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Monthly Archives: February 2011

These crazy kids from Baltimore have a new album coming out this May, called Do Whatever You Want All The Time and they have released an “album teaser” video to promote the album. Going from what the album teaser sounds and looks like, this album is going to melt your face off.

(Thanks to Altered Zones for the video)

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The King of LimbsRadiohead will be releasing their eighth album this Saturday. The King of Limbs, their first album since 2007’s In Rainbows will be available for download this Saturday, and they’re charging us this time, so it will cost nine whole dollars for a measly mp3 file version of the album.

In a breakthrough recording industry practice, Radiohead will be charging you twice for the same album. First for the mp3 version that is going to be released this Saturday, then once again for the physical copy that will be released in May. Why can’t I pay what I want like last time, Thom?

In May a “newspaper” version of the album will be released on two 10″ vinyl records, CD, and mp3. The “newspaper” will have a couple large sheets of paper with 625 smaller pieces of art printed on them. BONUS!

In other news, music critics everywhere praise The King of Limbs as the best album of the next ten years.

A track from Panda Bear’s (a.k.a Noah Lennox, a member of Animal Collective) forthcoming album, Tomboy, to be released this April. The link is from gorillavsbear.net.

Panda Bear – Last Night at the Jetty

This outstandingly-hyped album has been a long time coming, originally planned to have been released last fall. If it’s anywhere near as good as his last solo album, 2007’s Person Pitch, we’re in for a treat.

Destroyer - Kaputt The Canadian independent rock band Destroyer has released their ninth LP, Kaputt, and it is the best fusion of musical genres since Deerhunter dropped Microcastle in 2008. Whereas the latter blended ’50s-pop with shoegaze and punk, Kaputt takes indie rock and mixes it with pop, disco, and smooth jazz. And, we’re talking about Dan Bejar here, so let’s not forget about the stellar songwriting (of course) that flows throughout this album.

I’m typically one who forgets to listen to lyrics when hearing music, often getting caught up in the different melodies and sounds, which is very easy to do with Kaputt, but Dan Bejar is just too poetic to not reach out for the liner notes and analyze what he just sung. There isn’t one track that specifically exhibits his songwriting skills more than others; they’re all superb works of writing that move synchronously, even elaborating the soundscape. It all sounds very natural, which is probably just the way it left his pen originally.

As mentioned earlier with the smooth jazz influences present in this album, there are sentiments that evoke the feelings of an after-hours night club in the early 1980s. Men and women dressed dapper, with martinis, cigarettes, and cocaine, back-lit with soft neon lights. Although somehow, Destroyer is able to pull it off in a good way without making it feel contrived or cheap. It sounds completely sincere as if it could be no other way. On nearly every track there is a MIDI groove that makes the album feel dance-y too, something that isn’t necessarily surprising for Destroyer. Although the band is rooted in Canadian indie rock (think Sunset Rubdown or The New Pornographers), this isn’t a left turn for the band by any means. The album’s final track, “Bay of Pigs” which is specifically the “danciest” track on the album, sheds light on the sonic direction Destroyer was heading when this track originally appeared on an EP two years ago. Even with the smooth jazz and MIDI samples, Kaputt is substantially guitar-driven. Examples include the subtle finger-tapping segment that appears out of nowhere on “Blue Eyes” to the riffs during the middle of “Savage Night at the Opera.” The way that Destroyer is able to let elements float in and out before you can even notice they’re happening allows this album to engage the listener throughout its 50-minute (70-minute vinyl) playtime.

Unfortunately, the album has one soft spot. Smack in the center of the album is the song “Poor in Love,” while not necessarily a bad tune, it just doesn’t weight up to the rest of the album. I’m willing to forgive this, considering that “Blue Eyes” will definitely get “Song of the Year” nods from me, it’s an amazing pop song that has help from Vancouver-vocalist Sibel Thrasher. She appears several times throughout the album and her voice is used to add emotion to Bejar’s poetic lyrics. Her voice is also used effectively in “Downtown,” a track that owes its sound to southern soul, until a glittering synth washes over everything.

It is just February but this is a must-hear album of 2011. Bejar has already proved that he is a standout singer-songwriter with his previous albums and this continues to defend his case, despite the brief hiccup of 2008’s Trouble in Dreams. The elements of jazz (be it smooth or free-form) and pop coupled with Bejar’s songwriting abilities is what let’s this album shine. I’m sure Kaputt will stand up to any other album that is released later this year.

(Reviewer’s Score: 4.4/5)