Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Tunng, live on Fair Game, 10-29-2007

Those Caribou songs will be back up shortly. Speaking of Caribou, according to Last.fm, people who like the band Tunng also like Caribou, as Caribou is the top similar artist on Last. How 'bout that. Anyway, queer coincidence that Faith Salie had the Tunng experience on her Fair Game show yesterday. It's a metaphysical collision sending out ripples of harmonic love. This is why there's a folk revolution, by the way. Because it's colorful and freaking good.

Tunng - Live on Fair Game (10-29-2007) (mp3s):

Jenny Again

Own Good Arrows

Monday, October 29, 2007

Caribou - Live on MBE 10-26-2007

Caribou brought psychedelic rock brilliance to the studio for KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic last Friday.

By the way, how good was last week for live internet music? This week's looking pretty damn good, too.

Caribou - Live on KCRW (10-26-2007) (mp3s):

She's The One
Melody Day

Own Andorra

Thursday, October 25, 2007

The Shins - Live Acoustic on Fair Game 10-25-2007

James Mercer and Eric Johnson of The Shins played a shimmering mixtape-ready 3-song acoustic set for Faith Salie's Fair Game today. This is going to make you pick up the acoustic, so have it ready.

The Shins - Live, Acoustic on Fair Game 10-25-2007 (mp3s):

Girl Sailor
Phantom Limb

Own Wincing the Night Away.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Coconut Records = Jason Schwartzman

He laid down the beats for Phantom Planet's California years ago, and now Jason Schwartzman, a.k.a. "Coconut Records," pines for The West Coast, which would so have made an episode or two of The O.C. I think I'll listen to it and look at some pictures of Rachel Bilson. Pardon me. There's no excuse for this.

Posting From The Playlist

The Drones

I was just sitting here, thinking about what to post tonight, while listening to The Cockeyed Lowlife of the Highlands (mp3), recorded live this year at the Hultsfredsfestivalen in Sweden, by The Drones, who can teach you a thing or two about how to make a big nasty rock and roll noise. They're on tour, so check them out when they come to a town near you. They also have a forthcoming 7" vinyl "Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue" thingy, which is "limited to just 1000 pieces, 100 of them will be special edition silk screened printed covers, numbered and signed by the sleeve designer." If you're lucky you'll be able to buy one.

So anyway, while I'm thinking about what to post, the next song up on my playlist is the obscure funk gem Words To My Song by Dry Bread, which I decide not to post, because that song led me to listen to 7 minutes and 19 seconds of rousing funk, with oh-so-tight drums you wish you could play. The song I decided to post: Jay Mitchell's Tighter & Tighter (mp3).

Own Cult Cargo: Grand Bahama Goombay..

Also own The Drones' raw Gala Mill.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

The Fiery Furnaces, Live on KCRW 10-23-2007

The Fiery Furnaces brought a sonic carnival to KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic today. They played 10! Glorious! Songs! O! Ecstasy! Every brilliant word savored. I burned the show onto a CD and...dare I? Dare I consider it one of my top 20 "albums" of 2007?

The Fiery Furnaces - Live on KCRW, 10-23-2007 (mp3s):

Duplexes of the Dead
Automatic Husband
My Egyptian Grammar
Japanese Slippers/Widow City
Navy Nurse
The Philadelphia Grand Jury
Clear Signal From Cairo

Own the highly recommended Widow City, full of pleasing musical tricks and acrobatics.

Monday, October 22, 2007

The Go! Team - Live on KCRW 10-22-2007

The Go! Team brought youth's thunder to the KCRW studio, scintillating today's Morning Becomes Eclectic show. Their last KCRW show, which we posted last January, seemed unsurpassable. It wasn't - it just took the Go! Team to kick the Go! Team's asses.

The Go! Team - Live on KCRW 10-22-2007 (mp3s):

Grip Like A Vice
The Wrath Of Marcie
Fake I.D.
Flashlight Fight
Titanic Vandalism
Doing It Right
A Version Of Myself
Key To The City

Own Proof of Youth.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

The New Pornographers - Live on MPR, 10-17-2007

The New Pornographers played three songs for Minnesota Public Radio's The Current last Wednesday. I've got tickets to see them this weekend at The Trocadero in Philadelphia. There are still tix available. If I'll see you there, drop me a line.

The New Pornographers - Live on MPR's The Current, 10-17-2007 (mp3s):

All The Old Show Stoppers
My Rights Versus Yours
Adventures In Solitude

Own Challengers

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Le Loup, Live on KEXP, 10-15-2007

Washington, D.C's Le Loup played this live set from CMJ for KEXP yesterday, at the Gibson Showroom. It was glorious dynamic overload. Sonic ecstacy.

Le Loup - Live from the Gibson Showroom in NYC, 10-15-2007 (mp3s):

Look To The West
Le Loup (Fear Not)
To The Stars! To The Night!
Sea Took Me
I Had A Dream I Died

The Throne of the Third Heaven of the N is highly recommended.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, Live on Fair Game 10-11-2007

Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings' new album, 100 Days, 100 Nights, will stand the nearly impassable test of time and go down as one of this year's indispensable albums. A famous philosopher said "nothing great in the world has been accomplished without passion," and on this CD, and in yesterday's in-studio performance for Faith Salie's Fair Game, you feel the passion in every note and every syllable Ms. Jones summons from her embonpoint.

Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings - Live on Fair Game (10-11-2007)(mp3s):

Let Them Knock
100 Days, 100 Nights
Nobody's Baby
Keep On Lookin'

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Nellie McKay - Obligatory Villagers

The first thing that struck me about Nellie McKay's new album, Obligatory Villagers, is that it was recorded in the small town of Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania, about 3 miles from my grandparents' house in the infinitesimal town of Sciota, PA. Many of my fondest childhood memories are from that vast and solid 2-story white house, with a coal cellar, and heated by a coal stove. The meandering McMichael's creek was twenty steps from the front porch. At the end of the single-lane road to the right of the house, a historic grist mill overlooks a gentle waterfall, which spills under a small bridge that used to shelter us from rain as we fished for eel on summer nights.

On the back cover of the CD case, McKay dedicates this recording "to the memory of the Swiftwater Inn, Mount Airy Lodge, Henryville House, and the many other fast disappearing landmarks of the Poconos."

I thought for a moment that maybe she was getting soft. And then, before listening, I started reading the lyrics, and there was the bite, already, in the fifth line of the first song, Mother of Pearl, in which she rails against anti-feminists:

they say
child molestation isn't funny
rape and degradation's just a crime
rampant prostitution
sex for money
can't these chicks to anything but whine

This ain't her Walden or Life In The Woods. This is still pure Nellie spunk and wit. Having read through the lyrics, though, I wondered where the fun was. After all, you can find all the commentary you need, and most that you don't, in the papers and blogs. How does the listener make a connection to these songs?

The music, of course. A word of advice: if you don't have the album yet, and you plan on buying it (which the Smudge recommends), don't make the mistake of reading the lyrics before listening to the music. Not that they're bad - on the contrary, they're characteristically brilliant, loaded with internal rhyme, interrupted meter, and a buttload of vocabulary. What you won't get from the lyrics alone is the balance that the playful and tightly played jazz provides.

The line "I've got no reason to live," from Politan, sounds much more comforting with a latin jazz background and flamenco guitar accents than it does sitting on the cold white page. And Zombie is pure musical fun, with a strutting bass line and a Halloween organ setting the stage for sax injections and human growls.

Sure, the teeth are still clenched, and the bitterness hasn't exactly been washed away by the peace of Pennsylvania creeks. Obligatory Villagers a strange and compelling marriage of hip jazz and whip-smart feminist anger. So this is what artistic freedom sounds like.

Nellie McKay - Politan (mp3)
Nellie Mckay - Zombie (mp3)

From Obligatory Villagers.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Murder Ballad

I hate rap because it is morally degrading to our society, and the people that live in it, namely today’s youth...Rap teaches kids that violence is okay. It is mentioned so frequently, and so off-hand, that it seems like it is no big deal...

- from Rap: How it's Ruining Today's Youth and Screwing Up America on the recently hackedRepublicanVoices.org.

The times, they are a' changin'?

Carolina Buddies - The Murder of the Lawson Family (mp3)

From People Take Warning!: Murder Ballads & Disaster Songs 1913-1938.

Monday, October 08, 2007

The Fiery Furnaces on Fair Game

The Smudge did not die. It was just hibernating as I moved into a new house, short notice, and shortly thereafter I was distrait with overwork. But we're back.

The universe may now continue with its daily business.

What better way to announce our return than with The Fiery Furnaces' impromptu in-studio version of Japanese Slippers, recorded live for my favorite PRI show, Faith Salie's Fair Game.

Matt: Is there a piano in the studio?
Faith: Yes, there ii-iiiisssss.
Matt: If you don't mind us playing very badly.

The Fiery Furnaces - Japanese Slippers (Live on Fair Game, 10-5-2007)(mp3)

Own The Fiery Furnaces' Widow City, out tomorrow.