Friday, June 26, 2009

Bishop Allen are Busy!

Following a wildly successful European tour last spring, Bishop Allen are returning for another round of club shows and festival dates, visiting Austria, Germany, The Netherlands, Portugal and Spain. We’re thrilled the band has been able to spend so much time with their European fans while supporting Grrr… but for those of you in North America, the band will be touring again before the year is up.

Bishop Allen’s Justin Rice also spends time as an actor, appearing in acclaimed indie films such as Mutual Appreciation and Alexander the Last. Currently, Harmony and Me (written and directed by Bob Byington) starring Justin, as Harmony, a depressed lyricist clinging to the memory of an ex-girlfriend, is gaining notoriety at film festivals worldwide, screening at the likes of the Los Angeles Film Festival, Edinburgh International Film Festival and Cine-Vegas Film Festival. Harmony and Me also includes an excellent supporting cast including Kevin Corrigan (Pineapple Express, Superbad, The Departed), and Pat Healy (Rescue Dawn, Ghost World, Great World of Sound) as well as bandmate, Keith Poulson, who is currently manning the bass in Bishop Allen.

European Tour Dates...
07/16/09 Guimaraes, Portugal - Manta Festival
07/18/09 Dornstadt, Germany - Obstwiesenfestival
07/19/09 Nijmegen, Netherlands - Volkhofaffaire
07/20/09 Barcelona, Spain - Be Cool
07/21/09 Vic, Spain - Jazz Cava
07/22/09 Sevilla, Spain - Nocturama
07/23/09 Son Servera, Spain - S'Esglesia Nova
07/24/09 Sonneger See, Austria - Acoustic Lakeside

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Sally Shapiro Is A Miracle.

Swedish italo-disco heiress Sally Shapiro has just released a brand new remix of her recently-released single, "Miracle." The remix is done by Bulgarian producer Bogdan Irkük (aka BULGARI), and is in support of Sally's single, as well as her much-anticipated sophomore release, My Guilty Pleasure, coming out this fall on Paper Bag Records.

Bogdan Irkük (aka BULGARI) is the first to take a crack at putting his own spin on Sally's music. Known for his fantastic remix of Jens Lekman's "Sipping On the Sweet Nectar" last summer, Irkük brings forth a remix for Sally Shapiro's "Miracle." The single was recently released in the US and Europe.

As for the remix it's a Moroder meets Dubstar like stroke of genius that's lush and has epic written all over it. Bulgari essentially took something that was already gorgeous and made it even more beautiful. Fifteen years ago this probably would have been caned to death in Ibiza but now thanks to technology you can cane it to death on your Ipod on your way to Ibiza!

Wrangler Wrangles Back

Dave Wrangler will dabble in any and all genres and his style of performance and production reflect his chaotic focus. He blends elements of hip-hop, electronica, indie, rock and dance into a seamless mix of high-energy madness! Ok, so that just described like every DJ right now...but as one of the busiest and most versatile DJ's in Houston, he is becoming one of the most acclaimed new producers/remixers in the bloghouse (thanks for the description HR!).

Dave's tracks, remixes and sets have been featured with the likes of underground and mainstream powerhouses: Soulwax, Diplo, Justice, Peaches, Portishead, MIA and Santogold just about everywhere. He's also been nominated as one of H-town's Best DJ's for 2009.

This time around he takes on Herbie Hancock's electro classic, "Rockit," gives it some funk and throws Dimples on top of it seamlessly making it into a long lost hip hop tune unearthed from a time capsule a hundred years in the future. If that wasn't enough, Wrangler brings the Queens of the Stone Age into Bun B's house and rocks the fuck out of it in a late 90's stylee that will have you reaching for your JNCO's.

Download: H. Hancock vs. Dimples - Rockit (Dave Wrangler Remix)
Download: Bun B vs. QOTSA - Draped Up (Dave Wrangler Remix)

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

This Is No Fool's Gold

Fool’s Gold is a Los Angeles collective that weaves together western pop aesthetics with African rhythms and melodies. The group started as a side project of two young LA musicians, vocalist/bassist Luke Top and lead guitarist Lewis Pesacov, who set out to explore their shared love of various forms of African music (specifically Congolese, Ethiopian, Eritrean and Malian), Krautrock, and 80s dance influenced pop music.

Lewis, although raised on reggae and world music, holds a degree in classical music theory and composition. He studied underneath American avant-garde expatriate composers Mark Randall-Osborn and Frank Cox in Berlin and has had pieces performed in halls throughout Europe.

Luke, who was born in Israel (his mother is from Iraq/father from Russia) and was moved to Los Angeles at the age of three, instinctively alternates verses between Hebrew and English, thus personalizing the songs and allowing a unique interplay between his deceptively simple soul melodies and a propulsive rhythmic backdrop.

At first listen, it might be tempting to label Fool’s Gold as “world music,” but the band is, in its essence, a Los Angeles band; it is music made for hot nights in a sweltering desert. The multi-cultural group of players was born from a city that is a melting pot of neighborhoods and cultures.

The songs for their forthcoming self-titled album were mostly recorded live over a two-day session at the Sunset Lodge recording studio in Los Angeles in 2008, to be later completed in closets and apartment living rooms in 2009. On September 29th they will release their debut record on IAMSOUND Records.

Download: Surprise Hotel

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Smiles Everyone Smiles

Ryan Hamilton and Jencey Hirunrusme create their own modern blend of folk, pop and rock in Smile Smile. Their songs range from heart wrenching ballads to foot stomping sing alongs. Jencey’s classical piano background teamed with Ryan’s self-taught guitar style combine to create sounds, which both soar above you and pull you in tight at the same time.

And pull you in they do. Maybe it's because I'm writing this at 7:10am, but they have this uncanny ability to take something as simple as a piano and drums and turn them into part of the biggest song ever. "Sad Song," for example, has epic written all over it. It's got such a fantastic level of girl/boy interplay that it will give you goosebumps. When Smile Smile hit a chorus they hit it and hit it hard. This is a group that aims for the stars and goes beyond them with tear jerking accuracy.

Continuing to support their latest album Blue Roses, Smile Smile has just been hand-picked by Metric to open up for them on tour alongside Sebastien Grainger. The 9-city trek kicked off in Seattle and makes its final rounds along the East Coast with NYC and DC dates. Here are the last three dates...

JUNE 17 – New York, NY @ Terminal 5
JUNE 18 – Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club
JUNE 19 - Philadelphia, PA @ Trocadero Theater

Download: Sad Song

The Color is Turning...

Forming within the growing Los Angeles Indie/Experimental scene, The Color Turning conceived a project that pulled from an eclectic pallet of modern and experimental rock. The band blended the power and emotion of Southern California’s indie scene while using European ambient rock instrumentation and arrangements to contextualize and broaden the scope of expression drawn from their creative manifestations.

That's a really complicated way of saying that the band throw a whole bunch of influences up against the wall, use whatever sticks, and then carve out shiny pop gems out of that. This is a group unafraid to use everything at their disposal to create songs that linger on long after they're gone. That's good because they excel at writing the "big" tune. One listen to, "New Hooligan," and I think you'll agree they've got the knack for big riffs and even bigger choruses. It's uber-melodic stuff that's quite good.

Their album, Good Hands Bad Blood is an auditory adventure. Displaying flagrant mastery of their instruments and genre, The Color Turning represents an expansion of Los Angeles’ indie psyche with dancing musicianship and detailed composition. Finally, as if some corporate big wig broke out a dictionary for some phraseology, the band structured the album around the rising download culture in music, the band creates a visceral experience to be listened to in its whole as a story or broken into its chapters of tracks.

Download: New Hooligan

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Incoming Missill's

For those that don't know Missill, she is a multi-talented French mixtress (aren't they all nowadays) working in every medium she can - graphic designer, graffiti artist, producer and DJ.

Missill is in top form for the release of her second mixed CD. Don't believe me, just listen to the album sampler below. The girl just plain kicks ass. She's all over the place, keeping her Serato working on overdrive. It's impressive stuff and will have everyone that thinks DJing is just for guys shaking in their shoes. Here productions are just as impressive and have that trademark French sound to them that will have you quaking in your Chuck Taylors.

'Mix Shake', Missill's second DJ mix is set to provide the perfect soundtrack for Summer. Her style was described in the UK's M8 Magazine as a “sense-shredding orgy of hiphop, electro, ragga, dancehall, breaks and grime”.

I couldn't agree more.

Download: We Don't Care
Download: We Don't Care (Missill and Loris Chuppa Vocal Mix)
Download: Mix Shake Mega Mix

The Ever So Sweet Sugarplum Fairies

The Sugarplum Fairies are an Los Angeles based indie pop/rock duo who mix hushed, melancholic English-language female vocals with jangly, often acoustic guitars over spare folk-rock productions.

Comprised of Vienna natives Silvia Ryder (vocals) and Ben Bohm (guitar, background vocals), the Sugarplum Fairies draw influence from French cultural icons such as Françoise Hardy, Anna Karina, and Jean-Luc Godard, as well as the Velvet Underground, John Lennon, and Lee Hazlewood. The thing is, they sound like a bit more chic and upbeat version of Mazzy Star meeting Ivy on the left coast for some beatnik bluesy fun. It's fabulous pop that even has an accordions in it, which kind of makes sense w/the whole French influence being prevalent.

That brings us to the Sugarplum Fairies’ latest release Chinese Leftovers. It's a record that has it's foot in every sort of pond imaginable without sounding like a mess. The record mixes elements of shoegazing, dusty Americana, beatnik pop and of course bouncy D.I.Y. indie rock, all with a subtle infusion of country-noir and the occasional hint of eclectic Vaudeville. It's fun stuff and the Sugaplum Fairies as their name sort of indicates are a sweet treat!

Download: First Rate Show

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Back to the Nite Club

Nite Club's My Tronic is a sixteen song exploration of synth pop that's influenced by a mish mash of sounds and experiences. This really shouldn't be a surprise as the band's main man Richard Spitzer has been shaped by everything from drum and bass, punk, and salsa to just about everything in between. This diversity has led Nite Club's to produce a record that is far more than just an ordinary synth pop record, but an album that crams every possible idea ever into some sort of song structure that will make your feet move.

Perhaps sounding something like Figurine meets Chromeo, Nite Club clearly have an idea how to write dance floor friendly material while still being unafraid to weave styles and influences into a heady stew of pop. As a result My Tronic is a brilliant sticky sweet album of lush beats and barely there vocals that sound like they've got secrets to tell. My Tronic jumps around influences more than kids on a hopscotch court and at any one time you could have a song that sounds like it belongs to Erasure running into a early 90's rave anthem. My Tronic is a series of sharp turns that never goes in any one direction for too long; this is a record that will keep you guessing and keep you entertained..

Nite Club are absolutely brilliant at taking everything they know and manipulating it all into some sort of formula that works on every level. Filled with effervescence, a variety of beats, and songs that you will never forget My Tronic is a diverse trip through synth pop wonderland that's almost better than a trip through It's A Small World.

Download: Nite Club - No Matter Which Way (Mold Remix)
Download: Ultrachorus - Words Kept Talking (Nite Club Remix)

Rock Plaza Central

Toronto six-piece Rock Plaza Central is preparing for the second leg of their tour of the US, this time hitting the Midwest and west coast. To kick off their tour, and in celebration of their forthcoming album and Paper Bag Records debut, At The Moment Of Our Most Needing, Or If Only They Could Turn Around, They Would Know They Weren't Alone (out this week!), the band is offering their take on Van Halen's "Panama."

Their version of "Panama," is so incredibly different and so potentially depressing that Diamond Dave would probably have to seek help if he heard it. I don't mean that in a negative way. Rock Plaza Central have taken the classic and turned it on it's head. It's a slow, acoustic version that sounds as if the end of days have arrived in the convertible.

According to front man Chris Eaton, " really all happened as a result of two things. I had an idea to host a night about four years ago where I'd book bands and give them a list of songs they'd have to cover. It was pretty brilliant. And then I had to stop because my partner got a job in Panama for four months. I couldn't get the song out of my head, so one day I just clicked record on the tape recorder and this came out."

You can see them tackle the tune in person on these tour dates...
June 19 Albany, NY @ Valentine's
June 20 Philadelphia, PA @ Popped! Music Festival
July 4 Milwaukee, WI @ PBR Event outside Burnheart's
July 5 Minneapolis, MN @ 7th St.Entry
July 7 Winnipeg, MB @ The Pyramid Cabaret
July 8 Saskatoon, SK @ Walker's Nightclub
July 9 Edmonton, AB @ Brixx
July 10 Calgary, AB @ Dicken's Pub
July 11 Canmore, AB @ Canmore Hotel
July 13 Kennewick, WA @ Red Room
July 14 Seattle, WA @ The Sunset Tavern
July 15 Portland, OR @ Mississippi Studios
July 16 Bellingham, WA @ The Wild Buffalo
July 22 Detroit Lake, MN @ 10,000 Lakes Festival
Sept 18 Champaign, IL @ Pygmalion Festival

Download: Panama
Download: (Don't You Believe The Words Of) Handsome Men

Monday, June 15, 2009

They're Going to Save Your Soul!

Happy Monday to everyone. I meant to post this on Friday but never got around to it. But truth be told, it actually makes more sense brand new tracks from Soulsavers on a Monday than a Friday.

Who are the Soulsavers? Well they just happen to be one of the greatest accumulations of talent in rock and roll. Nothing too special then? So who's in the band? Well you've got Will Oldham, Mark Lannegan, Jason Pierce, Mike Patton, and Richard Hawley, Gibby Haynes, and probably some member of your family as well.

It's a crazy combination of artists and music and the results are not at all what you would expect. With people like Gibby and Mike involved you'd think it would be chaotic and all over the place, but instead it's almost like some dusty, rustic, countrified gospel soul record that's groovy, depressing, and really frickin' good.

Will Oldham's take on Mark Lannegan's, "Sunrise," is the perfect early morning tune while Lannegan's take on Oldham's, "You'll Miss Me When I Burn," will have you calling your therapist.

This superstar album soon to be known as Broken comes out in August and judging by what you can download below it's destined to be a classic!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Blood Shake: Oh So Delicious

What would happen if you took Bonde Do Role and gave them more toys to play with? Blood Shake might have the answer as they seem to be the living embodiment of that question.

This Brazilian duo take the mash up and mash it up with just about everything under the sun including the kitchen sink. It's a crazy combination of all their influences (ghetto-tech, maximal, hip-hop, b-more and rock), some lo-fi goodness, and hooks bigger than Carnivale. Is it good? Hell yeah.

Loaded with Portuguese ramblings, hyper beats, and an energy level that's second only to nuclear power, Blood Shake bring the party and whether they're doing Baile Funk or taking on Iggy, they let it all hang out.

Franz Gets Dubbed.

Last week, Franz Ferdinand released Blood, an album of nine dub re-workings of tracks from their latest album, Tonight, by co-producer Dan Carey a.k.a. Mr. Dan, whose roots in dub mixing goes back to his time as an apprentice engineer for the likes of Mad Professor and Lee "Scratch" Perry. Originally released as part of the early deluxe editions of Tonight, this new separate version includes an addition track, the dubbed-up version of "Dream Again," entitled "Be Afraid."

The Itunes version of Blood includes three new remixes of their latest hit single, "No You Girls" from legend Vince Clarke (Yaz/Erasure/Depeche Mode), The Juan MacLean (DFA) and Trentemøller.

In addition to the release Franz Ferdinand will be returning to these shores in August as special guest of Green Day on the latter half of their Summer tour.

The dates...
8/08/09 Houston, TX @ Toyota Center
8/09/09 San Antonio, TX @ AT&T Center
8/11/09 St. Louis, MO @ Scottrade Center
8/12/09 Kansas City, MO @ Sprint Center
8/13/09 Omaha, NE @ Qwest
8/15/09 Denver, CO @ Pepsi Center
8/16/09 Salt Lake City, UT @ Energy Sol Arena
8/18/09 San Jose, CA @ HP Pavilion
8/20/09 San Diego, CA @ Cox Arena
8/21/09 Las Vegas, NV @ Mandalay
8/22/09 Phoenix, AZ @ US Air Arena
8/24/09 Sacramento, CA @ Arco Arena
8/25/09 Los Angeles, CA @ Forum

Download: No You Girls (Trentemoller Remix Edit)

A Delgado Returns!

Sometimes bashful, occasionally imbued with curmudgeonly bluster, and yet always lifted by humorous life learned truisms, Lord Cut-Glass (former Delgado Alun Woodward) strikes a dashing figure of musically inventive bravado. Galloping percussion, waltzes and marches, promenades of male and female harmony, delicate and serene creations punctuated by casual profanity and shot through with brazenly hilarious words-to-the-wise.

Woodward’s solo project has grown incrementally over the 4 years since The Delgados disbanded. In between “non rock n roll” spots of gardening on his allotment, doses of scarlet fever and work on Chemikal Underground releases – including those of Aidan Moffat and The Phantom Band – the moniker ‘Lord Cut-Glass’ has made fleeting appearances on Chemikal’s own Ballads Of The Book project and the compilation Worried Noodles.

Lord Cut-Glass is like a Scottish version of the Super Furry Animals. He is quirky, far outside the norm, and filled with sweeping pop gems that are just waiting to get out of him. It's obvious that the time spent away from his former band has taken a toll on him as his creative juices are flowing so much that he can just about contain himself. He's dramatic one minute and then majestic the next and it's that skittishness that makes him so fantastic. If the track, "Even Jesus Couldn't Love You," is anything to go by, then his self titled debut will be one of the most well received epic pop records of 2009.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Canadian Band Alert: Ketch Harbour Wolves

The Ketch Harbour Wolves hail from across Ontario, yet foster a deep connection to Ketch Harbour (Nova Scotia). It was there at the edge of the ocean that the band began to grow in the tiny coastal village - at which point KHW was merely a seedling nurtured by vocalist/guitarist Jonathan Tyrrell and percussionist Brian Urbanik. Ketch Harbour Wolves were born five-strong on the familiar ground of Toronto with bass guitarist Scott Winter, lead guitarist Liam Brown, and multi-instrumentalist Kristjan Bergey (keyboards, flute, saxophone).

They are a moody bunch that write songs filled with sweeping, dramatic instrumentation and emotionally intense vocals. Their record, Dead Calm Horizon is a turbulent, stormy record that ebbs and flows on the mercurial nature of the band. It's really good stuff that defies any set of predetermined parameters and doesn't really sound like anyone else right now.

Tense and powerful the Ketch Harbour Wolves have come up with a set of songs that mix a sense of space with a sense of breathtaking theatrics and this is why it's hard not to like them.

Download: Words
Download: Animals

NASA Is Oh So Gifted

There's a new video from the crazy folks who are N.A.S.A. and as per usual it's an awesome little work of art. It's just another feather in the cap of the rather brilliant duo who somehow managed to round up half the damn musical world to appear on their 2009 debut.

I mean come on..."Gifted," alone has Kanye West, Santogold, AND Lykke Li! That's like the line up of the gods and when you have the song remixed by Treasure Fingers that's just about unthinkable.

That being said, it’s easy to say that it's damn hard to come across a band with more creative willpower or energy than that of the collaborative geniuses behind 2009’s party band, N.A.S.A. Well, this brand new video of theirs entitled “A Volta” proves that point to the extreme. Directed and animated by the production team Logan, and featuring the artwork of The Date Farmers, this video combines stunning video and graphic art work with its own storyline - accurately representing both the modern-day underworld crime scene and a love for video games.

The video for, "A Volta," is NUTS. It's like watching Grand Theft Auto Rio De Janeiro. You want violence, sex, cardboard bad guys, guns, helicopters, and explosions it's all there. Watching this thing is like watching a stop animation Michael Bay movie. You might have to watch it two or three times just to catch all the action.

Download: Gifted (Treasure Fingers Epic Wave Remix)

Watch: A Volta

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Illinois' Kid Catastrophe Is Back

Bucks County, PA band-that-could Illinois have put their sprawling, 20-song endeavor The Adventures of Kid Catastrophe on the shelves at your local record store this week.

For 6 long months leading up to this physical edition of the album, the band pounded the virtual pavement all across the interweb, releasing a 3-song EP & video chapter per month from November ’08 – April ‘09. A few of which made it on The POP! Stereo.

With the music portion of the project available for fans to have and to hold – now literally – the 6 video chapters have culminated in a 22-minute narrative that is featured on the homepages of both YouTube and PureVolume and can now be viewed across the Internet.

Not one to rest on their laurels or their laptops and coming off residencies and Kid Catastrophe release shows in NY, Boston, DC and Philly, Illinois will embark on a cross-country US Tour with The Builders And The Butchers.

Here are the dates...
July 15th Bottom of the Hill San Francisco, CA
July 16th The Cellar Door Tulare, CA
July 17th Spaceland Los Angeles, CA
July 18th The Casbah San Diego, CA
July 20th Urban Lounge Salt Lake City, UT
July 21st Larimer Lounge Denver, CO
July 22nd Fisch Haus Studios Wichita, KS
July 23rd Replay Lounge Lawrence, KS
July 28th DC9 Washington, DC
July 29th Johnny Brenda’s Philadelphia, PA
July 30th The Bell House Brooklyn, NY
July 31st Piano’s New York, NY
August 1st T.T. the Bear’s Boston, MA
August 3rd The Pike Room Pontiac, MI
August 4th Brillobox Pittsburgh, PA
August 5th Skully’s Music Diner Columbus, OH
August 6th The Vollrath Indianapolis, IN

Download: She's So Blonde

Watch the 22 minute film:

Fukkk Off!

Bastian 'Fukkk Offf' Heerhorst has been renowned for some time in his hometown of Hamburg for storming live sets in the clubs scattered around the city’s red light district. "Die sündige Meile" or "the sinful mile" as it is known, has seen its walls shaken and thighs quaked by the throbbing depths of Bastian's big room Fukkk Offf sound.

After the first two singles 'I'm A Freak' and 'Rave Is King', Fukkk Off just dropped his debut full length album Love Me, Hate Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me. If the first single, Love Me, Hate Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me is any indication of what the record is like then prepare yourself accordingly as it's a killer. "LMHMKMKM" is a destroyer of all who oppose it. It's like a long lost electroclash single from 2002 that just happened to magically appear. It's a dirty, scuzzy, fuzzed out monster that sounds like Adult. on copious amounts of speed or Paris Hitler gone totally wrong (oh wait...).

"More Than Friends," on the other hand is like a 1980's Power 96 Jam that's run through the 2009 electro remix processor and blasted out with enough stabs and squelches to last a life time. Electro-hop, hip house, call it whatever the hell you want, it's a blast from the past that's been updated for your convenience.

Two songs, two jams, two tunes to download.

Freeland Copes!

Upon relocating from Brighton, England to sunny Silverlake in LA, Adam Freeland initiated the creation of what many would argue as a departure album, yet he considers it simply another color in his already impressive and large musical palette.

Instead of his usual break-beat electro approach he's so famously renowned for, Freeland has put together the ultimate hybrid album, showcasing the roots of electronic music that he helped pioneer and the elements of rock music that he found most interesting and is inspired by. The results? If you're thinking something that sounds like Ali Love, Whitey, and Calvin Harris all rolled up into one you'd be on the right track. Now, add a ton of distortion and a side order of chaos and you've got Freeland nailed down.

Freeland's versatility and pioneering spirit s what allows him to concurrently exist as one of the most in demand DJs in the club world and as a member of a band touring the rock circuit in a van.

Cope, Freeland's new album was just released and it's already been dubbed the definitive album of Adam's career. Freeland are also crisscrossing the pond for several live dates. Here there are...

June 24 - Cargo, London
June 25 - White Rabbit, Plymouth
June 26 - Glastonbury Festival (2nd headliner), MAIN DANCE, UK
June 27 - Glastonbury Festival - Arcadia @ Trash City stage, UK
July 16 - Electric Ballroom, London (supporting Spinnerette)
July 17 - Glade Festival, UK (headlining)
July 25 - Secret Garden Festival,UK

Jul 02 Quebec City, QB @ Le Boudoire
Jul 03 New York, NY @ Webster Hall
Jul 05 Phoenix, AZ @ Adult Swim @ Wyndham
Jul 10 San Francisco, CA @ Mezzanine
Jul 11 Los Angeles, CA @ Vanguard

Download: Under Control
Download: Freeland Mixtape (via Zshare)

Watch a Freeland Featurette:

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The Wrangler Is Back!

Dave Wrangler will dabble in any and all genres and his style of performance and production reflect his chaotic focus. He blends elements of hip-hop, electronica, indie, rock and dance into a seamless mix of high-energy madness! Ok, so that just described like every DJ right now...but as one of the busiest and most versatile DJ's in Houston, he is becoming one of the most acclaimed new producers/remixers in the bloghouse (thanks for the description HR!).

Dave's tracks, remixes and sets have been featured with the likes of underground and mainstream powerhouses: Soulwax, Diplo, Justice, Peaches, Portishead, MIA and Santogold just about everywhere.

This time Mr. Wrangler has decided to tackle the Beasties and Kanye West/Twista. Two different tracks two different approaches. If the Beastie Boys track would have been released in 98 it would have had Big Beat Anthem stamped all over it...a post-classic if there ever was one. Meanwhile, the Kanye/Twista track pumps up the energy level like 100 times and lets Underworld run all over the thing. It's yet another post 90's anthem.

Download: Body Movin (Dave Wrangler Remix)
Download: Overnight Celebrity (Dave Wrangler Remix)

Discourse and Remorse With Josh Fitzwater

Josh Fitzwater and the Shambles are a band that proudly exploit their misadventures, trials & tribulations, and painfully brilliant moments that make up their lives. Hailing from Columbus, Ohio, Josh and the Shambles set out to tell a never-ending story through a head full of words and music.

Josh's discerning memory is one that reminisces about love lost and found and capricious youth and is always a few steps behind his journey. In other words its moving forward by looking back.

Josh Fitzwater and the Shambles album Discourse and Remorse is a blast of late 80's, early 90's influenced college rock that brings to mind bands like The Replacements, Buffalo Tom, and maybe even a little bit of The Buck Pets when the band is at its most upbeat and maybe like Soul Asylum at its most folky. Listening to Discourse and Remorse is like being back on college radio in the early 90's; angsty, energetic, and moody in all the best ways. Discourse and Remorse is so far removed from today's scene that listening to it is like a breath of fresh air, especially, if you've been around the block a few times.

Download: Montagues & Capulets
Download: Leave A Note

Cubism returns...

True to their name, The Cubists are taking a Picasso-like approach to pop. All the structures and strictures remain intact – the chorus and verse, the bridge and hook – but they have been bent, twisted and manipulated, expanded and enhanced beyond expected boundaries.

Over the course of seven material-mining years the Augusta, Georgia-based psych-rock act has evolved from earnest power pop trio to something bigger, bolder and infinitely more complex. Incorporating dense orchestral arrangements, electronic experimentation, found sounds and field recordings, The Cubists have grown in both size and scope. Channeling disparate musical elements and personal loss the band has emerged with the sprawling debut full-length, Mechanical Advantage.

Sounding as skittish as they do heavy, The Cubists are a band all over the map. Sometimes the approach of genre hopping doesn't work for bands, but in the case of these guys it totally does. In fact, it's their inability to sit still that makes them so damn good and makes their songs so catchy. Think of an American version of The Coral and you're kind of on the right track.

Download: She's Got Blood

Monday, June 8, 2009

Hooray For Tullycraft.

First String Teenage High: The Songs of Tullycraft Played By People Who Aren't, was originally co-released in 2003 by AAJ & Bumblebear records. The initial run was only 500 CD's and has been completely sold out for quite some time.

First String Teenage High started as a labor of love by Bumblebear Records owner Jimmy Hughes (current member of Elf Power & mastermind behind wonderful band Folklore). With Sean Tollefson's support, Hughes lovingly complied the tracks over a two year period. Some of the songs covered are actually from Sean's bands that were precursors to or side projects of Tullycraft - Crayon and Six Cents & Natalie. Sadly, very few of the bands that contributed to the album are still in existence.

First String Teenage High will be available for download via all major outlets on July 28th, 2009! And if you're like me you a) LOVE Tullycraft and b) will most definitely NOT miss this opportunity to have this record in your collection a second time. Twee done by twee for twee. You can't get much tweer than that.

Until July 28th rolls around enjoy two tracks from this rather masterful tribute record!

I Am Livin' XL

One of the pioneering multi-format dj's in Vancouver, Jon Hamlin was a mash-up artist before the term even existed. Known by his peers to be able to mix just about any genre into a seamless blend of pure party magic, Jon has left a trail of satisfied party goers wherever he has played.

In 2008, iamxl remix productions began to appear online and began circulating amongst various dj's the world over. Jon developed the iamxl persona to symbolize and celebrate musical diversity and his remix credits exemplify this. As a producer his tastes are varied and in a very short span he has already touched on downtempo house, hip-hop, gipsy punk, rock, and banging electro.

Having returned to Vancouver in March 2009, iamxl is once again making an impact on the Vancouver party scene. Whether it be upbeat hip-hop, disco, punk rock, latin, 80’s, or electronic bangers, any genre is fair game in Jon’s eyes. He's been busy to, he's got a list of remixes about fifty feet long and his two latest, a Digable Planets re-work and a Gossip/Emotions mashup on further cement his place as the mad Canadian remixer.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

All Woodhands On Deck!

Since dropping their debut LP Heart Attack in April 2008, Woodhands have been touring pretty much constantly, with stops across North America, Japan, China, and upcoming dates in Europe. Recently, the keytar-n-drums unit of Daniel Werb and Paul Banwatt have also been cranking out remixes and cover tracks that have been attracting high-level praise from the likes of Rolling Stone and NME. After the success of their cover for Eddy Grant's one-hit wonder "Electric Avenue" (blessed by Eddy himself!), Woodhands recently decided to tackle Katy Perry's hit single "I Kissed a Girl."

You can download "Electric Avenue," below and revel in it's upside down take on the classic. It's a slowed down, almost a non-electronic cover with percussion leading the way and bubbling synths following the way. It's good stuff.

While Heart Attack appeared on a slew of "Best of 2008" year-end lists including "Best Electro Album" from iTunes Canada, their live show has to be seen to be believed: no pre-programmed samples, no laptops, no safety net: just two hyper kinetic, high-energy performers bringing the party as hard as possible, a little different each time.

They will be continuing their US tour, hitting the West Coast for a set of dates in support of their recent Paper Bag Records Dancer EP. Recently deemed one of the "10 Best New Bands On Earth" by Q Magazine, the band has signed on to be a part of the Monolith Festival at Red Rocks in September, alongside Girl Talk, Health, Method Man & Red Man, The Walkmen, Thunderheist, M. Ward, and MSTRKRFT among others.

The latest live dates...
Tues. 6/9 Los Angeles, CA at Cinespace (Aoki Party)
Wed. 6/10 Los Angeles, CA at Knitting Factory (Alterknit Lounge) at 7:30pm (industry showcase, free with biz card)
Thurs. 6/11 Sebastopol, CA at Hop Monk Tavern
Fri. 6/12 San Fran, CA at The Independent w/ Datarock
Sat. 9/12 Morrison, CO at Red Rocks/Monolith Festival

Download: Electric Avenue
Download: Dance (CFCF Remix)

Watch: I Wasn't Made For Fighting

Friday, June 5, 2009

Ten Tracks You Need #27 (300th post edition)

It's Friday people! Unlike last week, we actually have a Ten Tracks You Need this week. In fact, we have an expanded mp3 edition of Ten Tracks You Need. Think of it as a little bit of a make up present for not having a post last Friday.

It's hard to believe that The POP! Stereo is 300 posts old. What originally started out as a blog designed to promote my DJ night has now sort of taken on a life of it's own. In little under a year it's grown exponentially and thanks to this little thing I've come in contact with and/or met so many people from around the world that I'm constantly in awe. It's always fun when 50% or more of the visitors to TPS are from outside the US. It reminds me of the days when I used to do a fanzine (go ask your parents kids) and would get snail mail with demo tapes from the four corners of the globe and speak to people in the remotest part of Norway as they flipped through my little magazine. It was crazy stuff then and still is today.

To celebrate our 300th post, the first three people to email me at will win themselves a POP! Stereo Prize Pack with CD's, Vinyl, and more!

Ok...enough giving away stuff, reminiscing and sentimentality. Off to the tracks. Have fun, thanks for the support, and here's to another 300 posts.

Ten Tracks You Need
Stuart Murdoch - Come Monday Night

Donny Hue and the Colors - Steps

Paul and the Patients - Blogspot

Future of the Left - Armingerirtrea

Mean Creek - The Sky (Or the Underground)

The Sounds - Dorchester Hotel

School of Seven Bells - Face to Face on High Places (Jesu Remix)

It's Elephants - Better in 77

Dark Room Notes - We Love You Dark Matter

Hollands - Coughing Boy

Living Things - Oxygen

Santo Gold - Anne (King Britt Moody Remix)

Major Organ - His Mister's Pet Whistles

O Spada - Time

Forcefield Kids - Since We Last Spoke via Rapidshare

RCRD LBL (opens in a seperate window)
Scott Hardkiss - Hey Deejay (Jimmy Edgar Remix)

Chairlift - Evident Utensil (Sinden Remix)

Free Energy - Dream City

Passion Pit - The Reeling (Miike Snow Remix)

Moby - Pale Horses (Apparat Remix)

Blank Dogs - Tin Birds

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Donny Hue and the Colors

The proper follow up to Donny Hue and the Colors album Folkmote, Letter from New Virginia, is out on June 23rd and the band have begun releasing a bunch of free sides (b sides from the album) fo us to enjoy prior to the release date.

Recorded in an old barn in the middle of Luray, VA, Letter to New Virginia paints a majestic landscape of harmonica laced hoe down folk. Once again, the Colors came from all over the eastern seaboard and west coast to put together the follow up to 2007’s Donny Hue and the Colors debut Folkmote. Burleigh Seaver (former member of OK GO) brought in his recording gear and captured all of the harmonies of the album at once with mixing and mastering done back in DC.

Judging by the freesides, Letter From New Virginia seems like it will be a folk-pop album that's filled with enough harmonies and left of center ideas to last a lifetime. Filled with quirky lyrics and homely vocals, the songs are like an old friend you haven't heard from in a while. The tunes are dusty and endearing. They are far from cliched territory and have such a great pop sensibility about them. Yeah, the songs are predominantly acoustic but they're hypnotic in that call and response, foot stomping sort of way and that's what makes them fun to listen to.

Download: Oh Lord
Download: Hayseed Cousins

These Hermits Have Thrush

Hermit Thrushes are a strange, ambitious power that only the east coast could have birthed. Cryptic lyrics in English and Greek sit comfortably over top angular guitar parts, melodic bass lines and fine-tuned drumming. Standard rock instruments are supplemented by melodic couplings on trumpet, spare glockenspiel lines, noisy organ chords and drums filled with metal.

The band's second album and first for Joyful Noise, entitled Slight Fountain, streamlines the band's chaotic sound into a cohesive batch of songs - successfully balancing their naive bedroom lo-fi with disjointed arrangements, noisy multi-instrumental blasts, and nasty pitch-shifts.

As for "Snowflake Heart," and "Push," which you can download below, They're like the indie rock soundtrack to a Fractured Fairytale. They're jumpy, skittish, sound broken, and encapsulate enough non-playing ala Pavement to last a lifetime. As songs they really shouldn't work, but their lazy and melodic nature just sounds dandy. The Hermit Thrushes are fun stuff.

For those of you up north there are a bunch of tour dates...
06.04.09 - Castle Gay - Philadelphia, PA
06.14.09 - Iwaa Bina - Philadelphia, PA
06.20.09 - Castle Gay - Philadelphia, PA
06.26.09 - Bunk Space - Cincinnati, OH
06.27.09 - Garfield Artworks - Pittsburgh, PA
07.19.09 - Pilot Light - Knoxville, TN
07.21.09 - JJ's Bohemia - Chanttanooga, TN
07.22.09 - Buccaneer - Memphis, TN
08.26.09 - LEMP - St. Louis, MO

Download: Snowflake Heart
Download: Push

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

How Much For the Little Girls?

Toronto-based Little Girls has just released their new EP, Tambourine with Paper Bag Digital earlier this week and we're here to celebrate.

This band of Little Girls emerged from Toronto's post-punk scene as a solo recording project of multi-instrumentalist Josh McIntyre. Little Girls' sound is driven by 'youth and nostalgia', says Josh who has been creating and playing music since his early teens. His influences come from the 80's no-wave post-punk scene, and the early 80's golden era of hip-hop. Equally influential are the late hip-hop artist J. Dilla, as well as Can, Joy Division, Wire, and The Clean.

The songs combine lo-fi distorted surf rock with layers of fuzz to create murky, haunting, and melodic walls of sound.

Little Girls' band consists of Josh on guitar and vocals, Andrew Wilson on guitar, Joseph Roth on bass and Anthony Gerace on drums. Little Girls will release two more EPs before the end of this year on various labels and will be touring throughout the summer.

Little Girls on tour...
June 18 Toronto @ A Secret Show w/ Slim Twig (NXNE)
June 19 Toronto @ A Secret 'House Party' w/ Slim Twig (NXNE)
June 20 Toronto @Sneaky Dee's w/ Crystal Antlers (NXNE)
July 8 New York City @ Cake Shop
July 10 Brooklyn @ Cameo Gallery w/ Japandroids
July 11 Brooklyn @ TBA
July 12 Boston @ Great Scott - w/ Japandroids
July 16 Toronto @ El Mocambo w/ Japandroids

Download: Tambourine

The Cocknbullkid Finally Comes To The States

IAMSOUND’s next essential release will be Anita Blay aka thecocknbullkid, with her debut EP Querelle out August 4th (my birthday). The 23 year-old pop star in the making has toured with CSS, Metronomy, Late of the Pier and others, appeared on Later... With Jools Holland in the UK last year (practically unheard of for an at-the-time unsigned artist), and also headlined the BBC Introducing stage at Glastonbury, not to mention playing at just about every festival known to man in the UK.

Her debut EP features production from Radioclit (The Very Best, Santigold), Dave McCracken (Beyonce, Ian Brown of The Stone Roses), Blue May and The Aspirins For My Children, and resides on the darker side of pop and that as we all know is never a bad thing. "Clean Apart," which you can download below is a slice of pop perfection that should be all over the radio. It's glossy on the outside but all kinds of grey on the inside. It's one for the floor and if you don't become immediately addicted to this tune you should seek medical attention.

Download: Clean Apart

Climb In To Bed With Lullatone

Lullatone is Shawn James Seymour and Yoshimi Seymour from Nagoya, Japan who have been releasing conceptual pop albums since 2002, displaying artwork, touring the world, and even hosting a Japanese children's TV program. Lullatone began out of necessity when Shawn Seymour was schooling in Japan and could only travel with his portable Casio SK-1 keyboard, sampling sine tones, he crafted quiet pop tunes in the apartment to not wake Yoshimi; now his now wife and vocalist for the band, as she was sleeping.

Released by Audio Dregs, We Will Rock You... To Sleep is an introduction to Lullatone, featuring tracks from several previous albums, but also serves as a single for "A Mobile OVer Your Bed" which will be featured on their forthcoming album entitled Songs That Spin in Circles. Although it is forty minutes in length it is priced as a "rock bottom," single price, and closes with an "Extended Lullaby Remix" as an exclusive B-side.

Download: A Mobile Over Your Bed
Make Your Own Lullatones: The Lullatone Melody Maker

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Lightning Dust Strikes Again

Lightning Dust's sophomore album for Jagjaguwar, Infinite Light (Released Aug. 4 in the US and Aug. 3 in the UK), is an album that ups the ante of the band's minimalist, self-titled debut and lays to waste any "side project" chatter. There is a light on the other side of the black mountain, and it glows in the hearts of Vancouver duo Amber Webber and Joshua Wells. As Lightning Dust, the pair harness a gentler sound than as founding members of Black Mountain.

That being said, the first tune to be released from Infinite Light, "I Knew," is something like a no-wave tune run through some sort of warbly folk music maker. The result is something that sounds like a rejected Suicide track if they were girls and wound up on the set of Dr. Who. It's twisted stuff that bounces around and boggles the senses.

In the case of Amber and Joshua lightning may indeed strike in the same place twice.

Download: I Knew

Cubic Zirconia Are Good Employees

The Savant Guard, Brooklyn's little little label with the big big sound, comes roaring back with this Summer's irresponsibility anthem, FUCK WORK.

On their left field debut, Cubic Zirconia, a 4 headed genre-defying monster bred in NYC’s lower east side, effortlessly combine acid basslines, crisp pre-software percussion, and noisy guitar stabs with an all too relevant call to arms. Fuck Work?

The digital EP features four bonus remixes, all of which are made for the dance floor. Dances With White Girls flows like no other in his unforgettable tweaky rap filled version (download this below), Lord and Master’s Lord Warddd drops a cheeky and infectious distorted hands-in-the-air rendition, Rene Goulet offers a sexy bottle service remix, and Proper Villains & Jubilee drop, it (um..) proper, with a big knee wobbler of dive bomb basslines and ravey windups .

So as you head on down to the unemployment line, blast this out of your Ipod and feel rest assured that for the 26 weeks you can officially say fuck work on the government's (and some degree my) dime.

Download: Fuck Work (Dances With White Girls Remix)

Monday, June 1, 2009

DirtyBlu Wonder Where Are You?

It's been a while folks. Duty calls in the form of off site meetings. I'm still playing catch up and I should be back to normal by tomorrow. Until then here's a quick post from DirtyBlu.

DrtyBlu are an obscure electro-house punk group from Brooklyn, who claim 'Our mission is to capture and release sounds, our style is no style. DrtyBlu smells like Humbolt county and moves like Muddy Waters. DrtyBlu is the new color of electro [pop] punk.'

Whether or not they are the 'new color' is up for debate, but the fact that DirtyBlu can write a big tune is not. "Where Are You" is destined to be huge as it has radio friendly written all over it. This is a tune that embraces the poppier side of punk with open arms and then bashes it over the head with a bunch 0f 808's. It might be a pure pop-ish at times but the synths and samples just throw the whole song into a dizzying loop of floor filling fun.

Mostro is a Monster

Mostro is the project of 4 electro superstars- crafted exclusively for ABSOLUT FREAK RECORDS.On "Mostro 1", french wonderboy PLAY PAUL, mainly known for his work with Kitsune, Craft Music and Gigolo ("Lalaland"), meets DANIEL DEXTER, member of the German crew AcidKids who have also appeared on eminent labels such as Exploited & Television Rocks. They deliver a dynamic and spacey electro climb.

On the B-side, club legend BORIS DLUGOSCH and RAIK FARGO from Hey Today! (Kitsune) are COME KLAR. Their tracks "Mostro 2" and "Mostro 3" are explosive tunes with a freaky basslines and fluro pads on a massive compression!

If you like Alan Braxe and Linus Loves than you need these tracks in your life!

Download: Mostro 1
Download: Mostro 2
Download: Mostro 3