Cereal for your brain

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Another few bands

These bands are pretty good. In case you don't follow iTunes "Download of the Week," it's a free download each week. The past few ones have resulted in me discovering some interesting bands.


Wolfmother
: This band is a throwback. They sound like Black Sabbath, as does the singer. I have not heard the entire "Dimensions" EP, but the self-titled track is one that is pretty good. Keeps me groovin'. I read a rather negative review of them in iTunes, but then again, those guys are such music elitists that you shouldn't pay attention to them if you give half a crap what you listen to. The bottom line: These guys know how to play their instruments, and the lead singer has a voice that was destined to be heard on a stage. Plus he's got a fro. Hello? Jimi, anyone?

Rock Kills Kid: These guys almost sound like The Cure in the song "Hide Away," which was the free download a few weeks ago. However, once you hit the chorus, they sound a bit like Coldplay. This band, just like Wolfmother, are nothing drastically original. In fact, they are a far cry from it. However, since they accomplish sounding a bit like 80s mixed with one of the biggest band in the 2000s, I give them credit. As before, I have not heard their entire album (and I don't think I'm willing to pay for it), but I can bet the rest is pretty similar. The bottom line: They're good, but not great. Worth the free download, but don't go buying the album unless you REALLY like them. Or else find some old Cure and listen to "Friday I'm in Love"

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Good Heavens

It's been ages...actually, about a year since I last blogged. I've been mostly on Liejournal (no, that wasn't a typo), but I've decided to add more purpose to my life, more action.

I haven't stopped listening to music. In fact, I've got QUITE a bunch of bands ot recommend to you. Here's a good chunk of them, some old, some new, all fantastic. And witness my alphabetizing skills:

Audio Bullys
Axel Krygier
The Avalanches
The Bell Orchestre (my friend Kaveh's band! Akin to Explosions in the Sky)
The Beta Band
Beth Orton
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club
Boards of Canada
The Boy Least Likely To
Broadcast
Bulldog Mansion
(funky Korean ska/rock band. Koreans do love horns)
Caesars Palace (remember "The Caesars" who did that iTunes hit? This is them when they were back in Sweden, before America told them there was a casino by that name)
Caribou (previously Manitoba, until Canada sued him)
The Cloud Room
The Cribs
Cut Copy
The Dissociatives
Editors (yes, I KNOW they copy Interpol, but still decent songs. Don't hate because someone copies someone...where would Diddy be?)
Elbow
Ellie Lawson
Faithless
Ferry Corsten (Dutch DJ, fucking AWESOME)
Fischerspooner (will always be on this list)
Grand National
Greyboy
Group Sounds
The Greyboy Allstars
The Go! Team
Imogen Heap (female counterpart of Frou Frou duo)
Islands (with ex-members of The Unicorns, just as good)
ISAN
Locksley
Tom Vek
The Rakes
The Stills
Voxtrot
We Are Scientists
William Orbit

That's it for now, I believe.

I'm doing well in school and shit! My girlfriend is spectacular, my family is alive and well, and the weather is gorgeous. Currently I'm a bit sick, but surviving. Tom Vek is really fucking good.

I want to try and get back into posting album reviews, but unfortunately, I don't have much cash, and albums are expensive. So I'll simply review artists as they come my way. I don't discriminate, and I am sick and tired of those that do. Time is kinda relative for me these days, except class times. Hehe :-D I've got so much things I want to do, yet quite a bit of doubt about my ability. Or rather, my ambition. I know I can do it all. I just need to really get in gear. Sometimes life is just too fucking beautiful, and I want to spend an entire day doing nothing but looking at things. Is that too much to ask?

With deadlines and a life, it is

Funny how Tedevan seems to spark many things for me lately. He was the cause of Josh starting to blog, which consequently made me find my old blog and begin blogging again as well. Also, I tried macrobiotic food for the first time last weekend. Great, actually. Plan on going back this weekend. Maybe I can find one in Brooklyn.

I'm going to play video games this weekend, after I make sure my paper is finished

Thursday, April 14, 2005

It's been a long time, I shouldna left you...

I haven't bought anything lately because I've been poor. So this entry won't be a musical review. I'm not even sure if anyone reads these. Oh well, hopefully I can inspire someone to listen to good music, by my definitions of course.

Note: If you don't know, or have, any Leo Kottke, go out IMMEDIATELY and get some. He is one of the most amazing guitarists to ever exist. Doubt me? Do yourself a favor and buy "6 and 12 String Guitar," then tell me I'm wrong.

BLoc Party and LCD Soundsystem tickets now available. Check it:

http://www.bowerypresents.com/calendar/calendar_200506.html

Among others of course. This entry will now end because I must buy tickets...'scuse me.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Review of two newer bands...perhaps you've heard of them

Colored Shadows - Colored Shadows EP

Colored Shadows is a band out of LA. As is rather common on Myspace, I first came across them when they had randomly befriended me. Typically I immedately "Deny" these requests, because I don't friend random anything/one. However, I liked their user icon. So I decided I'd give them a chance. I went to their page and listened to the 3 songs they had available. And I loved it.

Actually, I was hooked on the very first song, "Moscow". It just so happened that after I immediately bought their EP for only $5, I loved the other 3 tracks, "Eyes", "July", and "Rose Colour". Think Coldplay, but a keyboard/synthesizer instead of a piano, and the lead singer has a voice smooth as a baby's bottom. They list their influences as Pink Floyd and Air, which I realized was an extremely accurate description of their musical style. If you know Air, it has the same smooth melodies and hypnotic tunes. It's like Pink Floyd in that it's also classified as Psychedelic (Pink Floyd is Psychedelic Rock). It's a definite blend of the two because it contains melodies and consistent sound as Air, but it's got a live drummer and guitarist, as opposed to all computerized. In the beginning of July and Rose Colour, the lead singers voice is digitized, making it seem all the more like Air. So far, nothing acoustic like Floyd.

The Rinse

I've heard a few tracks of theirs from their Myspace page, and immediately I thought of Steriogram. The lead singer has a indie/punk voice, and at least 2 other fellows join in for back-up vocals (don't know if drummer sings as well). The band consists of 4 guys, and from the messages we've briefly exchanged, they seem nice enough, and certainly attentive to their fan base.

I'l hopefully be seeing them in concert on May 20th. Which brings me to my next segment....

SHOW PROMOTIONS!!!

As long as I know about them, I will continue to promote shows here. I won't promote the sold out ones (Bloc Party and Louis XIV), but everything else is game. The following shows are either at Webster Hall or at Bowery Ballroom

Death From Above 1979 is playing on April 30th (a saturday) and that is not sold out! 18+, $15, doors at 8:30. This band has been recommended to me, and I hope to see them.

Bright Eyes/The Faint/Mars Black are playing on May 21st - May 25th. $25 tickets, 18+, doors at 6:30. I already have my ticket, and I suggest you buy yours before they sell out.

Rilo Kiley is playing May 26th ($20 door/$18 adv., 16+, door 7PM) and 27th ($20 door/$18 adv., 18+, door 6:30). I'm a big fan of RK, and have my ticket to this show, and will be seeing them on the 25th in Philly as well :) .

LCD Soundsystem is playing Friday, June 10th, and I've heard I might like them as well. $25 at door/$20 in adv., 18+, doors at 6:00. Also The Juan Maclean and special guest DJ's (oooooh).

All these shows still have tickets available, and if you like any of these bands, help support them and their fantastic music! Plus see them live, of course. Maybe get something signed, who knows. I would throw my panties at Conor Oberst if I was a girl, but I don't think he'd like my boxers being flung at him. Oh well.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

More musical reviews

Damien Rice - O

A very choice album. He is a good singer, and I am pleasantly pleased...er...yea, with each and every song. "The Blower's Daughter", a song used on the soundtrack for Closer, inspired the purchase. It's a good song. I can already play it on the geetar :)

The entire album is mainly him and a guitar, with his slow playing and high-pitched (compared to me) voice, letting the occasional crack slip out and hang there, much like Conor Oberst does. It seems to be the fashionable thing to do. It definitely falls under the "folk music" category, and if you like Nick Drake and/or Joni Mitchell (early Joni), you'll like Damien Rice.

Daft Punk - Human After All

If you're a Daft Punk fan, you won't be entirely disappointed. While it's no Homework or Discovery, "Human After All" and "Robot Rock" are damn good songs. "Television Rules the Nation" is a good one, and "Technologic" is absolutely fucking weird. It kind of makes you go a little nuts. But in a good way, like in a "I WANNA DANCE, WOOOOO!!" way. Give it time. The beginning is really odd.

"Emotion" is a pleasantly slow song, filled with slow melodies and, of course, computerized voices (one, as far as I can tell, repeating "emotion") p.s. it's a long song. The beats are a little more mixed up on this, not just your classic UNH-SS UNH-SS electronic beat. In some cases, there is no beat. In others, it's so faint you can barely hear it, and sometimes it's only there for a few brief moments. One thing, I must say, that I don't like too much about it. But it's still good in the long run.

Thievery Corporation - The Cosmic Game

Yet another Thievery Corporation CD has dropped, this one following Outernational Sound, which marked a slight turning point in the groups recording strategy and outlay. Outnernational Sound was a compilation, much like Nicola Conte's "Jet Sounds Revisited" or any DJ Tiesto CD, in that every CD also has tracks exclusively by the group producing the album.

The Cosmic Game, however, is a bit like C-Mon's 'Cereal', because TC produces and makes every song, but they collaborate with another artist as well. This time, the only song that is only TC is its' namesake, "The Cosmic Game." For $9.99, or if you're just a huge thievery corp fan like I am, it's a must-have. It still follows the classic thievery roots, but some songs are more musical than you may be used it. And by that, I am saying it's a good thing.

As always, there is a fair deal of Indian influence, sitars and such. And this time, it's not only an influence; it's a full-blown presence. "Satyam Shivam Sundaram" is it's name. I'm assuming that's Hindi for something. It's a good song. Something about hearing Hindi being sung, or maybe it's just her voice, but I find it quite mesmerizing and relaxing.

That about does it for this musical review. Damien Rice's "O" is by no means a new album (released in 2003), but the other two have been released within March of this year, so they're the fresh hotness.

And by the way, I won't have negative reviews very often for albums, since I don't buy CD's that I don't like. So don't think that I am an eccentric optimist and leak positivity like a hemophiliac. I just buy shit I like, and tell you what it's like, so hopefully you will like it as well.

Fucking daylight savings time. And god damn friends that can have a good time without drinking. Is that depressing? Bah, I don't want to think about it.

Buonanotte, miei amici.

Friday, April 01, 2005

I recently purchased (and in some cases, recently received) several CD's. Some were so good, I purchased them immediately via iTunes in their entirety. Others were almost complete crap, and thus I merely purchased one or two songs from an album. And then there was the matter of international postal deliveries (ugh).

Beck - Guero: Beck has outdone himself. When he first came out with "Loser", people thought he was a joke. Think "Butthole Surfers" or "Toad the Wet Sprocket". However, he has persistently proved himself to be an invaluable member of the artist community, keeping his style fresh and laced with catchy Spanish. Che'Onda Guero indeed.
His latest album, Guero, is another masterpiece. From the more well known song "E-Pro" to the not so well known "Earthquake Weather", Beck's musical simplicity is refreshing. He makes it seem so easy. And yet his beats and the melodies mix together so well, it's hard to tell whether he put 2 months or 2 years into this album. Judging it merely on its surface, I'd say the latter is more likely.
I'm not sure how much this album is going for in Virgin or any other physical record store, but I do know it's a steal at iTunes for a mere $9.99. Do yourselves a favor and buy this album. And screw all those losers who say you're trying to be a hipster because of it. They're only projecting their sad, empty lives on you. Don't let stupid people ruin good music.

Sonic Youth - (iTunes dubbed) The Essentials: Some of you may be saying "what's this, Sonic Youth isn't new. Are you crazy?" I'm not crazy, I'm just simply discovering and trying all forms of new music. I didn't listen to much Sonic Youth before a week or two ago, but now "Teen Age Riot" and "Death Valley '69" has me rocking out in my head on the train, scaring old asian women at Canal Street.
Sonic Youth has been called the original Indie Rock band, and Thurston Moore and Kim Gordon are being hailed the grandparents of the genre. They were certainly ahead of their time with albums like "Daydream Nation" (which has one of my favorite songs on it).
This compilation is well worth the dollar-per-song price. With 25 songs at $24.75, I was enthused and enthralled by my bargain hunting abilities, and my oh my, how it paid off.

C-Mon - Cereal: C-Mon is a Dutch DJ out of Utrecht. This album is a return to his earlier roots of being a Hip-Hop DJ and making phantasmal beats for all language-MC's alike. From purely Dutch tracks to several English tracks, to even one or two R&B-esque tracks; Cereal is a well done record in the Hip-Hop genre.
Of course, it is not the best thing I have ever heard. While I am not a fan of music that I can't understand (and I don't speak a word of Dutch), some of C-Mon's beats on the album I find somewhat stale, almost as if I've heard them before. Normally this would come as no surprise, since most beats in the genre are comprised of cut and re-mixed oldies, sometimes music thaty never made it to mainstream, but music that had stil been played before.
Overall, "Cereal" is a good album if you like Dutch Hip-Hop. It's no Rawkus creation, but it's not as bad as what my friends and I used to come up with, either.

C-Mon & Kypski - Vinyl Voodoo, Static Traveller: WOW

To start things off, yes: WOW. These two albums are both absolutely divine. C-Mon completely redeems himself with these two works that he is a a large part of, after all, C-Mon & Kypski is the name.
Kypski, the European Turntable Champion 8 years running, provides the sick scratching and electrifying cuts you hear repeatedly. Tracks like "Shitty Bum" and "The Evil Needle" exemplify his near-perfection. After seeing them live at Joe's Pub, I fell in love. It was their first time playing in NYC...need I say more.
Vinyl Voodoo was their first real LP, still a fine creation. "Vinyl Voodoo" and "Ode to Rhodes" are personal favorites. Static Traveller, on the other hand, is pure goodness. I cannot name a single track I dislike. "Money Money" is exceptional, with Kypski providing the chorus melodies by scratching while simultaneously altering the RPM's, creating different pitches. Combine that with the break in "Shitty Bum", in which Kypski's hand becomes a blur on the alternator (my turntable lingo is slightly rusty: the dial that controls which record is being heard on the speakers and on the headphones).
MUST HAVES for any DJ's and scratch junkies. If you're in Europe and reading this, you're one lucky bastard! You'll be able to see them much more often than I can. Burn me a live mix if ya can! I'll pay you for it, jesus, just give me more!

That about wraps things up for this music review. These reviews don't come all too often, since I don't exactly have an abundance of money to spend on CD's. But if you're willing to fund me and provide money with which I can buy CD's, I will write as many reviews as you like! Providing I get to keep the CD's when I'm done reviewing them ;)

As you'll see, it's no surprise my username is StaticTraveller :D

Feel free to comment on what you think of my reviews. I am but a fledgling musical critic, and any advice will be well received, but only from those more knowledgable in music than I. Entries like "U Ar teh suxxorz" will be ignored. Feel free to E-mail me as well if you don't feel like letting the whole world read what you want to tell me.

Over and out. Keep those headphones on!

Thursday, March 31, 2005

A new beginning

I started on Xanga.

Then I graduated to Livejournal.

I suppose the inevitable next step was moving on to this new service. C'est la vie...

For the most part, I am creating this to be a part of NYCBloggers.com. However, I also look forward to making this a safehaven from my normal Livejournal posse. I'll see how things develop.

And that's a wrap. Ooh, and it's spring time, too.