Friday, November 27, 2009

Simian Mobile Disco at the Mayan 11/25

What better way to open up a weekend of eating and purging than to sweat to some heart pumping beats created by Simian Mobile Disco?

Before a breakdown of the show, I will give you a brief history of this English DJ duo and how they came to be. Comprised of two former members of Simian (yes they sang that "Never Be Alone" remixed by Justice for the hipster anthem circa 2006) James Ford and Jae Shaw decided to take on new sound. The majority of their songs feature simple vocals combined with extreme distortion and unique beats. With their debut album Attack Sustain Release in June of 2007, they began to form a name for themselves with hits such as "Hustler" and "I Believe". Their sophmore album Temporary Pleasure was released this May and included some heavy hitting names on the vocals (Beth Ditto of the Gossip, Chris Keating of Yeasayer). Temporary Pleasure featured more variety compared to the first album and most of the songs were either a hit or miss.

Lights decorated the stage and flashed giving you only glimpses of the duo mixing in front of you. The dancefloor was filled with glowsticks and kids hopping up and down to the bass. I have to say the one component I really enjoyed of this show is the originality. It seemed this team used their original songs as only a base for the new songs they created for the audience. They would take the original hook and create a whole new track right in front of you, seeping their creativity into the foggy atmosphere of the Mayan.

Various times they played the isolated vocals to hype up the crowd and then would slowly increase into the excellerated tone of the song. These men knew how to work the crowd and when they left the stage after their encore people were screaming for 15 minutes until they finally turned the lights on. Hands down this concert was worth the $25 and I will be attending their next show in the Los Angeles area.

Here is "Cruel Intentions (feat. Beth Ditto)" live at the Mayan:

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

New Animal Collective EP

Animal Collective's Fall Be Kind EP is dropping next week. The digital release will be available November 23rd, and a physical copy (either in compact disc or vinyl format) can be obtained in stores on December 15th, according to Paste Magazine,

Animal Collective made headlines this summer by being the first band to gain rights to a Grateful Dead sample. The song, "What Would I Want? Sky," featuring the Dead sample will be available on this EP, as well as "Graze", a more recent live track from the band.

Monday, November 16, 2009

The Twilight Saga: New Moon Original Motion Picture Soundtrack Review

The next installment of the “Twilight” movie series will premiere Friday and tickets are already selling out. 

For The Twilight Saga: New Moon Original Motion Picture Soundtrack, the artist selection strayed from the more mainstream bands featured on the first Twilight soundtrack and compiled a mix of indie-rock heavyweights that do not disappoint.

Perhaps the most interesting element of the soundtrack is not the artists featured on it, but that almost every song on the soundtrack is an original piece made specifically for the Twilight movie.

Death Cab for Cutie’s radio friendly original “Meet Me on the Equinox” opens the album.

The song is classic Death Cab, but its lyrics seem painfully forced. It’s as if the band wrote the song with the objective of including as many clear Twilight references as possible.

Lyrics such as “Let our bodies intertwine / But always understand that everything ends” seem like they could have been taken straight out of Meyer’s book.

Lykke Li’s “Possibility” is a gorgeous piano ballad that will surprise those only familiar with her singles and Grizzly Bear’s “Slow Life,” which features singer Victoria Legrand of Beach House, is a fantastic swirl of harmonies and symphonic bliss.

Thom Yorke’s “Hearing Damage” is the standout piece on the soundtrack. It’s a jittery electronic ballad of sorts similar in style to the tracks on Radiohead’s last full-length album “In Rainbows.”

Yorke also wrote “Hearing Damage” specifically for the Twilight soundtrack, but unlike Death Cab for Cutie’s original piece, “Hearing Damage” could easily fit onto one of Yorke’s or Radiohead’s own albums.

Its chorus of “You can do no wrong in my eyes” is perfectly applicable to the relationship between Twilight’s protagonist Bella and her vampire lover Edward, but is still ambiguous enough to avoid seeing flashes of the movie upon every listen.

The majority of the soundtrack features dreamy and atmospheric songs with hushed overtones and lots of acoustics, but there are a few upbeat tracks.

“Monsters” by Hurricane Bells is sure to get stuck in your head, in a good way, and Band of Skulls’ “Friends” is another toe-tapper.

Though none of the songs on the New Moon soundtrack are representative of their respective artists’ best work, the soundtrack is a great introduction to indie music for all those Twi-hards who haven’t yet experienced it, and definitely worth the buy.

Kid Sister TV Debut

Chicago's Kid Sister (A-Trak's girlfriend and older sister to Josh of Flosstradamus) made her first TV debut on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon on Friday with the help of Flosstradamus.

Here's the video, including the same crazy dancers she brought with her at Detroit Bar and the Echoplex.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Videos: Jookabox & Animal Collective

Though Halloween has long since passed, I can't help but enjoy this video.
"You Cried Me" by Jookabox, from their latest album entitled Dead Zone Boys.
Asthmatic Kitty Records 2009.

In other news, Animal Collective has released a new video for "In The Flowers" off of their early 2009 release Merriweather Post Pavillion. It is (quite fittingly) very whimsical and colorful. Click here to view it.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Viva Voce

I've been constantly listening to the song "Octavio" by the Portland-based husband and wife duo Viva Voce for the past few days (although they have added two more members for their latest album, so duo might no longer suffice.)  Though the song was released earlier this year, I can't help but play it on repeat. It brings me joy, and I thought that I might share a bit of that joy with you all.

The song is from the album Rose City which was released this year (2009) through Barsuk Records.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Free Vampire Weekend show!

Vampire Weekend played an intimate, secret show last night (which I luckily won tickets to) in Chinatown, Los Angeles last night at Madam Wong's.

But for those of you who missed out, they are playing another free show today!

Sunday, November 1 - Dia De Los Muertos
Vampire Weekend 3:30pm
415 S. St. Louis St.
Los Angeles, CA 90033

New Yeasayer track "Ambling Alp"

Brooklyn's experimental Yeasayer has released a new song available for download titled "Ambling Alp," which is the first single off of their sophmore release Odd Blood, due out in February 2010.

It's easily their most radio-friendly song, full of upbeat and bouncy synths. It is definitely a departure of their past album's, All Hour Cymbals, exploration into spacey, funky sounds.