Monthly Archives: August 2008

#57 cut copy – voices in quartz/ hearts on fire

i wasn’t too impressed with cut copy‘s live set last year at good vibrations, so i was pretty determined not to enjoy their new album in ghost colours released this year on modular records. however, since the mighty avalanches are still taking their time putting the final touches to their long awaited follow-up to since i left you (they’re crazy in the coconut!), i decided, grudgingly, to give label mates cut copy a try, and boy was i glad i did. a guilt-free journey into the depths of 80s dance, the album is as much a tribute to predecessors like new order as it is a progression from them, piecing their various influences together in one seamless party mix. to me, in ghost colours is a timely reminder of the crucial role of transitional tracks, and listening to the surreal anticipation of “voices in quartz” in litford‘s car tonight showed me just how incomplete the sublime “hearts on fire” is without its humble forerunner preparing the way. so here’s both tracks for you, only to be played together of course.

mp3: cut copy – voices in quartz

mp3: cut copy – hearts on fire

#56 young lords – how it goes

it’s almost 5am and i’m just back from supper and a great time of just chilling and catching up. can’t beat that i guess, though i really don’t know what time my day’s gonna start. but that’s just how it goes, yeah? speaking of which, up and coming new york band young lords have busy working on their debut album rodeo songs out this october 7, and one of the highlights of that very enjoyable album is coincidentally (yeah right, that’s how i planned it) called “how it goes”. kicking off urgently with a beatlesque intro, the band unleashes a cocky swagger in good ol’ rock and roll fashion. i grew up listening to nothing but 90s britrock, and i’ve got a feeling young lords did as well, and i’m comforted to know that all of that – the unmistakable hooks, singalong choruses and anthemic statements – still finds its way into music today. call me a sentimentalist, but that’s how it goes.

mp3: young lords – how it goes

#55 yeasayer – red cave

how often do we say thanks to the people that care most about us? i know i don’t do that very much, but from the heart-to-heart talk we just had, i’m really thankful for the friends i have, who share a real stake in each others’ lives. so too was brooklyn’s yeasayer, who take an unexpected detour on “red cave”, the last song of their stunning debut all hour cymbals album with a heartfelt mention to the family and friends who they deeply care for. some of you may remember that as the song they performed on the metro in paris and the spontaneous party that simply emerged. if only our gratitudes were as free-flowing as that. well if yeasayer can do it, so can you.

mp3: yeasayer – red cave

#54 larytta – ya-ya-ya

with so much happening on the dance/ electronica scene these days, it’s hard finding the stuff that really stands out. i’ve been listening to yacht‘s “the summer song” for quite a while now, undecided on whether to feature it, especially after the airplay they’ve been getting after signing with dfa. while it remains an enjoyable fling this season, there’s still much room for yacht to grow and mature. i’ve also been wanting to post on lindstrøm‘s new album where you go i go too, but it works so well as a whole it doesn’t make sense extracting any section from it. larytta, on the other hand, have a self-contained package bursting with fun, accessibility and creativity in their single “ya-ya-ya”, taken off their ironically titled upcoming album difficult fun. released on creaked records, the swiss duo’s effort is a laudable one that contains both the pop sensibilities of hot chip as well as a joyous spirit of adventure and experimentation that accounts for the countless meanders and several surprises all packed into one refreshing tribal electronica trip.

mp3: larytta – ya-ya-ya

#53 hallelujah the hills – hallelujah the hills

everybody loves self referencing song titles, especially in the charming ways they extend and prolong the myth-making process (“belle and sebastian”, “the story of yo la tengo”), but there’s a refreshing absence of that kind of baggage in hallelujah the hills‘ own self titled track which featured in last year’s collective psychosis begone. the band’s name itself is lifted directly off the bizarre 1963 film by adolfas mekas, shot in vermont which the song mentions as the place everybody gets born and dies in. in that sea of simulacral referencing, the song takes apart that impending narrative, lest any listener even begins to harbor the thought of constructing one, all with the sweeping dismissal: “meta, meta, meta and the novel is dead”. and the song? oh, it’s good raucous fun.

mp3: hallelujah the hills – hallelujah the hills

p.s. the band has just made available their “preparing to qualify” ep for free download.

#52 mrs kipling – lonely goatherd

one of the things i did today which i never planned to do was watch the sound of music, and i never thought i’d enjoy as much as i did. that prompted me to dig up my old bring on bull compilation featuring indiepop bands covering the sound of music songs, the proceeds of which went to organizations like the anti-nazi league, anti-fascist action, youth against racism in europe and the anti-racist alliance (!!!). the album was quite a mixed bag of demo-quality material, but one track that stood out for me was mrs kipling’s version of “lonely goatherd”. i have no idea who mrs kipling is, but she/they sure had something going with this recording, complete with yodeling of course.

mp3: mrs kipling – lonely goatherd

#51 the arcade fire – no cars go

just now i nearly got knocked down by a cab for the second time this week, and i hate to generalize but there’s something seriously wrong with the way they’re driving. i’m usually rather sympathetic to the long hours cab drivers spend on the road and the meager earnings they take, but honestly that’s no excuse for irresponsible driving. alright mood shift, shift back to good again – i think i’ll be a lot happier living in a place where no cars go, and it seems only the arcade fire know where it is. if there’s one thing win butler and company are best at doing, it’s their rousing anthems (like “wake up”), and “no cars go” is the perfect stirring rally to an unknown utopia “between the click of the light and the start of the dream”. appearing first on their debut ep, the boisterous original was re-recorded and released on neon bible in a more polished state. here are both versions for you, for each time this week i really wished i could have been there.

mp3: the arcade fire – no cars go (ep version)

mp3: the arcade fire – no cars go (neon bible version)