August 31, 2004

To celebrate Bjork

Bjork's album Medulla is released today, I thought I would post some new photos. She's as good a visual artist / collaborator as she is a musician. These are lifted from her online photo special and can be enlarged by clicking on the images.










August 30, 2004

There's no music on my radio


The girls above, from the UK group Client, don't want you to know their names. They'd rather be known as Client A and Client B. They don't like to show their faces either, just their legs. Or sometimes their chins.

But I am here to bust this mystery wide open: There is a blonde bird up there who is actually Sarah Blackwood, the voice of the late 90's group Dubstar. That band did lovely electropop - a total Pet Shop Boys sensibility, with similarly sharp lyrics. But doesn't it always happen? After two brilliant CDs, they dropped a viciously stinky turd and, in turn, got dropped by their label. So Sarah started this new group with another chick -I don't care about the brunette - and they are the first release from Andy Fletcher's label (Andy's a Depeche Moder).

Client is a variation on the Brit blonde/brunette archetype created by the positively iconic Joanne and Susan of Human League. Get on this, because they are good. The first single from their new album is called "Radio" and I say it is pulsing music for driving in your Delorean. Hear it here and now.

Album City is out on September 27, but their debut album is still available in the US.

Gwendolyn


I think she is pretty amazing. Can't wait to hear her record.

August 27, 2004

Everything about this is WRONG


A fun way to start your weekend: more Titney bashing! Please read the commentary from the brilliant Go Fug Yourself website. Thanks to Anne for the clue-in...

Homage or insult?

The Twilight Singers (Greg Dulli's group) have covered Mary J. Blige and Bjork. Not sure what I think of the covers, which you can hear on the Silence Is A Rhythm blog. Note that this is probably not an RIAA-approved link.

August 26, 2004

It's a wee Scottish jamboree

The Blue Nile have opened up a new website and have this sampler up for their new CD High. The samples are a generous minute each and need RealPlayer. The new single "I Would Never" sounds beautiful from the clip here.

Trashcan Sinatras also have an
e-card sampler up now with 4 complete songs: "Welcome Back," "All The Dark Horses" (my fave of these), "Freetime" and "Weightlifting."

Both of these records seem to have been recorded in a void where time has not moved on or gotten stale. Neither band seems to have been affected by any creative slump, ever.

Question: Can you name an artist who has both covered a song by one of these bands and come from the same womb as a member of the other band? Name artist, song and related band member. I predict maybe only 1 or 2 people who read this blog will know this. Winner gets a week of fabulous sex with me. Just kidding!

August 25, 2004

"I ain't taking shit off today!"

Here is a report on the upcoming release of the Live Aid DVD, which is worth the cost for the chill-inducing U2 "Bad" performance alone.

btw, get the quote above?

Duran Duran's "Astronaut" album cover


I am trying to figure out which Hollywood actress Nick now resembles in this photo!

Off topic sorta: Doing the Lyndie, 2004


Apparently the hot new dance craze is the Lyndie England, based on the Abu Ghraib prison photo of that dumbass redneck woman posing in front of the hooded Iraqi. Read more at World Of Wonder

August 24, 2004

Finn Brothers TODAY, 8/24.

Just a reminder that today is the release of the new Finn Brothers CD Everyone Is Here. Don't give to charity. Give to Finn.

How fucking cynical can this get?



USA Today is reporting that Titney Spears
will be marrying her white trash boyfriend TWO DAYS before the release of her Greatest Hits record. Of course, this is just gossip. It's not like USA Today prints real news. Let's just hope that Wigga / Babydaddy Federline puts on a new oversized white tee with pressed homeboy jeans before the ceremony to Miss Redneck Superstar.

I know I shouldn't be so mean: they're really nice kids, right? Upcoming BritNews predictions? That his ex (and Babymama) Shar is the maid of honor because GodOnlyKnows how much moolah they are throwing at that girl.

Can't wait for details on a Red Bull-sponsored honeymoon. I am thinking Cancun or Tijuana, where Brit can give Kev blowjobs on the motel balcony with a mouthful of cheap tequila. She'll wear a Von Dutch cap to slightly obscure the proceedings, thus allowing the pics to be published in tabloids internationally. Swallow the worm baby!

UPDATE! Please note the photo above, where Miss Titney is seen exiting a public bathroom in bare feet. Where does the madness end? As reported by
Stereogum

Ben Folds new EP on iTunes

I had given up on Ben Folds a few years ago, but recently he has been self-releasing high quality EPs. They are not available in stores, so many people don't know this stuff is even out there. Today he has a new EP called Super D on iTunes. Each disc has had a well-chosen cover (in the past The Cure and Divine Comedy songs). This one features his hilarious, falsetto-faithful version of Get Your Hands Off My Woman, a song by The Darkness that is as good as its title (a sample of their version is here).

August 23, 2004

Bjork's Medulla previews



You can hear a Bjork Medulla sampler (find Bjork at the bottom and click on the jukebox link) from Giant Step.net

For people who are worried that this record will be too experimental, I can tell you that from what I've heard, some is quite digestible, even for les miserables! Who Is It? has a very traditional, strong pop melody and you really can't tell that it's all human voices. Oceania is classic, in the Vespertine style, very pretty and an actual song (which it did not sound like at the Olympics). Good beats can be felt on both Who Is It and Triumph Of A Heart - the latter sounds nothing like the leak a few weeks ago and is pretty dance-able as well. Great vocal stuff going on there. Freaky German expressionists will like Where Is The Line, which is FUCKED UP!

I like this quote from the Giant Step site, which proves she isn't too precious about her own work:
"The only other rule," she says smiling, "was for it not to sound like Manhattan Transfer or Bobby McFerrin. After that, it became a very spontaneous, kind of carefree album to make. I didn’t want to spend another two years making it just a tiny bit better - fuck that."

August 18, 2004

Off topic Quote of the Week

From Gawker.com

Socialite Paris Hilton's teacup chihuahua Tinkerbell has been missing for at least a week now, and she's upped her reward for the dog's safe return to $5,000. We'll happily tell Paris what we know free of charge: the damn dog is likely crushed to death at the bottom of her over-stuffed Birkin bag.

August 16, 2004

Behind Bjork's curtain



An enigmatic interview with Lynn Fox, the creators of Bjork's new video for Oceania. Gives you a wee bit about her process and some nice visuals.

Update: There is a great, lengthy piece on Bjork in the new New Yorker (8/23/04 issue). It's not online or I would link it. The writer gives a very in-depth look at the making of Medulla.

Every boy
Is a snake
Is a lily
Every pearl
Is a lynx
Is a girl

- Bjork "Oceania"

Songs Of The Week

The Honeymoon “Act Like You Know Her”
Grand National “Talk Amongst Yourselves”
kd lang “Jericho”
kd lang “Love Is Everything”
Death Cab For Cutie “Transatlanticism” (from 2003)

Hey. kids. rock and roll...



Michael Stipe on Casey Spooner:

He has a fantastic sense of reality, Mr. Casey Spooner... and he has an amazing ass. And a great smile. And one of the best laughs..He is a piece of work.
Casey Spooner on Michael Stipe:

He’s a good guy, though. People give him hell, but he was a good lay. He could fuck the chrome off a bumper. He definitely fucked the shit out of me. That was fun.
In less tumescent news, a new single from REM (the sample sounds like a cross between something on Murmur and something on Automatic. That description sounds too good to be true and it probably IS).

Michael Stipe in Butt Magazine...

Who is Casey Spooner??

Sample-licious!

I just stumbled upon the fact that Duncan Sheik does the bulk of the Home At The End Of The World soundtrack (the movie that Colin Ferrell's supposedly mega-weenis was cut out of) TowerRecords.com has samples.

Meanwhile, you can hear samples on Amazon.uk of Weightlifting, the new CD by Trashcan Sintaras. Sounds like classic TCS, especially "Got Carried Away" and "Freetime." It is due out on super Tuesday, August 31. Please note that there is an American version with a special DVD.

Drowning in the sea of Bjork



Bjork Medulla special now online! See the media player in the upper right.

I saw Bjork's performance on the Olympics while I was in a half-sleep. Was it a duet with Katie Couric? Because I heard more of that perky little bitch than I heard of Bjork! I see that she topped the swan dress with a dress made of 30,000 sq feet of fabric which covered the Olympians on the field.

That little grandstanding minx.

August 12, 2004

Shirley loves her darklings



Shirley Manson has started posting her diary again on the Garbage website. If you haven't read it, Shirley's diary is one of the better ones on the web: she's NOT holding back. She's happily and unhappily neurotic, one minute carrying on about how hard her trainer is pushing her and the next minute railing against the expectations of what a rock chick should look like.

Remember to read it with a Scottish accent: when she mentions Butch Vig, that's Bootch Vig...

This show was MADE for ME

The new bands for the VH1 Bands Reunited show are (drumroll)...

Haircut 100
ABC
The Motels
The English Beat
New Kids On The Block

Thanks to Stereogum for this information

On an unrelated note, my favorite doughboys Keane have a selection of in-studio performances on VH1.com

August 10, 2004

Lyrics Of The Week

Morrissey's Mexico (Morrissey/Boorer/Day)

In Mexico
I went for a walk to inhale the tranquil cool lovers air
But I could taste a trace of American chemical waste
And a small voice said "what can we do?"

In Mexico
I went for a walk to inhale the tranquil cool lovers air
But I could sense the hate from the lonestar state
And a small voice said "what can we do?"

It seems if you're rich and you're white
you'll be alright
I just don't see why this should be so....
If you're rich and you're white
you'll be alright
I just don't see why this should be so....

In Mexico
I laid on the grass and I cried my heart out for want of my love
Oh, for want of my love
Oh, for want of my love ..


Get a grip Jacques!

For anyone who might have known the group Cousteau, they had to change their name to Moreau because of legal threats from humorless divers. They have a new CD called Nova Scotia and you can hear samples online now. The CD has been delayed by record company problems (like...not having a label!) so there is no date yet. I am not exactly endorsing this, but I did like several of the songs on their last CD, Sirena.

August 9, 2004

Let me kiss Nancy Sinatra

Nancy and Morrissey, 2004

Nancy Sinatra is just about to release her new single, penned by Moz. It's called "Let Me Kiss You" - no audio link yet. She gets a good review in Billboard.

There’s a place in the sun / for anyone who has the will to chase one

August 6, 2004

I'd rawther be here. Now.

It's always better on holiday
So much better on holiday
That's why we only work

When we need the money*


*lyrics from "Jacqueline" by Franz Ferdinand
image is Virgin Megastore, Oxford Street, London May 2004

Keane songs online

For those who don't know Keane, see this link to hear two songs. Please note that Keane is playing in DC at the 9:30 Club on Spetember 28. I am so there. Best album of the year.

October 5: Left Of The Dial box set

A new Rhino 80's box set coming, but it's the good stuff! From the press release:

LEFT OF THE DIAL collects 82 tracks from artists as diverse as Dead Kennedys, New Order, Concrete Blonde, Prefab Sprout, Minor Threat, Love And Rockets, The dB's, Siouxsie And The Banshees, Camper Van Beethoven, The Pogues, The Replacements and The Jesus and Mary Chain. Iconic bands like The Smiths, The Pretenders, R.E.M., The Cure, and Sonic Youth are represented, as are equally important lesser-knowns like The Rain Parade, Throbbing Gristle, Passions, The Go-Betweens, and The Lyres.

Link courtesy of And We Danced

August 5, 2004

Some newsy bits

  • REM's new album is called Around The Sun and it's out on Oct 5. The single is "Leaving New York" - gee, what is that about?!
  • Simple Minds are old enough to have a 5 disc box set called Silver Box that has no previously released material. Good Lord. For the hardcore fans - are they called simpletons?
  • The Blue Nile's album includes the beautiful song "Soul Boy" that Paul wrote for Melanie Chisholm (Sporty Spice) - the only good song on her last (and last?) album. More here, from a fan
  • Kirsty MacColl finally gets a 3 CD box set. The tracklist (you have to go through 3 screens starting with this link) covers everything important, plus tons of rarities. I still am sad that she died.
  • Paris Hilton's CD is called Paris Is Burning, which I will admit I find clever.
  • Duran Duran's CD comes out in October and is being called Astronauts. Stupidly, the first single is "Sunrise" an oh-so-eh track already released on the Queer Eye soundtrack.

August 4, 2004

4 Weeks to Bjork...

and her artsy fartsy media blitz has begun...



You can hear two new Medulla tracks courtesy of BBC's Breezeblock. They play The Pleasure Is All Mine at about 19:18 and Mouth's Cradle at about 20:49. Note you can fast forward to the tracks. Pleasure is very challenging - the melody is hard to detect, if it's there at all. Mouth's Cradle is a bit more traditionally Bjorkian and the voices mimic instruments. Remixes please!

Tidbit: Medulla was recorded in 18 places.

Off topic: A campaign reading MUST

The best article on John Kerry I have read as of yet appeared in the July 26 New Yorker - it's online here. Be forewarned that it is lonnnng - I printed it and read it on the subway over several days - but ultimately gives a clear picture of Kerry. We must defeat Bush- he is going to destroy our world.

August 3, 2004

August 2, 2004

Off topic: The Bush Twins

Read this hilarious faux interview

Quote Of The Week

Erika says "Old is the new black" in reference to this picture of Bono, whom she will always love.

Hmmmm, what should I wear tonight?


World superstars The Scissor Sisters finally make it back our fair shores and THIS is what lead singer Jake Shears (aka Jason Sellards) wears to the show? Guess it is a way to get noticed - another psuedonymous (is that a word>) star, Bono Vox, was in the small crowd with beefy guards nearby.

PS: Their single "Take Your Mama" is the best Elton John song since 1979.
photo courtesy of this dude via the great Arjan site