Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Music of the Sphere

We've been so consumed with SXSW and such, we've neglected pointing you toward some nice tuneage our faveblogs are hosting, to wit:

Tinted Windows - Kind Of A Girl - Unrescuable Schizo - Carlos/Iha/Hanson/Schlesinger supergroup that's all the buzz right now; well not all of it, bykwim

The Color Wheels - Plain Jane - CYSTSFTS - I previously posted "Green Means Go," so get it here or there, doesn't matter, it's a fun song.
Tigers Jaw - I Was Never Your Boyfriend - CYSTSFTS - The other one starts great but then--horrors--slows way down.

Pete and the Pirates - This Thyme - Dead Flowers
The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - Contender - Dead Flowers

Mando Diao - You Can't Steal My Love & Paralyzed - a PLAGUE of ANGELS - plus a bunch more MD's
Crooked Fingers - Call to Love - a PLAGUE of ANGELS - Several-years fave makes me heart ache. Molotov shoots you several other Fingers as well.
Say Hi - Dramatic Irony & These Fangs & The Twenty-Second Century - a PLAGUE of ANGELS - + more

Heavy Young Heathens - Drawn From Memory - 5 Acts


Thanks, favebloggers!

More SXSW still to come.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Morning After Girls alone

Yo, um. . .Girls?
You might not be able to tell that it's definitely the morning after (like 3:50 or so), but we just found something we had to share before beddy-bye. We were poking around psychoPEDIA's excellent post on "girl" and "girl-named" bands and copped some news that got us very psyched indeed. Several-year favorites (and one of our earliest posts) The Morning After Girls are wrapping up their forthcoming sophomore effort, alone, and plan to tour this year, including at least one performance at SXSW on Saturday, March 21, 11:00 p.m. at Pangaea (409 Colorado St). We merrily tripped over to their MySpace site and enjoyed an excellent song called "Shadows Evolve," only to find it available for free download at their bandsite. We also enjoyed the previewed songs from alone and are quite confident this is going to be one of our favorite lps of the year. Here's the song, along with another one we previously posted from the Melbourne-Tasmania-New York band's self-titled debut. And if you haven't acquired others from said self-titled debut--especially the glorious "Run For Our Lives"--run for yours and get it here.

The Morning After Girls
Shadows Evolve mp3 - from alone
Chasing Us Under mp3 - from The Morning After Girls

MySpace | Bandsite | Amazon mp3 | eMusic

Sunday, February 22, 2009

SXSW 2009 - Post Four: We Should Be Dead, Seedy Seeds, Ringo Deathstarr, Sleepover Disaster, Moog, My Fed., Elemeno P, Baddies, Earlimart, Viva Voce

Behold! a few more songs we very much like-to-love by artists scheduled to play at the South by Southwest Music Festival in Austin, Texas next month. Sorry about the generic titles this year for these SXSW posts. Last year it was Franglish and oh-so-chic. This year, well, as you see. (Fortunately it doesn't seem to affect the music.) Click song titles to play songs, artist names to go to their SXSW page. SXSW posts for this and previous years can be found here.

We Should Be Dead - Forget Romance, Let's Dance! mp3 - We bought a bunch of this Limerick band's songs last month, as noted here. (Scroll way down when you get to the page.)

Ringo Deathstarr - In Love mp3

The Moog - You Raised A Vampire mp3

Elemeno P - Baby Come On mp3

Earlimart - Face Down In The Right Town mp3

Thursday, February 19, 2009

SXSW 2009 - Post Three: CHOO CHOO, TPOBPAH, Princeton, Golden Dogs, THEART, Von Bondies, Steps, Beat Poets

We continue to explore bands appearing next month at the SXSW Music Festival in the Capitol City. Previous SXSW posts for this and a couple of previous years can be found here. Clicking band names will take you to their SXSW page. Clicking song titles will play songs. We've got a little dog & butterfly thing going here. We'll let you decide which set is which.

CHOO CHOO - A Little Wiser Now mp3 - Yeh, I posted them a week ago, but they're going to be at freakin' SXSW, a mere 60 miles from where I sit!
The Pains of Being Pure at Heart - Come Saturday mp3
Princeton - The Waves mp3
The Golden DogsLester mp3

THEARTNEWTOWN mp3
The Von Bondies - This Is Our Perfect Crime mp3
The StepsDagger mp3
The Beat Poets - Staring Stars Down mp3

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

SXSW 2009 - Post Two: Asteroid #4, Transpersonals, Magic Christian, Light FM, Higher State, Ugly B's, Geeks, JC&Co., Blue Aeroplanes, Fastball, CKs

We continue with more of our favorite bands appearing at this year's South by Southwest Festival in Austin, Texas. The full schedule of showcases is here. More such posts will appear here at Powerpopulist in the coming days. Previous SXSW posts, with lots of mp3s, can be found here.

A Mix of Known & New (to Me)

SXSW 2009 - Post One: Dollyrots, Zolof the R&R Destroyer, Artefacts For Space Travel, Cocktail Slippers, Magneta Lane

I know I sound like a broken mp3 but I really do get excited every year when the Southwest by Southwest Music Festival posts its schedule of showcases, along with hundreds and hundreds of mp3s by artists who will be performing in Austin, Texas (USA) on the dates indicated above. Over the next I don't know how many days, I'll be posting some of my favorites. Some of them are actually old friends, some I've already posted, but one of the great pleasures is coming across bands totally new to me. Clicking the song titles will unleash the music. Clicking the artist names will take you to that particular act's SXSW page, where you can see pictures and visit band and MySpace pages. I hope you find a lot to like. After experimenting a bit, I'm going to do two quick initial posts because some of these groups have long names and I want to be sure and get all these groups included in the LABELS thingies at the bottom of the post. I probably didn't need to share that bit of bloggatrivia, but oh well. Incidentally, SXSW posts from previous years can be found here.

The Dollyrots - My Best Friend's Hot mp3
Zolof the Rock & Roll Destroyer - Death or Radio mp3
Artefacts For Space TravelRecoup mp3
The Cocktail Slippers - Give It To Me mp3
Magneta Lane - Lady Bones mp3

Monday, February 16, 2009

The Joy Formidable

After listening to this London-based Welsh band’s music, I certainly feel their name, but I’m also in a quandary about getting it to you and you to them and so forth. I found out about them at AWmusic, who have posted two songs under their own imprimatur. Did they get them at NME, who are posting the entire debut album, A Balloon Called Moaning, here or at last.fm, who have three downloadables here or at a site the band directs you to here? Too many options? May I make a suggestion? Check out the three below, and if you like, follow your muse.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Something New: pppurcha$e$

In various ways I’ve gotten the idea that some of you like some of the same music I do. I guess the main way is that some of you have told me so. This little cosa mia called “Powerpopulist” is only one aspect of my musical experience. I’m also regularly purchasing lots of immensely satisfying music at eMusic, Amazon mp3, Not Lame, iTunes, etc., etc. And since my main purpose with this blog is to put you in touch with music I like and you might, I’ve been thinking about listing the stuff I’m buying each month. Although I only post here songs I either very much like or love, I actually like or love quite a lot of what I'm buying as much or more than what I'm posting.

So I thought I’d try a little experiment. I’ve set up a separate blog called pppurcha$e$, where I’ll post some of my mp3 purchases, with links to the webpages where I bought them. It's very barebones because that's all I have time for these days. I thought about doing it right here at Powerpopulist, but that wouldn't really fit in with my main modus operandi, which is to post full-length mp3s or send you to faveblogs where full-length mp3s are posted. I’ll always notify you here at Powerpopulist when I’ve done a new post at pppurcha$e$. (BTW, um, I've done a new post at pppurcha$e$.)

I’m just a music fan, not an expert. Of course I’ll be following not only my own personal discoveries but the recommendations of Steve over at Absolute Powerpop, Aaron at Powerpopaholic, Bruce at Not Lame, Debra at Power Pop Review, Auditeers, last.fm-ers, etc., etc. Who am I kidding? You know ‘em, you love ‘em, you probably found me through them. (Speaking of kidding, those three Big Kid songs on that first post are pretty splendid.)

I hope you’ll find this useful. These purchases represent all kinds of things: bands that are new to me, followups on bands I’ve posted here at Powerpopulist, filling in gaps in my collection, following recommendations from friends and enemies, etc. The newbies are usually based on 30-second samples, so occasionally I’ll later scratch 'n sniff and wonder what caused that earfart. I have found, though, that for the last couple of years, something like 98-99% of my purchases have been right on the money. The thousands of songs on the playlists I’ve built are a sheer joy to hear, as song after excellent song flows through me. By the way, just because I only list a couple of songs from an album doesn't mean I don't like other songs on it. In some cases I already have some of the songs, maybe I'll buy more later, etc. I'm simply showing what I've bought.

It took several hours to get that first post set up. I assume as time goes on, I’ll streamline the process. Knowing myself, I might not be able to “keep it up” forever. For one thing, someday I'll probably die. I don’t usually ask you for feedback (even though god only knows I’d love to get more) but in this case I really would like to know if you find this useful. If even a few of you like it, then it’s worth doing. So please leave a comment or write me an email and let me know. It’s not like I have to do this or anything. I’m getting no kickbacks from any of the vendors, no tax breaks to cheat on, no big ego boost, etc. I’m just saying, “Here’s what I bought; maybe you’ll like it, too.” Perhaps you’ll find it timesaving and musically enriching, who really knows? If you do find it useful, I’m considering working back month-by-month, adding previous months' purchases.

One other thing. Up there in the Powerpopulist banner, it says, “WHATEVER WE LIKE.” That “we” includes YOU. Please let me know what you are finding and recommending. I'll gladly check it out.

Happy Sun Day with Dead Heart Bloom

With a name like “Dead Heart Bloom,” you’re not going to explore fields of mountain flowers, bright sunshine, and the like, but pictures and music like that above and below. Okay, wait, scratch that, ixnay on the owersflay, mkay? Actually what you’re going to find is a wonderfully diverse range of mood, muse, and means, from heavyish riff to folky pick. There is, for the most part, a pleasingly dark solemnity holding things in check. Serious dude that I am, I kinda, like, dig that, ya know? I’ve known Dead Heart Bloom for awhile, (blogger cred riff checkoff), but it took a happy visit to the excellent AWmusic to get us heart-to-Heart. AWm has two excellent songs (one of which I’m posting) and news of more—much, much more. As I discovered, DHB offer up their entire catalogue for free downloading activity. Yesterday I saw a blogger make fun of bands that do that, so I made fun of the blogger (internally, that is; he’s actually a swell blogger at a swell blog, but I just had to get it out of my system somehow or ‘tother). But I ramble.

Here’s a few facts. The band began in 2005 as a one-manner. Boris Skalsky, former bassist, singer, and keyboardist of Washington, D.C. band Phaser recorded a self-titled debut in 2006 and eventually recruited phormer Phaser guitarist Paul Wood, bassist Nathan Goheen, and drummer John Hadfield, along with various guests who help out in concert and in the studio. (You could be reading all of this at the bandsite, but there you are, or rather here.) The four songs I’m posting aren’t necessarily representative—diversity, as I said—but they’ve certainly made my sunny day, and more to come, bud. I usually post fast ones first and calm down; this set builds.

Dead Heart Bloom
New Messiah mp3 - from Dead Heart Bloom
Is This The Way? mp3 - from 2008's Fall In EP, as is:
Come Back mp3
There Is No Mercy mp3 - from 2008's Oh Mercy EP

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

STOKED & STEAMING with CHOO CHOO

I received a very nice email from Dan Choo wondering if he could send me a shipment of “Steam Powered Garage Pop!” When I realized Dan meant the debut album by the Bern band CHOO CHOO, I had to tell him that would not be necessary. You may well be asking yourself, “Why, pp, why??? Why did you have to tell Dan Choo that would not be necessary?” Well, I’ll tell ya: I told Dan that because I had already been to eMusic and bought eleven of the tracks on CHOO CHOO’s self-titled debut album. Eleven out of Eleven tracks. Every song. 100%. There wasn’t a song on the album I did not buy. Ponder that in your hearts.

I’m a singles guy. I mostly buy singles, songs that I very much like-to-love. One song at a time. I’m tired of shelling out $16.00 for an LP and liking only one or two songs on it. (I think that works out to either $16.00 or $8.00 per song, something like that.) So when I say I bought all eleven songs on CHOO CHOO’s debut, it means I very much liked-to-loved (mostly loved) every freaking song on the album. Maybe I’m belaboring this point an ooch, I don’t know. Now that I’ve gotten up a head of steam, I can’t seem/don’t want to slow it down. Wooo-woooooo. . . . Chugga chugga chugga. Etc. But perhaps you now see why I had to tell Dan Choo “no”? Merrily, with a twinkle in my heart and a song in my eye, I just said “NO” because with equal, nay, building merriment, I had already said, as I listened to each song, “Yes, yess, yesss, yesssss, oh God yessssssssssssss. . . ." Etc.*

And with equal merriment, I thank Dan Choo (guitar/vox) and his sister/brothers, Lili Choo (organ), Sam Choo (drums/vox), and Yan Choo (bass/vox), for their delicious, heady Steam Powered Garage Pop! and for letting me give you a couple of belts thereof.

CHOO CHOO - from CHOO CHOO
A Little Wiser Now mp3
Your Heart is Breaking Down mp3

iTunes

*I was recently rejected for the third time by The Hype Machine. I was told my blog isn’t welcome to the machine because it isn’t like other blogs where the bloggers write with passion about the music they love. So I’m working on that.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The Lovetones' New Dimensions

Aussie poppsychers (or psychpoppers, your call) The Lovetones are set to release their fourth LP, Dimensions, on 24 February. (It dropped Down Under in November.) If the dreamy comp track down under is any indication, Brian Jonestown Massacreer Matthew Tow and crew are set to take us on a groovy li'l trip indeed.

Journeyman mp3

last.fm - Many full Lovetones tracks are available for sampling.

BTW, head TBJM head Anton Newcombe apparently does a remix of "Journeyman" on the forthcoming LP, previously ID'd above as Dimensions. [It's called "Journeyman (Anton Newcombe Remix)."] Of course, it might just be named in his honor; information at this point is hazy.] Whatevs, this is pretty much all the excuse I need to repost the following.

Seer mp3

Monday, February 09, 2009

Music of the Sphere

It's awfully nice to see Gary back in harness at Retro Music Snob. He's also got a sort of Son of Retro thing going at Rock God Cred (see below). We thank all of the hosts and hostesses for so generously plying us with fine tuneage. Click anywhere on each of the following to be whisked away and feted. Oh, and in case you're new here, Retro Music Snob is kind of an ongoing Music of the Sphere-type blog. When you get to any of the RMS posts, Gary will direct you to the website where the song is to be found. I hope you don't mind clicking an extra time or two. If you do, then don't.

The Beatles - Girl - Retro Music Snob - Once at the target site, scroll down to the comments for "Girl on the Wing" by The Shins.
Teenage Fanclub - The Concept - Retro Music Snob
Devo - Girl U Want - Retro Music Snob

My Bloody Valentine - Strawberry Wine (Alternate Version) - Retro Music Snob - This is lightish MBV.
Blue Öyster Cult - (Don't Fear) The Reaper - Rock God Cred


Skylight - As You Leave - Milk Milk Lemonade - part of Casey 'n' Michelle's excellent Size 16 shoegaze post, as is the next one
Summer Jets - 50 Reasons - Milk Milk Lemonade

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Happiness is the Warm Fuzzies

Global warming to the contrary notwithstanding, this cryogenically challenging season—in the Northern Hemisphere, at least—cries out for even more warmth. (Translation: Brrrrr, it’s wintertime, luvs.) On Tuesday happiness was a warm (One Weekly) Gun; today it’s a warm fuzzy, or, to be precise, five of them.* the Warm Fuzzies are from Athens (Georgia, that is: great clubs. . .primo rock). I was delighted when Fuzzy Jason Harwell told me he’d found me at the indispensable Absolute Powerpop and wondered if he could send me their new The Bubblegum - EP for review. I was delighted to tell Jason that I had found the Warm Fuzzies at the indispensable Absolute Powerpop and had already gone to eMusic and purchased thereof.

A flurry of (one) emailed negotiation resulted in his generously letting me share the below. I don’t think I have to tell you the feeling that immediately suffused my corpus. (Translation: I got warm and I got fuzzy.) Actually, Jason (dangerously) set no limits, so I am exercising iron self-control in holding it to a double bubble.

The bandname and EP title suggest you will be choked in the shallow waters before you get too deep.** And it’s true that Jason is quoted at the band’s MySpace site thusly: "We had a pretty simple mantra: If it's not fun, don't do it. . . ." Not so hasty, though, Bubba. There’s more here than smackin’ and blow pop. “Space Invaders” has meaning for those who get a little itchy when bumpkins get too close. “All My Friends Are Robots” might connect with those who find themselves increasingly turning to the machine you’re looking at for some of their closest encounters. But let’s not dwell on such quibbles ‘n’ bytes. Chew on this:

the Warm Fuzzies – from The Bubblegum - EP
Space Invaders mp3
All My Friends Are Robots mp3

the Warm Fuzzies Myspace
the Warm Fuzzies Bandsite
the Warm Fuzzies at eMusic
the Warm Fuzzies at Powerpopulist – Um, you’re reading it, duh.

*Jason Harwell - vocals/guitar * Davey Staton - drums * Laura Calvert - synth * Jonathan Staton - bass * Mattox Shuler – guitar

**Speaking of philosophy, I’m working up a post on a Philosopher Queen who’s been pleasantly warming my world of late. Coming soon to a blog near you.

************* These don’t really annotate anything specific in the post. They just kind of seem like apt visual representations of “warm fuzzies.”

The Memories Attack


Canadians Chris Thompson (of Eric's Trip) and Ron Bates (of Orange Glass and The Got To Get Got) have released their second full-length under the moniker The Memories Attack. (I'd like to pause for a second and just think about the band's name.) Yes, that was good, but the music's even better. If you can remember their name, there's a good chance you'll remember the name of the album: The Memories Attack 2. "But wait," you say, "you haven't told us anything about the music, stuff like how and whom and what it sounds like." Well, that's where clicking the song titles down there comes in. And clicking the band's name, which will take you to their MySpace site, where you can hear even more. Thanks to Matt Charlton at Pigeon Row for getting these to me and you. Okay, I sense you are pouting, so two (sort of) words: lo-fi. And two more: we like these, very much.

The Memories Attack - from The Memories Attack 2
Connected mp3
Peaks & Valleys mp3

Their debut, called simply The Memories Attack, can be purchased, song-by-song, at eMusic.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Happiness Is a Warm One Weekly

Tommy squeezes off a round of his own, and Peter's down wid it.

Gun. I pointed you towards One Weekly Gun's excellent "Dear John" at Hits in the Car back in June, but I didn't pay close enough attention to the arsenal at which Morten was arming himself. Week after week (i.e., weekly, duh) a young, sharp, shooter/musician, the Deadeye-Dickish Dane, Peter Fritzen, rifles through his fertile imagination and in less than three hours writes, records, and fires off (uploads) a brand new song based on a current event. So far he's squeezed off at least 41 rounds, and let me tell you, his aim is true. (He shoots to thrill. He hits me with his best shot. Etc.) The songs are timely, thought-provoking, and ridiculously entertaining. Heck, I can't write a decent post once a week/decade, and this keen-eyed marksman positively kills with penetrating pleasure bullets at the rate . . . previously indicated. (Yasss, I made kind of a list of gun/shooting terms especially for this post. I haven't used them all yet, but I believe I've used quite enough, would you agree? [Don't answer.])

Below you will find, Glocked and loaded, the five that plugged the epicenter of my aesthetic bullseye. You can fill your cartridge belt/iPod with plenty more at the OWG download page (Ready-Aim-Click). As always, I thank the most wonderful Mr. Stytzer at HITC for gunning these works at me. Oh, and btw, Peter has posts introducing each song (along with lyrics), but it's also kind of fun guessing which current event each song is aiming at. Your pull. Bang bang, shoot shoot.

One Weekly Gun
Dear John mp3
We Love Copernicus mp3 - One of my five favorite astronomers!
Pro-Fight mp3
Corporate Entertainment Throttle mp3
Addicted to Holes mp3 - Hi, I'm pp and I'm addicted to One Weekly Gun. ["Hi, pp."] In fact, I get my weekly fix emailed to me as a newsletter. ["Can we do that, too, pp?"] Yes, you can.

OWG Home
OWG MySpace

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Music of the Sphere, cont'd

Pockets in Reading

The recent slacking caused us to get behind, yada yada. Muchas gracias a los hosts.

The Pale Saints - Colours and Shapes - mp3hugger
Burning Hearts - I Lost My Colour Vision - mp3hugger - Get your aspirations over to the hugger right now, as I suspect the song's about to go down. If you're too late, you can find it here at the superb (and I mean supoib!) Shelflife Records Blog.

Speaking of which, look what else I found there!:

Hot Silk Pockets - Body Clock - Shelflife Records Blog - This Glasgow/Southend/South Wales/Yorkshire band's unpretentious little ditty has been delighting us for several years now.


The Ruling Class - Sleeping Beauty - Dead Flowers - Maybe you missed our post of another song by TRC here. The post has some other groovies, too, in our humble opinion (including Teenage Fanclub and Neutral Milk Hotel). Oh, and um, Fannies fans, there's another one here.

Morrissey - Irish Blood English Heart - AWmusic - Saw "Moz" do it on Later. . . and bought the lp immediately. What a song. (BTW, without the "inverted commas" I'd be affecting a "cool-blogger-in-the-know" pose, hence the "inverted commas.")
My Bloody Valentine - Soon - AWmusic
Woodpigeon - Love In The Time of Hopscotch - AWmusic - + 2 more nice ones
The Cure - Boys Don't Cry - AWmusic

The Mighty Lemon Drops - Pass You By & Take My Heart - Fuzzy Pop
The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart - Come Saturday & Everything With You - Fuzzy Pop - I previously posted that second song and earlier posted some others by TPOBPAH here (along with, you guessed it, some other groovies).
XTC - Senses Working Overtime - Setting the Woods on Fire
Hotpipes - Future Bolt - page 300