Sunday, December 31, 2006

Hi Guys!

Hey I'm not dead incase you were wondering! I just sort didn't post this week at all because I didn't have work or school and I just had a really great time doing absolutely nothing! I'll be back up and running on Monday morning. Until then, I hope you all had a nice holiday and I hope you have a happy new year! :)
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Monday, December 25, 2006

Heavenly's Early Sarah Records Singles

Sarah 30, Sarah 41, and Sarah 51

Since there seemed to be a good amount of postive response from the Rocketship singles post, I thought it would be nice to start posting old indiepop gems more often for a few reasons. One being that I love the nostalgia of it. Two being that they're all out-of-print and this is the best way to spread the love!

As I've likely mentioned before, Heavenly is probably one of my top ten favorite bands of all time. For those not yet aquainted, Heavenly was Amelia Fletcher, Matthew Fletcher, Peter Momtchiloff, Robert Pursey, and later, Cathy Rogers. While retaining the fun and, at times, some of the "tweeness" of the previous outfit, Talulah Gosh, Heavenly displayed a tighter, mature sound, particularly in Amelia's love-song lyrics and Pete's guitar playing. Recording for Sarah Records, Heavenly's debut single in 1990 "I Fell In Love Last Night" was followed by "Our Love Is Heavenly" and next, "So Little Deserve," in 1991. Those first three singles are available for download below.

Heavenly I Fell In Love Last Night 7"
Sarah Records (Sarah030) 1990

1. [MP3]: I Fell In Love Last Night
2. [MP3]: Over And Over

Heavenly Our Love Is Heavenly 7"
Sarah Records (Sarah041) 1990

1. [MP3]: Our Love Is Heavenly
2. [MP3]: Wrap My Arms Around Him

Heavenly So Little Deserve 7"
Sarah Records (Sarah051) 1991

1. [MP3]: So Little Deserve
2. [MP3]: I'm Not Scared Of You

Heavenly On


Hey guys! If you've got some time, please go take a look at my pal Sydney's new website. She makes the cutest art in the world and you should go say hi! Click on one of the lovely little buttons below.

Oh, and Merry Christmas!!!
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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Loney, Dear: "I Am John"

Multi-instrumentalist Emil Svanängen is Loney, Dear

I'm currently in love with Sweden's Loney, Dear.

"Loney, Dear is the X-man band. Loney, Dear is also the disguise of multi-instrumentalist and audio homecooking expert Emil Svanängen. In the tiny, sweltering hot Stockholm studio apartment, or in the cool basement of his parents house is where all the magic happens. The outside world has no idea of whats going on. Two records a year is his M.O., and by new years eve of 2009 all is said to come to a close."

I'll be completely honest, for about a week I was going around telling everyone about this awesome band Lonely, Dear. One day I realized that it is infact Loney and not Lonely and I felt totally dumb. But anyway! Emil has been recording and releasing albums since 2003 and he's finally got his big break! In February, SubPop will release his 2005 gem of an album, Loney Noir. Bridging the gap between happy-go-lucky indie pop and heartfelt folk, Loney, Noir is an album to curl up with in front of nice warm fire, watching the snow come down outside -- at least, that's the ideal. This song, along with a few others I might be posting soon, has been on repeat all week.

[MP3]: Loney, Dear :: I Am John (Woah Man! HUGE Recommendation!)
"I Am John" opens up with acoustic guitar, slowly bringing in back-up "la la las" into the mix, echoing every other line. Then, before you know it, you're hearing bells, drums, clarinet, and what sounds like either an extremely fuzzed-out keyboard or guitar. The shining of moment of the song, however, comes right at the 2:10 mark with layered voices all singing something over each other. I don't know what they're saying, but it's gotta be good, because they sound pretty damn happy.

Check out Loney, Dear on MySpace
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Probably my favorite video of the year

I think I might do a more cumalative "top videos" post somewhere else before the end of the year, but for now, here's what I would consider my favorite video of the year. This is the video for Ms. John Soda's "Nº One." There's something about it, i think probably the subtle instances of color thrown in over what is mostly a black and white video. Plus, by the end, there's just so much glass that has been broken, and glass breaking in slow motion will forever be one of my favorite things.
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Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Deerhoof: "The Little Drummer Boy"


I don't have too much time to be typing right now, but it looks like Deerhoof have jumped on the Christmas tune bandwagon with their rendition of the classic "Little Drummer Boy." It's super short, but might make a nice addition to your season's listening or mixtaping needs.

[MP3]: Deerhoof :: The Little Drummer Boy

Kill Rock Stars has also now made "+81," a new track from the upcoming Friend Opportunity LP, available for download. So, if you didn't get a chance to grab before I had to take it down last time I posted it, now's your chance.

[MP3]: Deerhoof :: +81 (Highly Recommmmmended!)

Deerhoof on MySpace
The Friend Opportunity Forum
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Skatterbrain's Top Songs Of The Year

What it says, mang.

As you'll eventually notice, this is technically a top 30. However, I've only ordered the top 15. The rest are unordered and sans-MP3. I would discuss the matter further, but really, this list is fairly self-explanatory. If you have any questions please direct yourself to the comments and ask it. These are the songs that shaped my year, for better or for worse.

The Top 15:

01. [MP3]: Pants Yell! :: Our Turf
This was my "song" of 2006. Who knew a barely two-minute long instrumental pop song could be a song of the year? It easily illustrates just about any scene of daily life perfectly and I think that's why I still find it to be so great.

02. [MP3]: The Most Serene Republic :: You're Not An Astronaut
If there was any song that I listened to as much as "Our Turf," this would no doubt be it. The absolutely dumbfounding drums in the beginning only hint at the awesomeness that soons follows.

03. [MP3]: The Pipettes :: Pull Shapes
This was hard pick. It was a toss-up between "Pull Shapes" and "You're Kisses Are Wasted On Me," and then I realized that it's really not THAT important, so I just picked one. In the end I picked "Pull Shapes," and I think most of us can agree that it's damn fine song to dance to.

04. [MP3]: Belle And Sebastian :: Sukie In The Graveyard
That guitar solo at 1:15! That bassline at 1:45! Good God!

05. [MP3]: The Knife :: We Share Our Mother's Health
This is like, the indie hipster's "Thriller." Spooky, yet, dancable. Also one of the finest beats of the year. Yknow, since I'm a huge expert on beats and all...

06. [MP3]: Joanna Newsom :: Emily
This was the only song I had heard from Ys, prior to hearing Ys, and it still remains my very favorite song from that album. Honorable mention though, to "Monkey & Bear," who ran a very good race up until the very end.

07. [MP3]: Sunset Rubdown :: Shut Up I Am Dreaming...
It's a shame I didn't love the whole album as much as I love this song, cause oh man is it an awesome song. The first time I heard that guitar solo, my jaw dropped and I just started drooling all over my desk.

08. [MP3]: Continental Divide :: The Days Go By, But He's Old
Several of you may remember this as the song I posted two days in row due to heaps and heaps of incorrect and missing information. I had no time to waste though, I HAD to post it as soon I heard it. A whole album of this would be amazing.

09. [MP3]: The Airfields :: Nowhere Left To Go
The Airfields' brand of shoegaze-twee-pop is absolutely irresistible to my ears. Their Laneways EP is full of tracks right on par with this one, which is saying a lot, cause this one's fantastic!

10. [MP3]: Voxtrot :: Rise Up In The Dirt
When I first heard this baby, I thought it had a good shot at being my song of the year. It dropped off a teeny bit, but it's still the best song they've ever written.

11. [MP3]: Rainer Maria :: Clear And True
See here.

12. [MP3]: Camera Obscura :: Lloyd, I'm Ready To Be Heartbroken
I never really fell in love with this whole album but this was definitely one of the finest pop songs of the year and arguably the best song Camera Obscura has ever penned.

13. [MP3]: Arrah And The Ferns :: Tokyo, Tokyo
In my opinion, Arrah And The Ferns' Even Is A Vegan is probably one of the most criminally overlooked albums of the year. Every song on the album is a banjo-pop gem; "Tokyo, Tokyo" being my very favorite of the bunch. The end is just!

14. [MP3]: Love Is All :: Spinning And Scratching
The only comment I have is that I wish I could meet the keys that Love Is All's Josephine Olausson can, because then I could sing this song in front of people, instead of butchering it to death at the top of my lungs in the privacy of my own car.

15. [MP3]: Metallic Falcons :: Nighttime And Morning
This manages what many would assume to be impossible. While being utterly creepy as hell, it manages to somehow also be awesomely catchy. I didn't really get it the first time I heard it, and I still really don't, but "nighttime is for the boy who can fly" is one of my favorite lines of the year.

The "Best of the Rest," so to speak:

Grizzly Bear :: Knife
Beirut :: Postcards From Italy
I'm From Barcelona :: We're From Barcelona
Mono :: Yearning
The Besties :: Prison Song
Headlights :: Put Us Back Together Right
The Grates :: Lies Are Much More Fun
Mogwai :: We're No Here
Mates Of State :: Nature And The Wreck
Broadcast :: Unchanging Window
The Lovely Feathers :: Breakfast Cake
Holy Shit :: Written All Over Your Face
D+ :: Hear Lies: Red, White And Blue
Ms. John Soda :: Outlined View
Cansei De Ser Sexy :: Music Is My Hot Hot Sex

That's it folks. That's all she wrote. Fin.

If you've yet to see it: Skatterbrain's Top 15 Albums of 2006
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Monday, December 18, 2006

The Budgies: "Friends in Literature"

The Budgies

The Budgies are cute cute cute. Seriously, what is with Sweden and being so damn cute. It's gotta be something they put in the water. Anyway, I had a pretty long span a little while back where this blog was totally and utterly twee out the wazoo. I think that might start happening again due to a lot of great new pop bands I've been finding as of late; including The Budgies! When I first listened to them, oh, a couple hours ago, my heart just melted and I went on a spree, listening to everything I could from them. Now, I will share a few of my favorites with you. Super completely recommended if you like early Sarah Records-era indie pop.

[MP3]: The Budgies :: Friends in Literature (Highly Highly Rec'd)
This song is from their 2005 EP, Humblepie. Now, I'm not completely sure what it is about "Friends in Literature," but it's got a way of making extremely smiley all over. From the lo-fi feel to the lyrics and the twinkling guitar melody, it's all very charming. I said above that my heart melted when I first heard The Budgies; well, that happened right in the first chorus. Wait for "oh oh oh ohhhhhh" right after "I recite the Night thoughts, you put the reciever on the pillow of your bed," you'll feel it.

[MP3]: The Budgies :: Lucky Sunday (Also Highly rec'd!)
This song comes from their more recently released Summer Obsession EP, which you can pick up from Popkonst Recordings. This song's a little more jangly, sounding like something Tiger Trap could've whipped up back in the day. It goes by in a flash, but not before hitting you with catchy-as-can-be lines like: "We're going to the church it's sunday morning and you like these funay mornings / when the sun is up I'm so happy I could lie down and die." If that's not twee I don't know what is, but I know I love it.

The Budgies on MySpace
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This Minute Is A Good Minute


Noisy Seattle indie rockers Welcome, who fairly recently signed to FatCat Records, will be releasing their debut album Sirs in the U.S. and Canada on March 5th. We talked about these guys once before, but here's another new track from the album to hold you over until March. Recommended for fans of Deerhoof and the like.

[MP3]: Welcome :: This Minute (Recommended)
This song isn't as immediately grabbing as the fantastic "All Set" that we posted before, but it's definitely another super solid track from an album that seems to be piecing together extremely well so far. They move through roughly a minute of pretty minimal instrumentation before showing their true colors, and turning on the distortion letting the guitars run wild. After cutting off the distortion, the song makes its way back into the original melody before slowly burning out.

We posted this song before and I think it's still my favorite. This song is just awesome.

[MP3]: Welcome :: All Set (Highly Recommmmmended!)

Welcome on MySpace

Unrelated, but, did anyone else catch that "Dick-in-a-Box" digital short on SNL this past Saturday? It was the funniest thing I've seen on that show in quite a while. I've been looking all over for a clip of it, but to no avail. Anyone know where I could find one? UPDATE! An awesome commentor found us a link! Watch the video here.
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Friday, December 15, 2006

Lylas: "Swing Low, Sweet Mistletoe"


Happy Friday! Earlier this week I recieved quite possibly the cutest package I've ever gotten in the mail. Responsible for this cutest of holiday presents was the wonderful Nashville band Lylas. Aside from the the chocolate kisses and candy canes was their four track Christmas EP A Christmas Kiss From Lylas. Consisting of two short instrumental songs and two originals recorded this holiday. Check out my favorite of the two songs below.

[MP3]: Lylas :: Swing Low, Sweet Mistletoe
Consisting of mostly acoustic and slide guitar the sole purpose of this Christmas tune with the clever title is to bring you some Christmas cheer and maybe keep you a little warmer, and maybe, just maybe, get you a kiss if you sing to someone special. In that sense it succeeds, as do all Christmas songs; and that's why you can never dislike a Christmas song, because if you do, you're really just a jerk, right?

Lylas on MySpace (you can buy their records there too!)
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Thursday, December 14, 2006

The Faintest Ideas: "Nosebleeders On The Track"

The Faintest Ideas

Hailing from Gothenburg, Sweden, The Faintest Ideas (formerly the Javelins) are the kind of jangly noise pop that brings to mind bands like Boyracer or Television Personalities. Their new album What Goes Up Must Calm Down somehow slipped under my radar when it was released by Magic Marker back around late October. I've got ahold of it now though, and I think I'm in love. If you like your twee pop to be a little dirty, a little more "classic C86," then these guys are for you!

[MP3]: The Faintest Ideas :: Nosebleeders on the Track (Highly Rec'd!!!)
I cannot stop listening to this song. It's one of those songs that makes me wish I played guitar; there's just something about those super-fast downstrokes that make me wanna be up on stage with a guitar doing the same thing. If the jangle alone isn't enough to grab you, the song is full of catchy lines about being nerdy and ugly: "It's no picnic, but we don't have the looks / We compensate that by reading books." It's quick, concise, and full of energy: The perfect pop song!

Buy What Goes Up Must Calm Down from Magic Marker Records
The Faintest Ideas on MySpace


Also, look at this great news!

The third installment of Parenthetical Girls' semi-annual Christmas series, "A Parenthetical Girls Family Christmas" was hastily written and recorded in October of this year. The first EP we've offered for public sale, the CDs quickly sold out–and as such, we've decided to offer our friends a gift in this most callous of seasons, in the form of a free download.

A Parenthetical Girls Family Christmas!

Happy Holidays,
Slender Means Society & Parenthetical Girls

So there you go! Everyone that was looking for it, it's now a free download!
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Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Le Volume Courbe: "I Killed My Best Friend"

Charlotte Marionneau is Le Volume Courbe

Released back in February on Astralwerks, Le Volume Courbe's debut album I Killed My Best Friend is a sometimes strange, but always compelling collection of songs that have many times been called "impossible to describe." I would liken it musically to perhaps a more experimental and possibly more damaged Chan Marshall. Either way, this song, the title track from her album -- even if it only last a little over a minute -- has been on repeat all morning.

[MP3]: Le Volume Courbe :: I Killed My Best Friend (Highly Recommended)
Being the first song Charlotte ever wrote, it obviously doesn't portray her experimental side too much, but it's probably the most immediately accesible track on the album. "I Killed My Best Friend was actually an improvisation when I first sang it. I didn't speak English well at the time; in fact I don't remember writing it. But I do remember being annoyed at my mother and my best friend, and thinking: I must kill them, at least in my head, at least for a while!" Can't argue with that!

Le Volume Courbe on MySpace
Buy I Killed My Best Friend from
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Monday, December 11, 2006

Skatterbrain's Year End Extravaganza: The Albums

The top 15 albums of 2006, as decided by me, your master of celebrations

2006 was a pretty good year. I blogged a lot, I got really into twee, I got two speeding tickets, I almost got my license suspended, went to the Pitchfork Music festival with Matt and met tons of totally awesome people who may or may not have thought that i was totally awesome people too! So all in all, I thought 2006 was pretty fun year. I was pretty early with my all encompassing list last year, but this year I got busy I guess, or something, but at least it's finally here. I'll write this at the bottom too, but incase you dont make it all the way there, please share your thoughts and stuff! Okay?

Mr. Beast
[Matador Records]

I had my expectations for Mr. Beast set higher than I did for probably any other album that came out in 2006. Unfortunately, due to my lofty expectations, it never quite measured up to my "album of the year" dreams, but it's still an extremely powerful record in any regard. Songs like "Glasgow Mega Snake" and "We're No Here" will now go down as some of their loudest to date, while other moments, such as the slide guitar outro of slow burner "Acid Food" saw Mogwai still pushing forward.

The Lovely Feathers
Hind Hind Legs
[Equator Records]

Hind Hind Legs is one of the few albums on this list that I actually included on my mid-year list as well. Time can be fairly detrimental to the success of album throughout an entire year, but I never found myself disinterested in The Lovely Feathers at all in 2006. While this album recieved lyrical criticism from just about every musical publication in existance, I feel like the writing fits the music perfectly. Chaotic, exciting, and most of the time completely ridiculous.

Rose Melberg
Cast Away The Clouds
[Double Agent Records]

As everyone has surely noticed, I've become quite the indie/twee pop fan this year and that will probably be more than obvious in this list, beginning here. Rose Melberg could very well be considered the American queen of twee, and for good reason. Before eventually going solo, Rose fronted the classic indie pop bands Tiger Trap, The Softies, and Go Sailor. This album is quite a departure from her work in Tiger Trap and Go Sailor, but fans of The Softies would have found a lot to love here. I couldn't begin to count how many times I fell asleep to Cast Away The Clouds this year.

Holy Shit
Stranded At Two Harbors
[UUAR Records]

Stranded At Two Harbors was probably the biggest grower for me this year. When I first heard the album I didn't dislike it, but I didn't really like it that much either. It took around three or four months for me to really start getting into this album, but by the time I had gotten thuroughly into it, there was no shaking it. For all of you out there who just can't seen to enjoy Ariel Pink no matter how hard you try, you'll find Holy Shit to be much more welcoming and perhaps, even addicting.

Love Is All
Nine Times That Same Song
[What's Your Rupture?]

I wasn't sure whether to include to include this album on here, but then I did, for a few reasons. The first reason would be that I already included it on my mid-year list anyway, so like, alright. The second reason was that it wasn't on my list last year, and it needs to be on a list at some point. The third reason would have to be the fact that is just so damn awesome. Just like another album a little higher up, Nine Times That Same Song is an album that demands to be danced to. I hate ending sentences with a preposition, but sometimes you just cant do anything about it.

Math And Physics Club
Math And Physics Club
[Matinee Records]

From the moment I heard "Darling, Won't You Please Come Home," I knew this album was gonna be one of my favorites of the year. Seattle's Math and Physics Club are with out question, one of the very best contemporary indie pop bands out there right now, and this album definitely solidified their spot in the next Twee as Fuck article to be wrtten 10 years from now. There's a feeling to these songs that just makes you feel good inside; and I like to feel good inside, and I think that's while I'll love this album for a long time.

Arrah And The Ferns
Evan Is A Vegan
[Standard Recording Company]

Arrah and the Ferns were one of my favorite new discoveries of this year. They basically seemed to appear with this album, but man, I just loved it. I still love it. I never expected it to make my year end list, but it just kept getting better and better everytime I listened to it, and there's was just no way I could let it go unmentioned. Even Is A Vegan might be quite a bit too "cute" for many people, but for me there's really no better pairing than a banjo and the words "OMG" and "MySpace."

Rainer Maria
Catastrophe Keeps Us Together
[Grunion Records]

As I mentioned in a post I made actually not that long ago, I just can't let go of Rainer Maria; or they can't let go of me. Either way, Catastrophe Keeps Us Together took quite a while to strike me. When I first heard it many months ago I was pretty underwhelmed. I made the mistake of glossing over it with a quick listen and writing it off as boring. It wasn't until about 2 months ago that I gave it another chance and then latched onto like a rabid dog. I thank the song "Clear and True" for being the ambassador and bringing me back to this amazing album.

The Most Serene Republic
[Arts & Crafts]

I've mentioned this album probably more times than needed this year, but still to this day I'm just amazed by it. Sadly, since it began as a tour-only released, Phages never really quite caused the impact that I feel like it should have. Last year's Underwater Cinematographer only hinted at the kinds of thigns this band was capable of doing. With more time signature changes than you could shake a stick at, and gorgeous washes of guitars and layered vocals, The Most Serene Republic now clearly define the label of dreamy noise pop.

You Are There
[Temporary Residence Limited]

While I've always been more of a Mogwai man, I would be lying to myself if I were to not acknowledge You Are There's superiority over Mr. Beast this year. Most of the only criticism that Mono ever recieves is that their musical M.O. is basically written in stone. When you get ready to listen to an album by them, you probably have a good idea of what to expect: beautiful flowing textures that either gracefully float away or burst into tidal waves of guitar, typically one of glistening beauty and another, snarling under it like a train engine. However, as long as Mono continue to make the most epic music I've ever heard, I can't really see any reason to complain.

Joanna Newsom
[Drag City Records]

The first time I heard this album I was sure it would end up being my number one album of the year. So why isn't it my number one album of the year? I messed around with my top 15 for quite some time before it occured to me that, while Ys may very well be the most "important" album of the year, the fact is that it just couldn't function as such. Sure, you could sit down and devote yourself to it, and realize the sheer brilliance of Joanna Newsom, but realistically, how many times can you really do that? Truth be told, as much as I love long songs, the fact that the albums higher up on my list are made up of fairly compact songs is not a coincidence. Frequencey is large part of an albums effect on me, and in that area (and that area alone) Ys lost it's stride. Sorry Joanna, I still love you.

The Knife
Silent Shout
[Mute Records]

Back in January, I would have never in my wildest dreams imagined an album like this could end in my top 5 of the year, but 12 months of influence and expanding tastes can do that to you, cant it? Though I firmly believe I still prefer their previous album, Deep Cuts, to Silent Shout, this album was nothing short of amazing. I think it's a fine testament to music's ever growing sense of innovation when people can still find ways to scare the shit out of a 21 year old who, by many standards, already listens to his fair share of terrifying music. The mutating intro of "We Share Our Mother's Health" will likely go down as my favorite single moment of music in 2006.

Pants Yell!
Recent Drama
[Asaurus Records]

"This year has been a very Pants Yell! year for me. When I first listened to Recent Drama, I was impressed but not enamored, but that would very soon change. About a week or so, after hearing the album for the first time, I won Matt's Pants Yell! contest on YANP and got a second copy of the album and an awesome custom screen printed newsprint poster of congratulations! About three or four days after that I got to see them live at The Black Cat in DC and was very impressed by their performance and they were really nice guys and gal, too. So you see, all these things kept me fully immersed in Pants Yell! and specifically Recent Drama. By the time I saw them live, I already couldn't put the record down and after that I was sure it would stick very close by my side for the remainder of the year." Even back in June, I couldn't have been more right. Pants Yell! practically paved the way into the world of twee pop for me this year, and for that, I will be forever grateful.

The Pipettes
We Are The Pipettes
[Memphis Industries]

You can hate this band and this record as much as you want, but the fact is, despite being written off as nothing more than "gimmick," The Pipettes delivered one of most fantastic pop albums of the past couple years. With it's Phil Spector-esque "wall-of-sound" production, We Are The Pipettes is an ice cold smack in the face, saying "Get up and move!". The harmonies in almost every song are some of the best vocals heard all year and solid rhythm provided by backing musicians The Casettes support the songs perfectly. I don't want to go giving anything away, but I'm pretty sure "Pull Shapes" was, and still is, the greatest song I've heard all year.

Belle And Sebastian
The Life Pursuit
[Matador Records]

Aha! The big number one! The album that floats above all other albums! Belle and Sebastian's The Life Pursuit. The funny thing about this album is that, like several other albums on this list, I didn't really care too much for it when I first heard it. Looking back, I have no idea what was wrong with me, because as time went on I started to realize that this was an album, this was what an album was supposed to feel like. Not just a collection of songs, but more like a story full of chapters, each one pefectly meshing into the next. Stuart is in top form on The Life Pursuit with the rest of the band reaching far and beyond anything else they've ever played. From it's impressive guitar work, horn solos(!), and my absolutele favorite line of the year, "'You ain't ugly, you can kiss me if you'd like' 'Go ahead and kiss her! You don't know what you're missing!'," The Life Pursuit is everything that a perfect album should be, and then some.

Well, there you have it guys. 2007's already shaping up to be a great year for music, so I guess we'll see how this goes next year! Please leave you're thoughts and opinions and if you've got a year list of your own, I'd love to hear about it!
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Parenthetical Girls: "Festive Friends Forever"

A Parenthetical Girls Family Christmas

Hello friends! Although the header probably gave it away a few days ago, I'm now heavily into the Christmas spirit. Last night I finished up most of the decorating I'll be doing and I managed to not burn down the house with the hundreds of pine-scented candles I had going! My decorating aside, you've probably realized that I haven't made any sort of Christmas related post yet, and you might be asking why. Well, it looks to me like every other blog on the face of the earth have already satisfied your indie holiday tastes already. Now, if I could get the CD to rip, I would be posting a few of my favorite Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers holiday tunes, but alas, that looks like it's not gonna be happening.

However, I've got a more than suitable solution! Some of you may be familar with Parenthetical Girls. They released an album this year called Safe As Houses and it's pretty great. If you still don't know who they are, I'd reckon that now might be a good time to utilize your good pal Google. ANYWAY, they put a totally awesome Christmas EP this year, appropriately titled A Parenthetical Girls Family Christmas. I've been listening to it over and over and over lately, and this song in particular has now become one of my favorite Christmas songs ever.

[MP3]: Parenthetical Girls :: Festive Friends Forever (Highly Recommended!)
Like almost any Christmas song, there's just something about the combination of sleigh bells and glockenspiel that just brings a smile to my face. This song is much more than bells though. From the organ and glitched out pops and snaps to the festive harmonies, this song is just perfect. When a song opens with "Festive friends, it's Christmas time again," it just really can't go wrong.

If you like this song and would like to hear more from the EP, let me know in the comments!

Buy Safe As Houses from Slender Means Society


Seriously, my list is almost done, I swear!
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Thursday, December 07, 2006

Rocketship's Early Bus Stop Label Singles

(Left): Hey, Hey, Girl; (Right): Honey, I Need You

A recent thread on a certain internet forum led me to realize that there are more people out there than I thought long to have Rocketship's early singles in MP3 format. Well, since they're both long out of print, and I happen to be lucky enough to have them both in MP3 format, I figured I'd share the love. If you're new to Rocketship, all I can say is they're amazing. For a more detailed idea of who Rocketship is, you can check out this post I made several months ago. Also, I can safely say that every one of these tracks are very highly recommended.

Rocketship Hey, Hey, Girl 7"
The Bus Stop Label (BUS034) 1994

1. [MP3]: Hey, Hey, Girl
2. [MP3]: Naomi and Me
3. [MP3]: People I Know

Rocketship Honey, I Need You 7"
The Bus Stop Label (BUS057) 1997

1. [MP3]: Honey, I Need You
2. [MP3]: She's Gonna Make Me Cry

The Bus Stop Label
Slumberland Records


Year-end list coming soon, I promise!
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Tuesday, December 05, 2006

The Airfields: New Demos

The Airfields

As you might remember, we posted on The Airfields a little while back and as I remember, I mentioned then that I was waiting on the 10" version of the Laneways EP to be finished. Well, I finally got it and it didn't leave my turntable for weeks. If I was going to make a year end list of EPs (which I may very well do), then Laneways would very likely take the number one spot, it's really that good. That's obviously subjective though, as if you're not a fan of early Sarah Records-era indie pop like, say, The Field Mice, then maybe you won't find it to be that good.

Anyway, Laneways aside, the band's been very hard at work writing and recording new material for their forthcoming full-length. From the looks of these few new demos, the new album is going to amazing. I'm a teensy bit short on time, but I've gotta say my personal favorite has to be "You're So Wonderful," with it's diluted vocals and obvious nods to early My Bloody Valentine.

[MP3]: The Airfields :: You're So Wonderful (Highest Recommendation!)
[MP3]: The Airfields :: Prisoners Of Our Love
[MP3]: The Airfields :: The Longway Home

As a bonus, here's my favorite track from the Laneways EP:
[MP3]: The Airfields :: Nowhere Left To Go (Highly Recccccccccc'd!)

Pick up the Laneways EP on CD or handprinted 10" from Humblebee Recordings
The Airfields on MySpace


December is finally upon us and you can guess what that means! YEAR END LISTS!!! The folks over at Gorilla Vs. Bear, Chromewaves, and Wolf Notes (ex-Good Hodgkins) are ahead of the pack this year and have already got their lists up. We should have ours up sometime in the next week or so, so keep your eyes peeled!

Gorilla Vs. Bear's top albums of 2006
Chromewaves' top albums of 2006
Wolf Notes' top albums of 2006

Check em out!
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Monday, December 04, 2006

Oh Joanna Newsom, we love you so

This is really cute. Watch it and stuff.

P.S.Whoa whoa whoa Snowman! It's winter time baby!
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MONO and Explosions in the Sky 2007 Tours


I would consider MONO probably one of my top ten favorite bands at the moment, and I missed their last two shows in Maryland due to the fact that I wasn't 21 yet. Well wouldn't you know it, the first time they play an under 21 show here, and I'm finally 21. Oh well, I'm seeing them, so I can't complain. I plan on not being able to hear the next day. Hopefully they fulfill my expectations, even though it is, oh, over five months away.

[MP3]: MONO :: Com (?)

Thu 04/12/07 Middle East Downstairs Cambridge MA *
Fri 04/13/07 La Sala Rossa Montreal PQ *
Sat 04/14/07 Soundlab Buffalo NY *
Sun 04/15/07 Carnegie Mellon University Pittsburgh PA *
Mon 04/16/07 Grog Shop Cleveland Heights OH *
Tue 04/17/07 Little Brothers Columbus OH *
Wed 04/18/07 Headliners Music Hall Louisville KY *
Thu 04/19/07 The House Cafe Dekalb IL *
Sat 04/21/07 Triple Rock Club Minneapolis MN *
Wed 04/25/07 Neumos Seattle WA +
Thu 04/26/07 Doug Fir Lounge Portland OR ^
Fri 04/27/07 Great American Music Hall San Francisco CA ^
Sat 04/28/07 Troubadour Los Angeles CA ^
Sun 04/29/07 Casbah San Diego CA ^
Mon 04/30/07 Plush Tucson AZ ^
Wed 05/02/07 Haileys Denton TX ^
Thu 05/03/07 Emos Jr. Austin TX ^
Fri 05/04/07 Mink Houston TX ^
Sat 05/05/07 Spanish Moon Baton Rouge LA ^
Mon 05/07/07 The Social Orlando FL ^
Tue 05/08/07 TSI Jacksonville FL ^
Wed 05/09/07 Bottletree Birmingham AL ^
Thu 05/10/07 The Earl Atlanta GA ^
Fri 05/11/07 The Village Tavern Mt. Pleasant SC ^
Sat 05/12/07 Local 506 Chapel Hill NC ^
Sun 05/13/07 Satellite Ballroom Charlottesville VA ^
Mon 05/14/07 Ottobar Baltimore MD ^
Tue 05/15/07 Rock and Roll Hotel Washington DC ^
Wed 05/16/07 First Unitarian Church Sanctuary Philadelphia PA ^
Thu 05/17/07 Bowery Ballroom New York NY ^

* w/ worlds end girlfriend
^ w/ worlds end girlfriend, Grails
+ w/ Kinski, worlds end girlfriend

MONO on MySpace

Explosions in the Sky

I love Explosions in the Sky just about as much as I love MONO, if not maaaaaaaaybe a wee bit more. In the spirit of 2007 shaping up to be an amazing year for music in every way, shape, and form, Explosions int he Sky will also be heading out on tour, in support of their forthcoming album All Of A Sudden I Miss Everyone. As you may know, like MONO, they're also NOT TO BE MISSED.

[MP3]: Explosions in the Sky :: Memorial

02/19/07 Brooklyn, NY Warsaw +
02/20/07 New York, NY The Wordless Music Series at the Society for Ethical Culture Concert Hall #
02/23/07 Cologne, DE Gebäude 9
02/25/07 Amsterdam, NE Paradiso
02/26/07 Brussels, BEL AB Box / Ancienne Belgique
02/27/07 Paris, FR La Maroquinerie
03/01/07 London, UK Koko's
03/07/07 Houston, TX Numbers *
03/11/07 Sunrise, FL Langerado Music Festival %
03/12/07 St. Augustine, FL The Alcazar Eluvium Buy Tickets
03/14/07 Asheville, NC Grey Eagle ^
03/16/07 Charlottesville, VA Starr Hill Music Hall ^
03/17/07 Washington, DC 9:30 Club ^
03/18/07 Philadelphia, PA Starlight Ballroom ^
03/20/07 New York, NY Webster Hall ^
03/30/07 Omaha, NE Sokol Underground ^
03/31/07 Lawrence, KS The Bottleneck *

* w/ Eluvium
^ w/ The Paper Chase, Eluvium
+ w/ Mountains
# w/ Ayano Kataoka
% w/ Four Tet, Stephen Malkmus, Band of Horses, more...

Explosions in the Sky on MySpace

Buy all kinds of stuff from both bands from the wonderful Temporary Residence.
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Friday, December 01, 2006

Skatterbrain presents...

What it says...

These past couple months have been very strange for me, musically. I've been jumping back and forth from indiepop to instrumental post rock, skipping pretty much everything inbetween along the way. I just happen to enjoy the opposite ends of the spectrum more than anything else between them, but it's still funny to think about listening something like Mogwai and then switching right over to a band like Tiger Trap. Anyway, as you know, I've already made an Twee Pop Mix, and I'm still in the middle of a Fall Mix, but I wanted to showcase some of my favorite mind-blowing songs of the mostly instrumental persuasion. These songs are all pretty much at their best when played as loud as possible, so grab your headphones, turn em all the way up, and duck and cover. Jake "The Sonic Destroyer" Winstanley assisted in the creation of this mix.

01. [MP3]: Thee Silver Mountain Reveries :: More Action! Less Tears!
02. [MP3]: Mogwai :: Ithica 27-9
03. [MP3]: Do Make Say Think :: Horns of a Rabbit
04. [MP3]: Explosions in the Sky :: Magic Hours
05. [MP3]: Comets On Fire :: The Bee and the Cracking Egg
06. [MP3]: Godspeed You! Black Emperor :: Moya
07. [MP3]: M83 :: (Star)
08. [MP3]: MONO :: The Kidnapper Bell
09. [MP3]: Sigur Ros :: Untitled #8
10. [MP3]: Growing :: Green Pasture

As you can see, it's not ALL post rock. It is however, all very LOUD, and very EPIC, and very BEAUTIFUL. Okay well, I hope you enjoy it and hopefully you haven't heard some of these songs before and you'll be like "OMG this is amazing thanks Matt!" or something. That MONO track would be my personal favorite in the mix, for anyone who may have been wondering.

Happy First of December!
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