Monday, June 28, 2004

So this is what the volume knob's for!

The Mountain Goats - Dance Music (Peel Session, 4/28/04) This is a song that John Darnielle, better known as the Mountain Goats has been touring quite a bit lately, and is from an upcoming album. Easily the best Mountain Goats song I've heard since "Oceanographers Choice" off of Tallahassee. This is a Peel session, which means that it sounds more stripped down than the inevitable studio vision - the presence of piano, (and I THINK a bit of bass) indicates this song will have a more fleshed out album edition, and will in fact be downright dancable. As it is, the song is classic Darnielle heartbreak, the story of a young kid escaping his squabbling parents with retreat into a world of loud dance music. Great stuff.

[Buy Mountain Goats albums from!]

Only one song today, because the evening has become unexpectedly caught up by the rush of brainstorm and arrangement in the setting up of a new idea. Everyone, I invite you to go check out Memos to Ourselves, a new AudioBlog for the world to post to. For more of an explanation, check out the initial post, by myself. So, Please, hop on over there, make a phone call and say something. I don't know if this will turn out the way I imagine it being able to turn out, but the only way to know is to try it, right? So hop on over, and help get things rolling, and tell all your friends too.

I'm Qualified to Satisy you...

The Dirtbombs - I'm Qualified to Satisfy You - Recipe for a party: 1 part classic motown songwriting, 1 part detroit punk god vocals, 2 parts drums, 2 parts bass, 7 parts rock the fuck out. The Dirtbombs are a brainchild of ex-Gories lead singer Mick Collins. Bringing in a pair of drummers, and a pair of bassists to back him up, on 2001's breakout album, Ultraglide in Black Collins and company stormed their way through a pile of classic covers, taking classic motown soul, and fusing it with the rightous anger of it's dark mirror in detroit garage punk. On this cover of the Barry White classic, collins displays an impressive range rarely hinted at in his Gories days, and while he's no Barry White (and who could ever be), there's somthing strangely captivating about his halfway there, dispassionate, but utterly enthralled vocal performance here.

The Dirtbombs - Underdog - from Barry White's balladeering to Sly and the Family Stone's anthem of race, prejudice, and struggle, here transformed from it's soul roots into a hard driving rocker that shows the Dirtbombs are the only band in Detroit that seems to get what it was that made the MC5 so very very unique and fantastic. The vocal harmonies on this track are so perfectly placed, and weave in and around the dueling basslines so well, it's hard not to get caught up and start cheering.

The Dirtbombs - Livin' for the City - and to finish things off, how can you go wrong with a dash of Stevie Wonder? While this just CAN NOT compare to the genius of the original, a downright epic, that careens between genres, accents, vocal styles, languages, and is probably the finest moment of Stevie Wonder's career. But, outside of that context, the Dirtbombs have managed to put together a damn great song of their own. The song is thoroughly transformed and consumed here. Ownership is taken, and for all it's inability to compare to the original, it's still probably the best cover out there. It's a testament to the Dirtbombs that they even managed it. Hell, even Ray Charles fucked this one up. And the less said about the Turners version, the better.

[Buy Ultraglide in Black from!]

Thursday, June 24, 2004

In the beginning there were Seamen.

Mp3's removed at the request of Saddle Creek. Sorry guys.

The Faint have a new album. It's entitled Wet from Birth, and is decidedly predictable in it's subject matter, completing the trilogy of Sex and Death and Birth laid out in their previous two albums. The new album has a healthy dose of the Faint refining and perfecting the sound thats carried them this far, and is quite excellent, but it also features a few tracks that break new sonic ground for the band,

The Faint - Desperate Guys - It's got the classic deeply warped bass synths and shuffling drum loops that make the Faint the Faint. But, where Danse Macabre introduced guitars as a punctuating melodic element, here the Faint bring in violins. It gives the song a sense of drama, and of tension that fits for the opening of an album which is, essentially, about creation from nothingness. The instrumental drumbreak at the end is, in particular, classic Faint.

The Faint - Drop Kick the Punks - But like I said, this album is probably the most diverse the Faint have ever recorded, as is evident in this number. Guitar driven, with very little synth, and what sounds like live drums, the song is built around a spiky, stutterring guitar riff and a pissed off gang vocal. It seems as if the Faint have been working backwards, from the completely electronic sound of Blank Wave to the industrialesque darkwave of Danse Macabre, to this, more punk infused number that recalls a hybrid of Talking Heads, and Nine Inch Nails.

The Faint - Southern Belles in London Sing - I had been of the opinion that Drop Kick the Punks was the best track on the album on my first few listens this morning. Then I paid more attention to this song and realized that, more than any other track on the album, it is utterly and completely different from anything the Faint have ever done. Driven primarily by a string section, and with a real sense of melody that in general is not the Faints strong point, the song manages to build to a (relatively speaking - this is the Faint here) balladesque level of emotion. And when the girls from Azure Ray kick in on the backing vocals - just lovely. Never thought I'd say that about a Faint song.

[Buy albums by The Faint from!]

and Pssst... do yerselves a favor, and track down Paranoiattack. I decided to stay away from the politicks, but it's probably the best "classic Faint" song on the album.

Wednesday, June 23, 2004

Are you stickin' 'round to see what happens?

So, I'm still on a political kick. What can I say, I'm gearing up for a night of Dance Party Politics thats a month distant (Ted Leo & Radio 4 at the Downtown in Farmingdale, Long Island. It's close to where I work at least, if not where I live.)

So. Today, the best political ska band out there today, and one thats been around for ages. Namely, the Slackers.

Seems they aren't too happy with Mssr. Bush, and have decided to record not just a song but a whole EP devoted to the takedown of an International War Criminal. Incidentally, thats the title of the EP.

The Slackers - International War Criminal - This is classic Slackers. Upbeat, even as it screams despair, full of rhythym and bounce and energy. They've been touring the shit out of this one, and with good reason. It's a great song.

The Slackers - Keep it Simple But the message is far more effective here. A simple song about trust, honesty, life and death. It works on levels both political and personal. A song with a message that doesn't use it as a blunt instrument. Whoda thunkit?

[Buy the War Criminal EP at!]

But the Slackers could never match the likes of the International Noise Conspiracy for Polemic.

The (International) Noise Conspiracy - Communist Moon - the Noise Conspiracy (led by Denis Lyczen, formerly of Refused) Are not concerned with the day to day of politics per se. They are far more interested in revolution. They've signed to American Records recently, and their newest album, Armed Love from which this track is taken, was produced by Rick Rubin. The result is a much stronger pop sheen over the Noise Conspiracy's mod revival style, socialist love songs. It works here, as Denis howls "Let's all share our dreams under a communist moon..." The proletariat never sounded so sexy.
[Buy A New Morning, Changing Weather at!]

SUPERSPECIALBONUS MP3! Adam Sandler - Secret - For those sick of the politicking going on here, a little bonus. I make no endorsement of the quality of this track, I merely offer it as a curiosity. So. Adam Sandler has a new album. This is the single. It is an Electronic/Dance track. I cannot tell you the subject matter as, as the title lays out, it is a secret. However, I can say that the line "I'm wearing my pants extra low tonight" is worth a chuckle and deserves to be sampled somewhere or something.

Monday, June 21, 2004

Sorry about no update last Friday. Blogger broke. I may also disappear without warning at some point this week as I am, at the moment, on standby for Jury Duty.

The Robbers on High Street - Hot Sluts (Say I Love You) - The Robbers on High Street sound, for the life of me, like nothing so much as the fusion of Spoon's spikey, gritty pop hooks with an NYC Dancepunk/garage sensibility. With killer Pianos, a healthy store of Television riffs, and a decidingly convincing declaration from vocalist Ben Trokan to "Let Your Body Move." These guys have been opening for the Wrens recently, and I just got my hands on this, their debut EP, [i]Fine Lines[/i]. I'm REALLY excited to see what they do with a full length. Also check out Night at Star Castle over on the label site.

[Buy the Fine Lines EP from!]

The Realistics - Should've Known - I first saw the Realistics years ago, when they opened for Joe Strummer during his 5 night residency at St. Annes Warehouse in Brooklyn, NY. At the time, I wasn't terribly impressed. Then, a while back, the Realistics suddenly became a "buzz band." For a while, I avoided it, but something nagged me. Mainly because the Realistics I had seen, weren't only not in my mind, worthy of buzz, but because they also seemed to have a sound that in no way fit in with what current buzz bands were. But now, now I understand. The Realistics have become something else entirely, and nothing shows it quite so much as this song from their debut album. Glammed out like the Scissor Sisters, but without the "Ironic-wink-and-laugh-at-the-silliness-of-all-this" vibe, this song is carried by a bubbly little synth melody and white-boy-soul vocals (in contrast to the all too trendy white-boy-funk). A fantastic song from a band that seems to have come to the realization of just what they were meant to do.

See ya tomorrow!

Thursday, June 17, 2004

Non-Profit is another word for "HUG ME! I'M LONELY!"

Todays all about da Anticon. A collective of San Fran by way of Maine, NH, and Minneapolis MC's Who are simultaneously doing some beautifully old school and thoroughly groundbreaking shit, and aren't scared to be political. I was going to post a new Beastie Boys track today, but that would be boring. Do yourselves a favor though, and go check out "An Open Letter to NYC" anywhere you can track it down. The rest of the album is okay, but not great. But the Boys love letter to the city we both call home is a fantastic song.

We'll start with the Non-Prophets, a trio who are not strictly members of Anticon, but who run with the same crowd, and bring it like it's 1992. They're fronted by Sage Francis, who you may have heard of.

The Non-Prophets - Xaul Zan's Heart - the title of todays entry is taken from the intro to this track, and first off, it's damn true. Now to the track itself - a song from the perspective of one of Francis's alter ego's, this is a hysterical celebration of the pimp life as an actual pimp life, (I'm not hard on women, I put my hard-on on women!) of mysoginy, rape and pedophilia. It's tongue in cheek, funny as hell, and will make you take a step back and wonder what the fuck you're laughing at.

The Non-Prophets - Damage - I go to Fugazi shows requesting Minor Threat songs. - This song, and more specifically, this line was my introduction to Sage Francis. I felt immediately upon seeing the lyric that I simply HAD to track down the MC that has the skills and the breadth to name drop not just Fugazi but Minor Threat. Overloaded with Francis's classic punchline/personal style, this song is a manifesto for the Non-Prophets. Francis came up out of a series of battle rap championships, and it shows here. The rhymes flow perfectly, and the tone is that perfect combination of arrogancce and spite that allows a track to be completely and totally meant smash another MC's dreams without ever even considering the idea of actually addressing the opponent in person. Other MC's are beneath the mighty Sage Francis's time.

Also, do yourselves a favor and track down the song The Cure. Most fantastic.

[Buy "Hope" by the Non-Prophets from!]

Passage - The Unspectacular White Boy Slave Song - Passage, a proper Anticon member, has a totally different, and totally unique take on this. I hate to quote press-kit type stuff, but I couldn't say this better if I tried. In short, Passage plays "electro-new-wave-industrialfolk-hospital-waiting-room hope-hop that you can dance or die to." In other words, an aesthetic drawn as much, if not more from the indie rock world as from the Hip Hop world. In general, Passage operates in 2 modes. One is a lo-fi, rap with acoustic guitar combo that is at once haunting, unsettling, and unspeakably daring. The Unspectacular White Boy Slave Song operates in the other mode, opening with Passage's typical singsongey rhymes over an electro beat. The chorus though, is catchy as hell. Utterly infectious and weird. Sadly, I just don't have the answer to his question.

Passage - Poem2thehospital - a dreamy, bouncy ditty that continues to push things forward with Passage's unique, poetic style. This song more than any other really shows off his strength and his uniqueness as an MC. Quite simply, rather than declaring, he sings. And not sings as in singing the songs hook. No. Passagee sings whole songs. His raps have a definite sense of melodocism to them that so many lack. Passage is pushing things forward. I can't help but wonder where he's headed next.

Listen to more MP3's by Passage and the rest of the Anticon collective at their website. Especially The Unstrung Harp.

[Buy "Forcefield Kids" by Passage at!]

More Politicks tomorrow. Stay tuned.

And remember, the title of this entry is very true. This is a Non-Profit blog, and I work in a Non-Profit organization. I'm very non-profit. How about a hug? Or at least a comment?

Tuesday, June 15, 2004

I'm Back! This is how it's gonna be.

Okay, first things first, big thanks to Cameron for holding down the fort while I was away in Chi-Town recieving indoctrination training for my new gig as an organizer. No, I will not rearrange your closet and set your files in order. I organize people. Y'know, the political/community kind of organizer. I's'a be talkin to the old peoples about all their drugs for the next few months.

So, in honor of said indoctrination, it's time to get political and shit, all week long.

Radio 4 - The Death of American Radio So, Radio 4 are the best band in NYC that noone outside of the city seems to have heard of. They're probably my favorite local band that never gets any respect. Their last album, Gotham, is probably my favorite album of the decade to date. It's the album that got me interested in Teaching The Indie Kids to Dance in the first place. So of course, I was mega-excited when their new album, The Stealing of a Nation leaked this week. This is probably the most instantly accessible track, filled with Devo-esque squonks, a killer bassline, and posssibly the first truly catchy song about radio deregulation and the evils of Clear Channel. (Sorry, Eric Idle's recent FCC song and NOFX's old "Dinosaurs will Die" just don't match up.)

Radio 4 - (Give Me All of Your) Money This however, is the albums definite winner. Ignore the somewhat cliched "We are electronic!" intro. Radio 4 should know better. They are, as a rule, at their best in an orgy of cowbells and congas and killer basslines and guitar hooks straight out of the Gang of Four/PIL playbook. But here, they push out and, with a dash of Primal Scream, manage to record one of the catchiest songs they've ever put out. I'm not terribly happy or impressed with the albums general direction (more electronics, less disco, less originality sadly), but when it hits, it's home runs all the way, as these two tracks prove. This is the essence of a driving song. It needs to be played, very loudly, cruising down a highway at well over the speed limit to be truly appreciated methinks. Definite single material.

Radio 4 - Struggle And now, because I've talked up Gotham and I'm guessing most haven't heard it, as it flew under the radar a few years back, hitting before dancepunk became big enough for everyone to snap up everything, the albums best track. To me, this has everything that makes Radio 4 great. The percussion, the guitars, the politics, the Cowbell! (Thank you Christopher Walken.) The Ideas of the Ruling Class / Should not be / the Ruling Ideas. Get behind the Struggle! Right Now!

[Buy Gotham! at!]

And, small random grousing. I've noted much crediting of an NPR piece for the term MP3J. While I won't claim to have come up with the term, as I'm SURE I heard it somewhere before I picked it up, I've been using it since this humble blog went live in February. I'm not bitter. Not at all.

Sunday, June 13, 2004

Atom and His Package are dead, long live Atom and his Package

OK, so this is my last post on TTIKTDA! Keith will resume normal posting of awesome mp3s ASAP. Hope you enjoyed everything I posted (thanks Laura for your converting-files-to-MP3s-skillz). Oh, also, Keith said he'd been getting a lot of mail regarding my posts... There seems to be a tad of confusion regarding the fact that I AM NOT KEITH, THE OWNER/MAIN HONCHO DUDE OF TTIKTDA. I didn't do anything before the Polyphonics post, and probably won't contribute again in the near future (unless Keith wants me to, that is). if you have anything you want me to know regarding my posts, please email me at I know I should have probably made this a tad clearer days ago, but whatever. Hurrah!

So, the goods:

When Adam Goren of Atom and His Package announced that he was hanging up the music sequencer and retiring from the business of writing awesome songs about random shit with cheezy casio beats, I'm pretty sure the entire foundation of modern society crumbled to the ground. No more songs about the metric system. No more songs about falling in love with disembodied heads. No more singing happy birthday to Ralph, even though he's fucking disgusting.

But, as a tail-end farewell, Atom has released his very last show as a two-disc CD/DVD on Hopeless Records! REJOICE!

OK, but once again, a little warning from the awesome people here at TTIKTDA: these are for SAMPLE PURPOSES ONLY! Atom has had a rough year, and is trying to launch his new (totally serious?) band, Armalite. So if you enjoy the tracks below, purchase the new live album at the Hopeless Records Online Store (Dude, $10. Support your local Philly electro hardcore kid!)

I was lucky enough to interview Atom on what turned out to be his very last tour last year. The devotion of his fans is really, really something to witness. Kind of like Dashboard Confessional, only you don't want to bash them in the head with a crowbar. Here are four excerpts of the live album/DVD. It takes a tad of explaining for each, so bear with me. Not everyone may enjoy them but I think they're total genius.

AAHP - Anarchy Means I Litter
This song is about how a few stupid punk rock kids can ruin things for awesome punk rock kids, by doing things which include, but are not limited to: littering (duh), stealing from record stores, calling people names, and physical violence. The song includes what may be Atom's most infectious chorus.

AAHP - Hats off to Halford
A tribute to Rob Halford of Judas Priest, and more specifically his being a gay metal dude. There's a really cool version on the Atom site which a commentary by Rob on a German radio station.

AAHP - If You Own The Washington Redskins, You're a Cock
In which Atom denounces teams like the Cleveland Indians and the Washington Redskins of having totally racist and offensive names.

AAHP - Punk Rock Academy
Atom's theme song. "I had a dream when I was in high school/that I attended Punk Rock Academy/and no one made fun of me!" Didn't we all. He closes most of his shows with this song ("Thank you, Philadelphia!"). A classic.

I have yet to hear Armalite, but if anyone has any mp3s or anything, email me!

And now, for the last, mega-rushed installment of That Charming Man: Morrissey Throughout The Ages! Like, really, really rushed.

Used To Be A Sweet Boy: The Vauxhall And I era, 1994 to (arguably) 1996 or thereabouts.
Great album. Everyone loves it. Dark, because Moz was going through loads of shit at the time. Best track is "The More You Ignore Me, The Closer I Get".

Morrissey - The More You Ignore Me, The Closer I Get

This song is great. Sad. Remorseful. Pathetic. Touching. Morrissey.

Fast forward to... NOW! Yes, as stated earlier, I ain't going near Southpaw or Maladjusted. They're pretty bad. There are still a feredeemingle songs, such as "Boy Racer" and "Alma Maters", but unless you're a hardcore fan, don't even go there. Just a word of advice.


Think Of Someone You Physically Admire: The You Are The Quarry era, 2004 - ?
If you don't own this album, shame on you! It's the best since Your Arsenal (in my humble opinion). Even better than YA in many respects.

So why am I posting a B-Side? Because it should have been on the album, that's why! "The Never Played Symphonies" would be right at home on Viva Hate, which makes you nostalgic and excited at the same time. "You were one you knew you were one/And you slid right through my fingers/No not literally but metaphorically"? Fucking hell.

Morrissey - The Never Played Symphonies

Nothing to even say on this. It's just to perfect.

Ok, sorry that was mega-rushed, but you know how things go, you really want to make a gorgeous update and you look up and it's 10:21pm and you still have 5 million things to do before Monday. I'm sure you'll understand.

So, thus ends Cameron's stay at TTIKTDA! Check back very, very son, because Keith will be back with youregularar programming. As for myself, I reside at Garage Dream, so come on down and say hi sometime. Thanks for the laughs (or something?)!

Friday, June 11, 2004

TTIKTDA Brit-Pack, vol. 3: The Conclusion

OK, it's 1a.m. and I'm as tired as a Linkin Park single, so I'll make this snappy. This is the last installment of TTIKTDA's Brit-Pack. I hope you've all enjoyed it! There are millions of bands I'd never have the time or energy to post MP3's of, so your only option at this point is to keep your eyes and ears wide open for incoming musical talent. Let's go:

The Zutons - You Will, You Won't
For some reason, I could only find this SUPER LAME RADIO RIP of this awesome Zutons song (die, LimeWire... die...), but it'll have to do. The sheer, balls-out furious RAWK of the track is still pretty evident. Apparently, this is "shroomadelica", a "new wave" that's taking Britain "by storm", that NME totally "made up", "from scratch". The song oozes cool though.

Keane - Bend and Break
The only reason I paid any attention to Keane at first was because they kept Morrissey's new album out of the #1 British chart spot for two full weeks. "This will not do!", I cried, taking to the streets in protest. Then I realized no one cared and retired to my closet to cry. Once I came to, I bought Keane's debut album, Hopes and Fears out of curiosity (and an upcoming gig at Knitting Factory), and fell in love. "Bend and Break" is by far the best track on the LP. WARNING: This ain't for the faint of heart. It's poppy, and I mean way poppy.

Dogs Die in Hot Cars - Pastimes & Lifestyles
One day, my addiction to import singles will ruin me, and I will spend the rest of my days huddled in some little corner of a misty, dark alleyway near a Tower Records, mumbling to myself about how I once dreamed I'd have the complete Belle and Sebastian singles collection. Until then, I will have Dogs Die In Hot Cars' Man Bites Man E.P., which "Pastimes & Lifestyles" is taken from. Think Frankie Goes to Hollywood meets XTC, then David Byrne crashes their party and shoots everyone.

Yeah, so Kill Uncle wasn't all that fantastic, but fortunately, Moz regained his senses and made what is widely considered to be his best work to date, the utterly exquisite Your Arsenal.

You're Going To Need Someone On Your Side: The Your Arsenal era, 1992 - 1994
I didn't want to post another lead single, but just so you know, "We Hate It When Our Friends Become Sucessful" is the best song on this album, and perhaps, just perhaps, the best song Morrissey has ever recorded, solo. But since I'm a sucker for great one-liners, here's the second-best: "Your The One For Me, Fatty".

Morrissey - You're The One For Me Fatty

I lack the stamina to go on and on for pages and pages about how awesome this album is, so please forgive me. I invite you to just listen and be struck by the sheer awesomeness. Tune in tomorrow, same Moz-time, same Moz-place...

Wednesday, June 09, 2004

TTIKTDA Brit-Pack, vol. 2

Day two of the Brit Band marathon here at TTIKTDA.

Bloc Party - She's Hearing Voices
I will stand by my guns in front of the onslaught of "OMG YOU'RE SO WRONG" comments and say: Bloc Party are the British TV on the Radio. My new life goal is to get them all onstage at the same time and watch them write the greatest multi-ethnic prog-dance song of all time. It would be like the entire cast of Degrassi on Qualuudes.

Charlotte Hatherly - Kim Wilde
I have always, always thought that Charlotte Hatherly was nothing short of brilliant. Anyone who has witnessed an Ash show knows that the woman has power. Sadly, it's pretty rare to see a female guitarist (especially in a band otherwise fronted by men) bring the rock, so rejoice! for Charlotte is releasing a solo album this summer. It seems like a departure from Ash's recent heavier sound, towards something way more light and pop. The lead single, "Kim Wilde", is pretty catchy and perfect for the 92º weather that's currently oppressing the hell out of the East Coast.

Graham Coxon - Bittersweet Bundle of Misery
Back when Blur released Think Tank, their first full-length sans guitar wonder Graham Coxon, said virtuoso gave an interview stating that he was "very glad to not be a part of Blur anymore", given the new album. Ah, yes, it was a hard time to be a Blur fan. Think Tank was their worst album since The Great Escape (you know it is, don't try to deny it-- just watch the "Crazy Beat" video and attempt to keep a straight face), Damon and Graham were no longer no speaking terms... Somewhere in England, Oasis gloated.
But fret no more! Not only is Graham's new solo album, Happiness in Magazines, galaxies away from any new Blur material, it's so fresh and light it should be enforced upon all whining emo kids by law. I think this is the second single, "Bittersweet Bundle of Misery". Now all we have to hope for is a Blur reunion... And life would be OK again...

Red Pony - London
Someone, please, oh pretty please, SIGN THIS BAND. This song makes us want to cry a serious river. It somehow makes moving to London sound so tragic.

Hark, what do I hear across blog yonder? Not enough Morrissey has been posted?!? Why, you're in luck, young traveler, for I bring you your daily dose of That Charming Man: Morrissey Throughout the Ages! Today, Steven is feeling a little down. You see, his second album, Kill Uncle, isn't doing as great as he expected...

You'll Never Guess, I'm Bored Now: The Kill Uncle era, 1991 - 1992
It's true, it's true, 1991's Kill Uncle isn't chockfull of the best Morrissey songs out there. I, myself, like to blame it on the sophomore slump, but let's face it, "Asian Rut"? What the fuck?

Luckily for us though, there are a few redeeming songs, notably the awesome lead single, "Our Frank".

Morrissey - Our Frank

The astonishing thing about this track, much like the Smiths classics "Sweet and Tender Hooligan" and "I Want the One I Can't Have", it romanticizes street gangs, violence, bar fights and everything in between. Lyrics like: "Give us a drink/And make it quick/Or esle I'm gonna be sick all over/Your frankly vulgar/Red pull-over/Now see how the colors blend" almost make you want to get socked in the face by some grimy urchin.
Basically, buy this album only if you're a completist. The whole rockabilly vibe really works against him, except it little gems such as "Mute Witness" and "King Leer".

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

TTIKTDA Brit-Pack, vol. 1

Pitting the British rock scene against the American rock scene is like pitting The Simpsons against Futurama: They're both good and pretty much have the same influences, but one is seriously way better and we all know why. So today and tomorrow, I will be posting new songs from up-and-coming British bands that won't see the light here for at least another 6 months (you know how it goes). Oh, and should the staff of NME read this and realize how awesome I am, please comment and I'll come and work for you for minimum wage.

The Ordinary Boys - Week In, Week Out
This band first grasped my attention for borrowing their name from a certain song of a certain favorite artist of mine, but luckily, the music itself is fucking awesome. For some reason the new single "Week In, Week Out" reminds me a Foo Fighters track, but so much better.

Art Brut - We Formed a Band
This is, by far, the greatest anti-rap of the history of the world. "By the way, this is my singing voice/It's not irony, and it's not rock 'n' roll/It's just me talking/To the kids." Also, is singing about forming an ironic band so ironic it's sincere? Discuss.

Ash - Evil Eye
The best track I've heard so far off of Ash's new album, Meltdown. Once again they prove that nothing, and I mean nothing, can beat a good power pop song. Meltdown is definitely a little too metal for my liking, although all that should balance out when lead guitarist Charlotte Hatherly releases her first solo album in a few weeks, and I shell out $26 for the import.

Selfish Cunt - Britain Is Shit
Wow, actual vitriol. Despite their rather, um, unfortunate name, Selfish Cunt are the first band to make raw, uncensored anger sound cool since, I dunno, The Clash? Somewhere around there? "Britain is shit/It's full of lies/White men start their shit/In their shirts and ties." Sounds like the Sex Pistols with drum machines.

Oh, and that's just the start of it, ladies and gentlemen. Rendez-vous ici, demain for TTIKTDA Brit-Pack, vol 2...

But first! Gather 'round the musty old cupboard, it's time for...
That Charming Man: Morrissey Throughout the Ages! Today we follow Steven as he releases his very first solo compilation, straight off the heels of his #1 success Viva Hate:

Kiss Me On The Mouth (Or Anywhere): The Bona Drag era
It's a tad hard to define the Bona Drag era, since it's just a singles/rarities compilation release directly after Viva Hate. So we won't dwell on it for very long. Just note that if you're a debuting Moz-fan, it's a very, very healthy place to start, as it contains all the best tracks off VH and yet more groundbreaking pop masterpieces.

Morrissey - Ouija Board, Ouija Board/November Spawned a Monster (Live)

I'm not quite sure where this track originated, seeing that I grabbed it off LimeWire ages ago, but it's one of my favorite Moz bootlegs. He opens with "Ouija Board, Ouija Board"'s pulsing guitar riff, but, A-ha! It is but a tease, for mere seconds later, the band shreds into the intro of "November Spawned a Monster", and he crowd goes bug-fuck wild. Classic.

Monday, June 07, 2004

Sky blue trainer bra...

If you ask me (which, by simply visiting this site, you undeniably have), Pulp were the very, very best of the Britpop explosion of the '90s. Not Blur. Certainly not Oasis. It could have maybe been Elastica, if it hadn't been for that nasty copyright-infringement lawsuit with Wire. So Jarvis & co. it is. As a friend once told me, "'Common People' is like a love affair... It's like being in love." That song is like taking the entire human condition, compressing it into four minutes, and putting a gun to the world's collective head, demanding them to dance their worries away. It's the anthem of the entire Britpop movement.

In 1992, Pulp released Intro, a compilation of synth-driven pop ditties recorded prior to the success the band earned with the His 'n' Hers LP. On this compilation is Inside Susan: A Story in Three Parts, a conceptual triptych that relays the story of a girl who might be the evil twin of the world-weary sculptor babe in "Common People". By taking the bus, snapping gum, flashing boys and working in a pet shop, she embodies the mundane lives most of us are condemned to, yet finds little pleasures along the way.

Inside Susan: A Story in Three Parts
"Inside Susan"
"59 Lyndhurst Grove"

And now, a little something I've been putting together over the last few days. You'll just have to indulge me on this one. As most people who know me have surely noticed, I'm quite the obsessive Morrissey fan. And, although we've been under Morrissey Siege '04 over the past couple of weeks, with the release of You Are the Quarry and whatnot, I still feel the urge to spread the Mozzer-love. Therefore, I present you with the inaugural post in what will be a week long series: That Charming Man: Morrissey Throughout the Ages. I will post an MP3 from every one of his solo albums (except Southpaw Grammar and Maladjusted, because only true Moz fans should be obliged to brave such musical depths), along with a few b-sides and live tracks for good measurere. Without further ado...

I Hate Myself and I Wanna Die: The Viva Hate era, 1989-1991
Fresh off the Smiths' crushing break-up and the critical acclaim of their last studio album, Strangeways Here We Come, many thought that Morrissey would be outed as a fraudulent opportunist, and Johnny Marr woulresurrectct as a guitar god. Never in the history of pop music has the public been so wrong. Viva Hate is melancholy at its most masterful, brimming with fleeting images of runaways, sexual innuendos, James Dean fanatics and "greased tea" (still trying to figure that one out).

Morrissey - Hairdresser on Fire

Even though it was clear that Moz would probably never reach the greatness of the Smiths with his solo material, this song stands out as one of his greatesachievementts. It's perfect as far an instrumentation goes, with Morrissey's sorry wail lamenting the state of his quiff. FYI: live, the lyrics change a bit, notably when "When he said: "I'm gonna sue you"/I really felt for you" becomes "When he said: "I'm gonna screw you"/Well, I really felt happy for you".

Update: "Stacks" is now working. Sorry for the mess-up.

Sunday, June 06, 2004

Why do you hang around?

Ok, so Keith is off to Chi-town for a week, and appointed lil ol' me to take care of things around here! And as if that wasn't coo enough, he totally filled me in on the fact that the new Polyphonic Spree has leaked. And it's awesome.

But let me be clear about something.

Anyone who loves the Spree and has witnessed the unfiltered genius of their live show knows one thing: despite the music, the magic and the harp player, boys be poor. Try dividing your paycheck by 23 sometime. Not fun. So, as it states in that little sidebar there, these MP3s are for sampling purposes only. When Together We're Heavy drops in a few weeks, do yourself and the Spree a big favor, and buy it.

Polyphonic Spree - Section 11 (A Long Day Continues/We Sound Amazed)
Polyphonic Spree - Section 12 (Hold Me Now)
Polyphonic Spree - Section 14 (Two Thousand Places)

It seems as if Spree front man Tim Delaughter kept his promise that the new album would capture the essence of their live show way better than the first LP, The Beginning Stages of... The Polyphonic Spree [Buy it here via]. It should be a real treat for any joycore/power pop/poison Kool-aid fan.

Friday, June 04, 2004

I Grew Up... In a Glue Factory!

First off, this is why I used to love reading Pitchfork every day.* Brent DiCriscenzo absolutely SKEWERS Travis Morrisons absolutely abyssmal cover of Ludacris's "What's Your Fantasy." There are not words for how bad this is. Listen at your own risk.

In other news, Creed have broken up. Can I get a Hallelujah?

Of course, this means that we'll have to deal wirth 1) All the mebers of Creed BUT Scott Stapp forming their own band, and 2) Scott Stapps solo project of songs inspired by The Passion of The Christ, due in September.

Both of these will suck, I fortell.

But enough about bad music.

Next weeks MP3's are going to be provided by guest MP3J Cameron of GarageDream so look forward to much britlove and Moz obsession and I don't really know what he has in store. I'm sure it'll be much awesome though.

And you just want me to get to the MP3's, eh?

The Chinese Stars - The Fastest Horse Yet - comprised of former members of Arab on Radar, Providence RI's, the Chinese Stars (who have a full length coming soon), sound like what people probably expected from Liars second album. Bringing the Punk to Discopunk, this song, with it's forceful, driving backbeat, thick, piercing basslines, and Angus-esque proclamations (though, IMHO, far better lyrically thann anything Angus had produced, if with less chant potential), the Chinese Stars seem intent to force more acknowledgment of the Punk side of Disco Punk. This is off of last years Turbo Mattress EP. If you buy it, the disc is shaped like an actual Chinese Star. Which is quite badass.
[Buy the Turbo Mattress EP at!]

And, seeing as the Belmont Stakes is this weekend, with yet another Triple Crown contender (thats... what? 5 in 7 years or something? He's doomed. Or due. Either way.), I figured I'll deliver you a double dose of Equine discopunk love.

Erase Errata - The White Horse is Bucking - More than any other current band that draws the comparison, Erase Errata remind me of Gang of Four. They have that same penchant for short bursts of anarchic, dancable aggression, lyrics that are stated more than sung, and guitars that just seem to slide in and out of the beat. This track, off of 2003's At Crystal Palace is probably my favorite off of that album, but somebody, somewhere needs to do some sort of extended mix to make this work as a floor track (much like the Three Girl Rhumba remix posted over at Flux a while back. Erase Errata, like Wire, write very danceable songs that just aren't long enough to actually dance to.)
[Buy At Crystal Palace at!]

*Note, that does nto mean I like reading negative reviews per se - most of the Forks negative reviews are the result of pretentious wankery of which I want no part. But when they are right, they are RIGHT, and far more eloquent and bilious about it than i could ever be.

Thursday, June 03, 2004

Psych Pop that isn't entirely about Brian Wilson.

Another Little update: Every beatles Song Ever in Alphabetical Order. This is an amazing piece of audiocollagerywork.

So, Of Montreal have a new album out. They were always a second tier, fringe Elephant-6 band. Nothing too notable. Satanic Panic in the Attic should change that. Growing up from the E6 60's/Brian Wilson/Beatles obsession, and beginning to discover the bold new world that is 70's music, Kevin Barnes has produced a fantastic album. Catchy in all the right places, sugary without being saccharine, and jam packed with variety.

Of Montreal - Lysergic Bliss - Probably the most classically Of Montreal song on the album, Lysergic Bliss opens full of jangly strumming and falsettos, and very Beatles beats. But give it two minutes. Suddenly, the song starts to dismantle and fall apart, slowing down, the chords become more sinister, and then, and 2:30, all goes quiet, and the bridge erupts in vocal acrobtics, harmonies all over the place, reminiscent of the Polyphonic Spree in a more Wilsonian moment. The drums come back with a more deeper tone, and a little instrumental outro, and we're out. The structure is nonexistent, but somehow, it doesn't feel the least bit slapdash, despite the obvious Wilson fixation in the "record distinct segments and throw 'em together" production style - pulled off with far less skill than Wilson himself, but thats hardly an insult when one considers the magnitude of Brians talents.

Of Montreal - Chrissy Kiss The Corpse - Possibly the jangliest, most upbeat song about necrophilia I've ever heard, recalling the Violent Femmes more than any of the typical E6 touchstones. Catchy, bouncy, and with a chorus you don't want to sing along with in public, but can't resist. I was only going to post two songs today, but this one just seemed too essential to skip.

Of Montreal - Vegan In Furs - and, as promised, Of Montreal discovers the 70's! This song is downright FUNKY. Sounding like a funkier moment of Elton John, or Steely Dan, or a white man wishing he were Sly Stone, the song is just tongue in cheek enough, and just clever enough to avoid being absolutely terrible, and instead, by working firmly within it's limitations, playing up a great bassline, fantastic percussion, and vocal production tricks over Barnes (lack of) natural range works to create a damn great song. And the pianos in the songs final movements are to die for. A much better execution of Wilsonian production on this track than on Lysergic Bliss.
[Buy Satanic Panic in the Attic from!]

Elsewhere in the Mp3Blogosphere...

I'm expecting great things from Uncritical - he's got great taste and judging by the spectacular Broadcast remix posted monday, and his most recent post of some great French electronica, a great ear for a blog.

Also, I remember once upon a time compulsively reading Losing My Edge. Then he slowly trailed off and went defunct. Well, now Mike D is back with a new look, a new hometown, and a new mission - as an MP3 blogger. Check him out.

And as a final note, you get one more post from me tomorrow night before I head out of town for a week. But keep checking in, as we'll have a special guest DJ running things here at TTIKTDA and making sure the seat doesn't get too cold.

Update: Elsewhere, check out The Polyphonic Spree Interactive Adventure Game - each level features a song from their upcoming new album Together We're Heavy, and when you win, you're rewarded with another track and some live cuts. I'm really excited for this album now. Hint: Start with the cactus.

Tuesday, June 01, 2004

Refused are Fucking Dead. Long Live Refused!

So, today brings the news to me that, arguably the greatest hardcore album of all time (on a par with minor Threat's Discography and Fugazi's 13 Songs to be sure), has gotten the 5.1 DVD Audio, super remastery treatment. Those of you familiar with Refused are likely in agreement with me about the greatness of this news. Those of you who are not should sit back and listen because today, we're gonna give you a little primer in The Shape of Punk to Come, the most progressive, forward thinking, innovative hardcore album since Fugazi moved beyond being a hardcore band.

Refused - New Noise - If you haven't heard this song, you never paid attention to hardcore punk, or are living under a rock. Either way, you should come out and take a listen. This isn't the brainless, screaming noise of most shitty core bands. Sure, the jagged, stuttering basslines, the throat scraping vocal screams, the driving, churning rhythyms, the howling guitar riffs are all there. But what's this use of electronics? This slick, high end production (very un-Minor Threat to be sure)? This subdued, spoken word vocal interlude? The technichal skill in this track floors me every time. This is the blueprint by which Hardcore could have saved (and still could save) itself from oblivion and obscurity. Seems only The Blood Brothers have taken it seriously though, mores the pity.

Refused - Liberation Frequency - This track offers hints of what was to come for Lars Strömberg & Dennis Lyxzén, post refused. With it's spare rhythyms, crooning (for refused), singsongey vocals, Gang of Fouresque guitars, and one of the most overt statements of Marxism in the bands catalog, the song clearly maps out the direction in which The (International) Noise Conspiracy was going to head. With a chorus echoing the Ramones famous demand that "We want the Airwaves!" and a furious break down at the 2:20 mark, that just makes me wanna SCREAM right on in time.

Refused - The Apollo Programme Was a Hoax - and, on the tail end of a solid hour of fury comes, seemingly out of nowhere, a moment of true beauty. Starting with an open, finger picked upright bass, and slowly adding layers, of acoustic guitar and flutes, and slowly building and building in intensity, until at the 3 minute mark, you expect a break into the classic screams of rage and defiance. But Refused know better than that. The song picks up intensity, but it maintains it's tone, guiding you out slowly, into a bold new world. The world of Punk to Come.

[Buy The Shape of Punk To Come at!]