Monday, November 30, 2009

Song of the Day


Band of Skulls - Friends

-------------Band of Skulls must have a friend who's been secretly sending their music to record labels and vampire authors. The British rock trio were suprised the movie's music supervisors even knew who they were. Nonetheless, the slow-bopping tambourine tapper "Friends" pledges allegiance to bar hopping and weekend devotions to best pals with more commercial appeal than the band may have expected. They played up Thanksgiving at The Neighborhood Theater, a hometown venue in Charlotte, NC, and if my tummy wasn't so obese with greenbean casserole and stuffing, I'd have seen them. Get "Friends" from the New Moon soundtrack (sorry...I wish it was on another album). But if you want to hear more Band of Skulls, check out "Death By Diamonds and Pearls" and "I Know What I Am" from their debut album Baby Darling Doll Face Honey.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Song of the Day


The Dead Weather - Treat Me Like Your Mother
------------Jack White's got another project, and when I found out about The Dead Weather and the celeb-hipster following it accumulated, I had my reservations. The Rancounters wasn't anything wildly impressive, and while Icky Thump resurrected The White Stripes just in time for festival performances, it was nothing too special.

The Dead Weather has a more reckless, uninhibited outlaw grunge to it, though, and it's sounding more and more appealing with every listen. "Treat Me Like Your Mother" sounds like a segway into the perfect incestuous-undertoned creeper song, but its a renegade bang-bang shoot-em-up barage of intimidating lyrics that's looking to start a bar fight. Get "Treat Me" from The Dead Weather's 2009 album, Horehound.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Song of the Day


Visceral - So Far Apart

--------------Trolling the interweb on a Saturday night - pretty much as dorky-schmorky as you can get, right? I'm not complaining here, I've stumbled upon the likes of Dallas quintet Visceral. They've got a big-venue, Warped Tour stage quality about their thoughtful punky melodies that I must give a nod to. Though they're unsigned, Epitaph might wanna scoop these guys up to make them labelmates with the likes of New Found Glory and Sing Out Loud.

Visceral has a couple of shows coming up in the lone star state, but I'm keeping my guitar-shredded fingers crossed these guys will jump into a big van and make their way east. Get "So Far Apart" from their August release Rapture.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Song of the Day


JEFF the Brotherhood - Mind Ride

-------------Mind control never sounded so badass with engine chugging guitars that skips right into an even more ominous, uptempo punk rip. The lyrics may not be so seductive, but there's no denying the magnetic draw of this Nashville group. JEFF the Brotherhood may not be best bros with popularity right now (only a handful of friends and Myspace plays), but that isn't stopping their garage grunge music from being played on tour through North Carolina, Virginia and Canada this winter. Check out other songs "U Got the Look" and "Bone Jam" from the band's LP Heavy Days.

*P.S. the link is at the top of the page, because technology decided to be high as a kite today.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Seven Songs For Black Friday

Black Friday:
Songs to Fuel the Commercial Sensation
------Look at that line for Target! If I wanted a plasma screen TV for 30 bucks or a jade tupperwear organizer, I'd go to Ebay on any given Sunday rather than Black Friday. I've heard people brave the midnight doorbusters for the "experience" and "people watching." If you want to know what the world will look like before its end, it's probably this.
If you have decided to save big and waste time standing in line for a couple of hours, you should start it off right with some essential, get-in-the-zone-for-shopping playlist.
1. Billy Bragg - The Busy Girl Buys Beauty
**This punky alliteration tells a tale between the babe and the broad, the one who buys whatever satisfies her material heart and the lonely lady who can't rub two pennies together for a pair of Doc Martens.
2. Barrett Strong - Money (That's What I Want)
**Black Friday may not be the cup of tea you wanted to chug before heading out the door at 2 a.m. Strong knows the pain of being broke and still having to spend (especially on the opposite sex). Fellas, you've got an empty-walleted friend in "Money (That's What I Want)."
3. The Steve Miller Band - Take the Money and Run
**Screw buying crap - why not just rob and run? The heartland boys of Steve Miller seem to be alright with it, but I'd make sure you aren't around any mall cops if you're planning on playing a Friday Bonnie and Clyde.
4. Sublime - Pawn Shop
**Maybe your Black Friday involves buying something you can't find on a shelf, but more likely in a pocket. The six-minute sketcher is perfect if you're feeling pretty damn mellow about your newest purchase.
5. Lil' Wayne feat. T Pain - Got Money
**Probably the track you want to play right before bursting through the push or automatic doors. "Got Money" is thug pop at its prime with a whole lot of ego, and you'll be taking it out of your pocket all day long for your steals and deals. When you're buying a 50-pack of toilet paper, why not feel a little fresher?
6. Madonna - Material Girl
** Why wouldn't you put the anthem of all 80's shopping songs on this mix?! Many think Madge was on to something when she said the boy with the cold hard cash is always Mr. Right. Even if you hate the message, you can't hate the bitchin' beats from "Material Girl."
7. Kanye West feat. Jamie Foxx - Gold Digger
**At the end of the day, money curses us all, and if we can't see the magic being cast from it, we'll be spellbound for life. West and Foxx are more than jaded by the ladies with too much to ask for, hence the sampling of Ray Charle's "I Got a Woman" to create "Gold Digger." Boys, buena suerte on Black Friday, especially if you're being dragged along by your lady to hold the purse and swipe the plastic.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Song of the Day


Anya Marina - Whatever You Like

--------------Covers can be oh- so good a little bearable ,or oh- so lame, but Anya Marina's adaptation of T.I.'s "Whatever You Like" couldn't be better. The San Diego songwriter has penned music featured on scandalous tv shows the likes of Grey's Anatomy, The Real World and Gossip Girl. So why is Marina's "Whatever You Like" everything you want? The vibe drops from playa pimp to simple seductress with Marina's coy vocals and mischeviously simple instrumentals. Check out "Whatever You Like" on this nifty Youtube clip:

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Song of the Day


Dinner and a Suit - Long Drive Home

-----------You'll always look presentable and suave when you dress for the occasion. The Jersey based Dinner and a Suit are looking pretty dapper indeed, what with a buzz on and the now available Safe to Say playing on their myspace page. The getup that dresses Dinner and a Suit shoes of Augustana, pants of Stellamaris and jacket of Citizen Cope - the rest of the outfit is up to your discretion.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Song of the Day


Them Crooked Vultures - New Fang

-------------Before heading home today, I decided I needed a somewhat reckless, impulsive but researched album purchase for the road. Them Crooked Vultures was my answer, and with a trio of John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin), Joshua Homme (Queens of the Stone Age) and Dave Grohl (Foo Fighters), I eagerly expected greatness. "New Fang" is slightly scathing and admittedly confused in its lyrics, but the barhouse jam drums and sexily-whining guitar riffs are like a shot of Jack Daniels in a muscle car. Get "New Fang" from Them Crooked Vultures self titled 2009 album.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Song of the Day


I.Y.A.Z. - Replay

----------------I'm excited for this SOTD - for some reason the Akon-echo and minimalist sentiments of "Replay" can't get out of my head. The sing-along chorus feels good and reminds us of the melodies that make us smile everyday.

So who's this reggae/ R&B rapper from the Virgin Islands and how the heck does he have a top download on itunes? I.Y.A.Z. is the first signee of Sean Kingston's label Time Is Money Entertainment, T.I.M.E., a division of Warner Brothers. J.R. Rotem's synth-heavy production is surely a radio hit (don't kill me- I haven't been listening to the FM or XM streams as of late). Get "Replay" anywhere - itunes, as a ringtone whatever - just listen!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Song of the Day

Justin Beiber - One Time
-----------------Jo Bros ain't got nothing on this 15-year old Canadian heartthrob. No lie, kids - this pint-sized tweenage thug was responsible for causing a thousand-fan riot at a mall in Garden City before he even reached the mall. The VP of Island-Def Jam Records was arrested for failing to control the crowd.

This kid has a swagger like a Jackson Five Micheal and the sweet white boy appeal of Jesse McCartney. I've gotta say I am now responsible for a couple more hits on the already ten million strong Youtube vids, which are delightfully wholesome with bicycles and smiles. And when your vid features a call on your iphone from Usher, you've got more game than COD 2: Modern Warfare.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Anberlin, All-American Rejects and Taking Back Sunday

Matt Rubano taught me some valuable life lessons that day. First of all, the most attractive couples stand at a two-thirds height ratio. Second, even though I do not fit the height requirements for the two-thirds ratio (I'm a few inches taller), we're still perfect. Thanks, Matt - sorry I couldn't come up with a better milk joke.

Apparently, the Rejects were riding around in the Rock of Love bus? Not sure which one it is in this shot, but if you see some of the Blondetourage puking in the bus bathroom, you've found it.

This little pooch could brighten a day better than a box of Crest Whitestrips. Her name is Jackie, and she tours around with the Rejects in style and grace. I didn't want to let her go!

Tell me this isn't the coolest, most nerd-tastic drum you have ever seen with two eyes - or one.

Rejects set list, joke list, and Taking Back Sunday set list. If you're wondering the origins of the "no skating" joke, if you take your board out almost anywhere here, you'll be slapped with a $50 ticket. Sorry, guys!

This gentleman made me jealous for a while.
Axes of rock? You'd better believe I was itching to play one of the dozens surrounding me all day.

Nick Wheeler in the throes of playing. All I can say about Wheeler is - what a cool dude. Found out he digs the new Bon Jovi album while driving him to a local fitness center, and his affinity for running is something this former cross country runner can appreciate. Thanks for the paisley tux.

Mike Kennerty flinging his mullet to the crowd.

The Rejects in blue.
Tyson Ritter during the show. Looks like I took a gigantic swipe over it to blur the colors.

Now here's a guy who always needs to play. Chris was wandering around backstage tapping away on his practice drum up until soundcheck. He was sporting a killer festive holiday sweater in sherbret orange, which I suppose says it's almost Thanksgiving, but I'm stoked for Christmas.

Nick Wheeler and Tyson Ritter.

The smallest crowd the Rejects will probably ever play again. They were the last to have their check, and the commotion had died down quite nicely. I took this during a pause in skating around the pit with one of the guy's boards lying around. I figured as long as I didn't crash into the soundboards, I was free to roam around without consequence.

All-American Rejects sound check.
Essentially the same photograph with light. The TBS banner hanging behind O'Connell is a BIG mother - if you thought folding your bedsheets was a big task, try that sucker. Props to the people who do it every show.
Matt Fazzi. The newest member of Taking Back Sunday is from San Jose, and being a Moragan myself, we talked about the Golden State during Anberlin's soundcheck.
I want to extend my gratitude the crew and members of Anberlin, All-American Rejects and Taking Back Sunday for a fantastic show and a very enjoyable, unforgettable day. The appreciation I could express wouldn't be able to fit into this post without people rolling their eyes and saying "enough, already!"
From chilling out with Jackie the AAR tour pooch and scooting around on a skateboard through the dressing rooms during the precious downtime, to the Red Bull and tattoo discussions we shared, the day spent backstage was marvelous. Please enjoy the photos and little anecdotes that go with them.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Song of the Day


deadmau5 - Ghosts n' Stuff

--------------In the music business, one thing is for sure: ya gotta tour. Deadmau5 takes this golden nugget of advice seriously. When you look at the Myspace page for the mouse-headed DJ, his tour list is longer than an encyclopedia index. One his 4-moAdd Imagenth gagillion date tour, ravers and techno-trance lovers all over the world will bob, sway, and tecktonik the night away in tune with deadmau5's hypnotic beats.

"Ghosts n' Stuff" - if I could describe it in the most nerdy way possible, it sounds like The Phantom of the Opera at the afterparty. An ominous pipe-organ laid over deep synth with a paranoid, breaking beat makes "Ghosts n' Stuff" a fantastically paranoid song.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Song of the Day


Between the Buried and Me - Obfuscation

--------------As I listened to the opening riffs to "Mirrors," the first track of BTBAM's October 27th release, The Great Misdirect, I thought to myself, question mark? Are these the same hardcore hometown heroes that I have died over not seeing at the Orange Peel this past Halloween? They've gone softer than butter in an EasyBake!

Then the album launched into "Obfuscation," and I breathed a sigh of relief. Course BTBAM wouldn't let me down - an offensive amount of chugging percussion, Tommy Rogers throwing mouthfulls into the mic, and lengthy, beautifully executed interludes. The band nailed this number at the Lincoln Theatre in Raleigh, North Carolina in September, giving fans a first taste at what was to come on the album. I'm confident that whether or not you're a fan of Between the Buried and Me's pre or post 2005 lineup change, you'll enjoy The Great Misdirect. The moral of the story - never judge an album by its first track.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Song of the Day


Momentary Prophets - Little Bird

--------------For some reason, the weather decided to shift from a cloudy, misty hole of depression to a smiling warm June day in the middle of November. I feel all granola-ed out; went on a 3-mile hike in sandals with some friends and took a cruise about the parkway. It was a lovely day, and it merits a somewhat down-home, folky sound to wrap up the day.

Momentary Prophets came through town for a show last week, and their album Sunflower fell into my lap for some reviewing. "Little Bird" sounds most similar to an uplifting "Blackbird," that could have been penned by Iron and Wine, but instead is quietly sung by this group from Manassas, Virginia. Take a listen, and if you so desire, check out other key tracks "Dogwood Blossom" and the Avett Brothers-style "Grass and Moss."

Friday, November 13, 2009

To Write Love on Her Arms - Song of the Day

Dustin Kensrue - Blanket of Ghosts
--------------For those of you who are not familiar with To Write Love on Her Arms Day, I want to direct you to the website instead of me stumbling over a pacified, dumbed-down version of the story behind its creation.

To the ones who are familiar with TWLOHA, I hope you had a good day, even though it may have been a day to remember some times when you or someone close didn't have it all together. My fingers are crossed that those days have passed.

Dustin Kensrue's "Blanket of Ghosts" is a slow prayer for "springtime in heaven" and strength to continue on, a deeply spiritual and emotionally loaded message to lost souls and broken spirits. While this may not seem like the most cheerful messages to send on a day like today, I think the more we remember that we aren't invincible, the less we take things for granted. Perhaps this song will help remind us to thank our loved ones for being there, even if only for a moment. Get "Blanket of Ghosts" from Kensrue's 2007 album, Please Come Home.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Song of the Day

Hey Monday - How You Love Me Now
---------------No wonder everyone hates Mondays. This is not a song of any sort of day, unless this is the day you've decided a hybrid of sissy rock mixed with Taylor Swift is your new "cool" band to shake your tushy to. Seriously, Hey Monday - what the hell?! You sound almost, no, exactly like Tay-Swift in a Glamour Kills tee with Wayfarers and hipster hair. If you like Hey Monday, you probably like The Jonas Brothers, the Movie Camp Rock, you're 12, or think this band is a clever alternative to Miley Cyrus.

I'm sad to say this band is from Florida, a prolific pop-punk haven with much higher standards. I can't understand for the life of my polka-dot Vans slip-ons why they have scored 25,000,000 + views on their Myspace page. And if I had a nickel for every chick that looked, sounded and wrote like Cassadee Pope, I'd be writing this post from my penthouse on Fifth Avenue.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Song of the Day


Kings of Leon - My Party

--------------Believe me, it was impossible for me to pick my favorite Kings of Leon song for tonight's post. I mean, Because of the Times is so riddled with spooky howls, dumbfoundingly sexy guitar riffs, and lyrics to seduce, entertain, and tantalize the listener, it makes other southern rock albums sound like crummy barnyard demos.
My Party has a whirling energy that is as manly as red meat yet teasingly provocative at the same time. The lyrics are quietly malicious, but when Caleb Followill sings it, the sting is evident. Get My Party from the Kings of Leon album, Because of the Times.
Fun Fact: All of Kings of Leon albums have five syllables in them. Try it!

Key Tracks: Arizona, Ragoo, Camaro, McFearless

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Photos from Thrice and Brand New

Here they are! All these shots were taken with a Canon Powershot SD1100 IS, and even if you do know what that means, you probably have a savvy-enough knowledge of photography to know that this is a very mediocre camera. But hey, I'm a blogger, not Annie Leibowitz! Enjoy.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Song of the Day

Young Soul Rebels - Shot
---------ATTENTION: All fans of The Fratellis, The Hives, The Kinks, The Kooks, you get the idea - Young Soul Rebels is your new, pearly gateway to brit-punk heaven. Young Soul Rebels are a quintet of blokes from Brighton, who brighten up the cloudy and somewhat seriousness of punk with some rascally fun.

Funny story behind this discovery of music, or musicovery. I saw the name Young Soul Rebels on the Billboard charts backing up a remake of War Child's "I Got Soul." When I Googled YSR, I ended up coming across this band. Peculiar how the world wide web can lead you to an entirely different world than what you expected!

In other news, Brand New tonight. It's been on the bucket list of bands for many music lovers around me, and I wish deeply that they could go with me to share in the experience. Take it from me - when you're going to see the right band for the right time in your life, the journey is beyond meaningful. Enjoy Young Soul Rebels, and if you're going, I hope to see you at the show!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Song of the Day


Eisley - Brightly Wound

------------Why haven't I heard of Eisley before? The four siblings and cousin quintet have been together for about 12 years now, producing ten albums and an enormous amount of righteous dudette indie rock from Tyler, Texas, so I am ashamed that I haven't known of their existence until now. Thank you, Jess!

Eisley is named after the town in the Star Wars trilogy called Mos Eisley, which I only mention because it is fantastically nerdy and appropriately cool. The song "Brightly Wound" dances slowly around a child-like piano and lyrics painted with innocence and Neverland fantasy. Get "Brightly Wound" from Eisley's 2005 album Room Noises.

**If you click on the headline for today's song, it'll take you to a sweet clip of Eisley singing "Brightly Wound" live from Austin, Texas.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Song of the Day


On Paradise Boulevard - Photographic Memory

------------Searching through my inbox today, I found a message from On Paradise Boulevard. I had never heard of them before, and from their name I assumed they would be another sweet-smiled generic pop punk band that, let's face it, we all love, but have seen before.

On Paradise Boulevard is far from sweet sentiments and mall-rat status. With a new bassist, a handful of five new tracks recently recorded in Ohio, and tour dates lined up through Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama, OPB's schedule is packed as tightly as their melodic hardcore sound.

On Paradise Boulevard describes their musical endeavors as "5 dudes doing what they love most and jamming as hard as shit." Need they, or I, say more? "Photographic Memory" can be heard on OPB's Myspace page along with some pre-production tracks.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Off and About...

-----------I hope everyone remembered remembered the fifth of November yesterday. Well, I remembered that, but forgot to mention that I purchased Liz Phair's Exile in Guyville yesterday. I so far like it for it's road trip-esque sound and how Phair's voice is so divinely alto that she sounds like a guy in some songs. Songs like "Fuck and Run," "Mesmerizing" and "Johnny Sunshine" are some key tracks. Have fun getting in touch with your inner 90's she-power rock.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Thursday Night with moe.

AT&T will be contacting me soon about this "Raising the Bar" shot.

An abandoned mic on the soundboard bigger than Buffalo, NY (where moe. was formed in 1990).

Here are some shots from moe., a band I had quite honestly never listened to before tonight when I worked their show. I handled the merch table with a nice chap named John, who's been on tour with the band for the past two years. His brother, Rob Derhak, is John's younger brother and bassist/vocals in the band. Family support never ceases to make me smile.
Given the fact that moe. has produced more than 17 albums in their 20 years, you can bet their shows operate like a well-oiled machine. The show was a fun and smooth bit to work, and I'm glad I found out what moe. actually sounds like.