Friday, July 28, 2006

Sing Happy Things

By d-mac
This is for AJ. My song recommendation for the day:

Greg Laswell - Sing, Theresa Says

We've both been hooked on this song since we listened to it in the car on the way to the Josh Ritter show Wednesday night.

If you like it too, you should check out the other stuff he's got up on his myspace page, or buy his new album, Through Toledo (released July 11th on Vanguard Records).

sing, theresa says

go to sleep while i gather all my things
and i will call you in a couple of days
i can hear the june bugs approaching
a god damn army of them in my brain

"sing," theresa says. "sing happy things"
"sing," theresa says if i do everything
one day a man will spring worth loving

all of my friends fall from the sky now
many more than i ever thought i had
everyone is sharpening up their angles
when all i really want is...

"sing," theresa says. "sing happy things"
"sing," theresa says if i do everything
one day a man will spring worth loving


"sing," theresa says. "sing happy things"
"sing," theresa says if i do everything
one day a man will spring worth loving

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Slow Runner & Josh Ritter

By d-mac
AJ and I saw Slow Runner open for Josh Ritter at Variety last night. I was surprised to see SR without their drummer or bass player, but it was cool to hear the stripped-down versions of their songs with just Michael Flynn (vox, keys) and Josh Kaler (guitar, backup vox). You may remember this band from such EYM posts as our first ever back in March.

Flynn opened the set solo with a new song "Long Division" (see video below). Later, Josh Kaler joined in on guitar and harmonies. Slow Runner played some familiar stuff off their first album ("Redneck Bar", "You're In Luck", "Break Your Mama's Back", "Everything Is Exactly What It Seems") as well as some new stuff, including a tongue-in-cheek piece Flynn wrote on the road called "1 of 3" about always playing second (or third) fiddle to the headlining bands on the tour.

I was disappointed they didn't play "Streamlined" but I'm not sure how it would have worked without the rest of the band.

I'd never seen Josh Ritter before but I'd heard some of his stuff. I liked it okay. He played the entire show with a huge goofy grin on his face. With his alt-country/rock/pop-ish style, he kinda reminded me of a poor man's Ryan Adams... you know, if Ryan Adams had never cheated on his homework, or been hungover, or had his heart broken.

Ritter's bass player, Colonel Sanders, was all dressed up in a white suit and a white Stetson hat, and was sporting a dark pointy beard and handle-bar moustache. He was hilarious.

I also took a couple of videos with my new digital camera. It's a tiny Casio Exilim, but the video quality is surprisingly decent. Apologies for the shakiness and poor cinematography in general. Still getting the hang of it!

Slow Runner - Long Division

Here's a link to another video from the show of another new song. Not sure on the name. This one got cut off when the memory card on my camera filled up. Also, you may notice about 32 seconds into this one that some a-hole forgot to silence his cell phone before the show started. Yah, so maybe that a-hole was me.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Embiggen Your Mix: Blips, Beeps & Farts

By d-mac
blips, beeps & farts mixA mix project for a mundane, muggy Monday morning. My mission: to have you tapping your feet along about 37 seconds into the first track, dancing in your chair by track 6, and somewhere along the way forgetting it's not a Friday afternoon.

Listen to entire playlist [M3U]. Click on image above for printable track list and album art.

Track Listing:
  1. Radiohead - Packt Like Sardines in a Crushd Tin Box
    The intro track to Amnesiac. Full of crunchy electronic tip-taps that set the tone for one of Radiohead's most consistent (and underrated) albums.

  2. Zero 7 - Today
    Fun track from Zero 7's latest release, The Garden.

  3. Faithless (feat. Dido) - One Step Too Far
    One of several songs by this trip-hop/dance trio to which Dido contributes her vocals.

  4. Frou Frou - Shh
    Short-lived duo comprised of singer-songwriter Imogen Heap and producer Guy Sigsworth.

  5. Kings of Convenience - I Don't Know What I Can Save You From (Röyksopp Mix)
    Hands down, KoC are easily my favorite indie folk-pop Norwegian duo. Okay, not exactly going out on a limb there, but I'd also put them amongst the top ranks of any listing for which they'd qualify. They can do no wrong in my book. My only gripe is that they haven't played a gig in Atlanta in years (the last was at Smith's Olde Bar, about 2 months before I'd heard of them, tragically). This track, mixed by fellow Bergen hometowners Röyksopp, is more upbeat than you'd normally expect from these guys, but I'm not complaining.

  6. Phoenix - If I Ever Feel Better
    I bought their second album, Alphabetical on a whim a couple years ago and found it to be choc-full of guilty pleasures. Then I went back and listened to stuff off their debut album (from which this track was taken) and their newest release, It's Never Been Like That and I haven't felt guilty about it ever since.

  7. Lily Allen - Oh My God (Kaiser Chiefs Cover)
    21 year-old MySpace phenom, Lily Allen has been taking the Blogosphere by storm since earlier this year. Her debut studio album, Alright, Still was released in Europe just this week and has already berthed a #1 hit on the UK pop charts.

  8. Gorillaz (feat. MF Doom) - November Has Come
    So as best I can piece it together, Blur's Damon Albarn created Gorillaz, which sometimes featured MF Doom, of Danger Doom, which included DJ Danger Mouse, co-creator of Gnarls Barkley, fronted by Cee Lo, of the Goodie Mob, which is a member of the Dungeon Family, along with OutKast, led by André Benjamin, who starred in Be Cool with John Travolta, who was in Look Who's Talking with Kirstie Alley, who was in She's Having a Baby with Kevin Bacon! Wait, what were we talking about?

  9. Thom Yorke - Black Swan
    Yay, Thom Yorke's solo project is finally available in a legal capacity, and it's fantastic. And I own it. And you should too.

  10. Lenny Kravitz - If You Can't Say No
    It's not so heavy on the blips & farts, but this track has got beeps coming out the blankity-bleep. See if you can count how many. I won't.

  11. James Figurine - All The Way To China
    He's digging a hole for his dad, in the yard. What? What's it for? Don't worry about it. Ever heard of minding your own business? Next song.

  12. Air - Universal Traveler
    If these guys are ever looking to replace their beer-bottle player or whatever instrument that is I hear in this song, I'm willing to quit my day job.

  13. The Postal Service - Against All Odds (Phil Collins Cover)
    A quiet fist-pumper.

  14. Slow Runner - Streamlined
    I highly recommend buying their debut album, No Disassemble. They're on tour now supporting Josh Ritter, catch them in Atlanta at the Variety Playhouse on the 26th or elsewhere.

  15. Portishead - Glory Box
    If a film student were to somehow collect scenes from your most vivid dreams and splice them into their senior film project, this haunting classic by the nineties lo-fi trip-hop outfit from Bristol, UK would probably play during the credits.

  16. Dntel - Last Songs
    Instrumental outro provided by Dntel, aka James Figurine, aka Jimmy Tamborello, aka half of The Postal Service collaborative with Ben Gibbard. Get the EP.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

iTunes Is A Bastard

By Josh Lamkin
iTunes, while convenient and amazing, is a bastard. iTunes is a bastard computer program. iTunes is the most selfish, passive-agressive computer program maybe of all time. I know there's not really a lot of "all time" from which to select selfish and passive-agressive computer programs, but I defy you name a program that is more of a bastard.

Let me elaborate.

Itunes is selfish. It hogs your computer when you're running it. Sure, iTunes plays tasty songs for you. It fills your ears with milk-chocolatey goodness, or gooey gooey gumdrops of goodness if you're insane and don't like chocolate. Right now my iTunes is playing "Dark State Of Mind" by Tuatara. Earlier I was listening to Luigi's Found On The Forest Floor album and fantasizing about what it would be like to make out with Luigi lead singer Michelle Dubois. Next, I plan to listen to "Canned Heat" by Jamiroquai and do my best Napoleon Dynamite dance moves. I enjoyed/am enjoying/will enjoy all of these musical experiences. The only thing is that iTunes just WILL NOT let you run any other program while you are running iTunes. When you are running iTunes all of the other programs you are attempting to run act like they just ate a huge meal of Mexican food and then took a bunch of Mescaline. They lag, they freeze up, they snore, they hallucinate.

iTunes is also passive-agressive. There's something about iTunes' volume control that makes you have to turn your computer's volume up to absurd levels in order to rock out to "Anti-Anti" by Snowden. So you're rocking out and maybe, I don't know, you're trying to surf the internet(s) at the same time. Maybe you're looking at the message board for the worst show in the entire world, Last Comic Standing, and here's the passive-agressive bullcrap iTunes pulls on you. Because iTunes made you turn your computer up so loud, every time you click a link and a new page opens that little clicking sound, that little clave sound, that satisfying Kabuki clack sound crashes out of your speakers like someone just smart bombed your neighbor's house. See, that's iTunes being pissy and jealous. It's like the computer program equivalent of getting mad and slamming the kitchen cabinets.

iTunes is a bastard. I think you know what I'm talking about now.