Tuesday, May 27, 2008

animal kingdom.

i gave my heart to two bands this week…

Frightened Rabbits for their latest "Midnight Organ Fight,"
and The Golden Dogs.

the former consists of unapologetic self-deprecating lyrics through thick Scottish accented vocals. the words sung are not the deepest i’ve ever heard, and some tracks are more radio friendly than others; but overall, a beautiful record that i keep coming back to despite the other 5497 songs calling my name. (i am currently listening to my entire digital collection. iTunes is doing most of the work for me, by keeping track of which songs i’ve played. when i have finished, nobody will be able to tell me having 11 000 + songs is ridiculous because i will be able to curtly reply. “i have listened to them all.”)

seconditively, The Golden Dogs are Canadian and independent. (my two favourite qualitites in a band…and a person.) from what i’ve heard, they put on a fantastic live show (you can hear a live CBC Radio 3 session featuring them). it was a task and a half to track down their most recent release “Big Eye Little Eye,” but entirely worth the effort. the video for “Never Meant Any Harm” is cute, pretty and fairly reflective of the band and albums sound. although my favourite song of the album by a long shot is “Saints at the Gates” for the fabulously raucous vocals.

aside: the broken piano in the photo has nothing to do with either bands. it was taken by a tres wicked photographer named Chris Jordan who’s latest solo exhibit addresses mass consumption on a very literal large scale. this is an earlier photo, taken for a series titled “In Katrina’s Wake” where he looks at the merits of unnatural disaster. he catches beauty in destruction, then shares in hopes of awareness. i say admirable.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Bonjour l’été.

It’s about time.

Today was all about summer events: sleeping in, patio beers, sunshine and music. I finally got the chance to wear my straw hat, something I had been excitedly anticipating for a while now (though after almost losing said hat to an untimely streetcar-related death, I learned not to wear it while biking). After a few hours of aimless wandering, shopping, chatting and a tragedy involving a fudge Drumstick, we went to see our friends’ band, Macro Fiesta. They were playing at the Steam Whistle Brewery for the Toronto Doors Open 2008, a cool architectural festival. While the music and cheap beer were a sweet deal, this afternoon bash was also the choice scene for a bachelor party of frat dudes, a bunch we affectionately named the Bro Show. Oh backwards hats and popped collars... Thank you Macro Fiesta for the sweet Dance Mix 94 Medley – so fantastic.

Oh, and I got my first sports injury of the season in a skateboarding accident... Well, what aaactually happened is that my friend dropped his long board on my sandal-clad foot, but that sounds so much lamer. Nonetheless, it’s a pretty badass bruise, which is great considering I’m going to be wearing flip-flops for the next 4 months.

Here is a mix of my favourite songs of the moment to kick off the summer. I would also like to recommend a visit to this website (one of my favourites) to which I owe this post’s photo (it's Dundas Square!!)


Girl 3 - Mix Tape.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Nose Dive.

's new video for 'Everybody Nose' looks like a live-action American Apparel ad. Quick, how many sweaty hipsters can we fit into this 3 minute clip!!? Let's split the screen up into a grid and maximise that amount!!

Oooh, and Lindsay Lohan makes an appearance. The tune IS about coke, after all.

It's a lame-ish song, but in a kind of catchy way, and I do predict there will probably be some sweet remixes (the version on their MySpace is already an improvement). Hey, you can do a lot chanting a line like: "All the girls standing in the line for the bathroom". I also think it sounds like they're sneezing repeatedly, in different styles. But maybe that's just me.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

going on. don't follow me.

Gnarls Barkley released the video for "Going On" (the latest single off The Odd Couple, their 2008 release) yesterday.

the video for it: wicked. (as in, is…)

i don’t dance. but If I did i would dance like the dancers in the video.

also worth a listen: elpuocddoeht.
the entire Odd Couple album as one track, backwards. i know, it sounds ridiculous. but it’s actually quite cool. you have to listen to understand. and you have no excuse not to, since it’s free:


Friday, May 9, 2008

Another flashback!

I’m sorry if I seem to be clinging desperately to the nineties... I think it’s because I’ve recently graduated into the ‘mid-twenties’ category, which brings me closer to 30 than I am comfortable with. Or I am secretly trying to legitimize a large part of my CD collection by making it sound cool again. Either way, I have faith that you’re going to appreciate this.

If the name Jyoti Mishra rings any bells, I’m thoroughly impressed. But an alias you might be more familiar with is White Town.

Still nothing? Well, this one-man-band is the genius behind the 1997 beauty “Your Woman”, a one-hit wonder which had rendered my thirteen-year-old self completely confused. Oh Jyoti, why would a man serenade another man about how he can never be his woman? Even now that I am older and consider myself more informed about gender identity issues, I still don’t quite grasp the message. And the lyrics... “So much for all your highbrow Marxist ways, just use me up and then you walk away.” Clearly the tragic tale of a doomed love affair. Uh...

Anyhoo, the album was called Women in Technology and the song was White Town’s only memorable release. But don’t be sad, it managed to reach #1 on the British charts that year, and dude’s probably still living off the royalties.

So what’s this mystery man’s deal? According to my friends at Wikipedia, Mr. Mishra is a follower of the straight-edge movement and a reformed Marxist. He is still making music, having produced a few more albums, including Don’t Mention the War (2006) released under his own record label, Bzangy. Oh, and he looks like this:

Here’s the video and the song, for you to add to your library of ‘90s one-hit-wonders.

Right before Right Said Fred’s “I’m too sexy”.


Thursday, May 8, 2008

one thing led to another...

get your mind out of the gutter.

i’ve had a mystery song in my head since seeing The Constantines put on a sick live show in Ottawa last Friday. i am a bit closer to figuring out the unknown track. i believe it is originally par The Sadies, covered by Bryan Webb in a secondary solo encore. …whilst searching for the original version of the mystery song, i came across The Sadies/Cons collaborative album. it in turn, led me to another side-project/super-group called: The Unintended (oh hello irony...) the self-titled album was released in 2004 and seems to be channelling Joy Division through a folkesque lens.

i hope “Controller Awake” haunts my dreams...
...and yours…

Controller Awake - The Unintended

and if you recognize The Sadies track, help a girl out please.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

The medium is the message.

They call us the MTV generation. Kids who would rather watch The Hills than the news; people who are more affected by the Brangelina babies and the release of GTA IV than by the recent disaster in Burma. It’s not necessarily that we’re apathetic - we are exposed to more media than any generation before us, and we must filter through inconceivable amounts of content in order to get to the stuff that matters.

Thankfully (or not...), corporations have figured out that this is a major social concern and are now trying to capitalize on our “ignorance”. Ad campaigns and gimmicks legitimize their profit mongering by taking on socially responsible or political messages. Turn world issues into a consumer product and voilà, informed citizens. And while this consumerism + altruism equation can often be a double-edged sword, certain industries have mastered the art of getting through to media-crazed youth. Ironically enough, MTV is one of them. Watch this new Radiohead video for All I Need, and don't miss the ending:

Radiohead - All I Need
Amplive - All I Need (Remix)

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Of course.

Jim Noir would probably take me on a road trip. I would buy us blue slushies and red licorice and we’d listen to the following song on repeat.

Jim Noir – Ships and Clouds

Then I would laugh at his sweater vest and he'd get mad.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Ugh, another one.

So Scarlett Johansson makes music now. I'm still completely torn, because unlike waaay too many actors who attempt to cross over into the music business, she kinda has a bit of cred. Here’s why:

a) Her entire album consists of Tom Waits covers, which is a cool concept.
b) "Falling Down" features David Bowie, who is supercool.

I first heard “Falling Down” without knowing these tidbits, and was thoroughly embarrassed for Ms. Johansson. Her voice is so monotonous and the lyrics are pretty repetitive, not to mention that this video is pretty narcissistic. It’s like these all these actresses turn to making music so they can make 4 minute video clips focusing strictly on them.

But now that I’ve read a bit more about the project and the amount of cool people involved in creating this, I guess I feel a bit more forgiving. But I still wouldn’t buy the album. Well, maybe in a few years, when it’s being sold for $5.99 on those rotating racks on the counter of small town convenience stores beside the beef jerky and the penny jar raising money for the local fiddle festival. Too harsh?

Needless to say people are quick to express their dislike for this project – this video alone has had over 50 000 views, and over 300 comments from viewers expressing their disapproval.

I don’t know, I’m at a loss. And now I made myself kinda crave beef jerky, which is upsetting.

Judge for yourself...