My Robot Friend – “The Fake” mp3
Truth is this morning I looked for a song about being machines. Or about becoming machines. About being part of a massive emerging collective consciousness made of light, wires, hardware and wet nerves. Welcome to the machine. You will be assimilated. Devo meets The Normal at a rave. Enjoy.
My Robot Friend
“The Fake” (mp3)
from “Hot Action! (Deluxe Edition)”
Teenage Kicks – “I Heart Lora Logic” mp3
For a brief moment in 1977, “New Wave” and “Punk Rock” were one and the same, in the minds and safety pin laden cheeks of many a spike haired, spitting angry teen. Teenage Kicks apparently take their inspiration from that storied cultural nanosecond, in this ode to Lora Logic, whom, googlenets be praised, I now know to be the sax player from original new wave punkers X-Ray Specs! She played those gr8 sickly tenor parts on “Oh Bondage Up Yours!” “I Heart Lora Logic” is a punk rockin’ love letter to a pre-riot grrrl pioneer, and a lament to the end of teenage fun. Enjoy.
“I Heart Lora Logic” (mp3)
from “Teenage Kicks”
13th Chime – “Two As A Couple” mp3
I posted 13th Chime‘s wonderful “Sarah’s Got A Chainsaw” last year and have purty much been in love with this long disbanded band of gothy Brits since. Behold the late 70’s mile long guitar reverb. Revel in the smudged eyeshadow sexy talky part. Gyrate to the rude pounding drum craziness but most of all, soak up the ever-so-English vocal dreaminess. Swooning in black lace as I return to “The Lost Album.”
“Two As A Couple” (mp3)
from “The Lost Album”
(Sacred Bones Records)
Swimmer One – “This Club is for Everybody Even You” mp3
In a tiny attic room on the Scottish coastline, two smartly dressed gents forge smart, moody electronic pop rather like the Pet Shop Boys freaking out in English class. There’s a special charm in the unexpected turns to the lyrics in “This Club is for Everybody, Even You.” Brainy, delicious Euro-pop from Edinburgh. Have a swim in it.
“This Club is for Everybody, Even You” (mp3)
from “Dead Orchestras”
Luxury Car – “In The Event” mp3
Brainy pop haz neva sounded so sexxy. Edinburgh, Scotland’s Luxury Car favors friendly blips and soothing old vocoder nebulae in the construction of their über-new wave vision. Lyrically we’re talking astronomical physics as metaphor for the un-likelyhood of a two strangers becoming lovers. A pair of heavenly bodies in their elliptical orbits. Will they ever come close enough together to even meet? In this charming single from their “Heart of the Matter” album, these clever pop-smiths consider the wonderful possibilities “In the Event” they do.
“In the Event” (mp3)
from “The Heart of the Matter”
Starfucker – “German Love” mp3
Starfucker is a perfect example of a certain current model of indie rock star. Analog hearts using digital arts to make soothing pop medicine. “German Love” is a typical title for these Portlanders – intriguing, sexy, ambiguous and romantic. Subtle yet compelling synth-y keyboard blippies and a jangly guitar strum accompany a dreamy longing vocal, all supported by smart and tidy arrangement sensibilities from the drummer, who drives home the pop-ness of it all. Me loves it.
“German Love” (mp3)
(Badman Recording Co)
Modern English – “It’s Ok” mp3
Impossible to think of pop radio in the 80’s without “I Melt With You” – which had simply one of the best hit choruses of that hopeful and fopp-haired era. The band behind that song was Modern English, and they have in the meantime made seven albums. Their latest, “Soundtrack” was produced by Hugh Jones who also produced “I Melt With You” and hit records by Simple Minds, Echo & The Bunnymen and more. “It’s Ok” is the single and I like it lots.
“It’s Ok” (mp3)
Before heavy metal was called “metal” and got all speeded up, it sounded heavy – like great shards of metal colliding and melting together in the sky. Loving Thunder‘s music is like that. This sonically massive title track from their “Photographing the Wild” album is a stunner. Very Seattle in the guitar department. There’s still something in the water there which makes electric guitars sound more beastly and immense. The drums and riffs are more Zep than Nirvana, and the vocal is delivered in a beautifully creepy octave harmony like monks gone to the dark side. A quote on their myspace says simply, “The future, as envisioned by teenage stoners, in the 70’s.” Pretty f00kin accurate.
“Photographing the Wild” (download mp3)
from “Photographing the Wild”
(Hot Dog City Record Co.)
“Photographing the Wild“ (play)
The New Rags – “Gotta Get Out of Here” mp3
With a delightfully distorted electric piano and a soaring organ lead track removing any need for bass or guitar, The New Rags’ tight vocal harmonies are given a lovely frame in which to shine. Underneath, you have this calamitous drum track that sounds like Keith Moon playing in XTC, approximately. Lyrical catharsis abounds in this youthful leave-town-for-heck-knows-where anthem. It’s ragtime music for the twenty-nothings! Original, fully realized, and fun.
The New Rags
“Gotta Get Out of Here” (mp3)
from “Gotta Get Out Of Here”
(Silent Stereo Records)
Crystal Stilts – “Love Is A Wave” mp3
Remember in physics class, the maddening question of light: is it a particle or a wave? And having to grasp that it’s both, and oh the duality and what will we do? Love has also been called light, in some poetic and spiritual texts. Well, at long last, Crystal Stilts from Brooklyn have determined that “Love Is a Wave.” Who am I to argue? After all, a yawning goth-y male vocal serenade with oceans of spring-reverb-y guitars and a rockin’ beat could convince me that time is a particle.
“Love Is a Wave” (mp3)
from “Love Is a Wave”