Thursday, March 26, 2009
If you feel that life has deceived you,
Don't be sad or angry.
In your day of pain, pause -
Have faith that happiness will come.
The human heart lives in what is yet to be;
The present may be troubled,
But it will all pass within a moment;
And when it does, it will be beautiful.
-- Alexander Pushkin
Thursday, March 19, 2009
As promised, here's a collection of my favorite live covers performed by Elliott Smith. They're made up mostly of Beatles and solo Beatles material, but there are some obscure nuggets in here as well. As a rule here, Smith ends up owning songs here that were, in most cases, written before he was even born, and I've personally been pledging allegiance to Elliott since the first time I heard Either/Or. That record got me through a broken heart.
Check out "Thirteen" and "Jealous Guy" especially.
If you enjoy this material, check out Rawkblog's complete collection of Elliott Smith live covers.
It's an incredible resource, and even though some of the performances and audio quality are spotty, it's a good time investment.
Also, before I sign off, I have to give a shout out to my Grandmother, Judy. She's been really into Merriweather Post Pavillion since I first played it for her this winter, and I'm convinced she's the coolest grandmother on the planet. She took me to see The Matrix when I was twelve, made a beautiful quilt for me before I left for college, and I love her dearly.
Favorite Elliott Smith Live Covers
- Thirteen (Big Star) [6.02.98]
- Jealous Guy (John Lennon) [4.17.98]
- These Days (Nico) [10.14.99]
- Harvest Moon (Neil Young) [3.29.99]
- Waterloo Sunset (The Kinks) [4.12.97]
- For No One (The Beatles) [11.14.97]
- Long Long Long (The Beatles) [10.01.02]
- Isn't It A Pity (George Harrison) [8.12.98]
- Yer Blues (The Beatles) [11.10.00]
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
It was reported earlier this year that The Avalanches are expected to finally release a follow-up to 2001's Since I Left You, one of Middleclass Haunt's favorite albums of the past decade, at some point in the year 2009. The album was supposedly dropped off at Modular's front door on Christmas Day, but considering how long it's been since the band's official website has seen any updates or news about the album, I'm slightly skeptical. Perhaps I'm just afraid to get my hopes up, but eight years is a long time to go in between albums, especially in following up a debut record.
To celebrate the even-possibly-tentatively-awesome news of another Avalanches record, I've taken the liberty to compile my favorite Avalanches mixes, none of which have seen physical release, from across the web and distribute it to the masses. Some of this material, "Some People" and "Gimix" especially, are on par with the quality of Since I Left You, and contain some serious adrenaline rushes. Spread the music, my friends, and hopefully The Avs will hear the call and finally put out this motherfucking record.
Get a drink, have a good time, and welcome to paradise.
- Ray of Zdarlight (4:42)
- Some People (44:02)
- A Different Feeling (Paperclip People Remix) [Avalanches Edit] (4:10)
- Gimix (46:00)
- Brains (Teazer) (23:11)
- Together/My Bloody Valentine (3:33)
Download Here (MP3, 224 kbps VBR) (via FileFactory)
Monday, March 16, 2009
Taken from last year's standout The Chemistry of Common Life, Fucked Up's "No Epiphany" is reworked here by noise-pop outcasts No Age. The song is stripped it of it's adherence to structure or pop song conformity, transforming it into a five minute rolling wave of cymbals, distorted screams, and uplifting punk guitar riffs. This is a track that lives up to how cool the mp3 tag is -- put it on your mixes to impress scenesters.
Download Here (Props to Stereogum & Pitchfork)
No Epiphany (No Age Remix) is available on the No Epiphany 7", out now on Matador Records.
See Also: Lost At Sea Feature - No Age & Liars LIVE in Brooklyn
Saturday, March 14, 2009
Until the day of his death, Elliott Smith had an uncanny ear for melody, no doubt a result of his heavy Beatles influence, and was honest and naked in almost all of his work. This edition of the Essential Live series is a show of his following the release of Figure 8, and has a top-notch setlist that covers almost every period in Smith's career to that point, including rare electric versions of "Needle in the Hay" and "Clementine." Later, I'll be uploading a compilation of Elliott's live Beatles covers and his last Basement Demo recordings before his death, so if you're into this, check back later for that.
Elliott Smith - At The Tabernacle (Atlanta, GA)
Performance Date: October 21st, 2000
- Needle in the Hay
- Son of Sam
- Division Day
- Can't Make A Sound
- Waltz #2 (XO)
- Lost & Found
- Ballad of Big Nothing
- Independence Day
- Speed Trials
- Bled White
- Stupidity Tries
- Coming Up Roses
- Everything Means Nothing To Me
- Color Bars
- Say Yes
- Nighttime/Thirteen (Aborted)
- Fond Farewell
Friday, March 13, 2009
Although it barely stretches over three minutes and Mos Def rhymes over only one verse, this track manages to land a pretty powerful punch. It's the second remake of Jay-Z 's already classic "Brooklyn (Go Hard)," the first being Raekwon's successful stab at turning it into a Staten shout-out with "Staten (Go Hard)," and Mos Def stands in contrast with Jay and Raekwon in using a much looser, more playful flow. Perhaps the "Brooklyn" beat will just join "Hustlin'" and "Swagga Like Us" in being one that everyone freestyles over to sound bad-ass. I mean, I like Mos Def's version a lot, but I guess I'm supposed to.
Mos Def - Brooklyn (Go Hard)
Download Here (via Sharebee, props to Nah Right)
Raekwon - Staten (Go Hard)
Download Here (via zShare)
Thursday, March 12, 2009
This track comes from Phoenix's soon to be released fourth album, Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix. It's got a great laid back, 70's pop feel to it, and if you really dig it, you can visit the band's official site and download a multitrack version for your remixing pleasure. Plus, they're from France -- and they're not a dance act. They kick ass, they're French, and they're not a club act. I didn't know that was possible.
The album drops on May 25th, 2009.
Download Here (via Stereogum)
Explosions in the Sky have just announced a short set of summer concert dates celebrating their tenth anniversary together. Having seen them live once before on their tour supporting All of a Sudden I Miss Everyone back in 2007, I highly recommend finding a way to make it out to one of these shows -- the group sounds just as passionate and explosive live as they do on record. The March date is part of Austin's SXSW festival, not the 10th anniversary shows, and is apparently a free concert.
Explosions in the Sky Summer Tour Dates:
3/21/09: Auditorium Shore Stage (Austin, TX) (Free Show, w/ Beach House)
5/24/09: Sasquatch Festival (Gorge, WA)
6/27/09: Hollywood Palladium (Los Angeles, CA)
6/30/09: Central Park Summer Stage (New York, NY)
7/02/09: Congress Theater (Chicago, IL)
Tickets for the June and July concerts go on sale on March 14th, and are available here.
(via Death + Taxes)
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Jay-Z on DMB? Is there an artist with less street-credibility than Dave Matthews? Well, based on a few listens, Dave's melodies actually work pretty nicely here and lend themselves well to sampling. As for Jay, It's been pretty much established that Jay-Z will sound good in front of absolutely anything (see The Grey Album, Jaydiohead, & The Black & Blue Album), so that's an easy slam dunk for DJ Moondance, the brave soul who put this all together. To the man's credit, The Crash Album is well produced.
Seriously though, how many different versions of "99 Problems" will there be by the time we all pass away? And can we please use someone besides Jay to use in album mashups? Granted he's the best rapper of all time, but the card has been played numerous times now. How about -- "Birdman vs. The Byrds - Sweetheart of the Grind." Now that would reign immortal.
DJ Moonstone - The Crash Album (Jay-Z vs. Dave Matthews Band)
- Jimi Boys
- Everyday Excuses
- Wastin' Time Ain't A Thing
- Typical Ruler
- A Brooklyn Christmas
- 99 Crashes
- Lay Down & Cry
- American Party
- Takeover Johannesburg
- Never Change Spaces
I don't know, what do you guys think? Does it work?
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
This is the first single from Mastodon's upcoming album, Crack The Skye, which will be released on March 24th, 2009. Considering how badass Leviathan and Blood Mountain were, and going on the strength of this song, hopes should be high. Check out the awesome cover art:
Monday, March 9, 2009
...Aaand we're back. Sorry about the hiatus everyone, but sometimes you don't realize how many things are too many things to do at once until you're actually doing all of them. To bring us back into rock consciousness, I've uploaded one of my favorite Dinosaur Jr bootlegs, made up of two shows -- the first being their 1997 set at the Water Festival in Stockholm, Sweden, and the second being performances from the Bizarre Festival in Cologne, Germany that same year. Don't be put off by how far removed these dates are from Dino Jr's late 80's prime, these sets contain some of the most energy and buzzsaw aggression I've heard from Dinosaur Jr live, and Mike Johnson and George Berz do a more than adequate job of backing up J Mascis' Hammer of Thor brilliance here.
Be especially on guard for facemelting guitar solos on "Alone" and "What Else Is New." Killer shit.
Dinosaur Jr - Out There [Europe '97]
Tracks 1-9: Water Festival (Stockholm, Sweden) - August 13th, 1997
Tracks 10-12: Bizarre Festival (Cologne, Germany) - August 17, 1997
- Out There
- Never Bought It
- Feel the Pain
- Get Me
- Freak Scene
- What Else Is New
- The Lung
- Can't We Move This
- Just Like Heaven