In our latest podcast, pop mastermind’s is the name, new music is the game as we talk out Sand + Silence, the latest release from indie-pop icons The Rosebuds, and EDJ, the first post-Fruit Bats material from the consistently prodigious Eric Johnson.
PLUS!! Did Coolio really sign a record deal with a PORN site? Could PORN be the way forward for the music biz? Is Paul Really a “Cooliologist”?
And last, but certainly not least, the van runs out of gas as we say [a temporary] goodbye to Andre, as he heads off into the great unknown – otherwise known as Turkey – to experience new adventures, oil wrestling, and most assuredly lots and LOTS of music
Sounds Like: Blitzen Trapper, Phosphorescent, Cave Singer
Why You Should Care: There is hardly a band around that Megafaun hasn’t helped, guested, or been part of recently. Gayngs, Grandma Sparrow, Sylvan Esso, Hiss Golden Messenger and the Shouting Matches all owe something to Megafaun
SOUNDS LIKE: One of the best bands out there today is in the holiday spirit
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE: It's nice having new Christmas songs every year, isn't it?
If you've ever spent a moment with any album from North Carolina's The Rosebuds over the last decade, you're bound to hear some sleigh bells pop up on one of their songs eventually. Between that, and Ivan Howard's impeccable croon, you might have thought to yourself that they would be suited to make a Christmas album some year. Well wonder no more: not only do they have a brand new Christmas album out, Christmas Tree Island, but it's full of 13 brand new Christmas compositions!
One of those songs tells the tale of a man named "Christmas Dan", and from the sounds of that irresistable sax solo, his favorite Christmas song is probably "Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree". He flosses his teeth with garland, uses a candy cane for an earring, and apparently took his Trans AM and converted it into a sleigh. Whether or not the reindeer have enough horsepower to keep the thing flying all night, that's never revealed, but what is apparent is The Rosebuds have given all their fans some new Christmas songs to spread to their friends and family for many holidays to come.
Christmas Tree Island is out now via The Rosebuds' Bandcamp page.
I've heard a metric f@#@-ton of music this year. More bands than I can even remember have gone in one earhole and out the other. I'm sure in the process of checking out absolutely everything I could get my hands on a few bands might have slipped through the cracks, and to them I can only hope to catch up with them again at a later date. These next 10 bands are the ones that didn't slip through the cracks though. They're the groups/individuals who managed to make their magnificent noise rise up above the rest, and in the process make 2011 a quite exceptional year for music.
#10 Caveman - Coco Beware
The simple act of discovery can color one's opinion of a band, and it certainly has in Caveman's case...for everyone that's ever heard them apparently. I "discovered" Caveman opening up for The War on Drugs at The Red Palace here in DC earlier this year, and from that instant I was hooked. This record is drenched in moody, dreamscape inspired Radiohead-esque harmonies and sounds, and yet plays like something only Caveman could create. I know, I know, that sounds circular, but when a band this early in their existence can so well define who and what they are as a band, borrowing liberally from everything around them and somehow managing to put forth those collective influences as something better is the sign of a great artist. They've already got the attention of the music-nerd set (including NPR) and in 2012 they're the band to keep an eye on, because with a debut this good, sooner or later everyone is going to catch on to Caveman's fire. (Yes, I just wrote that)
Hope everyone enjoyed Ethan's picks yesterday. Today we move on to Andre's picks, which per his instructions are in no particular order. But, um, he may like Blitzen Trapper a little bit.
Fruit Bats - Tripper
I've never been addicted to crack, but there were times this year that I understood what it was like when you just needed that fix. Easily the album that got the most spins on the old player this year for me, or at least the album I would have gone on Maury Povich to tell the world that I've accepted that I have a problem.
When you're talking about live music, it really comes down to one thing, the energy that a band and the crowd create in the moment. You’ve either got or ya don’t. So this is an opportunity for other bands to take notice, because everyone walked out of the Rosebuds/Hospitality/Moderate show with a yearning for when that will happen again.
I’m a newbie to the Rosebuds and their music, having only seen them as the opener for Bon Iver earlier this year, where the venue was filled mainly with his fans, not theirs. So it was great to walk into the Rock and Roll Hotel for their show where the North Carolina to DC-based band The Moderate was already rolling through their set. Utilizing a guitar heavy sound that nods to Built to Spill and Modest Mouse, this group has also really focused on their skills as a tight melodic pop unit. And one of the most exciting parts of their driving set was when they would let the songs open up and breathe with an occasional jam, leaving the audience wondering where they might go, by which they guided us all in for a chaotic, but controlled landing. This really set the tone for a fun night.
So we may have been a little late on this one, but it's only because we're totally freaking swamped and/or lazy we love The Rosebuds so much and wanted the photos to come out just right.
If you couldn't get a ticket to see the band on their last stop through DC, blame your fellow man's undying love of Bon Iver for that. It was a fantastic, albeit truncated, set that left the audience wanting more.
Well you're in luck! The Rosebuds are coming back to play the Rock and Roll Hotel on October 20th. If that date sounds familiar to you, it's because that's the SAME day that Wild Flag/Eleanor Friedberger are planning to blow up The Black Cat. Oh, unkind universe, how could you be so cruel?!!
Soooo looks like it's decision time people. You've got THREE awesome bands in town on the same night. You can only see one (well, technically 2). What do you do?
What. Do. You. DO?
Click on the link below to see the rest of the shots from The Rosebuds stop at the 9:30. And if you haven't already, be sure to pick up their excellent album Loud Planes Fly Low for a measely $5 over at Amazon.com. It's one of the best releases of the year and an absolute MUST buy.
Welcome back to PART TWO of our countdown! The place where shit gets REAL, or something. Agree with our picks? Hated them? Why don't you wait until you've heard us out before you get to trashing/praising us in the comments. It's only fair. So we've only got 5 more to go, but before that why dont' we have a look at what ChunkyGlasses contributors Paul and Andre were feeling this year. While I will admit, we all share some similar tastes in music, what makes this whole thing work is that we all see music from very different from very different perspectives, and I think that's reflected in their picks. Of course, being the authority here, they are WRONG. But hey, it's entertaining to think your opinion matters, right? (Just kidding guys..just kidding)
First up have a gander at Paul's list..in order from best to not so much with the best thing...
Why hello there 1987! It's been a long time!
Hailing from North Carolina, The Rosebuds have been around for a little while, but they've never quite tapped into their inner 80's as effectively as they do here. Stealing a page right from Blondie, this track would have easily made the Top 20 on Z100 of my middle school days, yet somehow here, today, it sounds not only fresh but, gasp, relevent. The band's new album, Loud Planes Fly Low, was written during the tumoil of leads Ivan Howard and Kelly Crisp's divorce, and you can hear those struggles in the songs. But rather than get mired in the depressing drone of misery that you would expect, the songs are suprisingly catchy, entirely danceable, and collectively make up one of the best albums released so far this year. This track is just a taste, so be warned...you will get hooked.
The Rosebuds - Come Visit Me
What was looking to be an incredibly bleak week for releases has turned out to be surprisingly strong..and fun! Look, I'm not the biggest dance/indie-pop fan on the planet. In fact you could say that for the most part, I think it's crap. But sometimes a band trandscends that awful, awful label and delivers something that is ultimately just damn good music. So who did that this week?
What do you get when you mix fun with some fun and add a little more fun in just for good measure? Why the new Cults album of course. This duo from New York manages to mix 50's girl group do wops and hand claps with a more modern, danceable undercurrent that doesn't dial back the fun for a single instant. Think B-52's for the modern. This is the album that both She and Him albums should have been, so take notice "superstars", this is how you can make music from the past sound relevant and hip without boring your audience to death.
Sondre Lerche has been many things over the span of his career. He's been jazzy, indie poppy, even Dylan-y. All of this adds up to a somewhat inconsistent track record,which makes it all the better that on Sondre Lerche, the Norwegian songwriter plays to all of his strengths rather than indulge only a few of them. This album will sound familiar to his longtime fans, but it's focused craftsmanship resulting in a collection of infinitely catchy tunes will be what brings the new fans in.
Loud Planes Fly Low
Cribbing from the play books of bands like Blondie, The Cure and Echo and the Bunnymen, The Rosebud's Loud Planes Fly Low has one purpose and one purpose only: to get you to dance it out 80's style. By making this record more reimagination than rehash, The Rosebuds pull a neat trick here. Pulling from just about every single 80's band you ever loved, they somehow avoid sounding like anyone but the Rosebuds. It's refreshing and sentimental at the same time, and fits perfectly into this weeks apparent theme of really fun records.
And here's some other notable releases for this week:
Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. - It's A Corporate World
I don't know why this is good, because they were pretty damninsufferable when we caught them live last month*, but it is. Sorta.
Battles - Gloss Drop
So far, this record is sort of scaring me. In a good way. I think.
Elisapie - There Will Be Stars
Ever wonder wtf "polar pop" was? Well now is your chance to find out. This is a nice little record from WAY up north.
Tedeschi Trucks Band - Revelator
HOLY GIANT F@#@ING BLUES SUPERGROUP BATMAN!!!
*In all fairness, Generationals opened and completely killed their set, so that might have jaded our opinion of the headliner slightly.