Sunday, July 5, 2015

Crossing the Pond #38: Reverieme

As much as I love gloriously loud cacophonies of effects pedals and waves upon waves of noise, sometimes a girl likes to tone it down a wee bit. As in, girl + acoustic. And that's it.

Hailing from Airdrie, Louise Connell, otherwise known as Reverieme, hits the spot. Connell's voice coos bittersweet, prettily melancholy and at times a touch otherworldly. Songs like "Plankton" are what ought to get folks more than a little excited, and I for one can't wait to hear more.       





[posted 7.5.15]

Remix Fix: Astropol

In theory I like the idea of the remix: taking someone else's song and tweaking it the way you want it done. It's a great means for completely redoing something, and for reinterpretation. Sometimes remixes go awry, and sometimes they're better than the original. Remix Fix is all about the happy medium when a remix totally nails it and makes a song that much better.

So, this little summertime perfect jam is a wee bit different than the usual Remix Fix song. Instead of being a great song teased into another great song by someone else, it's another version of the same song by the same folks. In this case, Astropol (a Swedish supergroup of sorts), doing a special Midsummer version of their effortlessly cool, Scandi slinky pop song "The Sound of a Heart that Breaks." It's mighty fine, if I do say so myself. And do stay tuned for more Astropol coming soon. 




[posted 7.5.15]

Video of the Day #55: Anderson East

There’s a bunch of videos out there. Some of them are good. Some of them are a cut above. I like to think my picks for Video Of The Day are a cut (or two) above.

I do love a good studio video, it must be said. Especially when there's a lively horn section, cooing backup lady vocalists, and a raspy, honeyed voice that can just about knock you over. Really, what more does a gal need? Anderson East immediately calls to mind Van Morrison with an Alabama drawl, and the video for "Satisfy Me" (shot in the magical Muscle Shoals, Alabama) ought to leave anyone good and satisfied. 

Now, y'all please pardon me while I swoon.  






[posted 7.5.15]

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Happy 4th of July!

It's time once again to don your most patriotic of red, white, and blue ensembles, pull the tab on the first of many great American beverages, and do whatever else you might happen to do to celebrate America. Unless of course you don't live here, in which case, there's really no need to celebrate.

One of the most American of things is that Star-Spangled Banner, the one everyone butchers at public sporting events because it's so very difficult to sing. The best version, of course, includes zero singing. I'll leave you with the 1969 Woodstock version of Jimi Hendrix putting all other renditions of the national anthem to shame. Happy Fourth, y'all!  




[posted 7.4.15]

Video of the Day #54: Kidcat Lo-fi

There’s a bunch of videos out there. Some of them are good. Some of them are a cut above. I like to think my picks for Video Of The Day are a cut (or two) above.

Leave it to a band from Vienna (Austria, not Virginia) to create a song that really captures exactly how I feel about the summer months. Called "Hate Summer," the lyrics in this Kidcat Lo-fi ditty are spot on and cute to boot, and the whimsical, almost twee lady vocals add that extra touch of charm. The video is simple, really, just the band enjoying (or not) some Austrian sun and goofing off, but it just fits the song to perfection. Summer haters unite! 






[posted 7.4.15]

The Week in Shows: 7/6-7/12

An overcast, America Day morning seems as good a time as any to plot ones weekly live music schedule, I think. Let's take a look at what's happening in the greater DC metro this week, shall we? Hot diggity!

After taking the week off, it's time to get back to the show planning. After the fireworks have come and gone (or been washed out by weather-related issues), there's plenty of shows to spark with. Here's some picks for the next few days. And remember, y'all, each week I'll be picking one show that is my seriously, go to this recommended show of the week, a show that should be the subject of your undivided attention. So here we go, a look at some recommended shows for the coming week.

MONDAY, 7/6/15

-Swirlies + Big Hush (Black Cat)
-Schwervon! + BRNDA (Galaxy Hut)
-Stephen Stills (Birchmere)

TUESDAY, 7/7/15

-Mudhoney + Kid Congo Powers & The Pink Monkey Birds + DJ Kid Congo (Black Cat) (Extra Recommended!)

WEDNESDAY, 7/8/15

-Heaters + Moonwalks + Sealab (DC9)
-Mates of State + Good Graeff + Hey Marseilles (Rock & Roll Hotel)

THURSDAY, 7/9/15

-The Wooden Sky + Margot MacDonald (DC9)
-Archers of Loaf + Monsoon (Black Cat)

FRIDAY, 7/10/15

-The New Pornographers + Thao & The Get Down Stay Down (9:30 Club - SOLD OUT)
-Janeane Garofalo + Dave Hill (Black Cat)

SATURDAY, 7/11/15

-Stiff Little Fingers + Government Issue (Black Cat)
-Mr Twin Sister + Moon King (DC9)
-Typefighter + Two Inch Astronaut + The Effects (Rock & Roll Hotel)
-Death Grips (9:30 Club - SOLD OUT)

SUNDAY, 7/12/15

-Soak + Marian McLaughlin (DC9)


[posted 7.4.15]

Newsflash!: New Beach House Single!

I'm sure some of you are already appraised of this news (good boys and girls that you are), but just in case you weren't yet aware, there's a new Beach House song making the rounds in advance of the August release of newest long player Depression Cherry

I'm chomping at the bit to get my hands on the record, and "Sparks" proves a tantalizing first listen. It's heavier on the scuzziness and grit than previous efforts, which just makes me all the more excited to hear the rest of Depression Cherry. Hurry up, August.  



[posted 7.4.15]

On The Road Again: The Bluetones

Y'all know I like to wax nostalgic about the glory days of the late 90s, when British bands were all over the place and a budding Anglophile could immerse themselves in all sorts of fabulous musical exports. The Bluetones was part of that later wave, their easy, effortless appeal (and swoon-worthy Morriss brothers) making quite the good impression on yours truly. 

Fast forward 20 years (sweet mercy) and the lads are readying themselves for a wee reunion tour. If I wasn't already going out of town during the time they were scheduled to be on the road, I'd seriously consider hopping on a plane to catch one (or more) of these shows. Timing is everything, as they say. Dates and a little dandy of a song are below. 


SEPTEMBER

Wed 16th LEEDS - O2 Academy
Thurs 17th GLASGOW - O2 ABC
Fri 18th NEWCASTLE - O2 Academy
Sat 19th MANCHESTER - Ritz
Wed 23th PORTSMOUTH - Pyramids
Thurs 24th LONDON - Forum
Sat 26th BIRMINGHAM - O2 Academy
Sun 27th BRISTOL - O2 Academy





[posted 7.4.15]

Sunday, June 21, 2015

The Week in Shows: 6/22-6/28

A muggy, Sunday afternoon post-tornado warnings seems as good a time as any to plot ones weekly live music schedule, I think. Let's take a look at what's happening in the greater DC metro this week, shall we? Hot diggity!

Another Monday is soon to be upon us, and while that's a bummer for some, it means that another week of shows is here to enjoy as well. Here's some picks for the next few days. And remember, y'all, each week I'll be picking one show that is my seriously, go to this recommended show of the week, a show that should be the subject of your undivided attention. So here we go, a look at some recommended shows for the coming week.

MONDAY, 6/22/15

-Porcelain Raft + Cat Martino (DC9)

TUESDAY, 6/23/15

-Total Babes + Mouser (Black Cat)
-Taj Mahal (The Hamilton)

WEDNESDAY, 6/24/15

-The Max Levine Ensemble + Rvivr + Shellshag (Black Cat)

THURSDAY, 6/25/15

-No Joy + Creepoid + Wildhoney (DC9)
-Blonde Redhead + Talk in Tongues (Black Cat)

FRIDAY, 6/26/15

-Jodeci (Fillmore)

SATURDAY, 6/27/15

-Mission of Burma + History Repeated (Rock & Roll Hotel) (Extra Recommended!)
-Sondre Lerche (U Street Music Hall)
-Bob Schneider (Hill Country Live)
-Mark Sultan BBQ + The Ar-Kaics + Jacques Le Coque (Comet Ping Pong)
-Baby Bry Bry & The Apologists + Heathers + Gingerlys + Furnsss (Babe City)

SUNDAY, 6/28/15

-Flesh Panthers + Brook Pridemore + Foster Carrots (The Dougout)
-Torres + The Sea Life (DC9)
-Ben Lee (The Hamilton)


[posted 6.21.15]

Singles Club: Sextile

From the perpetual summer of Los Angeles comes the gorgeous gloom and decadent doom of Sextile

Born of the pent-up passions of frustration and vexation, the synthy shimmer of "I Can't Take It" casts quite a dark, slinky shadow. This is a song that beats with a palpitating heart, careening through danceable industrial morasses in a very, very enjoyable and rather addictive way. Be sure to grab this gem while it's up for free download via Soundcloud. 
   





[posted 6.21.15]

Video of the Day #53: Oscar

There’s a bunch of videos out there. Some of them are good. Some of them are a cut above. I like to think my picks for Video Of The Day are a cut (or two) above.

Going from an old favorite to a new one, this clip from Oscar for "Daffodil Days" just might bring a tear to your eye (especially if you're as easily moved as yours truly). Beautifully shot, this clip is actually a perfect accompaniment to the bittersweet beauty of this modern pop song. Oscar's first EP Beautiful Words will be out on Wichita this coming week, so be sure you snap that up as soon as.  







[posted 6.21.15]

Monday, June 15, 2015

Video of the Day #52: The Verve

There’s a bunch of videos out there. Some of them are good. Some of them are a cut above. I like to think my picks for Video Of The Day are a cut (or two) above.

It's my birthday, and I'll talk about The Verve if I want to. Not that I ever need an excuse. I've been listening to older Verve records a whole lot lately, including the unbelievably gorgeous full length A Storm in Heaven. It's one of my all-time favorite records, so if you haven't checked it out, do so. "Slide Away," the transcendent song that it is, featured a 90s gem of a video. In it, the band is saturated in color and cavorts in desert landscapes and a middle-of-nowhere dive bar. Richard Ashcroft looks capable of genius and madness in equal measure, and guitar wizard Nick McCabe looks positively angelic. It's glorious, and it makes me happy, and hopefully it'll do the same for you. 





[posted 6.15.15]

Otherwise Engaged: Neko Case

It is an unfortunate reality for the serious concertgoer that on occasion, there will be more than one show on any given night that you really, really, REALLY wanna go to. Since the vast majority of us don't own a time machine, nor have the ability to either clone ourselves or split ourselves in half (or thirds or quarters depending on the night in question), this tends to present a problem. Difficult decisions are made based on a variety of variables (perhaps some of you even make lists of pros and cons), and ultimately, a show is chosen. But those other shows are still gonna be killer, and I'd like to give a little face time to the shows that, while I can't go myself, are still highly recommended.

Perennial girl crush Neko Case is in town this evening, for a sold out show at the Lincoln Theatre that will undoubtedly be amazing. In case you've never seen this lovely lady do her thing live, you might want to be trawling Craigslist for a ticket. Case's songwriting alone is worth whatever price tickets are going for, and then there's her voice. 





[posted 6.15.15]

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Video of The Day #51: Dustin Lovelis

There’s a bunch of videos out there. Some of them are good. Some of them are a cut above. I like to think my picks for Video Of The Day are a cut (or two) above.

Here's a little trippy dippy action to start off your Sunday, friends. Long Beach dude Dustin Lovelis (formerly of The Fling) goes all pretty psych in this clip for "Coming Back From a Cloud," a song that sounds as wonderfully spaced out as you might think. A perfect slice of 60s/80s fusion, beach-kissed Southern California psych that sounds just delicious, and the video might do your head in too (albeit in a totally different way).  






[posted 6.14.15]