Saturday, March 31, 2007

Modest Mouse @ Slim's - April 22, 1997

I found a nice soundboard recording of Modest Mouse on Dimeadozen a few days ago. It's one of their earlier performances, an opening gig for Built to Spill in April 1997. Sound quality is fairly good, a bit muffled, but enjoyable nonetheless. The source claims that this recording originates from the group's sound man and found its way to him through several intermediaries, which accounts for the high quality. New or old fan, this is good material, particularly for its Lonesome Crowded West content, the seminal indie album of the 90s, for many.

Thanks to the original seeder(s) at Easy Tree and Dime!

Modest Mouse @ Slim's (April 22, 1997)

Truckers Atlas
Cowboy Dan
All Nite Diner
Neverending Math
Custom Concern
Teeth Like God's Shoeshine
Out of Gas

See Also:
Modest Mouse's Tourdate Archive

Friday, March 30, 2007

The National...Leaked!

Many lauded the National's Alligator as one of 2005's best. I can't fault that opinion, not in the least. Their music is catchy, in a romantic sort of way. But most importantly, they injected some earnestness into a severely turgid genre. The Matt Berninger-fronted quintet slowly shot to indie popularity, all the while endearing themselves to bloggers worldwide.

'Fake Empire' has been floating around for over a week, teasing us all with what should be a great follow-up to Alligator. And today, their new album, titled The Boxer which will be released on May 22, was leaked onto the world of the internetz.

I've given it a quick one over, on my tinny laptop speakers mind you, but it has sounded nice thus far. Expect a more thorough write-up soon, following a few solid listens from some better headphones.

MP3: The National - Fake Empire
MP3: The National - Mistaken for Strangers
MP3: The National - Slow Show

Thursday, March 29, 2007

New Beasties Album

"Hi... here's a few things you might wanna know about..

1. we have a new record coming out
2. it's gonna be sick
3. we're playing a bunch of shows this summer (see below)
4. they're gonna be sick
5. we're gonna play some instrumental only shows also
6. better call your doctor..cause they're gonna be sick
7. it's gonna be a gala event
8. we're changing up the website...sick
9. got new gear coming soon...again...sick..
10. go see a tailor and get tapered up..."

Sick indeed. The fact that the Beastie Boys have remained relevant throughout the past 23 years of a vastly-changed genre, it's quite impressive. I didn't like To the 5 Boroughs that much (even though it had 1-2 great singles), but I've loved the rest of their catalogue, so I've got some high hopes. I'll update with additional details when more info comes in. Until then, enjoy the following mp3s, sick...

MP3: Beastie Boys - Check it Out
MP3: Beastie Boys - Sounds of Science
MP3: Beastie Boys - Sabotage

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Art Brut - New Album Completed

The NME reports:

Art Brut have finished their second full-length album, the band announced today (March 28). 'It's A Bit Complicated' is due out in the US on June 25. The UK release date has yet to be determined. 'Nag Nag Nag' will be the album's lead single in both the US and the UK. The follow-up to 2005's 'Bang Bang Rock & Roll' will also include the tracks 'Pump Up The Volume',
'Direct Hit
', 'Post Soothing Out' and
'Late Sunday'. Art Brut have also announced that they will play a handful of gigs in major North American cities in advance of the album's release.

The tour dates are:
New York, NY Bowery Ballroom (April 17)
Brooklyn, NY Studio B (18)
Toronto, Ontario The Mod Club (19)
Chicago, IL Subterranean (20)
Los Angeles, CA Troubadour (21)

I'll be the first to name Art Brut as my favourite England band. I'm all about sarcasm, satirical wit, and wry pokes, so it's no surprise that Bang Bang Rock N Roll was one of my favourite albums of 2005. Their Toronto show last October was amongst the best I've attended; Eddie is a great entertainer. Tickets to their Mod Club show will be purchased shortly, and for $15 that's an absolute steal, unlike artists that charge $46 (*cough*Nas*cough). This is my most anticipated LP of the year, and I've got some lofty expectations from the mustached crooner. Yes, that's sarcasm - Eddie'd be proud!

MP3: Art Brut - Nag Nag Nag Nag
MP3: Art Brut - Formed a Band
MP3: Art Brut - Emily Kane

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Happy Mondays - New Album + Tour

The Happy Mondays were one of Manchester's premier groups, drawing huge crowds for Factory Records' Haçienda. Their flowing mixture of funk, soul, and brit-pop was one of the highlights of the Madchester music scene, along with the Stone Roses' guitar-pop. 1990's Pills, Thrills, N Bellyaches remains as one of the genre's best ever albums and vaulted them from relative obscurity to druggie icons. Sadly, their reputation of being drug fiends, particularly in Shaun Ryder's case, lead to a multitude of problems, culminating in the band's break-up. Bez and Shaun later formed Black Grape in the mid-90s, and proved they still had their musical chops with the acclaimed It's Great When You're Straight...Yeah"

Following several ultimately disappointing reunions, the group got back together last summer and began recording a new album. A few months ago, the Happy Mondays announced their inclusion in April's Coachella fest, as well as a mini-tour. And now, reports have emerged that they're well on their way to completing their first LP in 14 years, which has yet to be titled. I'm a bit skeptical of this, given their turbulent history, but it could just be a nice surprise. Look out for a single in June.

Tour listing:

04-29 Indio, CA - Empire Polo Field (Coachella)
05-22 Inverness, Scotland - Ironworks
05-23 Aberdeen, Scotland - Music Hall
05-25 Sheffield, England - Leadmill
05-26 Middlesbrough, England - Town Hall
05-27 Hull, England - Hull University
05-28 Cambridge, England - Junction
05-30 Northampton, England - Roadmender
05-31 Preston, England - 53 Degrees
06-01 Dudley, England - JB's
07-08 Manchester, England - Ritz

MP3: Happy Mondays - God's Cop
Happy Mondays - Bob's Yer Uncle
Happy Mondays - Step On

Monday, March 26, 2007

New GHP Mixes

Mark Vidler was recently featured on BBC 6 Music's mix show and he's posted up the entire hour-long (!) show. The tracklist is as follows:

Part One
00.00 Grace Jones - Slave To The Rhythm / Grace Jones Slaps Russel Harty / Nelly Furtado - Turn Off The Light
02.31 Jimi Hendrix Experience - Foxy Lady / Jimi Does His Stuff On Lulu / Beyonce - Work It Out
05.56 Stone Roses Late Show Amatuers / Go Home Productions - Processed Waterfall
09.29 Malcolm McLaren vs Franz Ferdinand - Franz Buffalo
12.58 Derek & Clive - This Bloke Came Up To Me (at the farm)
13.53 Max Sedgely - Happy (Go Home Productions remix)
18.01 Family Guy - Brian Griffin Disses Gwen Stefani / Ding Fries Are Done /
The Beat - Mirror In The Bathroom / Mask - Square Off
21.36 Elvis Fucks Up / Elvis Presley - Drugs Dialogue / The Farm - Stepping Stone
24.52 Welcome Gentlemen to the Un...Apes In Spacesuits step out of spaceship
The Simpsons - Stop The Planet Of The Apes, I Want To Get Off!!!
25.12 Christina Aguilera - Can't Hold Us Down / The Monkees - Theme From The Monkees
28.54 Izzy Royal - Coronation Street

Part Two
00.00 Go Home Productions - Rock In Black
03.46 Dr Dre - The Next Episode / Crowded House - Weather With You
06.25 The Jam - Scampi And Chips / Chicken In A Basket
06.44 Paul Weller - The Changing Man / S Club 7 - Don't Stop Moving
09.20 Culture Club - Time / George Michael - Outside
11.48 The Young Ones Do Not Lean Out Of The Window
12.23 Pinocchio - I've Got No Strings / Radiohead - Creep / The Beatles - Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds
14.07 XTC The Drunken Sessions - Let's Do The XTC Tapes / The Troggs - The Troggs Tapes / XTC - I'm Bugged
15.49 When There's No More Room In Hell, The Dead Will Walk The Earth / H Chappell - The Gonk
16.12 The Beastie Boys - Triple Trouble / Ian Dury & The Blockheads - Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick
18.55 The Turtles - I'm King Kamanawanalea / Kylie - Slow / Alan Tew & Bullet - Theme From The Hanged Man
20.54 The Two Ronnies Nudist Bacon Slicer
21.08 Kasabian - Shoot The Runner / The Hollies - Bus Stop / Rolling Stones - We Love You / Slade - Coz I Luv You /
The Sweet - Blockbuster
24.14 The Velvet Underground - Waiting For The Man / The Velvet Underground - The Gift /
The Archies - Sugar Sugar / Basement Jaxx - Where's Your Head At
27.21 Abba - Voulez Vous / Echo & The Bunnymen - The Killing Moon

From what I've heard, it's Vidler's usual excellence, hopping from madchester to hip-hop to new-wave to... whatever he feels like. It's adventurous and contains some new material, along with some of his best work from the past. He's also just made a Daft Punk vs. Beatles mash - much different than his usual club bangers, but interesting nonetheless.

I also feel obligated to mention Chromewaves' incredibly thorough photo coverage of SXSW. He's undoubtedly the best Toronto blogger I've encountered on the net, and I thoroughly recommend reading his blog.

MP3: GHP - BBC 6 Music / 6 Mix Comic Relief Mix (Pt. 1)
MP3: GHP - BBC 6 Music / 6 Mix Comic Relief Mix (Pt. 2)
MP3: GHP - Nightbeatle (Daft Punk vs. The Beatles)

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Panda Bear - Person Pitch

Pop elements are what I enjoy most in music, and, is primarily what I seek out. Bright soundscapes composed of jangly guitars, infectious vocals, and a manifold of complementary instrumentation are, to me, the peak of musicality. Having said that, pop often serves as a wonderful supplement to seemingly contrasting musical styles. The Jesus and Mary Chain, for example, drenched noise with underlying pop sensualities. My point is, these bright sounds can be, more often than not, completely utilized in conjunction with borrowed sounds.

Panda Bear, also known as Noah Lennox from Animal Collective, is the creative force behind Person Pitch, his third album. Admittedly, I’m not a huge fan of AC. Not that they’re bad, but I’ve never listened to them extensively. As such, I had no idea what to expect from this album. I was genuinely hoping that it wasn’t some self-indulgent noise escapade that would make my ears bleed, like another band, which I won’t bother naming for fear of their fans leaving my blog! Thankfully, my fears were put to rest. ‘Comfy in Nautica’ is a nice intro to the record, featuring restrained vocals on Lennox’s part, and monotonic chants from the background. The album is an extremely relaxed experience, save for a few tense moments.

The album has roots in a variety of sources. Most obvious of the lot is a happy-go-lucky 50s/60s pop attitude you’d hear from a jukebox, along with (/including) the Beach Boys. Person Pitch sounds like a modern interpretation of Paul Simon’s Graceland, which is a huge compliment as that’s one of the greatest albums in the history of this galaxy. Except instead of Simon’s richly defined voice, we’re met with the busy and droned-out voice of Lennox. It’s very image-heavy and constantly moving, with noises from his surroundings (cars, skateboards, owls) playing a large role in the formation of the album. Halfway through ‘Take Pills’ comes another example of this atmospheric influence, as the sound is submerged into water. The song also sounds like it’s been directly taken out of the Beach Boys catalogue and infused with very spacey and consuming surroundings. ‘Bros’ is the true gem of the album, a 12 minute and 30 second long epic. It’s perfectly timed, incredibly balanced, and melodically brilliant. “I’m not trying to forget you, I’d just like to be alone,” exclaims Lennox, perhaps providing further insight into the busyness and isolation of the record. ‘I’m Not’ and ‘Good Girl’ offer a break from the brightness, instead making way for 9 minutes of layered noises – meandering voices swaying to and fro - a sort of intermission between two halves of pop. Following this short break comes the familiarity of Lennox’s falsetto and multi-instrumentation, which continues through to the album’s conclusion.

It sounds redundant, forgive me, but Person Pitch truly shines with its pop sensibilities. Perhaps it lacks variation, but when it sounds this beautiful why bother entertaining the idea of multiplicity? I’m running out of adjectives and superlatives in which to describe it. It’s just… great. This will no doubt end up as one of the year’s best albums; it’s too good to be overlooked.

Edit: I'm in NYC for the weekend, I return after 4 days without the internetz and they get a 9.4 on p4k?!

MP3: Panda Bear - Comfy in Nautica
MP3: Panda Bear - Take Pills
MP3: Panda Bear - Bros

See Also:
Person Pitch at Metacritic

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

No Sleep Till Brooklyn

Emceeing has lost its way. The days of Rakim, KRS-One, and GZA moving crowds are gone. Hip-Hop is dead. Well, not really, but it certainly is ailing. Sure, I'm old fashioned, but at least I'll admit to it. Don't get me wrong, there's still a number good rappers around; Aceyalone, MF DOOM, and El Da Sensei, for example, but there's just not enough of them. And while it's unrealistic to expect a breeding ground of Pharaoh Monchs and Raekwons, one can dream. I'm a purist. You know, one of those guys who think lyrics should never take a backseat to beats and rhythms. Not to say that production isn't important, but I've all too often heard a rapper that can't cut it without the production crutch to lean on, and even then struggles.

In comes El-P: El Producto by name, MC, producer, and Def Jux CEO by trade. Released yesterday, I'll Sleep When You're Dead is his true sophomore album and first since 2002's Fantastic Damage. He's quick on the mic, witty, and bursting with literary functions that would make even the Genius smile. But what really separates him from the rest of the languid genre is his fierce enthusiasm. My heart tells me that he's reminiscent of Chuck D, but the brain knows no-one will ever re-create Public Enemy's boisterous and racially-motivated anthems. Still, his emceeing is compelling to say the least. It's shrewd, while still maintaining grit and sharpness. And most importantly, it's explosive. El-P has that sheer determination to succeed; that enthusiasm I mentioned. Edgy production further accentuates the experience, providing a sort of Bombsquad noise assault to match the chaotic vocal escapades. He doesn't hide behind the beats, he uses them to complement his rhymes, creating a state of emergency, and a bleak one at that.

The album also features a slew of guest performers: from his label-mates Aesop Rock and Cage, to NIN's Trent Reznor and Yo La Tengo's James McNew. However, it's clear that El-P's cold and cynical execution is the main drawing point at hand. Dude knows his history too, with lines like this, "I'll be drunk on the back of a train / Takin' a piss / Pumpin' BDP through a Raheem kit / With a double D Duracell destiny mega mix, like this" causing me to stop listening and laugh aloud.

To date, this is his premier opus. It's an excellent album, and El-P's vision fully realized. It's aggressive, it's hard, it's capricious, and it's a must-buy.

MP3: El-P - Tasmanian Pain Coaster
MP3: El-P - Up All Night
MP3: El-P - EMG
MP3: El-P - Run the Numbers

See Also:
El-P's interview with Chuck D
I'll Sleep When You're Dead at Metacritic

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Nouvelle Musique de Mardi

Music releases don't seem to be that special nowadays, what with leaks and such. Nonetheless, there were quite a few notable new releases today. For now, here are a few mp3s to enjoy. Judging from a few listens, LCD's is excellent at times, though a bit "less good" at others, but I think it will grow on me. Their debut was one of my favourites of the decade, so I expect alot. El-P's is also a booming and very enjoyable listen. If time permits, I'll be able to do some write-ups for a few of the albums.

LCD Soundsystem - Sound of Silver

MP3: LCD Soundsystem - Get Innocuous
MP3: LCD Soundsystem - North American Scum

MP3: El-P - Tasmanian Pain Coaster
El-P - Up All Night

The Ponys - Turn the Lights Out

MP3: The Ponys - Double Vision
MP3: The Ponys - Harakiri

MP3: Modest Mouse - Dashboard
MP3: Modest Mouse - Florida

See also:

Monday, March 19, 2007

LCD Soundsystem Remixed

So Sound of Silver goes on sale tomorrow, and I still haven't listened to it yet. But I've heard a bunch of remixes, go figure. I recently found these remixes through Mark Vidler's mailing list, which I'd recommend joining, by the way. These collaboration remix sites are excellent, particularly the Primal Scream and Chemical Brothers initiatives of the past, and LCDSS is the perfect choice to carry the torch.

Here's a few mp3s, but there's a lot more on the site, check it out for the rest - LCD Remixed.

MP3: LCD - Get Innocuous (Geek Chic's Harm-Free Retouch)
MP3: LCD - Someone Great (Shokking Shokkaboy Remix)
MP3: LCD - Time to Get Away (ATOM's Exit Stage Left Mix)
MP3: LCD - North American Scum (Dunproofin's Not from England Either Mix)

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Manhattan Love Suicides

There's a lot to love about the Jesus and Mary Chain. From the thickly layered noise placed over the perfect amount of underlying pop, to the riot-inducing attitude. Not to mention the effortless, lazy even, vocal execution by Jim Reid and hair styles to rival Morrissey. Plus, they're Scots, and there ain't nothing wrong with that.

So really, it's no surprise that various revival bands have been sprouting up, recently. Take The Manhattan Love Suicides, for instance. They've got the noise part and pop elements covered, even more, just like JAMC's backs-to-audience attitude in concert, the 'Suicides shield themselves with obtrusive black shades. But instead of Reid's cursively shrouded vocals, is a female twee styling that's more than reminiscent of Talulah Gosh's Amelia Fletcher.

They played a midnight show at SXSW Friday night, here's a few pictures, all credit goes to Pitchfork's awesome festival coverage.

It's a nice debut album - part twee, part shoegaze (tweegaze?). All too often do bands mimic their influences, but not totally realize its sound, resulting in a hollow effort. However, this feels extremely authentic, obviously owing a great deal to their influences, but executed in a very convincing fashion. To put it simply, it's a good marriage of the two genres, both being favourites of mine.

MP3: The Manhattan Love Suicides - Things You've Never Done
MP3: The Manhattan Love Suicides - Evil Side
MP3: The Manhattan Love Suicides - Suzy Jones
MP3: The Manhattan Love Suicides - Kick it Back

Saturday, March 17, 2007

St. Patrick's Day mp3 Bonanza

Happy St. Patrick's Day to all the Irish, and wannabe Irish, alike. Disproving the "Irish are only good for their drinking" myth, the glorious nation (and their Northern brethren) have long had a rich tradition in the annals of music. From the days of ye old tin whistle to the indie scene of the 80s, 90s, and beyond, they've boasted a reputable number of notables. Such artists as U2 and Sinéad O'Connor have enjoyed incredible mainstream success, while The Pogues and My Bloody Valentine have reached godly status to punks and newgazers of today. So, it's only fair they get their own blog post from me, and you get some mp3 treatment. Here's a small compilation I've assembled for your drinking enjoyment.

Cheers Ireland!

MP3: The Boomtown Rats - I Don't Like Mondays
MP3: The Cranberries - Dreams
MP3: Dropkick Murphys - The Gauntlet
MP3: Flogging Molly - Drunken Lullabies
MP3: Humanzi - 6 Gun
MP3: Morrissey - Irish Heart, English Blood
MP3: My Bloody Valentine - When You Sleep
MP3: The Pogues - Dirty Old Town
MP3: Rory Gallagher - Tattoo'd Lady
MP3: Sinéad O'Connor - Nothing Compares 2 U
MP3: Stiff Little Fingers - Suspect Device
MP3: Thin Lizzy - Whisky In the Jar
MP3: U2 - I Will Follow
MP3: The Undertones - Teenage Kicks

Friday, March 16, 2007

V-Fest Toronto Announced

Tickets for the second annual English-import-to-Confederate-soils festival go on sale next week on the 24th of March, or the 20th through the EDGE pre-sale. Prices for V-Fest Toronto will be $138 (CDN) for the weekend pass of September 8+9.

I'll be waiting until some more bands announce their interest before I buy, but at the moment, these headliners aren't sparking much interest. Though Bjork, the Pumpkins, and TPC are definitely good choices to build it upon, and I'm sure a lot of other quality acts will sign on.

MP3: Bjork - Army of Me
MP3: Smashing Pumpkins - Disarm
MP3: Tokyo Police Club - Cheer it On
MP3: Tokyo Police Club - Shoulders & Arms

Thursday, March 15, 2007

New Morrissey Tour

And here I thought America was not the world. But, still no Canadian shows. I love Moz and all, but I don't think I could live without my nefarious seal beating escapades in the streets of Toronto.

04-27 Stockton, CA - Bob Hope Theater
04-28 Sparks, NV - John Ascuaga's Celebrity Showroom
04-29 Sparks, NV - John Ascuaga's Celebrity Showroom
05-01 Oakland, CA - Paramount Theater
05-02 Santa Rosa, CA - Wells Fargo Center
05-05 Spokane, WA- INB Performing Arts Center
05-06 Seattle, WA - Paramount
05-08 Salt Lake City, UT - E Center Ford Theater
05-09 Denver, CO - Fillmore
05-11 Omaha, NE - Orpheum
05-12 Milwaukee, WI - Riverside
05-14 Ann Arbor, MI - Michigan Theater
05-15 Chicago, IL - Auditorium Theatre
05-17 Cleveland, OH - Playhouse Square Center
05-18 Columbus, OH - Palace Theater
05-20 Indianapolis, IN - Murat Center
05-22 St. Louis, MO - The Pageant
05-23 Kansas City, MO - Uptown Theater
05-25 Dallas, TX - Palladium
05-26 Austin, TX - Backyard
05-28 Houston, TX - Verizon
05-30 El Paso, TX - County Coliseum
05-31 Tucson, AZ - Music Hall
06-02 Phoenix, AZ - Maricopa County Events Center
06-03 San Diego, CA - Bayside Concerts
06-05 Ventura, CA - Majestic Ventura Theater
06-06 Riverside, CA - Riverside Municipal Auditorium
06-08 Los Angeles, CA - Hollywood Bowl
06-09 Las Vegas, NV - Pearl
06-30 New York, NY - Madison Square Garden

No Buffalo shows either, bleh!

MP3: Morrissey - You Have Killed Me
MP3: Morrissey - The Youngest Was the Most Loved
MP3: The Smiths - There Is A Light that Never Goes Out

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

In Rotation: GHP Mixes

Here's a nice mix by Go Home Productions' Mark Vidler, one of my favourite mashers around. It's an amalgam of post-punk, indie, electro, and... well, it's titled 'Post Punk Dub Funk Junk Spunk Dance Mixture' so there. Superb production as always, and it's got a lot of value, clocking in at around 25 minutes.

Shriekback "Here Comes My Hand-Clap" 00.00
SebastiAn "Ross Ross Ross" 00.15
XTC "Dance Band" 01.47
LCD Soundsystem "North American Scum" 03.19
Bonde Do Role "Gasolina (Radioclit remix)" 04.55
Mr Partridge "Commerciality" 06.05
The Presets "Down Down Down (Digitalism mix)" 07.01
Juliette & The Licks "Got Love To Kill (MSTRKRFT remix)" 08.34
Two Lone Swordsmen "Nueflex" 10.24
The Rapture "Whoo! Alright-Yeah...Uh Huh" 12.01
XTC "Living Through Another Cuba (GHP dub)" 14.51
The Specials "Friday Night, Saturday Morning" 16.45
Humanzi "Long Time Coming" 19.28
The Gossip "Jealous Girls (New Young Pony Club remix)" 21.23
Vivien Goldman "Private Armies (dub)" 23.27

And while I'm on GHP, I may as well include his LCD Soundsystem remix.

MP3: GHP - Post Punk Dub Funk Junk Spunk Dance Mixture
MP3: LCD Soundsystem - Us vs. Them (GHP Remix)

Sunday, March 11, 2007


Sorry for the long delay! February was not a kind month for me, mainly due to insane amounts of school-work.

Anyways, you may have noticed that the majority of my links aren't working anymore. Something messed up with my MyDataBus account, and now they're cutting down on bandwidth allotment. So, now I'm spreading the load over a number of different servers in order to circumvent monthly hosting fees. Over the next few days, I'll be getting the majority of the links back up, particularly for the 'Best of' lists.