. The layered vocals singing about not caring for material things is way cool of them, but my favorite part remains the absolutely perfect drums and little water-y sound effects. Also, for those who haven't seen-it has by far the best video.
#6. Daylight by Matt and Kim-Sure, like many indie-ish songs this year it was ruined by being in a commercial, but if it weren't for that commercial, I, like many others, probably would have never been introduced to the sunshine-y "Daylight". When Matt and Kim perform, they smile incessantly, and it's almost creepy, but the happiness translates to you even if you can't see them. The bright piano and joyful singing by the end become very reflective, almost melancholy, but it will still never cease to brighten your day.
#5. 1901 by Phoenix-This song is the catchiest song ever made. It will infect your brain, and the only way to cure it is to give in. The slight electronic feel, the guitar lines, and the amazingly catchy lyrics have brought me back to the idea that a basic pop song can be this good. I am very happy for Phoenix that they've made a break through this year, and I guarentee it's thanks to this outstanding song.
#4. My Night with the Prostitute from Marseille by Beirut-For a long time, I was resistant to Beirut. Then, when I saw him do "Nantes" on Later with Jools Holland, my feelings quickly changed. So, earlier this year, when I sat down to review his "March of the Zapotec" EP, my newfound love grew deeper. The 2nd half of the EP was all electronic-y stuff, and it started off with the brilliant "My Night...". It's very different from the usual stuff he does, but his fantastic voice backed by joyful synthesizers only made me want to listen to that EP more and more.
#3. Exogenesis: Symphony, Pt. 1-3 by Muse-Almost a year ago, Muse told us that their new album would be very string oriented. Well, it wasn't, except for the glorious 3 part symphony at the end. Words cannot ever hope to describe how insanely dramatic and intense the Exogenesises are. Even if the album sucked, this stretch would've kept it from terrible ratings. Matt Bellamy is really starting to show his stuff as an orchestrater, for this almost puts his string arrangements found on "Absolution" to shame.
#2. Walkabout by Atlas Sound-As "Two Medicines" did for fall, "Walkabout" is just about the perfect summer song, rivaling "Summertime Clothes" and The Beach Boys. It's so overtly positive and happy, and the sample they use is just out of control delightful. Plus, the vocals are perfect-Bradford Cox and Noah Lennox-could you really get better than that? It puts you in a massively good mood, and for that it's my number two.
#1. Brother Sport by Animal Collective-There's no arguing the fact that this year was Animal Collective's year. The album came out in January, and it was then, before 11 months worth of music was heard, that people deemed it album of the year. I wholeheartedly agree. After the seemingly hundreds of listens I gave the album, I think that "Brother Sport" was the best song. It takes the tone of previous Panda Bear songs like "Chores" and "Derek" with an infectious uplifting mood created by passionate poppy vocals and nonstop synths. The song basically sums up the near perfect album with grace and leaves you with no choice but to listen again, or atleast it leaves me that way.
I hope you liked my list, I worked long and hard on it and put in an uncomfortably large amount of thought. It's very bias, but hey, these are the songs that made up the soundtrack to my 2009.

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Friday Thing: Cornerstone by Arctic Monkeys and Mutha'uckas by Flight of the Conchords

This past week was a very sad week for television shows I watch. It's On with Alexa Chung (I can't even believe myself that I watched it) announced that she was cancelled and will not be returning for another season. Last week however, Alexa had on Arctic Monkeys as a musical guest who performed 'Cornerstone', and I've not enjoyed a performance on her show more than when I saw Phoenix perform. I probably loved it because it was aired the day before I went to see them.


Another bummer was that Flight of the Conchords, the absolutely amazing/quirky New Zealanders, will not be coming back for a 3rd season. I just got finished watching the second season when I heard the news, and that made me very sad. In regards to there discontinuing, this the video for "Mutha'uckas" where Bret and Jemaine show off their rapping skills. It was one of the best songs from season one, and I hope you enjoy!


Thursday, December 17, 2009

The Best Of...

The end of the year is nearing, and so is this wonderful (music-wise atleast) decade. Over the next two weeks, I, like every other music blogger, will be posting my Top 20 songs of '09, my Top 50 music videos of the Decade, and my Top songs of the Decade. I only waited this long because you never know what could happen in the last month-I mean, the greatest album of the decade more than likely wouldn't have come out in December of the last year of the decade, but everyone deserves a chance to be listened to and (possibly) added into someone's list. Hope to see you there.

Also, my lofty plans of having three reviews out by the end of the month was not a lie. I'm working on it!

Saturday, December 12, 2009


On Thursday night, I was fortunate enough to see Arctic Monkeys at Terminal 5 in NYC. The actual concert experience was fairly unsatisfying, but that didn’t detract from the fact that they were absolutely brilliant. The opening act was Screaming Females. As openers go, they were ok, but that’s the last time I’m listening to them. The three of them really know the way around their instruments, and the vocalist/guitarist made the most noise I’ve ever heard (both vocally and instrumentally), but, they were a tad too loud (which got obnoxious) and after three songs, they all started sounding the same. That facct would’ve been fine, except their set was 40 minutes. After they were done and the roadies came on to fix up everything, I noticed the music they were playing: Black Sabbath and George Harrison. The fact that I heard ‘Art of Dying’ by George Harrison really got me so psyched. Then, not a moment too soon, Arctic Monkeys ambled onto the stage and dove right into “Jeweller’s Hands”. Before the show, I hated “Jeweller’s Hands”, but that performance won me over. After the mind-numbingly awesome “Brianstorm” and about half-way through “This House is a Circus”, the crowd really started to get irritating and the whole floor turned into a mosh-pit. It was intense, but not for me. As expected with there earlier stuff, the audience beyond freaked out when they launched through “Still Take You Home”, “I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor”, and “A View From the Afternoon”. The energy pulsed through you like nothing else. The ladder was very well performed, except for the fact that Alex messed up the verse pretty badly. I really don’t understand why, I mean I like the song a lot, but the audience had the heaviest reaction to “Cornerstone”. It was performed even better than the album, but I mean, the audience were less into it than they were for “Pretty Visitors”. All this brings us to the best, and utter highlight of the show: “Fluorescent Adolescent”. The bass for some reason sounded a little weird, like it had an odd poppy sound, but it added to the nice mellow take on it. To the audiences shock and glee, during the “Where did you go?” part, Matt left his drums and began to sing “Last Christmas”. That alone was seriously worth the price of admission and the pain in my back. I mean, everyone was cheering and singing very loudly: it was just fantastic moment! They ended the concert with a short two song encore, which they really could have made longer. As a whole, the concert was worth it. The music was great and very well performed. What I found was that Alex Turner is no longer the ‘star’-Matt Helders out shone them all. On the drums, it says “agile beast”: In describing Matt Helders, that is a serious understatement. He is a complete animal and is sickest drummer I’ve seen live so far! My only problem with the concert is that Terminal 5 was not built for this kind of show. When I went there to see The Shins, it too was sold out, but it was not nearly as crowded. They completely overbooked the place, and the over-extended/massive amount of space dedicated for VIP’s was completely stupid (if you didn’t want to mosh, you had no good place to go). I still loved the concert and I’d firmly suggest seeing Arctic Monkeys when you get the chance for you’ll see one of the best live acts around-just steer clear of the floor.

Jeweller’s Hands
This House is a Circus
Still Take You Home
Potion Approaching
Red Right Hand (Nick Cave Cover)
My Propeller
Crying Lightning
I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor
The View From the Afternoon
If You Were There Beware
Pretty Visitors
Do Me a Favour
Fluorescent Adolescent w/ Matt singing Last Christmas

Secret Door

Fluorescent Adolescent with Matt Helders singing 'Last Christmas'

NOTE: I hope you enjoy. I attended this concert with Ian France from Danish Poet!, so you'll be seeing this review over there soon, possibly with better pictures...maybe a different video. I put up that video because mine didn't come out so well, but I got all that on video plus Secret Door, so maybe I'll put that up later. If your reading this, and you attended either show, what did you think of it?

Friday, December 4, 2009

The Friday Thing: Lisztomania and One Time Too Many by Phoenix

I am a very big advocate/fan of La Blogotheque's 'Take Away Shows'. I really love them and think they create the perfect insight to how a performer does his/her thing. I was very happy to find out yesterday that Phoenix finally did one (which is surprising it took this long being they are from France too). Anyway, they did three: one for '1901', 'Long Distance Call', and this one. I really love how they did it on the top of a bus because not only do you get to see this great performance, but you get to see the streets of Paris too. They seem to have had a good time doing their thing, and I hope you enjoy!

1901 and One Time Too Many

Saturday, November 28, 2009

LOGOS-Atlas Sound

Atlas Sound
Status-Out as of 2009
2nd Studio Album
Rating-4 feathers

In 2008, an unfinished version of “Logos” leaked on to the Internet. So disheartened by the ordeal, Bradford Cox (of Deerhunter) almost canned the idea. Thankfully, he did not. Now, back under the name Atlas Sound, Bradford returns with his well-anticipated (and finished) 3rd album “Logos”.

The album starts with the very Sung Tongs/Feels-y ‘The Light That Failed’. It sounds like it is going to get nice and weird, but then after the first few seconds, it saunters into an incoherent drone. It does, however, set you up for a nice mellow trip through the brilliant and the tedious. Songs like ‘Criminals’ and ‘An Orchid’ take you to a bright, but calming place. ‘An Orchid’ especially gives you visual of walking through the woods with ‘Criminals’ providing the sunlight shining through. On the opposite end, ‘Attic Lights’ and ‘My Halo’ just go on and on and on.... They don’t really enlighten you because the intense calm just lulls you into a doze. There are some absolutely fantastic points like ‘Shelia’ and ‘Walkabout’. ‘Shelia’ sounds like an early 60’s pop song made in the late 60’s due to it’s simple guitar melodies and surreal lyrics with little experimental break downs. When I first heard ‘Walkabout’, I got filled with such an overt feeling of pure joy. It’s by far the perfect summer song. Bradford bringing Noah Lennox (Panda Bear) in for vocals was such a brilliant decision. With him, they were able to craft absolute magic. Unlike that collaboration, ‘Quick Canal’, with guest vocals by Stereolab’s Lætitia Sadier, doesn’t do it for me. First off, it’s too long. It is 8 minutes of ultimately the same thing that would have benefited by cutting off a few minutes. Second off, I’m not a big fan of how she used her voice: it sounds very pretentious and over done with too much creepy. ‘Washington School’ and ‘Logos’ finish off the album on a very trippy fantastical note. ‘Washington School’ puts you in a little trance with it’s oh-so-catchy bassline and dreamy vocals, but kicks you out of it with ‘Logos’’s Julian Casablancas vocal impersonation.

Bradford Cox shows some serious potential with ‘Logos’. It creates a wonderfully calming atmosphere, while, for the most part, constantly keeping your attention with it’s weird pop melodies. Every song gives you something different while still sounding flawlessly cohesive. He will probably never escape the Animal Collective comparisons (for all I care he toured with them and now he has Noah Lennox as a guest), but I feel they’ll help him to branch out even further and create even weirder records.

"Almost everything you hear on the album is a first take. This makes it almost like a 'live album' where a band sets up in a studio and just rolls tape. There are songs on here I don't even remember recording."-Bradford Cox

Video for Quick Canal

Recommendations: An Orchid, Walkabout, Shelia
Atlas Sound's Official Website
Note: Sorry for the severe lateness of this. I hoped to get it out soon, but I just didn't have the time. I realized just now that the last review I wrote was Muse's 'The Resistance' and I can't believe it. For the next month, I will have atleast a Julian Plenti, Monsters of Folk, Bat For Lashes, and a Concert review out. Stay tuned, and thank you so very much for reading!

Friday, November 27, 2009

The Friday Thing: Spare-ohs by Andrew Bird

It's less than 20 minutes of this Friday but here we go: One day, I decided to look up Andrew Bird. Like many bands and singers I read about on various music blogs, I knew nothing about him. So, I went to La Blogotheque, and what do you know, he had a take-away show. Entitled 'Spare-ohs', this song is amazing. The whistling is done with such finesse, and his monotone-ish singing fits the tone perfectly. I am a sucker for folky type things, but I have a feeling he has more great stuff yet for me to find. Enjoy!


Friday, November 20, 2009

The Friday Thing: Lua by Bright Eyes

Recently, I've been listening to a lot of stuff by Bright Eyes. I don't know, I just like it. I love Conor Oberst's sorta quirky pretentious folk, and I find it very calming. Just watching him on the Coachella movie after watching Arcade Fire go made this performance stick, and now I'm bringing it to you. I hope you enjoy!


Btw: Atlas Sound review out this week

New videos for In the Flowers by Animal Collective and Cousins by Vampire Weekend

About a week ago, I found out Animal Collective released a video for "In the Flowers", their mind-numbingly amazing 1st track off of this years Merriweather Post Pavilion. I didn't see too much talk about it, so I'm bringing it to you now. I don't like it. It's too trippy for me, and it's not a good fit for the song as "My Girls" or "Summertime Clothes" was. I think it'd be way hard to encase the song's glory in a video.

In the Flowers


Unlike the last song, the new video for "Cousins" by Vampire Weekend is being talked about on numerous music blogs. The song gives hope that the album will be just as great as their debut. The video looks like they had a lot of fun making it and it fits the energetic-ness of the song perfectly! I hope you enjoy!


Friday, November 13, 2009

The Friday Thing: Popcorn by Muse

I really hate not posting anything between Friday Things, I mean, I don't even know if anyone likes these, but I still post them hoping someone will. Anyway, Muse did a four song set for a French TV show called Taratata. They did a cover of Hot Butter's "Popcorn". It's so catchy, especially for an instrumental. It's one of the few covers where if I ever go to see Muse, I actually would enjoy it if they played it. They seem to like playing as much as you'll enjoy listening to it.


Friday, November 6, 2009

The Friday thing: Boy with the Arab Strap by Belle and Sebastian

A short time ago, I was watching the Coachella Festival movie. I had heard of Belle and Sebastian, but I really didn't know anything about them. I was pleased when they came up in the movie, and I quite enjoyed them. Their wholesomeness and how endearing they are is just too much. If this doesn't make you smile, even a little, nothing can.

Boy with the Arab Strap

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

New Video for Undisclosed Desires by Muse

Yesterday, Muse released the video for their second single 'Undisclosed Desires'. It's a good video, but it really does not fit with the song. I mean, when you listen to this song, you want to get up and move right? Well, apparently they thought that: the video features a dancer who looks like she was taken straight out of the Brianstorm video. Weird. Anyway, the video is decent, it just doesn't go with the song.

Undisclosed Desires

Friday, October 30, 2009

The Friday Thing: The Age of the Understatement by The Last Shadow Puppets

It's been exactly a year since I was fortunate enough to see The Last Shadow Puppets live. As I look back on the night, I cannot get over how immensely awesome it was, and how good of a band they really were. During this song especially, the audience was so whipped up jumping around and practically everyone was screaming the song. I chose this performance for two reasons. One is that it's one of the best live performances I've ever seen. The second is that it embodies the epicness of the performance I saw, even though this one was on TV. I hope you enjoy!

The Age of the Understatement

Spoon is...Transference!

Spoon's 7th album "Transference" is due out January 26th, 2010. Since I reviewed Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga over the summer, I haven't been able to stop listening to it, so now I'm very excited! Spoon have yet to disappoint, so I doubt this next addition will be any different. I'd advise any one to give a listen to them if you haven't already.

01. Before Destruction
02. Is Love Forever?
03. The Mystery Zone
04. Who Makes Your Money
05. Written in Reverse
06. I Saw the Light
07. Trouble Comes Running
08. Goodnight Laura
09. Out Go the Lights
10. Got Nuffin
11. Nobody Gets Me But You

Friday, October 23, 2009

The Friday Thing: Flagpole Sitta by Harvey Danger

I heard this on the radio earlier this week, and that made me think of the video. If you don't know, "Flagpole Sitta" came out in the late 90s and sounds like one of the quintessential 90s songs. About 3 years ago, an office for the company Connected Ventures filmed themselves 'performing' the song. If you haven't already seen this video, you must. It's the best lip sync ever. Period. How could you not want to work there? I hope you enjoy!

Flagpole Sitta

Friday, October 16, 2009


The Resistance-
Label-Warner Brothers
Status-Out as of 2009
5th Studio Album
Rating-4 feathers

Several months ago, Muse announced that they were making an album that was going to be so orchestrated that “[they’ll] be knocking on classic FM’s door” and “it could actually be kind of classical act basically, and move away from rock all together.” Now known as “The Resistance,” Muse’s 5th effort, is backed by a desire to take America with an unfortunately more attainable sound.

The first half of the album is not as orchestral as they made it out to be. ‘Uprising’ is a solid start to the album, but it is not great. It sounds just like Goldfrapp; they even said so themselves, which is not a good thing. It is the least complex song I have heard them do. It is a very bad representation of what they have come to be known for, and it should have been three minutes shorter. When the last “hey!” in ‘Uprising’ is uttered, and the atmospheric sound comes in, you know ‘Resistance’ is going to be epic. When the bassline and drums come pounding in, you’ve already forgotten about the desecration of their talent, ‘Uprising’. With simply amazing vocals and powerful instrumentation, the song comes together beautifully to reach a powerful, epic end. However, the lyrics are atrocious. When one hears the album name, little do they know it would be because of the line “Love is our resistance.” Really Muse? Is that all you can come up with? ‘Undisclosed Desires’ is a wimpy song and I would have never guessed that they would resort to this. The only good part is the orchestra’s impressive pizzicato arrangement. As a string player, I know how hard it is to arrange and make pizzicato sound good, and this arrangement is brilliant. ‘United States of Eurasia’ starts out dramatic, with moody strings, a piano, and solo vocals. But then out of absolutely nowhere, it turns into a bombastic Queen song, which just as suddenly turns into a stylized ‘Kashmir.’ It is pretty shocking, to say the least, but I guess we now know who their inspiration is. ‘Unnatural Selection’ is the heaviest, most Absolution-esque song on the album. The guitar is nice and thick with the angry vocals crying for ‘revolution’ and ‘protest’. If that wasn’t enough to remind you of the old Muse, the breakdown is so overwhelmingly reminiscent of ‘Origin of Symmetry’ and ‘Showbiz’ that any die-hard fan will hit repeat several times. Those who appreciate that fact will adore ‘MK Ultra’, which is essentially a cleaner ‘Unnatural Selection’, but about conspiracy theories. ‘I Belong to You (+Mon Cœur S’ouvre à ta Voix)’ is more abominable than ‘Undisclosed Desires’. It is a fun song, but it is really a murder of their talents. The only good part comes when he sings in incoherent French, but that is quickly negated when they come back for round two of the appalling part. If anything redeemed the album, it is the glorious three part symphony entitled Exogensis, starting with ‘Part 1: Overture’. This movement is wonderfully dramatic, and would not be out of place on ‘Origin of Symmetry’. The instrumentation and vocals fit in brilliantly with the heavy verbose string line. ‘Part 2: Cross-Pollination’ is just as heavy on the instrumentation, but it is the song that gets you riled up chanting ‘You must rescue us all!’ It’s a shame ‘Cross-Pollination’ is so short, but ‘Part 3: Redemption’ makes up for it. Words cannot hope to describe ‘Redemption’ properly. It is second to ‘Blackout’ in the line of the most beautiful thing Muse has ever done. It builds so gracefully, with sweeping strings and perfect, melodic vocals. It ends the album leaving you completely uplifted.

As a whole, this album wasn’t so terrible. It had some really horrific songs (ie. Uprising, I Belong to You), but it also contained some of the best songs Muse have ever created (ie. Redemption). Muse are fading ever so slightly, but still have not let their fans down, and The Resistance shows both aspects. Any fan will embrace this album as a continuation of ‘Black Holes and Revelations’, but I still highly doubt this will be the one to break them in America.

"We're the biggest band America doesn't know anything about."-Dominic Howard

Video for Uprising

Recommendations: Resistance, Unnatural Selection, MK Ultra, Exogensis: Pt. 1-3
Muse's Official Website
NOTE: Sorry, this review is like a month overdue, but hey, atleast it's completely honest because I let it soak in for a good long time. I bought it the day it came out in the US, honest. I hope you enjoy! Logos by Atlas sound is due out on Tuesday, so if I can get, that'll be my next review. Thank you for your support and understanding.

The Friday Thing: Rebellion (Lies) by Arcade Fire

Earlier this week, my favorite music/concert channel was playing the Coachella movie, a movie of a bunch of interviews and performances from the Coachella festival. After some ungodly acts, the started playing Arcade Fire. I have to say they are one of the best live bands I've ever heard, and this performance proves that further. Sure Will and Win Butler seem a little out of it, but that just adds to the weirdness that I love about Arcade Fire. Enjoy!

Rebellion (Lies)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

New Video for Cornerstone by Arctic Monkeys

The video for 'Cornerstone' by Arctic Monkeys, the second single off of Humbug was released today. There's only two good parts: When the song says the walls are wet, and Alex rubs his hand against the wall then shakes it out as though it actually got wet. The second good part being when he bends down and pops up closer to the camera. It's a dumb video, but I prefer it to 'Crying Lighting''s video anyday.


Friday, October 9, 2009

The Friday Thing: The Modern Age by The Strokes

I used to get this music channel, and one of the shows they'd play was 'Montreux Jazz Festival'. They had one with The Strokes, and in that hour they only played three songs, one of them being 'The Modern Age'. Admittedly it's a good performance, not a great one, but I'll tell you, the 1st time I saw it, it officially made a Strokes fan. From that moment, it became my favorite song of there's, and maybe if you watch this it'll have the same effect! Enjoy!

The Modern Age

Btw: I'm in the process of writing the Resistance review. Expect it in the next 3 days, and I really mean it.

Monday, October 5, 2009

NEW: Horchata by Vampire Weekend

On Saturday, I noticed on Vampire Weekend's website they had what appeared to be countdown. Well, the countdown ended today to unveil the 1st song of the band's 2nd Album 'Contra' entitled 'Horchata'. I'm really liking their sound. It'll take a few listens to completely embrace it, but otherwise it shows great promise for a hopefully great album. Listen to make your own opinions and if you really like it, it's up for free download on their site. Enjoy!

Friday, October 2, 2009

The Friday Thing: All is Love by Karen O & The Kids

I'm not the kind of person who goes crazy over new movies (ever), but upon seeing the trailers for Where The Wild Things Are, it looks really really sweet. I must see it. In one of the commercials, they played this song which I later learned was created by Karen O (the Yeah Yeah Yeah's front woman the woman in charge of the WTWTA soundtrack) and The Kids (the Kids are her backing band including the likes of Bradford Cox of Atlas Sound and the other Yeahs)entitled "All is Love". It's such a wonderfully cutesy song and I think Karen O did a great job. I can't get enough of it. Enjoy!

All is Love

Where the Wild Things Are trailer (featuring 'Wake Up' by Arcade Fire)

(Yeah, I know, not a live video, but I wanted to post about this. Oh yeah, about that Resistance review...)

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Final Fantasy is...Heartland!

Known for his string arrangements and work in many bands like Beirut, Arcade Fire, Grizzly Bear, and even The Last Shadow Puppets, Owen Pallett, the man behind Final Fantasy, has made quite a name for himself in the indie genre. He is now back with his third album, Heartland, which is apparently a full fledged concept album. Knowing his previous works, this has to be good. It's being released on Domino, so hopefully that'll mean it'll be actually possible to track down at a store. It's due out January 12th, 2010 (same day as Contra by Vampire Weekend), so get ready for alot of good listening!

01. Midnight Directives
02. Keep the Dog Quiet
03. Mount Alpentine
04. Red Sun No. 5
05. Lewis Takes Action
06. The Great Elsewhere
07. Oh Heartland, Up Yours!
08. Lewis Takes Off His Shirt
09. Flare Gun
10. E Is for Estranged
11. Tryst With Mephistopheles
12. What Do You Think Will Happen Now?

Friday, September 25, 2009

The Friday Thing: Daddy's Gone by Glasvegas

I know nothing about Glasvegas. I'm not going to even pretend. The only thing I do know is that I'm in love with this song. I heard it on palladia (a music (mainly concert) tv channel) on a Glastonbury 2009 special. I thought it was perfectly performed and it was very effective at captivating the audience. I couldn't find the performance I saw, so I went with a Jools performance. It demonstrates the wonder that the song is, but it doesn't do it justice because you can't see how the audience is interacting with it, but it's good enough. I hope You enjoy (btw: I lied, Muse review out tomorrow)

Daddy's Gone

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Muse's Weird Forms of Protest

Muse were recently on a television show in Italy, and they must've been told to lipsync because Dom was the singer/bassist, Chris was the keyboard/guitar, and Matt was on drums. The host of the show even referred to Dom as Matt. This video reminded me of previous 'protests' that were equally hilarious.

Change for 'Uprising'.

Slight line up change for 'New Born' on Live and Kicking, they really make no effort to disguise that it's not live.

Rumor has it, Muse were told not to curse in any of their performances here. If anyone knows Muse at all, they never use profanity in songs (only in one b-side). For the normally clean 'Feeling Good' they decide to change a verse...

Muse were asked to lip sync this performance, but apparently Matt convinced the sound person to let him sing live. Big mistake and the picture says it all.

Aren't they awesome?

Sunday, September 20, 2009


Time to Die-
The Dodos
Label-Frenchkiss Records
Status-Out as of 2009
3rd Studio Album
Rating-4 feathers

The Dodos have always been under the radar. Their first album went virtually unnoticed by the general public and the media, their sophomore album ‘Visiter’ gained them much deserved attention. Now The Dodos, a little over a year later and with new member Keaton Snyder on vibraphone, are back with their third album ‘Time To Die’. Perhaps this will give more sustenance to a band who is unfortunately known for a miller chill commercial.

The flow of ‘Time to Die’ corresponds with the transition from summer to autumn. The first half is embodied by bright guitar riffs and happy vocals. ‘Small Deaths’ starts off the album with heavy acoustic guitar and lightly intense vocals. The drumming might be a little to overpowering for the song, but it still helps to encase a summery feel. ‘Fables’ even furthers this tone. The acoustic guitar with a touch of vibraphone help lift Meric’s already optimistic vocals to an even higher lever. The whole song just puts you in a fantastic mood, and will leave you singing “I don’t wanna go in the fire” well after it’s over. They falter a little bit with ‘This is a Business’ which is a little too urgent. I mean, the craze in his voice adds a great effect, but the guitar seems way all over the place and the drumming is too frantic. They quickly restore themselves with ‘Two Medicines’, a song that gloriously encases all that is autumn. You can easily imagine yourself listening to the song’s galloping acoustic guitar and pounding drumbeat while walking down a leaf ridden sidewalk. It’ll make you instantly forget about summer and get you psyched for fall. ‘Troll Nacht’ and ‘Acorn Factory’ further this notion with uplifting vibraphones, twangy guitar lines, and somber vocals. The primitive drumming (like what was heard in Visiter) also makes a nice appearance, adding to each songs warmth. The titletrack ‘Time to Die’ ends the album a little weirdly. It starts out calmly, with just a light guitar and drums, but then it builds suddenly. When I say build I mean they just all of sudden pile on the guitar. It goes on like that for about four minutes, calms down just a bit, and then out of nowhere they end it.

As a whole, this album was very well done. It showed that The Dodos can build upon their old sound without succumbing to the third album syndrome, but still have it feel completely new, not like you’ve heard it before. Sure, the album doesn’t affect you mentally or emotionally like Visiter did, but it successfully helps get your mind around the fact that summer is over and autumn is coming. The Dodos have a lot to show, especially with a new member they will definitely create an even better version of their sound by album number four. It’s not their time to die quite yet.

“I’m glad that we were able to keep things simple on this record because when your band gets a little popular, there’s this tendency to say things like, ‘Let’s add an orchestra on this one!’ That works for some people, but it would detract from this band.”-Meric Long

Two Medicines

Recommendations: Fables, The Strums, Two Medicines
The Dodo's Official Website
NOTE: Yeah, I was supposed to have this out yesterday, but I have it out today so. I will have the review for The Resistance out within the next few days, but before Friday (I hope). On that note, who else is jazzed for fall?

Friday, September 18, 2009

The Friday Thing: Suzanne by Beck's Record Club

I was looking at random blogs, and many of them are writing alot about Beck's Record club. Beck's Record Club is this idea that he and group of fellow musicians are going to get together and record a covers of a 'classic album' in one day. For this installment, they are doing "Songs of Leonard Cohen", picked by Andrew VanWyngarden. So far they've only released two covers from the album, and this one is absolutely brilliantly performed by Beck, his crew, MGMT, Devendra Banhart, and few others. Though very different from the original, they give a really nice flair that even Leonard Cohen himself would approve of. Enjoy!


NOTE: I will have a review of Time to Die or The Resistance out on Saturday, stay tuned to find out which one.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Vampire Weekend is...CONTRA!

Vampire Weekend have (finally) announced their 2 album entitled Contra! It's due out January 12th, 2010. So far, I'm liking the fact that their 'style' doesn't look like it's changed too much from their first album, but I think the cover is a reeking too much like Ivy League preppy. I'm stilldefinitely itching to see how this one sounds.

1. Horchata
2. White Sky
3. Holiday
4. California English
5. Taxi Cab
6. Run
7. Cousins
8. Giving Up the Gun
9. Diplomat's Son
10. I Think UR a Contra

Also, The Dodos's 'Time To Die' and Muse's 'The Resistance' are out today. Go get them!

Friday, September 11, 2009

The Friday Thing: Across the Universe by Rufus Wainwright, Sean Lennon, and Moby

I used to see this performance all the time on this channel called 'The Tube', and the first time I saw it, I thought it was beautiful. Rufus's voice gives something different to the song, and I personally love this performance because of that. They could've just had Sean sing it solo, but they didn't. The 3-part harmony by the end is just a perfect touch. It's a really great tribute to John Lennon and I hope you enjoy!

Across the Universe

(Next week 'The Resistance' by Muse and 'Time to Die' by The Dodos comes out so I'll be reviewing both of those next!)

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

New Video for Yomp by Thenewno2

I decided to check up on Thenewno2, and it turn's out a little more than a month ago they came out with a new video for their song 'Yomp' featured on their album You Are Here. I would've never guessed this video for the song, but I have to say, the creepiness works quite well. Enjoy!


Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Samuel Stewart

So, while looking at a few music blogs, I've noticed someone called Samuel Stewart being mentioned. Just by his name, it occured to me there was someone named Sam Stewart in the now defunct Blondelle. So, I looked Samuel Stewart up, and what do you know: Sam Stewart is Samuel Stewart! I don't know how I feel about his music, and I prefer his work in Blondelle, but how weird is that? You can see a huge similarity in the vocals, but the style's are way different. I hope that Sam, or Samuel, Stewart has a successful solo career and that it work out better for him than Blondelle ever did.

A taste of Sam's solo stuff.

Video for Wonder by Blondelle. Sam 1st comes in about 22 seconds in.

Friday, September 4, 2009

The Friday Thing: Wires by Athlete

The other day, something amazing happened. The music television channel 'Palladia' had a 9 hour marathon of Glastonbury 2005, 2008, and 2009. As one would guess, I watched some of it. Halfway through the first hour, they showed Athlete performing their hit 'Wires', and they did a great performance. This brough me back to the first time I heard this song, which was when watching Later With Jools Holland some time ago. When I looked it up, I legitimately cried when I read the lyrics, which are about Joel Pott's daughter being born prematurely and the heartbreak that comes with it. Joel Pott is a brilliant man for conveying his emotions in such a sincere way. I hope you enjoy!


Thursday, September 3, 2009

HUMBUG-Arctic Monkeys

Arctic Monkeys
Status-Out as of 2009
3rd Studio Album
Rating-3.5 feathers

The third album for many bands seems to be the time where the band decides “Hey, let’s completely change our sound”. This either tremendously helps or hurts that band. Why should Arctic Monkeys be any different? Well, apparently they aren’t. Known for their guitar-heavy fast post-punk sound, these four Sheffielders decided to leave their classic sound for a significantly slowed down and darker ‘Humbug.’

Even with just one listen, you can tell these are not the same teenagers who wrote ‘I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor’. The starter song, innuendo heavy ‘My Propeller’, takes on a heavier and darker tone from the first drum hit. It shows promise, but after 6 seconds, it takes a dive for the worse, leaving behind a heavy-set slow paced rhythm section and vocals that offer no punch, at all. To be honest, it really does not make you want to hear what follows. What does follow is a trip through the good and the ugly, the brilliant and the lifeless. ‘Dangerous Animals’ offers both, sort of. It is instrumental section is powerful and the main riff is reminiscent of ‘Teddy Picker’s’, but the lyrics are terrible. Alex Turner, the man who wrote ‘A Certain Romance’, now writes a song where the chorus spells out the song name. It is admittedly catchy, but come on! It just seems like a major step back. ‘Potion Approaching’ is even worse. The main riff is alright, heavy like ‘Dangerous Animals’, but it doesn’t give the song anything. To make matters worse, the lyrics and vocals are even more of a drain. The thing they consider the chorus sounds more like a sorry excuse for a bridge, and the verses are simply forgettable. A song like ‘Secret Door’, however, is like the light at the end of a tunnel. It is calmer than what Arctic Monkeys usually do, but shows their musical skill. The song’s sweeping guitars and melodic vocals work so well to create a beautiful masterpiece. The chorus is cheesy, but the verses are sung with just enough punch to make the song purely brilliant. ‘Cornerstone’ brings you a tune similar to ‘The Bakery’, but with immense comic relief (e.g. “She was close, close enough to be your ghost/but my chances turned to toast”). Its instrumentation is lovely, utilizing their psuedo-slide guitars to encase a bright yet regretful tone that subtly builds to a wonderful fulfilled ending. Unfortunately, ‘Pretty Visitors’ is the last great song on the album. The keyboard intro sets it up for awesomeness. It frantically dives into a mess of pounding drums, speedy vocals, and intense guitar, making the only legitimately fast-paced song on the album. It is the perfect follow-up to their last singles ‘Teddy Picker’ and ‘Fluorescent Adolescent’; it is what I had hoped the album would sound like. What’s separating these 3 songs from each other are the drones that are ‘Fire and the Thud’, ‘Dance Little Liar’, and ‘The Jeweller’s Hands’. To be honest, nothing happens in any of them; they just come and go. ‘Fire and the Thud’ features Alison Mosshart on vocals, but it has a royal trainwreck of an ending, and the ‘Jeweller’s Hands’ is just a tired, tired ending.

As whole, this album was tired. The majority was uneventful, whereas the minority embodied pure genius. Though substantially disappointed with the album, I have come to terms with the fact that they are maturing and trying new things. They did not fail at conveying their new sound by any means, but they just went a little too over board doing it. I had hoped this album would be more like a continuation of ‘Da Frame 2R’ and ‘Nettles’, both which encompasses a darker sound but still sounds like trademark Arctic Monkeys. They surely won’t gain any fans based on this album, but fans will still find something to cling on to. Bah Humbug.

"We're so lound now. I just don't think we could handle a little stage now because we'd struggle to keep from blowing your head off."-Alex Turner

Video for Crying Lightning

Recommendations: Pretty Visitors, Secret Door, Cornerstone
Arctic Monkeys Official Website
Note: This, in my opinion, was Arctic Monkeys worst album. It's not bad, it's not. It's just not any where near as amazing as the 1st two were. The 1st couple of listens I found it very uninspiring, and only my 3 recommendations stuck out (and they're still the only ones). If I rated it as a diehard fan perhaps it would've been rated way worse, but I rated it removing my fan mentality. Anyway, I bought the album the day after it came out (a week ago), so sorry for not getting the review out faster, I needed processing time. I'll have a Death Cab for Cutie review or that Tapes 'n Tapes review I've been talking about out next. Enjoy and stay tuned!
EDIT: Originally I had my review at 3.5, and then I changed it to 3, but now I've rechanged it to 3.5. Sorry, very unprofessional, but I slept on it, and methinks it deserves a 3.5.

Friday, August 28, 2009

The Friday Thing: Hyper Music by Muse

In anticipation of Muse's new album 'The Resistance', I've been watching real old (for them) Muse performances. As most Muser's would agree, Origin of Symmetry is Muse's best album. It's filled with non-stop highlights. Hyper Music is one of 11 great songs, and I have to say, it's freaken massive live. As you can see here an in more recent performances on Jools Holland, the studio is very confining for their sound, but in this case, their sheer talent just oozes all over the place. Enjoy!

Hyper Music

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


Humbug by Arctic Monkeys is out today. Go get it!

Pretty Visitors performed at the Web Transmission

Saturday, August 22, 2009

2-Darker My Love

Darker My Love
Status-Out as of 2008
2nd Studio Album
Rating-3 feathers

Darker My Love, named for a song by punk band TSOL, got their start in LA, with members hailing from such bands as The Distillers. After the release of their virtually unknown eponymous debut, Darker My Love are back with a vengeance. Their second album, 2, is that call to arms. Whether they deem it as a “hitchhiker’s guide to getting through LA” or “a manual to help you deal with daily existence”, they may just be embellishing a smidge.

Firing off with ‘Northern Soul’, they are very clearly confident with their sound, which is somewhat refreshing. Sure, the vocals sound a little too generic, but the bass, drums, and guitar thunder at you with thumping promise. ‘Blue Day’ shows a little less ferocity, but its sound is very similar to the previous. The vocals fade dramatically, and the chorus of “Isn’t it strange?” is pretty irritating. ‘Two Ways Out’ is surely the stand out track from the album. The instruments all offer the same distorted sound that the previous two songs did, but somehow it feels different. Perhaps it’s the classic indie vocals or the bright ‘ooh ooh’s’. Either way, it’s a great guitar indie tune with a thick distorted guitar to give it that Darker My Love flair. Though until this point, they’ve only demonstrated their heavy sound, ‘White Composition’ brings to the table that midpoint break. Its lovely jazz inspired guitar and drums bring to mind a wet, drizzly day, while the psychedelic vocals and organ flourishes fit the mood so perfectly it makes you almost delighted. Past this point, the shear innovativeness halts, and the generic self-indulgent guitar solos commence. ‘Add One to the Other One’ sounds like an impromptu recording session. The 1st two minutes are an overdrawn spacey jam where nothing happens. At all. The vocals come in for 30 seconds, and leave when a similar heavier jam session is induced. ‘Even In Our Lightest Day’ is similarly unbearable. The vocals bring nothing to the song, just an endless drone and nothing interesting or even remotely catchy shows itself. This over repetitive self-indulgent pompous streak continues through five songs in total and doesn’t cease until the finale. I’m not saying that ‘Immediate Undertaking’ is a whole lot more interesting, but it does provide something you can focus on. It too is a bit drone-y, but the acoustic guitar strumming along with a Beatlesque psychedelic electric guitar melodies create a feeling of slumber and tiredness. Sure, the vocals give you that in it of itself, but at least the instrumentation brings you some closure.

Darker My Love have succeeded in the sense that they’ve created a very obvious sound. I can envision ‘Two Ways Out’ and ‘White Composition’ being immediate favorites of all those who come across this group. As an album, however, I was very disappointed. The first half of the album is great: they suck you in further and further with each song offering a new element to their sound. But, once they enter into the realm of self indulgence your perspective on 2 dies hard. Darker My Love show great promise, but for now, I’ll keep this ‘manual to deal with daily life’ out of my daily life.

“Yeah, it’s cool. It’s hot.”-Jared Everett

Video for Two Ways Out

Recommendations: Northern Soul, Two Ways Out, White Composition
Darker My Love's Blogger Blog
Darker My Love's Myspace
Note: I won't be having a review out until Saturday, maybe. But, I will be reviewing Humbug by Arctic Monkeys as my next review. Be sure to go out and buy it when it comes out Tuesday! Also, apparently Raditude was named by Rainn Wilson. Weird...

Friday, August 21, 2009

The Friday Thing: We're Not Gonna Take It by The Who (Woodstock)

As some of you may know, the Woodstock Festival was arguably the most important festival in the history of rock, preaching the idea of 3 days of peace and music. As some of you may not know, Woodstock's 40th anniversary was this past saturday until this past Tuesday. Though I was not around in 1969, I still understand how massive this festival was, and in celebration I chose The Who performing the end of 'We're Not Gonna Take It'. This performance is freaken awesome and is the essence of what Woodstock was. It's even better to know that it was performed this massively at 4AM. Can you imagine: While the sunrises hearing The Who chanting the words to 'Listening to You' over and over?

We're Not Gonna Take It

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Weezer is...Raditude?

Raditude? Are they serious? They are pretty 'rad', but Raditude? I personally feel they could've just named it Weezer and assigned it a color rather than give it some not so rad made up word for a name. I don't know which is better, Raditude or The Rascals 'Rascalize'.

As for '(If You're Wondering If I Want You To) I Want You To', it's no where near classic Weezer. The song is catchy and leaves you in a good mood like any poprock song would, but it still shows signs of mistake that was 'Trouble Maker'. Though this song isn't entirely bad for Weezer's now overtly mainstream sound, it's still not what they have come to be known for. Even though this album has slight promise, I can't say I'll be buying it.

(If You're Wondering If I Want You To) I Want You To

Album out: October 27th

Friday, August 14, 2009

The Friday Thing: Gwn Mi Wn by Gruff Rhys

Earlier this week, I was watching the Teenage Cancer Trust benefit concert special again to watch Noel Gallagher and The Coral perform. After that, I wanted to see the other acts and after about 40 minutes, Gruff Rhys came on. I recognized him from Super Furry Animals, so I watched it. I absolutely love it how he only needs himself, a loop machine, and a bunch of 'found' objects to make such a masterpiece. It's very Jamie Lidell or Joeseph Arthur. I'm a sucker for one man bands, I know, but the fact that he's able to have the head to make so many layers on the spot like that. It's a very nice song, and it's great that you don't have to understand welsh to enjoy it!

Gwn Mi Wn

Thursday, August 13, 2009


Skeletal Lamping-
of Montreal
Status-Out as of 2008
9th Studio Album
Rating-2 Feathers

Only a year after their highly regarded ‘Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer?’, of Montreal, an indie pop band originating from Georgia, released their follow-up ‘Skeletal Lamping’. With a funkier tone and lyrics bringing up a myriad of ‘fantasies, ruminations, and observations’, ‘Skeletal Lamping’ is quite a trip.

As a concept, the album was meant to be heard as one whole piece. 100+ short little songs: thousands of ideas some how classified into 15 separate songs. Starting with ‘A Nonpareil of Wisdom’, they delve right into the weirdness with a pumping bassline and quirky vocals which soon turn into a three minute long guitar solo simply involving the guitarist methodically crashing down on the strings. Though self indulgent, it’s actually very interesting to listen to. Upon hearing the 1st line of ‘Wicked Wisdom’ (it’s a smidge to inappropriate for this blog), how does it not set the mood for a moderately humorous and fun song? Well, unfortunately, it doesn’t. The song loses it’s poppyness within the first minute and then it becomes downright sleazy, with the line “when we get together it’s always hot magic” repeatedly sung over and over. ‘Touched Something’s Hollow’ and ‘An Eluardian Instance’ compliment each other very well. With ‘Touched’’s dramatic Imagine-style piano breezing into ‘Eluardian’’s bright horn fanfare, it’s an awkwardly appealing mixture with each song still offering of Montreal’s famous indie poppyness and danceability. Past this point, most of the songs are pretty odd, to say the least. Almost none of them have a full on structure and they all sound like random minute long songs just sorta pasted together. Also, each one lyrically becomes increasingly more sexually explicit like ‘Platis Wafer’, which is seven minutes of pure self-indulgence and one of the many where I just wanted it to end. To be honest, the only song worth mentioning past this is ‘Id Engager’. It’s one of the few songs on the album where they actually had a solid concept and it’s an obvious ‘song’. It has a very theatrical tone, with random screams thrown in and a thick bright bassline quickly encasing a mood of weird indie dance music.

As a whole, this album was a bit of a mess and very dirty, to say the least. I get the fact that the album was supposed to be hundreds of little compositions, but they generally seemed haphazardly put together. There was little cohesion, except in the albums general theme: I don’t know if it was just me, but every song on the album was seemingly about sex. Not only was this distasteful, but it made certain songs just a little too uncomfortable. As you can see, ‘Skeletal Lamping’ is not for everyone. Die hard fans will embrace it with the idea of ‘It’s just of Montreal being of Montreal’, but casual fans will be perplexed and severely turned off. On the surface, it’s a fun record to hop around to. I’ll give it that much.

“We feel that there’s no reason to produce another object that just sits on a shelf. We only want to produce objects that have a function and that can be treasured for their singularness. A CD has little value, as an object, and the conventional, right angle plagued CD packaging, we’ve been forced to endure forever, has nothing new to offer us either.”-Kevin Barnes

Video for Id Engager

Recommendations: Touched Something's Hollow, An Eluardian Instance, Triphallus to Punctuate!, Id Engager
of Montreal's Official Website
Note: Sorry, but I honestly did not like or fully get this album, hence the two rating. I thought the quote was appropriate for the fact that have you seen the packaging? I thought the packaging for Merriweather Post Pavilion was boss, but this packaging is this huge fold out thing. It's so beyond not a jewel case (or even a soft case for that matter). I do like of Montreal, but I don't think Skeletal Lamping was for me. I'll be working on Tapes 'n Tapes next and then probably Darker My Love. However, if Humbug comes out before I'm done reviewing either, I'll have that out. Enjoy and I appreciate the comments!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Resistance and Uprising cover art!

A week ago, Muse 'unveiled' their cover art for the highly anticipated 'The Resistance'. As compared to their previous covers, it fits in well being that they aren't known for their classically 'normal' looking covers. It's very fruity from afar, but if you click it to zoom in, it's very intricate: each hexagon looks like it's been drawn in, and then the man is actually walking towards the earth. Pretty cool.

This is the coolest coverart ever. Made for the cover of the single 'Uprising', it is the strangest things I've come to see. It doesn't match the songs mood at all and I'd never expect it, but c'mon! It's an army of teddy bears coming out of the ground. That's so sick and only Muse would do it!

Friday, August 7, 2009

The Friday Thing: Taste by Animal Collective

A while ago, I was 'youtube-ing' all the songs from the album Merriweather Post Pavilion, and when I looked up 'Taste' I came across a really strange version. I'm assuming they did this song live for awhile, but came up with a really clean different version for Merriweather. This performance was one of the things I came across, and I absolutely love it. It's VERY strange, and very different than the album version, but that makes it even better. I think Animal Collective should try more things like this utilizing objects found on the street to do some songs, because is this not awesome?


Thursday, August 6, 2009


Oracular Spectacular-
Status-Out as of 2008
1st technical Studio Album
Rating-3.5 Feathers

The Management came under the radar by opening for of Montreal back in 2005. Since then, and after a name change to MGMT, they have released their debut album ‘Oracular Spectacular’, quickly becoming hailed as “the band to watch” for 2008. Taking you through spacey-guitar riffs to the tune of psychedelic synthesizers, is easy to see why ‘Oracular Spectacular’ is the subject of recent hype.

This journey begins with a first step, and that first step is ‘Time to Pretend’. Chronicling the life of a stereotypical rockstar backed by moody synthesizers, and with an opening synth line effective enough to give you goosebumps, can you believe they didn’t choose this as the finale? After the pretending stops, MGMT goes on to prove that they know how to write a dancefloor filler. ‘Electric Feel’ is a space-rock influenced disco tune, and except for the disco feel it’s a great song. It’s not your typical dance song, but the thick bassline will be enough to help you develop a nice groove. After your trip to the late 70’s, ‘Kids’ comes in and brings you back with all its glory. The opening synthesizer is boss, and when the heavy backing synth comes in you have to get up and bop around, it’s simply impossible not to. With the basic synthesizer arrangement, punctuated by the sound of screaming kids and the main swooping synth line, you know MGMT’s created the perfect dance song that’s shockingly not on Top 40 charts. After the wonder comes the strife, also known as ‘4th Dimensional Transition’ and ‘Pieces of What’. ‘4th Dimensional Transition’ sounds like they tried to equal the drama of the previous songs, but failing to do so and adding that obnoxious quasi-tribal drum was a mistake. ‘Pieces of What’ is completely inconsistent with the album’s general sound. The whiney croon backed by a tinny acoustic guitar just sounds wrong, especially when they add the airy backing vocals and spacey synths at the end which even further just don’t go. ‘Of Moons, Birds & Monsters’ brings you out of your misery, taking you on a trip through an epic odyssey of sci-fi, simple guitar lines, and ambient synthesizers all ending with reverb strongly reminiscent of Muse. Past ‘Of Moons…’ the basic idea of the album fades, and the final two songs are passable. A great disappointment.

As a whole, MGMT are what they are hyped to be: masters of subtle space rock and neo-psychedelia. They’ve shown they can write works of genius, but they’ve also shown they can write a few easily-forgettables. They show extreme promise, and with their electric feel, there is still Time to Pretend for MGMT.

“We redid a lot of our songs that sounded too polished. Dave [the producer] ended up running the tracks through this thing that crushed them and made them sound really gross again. They're a lot better now.”-Ben Goldwasser

'Official' fan video for Kids

Recommendations: Time to Pretend, Electric Feel, Kids, Of Moons, Birds & Monsters
MGMT's Official Website
Note: Is that not the best lip synch, other than this, that you have ever seen in a music video? It's better than 99.9% of 'official' videos. I didn't put the official video for 'Kids' because the toddler crying makes me depressed. The lip synch in that sucks too. I mean, the video for A-Punk is better lip synched. I hope you enjoy and stay tuned for an of Montreal or a Tapes 'n Tapes review!