Saturday, March 25, 2006

after a night out...

I swear I'm too awake... I want to sleep. Here's some random lyrics from some random songs, mainly about ambiguity, sadness, tiredness, confusion...

"I'm not quite how I should be
been finding tricks too hard
I'm thinking something must be broken
'cause it wasn't like this before...

...i'm so scared just kill me
time and time again
i can't live with compromise
so maybe we can talk as friends
if at first you don't succeed try again for me...

...its in the way that you look
it's in the books that we'll read
it comes and goes like a friend
it's with me right till the end
it's in the memories i lost
it's concentrating too much
it's breaking down our relations
and it's the beat of the clock
it's not being able to explain
or get your feelings across
it's in the pain that won't leave you
it's coming straight back for us
it's in the new lease on life
and the search that ends well
it's in finding that change
it's being happy again"

"true love waits"

"smile, that fake, fake smile"

Okay, that's it. Anyway... Time to bring in the J.O.Y. I think.

Jenny Owen Youngs

Fuck Was I

This song is lovely and if it wasn't for all the cursing you could listen to it with your parents. Caustic lyrics set to lazily played acoustic guitar, casually plucking notes every now and then. There are other orchestral instruments too, which feature quite heavily, actually. I don't really have anything else to add, other than the fact that she's 16, which makes the song all the more impressive.

P.S. Tonight was good. Good things: friends, drink, music. This Charming Man is an amazing party song... mm-hmm.

*Note: post originally written at 4am... edited later.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Reverie Sound Revue

I'm not sure if I ever did a post on Reverie Sound Revue, but I don't think I did. So I will now. Lisa Lobsinger was the singer of the band and she is now a member of Broken Social Scene. When I went to see them live in Belfast she sang [as opposed to Leslie Feist, Emily Haines, or Amy Millan singing - since they're all enjoying their own success], and was amazing, especially her rendition of Anthems for a Seventeen Year Old Girl. Her voice is spectacular, she looked amazing, and there was something completely intriguing about her stage presence. There was an absence of flair. More a humble, bookish way of holding herself, lost in the music, singing to herself as much to anyone else. Was weird, but captivating.

I would say the music of her old band, Reverie Sound Revue, is very chilled-out, electro-pop [ish], lovely, pleasant, sometimes jazzy, happy, summertime music. Since it's coming up to the summer, and it's likely to be the hottest summer here in eleven years [or something; something to do with cycles, weather conditions repeating, and other stuff which I don't understand]... this is the perfect sort of music. For lazy afternoons sitting outside watching the grass grow and reading your favourite novel.

Facts (and opinions?):

#1: Reverie Sound Revue come from Calgary, Alberta, Canada;
#2: The band broke up at some point in the Spring of two thousand and four;
#3: Lisa Lobsinger now sings with the amazing, Canadian collective, Broken Social Scene;
#4: She likes to sing barefoot: apparently she does it all the time, and she did it at the gig I saw;
#5: I can't find an official website for Reverie Sound Revue so I've linked to a wonderful fansite [lots of MP3's on it] instead;
#6: I think the name Reverie Sound Revue is perfect for their music. Think rivers, oceans, sunlight, glistening fountains, crystals, dew drops, wine-glasses, snowflakes and most of all... think of sleepy little reveries. Reverie, of course, coming from the French word "rever", meaning "to dream". C'est parfait.

Reverie Sound Revue

Walking Around Waiting Downtown
Rip The Universe
The AM
It's All The Same
Carefree Radio
The City Belongs To Us
*Note: right-click and save target as or else it won't work.

Nice songs, I say. Hope you all agree that she has a lovely, lovely voice. After listening to those songs again, and refreshing my memory of what the band truly sound like, might I perhaps steal the words of Amy Millan, take them out of their original context, and say that Reverie Sound Revue make "lover's rock"? Yes, I may - only minus the rock... "lover's electro-pop" would be more appropriate, methinks *smile*. This music makes me want to lie down.

On that note: You'll be glad to hear that I got an e-mail the other day, recommending some unknown [I'd imagine] band from some unknown [I'd imagine] MP3 label. I downloaded an album [by one band] and an E.P. [by another band], and listened to it lying down. I felt relaxed. Sometimes it's good to listen to music that doesn't annoy, doesn't irritate, doesn't provoke, doesn't move. It was all lazy stuff from what I heard before I fell asleep, so I'll feature them when I get the time. I'm off to get to the bus, and read "The Art of Falling Apart" now. Maybe I'll pick up some pointers. *Note: only joking. Great book though..

N.B. If any of those MP3's don't work for you, click on any one of the "Reverie Sound Revue"' links in the post and go to the MP3 page and download from there. Why? 'cause Angelfire is shit, that's why.

Bell X1/Damien Rice

See, I thought I had this post all organised. But, no, I don't. I haven't said anything in the draft. I just have all this "research". Anyways, here goes. I saw Bell X1 doing two in-stores in the past week. One at Cool Discs which was good, very bare-bones, acoustic-ness going on [plus, I got a thing signed], and then another at HMV. Anyways, they were good, and kinda made me like them again. Haven't really paid much attention to them since Music in Mouth, but well, I was listening to some more stuff after the in-stores and they actually are a really good band. Here's some facts:

#1: Eve, The Apple of my Eye was played on the O.C;
#2: They're from Dublin, Ireland;
#3: On October 14, 1947, the Bell X-1 became the first airplane to fly faster than the speed of sound;
#4: Damien Rice used to be a member, and he wrote the songs Volcano, and Eskimo whilst in the band [then called Juniper], from what I remember;
#5: They played a show [or maybe more? couldn't really find out] with Elliott Smith... 'nuff said.

Damien Rice


Damien Rice is brilliant. His album 'O' was one of my favourites ever since about two years ago, when I lived in a different house, and my brother spent his time in a different country [as in the Republic... down in Dublin... for University]. I remember hearing it and thinking it was just amazing. And it was. Maybe still is.

So, anyway. I'm completely tired... I am shattered. I haven't slept properly in so long. Think I'm going to collapse someday soon. So, that means, I'll leave you with some quotations from the two in-stores.

Music [?] in Mouth

[after borrowing the lead singer/guitarist's tuner, the bassist says] "i'm saving up for my own tuner"

[lead singer/guitarist, shakes his head, realising his guitar's not in tune] "just goes to show you have to do everything on your own these days... phil you're dead"

"ah i think the nerves are settling a little bit. it's so distracting though y'know. Godfather III and Deus Ex! we used to do these in-stores alot. we're from ah.. we're from dublin. and we did lots of these in tower records, i think it was back at the very start. and tower records was like the first place to sell pornography in ireland. so yea, it was pretty great for that reason. maybe i shouldn't be saying this."

"we can't really do this song properly here 'cause of the set-up. so we can't do the discotastic version. but i guess... when in doubt - go country. that's the rule. so here's our slow country version of the new single, Flame"

"our album hasn't been released here yet. well, except for in Cool Discs... they've had it for a while. 'cause they're one of the good guys"

And some information: I saw them when they were promoting their album, Music in Mouth about a year ago, and that was a pretty good in-store. But anyway, at the end of one of the songs, the singer sang these lines from the Outkast song, Hey Ya! :

Don't want to meet your daddy,
Just want you in my Caddy.
Don't want to meet your momma,
Just want to make you come, ah.
I'm just being honest.
I'm just being honest.

At the latest in-store, in HMV, he sang part of Ms. Jackson [also by Outkast] :

i'm sorry ms jackson.. oohh... never meant to make your daughter cry.

Paul Noonan is the name of their lead singer/guitarist. Methinks he's an Outkast fan.

Oh, closing note... HMV had wayyyy too many security guards for the in-store. It was crazy. Two looked like they were only there after getting rejected from the Secret Service the same day. FACT! That's how stern the looks were. Suspicion was practically falling out off the shelves like knocked over CD's, and carelessly thrown schoolbags were no longer an obstruction - they were now regarded as dangerous weapons. Did someone say, bomb? Okay, wasn't quite that bad like. But, you get the idear.

Bell X1

Alphabet Soup - live
Here She Comes
Morning Becomes Eclectic Live Session - streaming media

If any of this post is wrong/doesn't make sense/annoys you - blame tiredness.

Bell X1 have a new album and a new single, out now! Should be good, I reckon. Their next single is called "Rocky Took A Lover" and it sounds absolutely fantastic acoustic. Doesn't sound quite as good electric, but still very well worth a listen. Go to their MySpace, here.

Also: in "Rocky Took A Lover", the lyrics allude to a Winston Churchill quotation [if my memory bank serves me right...] Churchill called some woman ugly. She called him a drunk. He said, "at least I'll be sober in the morning". And the lyrics to this Bell X1 song go like this: "she says... but you weren't so nice, last night, you're such an asshole when you're drunk. You said, least I'm okay in the morning". I definitely do really like the lyrics. They also allude to Oscar Wilde: "but from this gutter we're still staring at the stars"... thus referencing his infamous, "all of us are in the gutter but some of us are looking at the stars" quotation. [My versions, re: Wilde, Churchill, were paraphrased, 'cause I'm too lazy to Google them.]

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Let Down

So... there was lots of Radiohead yesterday. This is the last of it. Let Down. The original and two covers. The piano instrumental is particularly beautiful. Almost uplifting but just falling short, and sinking back into it's own beautiful misery. Has there ever been a song title which more perfectly summed up how I'm feeling right now? Not even a real reason for the feeling. Just sometimes there's too much. Sometimes there's too little. There's a vacuum or there's a reason. There's a beating heart, or there's darkness. There's blood and tears, or there's the end of the fight. Know what album title I've always liked? The Postal Service's... it was called Give Up, for those of you who didn't know. Just that. Give Up. Give Up. Give up to what? Give up hope? Give up the fight? What?... anyways, I feel like giving up. Don't even know what. Just. Anything. Everything.

Someday, art will save us from the flames.

Let Down

Let Down - Radiohead
Let Down - Pedro the Lion
Let Down - Christopher O'Riley

"It's easy to be miserable.
Being happy is tougher - and cooler." - Thom Yorke

"XO, mom... It's okay, it's alright. Nothing's wrong." - Elliott Smith

"What is a poet? An unhappy person who conceals profound anguish in his heart but whose lips are so formed that as sighs and cries pass over them they sound like beautiful music." - Soren Kierkegaard

Wednesday, March 22, 2006


So, this is following on from the last post. Sorry about the Radiohead saturation [am I really? No, not really...] but since they are coming to Dublin on their tour, I'm not overly concerned about posting about them too much. [Can you do such a thing?] They're an amazing band. Remember you can go here and here for more Radiohead stuff [remixes and rarities] over at S k a t t e r b r a i n. Here's some huge writing, and some MP3's. It's all good in the hood.

Radiohead Live

Exit Music
The Bends
*Note: Earl's Court recordings... go here to download a lot more of them.

Radiohead Covers

Mark Ronson w/Alex Greenwald

*Note: courtesy of Motel de Moka.


High and Dry

Christopher O'Riley

True Love Waits
Karma Police
*Note: Instrumental covers... these were rough demo's, not album versions. Hear more.

Damien Rice

Creep - acoustic

Benjamin Costello

Wolf at the Door
Let Down
No Surprises

Notes on the covers... those Benjamin Costello covers are interesting. They sort of soften the songs, take away the experimentalist edges and make them more like plaintive odes to misery. I love that cover of Just by Mark Ronson and co. It's fantastic. Turning the song into more of a party song that anything, it's just brilliant.

The Damien Rice cover is pretty ordinary. Simply sounds - unsurprisingly - like a cover of Radiohead performing Creep acoustic [on the My Iron Lung EP, from what I remember]. What I mean is this: there's no real flair, the melody is kept the exact same, only difference is that it's Damien Rice's voice instead of Thom Yorke's. So nothing too exciting really, but I like Damo, and well... he hasn't had a new album out in about - how long now? - FOREVER. He has re-released "O" about seven times though. Impressive.

The instrumental piano versions of the Radiohead tracks by Christoper O'Riley are cool. Good music to just chill out to. Background music is excellent... makes life feel normal. If there's no hiss, no hum, no music, then what is there? A vacuum. Anyways, Christoper O'Riley also does Elliott Smith covers. And other stuff.

That Bilal track is pretty funky... nicely chilled out. Here's what he said about Radiohead :

"Although most people consider me the go to guy for all things UK, I've never been a huge fan of Radiohead. I've just never been that depressed to get into their music."

And, Thom Yorke replies with:

"If people get it, they wouldn't think it's depressing. When people always say that fucking annoying thing about how my work's so depressing, well it's not because.. it's just words, and I put the words to music which I think it's an uplifting thing, otherwise there would be no point in doing this at all."

News: Idlewild. Radiohead.

Idlewild's singer, Roddy Woomble, is set to release his debut solo album in July. The music will be of a folk-orientation, apparently, which will suit his voice since in the past few albums the melodies have been particularly soft/poppy/nice/pleasant. For factphiles, the album will be produced by John McCusker, and all recording will be done in his studio. More facts? The album will be released by Pure Records, home of the folk songstress Kate Rusby. Is she good? I've never heard anything by her.

You should note that this solo effort does not mean the end of the band, who are currently labelless after parting company with their label Parlophone/EMI after eight years and four albums. I'm a big fan of their music, especially 100 Broken Windows, mainly because it has Wooden Ideals, silly lyrics, and Roseability [the best, most fun, live song, ever].

Thom Yorke has suggested that e-bay users [makes it sound like a drug. in a way it is I guess. 'tis addictive, apparently. perhaps detrimental?] should... well, here's exactly what he said on the official Radiohead blog, Dead Air Space:

might i suggest that those selling their koko tickets on e bay for stupid money gives a contribution...
say 30 percent of their proceeds,
back to friends of the earth, for whose benefit we are all doing this show.
seems only fair, unless you're a shallow____, dont you think?

Might I take this opportunity to say that the blanked out word is probably [omitted due to censorship].

Anyways, things are now coming along better for the lead singer of Radiohead, as he is starting to see progress in their music and looking forward to writing/rehearsing furiously in order to get ready for their tour. Tickets on sale today [for w.a.s.t.e. members] for Edinburgh and Dublin... no wonder the Radiohead website is broke!

Regarding the progression of the new album and tour; besides commenting on a desire to release singles, and not worry about "all the 'album' crap", the singer has also said that there will be "no grand design... wherever we are at. some of the random stuff we have at the moment could be the most exciting... trying to figure out how on earth we will be able to play some of it. anyway it is not important. there is more to life than freaking out about petty bullshit like this. there are more important things to think about".

Precisely. Like turning down a meeting with Tony Blair due to his not having any environmental credentials, and also because the idea of meeting Labour Party spin doctors makes you feel ill. The meeting would've been in aid of Friends of the Earth's Big Ask campaign, which Thom Yorke is currently supporting... [that gig at the Koko is in aid of raising awareness. Hence his bitter remark regarding e-bay ticket touts]. Read the full story here. I love Radiohead - the first decent [decent. decent. decent? the first absolutely bloody amazing band I ever liked... ]

Stars/Amy Millan Solo

I have spent the last two and a half hours in some sort of computer purgatory land. I've been in limbo, in between downloads and crashes, floating along that loosely tethered tight-rope where you either tenuously struggle on or fall to oblivion. Basically, the past few hours have been shit. And it's all because of Real Player. I had to install it to watch a Stars video. Then I uninstalled it because I despise it. Then it uninstalled Media Player Classic so I couldn't play any .ram files. Which frankly, is a bit of a bollocks. So I have spent this time, fixing, downloading, creating errors, updating windows and basically breaking my laptop in more ways than I care to even think about.

Happily, Real Player is no longer on my system [I hope. You never know with it. It's like a secret infiltraitor [sic - due to the whole, does Real Player really transmit personal information? debate]]. Also fortunate is that due to the fabulous K-Lite Mega Codec Pack, I now have Media Player Classic, once again, which means I can stream .ram files without worrying about my laptop having a fit and breaking. Well, anyway, you could say that I'm done with the "temporal suffering" now and I'm in computer/musical heaven. My laptop works. It's not slow. It's not frozen. It's not broken - yet. I still have some memory left [although, it's worryingly low]. And well, to be honest, that Stars video is amazing! So intense... so good.

For the record, I really love Stars. I think they're a brilliant band, and of course it's fantastic that they're on Arts & Crafts, encouraging that they're from Canada, and of course it's great that they have close links with Broken Social Scene. Basically, without even listening to their music, they already have scored more or less maximum points for indie cred just because of who they are and what they represent [and that would be part of the Canadian movement in the world of music... see: Arcade Fire, Broken Social Scene, etc.] But I'd rather judge them on their music: I think they make beautiful pop music. Their instrumentation is fantastic, and there is evidence of the incredible arrangements on many of these MP3's, especially Let It Go. Anyway, Stars are like a sad/happy likeable ambient pop group to me. In otherwords, just listen to them.

In the interview, Torquil Campbell describes their music as, "epic, sad, romantic, kinda dark, sorta self-loathing, orchestral pop" or more simply, "lover's rock", as Amy Millan asserts, "there's alot of love in our music and couples can dance to it". Anyway. It's class. Check it out. Definitely. I've also included linked MP3's of my favourite Stars tracks of the moment, and the new promo track off Amy Millan's solo album due to be released on May 30th. This album, Honey from the Tomb features songs written before her membership in Stars, and will feature the inevitable guest appearances of members of Stars, Broken Social Scene, and more...


from Nightsongs

The Very Thing
On Peak Hill
Better Be Heaven

from Set Yourself On Fire

Let It Go
Sleep Tonight
Your Ex-Lover Is Dead
Other Voices Performance [website link]

Amy Millan

Skinny Boy - zip file

Okay, well maybe all's not perfect. My screen needs cleaned - badly. And there's like a pretty aqua pixel just floating about, suggesting I've broke my screen. Hurrr... I'm away to sleep. It's all good.

P.S. I saw Bell X1 at an HMV in-store today. I also saw them at an in-store in Cool-Discs last Wednesday. They're pretty good, if you've never heard them. Find out more soon.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Sometimes you just have to go elsewhere

Normally I try to find lots of good stuff before I do this post. Well, this isn't lots, I don't think, but it is really good stuff so... enjoy it.

You can find Broken Social Scene rarities here. And since I love, [read: am amazed by; see: adore], Broken Social Scene, I think they're a tad good. Go check 'em out.

Radiohead are currently working on their new album, and it seems like Thom Yorke is cracking up under the pressure. Below is what Thom has been saying...

all i need

s'all wrong

s'all right

s'all wrong

s'all right.

today, myself, i was struggling, feels like we been trapped for a long time.
in la la land. very frustrating. and under pressure now
its so slow.
enough to drive anyone loopy. im supposed to be positive>>
smiling faces for the outside. well im fucking tearing my hair out.
too much at once.
furiously writing, working out parts. cracking up.
not much time left. unshure about everything.
im not supposed to put any of this here. so thats why i am.


...all that was said on the official Radiohead blog, Dead Air Space. Worrying stuff, although not exactly a big surprise, since he has frequently suffered bouts of insecurity and/or borderline depression in the past. Anyway, check out live tracks here. Looks like they're going to be played at the upcoming shows [if you read the post you'll see why], and perhaps on the new album as well? I like the Reckoner alot. It's a very very cool freak-out song... "Reckoner... ba ba ba".

Should also go here to get lots of music by Rogue Wave. Or alternatively, here for tracks by The Lovely Feathers. I Guess I'm Floating is a good blog and everyone's fallen in love with it. Why not?

Featured blogs are:

S k a t t e r b r a i n
I guess I'm floating

Monday, March 20, 2006

is there a valid reason for the hype?! dunno..

So, there's alot happening in the blogs. Well, in two blogs. You'll find out soon. But anyway. Just a quick post. Maybe Tapes 'n Tapes are better than I admitted. I've listened a few times to those songs, and they're pretty damn good. The point still stands though: they are not the new Arcade Fire. That's all.

Hope you like Tapes 'n Tapes. Maybe I made an error. Maybe it wasn't really an error. Maybe it was closer to the truth than the hype. Maybe it was just a side-effect of being anti-hype. Who knows. The image is to display all these things. You decide.

Track a Tiger

I'm starting this post and... I don't know what I'm going to say, other than that hopefully it will centre on the band, Track a Tiger, and a few songs off their album, Woke Up Early The Day I Died. Ok. That's it. I'm going to listen to these songs properly and compose my thoughts [see: read a book]. I'll be back soon.

I'm back. My laptop was going crazy for a while. Too many applications were running too many things were downoading everything was getting fried y'know overheating, like, and well it was all a bit of a pain, especially considering I checked how much memory I have left, oh hey guess what - only just over a gigabyte! as in one! - oh dear... trouble! trouble! trouble.

My mood has suffered. Computer troubles leave me frustrated. Makes me feel like I'm not living... I'm just killing time, as the song goes. But anyway, so I listened to these songs a few times. They're lovely little numbers. All very soft and good for sleepy, late nights as is reported on their bio. Not surprising, considering the band started off as the solo effort of Jim Vallet. Comparisons could be drawn to Beat Radio, since it's got that slightly poppy, melancholy feeling about it all. Anyway, I enjoy it [although I'm not overly fussed on "Sound as Ever"]

Track a Tiger

Seashaken Heart
Glad To Be Scattered
Sound as Ever

As I finish off this post, it's a new day, and my mood is better. But not what you'd call good. Anyways, I'm more willing to give Sound as Ever the time of day. It's fairly decent, but still, the other two tracks seem more real to me, whereas this one still sounds like a middle-of-the-road cover of some middle-of-the-road song by some middle-of-the-road quiet country band who play music to twiddle your thumbs to.

Seashaken Heart is good though, the melody of the instrumentation is perfect for the song, especially around the 1:52 mark where it has a trademark little motif, which is used alot in the melancholy acoustic genre. Fair enough, the music isn't groundbreaking, but I've heard lots and lots of groundbreaking, new, innovative, exciting, insert-your-own-adjective-which-basically-screams-"Hello, my names hyperbole" which I haven't enjoyed. Whereas the music that Track a Tiger make is pleasant and feels honest, and I enjoy it and respect it as a valiant effort to contribute something meaningful to the world of music.

As for Glad to be Scattered [which I'm relistening to now]; I dunno what else to say that I haven't said. It actually reminds me slightly of Farrago [a band from Derry who you won't have heard of] or The Magic Numbers, due to the male-female vocal harmonies. This song's interesting actually 'cause the vocals seem very humble; soft-spoken voices almost hiding behind the drumbeat. You can imagine the singer just peeking his head over the drumset and singing his part. Actually, if a video was made [by myself] of this song, then it would feature the male singer and the female singer lying on separate beds, in the same room, on top of the duvet and singing quietly, for at least 2 minutes.

So anyway, that was never meant to be a track-by-track run-through, but you just never know what you're going to say/type. Anyways, since that was long, and I don't wanna type up another post, wait 'til tomorrow to find out about some more good music.