Monthly Archives: April 2010

Funeral Party (in support of Julian Casablancas) – Cleveland, April 3

The Funeral Party (mid-party)

If you are a young band going on tour in support of the leader of the garage rock revival, it seems likely that your sound is already pretty well set in stone: grab the guitars and prepare the brooding, lo-fi melodies. Particularly when your name is shared with that of a Cure song. Particularly when that song is ‘The Funeral Party.’

Which is precisely what makes the sounds of the East LA 5-piece so shocking. With cowbells, synths, handclaps, and guitar solos reserved for a workout montage, the Funeral Party leaves all visions of a Paul Banks-ian dystopia in the dust. Extending the energy of a 90 second punk track to a four-minute freak out, the Funeral Party fuses yelping vocals with busy bass lines and disco beats, bringing to mind bands like the Rapture, !!!, and a happier Mars Volta.

So listen to ‘The Funeral Party’ and stop brooding. It’s time to dance.

The Funeral Party, “Carwars”

Oh, and if you haven’t yet heard the new Julian Casablancas, here’s a track to whet your appetite.

Julian Casablancas, “Left & Right in the Dark”

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Beach Pool Headphones Music Mathemagic

Growing up in Miami, I had a strong pool life. I spent a lot of time sun-baked and, since I wasn’t planning on aging, blissfully unaware of the consequences of a such a life. Some music takes me back immediately to those summer days and my first Walkman that always accompanied me, a giant yellow Sony monstrosity that probably would still be playing if I’d kept it around. One note of the Pet Shop Boys’ “West End Girls,” Madonna’s “Burning Up” or “I Know It” (my favorite and least-played songs on her debut record) or the Steve Miller Band’s “Jungle Love” (a title more problematic now that I’m old enough to understand what it means) brings me pool-side, to those halcyon days of eternal sunshine.

Yes, I listened to and loved the Steve Miller Band, and it’s still a guilty pleasure. One high school day, a couple of us freshmen snuck out to lunch with seniors. We hid in the backseat of the car and reveled in our outsider status. I think it was either Greg Nash or Charles Wolf (my memory of this event is now a little smashed) who–in response to our request for something or other–said, “now we’re going to listen to some real music.” And he popped in the Steve Miller Band. Needless to say, I was 12 or 13, impressionable, and hooked.

That wasn’t the only pretty terrible awesome music I mainlined and formed a dependency on. One of these pools my family liked to take me to had a jukebox. For at least a decade, I listened routinely to the (same) songs that stocked it, most notably Michael McDonald’s “What a Fool Believes.” (For a good time, watch the winner of the New Pornographers challenge, who sings the latter band’s “It’s Only Divine Right” in the style of Michael McDonald, which might only be funny if you know both bands). So that’s why I connect Michael McDonald with sunburn.

On Friday, just as I was complaining about this week new releases, I discovered the band Mathemagic on Lala and had another poolside moment. Perhaps it’s because of the band’s Beach Boys/Beach House referentiality, or perhaps its shimmering reverb water-like quality, but I immediately thought of water and wished I was listening to this CD in sunny Miami. This EP made by brothers Evan and Dylan Euteneier is quietly stunning, definitely lazy summer electronica.

So here you go, two songs from the daydreamy Ontarian Mathemagic, their own “Breaststroke” (okay, maybe that is also a reason for my association of this music with pools) and their remix of CFCF’s “Big Love.”

Mathemagic, “Breaststroke”

CFCF, “Big Love (Mathemagic remix)”

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LCD Soundsystem Knows All of What I Want

I reached for Noise Narcs’ post function within the first bar of “All I Want.” LCD Soundsystem doing a motorik beat? Instant sale.

I wasn’t that enthralled by “Drunk Girls,” the first leaked track from This Is Happening, but this song really does have everything I want. Motorik beat? Check. The dance-pathos of “All My Friends”? Check. “Heroes”-checking guitar? Check. An amazing, haunting, synthesizer that explodes daintily at the 2:53 mark? Check. Acts as an objective correlative to my excitement over a move to a new part Philly? Check, oh my yes, check.

LCD’s website has set up a free stream of the album pre-release, and I’ve got ants in my pants to finish this stupid post so I can go listen to it.

And I couldn’t mention motorik without posting the masters themselves, Neu! Drop these two songs on your mp3 player and start walking: odds on that 15 minutes later, you’ll wake up and find yourself in a completely foreign part of your supposedly well-known metropolis. Dig that beat.

LCD Soundsystem, “All I Want”
Neu!, “Hallo Gallo”

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"your brains can turn into melted cheeeeeeeese…"

Cheese People, hailing from Samara, a city of about a million people on the banks of the Volga, haven’t yet toured very far outside the Russian Federation, but the catchy fun of their self-titled debut has made them one of the most unique and popular club-punk acts in the former USSR.  Given the strength of their recently released sophomore-effort, the all-acoustic Well Well Well (downloadable free here), I’ll be keeping my ear to the ground for a US tour.

Cheese People, “Ua-A-A!”

Cheese People, “Angry Stupid Faces”

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Time and Taxes

It’s taxday, so while you’re enjoying your free Starbucks coffee (provided you walk in with a reusable mug), relax and give a listen to a song about dealing with things at some later date.

Laura Burhenn of Georgie James and Richard Swift have teamed up to release What We Lost in the Fire We Gained in the Flood as The Mynabirds, named after reverse-supergroup The Mynah Birds.  The album is due out April 27th, but you can stream the whole thing from here.

The Mynabirds, “Give It Time”

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More Philly love from Pitchfork? Hot Diggity Dr. Dog!

Only days after facilitating a trade of Matt Pond PA to New York, Pitchfork lowers themselves to the sixth borough’s level to give Dr. Dog a somewhat backhanded but respectable 6.7 for Shame, Shame. Take a listen on Lala and leave you own backhanded compliments in the comments.

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Trademarked Philly Geography

13th and Morris, circa 1967

Philebrity did another Philly focused post yesterday, and it’s full of great stuff. But, given that Noise Narcs’ first post waxed on hip hop, Philadelphia, and the importance of “where you’re from,” I was naturally drawn to Trademark Experience’s “South Philly (You Got To Love It),” with its “13th and Morris” check-in chorus. A great summer jam about a place I love that compares West of Broad drugslingers as tectonic plates because they “move weight and start trouble”: win.

Trademark Experience, “South Philly (You Got to Love It)”

Plus, it gives me the opportunity to talk about how amazing PhillyHistory.org is. Run by the City Archives, it geo and date tags photographs from the city’s treasure trove. It makes finding historical pictures from a neighborhood unbelievably easy (and amazingly addictive). Its blog is also a must-read: a picture book for Philadelphia’s history, covering such topics as “Washington Avenue: A Representative Example of Philly’s Historical Past.” A treat for the nerdy urban historian in all of us. Honest as a promise.

Previously: Philebrity’s Lush Life

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Philly trades Matt Pond PA for two Animal Collective cover bands

After repeatedly savaging Dr. Dog for no reason, Pitchfork finally does Philly a proper. In their blurb for the new Matt Pond PA album they identify him as “the New York-based singer/songwriter.” Hahaha. Suck it, New York: he’s yours now. Get the PA off the name, stat!

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I'll even learn to like the taste of whiskey…

Tammy Wynette: A good girl gone bad

Continuing on the countrifyication of Noise Narcs that started with Cydney’s Waylon Jennings post, I’m posting a classic from Ms.-Stand-By-Your-Man herself, Tammy Wynette. Why? On Sunday night, Kung Fu Necktie is hosting a classic country DJ/coverband night, and Steven Ward James’ promo mix (which includes tracks from Merle Haggard, Loretta Lynn, and all the known and unknown greats) draws you so deep into Philly’s early April 88°F/60% humidity that you’d swear you were straddling the Alabama/Mississippi border, just like Tammy’s childhood farm.

Tammy Wynette, “Your Good Girl’s Gonna Go Bad”

And by all means, go check out the rest of Steven’s mix (via Philebrity), and then head over to KFN on Sunday.

S I N G I N ‘ I T L O N E S O M E
Sunday, April 11th 9pm-2am / 21+ / No Cover
Kung Fu Necktie in Philadelphia
w/ special live guests:
THE WALLACE BROTHERS (classic country covers)

Oh, and just because it’s awesome, Loretta Lynn’s “Fist City”:

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Herb Ellis (8/4/1921 – 3/28/2010)

NYT obit

While probably best known for his work with the Oscar Peterson Trio, he was also the last living member of the jazz guitar trio, Great Guitars, which included Charlie Byrd (1925-1999) and Barney Kessel (1923-2004).

Great Guitars, “When The Saints Go Marching In”

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