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Archive for October, 2009

Nada Alic

C’est L’Halloween

2005AnimalCostumes

And unfortunately I’ll be working. So read this blog- because they are funnier than us. and they are dudes. and there is a lack of dudes around here. Oh and they swear. We swear too, just not in public.

Too Much Happiness

 

while you’re at it-

Daytrotter (as if we don’t promote this site enough…)

We Love You So

Indie Music Filter

The Tape is Not Sticky

I Guess I’m Floating

White Guys With Beards

La Blogotheque

but then afterwards, please return to us, will you?

Nada Alic

learn to surf

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I’ve never surfed. I’ve lived in two beach towns in my life and I’ve never given it a try. Something about balance, wet suits, frigid ocean temperatures and the deep watery abyss never really spoke to me. I know surfers, and they will quite often use words like ‘gnarly’ and they have no troubles getting up at 5am to catch waves. I don’t understand what the appeal is.

The beach as a body itself is an intimidating beast- with unpredictable (or perhaps as predictable as the weather?) tides, the roaring sounds and it’s own ability to take you out in one swallow, now that is something to be admired from afar- or conquered. Who knows. 

The Drums, Wavves, and most recently Surfer Blood are all riding the wave of California surfer- punk with their Beach Boys aesthetic, Joy Division sound, distorted vocals and breezy pastel sounds with fanny packs and Ray Bans. These boys are from West Palm Beach which explains a lot, besides the fact that they do not in fact surf, they were however- the subject of high school surfer bullies. As good a reason as any to start a band. 

They’ve been generating a good amount of hype, but my favorite thing about these guys is how very amateur and sweet their Myspace is- with nothing more than a band bio and tour dates- there is considerable reason to believe these indie kids are the gentle kind, the ones who are easily excited by all the successes their music will soon foster. 

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 Their tour starts today, and goes until December, circling the country with acts like Art Brut and Japandroids. Check HERE for the dates. Cool.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Surfer Blood- Swim (To Reach the End)

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Surfer Blood- Take it Easy

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Nada Alic

hold my feet to the fire

 

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The south has always been a literal hotbed for most spooky, spiritual happenings. A place where stories grow into their own truths and become historical accounts of the dead, leaving all wives’ tales with veins of truth here and there. Enough to make you believe it all. Ha Ha Tonka sing of these stories with enough conviction in their voices to make you feel like you could be on the porch of one of those giant hollow manors, sipping sweet tea, swapping ghost stories and the equally, if not more terrifying, truths about life and all it’s mysteries. 

Novel Sounds of the Nouveau South is their sophmore album, and it’s a refined, perfect collection of songs from a band that sounds older than it’s body. These boys can sing, and they can sing with soul. It’s easy enough to belt out a tune, even if you’ve nailed the pitch, it’s harder to sing with all of yourself, so that your faces twitches without your consent and your body sways in ways unfamiliar and uncontrolled. That’s singing with your whole self- beginning with your gut. Ha Ha Tonka has got enough reserves in their soul to carry them through years and years- but the blues come at a price. Singing of the suffering can take it’s toll on anyone who taps in to those depths of their heart. It is a sure good thing that these vibrant young men have got their health and all of that Southern charm to balance out all that wisdom and those looming thoughts floating just beneath the surface. 

Check out their unbelievable performance with a little help from bathroom acoustics–

 

Ha Ha Tonka- Hold My Feet To The Fire

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Ha Ha Tonka- Walking on the Devil’s Backbone

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Nada Alic

your time is runnin’ out

                  

Lou Barlow (Dinosaur Jr.) covered La Roux’s Bulletproof during a Spin session from the requests of his four-year old daughter who also shares his affinity for Lady Gaga. It’s interesting to hear this prolific songwriter cover these electro-pop artists. He’s got a new solo album out called Goodnight Unknown thats less grunge and more folk. I feel like he’s versatile enough to cover any genre at this point.

Lou Barlow- Bulletproof (La Roux cover)

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Nada Alic

We Love You So

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We Love You So is Spike Jonze, Dallas Clayton, Graham Kolbeins, Molly Young, and Matt Rubin. The World’s Best Ever (an online art/culture zine) invited WLYS to throw together a mix for their column ‘Sound Advice’. Check out the We Love You So blog and prepare to have your mind blown, and your heart softened by the posts that encourage youth in all it’s splendor through music, halloween costumes, ‘wild things’ and colourful garbage bags- from some of the most creative minds in the world. Enjoy!

Sound Advice 23  –  We Love You So

01 Lust For Life  –  Girls
02 Wake Up (WTWTA trailer version)  –  Arcade Fire
03 I Want a Dog  –  Pet Shop Boys
04 Hey There Stranger  –  Pamela Blue
05 The Wimp  –  Capybara
06 Animal Crackers (in Cellophane Boxes)  –  Gene Pitney
07 Yekermo Sew  –  Mulatu Astatke
08 Water To Wine  –  Saintseneca
09 Tong Poo  –  Yellow Magic Orchestra
10 Rumpus  –  Karen O and The Kids
11 Overnight Religion  –  Kurt Vile
12 Green Bean (Binki Shapiro)  –  Green Bean
13 No Time, No Hope  –  Times New Viking
14 Ode to an African Violet  –  Mort Garson
15 Como Pudiste Hacerme Esto A Mi  –  Alaska y Dinarama
16 Overmuch  –  The Long Lost
17 Turkey Sandwich  –  Mika Miko
18 Poet, Fool or Bum  –  Lee Hazlewood
19 Hultsfred ‘98  –  Jens Lekman
20 Seigneur Apprends Moi  –  Hermas Zopoula

 

You can download the mix for free HERE

Nada Alic

Hands Reversed

                     

I want to dedicate this post to my friend Andrew who currently lives in Nashville. Not for any particular reason other than the fact that I miss him somedays when I feel like I’m talking to myself at night, playing ‘would you rather’ waiting for him to answer, then making up funny responses to fill up the silence. Andrew was out on tour with these dudes earlier this year, for Invisible Children. I’m still waiting for a ‘thank you’ for that one. Anyway, I’m just going to start dedicating all my posts to my friends, because I don’t have enough money to buy them something, and Facebook isn’t quite enough. Why not get even more personal while I’m at it? The common feedback I get is that you strangers all enjoy it when I include my personal stories, I think I just do it because I want to be considered a real person on the end of this, not just a news machine spouting tour dates. Blah. boring.

Anyway, back to Andrew. Andrew is the coolest and weirdest dude. We spent a whole week eating nothing but spaghetti, and I think I ended up getting really sick from it. I missed my flight just so I could eat bagels with him and my friend Craig one afternoon. Andrew doesn’t know this, but he is the one who first introduced me to Bon Iver and I’m pretty sure I passed it off as widely known information, like- psh.. I’ve totally heard of this band. That was last year, and if you asked the both of us, it feels like ten years ago that we shared the same bus. Although our friendship is young, it’s still good, because we’re far enough that I never get bored of his insanely entertaining messages. This one is for you- dream catcher. 

So, I love Tokyo Police Club, and I feel like they still haven’t gained the recognition they deserve, chalk it up to the Canadian music curse. They took Invisible Children out on tour earlier this year, which was very rad of them- and I haven’t heard much from them since, but I came across this video of David Monks for ‘Hands Reversed’.

He’s got these strange lyrics like, “because the breakfast of champions is a hedonistic hell” I think his voice is strange and unique, and it still has that awkward adolescent tone to it that’s very disarming. He seems like a sweet, introverted dude. I can’t wait for new stuff from this band.

Nada Alic

stick up for yourself, son

Yeasayer. Man, I love this band. They’ve released a free downloadable track entitled ‘Ambling Alp’ from their upcoming album ‘Odd Blood’ out February. You can also grab a 12″, an instrumental version and remixes by Memory Tapes and DJ Rupture. It’s one of those eighties kind of jams that has been fined tuned for hip kids but it could’ve easily been played in the back of your mom’s oldsmobile en route to the grocery store. Either way, I’m anticipating another stellar LP from this psychedelic/folk/weird pop group. 

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Click HERE to grab it. 

Nada Alic

these are the good old days

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Carly Simon revisits some of her classic songs in ‘Never Been Gone’ released Oct. 27th. She recently did a Daytrotter session, which led me to discover her new/old 27th studio album.Twenty-seven, are you kidding me? Forgotten icons from the early days reminding us they’ve ‘never been gone’ is a testament to our short attention span with music, and our lack of appreciation for where folk, jazz, and rock originated. Cary Simon was and still is a legend.

Described as, ‘anxious and intrepid, wounded and ardent, sensationally smart and lethally self-doubting’. She’s like one of those people who collects all the life she’s lived and she soaks in it, and stuffs it in her pockets, and it shows on her face. Does her face not have more character than anyone you’ve ever seen? It’s beautiful. She’s got that fatal and endearing stage-fright, and loves creating but hates promoting. Amen. There is something very real about Carly, the songwriter- the woman. Her new album is a mix of old songs and some new stuff- nothing premeditated, just a collection of folk songs and piano ballads with her sultry, smokey voice.

Carly Simon- You’re So Vain

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Carly Simon- Anticipation

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Carly Simon- You’re So Vain (Daytrotter)

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Nada Alic

death for my birthday

sayanything

 

Last night I headed to Say Anything to see some old friends that I had the pleasure of hanging with while I was working the sweaty, filthy black hole that is Warped Tour last summer. I’d only actually ever seen once, so I was stoked to hear some of their new stuff. They played for over two hours and included three encores to the demand of the hundreds of fans concentrated mostly towards the front in what looked like a giant pile of heads jumping in unison and screaming silumtaneously. It was pretty ridiculous. I wonder what it’d be like to feed of the energy of a crowd like that every night. It’s like a transcendent exchange between bodily heat and ears- projected towards the stage and inhaled by those who need their second and third winds. Even though it’s not the kind of music I would listen to, I was impressed by the performance, and inhibition that all six of them exuded in the form of interpretive dance, writhing on the floor, dancing in their uniforms of white shirts and black pants increasingly growing transparent from sweat. 

What is often overlooked is the insightful, honest poetry of Max Bemis. Written off as pop music, Say Anything is an anomaly in tha they’ve created their own niche genre in which they only exist. Perhaps the hardest songs to write are the short and simple songs that, if one were to look a little deeper, hold a lot more depth. His creative genius is rooted in his blatant self-examination, and acknowledgment of his own spiritual, emotional and sexual pursuits. Self-proclaimed as everything, from a fool to a self-conscious belligerent with a “disgusting heart”. There is credit due for songwriters like him. Most songs are masked in cryptic ambiguity, with the ability to be interpreted as anything one wants. But Bemis has only one message and one meaning behind his songs, and it may be difficult to digest, but it is what it is- the clever and unapologetic truth. 

Nowhere as epic as In Defense of the Genre, but their latest self-titled holds it’s own in the Say Anything evolution. Their is political, religious, and romantic commentary- wrapped in quick tempo pop hooks, with a literal orchestra of a six-piece band under Bemis’ trademark freestyle spoken word vocal abilities. It is journal entries of a man in love, a man a little closer to finding himself, his own kind of Christianity, and his tight grip on angst and aversion to anything categorized under the veil of the “scene”. Their single, “Hate Everyone” is a testament to the finger pointing at hypocrisy in the vein of “Admit it” and other songs that tell it like it is, but always sure to turn the finger on themselves towards the end. We know it’s all a facade, so don’t be fooled because there is more love in this band than in most.

Say Anything- Hate Everyone

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Say Anything- Death for my Birthday

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Say Anything- Ahhh Men

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Nada Alic

are you happy to repeat yourself?

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I first heard Dirty Projectors when my friend Caroline snuck me and my friend Whitney into their SXSW showcase this year. They completely blew me away, and soonafter they gained a massive amount of deserved hype for their incredibly original sound. Their UK only EP that was supposed to be out in September, then pushed to October is floating around the internet, and it includes a few tracks that didn’t make it to Bitter Orca, including ‘Ascending Melody’ which is an airy track filled with female harmonies layered over male vocals, chaotic guitar sounds, clap tracks and ‘ooh ooh oohs’. 

Well.. looks like I can’t upload the track right now, but go HERE and grab it yourself. If you don’t feel like that, I could tryy singing it for you, but you don’t want me to do that. 

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