The Long and The Short

October 1, 2010 by

I know what I should be listening to. I’ve heard it every time I’ve had a discussion with someone who fancies themselves a connoisseur of popular modern music. While it would be true to say that I fall under that category, in the world outside of wordpress I barely ever talk about music with anybody but Jules and Jake. I’ve found that it’s right up there with religion and politics. People judge you based on what you listen to, and they judge you even more harshly if you say you “listen to everything.”

Even if you do.

I refuse to claim that my musical interests hit the full 360°. There’s entire genres I won’t even dabble in, because I’ve heard enough and it’s just not my thing, bro. A friend of mine who I’ve lost touch with would always play punk, metal, ska and other shit I hate, and at the time it was intolerable. Now I find myself missing Stiff Little Fingers (nh).

This article isn’t about proving I like punk, I wouldn’t do that to you. I’d rather share some of my more embarrassing musical proclivities so I can be laughed at. You, the reader, can feel superior to me knowing that you have way cooler stuff on your iPod.

There’s only one place to start so lets just get it out of the way: I love Paramore. Hayley Williams just hit the stratosphere with B.O.B. & their song Airplanes, but I have yet to meet someone who likes that song and her band. It’s considered by people who are close to the author a thing for emotional tweenage females.

But look at it logically. Female singer? Check. Every member is from the South. They have the ability to make me love a song I hate. Recording catchy ass pop songs is all Paramore does. They’re still technically indie. Hayley Williams can flat wail, and she’s not ugly. You may feel the need to point at that they’re featured heavily on the Twilight soundtrack. Well I would urge you to actually take a look at some of the Twilight soundtracks, because I bet you’re a fan of half the songs. It’s eerie, try it some time. They have it at Starbucks.

They won’t let me embed to “That’s What You Get” so I’m going to start where I planned to finish, with crushcrushcrush in Chicago.

Alright their stage show might wander into cheesy at times, but that’s because you’re in your twenties and you don’t know what the kids are in to any more. It’s fine, I don’t either. Frankly I’m just impressed she can bounce around like that for 4 minutes and sing so loud. She may be tiny but she makes a lot of noise.

I’ll admit I liked Use Somebody the first time I heard it. I quickly grew to hate KOL and all their songs. This version I really love, and I enjoy that she has the lyric sheet in front of her. It says, “I’ve heard this song and I understand it’s popular so I’m going to cover it live and get three million youtube hits just because I can.” Girl has moxie, and I respect it.

Paramore, you get it. Up next, more girly rock in the form of Lissie. This chick covers Kid Cudi’s (I refuse to use your dumbass capitalization) Pursuit of Happiness, and blows his doors off.

Although I find her stage presence and overall persona unlikeable and forced, I’d be an asshole if I didn’t give her due props. She can sing her ass off. Check out her bassist playing bass and drums. She was quoted in Spin as saying she wanted to play the Super Bowl halftime show in 4 years. Not only does that have a zero percent chance of happening, it’s an incredibly narcissistic and presumptuous thing to say. What about this chick seems like it would appeal to NFL fans? Nothing.

I love Pursuit of Happiness as a song. Cudi’s version is well produced, and makes an attempt at having a message. It just sounds lazy and uninspired next to Lissie, and it would be hard to argue otherwise. I also dislike that Drake is in the video because he annoys me.

I can’t realistically get through a post like this without mentioning Robyn. She’s Gaga without the pretense, or the over the top fabricated personality. She’s weird though, no doubt.

It’s just a good tune. I’m going to quit now because wordpress is telling me I’m at 750 words, and if you’ve taken the time to listen through all the youtube links in here I’m three things:
1. Impressed
2. Grateful
3. Sorry for taking up so much of your time.

I hope you feel better about your itunes library after this peek at mine. I love you all.


Show Review – Gayngs

October 1, 2010 by

At Jello’s behest I went to go see Gayngs at the metro last night, by myself. I’m not exactly a stranger to that type of arrangement so I was cool with it. After standing outside trying to pick up an extra off one of the meandering trendsluts I said to myself,

“Fuck it.”

And went inside and paid face. It was twenty bucks. I felt like an asshole. The scene was the scene, which never changes and isn’t worth talking about at this point. You’ve been there, you’ve gawked and chortled, and it’s surprising every single time. I had a bjork shirt and my freshest pair of Nikes on with my big daddy rolex all shined up and real real real low on my wrist. Because I’m a bawsss.

They came out with 11 people on stage, rivaled only by Thievery Corporation who fit like 25 people on the diminutive Metro platform. Blasting through a couple of their “hits”, talking shit to audience member via autotune, and yucking it the fuck up for the first 20 minutes, Gayngs was out to entertain. Then they covered this:

The crowd was baffled, even though they were told it was a cover.

“Is this new it’s not on the album.”
“I think this is a cover.”
“No way dude they don’t do covers.”

On and on and on. The show was amazing, the crowd chatter sometimes got in the way of the music, since it’s so mellow and subdued, but I dealt. I had two guys next to me who were talking about their job at a high volume during this song:

I shot them a look and puffed out my chest, they got the message. I’m a scary looking dude with my new beard.

Basically, go see them. I can’t say enough about this weird little collective. They soft rock.


The Comedy Stylings of Autoerotique

July 7, 2010 by

What does this mean?!

Autoerotique is the group formerly known as VNDLSM, pronounced (in my brain) Vandalism, but actually just stands for Very Nice Dave and the Legendary Skid Murphy. They just dropped an album and I’m following them on Facebook, so you can see them in New York or LA or whatever hip town you live in. Here’s their take on the Double Rainbow phenomenon.

Autotune is one of those things that might be a little played out, but is great when it comes to making fun of lonely hippies making videos of nature. Do you love Vagina?

Of course we do too. This little electro group doesn’t just jump on youtube fads and exploit them with autotune. There’s more tricks contained in this pony. They’ve got an album coming out, and even though I’m not really a fan of techno albums, there’s sure to be a couple bangers on it. We’ll post them, don’t worry. Here they are on facebook


Who Am I? – Miley Monday

July 1, 2010 by

My sixteen year old self would be giving me a face if he scrolled through my iPod. “What the fuck is this shit?” He’d ask, perplexed by the oddities of his future musical taste. Granted, I wasn’t really that hip back then, but I thought I was, and my musical choices seemed to reflect that. In retrospect it was just your average musical puberty, but I thought I was in to some really cool shit.

Now that I’m older, I know I’m in to some really cool shit.

Bad Veins came out with this record last year, self titled, and it’s noisy, moody indie rock music. It was recommended to me as a Vampire Weekend meets Broken Social meets whatever the fuck else Drew said. Their album is self titled.

Best Coast is a low-fi girly throwback rock group, and they have an EP called Art Fag 7″. I was instantly won over, then I spun this little gem. It kind of sounds like a take on doo wop for the irony junkies in whatever music scene I’m currently talking shit about. Probably yours.

They also have a song called “Sun Was High (So Was I)” You’re going to listen to it, and you’re going to like it. It’s still noisy and distorted, with the throwback structure, and it’s delicious. I hope they don’t suck live.

Deerpeople: Are they deer, or people. They can’t seem to make up their minds, and I’m not sure. If they’re deer, they’re probably my favorite band ever. If it’s just people, then they’re still pretty cool. They’re from Oklahoma. I need to get my hands on some of their weed. It’s southernistic, noisy, lyric-driven, smartass indie rock that makes a lot of good points about a lot of things. Try “Canada”. Be they deer, or be they people, they despise Canada, and that’s just fine:

So Delorean. JULIA GOOD TOLD ME ABOUT THEM. Their newest is called Subiza and the #1 track is a glitchy little downtempo vocal sample jammy jam that I’d stick my face in and just chill there if it was a bowl of pudding. It’s called Stay Close and the best thing about it is the sample. I’m sorry but that’s how it is.

Maybe not so downtempo, but if you’re trying to have the most relaxing dance party possible, give this a spin. That brings me to my last girly rock selection for the week, via a band called Pretty Girls Make Graves. It’s kind of a sugary pop/punk thing that reminds me of the mid 90s, but was made in the naughty aughts. Big, generic guitars and angry females on the mic. You cannot go wrong if you try.

If you read the same blogs I do and notice a similarity between what they’re posting and what I’m currently in to, save yourself the agony of having your snarky little comment rejected because I’ve heard it before. It’s not my fault they blog about everything. They have dozens, nay, scores of contributors with incredibly odd tastes, and this is basically a one man army you’re dealing with here.

Happy 4th


June 24, 2010 by

(Photo credit: Ysa Perez)

Narcisse is a duo from Brooklyn and makes dance music. That’s all we know. I listened to the tracks a few times, and I like it. The Moonsex Cassette track is really good. Can’t provide more information about this guys, but have a listen!

If you hit the blogosphere looking for info on these guys, this is more a good example of what you’ll get. Narcisse is comprised of a couple of my friends from high school, so I think I can give a little more information.

Yeah that’s right, we’re totally friends with musicians.

Before we get into the really interesting interview I did with Trav, let us all listen to one of their tracks. They have two, and this one is called Moonsex Cassette. Peep game:

DOWNLOAD Moonsex Cassette

The guy on the right up there with the robot arm is Mike, his band is called AVAN LAVA, their singer is featured on this track, and if you don’t check out their website immediately you’re doing yourself a disservice. His name is Tom and he’s got this electro vocalist thing on lock, wouldn’t you say? I know these guys are probably seriously tired of hearing this, but this is a great summer chune, bruv. I’m going to personally see to it that someone listens to it on a boat this weekend because I got it like that.

Narcisse has a studio in the basement of an old Catholic school that is “spooky and amazing”, and that’s where these tracks come from. I was told there’s not a lot of soft synths in these tracks; instead they choose to play their instruments and go ahead go nuts go apeshit on the 3630. Trav described the sound as more analog and I agree. It’s refreshing. Without getting to flossy, their tracks have the kind of build I’ve come to expect from Trav’s solo work, with a nice slice of the more subdued boom boom from the electro-rock demographic in the group. I forgot to ask who’s doing the drum work but it doesn’t really matter, does it?

Here’s another song that’s already been released, but we got some new shit for you after the jump. This one is called HAPS3. No vocals, but it’s got that whole progression thing I really like to talk about.


It’s a bit murdered out. If you want to hear this kind of thing live and in person, then you’re in luck. You know what Pitchfork is right? We tend to make fun of their music reviews but they have great taste in music. Pfork put me on Delorean. Narcisse has a Delorean remix coming out, in case you’re out of touch they’re super cool guys from Barcelona. They’ll also be in Vegas on the 18th of something, I forgot to write down the month in my notes. I take journalism very seriously.

Before I hit submit and fail to do the one thing I wanted to do in this lengthy post, here’s a new track from the boys. Visit their myspace while you’re at it, it’s up there too. They’re pretty easy to find on facebook.

I’m aware that you didn’t ask, but I think it’s pretty great. Bright, riffy, dance electro. It kind of makes you want to jump up and down with a lady, buy her a budweiser, then ask her if she’d like to get the hell out of Perry’s tent for a minute and go see what’s up with making a baby. At least for me. This is that music we’ve been telling you about for months now.

Happy Thursday, music fans.


One Hand Loves The Other – First Place

June 22, 2010 by

This is one of those posts that I know is going to be hard to write, so I’m just going to Hunter S. Thompson the shit out of it and hit submit and be done with it.

I “discovered” this band called One Hand Loves The Other about two years after they disbanded. I recognized the Bjork reference in the band named and downloaded anyway, expecting some fluttery abomination of poorly pitched synths and a mess of Americans trying to sound Icelandic. I was wrong to assume things.

They’re from Atlanta, which doesn’t really fit with the noises they make. I’m used to associating ATL with the southern garage thing, and all things Outkast. Granted, I haven’t spent much time in the town, but that’s because it’s a bit of a hole. I think we can all agree on that. Here’s my favorite, First Place:

Absolutely everyone I’ve played this for has dug it, including people who surf CMT for the latest Kenny Chesney in their spare time. What you’ve got, (in my opinion) is poignant-but-not-overwrought, vocal driven electro noise pop with just the right amount of Bjork production style ripoffs. (Former) frontman Lou Rodriguez can flat wail, and while on tracks he’s more subdued, in the video I just linked he really gets into it.

There’s a place on the internet where people who know more about all this garbage post songs they’re listening to, and after being lambasted by a “colleague” for big upping a Gyptian track off that Major Lazer/La Roux thing we posted about a week or so ago, I got e-props for turning him on to this (nh). This made me proud of my weird little find, and I thought I’d share with you fine people. (Check comments for how to purchase)

And on that note, what’s going on in the Atlanta electro scene that makes it impossible for this little outfit to stay together? 3/4 of the band is in a group called Tealights, and frontman Lou has a project called Insubordinate Promotions that has released exactly 0 songs in two years of operation. Maybe they’re all busy schlepping drinks to cover their recording expenses or something, I dunno. It would be nice if I could get some more material out of these people, namely Lou, but I’m not holding my breath.

For good measure, here’s the Bjork song from which their band name was derived. It’s called Unison, and if you’re my friend on Facebook (who isn’t at this point?) you saw me link it a while back. This is a great recording. This is one of the best songs.


June 21, 2010 by

This is one of the coolest music videos I’ve ever seen. The story of the project, according to Blockhead:

Honestly, I’d like to say it was some awesome shit I worked closely with the artist on but it was just something ninja tune commissioned the artist, Anthony Schepperd, to do. I’ve never spoken or met the guy but I had seen some of his earlier work and approved the idea. I tend to blindly approve videos in general cause, in truth, they usually don’t really matter on my level. But this one blew my wig back.
As for the expensive part, I’m not 100% on how much the dude made but I’m pretty sure it’s not THAT much cause ninja tune isn’t trying to spend tons of money on videos. regardless, the dude hit it out the ballpark and I couldn’t be happier with it.

This, to me, is how to make something viral. If you put together a video of this quality it’s going to make it around the intarweb in a hurry. It’s kind of like The Wall, or Yellow Submarine. I always check for Blockhead’s stuff because he made Daylight and he’s a friend of the program. He’s your favorite rapper’s favorite producer.

Either way it goes, do yourself a favor and buy The Music Scene. It’s great.


May 26, 2010 by

Awesome mixtape cover aside, you need to check this out. Download it here for great justice.

Major Lazer is diplo & switch, of MIA and being awesome fame. La Roux is a retro girlpop group we talk about extensively on the podcast that you still haven’t listened to. Here’s a tracklist.

1. Major Lazer & La Roux – ‘Bulletproof’ (Nacey Remix ft. Matt Hemerlein)
2. Major Lazer & La Roux – ‘Colourless Artibella’
3. Major Lazer & La Roux ft. Gucci Mane – ‘I’m Not Your Lemonade’ + Heroes n Villans Remix
4. Major Lazer & La Roux ft. Candi Redd – ‘Independent Kill’
5. Major Lazer & La Roux – ‘Keep It Fascinating’
6. Major Lazer & La Roux – ‘Magic’ (Falling Soldiers Dub)
7. Major Lazer & La Roux – – ‘In 4 The Kill Pon De Skream’
8. Major Lazer & La Roux ft. Drake – ‘Houstatlantavegas Pains’
9. Major Lazer & La Roux ft. Rusko – ‘Tigerlily’ (DYWHAP Blend)
10. Major Lazer & La Roux – ‘Can’t Stop Now’ (Armor Love Remix)
11. Major Lazer & La Roux ft. Amanda Blank – ‘Quicksand’ (Mad Decent 2010 Rerub)
12. Major Lazer & La Roux – ‘Cover My Eyes’ (Costra Nostra Edit)
13. Major Lazer & La Roux ft. Opal – ‘I Said It’ (Major Lazer Dubplate)
14. Major Lazer & La Roux ft. Gyptian – ‘Hold Yuh’ (Double Dubplate)

It’s like that.


MIA goes (more) pop – Uffie & Pharrell

May 26, 2010 by

MIA has an album coming out in July. Yes that’s right July. So you can expect to see her do her thing live very soon, and those who know know it’s not to be missed.

What’s that you say? You heard the single and it blows? Well that’s true, the first song off this album was very not good. It’s very political, and where she normally toes the line between having some sort of message and making danceable big beat stuff, Born Free was a harrowing preview of what the album might sound like.

Fear nots, my homies. She followed that up with XXXO, which is a pleasant pop romp. It’s more pop than anything off Kala, which isn’t really that hard to pull off. I think she’s going to hit her stride with this record, and all the MIA doubters are going to have a long hard summer.

You don’t get it do you? Why do we listen to this shit? It’s kind of hard to explain . It isn’t just some oddball fascination with hot girls who rap, not even when they look like Uffie. For me a lot of rap has lost its sense of humor, being replaced by swagger. Let me just say, I don’t care if it’s the right word for the situation, the next time someone says swagger or swag in conversation I’m going to vom.

Ed Banger. Amanda Blank. MIA. Uffie. I enjoy the looks I get when I play this in your car and you can’t do shit about it because the ipod is on my side and we’re on Lake Shore Drive.