Archive for March, 2008

volume 11….coming soon!

…first, let’s start (again) with a little reminder, both for email subscribers and direct blog readers (where DID you stumble in from?): all the eddieo compilation CDs, dating back to Summer 2004, are here on the site for your listening and downloading pleasure. You can even podcast them, as I myself did with Rick Corson’s “Scrod” (also here on the site), which allows me to simply select it from among the other podcasts in my iTunes and play away. So, feel free to scroll down (way down), and you’ll find volumes 1-10.

Okay; commercial over! Volume 11, in the works, thanks to a couple of inspirational new tracks I’ve recently learned about (from reading other, better blogs!). First up, White Lies, and their song “Death“, which I learned of from dany at Exitfare (even NME steals from him!)

White Lies

This UK trio, currently touring with Crystal Castles (they’re down below somewhere too), have just enough reverence for the fabulous eighties but also plenty of fresh attitude. I can be a little trigger happy with the tonearm, and I almost bailed on this one at 30 seconds. From 0:33 to about 1:00 it was mildly intriguing, than it smacked me around a bit, the way I like. This is the kind of song I like to listen to about twenty times in a row, to temper my infatuation. Listen, contemplate, feedback if you like.

Duffy serves as proof that there’s more to Britain’s retro soul fascination than just Amy Winehouse. As MixTape Maestro said in January, last year we all sang along “no, no, no” and this year we’ll be singing “yeah, yeah, yeah”, the infectious hook from her new song “Mercy”, added to Indie 103.1 just 3 weeks ago. Admittedly a bit easier on the eyes than my girl Amy:

Duffy

…you won’t be surprised by the Dusty Springfield influence, which I found a very welcome element. Check out her MySpace, or click here:

“Not Nineteen Forever”, by Manchester (UK)’s The Courteeners was a little slow to win me over, but it’s in big rotation on BBC1, BBC6, and XFM, so it wore me down, and I’m glad it did. The guys have all been friends since they were ten years old, which, from the look of them, was a few hours ago.

the courteeners

As always, check the MySpace for some tastes, but the hit’s not there, at least not yet. Play it by clicking below.

There’ll also be some familiar names on 11 as well, with newish releases from Hard Fi and The Kooks, that great Nada Surf tune in the SXSW post, and some stuff I’m still unearthing…….more on that soon. Rock on.

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Mr. Know-it-all wrong again!

First, a little reminder/heads-up to email subscribers to this site: the email you get may not have all the mp3 players and links that are in the post. If you see something in the email you’re interested in, you may want to click on the ‘dj eddieo’ link at the top or bottom of the email and go directly to the website.

Now, on to my mea culpa…..when the Apple Mac Airbook commercials first aired (you know, the ones with the super-slim laptop in the manila envelope), we all loved the song “New Soul”:

I’m a new soul
I came to this strange world
Hoping I could learn a bit bout how to give and take
But since I came here, felt the joy and the fear
Finding myself making every possible mistake

I immediately identified it as Feist, which, of course, allows me to revel in having “discovered” her (see eddieo compilation vol 9, below). Leave it to G to second guess Dad! Turns out it’s Paris-born, Israeli singer/songwriter Yael Naim.

Yael

Play the mp3, above, or the video, below:

VIDEO

About a month ago, I was listening to XFM or BBC-6, I forget which, and scribbled notes all over my telephone bill (that’s how I know it was a month ago; it’s last month’s bill). The Ting Tings were the #2 hottest act that day or week (#1 was Vampire Weekend), and that was before the recent SXSW buzz. Kind of a bizarro-world White Stripes: he drums, she sings; they’re dance/pop, not rock; who knows if they’ll have the legs the White Strpes have, but they’re a lot of fun, especially for summer.

ting tings

The hot cut is “Great DJ” (all deejays love songs that mention deejays), and you can hear the perfectly tasty original version on their MySpace page, or click below for a cool remix by Calvin Harris.

Maybe you want the video as well.

Another great UK band I scribbled about that day is Pete and The Pirates (free download at the website), whose song “Mr. Understanding” I heard that day.

This is another of those bands that doesn’t have any US dates on the horizon, so it may be a while before mainstream outlets take notice, but I believe they’re likely to catch on here.

PATP

Pete and The Pirates

Finally, The Enemy. The cut I heard was “This Song”, which you can find, along with a handful of others, on Sideload, a cool listening/sharing site I like. Of course there’s also their MySpace and website. Look for more ink on them soon.

The Enemy

The Enemy

Charlatans, Bauhaus: back? no, never left!

Back around 1990 or so, alternative was swept up in the hippy, drippy, “Manchester sound”, for what now seems like about five minutes. I remember making a mix tape (cassette!) with Soho’s “Hippy Chick”, Stone Roses’ “Fool’s Gold”, and, of course, The Charlatans’ “The Only One I Know”, among others. When I first heard that The Charlatans are back on the charts in the UK, I assumed they had recently reunited after years of rust, but no, they’ve never stopped. Personally, I’m less interested in bands with members that are my age, but I know that many of you out there don’t suffer from such blatant ageism, so look below for links to their MySpace and free downloads.

charlatans; thanks dany

The Charlatans (UK, to us in the US), 2008

Here are the clicks:

MySpace; Download the songs; Download the whole album; Enter to win a rare white vinyl copy

Bauhaus, whose fifteen minutes was even longer ago, also never stopped, though they famously separated into Peter Murphy and Love and Rockets (hey, I know you know…..you don’t come here to get educated, just entertained). The new album, Go Away White, is billed as their last, and is already charting in the UK. Alas, they’re not giving anything away (though there was a free toothy face beer glass with a pre-order of the CD from Newbury Comics, but we missed that; sorry). Check out their (kinda cool) website for the story about how they invented Goth, and visit their MySpace to preview some new songs and re-hear some old. If you can’t tell the difference, is that a good thing or a bad one? For me, here’s all the Bauhaus I need (and I do need it):

Bauhaus

Bauhaus, 2008

SXSW, via NPR….

Cheating again! All Songs Considered is a great NPR show (I don’t think it airs here in Boston; I go to the website) and the current epiode is a preview of the upcoming South by Southwest festival (the true March Madness for indie music fans). You can listen to the 41 minute show HERE, and it’s downloadable until the next episode airs. The highlights are here:

Oklahoma quartet Evangelicals are melodic and noisy at the same time. Weird sounds, not there just for their weirdness, it seems. Sleater-Kinney guitarist/blogger Carrie Brownstein kicks off the discussion with their “Skeleton Man”.

Evangelicals

Evangelicals

Fanfarlo, from London channel David Byrne, a la Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, or maybe they just channel CYHSY, minus a bit of the quirkiness. Their MySpace page has a free download of “Sand and Ice”, a demo they recorded “in the living room”. “Fire Escape” appears to be the single, but I like the flipside, “We Live By The Lake”.

Fanfarlo

Fanfarlo

Troubled Hubble gets a nice plug on the podcast, but they’ve been defunct for years. The SXSW story that earns them mention is endearing enough: they drove 18 hours from Elburn, IL to play 20 minutes at an out-of-the-way party, then turned around and drove home. It’s a bit of a shame they are no longer, as the tunes on their MySpace page (last updated in 2007) are quite catchy. Frontman Chris carries on as The Heligoats (skip that MySpace page altogether), and can be seen here in a YouTube clip playing solo at a coffehouse. I like how he takes longer to introduce and explain the song than he does to perform it.

She & Him, bad grammar aside, has an advantage: “She” is Zooey Deschanel (so really, who cares who “Him” is?). Evidently, she’s been secrectly recording demos for years and “hoarding them like acorns for winter”. There’s only one song on their MySpace page, but it’s worth hearing, and the NPR podcast has a snippet of another. Him, by the way is M. Ward, a successful one man band in his own right. Pretty neat website too, plus his MySpace.

She & Him

She & Him

Honeycut suffers the minor indignity of having their name and song title mixed up by host Bob Boilen, but they might be the best find on the podcast. The Bay area trio lists their duties as “beats”, “samples”, “voice”, and “keys”, and they make the kind of music I could be making here in my office, if I had any initiative or talent. Go to their MySpace page to check out “Shadows”, “Tough Kid”, and the one Bob Boilen liked, “Exodus Honey”.

Honeycut

Honeycut

No strangers to the blogosphere, Nada Surf will be in Austin in support of the new CD “Lucky”. Go to the MySpace page for a free download of “See These Bones”, but don’t rush off; stay for the cut I prefer (alas, not a free download), “Whose Authority”, and revisit 2005’s “Always Love”. Brooklyn is the coolest of the boroughs.

nada surf

Nada Surf – Lucky – 2008

There’s more on the podcast, which you should definitely check out when you have 41 minutes and 16 seconds, like Magic Arm (dreamy and vaguely Middle-Eastern sounding), Basia Bulat (like Tori Amos crossed with Dido), Sonic Youth’s Thurston Moore (a hell of a lot prettier than you’d expect), and the de facto headliner, Vampire Weekend. I’m trying to be sick of them already but they’re far too much fun. Check this player on their website for a couple of tunes that aren’t being played everywhere, “Oxford Comma” and “M79” (remember, I used to work at M80!)

Vampire Weekend

Vampire Weekend

edit: I should have mentioned that VW was to be on SNL on 3/8, the date of this post. I doubt too many visitors might have seen my post before the show anyway. Alina emailed me after their second SNL song (she stays up WAY too late) to say how shocked she was at their preppy look, which I haven’t mentioned but I thought was well documented. In a wine-fueled discussion of the band with djeddieo.com contributor Rick (see Scrod, #31, below), we agreed that it’s a kind of “reverse-Graceland” phenomenon. I don’t know if the Paul Simon reference fits our opinion but that’s another commonly ascribed VW reference, along with Peter Gabriel. What we’re saying is that most bands of white college boys that fall in love with ska, reggae, or another ethnic music tend to espose a false authenticity, singing about strife in Kingston or salvation through Rastafari. VW stays true to their preppy Columbia University origins, singing of Cape Cod, mansard roofs, and other real parts of their lives in Brooklyn, summering at the cape, etc. For me, that makes it more authentic. Granted, I was late to the VW party, but I plan to enjoy them at least through the summer.

VWvw

Taken By Trees, White Hinterland at MFA

It’s my understanding that some people like being busy; I’m not one of those people. I’ve been so busy that this is my first opportunity to blog about the Taken By Trees/White Hinterland show I caught at the MFA an entire week ago!

The show was terrific, in an entirely adult and sophisticated setting: no pushing, shoving, screaming, standing, eating, cell-phoning, or any of the other annoying activities so common at live shows. This small, comfortable space (about 200 in attendance this night) has recently hosted Vampire Weekend as well – I can kick myself for missing that show.

White Hinterland opened; jazz-influenced indie folk/pop with (exquisite) violin in lieu of guitar, and a percussionist who featured a saw (!) among his instruments. Beautifully talented singer Casey Dienel seems shy and fragile, not unlike Aimee Mann seemed when I met her backstage at an Elvis Costello show in ’87 (you think THAT’s name-dropping—don’t get me started), but she certainly commands attention. A Jamaica Plain native,  she said she was happy to be home. Of course, the tour has just leaped from east coast (Montreal, last Monday) to west (West Hollywood last Thursday), with SXSW shows in Austin to follow, so it may be a while before we see her again. Check out their MySpace page, or click right here for “Dreaming Of The Plum Trees”:

casey dienel of White Hinterland 

Casey Dienel of White Hinterland

Victoria Bergsman began the Taken By Trees set by announcing she didn’t feel well, but it was hardly evident in her performance. From the opener “Julia” (pronounced yoo-lee-ya) to set-ender “Too Young” (I could be wrong about that being last), all songs came from their debut, Open Field, with one notable exception: GNR cover “Sweet Child O’ Mine”, which was L’s fave, and now must be included on my April St. Martin vacation CD. Check it out at their MySpace page, or click HERE to download/play.

Victoria

Victoria Bergsman of Taken By Trees