28 February 2009

I can't decide what's more fiery, her voice or her hair.

NPR is streaming the ENTIRE new Neko Case album Middle Cyclone. Try it before you buy it March 3rd. And trust me, you'll buy it.

26 February 2009

Dinosaur Feathers

I know very very little about Dinosaur Feathers, except that I like their band name and more importantly I like their music. This duo from Brooklyn kind of remind me of a mellower version of the Dodos, yet they maintain a totally unique vibe of their own. The rhythms are a lot less manic and a whole lot dreamier. Stream a few tracks here. I'm especially digging the soulful, bossa nova-esque "Vendela Vida"

And download one here:
Teenage Whore - Dinosaur Feathers

25 February 2009

Isn't it the twee-est thing you ever saw?

I am beyond in love with the new Boy Least Likely To album. Here's a video for one the catchiest tracks "Balloon on a Broken String". Like all their best songs, it's remarkably upbeat yet features deceptively melancholy lyrics. Here's hoping the boys find their balloons.
A Balloon On A Broken String from The Boy Least Likely To on Vimeo.

23 February 2009

The Decemberists track is particularly epic.

Dark Was The Night For the past week, I've been trying to put into words how freaking amazing Dark Was The Night is. And but all I can come up with is AWESOME, AWESOME, AWESOME. Not very articulate, right? But trust my gut on this one.

For those of you who don't know, DWTN is a two-disc compilation of ALL NEW tracks by the all the bands you love (if you're reading this blog, you love these bands, trust me). You got some new Arcade Fire, Beirut, Bon Iver, Sufjan, Decemberists, Spoon, New Pornographers, Yo La Tengo, Feist, Grizzly Bear, The National, Antony... seriously the list goes on and on.

Now you might be weary that this sounds too good to be true, that these are all half-assed, lesser-quality tracks that didn't make these artists' albums the first time around. Well you couldn't be more WRONG. Honestly, this compilation probably sets a new standard by which all other compilations should be judged. The line-up lives up to its potential. It's as if you commanded these bands to craft a mix just for you and then they pull out all the stops and floor you. I have honestly listened to nothing else for a week straight.

OH and all the proceeds benefit the Red Hot Organization which is dedicated to fighting AIDS. I will try my best and guilt trip you into not torrenting this album. Because: A) You should contribute to a worthy cause, and B) This is a collection worth tangibly owning. Believe me, shelling out the 13 bucks will make your ears feel good and your heart feel better.

Check out Pop Tarts Suck Toasted interview with Bryce Dessner of The National, who, along with his brother Aaron, were in charge of culling the collection together.

Try out one track (go stream more tracks and then BUY it here!)
Lenin - Arcade Fire

22 February 2009

In honor of the Oscars tonight


19 February 2009

Just sayin' is all


If anyone feels inclined to be generous and dote on your favorite lady music bloggers, we won't stop you. But these Volume Knob brooches are just a little too perfect. We give so much, after all. Don't you just feel compelled to give back? (Please?) It's the perfect way to celebrate our new mailing address at right!

The Dead Milkmen - Everybody's Got Nice Stuff But Me.mp3

18 February 2009

Still refusing after all these years

Read about how much I love the new Morrissey album (as originally posted on Crawdaddy):

More has probably been written about Morrissey’s public persona than his music. While the two are inextricably enmeshed, there is just something uniquely fascinating about an ambiguously sexual, unabashedly British, gladiola-loving 49-year-old (!) loner. He remains a paradox. His lyrics let us know he’s painfully alone, while his boastful croon let’s us know he’s confident—awesomely, arrogantly confident.

At this point in his career, it’s easy to accuse him of self-parody. Anytime a dude who is almost as old as my dad sings about how “Nobody Wants My Love,” like he does on the lead single “I’m Throwing My Arms Around Paris,” I become a little incredulous.

But let’s not play the authenticity card here. That would detract from the real issue at hand: relevance. As long as there are 16-year-old kids alone in their bedrooms lamenting their lack of a prom date, Pretty in Pink style... as long as there are shy collegiate girls in cardigans studying their weekends away in library basements... as long as there is someone out there feeling remotely inadequate... this guy will be relevant. Morrissey’s career endures because our personal lives do not.

His recent millennial career resurgence continues with Years of Refusal. His vocal prowess is stronger than it’s ever been, and his backing musicians sound less and less like a Smiths tribute band and are coming into something of their own as well. This translates to an even higher, and more paradoxical, level of confidence. For the most part, the album is composed of tight bursts of catchy rock songs with the lyrical quips we’ve come to rely on for over the past 20 years. And chances are, fans will fall for these battle cries of confident loner-ism all over again.

Years has got him dizzied up in a fiery black cloud. The rampage of “Something Is Squeezing My Skull” and the spaghetti Western pizzazz of “When I Last Spoke to Carol” suggest Morrissey-the-persona is beyond pissed per usual at the trappings of his loner status. For “there is no love in modern life, it’s amazing I’ve made it this far” he dramatically declares. There’s no doubt that tried and true fans will eat this shit up.

But before you know it, three tracks later, what do you know, surprise, surprise (that’s sarcasm folks), Moz is reveling in his self-imposed exile, throwing his arms around Paris with flamboyant aplomb. For only “stone and steel accept [his] love.” Later, on the album closer, he tauntingly sings, “I’m okay by myself / And I don’t need you or your morality to save me.” But whom he’s taunting remains unclear. The joke, however, is probably on all of us. After all, Morrissey has made a career invoking our insecurities, while simultaneously relying on that audience to elevate his existence to living sainthood. With an artist and audience so inextricably linked, no one is okay alone. So he’s not stopping now. He won’t. He can’t. Not when all we need is him.

One Day Goodbye Will Be Farewell - Morrissey

16 February 2009

Songs for Presidents

Another beautiful Presidents' Day! While normally we'd be out enjoying our days off, courtesy of Honest Abe and George Washington, we're grateful to have a new president to look up to. Here're some songs for this under-appreciated holiday!

Sufjan Stevens - Presidents & Magistrates.mp3
Death Cab for Cutie - President of What?.m4a
The Magnetic Fields - Washington, D.C..m4a
Lurch & Holler - Walt Whitman's Letter to Lincoln.mp3
They Might Be Giants - James K. Polk.mp3
The Presidents of the United States of America - Naked & Famous.m4a

12 February 2009

Slowly learning that life is ok...

I think A-ha's "Take On Me" was the first song I ever fell in love with. I remember hearing it on the radio and nearly tearing up when I was like seven, nearly a decade after its initial release.

Apparently A.C. Newman, Mr. New Pornographer himself shares the same reverential fervor towards the song as myself. His cover is just so beautiful and nuanced. And while nothing can match the original's walloping melodrama or falsetto, Newman pays his best respects. Enjoy.

Take On Me - A.C. Newman (A-ha cover)

10 February 2009

Never gonna fall for...

So over the weekend I watched an enormous ammount of VH1 Classic. I was armed with a low-grade fever, and in my arms, an amazingly sweet and shockingly patient boyfriend, (sorry fellas, I'm taken). So in my sick and (love-sick state) I belted at the top of lungs to every 80s video that aired, even the ones I didn't know the words to. (You should have seen my Whitney pre-Bobbi impersonation) He just sort of shook his head at me, with a "there, there honey" smirk. You know the one.

But then this gem of a song came on...

And we full on rocked out and I took command of the "CHURCH ON TIME" back-up vocals. And if my tummy didn't ache, I'm sure there would have been plenty of dancing too.

Bonus Cover Time! (that's my favorite time of day after Pie Time!)
An somber, transformative version that's hauntingly poignant:

Modern Love - The Last Town Chorus (David Bowie cover)

09 February 2009

About the only relevant three minutes of the Grammys....

I LOVE marching bands (four years of high school clarinet will do that to you). I'm glad Radiohead do too. "15 Step" lends itself nicely to all the brassy, percussive stomp of a pep rally gone horribly awry. Even more LOVE

05 February 2009

New Ra Ra Riot video

My mom overheard me listening to Ra Ra Riot and asked "Is that Vampire Weekend?"

"No," I replied. "It's better."

Seriously I love what this band does with a cello. Tis a beautiful instrument.

Anyways, RRR has a new video for "Can You Tell?" It's most notable for its use of front doors as drum sets.

And check out another tune off of their stellar debut The Rhumb Line while you're at it:

Oh, La - Ra Ra Riot

04 February 2009

Update on last Elliott Smith post

So apparently Elliott Smith's family got word of the recently leaked song "Suicide Machine" and it understandably upset them. They've since requested it be taken done. As much as I love to find and share new Elliott songs, I'd hate to cause further grief to his family. We thank our readers for understanding.

More on the family's wishes here.

"Everybody's trying to turn me into a suicide machine"

Legend has it the night before Elliott Smith tragically died he recorded the vocal part for an instrumental track previously titled "Tiny Time Machine" Once the vocals were added the song was re-worked and ominously re-titled "Suicide Machine". There was never any evidence this song existed. That is until now. And we have it for you.

Before you get out the Kleenex, you should know, despite its title "Suicide Machine" is shockingly upbeat, almost defiantly so. It nearly mocks his sad-sack public persona, yet given the tragic timing, totally validates it.

Suicide Machine - Elliott Smith (removed per request)

01 February 2009


The Superbowl: we has it. Here's some songs to root on The Steelers (and whatever lame team they are playing against who will surely lose.)

This post is dedicated to and in honor of two very important people to us! One being our blog-mate Lizzie, a Pittsburgh native and mega-Steelers fan. The other being the creator of these songs, Peter Peter Hughes, aka DiskothiQ. But you probably know him as the bassist for the Mountain Goats. At this very moment, he's loading his gear aboard a cruise ship headed to Mexico to play for Ships and Dip V with the Barenaked Ladies, Sloan, The Weakerthans, and many other awesome bands. Unfortunately, as the event was booked by Canadians, who were unaware of the importance of today's date, he is going to miss the game!

So here you go, Lizzie and Peter. These are for (and, uh, by) you!

DiskothiQ - Steelers.mp3
DiskothiQ - Cardinals.mp3