Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Calexico, Live on MPR's The Current, 11-25-2008

The Daily Flashback: Elliott Smith - Jealous Guy (Live)

This is the perfect companion to the earlier mp3 post.

Okkervil River - Jealous Guy (Lennon) (Live, München, Germany)

Best thing I've heard this month.

Okkervil River - Jealous Guy (John Lennon)(Live, Die Registratur, München, Germany, 11-18-2008) (mp3)

Also, from the same performance:

Unless It's Kicks (mp3)

Torrent on Dimeadozen.

Order Okkervil River's latest album on the sidebar.

Monday, November 24, 2008

The Daily Flashback: Rick Springfield - The Human Touch

Before Neo made choices in The Matrix, there was...Rick Springfield, who was "The One" in 2016, back in 1983.

Deerhoof - Live on KEXP, 11-21-2008

"San Francisco noise-pop experimentalists Deerhoof play an exclusive set for KEXP at CMJ live from Gibson Studios in New York. Recorded on 10/20/08 - 4 songs: Blue Cash, The Tears and Music of Love, Fresh Born, Basket Ball Get Your Groove Back" - KEXP Live Performances

Download the performance as mp3 here.

Bob & Bill

Bob & Bill explore improvisational possibilities in electronic music. It's a sort of chaos within boundaries - coloring inside the lines, but with wild, free strokes of the crayon.

Bob & Bill - Mr. Rember (mp3)

Bob & Bill - Night (mp3)

Bob & Bill - Maria's Bone (mp3)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Blue Giant (Viva Voce + Decemberist + Sleater Kinney) EP available now.


Blue Giant's Target Heart EP just became available yesterday, and it's already an eMusic pick. I've been listening to their songs on their myspace for several months now. Really, I return for this song, a beautiful southern strum, with melancholy chord changes complemented with slow, steady pedal steel and patiently paced electric arpeggios, and Anita Robinson singing sadly, convincingly, with her husband at her side:

She's a lonely girl
needles and pins
the weight of the world
oh
she's thinking about
that lucky break
that's all it takes
i'll leave in the morning.

talk
talk of the town
always in love
but it's never enough
oh
she keeps thinking about
what they might say
and leaving anyway
in the morning.


Whatever country music is, was, or is supposed to be, this is what I would love to hear more of - songs that target the heart, not with oversentiment, but with simple declarations of regret or yearning.

Blue Giant - Lonely Girl (mp3)

The Daily Flashback: Doublemint Gum Commercial (1985)

For no particular reason. Just because.

Conor Oberst, Live at the 9:30 Club, 11-10-2008 (NPR podcast)

Conor Oberst played the 9:30 Club this weekend, and NPR was there to broadcast and record the show. Listen to it here (mp3).

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Blitzen Trapper, Live on The Current, 11-8-2008

Jessica Lea Mayfield

Pitchfork gave Jessica Lea Mayfield's With Blasphemy So Heartfelt a solid 8.2 rating, meaning that a lot of people are going to be looking into her. A good place to look is WOXY.com, where she played a live in-studio set a couple of weeks ago. Download here (mp3).

Monday, November 10, 2008

The Daily Flashback - 21 Jump Street: Brad Pitt & Johnny Depp

Yes, Brad Pitt guest starred on 21 Jump Street, as a high school kid in a letterman jacket.

Laura Marling - The Captain and the Hourglass



Behind every tree is a cutting machine and a kite fallen from grace
Inside every man is a heart of sand; you can see it in his face.
He’ll tick tick tick tick tick tick tick away.
Another second lost with every fallen grain.


Laura Marling - The Captain And The Hourglass (mp3)

From Alas I Cannot Swim

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Conor Oberst, Live at Other Music, Summer '08

For you Conor Oberst fans, you know who you are, this is an amazing performance from summer 2008. Josh Modell from OtherMusic says:
The band rolled into the shop during a short promo tour when the album came out this summer. We raffled off 100 tickets, and hundreds more fans showed up on the off chance that they could sneak in, or even just sneak a peak at their hero. For a shop like Other Music, where fans and artists tend to casually mingle on a daily basis, it was more than a little overwhelming, as Oberst was mobbed at every turn.

But that is just hype, the real story was the performance, which, especially in the confines of our tiny space, was simply stunning. Raw and passionate and hauntingly beautiful, that band ran through much of their new album and added in a few surprises, and I don't think that anyone who saw the show could have been unmoved.



Friday, November 07, 2008

The Daily Flashback: Family Ties - "The Real Thing"

Alex and Ellen/Michael and Tracy. Yes, it was an 80's sitcom, and yes, there was a script, but at the same time, you could tell it was real.

The Dears, Live on KEXP

The Dears went acoustic for yesterday's in-studio on KEXP.

Here it is:

The Dears (Live on KEXP, 11-6-2008)(mp3s):

Crisis 1 & 2
Dream Job
Lights Off
Money Babies

Thursday, November 06, 2008

The Kills - Tape Song (Video)

Video for single Tape Song, taken from the album Midnight Boom, which is out now. The video contains footage filmed by the band while on tour in the US with The Raconteurs.

The Daily Flashback: Pete Townshend - Let My Love Open The Door (Live, Solo on VH1)

I watched this as it aired, taped it, and then lost it. This Thanksgiving season, I am thankful for YouTube.

The Dears and The Secret Machines on KEXP today.



The Dears and The Secret Machines are performing live in-studio sets for KEXP today, at 12:00 and 3:00 (3:00 and 6:00 Eastern). Be there.

The Dears - Demons (mp3)

Order their brand-new albums, The Dears' Missiles and Secret Machines

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

The Daily Flashback: "V: The Final Battle" - The Birthing Scene

Awwww, twins!!

Umalali Live

The Smudge has gone quirky today.

From the KEXP podcast site:

Umalali is a group of musicians from Belize, Honduras and Guatemala that blends the vocal stylings of the Garifuna women with rock, blues, funk, African, Latin and Caribbean music. The Garifuna people are descendants of African slaves who intermarried with the Carib and Arawak Indians of the Caribbean. You’ll be amazed by the unique beauty of this live KEXP performance.


Umalali - Live on KEXP 10-31-2008 (mp3)

Ra Ra Riot Ukelele Session

The mood today is giddy and strange - a full moon mood. The posts will accompany the mood.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

The Daily Flashback: Election 1988

With today's election, the negative presidential campaigning will be over. At least until 2012. Check out this CNN exploration of the 1988 campaigns:

Monday, November 03, 2008

The Daily Flashback: Patty Smyth & Scandal - The Warrior

They're on tour now, playing at Ram's Head in Annapolis on Friday.
Yes, seriously.

Electric Owls - These Days (Jackson Browne)

About a year before Hot Fuss was released, The Killers played in front of about two dozen people at the Black Cat in DC. Nobody knew what they were seeing, but most of the people in the crowd were visibly stirred before their show ended. The band opened for Stellastarr, and TV on the Radio played the backstage downstairs. The Killers left the stage with moderate applause from not-yet adoring fans.

Fast-forward to this weekend: on Saturday night, Electric Owls (aka Andy Herod of The Comas) played the Black Cat, almost solo acoustic, opening for Bishop Allen. His accompaniment was his laptop, placed neatly on a comfortable-looking wooden chair on stage. A few people in the audience quipped "He should be called Electric OWL." If you paid close attention, though, and if you used your imagination, you could see and hear a full band behind Andy, who reminded me of a young Lindsay Buckingham playing solo, confidently hitting the chords and singing with the passion of a man singing to a sold-out venue. Nobody even flinched or crinkled a brow as he sang what was likely the most macabre verses any of them heard all Halloween week, from Cannibal Superstar:

Reflected too long on a cannibal's life,
And I found myself obsessed with thoughts of eating my wife
Oh, I am
Not an evil man
She came home and I shot her dead
And I pulled her favorite pillowcases over her head
Oh, then I
Faded and cried
Whoah, what have I done?
Get in the car
I am a cannibal superstar


I suspect that in six months or so, not too long after Electric Owls' debut LP release date, that the people I shared the floor with on November 1st, 2008, will then, and not sooner, realize that they witnessed a very special half-hour of live music, and make a good fuss about it.

Here's a Jackson Browne cover from the show:

Electric Owls - These Days (Jackson Browne)(Black Cat, 11-1-2008)(mp3)

Get the Electric Owls EP from their myspace.

By the way, if you wondered, yes, Bishop Allen was absolutely fantastic.