Archive for November, 2012


“Robber Barons” by Thee Oh Sees

Thee Oh Sees’ Carrion Crawler/The Dream is the second of the two CDs I bought in Vermont a couple of weeks ago.  I played some of the album in the car last week during one of our late-night Taco Bell runs, and I know both of you guys were digging it.  So here, for posterity, is one of the tracks we heard in the car, and my personal favorite on the album:  “Robber Barons.”  If nothing else, this song has one hell of a groove, especially when heard in car-stereo surround sound with the volume up.  If rocking out to songs like “Robber Barons” makes me a hipster, then so be it, because this is awesome.

Devin and I found this over the break, if you ever wondered why the Chili Peppers are considered a funk-rock band, here’s your proof:

 

“Im a thief and I dig it. I’m up on a beef I’m gonna rig it.” cries the powerful hook of this song. Each verse offers increasingly viable reasons for jawbone to give up the thiefing life only to be answered by an even more passionately sung hook. This call and response paired with the beautiful bluesy guitar organ combo is just one of many reasons this song stands the test of time.

For the week of 11/19/2012…

“Sad Fuzz” by Ty Segall

It’s Thanksgiving break, but instead of going out and carousing, I’m at home, sick.  I guess that means it’s time to post some new music!

On Saturday, Chris and I visited Pure Pop Records in Burlington, Vermont, where I picked up albums by two artists I’ve been getting into lately, Thee Oh Sees and Ty Segall.  They are labelmates and are both denizens of an exciting San Francisco garage rock scene that’s produced a lot of terrific material over the last few years.  Just this September, both Thee Oh Sees and Segall released top-notch new albums:  Putrifiers II and Twins, respectively.  Twins is actually the third 2012 LP with Segall’s name on it; earlier, he collaborated with White Fence on a record called Hair, and inaugurated the official Ty Segall Band with Slaughterhouse.  But Twins, his solo effort, is the best of the bunch, delivering knockout after knockout.  It’s the most exciting new album I’ve heard all year, with the possible exception of the Screaming Females’ Ugly.

Anyway, looking to pick up second CDs by these two artists, I bought a 2011 Oh Sees disc, Carrion Crawler/The Dream, and Segall’s 2010 album, Melted.  Melted isn’t as consistently great as Twins, but most of it is pretty damn good and a few tracks are awesome.  One of the songs falling into the latter category, especially upon repeated listens, is “Sad Fuzz.”  Slotted after rollicking single “Girlfriend,” “Sad Fuzz” is slower than most Segall songs, but it exemplifies his ability to write great garage-psych tunes with catchy melodies.  This one, in particular, sounds like a Beatles song, filtered through all the glorious fuzz of Mudhoney in their prime.  No wonder I love it.

I feel like even more big things are coming from this kid, who by the way is only 25 (and therefore was 23 when this song was recorded).  Apparently Spin magazine thinks so too, as they did a lengthy profile of him this month which you can read here.  Rock ‘n’ roll is alive in 2012.

For the week of 11/12/2012…

“Next Girl” by the Black Keys

“Next Girl” is, of course, track number two on the Black Keys’ 2010 breakthrough album, Brothers.  Its blues-rock groove and call-and-response guitar are hard to beat, and “well, the look on the cake, it ain’t always the taste/my ex-girl, she had such a… such a beautiful face” is a top-notch opening couplet.  But my priority in posting this is to draw your attention to the song’s music video, which I for one find side-splittingly funny.  In the video, the song is performed by a dinosaur puppet, who is surrounded by fawning babes in bikinis lounging around a hot tub.  As comical as that is, what really pushes the video over the edge into true hilarity is the scrolling marquee at the bottom of the screen, which all the while is disavowing the video as “an attempt by the record label to draw attention to the band using a ridiculous dinosaur puppet” and professing the band’s undying hatred for the whole thing.  Absolutely hilarious; 10/10.

Your extremely late post for the week of 11/5/2012…

“Hang a Picture” by Thee Oh Sees

Transitioning away from Mike’s electronica samples and into some current stuff that I’ve been listening to a lot lately.  Thee Oh Sees are a veteran indie band from San Francisco, and if you’re into serious guitar scuzz, I think you’ll like this track off their new-in-September album, Putrifiers II.  “Hang a Picture” is a swinging midtempo song with a bright, upbeat melody, delivered via a deliciously fuzzy guitar part and ’60s vocal harmonies built around frontman John Dwyer’s falsetto.  To me, it has the feel of a summer song, and while it’s not bubblegum, it also isn’t by any means inaccessible.  This tune has wormed its way into my head, and it is staying put.  Give it a couple of listens and hopefully you’ll be as hooked as I am.

One of the best new songs of 2012 that I’ve heard, for sure.

Double Feature: It’s a Cover!

Hello again, I’m back and with more music to share. The other day my fine feathered friend and roommate Joey tuned our TV to Blues Brothers 2000, the spiritual successor to the original Blues Brothers except with Walter from Big Lebowski. It’s a musical, and one of the songs was this cover of Season of the Witch, originally by Donovan. This version is so completely better then the original it isn’t even funny.

Blues Brothers 2000 OST – Season of the Witch

Hey guys, it’s me, remember? The third guy who posts on here…. I’ve come back from my long hiatus with a bunch of new music. After a lot of soul searching I’ve come to the conclusion that techno and electronic-whatever is absolutely sick. Music have something to do with needing pump up music for studying how water moves through pipes. My big subwoofer probably plays a big part in it too. So, here’s a bunch of stuff!

PS: I am shall we say, slightly uncomfortable, with how close this is to dub step and shitty pop music.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR USE: Don’t use your shitty ass iPod headphones or your laptop speakers, use some real speakers, and crank it as loud as it goes.

Sleigh Bells – Rill Rill

Crystal Castles – Empathy

Justice – Civilization

Daft Punk – Television Rules the Nation / Crescendolls (Alive 2007)

For the week of 10/29/2012…

“Since Yesterday” by Strawberry Switchblade

“Since Yesterday,” released in 1984, is one of my favorite one-hit wonders.  It opens with a doleful horn fanfare, snagged from Jean Sibelius’ fifth Symphony, which is quickly offset by the bright sound of a steel-drum-like synthesizer part; then, the big sound of a classic ’80s synth-drum fill kicks the song into gear.  The bright, happy sound of the synth — which in this song falls somewhere between sounding like a steel drum and sounding like a xylophone — and the big beat allow the song to maintain a basically upbeat character, despite the wistful, melancholy vocals.  All things considered, this transitions really nicely with A Flock of Seagulls’ “Transfer Affection” — as it does on my most recent mix.

The coolest part of the song is the synth breakdown at 1:32.

P.S.  The B-side of “Since Yesterday” was a cover of “Sunday Morning.”