A Very Belated New Music Sunday vol 4- Dappled Cities, Girls, Monsters of Folk, Tea Leaf Green, Umphrey’s McGee

sorry everybody working with a free blog there are some limitations and that includes how much space i can host music online but hopefully thats not an issue anymore.anywho

Dappled Cities-

This Australian band features a good Strokes meets Coldplay vibe but with enough instrumental experimentation to be their own and they have a new album out thats worth checking out, unlike Yoko Ono’s latest attempt at singing.

Answer is Zero

Fire Fire Fire

Slow For Me, My Island

Girls-

Featuring one of the most descriptive band names ever, as well as one of the most alliterative album names ever (Album).  Girls is alot more complex than their simple names portray.  Easing into a psychedelic rock meets indie mode the lead singer is easily comparable to Elvis Costello and Buddy Holly in his timbre and the melodies they make are either sometimes downright catchy, or downright intriguing, definitely a band worth keeping an eye on. And despite the strange song names, they are quite easy to get into.

Ghost Mouth

Hellhole Retrace

Summertime

Monsters of Folk-

This band doesn’t need anymore accolades, in fact its already full of them.  Some people are saying its the new CSNY, others the new Traveling Wilburys, and everybody seems to think they’re a damn good band.  Featuring harmonies that are worthy of their former comparisons, Monsters of Folk is a group comprised of Jim James (My Morning Jacket), M. Ward (She & Him) and Conor Oberst (Bright Eyes).  Dear God (Sincerely M.O.F.) is worth the price of the album itself, a great piece featuring each vocalist by himself then the overall group with a great lush background.

Dear God (Sincerely M.O.F.)

Temazcal

Tea Leaf Green-

I haven’t always been the biggest fan of Jam bands but TLG is worthy of praise, especially when as a jam band they can break down their songs into acoustic sets with smaller audiences.  The harmonica and bass interplay on this song is sublime and I’d be damned if I don’t hear shades of Jerry Garcia all over this guys voice

Let Us Go

Umphrey’s McGee-

Simply the most fantastic funktastic jam I’ve ever heard about everybodys favorite malt liquor beverage.  Hell Marvin Gaye couldn’t make it sound sexier if he tried, its a little strange in the beginning, but the rest of the song is worth it.

40’s Theme

New Music Sunday! Vol 3- A.A. Bondy, As Tall As Lions, Jason Diaz, Justin Townes Earle

A.A. Bondy-

A.A. Bondy is blessed with the talent of taking the age old guitar and harmonica duo and breathing new life into it. While his lyrics match those of another famous guitar and harmonica wielding folkster, Bob Dylan, his voice is much less scratchy, warm and endearing.  He’s got a new record out as well, which shows he has a knack for arrangements, something Bob Dylan didn’t really flesh out.  His voice rings out against the dark moody instruments in the background and its hard to shake his warm spirit.  Troubadour say some,  but he seems to possess a depth beyond labels.

American Hearts

When the Devil’s Loose

There’s  A Reason

Witness  Blues

Hey Preacher

Black Rain, Black Rain

The Mightiest of Guns

I Can See the Pines are Dancing


As Tall As Lions-

As Tall As Lions is a group that thrives in its technical ability, its crazy modern arrangements, and its talented high register singer.  It would not be a stretch to compare them to Radiohead, nor an insult to either.  Beautiful these melodies are, derivative they are not.   The moods this band is able to create with each different song is remarkable and reason enough to listen

Circles

Sleepyhead (acoustic version)

Love, Love, Love (Love, Love)

Song for Luna


Jason Diaz-

I heard Jason Diaz on a music blog site, unsure at first of what his particular talent was until he opened his mouth.  Soulful, stunning, and absolutely exquisite, Jason Diaz’s voice can be a little too moving sometimes,  but the biggest highlight here is Foresaken which melds his croon with great jazz piano and guitar that seems like its right out of the Hendrix songbook, its an odd trifecta to be sure but one not to be missed out on.

Pleasure in Pain

Forsaken

Take Me or Leave Me

The Prodigal (Sweet Caroline)

Unholiest War

When You Lay Down Your Life


Justin Townes Earle-

Now, the one genre I have generally had no respect for is country.  It’s easy to hate on and make fun of since it is such a pigeonholed genre with little variation involved.  It seemed Justin Townes Earle would not fall far from the tree.  His father Steve Earle had already been a famous country singer and he seemed fated to fall in his footsteps.  Yet with Midnight At the Movies, his latest album, he manages to break free from the mold, he lets the style breathe with his simple arrangements and his voice has a slight twang that doesn’t overpower his singing abilities.

What I Mean To You

Poor Fool

Can’t Hardly Wait

The Ghost of Virginia

New Music Sunday! Vol. II- Voxtrot, The xx, Coconut Records

Voxtrot

Voxtrot sounds like its a band that didn’t forget the eighties.  But this isn’t a bad thing, rather they come off as the Smith’s heir apparent, with dashes of The Strokes thrown in.  Ear candy for the music fan who wishes more bands were like The Smiths, and ear candy for the music fan that loves a good early Motown meets classic pop melody.

The Start of Something

the warm somewhat unclearly recorded vocals only makes this song more endearing, and it does give you that warm feeling of starting to fall in love, euphoric.

Mothers, Sisters, Daughters & Wives

Excellent transition from a reverbed opening into clanging chords, great guitar and drum work on here and just goes to show the bands ability to stretch their style.

Kid Gloves

Yet another variation and undeniably catchy

Berlin, Without Return

This song stands up to some of Spoons best, great build, great arrangment, simple and beautiful

The xx

The xx is a very intriguing band in the way they develop their songs, arrangements play a huge role in what makes them good, and the dual female and male lead singers only help their cause

Basic Space

theres a lot of space in the arrangement as the title might suggest, and the harmony betweeen Oliver Sim and Romy Madley Croft is sublime.  Croft has a beautiful achy voice that just cuts right into you

Crystalized

Ever wonder what it would sound like if Thom Yorke had a female counterpart to sing with in Radiohead, I do, and this gives you a little glimpse.

Heart Skipped A Beat

It’s amazing they manage to take drum loops and make them sound like they fit nowhere else but in their songs, and this is a great duet

Coconut Records

Coconut Records is the brainchild of actor Jason Schwartzman, yes that actor who played that annoying kid in Rushmore and is also known for playing drums for ‘that band that played the theme song to The O.C.‘ (Phantom Planet). Don’t let that dissuade you though, Schwartzman has a knack for crafting pop melodies, and he plays all the instruments on the record as well.  Think of  Elliot Smith except more upbeat.  Schwartzman fully deserves to be recognized as a musician and an actor, not an actor/musician, because there is a difference.

Drummer

Off of Davy, his latest release, this song mocks his fame as a musician, and its got a great melody to boot

Saint Jerome

Somehow Schwartzman came upon the perfect meld of sound between his voice, guitar and piano, sure the arrangement is nothing groundbreaking but it sounds fresh in his hands

Microphone

He certainly has his own sound but his knack for making great pop melodies reminds me of Paul McCartney and thats not a stretch

West Coast

Off of his first album Nighttiming, everything about this song is perfect from the synthesizer to the organic backing instruments to his beautiful background harmonies.


New Music Sunday- Temper Trap, Rosewood Thieves, The Union Line, Bishop Allen, Army Navy

Three new bands for all of you out there to check out today.  The radio sometimes makes me want to give up on music but here are three bands that are keeping it fresh and yet remind you of all those good old bands that we used to remember when it was talent and originality that dominated the airwaves instead of vocoder hooks.

Temper Trap-

Temper Trap reminds me of a lot of things, they’ve got the energy that British imports like the Arctic Monkeys and the Kooks featured before them, as well as a taste for beautiful slow ballads and feature a vocalist more similar to Thom Yorke of Radiohead than the brash aforementioned brethren, low praise this is not.

Soldier On

a slower style ballad of theirs, beautiful singing

Sweet Disposition

flashes of Radiohead, The Cure, and a little of U2

Hearts

heres that energy i was talking about

Sirens

more of that Thom Yorke touch, with a melody thats hard to beat

Rosewood Thieves-

I don’t remember how exactly I heard of this band, but I’m sure glad I did.  Similarities abound between this group and famous rock heroes such as John Lennon and Bob Dylan.  In fact many times I’ve been asked  by Bob Dylan fans if this band is indeed Bob Dylan.  Great Melodies, great songwriting and great influences.

Murder Ballad in G Minor

basic arrangement of acoustic guitars and acoustic percussion, the story is among the best dylan could have dreamed up.

Bullet Painted Red

A song that feels like an age old drinking tune, about adultery and featuring the chorus.  Down at the tavern, where the drinks they taste just like fire, I told you I loved you and you kissed my lips like a liar. Sometimes the best melodies are the most simple ones, and this one sticks with you.

Junkyard Julie

This song is pure Bob Dylan delivered with the intensity and sarcasm worthy of John Lennon.

When My Plane Lands

Great piano and guitar interplay, another Bob Dylan meets Lennon song.  Intensity in the delivery and a nice hook.

The Union Line-

As much as simple arrangements work best for some, The Union Line doesn’t pride itself on following basics. With a singer similar to the likes of Modest Mouse, they manage to be just as different yet better with hooks.  Great taste in arrangements is their signature and its a treat to listen to their songs develop, this is really a band to watch.  They sound experienced beyond what their one album discography would suggest.

Gold Mine

Pearls

Rich Man’s Tune

Strangers

Wishing Well

Bishop Allen-

I first heard this band in the movie Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist which featured a strong soundtrack and a good story but I feel Adventureland tops it in pure awkward feel and accuracy.  Nevertheless I heard this band say we’re Bishop Allen before launching into a live version of Middle Management, and when the movie ended I felt like I had to check this band out, the results don’t disappoint, they feature textured arrangements that are unusual in an indie band.

Middle Management

Rain

The Same Fire

Corazon

Things Are What You Make of Them

Army Navy-

Another band out of the Nick and Norah soundtrack.  This band has an eye for sweet melodies and a dynamic live sound and subtle harmonies that slip into their tracks from time to time, another band to keep an eye out for.

My Thin Sides

Saints

Snakes of Hawaii