Friday, September 29, 2006

Today's Brew | Grizzly Bear

Yes, I ended up catching the Grizzly Bear show, instead of the Sonic Youth show. Economics and location were a factor, and also had to wake up early the next morning for work.
A little factoid: Three of the four members of Grizzly Bear were classically trained jazz musicians.

From their album "Yellow House":
mp3 download: Grizzly Bear- "Knife" (courtesy of insound)

From their album "Horn of Plenty":
mp3 download: Grizzly Bear- "Deep Sea Diver" (courtesy of insound)

Grizzly Bear @ Spaceland (CA):

Quite an amazing performance, that's all I can say. If you haven't caught them live, its a band you won't wanna miss live.

They finish up their US tour with a bunch of shows with fellow Brooklyn mates, TV on the Radio. Now that's a bill to definitely catch, and be sure to visit their My Space for the dates.

Buy the album "Yellow House" ovah here.
Buy the album "Horn of Plenty (with Bonus Remixes)" ovah here.

official site: Grizzly Bear
My Space: Grizzly Bear

Thursday, September 28, 2006


All day I was deciding whether to catch Sonic Youth at the Wiltern or not.
I was entertaining that idea while at work.
Then I realized Rogue Wave was playing and also Grizzly Bear.

You'll never guess what I've decided.

Sonic Youth @ the Wiltern

Rogue Wave @ Safari Sam's

Grizzly Bear @ Spaceland

Today's Brew | Date with Lily Allen?

In celebration of National Dating Day (?!), recruited fourteen celebrities as part of a fundraiser. National Dating Day? WTF?

According to Pitchfork:
When the fundraiser comes to an end on October 1, the famed volunteers will hand their earnings over to a variety of charities (each participant chose his/her own upfront). Allen, who's already made her way up to £2,100, chose Strummerville, a Joe Strummer-honoring foundation for the production of new music.

Lily Allen
Age: 21
Lives: London
Country: UK
Profession: Singer/Song Writer
Hair Colour: Brown
Hair Length: Long
Height: 5' 11"
Interests: Designing trainers, writing music, collecting records, sassy dresses and sunday roasts.

Check it out ovah here.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Second Cup | Death of a President

Playing with alternate history in almost in a true sense. Two different mediums explore that path, in this "what if" scenario.

The film that created a bit of uproar by Gabriel Range that screened recently at the Toronto Film Festival. The title is also known as "D.O.A.P".

"Shot like a typical television documentary, the 93-minute film uses computer wizardry to combine archival footage of President Bush with staged scenes to depict the murder and its aftermath." (By Josh Grossberg, E! Online)

Film: Death of a President

"The President's Dead." A two-minute and forty-two second serving of alternative historical fiction.

from a limited edition 12" "The President's Dead":
mp3: Okkervil River- "The President's Dead"

official site: Okkervil River

Today's Brew | The Decemberists

Stereogum posted this awhile back at his site, and available on You Tube, a behind the scenes photo shoot of the forthcoming album by the Decemberists "Crane Wife". So yes I'm late on this, but if you haven't caught it, check it out.

The album drops on October 3rd and their first big release with Capitol.

YouTube: The Decemberists- "Crane Wife- Photo Shoot"

Buy the album ovah here.

official site: The Decemberists

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Late Night Brew | The Knife "Like A Pen"

Just another video from the dynamic duo from Sweden. If you haven't checked out their album "Silent Shout" (one of my favorite albums of the year)...I highly recommend it.

Video directed by Andreas Nilsson

QT: The Knife- "Like A Pen"

Gorilla vs Bear recently posted an earlier track by The Knife that is worth checkin' out.

re: 1990

John Lydon, after leaving the Sex Pistols and shedding his Johnny Rotten persona...he came together with Keith Levene, who was also one of the earlier lineups of The Clash to form Public Image Limited aka PiL.

The Greatest Hits, So Far mines the singles PiL released through 1990. Ten years after its release, it was doubtful that a second volume would surface (the '90s saw one lone studio release, not to mention a John Lydon "solo" record), so thankfully Lydon didn't embarrass himself by titling it "The Greatest Hits, Volume One." That said, not many outfits under the guise of one name can boast a collection of singles so diverse and ranging in quality. And really, the title should be "The Singles, So Far." (by Andy Kellman, AMG)

YouTube: Public Image Limited- "Rise"

Monday, September 25, 2006

Second Cup | Dmitri Shostakovich

This week marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of composer Dmitri Shostakovich. NPR this morning did a special feature on him that I was really intrigued by.

September 25, 1906 - St. Petersburg, Russia

Hearing History in Shostakovich's Fifth Symphony by Marin Alsop
For example, how fast should it be played? At the very end of the symphony, Shostakovich's original tempo marking is quite slow. But Leonard Bernstein doubled the tempo in his recording with the New York Philharmonic, and Shostakovich thought it worked very well.

For me, this is a defining moment in the symphony, determined by the entirety of the last movement, and even the journey of the entire piece. I hear the last movement as a gradual acceleration of forces, an increasing sense of hysteria and loss of control until things break down and the fanfare (like the theme) becomes almost nightmarish in sound.

Three Must-Have Shostakovich Recordings by Melody Joy Kramer
Immersing yourself in Dmitri Shostakovich's complete works would take days, but familiarizing yourself with his music should take no more than an afternoon. And it will not be painful.

Read the full features here:
NPR: Shostakovich, Man of Many Variations

Today's Brew | Josh Grier's fave 2006 songs

This week's Pitchfork's Guest List is from the band Tapes N Tapes frontman Josh Grier.

Pitchfork's Last week's Guest List entry- Colin Meloy

Favorite Songs of the Past Year

Liars: "The Other Side of Mt. Heart Attack"
The contrast between this song and the rest of the album is initially so stark; it goes from intense drums and chanting to this very mellow guitar and vocal track. At first I thought the song was almost out of place on the album, but the more I listen to it, the more I realize it's not. Everything on Drum's Not Dead is so visceral and intense, and "The Other Side of Mt. Heart Attack" is the perfect closing track for the album.

Destroyer: "European Oils"
Everybody sing along: "Ladadadada da dyedyedye." This has to be the best "la la la" chorus in the past 10 years. And then when he goes back to the verses, it's like you picked up your copy of War and Peace.

Wolf Parade: "You Are a Runner and I Am My Father's Son"

When I hear this song, I have an irrepressible tendency to dance like Corky St. Clair in Waiting for Guffman. A song has to be rad to make that happen.

Silver Jews: "Punks in the Beerlight"
I'm a sucker for Dave Berman; I'm also a sucker for anybody who can use the phrase "to the max" 20 times in a song, and make it sound totally sincere. This should have been the theme for [1980s BMX-themed movie] Rad.

For the rest of the Pitchfork article:
Guest List: Tapes N Tapes

Today's KCRW Morning Becomes Eclectic Guest: The Decemberists

Friday, September 22, 2006

Weekend Brew | KCRW: TVOTR

TV On The Radio visited KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic show for an in studio performance earlier today. If you haven't caught this unforgettable performance, do yourself a favor and check em out. And if you haven't picked up their current album "Return to Cookie Mountain", I highly recommend it.

Watch the performance:
Real: KCRW MBE: TV On The Radio (In studio performance)

They will be in concert this Sunday with Massive Attack at the Hollywood Bowl.

Today's Brew | Concert: Emily Haines

The Viper Room | Hollywood, CA
Last night I caught Emily Haines, where she played 2 shows in one night. I caught the first show.
To start off, parking along Sunset Strip sucks, and the Viper Room isn't the greatest venue either, but maybe in this particular setting it sorta worked.
But after much waiting...and it was quite a long wait.
It was nice to finally catch Emily.

During the show, film projections from various clips of Guy Maddin (The Saddest Music in the World) films were played for each song performed.

Zeitgeist Films: Guy Maddin

Compare and Contrast:

Gosia Dobrowolska in a dream sequence from Careful.

Emily Haines

My previous entry about her ovah here.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Today's Brew | BBC Collective: Bat For Lashes

When Natasha Khan describes her childhood in Pakistan as one of “mystery and magic and religion and repression and happiness and sadness, a real kaleidoscope of stuff,”
Gracefully sidestepping rock tradition with a multi-instrumental band including harpsichord, viola, autoharp and bells, Bat For Lashes at once hint at Kate Bush’s lush romanticism, the pressure-cooker emotion of PJ Harvey, and the deadly intrigue of a Renaissance court.

(from Abi Bliss 14 September 06 | BBC Collective)

I'm on fire (Bruce Springsteen cover)
I saw a light

For the rest of the performance and feature about them, visit:
BBC Collective: Bat For Lashes Session

official site: Bat For Lashes

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Specialty Blend | Daytrotter's Sean Moeller
one featured band, four Daytrotter Session songs each week.

Some of Daytrotter's past guest have been:
Thao Nguyen, French Kicks, Sunset Rubdown, The Cold War Kids, and the list goes on.
I invited Sean to be a guest blogger here and just let him write about what music he's been enjoying.

William Elliott Whitmore's "Song of the Blackbird"
Over the course of a 24-hour day, you're bound to feel nothing more than circumstantial at least twice, often more than that. It's not altogether impossible to avoid feeling this way, but I'd say it takes a special person to do so. When I was asked to provide this guest blog just this morning by the Coffee Snorter brass, I was still swirling over the too wonderful Bonnie Prince Billy performance on Late Night With Conan O'Brien last evening, in which Will Oldham was accompanied on the piano by Andrew W.K. There was Oldham with his eyes all did like Brandon Flowers and, as it is sometimes to happen, Kate Moss, doing it for a national television audience with the hard partier himself. Andrew W.K. and Oldham, as unlikely suits as you'd ever come across, are artists who can bring you back to the fold, sage in their purity and the pursuits that this purity yields. Thus we come to William Elliott Whitmore, the old man in the new body from just down the Mississippi River here in Lee County Iowa.

He reads by candlelight, in a cabin he's building in the middle of nowhere that he hasn't bothered outfitting with electricity in the six months he's lived there. He's a human being with enough down-home, spiritual moxie to make Texas blush. But for the most part, he's an incredible man whose songs beat with the force of a fleet of hearts. "Song of the Blackbird" is an album that makes you wonder how Whitmore is not more beloved. You can hear his church shoes (and they are church shoes) thumping away on a hardwood surface even when it's not inherent in the recordings. These songs mourn for people and things in a way that is so beautiful it hurts. But they'll get to stop thinking about your sometimes sorry self for a minute and that's nice.

-- Sean Moeller (

official site: William Elliott Whitmore
official site: Daytrotter

Daytrotter- " you exclusive, re-worked, alternate versions of old songs and unreleased tracks by some of your favorite bands and by a lot of your next favorite bands."

Second Cup | NYTimes: Cat Power

Excerpt taken from NY Times
Published: September 20, 2006

About two weeks before "The Greatest" release in January, Ms. Marshall said, she lost her mind: “I was looking at death. I wanted to die.” Holed up in her Miami apartment for seven days, she turned off the phone, played Miles Davis on repeat, stopped eating and sleeping. She drank to oblivion and prayed to die.

Susanna Vapnek, a painter, came over to check on her friend. Ms. Marshall was acting bizarrely, obsessively chasing “bad spirits” around her apartment with a lighter and sage. Ms. Vapnek bathed her and stayed by her side. Eight hours later she took Ms. Marshall to Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami, where she was admitted.

Confined for psychiatric treatment, Ms. Marshall recalled refusing to bathe, hiding from her reflection and wanting to be drunk. “I asked God, I said, I’m tired, I can’t do this,” she said. “I was asking him to just take me.” She was terrified by the other patients who screamed at night and were comatose during the day.

After seven days in the hospital she was allowed to leave. “It was like I was in glue,” she said of the heavy doses of lithium given her.

Even though “The Greatest” was getting good reviews, a tour in support of the record had to be postponed because of her problems. Her label, Matador, estimated that it lost more than $100,000 on marketing and promotion, paying her supporting band (including a onetime member of Al Green’s band) and canceled shows.

NY TImes: Chan Marshall- Cat Power Report

Today's Brew | Joseph Arthur

The latest from Joseph Arthur dropped yesterday...

Follow this link here to stream the "Nuclear Dream" album.

Also makes his debut appearance on the Late Night with David Letterman on Tuesday, October 10th.

official site: Joseph Arthur

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Second Cup | 'Rockin Bones'

I heard a real interesting feature this morning on NPR about rebel music of the 1950's, rockabilly music. This article could redefine our notion of protopunk.

Morning Edition, September 19, 2006
Just as the Ramones, the Clash and Sex Pistols broke the rules in the 1970s, so did a slew of equally rebellious singers and their groups a generation earlier. Rockin' Bones, a new CD collection, features the music of 1950s rockabilly artists who were the iconoclasts of their day.

Ronnie Dawson's "Rockin' Bones" is the title song on a set that also features Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Buddy Holly and other rock 'n' roll stars.

Well when I die, buried six foot deep / With a rock 'n' roll record at my feet / A phonograph needle in my hand / I'm gonna rock my way right out of this land.

"That's really great poetry," says James Austin, who produced the Rhino set.

(text by Renée Montagne, NPR)

Read the full article:
NPR: 'Rockin' Bones' Celebrates Rockabilly's Rebels

Today's Brew | The Sugarcubes *Reunite*

It's official.

(text below from

"Nearly 20 years ago The Sugarcubes put out on their own label Smekkleysa SM, their first single "Birthday". This release was the start to the splendid career of The Sugarcubes, and impressive releases of Icelandic artists in Iceland and abroad alike. These first steps made by The Sugarcubes have made and everlasting impact and influence on the Icelandic export of music.

It is therefor with unbound joy we announce the 20th anniversary concert of Birthday and The Sugarcubes in Reykjavik on the 17th of November. The Sugarcubes will take to the stage for the first time in 14 years.

All profit from the concert goes back into Smekkleysa SM who will continue to work on a non-profit basis for the future betterment of Icelandic music and artists.

My previous entry about them ovah here.

re: 1979

One of my favorite Talking Heads album, and also features one of my favorite songs by the Talking Heads as well.

By titling their third album Fear of Music and opening it with the African rhythmic experiment "I Zimbra," complete with nonsense lyrics by poet Hugo Ball, Talking Heads make the record seem more of a departure than it is. Though Fear of Music is musically distinct from its predecessors, it's mostly because of the use of minor keys that give the music a more ominous sound. (by William Ruhlmann, AMG)

Also credited to the song "I Zimbra" is Brian Eno.

YouTube: Talking Heads- "I Zimbra"(1983 performance)

Buy the album ovah here.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Late Night Brew | Emily Haines...again.

From the video "Doctor Blind":

QT: Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton- "Doctor Blind"

My previous entry about her ovah here

Today's Brew | The Who

This morning, I wasn't to sure which comeback was bigger, The Who or Jay Z.
Jay Z making a big deal of his "pseudo-retirement" comes out of that as he announced it late last week. But nothing would compare the return of the Who.
There's much to be said about comebacks, but regardless of how it'll ultimately will be received, its worthy of being noted. Especially these guys.
After almost a quarter of a century of being out of the game, their back with a new studio album. Quite a comeback for the duo of Roger Daltrey and Peter Townshend. Although they've reunited several times to perform at various performances and all, their back, at least for now.

From their album "Endless Wire" (release date: October 31):
Stream: The Who- "It's Not Enough" and "Tea & Theatre"

Friday, September 15, 2006

Second Cup | Colin Meloy's fave new artist

started a new series called "Guest List" in which they feature their favorite artists and find out what they've been up to lately. So they start it off with The Decemberists frontman Colin Meloy.
Check the article ovah here.

Among a list of other things he says, one notable is
Favorite New Artist.

My Brightest Diamond

That’s really hard to say, but I’ll pick My Brightest Diamond because they're a very new band, and some of the other ones are probably off limits, not being that new. But as far as a debut record, Bring Me the Workhorse is really knocking my socks off.

My entry about My Brightest Diamond ovah here.

The Decemberists release their album "The Crane Wife" on Oct. 3rd. If you haven't heard any of their new material, you're in for a treat.

Today's Brew | Xiu Xiu "Boy Soprano"

Jamie Stewart and company return with poetry (both vocally and sound) that sorta leaves a resonance of truth upon the listener with the release of 'The Air Force'. Quite an exploration of sound.

"Loneliness isn't being alone/It's when someone loves you/And you don't have it in you to love them back," ("Wig Master", The Air Force by Xiu Xiu)

image from the video "Boy Soprano"

A peculiarly odd video game soundtrack with an
even more bizarre tripped out video game.

From the album "The Air Force":
QT: Xiu Xiu- "Boy Soprano"

mp3: Xiu Xiu- "Boy Soprano"

My Space: Xiu Xiu
official site: Xiu Xiu

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Today's Double Brew | Asobi Seksu + CWL

mp3 download: Asobi Seksu- "Strawberry (Cassettes Won't Listen Remix)"

Visit their My Space for a comprehensive list of their Fall Tour.
I caught them a couple a years back at the Echo, and they are definitely worth checkin' out.

Their LA area appearance:
Oct 5 Detroit Bar
Oct 6 The Echo

Also Today:

It appears that KEXP is making their presence known in the east coast.

YouSend: Cassettes Won't Listen- "Cutting Balloons" (For a limited time)

Cassettes Won't Listen (Live in NYC) Thursday September 14, 8:00am
Prior to that, Grizzly Bear (Live in NYC) Thursday September 14, 7:00am

Stream more of their stuff at My Space:
My Space: Asobi Seksu
My Space: Cassettes Won't Listen"

official site: Cassettes Won't Listen
official site: Asobi Seksu

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Today's Brew | Bishop Allen's August EP

For the month of August, Bishop Allen offers up a 13 song live EP, most of which were recorded from a show at the Middle East in Cambridge, MA.

mp3: Bishop Allen- "Same Fire" (live)
mp3: Bishop Allen- "That Summer" (live)
mp3: Bishop Allen- "The Flood" (live)

Also finally, the band makes their trek to the wild, wild West:
10/27 ~ 11/22 West Coast Tour :: TBA
w/ The Starlight Mints

Buy it ovah here.

And finally, be sure to check out the movie "Mutual Appreciation". Quite an interesting film, but its definitely not for everyone.
My entry about that film ovah here.

official site: Bishop Allen

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Second Cup | Stampin' Beatles

Beatles Album Covers Made Into Stamps

LONDON (AP) - The Royal Mail is saluting the Beatles in January by releasing six commemorative stamps illustrated with memorable album covers.

The set includes ran image of "With the Beatles," released in 1963, which was the group's second album. In the United States, it was the first Beatles album to be released and was titled "Meet the Beatles."

Others in the series include "Help!" (1965), "Revolver" (1966), "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" (1967), "Abbey Road" (1969) and "Let It Be" (1970).

official site: Royal Mail

Today's Brew | TV on the Radio

The amazing album "Return to Cookie Mountain" finally drops today in its domestic release (US). One of my favorites this year.
Eventhough its been available as an import since July. Import?! Yes, as an import as these guys are from Brooklyn, NY.
And if you were real lucky, tracks from the album were leaked back in March.
So its finally official so to speak.

YouTube: TV On The Radio- "Wolf Like Me"

re: 1995

Brit-pop had reached its zenith right in the mid-90s with solid releases by brit-pop heavyweights: Blur "Parklife" in 1994 and Oasis "(What's The Story) Morning Glory" in 1995. But yet another band would release their best album in the mid 90's, and that band is Pulp, led by Jarvis Cocker. That album is "Different Class".

"but the best moment on the album is the hit single "Common People," about a rich girl who gets off by slumming with the lower class. Coming from Cocker, who made secondhand clothes and music glamorous, the song is undeniably affecting and exciting, much like Different Class itself."
(by Stephen Thomas Erlewine, AMG)

YouTube: Pulp- "Common People"

Monday, September 11, 2006

Today's Brew | Emily Haines

And The Soft Skeleton.
Something to start your Monday...

From the album "Knives Don't Have Your Back"
release date: September 12 (CAN) and September 26 (US):
YouSend: Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton- "Doctor Blind" (for a limited time)

My previous entries about her ovah here and here.

official site: Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton

Also today:

Morning Becomes Eclectic- Guest Today: Neko Case

Friday, September 08, 2006

Today's Brew | Norfolk & Western

from: Portland, OR
current release: "A Gilded Age" EP (April 2006), "Unsung Colony" (October 2006)

Keys, mandolin, theremin, glockenspei, accordion, musical saw, and mellodica are some of the instruments played in this interesting ensemble of a band. No wonder the Decemberists have listed them as one of their bands they adore.

They toured a bit with DeVotchKa earlier this year. Rachel and Adam play in M. Ward's band as well as the other members play in other bands as well.

mp3 download: Norfolk & Western- "Porch Destruction"
(courtesy of My Space Music)

mp3 download: Norfolk & Western- "Clyde and New Orleans"
(courtesy of My Space Music)

official site: Norfolk & Western
My Space: Norfolk & Western

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Today's Brew | DeVotchKa

I finally caught this movie over the weekend. If you haven't seen it yet, do yourself a favor and go see it. Also features the catchy song by DeVotchKa.

YouTube: DeVotchKa- "Til The End of Time"

View the trailer.
official site: Little Miss Sunshine

official site: DeVotchKa
My Space: DeVotchKa

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Second Cup Updated | Beck "Nausea"

From his forthcoming album "The Information":

official site: Beck