In the blogs…

I haven’t done this in a while…here’s what’s going on in blogs of a different color:

m3 online got into some shit for hosting Thom Yorke files, and now they’re going on hiatus until July. The first of two final posts is a sweet Guillemots contest! Wish ‘em well and win some free stuff.

Good Hodgkins continues his Desdemona preview with a nice post on Enon.

Noise for Toaster is one of my new favorite reads….this is also a consolation link because apparently my tall frame obstructed her view at the TnT/CWK show in Boston…(my self-indulgence reminds me that I could see perfectly fine, teeheehee)

Take Your Medicine is now Nothing But Green Lights. Pill poppers and red lights take notice.

Props to fellow beantown bloggers Bradley’s Almanac and rbally… ok, ok, so I’m not really from Boston, I’m from Providence…but that’s where I go to shows, and South Station is where I crash when I miss the train after those shows. Word up to the red line.

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Cursive‘s wicked new, cello-less album Happy Hollow has gone the way of so many great albums before theirs, and has leaked. It’s inevitable, it’s a part of the “putting out a record” thing, and it’s just something you’ve got to accept. Just because a few hundred hipsters download it doesn’t mean a hundred thousand won’t buy it. Anyway, after my first listen, I can’t help not remembering any of the songs individually…except for one:

[MP3] CursiveBig Bang
After listening to Happy Hollow, I was a little disappointed… not because it isn’t good, because it is, but because it’s what I would have expected them to do. Each song has a common sound, there are no surprises, nothing that made my heart pound the way “Staying Alive” does. I think it’s a lack of abstraction and a more finely tweaked, mastered sound. They’ve got a formula for this record, and while it’s good, and it’ll make for a pretty fantastic concert, it’s just not what the new Cursive record should have sounded like. I expected to be blown out of the water, not just gently rocked by equidistant waves of the same nature.

I’m sure after more listens I’ll be cured of my “new album woes,”…but I don’t think it should take forced listening. TUO had me at the beginning of every song. Maybe I’m just being too picky and critical, but hey, that’s what I’m here for.

(Edit: After numerous listens, I’ll take back some of what I said. Happy Hollow is going to be huge. BUT, I still don’t think it’s anywhere near TUO caliber.)

Buy some of their stuff, including the new single, here
Find more MP3s and whatnot here

Bonus MP3:

[MP3] CursiveStaying Alive
Yeah…that’s what I’m talking about…

Alright, I wasn’t originally going to post on this gargantuan list that Paste Magazine is issuing for their June/July mag but I’ve read it 3874 times on various forums, blogs, and web pages inspiring lots and lots of debate. That’s the main reason I didn’t really want to post anything about it, but hey, we love a good ole’ fashioned musical fury, eh? I am still debating if they’re basing this list solely off lyrics or the entire composition. Regardless, there are some things that I don’t (at all) agree with but this a fairly accurate list of the best living songwriters. Have a look-see:

Paste Magazine’s Top 100 Living Songwriters

1. Bob Dylan
2. Neil Young
3. Bruce Springsteen
4. Waits/Brennan
5. Paul McCartney
6. Leonard Cohen
7. Brian Wilson
8. Elvis Costello
9. Joni Mitchell
10. Prince

11. Randy Newman
12. Jagger/Richards
13. Paul Simon
14. Stevie Wonder
15. Willie Nelson
16. David Bowie
17. Holland/Dozier/Holland
18. U2
19. Patty Griffin
20. Van Morrison
21. Lou Reed
22. Lucinda Williams
23. John/Taupin
24. Jeff Tweedy
25. Chuck Berry
26. R.E.M.
27. Radiohead
28. Robbie Robertson
29. Tom Petty
30. John Prine
31. Carole King
32. Leiber/Stoller
33. Pete Townshend
34. John Fogerty
35. Steve Earle
36. Beck
37. Smokey Robinson
38. Kris Kristofferson
39. Led Zeppelin
40. Bacharach/David
41. Ray Davies
42. Loretta Lynn
43. Ryan Adams
44. Al Green
45. Jackson Browne
46. David Byrne
47. Sufjan Stevens
48. Welch/Rawlings
49. Cat Stevens
50. Public Enemy
51. Penn/Oldham
52. Paul Westerberg
53. James Taylor
54. Aimee Mann
55. Dolly Parton
56. James Brown
57. Morrissey
58. Sly Stone
59. Jack White
60. Jimmy Webb
61. John Hiatt
62. Sting
63. Richard Thompson
64. Andy Partridge
65. Bill Mallonee
66. Charles Thompson
67. Conor Oberst
68. Allen Toussaint
69. Merle Haggard
70. Alex Chilton
71. Vic Chesnutt
72. Michael Jackson
73. Julie Miller
74. Over the Rhine
75. Ron Sexsmith
76. Will Oldham
77. Bruce Cockburn
78. Robert Pollard
79. Stephen Malkmus
80. Pink Floyd
81. The Flaming Lips
82. John Darnielle
83. Fleetwood Mac
84. They Might Be Giants
85. David Bazan
86. Sam Beam
87. Lyle Lovett
88. Parliament
89. Victoria Williams
90. Nick Cave
91. Drive-By Truckers
92. Alejandro Escovedo
93. Joseph Arthur
94. Sam Phillips
95. Patti Smith
96. Jimmy Cliff
97. Josh Ritter
98. Jay Farrar
99. Outkast
100. T Bone Burnett

Here is the biggest question I have for Paste: Is Billy Joel dead or just that awful of a songwriter that he can’t be listed in the Top 100? He’s the Piano Man for Christ’s sake!! What about Donovan!?! Jeff Mangum? Eddie Vedder? Brian Eno? Pink Floyd at #80? Sufjan so high up and beating out Cat Stevens?

I like the list alright, I’m just pissed they left out Billy Joel… I figure you guys will have enough rage about this list in your comments to make The Hulk jealous.

so this promo ended up in my mailbox, like any other promo, except it was buzzing…vibrating, if you will. so, i popped it in my computer, and the speakers started vibrating (to my surprise, i mean, how the hell does sound work anyway?)…and then my face started vibrating, until a smirk suddenly “popped” (pop!) on my face…and then my hand started vibrating, fingers, toes, nostrils, eyelashes, elbows, cuticles, testicles, follicles, bicycles– even my left hand! and legs! holy crap, i was floating! i could see everything (almost)! but it didn’t stop!! i started to sweat, terrified! my head…fucking “popped” (pop!) like a balloon, and i fell back down, down, really far down….and i opened my eyes, only they weren’t my eyes at all…they were the palms of my hands. in one was a vile of blood with a cork cap labeled “silence.” this was in the other hand:

[MP3] The Foundry Field RecordingsWarning Raids Over Kiev

More info.
More MP3s.
More BUY IT.

Here is a band, by looks, that surprised me. I mean, a few of their publicity shots, promos, etc. make them out to be some form of a Fall Out Boy type of a band. Don’t get me wrong, I like to hear Dance Dance every other millenia or so but those “types” of bands only seem to entertain for awhile and then fade.

Proving to the skeptics (me) and the rest of the world that they’re not fading, Brandtson have been around for a good while with a handfull of albums and a ton of touring under their belts. They’re newest release, Hello, Control is terrific and sounds like it was recorded with far more energy than their past releases. Gearing further away from their once punky-pop roots and more towards indie-pop, Brandtson is causing some seismic disturbances in the musical realm. Sure, there are still some misses on their latest work but there are far more (danceable, I might add) hits to outweigh the duds.

[MP3] BrandtsonEarthquakes and Sharks (This song is too catchy)
[MP3] BrandtsonHere We Go
[MP3] BrandtsonNobody Dances Anymore

The guitar riff in Earthquake and Sharks reminded me a lot of Modest Mouse, for some reason and Nobody Dances Anymore is a great song, because I don’t know how many parties I’ve been to where people are terrified to start dancing. Abortion? Gay marriage? I appreciate Brandtson tackling the real issues head on. Be sure to catch them on their national tour! I’m pretty sure they want to be your MySpace friend, though I’m only guessing, and would also love for you to buy their new album.