Archive for December, 2009

Another round of 2009 favorites

Tuesday, December 29th, 2009

In keeping with the KWUR non-conformist style of year-end lists, I’ll throw rankings to the wind and simply list my favorite records of 2009, in no particular order.

The Intern and Klax have already listed some of my picks, namely, Thee Oh Sees, White Rabbits, Jeff the Brotherhood, and Dirty Projectors. They both did a fine job, so you can read their opinions regarding these bands/records here and here.

Micachu and the Shapes – “Jewellery”

Phenomenal weirdness from Mica Levi (Micachu) and Matthew Herbert (the Shapes). Rare is the record that executes new idea after new idea, and does so often, and well, and cohesively. Take “Eat Your Heart,” which begins with some kind of fucked up Hot Chip rhythm under clipped screams, transitions seamlessly to ukulele strums and more coherent vocals, and finishes with a refrain of “cuz I could eat your heart” over plodding, fuzzy bass. Or “Calculator,” which is what I’m guessing “Tequila” sounds like on a lot of drugs. “Jewellery” rides a razor sharp edge from start to finish.

Darlings – “Yeah I Know”

This band, and the next, have been criminally overlooked, critically. It’s a shame, because Darlings play proper homage to twee pop, the kind that Slumberland bands defined circa 1992. I find this funny, and a little bit sad, because it seems like Slumberland’s current roster (which has gotten its fair share of critical praise) has missed the point of twee entirely in trying to emulate it: it’s supposed to be loud and weird, not mumbly and boring. I mean, twee gets a lot of shit for embodying escapist, cuddly, I-want-my-childhood-back nonsense, but even a cursory listen reveals that it was also incredibly abrasive (proof: here and here). “Yeah I Know” maintains some semblance of this messy abrasiveness, but ratchets up the competence – the record sounds like the product of very capable musicians who care about the music they play. Sure, they sing about the cute, little things in life – watching TV, being friends, etc – but they demonstrate that you can do so and still sound like you’re having fun, not like you’re about to fall asleep. One part pretty melody, one part guitar freak-out: twee as fuck, indeed.

Boogie Boarder – “Pizza Hero”

“Pizza Hero” is a 30-minute adrenaline rush committed to tape. I mentioned Boogie Boarder in my CMJ rundown, and everything I wrote there holds true for this record as a whole. Take “Bio Hassle,” my favorite track – it begins with a sloppy, joyful bass/guitar riff, enter frenetic drumming that recalls Brian Chippendale, enter a shouted, barely intelligible chant; rinse and repeat. The song chugs along at 110% until about 3:30, when the guitar/vocal harmonization hits and the energy level rockets through the fucking ceiling. Gets me every time.

Lightning Bolt – “Earthly Delights”

Speaking of repetitive, loud records… the band of Brians put out a new record this year. This was actually the first Lightning Bolt album I’d ever heard, and after giving it a listen, I a.) was significantly more deaf, and b.) grabbed their entire back catalog faster than you can say “Waffles.” Having listened to most of it, “Earthly Delights” strikes me as their loudest to date, although that could be a result of improved production*. It also appears to be somewhat influenced by stoner metal – they’ve embraced the lower registers, and Chippendale’s insane drumming is ever-so-slightly more in step with Gibson’s pummeling riffs (hear “Colossus”). They certainly haven’t abandoned the weirdness that set apart their earlier work – check “The Sublime Freak” or “Funny Farm.” In any case, the last track was my favorite: “Transmissionary” will melt your face and peel the paint off your walls.

*I don’t really know if production is ever really a factor that goes into a Lightning Bolt album – research suggests “no” – but when I listen to their albums successively on my iPod, “Earthly Delights” is by far the loudest.

Other records that deserve a listen:

HEALTH – “Get Color” - “Die Slow” was my jam this summer, and though the rest of the record isn’t quite as good (how could it be? “Die Slow” is damn near perfect), it does not disappoint. Spacey, harsh, lovely.

Hornet Leg – “Ribbon Of Fear” - I haven’t heard a drum’n'guitar duo push the limits of what you can do with drums and a guitar since “White Blood Cells.” Every track is different, all tracks are great.

Red Red Meat – “Bunny Gets Paid” (reissue)
- Originally released in 1995 and reissued by Sub Pop this year, “Bunny Gets Paid” hasn’t aged a bit.

Pissed Jeans – “King Of Jeans” - I wish Sub Pop would cut it out with the folksy, pretty shit and sign more bands like this. Sludgy, pounding riffs’n'rhythms and a delightful fuck-you outlook make for a great listen.

Bibio – “Ambivalence Avenue” – This record is busting at the seams with creativity, and just about every idea put forth here is incredibly well executed. “Fire Ant” marries R&B and glitch flawlessly, while “Flesh Rots, Pip Sown” recalls the grainy nostalgia of Boards of Canada. Great stuff.

Talk Normal – “Sugarland” - No Wave’s never been my thing, but this record’s drones and rhythms seep under your skin and possess you. Unsettling and mystifying.

Talbot Tagora – “Lessons In The Woods Or A City”
– If you layer dissonance on top of dissonance on top of more dissonance (and do it well), the result is (apparently) a great album.

That’s it. Catch you suckahs in 2010.

2009 Favorites

Saturday, December 26th, 2009
(Thee Oh Sees at GonerFest 6 – image by Kandi Cook)

Well, we finally (almost) made it through 2009. It was a tough year. As usual, good music kept it interesting. (See my mid-year list — expect some repeats…)

Thee Oh Sees – Help LP [In The Red], Zork’s Tape Bruise Demos LP & Singles Collection CD [Kill Shaman], Dog Poison EP [Captured Tracks], Tidal Wave / Heart Sweats 7inch [Woodist], Jay Reatard split 7inch [Shattered], Ty Segall split 7inch [Castle Face], In The Shadow of the Giant 7inch [Sub Pop Singles Club], Blood in Your Ear / Friends Defined 7inch [Rock Is Hell], Paul Cary split 7inch [Stankhouse]

Holy shit! This was the year to be an Oh Sees fan. John Dwyer and company took no breaks and consistently delivered new material up until the very end of the year. Plus, I got to see them live three times over a five month period (L.A., Memphis, Atlanta). I like the layered pop oriented direction of their latest EP, Dog Poison (it was, impressively, written and recorded entirely by John Dwyer — i.e. he multi-tracked and played every instrument/performed all vocals). I also like the increasing use of the flute in their songs. Expect some of the tracks from the later seven inches to make their way onto the upcoming Warm Slime, slated for an early 2010 release on In The Red Records. These guys (and girl) aren’t taking breaks. Keep it coming!

Ty Segall – Lemons LP [Goner], Reverse Shark Attack (w/ Mikal Cronin) [Kill Shaman]
The Perverts – The Perverts 7inch [HBSP-2x]

Oh Sees buddy and boy wonder Ty Segall cranked out more blown out garage rock mid-year with Lemons, a strong follow-up to his excellent debut album. We got Reverse Shark Attack, a collaboration with Mikal Cronin of Charlie & The Moonhearts, just a couple of weeks ago. I may like it even better, especially the 10+ minute side B beatles-esque/surf jam.
Also, for an even louder slab, I ended up spinning (another project of his) The Perverts, quite a bit. Throw in the couple of stellar 7 inches he released and you have a strong year. Did I mention this guy is like 22? Keep and an eye on this one. He’s hopefully going to be cranking them out for a while.

Various Artists – RRR-1000 LP [RRR]

A follow-up to RRR-100 and RRR-500, this record contains 1000 locked grooves by twenty artists. A neat record to have in your collection for sure. Since it’s hard to be precise to the groove level on a record, every listen turns out different and provides a little surprise.

The Beets – Spit In The Face Of People Who Don’t Want To Be Cool LP [Captured Tracks]

Some nice minimal yet percussive heavy psychedelic garage-rock. Nice debut LP.

Times New Viking – Born Again Revisited [Matador]

Some of the most abrasive pop music out there. They delivered the goods again this year with a fourth LP of goodness. I also really enjoyed hearing a recording their special Velvet Underground cover set (with guest violinist C. Spencer Yeh — KWUR Week 2007 alum) performed at Ohio’s Wexner Center in February. Download it here.

Mika Miko – We Be Xuxa [Post Present Medium]

Sadly, Mika Miko recently broke up. Luckily, I saw them this summer in their element at The Smell in Los Angeles. I can’t say I was a fan of their west-coast punk style until after the show. That’s how good they are live. Now I listen to their albums all the time.

Mayyors – Deads EP

This is some heavy shit. It’s the guy (Chris Woodhouse) who produces all those other awesome band’s (Hospitals, Coachwhips, Oh Sees) albums. He was also in Karate Party.

Magik Markers – Balf Quarry LP [Drag City]

I think I listened to this album more than any other this year. See my mid-year post.

Yellow Fever – Yellow Fever LP [Wild World]

I love this band. I was glad the Vivian Girls helped get their songs out on vinyl. Mellow mostly bass/drums combo.

Amen Dunes – Dia LP [Locust]

Some pretty weird stuff for just one guy. Again, see my mid-year post.


Predator – Predator EP [Rob's House]

Best band in Atlanta right now. Tight repetitive punk rock. Check out their debut LP coming out on Douchemaster Records in 2010.

Various Artists – The World Is Lousy With Ideas, Vol. 8 LP [Almost Ready]

For better or worse, this will be the compilation people will look back on when they wonder 20 years from now, what was the music scene like in 2009? Featuring: Vivian Girls, Blank Dogs, Pink Reason, Guinea Worms, Times New Viking, Tyvek, The Intelligence, Sic Alps, Thee Oh Sees

Re-issues/Not New:

The Beatles – In Mono boxset [Apple]

It was nice to finally re-examine all The Beatles albums as they were originally intended. The band didn’t give a damn about the stereo mixes and only closely supervised the mono mixes when originally released. Of course, these had never been released on CD, so many like me only knew the inferior 1980s stereo CD versions. If you know the old stereo versions even remotely well, throw on some headphones and listen to these mono reissues. You will hear a difference and you will like it. It’s only way to listen to the Beatles from now on. Plus, vinyl re-masters are confirmed to be in the works. Hopefully we’ll get mono versions and hopefully early in 2010.

Billy Childish – Archive From 1959 [Damaged Goods]

Since Billy Childish has released a huge amount of material, it’s a little daunting to figure out where to start off your vinyl collection. Luckily this 3 LP collection came out and it features all the best nuggets from Billy Childish’s (non-spoken word) career (up until now). It’s all the Billy Childish vinyl you’ll ever need in one nice package. It’s also very reasonably priced.

Nirvana – Live at Reading [Geffen]

As the Nirvana archives are annually milked, it was nice to see this legendary show officially released. The performance is non-stop one hit after the other and includes all the classics from all the albums.

Gris Gris – Live at the Creamery [Birdman]

I had kind of forgotten about the Gris Gris. They hadn’t released anything since 2005. Then this killer live album came out of nowhere and they started playing shows again. That’s a good thing.

Vaselines – The Way of the Vaselines [Sub Pop]

I’m starting to like these Sub Pop “Deluxe Edition” LP sets. See my mid-year post.

Various Artists – Art of Field Recording, Vol. 2 boxset [Dust-to-Digital]

The last (?) in Art Rosenbaum’s carefully compiled field recordings documenting American country, folk, and blues. The modern Harry Smith Anthology.

Sic Alps – Long Way To A Shortcut 2xLP [Drag City]

Nice to get this odds ‘n’ ends compilation on vinyl as it should be heard.

Vinyl Geek Re-pressings:

Faust – So Far [4 Men With Beards], IV [Virgin]
Sandy Bull - Fantasias For Guitar and Banjo, Inventions For Guitar and Banjo, E Pluribus Unum [Sutro Park]
Peter Walker – Rainy Day Raga [Harte]
Arthur Doyle – Alabama Feeling [Rank]
Terry Riley – Rainbow in Curved Air [Columbia]
Amon Duul II – Yeti [Revisited]
Beastie Boys – Ill Communication [Capitol]

Labels:

Mississippi Records
Galactic Zoo Disk
Trouble in Mind

Festivals:

Gonerfest 6

I know, I never did my Gonerfest recap. Well, let’s just say a lawless city like Memphis plus easy access to cheap beer plus three days of raucous garage rock made for an enjoyable time. Tickets and accommodations were very reasonable too. Will be attending again.

My 2008 List

My Year in Music, 2009

Friday, December 25th, 2009

So here it comes, the inevitable year-end list that nobody really needed, but that I feel the need to provide anyway. For this is America, and I have access to a blog, and if making a year-end list not in the Bill of Rights, it should be. I try and do things a bit differently however. I’m not into the whole top ten thing, or even the idea of the list. In my view, it’s part of this commodification of culture that we should try real hard to avoid, though we inevitably participate in it. We assign these works a cultural value, and if we’re smart, we try to find underrated and overrated (read: undervalued and overvalued) records and try to make a cultural profit through our acumen. It’s kind of an ugly thing that reduces music to things. That’s not how anyone who loves music actually listens to it. First of all, I rarely listen to things in the strict chronological order that the year-end list suggests. A lot of my year’s listening is catch up, older things that slipped through the cracks in previous year. I also don’t haven’t listened to anywhere near the number of things that the top ten list’s assumption of objectivity seems to require. There are some things I just never got to (Real Estate, Grooms) and there are some things that I just never got into (if someone can convince me that the Phoenix album is not boring, they’re welcome to it, since I seem to be the minority report here). So I don’t try and do any sort of list here; I just try to capture the way I lived with music for a year. There are no rankings, I just note the records I felt notable. I also didn’t even bother trying to do a decade wrap-up; I was 11 when this decade began. I have no perspective. For those who are interested, my list for last year can be found here.

My first few months of the year weren’t typical for me, as far as music or as far as anything goes, since I was in the People’s Republic of China. I’m not much for Chinese music. Some of the folk stuff is fun, but the pop is dreadful; the Chinese like big, stupid ballads and syrupy pop. I found myself retreating to the most idiomatically American forms of music: hip-hop and the blues. My favorite musical moments in China, in no particular order:
1) I had to sing on at least two separate occasions. I sang the first verse and chorus of “Gone Gone Gone” by Lefty Frizzell for a group of Yi villagers (who sang some awesome drinking songs). I also sang the verse of “Billie Jean” for a high school English class in the Yunnanese resort town of Lijiang.
2) I heard a Mandarin version of “Bizarre Love Triangle” that was really sweet.
3) Club DJs in the city of Guilin in Guangxi played “The Breaks,” to the great joy of the Americans in the club, and to the general befuddlement of the Chinese.
4) Two walking around listening to hip-hop moments. One, sitting in the Beijing Train Station, listening to “Chinese New Year” by Clipse. Two, walking down the street in Kunming, Yunnan province, listening to “Let Me Ride” by Dr. Dre. Speaking of, never really listened to The Chronic before this year. What an album. You know, Snoop Dogg used to be an inspired lyricist before becoming a bad comedian’s punchline. And Dr. Dre used to be the best producer anywhere, ever.

Being in China was kind of refreshing, but also kind of isolating, since I was cut off from the blogosphere and from KWUR, where I generally find out about music. It was isolating because I love new music and I love indie music, whatever that means; it makes my life noticeably better. But it was refreshing in that I dodged a lot of the madness that tends to go on in those quarters. Case in point: I was out of the country for a lot of the Merriweather Post Pavilion insanity, and I think it gave me a good amount of perspective on the album. Although there are honest critics and lovers of the album (our GM Kenny for the former, our MD DB for the latter), I think a lot of the rhetoric going on over the album is overheated and really about issues other than the album itself. I strike a middle position. On one hand, I do genuinely like the album. It is original; there are a lot of things that sound like Animal Collective, but not a lot that match it, either for content or in quality. What Animal Collective is doing, blurring the boundaries of electronic music and old fashioned tribal drone, seems distinct to me. It’s also a very engaging record, with a good beat, lots of catchy, joyful sound. To the critics, I would say, don’t throw it out because the poseurs like it now. But to the lovers, I would suggest that you check out Sung Tongs or even Strawberry Jam, and tell me if you really, truly think that MPP is Animal Collective’s best work. Their earlier stuff is just much more human. MPP isn’t the record that will bring the messiah; it’s not even Animal Collective’s best stuff.

Near the end of my stay in China, I raided a local record store (that sold Chinese Democracy, shit you not) and got a few soul discs for super cheap. The best of the bunch, by far, was a collection of J.J. Barnes. There are some soul artists who are unknown because they just weren’t that great, and there are some soul artists who are inexplicably unknown (at least, to the average listener), and J.J. Barnes is definitely in the latter. Basically, like Betty LaVette with Atlantic, my impression is that Barnes’ career never took off in a big way because Berry Gordy arbitrarily decided to shit on him (remember, this is a man who did not like Marvin Gaye’s version of “Grapevine”). Barnes’ stuff is Motown soul at its best, with a mighty Northern stomp propelling the whole thing. He really should be a household name.

When I came back from China, my big record was the Elvis Perkins in Dearland self-titled album. Elvis Perkins is inexplicably ignored by critics and music lovers, and yet he has quietly been writing the best songs of the decade. Your typical Perkins’ composition is a tightly written contraption that glows with organ and the immaculate timbre of Perkins’ voice, pop songs, but pop songs filled with such brilliant lyrics and honest passion that they can melt virtually anyone. It was my distinct privilege to see Perkins in concert at the Gargoyle this fall. America, for the love of God, listen to this man!

One record waiting for me when I got back to KWUR was the new Lee Fields album, “My World.” Lee Fields was another one of those soul artists in the early 70s who just, for whatever reason, never hit it big despite an insane amount of talent. I generally hold back on endorsing this kind of soul revival disc, because you tend to suffer from the “he’s still got it” syndrome; you might like it a bit, but at best it’s only as good as the original stuff, and at worst, it’s really tacky. I have no such reservations here. This album feels new; it’s authentic, no-bs soul (helmed by a man with an insane voice), but the ever-so-slightly electrified and distorted instrumentation will likely keep the interest of kids raised on Sonic Youth. An honest-to-goodness terrific album.

Fall was when I finally caught up to the new Dirty Projectors album. I was a fan of Rise Above, but damn, this one really knocks it out of the park. It’s an interesting album (my favorite kind of interesting, pop made out of idiosyncratic parts roped together, pop that zigs where Miley would zag) that rewards seconds listens, but it’s also eminently approachable and hell, even funky (See: Stillness Is The Move). It also is just plain beautiful. Usually, classically-trained or experimental background are some of the most bullshit terms out there, but it’s nice to hear singers who genuinely have range, are concerned about clear pitch, and do cool things with their voices. Finally, an indie album that captures the verve, energy and innovative moxie of New Music. Neat!

My year was generally ruled by loud music, starting with Times New Viking. I guess the term is sludgegaze. I just like pop that sounds young, imperfect and like it comes from another planet, because, er, I often feel young, imperfect and like I come from another planet. I rarely feel like a Rihanna song.

The Dutchess and The Duke album would be the exception to my loud music fall and winter. A lot of indie albums tap the sixties for inspiration, but not a lot go to the sound these guys tap into: namely, the peculiar, empty rich wooden echo around the human voice you find in mid to late sixties folk. There is an existential quavering you find in this album that’s just really penetrating, the way the voice is allowed to expand on the track in a way that reveals just how vulnerable the human voice sounds when it is extended out. Really lovely.

Really, my late-fall/early-winter was all about two excellent, related albums: The Almighty Defenders’ self-titled and the new King Khan and the BBQ Show album. My first listen to the Almighty Defenders album was really something. We had it on vinyl only, so I had to do the review in one sitting on the listening room couch in KWUR. I went from being, hey, this is good, to OMG, this is the best fucking thing ever in a remarkably short amount of time, finished the review in about an hour, and immediately ran into the air studio and demanded that DJ DB play it on the air right now. Both these albums are remarkable, gritty reinventions of soulful garage rock. Thinking about why this sound so appeals to me, two things come to mind. One, I love pop when it gives in to its most poppy tendencies, and it seems to me that that is what’s going on on both these albums: screaming, bratty vocals, sing-a-long vocal hooks, downright superfluous organ, awesome guitar and fuck, a beat. I also like the story contained in each of these albums: hey, the fuck-up kids form a band and hey, turns out they’re pretty good at their instruments, and hey, turns out they write some pretty catchy songs, and hey, let’s rock out! Beats “ivy league kids buy a sequencer” any day.

I did some catch-up in December, and went on a wild rip session in the KWUR stacks. Very worthwhile. First of all, I got to listen to the terrific new Raekwon album. It seems that the critical beef on this album is it just sounds like old Wu-Tang. Well, yes, yes it does, but can we stop for a moment and think about what an insane critique that is? Imagine if James Joyce came back from the dead and wrote another book that was just as good as Ulysses, and a critic dismissed it as just that old Joyce shit. Yes, it does sound like old Wu-Tang; the best beats in the business, and lyrical virtuosity that makes your jaw drop. Also, there’s a poignancy involved in that old sound; it is the sound of an art form that was abandoned before it reached its full potential, and a troubled community that became ignored and marginalized before its problems were solved. If anyone wants to know what the surreal experience of living in 2009 was like, they just need to listen to “Party in the USA” followed by Raekwon’s “Cold Outside.”

I am a really big fan of the Those Darlins record. I once heard a friend describe Heidegger’s summaries of Socrates and Plato as “not an accurate representation of what they said, but an accurate representation of what it felt like to be them.” That’s the way I feel about this record. It’s not Johnny Cash, and thank God it’s not another ersatz “cowpunk” album, chained to its genre. It has the energy and drive of what it was like to make music like Johnny Cash, and hell, that’s what we need. Real fun, real catchy, and great live show to boot.

I don’t rank. That said, the Jeff The Brotherhood album is the best album of the year. Great, super satisfying loud music. I’ll just summarize the experience of seeing them live. I had a rough couple of days of work, and I went to the show on Tuesday just for the hell of it, just to unwind. Talk about catharsis; after fucking rocking out and losing my mind with say, thirty other people as they killed it on the Gargoyle floor, my neck was sore the next day from headbanging, and my arm was sore from fist-pumping. God bless an album where the drumming is the star of the show. And like I said before, I don’t rank. But I’m gonna have to concur with our GM Kenny here and say the half a minute or so in the middle of “Growing” where the drums and guitar interlock is the best half minute of music produced this year.

I’m going to just assume that someone has told you about The Antlers album already. How it’s gorgeous and emotionally devastating. How it will make you not want to leave your bed. Well, alright, they’re right. The power of this album lies in the half-whispered, nakedly emotional, super precise lyrics layered over the droning guitar and the steady drumming. Goddamn it.

That’s my year in albums. Now I’m going to list some orphaned tracks (where I really just liked one song but not the whole album, or never got around to the whole album) that caught my attention this year.

Percussion Gun by White Rabbits: DRUMS DRUMS DRUMS! DRUMS DRUMS DRUMS! Gee, it turns out that when Britt Daniels is producing your album, he can help make it pretty fucking good. Also, dig the little bass lick here. Sweet.

As a whole, and I say this as a Fiery Furnaces fan, I was largely disappointed by “I’m Going Away.” The problem is that it’s pretty uneven. There’s a lot of filler and tracks that don’t really do anything for me. On the other hand, there are tracks like The End Is Near that remind you that the Friedberger siblings wrote some of the smartest, tightest, most sentimental pop songs of the decade. Love the piano on this one.

I reviewed the new Islands record for the station here. As the review says, I’m generally a fan of Islands, but I thought this last record was pretty mediocre. Except for the track No You Don’t, which has a certain chilly, electronic funk, bubbly synth, and a weird electronic sitar solo. Not to mention a chorus that lends itself well to singing along.

People really love Neko Case’s solo work. I think they have good reason to, but I’m not one of them. I just can never get into the meander of her work, the way the songs are sort of content just to sit there and let you dwell in her voice. On the other hand, few better places to sit and dwell than in her lovely, powerful voice, singing some of the best lyrics in the business. Case in point: This Tornado Loves You.

Dunno how I feel about the Girls album as a whole. Do know how I feel about Lust For Life. I’m always a sucker for the pop song that slowly fills in, that’s glad to be there, that insists that you’re going to sing along with the bratty vocals and bob your head. That’s it right there, down to the handclaps.

Oh gosh, I was going to try and keep this to five, but I’d be remiss if I didn’t include the terrific single by Generationals, When They Fight They Fight. Takes pretty much all the elements I love in soul and cobbles them together in this intriguing indie song structure that is super catchy.

Orphans from other years that got stuck on repeat this year:
Listen, I don’t know why I like Hungry Heart (by The Boss, if you didn’t know). I just do, a whole lot. Might have to do with the insistent piano. Might have to do with my favorite rock/soul instrument, the baritone sax. Might have to do with – God help me – the sax solo. I just like it a lot. Leave me alone. Shut the door. I’m going to listen to it again.

Yo, indie scenester, I’m real happy for you and I’mma let you finish, but The Flying Burrito Brothers had the best love song of all time (Hot Burrito #1).

Holy Christ, how did it take me so long to listen to Bon Iver? Listen to For Emma for a second. Jesus, how does anyone make music that is that beautiful?

So, that was my year in music. Looking back, had some highlights, but overall, kind of mediocre. Whatever. Great thing about years? They end. Here’s to 2010, guys.

BLAST FROM THE PAST

Tuesday, December 15th, 2009

Okay so we’re digitizing a bunch of old taped interviews from way back when college radio was important (8/12/86, to be exact), and came across this, uh, gem. It’s an audio snippet from an interview we did with The Descendents: two DJs try to get Milo to give a station ID, and he gets creative. A fascinating conversation ensues. Enjoy:

Descendents Station ID + conversation

There’s more to come of this kind of thing, soon… (because winter break is here and I’ve got fuck-all to do).

Album Review: Thomas Function, "In The Valley Of Sickness"

Monday, December 7th, 2009


Standard Indie rock with a Southern rock influence. Think slowed down Jay Reatard or more straight-forward Violent Femmes (dude’s singing voice sounds exactly like Jay Reatard). Not the most thrilling record, but generally inoffensive with some catchy numbers.

Play: 1,2,3, 6+ (catchy), 10