Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Live Show Tomorrow!
I wanted to encourage everyone in the vicinity to head over to Southpaw tomorrow night to see my friend Bob play with his new band The Exotic Profiles. They don't go on until 10:30-11, so anyone on the Food Van (like me) should be able to make it.
East of Eden
Formerly of the behemoth Estonian girl-group Suntribe, Mari-Leen Kaselaan has now struck out on her own, covering the twee-classic "Levoton Tuhkimo'' by Finland's Dingos (in Estonian, it's now called ''Rahutu Tuhkatriinu.") Eschewing Finnish melancholy for a cheery, feisty, pan-European anthemic grandeur that should just bop you right out of your chair, her new record is called Moonwalk.


Rahutu Tuhkatriinu (Live-ish)

Her MySpace
Is this just the coolest thing or what???

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Letting the Days Go By
One of the most popular bands from Colorado (after DeVotchKa I guess,) the Motet, plays, of course, afro-cuban-funk-jazz. Which is ordinarily a genre I would just run screaming from down the street in my underwear if need be. But just today, I seem to have entered a moment of questionable taste. So Johan, Sara, Damon, Debbie D., this may be the closest I ever get to jazz as song of the day, so enjoy it while it lasts.

Ulysses' Falcon

Motet Live

Their website

Buy Motet at Amazon

Monday, January 29, 2007

Good Day to Start a New Job!
Well recently I've been in an entirely anti-"Indie-rock" kind of mood, but then over the weekend, I listened to this song by The Oohlas and I just had to play it for you. Noisy and crude as they come, wailing and sometimes tuneless, but big and brave and compelling, The Oohlas are the Ekland brothers and Olivia Stone channeling Kim Deal, plus somebody must play the drums. And actually I had put them as one of my favorites of 2006, but had forgotten to ever mention them before.

Small Parts

TV Dinner (Live)

Their MySpace

Buy The Oohlas at Amazon

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Groove Armada is a pair of English producers who hit the big-time several years ago with the monster club hit "I See You Baby" as remixed by Fatboy Slim. It may be a bug or a feature, but they really have no signature sound. After starting in the chill-out genre, they have moved through a more upbeat and rock based period as many of their songs were used in commercials and video games to picking up hints of grime amidst the drum'n'bass.

Get Down (12" mix)

Superstylin' (Live at Brixton Academy)

Their MySpace
And website

Buy Groove Armada at Amazon

Friday, January 26, 2007

Cheese Steak
How can you not love a band called South Filthy? A foot-stomping bar-crawling bunch out of Austin and Memphis that frolics briskly and happily through roots rock and blues and finds moments of freshness therein. If they were Canadians, you'd call them a supergroup, having members who played in the Oblivians, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, and Big Foot Chester, but they're not.

Surfin' in Death Valley

Bad Girl (Live in Munich)

Their MySpace

Buy South Filthy at Amazon

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Shtick Shift
After the crushing seriousness of yesterday I thought a little plain fun was in order. The Detroit Cobras do covers of classic, but deeply obscure, soul and R & B songs from the '50s and '60s reimagined as joyous surf/punk romps as sung by Debbie Harry or Patti Smith. It's a shtick, but it's quite exuberantly spunky and well done. Though having mined the same vein for ten years, it must start to feel like being stuck at the same wedding.

Bad Girl (Oblivians) (In homage to Liz at The Roaring Machine.)

Magic Stick (Live)

Their MySpace
And website

Buy The Detroit Cobras at Amazon

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Be Prepared... Be Very Prepared...
By request from Ashkan, here is the famous (or infamous) Metal Machine Music by the incomparable Lou Reed. Though now denied, MMM is often cited as having been released as a deal-breaker with his record company. But in many ways, given the history of the Velvet Underground, MMM is a logical cul de sac. 64 minutes of relentless feedback from two guitars spread over four sides on vinyl, if you can get over the feeling of being assaulted, there is something quite funny, and playful, or perhaps just hypnotic about it.

Metal Machine Music Part 4

Velvet Underground & Nico -- Symphony of Sound

Buy Lou Reed at Amazon

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Charm Attack
Sara Spade, a singer from Northamptonshire, England, has a wonderful light touch with a song, making charming jazzy contemplative music. Not sad, unusually for the genre, she says that she's brought home influences from her travels ranging from jazz, folk, country and blues. Her music reminds me a lot of the pure easy flow of early Everything But The Girl.


Her MySpace
And Website

Thursday, January 18, 2007

By request
Natalia Zukerman is the daughter of famed classical musicians Pinchas and Eugenia Zukerman. She is traveling well off the classical track into confessional folk, touring with Melissa Ferrick and playing guitar with Andy Friedman and the Other Failures. She has a nice Ani-esque complexity to her guitar playing and what seems a surprising familiarity with the hills of West Virginia and country music.

Southern Wind

Jammin Java (Live)

Her MySpace
Her website

Buy Natalia Zukerman at Amazon
Making Songs With Morgan
I've basically been waiting, like, forever for Liz over at La Gringa to post Ane Brun as her SOD, but SHE JUST WON"T DO IT! So I guess I've run out of patience and am forced to do it myself. A haunting singer and richly talented guitarist, Ane Brun has built her career from the ground up, starting in Spain as a street busker, then touring and self-releasing her records. Born in Molde, Norway, she now lives in Stockholm. She is playing this Saturday at the Bowery Ballroom, but alas I will be in Boston, so someone please go see her and tell me how she is.

Temporary Dive (Live)

Roots of Heaven (Behind Closed Doors) *note--I LOVE THIS!!!!!

Her MySpace

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Party Like It's...
Orishas is (are?) a Cuban rap group that formed in Paris while several members were studying there. Named after a spirit of the Yoruba religion, they are very popular throughout Europe and of course massively huge in Cuba. They won first place in the Cuban Underground Rap Music Awards and some years later racked up a handful of Latin Grammys. I find their particular mix of hip-hop and traditional Cuban rhythms quite irresistible.

1 9 9 9

Mujer -- Music Video

Friday, January 12, 2007

Fire Spirit
Not to bring everybody down or anything... but today features Gun Club, one of my favorite bands ever. And really you have to have a significant level of suspension of disbelief to walk down this path. To me they brought the astonishing spirit of the particular early '80s Los Angeles refinement of punk to bear on traditional Mississippi Delta Blues and there found something that "looked just like an Elvis from hell" to quote one of the songs on their amazing record Fire of Love. Jeffrey Lee Pierce was the President of the LA Blondie Fan Club, as well as an irredeemable drunk and drug addict, and he followed a well-worn and clichéd rock 'n roll path that ends just where you would expect.

She's Like Heroin to Me

Fire Spirit (Live)

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Cheeky Monkey
Jonah Maddox is like Jamie T singing his way through the Roddy Frame songbook. From Cambridge, England, which seems to have a fairly lively bunch of charming cheeky songsters and songstresses making the rounds, he says that he used to play in a ska/punk band called Fellthru. That's all I know.

Chin Up

His MySpace

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Space Oddity
A fully queer carbon copy of David Bowie in his most glam phase, Jobriath trafficked in the same odd blues/cabaret mix with similar fetishes of aliens, space travel, and craft-project Halloween costumes. Mass marketed in the early seventies to an indifferent response, he was credited as a huge influence by (surprise!) Morrissey, Gary Numan, and Neil Tennet. There is a real shockingly Zeppelinish tinge to some of his material--particularly live.

Good Time (Live)

Jobriath (Live at the Chelsea Hotel)

Buy Jobriath at Amazon
One of the founding members of the Sugababes, Siobhan Donaghy left because she was being bullied by a bandmate (if you believe the gossip.) After a couple of albums that are a bit confused (and confusing, as she also went by the anagram "Shanghai Nobody,) she has found a startling new mode that is richly odd in a Kate Bush-ish sort of way. Her new album will be out this month.


Overrated (Live)

Her MySpace

Monday, January 08, 2007

Jury Duty
A mystery of sorts. Who is Jessica Persée? She seems to be a French Reggae singer and her father a musician named Patrick Persée, but other than that? Help me out someone.

Ying Yang

Friday, January 05, 2007

Promises, Promises...
It's a rainy hot day in NYC, so what's more appropriate than a punk band from Albuquerque? They've been called "the long-lost musical daughters of the Ramones" (though perhaps "of Joan Jett and Belinda Carlisle" would be more accurate.) The Eyeliners, who are in fact sisters, have played on the Warped Tour and raise money for PETA. It's a little punk, a little pop, and a lot of fun.

I Could Never Hate You

The Promise (Live)

Their MySpace

Buy The Eyeliners at Amazon

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Grace Jones was a supermodel in the days when it was rare. Born a preacher's daughter in Jamaica, she was a muse to Andy Warhol and remains to this day an extraordinary fashion icon. Her recording career began in the waning days of disco and soon incorporated a unique mix of reggae and dub elements, as well as an unmatched erotically charged androgynous fierceness.

Slave to the Rhythm--Operattack

Love on Top of Love (Live at Festivalbar Italy 1989)

Buy Grace Jones at Amazon

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Boy Howdy
Boy Omega is Martin Henrik Gustafsson, a Swede who I am now thinking of as the "twee heart-melter." It's somewhat as if Elliot Smith had been the lead singer of The Cure (though it ends up substantially jauntier than that implies)and they liked to sit around playing country music. It also has a little of PlayRadioPlay's appealing hermetically sealed innocence.

The Best Time Of The Year

Explode Music Video

His MySpace

And website
Happy New Year All!
I am very excited to start the year with what I think will be one of the best of 2007: Finland's Husky Rescue. Reflecting the harshness of the weather and the landscape, HR makes a imaginative wandering dreamscape that is eager and coy, shy and passionate, and captivating. Their new record should be out here momentarily and it is great!

Nightless Night

Husky Rescue Live in London

Their MySpace

Buy Husky Rescue at Amazon