Monday, May 26, 2008

Midnight Organ Fight by Frightened Rabbit

On the face of it I feel as though I should probably hate Midnight Organ Fight by Selkirk Scotland's Frightened Rabbit. I mean, it kind of wreaks of a holier-than-thou-uber-indieness i.e. completely nonsensical album title, and they have an animal in their band name... for those of you following along at home animals (particularly bears and wolves) are the new 'The' bands. That said, I've been listening to Midnight Organ Fight more than anything else in the last two weeks.

There's probably a couple of reasons for that: 1/ I feel like I've been a little bit of slump lately, haven't been looking as much, and therefore finding much new stuff to listen to; 2/ I listen to the Once soundtrack pretty frequently and have developed a growing affinity for the British accent; 3/ there are some really blunt-catchy-punchy lyrics through out the album - "Jesus is just a Spanish boy's name", "My trouser's seem to love your floor", "It takes more than f--kin' someone you don't know to keep warm"... and so on.

I mentioned the other day that a couple of guys are picking this as an early favourite for album of the year, and while I don't think its that good, its definitely worth your time.

Thanks to Allan for turning me on to them... see his post here complete with mp3s.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Tales of Interest, Thursday Edition: Good News, Bad News

Bad News
  • Atmosphere's When Life Gives You Lemons... kind of sounds like he decided to make a Will Smith album. I liked him a lot better when he was angry.
  • I came across Mike Doughty via the Interface and his acoustic set with his buddy Andrew 'Scrap' Livingston on the cello. It was a really cool upbeat performance, but unfortunately his album is horribly, horribly, over produced to the point where it in no way resembles what he did on the interface.

Good News
  • As you may be able to tell, I spent some time catching up on my interface videos ... I really enjoyed the one by 19 year old soul singer Adele. View it here.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Here EP by The Golden Hands Before God

I heard a single ('Interlude') by the Golden Hands Before God via Matthew a back in, say, January and have been eagerly anticipating more from them. Jamie of the GHBG sent me a unmixed copy of 'Blood of November' shortly after, which was outstanding, and I've been really excited about the EP since then.

About a week ago I got a digital copy of the Here EP and have been feeling strangely compelled to grow my hair (both head and facial) out since listening to it a handful of times. They've put together the kind of blue collar classic rock album that makes you realize why Classic Rock Radio that plays nothing but music from the '60s and '70s is still viable; and why kids (and university students) are rediscovering this kind of music through a little game I like to call Rock Band.

'Communist Party' is the first single chosen by Pop Echo - the band's label - which, I think, is a good choice. I love the lyric "this ain't no communist party, you've got the wrong f--kin' house"...
Also, I couldn't be happier that 'The Blood of November' made it on to the EP, because its still my song of the year and has a kind of haunting, mystical quality reminiscent of Led Zeppelin.

[mp3] The Golden Hands Before God - Communist Party
[mp3] The Golden Hands Before God - Blood of November

They've got a couple of new (old) tracks up on their myspace.

They're playing NXNE in Toronto - June 13 at the Savannah Room - and due to a house warming/needing to find an apartment/I may be there.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The Boston Celtics

(KG playing defense like Kyle Korver, see photo)

Friday, May 9, 2008

Tales of Interest, Friday Edition: Take Out the Salami and Cheese

Been really busy, so, not much music to chat about, but some interesting b-ball stuff:
  • Malcolm Gladwell's moneyball-esque thesis that physical attributes aren't great predictors of future success. It's often been my thought that the biggest thing that high school players that go straight to the NBA miss out on is experience 'grinding it out' and learning how to win. I mean, its easy to win when you're significantly bigger/stronger/faster than everyone else by a lot, but at some point you've got to figure out how to "out compete" the other side. Off the top of my head Kobe is the only highschooler to win multiple titles... for anyone who saw the Celtics-Hawks series it seems unlikely the KG is going to buck that trend.
  • Liz and I saw Forgetting Sarah Marshall on Monday night starring a couple of my favourite TV actors Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars) and Jason Segel (Marshall - How I Met Your Mother). I was expecting a mildly entertaining romantic comedy and instead got an extraordinarily funny comedy comedy where the romance part is introduced through a particularly hilarious break up scene early in the movie... and, I guess if this is supposed to be first and foremost a music blog, here's some music from the movie.

    Its a song that was written by Segel, who I guess is writing the next Muppets movie....

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Tasseomancy by Ghost Bees

Apparently, Tasseomancy is the art of reading tea leaves as well as the name of the first?latest? work by the Halifaxian duo Ghost Bees. The name of the album really captures the kind of bizzare and extraordinarily haunting nature of their music*. After hearing the first single, I was slightly creeped out, but after I got the album in the mail I was pleasantly surprised how much I really enjoyed being creeped out by them.

The closest point of comparison I think is probably one of my favourite bands of the last couple of years, Beirut. I mean, not that they sound like Beirut, but in a I never would have thought that I'd enjoy listening to an album with this kind of sound once all the way through, let alone repeatedly (Beirut's Gulag Orkestar is probably one of my most played albums over the last two years). Tasseomancy might be a little too shrill at times for that to happen, but I'm not going to be surprised if it turns into a regular rotation album or even a recommendation.

[mp3] Ghost Bees - Vampires of the West Coast

* I feel like this is strange phenomenon that more albums aren't titled properly - i.e. given a name that accurately reflects the feel of the album. Maybe this isn't possible all the time, for example, Death Cab for Cutie Goes Punk may not have been the best album title for Tokyo Police Club's latest, but you know what I mean...

As an aside - this is who I think the Raps should draft.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Tales of Interest, Wednesday Edition: You Can't Feel Your Face After 12 pts?

  • A completely incoherent piece passed on to me by Rosie by Josh Levin on Gilbert Arenas (and LBJ), which criticizes Gil for taking an off balance 3 at the end of the last Wiz-Cavs game and praises James for passing. I hate love to say it, but Levin completely misses the point... everyone was all over LBJ for passing at the end of games a couple of years ago when the Cavs lost. So, it seems to me that most of the criticism stems from losing not from the issue of passing/not passing, but winning/not winning. I think the biggest problem at the end of the games is that coaches (like Mike Brown and Eddie Jordan and Sam Mitchell) call plays at the end of the game where star player X to dribbles down the clock and: a/ drives to the basket and hopes for a foul call; or, b/ drives and takes an off balance 10-20-25 foot jump shot with a hand in their face; or, the best case scenario, c/ drives while all 4 other players stand and wait for the kick out to take a semi-open shot. For 2/3/4 million a year can we not figure out a better play with under 30 seconds left? I mean, if you have LBJ, Kobe or, maybe Manu Ginobli this might be a viable play... otherwise... WTF?
  • I've been kind of getting into Why?'s (I wonder if the question mark will be the new exclamation mark?) album Alopeica something I'd been meaning to get to since I saw Allan's review a while back. Maybe this is a terrible description, but I'm thinking it sounds like - Eminem meets the sunscreen song meets hip-pop...?
[mp3] Why? - The Vowels pt. 2
  • One of the kids I coach played this for me the other day... its wicked hot.
[mp3] Estelle - American Boy ft. Kanye West
  • I'll leave you with this... Barack Obama playing 3 on 3. The best part? The commentary. ... and Obama walks on water, aaaaaand lays it in...

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