Monday, April 20, 2009

Tera Melos - Idioms (EP) (2009)

01.meant for you (The Beach Boys cover)
02.koka kola (The Clash)
03.tame (The Pixies cover)

04.blast off (Weezer cover)

05.hey sandy (Polaris cover)

In a recent myspace bulletin post, lead guitarist Nick Reinhart mentioned how happy he was that he didn't have to tap one single note on this whole ep. "I felt like such a hack everytime I started to play 40 Rods..."

We could've had a full length in a recent time from Tera Melos. At least until drummer Vince Rogers left the band. But with Vince leaving the band, the whole idea of a new full length for us to steal came to a screeching halt. After picking up new drummer John Clardy, Tera Melos put the idea of a new full length on hold, and rather decided to pick up their instruments and play the songs that most inspired them. They describe these songs as: "These are five of the raddest songs ever written. Since we will probably never write anything as cool as these, we figured we'd recreate them. Also, since they will likely never be performed by the original artist again, and quite possibly by anyone, we will honor them by playing them live." Taking a few months to relearn their most influential songs, the next stream of releases coming out look to be Cover EPs such as this one, Idioms Vol. 1.

The music itself is a huge change of pace for Tera Melos as a whole. Gone is the crazy spastic, jazz like drumming found on their previous albums. Gone is the crazy tapping frenzy that guitarist Nick Reinhart and bassist Nathan Latona flung at your ears at a million miles per hour. We are greeted with toned down technicality, a flurry of effects, and most surprisingly, vocals. Tera Melos never really used vocals. First a few undecipherable lines on their debut LP, and then an added conclusion of vocals found on their split EP with "By The End of Tonight." Here the vocals are not used as another layer, but more as the fronting force. Nick's vocals are put through a lot of effects and such throughout the EP, and give the EP a more chilled-out feel. The guitar and bass are toned down from the aggressive and spastic nature found on their previous recordings. No more crazy time-signature shifts, jazz-style drumming. The one thing that still remains from previous recordings is the high use of sampling. Halfway through most of the songs everything will cut out and sample will cut over carrying the song over to it's next part. The guitars are much more simple and Nick relies on pulling his strings more than any other technique he has used. The bass is more groovy then pounding and the drums rely more on simplicity and substitute a few fills in here and there.

The covers themselves are very well done and more importantly, they're loads of fun. I can't imagine someone staying depressed through the EPs 7 minute 56 second play time. The songs are happy, bouncy and upbeat. It's quite evident throughout the whole playtime that everyone in the band was having a lot of fun recording the songs that they know, love and grew up with. The songs flow through in a fantastic way that allow the EP to flow as smooth as a slip n' slide. For one, I'm happy for this new transition in Tera Melos' writing process. It seems that they have completely dropped what had made them original in the first place, to progress into a different realm of song writing and techniques. If they actually do decide to change their sound completely, only time will be able to tell us that. But enough with this rambling, if you're a fan of fun, I suggest joining their mailing list and downloading this free EP. Or just wait for some little shit to upload it onto a torrent site (that's how they feel about downloading.)

Now only if Tera Melos happened to do a Godspeed You! Black Emperor cover.

Black Moth Super Rainbow - Eating Us (2009)

01. Born On A Day The Sun Didn’t Rise
02. Dark Bubbles
03. Twin Of Myself
04. Gold Splatter
05. Iron Lemonade
06. Tooth Decay
07. Fields Are Breathing
08. Smile The Day After Today
09. The Sticky
10. Bubblegum Animals
11. American Face Dust

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania’s psych-pop outfit “poised to break out this year” (Rolling Stone) Black Moth Super Rainbow have a special treat for Record Store Day vinyl aficionados.

On April 18, 2009, Graveface Records will release the ‘Born On A Day’ 7-inch, which comes with two versions of the eerie, swirling psychedelic first single “Born on a Day the Sun Didn’t Rise”‘Eating Us’ (Graveface 5/26) on 7-inch orange/red vinyl in a limited edition of just 500 copies. from their forthcoming album

Side A is the album version, and Side B is a soft, stripped-down version recorded with a banjo and sticky electro beats, showcasing the before and after entailed in recording their first studio album with acclaimed producer Dave Fridmann (The Flaming Lips, MGMT, Weezer) at Tarbox Road Studios. Graveface is also offering “Born On A Day the Sun Didn’t Rise” as an MP3 download for fans to hear the fully fleshed-out BMSR.

Fridmann takes Black Moth Super Rainbow’s adventurous sound to new sonic heights by replacing the spliced electro beats used in their previous recordings with D.Kyler’s booming, hip-hop styled live drums, cranking up the undulating bass guitar to blend seamlessly with the crunchy beats, and making frontman Tobacco’s vocoder lush and up front, creating a creepy and angelic sound that bridges human voice and machine. Fridmann keeps the candy-coated sticky textures created with vintage synths, guitars and freaked-out analog effects for which the group has become known and loved.

‘Eating Us’ follows the critically praised 2007 ‘Dandelion Gum’ (Graveface). The group Blender described as “the missing link between Daft Punk’s cosmic kitsch and the wistful bliss of ‘Strawberry Fields Forever” is poised to make a major impression on new fans in 2009.

Graveface Records has set up a reserve list on their website where fans can sign up to ensure they receive the full deluxe CD of ‘Eating Us,’ featuring a 16-page art booklet and hairy summer jewel case jacket limited to 2,000 copies.

As previously announced, Black Moth Super Rainbow, who have previously toured with Flaming Lips and Aesop Rock, will take their cocktail of visual and aural oddness on the road this summer supporting ‘Eating Us.’ Daydreamers School of Seven Bells co-headline.

Friday, April 17, 2009

LoveLikeFire - Tear Ourselves Away (2009)

1. William
2. From A Tower
3. Crows Feet
4. Signs
5. Ive Pissed Off My Friends
6. Good Judgement
7. Boredom
8. My Left Eye
9. Far From Home
10. Stand In Your Shoes
11. Everything Must Settle

Million Dollar Lips-Lust (2009)

01. Single Round
02. Golden Pearl 
03. Under Dancer (Feat. Danny Mommens) 
04. Modern Dream 
05. Always The Pain 
06. Lets Dance 
07. The Colourful Me 
08. About To Break 
09. The One To Blame 
10. All She Wants 
11. Moving On (To The Other Side)

This is Million Dollar Lips debut record. The album of the band from Sesimbra contains 11 tracks, where the electro pop melts with glam and pieces of the sharpest lust. It was produced by Marc Requille.
Enjoy it and support the band! -

Halloween, Alaska - Champagne Downtown (2009)

01. Hot Pink 
02. In Order 
03. Ends
04. Gone with the Wind 
05. Hollywood Sign 
06. Champagne Downtown 
07. Un-American 
08. Be a Man 
09. Hurry Up 
10. Knights of Columbus 

Having earned widespread acclaim for its atmospheric brand of synth-driven indie, "CHAMPAGNE DOWNTOWN" sees Halloween, Alaska crafting its most distinctive and disarming set to date. Songs such as "In Order" and "Gone With The Wind" are complex and thoughtful, rich with simmering textures and literate lyricism. Melding an expansive range of inventive sounds with anthemic indie-rock hooks, "CHAMPAGNE DOWNTOWN" straddles the boundary between the electronic and the organic to create a novel rethink of what pop music can mean in a new millennium. Halloween, Alaska is comprised of James Diers (voice, keyboards, guitar), Matthew Friesen (bass, sampler), Jacob Hanson (guitar, keyboards, voice), and David King (acoustic and electronic drums)- the latter also serving as the enigmatic drummer with modernist jazz giants, The Bad Plus. Though founding keyboardist/programmer Ev has since left the official touring line-up, he remains on board for recording and assorted sound manipulation. "CHAMPAGNE DOWNTOWN" was recorded by Ev and mixed by Grammy Award-winning engineer Tchad Blake (Peter Gabriel, American Music Club, Latin Playboys).

Halloween, Alaska came together in 2002, encompassing members of such esteemed local outfits as Love-cars, 12RODS, and Happy Apple. The band self-released its eponymous debut in 2004, drawing critical praise and nationwide exposure when two tracks - "Des Moines" and "All The Arms Around You" - were featured on the Fox series, The O.C. Popular demand saw "HALLOWEEN, ALASKA" reissued the following year by East Side Digital, prompting a further flood of accolades. 

"Halloween, Alaska's emotive verve and electro-organic poise is so accomplished, you'd think you'd got your hands on The Blue Nile's mislaid comeback album," declared MOJO in it four-starred rave. "Melancholy stains every measured note, but HA reside slap-bang in the heart of America's Midwest, and the atmosphere of low, distant horizons and isolation is palpable." "Mesmerizing stuff," hailed the Sunday Times , while the Twin Cities' own City Pages noted that "the album drowns the ears in alien lullabies, though Diers's candid lyrics about living-room clutter make everyday things just as song-worthy as these strange soundscapes...King combines his traditional drum kit with electronic pads that sound just as they should - beautifully artificial."

That same year also saw the release of Halloween, Alaska's sophomore outing, "TOO TALL TO HIDE." The album - which includes a striking rethink of LL Cool J's classic "I Can't Live Without My Radio" - also reaped copious critical hosannas. "Having laid out a defining blend of lush electronica and spare, somber emo-rock on its debut," wrote The Onion AV Club , "this time out the foursome explores the territory further - it's soaring and introspective by turns." "It displays all the charms of this band," affirmed Pulse , "sentimentality tempered by a wink and masterful musicianship uncluttered by virtuoso-style wankery." -

Flairs-Sweat Symphony (2009)

01 Superlife 
02 Radio 
03 Whamma Gonna Do 
04 Better Than Prince 
05 French Cowboy 
06 Truckers Delight 
07 R.E Balls 
08 Neighbourwatch 
09 Square Boy 
10 Golden Years

Tiga - Ciao! (2009)

01. Beep Beep Beep
02. Mind Dimension
03. Shoes
04. What You Need
05. Luxury
06. Sex O'Clock
07. Overtime
08. Turn the Night On
09. Speak, Memory
10. Gentle Giant
11. Love Don't Dance Here Anymore

The producer has reportedly split the difference between "club songs and real songs" by working with the likes of Soulwax, James Murphy, Jesper Dahlb├Ąck and Gonzales—an artist perhaps best known for his work behind the scenes with indie darling Feist. Soulwax and Dahlb├Ąck, as you might imagine, have a lot to do with the club-centric tunes like "Beep Beep Beep," "Mind Dimension" and "What You Need." And Gonzales and Murphy help out with things like "Luxury" and "Gentle Giant," which see Tiga airing out some of his insecurities to the world at large. That said, as with many Tiga records, there's lots of mixing and matching, meaning the line between "club" and "real" blurs quite often—as on the lengthy closer "Love Don't Dance Here Anymore," which contains a two-minute piano ballad intro before transforming into a Cowley-esque disco groover.