-The catchiest song of the summer, Spoon’s The Underdog now has a video. Camera following assorted producers around a recording session, checking in on emotionless automaton musicians, Underdog could very well be a commentary on the commercialization of music and manufactured pop icons . Or, I could just be reading way too much into a quirky video from a classically quirky band. But that little skip over the dead producers has to mean something.
Spoon – The Underdog (mp3)
Vid (No youtube or dm yet, if you find one, leave it in the comments I’ll amend the post)
-Simian Mobile Disco may have been overshadowed by a certain French electronic duo as of late (horrible timing, considering their excellent debut LP was released at the height of the Justice hype-machine), but that hasn’t stopped them from prepping a brand new EP, featuring Tits & Acid, along with two new tracks. It’d be a real shame if this went as criminally unnoticed as the ADSR.
Simian Mobile Disco – 3 Pin Din.mp3
-The second single from Dizzee Rascal has officially been “americanized”. By americanized, of course, I mean butchered. The offensive, but killer chorus is nowhere to be found, instead replaced by a minute of awkward rapping tagged on to the end of the track. The meaningless war and dumb-as-a-bag-of-bricks President have contributed, but I’m sure moves like this are why the rest of the world hates the U.S. At least the video is pretty good.
Dizzee Rascal –
Pussy’ole [Old Skool] (mp3)
-I’m a little surprised I haven’t already said so, but I really love the New Pornographers latest album, Challengers. It’s a more mature sound for them, low-key and quiet, but it suits them well. Still, it’s got its poppy moments, such as Bejar’s Myriad Harbour, but I’m certainly not going to complain. After all, Harbour might just be the greatest thing Bejar’s ever contributed to the group.
-Animal Collective released the video for Fireworks, a few days ago, on the evening of July 3rd. Fireworks is the centerpiece of their latest album, Strawberry Jam, and the video captures everything that’s great about it, from the subtle surreality of it all, to the slightly dark undercurrent running through the vocals. A beautiful video for a beautiful song from a beautiful album.
Animal Collective – Fireworks (mp3)
Today I came across this cool little Panda Bear quote, concerning the Strawberry Jam leaks:
Did you hear that Domino is pretty pissed about the new songs leaking?
I heard they sent out a thing; I know they’re stressed about it. It’s a complicated issue. I know, from our side, after a second of them being upset about it, we were like, “Forget about it. Don’t make a big deal about it.” I know they traced back the leak to one person and he was going to get fired, and we don’t want to do that to anybody. We don’t want anybody to get fired…I don’t think he’s going to get fired anymore. I’m happy about that.
At the same time, you trust these people with these things and, you know, the leak was really good for my record…and we had to send the promos out really early because of travel schedules and other things. But, I think the label will mellow out about it. The only thing we’re really upset about with the leak is that it’s only parts of it. I think there are six songs out there now. People aren’t even able to get the full experience of the album, which bums us all out quite a bit. So if you’re listening leakers [speaking directly into the tape recorder], put up those other three songs, man, pronto.
For me, this pretty much cements Noah Lennox as the coolest person in modern music. The rest of the interview is pretty interesting, too, especially Noah’s opinions on how leaks effect album sales, so be sure to give it a read. Oh, and here are the Strawberry Jams I’ve been digging the most lately (which just happen to be the Panda jams . . .)
Sonic Youth + The Ramones = No Age? Apparently so. L.A. lo-fi noise/punk duo, No Age, composed of Randy Randall and Dean Spunt have been releasing great 12″‘s for a while now, but it wasn’t until June 11 (in Europe, at least) that they released their debut LP, Weirdo Rippers. Most of the tunes on Rippers are culled from previous releases, but you’d never guess by the flow of the album. It doesn’t sound nearly as copy-pasted as you might think, instead sounding like a great collection of songs. The continuity is a little off, sure, but it’s hard to complain with tracks as great as these are.
-New tracks from Liars and New Pornographers here.
-Lifesavas are finally going to get some hard-earned attention, it would seem. (mp3)
-Cristian Vogel’s new band, Night Of The Brain, just released their new album Wear This World Out. (mp3)
This may be the greatest morning ever. I wake not only to find that Challenger is floating around the interweb, but also that the first three tracks from Animal Collective’s Strawberry Jam have surfaced. If you haven’t memorized the SJ tracklisting (which you really shoud have), those first three tracks are ‘Peacebone’, ‘Unsolved Mysteries’(which we’ve never heard before!), and ‘Chores’. I’ve been listening to the live versions of ‘Peacebone’ and ‘Chores’ for the past month, and I can safely say the the studio versions blow the live ones away. The vocals on ‘Peacebone’ are crystal-clear, and it somehow packs even more of a punch than before. ‘Chores’ is a little bouncier than before, with some great Panda parts kicking in about halfway through, and some of the most gorgeous vocal harmonies you’ll ever hear. So far, all signs point to Strawberry Jam being a highlight of AC’s already amazing career. Oh, and there’s a rumor going around that the cover is a close-up of a smushed strawberry!
The competition was fierce, but here are the best tracks posted on SC this week.
Miracle Fortress – Maybe Lately.mp3
Spoon – The Ghost Of You Lingers.mp3
Betty Davis – He Was A Big Freak.mp3
Smashing Pumpkins – Tarantula.mp3 [Radio Rip]
The Go! Team – Grip Like A Vice.mp3
Animal Collective – Peacbone.mp3 [Live]
Some amazing news just made its way to me from the Collected Animals forum; Animal Collective have finally announced their new album. While it still has no release date, it will be called Strawberry Jam, and consist of the following tracklist:
2. Unsolved mysteries
4. For reverend green
7. Winter Wonder Land
8. Cuckoo Cuckoo
Most of these tracks have been around for a while, and I think this record might just be enough to knock Person Pitch out of that album of the year spot it’s held so tightly these past few months. If you don’t believe me, check out these killer tracks that’ll make an appearance on Strawberry Jam. Oh, and apparently, promos go out next week!
I was a little put off when I heard that Animal Collective had signed to Domino last year; I mean, AC and Arctic Monkeys being label-mates? While I’ll remain cautious until I hear the full album, this video has done a lot to alleviate my fears. It’s a performance of a new song song, Cuckoo, live for TVP Kultura. Anyone who’s heard the latest AC material will tell you, probably with great glee, that it’s extremely good. Cuckoo is no different. It actually sounds like something off Spirit . . ., which is by far my favorite AC album. Dig it.
Animal Collective – Tikwid.mp3 [From the People EP]
Since my other two weekly features have gone over so well, I thought I should introduce another new feature: that would Covers Wednesday. As you can guess, Covers Wednesday consists of covers. I don’t think there’ll be any particular style though; some weeks I’ll focus one artist’s covers, other weeks covers of one artist. Still others, like today, I’ll just throw together a few semi-random covers that piqued my interest. Today, I’ve got some covers by Animal Collective, Björk, and Bright Eyes, of Nirvana, Nancy Sinatra, and Feist. The Animal Collective cover of Nirvana’s ‘Polly’ is definitely the best of the bunch. It’s one of the most darkest songs from either bands catalog. I never understood the controversy over ‘Polly’ until now; with AC performing it, the subtleties Cobain wrote in take center-stage, producing the most thoroughly disturbing song I’ve heard since Scott Walker’s last album.
I’m sorry for the Animal Collective obsession that’s been going on lately. I just love AC too damn much. Still, I’m about to add yet another digital hug to the lovefest. Late last year, AC released an Australia-only, EP called People. Now, after a few months of waiting, emailing, and a little crying, my import finally arrived yesterday. I love it. It’s classic Animal Collective, with all the screaming, backwards-sounding lyrics, and strange composition you’d expect. Right now, my favorite tracks are ‘People’ and ‘Tikwid’. ‘People’ is essentially just AC-style instrumentation, with Avey screaming “people” every few seconds. I particularly like the live version, in which you can hear Avey’s voice echoing off after every scream. Awesome.
Last week, I reported that Sweet Road had been used in a Crayola commercial, and I promised to post a video as soon as I found one. So, you can follow this link to the Crayola site, and watch in awe as you realize that one of your favorite songs fits a Crayola commercial almost perfectly.