Thursday, February 28, 2008

Three Excellent Shows Tonight In Minneapolis



Download: The Hives - "Tick Tick Boom"
Download: The Donnas - "Don't Wait Up For Me"

Two of the definitive definite article bands - The Hives and The Donnas - are in town to Rawk First Avenue tonight. Tickets are $20 and the show is all-ages. The show is not sold out yet, so if you've got an inclination for going, give in, for those about to rock will be undoubtedly saluted at a night like this.

The Hives MySpace Page
The Donnas MySpace Page



Download: The Black Lips - "Stranger"
Download: The Black Lips - "O Katrina"

Garage rock was essentially born out of young, adolescent men in the 1960s trying to emulate the old R&B records from decades previous. The Black Lips, a highly energetic quartet from Atlanta, Georgia, harkens back to that time with simple, but immensely addictive, rock squalor. Last year, the Lips released two records, Los Valientes Del Mundo and Good Bad Not Evil. The band, known for its chaotic, comedic and wholly unpredictable live shows, play at the 7th Street Entry. Tickets are $14 for a 21+ show. Doors open at 8 p.m.

The Black Lips MySpace Page



Download: Crystal Castles - "Air War"
Download: HEALTH - "Crimewave"

HEALTH and Crystal Castles play at the T-Rock tonight. Crystal Castles will be issuing their debut album in a couple of weeks, so check them out tonight if you want to get an advanced taste. Tickets are $14 and doors are at 9 p.m. for a 21+ show.

HEALTH MySpace Page
Crystal Castles MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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Askeleton LP Release Party Tonight



Askeleton are releasing their new LP "The Personalization" (Goodnight Records) tonight at the Barfly. The show is 18+ and starts at 8pm. No mp3s have been leaked on this, so you'll have to go to their myspace page to give it a listen.



Askeleton on MySpace

(Ian Anderson)

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Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Free Baby Guts Show at the Triple Rock



Download: Baby Guts - "Staplegun"
Download: The Chambermaids - "Park"

The flier explains it all. Spring is just around the corner, so hopefully this free show at the Triple Rock Social Club will be the beginning of more free shows when the weather is nicer. Show is 21+ and the doors are at nine.

Check out an interview with 2/3rds of Baby Guts over at Flak Radio.

Baby Guts MySpace Page
The Chambermaids MySpace Page
Strut and Shock MySpace Page
The Vignettes MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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Tonight: Free Screening of Bob Marley Documentary at Yo! The Movement



Download: Bob Marley - "Stir It Up"
Download: Bob Marley - "Slave Driver"

Though it may be hard to believe it so many years after his death (it seems like copies of his greatest hits collection Legend are issued with admissions applications and samples of Tide to suburbs across the nation), Bob Marley was once, and still is, a radical and important presence in the context of popular music. Marley, along with his band The Wailers, is credited for not only popularizing reggae music to Western audiences with albums such as roots reggae classic Exodus, and the reflective Rastaman Vibration (Marley's only top ten album in the US), but for using his religious beliefs to act as an agent for social change. Marley was a strident Rastafari, a cultural and philosophical movement which stresses love and respect for all living things. Naturally, he was viciously assaulted only a few days before playing a the One Love Peace Concert to ease tensions amongst Jamaican political parties who were waging civil war against one another at the time. Nevertheless, the One Love Peace Concert ended with with People's National Party leader Michael Manley shaking hands with his opponent Edward Seaga, the leader of the Jamaican Labour Party (both men were prime ministers of Jamaica at one time or another).

Marley died of cancer in 1981, at the age of 36. Since his passing, he has become an international icon. In order to celebrate his legacy, Minnesotan non-profit organization Yo! The Movement is sponsoring a free screening of the documentary about Bob Marley's family first trip to Ethopia in order to attend the Africa Unite concert. The film takes its title from the festival itself and will be shown here:

AFRICA UNITE DOCUMENTARY ADVANCE SCREENING (FREE)
A Celebration of Bob Marley's Vision - Released Internationally By Palm Pictures in March
Host: YO! The Movement, The Nia-Imani Youth Center, and CRUNC
Date: Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Time: 7:00pm- 9:00pm
Location: YO! The Movement - (Inside Kwanzaa Community Center/Church)
Street: 2100 Emerson Ave N
City/Town: Minneapolis, MN
Phone: 612.874.9696
Email: info@yothemovement.org


Listen to two MP3s at the top of the post from Bob Marley & The Wailers debut album Catch A Fire.

Yo! The Movement MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

(Jonathan Graef)

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Tonight: Tarleton at the Nomad World Pub



Download: Tarlton - "Oatmeal"
Download: Tarlton - "Two Nights Of Storms"


Good news, everyone! Brett Bullion, a.k.a. Tarlton, has returned from Seattle for a show in Minneapolis. Tarlton will be performing as part of the http://spark.cla.umn.edu/. The schedule is way too massive to list here, but check it out on the Spark website.

Tarlton is performing at 9 p.m. Thursday at the Nomad World Pub. Having seen him perform last night, I can safely say that he's never sounded better. It is absolutely worth your time to go see his set.

Tarlton MySpace

(April Wright)

Full disclosure: Brett is a friend of both Ian and mine and may or may not have built us a solid gold monument on the moon. This does not change the fact that Tarlton makes objectively awesome music that each and every one of you blog-o-nerds would love.

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Sleeve Face



Alright, so who wants to start a club with me?

(Ian Anderson)

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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

New Cloud Cult - "When Water Comes To Life"



Download: Cloud Cult - "When Water Comes to Life"

Minnesota-based Cloud Cult have a new album titled Feel Good Ghosts (Tea-Partying Through Tornadoes) and it is set to be released on April 8th of this year. For fans who need a taste sooner than that, Pitchfork shared the new track ‘When Water Comes to Life’ a few days ago via their Forkcast section.

In true Cloud Cult fashion, there’s never a dull moment as this track slowly changes and grows and takes the listener through a series of auditory ups and downs. The tempo and mood mutates from a quiet, peaceful place to something soaked with loud guitars and raucous drums. Craig Minowa’s trembling vocals paired with soaring ethereal instrumentals create a fusion of sound lying somewhere between Beethoven and Björk.

Cloud Cult have always had a pension for creating beautiful blends of the classical and modern, giving them a symphonic sound like an indie rock opera. This song seems to pick up right where 2007’s The Meaning of 8 left off, conveying a soft sound and a hard edge simultaneously, but perhaps sounding a bit more orchestral than electric. If "When Water Comes to Life" is any indication of things to come on their next release, listeners definitely have something to look forward to.

Cloud Cult will be playing First Avenue on Saturday, April 26.

Cloud Cult MySpace Page

(Tara Rogan)

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The AV Club Reviews Secret Tapes N Tapes Show


(via the A.V. Club)

Download: Tapes N Tapes - "Hang Them All"
Download: Vampire Hands - "Wolf Skin Pose" (Live at the 7th Street Entry via Schedule Two)
Download: The Blind Shake - "Calling All Horses"


The fine folk over at the AV Club posted a review a few days ago of the secret Tapes N Tapes show at the Turf Club. Here's what writer Christopher Bahn had to say about the show:

the new Tapes songs are pretty clearly moving somewhat away from the quirky jangliness of The Loon toward a more intense, harder-rocking sound. I'm not sure if that's a good thing; I didn't hear anything that grabbed me with the immediacy of "Insistor" or "Cowbell" from The Loon. But there were still a lot of interesting angles in what I heard, and I'm guessing that hearing the disc itself will bring that out even further; Tapes have always been a better-in-the-studio band for me.


Additionally, Bahn had some kind words for Minneapolis bands VIP and Harems Vampire Hands and The Blind Shake, whom he called his "favorite Minneapolis bands"

Vampire Hands have a heavy psychedelic vibe, a little like Syd Barrett backed by the Stooges, with dual vocalists trading off between a spacey falsetto and a punky rasp, and a pair of drummers that both attack with relentless energy....The Blind Shake are a punk power trio fronted by two brothers, Jim and Mike Blaha. They made a terrific collaborative record with criminally unknown underground guitarist Michael Yonkers last year called Carbohydrates Hydrocarbons. On their own, they create a furious, squalling wall of noise.


Read the rest of the write-up here.

Tapes N Tapes MySpace Page
Vampire Hands MySpace Page
The Blind Shake MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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Fun With Words: Music Blog Anagrams Prove To Be Startingly Insightful

MFR writer April Wright and I were g-chatting it up whist about our daily business when she directed me toward Sternest Meanings, a chatter-bot that responds with anagrams whenever you type in words. Being the music dork that I am, I decided to plug in several music blogs, music journalists, and band names to see with what Sternest Meanings would respond. Much to my delight/chagrin, the results proved to be surprisingly accurate, or, at the very least, incredibly hilarious.

To wit (with Sternest Meanings responses in bold):

Minneapolis Fucking Rocks - Cock ups malign in foreskin*
Sasha Frere-Jones - Jeer of a rashness
Pitchfork Media - Mock Rapid Thief
Chuck Klosterman - Skunk male crotch
Robert Christgau - Its Turbocharger
Nick Sylvester - Slickest, Nervy
Stereogum - So True Gem.
Brooklyn Vegan - OK Graven Nobly
New Musical Express - Warm Excuseless Pin
You Ain't No Picasso - Ciao! Nosy Utopians
Pretty Much Amazing - Crazy Thumping Mate
Hype Machine - I'm Ace Hyphen
Music For Kids Who Can't Read Too Good - Make out swift dishonor accord. Good.
Jim DeRogatis - I Stodgier Jam.
Rolling Stone - On Stolen Girl
Nah Right - High Rant
The Late Greats - That Steel Rage
Rock Sellout - Tool Sculker
To Kill A Petty Bourgeoisie - Goose Poetlike Brutality
Vampire Hands - VIP and Harems
First Communion Afterparty - Funny Farm Optimist Creator.


MFR Mandate: From now on, the dean of rock critics must be referred to as Robert "Turbocharger" Christgau. As far as The Late Greats is concerned, I just hope that the Duke doesn't become filled with his trademark steel rage!

Incidentally, On Stolen Girl, starring Sally Fields and Valerie Bertinelli, will air this coming Sunday at 8 p.m. EST/7 CST on your local Lifetime affiliate.

Since you're probably thinking of it, here are the Sternest Meanings responses for MFR's writers.

Jonathan Graef - Jar of neat hang.
April Wright - Rat whip girl.
Ian Anderson - In and reason.
Tara Rogan - Rat a groan.


Sternest Meanings Website

(Jar of Neat Hang)

*Somewhere, Jack Black is writing this down as a potential song title.

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Coconut Records - "West Coast"


Download: Coconut Records - "West Coast"

The always-captivating Jason Schwartzman just released his first solo album under the name Coconut Records, and it is actually pretty great. Granted, I said the word "actually," but I had low expectations coming into my first listen because I didn't quite know what to expect due to Schwartzman's transition from music to acting, to acting to music, drumming for Phantom Planet to awesome indie career, etc.

The record is full of super catchy, cutesy songs and may, may even have a cameo from Kirsten Dunst. I really don't know for sure, it just sounds a lot like her.

To pick up a copy, visit Young Baby Records.

Coconut Records on MySpace

(Ian Anderson)

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New Foals - "Balloons"



Download: Foals - "Balloons"

Though the track has been floating around the internet for a while now, it was only yesterday that Sub Pop made the first official single from UK synth-heavy dance-punk group Foals debut album Antidotes available as a download. The record is due for a UK release on March 24th and a US release on April 9th.

Foals are a quintet which formed out of the ashes of band members Yannis Philippakis and Jack Bevan previous group, a math-rock ensemble called The Edmond Fitzgerald. Though Foals doesn't have the jittery cacophony of most math-rock, a similar emphasis on percussion propels "Balloons".

The group may self-deprecatingly refer to their music as being in a "pretentious proggy math-rock comfort zone", but the strutting disco beat, intertwining guitar lines, subtle synth touches, and baritone sax (no doubt the touch of produced Dave Sitek of T.V. on the Radio) make a very strong counterargument to any potential detractors. Those who thought Liars peaked with their first record (I don't understand you, but, hey, no judgments here. Scout's honor), or want a less esoteric version of the mighty polyrhythms of Battles, might want to check out Foals.

Antidote is out on April 8th via Sub Pop.

Foals MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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Monday, February 25, 2008

Stream Goldfrapp's Seventh Tree In Its Entirety



UK electronic-pop duo Goldfrapp's newest release Seventh Tree - which is set to be released in the States tomorrow, February 26th - hasn't been receiving the greatest of reviews as of late. MFR will have its own take on the record posted in the next couple of days. In the meantime, those who want to stream the record in its entirety can, and should, head over to the band's MySpace Page where all of Seventh Tree's 10 tracks are streaming. Listen for yourself, then decide whether or not some critics are being too harsh on the album.

GoldFrapp MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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Atmosphere Announce Tour Dates, Lemons Pre-Order Information




Download: Atmosphere - "Lyndale Avenue Users Manual (from Sad Clown, Bad Fall 10)

In order to demonstrate how one properly paint's one's shit gold when life hands them lemons, Minneapolis rap duo Atmosphere have announced a small, "release party" for their upcoming sixth studio album, When Life Gives You Lemons, You Paint That Shit Gold. The tour starts off with not one, but two Chicago dates at the Metro. Don't we Chicagoans feel special? (answer: yes).

Here's the rest of the tour dates:
04.22 Chicago, IL The Metro - Atmosphere.ducatking.com
04.23 Chicago, IL The Metro - Atmosphere.ducatking.com
04.24 Toronto, ON Opera House - Atmosphere.ducatking.com
04.26 Boston, MA The Roxy - Atmosphere.ducatking.com
04.27 New York, NY Webster Hall - Atmosphere.ducatking.com
04.29 Washington, DC 9:30 Club
05.02 Austin, TX Emo's
05.03 Austin, TX Emo's
05.05 Phoenix, AZ Marquee Theater
05.06 Los Angeles, CA Henry Fonda Theatre
05.07 Los Angeles, CA Henry Fonda Theatre
05.08 San Francisco, CA Grand Ballroom at The Regency
05.09 San Francisco, CA Grand Ballroom at The Regency
05.12 Portland, OR Crystal Ballroom
05.13 Seattle, WA Showbox
05.14 Vancouver, BC Commodore Ballroom
05.16 Salt Lake City, UT In The Venue
05.17 Denver, CO Ogden Theatre
05.18 Denver, CO Ogden Theatre


There isn't a Minneapolis date yet (yet definitely being the operative word), but fret not. Those of you who want to can order the new album through Fifth Element. Do so as soon as you can, and you might get some special goodies.

From the band's MySpace page:

The first 1,000 Pre-Orders (DELUXE EDITION ONLY) will ship with an autographed copy of When Life Gives You Lemons and a CD copy of Strictly Leakage (previously available as a download only)

Golden Lemons Contest:
We are excited to announce our 5 Golden Lemons Contest. We have placed a Golden Lemon in 5 "When Life Gives You Lemons, You Paint That S*!T Gold" CD's (Deluxe Edition ONLY). If you are lucky enough to find one, you will win; 2 tickets to the show of your choice on the When Life Gives You Lemons Tour and a copy of the new "Sad Clown Bad Spring 12".


To read more about the deluxe edition, go here

Between these contests, the YouTube show, free romantic advice, and an entirely free record, I'm not sure how much more Slug and Ant can give. At this rate, Slug and Ant will either have to show up to your doorstep with a new car, Oprah-style, or, shit, one of Brother Ali's kidneys. Watch your (lower) back, Ali!

When Life Gives You Lemons, You Paint That Shit Gold is out on April 22nd.

Atmosphere MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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Devendra Banhart Performs "Seahorse" Live On French Television



Download: Devendra Banhart - "Seahorse"

Smokey Rolls Down Thunder Canyon is, like many of eclectic folk singer Devendra Banhart's work, fascinating, unpredictable, and frustratingly inconsistent. However, one of the undisputed highlights of that album was "Seahorse", a free-flowing, winding track that starting off softly, went on a musical detour that placed Banhart's more Latin-flavored influences in a waltz context, and finished in a psychedelic jam session.

It's no surprise, then, that "Seahorse" would sound great in a live music setting, whether it's on the festival circuit or on French television. Banhart's YouTube channel just made available his performance on the French television show "De La Semaine" and you can watch Banhart and his band (are they still called Spiritual Boner?) play the song at the top of the post.

Smokey Rolls Down Thunder Canyon is out now.

Devendra Banhart MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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The Melismatics Post New Song on MySpace - For 3 Days Only



Download: The Melismatics - "It's A Drag"

Listeners who want to find out if Minneapolis-based power-pop quartet The Melismatics' upcoming The Acid Test will pass their own auditory evaluation can stream one of the new songs from the upcoming record at the band's MySpace Page. The band sent a bulletin on said Space page which had all of the details, details which you can read here:

The Melismatics' brand new track, "Soul Sucker" from the upcoming album "The Acid Test" is up going to be on our myspace page for the next 3 days only, so check it out and let us know what you think!

If you live in Minneapolis/St Paul, there will be a video premier party for "Soul Sucker" at The Triple Rock Monday, March 3rd at 9:00PM. We will be performing and showing the video for the very first time. Also on the bill are The Dollyrots and Suffrajet. For the rest of you, we will post the video on our myspace and on youtube Tuesday, March 4th!


Much like Clarissa, that bulletin seemed to explain it all. You only have three days to hear it, so get crackin! As for the song itself, the opening sounds like an electro-pop gimmick - the two-note riff and the bludgeoning bass beat don't help. That said, the song opens quite nicely with a disco-inspired pre-chorus, before the band glams it up into overdrive for the chorus. The titular she-beast of the song may be one to suck souls, but with high-octane hooks and guitars, this song should do just a fine job of replenishing any lost vitality.

The Acid Test is coming soon.

MySpace Page.

(Jonathan Graef)

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Minnesotans Kick Some Ass At The 80th Annual Academy Awards; Once Wins Best Song Oscar (Plus Video of "Falling Slowly" Performance)



Download: The Moldy Peaches - "Anyone Else But You"
Download: Michael Cera & Ellen Page - "Anyone Else But You"
Download: Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova - "Falling Slowly"

For those of you Minnesotans who didn't watch the 80th annual Academy Awards should know that, if you had, you would have felt some serious hometown pride. Not only did No Country For Old Men, the twelfth full-length feature from St. Louis Park-born filmmaking duo the Coen Bros., won four Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Supporting Actor (Javier Bardem) and Best Adapted Screenplay, but the winner for Best Original Screenplay went to none other than Diablo Cody. Cody is the Minneapolis-based, Chicago-born (yay Chicago and MPLS!) "something-something-turned-something-or-another", who was awarded a statuette for her screenplay Juno. And while this writer can't show them some hometown love, lest I defy the laws of physics, congratulations all around are in order all the same.

In music related Oscar news, Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova defied the odds once again by winning the Best Song Academy Award for "Falling Slowly", the centerpiece of the film Once, in which both Hansard and Irglova co-starred. Watch video of their performance, and listen to the original version, at the top of the post.

Once Soundtrack MySpace Page
Juno official website
No Country For Old Men official website

(Jonathan Graef)

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Prepare to Have Your Mind Blown



Thanks to Jessi for the tip on this. Oh wowowwowowow. Wow.

(Ian Anderson)

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Friday, February 22, 2008

Tonight in Minneapolis



Download: St. Vincent - "Human Racing"

St. Vincent
Venue: Cedar Cultural Center
Time: 8pm
All-ages
Foreign Born open

Gay Witch Abortion

Download: Gay Witch Abortion - "Stain On The Floor"

Six local bands:
OBCT
Kaligula
Gay Witch Abortion
Myiasis
Cognitive Dissonance
Monsters of Pot


Doors at 9 p.m.
18+
Tickets $3.00 at the door

Bedlam Theatre
1501 South Sixth Street
West Bank, Minneapolis, MN

Soild Gold



Self-explanatory.

Solid Gold MySpace Page

Lambs Of God

CD Release party
THE POCKETKNIFE
with THE HAMMER GANG and UNICORN BASEMENT
Time: 8 pm


Download: Lambs of God - "The Whores of Babylon"

LAmbs of God MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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The Top Ten Tracks On Elbo.Ws Reviewed In 50 Words Or Less: Extra Super Bonus Edition



Bi-monthly, MFR reviews the Top Ten tracks on music-blog aggregator Elbo.WS in 50 words or less. For the weeks of February 1st through February 18th (plus a few more songs due to the fact that it's been a while - when you're unemployed, job search takes precedence over everything else), here are the ten most popular songs:

1. Tapes N Tapes - "Hang Them All"

Download: Tapes N Tapes - "Hang Them All"

A funky, yet mournful, minor-seventh guitar riff propels "Hang Them All" to an almost impossibly energetic start. An uncomfortable anxiety permeates the song but thank goodness we have the organ-fueled chorus to relieve our stress. By the time it’s done, one can't help but feel the experience was a little anti-climatic. Please don’t hang me.

Grade: B-


2. Amp Live - "Video Tapez" (ft. Del The Funky Homosapien)

Download: Amp Live - "Video Tapez" (ft. Del The Funky Homosapien)"

By directly sampling, and syncopating, both the piano and vocal line from "Videotapes", the AmpLive remix doesn't really do anything completely new or unexpected with Thom's favorite track, but, once again, Del's singular flow proves to be irresistible.

Grade: B

3. The Grand Archive - "Torn Blue Foam Coach"

Download: The Grand Archives - "Tom Blue Foam Couch"

Like Broken Social Scene (or Matt Brooke's previous ensemble, Band of Horses) playing a 50s themed prom night, The Grand Archives bring layers of ethereal guitar tones and brass to give texture to what is otherwise just another classic pop chord progression. It's by no means revelatory, but there's a reason why this stuff is, to a degree, infectious.

Grade: B-

4. Man Man - "Top Drawer"

Download: Man Man - "Top Drawer"

Man Man never struck me as a band that would strut its stuff down the musical catwalk, but "Top Drawer" proves us all wrong. That said, the slinkly, sultry Tom Waits-esque groove remains too stagnant and thus becomes a little monotonous. Still, one can't help but sing along to the howls and calls.

Grade: B

5. British Sea Power - "Waving Flags"

Download: British Sea Power - "Waving Flags"

When you, as a band, start out at ten, it's hard to be able to build to an anthemic exultation, but somehow British Sea Power manage to accomplish that feat quite nicely, using a whole lot of reverb-and-chorus heavy guitars in the process. The title may sound nationalistic, but intoxication is a nation-state ruled equally by almost everyone. "Welcome in", the band says. Don't mind if I do.

Grade: A-

6. The Dodos - "Fools"

If Visiter, the upcoming second album from San Franciscans The Dodos, isn't one of the best albums of the year, I will eat my own hat. "Fools" is so great that it inevitably makes one out of the listener. Try not to dance around in blissed-out merriment. It simply cannot be done.

Grade: A

7. Throw Me The Statue - "About To Walk"

Download: Throw Me The Statue - "About To Walk"

MFR's very own soothsayer April Wright posted this back in November, but it's only now, with the release of their album, Moonbeams, that the band has started to receive attention. And rightfully so. The band's brand of folk-tronica is dreamy, but also grounded in bouncy, effervescent melodies.

Grade: B+

8. Basia Bulat - "In The Night"

Download: Basia Bulat - "In The Night"

While there's a hint of gospel influence in Basia Bulat's brand of folk-pop, there's precious little to rejoice about in her song "In The Night." Part of the reason is that while the song moves at a nice clip, the brisk tempo also prevents any sort of lasting enjoyment. The night's young. Why such a rush?

Grade: C


9. American Music Club - "All The Lost Souls Welcome You To San Francisco"


Download: American Music Club - "All The Lost Souls Welcome You To San Francisco"

Lying somewhere between vintage Al Green and Nashville Skyline-era Bob Dylan, the first track from AMC's second reunion LP is a perfectly pleasent, mellow bit of blue-eyed soul (though the bridge toward the end gives “Souls” some needed edge). Now that the lost souls have welcomed us, can we hang out at Cafe Du Nord?

Grade: B

10. The Raveonettes - "Dead Sound"

Download: The Raveonettes - "Dead Sound"

One of the many dreamy highlights from their best record yet, The Raveonettes don't really re-invent their sound with this second single from Lust Lust Lust. Instead, they perfect the boy-girl harmonies, white-noise, and fuzzed out guitars. No longer beholden to artificial constraints, the band has finally learned to use simplicity in a smart, compelling way.

Grade: A-

Bonus Tracks Galore

Here's some stuff we missed, in no real order:

1. Megafaun - "Lazy Suicide"

Download: Megafaun - "Lazy Suicide"

The bluegrass flavor is a nice foundation with which to work, particularly since so little bluegrass flavored tracks show up on Elbo.ws. charts. But ultimately, this is more of an intriguing experiment than an actually enjoyable song. Still, there are a lot of provocative elements, particularly toward the song's country-cum-post-rock conclusion.

Grade: B-

2. Vampire Weekend - "Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa"

Download: Vampire Weekend - "Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa"

Like the motion picture Juno, Vampire Weekend often confuses cute with cloying ("Kwassa" beats you over the head with its own West-Afro indie-pop precociousness) but also manages to partly win over its audience by being genuinely clever and charming. That said, I roll my eyes every time I hear that Peter Gabriel couplet.

Grade: B-

3. Say Hi - "Northwestern Girls"

Download: Say Hi - "Northwestern Girls"

It goes without saying that any group who writes concept albums about vampires probably needs some desperate gains in the maturity department. It also goes without saying that, with its tasteful electronics, slow-burn dynamics and subdued vocals, Say Hi''s "Northwestern Girls" does the trick and then some.

Grade: B+

4. MGMT - "Time To Pretend"

Download: MGMT - "Time To Pretend"

MGMT's breezy, sunny, satirical blast of psychedelic synth-pop starts out with a ringing keyboard line before another, more sweet sounding line compliments. And thus begins the immaculately layering of "Time To Pretend", a track which combines New Wave and Rentals-style bass buzz to create a ridiculously hummable tune.

Grade: A-

5. The Helio Sequence - "Keep Your Eyes Ahead"

Download: The Helio Sequence - "Keep Your Eyes Ahead"

The Helio Sequence mine the same territory as fellow early post-punk spelunkors Interpol. The minor-key arpeggios and haunting keyboard lines seem to indicate a similar doom-and-gloom atmosphere as that New York band. However, the band also adds showgazer ambience and Beatles-esque vocals for much needed warmth. Sounds pretty average, but at least the ending is nicely warped.

Grade: C+

(Jonathan Graef)

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Thursday, February 21, 2008

The Mountain Goats - Heretic Pride



The Mountain Goats
Heretic Pride (4AD, 2008)
Grade: B-


Download: The Mountain Goats - "Sax Rohmer #1"
Download: The Mountain Goats - "Lovecraft In Brooklyn"


Mountain Goats singer-songwriter John Darnielle has always been best as a deranged observer, breaking hearts and puncturing egos with acerbic wit and howling with the voice of someone teetering on the brink. I have this shining image in my head of Darnielle drunkenly grasping at air while whisper-singing his way though Get Lonely a year and a half ago at the Triple Rock. With this vision in mind, Heretic Pride just doesn't have the vulnerability and personal touch of previous albums.

And that's a problem. Darnielle's genius doesn't lie in his amazing arrangements, his ability to shred or his good looks. He's a poet, and his strength comes from taking a subject that touches a nerve with most people and teasing it up with poetry until the listener is left with a stylized, but raw peek at the world as Darnielle dreams it. On Heretic Pride, Darnielle nails stylization, but sometimes, his weak delivery wins out over his lyrical brilliance.

John Darnielle is a captivating person to watch and listen to, but not because he has a good voice. Much like Jeff Mangum, the strength of Darnielle's voice isn't in its quality, but in how he uses it. His voice is built for passionate growls that bleed with intensity. It's made for singing poetry that speaks to the very core of your being. When I heard Darnielle making an earnest attempt to sing smooth over power-popper "Autoclave," I felt a little sick. I don't like hearing Darnielle sound so cavalier when babbling on about a throne of skulls. Where's the raw shake? The quivering voice of a man on the edge of saying "Fuck it" and driving off a cliff? It's almost like Darnielle is devolving as an artist from someone who was comfortable with his flaws to someone afraid to be chastised.

The album is dressed up in instrumentation to a greater degree than any other Mountain Goats album in the past. Unfortunately, Darnielle has never been a great musician. He's a competent songwriter with a great ear for melody, but has never been very good at arranging a diverse array of instruments. Like on The Sunset Tree, some of the arrangements are very solid, but others fall back on kitschy pop-rock territory. A good example of this is the opening to "San Bernadino," which sounds like a track off of any of the Mountain Goats' past couple albums with a U2 guitar line plunked in. There's a ghosting of the type of melodies that made Tallahasee and All Hail West Texas two of my favorite albums of all time, which is encouraging, but the instrumental arrangements on Heretic Pride hinder the album's melodic development more than they help.

Overall, as a huge Mountain Goats fan, I'm disappointed in this album (which is a huge bummer, since I avoided all hype and spoilers. Thanks for ruining my 21st birthday, John). It's more-or-less a solid album, but Pride definitely lacks the punch of previous albums. I never really missed the lo-fi hiss of his earlier albums because the later ones had really interesting lyrical content and spot-on vocal performances. But with weak arrangements and shy vocals, I'm starting to miss the tape recorder.

Mountain Goats Website

(April Wright)

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New Video: Art Brut - "Pump Up The Volume"



(YouTube via Stereogum)

Download: Art Brut - "Pump Up The Volume"

The always entertaining Art Brut have "accidentally released" another single from their sophomore release It's A Bit Complicated. How does one accidentally release a single? Good question. From the band's website (via Stereogum):

Attention, the Internet!! It seems Art Brut have accidentally released a single. Yes, the rumours are true. But how could this happen, you may ask? Why were we not informed? Why was it not available in my local record shack, thrust pride of place along side the latest View recording? Well, my friends, pick up any thread of incompetence and it will usually lead you to a record company. That's right, it seems EMI have decided to release Pump Up the Volume without informing either the band or myself, making any kind of wide scale promotion rather difficult. Adding to this curious new marketing stratagem of discouraging sales, EMI have chosen to make the song available via download only. So no luck in the record shacks either. Please do put the effort into downloading it though. The band are very proud of it and it's a shame to see it and the b-sides go to waste. Let's try and prove the suits wrong in what little time we have left!


And all this time, we merely thought that EMI were faking or, at the very least, all just were money making. Hopefully, too many people will have the suss to support Art Brut and will download the song, along with its b-sides. Buy "Pump Up The Volume" here.

It's A Bit Complicated is out now.

Art Brut MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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Surprise! Tapes N' Tapes Tonight at the Turf Club



Download: Tapes N Tapes - "Hang Them All"
Download: Vampire Hands - "Opium Typhoon"
Download: The Blind Shake - "Midnight Scream"


Tapes N Tapes sent this email out to their newsletter subscribers fifteen minutes ago, literally. It's a surprise show at the Turf Club!

Here be the details:

that's right kids, we're playing a show tonight (thursday 2/21) @ the turf club in st. paul. we can't tell you how excited we are. it's true that we're always talking about how excited we are about things, but we're REALLY excited about this show. it's with two of our favorite MSP bands, vampire hands and blind shake. and it's gonna rule! we hope you can come on down. we're gonna be playing all of "walk it off" (minus one song), and just straight rock-rock-rawkin!
be there or be square,
tapes 'n tapes

show details:
where: turf club, st paul, mn
when: tonight, 9pm
who: 21+
with:vampire hands and blind shake
how much: $5


I would assume that tickets are first come, first serve, so get there ASAP! Opening are Vampire Hands and Blind Shake, both of whom put on a raucous live show. This should be an excellent rawk show.

Tapes N Tapes MySpace Page
Vampire Hands MySpace Page
The Blind Shake MySpace Page

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Death Cab For Cuite Announce New Narrow Stairs Information (Tracklist, First Single, New Live Shows, Oh My!)



Download: Death Cab For Cutie - "Bend To Squares"
Download: Death Cab For Cutie - "Prove My Hypothesis"
Download: Death Cab For Cutie - "Crooked Teeth"

Death Cab For Cutie announced late yesterday evening on their MySpace blog the tracklist, release date, and tour dates for their upcoming album Narrow Stairs, their sixth full-length album and second for a major label. The eleven song affair with be released on May 13th.

Here's the tracklist:



NARROW STAIRS track listing:

1. Bixby Canyon Bridge
2. I Will Possess Your Heart
3. No Sunlight
4. Cath…
5. Talking Bird
6. You Can Do Better Than Me
7. Grapevine Fires
8. Your New Twin Sized Bed
9. Long Division
10. Pity and Fear
11. The Ice Is Getting Thinner


Sounds cheery, no? The first single from the album will be Stairs' second track, "I Will Possess Your Heart".

We all know that Jack Black was talking about Belle & Sebastian when he was complaining about "Sad Bastard Music", but if these album titles are any indication of what Stairs will sound like, Black's description just may apply here as well.

But then again, maybe DC will challenge listeners. At least, that's what Death Cab bassist Nick Harmer is quoted as saying in the aforementioned MySpace post. Harmer states that "I hope this album is a bit of a surprise for those out there that think they have us all figured out. We can't wait to share these songs with the world."

Well, alright then. Those readers who want Death Cab to surprise them personally will, in a sense, have the opportunity to get gobsmacked when the band rolls into their town. Along with previously scheduled festival dates like Coachella, Death Cab have announced more live shows. Here they be:

April 18 Bremerton, WA @ Admiral Theatre
April 19 Eugene, OR @ McDonald Theatre
April 21 Arcata, CA @ Van Dozer Theatre/Humboldt State University
April 22 Davis, CA @ UC Davis-Freeborn Hall
April 23 San Francisco, CA @ The Fillmore
April 24 Las Vegas, NV @ The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel


So no Minneapolis date for now. Once Narrow Stairs gets closer to release, we're sure that once will be announced.

Narrow Stairs is out on May 13th.

Death Cab For Cutie MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Tonight: Say Hi at the Triple Rock



Download: Say Hi - "Toil And Trouble" (from The Witches And The Glitches)
Download: Say Hi - "Zero To Love" from The Witches And The Glitches)
Download: Say Hi - "Laundry" (from Discosadness)
Download: Say Hi - "Spaceships" (from Numbers and Mumbles)
Download: Say Hi - "Yeah, I Think I'm In Love With An Android" (from Ferocious Mopes)
Download: Say Hi - "Angels And Darlas" (from Impeccable Blahs)
Download: Now, Now Every Children - "Not One, But Two"*

Being prolific, in a musical sense, has its ups and downs. A positive is that everyone usually fawns obsessively about how much creative material you put out in a given calendar year. A negative is that said material is more often spotty, with bright lights of greatness threatening to be overshadowed by half-formed ideas and filler. So give Say Hi, and its creative leader, Eric Elbogen, credit for being able to release five albums worth of engagingly quirky, lo-fi, sci-fi heavy indie-pop roughly every year since the group's inception in 2002. It's latest release, the recently released The Wishes And The Glitches, is regarded by some as its best album yet. It's easy to see why, with tracks like "Northwestern Girls" retaining the electo-pop melodiousness of past releases, while reveling a newfound maturity through Elbogen's crooning vocals.

Tickets are $10 for an 18+ show at the Triple Rock. Doors are at nine. Minneapolis' own Now, Now Every Children* and Shorline open.

Say Hi MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

*Full Disclosure: Now, Now Every Children are signed to Afternoon Records, a label in which one of our writers has a financial interest.

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More Cowbell Gives Away Tickets To Friday St. Vincent Show


Download: St. Vincent - "Now Now"

St. Vincent's Marry Me is still a stunner of a debut record, so it's no surprise that Annie Clark and her band of merry men are unwaveringly touring behind it. That tour includes a stop at the Cedar Cultural Center on Friday, the 22nd. Tickets are still available for the show, both online and at the venue, but those of you who think that you're lucky, punk, can get tickets for free.

More Cowbell is giving away tickets to the show in question. All you have to do is email Paul@Howwastheshow.com for your chance to win a pair of tickets to the concert. Pretty simple, but also pretty awesome. You have until tomorrow, Thursday, at noon to enter. Winners will be chosen at random so, if you lose, don't take it personally. It's an all-ages show and doors open at 8. Foreign Born open.

Once again, the email is paul@howwastheshow.com. Good luck!

Marry Me is out now.

St. Vincent MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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Kate Nash Announces May Date At First Ave. - Plus Ticket Pre-Sale



Download: Kate Nash - "Birds"
Download: Kate Nash - "Caroline's A Victim" (Tapedeck Remix)

Singer-Songwriter Kate Nash, whose debut album Made Of Bricks finally arrived on US shores last month (and inspired shrugs at MFR) will be launching her first North American tour. The jaunt will be sponsored by British mag NME. Nash told the venerable magazine that “It’s pretty cool to be touring America, I’m really excited, I can’t wait...I’m really looking forward to playing Chicago and the places I’ve never been because it’ll be really fun to explore America a bit more.”

Chi-town love! What, What!

Here's a list of all the dates, including the May 3rd date at Minneapolis' First Avenue.


Atlanta Variety Playhouse (April 15)
Asheville The Orange Peel (16)
Washington DC 9:30 Club (17)
Towson Recher Theatre (18)
Philadelphia Trocadero (19)
Boston Paradise Rock Club (21)
New York City Webster Hall (23)
Coachella Festival (26)
Toronto The Phoenix (28)
Detroit St Andrew’s Hall (30)
Chicago Vic Theatre (May 2)
Minneapolis First Avenue (3)
Boulder Fox Theatre (5)
Vancouver Richard's On Richards Cabaret (8)
Seattle Showbox At The Market (9)
Portland Wonder Ballroom (11)
San Francisco The Fillmore (13)


Speaking of the First Ave. show, there's a special pre-sale going on which started this morning and which will end tomorrow evening at 10 p.m. Head here to buy the tickets. The secret password is "foundations". How creative.

Made Of Bricks is out now.

MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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New Mp3: Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks - "Cold Son" and "Out Of Reaches"



Download: Stephen Malkmus - "Cold Son"
Download: Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks - "Baltimore"

Matablog posted yesterday the second MP3 from Stephen Malkmus And The Jicks' upcoming Real Emotional Trash, as well as a live video of another new song, "Out of Reaches", taken at a soundcheck.

In contrast to the more open-ended instrumental jams of "Baltimore", "Cold Son" is a fairly straightforward, verse-chorus-verse affair, starting out quietly with guitar and bass, but then adding a rad-sounding Moog synthesizer. The chorus of the song is as cool and collected as its refrain. Overall, "Cold Son" is the kind of nice, breezy and mellow song that Malkmus is renowned for - but this being the man played on "Woweee Zowee", he can't help but throw in a little chaos at the end, as "Cold Son" sputters to an idiosyncratic, almost polyrhythmic close.

Similarly, "Out of Reaches" mines the low-key vibe of the first Malkmus solo record by operating at an easygoing midtempo pace, a groove which allows the band to gracefully segue into the song's smooth, relaxed extended bridge.

As mentioned before, all of the songs are from the Jicks' forthcoming Real Emotional Trash, a record which is a part of Matador's "Buy Early, Get Now" series. Read more about that here.

Real Emotional Trash is out on March 4th.

MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Headlights - "Cherry Tulips" Video



Just in love with this band.

Headlights on MySpace

(Ian Anderson)

Labels:

Atmosphere Answer Your Questions On Web-Only Program



Download: Atmosphere - "Little Math You" (from Strictly Leakage)


Anthony and Sean, aka Ant and Slug, aka Minneapolis hip-hop duo Atmosphere, have used the internet in one-of-a-kind ways in order to communicate their music and message directly to fans and potential fans alike. Now, they're asking you, the listener, to participate with the duo in a new web-only series by posing queries about their new album, When Life Gives You Lemons, You Paint That Shit Gold, or anything else that might pop into that little head of yours.

The show, titled "Paint It Gold", is self-described on the band's MySpace Bulletin as "an attempt to get (the listener) more involved with our new album. basically, we want you to interview us. it's as simple as emailing us a question that you would like us to answer."

That email address, you must be wondering, is paintitgold@hotmail.com. You can ask multiple questions, but Atmosphere request that you send each question in a separate email.

Once questions are submitted, head on over to the Rhymesayers YouTube channel to see if Ant and Slug picked your question. Be sure to include your name and address in your email, because if your question is selected, then you'll receive a free copy of the band's upcoming album on its release date.

Hey, I got a question: When's the first single from Gold gonna drop?

Watch the first episode of "Paint It Gold" (not to give anything away, but the undisputed highlight of the show comes from a question asked by a fellow Rhymesayer) at the top of the post.

When Life Gives You Lemons, You Paint That Shit Gold is out April 22nd on Rhymesayers.

Atmosphere MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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Royalty, Etc. Records Gives Away More Free Music Than You Can Shake A Stick At



Download: Space Camp - "Cheesy Pop Song Makes Comeback"
Download: Seymore Saves The World - "Love Song"

This Saturday, Feburary 23rd, Royalty, Etc records will be hosting a show that celebrates their two-year anniversary, a gig which will include, according to label founder Ty Moore, “7 bands playing all night, tons of free CDs and box sets, t-shirts, free digital and direct-to-device music downloads, and a local wi-fi network with exclusive content.” Sounds bitchin', no? Of course it does. That quote comes from the Reveille Magazine feature about the event, one that critiques said sampler and every song on it. Click on the latter hyperlink in the previous sentence to read the feature and listen to the songs on the sampler. Go to the top of the post to hear two songs from two Royalty, etc. acts.

Royalty Etc. MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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Bon Iver's For Emma, Forever Ago Out Today - Plus Radio Interview With Justin Vernon



Download: Bon Iver - "Skinny Love"

Those of you who didn't pick up Bon Iver's debut album, For Emma, Forever Ago during its original, self-released pressing finally have the opportunity to head down to their local record store and pick up what is widely regarded as a fantastic, auspicious start. In addition, you can listen to an interview that the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire radio station with Mr. Justin Vernon himself here. Thanks to reader AJ for the tip.

Bon Iver MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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Monday, February 18, 2008

Tonight: Holy Fuck at the Triple Rock



Download: Holy Fuck - "Lovely Allen"
Download: A Place To Bury Strangers - "To Fix The Gash In Your Head"

Holy Fuck are a lo-fi electronica collective hailing from Toronto who are renowned for making their unique noises and soundscapes with live instrumentation. In other words, they don’t use any computers or digital techniques — looping, sampling, etc. — to form the basis of their electronic sounds. In fact, the band motto is "find something from the trash...and plug it in." LP, which came out last year, is their second release and continues the same hypnotic clang-and-clatter of their self-titled debut. The group also shows signs of maturation with a song called "Lovely Allen", (posted above) an instrumental with a beautifully minimalist keyboard line and a raging undercurrent of distortion, feedback and pulsating bleeps. Holy Fuck’s not-so-secret weapon is having two drummers, which is an instrumental choice that’ll undoubtedly have many ears bleeding once the band begins their visceral live show. Theirs is a show that will undoubtedly have you screaming...well, you know.

Speaking of ear-shattering volume, New York-based A Place To Bury Strangers has received many accolades for being one of the world's loudest bands. Mining the same Factory Records framework as many other groups from New York while adding the louder than bombs guitar work of shoegazer bands like My Bloody Valentine and Ride, the trio garnered many favorable notices for last year's self-titled debut album. Songs like "To Fix The Gash In Your Head" and "I Know I'll See You" start with the cold minimalism of Martin Hannett (particularly in the drums) but then add a wall-of-fuzz afterglow which helps give the songs some degree of humanity.

Show is at the Triple Rock Social Club and is 21+. Doors are 9.

Buy $15 tickets here


Holy Fuck MySpace Page
A Place To Bury Strangers MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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The Raveonettes - Lust Lust Lust



The Raveonettes
Lust Lust Lust (Vice Records, 2008)
Grade: A-

Download: The Raveonettes - "Aly, Walk With Me"
Download: The Raveonettes - "Dead Sound"

The Raveonettes are a Danish pop duo who've somehow managed to sustain themselves on a cult-like devotion to simplicity for its own sake. Past releases such as Whip It On and Chain Gang Of Love have certainly had their charms, but have also been hindered by gimmicky premises and constraints, such as having entire albums being in the same key. Their last album, Pretty In Black, expanded the group's sonic palette by reducing the distortion of their past two albums, adding various guests (including Ronnie Spector and Moe Tucker), new members and styles like disco and new wave.

In that context, Lust Lust Lust, the group's newest album, might strike some listeners as a regression. While the band returns to the girl-group-with-Stockholm-Syndrome-for-The-Velvet-Underground sound of their first record, Whip It On, they also have kept the expanded arrangements of their third. The result makes Lust Lust Lust a strong, assertive step forward for The Raveonettes.

That newfound sense of confidence is apparent on the very first track, "Aly, Walk With Me". Over a metronomic, but seductively noir, trip-hop beat and a fuzzed-out bass line, Sune Rose Wagner and Sharin Foo hypnotically harmonize about strolling around cities like Portland and New York, as well as less tangible areas like one's dreams. The minor-key guitar lines that sporadically appear during the verses portend the white noise that arrives at "Aly"'s end, a wall-of-sound with enough distortion to make Stephen Meritt blush. By the time Aly finishes walking around the listener's heads, it's become perfectly clear that the song is easily the most mature and sensual piece of music that the band has written to date.

While "Aly, Walk With Me" might make listeners think that The Raveonettes have outgrown the playful, flirtatious energy of past records, songs like "Hallucinations" and "Blitzed" show up to serve as the link between the old and the new. What's different about these songs as compared to the tracks that were on Chain Gave Of Love is the difference between how an amateur and a professional use simplicity. The amateur keeps it simple, stupid, because they don't have enough musical knowledge to do anything else. The professional keeps it simple because that's what the song calls for, and they know exactly what to play and when to play it.

The Raveonettes announce themselves as being the latter by using space ("Lust" is particularly effective at using dynamics barely louder than a whisper), distortion and muted percussion in ways that bring remarkable color and shape to what are otherwise straightforward pop songs - no more than three or four chords per song. But the group impeccably combines Phil Spector's symphonic touches with the shoegazer atmospherics of Alan Mould to create a warm blanket of ambience over the entire album.

But having great production does not a great album make. No, you need songs for that, and Lust Lust Lust has those in spades. With his album, The Ravenettes have finally eschewed artifice and have written 12 eminently listenable songs. "You Want The Candy" and "Dead Sound" don't reinvent the Raveonettes noise-pop wheel, but they do perfect it by adding a great deal of melodic variety that wasn't present before. Similarly, "Sad Transmission" and "The Beat Dies" sound like girl-group standards of the past, but subtle production touches and newfound songwriting maturity help propel those tracks to album highlight status.

Subsequent releases will tell whether or not that the sophistication that The Raveonettes have developed on Lust Lust Lust is a matter of true growth or whether the band just got lucky. For now, Lust Lust Lust will just have to unequivocally stand as one of the first truly great records of the year.

MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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New Music: Destroyer - "Dark Leaves Form A Thread"



Download: Destroyer - "Foam Hands"
Download: Destroyer - "Dark Leaves Form A Thread" (via P4K)

The second single from Trouble In Dreams, "Dark Leaves Form A Thread", was debuted by Pitchfork earlier today. "Leaves", in contrast to "Foam Hands", released a couple of months ago, is a decidedly more upbeat affair, with shimmering, new wave keyboards holding the attention of the listener. Strangely enough, the song is highly reminiscent of The Cure. Listen for yourself at the top of the post.

Destroyer MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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New Video from The Raveonettes - "Aly, Walk With Me"


(MTV via Stereogum)

The first single, and first track, off of The Raveonettes' great album Lust Lust Lust gets a video, a clip which is surprisingly comical given how serious and seductive-sounding the song is. Check out the vid at the top of the post. Lust Lust Lust is out tomorrow. Expect a MFR review later today.

(Jonathan Graef)

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EL-P Announces May Minneapolis Date With Dizzee Rascal


(El-P)


(Dizzee Rascal)

Download: El-P - "Run The Numbers"
Download: Dizzee Rascal - "Fix Up, Look Sharp"

Pitchfork reported the news on Friday that EL_P and Dizzee Rascal, two of hip-hops most dynamic, creative and forward-thinking artists, have teamed up to do a tour together, one which will touch down in Minneapolis in the middle of May. The tour partnership is apropos of the fact that Def Jux, El-P's label, will spearheading the US release of Rascal's widely acclaimed third album Maths + English. The Pitchfork article quotes El-P as saying that "as big as (Rascal) is overseas, he's never really had as much of a chance to get out there in the U.S., so the idea of touring with him is really exciting for me. Between the two of us it should be a pretty insane experience."

Speaking of insanity, the article also states that El-P is working on a follow-up to last year's outstanding I'll Sleep When Your Dead, stating on his aforementioned MySpace blog that the new effort "will most likely be a little more than an ep, a bit less than an album, and a whole lot of fuckery."

Based on the results of his last effort, it's safe to say that the world could use more of El-P's fuckery.

Here be tour dates, courtesy of the 'Fork:

03-13 Austin, TX - The Scoot Inn (Definitive Jux SXSW showcase) *
05-08 Washington, DC - 9:30 Club
05-09 Philadelphia, PA - First Unitarian Church
05-10 New York, NY - Webster Hall
05-11 Boston, MA - Middle East
05-12 Ottawa, Ontario - New Capital Music Hall
05-14 Detroit, MI - Crofoot Ballroom
05-15 Chicago, IL - The Abbey
05-16 Minneapolis, MN - Triple Rock Club
05-19 Seattle, WA - Neumos
05-20 Portland, OR - Berbati's Pan
05-21 San Francisco, CA - 1015
05-22 Los Angeles, CA - El Rey


Dizzee Rascal's Maths + English will be out on Def Jux on April 22nd. El-P's I'll Sleep When You're Dead is out now.

EL-P MySpace Page
Dizzee Rascal MySpace Page

(Jonathan Graef)

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