Friday, April 30, 2010

Okay, what?

Here's what U.S. soldiers stationed in Afghanistan have resorted to...Lady GaGa. I wish I had a better comment but honestly I don't know what to say.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

the xx always wears black.

The xx just released a video for "Islands," which embodies them as a band. The whole video is a repetition of the same choreography, but slowly starts to change parts of it as the video goes on. You can't look away. Of course, they're dressed in all black. I love it!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Deer Tick is hard not to like.

Deer Tick is one of those bands that is difficult to describe. Not just their sound, but their personalities too. I had the opportunity to see the band from Providence, Rhode Island a couple weeks back in Columbia and it was unforgettable. In fact, it ended with silly string.
Lead singer and guitarist John McCauley is the instigator of their unique vibe, starting with his scratchy vocals and ending with his eccentric outfits. This is a picture of him (right) playing at Coachella, sporting a sundress and sparkly green hat--only to prove that he can do whatever he wants.
However, there's a bigger reason I'm writing about Deer Tick. They're getting ready to release their third album, the Black Dirt Sessions, which will be brilliant I'm sure. In the meantime, they released this track entitled "Twenty Miles" to keep you occupied: [mp3] Deer Tick - "Twenty Miles"

Thursday, April 15, 2010

The Tallest Man on Earth is back.

Since his 2008 album, Shallow Grave, fans of the Kristian Matsson, who goes by the moniker Tallest Man on Earth, have been anxiously awaiting his sophomore album release.

The Swedish folk singer is also often associated with Dylan because of his unique raspy croon, guitar stylings and specialized folk repertoire. He even references “Boots of Spanish Leather” in his song “King of Spain,” which shows off Matsson’s quick-finger guitar skills.

The Wild Hunt takes listeners through the Tallest Man’s complex mind as his scratchy voice sings songs about the meaning of the past, present and future. His guitar sometimes whispers and sometimes screams melodies, which makes for a interesting ride through his lyrics as well. The range of the elements combined creates an album that showcases Matsson’s versatility as an artist.

For instance, on the track “Love is All” the Tallest Man cries lyrics like “Here come the tears, but like always I let them go,” and a reflective sensitive man appears. Then he becomes more self-assured on “A Lion’s Heart,” with a softer voice and more wise perspective on things.

It will take a couple of listens to wrap your head around some of his mysterious lyrics, but it’s worth the trouble because what the Tallest Man on Earth has to say is quite profound.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


"I can't help think but we've grown up too fast." THE MORNING BENDERS' new video for
"Promises" from their new album Big Echo is proof of that. Check it out!


the morning benders | MySpace Music Videos

Monday, April 12, 2010

Sorry, not exactly Congratulations.

MGMT is a pretty creative duo. Their 2007 album, Oracular Spectacular, was extremely well received with tracks like "Time to Pretend" and "Electric Feel" that kept made their fans happy and made their fans dance.

However, their sophomore release, Congratulations, pretty much goes against everything they stand for. Not exactly congratulations to them, but more like better luck next time?

I understand the concept of trying to expand and experiment, but this album will confuse you as a listener. If you liked from Oracular Spectacular like I did, these songs are not what you're looking for.

Goldwasser and VanWyngarden claim that they were trying to be themselves more by getting to their roots, but it gets lost in translation. They defend the album to skeptics by referring to influences like the Beach Boys and Led Zeppelin.

Whether it’s their twelve-minute track “Siberian Breaks” or the obscure “I Found A Whistle,” you’ll be heart-pressed to find any meaning in their lyrics or melodies.

There are traces of the group’s previously impressive psychedelic styling in songs like “It’s Working,” but there’s no MGMT spunk attached. It’s more like a continuation one of those eerie songs you hear at a carnival on the merry-go-round that never ends.

Ironically, the only track I enjoyed on the entire album happens to be “Congratulations.” If I had to pick one song for MGMT to use as defense, that would be it. Other than that, I'm lost.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

She & Him sounds like summertime.

She & Him have done it again. She being the lovely Zooey Deschanel and him being the talented M. Ward. If you're in one of those "I wish it were summer already" moods like I am lately, listen to She & Him's Volume Two.
Just like their Volume One released in 2008, Deschanel and Ward collaborate to bring back vintage sounds in a rare way that makes you feel like a part of a variety of eras. It's refreshing to hear so many genres in one: hints of folk, pop, rock, country, jazz...pretty much anything you could find in your grandparents' vinyl collection.
Ward controls the strong guitar sounds while Deschanel pipes in with her flirty vocals and keyboard. Ward, who produced the album, occasionally jumps in to sing along.
Key tracks are "Thieves," "In the Sun," and "Lingering Still."
With such a versatile blend of upbeat poppy songs (the good kind) and slower more reflective tunes, you can't go wrong putting this album on repeat.
It's like Deschanel says in "Me and You," "You gotta be kind to yourself."

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Real Estate is the perfect soundtrack to the beach.

Although their album came out in 2009, I have recently become engulfed in Real Estate's self-titled album because of one reason: the beach. When I was recently in Miami over break, I found myself repeatedly returning to the low-fi surf rock in the sun. They're from New Jersey and the album takes place in their nostalgia for their suburban teen years, free of responsibility. Go listen to "Suburban Beverage" to get a taste.

Listening to their long-winded jams and subtle vocals about life in sand and under sun while experiencing it myself quickly became addicting. It's the perfect soundtrack to the beach. (I knew I was missing something in Missouri!)

I have issues choosing which track is my favorite. All of the tracks have an overwhelmingly clean instrumental vibe accompanied by calm, faded vocals. I usually start with "Fake Blues" then go to "Beach Comber" and follow that with "Pool Swimmers." It's really a win/win. If you don't have access to a beach, it's just a matter of closing your eyes because Real Estate will get you there. It's just like lead singer/guitarist Martin Courtney says: "What you want is right outside your reach."