Friday, December 30, 2011

Christopher Stopa - Sit Still

Last week the internet was screaming with a song titled “How Do You Sit Still" or "Putting Ketchup In The Fridge” which was believed to be Radiohead from The Bends/OK Computer days. Well it turns out the real source of this song is actually by Toronto musician/baker Christopher Stopa. CNN Erin Burnett broke the story on where the song really came from here. The song 'Sit Still' was recorded back in 2001, and after being dubbed an early Radiohead Demo racked up nearly 100,000 views in a week. Although it is not a Radiohead song I think some props has to be given to Christopher Stopa for creating a great song.  Take a listen to the song below and check out what Stopa had to say about his song below.

Sit Still by Christopher Stopa

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Panda Bear - You Can Count On Me

Here is the official music video for Panda Bear's "You Can Count on Me"
from the album "Tomboy" on Paw Tracks. The video offers up some trippy visuals but works perfectly with the haunting vocals.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

2011's Top 100 Songs: #20-1

2011 was an interesting year for music. Great sounds were thankfully everywhere- but songs, as opposed to albums, became suddenly more memorable. While there is no doubt that 2011 was an exciting time for full-length releases, more and more artists seemed to be embracing the idea of the single and crafting an album around it. Due to this apparent evolution, I will be counting down my top 100 songs of 2011. The rules are simple- obviously the track must have first been released in this current year. Also, no one album can have more than three songs make an appearance. Also, keep in mind, this list is subjective- I have not yet had the opportunity to listen to some of this year's more popular releases.The new Jay-Z/Kanye West collaboration, Watch the Throne will not be making an appearance. Adele's 21 and Drake's Take Care were not taken into account either.

Note: I recently have listened to PJ Harvey's Let England Shake in it's entirety several times. At least two of those songs would have found a very high place on this list if I had heard them sooner. The album itself is incredible- ideally, it would easily have been in my top 5 of the year.





20- TV on the Radio- "Second Song"- Nine Types of Light



19- Cults- "Go Outside"- Cults
Cults - Go Outside by underhisempire2

18- Zola Jesus- "Vessel"- Conatus
Zola Jesus - Vessel by souterraintransmissions

17- Lykke Li- "Sadness is a Blessing"- Wounded Rhymes
Lykke Li - Sadness Is a Blessing by a.vourloumis

16- Other Lives- "For 12"- Tamer Animals
For 12 by Other Lives

15- Bon Iver- "Holocene"- Bon Iver
Holocene by boniver

14- Battles- "Futura"- Gloss Drop
Battles — Futura by m4spam

13- Foster the People- "Pumped Up Kicks"- Torches
Pumped Up Kicks by Foster The People

12- Radiohead- "Bloom"- The King of Limbs


11- tUnE-yArDs- "Bizness"- who kill
BIZNESS Tune Yards by CristinaBlack

10- Panda Bear- "Last Night at the Jetty"- Tomboy
Panda Bear - Last Night At The Jetty by bigasslens

9- Girls- "Vomit"- Father, Son, Holy Ghost
Girls - Vomit by artsandcraftsmx

8- St. Vincent- "Cruel"- Strange Mercy


7- Lana Del Rey- "Video Games"


6- Atlas Sound- "Terra Incognita"- Parallax
Atlas Sound - Terra Incognita by rslblog.com

5- Washed Out- "Amor Fati"- Within and Without
Washed Out - Amor Fati by DominoRecordCo

4- Cults- "Abducted"- Cults
Cults - Abducted by cultscultscults

3- Fleet Foxes- "Helplessness Blues"- Helplessness Blues
Fleet Foxes - Helplessness Blues by MMMusic

2- Radiohead- "Lotus Flower"- The King of Limbs


1- M83- "Midnight City"- Hurry Up, We're Dreaming


- Fr. Jones

Jónsi - Gathering Stories VIDEO

Sigur Rós frontman Jónsi co-wrote a song called 'Gathering Stories' with director Cameron Crowe for the filmmaker's We Bought a Zoo. Check out the snowy animated which was directed by Crush Creative.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Radiohead - (Putting Ketchup In The Fridge)


Here is the newest addition to the Radiohead collection. 'Putting Ketchup In The Fridge' comes from The Bends/OK Computer era and after a listen you get the feeling that it would have been a perfect fit to fit right in the middle of those two albums. The song was never released on a single, album or EP but has been leaked recently and I thought it was a fantastic B-Side from Radiohead and it is a very nice throwback to all things The King of Limbs.



(Putting Ketchup In The Fridge) Lyrics:
Haven't got a hope
Haven't got a prayer to hear me
Can't say that I know what
Or why am I drifting away

Anxious forces from above
Keep on asking me
How do you sit still?
How do you sit still?
(no more no more no more?)

There was a time
When you shared a hope with me
And all these colours must be fading
Cause I'm finding it hard to see

So follow me, my love
Cause I've been wondering
How do you sit still?
How do you sit still?

Everybody knows
Someone's going to fall
Well, you decide just how badly
I don't wanna watch
Turn the other way
It all goes bad

How do you sit still?
How do you sit still?

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The Rest - Always On My Mind / The Last Day

Finally getting around to posting something about 'The Rest'. They are a terrific band from Hamilton, Ontario that released their last album "Everyone All At Once" back in 2009, a four track EP in 2010 and are on the verge of releasing their new LP this coming February titled "Seesaw".

To go into a bit of history of the band, they've shown a great deal of versatility in their relatively short life and have contributed to tracks for a Smith's Tribute as well as an Indie Lullabies collection (Pure Imagination of Willy Wonka fame, which must be checked out!).

The Rest also has a pretty interesting relationship with beer which is worth mentioning, as documented on their label's website:
"Bass player Matty Buzanko apprenticed at a small brewery on the outskirts of Hamilton for three years. It wasn't long before Matty started making people swoon over his IPA, and hunger for his award winning Scotch Ale. The Rest began having parties/concerts/film nights/crafts and geeks workshops celebrating this barley business. These gatherings funded two records and an EP, (which was released) in the spring of 2010."

New Tracks - "Always On My Mind" and "The Last Day" show the band has developed their sound since their previous releases and show more confidence and poise. Both of these great tracks can be downloaded for free on the band's Bandcamp page or played below. Check out a copy of "Everyone All At Once" on iTunes.





2011's Top 100 Songs: #40-21

2011 was an interesting year for music. Great sounds were thankfully everywhere- but songs, as opposed to albums, became suddenly more memorable. While there is no doubt that 2011 was an exciting time for full-length releases, more and more artists seemed to be embracing the idea of the single and crafting an album around it. Due to this apparent evolution, I will be counting down my top 100 songs of 2011. The rules are simple- obviously the track must have first been released in this current year. Also, no one album can have more than three songs make an appearance. Also, keep in mind, this list is subjective. As one person, there are several albums that I have not yet had the opportunity to hear- including a few of the more popular releases. I missed out on Adele's 21, Drake's Take Care, and Jay-Z/Kanye West's Watch the Throne (although I did finally pop this one in last night- wow!)-records which have been perennially favorites on many year-end lists.




40- The Antlers- "Rolled Together"- Burst Apart


39- St. Vincent- "Surgeon"- Strange Mercy


38- Toro Y Moi- "How I Know"- Underneath the Pine
Toro Y Moi How I Know by stellarola

37- Lykke Li- "I Follow Rivers"- Wounded Rhymes
Lykke Li - I Follow Rivers by LykkeLi

36- EMA- "California"- Past Life, Martyred Saints
EMA: California by -gaga

35- Panda Bear- "You Can Count on Me"- Tomboy
Panda Bear - You Can Count On Me by ThatEricAlper

34- Girls- "My Ma"- Father, Son, Holy Ghost
Girls - My Ma by artsandcraftsmx

33- Explosions in the Sky- "Be Comfortable, Creature"- Take Care, Take Care, Take Care


32- Fleet Foxes- "The Shrine/An Argument"- Helplessness Blues


31- Dum Dum Girls- "Bedroom Eyes"- Only In Dreams
Dum Dum Girls - Bedroom Eyes by subpop

30- Atlas Sound- "The Shakes"- Parallax


29- James Blake- "The Wilhelm Scream"- James Blake


28- Fever Ray- "The Wolf"- Red Riding Hood OST
The Wolf by Fever Ray

27- Battles- "Ice Cream"- Gloss Drop
Ice Cream (Featuring Matias Aguayo) by BATTLES

26- M83- "Steve McQueen"- Hurry Up, We're Dreaming


25- Neon Indian- "Hex Girlfriend"- Era Extrana


24- Youth Lagoon- "Afternoon"- The Year of Hibernation


23- Washed Out- "Far Away"- Within and Without
Washed Out - Far Away by haibee_mirage

22- Austra- "The Beat and the Pulse"- Feel it Break
Austra - Beat and the Pulse by earwormdaily

21- St. Vincent- "Chloe in the Afternoon"- Strange Mercy


- Fr. Jones

FPT's Best Albums of 2011


Here are the writers at Fake Plastic Tunes, individual "Best Albums of 2011" lists. Be sure to check out our Album Reviews section for detailed analysis of all our 2011 reviewed albums. Being Radiohead fans we decided to leave out Radiohead's The King of Limbs album from our lists. 2011 was a fantastic year in music, now lets see what 2012 has to offer.

James Brimacombe -- Top 50 Albums of 2011
01. The Vaccines - What Did You Expect From The Vaccines?
02. WU LYF - Go Tell Fire To The Mountain
03. Youth Lagoon - The Year of Hibernation
04. Elbow - Build A Rocket Boys!
05. French Films - Imaginary Future
06. Bon Iver - Bon Iver
07. Explosions In The Sky - Take Care, Take Care, Take Care
08. The Horrors - Skying
09. Fleet Foxes - Helplessness Blues
10. The Decemberists - The King Is Dead
11. Tim Hecker - Ravedeath, 1972
12. Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds
13. The Black Keys - El Camino
14. Kasabian - Velociraptor!
15. Kurt Vile - Smoke Ring For My Halo
16. Wilco - The Whole Love
17. M83 - Hurry Up, We're Dreaming
18. Frankie & The Heartstrings - Hunger
19. Bright Eyes - The Peoples Key
20. Beirut - The Rip Tide
21. The Rural Alberta Advantage - Departing
22. Bombay Bicycle Club - A Different Kind of Fix
23. PJ Harvey - Let England Shake
24. Noah and The Whale - Last Night On Earth
25. Generationals - Actor-Castor
26. Cults - Cults
27. The Cival Wars - Barton Hollow
28. Iron and Wine - Kiss Each Other Clean
29. Arctic Monkeys - Suck It and See
30. Alexander - Alexander
31. Destroyer - Kaputt
32. Cut Copy - Zonoscope
33. Big Talk - Big Talk
34. Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks - Mirror Traffic
35. The Pains of Being Pure At Heart - Belong
36. The Strokes - Angles
37. Esben and the Witch - Violet Cries
38. White Denim - D
39. The Belle Brigade - The Belle Brigade
40. Real Estate - Days
41. My Morning Jacket - Circuital
42. Girls - Father, Son, Holy Ghost
43. Matthew Good - Lights of Endangered Species
44. Cold Cave - Cherish The Light Years
45. TV On The Radio - Nine Types of Light
46. Unknown Mortal Orchestra - Unknown Mortal Orchestra
47. Ryan Adams - Ashes & Fire
48. I Break Horses - Hearts
49. The Drums - Portamento
50. Beady Eye - Different Gear, Still Speeding

Honorable Mentions:
The Naked And Famous - Passive Me Aggressive You
Yuck - Yuck
Braids - Native Speaker
The Joy Formidable - The Big Roar
tUnE-yArDs - w h o k i l l
James Blake - James Blake
Grouplove - Never Trust A Happy Song
The Kooks - Junk of the Heart
Other Lives - Tamer Animals
The Cave Singers - No Witch
Death Cab For Cutie - Codes + Keys
Washed Out - Within And Without
Metronomy - The English Riviera
The Antlers - Burst Apart

Nick Swenor -- Top 25 Albums of 2011
01. Fleet Foxes "Helplessness Blues"
02. Wilco "The Whole Love"
03. Cut Copy "Zonoscope"
04. Surfer Blood "Tarot Classics EP"
05. Beirut "Riptide"
06. Neon Indian "Era Extraña"
07. Destroyer "Kaputt"
08. Felice Brothers "Celebration, Florida"
09. Black Keys "El Camino"
10. Black Lips "Arabia Mountain"
11. Cults "Cults"
12. Radiohead "King of Limbs"
13. Mister Heavenly "Out of Love"
14. The Cool Kids "When Fish Ride Bicycles"
15. Man Man "Life Fantastic"
16. TV on the Radio "Nine Types of Light"
17. Girls "Father, Son, Holy Ghost"
18. The Drums "Portamento"
19. Smith Westerns "Dye it Blonde"
20. The Strokes "Angles"
21. Portugal. The Man "In the Mountain In the Cloud"
22. Dawes "Nothing is Wrong"
23. the DoDos "No Color"
24. City and Colour "Little Hell"
25. Phantogram "Nightlife EP"


Honorable Mentions:
Tapes n Tapes "Outside"
Wavves "Life Sux EP"
The Roots "Undun"
Grouplove "Never Trust a Happy Song"
Lykke Li "Wounded Rhymes"
Unknown Mortal Orchestra "Unknown Mortal Orchestra"
Deerhoof "Deerhoof vs Evil"
Fruit Bats "Tripper"
The Go! Team "Rolling Blackouts"
Foo Fighters "Wasting Light"
Jacuzzi Boys "Glazin"
The Kooks "Junk of Heart"
Kishi Bashi "Room for Dream EP"

M83 - "Hurry Up, We're Dreaming"

Jay Harris -- Top 15 Albums of 2011
01. M83 - Hurry Up, We're Dreaming
02. WU LYF - Go Tell Fire To The Mountain
03. Bon Iver - Bon Iver
04. The Vaccines - What Did You Expect From The Vaccines
05. Cold Cave - Cherish The Light Years
06. St. Vincent - Strange Mercy
07. Elbow - Build A Rocket Boys!
08. Girls - Father, Son, Holy Ghost
09. The Horrors - Skying
10. Fleet Foxes - Helplessness Blues
11. Explosions In The Sky - Take Care, Take Care, Take Care
12. Bombay Bicycle Club - A Different Kind Of Fix
13. Florence And The Machine - Ceremonials
14. Cults - Cults
15. Destroyer - Kaputt

Bobby Markle -- Top Albums of 2011
01. Twin Sister – In Heaven
02. Tycho – Dive
03. Neon Indian – Era Extrana
04. Bon Iver – Bon Iver
05. Jay-Z and Kanye West – Watch the Throne
06. SBTRKT - SBTRKT
07. Gang Gang Dance – Eye Contact
08. M83 – Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming
09. Destroyer – Kaputt
10. TV on the Radio – Nine Types of Light
Honorable Mentions:
Grimes – Geidi Primes
Washed Out – Within & Without
Future Islands – On the Water
James Blake – James Blake
Panda Bear – Tomboy

Mark.HaTe -- Top 15 Albums of 2011
01. The Twilight Singers - Dynamite Steps
02. Puscifer - Conditions of My Parole
03. Ryan Adams - Ashes & Fire
04. The Dreaming - Puppet
05. Jane's Addiction - The Great Escape Artist
06. Tom Morello: The Nighwatchman - World Wide Rebel Songs
07. Tom Waits - Bad As Me
08. Sebastian Bach - Kicking & Screaming
09. Jolie Holland - Pint of Blood
10. Jay Psaros - On Up The Road
11. Hugo - Old Time Religion
12. Only Living Boy - Hide Nothing
13. Falcon - Disapear
14. Iron and Wine - Kiss Each Other Clean
15. Mike Doughty - Yes and Also Yes

Ty Martinez -- Top 10 Albums of 2011
01. M83 - Hurry Up, We're Dreaming
02. Fleet Foxes - Helplessness Blues
03. St. Vincent - Strange Mercy
04. Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks - Mirror Traffic
05. Girls - Father,Son, Holy Ghost
06. Cold War Kids - Mine Is Yours
07. Youth Lagoon - The Year of Hibernation
08. Beastie Boys - Hot Sauce Committee Part Two
09. Foster The People - Torches
10. Eight Bit Tiger - Parallel Syncnized Randonmess


Fr. Jones- Top 15 of 2011*
(FYI- The King of Limbs would fit snugly in the 2-3 range, stipulations aside. That album is like a type of festering, adaptive bacteria in it's ability to grow over the past ten months. It reminds me a lot of the alien from The Thing. I have become a firm believer that The King of Limbs has this innate ability to adapt to whatever mood the listener is in. It's oh-so comfortably polarizing. )

1. Fleet Foxes- Helplessness Blues
2. Atlas Sound- Parallax
3. M83- Hurry Up, We're Dreaming
4. Washed Out- Within and Without
5. Cults- Cults
5. Battles- Gloss Drop
6. tUnE-yArDs- who kill
7. Panda Bear- Tomboy
8. St. Vincent- Strange Mercy
9. Other Lives- Tamer Animals
10. Girls- Father, Son, Holy Ghost
11. The Antlers- Burst Apart
12. Zomby- Dedication
13. TV on the Radio- Nine Types of Light
14. Lykke Li- Wounded Rhymes
15. Grimes- Halfaxa
15. Austra- Feel it Break

Honorable mention: Zola Jesus- Conatus, Dum Dum Girls- Only in Dreams, Bon Iver- Bon Iver (I know, I know- am I the only one that secretly wanted this album, as good as it is, to be slightly less predictable?)







Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Radiohead - Winter Wonderland

Here is Radiohead with a cut from Inside out night webcast in 2002 performing 'Winter Wonderland'. You would be hard pressed to find any other Radiohead Christmas song, but I think 'Winter Wonderland' is a perfect selection. You even get to hear Thom's shout out of "It's the smurfs! Its' the smurfs!" to open up the song haha.

Smith & Burrows - When The Thames Froze

Smith & Burrows have put together an entire album dedicated to Christmas, titled Funny Looking Angels. From that album they deliver the best Christmas song of 2011 in my opinion with 'When The Thames Froze'. Smith & Burrows consist of Tom Smith of Editors and Andy Burrows of Razorlight. They both have been friends for years and have developed their album on the idea of a Christmas theme. Check out my version of the best Christmas anthem of 2011 below with the video for 'When The Thames Froze'.

http://smithandburrows.com
http://facebook.com/smithandburrows
http://twitter.com/smithandburrows
Amazon -- http://www.smarturl.it/fla
iTunes -- http://smarturl.it/funnylookingangels

Monday, December 19, 2011

The Killers - The Cowboys’ Christmas Ball

Here is yet another one of those so called Christmas songs. This time we get The Killers with a new song "The Cowboys' Christmas Ball". The Killers have made releasing holiday songs an annual tradition as every year since 2006 they have done so. We have heard in the past songs such as "A Great Big Sled" and "Don't Shoot Me Santa" and now they have a sixth single and a new "(RED) Christmas" EP which contains all six songs to benefit Product Red.

(RED) Christmas EP tracklisting:
1. A Great Big Sled (feat. Toni Halliday)
2. Don't Shoot Me Santa
3. Joseph, Better You Than Me
4. ¡Happy Birthday Guadalupe!
5. Boots
6. The Cowboys' Christmas Ball

Sunday, December 18, 2011

2011's Top 100 Songs: #60-41

2011 was an interesting year for music. Great sounds were thankfully everywhere- but songs, as opposed to albums, became suddenly more memorable. While there is no doubt that 2011 was an exciting time for full-length releases, more and more artists seemed to be embracing the idea of the single and crafting an album around it. Due to this apparent evolution, I will be counting down my top 100 songs of 2011. The rules are simple- obviously the track must have first been released in this current year. Also, no one album can have more than three songs make an appearance. Also, keep in mind, this list is subjective. As one person, there are several albums that I have not yet had the opportunity to hear- including a few of the more popular releases. I missed out on Adele's 21, Drake's Take Care, and Jay-Z/Kanye West's Watch the Throne (although I did finally pop this one in last night- wow!)-records which have been perennially favorites on many year-end lists.

Anyway, on we go.

Top 100: 80-61



60- Twin Shadow- "I Can’t Wait"- Forget
Twin Shadow - I Can't Wait by Juan Guitaro

59- Zola Jesus- "Seekir"- Conatus
Seekir by ZolaJesus

58- Pictureplane- "Real is a Feeling"- Post Physical
Real is a Feeling by PICTUREPLANE

57- Arrange- "When’d You Find Me"- Plantation
Arrange - When'd You Find Me by dangervillage

56- Elbow- "The Birds"- Build a Rocket Boys!
ELBOW 'The Birds' from album 'Build a Rocket Boys!' by KidTwist

55- The Weeknd- "The Morning"- House of Balloons
The Weeknd - The Morning by The_Weeknd

54- Active Child- "Hanging On"- You Are All I See Active Child: 'Hanging On' by Ragged Words

53- tUnE-yArDs- "Powa"- who kill
Powa - Tune Yards by CaballeroDeMartin

52- Modeselektor- "German Clap"- Monkeytown

51- Neon Indian- "Polish Girl"- Era Extrana

Neon Indian - Polish Girl by deejlr



50- Purity Ring- "Belispeak"- Split 7"

Belispeak by PURITY RING

49- Washed Out- "Echoes"- Within and Without
Washed Out - Echoes by ListenBeforeYouBuy

48- Other Lives- "Desert"- Tamer Animals
Desert by Other Lives

47- Reptar- "Stuck in My Id"- Oblangle Fizz Y'all
Reptar - Stuck in my Id by j.co413

46- The Antlers- "Every Night My Teeth Are Falling Out"- Burst Apart
The Antlers - Every Night My Teeth Are Falling Out by mjvisme

45- Grimes- "Sagrad"- Halfaxa
Grimes - Sagrad by my.monkey

44- The Strokes- "Under Cover of Darkness"- Angles
The Strokes - Under Cover Of Darkness by d_antec

43- M83- "Year One, Year UFO"- Hurry Up, We're Dreaming


42- Zomby- "Natalia’s Song"- Dedication
Zomby - Natalia's Song by marsbars

41- Radiohead- "Separator"- The King of Limbs

Friday, December 16, 2011

Top 25 EP's of 2011

Next week the writers here at Fake Plastic Tunes will drop their top albums of 2011. In preparation of those 'Best Of Lists', I have also put together a top 25 list of EP's that I enjoyed in the year 2011.

FPT's James Brimacombe -- Top 25 EP's of 2011:
01. Painted Palms - Canopy
02. Alabama Shakes - Alabama Shakes
03. Beach Fossils - What A Pleasure
04. Alex Turner - Submarine OST
05. Howler - This One's Different
06. Serenades - Come Home EP
07. Kurt Vile - So Outta Reach
08. This Many Boyfriends - Young Lovers Go Pop!
09. Tribes - We Were Children EP
10. I Am In Love - Call Me An Animal
11. Dirty Gold - Roar
12. Team Me - Team Me EP
13. Surfer Blood - Tarot Classics
14. Joy Formidable - Roarities
15. Typhoon - A New Kind of House
16. San Cisco - Golden Revolver
17. Broken Bells - Meyrin Fields EP
18. White Denim - Takes Place In Your Work Space
19. Dom - Family Love
20. Phantogram - Nightlife
21. Phil Selway - Running Blind
22. The Decemberists - Long Live The King
23. Beth Ditto - Beth Ditto EP
24. Tim Hecker - Dropped Pianos
25. Esben and the Witch - Hexagons EP

Honorable Mention:
Toro Y Moi - Freaking Out
Burial - Street Halo
Jens Lekman - An Argument With Myself
Clams Casino - Rainforest
Reptar - Olbangle Fizz Y'All
The Soft Moon - Total Decay
The Glitch Mob - We Can Make The World Stop
The Morning Benders - Japan Echo
Kele - The Hunter EP
Dum Dum Girls - He Gets Me High
Jamie XX - Far Nearer/Beat For

Arcade Fire - Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains) VIDEO

Arcade Fire are back with a new video for Sprawl II which as a fan you can view it in its traditional version or in its interactive version. You get to take control in the video and create the movements of each of the members of Arcade Fire. Check out both the original version of Sprawl II below and the invitation to join the dance.



Thursday, December 15, 2011

EYVIND KANG'S THE NARROW GARDEN SET FOR JAN. 31 RELEASE ON IPECAC

Eyvind Kang is best known for his work with Mike Patton, John Zorn, and Lou Reed.

This well known string player is set to release his newest offering to the world, The Narrow Garden, which is said by Kang to be “inspired by the natural world.”

"I composed most of the songs at a pond on Vashon Island," explains Kang. "I also went down to Yelm and Olympia and music just came into my head. There were birds, plants and flowers. It's a concept of love, of poetry, like a troubadour or ashugh, courtly love that goes in two directions - one the more ineffable, kind of delightful which is the idea of 'Pure Nothing' and the other direction is the implication of a kind of violence."

Spin said of Kang's most recent Ipecac release, 2007's Athlantis: "Think the monolith scene from 2001 as rendered by Mr. Bungle and you're almost there." PopMatters said Kang "...inhabits other worlds so the rest of us don't have to."

As an enormous fan of all things related to Mike Patton and the world he inhabits, Kang’s next release is certainly on my radar. His previous release, Athlantis, is said to have been inspired by Renaissance era literature and philosophy. I like the moody imagery he portrays in his music.

The Narrow Garden was recorded in Barcelona with a group of 30 musicians helmed by Kang.

The Narrow Garden track listing:

1. Forest Sama'i

2. Pure Nothing

3. Usnea

4. Mineralia

5. The Narrow Garden

6. Nobis Natalis

7. Invisus Natalis



--Mark.HaTe

The Dreaming – Puppet REVIEW

It’s been over ten years now since I last saw Stabbing Westward concert. As an enormous fan of the prog metal outfit, I was hugely disappointed when I learned of the break up. I had seen several shows of theirs, including at DV8 in SLC, UT – one of the greatest places to catch a concert until it burned down a few years ago.

Shortly after the end of SW in 2002, I began to read on message boards about a new band that singer Christopher Hall was putting together called, The Dreaming. I was, of course, excited about the news. I wasn’t sure what to think about the new project at first. If anything I was worried that nothing would come of it. Yet of any band that I have ever followed from the beginning, none have catered to their fans the way that The Dreaming have.

Let me explain.

From the beginning, they released song clips, live clips, and regular updates about the status of the band. When they released their first EP, I was ecstatic and couldn’t wait to get it in the mail. And even though it was only four songs, they were all amazing and showed the kind of potential this band had. With future EP’s, including one remixes and another of all acoustic tracks, The Dreaming were a band that were without a full album release but with a decent collection of music in the hands of their fans.

Six years later in 2008 the band released their first full album, Etched in Blood, and I couldn’t have felt prouder to be a fan. I had put in the time following these guys from their beginnings and now I had an album and a tour to be excited about.

Since their incarnation, I have seen The Dreaming four times in concert and still consider myself an enormous fan. I mention all of this because, while it makes this album review completely bias, this is a band I am proud to have been following from the beginning and am ecstatic at the chance to show my support through an album review.

So anyway, this is a review after all…

Puppet, which was released in November, is the new album from The Dreaming and contains some new and some reworked previous material. I was anxious to hear some of the songs that I have been listening to over the past few years in a new light and I haven’t been disappointed by both subtle and drastic changes.

The album kicks into high gear from the beginning with the title track. Johnny Haro’s percussion starts things off with an aggressive edge that follows throughout the entire album. I especially love the vibe of the first single, Every Trace, with the simple beat that really is the driving force behind the song.

This is a very consistent album in terms of the quality of the tracks. I don’t feel like there are any filler tracks, which of course is good, because it has an album feel to it. I’ve probably listened to this from beginning to end at least thirty times since release and there isn’t a single track that I ever find myself wanting to skip.

I had read before the album release that singer Christopher Hall was considering this album to be more in line with the Stabbing Westward albums in terms of style, but one of the things I appreciate the most about these songs is the fact that this is not a Stabbing Westward album. The Dreaming have honed their sound and they have created an album that is definitely a Dreaming record. And this is good.

So suffice it to say, I love this album. Christopher Hall’s vocals are as good as I’ve heard them on past records. The percussion and guitar work is tight and creative. The songs each have their own personality.

This is a fantastic album that is still on constant rotation for listening by me and definitely one of my top albums of the year.

I look forward to seeing what the future of The Dreaming has in store for us and I look forward to continuing being a fan.

Track Listing

  1. Puppet
  2. Every trace
  3. Breathing
  4. There will be blood
  5. End In Tears
  6. Fight For You
  7. Stitches
  8. It’s no good
  9. Hole
  10. Solo Cruficixion
  11. Too Late
  12. Always and Never

Album Rating: 4.5 / 5

Album Reviewed By: Mark.HaTe