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Monday, August 31, 2009

TV on the Radio

In a very fortunate series of events, Bennett and I were able to go to Outside Lands in San Fransisco for free. Walking around the area, two women drove by to simply give up their three day passes. We were staying at Stanford and had to get back, but we couldn't pass up the opportunity, especially considering TV on the Radio was about to go on. I'm a big fan of their new CD, but resisted posted because all of the songs were already out there in the blogging world. The Brooklyn band was great onstage, made only better by the perfect weather. Tunde thrashed about with so much energy that the crowd had to get involved. While the mixing was a bit off (one sax was significantly louder than anything else onstage), the songwriting shone through. I've included two of my favorite tracks from the new album.

TV on the Radio - Love Dog (YSI)

TV on the Radio - DLZ (YSI)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Evens

Washington, D.C.'s The Evens consists of Ian MacKaye and his domestic partner Amy Farina, formerly of The Warmers, and Ted Leo & the Pharmacists.  Ian MacKaye is best known as the frontman of the influential hardcore punk band Minor Threat, the post-hardcore bands Embrace and Fugazi. The Evens released their self-titled album in early 2005, breaking a three-year silence by MacKaye.

Blessed Not Lucky and Mt. Pleasant Isn't both come off of the Evens' debut self-titled album. For those wanting to hear MacKaye revisiting his harder Minor Threat/Fugazi past, you're in for a big surprise. Together with Farina, MacKaye shows us his softer side, while still maintaining his punk activist roots. Blessed Not Lucky is my favorite off the album, which makes more for a relaxing late night jam than a punk anthem of his past. Mt. Pleasant Isn't in my mind is the best example of MacKaye's ironic activist lyrics, but I'll let you be the judge. Enjoy,

The Evens  - Blessed Not Lucky (YSI)

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Long Overdue

I apologize to everyone who has been checking in only to find the same old posts each day. We have been off on summer in various corners of the globe. Personally, I just returned from Bangladesh and haven't had Internet access for weeks. Now that I am back (and have had a week to catch up a bit), I am ready to give you some good new tracks. These two I've had for a while, and in searching my head for what to post, I realized how unfortunate it is that these hadn't been put up. Sydney Blu has two amazing tracks. "Give it up for me" has one of the hardest hitting basslines I've heard in a while. I think the original is even better than Deadmau's interpretation. Also from Toronto, Blu has shown some promise. Most importantly, though, Sydney Blu is a chick. Enjoy.

Sydney Blu - Give it up for me (original mix)

Sydney Blu - Give it up for me (Deadmau5 remix)

Sydney Blu - Senses of the Mind (original mix)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Beck (again)

Beck gets the award for maintaining the best artist's website for these two amazing programs that he has come up with:

1) An interview series, in which his first two guests have been Tom Waits and Will Ferrell.
2) A program called the Record Club where Beck and his buds (including Devendra Banhart, and the guy from Little Joy) chose one album to cover from first song to last in a single jam session. The first album they covered? The Velvet Underground and Nico. Then the master-stroke: release it all one track at a time to keep people coming back.

Verrrry smart, Beck. These things are newsworthy (and numerous) events, causing Beck's name to pop up everywhere on heavily trafficked pulpits like Pitchfork. The kind of publicity that would cost SERIOUS bucks from the Label (which hardly pays for anything anymore).

Interesting as far as the music business is concerned. He's building his site into a virtual variety show -- and it's at little cost to the artist. Hit-makers have hit-maker friends. Call them up -- and record it. Jam with them -- and record it. I would not be surprised to see other musicians jumping on the band wagon. No pun intended. Aknowledged, nonetheless.
Here he is, at Pitchfork, talking about the Jam series:

Record Club: Velvet Underground & Nico 'Waiting for My Man' from Beck Hansen on Vimeo.