Monthly Archives: April 2010

I want to feel sunlight on my face

Sometimes life is easy, and sometimes life is difficult. Sometimes, things get so tough that we end up turning to prayer. And when we just can’t pray anymore, then we still have hope left. Hope. Music. Love. Right now, that’s what we’ve got.

We’re beaten and blown by the wind
Trampled in dust…

Brother, this one’s for you.

It’s all I can do

U2 – Psalm 116 >> Where The Streets Have No Name

Subway Mix #2

Sorry for the lack of posting. Job searches, final projects, and the impending doom of finals are upon me. But despite all that (actually because of all of that) I’ve been taking the subway a heck of a lot lately – going back and forth between school and my apartment.

And so I present to you Subway Mix #2.

My Morning Jacket – Aluminum Park

Foreign Born – Blood Oranges

Neil Young & Crazy Horse – Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere

The Rolling Stones – Shine A Light

These United States – Conquest & Consequence

Wilco – Ashes Of American Flags

The Tallest Man On Earth: The Wild Hunt

“Joanna Newsom sounds like Joni Mitchell and The Tallest Man On Earth is just a Dylan copycat.”

Yes. I’m aware that some people think that. I know that these two artists have similar voices to said folk rock foreparents. But in no way does that make then unoriginal or without their own styles. While I’m still not ready to adequately review Joanna’s latest masterpiece (see here) I do think I can begin a review of The Tallest Man On Earth’s recent release, The Wild Hunt.

This is an artist who is fantastic in all three equally important areas of singer/songwriter music. He has mastered his instrument (the guitar), has perfected his vocal style (think of a Dylan with a good voice who isn’t afraid to let his voice jump around a bit), and has become quite the lyricist:

There is a crow moon comin’ in well you keep looking out
It is the hollow month of March now sweeping in
Let’s watch phenomenons that rise out of the darkness now
Within the light she is my storming heroine

So you naysayers can claim copycat all you like. Anyone who has their ears screwed on right will recognize this album as an original work; one that isn’t just different than a Dylan record, but one that has introduced some pretty awesome music to the world.

The Tallest Man On Earth – The Wild Hunt

Pearl Jam on Conan

Barbarossa

For those of you who don’t know yet, I’m a big fan of the Counting Crows, and basically anything Adam Duritz does. I know many of you will deride this and that’s ok. I like him not only despite his whiny complaints about his love life, but actually because of it. Maybe it’s a bit voyeuristic to see someone pour their heart out onstage like Adam does at every show, but then again, music is an emotional experience and Adam manages to make sure of that with every song.

Enter Sordid Humor. This late 80s alt rock outfit actually featured Adam on backing vocals for a few tracks, as well as David Immerglück (one of CC’s guitarists) as the bassist for a few songs.

And though Adam’s only singing the background parts, he manages to move the song from an alternative ditty, to an emotional ballad that would fit perfectly on any Crows album.

Enjoy!

Sordid Humor – Barbarossa

Israel Remembrance Day

Today is Israel’s Remembrance Day, a day when Israel mourns the loss of its nation’s soldiers and victims of terror. As everyone in the country has spent some time in the army, this is not like Memorial Day in America; there everyone knows someone who has died; everybody has someone to mourn for.

Since many of us are in school or at work, maybe we can take these songs as our own personal way to remember those who have fallen.

Elliott Smith – Memory Lane

Explosions In The Sky – Remember Me As A Time Of Day

Miles Davis – Israel

Wilco – I’ll Fight

Soundgarden: April 16, 2010

This one doesn’t need much of an intro. Soundgarden, one of the premier Seattle bands of the late 80s and early 90s, has finally reunited. Broken up in 1997, Soundgarden announced that they would be reuniting in late 2009, and played their first show in 13 years on Saturday night, April 16.

The show sounds pretty awesome, and Cornell can hit almost all of the absurdly high notes from their early songs. The band as a whole sounds pretty tight, as if they picked up where they left off in 1997.

Enjoy!

[Update: Both the zip file and the single song files have run out of bandwidth. Please check back again tomorrow. Sorry for the delay.]

Download a .zip file of the entire show here.

1. Soundgarden – Intro

2. Soundgarden – Spoonman Continue reading

Subway Mix 1

I’ve decided to introduce a new feature to this blog. As I have to take the subway every day to get to school, I spend a lot of time listening to music in transit. And while I haven’t been doing this enough, I really need to start making subway mixes. My transit from door to door comes to about 30 +/- 3 minutes on average, so I’m going to be rolling out a few mixes that are approximately 35 minutes, just in case there are any delays in transit.

I tried to include some old stuff, some new stuff, and some stuff you may not know yet. Enjoy!

Note: Songs are available for STREAM ONLY. If you like the song, buy the album.

The Morning Benders – Promises Continue reading

Deer Tick: 20 Miles

Stripped down, is a pretty good way to describe Deer Tick’s sound: minimalist blues/country with a touch of smoking and drinking in the vocals. Until today, however, I didn’t realize that they took the same approach to their website. Looking for info on their forthcoming album, I searched for Deer Tick, and made my way here. It looks like the Geocities page my high school band (we were called The Mazah Balls) put up.

Either way, John announced via the site that their new album, The Black Dirt Sessions will be out in May. Thanks to Stereogum, we have a song released (with the band’s permission, I think), which I’ll share with you today. Thank goodness they dropped the pop aspect of War Elephant for the angst ridden booze ballads of Born On Flag Day.

Here’s to hoping the rest of the album follows suit.

Deer Tick – 20 Miles

Joanna Newsom: Live in DC

I never got around to reviewing Joanna Newsom’s latest offering, Have One On Me, mostly because I couldn’t figure out where to start. It’s obviously an unbelievable album, but it’s so dense and difficult to comprehend that it makes the reviewer (me) a bit stumped as to how to properly review it.

And while there is a ton going on in the album that I still need to unpack, I’m happy to say that I found this recent Joanna concert to share with you. Surprisingly (at least to me), Joanna is able to replicate in her live show every one of the auras and atmospheres she swirls into each of the album tracks. The result is a magnificent live show that presents to us an young artist who is not only producing studio wonders, but has the ability to wow us onstage as well.

So please, I implore you to listen to this concert. Listen once, and understand that you may not fully get it at first. And then listen a second time. By then, your ears will convince you that subsequent plays are necessary, and that you must go out and purchase the album.  It’s that good.

1. Joanna Newsom – ’81

Continue reading