Wednesday, February 28, 2007

It’s easy to hate it. It’s deceptively simple to pretend that you don’t. the light the light the light. Fortune doesn’t smile on you because it can’t. you made it up along with karma in a fit to protect you from empty hours when you stand slack-jawed like a corpse and your mind idles in the face of inevitability. change will not casually change you. the roots of instinct sit deeper than your arms can dig. It's like trying to bite your own cheek. you should bite off your own tongue. Violence does not exist. or it goes forever, but unrequited. In the acknowledging nod of your defeat from the room which you wear like a party favor out into a fog of lazy ambivalence. Give up this habit of waiting for time. Forgetfulness is a sin and a sea to throw yourself into pell-mell. Give away your stupid mantras. Dormant garbage escaping too fast and fluidly for anyone to notice it into the empty starless green grey cloud cover. The world will not end ever. The Rapture will not come because catharsis does not exist. we will go on forever in a dream in a dream in a dream. Of light of light of light. An echo of the muttering of an autistic collective conciousness. Melancholia, guttural throat gurgling distorted half truths. Nerve damage, leprosy, mismanaged emotions, drunken embellishments mistaken for heartfelt confessions. This trend of optimism will surely suffocate you all. Your life is meaningless and karma has forgotten you. Meditate on your sorrow until it is manifest across your chest in an armor of salt. Threats are useless. Pride is gaseous and consuming. Nothing is forever. But the aforementioned absolutes will never ever ever ever ever ever end.

Avey Tare & Kria Brekkan-Pullhair Rubeye (In Reverse)

First of all, head on over to Gorilla V.S. Bear for two humbling videos of Grizzly Bear performing Easier, Service Bell, and Knife at Good Records in Dallas TX.

Then come back and download this. Pullhair Rubeye is the first collaborative piece from Avey Tare of Animal Collective notoriety, and Kria Brekkan of Mum. They apparently have been doin' it for awhile and decided that since they were both young and beautiful and talented they might as well make us all look worse by being productive too.
Well, apparently love really does make you fat. Because somewhere along the line, after recording 8 charming mostly acoustic duets on a chincy borrowed two-track dug out from a garage sale they decided to release the whole thing IN REVERSE... I capitalize that not because it's zany and brilliant, but because it's fucking dumb. It would have been one thing if they had written the songs backwards, but they didn't. No, Pullhair Rubeye, as it will be released, is just a bunch of zips and zahs and warbly cooing and makes about as much sense as the description I just gave it at the beginning of this sentence. I'm sure they have a perfectly rational explanation for their actions. But really, at the end of the day, in my opinion anyway, this is the sort of record that you keep on your computer and listen to while you're making love to yourself or your lover not that you flush into a market already stewing in the juices of a bunch of self-absorbed half-attempts at "experimental" music.

Given that I just wrote a lengthy tirade about this record, its understandable if you aren't too inclined to click on the link above. Well, there is hope. Fortunately, someone you know who has way too much time on his hands has taken the time to re-reverse all of the tracks and reveal it for what it could have been. And, let me tell you it was worth the effort. Pullhair Rubeye in reverse is warm and delicate. Cohesive and most importantly wholly enjoyable. It's a quiet and casual and great for morning bike rides. And while its not gonna change any lives, its definitely worth downloading.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Frog Eyes-Tears of the Valedictorian

Frog Eyes are true underdogs. they are practically the only indie band from Montreal that hasn't blown up in one way or another in the past two years. Which is both criminal and predictable, as they are both directly responsible for many of their more popular peers' sound *cough cough Wolf Parade cough* and one of the more clever and consistently interesting bands to crop up from that scene.

Carey Mercer's voice is a bit more restrained and a bit more accessible than previous albums. But the passion is still there.

I want to take a minute to acknowledge that, actually. Mr. Mercer has probably one of my FAVORITE voices in rock n roll. I rarely hear anyone sound like they really really mean it and I think its kind of fucked up and sad that people hear him and write his fucking tear my own head off urgency off as a gimmick. Listen closer. even if he is faking it, he does a better job than most of the other guys could if they had a gun to their nuts.

Tears of the Valedictorian isn't too much of a stray away from the rest of the Frog Eyes catalog. But it's such a simple and effective formula, and they're so far past the learning curve they could keep writing records like this for another decade and it wouldn't get old.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

The Black Lips-Los Valientos del Mondo Nuevo

The day I moved to Portland, as in a half an hour after I got off the train, I was introduced to the Black Lips' Let It Bloom while puttering around the city for the first time as a resident with Mark and Eric. Mark would drunkenly go on to declare to the band themselves at a gallery after hours that their music "changed our lives". I pretended I didn't know him.

Here is what you need to know before listening to the Black Lips:

They are a garage band from Atlanta.

Like most good garage bands, their records are hard to place in a particular time period (in other words, they sound vintage).

Let It Bloom is the best one, but the others are good too.

They wear grills and play the guitar with their penises live.

Los Valientos del Mondo Nuevo is their upcoming Vice Records debut. It's a live album, laid to tape in a bar in Tijuana. If you've read the above then you should understand that this is in fact the quint-essential Black Lips listening environment.

that's it.

go forth, and spread the word.

(post-script: Many glaring clerical errors due to the need to make a hasty exit from an awkward coffee shop situation have now been corrected...)(there are still many grammatical imperfections in this, well, all beulahland posts. I leave them in to make kari cringe)

Saturday, February 24, 2007

V/A-Johnny Greenwood is the Controller

Today is a good day for this one. I'm glad I waited so long. the outdoors are puking their guts up and my laptop is warming my thighs. I just took out my last $20 from my savings account. I had to make a special trip to the bank yesterday to put $2 in my checking so I wouldn't overdraft. But I have money in my wallet for now. I should be making calls, getting things in order for the album, finding a decent job, letting people into the gallery... buuut I think I'd rather stay inside my head for now.

This is a tough compilation to write about, especially considering who is probably reading this. I know many of you don't listen to much reggae/dub/dancehall/rocksteady/ska/whatever. If you don't please consider a few things before you don't download this. Reggae is inherently tied to soul. Many of the most legendary names in reggae, such as Duke Reid and Byron Lee produced both soul and reggae comps.Ska, which reggae grew out of, was inspired from the combination of mento and soaca with R&B and soul.
Also, enjoying it does not necessarily make you a hippie.

So maybe give it a listen??
You might be surprised how little you dislike it.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Death Unit-Infinite Death

stick this in your pipe... DEATH UNIT!!!! In other words Brian Sullivan of Mouthus, Trevor Tremaine of Hair Police, and Chris Corsano (many of you know him as that crazy amazing drummer who liquified brains at the church last winter)!!!! !!! INFINITE DEATH!!!!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Low-Drums and Guns

new Low? I had no idea, really. There were clues I suppose. Anton had mentioned to me that they were going to be playing in Cleveland soon. But they've toured before without a new album to promote.

Either way, here is Drums and Guns in all its wintry glory. Remember The Great Destroyer? This is NOT the sequel to The Great Destroyer. This is probably about as far away as Low will ever get from The Great Destroyer. However, it's nearly as good. There is some oddball mixing (i.e. everything hard-panned). But nothing too out of the ordinary for Low. What's really strange is the heavy use of sampling. Parts of the record sound a bit like they could be Low's response to "Pakt Like Sardines in a Crushed Tin Box"... in a good way. Also, I can't help but hear the heavily processed guitar drones that swath this collection of songs and not be reminded of Alan Sparhawk's 2006 experimental release, Solo Guitar. It no doubt played an important role in shaping the atmosphere Drums and Guns. Low is consistently one of the most efficient american indie rock bands around. Creating the most amount of dramatic effect possible from the fewest sonic sources. My prediction is that Drums and Guns will end up an essential example of that legacy.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Marnie Stern-In Advance of the Broken Arm

a few months ago I made a fuss over a couple of albums. Well, apparently I've been inundated with so much good new music recently that I forgot to post one of them. Without further ado here is the miraculous debut from one Marnie Stern. This is in many respects another pop album, which I have been posting a lot of, I know. However this album differs slightly, at least in the sense that there is some serious fucking shredding going on in literally every track. this makes most riot grrl acts look like girl scout troupes. Fair warning. Marnie Stern will devour you.

Hey Chris, remember that two piece we saw at the UCF who you thought was amazing cause the front-woman had nice hair and could kind of play the guitar. Yeah, well.. eat your heart out.

tomorrow, new Low, Black Lips, Cyann and Ben, or Eluvium? I'd like to post them all right now, but I can only put off being responsible for so long...

an open letter to Cheryl Wakerheuser of Pix Patisserie:

Burn in hell. And I hate you.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Busy moving giant pieces of someone else's artwork all over hell's half acre. But those Mount Eerie links should work now. thanks to merkel for pointing that out.

while you're at it check out this guy. He's the reason I'm not posting music today.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Blonde Redhead-23

This is a rar, so if you're on a mac and you don't have the capability to decompress that type of file, go here and download the appropriate software. Trust me. This one is worth it. Most of us who are familiar with Blonde Redhead have already had our palettes hardened by their distinct sound. This being their seventh release in a series which I've always been interested in, but never blown away by, I was completely blind-sided by this fucking mammoth pop opus. I don't want to ruin the surprise too much. that's part of what makes it such an impressive listen. But let's just say this early into a year I'm completely befuddled by hearing more than one record this satisfying. It's reminiscent of another lucky year for pop music ending in a 7. The production is rock solid and gorgeous. But the real beauty is in the coupling of such brilliantly soaring atmosphere with a endless cavalcade of heart-wrenching hooks and impenetrable songwriting. this is starting to sound like some jackass record review so I'm going to stop. but please download this and listen to it with an open ear. And then call me so we can shit a brick together.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Modest Mouse-We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank

I really want to like this. It's not easy.

The Field-From Here On We Go To Sublime


I know this looks like shit, but I'm sick of fucking with this stupid new blogger. Maybe I'll fix it tomorrow when I post the new Blonde Redhead, which is mind blowing.

Tonight the other half of Hollotronix (the one that's not Diplo) is djing at Holocene, which isn't exactly a gay bar as much as its a metrosexual bar. But its gigantic inside and looks like the party scene in a movie everytime I'm there. I think Mark and I are gonna go and I'm super excited even though I really don't have the money to drink, I probably won't dance at all, and we'll most assuredly argue like a married couple all night.

But at least Low Budget will be banging that nasty baltimore club shit all night long.

WOO! GO ORIOLES!! (are they still a team?)

In other news, Merkel this is your new favorite band, Reverse Dotty and the Candy Cane Shivs.
I'm sorry. I tried. It seems warm, spring-like, sunny saturday afternoons are when people like to hole themselves up in coffee shops the most. As a result the internet is running exceptionally slow. When I first got here there was nowhere to sit. Or at least nowhere next to an outlet (as many of you know my powerbook is constantly falling apart and must be plugged in at all times). So I had to shove myself into a corner next to the play area. Everything was fine and I was uploading the new Modest Mouse (it has a really stupid title and I refuse to waste the time typing all of it) at 30kb/s. Not long after I had settled into my little corner next to the disease ridden duplo blocks that some four year old probably snotted all over, did someone decided to leave their spot on a couch. In the ensuing melee that was me scrambling to claim this virgin coffee shop territory as mine own, this piece of shit laptop became unplugged and promptly died. its back on, but Megaupload has now decided to upload in a fashion that can described in many ways, none of which being "mega".
But I'm sitting here. And if I don't go blind first I will post something. Probably not as much as I wanted to. Currently I'm listening to the debut album from The Field, From Here We Go Sublime. It's being released on Kompakt in the U.S. next Tuesday and if you can find it, buy it. Emily this means you, because you're in France and this is the kind of music you listen to when you're young and alone in France. Especially when driving around in the country on a sunday. Or you could just wait around until I get up the gumption and bandwidth to post it on here. Kompakt has been good to me so far this year. a Brazilian Producer/DJ named Gui Boratto has one coming out on the 26th called Chromophobia. And while the first half is just a little better than lackluster, the second half tears my face off. Beautiful Life is a fantastic single and perfect to listen to on the bus ride home after charming your way through a job interview at the coolest place to work in Portland.

So anyway, there is so much good stuff for I want you all to listen to if you already haven't. And as soon as I get my shit in order I promise I'll put it on here.

Friday, February 16, 2007

P.P.S. Tomorrow I'm gonna try and blitz this blog with a shitload of new releases including Jonny Greenwood is the Controller, Chris Corsano's latest project Death Unit, Cyann and Ben's Sweet Beliefs, Modest Mouse's new one, The Black Lips' Los Valientes Del Mondo Nuevo, and Blonde Redhead's 23.
It's pretty ambitious, but I haven't started my new job yet so what the hell.

Mount Eerie-No Flashlight

Mount Eerie-Seven New Songs

Last night after about an hour and a half long pep talk from eric and anna, I finally tried talking to the bartender at aalto lounge, my favorite neighborhood bar. I believe I was supposed to say, "I'm sorry I can't keep my eyes off of you. I just think you are the most handsome man and I'd love to go get coffee with you sometime.." or something to that effect. Instead as he passed by to collect our many empty cans of pabst I said "sorry I keep looking at you...". "I'm sorry, what?". this is me standing up and invading his bubble space. "I said, sorry I keep looking at you". pause. chuckle. "Oh, I didn't even notice." this is me nodding my head, blushing, quickly and ashamedly taking my seat. He was polite enough about it. Probably due to the fact that he's a tattooed and fit young man working at a bourgieous hipster bar on belmont that practically drags lonely queers in off the street. Perhaps he was even interested. I mean, he did run up to the counter, in between the other bartenders to make sure he was the one to close out my tab as I was leaving. But as sure as drinking makes you drunk, I clammed up again and got out of there as efficiently as humanly possible without leaving my debit card behind, which in retrospect might not have been a bad idea. I'm very zen about the whole ordeal now. I suppose it's all part of learning how to play the game. But last night it was a different story. Let's just say Eric would have been better off hauling me away by the scruff of the neck than standing outside the bar in the drizzle and patiently reminding me that it wouldn't be a good idea to go back in and try again. It's times like this that make me grateful for technology. Had I not stumbled across No Flashlight while scrolling through my ipod and remembered that it's the perfect album for traipsing about in the dark I think I might have been a mess... or rather, a crying mess. Yes, The Glow Pt. 2 and Mount Eerie, the record before the name change, are the best albums Phil Elvrum has ever made. But I've found even a few die hard fans that seem to have forgotten or possibly even over-looked completely his post-Microphones work. Most of which is at least on par with and occasionally surpasses his previous efforts. Maybe I just think so because of all of the seminal moments in my life involving this particular iteration of Phil Elvrum's song-writing. Up until last night the most recent being an October performance at a quirky, but pretty awful little venue that sort of reminded me of a shittier, dorkier version of The Church (RIP). That particular night, the specific date of which is lost in the ether of my hungover mind, marks not only the first time I saw Mr. Elvrum live or the first time I spoke at him (it's probably the 45 hundredth time someone has yelled "What does Mount Eerie mean?!" in between songs). But also the first time I went to a show or pretty much anywhere except work by myself in Portland. Or maybe my brain just wheedles away until it finds something to commemorate listening to Mount Eerie. The music certainly lends itself to nostalgia well enough. How lame. I bet you The Microphones and Mount Eerie are probably the most blogged about bands in the history of bands that are blogged about. But I guess there's nothing wrong with being just another jilted scrawny white dweeb who loves music for jilted scrawny white dweebs. Or maybe there is. I don't care. I just like listening to it in between alienating every half-way attractive person in Portland.

P.S. This whole drag and drop photo thing is awful and I hate it.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Dungen-Tio Bitar

Here's the new Dungen album, Tio Bitar, which isn't scheduled for release until May 1st. I can't seem to find a good image of the album artwork. sorry. I'm in love with the production on this record. It's like being wrapped up in a warm crepe. Or the Swedish equivalent. It's how your stomach feels after getting a smile from the crush you don't have the nerve to take off your headphones and talk to. Its something terrible making an awfully big, loud mess three doors down. It's the sound of fireworks a few miles away. Or the town next to you being shelled. And it compliments the endless barrage of hooks more so than on Ta Det Lugnt or Stadsvandringar. this is not to say that Tio Bitar is an immediate album. Like most of Dungen's catalog, it's a slow burn. Possibly even more than on previous efforts, the songs effectively, but almost imperceptibly seep into your brain. in such a way you won't begrudgingly be humming the melodies an hour after the record stops spinning. but maybe you'll be tapping your foot.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Although I've got some fucking jams all zipped up and ready to titillate your ears and light a match under your ass I'm not posting anything today. too busy looking for a job that won't suck my very will to live or put me at the edge of shoving a gold flaked dessert down some fat slob from beaverton's throat. Let it be known, the only feature missing from a Pix Patisserie's decor is a vomitorium...

Also, I'm starting to think Chris might have been on to something when he said Amnesiac was Radiohead's best full length album. And before you go posting any presumptuous comments, NO this has NOTHING to do with Greg Saunier's reference on
Besides I'll probably change my mind in a few weeks. Or at least for the first few months after the new one comes out.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

International Harvester-Sov Gott Rose Marie

this record is the sound of a pitch black Mount Tabor staring down a deserted Hawthorne in the gangrenous street light outside my work at 3 in the morning when it turns out the whole world was, in fact, playing a horrible joke on me my entire life. and I may as well be living on roanoke island.

there's a bonus track on here, Skoretider (Harvest Times), that was packaged with the reissue in 2001. It's probably one of my favorite songs of all time.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Air-Pocket Symphony

(this low resolution image doesn't do it justice, but the album artwork for this record is fucking swank)

I want to make a disclaimer. I'm not going to start reviewing stuff. I'll continue to post mainly stuff I think is brilliant and that everyone should own. I'm only posting this, because I know a lot of my friends, especially ones in ohio probably want to hear this. Ok, here's Air's upcoming march 6th release, Pocket Symphony, as promised. It's pretty good. There are a few missteps. The worst of which being the utterly painful, One Hell of a Party, featuring the singer from The Divine Comedy. But overall, I'm pretty pleased with what I'm hearing. At first glance, I was a little afraid Air finally tipped over the edge of the "easy listening" cliff they've been straddling for so long. And maybe they have. The opener, Space Maker, has a bass line that really grinds on my nerves. I'm reminded of that live dvd they put out in '99, eating sleeping waiting and playing. Every time they cut to concert footage this DOUCHEBAG is strutting all over the place, improvising these awful, slick ass, grand-standing, I-think-I'm-a-badass-but-I'm-really-just-a-douchebag bass lines. I really wanted to choke that guy. Anyway that's the same sort of bass playing you hear on Space Maker.
But if you hold out past the first few tracks (approximately four, or right to the middle of Mayfair Song) it starts to pick up. the high points are the understated photograph and the tremendous Mer du Japan. Which of course is japanese for Mer of Japan (dumb. I know. I couldn't help myself).
All in all, this isn't Talkie Walkie or Moon Safari. But it's still an interesting listen. If for no other reason than that, more than any other air album, this stands together as a blueprint for how to ape a few bars of Debussy, loop it, and turn it into pallateable pop music, which I think is on the official website as their mission statement or something.... if it's not it should be.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

I was going to post the new air today, but, mostly for lack of time and a faulty internet connection, that will have to wait until tommorow. In the meantime listen to these guys. I'll probably be posting a lot more harry partch in the near future. He was one of, if not the first 20th century composer to really explore the possibilities of microtonal scales. Which is to say, music outside of the western philosophical boundaries. Think of gamelan. Sort of like that. Also, he also ran around as a hobo in the great depression. This track is from one a few seminal compilations of his work entitled, Delusion of the Fury.

the other track is a four tet remix of one of the better tracks off of the upcoming explosions in the sky album, suddenly I miss everyone. I'm always less than impressed with explosions in the sky. But I love four tet. He makes songs by people that would otherwise sound bland sound edible.

Explosions in the Sky-Catastrophe and the Cure (four tet mix)

Harry Partch-On a Japanese Theme

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

here is the late alice coltrane's 1970 masterpiece Journey in Satchidananda. there are so many horrible things going on around me right now. I just caught wind of a biopic being made about Keith Moon. It's entitled See Me Feel Me: Keith Moon Naked for Your Pleasure. Starring none other than... wait for it... WHA!?... MIKE MYERS?!?!?!? you heard me. Mike, so I married a cat in the fucking hat, myers. That little nugget of surreality coupled with an hour and a half long live documentary from finland's most well-known men's chorus classic rock cover band, the leningrad cowboys (trust me, it's much more bizarre than it sounds), and I'm about ready to commit myself. I think I might have actually just lost my mind.
So it's good to have something like this to bring me back to my center. I want to have dirty, nasty sex with this album. Coincidentally, journey in satchidananda is good for having dirty, nasty sex to. or just drinking with some friends when it's cold outside. or just putting on your headphones and staring at a wall, like a labotomy patient. whatever works for you.

Alice Coltrane-Journey in Satchidananda

Monday, February 05, 2007

I never trusted the arcade fire. they're too much like a group of really cool drama club kids. and as I can attest firsthand there is no such thing as a cool member of the drama club. So given that, what's worse than having your high hopes for an album dashed in the glare of inappropriate cliches and bland arrangement? having to begrudgingly admit that a band you can't stand actually released a pretty fucking satisfying record. I could probably do a pretty good job of convincing myself this record is over-produced and the songs are obscured by a cluttered and unnecessary sonic palette. but the truth is it's been deftly and confidently put together. Funeral may have relied too heavily on the charm of juxtaposing Win Butler's tendency to write bombastic songs with an inevitably low budget production. But, more than likely because of the commercial success of said album, neon bible has the rich and unapologetically melodramatic voice that the arcade fire's music has begged for from the start. It's already been written, and probably will continue to garner not only critical acclaim, but numerous comparisons to the boss. It's true the gallop of songs like (television antichrist blues) call to mind born to run and even the slap echo treatment to Win Butler's vocals, which was present even on their debut, have gained a sort of nebraska-like quality to them. When listening to the spine-tingling veritable climax of the album, No Cars Go, I'm tempted to think something stupid like "maybe these guys are cooler than I thought". But then I realize that they're all canadian.

don't lose any sleep over screwing them out of their royalties (not that you would). these guys are going to clean up with this record.

The Arcade Fire-Neon Bible

I still don't like that smug bastard. look at his face. you can tell he's a jerk... However, I do like that when I typed arcade fire into google this came up:

If you've already downloaded the album, you may have discovered track nine, Windowsill, is missing. Sorry. I must have been distracted by all the triumph going on in this record. here. enjoy.