Archive for August, 2009

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D-I-S-C-O

August 31, 2009

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What to make of the new Simian Mobile Disco album. There’s that song with Gruff Rhys from Super Furry Animals called “Cream Dream.” There’s help from The Gossip’s Beth Ditto, Yeasayer’s Chris Keating, and then there’s that song with Alexis Taylor from Hot Chip that sounds, well, exactly like a Hot Chip song without the soul. So I might not be ready to Attack Decay Sustain Release myself into a cream dream about this album quite yet, but that’s not to say there aren’t any electro monsters that compare to “Sleep Deprivation” and “I Believe,” two of the finest doses of electronic music created this decade.

“Off the Map” is SMD’s closest try at recreating the magic off of their first album. Jamie Lidell croons on the track, “you can be space, I’ll be the invader,” and the sexual references just continue to fly from this electronic duo.

Simian Mobile Disco – “Off the Map (ft. Jamie Lidell)”

(Now with direct download! Just click save as)

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Benefits of Globalization

August 30, 2009

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We first talked about The Very Best, the unlikely collaboration between producers Radioclit and Malawi musician Esau Mwamwaya, when they released their amazing debut mixtape that offered a completely original take on classics such as the Beatles‘ “Birthday,” Vampire Weekend‘s “Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa” and M.I.A‘s “Boyz.” This time around, the group brings us their first album full of all original tunes. Standout track “Mfumu” brings the best of both parties– Radioclit lay a beautiful, thundering synthesizer that charges beneath Mwamwaya’s falsetto. I don’t understand a word being said, but maybe that’s for the better. Sometimes too much importance is put on the song’s meaning– can’t we simply enjoy it because we like the way it sounds? (This is NOT an argument for top 40 radio, however.)

The Very Best – “Mfumu”

The Very Best – “Birthday” (Beatles cover)

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Sing Sang Sung

August 29, 2009

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Picking the universal “chilling out under the stars contemplating life and all that is meaningful and how insignificant we are” music is a no brainer. Air, the french band known for their perfect pop tunes that seem to float on, well, air, are releasing a new single that does everything an Air track should. Soothing synths, relaxing melodies and the occasional chime makes this gem perfect for your next night time Mulholland Dr. lookout spot.

Air – “Sing Sang Sung”

(now with direct downloads! Just click save as)

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Fake Blood

August 29, 2009

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There was a time not too long ago when Fake Blood could do no wrong. Every remix they touched (and you knew it was them with that little “Fake Blood” vocal they dropped right before the bass) was the definition of an electro anthem. I hadn’t heard any original material until this three song EP, but the Fix Your Accent EP, and especially the title track, prove that these guys are not a flash in the pan. Though most of their remixes have a grittiness to them, “Fix Your Accent” has an undeniable charm that floats its way across the song. It never takes itself too seriously, and for that, we can dance merrily around the room chanting these three meaningless words.

Fake Blood – “Fix Your Accent”

(now with direct downloads! Just click save as)

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What’s Going on Underneath Those Jeans?

August 28, 2009

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Most of Javelin‘s tracks are lo-fi instrumental that are pleasant enough to listen to without paying much attention. Not surprisingly then, this gem about safe sex in this age of free lovin’ sticks out like a sore…something. I can’t even describe how great it is hear a chorus like

“Whats you symptom? and who’d u get that itch from?
Lets talk about it.
Herpes, aids, lets talk about it.
Crabs, scabies, syphilis, rabies, crazy shit beyond your laves,
Dont be shy, but unabashed, go ahead ask
Whats up with that rash?”

It’s a humorous take on some boring sex-ed lessons, and it’s greatly appreciated. There’s literally too many great lines to quote, so hear it for yourself. It’s the cleverest rhyme-scheme since “Thou Shalt Always Kill,” but without all the suppressed hatred.

Javelin – “STD Fury”

“I’m reppin’ B-More but I don’t like crabs that much.”

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Lost in the Endless Sound

August 26, 2009

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2007 saw my complete emergence in electronic music. At first, I tried to force myself to make sure the Strokes and Arctic Monkeys still made a rotation on my iPod, but as 2009 approached, indie rock was almost obliterated from my musical selection. “Dream City,” the thunderous first single from DFA signees Free Energy is a reminder not to forgot this genre. Debatably  the feel good song of the year, “Dream City” launches straight away into a 60’s sounding riff that feels of the moment and a nod to yesteryear at the same time.

“Here we’re coming out, kids across town / Dream like there’s nothing to scream about. / And we’re riding through the night, / Tryin’ to get around, / In love with that electric sound.”

…. sounds like a Dream City.

Free Energy – “Dream City”

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Come On And Laugh With Me

August 25, 2009

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The word Girls hails a thunderstorm of emotions. For some, girls brings back memories of chasing females in your college-aged years. For the band Girls, this seems to be it. Their dose of lo-fi acoustic guitar grunge is much more pleasant sounding than that description right there. There’s been a surge of lo-fi lately– Wavves, Neon Indian, Javelin, just to name a few– but it’s Girls who win out for being the most original sounding and refreshing. While their melodies often recall a grunged-out Beach Boys, songs like “Hellhole Ratrace” have no predecessor to compare it to.

Girls – “Hellhole Ratrace”