Thursday, May 27, 2010

Aural Fix: "Dilly" by Band of Horses

Pre-sale tickets for the July 14 Band of Horses show at The Blue Note are available today between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m. Band of Horses just released their latest, Infinite Arms, on May 18. Frontman Ben Bridwell and company relocated from Seattle to South Carolina and self-produced Infinite Arms with a little help from Modest Mouse producer Phil Ek. They're definitely heading in a mainstream direction, but many of the tracks on the new album are gentle gems not necessarily guaranteed to snare a mass-market crowd in search of poppy hooks or bombastic riffs.

In honor of the warm weather and the long holiday weekend, here's the easy/breezy single "Dilly" from Infinite Arms.

"Dilly" by Band of Horses

[[MP3 removed...]]

Thursday, May 20, 2010

I Have Proof...

...reading that is. And lots of it, which explains why I've been unable to post. I've been spending all my free time editing a no-fun, no-music medical coding textbook. I am poor. This is why I sell my soul to a multinational Dutch publishing company. Ironically, I spent seven years in Chicago working for this same Dutch company's Dutch competitor...

Just one bit of news for today: I hear that Hennessy Music is going out of business after more than 30 years. I've been meaning to stop by to see what sort of sales they're running. I'm in the market for a piano (although a clavinova would be better for apartment livin'). Hennessy will be closing its doors at the end of June.

I'll be back soon.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Paper Planes for The Clientele

I ran my first 10K this Saturday at the Jay Dix Challenge to Cure 5K/10K run at Flatbranch Park. There's nothing like running from downtown to the Hearnes Center and back... and then doing it again. You'd think I would have spent those 50-something minutes listening to new music on my iPod, but I don't like running with one.

(Running in the no-iPod world)

I also can't read/work with music on (it's a concentration thing), and sadly, I spent most of my time inside this weekend freelance proofreading a textbook on medical coding. (Now I know the codes for ruptured esophagus and candidiasis of the lip.) I did manage to get out on Saturday night to visit my brother and his wife. We watched a DVD of The Brothers Bloom:

The music was good, and I was inspired to make a camera obscura from a watermelon.

(I actually want to try it with something less sticky. I've always been curious about these things.)

Driving home later, I heard the KCOU dj talking about The Clientele's cover of M.I.A.'s "Paper Planes," which they recorded for a recent covers project. Apparently, The Onion has a print/web-based entertainment newspaper called The A.V. Club (for "audiovisual") that features real, non-Oniony, interviews, reviews, etc. (and a venti-load of Starbucks advertising).

One of The A.V. Club's recent projects is A.V. Undercover, a plan to shoot music videos of artists covering a song they choose from a list of A.V. Club-selected songs. And so The Clientele showed up early and opted to step outside their mod comfort zone by covering "Paper Planes"... although they manage to Georgie Girl it up anyway. Nah, I kid. It's all good fun. You can watch it here.

(The Clientele)

This should be an interesting project. So far Ted Leo and the Pharmacists, Fruit Bats, Alkaline Trio, Cursive, and others have stepped into the studio. Pavement's "Cut Your Hair" remains unclaimed, along with notable tracks from The Smiths, The Cure, The Lemonheads, R.E.M., Nirvana, etc.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Redesigning and Discovering The Comoian

(RIP for today)

I had some time to kill at work Thursday and decided to mess with this blog's design. I don't think the title graphic is large enough, but it's a work in progress. Check back for more completely random design updates soon. (In other words, I'm a bit nonplussed, but I don't have Photoshop on my Mac so a new graphic will have to wait until I'm back in the office.)

But in more exciting news, Columbia has a handy new site for aggregatorial delight: The Comoian, run by local brew-blogger Zac. (Zac has a blog devoted to two of his passions: beer and Pavement, which you can check out here.) The Comoian is your addictive source for local tidbits on everything from upcoming Blue Note concerts to ongoing sobriety checks—all delivered with sarcastic flair. I found myself checking back to The Comoian several times Thursday afternoon after Zac tipped me off about it. For the time-deprived or the non-mindful, the site offers a constantly updated list of CoMo-related blurbs gathered from blogs and traditional news sources alike, offering a "best of the best" in instant gratification. Read as much or as little as you like. I'm hooked.

Zac tips us all off to next week's Midlake concert at The Blue Note. More about this show to come... But he's right. Don't miss it.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Falling into The Temper Trap

(The Temper Trap)

Last weekend I started studying for the GRE, ran the trail, and walked through PedNet's Bike, Walk, and Wheel Week kickoff Saturday and Earth Day Sunday with my partner in musical crime. Earth Day can best be summed up with lots of bongos and girls with rainbow-colored hair and hula hoops. The environmental displays attempted to ground the festival and keep it from embarking on its own self-indulgent acid trip. But we didn't really stop to smell the organic flowers.

(Mother Earth Day)

Late Sunday found us at Broadway Brewery for a bluegrass jam and lots of beer. We missed my friend's friend playing his mandolin, but we didn't miss out on the beer. Apparently, the jam is a weekly feature at Broadway Brewery, and anyone can join in, provided you're somewhat acquainted with obscure Scottish/Irish folktunes written in 6/8 time. Drink enough beer, and you'll think you know them.

All this talk of beer, hippies, and hula hoops has me thinking music. We need something new this week... Last summer Aussies The Temper Trap released their first studio album, Conditions, featuring the single "Fools." Apparently, the band just created a monolithic stir of Ayers Rockian proportions at this year's SXSW and Coachella music festivals. And it's easy to see why: lead singer Dougie Mandagi has a falsetto voice that's harder to overlook than a giant red rock on the horizon.

If you like what you hear, you can see The Temper Trap at either Crossroads in Kansas City on June 8 or The Pageant in St. Louis on June 9.