Wednesday, 28 April 2010

LIVE SHOW: Grateful Dead - May 8th 1977, Cornell University

I'm currently washing the pots and thought I'd stick on some Grateful Dead. I'm not a Deadhead by any means, but have really been getting into their live shows over the past few months, thanks mainly to the awesome Anyway, this show is often cited as THE greatest Dead show of all-time and I've just read a fascinating post about why over on, which if you're into the Dead or are new to them, you should definitely read! The post has got me really pumped to delve even deeper into the Deadhead world and the world of tapes and shows and all the stories that accompany them all. Read it here.

You can download the show here or listen to the stream below.

COMING SOON: Madlib Medicine Show #5: The History of the Loop Digga, 1990-2000

Madlib will release the fifth installment of his Medicine Show on 25th May and Stones Throw just posted up two tracks from the album, which you can listen to below. Read more about the release here.

Madlib - Static Invazion

Madlib - Episode XVI

"This collection of beats showcases the way that Madlib’s early hip-hop demos were filtered out to his crew of friends and associates, providing an opportunity for a unique view into Madlib’s working process."

FREE STREAM: Flying Lotus - Cosmogramma (2010)

Flying Lotus obviously realised that Cosmogramma had leaked and thought he may as well put the album up for a free stream on his Myspace until the album's official release next week. I've only just found it myself and am going to make a cup of tea and stick it on! And if you're new to FlyLo, you can listen to his previous releases on Spotify:

Los Angeles (2008)

1983 (2006)

Listen to 'Cosmogramma' here.

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

ALBUM/EP OF THE WEEK: The Brian Jonestown Massacre - Bringing It All Back Home Again (1999)

I'm pretty gutted that I can't attend any of The Brian Jonestown Massacre's Scandinavian shows, but rather than let it get me down, I thought I'd use their tour to revisit a few of their albums. I've always loved their acoustic songs and don't think there's a bad one in their catalogue. This and 'Thank God For Mental Illness' are, however, the only 2 acoustic-based albums they've released thus far and judging from Anton's more recent output I can't see another anytime soon!

'Bringing It All Back Home Again' is only 6 tracks long, but is a lazy and loose front-porch album for sunny days (if I had a front-porch that is!). 'Reign On' is perhaps the odd one out here, both in style and vocally (Miranda Lee Richards) but that's by no means a bad thing and along with 'All Things Great & Small' it's a perfect compliment for the other rawer tracks. The album is finished with the reworking of Charles Manson's classic 'Arkansas', as 'Arkansas Revisited', which was apparently recorded with Manson (see below). Whether or not this is true I don't know, but it only adds to the songs glorious 13 minutes and 26 seconds. If you've never heard any of Manson's work, be sure to check it out. 'Arkansas' is off 'Lie' and it's probably the best place to start!

Whilst none of the tracks sound like any particular Dylan song, when Anton sings:

"Well I've drank a lot of whiskey
And ate way too many pills
And I went around tight corners and
Had my share of spills
But I've survived
So come and get me, I'm alive"

You believe him. Just like you believe Dylan when he sings; and like Dylan, Anton's vocals are often underrated or misunderstood and on this album they suit the songs perfectly; from delicate to cocky, his vocals are spot on.

If you're new to the band this isn't a good example of the sound they became famous for, but it is highly recommended if you're a fan of folk, blues or country. Have a BBQ, invite some friends over, crack open a beer, stick this on and tell me this isn't good?? 

NEW TRACK: Phosphorescent - Mermaid Parade

Phosphorescent's new album, 'Here's To Taking It Easy', is out on 10th (UK)/11th (US) May and Stereogum just premiered the second single off the album. 'Mermaid Parade' isn't quite as Springsteenesque as the first single, 'It's Hard To Be Humble (When You're From Alabama)', but has me every bit as excited about the album's upcoming release. Whilst I'm at it, check out the recent performace of Pride's 'At Death, A Proclomation' for IFC.

Mermaid Parade

VIDEO: The Incredible String Band - Painting Box

I've spent the last several nights going to bed listening to The Incredible String Band and although I was listening to it in darkness, it really is great music for spring.

"My Friday evening's foot-steps plodding dully through this black town,
Are far away now from the world that I'm in.
My eyes are listening to some sounds that I think just might be springtime,

With daffodils between my toes I'm laughing at their whim,"

DOWNLOAD: Keith “Guru” Elam Tribute Mix by DJ Premier

DJ Premier has just put up a free mixtape to celebrate the life and work of Guru.  You can stream/download it here.

Monday, 26 April 2010

DOCUMENTARY: Grateful Dead Documentary - Can't Take It With You

I've been listening to a lot of the Dead's live bootleg's recently and watching anything I can find on You Tube and just came across this BBC documentary and thought I'd share it with y'all! Part 1 is below and you can watch the rest of it on You Tube. Enjoy!

NEW: Slum Village - Lock It Down (Prod. by J Dilla)

DJ House Shoes premiered a new J Dilla produced Slum Village track on Soundwaves KPFK. Rumours floating around say it could be from a Slum Village album featuring unreleased Dilla beats. Thanks to Rappers I Know for the link.

Slum Village - Lock It Down

NEW: Tobacco - Maniac Meat (2010)

Tobacco is due to drop his follow-up to 2008's underrated 'Fucked Up Friends' (listen in Spotify) on the 25th May. The album is called 'Maniac Meat' and will be released on Anticon Records. Last time around the album featured vocals from Aesop Rock, whilst this time Beck features on two tracks. In case you didn't already know, Tobacco aka Tom Fec is also the frontman of Black Moth Super Rainbow. Check out the video for 'Sweatmother' below and take a listen to 'Fresh Hex' featuring Beck.

VIDEO: Nas & Damian Marley - As We Enter

A SPOTIFY PLAYLIST: Forty-Two Songs to Fika to

"Fika, a social institution in Sweden, is both verb and noun in Swedish and has a broad definition. Essentially, it refers to a break from one's activities in order to drink coffee or other drinks with friends, family or acquaintances. This tradition of a coffee break with a snack is central to Swedish culture, and Swedes are one of the world's top coffee consumers."

The mix includes tracks from David Crosby, Neil Young, The Beach Boys, The Zombies, Real Estate, Devendra Banhart, The Brian Jonestown Massacre, Fred Neil, Traffic, John Phillips, Kurt Vile, Old 97's, The Byrds, The Flying Burrito Brothers, Grateful Dead, The Felice Brothers, The Strange Boys and many more.

Invite some friends over, stick this on and fika Swedish style. Perfect for a lazy Sunday afternoon.

Friday, 23 April 2010

NEW VIDEO: M.I.A. - Born Free

M.I.A, Born Free from ROMAIN-GAVRAS on Vimeo.

VIDEOS: The Grateful Dead - Sunshine Daydream

"Sunshine Daydream is an unreleased movie shot at the Grateful Dead's 1972 Veneta, Oregon concert to benefit the Springfield Creamery in nearby Springfield, Oregon. The film is sometimes shown at small film festivals, and bootleg recordings of it have circulated on VHS and DVD and as digital downloads.

The concert, recorded on August 27, 1972, was filmed using four 16 mm cameras, in the woods of the Oregon Coast Range foothills, on the grounds of the Oregon Country Fair. Originally even more cameras had been planned, under an ambitious scheme: "The plot was to develop a signature visual style of representing the band: a camera for each of the 16 channels (at least!) emphasizing the visual kinetics of the music making itself as well as the enormous open communication within the band.""

Download/Stream this legendary set here.

The Roots x Jim James x Joanna Newsom x John Legend

Rumours are flying around that the new album from The Roots will feature tracks involving Jim James (My Morning Jacket), John Legend and Joanna Newsom. ?uestlove posted a video of him "recording the joanna newsome jawn...." on his Twitter yesterday, so it seems the rumours are true. However, whether or not it means she's going to sing/play on the album isn't clear and maybe she might just be sampled. Exile had previously sampled her for Fashawn's track 'When She Calls' and I just discovered a hip-hop remix of her 'Milk Eyed Mender' album entitled 'Milk Eyed Gangster', which you can stream/download here. I reeeaallly can't wait to hear this album!!

Gayngs - Relayted (2010)

I just came across these guys on RYM whilst looking through the top rated albums of 2010 so far. The album isn't due for release until the 17th May (Jagjagwar), but there are a few tracks on You Tube and I really liked what I was hearing. Oh, as I type this I've just come across a free preview stream over on Minnesota Public Radio, which I've never heard of before and it seems they're doing the same as NPR. :D It's just after midnight now and the perfect time to listen to this album if the rest of it sounds anything like the 10cc style 'The Gaudy Side of Town.' Whilst not exactly the same sound, this album sounds like it could be a perfect companion for Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti's upcoming 'Before Today,' with both albums seemingly drawing inspiration from similar sources.

The Guardian have also named it there top album of the year thus far. Read the review for more on this 'supergroup' that includes Justin Vernon aka on Iver.

"We just wanted to start playing some soft-rock music," Olson explained to Andrea Swensson, of the City Pages in Minneapolis. "I'd been listening to a shitload of 10cc and I was just like, yeah, I want to do something like this." or

Thursday, 22 April 2010

Dead Luke

I just came across Dead Luke over on the excellent Raven Sings The Blues and have been listening to the tracks on his Myspace and the 2 tracks over on RSTB the last half an hour or so and am really looking forward to hearing more from him. Check out the awesome Spacemen 3 style cover of Suicide's 'Ghost Rider'. He's due to release a new LP on Florida's Dying called 'American Haircut'.

"Blowing his sonic palette wide open, the album is a psychedelic odyssey that leaves Luke's voice obscured behind a mesh of distortion but weaves clean driven guitars both electric and acoustic, backwards fluttering effects and sitar and synth strewn passageways into a cosmic tapestry that's far and above anything he's created to this point. American Haircut is the drone-blues record of the year, grinding Midwestern boredom into a fine powder and shooting it straight into the heart of the sleeping giant with catastrophic results."

Earlier in the year he also released another LP entitled 'Cosmic Meltdown' on Night People.

"Dead Luke’s Cosmic Meltdown is a full length album full of disenchanted wandering, psychedelic annihilation, working man blues, and torched pop mysticism. Some great stuff here from this prolific Madison WI resident. With previous releases on Sacred Bones and an upcoming LP on Floridas Dying this tape is a great primer for the newer more psych rock influenced songs Luke has been crafting. Cosmic Meltdown has a bit of a bitter broken heart vibe, and it fits really nicely with the blasted reverb soaked approach."

Sore Eros - Taal Compass/Wide Open 7"

Sore Eros has/have just released a new 7" on Blackburn Recordings. You can listen to 'Taal Compass' on his/their Myspace and 'Wide Open' has a making of video on You Tube (see below!). I really enjoyed Sore Eros' debut album, 'Second Chants', and often listened to it when I was going to sleep. Perfect night time music.

Whilst checking his/their Myspace page I noticed that someone had left a comment saying "Yo.  In a good way.You all sound like Les Rallizes Dénudés. At points..." That's actually a pretty damn accurate comparison. I've posted a video below so you can see what I mean. They're very much one of those bands that, like Marmite, you either love or hate. One thing's for sure, you can't get much more rock n roll than Les Rallizes Dénudés. May have to do a complete post for them now!

ONE TO WATCH: Arkansas Bo

I get an e-mail from NPR every day with their 'Song of the Day' and yesterday's song was 'Arkansas Sound' by Arkansas Bo. When I initially saw the e-mail I thought to myself "who the hell is that?!". Anyway, I clicked on it and to my surprise it was a rapper from Arkansas! 
"Arkansas Bo is Marlon Jennings, a member of the duo Suga City and one of the South's best little-known rappers. Though he possesses a smooth flow and specializes in funny punch lines, he has yet to get his due. This might have something to do with the state from which he hails. As he notes in "Arkansas Sound," just about every other part of the South has gotten its national hip-hop props, including Georgia (home to OutKast), Tennessee (Three 6 Mafia), Louisiana (Lil Wayne) and Mississippi (David Banner). "Why we the ones that everybody fail to mention / and my state lies smack-dab underneath the Mason-Dixon?"


The track's amazing and made me want to stick on Ludacris' debut album or some early Outkast. After listening to the track a few times I thought I had to check out the mixtape the track was off, 'The Notebook', and also check out Suga City. You can download the mixtape below, as I'm in the process of doing. It was released on the 17th March and after watching the below video for 'The Dream' and 'Monsta Nigga' I've got high hopes for it! It sounds like a perfect slice of southern fried hip-hop. Now where are my flip-flops and socks...

Download the mixtape here.

The Dream - Monsta Nigga - Arkansas Bo from Conduit Entertainment on Vimeo.

VIDEO: Laura Marling - Rambling Man (2010)

Listen to 'I Speak Because I Can' in Spotify

Flying Lotus mix and Interview

Flying Lotus' new album, 'Cosmogramma', is due out on the 3rd May and is already ranked 13th best album of 2010 on RYM.  It has to have one of the best album covers too! Although the album has leaked, I am yet to here it in it's entirety although there are a few tracks floating around on You Tube.

I just came across a nice FlyLo interview on You Tube and also a mix that was done at Christmas which I somehow missed. The mix was put together by Gaslamp Killer and FlyLo said this about it:

"Merry Christmas and happy holidays to everyone
as we’re approaching this new year, I felt it was time to let go of some things that have been gathering dust. Some old things, and some new things, I tried to pick out tracks that I know yall haven’t heard yet so there should be surprises around every turn.

can’t believe i’ve been making tracks for over 10 years now..That said, there’s so much to learn still.
I hope you all enjoy this mix. Thanks to the Gaslamp Killer for doing an incredible job on this.
Can’t wait for you all to hear my album ‘Cosmogramma’ coming out May 4th 2010 on Warp Records.
 Download the mix here.

Listen to '1983' In Spotify

Listen to 'Los Angeles' in Spotify

Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti Demo Reel

GorillavsBear just posted up a really nice Ariel Pink demo reel. The video was made by Nanuka. 'Before Today' is out on the 8th June on 4AD.

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

VIDEO: The Beets - For You

This was just too funny not to share it with you guys! I'm fairly new to The Beets and their music and am just listening to the songs on their Myspace. They're nothing special by any means, but are perfect for drinking to and generally kicking back. The bands Myspace says they Sound Like: "a trio of drunk, possibly retarded twelve year olds.  Seriously, my left tit probably outweighed the whole fucking band." This was taken from a fellow blogger's review of a live performance by the band, which you can read below. It's actually pretty funny too!

"The Beets -- Probably one of the worst bands I've ever seen, but how can you not root for a trio of drunk, possibly retarded twelve year olds.  Seriously, my left tit probably outweighed the whole fucking band.  The music was horrible, just generic garagey crap with the tone-deaf/grating/whiny vocals you've all come to know and hate from countless crappy NYC opening acts.  More of the same, and in heaping portions.  These guys would have gotten tiresome really quickly if they hadn't constantly sabotaged themselves with equipment malfunctions, broken guitar strings and straps, all the while inexplicably abandoning songs while in progress.  It's so rare that hipster crowds show any emotion at all, let alone joyously reveling in schadenfreude, but there were sarcastic catcalls of "you guys are awesome!" and flat-out uproarious laughter throughout the crowd.  I can't remember the last time that I've seen so many blank stares changed over to "what the fuck is this shit?!" rubbernecking within the course of just a few songs.  I'll definitely be seeing these guys again just so I can confirm that they are, in fact, this hilariously terrible.  Kudos boys!"

I actually just found The Beets album on Spotify! Listen here.

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

New Devendra Banhart Video - Foolin'

Devendra Banhart "Foolin"

Devendra Banhart | MySpace Music Videos

Lissie Covers Metallica!

Metallica - Nothing Else Matters - live cover - Lissie

lissie | MySpace Music Videos

New Jay Electonica! 'A Million In The Morning'

Inspired by:

"Follow Gavin Mcinnes as he stays awake for 5 Days with ZERO sleep, Documenting the World Movie Watching Championship. As 8 contestants compete for a Guinness Book World Record “Most consecutive movies watched without sleeping.” Gavin quickly looses his shit and the film takes a sharp left turn into the depths of insanity and the disturbing underbelly of the american subconscious… Soundtrack by JAY ELECTRONICA, DJ Honda, RJD2, EL-P, The Death SET and others."

Some Thug Shit

I was just listening to a few old favourites on You Tube and thought I'd post up a few of the tracks. Be sure to watch the Biggie video...HILARIOUS! It doesn't get any better than this! BRRRAAAPP.

R.I.P. Guru

I just found out that Guru of Gang Starr died of cancer yesterday. A big loss for the world of hip-hop. R.I.P. Guru.

VIDEO OF THE WEEK: Elliott Smith - Lucky Three

I just randomly remembered this video and felt like watching it again. Smith himself described it as:
 "a cross between a video and a documentary, but actually being neither of the two."
It's a short film that was shot by Jem Cohen and was recorded in October of 1996.

I forgot just how haunting and beautiful it is...

FESTIVAL: Way Out West, Gothenburg, Sweden 12th-14th August 2010

I'm still in my first year living in Sweden and have always wanted to go to 'Way Out West' and this year is no exception after seeing the current confirmed artists include Beach House, GIRLS, Local Natives, Real Estate, M.I.A., Pavement, Q-Tip, The Tallest Man On Earth, the National and more! What's more, I just read that they're trying to (I think I did anyway!) get The Felice Brothers booked too! NOW THAT WOULD BE SOMETHING!

MWW FAVOURITE: The Felice Brothers

I first read about The Felice Brothers in an issue of Uncut magazine a few years back and remember them mentioning The Band and Dylan as obvious influences and thinking I had to check them out! Anyway, I forgot about them and then a few months later I remembered the article, but for the life of me couldn't find the issue or what the band was called. All I could remember was that they were called The 'Something' Brothers and I think I ended up listening to The Avett Brothers or The Deadstring Brothers instead and thinking that both sounded pretty cool, but didn't sound like The Band or Dylan. Anyway, I can't remember exactly how I finally found them and I guess it's pretty unimportant...

The first album I heard was 'Tonight At The Arizona', which I had downloaded to check if they sounded anything like Dylan or The Band and obviously they did and that's when the love affair began. But, just to make a point, as Simone once put it in an interview...

"You have to promise not to ask us anything about Bob Dylan and the Band. A lot of people say we sound like them and we're tired of it. We're influenced by everything - Huey Lewis and the News ..."
 When I first heard the album I remember thinking how sad the album sounded and how intimate it all felt. Like real folk music should if they were playing just for me. 'Roll On Arte' and 'The Ballad of Lou the Welterweight' were the first 2 tracks that hooked me in and I remember weeks later hearing a band busking and cover 'Lou' and feeling like I was part of a special club lucky enough to have heard of the band. And what a chorus! Me and my fiancee still sing it randomly to this day. Don't worry though, I went out and bought the album the following day!

"oh my mouth ain't fed, my lips aint cherry red
and my grin might show my bad teeth
and all the people i pass, they give me a glance
as if im some lower class thief
but to you I'm fine and I'm in your mind
even if I'm not around

and my arms are strong and that's where you belong,
given the love that we've found

After hearing this album I had to hear all their other work, which up until that point included the out of print 'Iantown' (which I only recently got hold of!), 'Through These Reins and Gone' and 'Adventures of The Felice Brothers Vol. 1'. It would be these first three releases that would pretty much make-up their first official release and some songs, such as 'Frankie's Gun' and 'Whiskey in My Whiskey', would also see a reappearance on their second official album, 'The Felice Brothers'. These first three albums are still essential and contain several tracks that wouldn't make reappearances, such as the excellent 'Her Eyes Dart Around' and 'Trouble Been Hard'.

In 2008 the band released their self-titled album which would be their 2nd or 5th album depending on how you look at things. The album takes on a fuller and sound this time and isn't quite as stripped down and lonely as their first album, but nonetheless is packed full of songs begging to be seen in a live show. If anything the album is more varied, with jams like 'The Greatest Show On Earth' alongside the upbeat classic, 'Frankie's Gun', and the heartbreaking 'Goddamn You Jim' or the epic 'Ruby Mae'.

This album was quickly followed up by 2009's 'Yonder Is The Clock', which would be their first release full of songs not found on any of the 3 earlier albums. This album was picked as Uncut's album of the month and it was such a refreshing change to see them there instead of Paul Weller or The Hold Steady. haha. The review is great and you can read it here. As with their previous album, this one combined heavier tracks ('Penn Station' and 'Run Chicken Run') alongside long ballads such as 'Katie Dear' and the haunting 'Cooperstown' that really make for a complete album.

The band also released an album of outtakes, entitled 'Mixtape', from 'Yonder Is The Clock' last year, but it was only available at live shows, so unfortunately I haven't yet heard it, but hope to one day soon! Last year also saw Simone Felice's departure from The Felice Brothers to concentrate on his writing and his new band, The Duke & The King and they released their incredible debut last year and are very much their own band. If you've not heard the album, do yourself a favour and check it out.

In conclusion, this band is something very special and although they haven't got anywhere near the recognition they deserve, as long as they keep putting out albums of such quality I'll keep buying them. Of their three albums, the first 2 are in the top 100 albums for 2007 and 2008 on RYM and their third is in the top 350 for 2009 (which is a joke as it was my favourite of last year!). I also just read that they might now be coming to Sweden's 'Way Out West' festival this summer, which would be a dream come true for me, as I am yet to see them live!
Their three official albums are on Spotify for those of you lucky enough to have an account and The Duke & The King are also on there:
It doesn't get any realer than this.


Mimi wo Sumaseba (Whisper of the Heart) x Olivia Newton-John = AWESOME!

Monday, 19 April 2010

COMING SOON: The Roots - How I Got Over (2010)

I was just thinking about the hip-hop releases so far this year and how nothing really great has been released (that I know of or have heard) thus far. Anyway, The Roots will be back with a new album in June and here's to hoping they can raise the bar and kick start the year! The band recently became Jimmy Fallon's house band after he took over from Conan and in my opinion that can only be a good thing.

And just a few videos to remind you just how great they can be:

FREE STREAMS: Broken Social Scene and Hold Steady

NPR have the new Broken Social Scene and Hold Steady albums up on their Exclusive First Listen page. I haven't got roudn to listening yet as I'm still busy listening to my recent discoveries.

Listen here.

Recent Vinyl Purchases

I thought I'd share some recent vinyl purchases with you, just to switch things up a bit!

Rate Your Music - James Gang - Rides Again (1970)

Rate Your Music - Sir Douglas Quintet - Mendocino (1969)

Rate Your Music - Little Feat - Feats Don't Fail Me Now (1974)

Rate Your Music - Hoola Bandoola Band - 1971-76 (1980)

Kurt Vile - God Is Saying This To You... (2009)

Up until now I had only heard the excellent 'Constant Hitmaker' and 'Childish Prodigy', but I was just browsing around on Spotify when I noticed they'd just added 'God Is Saying This To You' and I knew I had to listen to it! Anyway, as I've been listening to it I've been reading through a review I came across over on Hippies Are Dead and I think it captures the feel of the album perfectly. The key word used in the review for me is probably 'organic'. The album drifts effortlessly from song to song like a vulture soaring high over the desert in the summer. The review also talks about how the album is at heart a great pop album, with some excellent songwriting, but still manages to push the boundaries enough where necessary to become something more than just a pop album. And it's exactly those two elements which make the album what it is: the songwriting keeps the experimental parts in check and the experimental parts help keep the album interesting. The album is out now on Mexican Summer, where it seems to suggest this is his latest LP, even though it was actually released before 'Childish Prodigy'. Strange!

"More than a mere odds-n-ends collection, Kurt Vile’s latest LP is a compilation of tracks from Overnite KV, a tour-only CDR, along with a handful of extra tracks recorded specifically for this release. Here we find Kurt solo, four-trackin’ as usual, and blowing minds with his mix of bluegrass guitar, blazed singer-songwriterisms, and the knowledge of how to balance these contexts out with laidback precision. Psychedelic to its core, these twelve tracks speak to the will of the casual perfectionist, honing his craft with effortless aplomb. You’ll be hearing plenty more from this Philadelphian wizard in the months to follow, and we’re happy to keep the ball rolling with God Is Saying This to You…"

Listen in Spotify

VIDEOS: Pharcyde - Runnin'/Q-Tip - Let's Ride

Summertime hip-hop at it's finest. RIP J Dilla.

Sunday, 18 April 2010

New Clutchy Hopkins track/album!!

This one kinda crept in under the radar and is off his new album, 'The Storyteller', which I now need to check out! For a review, check out this 4 out of 5 review over at Urb.

SONG OF THE WEEK: Stomu Yamash'ta - Memory of Hiroshima

I recently watched this clip from the 1978 skateboard film 'Skateboard Kings':

Anyway, I really wanted to know what the epic song was when they ran toward the pipes. Anyway, somebody responded to my comment and I now know! It's Stomu Yamash'ta's 'Memory of Hiroshima' from his 1973 album, the soundtrack to 'The Man From the East.' The song builds slowly until around 4mins when it really takes off. Recommended for Pink Floyd and Ennio Morricone fans.

CLASSIC: Bill Fay - Time of the Last Persecution (1971)

Incredible album. Kinda like Nick Drake in the sense that during the 70s he was pretty much ignored and only recently started to get the recognition he rightly deserves. If you like Dylan, Van Morrison, Cohen, Nick Drake or any other singer-songwriters from that era this is for you.

Take a look at this NME review from 1971:

"Another rather tuneless singer who writes his own songs, Londoner Bill Fay is 28 and has the right sound in his voice for today’s folk tunes… He plays piano and is backed by a six-piece at times, including guitarist Ray Russell, who helped produce his second LP, which is versatile and interesting’ – NME, 20/2/71"

Tuneless, but has the right sounds in his voice and is still versatile and interesting?? Huh??? The production is amazing and the LP is haunting, beautiful and heartbreaking in equal measures. It took me a while to get into this album, but once you do it'll be with you for life.

The album isn't on Spotify, but there is an excellent compilation from last year called 'Still Some Light' that collects both old unreleased versions of many of the songs found on 'Time of the Last Persecution' and some from his self-titled debut, as well as last years home recorded album full of new songs.

ALBUM OF THE WEEK: Alex Bleeker and the Freaks - S/T (2009)

I know I already posted about this album a couple of months back, but I hadn't heard the album then. I've been listening to the album the last few days and I just had to tell you all how GOOD it is! A few reviews I've read refer to this album as classic rock for our generation and it's pretty much bang on! This is a talented bunch of guys! I don't think I've heard an album involving any of these New Jerseyers that I haven't liked. Be it Real Estate, Julian Lynch, Ducktails or Alex Bleeker's recent solo 7", 'These Days'. All the albums have a similar sort of vibe, but sound quite different at the same time. Alex Bleeker and the Freaks have a really loose, jam style quality to them, complete with wailing guitar licks and Neil Youngesque melodies that are perfect this time of the year. The album plays works best as just that, an album. The whole thing blends into 26 minutes of carefree good times that always has me hitting play again as soon as it stops. The longer instrumental passages combine perfectly with the more 'song' based material, such as their cover of Mountain Man's 'Animal Tracks' and the transition from 'Summer' into 'Epilogue' is incredible. Although this was released last year, this is definitely going to be one of my most listened to albums of the year and I look forward to more releases from Bleeker & co.

Next on my list of bands to listen to are all the other artists on Under Water Peoples Records, which is home to Real Estate, Bleeker and company!

Listen in Spotify 

Check out this interview with Bleeker over at Low Log.

SOUNDTRACK: I Heart Huckabees (2004)

Not just a great soundtrack, but a great album. It's so perfectly melancholic and was the ideal soundtrack for the film. I love all Jon Brion's work, including his other soundtrack work on Magnolia, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Punch-Drunk Love and Synecdoche New York, his solid solo album, 'Meaningless' and his amazing production on Kanye West's best album, 'Late Registration'.

Listen in Spotify

Saturday, 17 April 2010

White Fence - S/T (2010)

White Fence is Tim Presley. He's singer for Darker My Love, has played in The Fall (on 'Reformation') and is also a member of one of my favourite bands of the moment, The Strange Boys (although he's only credited on their Myspace for vocals and laughs). The album has been compared to those of a lot of my favourites from the 60s, including Love, The Byrds, Skip Spence, Pink Floyd, Syd Barrett, The Who etc. You get the picture! The comparisons aren't too far off the mark either and makes this a must for any fans of said bands!

"Wander into the sweltering Cali smog to find yourself transported into a lysergic pop netherworld, where White Fence carves broad strokes of color into your mind. Coming on like Love in a Lollipop Shoppe, or Chris Knox abusing a Voxm the record oscillates between a sun-dappled English meadow, a crumbling SoCal suburban bedroom, and a riotous Sunset Strip leather gang knife fight, with the kind of warped precision and purity that marks the wolves from the sheep and the profound from the pretend in this instant online age. You know what I mean."   Woodist Records

"There's hardly a minute of this debut that doesn't remind you of something else, but never in an objectionable, copying sort of way. What you're hearing, if you like 1960s psychedelia, are the skewed, very personal observations of a guy who has the same records as you do, who loves them deeply, but would never stoop to xeroxing them."    Dusted Magazine

Coming Soon: Blitzen Trapper - Destroyer of the Void (2010)

Blitzen Trapper will release their follow-up to 2009's 'Black River Killer EP' on the 8th June (Sub Pop), although I'm pretty sure it's already leaked. For those of you who'd prefer to wait for the official release, here's a sample:

Friday, 16 April 2010

Alex Bleeker - These Days 7"

Alex Bleeker has just released a 7". You can download the A-side, 'Getting By', over at Chocolate Bobka or listen to it on his Myspace. I've only heard 'Getting By', but the song is really very nice! You can pick it up over at Group Tightener.
"We’re extremely happy to announce the release of our third 7-inch with Alex Bleeker, who you may also know from Real Estate and Alex Bleeker and the Freaks. You may also know him as an awesome dude. Whatever the case, this record is perfect to jam out in the early days of Summer (or any other season you might feel like putting it on). Download the A-side, “Getting By” over at Chocolate Bobka, and purchase the record (shipping included in the prices below) to hear “These Days” and “Never Going Back.”

COMING SOON: Kurt Vile - Square Shells EP (2010)

On 25th May, Kurt Vile will release 'Square Shells EP' on Matador Records. It's his first release since last years excellent 'Childish Prodigy'. A new full length album should be coming sometime in Autumn. Take a listen to a taster from the upcomign EP below.

Kurt Vile - Invisibility : Non Existent

VIDEO: Bonnie Prince Billy & The Cairo Gang - Beware Your Only Friend

I just came over this awesome live version of 'Beware Your Only Friend', off the massively underrated 'Beware'.I haven't got round to hearing their new album, 'The Wonder Show of the World', yet, ut look forward to hearing it!

UPDATE: Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti - Before Today (2010)

The new album is out on 4th June and has apparently leaked, although none of the links seem to be working anymore. Although I'm sure if you try hard enough, you'll find it somewhere...but go out and buy the album and support one of my favourite artists of recent times! The album has gone straight in at 19th best of the year so far on Rate Your Music though and leaves me very excited. The only thing strange about the album is the numer of old songs that have been redone for the album.  An example of this is 'Beverly Kills (Freak With Golden Heirs)', off 'Scared Famous', which I also found a cool new video for on You Tube.

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