Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Indie is In!*9

as the answer to life’s great quest.

the portastylistic

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Little Red - Listen To Little Red

*I Proud To Recommended!!!*

"Refreshing Perfect!"

Straight outta Melbourne, Australia, with 3 lead singers fighting for every note over 4 part harmonies & skin-tight primal rhythms, Little Red are the hottest all singing, all dancing incarnation of the quintessential rock 'n' roll band, simultaneously both classic and anachronistic in a way that's guaranteed to generate excitement.

Rather than stealing inspiration from the 'book of cool' this 5-piece cut to the chase in a pure style they jokingly refer to as 'doo-wop punk'. They maintain almost exclusively iconic influences, from a palette of Springsteen, Radiohead, early Elvis, Dylan, Sam Cooke, Nick Cave, The Beatles, and Lou Reed, as well as the more obscure gospel and doo-wop references that become apparent from listening to their fierce vocal passion, delivering the beauty and tension of musical emotion in a ragged and raw expression.

Formed from a core of childhood friends, and some late arrivals, and named after a song from the canon of Chicago blues legend, Willy Dixon, which reached no 1 in the UK via a cover from The Rolling Stones, Little Red are now recognised as Australia's top live draw and current “buzz” band.

Listening to debut album ‘Listen To’ is pure entertainment, like sitting down to watch the in-house band at Fonze's yard gatherings in 'Happy Days'. Their aspirational 'gang' mentality draws pictures of a band of fledgling anti-heroes from a classic-teen movie, akin to James Dean and Sal Mineo getting kicks from thrashing on instruments, instead of playing 'chicken' in souped-up motors, with wanna-be Natalie Wood types watching their every move. This is the kind of band happy to stir teenage hormonal fervour, creating instant anthemic feelings, but simultaneously carving out reaction from deeper feelings of the soul.

Be struck by the cocky strut of ‘Coca Cola’, as effervescent as its subject matter, and feel the languid carefree soul of ‘It’s Alright.’ ‘So Long’ sounds like the song that inspired The Pixies ‘Where Is My Mind’, with it’s darkly desolate swooning & crooning, whilst ‘Stare In Love’ opens up with the kind of sleazy blues groove that wouldn’t be out of place on an AC-DC album. Album closer ‘Autumn Leaves’ proves they’ve got plenty more magic tricks up their sleeves, with a polished intimacy, mixing high school love letters with a hint of Bacharach. The feel good factor, and the urge to dance that the album generates is foremost.

The band's moves have increasingly garnered attention in their homeland, from winning Australia's 2008 'Garage To V Festival' competition, to touring with Vampire Weekend, to selling 40k albums and counting of their recently released debut album. Their Australian heritage has allowed them to be influenced by the classic British and American artists, but together with Melbourne's d.i.y. ethic, the isolation of living on the world's largest island has promoted unique development away from prying eyes. The wide-open landscapes of their locality encourage the same wide-eyed world conquering ideas that spawned the long-gone power of the original Americana, now replaced by more corporate populist cynicism. Their sound represents a back-to-basics rawness, where everything you hear is the sound of recording live in a room, and some of these great songs are even first takes. Like The Strokes & The Shins at their most influential, they deliver a dual quality of referencing timeless classicism with the urgent modernity of youth.

Listening to Little Red, you're reminded of all the good things in life. As you dance like no one's watching, and sing with your best bathroom gurgle in an attempt to recreate the essential quality of the band, one thing's for sure, it's hard not to smile.

Indie(Rock),Pop,Australia It’s Alright is a wonderful knock off of a 50’s romance song.!!!


Aqualung - Magnetic North (2010)

*I Proud To Recommended!!!*

2010 album from British singer/songwriter Matt Hales AKA Aqualung. Magnetic North is Aqualung’s first album of all new material since relocating from England to sunny Los Angeles last fall. All 12 tracks were co-written and produced by Aqualung Co-writers include: Ben Hales, his brother, his wife, and the legendary Paul Buchanan (of the Blue Nile). Guest vocal appearances include: Kelly Sweet, Alison Sudol (A Fine Frenzy) Sara Bareilles, and others

Early this morning I was greeted by a rather excited cheerful email from Matt Hales, aka Aqualung about the release of his newest LP entitled Magnetic North. This news comes as a welcome surprise considering Hales’ subsequent announcement that he was retiring following the release of his last record, Words & Music, in late 2008.

In Matt’s words:

“That’s right – it’s a full on multi-media assault – brace yourself world, The A Lung is coming and there will be NO ESCAPE…(SFX: panting, possibly drooling…) “

Pants-bulging news indeed. Additionally, Matt has also announced a short, yet slightly more gratifying than usual, list of tour dates to promote the new album.

Aqualung US Tour Dates:

April 26, 2010 – Bootleg Theater, Los Angeles, CA

April 27, 2010 – Swedish American Hall, San Francisco, CA

April 29, 2010 – Biltmore Cabaret, Vancouver, BC

April 30, 2010 – Doug Fir, Portland, OR

May 1, 2010 – The Triple Door, Seattle, WA

May 4, 2010 – Varsity Theater, Minneapolis, MN

May 5, 2010 – Schubas, Chicago, IL

May 6, 2010 – Blueberry Hill Duck Room, St Louis, MO

May 7, 2010 – The Basement, Columbus, OH

May 8, 2010 – World Café Live, Philadelphia, PA

May 9, 2010 – Jammin’ Java, Vienna, VA

May 10, 2010 – City Winery, New York, NY

May 11, 2010 – The Red Room @ Café 939, Boston, MA

Magnetic North will be released on April 20th, via Verve Music Group, and you can listen to the first single ‘Fingertip’ on his MySpace or iTunes.

‘7 Keys’ – Aqualung – (download)



David Byrne & Fatboy Slim - Here Lies Love (2010)

*I Proud To Recommended!!!*

David Byrne and Fatboy Slim - Here Lies Love (2010)

'Here Lies Love' is a 22 song double-disc song cycle - improbably poignant, decidedly surreal, surprisingly thought provoking - about the rise and fall of the Philippines' notorious Imelda Marcos. It was conceived by David Byrne; composed by Byrne and British deejay/recording artist Fatboy Slim, a/k/a Norman Cook; and performed by a dream cast drawn from the worlds of indie rock, alt country, R&B and pop.
Byrne's taste in collaborators is as imaginative as it is impeccable, including Cyndi Lauper (who recounts, to lighthearted disco beats, Imelda's courtship with Ferdinand Marcos), Steve Earle (as the power-hungry Ferdinand), Dap-Kings vocalist Sharon Jones (recalling Imelda's introduction into New York society) and Natalie Merchant (as spurned Imelda confidante Estrella, anticipating the onset of martial law). Along with vocals turns from such stars as Tori Amos and the B-52's Kate Pierson, Byrne works with rising indie rockers St. Vincent and My Brightest Diamond; New York chanteuses Nellie McKay and Martha Wainwright; and dance-music divas Roisin Murphy and Santigold. Byrne himself appears as the voice of imperialistic America on 'American Troglodyte' a send-up that wouldn't have seemed out of places in Talking Heads' True Stories. – Amazon

Disc 1:
01. Here Lies Love - feat. Florence Welch [Florence & The Machine]
02. Every Drop Of Rain - feat. Candie Payne & St. Vincent
03. You'll Be Taken Care Of - feat. Tori Amos
04. The Rose Of Tacloban - feat. Martha Wainwright
05. How Are You? - feat. Nellie McKay
06. A Perfect Hand - feat. Steve Earle
07. Eleven Days - feat. Cyndi Lauper
08. When She Passed By - feat. Allison Moorer
09. Walk Like A Woman - feat. Charmaine Clamor
10. Don't You Agree? - feat. Roisin Murphy
11. Pretty Face - feat. Camille
12. Ladies In Blue - feat. Theresa Andersson

Disc 2:
01. Dancing Together - feat. Sharon Jones
02. Men Will Do Anything - feat. Alice Russell
03. The Whole Man - feat. Kate Pierson
04. Never So Big - feat. Sia
05. Please Don't - feat. Santi White [Santigold]
06. American Troglodyte
07. Solano Avenue - feat. Nicole Atkins
08. Order 1081 - feat. Natalie Merchant
09. Seven Years - feat. Shara Worden [My Brightest Diamond]
10. Why Don't You Love Me? - feat. Tori Amos & Cyndi Lauper

David Byrne and Fatboy Slim have united to create a 22-track opus entitled Here Lies Love, sketching the life of former First Lady of the Philippines, Imelda Marcos, and her childhood servant Estrella Cumpas. When conceptualizing the album Byrne set out to emulate a night club setting. In the album’s introduction Byrne stated:

“The story I am interested in is about asking what drives a powerful person—what makes them tick? How do they make and then remake themselves? I thought to myself, wouldn’t it be great if—as this piece would be principally composed of clubby dance music—one could experience it in a club setting? Could one bring a ‘story’ and a kind of theater to the disco? Was that possible? If so, wouldn’t that be amazing!”

Each song’s lyrics are interpreted by a different vocalist, while Fatboy Slim and Byrne provide all of the beats. Featured artists include: Tori Amos, Steve Earle, Nicole Atkins, Sia, Martha Wainwright, Santigold, St Vincent, Florence Welch and more. Here Lies Love is due out 6 April 2010 on Todomundo/Nonesuch. Each album includes a 100-page book detailing the project and a DVD. More information, track listing and insight on the project can be found at:



Sweet Apple - Love & Desperation (2010)

Most bands are brought together by guitars, amps and drums. Sweet Apple formed after tragedy, out of friendship, on a miserable day in Vermont. At first glance, the rock ‘n’ roll quartet might seem like one of those “indie-rock supergroup” sideshows. (editor’s note: “stupor group”?) Yes, J. Mascis (drums/guitar/vocals) plays in Dinosaur Jr. Tim Parnin (guitar) and John Petkovic (vocals/guitar) play in Cobra Verde. Dave Sweetapple (bass/vocals) plays in Witch. But Sweet Apple was born of a death — and a cross country drive. Totally by chance. It was rainy morning in December when John Petkovic got in his car heading eastward. He had no destination in mind, let alone plans for a band. He just wanted to drive away. “My mother had just died after a long, horrible illness,” he says. “And I’d been totally devastated by so many things, all at once. I’d lost so much weight. I couldn’t eat or sleep. All I did was smoke cigarettes, one and after another after another.” John got in his car and went for a long smoke. Four hundred miles from his hometown of Cleveland, and out of the blue, he received a phone call from friend Dave Sweetapple. “I couldn’t believe he was driving around aimlessly,” says Sweetapple, of Brattleboro, Vt. “When I found out he was so close to Vermont I told him to come over.” Dave also called their mutual friend J. Mascis, who lives nearby in Amherst, Ma., and told him to come over. J did, and told John to start writing a bunch of songs when he got back home – so they could start a band. John hadn’t played guitar for months. He came up with four songs on the ride home – including “I Can’t See You,” with its haunting refrain, “I drove and drove and drove and drove. And drove and drove and drove and drove.” Within three weeks, John was jamming with CV bandmate Tim Parnin – and they whittled 25 songs down to 12. “Out of the blue, we had an album full of catchy tunes,” says Parnin. “It’s one of the weirdest things I’ve experienced playing in bands.” Even weirder, many of the songs are upbeat – fun and mockingly funny, with loud, brash guitars. “Do You Remember” is a driving singalong. “I’ve Got a Feeling That Won’t Change” is wounded pop. “Flying Up a Mountain” is a nihilist singalong. “Love & Desperation” was recorded in Cleveland and Massachusetts. It was mixed by John Agnello (Dinosaur Jr., Sonic Youth, The Hold Steady) and Don Depew (Guided By Voices, Cobra Verde). “I tell people that I saved John’s life by starting this band,” says Mascis. “But they don’t believe me.”



Band of Horses - Infinite Arms (2010)

*I Proud To Recommended!!!*

Band Of Horses are back in mid May with Infinite Arms, their first dip into major label territory following two great releases on Sub Pop that rate very highly in my music collection. So far just a few teasers have been revealed but it sounds like the band have once again hit on their magic formula for atmospheric Americana drenched in passion and melancholy.

With 2010 already promising some much anticipated releases from some of indie rock’s most acclaimed acts it is no exaggeration to say a new Band Of Horses release raises the anticipation levels up a notch.-cougarmicrobes



The National - High Violet (2010)

*I Proud To Recommended!!!*

High Violet, the new full-length record by the National, is a nervy, melodic, explosive and beautiful set of songs that find the band at the height of their collaborative powers. The music is wide-ranging in its moods, by turns intimate and rough, expansive and spare, full of stark angles and atmosphere. Berninger’s singing—wild, half-broken, sly—evokes a feeling of being haunted, by love, by paranoia, by something just out of reach. High Violet may be The National’s most thematically twisted record to date but it somehow also manages to be their most infectious and immediate.

Setting up their tunes on a creative territory amid American electric rock and indie rock’s mellowest tunes, the National ultimately present melodious and inspiring compositions also enlightened by a set of influences, including country-rock and even British pop/rock. Originally coming from Ohio, the band eventually formed in New York in the late ’90s, with a five-piece lineup, embodied by brothers Scott (guitar) and Bryan Devendorf (drums), Aaron (bass) and Bryce Dessner (guitar), and by vocalist Matt Berninger. Following a series of live presentations, the group eventually managed to enter the studio to record their first record. The National, their debut and self-titled album, hit the record stores in 2001, achieving considerable acclaim. The Ohio natural crew then continued to play on several live shows, eventually securing a growing fan base. In 2003 the group released Sad Songs for Dirty Lovers, a deft blending of alternative country and chamber pop, followed by the EP Cherry Tree in 2004. The following year the band signed with Beggars Banquet and released Alligator. The National returned in 2007 with Boxer, an ambitious effort that featured orchestration by the Clogs’ Padma Newsome and Sufjan Stevens on piano. ~ Mario Mesquita Borges, -All Music Guide



Pomplamoose – Tribute to Famous People (2010)

*I Proud To Recommended!!!*

"It's Super Cute!"

Jack Conte and Nataly Dawn started making music together in the summer of ‘08, and decided to form a band. Pomplamoose thus represents the collaborative efforts of the two afore-mentioned musicians. It also means grapefruit in French.



Ingrid Olava - The Guest (2010)

*I Proud To Recommended!!!*

"Best debut Voice!"

Ingrid Olava Brænd Eriksen (known as Ingrid Olava, born 18 March, 1981) is a Norwegian musician and singer and musician, best known for her debut single “Only Just Begun” from 2007 and as a backup singer for Madrugada. After hearing her live performance, EMI Music Norway invited her to play in a studio, and later signed her.

Ingrid grew up in Lillehammer, where she began to play on a piano in the neighbor’s basement, eventually teaching herself the song “Do-Re-Mi” from The Sound of Music. She names Trond-Viggo Torgersen and Billy Joel as some of her first musical influences. She went on to play with the local Ten Sing, and became a regular performer at the Felix rock cafe in Lillehammer, where she was subjected to alternative rock and punk

Ingrid Olava was 20 years old before she began singing seriously. Her first gig was at Utøya, at a youth camp, but the first breakthrough was at a concert at the John Dee Live Club & Pub, in November 2004, where she warmed up for Vidar Vang.

In the summer of 2006 Ingrid Olava played on several festivals, including the Quart Festival, the Slottsfjell Festival, Træna and KlubbØya, and was praised for several of her concerts. In the fall of 2006 Sivert Høyem and Frode Jacobsen attended one of her concerts in Oslo, the result of which was that she joined a two-month tour as supporting artist for Madrugada.

Olava was also a member of the Lillehammer-based band Shit City, but left them in the 2007. In the summer of 2008, she played on the Hove Festival, Træna, and Øyafestivalen where she surprised with her interpretation of Leonard Cohen’s classic “Take This Waltz”. She has also accompanied several other Norwegian artists, such as El Cuero.



Kate Nash - My Best Friend Is You (2010)

"Do Wah Doo!"

My Best Friend Is You is the second album from London-born songstress Kate Nash. Following the success of 2007’s Made Of Bricks, Nash’s sophomore album features a more mature piano pop and girl-group-tinged punk sound, while maintaining her quirky style. Produced by ex-Suede guitarist Bernard Butler, the album includes the single “Do Wah Doo”.



Jamie Lidell - Compass (2010)

*I Proud To Recommended!!!*

Jamie Lidell is a genuinely restless soul. He broke out of small-town England and has been a nomad ever since. His constant desire to progress leaping and stumbling towards new discoveries has defined his musical journey so far; and there’s no sign of it fading away. Recorded in Los Angeles, New York and Canada Compass is his most eclectic album yet. Songs shift, chop, change and mutate genres and forms before our very ears. It’s got funk in spades; the jaw-dropping power of the vocals is stronger than ever; it rocks, it pops, it’s sweet, angry, hard, soulful and soft, often within the span of a single track. It’s the restless album that finally matches the soul of its creator.Jamie’s fellow travelers on Compassinclude Beck, Feist, Gonzales, Chris Taylor of Grizzly Bear and Pat Sansone of Wilco. Musically and lyrically this is very much A Jamie Lidell Production reflecting not only his exhilarating, diverse tastes, but also a year of change, love, longing and arrival at a new place. When he takes to the road in 2010, he’ll be bringing a band again, but stripping it back; keeping it lean. For both newcomers and initiates, this will be an experience. And no, he won’t stop.

On his previous two albums, Jamie Lidell delved heavily into soul music with some eclectic touches here and there, but judging from the list of collaborators on Compass, things are looking to lean more on the eclectic side of things this time around. Nikka Costa does indeed guest on a song, but the rest of the decidedly non-soul roster on the album includes Beck, Feist and members of Grizzly Bear and Wilco. Lidell has stated that the past few years have been tough on him emotionally and it shows with the moody title track, a song with shades of experimental folk that sound like nothing Lidell has done in the past.



Inlets - Inter Arbiter (2010)

*I Proud To Recommended!!!*

"Great stuff give you chill!"

From Stereogum: “Think the weariness of a bedroom troubadour, a folkie with mild classical tendencies … It’s really great stuff”

From Gorilla Vs Bear: “Perfect for your wintry listening pleasure.”

From Said the Gramophone: “Post-castration Abelard has access to a tape deck and an arsenal of strings and woodwinds and Heloise’s musical preferences include but are not limited to indie folk, Steve Reich, and choral music.”

From I Guess I’m Floating: “Demonstrates a unique type of beauty that needs to be absorbed …The vocal harmonies are vastly layered, and even come across as almost psalmic as if sung by a church choir. They might, just might, even give you chills…”



Apples In Stereo - Travellers in Space and Time (2010)

*I Proud To Recommended!!!*

Studio-obsessed indie rockers The Apples in stereo are celebrating the start of a new decade with the release of their seventh studio album, Travellers in Space and Time, their most hi-fi and hook-laden production to date. Described by frontman Robert Schneider as "retro-futuristic super-pop," the album is the official follow-up to 2007’s New Magnetic Wonder, and the band's second release for Elijah Wood’s Simian Records. The album will be released on April 20 via Yep Roc/Simian/Elephant 6.

Travellers contains sixteen piano-driven tracks, bubbling over with vocoder harmonies and sci-fi sound effects, like '70s AM radio filtered through a UFO; including the robotic first single "Dance Floor", the four-on-the-floor dream-scape "Hey Elevator", the Hall and Oates-tinged "Told You Once", and the epic, yearning "Dream About The Future," among many instant hits. The musical theme heard in these songs is strung throughout Travellers: intense pop hooks and electronic sounds, mixed with a pumping, get-up-and-moonwalk beat.

Future Vintage: Covers of The Apples in stereo will be available for free with purchase of Travellers at your favorite local indie retailer on national Record Store Day, April 17 (three days before the album's release date on April 20th)
For a list of participating indie retailers, CLICK HERE.



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