Saturday, January 29, 2011

Patrick Wolf Heads To The City

Fresh out the studio, Patrick Wolf announces a brand new set of shows to take place across the UK in March 2011. After the storming success of his last single ‘Time Of My Life’, Patrick is now gearing himself up for what are sure to be some of his finest live performances yet.

Patrick’s new album is due for release in May 2011 through brand new label, Hideout Recordings, and will be preceded by second single “The City”, on March 14th 2011. The new single will be available for download and on limited edition 7”, with a selection of remixes available on limited edition 12”.

Discussing the new single, Patrick says: “The City’ saved my life. Living in central London, I woke up one broody morning having booked some studio time. It was a hot summers day and in the midst of the protests against the banks and BBC6 Music closing down. Seeing how the recession had worked its way into peoples relationships and ambitions, I went to my piano and started to fight against the negative by writing in the positive.”

Enter Richard X...who makes this single a beam of sunlight on a grey day. Richard X has been lending his brand of magic to indie folk for ages turning them into dance floor monsters and he's done it yet again here with his remix of, "The City."

UK Tour Dates...
21-Mar Dublin Sugar Club
23-Mar Glasgow Oran Mor
24-Mar Nottingham Rescue Rooms
25-Mar Birmingham Academy
26-Mar Manchester Club Academy
28-Mar Bristol Thekla
29-Mar London Koko

Download: The City (Richard X Remix)

The Sweet Serenades Are Sweet

Martin and Mathias found each other for the first time in May 1991. They were both wearing the same CCCP-cap (a hip thing among pre-teens in northern Sweden at the time) and riding similar BMX-bicycles. Ever since then they’ve been inseparable.

The Sweet Serenades was officially formed in Stockholm, Sweden 2002. The sound is mainly influenced by great songs, broken hearts, sexual frustration and musical acts as Tom Waits, Clap your hands say yeah, Arcade Fire, The Strokes, ACDC, Eddie Meduza, ABBA, The Technicolors, The Perishers, The Shins and many more. We call it Jungle Rock. Or testosterone Pop.

As of late, they've been everywhere. From Hype Machine charts to weepy medical drama Grey's Anatomy. It's well deserved despite looking like a couple of axe murderers who just happen to make some darn fine indie pop. Their album, Balcony Cigarettes should be out any day if it isn't already until then or until the next episode of Grey's you can check out a mini best of below.

Download: Greatest Hits (zip file)

Friday, January 28, 2011

Datarock Compute Their Return

I meant to post this a couple of days ago, but I got sidetracked with other stuff.

Datarock have returned and it's hard to believe that it's been so long since they've been around. In fact it's been so long that most of the people that download this were probably still eating baby food.

Delays and time aside, it's nice to have these guys back as they so easily combine the whole dance thing with a tongue planted firmly in cheek and as a result come up with stupidly good songs that will linger long after your kids go to college.

They’ve done everything from tearing the roof off Coachella to playing Yo Gabba Gabba and now Datarock will release Catcher in the Rye, the most extravagant single in history on March 21! The single will come as a designer toy with a USB stick that features 110 tracks, 1500 photos taken at their shows in 33 countries, 20 music videos, and Never Say Die a brand new hour-long concert film. The single will also be released as a digital 5 track EP. The USB features the EP, the new album Music For Synchronization, both of their previous albums with bonus tracks, the new Lost and Found b-sides and rarities compilation, 15 new instrumentals, and the 40 track remix album Mixed Up.

Download: Catcher In The Rye

The Good Suns

In performing their beautifully crafted, old time pop gems in and around London for the past year, The Good Suns have won a faithful following that have fallen for their dreamy guitar pop.

At the core sits the partnership of James Hearn and Bobby McBrierty - a songwriting duo in the purest sense and meticulous over every word they pen. Their lyrics connect over similar themes of love, lust, and the anxiety of going nowhere fast.

As for their songs...think Hermans Hermits brought bang up to date and hanging out with someone like The La's or maybe even Cinerama. It's all very retro-tinged and jangly and as a result hits you right between the ears. Not overly complicated but ridiculously good, The Good Suns are mining all the best influences to come up with a sound that is uniquely their own.

February sees their first official release in the double A-side of Shadow/At Last I’m Bored.

Download: Shadow

Take It Dag For Dag

American-Swedish. Brother and sister. Nomadic wanderers. From Missoula, to Wisconsin, to Honolulu, to, finally, Stockholm...that's Dag för Dag in a nutshell.

Dag för Dag bring their sprawling mix of dirty guitars, layered textures, and anthemic guy/girl vocals via a full-length album. Boo is set for a April 26th release on Brooklyn's Ceremony Recordings. The band's name, Swedish for "day by day," was originally taken from a language-learning tape the duo once stumbled across, the name has become an apt descriptor of their approach to music and life in general.

With a sort of dark and dreary sound, their single, "I Am The Assassin," sounds like a James Bond outtake that slinks it's way around slaying you with subtle hooks, and slinky guitar work. It's a subtle sort of tune that sticks with you until it gets the job done. If Boo is anything like this tune, we're in for one heck of a thrill ride.

Download: I Am The Assassin

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

They're U.S. Royalty

Today, January 25, DC-based U.S. Royalty releases the anticipated debut album, MIRRORS.

"With this record we wanted to present a body of work, a complete thought," says singer John Thornley. To achieve this, the band wrote and rewrote songs for a year, demoing and dissecting while on the road and at home. John continues, "Because we traveled for about a year and a half before we recorded the album, there is definitely a travel vibe to the record."

And for some strange reason, the thing sounds like Fleetwood Mac if they hung out with some sort of rustic version of Foals. It's an interesting combination of sounds the combine into something far greater than it's parts. Several people have called the Royalty, folk-pop. This is a massive disservice as the songs here are about as folky as Slayer is easy listening. Pastrol pop with a wides screen feel, If the singles below of how the rest of the album sounds, then this is destined to be one of the cooler records you'll hear this winter.

Download: Monte Carlo
Download: Equestrian

Acrylics Afternoons

NY duo Acrylics (Molly Shea and Jason Klauber) have debuted the video for "Nightwatch," the fifth track off their forthcoming full-length, Lives and Treasure. The video for "Nightwatch" was a collaboration with House Plants, and was filmed on location at The Wassaic Project - an upstate NY oasis of spooky ancient buildings, ominous rivers, and eerie landscapes that set the tone perfectly for the single.

Lives and Treasure will be released on Friendly Fire Recordings/Hot Sand Records on March 1st, and the band will be touring down to this year's SXSW behind it. The album follows the band's acclaimed 2009 EP All of the Fire, which was produced by Chris Taylor of Grizzly Bear and the first new signing to his label, Terrible Records.

Download: Nightwatch
Download: Mollys Vertigo

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Howler-ing At The Moon

Minneapolis’ Howler is the solo project of Jordan Gatesmith, lead guitarist for indie pop band Total Babe. Jordan claims that the idea for the band came to him because he's “terribly A.D.D.”, and needs to be working all the time.

Fortunately for music fans he is not medicated for it, so he is constantly writing music and apparently creating new bands. After starting a new band each week for about 2 months, Howler emerged as the clear standout, and after a short amount of time recorded the This One’s Different EP.

Jordan describes Howler as “an 80’s punk band cleaned up just enough so you could stick a corsage on it and take it to the prom.” The result is something like The Jesus and Mary Chain during their I Hate Rock & Roll period. It's noisy, kind of lo-fi, shambolic, and deeply in love. Nice stuff then that's as dusty and dear as it is rock and roll.

Download: I Told You Once

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Those Infernal Devices

Infernal Devices met online over a shared love for electronic dance music and began writing music together shortly thereafter. After a long discussion one night about the joys of 80’s sci-fi and dance music, it was decided that this band would be a unique visual experience and take on electropop.

Do you remember the feeling when you saw Star Wars for the first time? That feeling of wonder and excitement? That’s what they’re aiming for. With this in mind, they holed up in their studio in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, writing, recording and constructing a live show to bring retro-futurism to the post-disco dance floor, combining floor-pounding beats with melodic hooks.

With previous remixes being done for ‘Not Enough’ by Xylos, ‘Leave Me Alone’ by Pretty Good Dance Moves featuring Bjorn Yttling of Peter Bjorn & John (released on Township Records), ‘Wildkat’ by Flashmen (released on Crushed Records), and ‘Sleepyhead’ by Passion Pit the band has literally been all over the map. Their latest remix is of Savoir Adore and you can check it out below. It's a gorgeous rework that brings to mind St. Etienne or something straight out of the Thompson Twins back catalog more than pill munching rave zombies and maybe that's why I like it quite a bit.

Download: Savoir Adore - Loveliest Creature (Infernal Devices Remix)

Friday, January 21, 2011

Rachel Goodrich & The 305

So, I leave Miami in 1999 and move to Jacksonville. Part of that move was motivated by the burgeoning music scene up here in Jacksonville...and the lack there of in Miami. So what happens? Miami explodes with this music scene that was essentially the side effect of Virgin opening a Megastore in the city and Jacksonville slowly but surely dries up. Einstein's is closed, the number of good national acts passing through the city plummets and the city's indie scene suffers as a result. Such is my luck.

While Miami obviously has a serious love affair with electronic music, there is a rather nice size indie scene as well and the number of bands coming out of my hometown seems be increasing daily. Among the latest is Rachel Goodrich. Rachel is so far from anything you'd expect to hear coming out of Miami you'll think she's actually a New Yorker. With nary a Latin, electronic, hip hop, urban influence in sight, Rachel creates a left field version of what a singer songwriter should be and does a good job of it. In fact, she's so good at it if you were to look up the word quirky in the dictionary she'd be pictured along with the definition. Utilizing just about everything around her and using a voice that's so adorable you'll want to give it a hug, Rachel sings her heart out and woo's you in to this wonderful state of glee.

Her self-titled album is a really neat record who's eccentricities and odd sounds make it officially one of the coolest records to come out of Miami in ages. With an indie pop lilt and enough melody to make the the sun shine, Rachel's album is a whimsical fun record that shatters everything that's associated with the very idea of a singer songwriter. Cute, cuddly, odd, and brilliant Rachel Goodrich is one of the most original talents to emerge from Miami in the last decade. Her songs are as lovely as she is and she represents the 305 oh so well.

Download: Golden Phone (Micachu & The Shapes cover)
Download: Light Bulb EP (via Bandcamp)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Head To The Balkans

Balkans are back at it again. The Atlanta, GA band is releasing the Edita V 7" on February 22nd and a new self-titled album on May 10th (US, May 9th in the UK), both on Double Phantom Records (Roman Photos, Abby Gogo, Carnivores).

Maybe it's because I've not heard the Strokes in ages, but Balkans totally remind me of a primordial Strokes whose rawness and overbearing hooks just kind of bash you over the head until you realize that their songs are pretty good.

The band's forthcoming LP is chock full of the raw, heavy guitar fuzz Balkans have become known for. After releasing several seven inch singles through local labels, they're more than ready to unleash their debut record to the world.

Download: EditaV

Monday, January 17, 2011

Acid Pauli Kicks Off The New Year.

After his rather menacing vision called World's End (Hometrainer/Acid Pauli 12", Dec 2010) Acid Pauli pulls another two more typical tricky tracks out of his musical drawer. But, to confuse right from the scratch, he gave them polarizing names such as "Like It" and "Don't Like It". Has he possibly planted something on us?

"Gefällt Mir" (English "Like It") becomes proudly led by a vivid Flamenco melody. It starts right swiftly to enter eagerly into an Acid-Paulish play with tensions. A few peaks must be crested before the barge steers over to in twilight's dazzling Andalusian haven.

"Gefällt Mir Nicht" (English "Don' Like It") gets a little more time to build up. Guided by a springy beginning the track builds up brick by brick, until a noise emerges and changes things completely. This noise – let's name it violin screaming – becomes something to remember because the magic violin pops up unpredictably whilst the track constantly maintains its melacholic ways.

So that's his latest release in a nutshell...the guy seems to put these things out in an assembly line fashion with the highest quality. Check out the versions below and buy them here.

Download: Gefallt Mir
Download: Gefallt Mir Nicht

Zoey Van Goey Is A Poet & Doesn't Know It

Zoey Van Goey are Matt Brennan, Michael John McCarthy, Kim Moore and Adam Scott. Brennan, McCarthy and Moore, hailing from Canada, Ireland and England respectively, formed the initial trio in Glasgow in 2006, with Scott becoming a fully fledged member in 2010.

The band's new album, Propeller Versus Wings, has been inspired by Powell & Pressburger's magnificent A Matter of Life & Death, a film with which it shares a sense of romance and adventure. Perhaps emboldened by the addition of the multi-talented Scott (as well as the results of their research), this collection of songs sees Zoey Van Goey displaying a new found musical confidence, borrowing freely from disparate styles whilst still sounding like themselves, in a fashion not dissimilar to heroes such as Yo La Tengo and The Magnetic Fields.

They're mathy, rustic, weird, and quite good. They're like a jumble of influences as much as they are a jumble of nationalities and it's this sense of confusion that really helps the band stick out. In fact, it might not really be fair to compare them to anyone as they've gone their own way and come up with some fantastic music. To quote a famous Scottish band..."I love your friends they're all so arty." That pretty much sums up Zoey Van Goey.

Propeller Versus Wings comes packaged in specially commissioned artwork by Glasgow-based artist Ursula Cheng, including a 9 panel fold-out illustration. Equal parts Quentin Blake, Jamie Hewlett, Jimmy Corrigan and Hayao Miyazaki it is the work of a kindred creative spirit, bent on making strange the stuff of everyday life in order to fashion a looking glass through which the mundane becomes something more magical.

Download: The Cake & Eating It

autoKratz Return

autoKratz has kicked off the new year with no only their return but with the Opposite of Love EP.

Remixes come from Les Petits Pilous (Boys Noize), NT89 (Southern Fried) + Joe & Will Ask? (MOS).

It's the first single taken from the band's second album Self Help for Beginners, which is set for release in March 2011, and follows 2009's acclaimed Kitsuné debut Animal which spawned the worldwide smashes 'Stay the Same' and 'Always More'.

It will be the first release on Bad Life, a new imprint being launched for 2011.

Download: autoKratz - Opposite of Love (North Lights ft. Perseus Remix) (via Mediafire)

Drink Up The Milk

The Milk are four spirited young men from Essex (and proud of it), though they spent their formative years dreaming of being cool kids in Camden, and thrashing around somewhat aimlessly in a punk band. Having slogged up and down the M1 one too many times, with self-booked tours that took them to Hull via Exeter and Edinburgh ("we had no concept of geography," notes singer Ricky), the band realised punk was dead, and split. Remaining a true gang of friends ("we still get pissed off if one of us sees a film on their own"), the boys took a break to re-evaluate what they wanted to do.

Soon after, narrowly avoiding naming themselves Nigel Winterbottom and the Flat Back Four, they re-emerged as The Milk; embracing the classic Motown, Stax and Trojan records that had soundtracked their teens. Their early demos were recorded in their shed, with mixing assistance from acclaimed hip-hop/electronic DJ-remixer Brad Baloo (The Nextmen). It’s an admittedly work-in-progress sound, which has excited those who have stumbled across it.

These guys in a word are brilliant. You get the sense in listening to these guys that this is the kind of record Mark Ronson really wants to make. The Milk are soul men and it oozes out of every pore. All that needs to happen now is Merc to sponsor them, Weller to admire them, and them to sell a lot of records.

Download: 54 46 Was My Number

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Don Juan Peligroso

Portland, Oregon's Don Juan! Peligroso! was formed on a whim by six eccentric, music-loving friends during late 2010. After performing their first show at Portland's famed White Eagle Saloon, the band decided they had crafted a collection of songs weird enough to document. They then recruited their friend Jim Prescott (former bassist of G. Love and Special Sauce) to help them record their debut EP.

When not playing music together, the band members can be found aimlessly wandering the streets of their home city, wearing extravagant masks.

If that doesn't seem weird enough for you, wait until you listen to them. You'll be left scratching your head as you hear the saxophone mixed in amongst guitar and drums. It's like listening to a much cooler version of smooth jazz. Think of it as easy listening that it's ok to like...perfect music then for a lazy Sunday afternoon.

Download: Nap Time
Download: Ken Doll 6

ESG Releases Best Of....

London’s iconic Fire Records is proud to announce the global release of the two-disc Dance To The Best of ESG from New York's legendary punk/funk family affair ESG (Emerald, Sapphire and Gold.)

For the very first time, all of the songs that made the band such an innovative influence are available in a single release. Covering their earliest Martin Hannett produced tracks such as "Moody" and "UFO" right through their more recent killer tunes, this compilation leans heavily on the foundation that made them one of the most sampled artists of all-time, while touching on every one of their stellar records.

Every cut runs deep and every ass had better shake. When ESG says dance you had better dance dammit!

Download: Dance to the Beat of Moody

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Not Necessarily The Sound Of Growing Up

The Sound Of Growing Up is the moniker of singer/songwriter Justin Kao (kay-oh). A Boston transplant via Long Island, NY, Kao moved to Boston shortly after finishing college to pursue his career in music. Having played small shows and open mics in the local area, Kao began building up a network of fans, friends, and musicians with his catchy melodies and earnest lyrics.

The band’s aptly titled debut EP, Drifting, due out March 8, 2011, is a sweeping range of emotions that travel from uncertainty and apathy to hope and promise. This is total nerd core intermingling with indie pop and as a result sounds like Ben Folds Five in a fist fight with Weezer after several shots of espresso.

Keep an eye out for their album in March and in the meantime enjoy The Kite.

Download: The Kite

Breathe Owl Breathe

Beginning February 19th in New York City, Breathe Owl Breathe return to the road for another collection of North American dates in support of Magic Central, the band's spellbinding first album for Hometapes.

Breathe Owl Breathe will be joining venerated French composer and musician Yann Tiersen on a coast-to-coast journey, transforming venues into campfire circles, conjuring smiles in the dark, and revealing, to whole new worlds of people, what happens when you start doing your "Own Stunts."

Here's the dates...
2/19/11 - New York, NY @ Highline Ballroom
2/21/11 - Montreal, QC @ Metropolis
2/22/11 - Toronto, ON @ Mod Club
2/23/11 - Detroit, MI @ The Crofoot Ballroom
2/24/11 - Cleveland, OH @ Beachland Ballroom
2/25/11 - Chicago, IL @ The Bottom Lounge
2/26/11 - Minneapolis, MN @ Cedar Cultural Center
2/27/11 - Winnipeg, MB @ WECC
3/01/11 - Edmonton, AB @ The Starlite Room
3/02/11 - Calgary, AB @ Republik
3/04/11 - Vancouver, BC @ Vogue Theater
3/05/11 - Seattle, WA @ Neumo's
3/06/11 - Portland, OR @ Wonder Ballroom
3/08/11 - San Francisco, CA @ Regency Ballroom
3/09/11 - Santa Cruz, CA @ Rio Theater
3/10/11 - San Diego, CA @ Belly Up Tavern
3/11/11 - Los Angeles, CA @ The Music Box

Download: Dog Walkers of the New Age
Download: Across The Loch

Friday, January 14, 2011

The Concretes Solidify US Tour Dates

Sweden’s dreamy indie-pop ensemble The Concretes dropped their new album, WYWH, November 9, 2010 via Friendly Fire Recordings, and now they're announcing their first North American tour in four years!

The tour is split in two, with the band hitting markets on the East Coast, Midwest and Canada in January, then returning in February to tackle the West Coast.

Here are the dates...
January 14 – Minneapolis, MN @ Triple Rock
January 15 – Chicago, IL @ Schubas
January 16 – Detroit, MI @ Magic Stick
January 17 – Toronto, ON @ Horseshoe Tavern
January 18 – Ottawa, ON @ Mavericks
January 19 – Montreal, QC @ La Sala Rossa
January 20 – Allston, MA @ Great Scott
January 22 – New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom
January 24 – Philadelphia, PA @ Johnny Brendas
January 25 – Washington, DC @ Rock and Roll Hotel
February 26 – Portland, OR @ Doug Fir Lounge
February 28 – Seattle, WA @ Neumos
March 1 – Vancouver, BC @ Biltmore Cabaret
March 3 – Sacamento, CA @ Blue Note
March 4 - Los Angeles, CA @ Troubadour
March 5 – San Diego, CA @ Casbah

Download: My Ways (Remix)

Digits Calculates His Return

Alt Altman is Digits, an electronic indie pop artist from Toronto, and it's been a while since Hold It Close but Altman has emerged out of the studio with new music.

A blend of indie pop songwriting and danceable electronic arrangements, Digits has been likened to the Junior Boys, Belle & Sebastian, and Broadcast. Although to me the record reminds me of early 90's Creation/Factory/Sarah records with an electronic edge, think Pacific, The Wake, etc. Altman writes lush, detached stuff that's kind of sparse the way so many of those early 90's records were and that's why I love this record. His new stuff continues that tradition as it tugs at your heartstrings.

For a first glimpse, "Lost Dream," holds a lot of detached/aloof promise of what is to come. I for one can't wait to hear what Digits calculates next.

Download: Lost Dream

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Eli Escobar Is Back

This past summer, Plant Music released Eli Escobar's four-part Love Thing EP which included a vocal workout by Amanda Blank on Part 3 (check out the awesome video).

Well, the remix package just dropped featuring mixes by DFA's Runaway, Edbanger's DJ Mehdi, Mike Simonetti, and John Selway. Eli also reworked Part 1 of "Love Thing" to wondrous effect.

House is a feeling and this has more feelings than it can handle.

Download: Love Thing (Part 1) (Eli Escobar Rework)
Download: Love Thing (Part 2) (DJ Mehdi Club Mix)

Sweet As Soda POP!

Soda Shop is the merging of Drew Diver (Horse Shoes) and Maria Usbeck (Selebrities), a boy and a girl who met by fate at an Embassy concert in Brooklyn, NY. The Embassy, whom heavily influenced both Drew and Maria's other acts, brought together a new duo. Though this time, leaving the drum machines and synthesizers behind for a hollow-body guitar and tambourine.

If you're a fan of classic girl-groups (Shangri-Las, The Ronettes) or current pop (Acid House Kings, The Cardigans, Tennis, The Raveonettes or Summer Camp) you won't want to miss out on the debut single from Soda Shop.

Farewell is a small taste of what's to come.

Download: Farewell

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

That's Some Community

Brazil’s most promising indie-rock band, Some Community, formed in 2009. The five piece that met in prep school consists of Juliana Vacaro who delivers charming and delirious vocals as well as: Veronica Vacaro (keyboards and guitar), Marco Frugiuele (percussion), Gabriela Gonzalez (guitar), and Fernando Fernandes, who brings lead guitar to the mix.

This clashing of talent and instruments is augmented and punctuated by an array of Casiotones and melodica (played by all) in arrangements sweet enough to give you a cavity, yet hard hitting enough to knock that tooth right out.

Some Community will be releasing a brand new single later this month, and will be traveling all the way to Austin for this years’ SxSW Festival!

Download: Random Words

Don't Cross The Lines

Sounding something like Hard Fi in a head on collision with The Enemy and perhaps the Arctic Monkeys, The Lines have been making quite a ruckus in their native Wolverhampton.

Making giant strides and getting the heck out of their hometown has been a major goal for this band and judging by what they've released so far they've done just that. From their debut single Domino Effect to their latest El Matador it's easy to see why these guys are clearly on to something.

With an incessant groove and a hook bigger than Wolverhampton and it's big city cousin Birmingham, El Matador is the sort of tune that you'll have a hard time clawing out of your brain.

The guys are preparing a full on SXSW assault this Spring and until then enjoy the matador.

Download: El Matador

Pay The Goddamn Electric Bill

When Jason Torbert began writing new material for his solo project, Goddamn Electric Bill, he wasn’t picturing his most enthusiastic audience as a conservative Middle Eastern emirate. But after releasing a few tracks to radio, he noticed that he was getting a whole lot of play in … Qatar. His music continues to float around at the top of the Qatar QBS Radio charts this year, garnering attention from DJs and fans in the Arabian Peninsula.

It’s a good omen for Jazz, the third full-length album from Goddamn Electric Bill. Torbert began to write and produce the tracks from Jazz as a score for the indie film, “Douchebag,” which was nominated for the Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize last year. But when inspiration hit and Torbert found himself swimming in tons of new material, he began to imagine the tracks as one solid album.

“This is the first time an album has felt truly cohesive to me,” Torbert says. “I think it’s because I wrote it all at the same time and it just clicked.”

The album is a departure from Torbert’s usually melancholy work. It’s hopeful. It’s youthful. It’s feisty. Deft hand-claps propel “Pull the Lever” through rolling synth and a reverb vocal chorus. “Fairytale Orchestra” is a playful plod through the sunshine. These are all glass-half-full tracks that master the art of optimism.

Download: Pull The Lever
Download: Fairytale Orchestra

Keith Canisius Is A Fish Out Of Water

Keith Canisius, American born (Cambridge, MA) living in Copenhagen, Denmark is determined to create beautiful, mood elevating, dreamy pop music sometimes with an explosive edge, and other times with a smooth and tender bedroom. Stubbornly he’s been practicing and learning how to produce his music on his own, putting out records every year since. Keith Canisius hates and loves genres so much, that he has decided not to worry about them anymore and just make whatever music he wants.

His newest album This Time It’s Our High released on Darla Records is his proudest work so far. The hard work and late night bedroom dreams are finally starting to redeem themselves he feels. After releasing 4 albums, an EP, and contributing to various remix and compilation albums in 4 years, Keith Canisius is starting to wake up from a long dream where This Time It’s Our High is serves as an interesting transition to a new one.

Download: Peoples Faces
Download: The Beach House

Narcoleptic Dancers

Brace yourselves, because nothing can get cuter or sweeter than this Dutch-French brother/sister duo The Narcoleptic Dancers and their infectious sugary sweet pop songs. This is the kind of cavity inducing sweetness that your dentist would drill you for.

The Narcoleptic Dancers take you on a care-free stroll into a world full of animated chirping birds and quirkilicious personalities. Their simplistic instrumentation packaged with melodic vocals and endearing lyrics join harmoniously together to create a sound born to bring a smile to your dial.

Download: Not Evident

Monday, January 10, 2011

The POP! Stereo Top 25 for 2010

This was originally going to be posted at the end of December 2010, but things sort of happened that wouldn't allow me to do this. If you follow the blog on Facebook or Twitter, you'll know that I've had a family medical emergency that made me set the blog aside for a couple of weeks. I'm now trying to do the blog in an effort to create a sense of normality amongst a sea of change.

So, my apologies for doing this late, but family comes first .

As for the countdown, it's a god honest run down of my favorite records this year. It's got NO hipster credibility as I, quite honestly, have no idea what the hell the blogosphere went gaga over the last year. It's what I found myself listening to over and over again. Belle & Sebastian is about as cool with the hipster community as relaxed fit jeans...but you know what? I still love them and they made a fantastic record that's on this list. That's just a little hint of where I'm coming prepare yourself and enjoy!

Without further we go....and no those aren't mp3's but videos from each album.

25: No Age: Everything In Between
This is indie rock the way it used to be played.
Fever Dreaming

24: Quitzow: Juice Water
Pure, simple, overjoyous synthpop
Cherry Blossom

23: 1900's: Return of the Century
Fantastic indie pop that's lazy goodness

22: Julius C: Ok Ok
Big massive power pop to fill enormodomes
Don't Want Anybody

21: Magic Bullets: Magic Bullets
All hail Orange Juice and those who sail in them.
Lying Around

20: Five O'Clock Heroes: Different Times
Yeah...that band w/Agyness Deyn showed up in.

19: Lyrics Born: As U Were
Somewhere right now Cameo is shitting himself.
Kontrol Phreak

18: Goldfrapp: Head First
Alison Goldfrapp revisits Xanadu and never leaves.

17: DVAS: Society
Like a Members Only Jacket only cooler.

16: Shout Out Louds: Work
Sunshiny pop from Scandinavia that's not work to listen to.
Show Me Something New

15: Wolf Parade: Expo 86
Who knew these guys could have made a record this good?

14: Belle & Sebastian: Write About Love
Stuart is still brilliant. I still love them and always will.
I Want The World To Stop

13: Foals: Black Gold
Musical adventure that's absolutely blinding.
Black Gold

12: Amusement Parks On Fire: Road Eyes
The Son of Mustang Ford is still alive and kicking.
Flashlight Planetarium

11: Stereolab: Not Music
Two decades later and these guys are still amazing.
Silver Sands

10: The Mynabirds: What We Lose In The Fire We Gain In The Flood
The soulful sixties channelled through one of the most gorgeous voices on earth.
What We Gained In The Fire

09: Arcade Fire: The Suburbs
Still as important as ever.
Ready to Start

08: Rusko: O.M.G.
To say Rusko is a dubstep producer is an insult to his ability to level dance floors of all kinds.
Hold On

07: School of Seven Bells: Disconnect From Desire
Somewhere amongst the miasma the Cocteau Twins are blushing.

06: Editors: In This Light And On This Evening
Having done the Joy Division thing, they're well on their way to becoming the next New Order.

05: OMD: History of Modern
Who says resurrections can't be fantastic?
New Babies New Toys

04: The Vaselines: Sex With An X
Let the c86 revival start now...again.
Sex With An X

03: LCD Soundsystem: This Is Happening
Is there anything James Murphy can't do?
Pow Pow

02: The Drums: The Drums
The Best British Band On The Planet and they're NOT even from Britain.
Best Friend

01: Chromeo: Business Casual
Some bands know that a tongue planted firmly in cheek is the key to great pop music.
Hot Mess