Killed By A Crescendo


Category Archive

The following is a list of all entries from the Posts category.

Islands

Nick Diamond

Rough Gem mp3

Where There's A Will There's A Whalebone mp3

Don't Call Me Whitney, Bobby mp3

Upon doing a Google image search for a picture of the fractured ex-Unicorns outfit, Islands, hardly any images are to be found relating to the group at all, unless their whimsical and charming tunes were induced by visions of tropical, far-away islands. Likewise, when you search for a picture of Nick Diamond, or J'aime Tambeur, the 2/3 of Unicorns that drifted, it's almost impossible to find a decent selection. However, if you dare to type in as a keyword search term 'The Unicorns,' you will find several pictures of all three of the former's members posed harmoniously in several photos. Even though the existence of The Unicorns seems to be well forgotten, Islands is bringing back the spirit of ghosty-goblin pop in a different light. The track "Where There's a Will, There's a Whalebone," is a merger between the worlds of hip hop and pop, sidelining another project of J'aime and Nick's, the hip hop group, Th' Corn Gangg, soon to release an album of their own. "Rough Gem" recreates the signature freak pop classic-ness of "Tuff Ghost," an favorite of anyone who has missed The Unicorns since their falling out in 2004. "Don't Call Me Whitney, Bobby" is a favorite of Islands' new album, Return to the Sea, and is a precious lovey-bit of guitar-strum fun. So even though Nick is fronting Unicorns in the picture above, he is still providing the same bittersweet and squeaky-clean tunes you're accustomed to. Sans the pink cape.

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Reasons to Love Country

 Bill Carson and His Checkered Past

bill carson & his checkered past

Roses stream (availible to stream here only, please visit and friend Bill Carson and His Checkered Past on MySpace!)

Bill Carson has a posse, and they're bringing back traditional country full-swing. Slow and carefully placed vocals outline really tender and thoughtful tracks. It is exactly what country is supposed to make people think about.

Ryan Adams and The Cardinals

ryan adams

29 mp3

Everyone hates him, no one understands him, and he simply doesn't give a shit. And this doesn't bother me because the man has the talent of pumping out some really decent tunes every once in a while. While the tremendous volume of his lastest release with The Cardinals, Cold Roses, did not meet the success of Heartbreaker, it held very strong tracks like "Easy Plateau" and "Magnolia Mountain". In 29, Mr. Adams' newest release, and his third last year, he strays from his backing band to make an album about "growing pains".

KT Tunstall

kt tunstall

Black Horse and the Cherry Tree mp3

One wo-man band has a great hit single

Rocky Votolato

rocky

White Daisy Passing mp3


SCREECH!: Women of Music 2006

Karen O from Yeah Yeah Yeahs

Karen O

 Gold Lion mp3

Now, everyone seems to be in upheaval over Miss O’s decision to trade her bad-ass, beer-spitting, psycho-frontwoman image, for a softer, more feminine, indie sound. I, personally, a huge fan of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs latest album–Fever To Tell, am not disappointed in the least by their new single, “Gold Lion”. The innovation is still there, their lyrics, for the most part have had an indie feel to them, but were wrapped in heavy punk guitars and drums, and not to mention, Karen’s screeches. For example: “Maps” and “Modern Romance” seem to be really reminiscent in the new single, and truly don’t make this seem to be a drastic change, other than the way the songs are performed. I don’t think fans will have a hard time making the transition to the new music, if you do find yourself somewhat disappointed, it may be because you weren’t listening at all to begin with.

Chantal Claret of Morningwood

Chantal & Bandmember

 Jetsetter mp3

Glam-rock this glittery should have a parental advisory label. Perhaps they already do. It was time for a little kick in the ass, and Morningwood brings it on full swing. Big voice with a big sound to back her up, Chantal has a problem with all you people, and you’re gonna hear about it. “Jetsetter” isn’t sun-shiny, it’s not indie, but you’ll love it. Bubble-gum pop rock about silly boys and naughty girls, and just that part of life where you feel that no one understands you…. yup, seventh-grade angst to the ‘nth degree’.

Alison Goldfrapp (Goldfrapp)

Goldfrapp

 Ooh La La mp3

Goldfrapp reminds me of an older Gwen Stefani. If it became Stefani’s goal to be in music for decades like Madonna. I mean, Goldfrapp is snazzy. Electro-disco fun wrapped in soft sensual vocal. A treat.

 

 

 

 

 

 


The Phenomena that is…. Arctic Monkeys

Arctic Monkeys

I Bet You Look Good On the Dance Floor mp3

Scummy mp3

Fake Tales of San Francisco mp3

Why are the Arctic Monkeys so cool? I’m not quite sure myself.  Maybe it’s because their an indie band who’s on the top of UK’s charts (entered at #1, which hasn’t happened since the Spice Girls), selling out shows like crazy in in USA (even though they have no relases here yet). ABC had a story on them not too long ago, SPIN magazine featured them this month, and they have David Bowie’s support. It’s some crazy hysteria. 

After hearing all about them, I decided to check them out (finally), and was pleased with what I found. The Artic Monkeys hardly sound like the typical indie band at all. They some sizzling hot rock sound going on… hotter than eggs on a frying pan…hotter than a bonfire…. hotter than lava. Yes, their music is like lava, it flows. I still don’t understand what made “I Bet You Look Good On the Dance Floor” so popular, I find that their sound truly comes through on the other two tracks posted. The aforementioned leading single sounds like a super beefed-up Franz Ferninand, fellow labelmates of the Arctic Monkeys.

Currently, the band is on a North American Tour with The Spinto Band. I had originially wanted to see The Spinto Band show with a friend, but it is currently sold out (Philadelphia), and has been for a solid month. The show is about  another month from today, possibly longer. That’s how crazy-amazing this band is. So now that I’ve channeled my rage into discovering a new, awesome band, I’ll gladly be sporting headphones and listening to Arctic Monkey tunes on Sunday, March 26th.

 


Guys and Gals: Songs of Green Pheasant and Cat Power

 Opposites attract. Which may be the possible explanation as to why both of these tremendous yet very opposite artists sound so awesome in my head right now. Donald Sumpner, the mellow-voiced British artist also known as Songs of Green Pheasant, released a beautiful low-key delight at the end of 2005 with his self-titled release. Chan Marshall, the settle and Southern beauty also known as Cat Power, returns from You Are Free’s success and brings up a turned-down and soulful blues album. Take a peek!!

Songs of Green Pheasant

Songs of Green Pheasant

I am Daylights mp3

Even though the chorus vibrations may sound somewhat, well, weird, they’re delightfully sunny and welcoming. It’s a great song to start the morning off to. An even more truly amazing thing about Mr. Sumpner’s album is that it was recorded in his kitchen on a four-track recorder. If you like Iron & Wine, i recommend Songs Of Green Pheasant. He seems to give a fresh and throughly ‘British’ flavor to simple and beautiful folk tracks.

Cat Power

 Cat Power

The Greatest mp3

“The Greatest” is a gorgeous start off to Cat Power’s new and impressive sound. The song is completely moving, it’s a song that makes everything seem weightless and transcendent; you could drop everything you were doing or were about to do and listen to Marshall’s steady voice.


Baumer

Baumer

How the West 1 mp3

The Astro Magnetics army is slowly invading the music scene, and will soon be one of the hottest independent labels, all because of their new and talented bands including Secret Lives of the Freemasons, The Valley Area, and now Baumer. “How the West 1” is off their originally self-released debut, Come On, Feel It. The album applies electronic beats and synths to guitars and drums and somehow keeps a very settle, yet hyped-up sound. Off-your-rocker instrumentation. Highly clever. Think a dance-y version of Guster. Gusterrr. It’s amazing to me how much they remind me of Guster. That’s not bad, just spooky. Listen to your new favorite song (at least for today).


Elefant

Elefant

Lolita mp3

The thing that is so great about Elefant is their knack for creating an instant and oh-so-modern hit. Last year’s “Misfit” from Sunlight Makes Me Paranoid, a drum-rolling, ‘hipster finds enchantment with beauty’ tale, drew some light towards the haunting and erotic voice of Diego Garcia, the Argentinian frontman of Elefant. Their new album, The Black Magic Show, is set to be released in April, and it’s lead single Lolita has proven that Elefant still holds the potential of being more sophisticated than they already presume to be. Fans of the group’s debut can prepare for giant drums, edgier tunes, and an even darker and more disillusioned Diego Garcia on their promising sophmore album. Elefant is currently on tour promoting The Black Magic Show. Info on shows can be found at their MySpace page.


Jenny Lewis and the Watson Twins

Jenny Lewis and the Watson Twins 

You Are What You Love mp3

Rilo Kiley’s red-hot frontwoman goes solo with Rabbit Fur Coat, featuring The Watson Twins. The much-anticipated release (for Rilo Kiley fans, anyhow), represents the trademark Jenny Lewis charm we have all come to know and love. This beautiful and steady track has somewhat of a country flavor, accompanied by Lewis’ heartbroken yet mellow voice. A woman’s sympathy for man and her ever-forgiving heart is endless, and Lewis tells the tale. The music sounds like mere backup to her voice, and I am almost certain the track would be just as amazing sung acappella. Jenny Lewis is slowly becoming one of the most loved leading ladies of music, which is easily-understood through her tremendous success with Rilo Kiley, and the instantaneous wave of appreciation that will follow her debut as a solo artist.

 


In Memoriam: The Best-Kept Secrets of 2005

 Yes, I suppose I must learn to move on by the success of 2005, but these bands have either made glorious music towards the end of 2005, or just didn’t recieve enough praise for it, or are just simply not known to the masses yet, so I present the following:

The Spinto Band

The Spinto Band

Brown Boxes mp3

Six-piece from Delaware blast out a haunting tune about moronic and miserable love. Diary except from a passive aggressive boy who wishes he could play Atari instead of being with his naggy girlfriend. My favorite song from Nice and Nicely Done by far.

dEUS

dEUS

If You Don’t Get What You Want mp3

They’re your most-likely-never-heard-of-em band from Belgium, (yes, Belgium) releasing their first studio album in six years, Pocket Revolution. Listening to dEUS sounds like you’ve channeled to days of listening to your favorite rock band from back when you wore Converse shoes. Even though the lyrics are somewhat beefheartful, the utter sound is just so, well…. pleasant. If you enjoyed this track, I’m not wholly sure if this album has been released in the USA yet, but they’re worth checking out.

Silversun Pickups

Silversun Pickups

Kissing Families mp3

L.A.’s finest. This indie band’s calm and collected debut, Pikul EP(pronounced pie-kul), is harmonic and jusitifiably one of the best indie sounds to come along in a while. And for an album 3 years in the making, it ought to. Twangy chords and boy/girl vocals make for a sweet and gentle tune.

Okkervil River

Okkervil River

Another Radio Song mp3

Okkervil River quickly becomes everyone’s favorite band from one listen, and if their entire catalogue before Black Sheep Boy Appendix EP, didn’t launch you there, this track will in a heartbeat. The reoccurring character, Black Sheep Boy is back in an even more harsh setting as Will Sheff screams out against the “…thing that is making its home in your radio.” Okkervil River has been trying to make its way to our ears for a great deal of time now, and I believe they are just beginning to, having been placed on many a ‘Best Albums of 2005’ list across the nation. “Another Radio Song” is easily the best song of 2005 alongside “For Real” from the album Black Sheep Boy.

Rah Bras

Rah Bras

No Furture mp3

I really did not like electronic or new wave emocore dance rock very much until this year, until a ton of stylish, fun, and consistent artists made debuts this year. However, I always liked the quirky and crazy sound of Rah Bras. EVERY song on their new album Whohm is wonderfully-eccentric. Synthesizers, giant drums, and Marie Bethel’s operatic voice will blow you to smithereens. If you’re a big fan of electronic, or just really ecclectic music in general, you will find no album more consistent in it’s quality and sound than Whohm.

The Willowz

The Willowz

I Wonder video

Bluesy-garage rockers made a breakthrough this year, and everyone’s digging the sound. So early in their career, the famous Michel Gondry offered to direct their music video for “I Wonder,” a soft, outspoken daydream. It’s a wonderful song, yet very different from their traditional ‘shout out rock’ tracks like “Ulcer Soul,” which are very different, yet equally amazing. Their two albums Talk in Circles and Walk In Circles have nearly no difference. Pick one, both are awesome.

Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin

SSLYBY

Pangea mp3

Missourian indie rockers from Springfield are the best band to be named after a Russian leader. “Pangea” is from their latest album, Broom. Shoe-tapping melodic tune, and many more on their album, all recorded at Will’s house in the attic. Oh, and downstairs, too.