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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Cutting The Fat

No time for clever gimmicks or conceits here. I'm on deadline dammit. Recent things that are one thousand degrees:

Mayer Hawthorne & The County - Just Ain't Gonna Work Out

New Stones Throw artist Mayer Hawthorne has us over here at BW in a weeks-long swoon. Nat wants to have his babies. Lo-fi blue-eyed soul that sounds like long-lost Stax demos. LURRRRRRR.

(thanx to Stranger Dance for having a link when Badongo is bitching out)

Kid Cudi - Switchin' Lanes

It's fair enough to think that tracks recorded exclusively for video games should be retarded. They probably are, fundamentally. But Cudi's I'm-not-even-really-trying-here delivery suits the almost All Eyez On Me style beats. If you haven't yet, follow Dat New CuDi on Twitter cause he drops links to new tracks.

BLK JKS - Summertime (Carlos Ramos version)

BLK JKS are like a South African version of TV On The Radio - in that they sound similar, are amazing, and come from Johannesburg. Props to RCRD LBL for this track.

Body Langauge - Huffy Ten Speed

Neon Gold is ridiculous. We continue to worship at the altar. The consistency of the bangers over there is just unbelievable. This is my jam of the year so far.

Friday, March 13, 2009

8-Bit Heat

Check out this medley of rap songs done Nintendo style. Anyone know how to download it?


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Eyes Caught Fire

Who ever thought alt-country mixed with Nirvana could sound so good. Their name is The Mountain Apple Epidemic, their bio reads 'Used to have a band that was on the harder side of things, Tool-ish, now I try to rip off Wovenhand' and they are sublime. Like the soundtrack for a forgotten sequel to Deadman. Sample the album standout Eyes Caught Fire below or grab the whole album for free here.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Seek the light

Despite at least 18 months in the fickle glare of the indie spotlight, Bon Iver seems to be suffering very little fatigue, and certainly not with me or the rest of the BW crew - especially not after the amazing show we saw him play back in January.
There are plenty of live sets of Bon Iver floating around the interwebs now (NPR has two, also try Hard to Find a Friend) but I still felt compelled to post about The MySpace Transmissions because just about every live set I have heard Justin and company perform has been different. This has been available for just under a month now, but I only just came across it a couple of days ago. The set can be watched here or downloaded from the link below.
The stand out in this set has to be the beautiful version of Blindsided that runs to a full 7 minutes. However, stunningly constructed and performed versions of Emma, Flume and Lump Sum also appear.

Bon Iver - The MySpace Transmissions (courtesy of Howling Songs)

MySpace | Website

Monday, February 23, 2009

Speaking of magic...

I had the pleasure of catching Benga and Skream a few months ago at the ol' sweat pit that is Oxford Art Factory. Safe to say they fucking smashed it, moving quickly from banger to banger all with a set of cheeky grins.

The track below was not dropped (as far as my hazy memory can tell) but holy shit I wish it had been. All stripped vocals and soft rave bleeps new comer LaRoux (currently on tour with Ms Allen) brings on the goose bumps. Then in the last minute it simply cuts loose, releasing the tension with tough breaks and the kind of bass Skream is renowned for. Ace.

LaRoux - In For the Kill (Skream Ravey Remix)

Myspace | Website

Unexpected Monday Afternoon Magic

Good times for Adele. Last week (or so) she cleans up at the Grammy's, and now this absolute fucking banger of a remix of Hometown Glory appears courtesy of Chewy Chocolate Cookies. So the track has been mixed up a bunch of times, but this one kills facists and like perennial BW jam Sleepyhead, this proves you can get in and make nights in under 3 minutes.

Adele - Hometown Glory (Chewy Chocolate Cookies remix) [soundcloud download]

Update: zshare link was killed so it's a soundcloud d/l now.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

This Isn't A Post About La Roux...

...weird right? Apparently there's other bands around, blogosphere.

I first came across Harlem Shakes a year or so ago after they did a Daytrotter session. Then, I found them super likable but just missing that extra je ne sais quoi. Now they've had a bit of time to mature as a band and I lurr the new direction they've taken. Mostly in that they've upped the fun and (metaphorical) thrusting factor, and are sounding tight. Kind of like if an English indie band heard themselves, then went back in time and grew up in New York instead. Their record Technicolor Health drops in March.

Harlem Shakes - Strictly Game


Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Ahora bailemos...!

Last Sunday I skipped along to St. Jerome's Laneway Festival in Sydney, for the first time in my festival life, with no idea who the bands were that were playing (apart from The Holdsteady and Four Tet) and had little motivation to find out. Surrounded by music aficionados, I was in nurturing hands. As the day rolled by and my blood sugar level dropped, I was pleasantly surprised to turn down one (of which there are only two) laneway and encounter something I knew would pep me up again - that being - tribal and thudding Spanish tunes.

El Guincho is one of those acts other artists get down to see, including, on that particular windy afternoon, the guys from Hermitude and Ryan Stively from Port O'Brien. The adorable man behind El Guincho, Pablo Diaz-Reixa, had everyone dancing for the whole duration of his set and I personally thank him for making me forget how sore my feet were and fooling me into thinking I was back in Spain. I was so excited when we ran into the man himself, on our way home.

I hope his album is playing at the next party I go to, as I can't wait to get down again.

Pedro with a drunk and over excited BW contributor, Nat.

El Guincho - Kalise

Myspace | Website

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Are you watching closely?

It's very rare these days when a hip hop artist will stop you in his tracks. Lil' Wayne did it last year with Da Drought 3, but I feel this year we gotta get a little deeper, cerebral.

Jay Electronica is an artist who has been skirting the fringes of greatness for some time. He has produced tracks for Nas and Eryka Badu (who he has a live Twittered child with) and recently cut a track with Just Blaze. His breakout track Act I: The Pledge referances the film The Prestige and see's Jay spitting over fragments of Jon Brion's Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind soundtrack about UFO's and voodoo men. No drums in sight.

Check the slightly more conventional Renassiance Man below and stop the slow singin' and flower bringin' cause hip hop ain't dead yet.

Jay Electronica - Renassiance Man


Thursday, January 22, 2009

For Emma

A large slice of the BW crew were lucky enough to make it down to the City Recital Hall in the center of Sydney. The guest of honour was none other than the blogsphere's favourite son Justin Vernon and his rag tag gang AKA Bon Iver. The show, setting and company came together to form a sublime gig. Justin was both humble and charismatic with him and his band showing passion and startling musicianship for such a young band. Highlights included Skinny Love, re:Stacks and a stirring singalong rendition of The Wolves (Part I & II). Goosebumps all round. Check out one of the new tracks from the new EP Blood Bank below and if you have chance to catch them live make sure to grab it by it's scruffy beard.

Bon Iver - Blood Bank (Badongo)

Myspace | Website

Monday, January 19, 2009

Hey, Internet, Hush With All The 'Shoegazing'

It must get so frustrating for bands sometimes: one -usually kinda influential- blog attaches an descriptor to a band's sound, and it becomes the archetypal word to describe their output. We constantly heard about the 'African influences' of Vampire Weekend, simply because one of their song titles mentioned Kwassa Kwassa. Hercules & Love Affair couldn't be separated from their 'bringing back disco." It goes on. So pity Asobi Seksu, who have been lumped with "shoegaze." Not only is this inappropriate, does it even mean anything?

The band has a new album, Hush, dropping February 17th through Polyvinyl, and from what I've heard on a once-through it's at times dense, uplifting, bright, forceful, and or a million other things. It is appealing guitar-driven pop with some huge riffs, quite different from the Thursday Twelves remix that blew up and got them some burn all those months (years?) back. Importantly, it's not shoegazing, unless you really forced yourself.


So Notorious hit screens on Friday, and to go with it comes the official unofficial mixtape, hosted by Talib Kweli, which dropped today. All the tracks are mixed by DJ Grafitti, and of the two jams below, the Buff1 is actually tighter than Kweli's. Check em out at the zshares below, and cop the full tape here.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Telephone My Brain Back plz.

I dunno whether it's because you discover the album late at night and there are no distractions, or whether some albums are just so expansive that they can utterly occupy your headspace. Whatever it is, Telefon Tel Aviv's Immolate Yourself did it. I listened to a little before bed and was like "this is too big." Then I tried it on the train, which is my main opportunity each day to really listen to something, and was still like "woah huge." And it hasn't stopped. Shit is transcendent. It's not that it has huge, obvious sounds, but more that -like M83 for example, or maybe Fuck Buttons- the tracks are so enveloping that you can't really concentrate on anything else, thanks to the white noise soundscapes and the driving melodies. And sometimes it seems like it should come across sparse and bleak, but it never quite does...  Anyway, enough of my inability to deal with complex music. 

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Avalanches, hit the showers.

As the world slowly waits for what is becoming the hipster version of Chinese Democracy, a new Avalanches album, a whole bunch of like minded artist have risen in their place.

One such plucky newcomer is the generically named Metaform. Apparently spending five years in social isolation, slowly crafting a masterpiece that comes across as a mix of the aforementioned Avalanches and pre-hyphy DJ Shadow.

Check Pch below for a taste of his sample heavy vintage sound, and hunt down the whole damn instrumental opus. You wont regret it.

Metaform - Pch

Myspace | Website

Friday, January 9, 2009

Neon Flames

Neon Gold's unbelievable track record for finding shithot bands continues. This time it's Giantess, whose jams are being produced by Passion Pit's Ayad Al-Adhamy. Which makes total sense when you hear the track. A saccharine -but not cloying- fun explosion. More please.

Giantess - You Were Young

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

PBJ have nothing to worry about because they're on the money

Ye just dropped a new Peter, Bjorn and John tune on his blog. His usual garble spouts about how much he loves the drums... and I have to agree with him: the beat is money! But the track will be HUGE because of the singing children sample. I'm convinced it's the fastest way for musicians to cash in.

Peter, Bjorn and John - Nothing to Worry About

MySpace | Website

Postcript: In before Pitchfork - BITCHES!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

And finally (for 08)

So 2009 is upon us and all those lists are played out but I couldn't resist posting a few final treats I found kicking round the place.

First up is a tasty 2008 wrap up show that my man Mark Ronson rolled out Boxing Day. Peep the track listing and grab the mp3 here.

Second is an impressive wrap up coming from VJ blog, Accent Feed. A list of the top 10 Innovative Concert Visuals. Anyone who has been to a concert in the last few years knows that every act feels to need to melt your brain with flashing lights (hell Kanye even wrote a song about it). Next level shit right here.