Friday, February 27, 2009

The Friday Thing: Cellphone's Dead by Beck

As I mentioned in the Friday Thing post with Jamie Lidell, I was watching From the Basement with Beck. This was my favorite performance from the episode, and I love it even more than I do the album version. As you can see, Jamie Lidell adds his input to the performance, and this further demonstrates Beck's awesomeness. I hope you enjoy, it's definitely worth the watching!

Cellphone's Dead

Thursday, February 26, 2009


The Dodos
Label-French Kiss Records
Status-Out as of 2008
Rating-4.5 Feathers

Getting their title Visiter from a drawing given to them by an elementary school class, The Dodos come out with their second album. Hailing from California, this duo, comprised of vocalist/guitarist Meric Long and drummer Logan Kroeber, have combined folk with primitive drumming to create a sound undeniably theirs that they’d never thought would ‘speak’ to the masses. ‘Walking’ is a very calm, confident beginning. It sets the mood, though the banjo used sounds a little out of place. It then walks smoothly into ‘Red and Purple’. The song is so perfectly arranged: if they weren’t playing it all together at the same time when they recorded it, I’d be amazed. The drums are brilliant and the toy piano fits in perfectly. It really is a truly well put together, lovely song. ‘Eyelids’ is a pretty good, nicely primitive filler. ‘Fools’ is my personal favorite. The drums suck you in immediately. The instrument bit between verses, with the frantic guitar and trombone, is a perfect touch that couldn’t be any better coordinated. The line ‘til we’re tired and we’re crazed in the mind’ followed by someone yelling like they’ve gone insane is great, very clever effect. ‘Joe’s Waltz’ starts with a nice quiet beginning. They part where he sings ‘on and on’ is very reminiscent of a soft Beatles song. When the song changes half way through, it’s enough to send shivers down your spine. They effect of them sounding as if they’ve lost their minds is amazingly perfect. ‘Winter’ is a very sweet sounding song. The horn section really helps with the general mood. However, for some reason, the lyrics have a hint of creepy creating a whiff of uneasiness, which to me is odd. ‘It’s That Time Again’ is another nicely simple song. The lyrics are pretty funny (to me), especially since their voices all sound like an all boys high-school chorus. ‘Paint the Rust’ isn’t anything that special, but the guitar and vocal pattern sound nice together and his voice sounds cool when he runs it through a filter. ‘Park Song’ sounds like a folk song with an urban twist. It’s very different from the other songs, which allots for a pleasant surprise. ‘Jodi’ is my least favorite song from the album. The drums at the beginning sound constipated and a little stupid, and the guitar sounds equally as uncomfortable. The vocals are the only thing that really save it. If I were Jodi, I’d be jealous of ‘Ashley’ because she gets a nice song. Though it’s a little less ‘upbeat’, it a very moving song. It’s calm and lovely, but the part where they say ‘Ashley’ in a falsetto-y way is pretty creepy. ‘The Season’ is a very poignant sound, and an obscure drum beat, which about half way through turns into a sort of desperation with Meric sounding as though he’s pouring his heart out to our ears. After he’s calmed down, ‘Undeclared’ starts up. It’s a little kiddie sounding. I don’t know about you, but I can’t tell if that’s a girl singing or Meric just singing in really high falsetto: either way it’s a little childish and kinda bizarre. ‘God?’ is a very fine close to such a fantastic album. It’s another soft song, but it really makes me cry. It’s so beautiful, and the fact that the song is about ‘oh God where’d you go?’ is very desperately glum. This is especially seen when after the second chorus, the person in the background sounds like he’s lost all hope when he calls out saying ‘God? God?’. Oh man, I’m tearing up as I’m writing. As you can see, this album was a work of genius. I have to say, when something moves you as much as Visiter has, you know it’s going to go places and one can easily see why this became as infectious as it is. They can only go up from here, and they are definitely worth the visit.
"I mean everything's corrupting it. Just loud rock music-I feel like there's a tendency playing live shows and stuff. The more you do it, the more you want to be like 'fuck it', and strap on an electric."-Meric Long

Video for Fools

Recommendations: Red and Purple, Fools, Joe's Waltz, God?
The Dodos Myspace
The Dodos Official Website
Note: Sorry for the severe lack of postage, I took a holiday from the blog, and I'm back with what I've promised. I'm so irritated that I only heard of The Dodos at the end of the year. I'll be doing Origin of Symmetry by Muse next and maybe a single or two between then so keep reading. Also, I took the following thingie off my page because the new format thing they did to it looked ugly to me, but I'd love for anyone to follow anyhow. Thank you!

Friday, February 13, 2009

The Friday Thing: Hellhound by Son of Dave

As usual, I was watching later with Jools Holland and, typically, half way through the show they'll have some one come on who does one song, and usually its very, very weird. Son of Dave was on this one (I only watched it because The Coral were on) and I was kinda creeped out by this performance, but I must say it had a very lasting effect on me. You also gotta love James Skelly's (The Coral singer) look at 0:57: It basically sums up my reaction!


Monday, February 9, 2009


The Black EP-
Status-Out as of 2003
Rating-3 Feathers

After the huge success of Turn on the Bright Lights, Interpol went on a world tour. It took them into France and one of the destinations was Radio France where Interpol recorded ‘The Black Sessions’, a set of live recordings put out as an EP. ‘Say Hello to The Angels’ is the only recording on this EP that’s the same recording as it was on the album. It’s an alright song sounding very similar to The Strokes. But something about it just doesn’t go well my equilibrium making me a little woozy. I don’t get why they chose this song being that it was one of the worse songs on Turn on the Bright Lights. ‘NYC [Demo Version]’: From my experience on listening to demos, they usually present a different arrangement of the song or a more raw version. This one however, is pretty close to how the album version is, and I must say, it’s pretty good for a demo. The drums specifically are really clear and sound really good. ‘Obstacle 1 [Black Session]’ is not as stunning as one would hope. The album version is pure joy and magic, but only the instrumentation is decent, and even then the guitar and drum mixing is way off. The vocals just sound terribly off. I’ve never heard ‘Specialist [Black Session]’ before, but from my knowledge it’s a well-known b-side. I can easily see why it never actually made it onto the album. It lasts about a minute and a half too long, and the obscurely clever lyrics are the only thing you can cling to. ‘Leif Erikson [Black Session]’ is possibly the best performance on this album. They’ve almost perfected transferring the sound of the album recording into a live performance. The only beef one could possibly have with this is that the mixing of instruments versus vocals is off. ‘PDA [Black Session]’ is another very good performance, except for the fact that they sped through the beginning bit and Paul sounds like he can’t breath. The solo at the end is very well done and at the exact right speed. Overall, this EP was ok. The mixing was blatantly off, probably because the lot of it was recorded at a radio station, but you could still see that they were pretty sound performances. This early in a bands career, you typically wouldn’t see them put out a live recording until they’ve gained sure promise or are a couple albums in. Banking on there success, Interpol did it anyway. I wouldn’t suggest this for you average music listener or a casual fan, however, die hard Interpol fans should definitely add this not-so-rarity to their collection.
"They had this little park with deer in it and I fed deer every day. How rock 'n' roll is that?"-Sam Fogarino

Video for NYC

Recommendations: NYC [Demo], Leif Erikson [Black Session], PDA [Black Session]
Interpol's Official Website
Note: I bought this in Best Buy, can you believe it?! Very rarely do they have EP's or singles, but they had this and I flipped so I had to get it. I'm going to review Visiter by The Dodos next in the coming week, I hope. Enjoy!

Friday, February 6, 2009

The Friday Thing: Guns of Brixton by Arcade Fire

I was watching an Arcade Fire documentary and it was punctuated by 'exclusive performances' er whatever. When they started this one, I quickly realized that it was 'Guns of Brixton' by The Clash. I was so far beside myself because this was more random a cover than Kate Nash covering 'Seven Nation Army'. I love how even though it's completely different from The Clash, it's still a pretty great interpretation of the song and it doesn't evicerate the songs message. Enjoy!

Guns Of Brixton