Friday, December 30, 2011

Happy New Year


Hope everyone has a fantastic and sexy New Year's Eve filled with La Dolce Vita-esque shenanigans and tomfoolery.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Kitty, Daisy, & Lewis – Don’t Make A Fool Out Of Me


Check out the stylish grooves of “Don’t Make A Fool Out of Me,” from Kitty, Daisy, & Lewis.

With plenty of super cool mod references, the track is packed full of sexy 60s spy vibes but the “boom boom bap” throwback hip hop beat really pushes it over the top.

Watch the video below and be sure to check out the rest of their album Smoking in Heaven as well.



Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Friday, December 23, 2011

Destroy All Televisions


I don’t know why but this video of Lucy Rose, who occasionally joins Bombay Bicycle Club on vocals, destroying a television Office Space style is oddly gratifying.

On that note, merry Christmas! 

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Top 5 Spontaneous Dance Party Starting Jams of 2011


#5 New Division - Nocturnal

New Wave meets shiny disco bangers, what’s not to love?


#4 My Tiger My Timing – Endless Summer

Armed with this jam, it will feel like summer never actually left.


#3 Justice – Civilization

It takes a little while, but when the track hits its stride, damn do those two Frenchmen know how to light a room on fire.


#2 Toro Y Moi – Still Sound

When that silky smooth 70s funk hits your ear, your feet will know what to do.


#1 Black Light Dinner Party – Gold Chain

Big beats, sparkly synths, and Ron Jeremy – what else do you need for a party?


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Beatle Mania

The Beatles + 3 Girls - Jerry Schatzberg, 1964

Monday, December 19, 2011

Top ten albums of 2011


Yup, it’s that time of the year again, so without further ado, here are my top ten albums of the year.

#10 Dirty Beaches – Bad Lands

If Wong Kar Wai had a band, it would sound a lot like Dirty Beaches. Filled with 1950s cool, lovesick yearning, and all the raw emotions and frenetic longing of a Wong Kar Wai classic mixed with the dark malice of David Lynch, Alex Zhang Hungtai successfully creates a unique sound and aesthetic unlike anything I’ve seen or heard in a long time.


#9 Caroline Smith and the Goodnight Sleeps – Little Wind

With a voice every bit as adorable as their name, Caroline Smiths and the Goodnight Sleeps have more than enough folksy charm to spread around. Like Thao Nguyen and the Get Down Stay Down, these indie-folk rockers know how to transform quiet songs into foot stomping danceable goodness.


#8 Abbe May – Design Desire

The third album from this hard rocking Aussie lass is somethin’ mighty fierce. Abbe May’s monstrous rock riffs will swallow you alive, but underneath that tough veneer lies an unspeakable tension. There is so much energy and emotion coiled tightly below the surface that each track fills you with anxiety as you wait in wide-eyed fear for it to explode like a jack in the box. If that doesn’t do it for you, her powerful voice will. Unlike Allison Mosshart, Janis Joplin, and other rock goddesses, Abbe May’s voice is soft, pure, and angelic. Her hushed whispers prove to be an unsettling juxtaposition to her vicious guitar playing.


#7 Big Deal – Lights Out

Consisting of a guy, a girl, and two guitars – one electric and acoustic – you couldn’t get more basic than Big Deal. Their minimalist sound immediately earned them comparisons to The XX, and deservedly so. In candid lovelorn songs, these two lay their hearts bare without sounding heartsy or sappy – in fact they even manage to come off a bit like badasses, like it’s cool to talk about your emotions.

#6 Army Girls EP

#6 Army Girls – Close To The Bone

I know I’m cheating here because it’s not a full-length album, but I just love Army Girls so much that I couldn’t resist. Compared to other guitar and drum duos, Army Girls has a surprisingly lush sound. In particular Carmen Elle draws you in with her powerfully captivating voice that shifts with uncanny ease between soothing coos and raw spitfire. Their EP is filled with some of the catchiest and most melodic songs I’ve heard in quite some time, and it is certainly a good indicator that an amazing album will soon follow. 

ARMY GIRLS - THE POWER from untold city on Vimeo.


#5 Arctic Monkeys – Suck It and See

Abandoning the dreary English weather for the sun-soaked beaches of California for their latest album, the Artic Monkeys have opted for a more mellow doo-wop 50’s vibe more fitting of their new climate. Their sound is as sharp as ever with cheeky songs like “Love is like a Laserquest” and lyrics like “thundersuckle fuzz cannon.” Since their initial album, the band has become increasingly precise and tightly orchestrated to the point that each song has become pure genius compacted into four minutes.


#4 Chapel Club – Palace

Take a trip back to 1980s Manchester with Chapel Club. With heavy doses of The Smiths and Joy Division, these Brits pay homage to the best of 80’s New Wave by replicating it perfectly while adding a touch of modern sensibility. So hurry up and throw on a chunky sweater and a pair of acid-washed jeans and jump into the Morrissey time portal.


#3 The Kills – Blood Pressures

If you haven’t heard this album yet, it’s time to get baptized in hellfire, cheap whiskey, and cigarette smoke. The Kills are without a doubt one of the most badass rock duos out there and Jaime Hince proves once again that he’s one of the meanest guitar-slingers in the West. One listen to the “Gimme Shelter”-esque riff on “Baby Says” and you’ll be knocked down faster than a rickety fence in a hurricane. While not as melodic as “Midnight Boom” and not as in your face fuck off intense as “Keep On Your Mean Side,” their latest album sits in between finding a nice balance of simmering blues and explosive rock.


#2 Voxhaul Broadcast – Timing Is Everything

For thirteen glorious tracks, Voxhaul Broadcast will punish your speakers with bleedingly good indie rock. Throw in a pinch of southern blues rock, a dash of soul, a smidge of falsetto, and some garage rock to boot and you get one helluva party.


#1 US Royalty – Mirrors

Like their name implies, US royalty takes the best of Americana and distills it into a potent bourbon that will have you instantly wobbling. Drawing on Southern blues, raw Detroit rock, and the optimism and vitality of the West, these indie rockers have put out an album that will put some serious iron in your veins. From jangly river basin blues to dreamy folk and even an insanely catchy indie banger to boot, this album covers a lot of ground, but underneath it all lays a strong blues tradition steeped in sorrow, whiskey, and howling guitars. One listen to “The Desert Won’t Save You” and you’ll understand why US Royalty has quickly become one of my favorite bands.

To quote an earlier review of mine, “A powerful lone guitar rolls out a nice delta blues progression while vocalist John Thornley howls mournfully and the drums beat out a rhythm that sound like someone was keeping time using a good ol’ fashioned hollow crate. This nice little interplay slowly builds to a crescendo until Paul Thornley unleashes a savage barrage of Black Keys-esque guitar lines. Then, at a moment's notice, the attack disappears and we’re left with the quiet rumblings of the bass guitar. This build and retreat pattern happens repeatedly, gaining in ferocity each time for nearly seven minutes of gloriousness.”

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Said the Whale Live Set @ Noise Coalition


I know it’s only 10:30 and a lot can happen today, but I’m just going to go ahead and declare that I’m totally hash tag winning.

To what do I owe this joyful exuberance? Why, none other than Said The Whale and Noise Coalition. The two wonderful groups of people have teamed up to bring us a live Said The Whale set from the Noise Coalition studios in Costa Mesa, CA.

Featuring a smattering of jams old and new including “Lines,” “Goodnight Moon,” and “Big Sky,MT,” Canadian Indie-folk rockers Said The Whale definitely brought it, and if it was a dance-off somebody would have definitely been served.

Watch the entire live set below, so that you too can also be hash tag winning.





Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Bleeding Knees Club – Have Fun



Bleeding Knees Club is the perfect name for a trio of hard-charging rapscallions.

Overloading their songs with plenty of mischievous adolescent punk surf rock a la Smith Westerns these similarly rambunctious skirt-chasing lads from Australia focus on the finer things in life like booze, women, and having fun. In fact on the track “Have Fun,” the chorus is simply “I just wanna have fun."

With pretty much all of their songs clocking in at less than three minutes, each track is a frenetic blur that plays like your wildest summer in high school replete with illegal substances, teenage angst, and sexual frustration.

Check out “Have Fun” and “Teenage Girls” below.


Monday, December 12, 2011

Friday, December 9, 2011

San Cisco – Awkward


San Cisco is back with a brand new video for “Awkward,” the lead track from their forthcoming EP of the same name.

Every bit as bright and cheeky as their last EP, but rather than celebrating the joyousness of summer, this time around they opt to tackle the ego-crushing confusion of interactions with the opposite sex. With bright guitars, a breezy melody, and dueling male/female vocals that sound a bit like CSS, San Cisco dissects the morning after an awkward date with a rather persistent male suitor.  

Have a look at the video below and keep an eye out for the Awkward EP which is scheduled to drop in February of next year.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

The Photography of Claire Wise


I normally detest children’s photography. I would rather be accountable by punishment of death by torture for having to teach a litter of newly born kittens to wrap Christmas gifts than to ever have to view another Anne Geddes photo of children posed with baskets of adorable kittens perched on dolphins playing with iPads, which is why Claire Wise’s photography is all the more startling.

As a children’s photographer, she manages to escape the trap of saccharine sweetness and still create bright, joyous photos. Rather than photographing children, her images capture childhood – a critical distinction that saves her from falling into the Ann Gedes honey trap of puppies and rainbows. She does not treat her subjects as mere vessels of innocence and cuddly cuteness, instead they are viewed as cognizant human beings and she simply brings out their natural fun-loving side.

Have a look at a few of my favorites below to see what I mean, or head over to her site to view her portfolio.


Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Old Wives’ Tale - Momma Devil

Konichiwa bitches! It’s time to rock your face off with the mean sounds of Old Wives’ Tale.
Have a listen to “Momma Devil,” a heavily blues inspired track that opens with an emotive Son House-esque a capella fraught with yearning, tension, and want before melting into some good ol’ thrashing rock.
Taken from their second LP Late-Night Paraphernalia, which is available now via bandcamp.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Monday, December 5, 2011

Quiet Lights – No More Canyons (Brutalist School remix)


Now that it’s Monday and work has kindly punched us in the face, have a listen to the remix of Brooklyn shoe gazers Quiet Lights’ “No More Canyons,” which will either make you feel fantastic or have you wallowing in introspective self-loathing.

Infusing the lushly textured and colossal guitars of “No More Canyons” with a hypnotic beat, Hsi-Chang Lin of The Brutalist School opts to bring out the haunting loneliness of the original in a stripped down minimalist version.

Cue the “It’s The Muthafuckin Remix” siren and have a listen below. Be sure to also check out the original as well if you haven’t already.

  


Friday, December 2, 2011

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Morning Claws – Fight For Your Friends

Morning Claws’ latest EP Pet Storms, Ancient Clouds is filled with dreamy Irish New Wave rock that harkens back to a time when The Edge had hair and Bono wasn’t gallivanting around the world spreading Christmas cheer.
With driving beats, shoe-gazey guitars, and dreamy vocals, “Fight For Your Friends” is pretty damn good.  
Listen below and download the track for free.
The EP officially drops December 5th, but in the meantime you can stream the album on Bandcamp.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Odonis Odonis – Ledged Up

Widening pupils; a glint of steel; a stream of red; electrical synapses firing for the last time; a shadowy figure flees the scene. As a dizzy acid-fueled ode to Hitchcock, “Ledged Up,” the latest video from Odonis Odonis, hits all the right notes.
Drawing on the psychedelic sounds of the 60s, infused with stylish mod fixings, and roiling in surf rock, “Ledged Up” plays like a frenetic chase scene from a retro spy thriller so it’s no wonder they chose to go with a Hitchcock theme for the album.
Have a look at the video below courtesy of Rolling Stone, and if you like what you hear, their album Hollandaze is out now.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Eugene McGuinness – Lion


Eugene McGuinness’s absurdly catchy new single “Lion” has been blaring from my speakers for a while now and I couldn’t help but share.

Taken from his forthcoming album to be released next year, this is certainly an indicator that good things will soon follow.

From punk guitar lines to a surf rock bass line, abstract Bowie-esque lyrics, and 50’s mod stylings, “Lion” is entirely unpredictable and insanely fun as a result. Although, I suppose it’s not entirely unexpected considering that it’s from the cheeky, genre-bending McGuinness.

Check out the video below which is equally as wild and random as the track. In particular, the wild coordinated gyrations of the four back up dancers will prove amusing to enthusiastic appreciators of moving your body rhythmically.

If you like what you can hear you can trade your email address for a free download of the song on his site.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

A Very Burroughs Thanksgiving


“Thanks for the last and greatest betrayal of the last and greatest of human dreams.”

-Burroughs

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Lissy Trullie – Madeleine

Fantastic news! Lissy Trullie is back with “Madeleine,” a teaser from her long awaited self-titled debut album, which is set to drop on March 6th via Downtown.
In a bit of a departure from her killer EP, Self-Taught Learner, Trulie eschews her energetic fuck off post-punk sound and instead opts for a slow burner filled with buzzy distortion, a Velvet Underground vibe, and her characteristic deadpan vocals.
Listen below or head over to RCRD LBL to grab your own copy.
 


Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Monday, November 21, 2011

Black Light Dinner Party – Gold Chain


What better way to start your week off then with the new video to Black Light Dinner Party's glittery dance-floor banger “Gold Chain.”
Packed full of 80s shimmer, sparkling synths, relentless optimism, and an insanely catchy beat there’s a lot to love here. Not to be outdone, the video is equally loveable with a cameo by Ron Jeremy rockin the illustrious gold chain of the title.

Despite only having a few tracks to their name, BLDP has been blowin up the interwebs and their debut record is sure to set your speakers on fire. The word on the street is that the band is still finishing up the record, but there’s no details on when it’s set to drop.

Until then, check out “Gold Chain” as well as the video to “Older Together,” another Dreambear produced goodie.


Friday, November 18, 2011

Occupy Vintage

Douglas Fairbanks hoists Charlie Chaplin at the foot of the old sub-treasury building during a rally to promote Liberty bonds, which were sold to help support the U.S. World War I effort -  Wall Street, 1918

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Michael Caine - A Bourgois Nightmare


"I'm every bourgeois nightmare - a Cockney with intelligence and a million dollars."
 
                                                                                                  -Michael Caine

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Y Luv – Earthquakes


I’m in a pretty damn good mood right now thanks to “Earthquakes,” the latest single from Y Luv.

With massive hooks, a catchy melody, and warm guitars, the track is uplifting indie pop at its best.

According to Freddy Janney, the band’s frontman, the song was inspired by his morbid musings on the big California quake and the frivolity of envying celebrities.

“It made me realize how fragile life is. It got me thinking about what really matters. Also, while I was freaking out about an earthquake, my sister and her friends were looking at a magazine and freaking out (as much or more) about how amazing someone’s body was and how they would never look like that and never be as happy as that person . . . I guess it’s all relative,” Janney said. “It’s a song that recognizes the world might fall but celebrates that it hasn’t.”

Listen below.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Work Drugs – Flying Zambo

Aurora Lies, Work Drugs’ hot debut album, is an instant sexy party waiting to erupt from your speakers.
Dark disco beats, shimmering synths, and ethereal effects create a devastating mix of moody, chill wave stereo bangers.
According to the band, the album was written during an adventure on the high seas that had been waylaid by rough weather.  
“Encountering rough seas, the S.S. Flying Zambo had to take shelter in the Drake Passage for a number of days. While enjoying some delicious Chilean wine, the Work Drugs crew wrote a number of songs to help fight home sickness. These are those songs...”
The newly released album is perfect for relaxing inside, lounging about, and having a good time, so sit back and have a listen to “Flying Zambo."

Head over to bandcamp to get the full album for some unabated goodness.

Friday, November 11, 2011

AA Loves – Alabama Shakes


With a sound straight from 50s Detroit, Alabama Shakes will immediately transport you to another era.
Far from being just another throwback band calling upon the ghosts of Motown past, the Shakes are the real thing. In the same way that Raphael Saadiq and Amy Winehouse (RIP) channel the soul fire of Lady Ella, David Ruffin, Aretha Franklin, and Smokey Robinson, Brittany Howard is a rare gem that can wail with the best of them.
On “Hold On" and "I Found You" listen as the raw passion purrs from Howard’s throat as she soars smoothly over the doo wop bass line and bright guitars.
Grab their self-titled debut EP available on bandcamp now, and be sure to keep an eye on them as they are quickly becoming indie darlings with the likes of Alex Turner raving about them.



 

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Tennis System – Hey, We Tried

Now that the East Coast has already been buried in snow and temperatures have dropped to levels that warrant two pants, I think I’m totally justified in bringing out the hazy sun-kissed sounds of Tennis System.

With traces of shoe-gaze, “Hey, We Tried’s” sunny disposition quickly spirals out of control in a growing vortex of fun, energy, and swirling guitars and synths that inevitably pulls you under.

Check out the video below and try not to think that it will be another 6 months before you get to experience anything remotely like it.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Monday, November 7, 2011

Little Scream – The Heron and The Fox (Work Drugs Remix)


Check out this 80s-licious remix of Little Scream’s “The Heron and the Fox.”

Infusing the original with glittery beats and a twinkling melody a la Cyndi Lauper, Work Drugs will have you dancing all day – a stark difference from the quiet-folksiness of the original.

Stream and download the remix below.

Enjoy.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Agyness













Have a look at this beautifully shot video of Agyness Deyn discussing her first heartbreak.
She doesn’t say anything deep, let alone novel, and frankly the montage is a bit cliché, but that quick grin she gives at 1:03 is utterly enchanting and worth far more than the one minute and 20 seconds it takes to watch this.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

The More You Ignore Me


Originally, this was just going to be a photo post, but when it comes to Morrissey, how can you resist throwing in a song.

Have a listen to "The More You Ignore Me, The Closer I Get"

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Monday, October 31, 2011

Gauntlet Hair – Top Bunk


I can’t quite figure out what it is about Gauntlet Hair, but I can’t get enough of their recently released self-titled debut album.

Each track from these Denver Indie rockers is a kaleidoscopic swirl of influences pulling in elements of dream rock, dance floor bangers, meandering shoe-gaze, and the larger than life guitar lines of Durutti Column, which Andy, Gauntlet Hair’s guitarist, lists as a major influence.

The juxtaposition of massive bass-laden beats and cavernous reverb-laden guitars is unsettling, in that you don't know whether to dance or to sequester yourself in a room doing massive amounts of mind altering drugs.

Check out “Top Bunk” and the far more danceable “Keep Time” below. Trust me, you won’t regret it.