Friday, June 24, 2005

New Orleans Festival

The Voodoo Music Festival on October 29-30 looks promising. The Flaming Lips, Ryan Adams, LCD Soundsystem, The Decemberists, Handsome Boy Modeling Squad, and the Secret Machines among others will be playing at this festival. Tickets go on sale July 8th. For a full list check out:

More on the New Jacket Album

From Billboard's website:
The new Jacket album will be released Sept. 20 via ATO/RCA and was produced by John Leckie (Radiohead, New Order).The addition of new members Carl Broemel (guitar) and Bo Koster (keyboards) has helped broaden the band's sound, with more keyboards and overall sonic texture in the nooks and crannies than on 2003's "It Still Moves." That set debuted at No. 2 on Billboard's Heatseekers chart and has sold more than 127,000 copies in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
The album opens with the vintage keyboard bounce of the aptly named "Wordless Chorus," which immediately reintroduces frontman Jim James' reverb-drenched voice. "We are the innovators / they are the imitators," he sings, eventually rising to a full-on falsetto of "hoos" as the song concludes.James reaches back for chill-inducing wordless vocalizations on the stellar space rocker "Gideon" and shines on the piano- and pedal steel guitar-tinged ballad "Knot Comes Loose."The band works up a top-notch rock/reggae groove on "Off the Record," which morphs into a smoky, soul-driven instrumental interlude with shades of the Rolling Stones' "Can't You Hear Me Knockin'," replete with backward vocal snippets.A "Take Me Out to the Ballgame"-style organ and the sounds of children playing outside usher in the amusingly strange "Into the Woods," while the sparse seven-minute-plus closer "Dondante" builds to a tense climax that ends the album on a spooky note.But MMJ saves room for several satisfying rockers, including the ripping, chipper "What a Wonderful Man" and "Anytime," both of which capture the power of the band's live shows.MMJ plays the third show of a five-date run with Wilco tonight (June 24) in Boston. New headlining dates have also been added tomorrow in Northampton, Mass., and Sunday in Burlington, Vt. A trip to Japan is being penciled in for late July, and James will play an Aug. 7 solo date as part of Rhode Island's Newport Folk Festival.Here is the track list for "Z": "Wordless Chorus""It Beats for You""Gideon""What a Wonderful Man""Off the Record""Into the Woods""Anytime""Lay Low""Knot Comes Loose""Dondante"

Monday, June 20, 2005

Disc Burning: The Man Strikes Again

Major labels like Sony and EMI are planning to nix cd burning. "According to Billboard, Sony BMG has quietly slipped about a million discs by 10 different artists -- whom they won't name -- into the market featuring anti-piracy technology from some United Kingdom company called First4Internet. This new technology totally stops you from making more than a few copies of a disc, and it also stops your friend from making a copy of his copy. They call it "sterile burning." I call it a total bummer! And this is just the beginning, man. More of Sony BMG's partners are beginning commercial trials of similar technology within the month, and since there has been no obvious backlash (YET), Sony BMG announced that it will extend this security to all of its American releases by the end of the year." Moral of the story is as long as the artist is an indie artist everyone should be okay because these cd's are very expensive to make. This will likely force people to end up using iTunes until something gives. I had to buy the new Kings of Leon album on iTunes just to get it on my mp3 player because it is copy protected. This is ridiculous. Burning cd's spreads the music more than anything. I have bought many albums from artists that I initially burned from someone. The artists make most of their money off shows anyway. Burning actually helps the aritists but hurts the billion dollar corporations. Oh well, people will find ways around it. They always have and always will.

The Strokes Boast New Album

Looks like the new Strokes album will be out in January. The lead singer Julian Casablancas is ecstatic about the new album comparing it to a seedless watermelon. The band is currently mixing the album with Andy Wallace. The band was deadline free with the making of this album which gave them plenty of time to polish the album. Casablancas said that a full tour will follow larger than the tour that followed 2003's Room On Fire.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Sampling Problems: The Go! Team

Apparently The Go! Team is having trouble releasing their album Thunder Lightning Strike in the US due to sampling concerns. The album will be completely redone with no sampling and will contain an extra song. The album is supposed to sound somewhat different than the one we have all become used to. For the full article click link.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

More Releases

Here are a few more releases coming out soon.
Sufjan Stevens
July 12

John Vanderslice
Pixel Revolt
August 23

September 20

Nada Surf
The Weight is a Gift
September 20

These releases do not have a set date yet.
Ryan Adams

Ryan Adams

Ambulance LTD
[Title TBA]

Devendra Banhart
[Title TBA]
Summer 2005

Big Star
[Title TBA; first studio LP in 30 years!]
Summer 2005

Bloc Party
[Title TBA]
Late 2005 / Early 2006

Brand New
[Title TBA]
Summer 2005

Broken Social Scene
[Title TBA]
Fall 2005

Built To Spill
[Title TBA]
Spring 2006

The Dandy Warhols
Odditorium Or Warlords Of Mars
Summer/Fall 2005

The Darkness
[Title TBA]
Summer 2005

Death From Above 1979
[Title TBA]
Spring 2006

Depeche Mode
[Title TBA]
October 2005

The Flaming Lips
At War With The Mystics
Early 2006

Franz Ferdinand
[Title TBA]
Fall 2005

[Title TBA]

Guided By Voices
Suitcase II
December 2005

Massive Attack
[Title TBA]
Spring 2005

Mr. Beast
Early 2006

[Title TBA]
Late 2005

The Notwist
[Title TBA]

10 The Hard Way
June 2005

Pearl Jam
[Title TBA]
Late 2005

Liz Phair
[Title TBA]
Fall 2005

Pretty Girls Make Graves
[Title TBA]

Red Hot Chili Peppers
[Title TBA]
Spring 2005

Rolling Stones
[Title TBA]
Summer 2005

Scissor Sisters
[Title TBA]
Fall 2005

The Shins
[Title TBA]

Sigur Ros
[Title TBA]
September 2005

Silver Jews
Tanglewood Numbers
July 2005

Snow Patrol
[Title TBA]
Fall 2005

[Title TBA]

The Stills
[Title TBA]

The Strokes
[Title TBA]
January 2006

TV On The Radio
[Title TBA]
Fall 2005

Yeah Yeah Yeahs
[Title TBA]
Fall 2005

Pete Yorn
[Title TBA]
Fall 2005

Neil Young
[Title TBA]

Austin City Limits Festival

Are you kidding? What an amazing festival. I went the first year, and it was great. I will no doubt be attending this one. Coldplay, Wilco, John Prine, Arcade Fire, Bloc Party, The Decemberists, Death Cab For Cutie, Spoon, The Black Keys, The Frames, The Secret Machines, Leo Kottke and Mike Gordon, Theivery Corporation, Built to Spill, Franz Ferdinand, Robert Earl Keen, M83, The Walkmen and many many more. The full list below.
THE FESTIVAL - September 23-25, 2005
Get Tickets for $95 right now but are supposed to go up.
-->It’s the 2005 Festival bill. Click on artist name for photos and bios. The schedule grid of what day and which stage each artist will play will be released in July.
Widespread Panic
The Black Crowes
The Allman Brothers Band
Jimmy Cliff
Robert Randolph & The Family Band
Lyle Lovett & his Large Band
John Prine
Lucinda Williams
Buddy Guy
Roky Erickson & The Explosives (JUST ADDED!)
Dierks Bentley
Thievery Corporation
Arcade Fire
Death Cab for Cutie
Bob Mould
Built to Spill
Bloc Party
Steve Earle & The Dukes
Franz Ferdinand
Gov't Mule
Zap Mama
Robert Earl Keen
The Black Keys
Leo Kottke & Mike Gordon
The Walkmen
Jason Mraz
Rilo Kiley
The Secret Machines
The Decemberists
The Bravery
Blue October
Grupo Fantasma
Kermit Ruffins
The Dirty Dozen Brass Band
Bettye La Vette
Rev. Dan Willis & The All Nations Choir
Morgan Heritage
Ricardo Lemvo & Makina Loca
Ruthie Foster
The Frames
Mates of State
Mindy Smith
Martin Sexton
The Fiery Furnaces
Federico Aubele
Mouse on Mars
The Futureheads
Kathleen Edwards
Asleep at the Wheel
Tegan and Sara
Mike Doughty
Split Lip Rayfield
Rachael Yamagata
Bobby Bare Jr.
The Ditty Bops
The New Amsterdams
Ambulance Ltd
Slightly Stoopid
Dios Malos
Brave Combo
Dave Alvin & The Guilty Men
John Butler Trio
Bruce Robison
Missy Higgins
Nine Black Alps
Kevin Fowler
Willy Mason
The Weary Boys
Wayne Hancock
Rick Trevino
Monte Warden
Sound Team
Asylum Street Spankers
Oliver Future
The Real Heroes
Bukka Allen
Hairy Apes BMX
The Lost Trailers
The Gospel Stars
Donna The Buffalo
The Shields of Faith
Star Kids Yoga
The Jones Family Singers
South Austin Jug Band
The Lighthouse Singers
Casey McPherson
Kacy Crowley
Tristan Prettyman
The Massacoustics
Joe McDermott
Sara Hickman
Imagination Movers
Free Sõl
Inara George
Austin Hartley-Leonard
Maneja Beto
Austin Collins Band
The Biscuit Brothers
Naturally Seven
Patrick Davis Band
Kelley Hunt
Kate York
The Experiment Experience

The Bright Side of the Moon

Hell may have frozen over. Break out your psychodelic glow sticks and acid droppers. Pink Floyd has reunited for the London Live 8 benefit on July 2 in Hyde Park to benefit poverty. Disgruntled band worker Roger Waters finally realized his music sucks and is back with the old members of Pink Floyd which include guitarist, vocalist David Gilmour, drummer Nick Mason, and keyboard player Richard Wright. They might as well yank ole Syd Barrett out of rehab to join them. The last time the band played together was in 1981 on the Final Cut tour. "Any squabbles Roger and the band have had in the past are so petty in this context, and if re-forming for this concert will help focus attention then it's going to be worthwhile," Gilmour said. Amen.

Monday, June 13, 2005

Upcoming Releases

A few recent Cd's worth noting are Belle and Sebastian - Push Barman to Open Old Wounds, Stephen Malkmus (old Pavement singer) - Face the Truth; Son Volt - A Retrospective; The White Stripes - Get Behind Me Satan.
Looks like the new My Morning Jacket Album will be out September 20. Here is an article about it. Also the new Death Cab For Cutie dvd will be out July 26 with a new album Plans out this autumn. Son Volt will have a new album Okemah and the Melody of Riot out July 12. Looks like the new Flaming Lips album At War With the Mystics will not be out until Jan. or Feb.

Here are some upcoming releases for the next few weeks.

Amelia / Por Avion (Slow Down)
Caitlin Cary & Thad Cockrell / Begonias (Yep Roc)
Harry Connick, Jr. / Occasion (Rounder)
Grey DeLisle / Iron Flowers (Sugar Hill)
Alpha Yaya Diallo / Djama (Jericho Beach)
Dressy Bessy / Electrified (Transdreamer)
Embrace / Out of Nothing (Lava)
Brian Eno / Another Day On Earth (Rykodisc)
The Fabulous Thunderbirds / Painted On (Artemis)
Fantomas / Suspended Animation (Ipecac)
Foo Fighters / In Your Honor (RCA)
Alvin Youngblood Hart / Motivational Speaker (Artemis)
Indigo Girls / Rarities (Sony)
The Jessica Fletchers / Less Sophistication (Rainbow Quartz)
George Jones / My Very Special Guests (Sony)
Janis Joplin / Pearl (2-disc special edition) (Sony)
Gabby La La / Be Careful What You Wish For (Prawn Song)
Daniel Lanois / Acadie (
Daniel Lanois / Rockets (
Jesse McReynolds & Charles Whitstein / A Tribute to Brother Duets (Pinecastle)
Miles Davis Quintet / Round About Midnight (reissue) (Legacy)
The Pernice Brothers / Discover a Lovelier You (Epic)
Michelle Shocked / Don't Ask Don't Tell
Michelle Shocked / Got No Strings
Michelle Shocked / Mexican Standoff
Solarists / The Channel's Twilight (Darling Music)
Wayne Shorter Quartet / Beyond the Sound Barrier (Verve)
Lizz Wright / Dreaming Wide Awake (Verve)
Dwight Yoakam / Blame The Vain (New West)

A Northern Chorus / Bitter Hands Resign (Sonic Unyon)
American Ambulance / Streets of NYC (Hayden's Ferry)
Tracy Bonham / blink the brightest (Zoe)
Laura Cantrell / Humming By the Flowered Vine (Matador)
The Clarks / Between Now And Then
Billy Corgan / TheFutureEmbrace (Warner Bros.)
Dropkick Murphys (The Warrior's Code) (Hellcat)
Stacy Earle and Mark Stuart / Communion Bread (Funzalo)
John Hiatt / Master of Disaster (New West)
Chris Hillman / Other side (Sovreign Artists)
Mark Knopfler / Live From Shangri-La (Warner Bros.)
Method Man / Street Education (Cleopatra)
Meshell Ndegeocello / Spirit Music Jamia - Dance of the Infidel (Shanachie)
Redwalls / De Nova (Capitol)
Spottiswoode & His Enemies / Building A Road

A Band of Bees / Free the Bees (EMI)
Jeff Black / Tin Lily (Dualtone)
The Church / Forget Yourself (Silverline)
Del McCoury Band / The Company We Keep (Sugar Hill)
Fountains of Wayne / Out-Of-State Plates (Virgin)
Jerry Garcia / The Jerry Garcia Collection, Vol. 1: Legion of Mary (Rhino)
The Greencards / Weather and Water (Dualtone)
Longwave / There's A Fire (RCA)
Erin McKeown / We Will Become Like Birds (Nettwerk)
Shannon McNally / Geronimo (Back Porch)
David Mead / Wherever You Are (Eleven Thirty)
Gram Parsons / The Complete Reprise Sessions (Rhino)
Dolly Parton / The Essential (RCA Victor Group)
Marty Robbins / The Essential (Columbia)
John Stephens / Red (Maverick)
String Cheese Incident / One Step Closer (SCI Fidelity)
World Leader Pretend / Punches (Warner Bros.)

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Concert Review: My Morning Jacket: Live at the Sloss Furnace, Birmingham, AL June 3, 2005.

As I contemplated my options for Friday night, I could not decide between an Ole Miss baseball regional or a concert in B’ham. Thursday night I decided I would say screw sports as I always say and go the concert 4 and a half hours away. As I watched the clock slowly strike 4:30 on Friday, I tugged at my strangling tie like Ben Stiller ripping the neck of his turtle neck sweater on Meet the Parents and sprinted for the door in my black shiny lofers. You would have thought I was a kid who was exiting his church clothes to go play neighborhood football. As I tore the rest of my out of character office clothes off, I threw on my vintage shirt and flip flops. My metamorphous was as drastic as the skinny clean shaven young man’s who turns into the Incredible Hulk. As I sped towards Birmingham, excitement rushed over me. I was on my way to see Jim James and the boys. I discovered My Morning Jacket back in 03' as I was hastily flipping the pages of The Daily Mississippian in Oxford, MS. I read a rather thorough review on the boys from Kentucky to discover they sounded as if they would fit the mold I long to seek in a band. Anyway, I left at 4:30 and made it there by 9 ensuring that somewhere along the way my mp3 player would not ruin my coolness in forcing me to listen to the band the day of the concert. (This tradition was later corrupted by one of my best friend’s girlfriends ha ha just kidding KTP). Meanwhile back at the ranch, we pulled up to this poorly named venue called the Sloss Furnace. I was about to be surrounded by best friends to see MMJ. (it doesn’t get any better). As Jim approached the stage, we were shocked to see ole Jim had chopped off all of his hair. (For those who aren’t familiar he previously had hair down to his crack and looked like Cousin It on the Addams Family.) He now looked like a young prince with hair only Charlie Chandler would die for. However, I must admit it did take away from his rocking. Previously he would swing his hair as he head banged and one could be confused they were at Pantera or Metallica show. But oh well at least we can see his face now. Aside from the poor acoustics in the venue, the show was as always amazing. We just went to the front so we could hear better. The crowd was amazing, the place was packed, and the jacket was rocking. MMJ can put on a show like no other. A few highlights: They opened with a new song which sounded incredible despite my bias. To name a few others: "The Way He Sings", "O the One is Real", "Run Thru", "Golden", "At Dawn", "Bermuda Highway" (although corrupted with feedback), "The Bear". Jim also came out and played Lou Reed’s "This Magic Moment" with only an omni-chord which was pretty cool. He said he used this on some songs on the new album due out in September. It almost sounded like a Postal Service beat in the background. Sounds promising. The highlight in my opinion was the last song which was "Mahgeeta". The crowd went nuts, and I don’t think there was a stationary foot or head in the whole place. As for me, I had to wake up the next morning and drive to Monroe, LA. You couldn’t have wiped that shit-eatin’ grin off my face with sandpaper. I had chosen wisely.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

The Beginning

Although I am forced to respect all music, much of the music out there today is nothing more than a pretty pop singer whose voice and music is overshadowed by his/her marketed physiques. Music is not about looks. This blog will introduce you to the many bands out there who create melodies through actual instruments and laptops. Many critics shy away from anything not created on instruments. I have come to the conclusion that we need to welcome the laptop and electronic based instruments into the 21st century. With that said we will begin this blog with a few recommendations to begin your path to good music.
1. Arcade Fire - Funeral

2. The Postal Service - Give Up / Wilco - Yankee Hotel Foxtrot

3. Neutral Milk Hotel - In the Aeroplane Over the Sea / Bright Eyes - Lifted or The Story is in the Soil Keep Your Ear to the Ground

4. Son Volt - Trace

5. My Morning Jacket - It Still Moves

6. Belle & Sebastian - The Boy with the Arab Strap; Tigermilk; If You’re Felling Sinister

7. Modest Mouse - Good News for People Who Love Bad News; Moon & Antarctica

8. The Go! Team - Thunder, Lightning, Strike

These are a few Cd's to start you off to decide what category you like the best.

The Second Step

The second step is finding which of these cd's please your ear the most. I personally love everyone of them but sometime it takes a while to acquire a taste for some. Once you decide you can go to each category to see more cd's similar to each 1st tier cd.

The Categories Broken Down

Arcade Fire - Funeral
Break out the Hypercolor and headbands for the Arcade Fire category which contains music with thick textures as well as a hint of the Eighties. The tempos are more upbeat than most while not being mistaken for anything near heavy metal. Everynow and then you will be driving down the road finding yourself goobing out to one of the these tunes while yelling lyrics at the top of your lungs.
Bloc Party - Silent Alarm
Interpol - Antics; Turn on the Bright Lights
Spoon - Gimme Fiction; Girls Can Tell

The Postal Service - Give Up / Wilco - Yankee Hotel Foxtrot
The second category is somewhat of the Laptop pop category if you will. It involves more electronics as well as noises to accompany the melodies. This is currently my personal favorite.
The Flaming Lips - The Soft Bulletin, Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots
John Vanderslice - Cellar Door
Bright Eyes - Digital Ash in a Digital Urn
Wilco - Summerteeth
Death Cab for Cutie - Transatlantacism; We Have the Facts and We’re Voting Yes; Photo Album
Gomez - In Our Gun
Bright Eyes - Take it Easy (Love Nothing) EP
Radiohead - Kid A
Stars - Set Yourself on Fire

Neutral Milk Hotel - In the Aeroplane Over the Sea / Bright Eyes - Lifted or The Story is in the Soil Keep Your Ear to the Ground
The next category is what I think of when I hear the word indie. It is more emotional music with raw lyrics and voices. Particularly, Bright Eyes - Lifted has been known to bring tears to the eye. This album was put out before Conor got on a soapbox about the Iraqi war. It is phenom. Also, another point worth noting is about the singer of Neutral Milk Hotel. Jeff Mangum basically freaked out and disappeared from the US. I believe he is currently in Bulgaria making music.
Pavement - Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain: LA’s Desert Origins; Brighten the Corners
The Decemberists - Picaresque; Her Majesty The Decemberists
John Vanderslice - Cellar Door
Spoon - Gimme Fiction, Girls Can Tell
Wilco - Being There
Bright Eyes - I’m Wide Awake Its Morning
Bright Eyes - Lua EP
The Shins - Chutes Too Narrow; Oh Inverted World
Death Cab For Cutie - Transatlantacism

Son Volt - Trace
This category is basically the alt-country category pioneered by Uncle Tupelo who later split into Wilco and Son Volt. Before Ryan Adams turned into a wuss, he made beautiful music with a band called Whiskeytown. Check it out.
Drive-By Truckers - Dirty South; Decoration Day
Cleotis - Cleotis
Damien Jurado - On My Way to Absence
Richard Buckner - Since; Devotion and Doubt; The Hill
Ryan Adams and The Cardinals - Cold Roses
Whiskeytown - Stranger’s Almanac
Uncle Tupelo - Every Album
Wilco - A.M.
Kings of Leon - Youth and Young Manhood; Aha Shake Heartbreak
My Morning Jacket - Tennessee Fire
Sun Kil Moon - Ghosts of the Great Highway
Bright Eyes - I’m Wide Awake Its Morning

My Morning Jacket - It Still Moves
This category is hard to label. It is somewhat of a southern rock feel with a classic rock background. The lead singer of "the jacket" Jim James is a right good looking chap with hair down to the middle of his back. Oh wait a minute, he chopped it all off and now looks like a young prince. He rocked harder on stage with long hair, no doubt.
My Morning Jacket - At Dawn; Acoustic Citsuoca EP
Kings of Leon - Aha Shake Heartbreak; Youth and Young Manhood
Drive-By Truckers - Dirty South; Decoration Day
Spoon - Gimme Fiction, Girls Can Tell
Gomez - Bring It On.
The Strokes - Room On Fire

Belle & Sebastian - The Boy with the Arab Strap; Tigermilk; If You’re Felling Sinister
This category is more of a laid back category with tunes to ensure you that you are comfortable with your sexuality. Although at times you will feel as if a male should not listen to this, it is sinless guilty pleasure. Each of these albums provide more of a relaxing atmosphere.
Andrew Bird - The Mysterious Production of Eggs
Stars - Set Yourself on Fire
Iron & Wine - Woman King EP; The Creek Drank the Cradle; Our Endless Number of Days
Bonnie Prince Billy - I See a Darkness
Bonnie Prince Billy & Matt Sweeney - Superwolf
Damien Jurado - On My Way to Absence
M. Ward - Transfiguration of Vincent
Yo La Tengo - Summer Sun
Wilco - A Ghost Is Born
My Morning Jacket - Acoustic Citsuoca EP
Death Cab For Cutie - Forbidden Love EP

Modest Mouse - Good News for People Who Love Bad News; Moon & Antarctica
On the other side, this category is borderline hard rock. These bands are not afraid to sing and play with their guts. You will find yourself "meating out" on some of these tunes. Disclaimer: Modest Mouse's Lonesome Crowded West I must warn you that someone has actually received whiplash from Doin the Cockroach which is Track 6 on the album.
Pavement - Slanted and Enchanted: Luxe and Redux
Swell - Too Many Days Without Thinking
Modest Mouse - The Lonesome Crowded West
Spoon - Gimme Fiction; Girls Can Tell

The Go! Team - Thunder, Lightning, Strike
This category contains the instrumental music. Although I must admit none of the following are as amazing as The Go! Team, the following albums are still ear friendly. Many of the following albums come highly recommended when looking to score.
Air - Talkie Walkie; Moon Safari
Mogwai - Happy Songs For Happy People
Thievery Corporation - The Cosmic Game, The Richest Man in Babylon
Bela Fleck & the Flecktones - Live Art
Leo Kottke - Anthology
LCD Soundsystem - LCD Soundsystem
Broken Social Scene - You Forget It in People
M83 - Before the Dawn Heals Us
Sigur Ros’ - ( ); Agaetis Byrjun