Friday, March 12, 2010

Japanther x 2 (old and new)

Wazza in the hizzie? Japanther, your favorite skuzz/noise pop punk band, are BACK! I thought it would be weird and wild to see how older Japanther would compare with newer Japanther. One of my favorite older records (okay so not OLDER, but 5 years old) is Master of Pigeons. It's interesting to see how all over the place the production and songwriting is on their earlier releases compared to their more composed and focused newer releases. Arguably what makes them charming is their "who gives a shit" attitude which is most pronounced on their earlier releases. However, in their new releases, we at least see them trying to give a little cohesion to their album's sound. Their new album, Rock 'n Roll Ice Cream, is much better than most of the stuff they've done in the past 3-4 years. But honestly, every Japanther album has it's ups and downs. But that's their charm for me. If they made an album that "blew me away" they wouldn't be Japanther. Take a look at the company they keep.... fellow Brooklyn indie rappers Ninjasonik. They have this self referential, just fucking around quality to their sound as well... it wouldn't work otherwise. They aren't trying to be Jay-z and Japanther aren't trying to be Radiohead. They are just having fun, writing catchy fast paced songs with quirky/silly lyrics. Sometimes, you need to take a break from heady arty indie rock and Japanther are a nice escape. Check em both out, because... well ... both are good, stupid.

Master Of Pigeons

Rock 'N' Roll Ice Cream

Monday, March 8, 2010

R.I.P. Mark Linkous aka Sparklehorse

Sad day, man... one of my favorite artists of all time took his own life. Look on this blog here for his full catalogue of LPs. Also here is a link for his collab with Fennesz here. Sadly the last thing he will probably release isn't of his own work but another collab with Dangermouse called Dark Night of the Soul here (I also wrote about it here but the link is broken). Who knows though, he was supposedly working on a new album, so maybe we'll eventually hear a posthumous album just like we got with Elliot Smith. Either way, I hope his family and friends are doing well and that they know his genius will be greatly missed. His music changed my life, that is for sure.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Take a Leak! (with me)

I'm gonna start this new thang on here that's gonna be called "Take a Leak". Every once in a while when an album leaks and I'm interested in it enough... I'll post it! Also, it's a double entendre... like I'm taking a piss, but really I'm talking about music. Why can't I write for magazines again? Anyhow... This time, on "Take a Leak", we have Frightened Rabbit, with their new LP The Winter of Mixed Drinks. I discovered Frightened Rabbit's last album, Midnight Organ Flight, very close to the end of 08. What I didn't know was that it was actually one of my favorites of 08 even though it only made it into the "honorable mention" section. Just goes to show what a little time and a couple more listens can do to an album. Still the album suffered from a few insincere moments and corn ball lyrics. But unfortunately, the best parts of the last album take a back seat and the worst parts are more prominent on this release. Maybe it's because the singer is "happy" with his life (what a dick) and now he can't write his sardonic, rip the heart out of my chest, fuck the world lyrics that made his last release so much fun. That's not to say that the lyrics here are "happy", in fact quite the opposite. However, they DO feel more contrived this time around. All of that I could've lived with, but there is a lack of drive with the music. Sure it's not BAD, but it's a bit of a disappointment and a unfortunate departure from their last great effort. I guess we can only hope the singer gets his heart broken or has someone die that he really cares about or something. It's for the sake of your art, brah. (KIDDING). Who knows though... this is so new it could end up having the same effect on me as the last album. Check back with me in a month or two... I could be eating my words.

The Winter of Mixed Drinks

Just in case you don't have it yet

I was gonna post this like two weeks ago... but I was too busy listening to it. NON STOP. UNTIL RIGHT NOW. That's how long this thing is. Also, hyperbole is THE GREATEST THING IN THE WORLD. But yeah mang, this is GOOD. I mean, if you are into the idea of an epic of lyrical grandeur, this shit is right up your alley. Sometimes I feel like Newsom just uses music as a pedistal for her poetry. That's not saying that her music takes a backseat, like some spoken word jazz or something. But it's more about the build, the emotions that she transferes to the words to inflate their meaning to a greater realm. So, sit down. Grab the lyrics online. Put on some headphones. Clear out the rest of your day (seriously), and get ready to have your world rocked.

Have One on Me