Random Photo of the Day: "Landscape at Dusk"
I don't know a lot about Xiu Xiu, but I've been listening to thier records for a couple of years now, and they seem to grow in leaps and bounds with each release. Knife Play was just plain scary to me. I had never heard anything like it. The voice! It was so hard to decide if that melodramatic voice was being serious or not. Jamie Stewart quavered eerily between desperate whisper and death wail atop a sparce-to-clamourous pots-and-pans din of drum machine and exotic ethinic percussion. Somehow I loved it, but soon found it to be a clear-the-room favorite at gatherings. Much easier on the ear, but even harder on the psyche was last year's Fabulous Muscles, an album which wears it's pathetic and vainglorious homoeroticism on it's silver lamé sleeve.
Xiu Xiu returned stronger than ever recently with thier new CD La Foret. I haven't had a chance to totally bathe myself in yet, but as a whole, the new album seems even more approachable. Jamie's voice still projects emotional intensity without grating on unaccustomed ears. Parts of La Foret, including the track I've chosen for today, successfully recreate the echoey doom and gloom of The Cure circa "Charlotte Sometimes", which is not really an easy act to pull off. However Xiu Xiu do, and the result is one of the most entrancing things to come out in 2005.
MP3 7.72MB, 320kbps, 44kHz
Random Photo of the Day: "Lou and Jenna in Leavenworth, WA"
Photo Montage By Patrick 08/05
Boo! Just in time for Halloween...See you there...
MP3 6.18MB, 128kbps, 44kHz
Random Photo of the Day: "3 Naked Boys Standing On The Corner Of Sprague & Sullivan Soliciting Money For A Trip To Ireland (I Gave Them $1)"
Bedtime For Toys
Not much time today (or this week in general - Hello, overtime!), but I wanted to post this excellent tune by Bedtime For Toys I discovered a while back over at Spoilt Victorian Child. (who also have several fabulous remixes of the track posted, and even a remix competition.) It's one of the most original things I've heard in many moons. I'm going to cheat and re-post a review of the EP from indie workshop.com. Yeah, what they said:
Dance to the apocalypse, brothers and sisters and purr your way through urban decay. If you happen to want a soundtrack for joyful disintegration, then I’d have to recommend that you check out Los Angeles’ Bedtime for Toys. Marchelle Bradanini vocally struts like Sheila E with a healthy huff of Princess Superstar thrown in, especially in the way her cadence rides snug to the edge of rapping without quite going there. She sings in slinking velvet exhales, but with such liquid staccato rhythm that you can be forgiven for hearing her inner emcee surface now and then.
With the jagged beats and Rockwell keyboards, it’s easy to hear a bit of Peaches, especially since all of the tracks make you want to get oiled and naked. You just can’t help yourself when Bradanini snakes her way through “Mona Lisa”, which pretty much sounds like an operatic orgasm pounded out in dark synths that sound like a gothic take on a lost OMD single. Toussaint Christophe, the man behind the beats, successfully weds hip-hop, 80s synth funk and even, in the sharpness and concussive blows of his rhythms, a little industrial to songs’ undertows. Unlike the tinny thievery of some electroclash acts, Christophe often layers the beats in an intricate booty smacking crossfire that gives them an added measure of neck-popping syncopation that doesn’t sound hollow. The mood of his choices tends toward the frenetically uneasy, as he frames Bradanini’s voice in a way that brings out its submerged threat, like “Chandelier” where the beats turn her vocals into something with the fight and howl of a Siouxsie Sioux track on roids.
Like Prince, Bedtime for Toys refuse to forget rock and roll in their sexy witches brew and guitarist Samuel Jacob Chatez manages to weave in licks that fuse into the tracks without derailing them. Even when it sounds like he’s setting his strings on guitar, his riffs simply add another level of potency and aggression. It’s difficult to imagine a mix of instruments more impressively blended, each player shadowing the others in a way that adds shading and breadth. If this EP portends the content on their forthcoming LP, then Bedtime for Toys are dance floor assassins worth keeping an eye on.
- Terry Sawyer 2005-07-27
MP3 4.75MB, 192 kbps, 44kHz
Random Photo of the Day: "Weenis in Waikiki"
Nearly 20 years later, there is still something so therapeutic about listening to the teen angst and melodrama of the first self-titled Throwing Muses album (4AD, 1986). Kristin Hersh's emotions are raw and she hurls emotional non-sequiters until her throat is bloody. It's amazing to think that the Muses were only teens when they wrote and recorded those songs. Hersh was wise beyond her years. Whenever I feel I frustrated or blue or lonely or antisocial (basically, whenever I get a VERY belated rush of teenage angst - don't we all sometimes?), I love listening to that album because I can relate to its sentiments so well. It's such a fucking classic record, amazing in its shifting moods, random time changes, emotional overload, and even a bit of dark humor here and there: ("He won't ride in cars anymore/It reminds him of blowjobs/That he's a queer/And his hair stuck to the roof")
Delightfully, Hersh has returned to similarly raw territory with 50 Foot Wave and thier new Golden Ocean album, which ranks as one of the best of 2005 so far, if not THE best. It's beyond time for the music of Kristin Hersh, Throwing Muses, and 50 Foot Wave to see some more recognition, and a good place to begin is this track from the first Muses album:
MP3 7.09MB, 192kbps, 44kHz
Random Photo Series of the Day: "The Shower Cap"
Photo series by Patrick, Weenis' 30th B-Day Bash, August 6, 2005
(Thanks to Rebecca for turning me on to this totally tubular Texan treat!)
MP3 2.36MB, 128kbps, 44kHz
Orange Television My Space Update
Okay, everyone point your hot little browsers over to my Orange Television My Space. I posted four new tracks from the upcoming yet-to-be finished Orange Television album titled Vermillion, possibly. I am quite happy with the way these new songs have turned out. They are my version of breakup songs, I wanted to inject some melancholy without being totally depressing, and I think it worked. Also, if any of you reading this have a My Space account, please add me to your friends list and I will do the same. For those of you with no My Space: get on the ball, already! All the kids are doing it!
Random Photo of the Day: "Neon Crucifix Implosion"
Goldfrapp rose from the ashes of the late nineties trip-hop boom with the magnificently subdued Felt Mountain. It was cinematic and epic and spawned eighty-seven remixes of the same three or so singles, which were all also fantastic. Picking up where all those remixes left off, Will and Alison unleashed Black Cherry in 2003. It was the Electroclash album to end all Electroclash. Simply put, no one could top it. With such sublime delights as "Twist", "Train", and "Strict Machine", it was an album that stayed on everyones heavy rotation list for several years. It's unimaginiable that they could possibly top Black Cherry, but I present to you the stomping, glittery new Goldfrapp single "Ooh La La" in it's full extended glory. Mute/EMI are putting a heavy push on the new album Supernature (due late August), expecting it to go massive. If there is any justice in the world, it will go massive. "Ooh La La" is like Kylie in full electro mode meets the foot-stomping glam rock of classic T. Rex. It's sexy, slick, and addictive as candy and is guaranteed to remain stuck in your head for the rest of your life. Goldfrapp - Ooh La La (Original Extended Mix) MP3 8.9MB, 160kbps, 44kHz
Random Photo of the Day: "811 N B St Part 5"
You'd have to have a cold, black heart not to love the swooping analog synths and icy Euro-chill of the music of Ladytron. Thier last two albums were must-own classic masterpieces of electro-pop, and they are back later this month with a new album, The Witching Hour. Like ABBA, Ladytron makes tragedy and heartbeak sound epically fabulous and dancable. A search for early reviews turned up this semi-amusing entry on contactmusic.com, written by someone who perhaps doesn't have the best grip on the English language. However, the wide-eyed excitement comes through and makes me anxious to get my mucky mitts on a copy.
Released on August 29 th 2005, the Liverpool based four piece are back with this third album. Since “Light and Magic”, they have been allowed to be themselves as they have worked with Jim Abiss who has worked with Placebo and Kasabian. So as you can imagine, it’s going to be good, as both these bands are cool! The album is synth-like but also has a pop sound to the record. I think this album has a more wild side to it. The album is much more in depth than the last two and I think its better! The atmosphere of this album is more electric and dark at the same time. The new single “Sugar” sets the record off to a great start, it’s has a certain nursery rhyme theme to this song – its quite funny! To me, I can gather a force in this record, it’s quite powerful and has great vocals and is very arty! This comes across in their music – they take their music very seriously and the emotions throughout the songs are evident. It also has the disco – reality sound! The songs are pop but at the same time they sort of hit home – lyrically most of the tracks are about feelings, being with someone, issues in daily life etc… “International Dateline” is quite tearful too; the lyrics definitely touch a nerve! There is an atmosphere to this song. The collection of songs sum up Ladytron and their message about their music! You’ll have to listen to it to see how they have fulfilled themselves with this record!
MP3 6.13MB, 320kbps, 44kHz
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