Tuesday, June 30, 2009


Only by the Night-
Kings of Leon
Status-Out as of 2008
4th Studio Album
Rating-3 feathers

Back with another new sound and new look, and marketed as the next big thing, Kings of Leon have released their critically well-received 4th album ‘Only by the Night’. It seems they have been marketed as the next big thing, but will they finally make it big in their home?

As a collection, the songs fit with one another well; maybe a little too well. The opening track, ‘Closer’, has a weird enough sound to make you think “Why haven’t I been listening to these guys?” The southern electrified ‘Crawl’, with a sound like The Who’s ‘The Seeker’, and the pulsing groove of ‘Sex on Fire’ demonstrate perfectly the potential of Jared Followill as a bassist and Matthew Followill as a guitarist. They reach the peak very quickly with the overtly dramatic ‘Use Somebody’. The song builds nicely, and evokes a boatload of emotion, almost as if it’s the last song on the album and they want to go out with a bang. However, that is not the case: there are 7 songs still. After this, each song has it’s own personality and brings something different to album, but not enough to keep it from being overwhelmingly monotonous. For the first few songs you kinda get that Caleb wants to show off his voice, and for a few it works. But, when you’re pouring the same amount of intensity and staying in the same range for every song, it gets very tiring very quickly. The majority is a bit of a blur. ‘17’ sticks out badly for having this beyond annoying vocal pattern that they repeat several thousand times, but a song like ‘Notion’ sticks out for it’s heavier atmosphere and for the proper utilization of the forceful vocals. To finish, ‘Cold Desert’ is less than memorable. It never really builds, and just drones on. They even have a dumb false end, and when it comes back, it’s even more uninspiring.

Each song is a good song and well performed but it’s just very repetitively boring. Many of the songs follow a very similar formula, and the album just sorta dies after the 4th song. ‘Only by the Night’ is possibly Kings of Leons’s most successful album in the U.S., but for now, and possibly forever, they’ll just continue to ‘Be Somebody’ everywhere else.
"We always end up doing records so much faster than we want to 'cos we just get bored when we go home and have nothing to do, but drink or write. So we drink plenty…the writing comes shortly after."-Nathan Followill

Video for Use Somebody

Recommendations: Closer, Crawl, Sex on Fire
Kings of Leon's Official Website
NOTE: I said I would do it, and I did! This was awkwardly challenging to write, and I hope you enjoy. And, this is my 100th post! It's been good so far, so thank you to all who commented! I'll be reviewing either Tapes'n Tapes, Spoon, or Panda Bear next.

Friday, June 26, 2009

The Friday Thing: Bleeding Love by The Wombats

I was watching a repeat of the 2008 EMAs which stands for European Music Awards. I watched it because I assumed that it was an award show that'd actually have performances by bands that I like, and my music would finally be given awards and stuff. I should've realized that it was run by MTV, and therefore EVERYTHING would be like your average VMAs or music on mainstream American radio. Katy Perry was the host: enough said. However, about an hour and half into it, with a little hope left, The Wombats performed a cover of Leona Lewis's 'Bleeding Love' after she won an award. I thank them for putting The Wombats on, for they were possibly the most european thing in the whole 2 hours.

Bleeding Love

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The Dodos are... TIME TO DIE! (And Arctic Monkeys Humbug Cover)

The Dodos are releasing their third album entitled 'Time to Die' on September 15th, a day after 'The Resistance' by Muse is supposed to be released. That's going to be a fantastic week! 'Visiter' and 'Beware of the Maniacs' were absolutely great, so 'Time to Die' should be as good, if not better!

Track Listing:
"Small Deaths"
"The Strums
"This Is A Business"
"Two Medicines"
"Troll Nacht"
"Acorn Factory"
"Time To Die"

Arctic Monkeys too have released the cover art for their third 'Humbug'. I like it, it has the band on it which is a first for them being that all their cover art for everything was either cryptic or just with words on it. Enjoy!

Friday, June 19, 2009

The Friday Thing: Time to Pretend by MGMT

Through the past couple of years, I was completely resistant to MGMT, as I was with Animal Collective. About a month ago, that all changed. I heard 'Kids' on the radio and I've been officially addicted to it since. The past two weeks though, 'Time to Pretend' was added to my awareness of MGMT, and I can't stop that either. I was watching MGMT's MTV live, and the last song they showed was 'Time to Pretend', so why not make it my Friday Thing? Enjoy!

Time To Pretend

Thursday, June 18, 2009


Arctic Monkeys at the Apollo-
Arctic Monkeys
Status-Out as of 2009
Rating-2.5 feathers

There comes a time in most bands’ careers where they decide to release an epic film chronicling an epic or special performance well into their respective career. The Beatles did it. Oasis did it. Muse even did it. They are one the most successful English bands right now, and even though their catalogue is a little small (only two albums), Arctic Monkeys decided to hop on the concert release bandwagon, and film the last show of their Favourite Worst Nightmare world tour. Already you can see problems.

They come on stage and plow right through ‘Brianstorm’ and ‘This House is a Circus’, each equipped with noticeable blunders. I’ll let that slide because it was the 1st two songs, and they completely nailed ‘Teddy Picker’. They then promptly glaze over ‘I Bet You Look Good On the Dancefloor’ and ‘From the Ritz to the Rubble’ which were two very blaringly lifeless performances with only the slightly energetic ‘Dancing Shoes’ separating them. After a few more barely memorable performances, they make-up for the others with nearly perfect renditions of ‘Nettles’ and, as Alex Turner put it, ‘D is for Danger’. Later, they do ‘Still Take You Home’, which makes the whole experience worth while because for once they wake up a little and actually seem pumped to play it. They seem to develop a little more spring, and they bounce up and down vigorously throughout. When they cease, and the cheering stops, they introduce their friend Miles (Kane), then still of The Little Flames fame, as a guest to help them out on ‘Plastic Tramp’ and ‘505’. They end the set with ‘A Certain Romance’. It’s so beyond glaring that their hearts are just not into it. It’s almost depressing. The only redeeming quality of it is that during the botched up solo at the end, they play a slide show of random clips of the band, but even that only lasts 30 seconds. For the encore, they play ‘The View from the Afternoon’, which regardless of how dead the performance is, it’s still insanely impressive to watch. As for the extras, the option to watch the concert in four camera view is a joke: the cameras are all stationary at awkward angles, and the band don’t even stay within their camera’s view. The bonus performances of ‘Balaclava’ and ‘Bad Woman’ really should have stayed in the film, they would’ve helped. The bonus CD of Live in Texas is another mistake. The recordings were generally bad and poorly mixed. And live in Texas? Honestly, why live in Texas?

For such a good live band, this was severely disappointing. First off, for a concert DVD, they completely ignore the audience, the lighting sucked, and the camera severely favors Alex Turner, almost completely ignoring Nick O’Malley and Jamie Cook. Also from start to end, they are all very clearly not fully there, uninterested, and very tired. Alex even has these bizarre long moments where he just stares unblinking, and none of them are feeling the music. It doesn’t help that they filmed their last show of a nearly year long tour as their big concert release. It was by no means epic or a spectacle, but at least every performance was played well technically. Perhaps a better idea would’ve been to release a full-length version of their massive set at Glastonbury 2007?

"We'll try a couple more with you and then we'll review"-Alex Turner


Performance of Still Take You Home

Official Website for At the Apollo
Arctic Monkeys Official Website
NOTE: I tried to make this review shorter than my others, but I don't know if I succeeded. I actually bought this the day it came out, but it just took me a month to get to the review. I hope you enjoy! Also, I'm thinking of reviewing Only By the Night by Kings of Leon, so stick around!

Monday, June 15, 2009

New Video for Summertime Clothes by Animal Collective

As you can see, in order to post more, I've posted about any music news (in recent time) that I care about so... Animal Collective, apparently a few days ago, released a video for their now 2nd single 'Summertime Clothes', one of my favorites from their latest album 'Merriweather Post Pavilion'. I'm very happy with their choice, but I warn you the video is very strange, but it's what I've come to expect by them. It's a good video for the song, just I don't feel it's as epic as it could have been or as amazing as 'My Girls' was. Enjoy!

Summertime Clothes

Source: We All Want Someone

Friday, June 12, 2009

The Friday Thing: Your Light is Spent by Final Fantasy

I was searching around La Blogotheque on the Take Away Shows, and I stumbled upon this Final Fantasy performance. I'm so glad I did, it brightened my day. It is such a beautiful song, and Owen is just too adorable in this. The fact that this song is being played while he's strolling (or running) through the streets makes it that much more perfect and adds such a great effect. Owen Pallett is a genius, and I hope you enjoy!

Your Light is Spent

Tuesday, June 9, 2009


Midnight Boom-
The Kills
Status-Out as of 2008
3rd studio album
Rating-4 feathers

One night long ago, a girl named VV and boy named Hotel were staying in an English hotel. With both fed up with their current musical projects, Hotel began playing his guitar and VV, in the room above, heard the noise. She ran off to find it, and when VV’s eyes met his, The Kills were born. Though it might not have happened just like that, it was fate that Alison Mosshart and Jamie Hince would meet that night. They became a minimalist punk inspired duo, using nothing more than a guitar and drum machine. With two albums under their belt, Midnight Boom is created with a lot of stress regarding third album syndrome. Will they crash or will they soar? Let’s find out. ‘U.R.A Fever’ sets the tone immediately. They create a weird sorta distorted sound that fits just perfectly against the rotating vocals and it demonstrates what they can produce. ‘Cheap and Cheerful’ is also very catchy. Though the coughing at the beginning is a little grotesque, and the vocal pattern sounds like it’s been done so many times before, it still contains well constructed guitar parts and a flair of their own. ‘Tape Song’ is literally about tape, like scotch. With that aside, it’s a very simple song that has so much poured into it. Alison’s vocals are so perfect, especially the ‘you got to go steal ahead’ part. Though the drum machine is a little cheapish sounding, it awkwardly fits the general sound. ‘Getting Down’ is not all that great. The combination of their voices make for a sound that’s just not comfortable. It sounds creepy, especially since Alison is singing low and very, very breathy. ‘Last Day of Magic’ is very similar to ‘Getting Down’, just a smidge mellower. It just doesn’t make you comfortable, once again. It has an overall awkward sound and the main line ‘A little tornado, a little hurricane-o’ is just dumb. ‘Hook and Line’ is a vast improvement. It contains the best vocals on the album, and it really sounds like she embraced the song and put all she had into it. It comes in so heavy that it knocks you over. ‘Black Balloon’ is the midway break. It’s very gloomy, and the aura created from the sound of them slapping their laps is really a great effect. Though on the surface it’s reflectively melancholy, upon closer listen it’s a little lighter. You just have to smile when you hear “Farewell my black balloon, let the weather have its way with you”. ‘M.E.X.I.C.O.’ is the most sing along/fun song on the album. Though the beginning guitar part is a little self indulgent, and the actual song part is short lived, it’s filled with such an unavoidably fun flair that you can’t resist. I can’t honestly give an unbiased opinion about ‘Sour Cherry’. It was used on the pretentious teen drama Gossip Girl, leading the song to be the most popular Kills song on iTunes. That destroys me. It’s the equivalent to hearing Animal Collective in Abercrombie. I mean, it’s a good song, just I can’t get that fact off my mind. ‘Alphabet Pony’ is just simply bizarre. There’s no other word for it. It’s a little creepy, but “he’s the alphabet pony”? That’s just odd. ‘What New York Used to Be’ is the best song on the album. The guitar alone sends you goosebumps and the vocals fit so perfectly. The generally sound is just so light, original, and different from what the rest of the album offers. They truly save the best for last, and it’s a shame that so many probably missed this gem. ‘Goodnight Bad Morning’ ends the album so beautifully simple. It’s the most simplistic song on the album, but it still leaves you with something to hold on to. It leaves you satisfied with the idea that the album has closed. As whole, Midnight Boom wasn’t all too bad. It’s really a fun album; every song is catchy and you can easily sing along from beginning to end and have fun doing it. It’s really nothing that much more. A classic? Maybe not, but a really great collection of entertaining songs. They are very good at their chosen style, and should continue on that course. They truly ain’t born typical.
“I remember us writing songs together in my little kitchen and never knowing whether anyone would ever get to hear the fruits of our labors. I still maintain we’ll never be truly popular, but with all that’s happening to us at the moment, it’ll be interesting to see what happens next.” Jamie Hince (Hotel)

U.R.A. Fever

Recommendations: U.R.A. Fever, Tape Song, Hook and Line, What New York Used to Be
The Kills Official Website
Note: This was The Kills review I was talking about way back when. I promised it and I gave it, so go me. I hope you enjoy, and I am still in the works of Arctic Monkeys live at the Apollo. Enjoy!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Arctic Monkeys are...HUMBUG?

Humbug. That's the name of Arctic Monkeys 3rd album. Humbug. Wow. I'm not sure how to react. They have semi-iffy titles like 'Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not' and 'Favourite Worst Nightmare', but 'Humbug' is really, uh, fairly odd, to say the least. It's still setting in. Humbug. Expect the album out on the 25th of August for the U.S. Opinions?

A View From...Rehearsals

Friday, June 5, 2009

The Friday Thing: Dreaming of You by The Coral

If you ever read my blog, you know that I love The Coral. So, I was watching a charity concert for 'Teenage Cancer Trust' and after Bloc Party, The Coral came on to perform their ever popular 'Dreaming of You'. I was thrilled with this version. James Skelly clearly pours alot of himself into this song, and the fact that the majority of it is acoustic just makes it that much more original. I hope you enjoy this as much as I did!

Dreaming of You

Thursday, June 4, 2009

WATER CURSES-Animal Collective

Water Curses-
Animal Collective
Status-Out as of 2008
3rd Extended Play
Rating-4 feathers

After the release of the ever successful Strawberry Jam LP, Animal Collective set forth on recording new material. Released shortly after, the ‘Water Curses’ EP represents just how their progress is coming along. Beginning with the title track, ‘Water Curses’ starts out with a weird trombone-y groan that sets the foundation perfectly. The synthesizer flutes backed by water sounds and primitive drumming fit perfectly behind the frantic unintelligible singing. You quickly agree with the lyrics “I don’t think I know exactly what I’m doing”. They know enough, however, to make this song so irresistibly catchy. ‘Street Flash’ is the simplest song of the four. With single organ beats and lightly filtered vocals (and awkward ear piercing laugh-screams), this song has so little going on, but it’s no less catchy or brilliant as compared to its predecessor. With weirdly clever lyrics like “I’m so sorry I came in late this evening, but all the clocks around the town had died”, how could you think otherwise? When they casually bring back the original theme after the swampy trippy interlude, you know they have the formula down perfectly. ‘Cobwebs’ provides a little break from the others. The combination of the tinny sound and creepy synthesizer being used to keep the beat, will, if the vocals alone don’t, keep your interest. You’ll be sure to be singing “I’m not going under ground” for days to come. Though the song doesn’t get freaky/experimental ‘til the 3 minute mark, the journey there is still worth it. Though you don’t realize a new song has started until you hear a normal sounding piano, ‘Seal Eying’ definitely stands out. It sticks out because it really isn’t anything hugely special. Nothing too interesting or intricate happens, which is somewhat disappointing regarding that the 3 others were so weird and complex, but this is just a bit draining in comparison. Generally, I am quite happy with this selection of songs. As an EP, it’s a quality collection that demonstrates their talent of random experimentation very well, and ¾ songs are just fantastic. It’s a shame that songs like ‘Water Curses’ and ‘Street Flash’ won’t be used on a full length album, but if this is any representation of what their upcoming album will be like, it’s going to be absolutely amazing!
"Water Curses" [the song] was the most difficult ever, I think. All getting on the same page of what that song was supposed to convey, emotionally and sonically." Brian Weitz (Geologist)

Video for Water Curses

Recommendations: Water Curses, Street Flash
Note: I wanted to review something, so I did an EP. I will still do a long review of Arctic Monkeys live at the Apollo in the coming days, so look out for that. I hope you enjoy and thank you for your kind words!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Arctic Monkeys: New Album Release

Mark your calendars: Arctic Monkeys long awaited 3rd studio album is set to be released on August 25th in the U.S. (24 in the UK). They apparently have been recording for the past months in Brooklyn, and you can keep track of their progress through their video diaries entitled 'The View From' hosted by Matt Helders. Lets really hope that they don't turn away from their sound we've come to know and love for it's rumored that it's very 'Black Sabbath'... Also, if you haven't noticed, the four have changed aesthetically, especially Alex Turner and Jamie Cook. I really hope their look doesn't reflect on their sound.

01. My Propeller
02. Crying Lightning
03. Dangerous Animals
04. Secret Door
05. Potion Approaching
06. Fire & The Thud
07. Cornerstone
08. Dance Little Liar
09. Pretty Visitors
10. The Jeweller's Hands

The latest of the The View From's