On his follow up to 2018’s The Optimist, Ryan Porter and his friends the West Coast Get Down are once again swinging for the fences and bring jazz into the spotlight for a whole new generation. Rehearsed and recorded in five-hour bursts in multiple locations, Force For Good is a fearless step forward into the future of American jazz that celebrates America’s greatest art form even as it challenges what came before it. Join us as we discuss Porter’s seemingly limitless talent, the normalization of jazz in the popular culture, and much more.
Empire of the Sun brought all the costumes, set props, and backup dancers you know and love for three-night, completely sold-out stop at The Showbox in Seattle, all in celebration of the 10th anniversary of their debut album Walking on a Dream.
In 2012 rapper/producer El-P and rapper Killer Mike met and discovered that not only did they bring out the best in each other's art, all signs pointed towards them being world's first motherf@#@ing rap superheroes.
With the release of their third collaboration as Run The Jewels, all signs point to the prophecy being true.
Join us as we we kick off our 2017 coverage diving into their latest masterpiece to try and figure out what makes this dynamic duo tick, why they may be the most powerful rap duo of all time, and more.
This week we published our 200th episode of Chunky Glasses: The Podcast. It was a long road full of...well...mostly beer, but the point is we got here by staying true to our "vision", just doing what it is we do, and believing in the power of weird.
In the spirit of that weirdness, this week's playlist is a look inside what has driven the podcast over the years, either directly - you may recognize some of these songs from our outro - or indirectly. In other words here's a glimpse into my head, a view that our crew knows well, that offers the clearest look at how and why we do what we do. - Kevin
2014 was a huge year for music makers and music lovers alike. Established bands hit their stride, newcomers changed the game and across the board musicians from the biggest to the smallest delivered some of the best music we’ve heard at ChunkyGlasses since we started this damn thing almost five years ago. Before calling it quits for 2014 and taking a break, it’s time for one last list, one last roundup, and a whole lot of thank-you’s.
To all of the amazing artists we talked about, interviewed, or just put in our ears - thanks for thinking we were worth your time. That goes double for the ones we didn’t get to.
To the site staff and contributors and sitters in – your insights, opinions and differences in tastes keep this whole thing interesting for me. Hopefully it does the same for our readers and listeners (if not we’ve got an email address for that). Special thanks goes out to Paul for gChat support and Andre for the heady vibes he brought to the podcast.
Biggest thanks though is to our readers and listeners. We’d still do it without you, but the idea that once in a while people listen to and maybe even care what we say – even if it’s only eleven of you – warms our curmudgeonly hearts greatly.
With all that out of the way, I give you 2014 through my ears.
2014 was a huge year for great music, so in like fashion we’ve got a HUGE podcast to finish the year out. Paul, Adam, Quinn, Tori, Brian, Carrie and Seàn join Kevin in the basement to talk about their favorite songs, albums and artists of the year, and what everyone is looking forward to in 2015. PLUS! One last round of “Prince is a dick” to decide once-and-for-all if Prince really is…well…you get the picture.
So strap in loyal listeners as the ChunkyGlasses gang takes on the year that was on Episode 96 of ChunkyGlasses: The Podcast – Best Of 2014!
In our latest episode, the internets takes us up on our offer and random listener Patrick stops by the basement to talk music with the gang. PLUS! Quinn dishes all the good and the bad on this years CMJ Music Marthon and we review Spite, the new album from the greatest band you may or may not have heard of, Austin, TX’s HUNDRED VISIONS!
Sounds Like: The loudest garage in Texas; Thin Lizzy on (all of the) acid; lo-fi fuzz pop; Hot trash (see 2012); righteous rock n’ roll malevolence.
Why You Should Care: We’ve told you before about Hundred Visions here, here, here, and oh yeah, we even talked with ‘em here. But until you all recognize the simple fact that Hundred Visions are one of the best bands you’ve probably never heard of, we’re just not gonna shut up about ‘em.
This week we double down on the interviews with a duo of quick but killer conversations with two of our favorite bands. First up, Suzie sat down with DC’s very own EX-HEX before their tour kickoff at the Black Cat a few weeks ago to talk about the genesis of the band, the making of their as yet unrecorded debut, and more as the bar literally opened around them. Then, Austin, Texas’s HUNDRED VISIONS stopped by the basement before their gig opening for Okkervil River...
If you think about the sheer quantity of music that was released in 2012, the thought of compiling anything into some sort of consensus seems a fool’s errand. Yet, this year, like every year, our prehistoric brain takes over and we are once again force to assign, rearrange, tabulate and label until we are able to put together one of man’s greatest contributions to the universe: The list.
This year, eleven voters ended up contributing over seventy different albums to a pool that ultimately had to be whittled down to just ten. Every single staffer here has one thing in common - THEY FUCKING LOVE MUSIC – and I think this list represents not only the diversity of the ChunkyGlasses team, but why what we do is so much damn fun.
But the time for writing is done this year. Now we hash it out, mano y mano, for your listening pleasure. For the faint of heart, we’ve broken this booze soaked supersized podcast into ten bite size nuggets to consume at will should you choose. Either way, strap in, grab a cold one (or ten) and get ready to find out what happens when a bunch of music nerds with no filters lock themselves in a basement and hit record.
70 albums. 11 contributors. Only the strong survived The Official ChunkyGlasses Top 10 Albums of 2012!!
Episode 18: Best Of 2012
Alt J - An Awesome Wave
"It’s nearly impossible to describe the album, which won this year’s Mercury award in Britain, without referencing that Alt-J has clearly found the soul and innovation Radiohead abandoned over the past five years. Joe Newman’s reedy voice weaves the best threads of world influence into ridiculously layered electronics, and the entire album runs like a drug-addled trip around the globe. The band’s name is written Alt-J because that’s the keyboard shortcut on a Mac to make the Delta symbol (?) – if this album weren’t spectacular, the whole thing would smack of a project by a bunch of art school jackholes, but fortunately for them it is spectacular." - Carrie
#10: Alt-J - An Awesome Wave
Dinosaur Jr. - Bet On Sky
"...I Bet On Sky doesn’t break much new ground, nor would Dino Jr.’s fans want it to. The leadoff single “Watch the Corners” starts with a crunchy one-chord intro before finding its way to the melodic noise that Mascis excels at. At 46, Mascis’ voice has never sounded better, inasmuch as a voice that doesn’t actually sing as much as mumble with style can sound better. He manages to convey some emotion on a slower tune, “Stick A Toe In,” which hearkens back to another Dino Jr. song, “I Don’t Wanna Go There,” with Mascis asking in both songs if he’s doomed to “walk alone.” “Pierce the Morning Rain” may cover the most ground in terms of illustrating all Dino Jr. does well; the opening riff throws a nod to Nirvana’s “Scentless Apprentice” before seguing into the kind of jaunty rock found on songs like “The Wagon,” then right back to the Sabbath power chords. It’s a garden of delights." - Justin
#9: Dinosaur Jr - I Bet On Sky
Frank Ocean - Channel Orange
"It’s a concept album. It’s a confession. It’s a snapshot of LA life unlike anything we’ve seen in years. Landing somewhere between Steely Dan and Stevie Wonder, Frank Ocean has made the album of his career and lucky for all of us, he’s just getting started. channel Orange is topping best of lists everywhere you look and it’s with good reason: It’s simply that good."
By channeling everything that was right about the new-wave/punk scene hanging around CBGB’s in the late 70’s and putting a borderline twee pop sheen on it, Hospitality turned out one of the most listenable albums of 2012. More importantly though, it was also one of the most smartly satisfying records in recent memory. By simply having not only great taste in music, but the ability to execute on it with great songwriting, Amber Papini and crew set the bar just a little higher for all the aspiring indie-popsters out there this year.
Oddisee - People Hear What People Say
Standout Tracks: “Let It Go” “Anothers Grind”
Hip hop these days tends to either aim to either invigorate social awareness or lean towards a celebration of the more bacchanalian pursuits in life, but seldom does it more successfully meld the two more sweetly than on People Hear What People Say. Oddisee, originally a DC native, laid down twelve tracks of old school rhymes mashed against late 60’s universal soul and the result was an album that transcended the genre as much as it celebrated it. A wild ride that veers from West Coast to East Coast, KRS-One to Posdunus and back , People doesn’t just revel in the history of hip hop, it exalts the history of popular music PERIOD, and isn’t just a record that you shouldn’t miss, if you have ears, you practically can’t.
Good morning class, my name is Dr. Jim Sullivan and I’ll be your instructor for this semester’s class; Introduction on How to Rock Face 101. Here is your first assignment. I want you to go home, put on Hundred Visions Permanent Basement and loosen up your rock maneuvers along with some serious rock face. Although, there is one condition, you cannot, and I repeat, do not, at any point in this exercise rock face to this album into or near a mirror or any other reflective surfaces. I’ll see you all tomorrow for our discussion.
Welcome back class. Well, based upon the look on all of your melted faces, you probably think that I’m disappointed to see that you all have failed to follow the instructions. Billy, what was the last instruction I gave? Uhhhmmm, don’t look into a mirror or reflective surface while rocking face to Hundred Visions? Correct Billy, and based on your experience, why would I give you that instruction? Uhhhmmm, because even the reflection alone of how hard this album makes us rock face would cause us to melt our own faces off? Correct Billy, but sometimes the best education is experiencing the true power of rocking face first hand. You can thank Hundred Visions for that one. Good job class, now let me tell you about an album I like to call U.F.O.
Damien Jurado - Maraqopa
Similar to Jim Sullivan’s 1969 masterpiece U.F.O., Maraqopa is a lush, multi-layered and mysterious sounding folk album that may not get the credit it deserves in its day and age. This album is also one of the few examples of how to tastefully use strings and choirs in modern music. But, like a fine wine, this one will definitely age well and stand the test of time so that it can be lauded when the Space Jesus returns (listen to podcast 17, time stamp 52 minutes for further explanation on that front.) I just hope Damien doesn’t mimic Sullivan and decide to walk into the desert and get summoned back to another planet where the general public appreciates his music in the time when it is actually happening. So, as Carrie would say, sometimes you have to ask yourself What Would Alien Jesus Do? Well, apparently he would listen to Damien Jurado.
Standout Tracks: “Where Do I Sign?” / “Last Cab from Tunis” / “Regina, Hold the Line”
This Austin band may have screeched into my Top Ten based on their insanely entertaining live performance last April, but as long as I get the answer right I shouldn’t have to show my work. They can veer from genre to genre and get it all right, and as they say to Regina while she’s holding the line – “resistance is futile.” Buy this album for everyone on your Christmas list, and they will all love you and bake shit for you as a thank you.
Father John Misty - Fear Fun
Standout Tracks: “Nancy From Now On” / “Hollywood Forever Cemetery Sings” / “Every Man Needs a Companion”
Whatshisface Tillman (he spends a lot of time talking about how much he dislikes his first name) may be the loveliest man born in the past 35 years and his voice can get you pregnant through your headphones, so ladies, you’ll want to be careful when listening to this album.
In which the gang tries to make sense of the streaming music revolution, discusses the pros and cons of porn moustaches and takes a trip back to that grooviest of years, 1969. PLUS!!! new music from Neil Young and Crazy Horse, a reunited Soundgarden and from Austin, TX, Hundred Visions!!!
Everyone tosses around “killing it” these days. This band was killing it at the arena, that kid killed it on his psych exam, your roast beef sandwich killed it at the potluck -- overuse of the phrase has become, well, epic. That said, White Denim and Hundred Visions freaking KILLED IT at the Rock & Roll Hotel, in an Austin, Texas, double-bill that once again proved the ChunkyGlasses rule of Never Miss the Opening Band...Ever.
Sometimes what this town needs is an honest-to-G*d rock show, like head in the speakers, earnest, feeling it kick-ass rock and roll. Hundred Visions, on tour to support their EP Last Cab from Tunis, galloped on stage and dove head-first into a 45-minute set that never came up for air. Sprinkling a layer of funk over a solid stream of old-Replacements-style rock, lead singer Ben Maddox personified every reason why you should and should not fall in love with a musician - he had an instantaneous connection with every member of the mostly packed house, and he didn’t invite so much as demand that everyone “move forward and get sweaty.” Done and done, sir. Although the band has formally released only one 3-song EP, I’m confident they left D.C. with a horde of new fans, and hopefully when they swing back our way it will be as a headliner with more material in step with their killing-it EP.
Sounds Like: Talking Heads, LCD Soundsystem, the twang of South Texas and just about everything else that is right in the world. Why You Should Care: Trust us. We're pros.
We get our fair share of submissions here every day and in an effort to keep things somewhat organized we try to put everything into one of four piles. There's the good pile, the bad pile and then there’s the pile...well...it’s best we don’t talk about that pile. But then there’s that last pile in which we throw things that we like to refer to as "THOSE THINGS WHICH ROCK OUR FACES MORE THAN ANY OTHER THAT HAS COME BEFORE”, and right now Hundred Visions is setting right at the tippy top of that mass. Hell, they may be levitating above it.