May 13, 2010
Marina & the Diamonds has appear on DYB before in remixed form, but not even close to this good. She is of the Little Boots, La Roux great female vocalist mold that Britain just seems to churn out on a weekly basis. For me those acts shine most in remixes when production is put into more adept hands. Enter Clock Opera, a London quartet with stellar production chops though their vocals and melodies leave a bit to be desired. With Marina (aka Marina Lambrini Diamandis) taking vocal duties, Clock Opera takes her song with its vulnerably beautiful verses layers in epic strings and more importantly takes an okay (at best) chorus and chops up her vocals to mind blowing effect. This song has been on repeat for a week straight and I see no end in sight. This one will be on my year end list for sure. Find it HERE.
Amber Coffman of Dirty Projectors' fame (she goes all Maria Carey on "Stillness Is The Move") took some time off to guest on Rusko's track "Hold On" on his latest album, O.M.G.! (really??). Fortunately the song is about the opposite of the album title. Amber's voice is quickly becoming one of my favorites in music today. This song shows her with more soul and a bit of an edge. Sub Focus provides just insane and very STRONG (the percussions are not for the weak) beats that kick this song into another gear. Love this - HERE.
While not a remix per se, Sleigh Bells takes an excellent female vocalist Alexis Krauss and pairs her with a production mastermind, Derek Miller. They just happened to form a band instead! (Note to Little Boots, et al.: Please use this same formula). So instead of just a one off great remixed track, Sleigh Bells dropped a whole album of absolutely banging beats and sultry vocals - this album is SICK! The album dropped on Tuesday and is available for the rest of the week for free streaming on NPR. Definitely check them out HERE. I have raved about these two before - HERE for more info.
Robyn has been putting out dancefloor ready tracks for years and doesn't seem to be slowing down at all. Possibly my favorite of hers to date "Dancing On My Own" has been on repeat for me for a while. Check it out HERE. Dance remix by Buzz Junkies HERE works for a more amped up late night play but I am still waiting for a quintessential remix of this track. Right now nothing beats the original.
Lastly and out of nowhere is HEALTH with "USA Boys". HEALTH was a group making mainly loud uninteresting noise in the LA scene. Here they throw that completely out and put together one of the sickest beats I have heard this year off of their remix album DISCO 2. Going to start paying attention now for sure. Give it a spin HERE.
Couple other things of note:
(1) Check out wearehunted.com for a great playlist of the 99 most blogged songs of the moment and a whole section devoted to remixes as well HERE.
(2) Lala is shutting down end of the month thanks to Apple buying it (Stewart is right - Apple is turning into the Gestapo) BUT a huge benefit - all of Pitchfork's tracks on their website can be streamed repeatedly for free so check it out HERE. Until the end of the month that is..
April 23, 2010
Don't have much time to write and have SOOO much I want to share on the amazing Coachella weekend that just passed (my favorite in the 4 years I have been to the festival and possibly my favorite weekend EVER). One band that was present, James Murphy's LCD Soundsystem, who had THE performance of Coachella (with 10 foot disco ball hanging overhead the whole time) has put their new album This Is Happening (which is as unbelievably brilliant as their last, Sound of Silver) up for free streaming on their website HERE. He is also playing the Hollywood Palladium on June 4th and the Glass House in Pomona on June 5th - more info on presales HERE.
April 14, 2010
Coachella is only 2 days away (2!) - Get ready!
Without further ado, I present the final installment of the "Coachella Commitment" Mixes - the EPIC Day 3! "Day 3 Commitment" is the next level. After two full days of intensity (sun, LOTS of people, port-o-potties), those around for Sunday deserve a medal. This year with Thom Yorke, Phoenix, Spoon, Pavement, Gorillaz, it is my favorite lineup of the festival - so looks like I have no choice but to power through. I hope all of you do as well!
Like everything on this site, this mix is an editorialized selection of my favorite acts performing this year and my favorite song(s) by them. For those acts with two songs, they should not be missed. For those with just one, I am going to try to catch them for at least a few songs. Some others worth considering and not on the mix - Jonsi (lead singer of Sigur Ros - don't love his solo stuff but his voice is otherworldly) and Local Natives (excellent LA band playing on the early side - wrote more about them HERE). Below is the tracklist and at the bottom is the link to the download. Next to some artists I have put a link to previous posts I have written on them for more details and tracks.
Coachella Commitment Day 1 Mix Tracklist:
1. Phoenix - Lisztomania ( Off of DYB's Favorite Album of '09; More Info HERE)
2. Spoon - The Way We Get By
3. Pavement - Cut Your Hair
4. Thom Yorke - And It Rained All Night (I may talk about this guy a tad bit too much like HERE)
5. Julian Casablancas (Lead singer of The Strokes; more HERE)
6. Phoenix - Long Distance Call (25 Hours A Day Remix)
7. Spoon - I Turn My Camera On
8. Julian Casablancas - 11th Dimension
9. The Big Pink - Dominos
10. Miike Snow - Burial (DJ Medhi Remix - who is playing as part of Club 75 Sunday!)
11. Gorillaz - Stylo
12. Little Boots - Stuck On Repeat
13. B.O.B. featuring Amy Winehouse - Grip Your Body
14. Florence & The Machine - You've Got the Love (see also Day 2's xx remix of this excellent song)
15. Yo La Tengo - Here To Fall
16. Thom Yorke - The Eraser
DOWNLOAD DAY 3 MIX HERE
Enjoy and see you there,
PS New LCD Soundsystem Album is up and available to stream on their website! Check it out HERE. Awesome so far!
April 13, 2010
Coachella is only 3 days away (3!). Tickets appear to have sold out (though rumors persist that they may release some day of...who knows?). All set times are up (HERE) so its fully time to get serious - Coachella is approaching fast...
Miike Snow - Sylvia (Dirty South & Sebastian Ingrosso Remix)
Tracey Thorn - Grand Cayon (Dirty South Remix)
Hop Chip - Over & Over (Solid Groove Remix)
Major Lazer- Pon De Floor (Laidback Luke Remix)
Empire of Sun - Walking on a Dream (Kaskade Mix)
Tegan & Sara - Back in Your Head (Tiesto Remix)
MGMT - Kidsos (Sebastian Ingrosso Mix)
David Guetta - Memories (
Bloody Beetroots - WARP (2ManyDJs Mashup Mix)
David Guetta & Kelly Rowland - When Love Takes Over (DG Podcast Mix)
David Guetta - The World is Mine (DJ Red & Josh Dupont Remix)
Tiesto & Sneaky Soundsystem - I Will Be Here (Laidback Luke Remix)
Kaskade - Move For Me (Extended Mix)
Tiesto - Walking On Clouds
David Guetta- Love is Gnuk (Axwell Mix)
Tiesto - Delerium - Silence (In Search of
Tiesto- Adagio For Strings
Kaskade - I remember (Caspa Remix)
MGMT - Time to Pretend (DMoe Funk Club Mix)
April 7, 2010
Coachella is only 9 days away (9!) and I may have to freeze myself until then to contain my unbridled excitement. Instead I have decided to dedicate DYB to all things Coachella until then INCLUDING Introductions to the most exciting (and some lesser known artists), Recommended schedules for each day and most importantly MIXES including all the best, most exciting artists. Get ready!
Without further ado, I present the "Coachella Commitment Day 1" Mix! "Commitment" because Coachella is not for the weak. It is intense (sun, LOTS of people, port-o-potties), but always always AMAZING! Like everything on this site, this mix is an editorialized selection of my favorite acts performing this year and my favorite song(s) by them. For those acts with two songs, they should not be missed. For those with just one, I am going to try to catch them for at least a few songs. Some others worth considering and not on the mix - Gil Scott Heron (70s legend I wrote about HERE) and Fever Ray (female half of The Knife - out there, but very cool). Below is the tracklist and at the bottom is the link to the download. Next to some artists I have put a link to previous posts I have written on them for more details and tracks.
Coachella Commitment Day 1 Mix Tracklist:
1. Yeasayer - ONE (More Info HERE)
2. Jay-Z - Heart of the City
3. LCD Soundsystem - All My Friends (More Info HERE)
4. Sleigh Bells - Crown on the Ground (More Info HERE)
5. LCD Soundsystem - Daft Punk is Playing At My House
6. Passion Pit - Moth's Wings (More Info HERE)
7. Jay -Z - 99 Problems
8. Aeroplane - Friendly Fire's "Paris" Remix
9. La Roux - I'm Not Your Toy (Jack Beats Remix) (More Info HERE)
10. Deadmau5 - Ghosts N Stuff
11. Passion Pit - Sleepyhead
12. Wale - TV In The Radio (Produced by David Sitek of TV on the Radio)
13. Grizzly Bear - Two Weeks (More Info HERE)
14. Vampire Weekend - Diplomat's Son (More Info HERE)
15. Sleigh Bells - Ring Ring
16. The Whitest Boy Alive - Burning
17. Ra Ra Riot - Can You Tell
DOWNLOAD MIX HERE
Enjoy and see you there,
April 1, 2010
Coachella is only 15 days away (15!) and I may have to freeze myself until then to contain my unbridled excitement. Instead I have decided to dedication DYB over the next 15 days (15!) to all things Coachella until then INCLUDING Introductions to the most exciting (and some lesser known artists), Recommended schedules for each day and most importantly MIXES including all the best, most exciting artists. Get ready!
March 26, 2010
Broken Social Scene already released the brilliant "World Sick" (currently in the pole position for song of the year for me) off their forthcoming album, Forgiveness Rock Record. Now they have made available for download on iTunes and available for streaming below, TWO new songs off the forthcoming album, "All to All" and "Force to Love". "Force to Love" is an excellent tradition rock song with the added layers one comes to expect from BSS. "All to All", for me, is the true gem. It uses occasional female vocalist for the group, Lisa Lobsinger, as the lead and it comes off like a newer Yeah Yeah Yeahs song with Lisa a more vulnerable Karen O. The song is airy, summery at the beginning and by minute 3 is jammy and drives it home beautifully. I have been listening to this one on repeat - check it out below.
The National already got me (way too) excited for their upcoming album with the "Terrible Love" performance from Fallon (video posted HERE.) Now comes their official single, "Bloodbuzz Ohio", off the new album, High Violet, that drops in May. This song would have fit beautifully on their last album, the absolute classic Boxer, but it shows a bit of the transition from that album to the all-out rocker that is "Terrible Love". These guys can do no wrong in my book.
Flying Lotus is an experimental producer based out of LA creating some of the craziest beats out there. His album, Los Angeles, was a critical darling in 2008. How does one improve upon that success? Team up with Thom Yorke on your new album's, Cosmogramma, first release, And the World Laughs With You". The first two minutes sets the stage for his mind bending beat making ability with Thom Yorke's super smooth vocals coming in shortly after the 2 minute mark. Loving this track too!
While the biggest names in indie music are raising the bar this year, the newer guys are holding their own too:
Delorean (who I have written about before HERE) are back with the first track, "Stay Close" off their upcoming debut album (though these guys had quite the impressive first EP dropped last year). This track is everything that is great about Delorean - fun, dancey electronic club music made for beach / poolside listening. These guys take a lot of influences from the Swedish poppy electronic bands (learn more about them HERE), but make this their own. Will be listening to this one all weekend.
One more newbie that I just started listening to be, but am really digging is Blondes. These two guys are an electronic music "jam band". They are experimenting and always pushing their music (I hear their live shows are sick!). Check out a jam off their EP below.
Enjoy and have a great weekend,
March 24, 2010
After topping numerous end of year lists (including DYB's) with their brilliant Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix and touring relentlessly throughout 2009 and still going strong in 2010 (with US dates starting again with Coachella on 4/18 - see full tour dates HERE), Phoenix is the gift that keeps on giving. But why stop there - Phoenix is giving away a 8 song FREE live set from their show in Sydney on their website -HERE! From someone who saw Phoenix perform 4 times last year (and will be front and center at their Coachella set), trust me this is a must listen.
March 15, 2010
And make me all the more excited for May. While this year has been slow on the mind-blowing music front, two of my favorite bands of the past decade, The National and Broken Social Scene, have both dropped new songs on the world to give me hope that the 10s have some promise yet. Broken Social Scene absolutely killed their return after a 5 year hiatus with the single, "World Sick" off their forthcoming album (out May 4th), Forgiveness Rock Record (single and all the details available HERE). The National's last two records (3rd and 4th overall), Alligator and Boxer, are two of my favorite records of the past decade (just barely missing out on this HERE) and show a band that is absolutely peaking right now. "Terrible Love" shows the band continuing to build on all the qualities that make them great -lead singer Matt Berninger's deep baritone, helpless yet somehow hopeful lyrics, brilliant orchestral instrumentation, and distinctive and flat out awesome drumming. The band talks about how they have to make their songs less "epic" as they finalize their record, but like Broken Social Scene these guys embrace that "epic" sound in all the best ways. The last minute is both raw but polished rock of the highest order. Can't say enough about these guys. I am looking to them and BSS to save the year.
March 5, 2010
March 3, 2010
Morning Benders are a throwback of the best kind. Coming out of the exploding music scene in San Fran, they have crafted a 60's pop gem with "Excuses". This one sounds like a lost track in Phil Spector's or Brian Wilson's catalog. The song has me longing for summer. It is just a breezy top down driving tune with airy almost floating guitar rhythms, and a gorgeous melody accented with lush harmonies. Take a listen to the single off their new album, Big Echo:
Morning Benders - "Excuses"
Local Natives are one of the most exciting bands in the LA music scene right now. Recently being graced with a P4K Best New Music label shouldn't hurt either. These guys are very much deserving. Their debut album, Gorilla Manor, is one of the most intriguing of the new year. They sound like Grizzly Bear if it was produced by David Sitek. Really these guys resolve my only issue with Grizzly Bear - their weak rhythm section. They don't quite have Grizzly Bear's vocal chops but they have some great harmonies and I LOVE their drumming. Listen to the great first two tracks off their album, "Wide Eyes" and "Airplanes".
Local Natives - "Wide Eyes"
Local Natives - "Airplanes"
Gil Scott Heron is an icon of the 1970's. An African-American poet, musician and author; his musical style played a huge role in the development of hip-hop both with the political and social commentary of his lyrics as well as his rapping style of delivery. Then for a long time he disappeared, was in and out of jail on drug related charges and had only one album to come out in the last 25 years. Then he recently dropped I'm New Here and damn he's still got it. "New York Is Killing Me" is sure to be a classic. It is a stripped down blues tune with minimal hand claps and Gil's signature raspy baritone lamenting of his personal downfall in that great city. But it wouldn't be a Heron classic without its social commentary on the changing landscape of NYC. Enjoy:
Gil Scott Heron - "New York Is Killing Me"
And lastly, Yes Giantess' "The Ruins" may sound EXACTLY like a Passion Pit track (and they also happen to be from Boston, Mass too) BUT it still sounds so good. Check it out:
Yes Giantess - "The Ruins"
February 26, 2010
"Give Up The Ghost":
"The Daily Mail":
"Mouse Dog Bird":
February 25, 2010
First, it was ????. Then on the Coachella flyer it became Thom Yorke ????. Now it is official - Thom Yorke's new superband (with Nigel Godrich, Flea and other musical geniuses in tow) is called Atoms For Peace. Atoms For Peace is both a song off of Thom Yorke's solo debut album, The Eraser, and the famous (or infamous or really a little of both) speech delivered by then President Eisenhower to the UN Assembly that established the US program of supplying information and equipment for the development of atomic energy around the world. It was intended as a means to lead to equality amongst nations in the use of nuclear power / energy and a way to help solve "the fearful atomic dilemma". It was also under this program that both Pakistan and Iran built their first nuclear reactors. The song, "Atoms For Peace", is perhaps my favorite off the album, simple and gorgeous bass harmonics, hauntingly beautiful vocals, and a call to action: "No more talk about the old days, it's time for something great". So clearly I love the name choice (shocking).
Check out this sick remix of "Atoms for Peace by Four Tet (separately, you can catch Four Tet playing the Echoplex on Saturday, 2/27):
Atoms For Peace has announced some additional tour dates in addition to playing Coachella - lucky for those in NYC, Boston, Chicago and SF / Oakland. Check out the dates HERE. Pre-sale tickets available starting March 2nd on W.A.S.T.E. March 5th at 10am EST on Ticketmaster. Good luck - these are going to go fast.
February 9, 2010
January 27, 2010
1. Favorite band of last year (Phoenix) covers favorite act of my youth (Bob Dylan): world collapses in on itself. Fortunately I survived my encounter with this tune. Thomas Mars channels a very convincing Dylan, staying very true to the original "Sad Eyed Lady of the Lowlands" off the beyond essential, Blonde on Blonde. From personal favorite "Visions of Johanna" to classics "Just Like a Woman" and "Rainy Day Women #12 & 35" check out the original too - please. Phoenix - "Sad Eyed Lady of the Lowlands"
2. Animal Collective premiered their "visual album" at Sundance yesterday and have some screenings planned for NYC and Chicago in the next couple months (hopefully LA soon?). more info here: http://oddsac.com/. The 30 second teaser below is everything you would expect from an AC video: visually captivating and terrifying. Unfortunately not a lot of insight into the music in the teaser, but I was sold at "visual album".
3. Spoon's Transference came out last week and I have been listening to it non-stop. So hard to rank Spoon albums since all of them are truly fantastic, but they focus more here on textures with the same brilliant instrumental interplay. Britt's voice is as captivating and playful as ever on the melodies. Check out "Who Makes You Money" and "I Saw the Light" (especially the absolutely awesome piano solo / break starting at the 2 min mark). Best album of the year so far (a bit underwhelmed by the other big releases - Vamp Weekend, Beach House (though do check out "10 Mile Stereo" HERE which is an excellent track off a good album, and Surfer Blood).
4. Dirty Projectors weren't content to just rest of their laurels of "best of year" lists from nearly every publication or maybe just because of that they have given their fans a present. Single "Ascending Melody" (not featured on Bitte Orca, but from that session) has been released on their website for free: http://www.dirtyprojectors.net/. I like the single, but for me the highlight is the free b-side, "Emblem of the World". It is as simple as this band gets (or I would bet will get) - just a simple guitar strum, minimal drums and David Longstreth at his most harmonious.
5. I have already raved about Yeasayer's first single "Ampling Arp"; this single may just top that one. "One" - 80s disco infused good times. Free download here: http://www.yeasayer.net/. The rest of the album, Odd Blood, drops February 9th and it ain't too shabby, but these two are the absolute gems.
6. Check out this very cool video of El Perro De Mar joined by Lykke Li on an LA rooftop performing an acoustic version of "Change of Heart". Love this cover (and the original HERE). Check it out:
7. LASTLY, LCD Soundsystem and The National have new albums out this spring!!! The National are playing the Wiltern on May 22 and LCD Soundsystem as of now is playing Coachella on April 16th and hightailing for a European tour after that. More updates on these guys (and a massive Coachella primer posting) coming soon.
Not a bad start to the new decade...