Thursday, March 28, 2013

Lollapalooza Lineup Leak: CONFIRMED

One of the year's best weekends is getting a lot of buzz lately. Lollapalooza's 3-Day Passes sold out in around 3 hours, without an official lineup even being announced.

So now rumors are abuzz about the supposed lineup, and a semi-official-looking one leaked today, and it looks epic. This all seems legit, so I will definitely eat crow if it turns out to be fake.

Lollapalooza takes place the weekend of August 2-4 in Grant Park, Chicago, IL

UPDATE: THIS LINEUP HAS BEEN CONFIRMED BY CHICAGO TRIBUNE


Watch: Wavves on David Letterman

Wavves brought their grunge to the late night stage last night, performing "Demon to Lean On" on David Letterman. Nathan Williams' voice seems smoother than normal in the performance, and bassist Stephen Pope steals the show with his Metallica tie-dyed cutoff and his kickass headbanging abilitiy. Even Dave seemed to enjoy it, and not in an ironic David Letterman way.

Wavves' stellar new album, Afraid of Heights is out now via Mom + Pop


Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Watch: Enerate "Unstoppable" Video

Sydney's Enerate has been enjoying early success with the release of their first single, "Unstoppable." The band will be releasing their debut LP, Good Times Airlines, sometime this year.

With little information available yet, I'm curious to see what else the acoustic synthpop group has in store for us. Until then, enjoy the video and track for "Unstoppable" below.

To follow the band's whereabouts visit www.enerate.com.au


Rogue Wave Annouce New Album, "Nightingale Floors"

Nearly three years after the release of 2010's Permalight, Rogue Wave has announced their much anticipated followup album, making it their fifth LP, titled Nightingale Floors. The 10 track LP will be available June 4th (Vagrant), but to tide us over until then the guys have released the first single, "College."

For further details visit roguewavemusic.com

Watch: Phosphorescent's Video for "Song For Zula"

One of the best tracks of the year was paired with a music video, released today. Check out Phosphorescent's "primitive" video for "Song for Zula" below, and if you haven't yet, get their new album Muchacho, you owe it to yourself.


Sound Check: Wild Feathers (FPT x SXSW 2013)



The never ending SXSW coverage continues! I had the privilege of sitting down with a few groups over the course of the week of SXSW in Austin, and asking them a series of similar questions, and letting the artists run with them. The first of these groups being Taylor Burns (seen above, second from the left) from the up-and-coming, genre-testing, Nashville based group Wild Feathers. Check out the interview below (as well as their single "Backwoods Company" and video for "The Ceiling"), and get to know a group that shows an unbelievable amount of promise.

Kellen (FPT): So let's start out at Point A: How did Wild Feathers come about? I know that you guys all used to front bands, how did you guys come together?

Taylor (Wild Feathers): Ricky and Joel were trying to put this band [Wild Feathers] together, and we didn't really know what it was going to be yet. We had a mutual friend play bass in me and Preston's band - Preston and I had been in bands together since we were 19 or so. And he was saying, "man, you need to hook up with this guy, you just need to jam or something" and they were in town, in Austin, when I used to live here, and we just met up, hung out, and wrote a song or two and we just kinda clicked. And so I started making the trip out to Nashville every once in a while, and they'd come here occasionally.

Was that pretty arduous?

WF: Oh man. It was tough. It SAYS 13 hours.. but it's more like 16. So, that's when I finally moved, I was just kind of like "I'm done with this shit" (laughs). I mean I love this town and all, but that drive was just too much.

Yeah I drove down from Milwaukee two days ago; it says 16, but turned out to be more like 20. It was brutal..

WF: AH MAN! That's so tough. Yeah we've been driving so much for the past few months in particular. It gets tough, for sure.

Ok, I know you guys all kind of share the "role" of singer, or frontman, is there a power struggle there at all?

WF: Man, I know at first, for me, I dunno if I'd call it a "power struggle" but I was just like 'man, I'm used to calling all the shots, and being like 'We're doing this song now.' But I actually really love it now, now that I've gotten to know the guys, we're like brothers now, and it's kind of nice to not always have the burden of carrying the whole show, y'know? But, I think it's a healthy competition, now. Like 'Alright man, you wrote this one, I'm gonna step my game up a little'

Oh, well that's awesome! That's a good writing process to have, just trying to one-up each other.

WF: Yeah exactly, it's a good problem to have.

So you're from Austin, what about the rest of the guys?

WF: Actually, me and Preston are both from here, Ricky's from  Katy, Texas - he's our acoustic guitar guy, Joel's from Tulsa, OK, and the drummer [Ben] is from Macon, GA. We're just sort of based out of Nashville - Ricky and Joel and Ben have been in Nashville for about 7-plus years or so.

Okay, kind of pieces from all over then. Being based in Nashville, then - Nashville has a sort of distinct reputation for music, was that move there based on the sound you guys were creating, and what you were trying to do?

WF: Not at all (laughs). It was purely based on being in one central location, and the guys being in Nashville, there was obviously a big scene going on there. And everyone associates Nashville with "country" but like, The Black Keys are there, Jack White, Kings of Leon and a bunch of other great bands that are up-and-coming right now, so there's a really good scene there. I just kind of got stagnant here in Austin, so I just needed to change it up.

For sure. On that note, there's been a surge of the indie-folk/country stuff coming through the music scene, where do you see Wild Feathers fitting in with that?

WF: Well, I like to consider us a rock 'n' roll band, because with rock 'n' roll band you can be country, you can be folk, like Neil Young, Buffalo Springfield, Crosby Stills Nash & Young, they all had folk songs, they had hard rock songs. So I like to think we're a more rock 'n' roll band than like The Lumineers of the world, who are just really focused on acoustic, where we like to have heavy riffs and stuff too, but we also have the other element and other side. I think it's just kind of a more old school approach to rock 'n' roll music and what it once was, before all these sub-genres, and small things like creatively, when really... it can get convoluted sometimes when it's just fucking rock 'n' roll.



That's definitely the cool part of music now is that, genres are getting to the point of nonexistence. You can just kind of float from one type of music to the other.

WF: Oh for sure, man. It is good. I always kind of hate the question "what kind of music do you play" when really my answer is always like "this song is like this, and this song is like that" I don't necessarily hate it, but it's just hard to define under one umbrella, saying we're THIS kind of band.

It also seems kind of pointless, like why pigeon-hole yourself?

WF: Absolutely!

Does the surge of that "genres" of music (like the Lumineers) make you happy? Bitter? Is there a sort of mentality of "I've been making this music for so long, and NOW it's becoming popular"?

WF: It definitely makes me happy. There's always people who are envious and jealous y'know - there's people talking shit on other bands, but I'm just glad that it's going that direction, instead of another direction that would make our music obsolete. I'd rather see that then music that's not in my same vein or whatever. Like, I like all kinds of music, but still, I'm glad to see the Mumford & Sons and those types of bands have such great success because that means there's a great opportunity for us.

Who are you guys listening to now?

WF: Man, I'm in love with Dawes. I guess they have two albums out under that name, but we've been playing those albums so much in the van. Joel's a huge Jack White fan, so we've played that record a lot, Black Keys a lot too. I know I'm forgetting some of the new bands out there, but we listen to a lot of old stuff too, like The Band, that's our favorite band collectively, as a band we would definitely say that's in our collective top 5.

Wild Feathers' "About" via Facebook
That's funny, because I was going to ask about the Facebook Bio.. The Led Zeppelin, meets the Band, and yadda yadda yadda. Is that an aspiration or is that true, because there's a lot of heavy hitters in there?

WF: I'd say that's probably more of an aspiration. Someone wrote that about us in a text message, and we loved it so much we were just kind of like "we gotta put that in the Facebook." But all those are inspirations, I mean it says 70's country and like the Stones... I mean, Exile on Main Street is one of my favorite records of all time.

Oh, absolutely. So what's a Wild Feathers show like? What's a tour like? I know you've been touring mostly down here.

WF: Yeah we've had a sort of southern residency down here, like Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, we've been doing the same clubs for about the last 6 weeks. But we just got some dates out with Ryan Bingham for a few months, and we have two dates with [Bob] Dylan in April, both in Kentucky.

Wow that's awesome. Congratulations.

WF: Yeah we're still kind of freaking out about it. Hasn't really set in yet.



So do you guys do a lot of writing on the road?

WF: Not lately. I do a lot of writing, personally, on my Notes thing on the iPhone, I'm always coming up with melodies and humming them in to my Voice Recorder.

Yeah I've heard from a lot of musicians that are actually utilizing that tool.

WF: It's pretty great just to be able to keep that, to utilize that tool and have the iPhone as a resource, just so you can capture the ideas, because I've lost so many ideas just because I haven't had something around to record on.

But we haven't gotten to writing too much new stuff yet, I mean, we're playing 6 days a week so on our one day off we're just kind of like "man, I just wanna fuckin' sleep; drink water, and rest."

What was the writing process for the album?

WF: It was really good, man. It goes back to that competition thing. We actually demoed a bunch of songs, held up in a cabin in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, in the dead of winter. We were there for around two weeks and demoed about 33 songs and wrote about half of them up there, we had about 15 or 16 songs already, and just demoed them all day, every day. It was grueling, but like it was awesome too, because that process, having that deadline sort of breeds a mentality of "we just need to knock this out" but a lot of good stuff came from it; we got a couple of songs out of it that we weren't really expecting to get out of it.

That's always a plus, for sure. You guys pretty happy with how everything turned out?

WF: I love the way the record sounds, I can't wait for everyone to hear it.

This is usually my last question for groups or musicians: How many records do you see Wild Feathers making?

WF: Man, I mean, I think we could be a career band where we could still be together in 20 years. Maybe we'll all hate each other (laughs) but I think the sky's the limit - I know that's cliche to say but.. I truly believe it. It's one day at a time, but I really don't think there's a limit to what we can do.

I imagine it helps to have the chemistry you have. Whereas a lot of times there's just one or two primary songwriters, but with you guys...

WF: Yeah I mean if someone dries up, we're just like "don't worry about it, I got plenty of songs, man" (laughs)

We eventually talked about SXSW, Sound City Players, and Milwaukee-based favorite Hugh Bob & The Hustle, whom Taylor had been turned on to about 6 months prior, working with Nikki Lane whom Wild Feathers also worked with closely.

Be on the lookout for Wild Feathers self-titled debut LP, due out this spring from Warner Brothers Records. FPT will be sure to keep you in the loop on all things Wild Feathers in the future.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Watch: New Video from WAVVES - "Afraid of Heights"

This video is as awesome as the song it was made for, but just as weird too. Featuring members of the band dressing in drag (bassist Stephen Pope and drummer Jacob Cooper) and the other two members swooning over them at a local watering hole. Let's just say that all does not go as planned, as the night ends in probably the worst possible way.

Wavves released their new album, Afraid of Heights, today via Mom + Pop, and it is highly recommended that you check it out.



Watch: A$AP Rocky's "Wild for the Night" Video



So, this video cost a lot of money. Lavish and extravagant, taking place/filmed in the Dominican Republic, the guiltiest pleasure off of A$AP's latest album, Long Live A$AP now has a music video.

The video is a little confusing, but still worth a view or two. I don't understand how putting pale-assed Skrillex in the DR seemed like a good idea, much less giving him a "featuring" credit as opposed to a "produced by" credit. Clams Casino sure doesn't get this kinda love.


Monday, March 25, 2013

Watch: Toro y Moi's "Never Matter" Video

Fresh from Gorilla vs. Bear, check out Toro y Moi's video for "Never Matter" off of this years Anything in Return. The video features some people getting down to Anything in Return at an outdoor flea market, then takes on an entirely new narrative towards the end of the video, so make sure you stick around for that... super creepy.

Directed by Steve Daniels

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Daft Punk Share Details on New Album (...Finally)


It's difficult to find shock in the announcement of Daft Punk's new album, we've been patiently waiting for months now for any details to leak. I followed many rumors and tracks to try and figure out where Daft Punk was playing at SXSW-- they weren't... despite what all the signs and "trustworthy" strangers wanted me to believe.

So now, we finally have the smallest tidbits of information on the new album, which will be called Random Access Memories and will be released on May 21 via Columbia Records (which makes you feel kinda bad for The National, who just announced the release of their new album, Trouble Will Find Me on the same date). That's really the only information I have for you. I can tell you there's 13 tracks, and the average length of each song is around 5 minutes, but that's it for now. Stay tuned for more information about this highly anticipated release.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

FPT x SXSW 2013 - Day 5 - Wild Belle, FIDLAR, Toro Y Moi, Kendrick Lamar

My final day at SXSW was one of the best, if not the penultimate of the 4 days I'd spend at the fest. The final day was a combination of every good element I had heard about SXSW, all bundled nicely into one eventful day.

I started out by waiting in an incredibly long line at Stubb's BBQ on 7th, joining hundreds while waiting to get a wristband for the party that night which included HAIM and Vampire Weekend. This was my last chance to see VW for the weekend, and I ultimately gave up after reading a tweet saying I wouldn't get in for a few hours at least. Since I was waiting in line by myself, I opted out of this ridiculous idea of waiting for hours for a concert I might not even get in to.

So instead, I walked a few blocks up the street and walked right to the front of a small crowd waiting for Wild Belle at Mohawk's House of Vans. I am resisting every urge to confess my desire (romance novel style) for the lead singer, Natalie Bergmann. Yes, Natalie is absolutely gorgeous, but Wild Belle's music is incredibly enjoyable. One part reggae dub, one part funk, one part soul, and one part sex appeal, the music from the brother-sister duo (and backing band) is difficult to resist.

Even though this was the band's final showcase performance for the weekend, Wild Belle was far from rusty. Natalie's voice was still brilliantly soulful, and the band was completely on point and cohesive as ever, Elliot Bergmann (Natalie's brother and WB's keyboardist/saxophonist) even threw in a little bump for the group's new album Isles, which is out now. The group even brought out a pair of backup singers, which was a new element added since I had last seen them in December.

After the Wild Belle show, I met with my friend and co-photographer and headed over to Hype Hotel, where we would remain until 6 p.m. because, well, with this lineup and the ever-tempting "Free Booze, Free Taco Bell" tagline that came with it, it was difficult to resist. We were able to catch the entirety of Blue Hawaii's set at 3, and after hearing mixed reviews, I found myself feeling mixed on the group myself; not bad, but not entirely selling me of their sound, which was like a Crystal Castles but without the edge of Alice Glass. A simple, male/female duo, with the male lead creating the beats and backing music, while the female "sings" - I just left their set feeling unimpressed, like I'd seen it before. A follow through must be done with Blue Hawaii, because I'm not entirely convinced they're ready to be written off.

Following taco number 7, FIDLAR was up next to perform, a band that has previously eluded me. I recently had the chance to see them open for JEFF the Brotherhood and Delta Spirit in November, but missed their set looking for parking in downtown Chicago. The raucous foursome from California are another emerging band coming from the lo-fi punk scene from Cali, but are a little more on the aggressive side compared to the other acts I'd seen in the genre over the past few days. To sum it up vaguely, they had more balls than Bleached, and more beer (less weed) than Wavves. Each of these elements bring out the best in their respective bands, and FIDLAR is no different, their in-your-face approach to their music is incredibly enjoyable.

Again, this was another eclectic (if not weird) lineup. Filled with electronic music to start and a loud punk band in the middle, leading up to the headliner for the day: Toro y Moi.


One of the 2013's best releases (Anything in Return) was followed through with a brilliant, 35-minute-long set that featured favorites like "Rose Quartz" "Harm in Change" and "Say That" frontman Chaz Bundick puts together quite an amazing set, one of my favorites of the weekend.

The key is Bundick's insistence on performing with a live band, fully equipped with a guitarist, bassist, and drummer, all of which were talented and worked well together. It's becoming a trend to see a band like Toro Y Moi perform with simply a beat machine, looper/sampler, and computer set up in front of them, and that's it. But bands like The xx, Superhumanoids, and Toro Y Moi seem to be working against the grain, and it works wonderfully to their advantage. Performing music like Toro Y Moi's with a live band delivers depth and demonstrates keen musical talent, as well as (seemingly) deliver more of a spectacle and connection for the live audience.

We stopped for some coffee and a recharge at a nearby hotel patio, and debated where to head next. My friend and I admitted that Kendrick Lamar was on the top of our respective "MUST SEE" lists, and although we figured that Viceland's closing party would be tough to get in to, we decided to give it a try. I was delighted when we were able to walk right in to the party, and enjoy a DJ set by Erykah Badu (!) with a couple of the cast members of The Wire enjoying the set behind her (even Omar [played by: Michael Kenneth Williams], whom when I saw I nearly lost my mind - Top 5 TV Character of all time, but that's a different story). She wasn't the best at mixing, but it was still cool to see one of the best soul artists over the past 20 years so close and in such an intimate setting.

Not only this, but we found a free taco stand, run by the amazing guys over at CoalaTree Organics, we stopped for a quick chat with the leaders of the collective, and a few amazing free tacos which really put the Cool Ranch Doritos Taco I ate earlier to shame.

We headed in to catch Parquet Courts, yet another punk band I'd heard a lot of good things about before heading to Austin. Mixing elements of punk with a dark and unenthused attitude, I'm extremely excited to see what these guys have to offer in the future. The song "Stoned and Starving" is one of my favorite alternative songs of the year thus far, and I'm excited I got to see the song performed live.

There was some drama getting in and out of the venue to use the restroom, bar and charging station though. Apparently our early arrival was key Saturday night, because right before Action Bronson came on, someone came on to the house microphone and said that people could no longer get in to the main room, enforcing a "one-in, one-out" rule as per the Austin Fire Marshall's request. This left me stuck outside of the venue room during a heavy portion of Action Bronson's set, until I was finally dragged through the crowd by a 300-pound security guard into the concert. It was the first time I'd been dragged INTO a show by a security employee.

But it was all worth it, after Action Bronson's set, which was pretty awesome from what I saw, we scooted our way up front for Baauer's set. The trap DJ specialist who created "The Harlem Shake"
craze a while back, put out a great mix that would've been filled with "bangers" in any given club, but the crowd behind me seemed tired, and anxious for Kendrick to come out.

After about a half hour set, the time had come for Kendrick to make his way to the stage. There were rumors of Jay Z's presence in the building, due to the newly released remix to "Bitch Don't Kill My Vibe" - the rumors were unfortunately misinformed, but that didn't take away anything from Lamar's set.

He cruised through a few favorites off of his first mixtape, section.80, and giving props to those who heard of him before his critically acclaimed debut full length album, good kid, m.A.A.d city.

After seeing Kendrick on television, performing on Letterman, Fallon and SNL with a full band behind him, I was kind of hoping I'd at least get a drummer and a bassist. But instead he came out with a sole DJ behind him.

That was the only disappointment I had in the entire set. Kendrick played my favorites, "Poetic Justice" "Swimming Pools (Drank)" "Money Trees" and even did his verse from the A$AP Rocky track "F*ckin' Problems". The crowd ate it all up, and I've never seen such a harmonious atmosphere in a hip-hop show. Instinct tells me it was all the devil's lettuce in the air, but I have reason to believe that everyone there was thoroughly enjoying themselves, witnessing a prolific name in a venue they'd probably never see him perform in again, much less to a crowd so small.

This concluded my time at SXSW; a festival so massive that it's impossible to even tell you about what I wish I'd have seen, and equally impossible to tell you my favorite part. I look forward to many more South By's to come, as Austin quickly became one of my favorite cities, and hosts one hell of a party.

FPT x SXSW 2013 - Day 4: HAIM, Metz, King Tuff, Wavves

The fourth day of SXSW started much like the previous two for me: quick shower, shaking off the hangover, and breakfast tacos. Friday's festivities had a lot in store for me, and proved to be one of the best days I'd spend in ATX.

I started out by joining some friends at a showcase based around Madison and Minneapolis, catching one of my old favorite MCs, F. Stokes as well as an up-and-coming band called PHOX that is catching a lot of buzz around the midwest. Both put on great shows; F. Stokes stepping off the stage and joining the crowd for his entire set, eliciting a heavy amount of crowd participation and even starting a dance-off with a couple members of the crowd; PHOX warms your ears with a healthy blend of multi-layered guitars, trumpet (here and there) and Monica Martin's soothing vocals.

Next we headed to Filter's Cedar Street Showdown in the Cedar Street Courtyard, another one of Austin's awe-inspiring venues. Wild Belle had finished playing earlier, and The Neighborhood would play a rousing set after, but we were there for HAIM.
HAIM

The indie pop band consisting of 3 sisters and their cousin on drums is generating an unhealthy amount of buzz, and that's based solely off of their singles released in the last year. This was the first chance I'd get to see them live, and I was completely floored by their set. The sisters put up a guise of a sensible, laid back 80's-pop-inspired girl group, but play their live shows like they were raised in the 70's, absolutely shredding guitar parts and for lack of a better term "rocking out" more than expected. Ugh, I can't believe I just said "rocking out."

HAIM cruised through all of the favorites and played some new tracks that will be released with their new album coming soon. "Don't Save Me" and "Forever" both glistened, as they should, because they're basically laced with sugar. HAIM drew some celebrity fans as well, as Usher and (my idol) Pharrell could be seen sidestage. After their set, all I could think was "I can not WAIT to see these girls again."
After a brief stint down 6th Street with some friends, and stopping to grab some grub and recharge, I made my way to the Filter party on Rainey where a spectacular showcase was scheduled to go on at 9:30 - Phosphorescent, Metz, King Tuff, and Wavves (this showcase was also the most notably punctual showcase I'd seen all week).




Phosphorescent was the only band I ended up seeing twice at SXSW that week, and both sets were impressive, mainly because . "Song for Zula" was left off this night's setlist, but I was fine with it; frontman Matthew Houck turned to his bandmates and said, "what should we play next" - I took this cue to yell out my favorite song from their latest LP, Muchacho, "Muchacho's Tune" as it had been left off of the previous night's set. Houck turned and said, "There we go, let's play 'Muchacho's Tune'." They upped the tempo a little bit and burned right through the song, making me the happiest little fanboy disguised as a music journalist. Houck shook my hand before leaving the set that night and said "thank you" so that made me even more elated.



Little did I know what was to follow. Metz, a band I'd heard of but never heard, was due up next. The Canadian-based punk band was undoubtedly an interesting choice to have follow Phosphorescent, or maybe it was Phosphorescent that seemed out of place on the mostly-punk showcase. Either way, I was not prepared for the mosh pit behind me, my knees would take a beating during the set as the base of the stage was right above my kneecap.

All complaining aside, Metz really impressed me with their in-your-face approach to a live set. The singer was hard to hear, but it didn't matter, the group never stopped moving, thrashing their instruments and absolutely tearing apart the eardrums of the crowd's inhabitants. Metz's live set was a true embodiment of what a punk show should be. And yes, I even set down the camera and got a few shoves in myself.
Metz

King Tuff

King Tuff, from California, was the next band to take the stage. The trio's brand of surf punk was very well calculated and the band was a joy to watch. Especially that bassist (Magic Jake, seen below), who looks like he should be playing in a Styx cover band, if not actually in Styx. Their throwback attitude gave nods to watching videos of Van Halen and other 80's rock groups, and their set was immensely enjoyable. Songs like "Anthem" "Keep On Movin'" and the set closer "Bad Thing" all got the crowd's attention and created at least one new fan - me.



Wavves is a group that I've been meaning to see for a long time, ever since their debut album was released in 2009. But it was King of the Beach that really got me fully into their music, and still is one of my favorite summer listens of all time. With their next album, Afraid of Heights due out in a week, I was really pumped for this show and to hear some of the new material.

Frontman Nathan Williams was hobbling around stage during soundcheck, apparently from a motorcycle accident the previous day. Luckily, it was the group's last show of the festival, and the band's attitude showed it. Bassist Stephen Pope walked to the front of the stage, coming to a stop right in front of me, and then slowly collapsed into the crowd. I held him up by the thighs and then passed him along to the crowd behind me. If you've seen Pope, and much less seen me, you realize this is not the easiest task. Pope probably outweighs me by at least 100 pounds. The encounter still makes me chuckle though.

Again, I had little to no idea how rowdy this crowd was going to be. By the end of their track "Post-Acid" my knees were hurting again after they had received a little break during King Tuff's set. I seriously haven't seen a crowd like that since the last Brand New show I went to in 2009; I was practically being pushed on to the stage, and kept apologizing to Williams for knocking into their monitors at the front of the stage. At one point, I moved one about a foot and knocked over Williams' Lone Star. Oops.

Some of the new tracks Wavves played had me really excited for the new album. "Sail to the Sun" "Dog" and "Demon To Lean On" were all notable additions to a setlist of old favorites. It was during "Demon.." that the band unraveled a little. Bassist Pope could not get the time signature down, and kept playing the new song's intro incorrectly.

However, the manner in which this was handled by the band really helped clarify the personality of the band: after a few tries, and multiple attempts by the drummer to set the tempo correctly, Williams was clearly frustrated... but still couldn't help but laugh at the situation. I could give a vague recollection of what was said, but it would undoubtedly be misconstrued and make him seem like a prick, and he really wasn't. And even the crowd was just laughing light-heartedly, in a manner that seemed like a collective "it's ok big bear, we forgive you." At least... that's how I understood it.


Watch: Travis - Another Guy

They are back!  As much as I love Radiohead and even named this blog after them, I am just as fond of Travis and their resume.  Their album "The Man Who" has probably been listened to more then any album I own (minus The Bends), and good old Fake Plastic Tunes was almost named The Man Who Listened.  Yesterday, Travis announced their first listen in on their 7th album, and I couldn't be happier.  The song is 'Another Guy' and is accompanied by a goofy video, which you can view below.  Also here is a note from Fran in regards to the song and album...

Dear All,
Album 7 is finished!!! so here is a pre single teaser song to start things moving. It's called "Another Guy"
Rather than put the track out there alone we and our dear friend, the legendary film director Wolfgang Becker made a little dramatization which does all the things a Travis video should do. We decided, in light of everything going hi definition, we'd shoot on a VHS camera. Also we asked Wolfgang to star in it because HE IS THE COOLEST GUY IN BERLIN.
Oh I think there is a widget which will allow you to download the song... OK... Travis are back!
Enjoy the song
Fran x
 
 

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Watch: Rilo Kiley's Retrospective Video for "Let Me Back In"

Sentimentality goes a long way for Jenny Lewis and company, and it shows in their latest music video. Compiling footage from tours passed, Rilo Kiley created a video for "Let Me Back In" that serves as a fitting homage to their home city of Los Angeles. The song itself is an acoustic love song (for L.A.) that Rilo Kiley has become known for, a bitter reminder of what a great band we lost when the group disbanded years back. Check out the video below, and pick up Rkives on April 2.


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Album Review: Phosphorescent - "Muchacho"


It's kind of crazy to think that Matthew Houck has been releasing music under the moniker Phosphorescent since 2003. With five albums under his belt, Houck admits that he wishes he had even more albums to show for a decade's worth of work, but with three years since Phosphorescent's last release (the well-received, but sparsely re-visited Here's To Taking It Easy) it was due time for Houck to take another crack at an album, and thus he releases Muchacho, an album that makes it difficult to deny 2013 will be Phosphorescent's year to shine.

The Alabama native, now residing in Brooklyn, takes a large cue from many artists of the 60's and 70's when it comes to his role in making the music for Phosphorescent. Not only does Matthew write and sing, he also plays multiple instruments and produces a large portion of the music for Phosphorescent: an homage to the great folk artists from the days of yore (he even titled Phospho's 2007 album To Willie - a tribute to Willie Nelson).

It'd be a stretch to say Matthew Houck is the next Bob Dylan or Waylon Jennings, but you have to hand it to the guy for taking such a personal role in Phosphorescent's sound; giving the impression that he truly believes in what he's producing, making sure every piece of the puzzle is in its correct position and is cut just right.

To Willie and Here's to Taking It Easy were appreciation pieces for classic Americana rock music, driving forward with heavy country influences; Phosphorescent's latest album Muchacho (via Dead Oceans), has Houck taking more chances.

"I've always been happy with the records I've made," he says, "but sonically I think there's been something lacking. This time, I was getting really excited with the experimental noises I was making." Houck was even working on creating an ambient album with no lyrics at all, and considered releasing it under a different name (or even his own).

It's a good thing he didn't, because had he released an album without lyrics, 2013 would have been robbed of one of its most thoroughly beautiful albums.

The story behind Muchacho's creation may be cliche; Houck even admits this to be somewhat true... but that doesn't make it any less inspiring.

As 2012 came, Houck's personal life began to unravel. A domestic struggle found the songwriter suddenly needing to find a new apartment and studio in Brooklyn, a city which basically has a "Vacancy Limited" sign illuminated as you enter the borough. Houck says that 5 or 6 songs came from the "bit of a freak out" he was dealing with, and suddenly, on a random Sunday, he booked a flight to Mexico that was leaving just three hours later.

Matthew Houck of Phosphorescent
Taking his guitar with him, Houck's journey found him spending a week on the Yucatan Peninsula in a small hut on the beach, writing the music that would become Muchacho's backbone.

When Muchacho's lead single, "Song for Zula" came out a while back, my jaw nearly hit the floor when I listened to it the first time. Soulful lyrics speak like a gospel for those who believe in love, whether it be the ups or downs that come with it - "See, honey, I saw love, you see it came to me/ it put its face up to my face so I could see/ Yeah, then I saw love disfigure me/ into something I am not recognizing" The track is a beautiful recount of the peaks and valleys of love, not only serving as a release, but as an epigram for what love "should" be.

I was initially afraid that the rest of the album would not live up to the beauty that was found in "Song for Zula" but my skepticism was quickly eradicated. Muchacho is framed wonderfully by two songs, serving as bookends for the emotion held within; titled, "Sun, Arise! (An Invocation, An Introduction)" and "Sun, Arise! (A Koan, An Exit)" the tracks are simple enough to suggest a soothing metaphor that despite darkness, light will eventually return.

The glory of Muchacho is that Houck doesn't pigeon-hole himself into creating music that is over-dramatic or emotionally exhausting. If the album was chalk full of 10 different "Song[s] for Zula" the album would be easily dismissed. But Muchacho does just the opposite, providing songs that feature uplifting horn sections, and upbeat melodies in which the sudden "Woo!" from Houck can induce a reason for hope as well as a simultaneous outburst of the same nature.

Phosphorescent at this year's SXSW
The third track, "Ride On/Right On" is a song focused on highlighting the abstract guitar sounds Houck would find himself experimenting with, looping behind his vulnerable and shaky voice and a great 808 drum beat. "Muchacho's Tune" along with "A New Anhedonia" and "The Quotidian Beasts" are Muchacho's fullest sounding songs, as Houck would call upon 20 different musicians at different times to help deliver the songs' resonances. This sound is delivered exceptionally well through Phosphorescent's live set, with Houck leading a 5-piece band behind him.

But it's "Muchacho's Tune" that serves as the pivot-point of the album, and was the first song that Houck would find in its full form: armed with mariachi brass, a great twanging guitar section, an echoing bass, and lyrics that really help the album find its character. "I found some fortune, found some fame/ finally cauterized my veins/ Yeah, I've been fucked up, I've been a fool," Houck revels, then sings in the chorus, "I fix myself up, to come and be with you.."

It's this self-realization that gives Muchacho a full-fledged personality. Muchacho appears vulnerable and weak, yet entirely self-aware of its own weaknesses, which gives it an astounding sense of strength. Houck's vocals are wavering, but only in the best way, as his vocals deliver a calm comfort that helps his listeners empathize with his messages.

Muchacho, as an album, is one of the most refreshing pieces of music in recent memory. The songs held within function well on their own and combine to create an album that drives home a ray of hope, as fleeting as it can be at times. The album demonstrates that music can have a power within itself, whether listening to it or creating it; music can be therapeutic... life-changing, even. Muchacho is one of those albums that comes across ever so rarely, an album that finds its creator in a position so vulnerable that its impossible to not relate and recount.

My Rating: 4.8/5

Purchase Muchacho (Available 3/19): iTunes | Dead Oceans

Monday, March 18, 2013

FPT x SXSW 2013: Day Three - Foxygen Chaos, Phosphorescent, Beach Fossils and More

Ok, so the whole "live blogging" thing wasn't going to work. It was a massive drain on my battery, and I didn't want to be "that guy," "staring at his phone all day" (even though I normally am). So instead I will create a recap from here on out of who I saw, and who I missed, and what the hell actually happened day-to-day.

Thursday was filled with a little bit of drama as the day went along, starting with the disappearance of a voice recorder (I had two interviews that day) and the complete non-charging of my camera's battery. So photos from Thursday's events are kind of few and far between, and were all taken from my iPhone.

We started the day by hitting a few food trucks, which are plentiful in Austin, and are always serving unique and amazingly delicious food. Eventually, I had to part ways with some friends and head to The Belmont for an interview with Wild Feathers (which will be posted soon!).

Even though I was not there, members of my group claimed that the Poolside show they attended while I was absent was amazing, and a few of them even claimed the California-based "Daytime Disco" artists as the most pleasant surprise of the weekend, making me incredibly bitter that I've missed them once again (I saw a DJ set last summer at a Lolla after party, but that just doesn't compare).

After the interview I met up with some friends for the Cayucas set at the Austin Convention Center. I only caught the end of their final song, but was perfectly fine with that as I was slotted for an interview with the group later at Red7 after their set.

Travi$ Scott & T.I.
We headed over to the MTVU Woodie Award party, and caught the end of Atlas Genius' set and stuck around for a free beer, and a cameo by the Rubberband Man himself, T.I. (right; photo credit - John Shearer/Invision for MTV) during Travi$ Scott's set. Alt-J was due up next, but we opted to head across the street to a local BBQ joint for some food and a quick phone recharge (you'll notice that food whilst recharging are a very common motif of a weekend at SXSW).

Next was one of the best full sets I saw all weekend, delivered by Beach Fossils.

Starting with the first song off their new album of the same name, "Clash the Truth" had me jazzed to finally be seeing the group that released my favorite album of 2013, thus far. I took full advantage of the venue's relaxed security and jumped up on the side of the stage to enjoy the set.

Beach Fossils @ The Old Emo's (The Jr.)
The band meshed incredibly well together, especially for a group that is apparently melded together with rotating musicians surrounding front man Dylan Payseur. Guitarist Cole Smith's side project/current focus DIIV were actually playing right up the street at the Flamingo Cantina at the same time as Beach Fossil's set at the old Emo's. I'm extremely happy with my decision to catch BF.

The crowd was one of the best I'd see all weekend too. A controlled mosh pit/dance circle started naturally in the center of the crowd, complete with a stage diver launching himself off the front of the stage.

The band graced the crowd with a mixture of tracks off both of their albums including personal favorites "Careless" and "Holiday". As their set neared a close, the band promised two more songs, then were abruptly told they had enough time for one by venue management. This meant nothing to the group, as they proceeded to go directly into a second song after the first. Before Dylan could even sing, a woman jumped on stage and started to flip the switch on the amps, much to the chagrin of the crowd.

After the crowd cleared I made my way back out in to the sun and eventually made my way to Red7 and got set to watch the Dead Ocean/Secretly Canadian/Jagujaguwar set which featured one of the best lineups of the weekend. Cayucas was up first, a new-to-the-scene group based around frontman Zach Yudin. The crowd (which was based at the outdoor stage of Red7's venue space) ate up the warm melodies being performed for them by the band, which sounded like a light-hearted cross between The Beach Boys, The Animals, and Vampire Weekend. Make sure to keep your eye out for Bigfoot, Cayucas' debut album which comes out in April.

Another notable band on the bill was Bleached, the girl-power punk group that's been praised by fellow surf-punk band Wavves. All eyes gravitated towards the captivating Jessica and Jennifer Clavin (sisters) as they put forth late-70's style punk, hit after hit. The group has an album coming out on April 2, called Ride Your Heart, and this was a great introduction to the band, whose live show feels straight from the garage and really highlights the band's talent outside of a studio space.

The previous night's Sky Ferreira failure was a perfect preface for what was to come on Thursday night with Foxygen's set. The group came out next after a lengthy soundcheck, which seemed to be based around a problem getting sound from the keyboards (soundchecks seemed to be a very problematic thing all weekend, being a major gripe from DIIV on Friday via a Twitter explosion). By the time the set started, the crowd had been getting anxious for quite some time.

I bring this up for what was to come after the band's first couple of songs, frontman Sam France had announced that the festival was already wearing him out. France's stage presence makes you see why, as he is constantly screaming lyrics or pacing on stage appearing to be in a controlled yet panicked state. After confessing, and what seemed to me to be an apology or sign of self-criticism, France stated that his voice felt shot and that he was running on fumes. When a member of the crowd began to yell some fairly unnecessary comments towards France, who seemed to initially think they were coming from me. France seems to look at me and yell, "come on the fucking stage and talk to me about it you fucking coward" I quickly glanced behind me as if to yell "I SWEAR TO GOD IT WASN'T ME PLEASE STOP YELLING AT ME I JUST WANNA LOVE YOU!" You can see the video of the outburst below, courtesy of StairwellBaby.



Eventually France pushes this little tussle aside and is able to play "In the Darkness" before France bids a farewell to the crowd and storms offstage. Leaving the crowd in a "wait... really??" haze, which spread to the faces of France's 5 bandmates. His song-writing partner and other primary member of Foxygen, Jonathon Rado, would leave the stage to track down his bandmate and then come back and confess that the show was over, apologizing, and stating that Phosphorescent would follow. Before he could even take his guitar off his shoulder, France ran back to the stage.

"I'm sorry for what I said earlier to that guy," France stated, "I wasn't even talking to him, I was talking to myself."

Foxygen would play two more songs, including an amazing rendition of "On Blue Mountain" off of their latest album, We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace and Magic. By the end of the weekend, Foxygen would cancel a couple of their final showcase appearances at SXSW, stating France was feeling ill and had no voice. I heard many people complain about this, but as I mentioned with the note on Sky Ferreira, it's important to remember that SXSW isn't about you as an audience member, but instead can be an incredibly grueling experience for artists, as many are subjected to multiple performances in a day, all day, multiple days in a row. Considering the circumstances, Foxygen sounded amazing.

Up next was Phosphorescent, a band I've been dying to see since hearing their latest album Muchacho. Matthew Houck, as the frontman of Phosphorescent, has been releasing music for about 10 years now, much to my surprise. I had heard only a song from them three years ago, Los Angeles, which closed the set out wonderfully. The leading single from Muchacho is "Song for Zula" - probably the most aesthetically pleasing and beautiful song I've heard all year, and glimmered as Phospho performed it live. The album is filled with such grace and poise that is incredibly exciting, and the group really brings a great energy to the stage. The keyboardist was a spectacle within himself, pounding viciously on his keys and making phases that made him appear to be possessed by some sort of piano demon spirit. Check back soon for more Phospho coverage and keep an eye on them, 2013 is set to be a great year for Phosphorescent.

Vampire Weekend Debuts Two New Songs

I'm not even listening to these before I post them. Join me in listening to two new tracks from one of the best bands around.

"Diane Young" and "Step" are the first two tracks to be officially released by Vampire Weekend for their new album Modern Vampires of the City.




Listen: Kendrick Lamar's Remix for "Bitch Don't Kill My Vibe" featuring Jay-Z

Every once in a while, a remix comes out that pretty much surpasses the original. Some of them are just re-works the musical elements behind it (demonstrated wonderfully by RAC) and others add a verse or two to the lyrical content.

The latest Kendrick Lamar remix is of the latter variety, and is a brilliant remix of the song, practically just a new version of "Bitch Don't Kill My Vibe" from 2012's phenomenal good kid, m.A.A.d. city. Kendrick adds two new verses with a verse by Jay-Z (always spectacular) in between, and is absolutely worth listening to multiple times. Gotta love the artwork for the track as well.


The rumors and leaked versions of this remix had been stirring all week while FPT was at SXSW, and resulted in an [unfulfilled] rumor that HOVA was in attendance for Kendrick's #VICELAND set on Saturday. Check back soon for Saturday's SXSW coverage including photos/coverage of Kendrick Lamar, Toro y Moi, and more!

FPT x SXSW 2013 - Day Two: CWK, Lord Huron, Skaters, & Sky Ferreira

My first day at SXSW will technically be the second day of the fest, as I've spent the last 16 hours in a diesel-fueled VW Jetta w 3 friends. We don't hate each other yet, but that doesn't mean I'm not gonna hop right on my bike and head downtown upon arrival.

Note: I updated this as a sort of a live feed on Wednesday, from my iPhone (so I apologize for typos and capitalization errors). For now, I'll stick w a timeline format.

1:45 pm: Arrive in to Austin, dump luggage at place of residence; shower is necessary after 19 hours in car.

Lord Huron @ Filter Rainey Street Party
3:45 pm: Arrive downtown Austin, grab Fader Fort wristbands w friends (and help a stranger out w my +1; shout out to Parker) then head to pick up my credentials then Cold War Kids at Old School Bar by 4.

6:10 pm: Filter at Rainey Street is PACKED for Lord Huron. Finishing this Lone Star and getting the hell out of here.

6:38 pm: scratch that. we stayed for the remainder of his set. Lord Huron was just too good. Heard "Time to Run" - my favorite track off the album, so my day was on a gradual upswing already.


Next we headed to recharge our phones at a local bar called The Library, then headed to The Belmont for Skaters. The NYC-based punk band sounded great..  reminiscent of the days when the The Strokes focused on being loud.


We somehow ended upstairs at the Belmont, where the members of Skaters were hanging out and "open bar" were two words we loved to hear, as do most people during the SXSW festival.


12 am: After Skaters we left to check out Sky Ferreira, one of the songstresses who has recently stolen my heart. This was the first time when waiting in line actually became a nuisance, but we were all excited enough not to care. But her performance was marred by a shaky voice from a young girl who seemed overwhelmed by the chaos that is SXSW. Her voice faded in and out during the first two songs, then during her hit, "Everything is Embarrassing" she basically quit, making it only a line into the song before apologizing and walking off stage. I was disappointed, sure, but in retrospect, concern must be shown for a talented young artist who must be careful to not get in too far over her head. Check out a rough cell phone video over at YouTube, shot by friend, Megan Roewer.


This was not the last time we would witness or hear about artist meltdowns or rants, which became a theme as the weekend went along.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Watch: The Strokes - All The Time

The Strokes are on the heels of releasing their new album Comedown Machine on March 26th.  Check out the video for the albums first single 'All The Time'


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Watch: Christopher Owens "Here We Go Again" Video

Christopher Owens (formerly of Girls) released his debut solo album, Lysandre, earlier this year. To say the least, the album is incredible and his latest video for the upbeat song "Here We Go Again" emphasizes how talented Owens is. The montage video shows Owens and his backing band basically having fun. Enjoy "Here We Go Again" from Lysandre below.


Watch: Palma Violets - Step Up For The Cool Cats

Palma Violets just released their debut full length album 180 yesterday and it is one of my early favorites for album of the year.  'Step Up For The Cool Cats' is their newest single which was released about a month ago and has a nice video to go along with it. 

If you are at SXSW this week be sure to try to catch them live:
3/13 – Spotify Sessions with Jim Eno, Hi Fi Studio @ 10:00am-2:00pm
3/14 – IAMSOUND/Vans Party, Mohawk @ 5:30pm
3/15 – Laneway Fest Party, Red 7 @ 5:00pm
3/15 – Coda/Paradigm Showcase, Club DeVille @ 1:00am
3/16 – Brooklyn Vegan Day Party, Emo’s @ 2:30pm

 

Premiere: The N'ere Dowells - I Won't


The N'ere Dowells have that familiar New York sound, a sound that in the rock music world means an awful lot.  My very first 'Play It Forward' post was about these guys as I took a liking early on. Some times in the world of music blogs you get an over load of bands that are all being hyped at the same time and the time isn't taken to find that new band that has something new and different to offer. The N'ere Dowells are just that band, all they need is for you to listen to their music and judge for yourself.

I am excited to see the band evolve and for them to be on the heels of releasing their full length debut album Are You Still Down, which is a pretty big stepping stone.  Their first single 'I Won't' is taken from their upcoming debut album, and it is a huge step in the right direction for the band. In a music world full of 3 minute quick and easy tracks, The N'ere Dowells have delighted us with this 6 minute rocker that does not disappoint.

From the smooth guitar riffs, to the synced in drums pounding, added with the New Yorkish vocals 'I Won't' fully comes to life in a big way.  Be sure to drop over to their bandcamp site and pick up the track as it is available at a modest "name your price"


Tuesday, March 12, 2013

FPT x SXSW 2013


That's right. I'm heading down to SXSW to represent FPT, and it's going to be an interesting journey. The ride down alone will be pretty intense (16+ hours from Milwaukee, WI) as me and 3 friends head out on the road trip on Tuesday afternoon.

I've heard a lot about the fest, preparing like a madman for the past few days. There's literally thousands of events and I've listed an average of 50 different things that are worth checking out each day - except Sunday... nothing is happening Sunday.

There's bands I'm gung-ho on seeing, new faces I'm dying to check out, venues and parties hyped beyond belief... and there's rumors stirring, that are actually proving to be more obnoxious than they are worthwhile. Check out these lists below.

The "Duh, Obviously" Acts:

Vampire Weekend: Formerly a band that was easy enough to poke fun at, dismissed early on as a Paul Simon-inspired indie pop band that would fade away just as quickly as they came into the spotlight. But now it's 2013, 4 years after their debut self-titled album was released, they're preparing to release Modern Vampires of the City, their third album. Promising to be more artistic, but nevertheless a typical Vampire Weekend album, I can not think of an album I'm more excited to get my hands on this year. Here's to hoping I get the chance to catch them on Friday at Stubb's to hear some (or all) of their new material.

Kendrick Lamar: Undoubtedly hip-hop's hottest newcomer, Kendrick will be all over SXSW for the second year in a row. I've spoken highly enough on Kendrick Lamar for a while now, so I don't even think I need to tell you why I want to see him so badly. Check out "Swimming Pools (Drank)" performed live below.




Toro Y Moi: Chaz Bundick is skyrocketing in 2013. Little known last year, Bundick and his project Toro Y Moi are destined to become household names this year. His album Anything in Return is easily one of the best released so far this year, and Toro Y Moi is on the top of almost every member of my road trip's must-see lists. Check out "Say That"




Poolside: One of my favorite albums of 2012 that slipped by a lot of critics. Two guys performing electronic music they coined as "daytime disco," Poolside's music just begs to be seen outdoors in the sun while slamming free beer and chowing on free tacos.



Foxygen: Another group on the rise, most recently seen opening for Unknown Mortal Orchestra, the group is garnering heavy attention. And for good reason; We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace and Magic is an indie pop-lovers wet dream. I'm looking at Thursday's Dead Oceans/Secretly Canadian/Jagujaguwar showcase as the best chance to see them (also performing that night is UMO, Phosphorescent, Bleached and Cayucas).



Wavves: Another one of my most highly anticipated albums of 2013, Nathan Williams brings his project Wavves to SXSW to promote his new album Afraid of Heights. My favorite stoner/surf-punk group will be a band I refuse to miss this week. Here's the group's brand new video for "Demon to Lean On"



Others: Japandroids, Surfer Blood, Local Natives, UMO

The Under-The-Radar Acts:
(Note: This list is simply filled with acts I've never seen before or have just recently been introduced to)

Beach Fossils: One of my favorite albums of 2013 so far, I'm dying to see the live show Beach Fossils puts out. Apparently more aggressive than their first album, and more along the lines of their latest effort Clash The Truth, their live set is almost guaranteed to impress.



Phosphorescent: Yes, fine, the group has been around for around 10 years now, but Phosphorescent is shuffling some parts around and are primed to release a new album with a new sound. Entitled Muchacho, the album is spectacular and "Song for Zula" is one of the most heart-felt songs I've heard in a long time.




Cayucas: One of my new favorite bands, I'm really pumped to see what these guys have to offer on a live stage.



Others: Waxahatchee, CHVRCHES, HAIM, DIIV, Earl Sweatshirt, The 1975, Bleached, Angel Haze, The Wild Feathers, Mister Lies, Disclosure, Ducktails, Sky Ferreira, Parquet Courts, California X, and literally hundreds more...

Parties & Venues
There are a ton of venues I'm dying to check out, if nothing because of some of the hype surrounding them.

Fader Fort: Year in and year out, Fader Fort is the launching pad for the next big thing (Kendrick Lamar highlighted last year's Fort schedule). The RSVP link crashed the site's server, only to relaunch for 9 minutes later that day, and then it was gone. Luckily for us, everyone in our group was on top of our game, and we got our RSVPs in before the link was taken down.

Hype Hotel: What more could I ask for than this lineup AND free Taco Bell AND free beer? Hype Hotel is what SXSW is all about. I'll be found here at least a couple of days this week.

Mohawk: House of Vans is taking over Mohawk, supposed to be one of the coolest venues in the city. I'll be sure to report back to you on this hype, but for now, look at the amazing line-up House of Vans is offering this year.

Stubb's: Undoubtedly the most famous of the venues in Austin, the venue will bring in some of the best acts and parties all week. Spin's week-ending party on Friday will feature Kendrick Lamar and Saturday will have Vampire Weekend gracing the stage.
















Rumors, Rumors, Rumors

Ugh. The most frustrating part of this week has been following all of the rumors floating around on Twitter. Some of the biggest names have all but been confirmed (Prince, Justin Timberlake) and some even bigger ones are still on the tips of tongues in Austin (Daft Punk, Jay Z). For now, I refuse to acknowledge or change any plans based on these rumors. Not only because getting in to the shows will be nearly impossible, but also because these rumors have started to cause an unheard of amount of stress. But you can bet your ass I'll be sprinting to a Daft Punk show, if it's ever confirmed.

There will be drama. There will be intrigue. There will be music, hipsters, weirdos, consumption of free beer and tacos, BBQ, and I'll be telling you about all of it. Please follow along with me and my camera as I will be posting some pieces here throughout the week, and blowing up Twitter/Instagram (@KellenYouSoftly) feeds like it's my damn job. Follow along, and if you're in Austin, catch me if you can!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Watch: "Demon to Lean On" Music Video from Wavves


What's that? You want more music videos?? Fine, I'll oblige.

This one's for Wavves' "Demon To Lean On" off the much-anticipated Afraid of Heights album, due out March 26. The video features a boy being mistakenly adopted into a gang of misfit children (led by Wavves' frontman, Nathan Williams). Check it out below.


Watch: Foals' Engrossing (NSFW) Video for "Late Night"



Is it just me, or has there been some ridiculous new videos being put out within the last month or so? Could 2013 be the return of the epic music video?

Today's entry is from UK veterans, Foals for their next single "Late Night" off of their latest LP, Holy Fire. The video features the group playing at a hotel bar, meanwhile a birth, sex scenes (complete with nudity, hence the NSFW tag) and a suicide attempt go on above them. If you're in a place that you can safely watch the above scenes without being judged or scrutinized, I suggest you do it, the video is great and "Late Night" is one of my favorites from the album.


Friday, March 8, 2013

Watch: New Video from Phoenix for "Entertainment"

Yet another great video to showcase for you today.

Phoenix's epic pop sound needed a video like this to coincide with "Entertainment" - the first single off their forthcoming album, Bankrupt!

Taking a nod from Cloud Atlas, it seems, the video for "Entertainment" is incredibly expansive and unbelievably over-dramatic. But I don't doubt that this was the point, the video turns out to be pretty epic and just as enjoyable.


Watch: The Knife's New Video for "A Tooth for an Eye"

The Knife are back with a new video today, for the song "A Tooth for an Eye" off of their next album, Shaking the Habitual due out April 9.

The new video clocks in at a much more agreeable 4:34 and the track is a little less aggressive as their previous glimpse in to the new album, "Full of Fire" Check out the band's statement on the video below.




“A Tooth For An Eye” deconstructs images of maleness, power and leadership. Who are the people we trust as our leaders and why? What do we have to learn from those we consider inferior? In a sport setting where one would traditionally consider a group of men as powerful and in charge, an unexpected leader emerges. A child enters and allows the men to let go of their hierarchies, machismo and fear of intimacy, as they follow her into a dance. Their lack of expertise and vulnerability shines through as they perform the choreography. Amateurs and skilled dancers alike express joy and a sense of freedom; There is no prestige in their performance. The child is powerful, tough and sweet all at once, roaring “I’m telling you stories, trust me”. There is no shame in her girliness, rather she possesses knowledge that the men lost a long time ago.

Watch: Beach House's Video for "Wishes" (Directed by Eric Wareheim)




To my amazement, we missed this amazing video from Beach House yesterday for the song "Wishes" off of their latest album, In Bloom.

The video, directed by Eric Wareheim (of Tim & Eric fame, also cameos in the video), features a ridiculous premise when looked at on paper, but is still remarkably beautiful.

I can't explain it, but I love this video.


Thursday, March 7, 2013

Austra Announces "Olympia" LP, Shares New Track

On the heels of 2011's mesmerizing Feel It Break, Toronto-based band Austra has announced the upcoming release of Olympia, set to drop June 18th on Domino Records.  According to Katie Stelmanis, the new album promises to be "dark," but "fundamentally a dance record."  You can stream "Home", Olympia's first singe, below.  And be sure to check out "The Beat and the Pulse" from Feel It Break.

 

Concert Recap - Tame Impala (Turner Hall Ballroom 03/03/13)

Western Australia's Tame Impala primarily started as a "psychedelic rock project" by Kevin Parker and has been gaining momentum with a substantial amount of praise from critics since their 2010 debut, Innerspeaker. With the immediate success of their debut album, they received four ARIA Music Awards nominations along with a slot as the opening act for MGMT's American Tour.

They didn't stop there with the release of 2012's Lonerism, which lead the band to top polls across countless sources, such as Rolling Stone, NME and Triple J (to name a few). In the same year, the band also won their second "Album of the Year" ARIA award.

Without getting too deep into the bands history, it's easy to see why they have been selling out show after show (basically their entire US tour) including Turner Hall in Milwaukee, on Sunday March 3rd.

Frontman Kevin Parker (vocals, guitar) was joined on stage by Jay Watson (keys, guitar, backing vocals), Dominic Simper (guitar, synth), Nick Adams (bass) and Julien Barbagallo (drums). Taking the stage around 9:15 they kicked it off with a "Desire Be Desire Go" jam. I especially enjoy bands who switch it up during their live performance, so it was a nice surprise to see drummer Jay Watson on keys, who also played guitar on "Half Full Glass of Wine" and was banging his head throughout the majority of the set.

Speaking of change, the space rock vibes of "Solitude is Bliss" filled the air with a jam towards the end.  Often sounding somewhat aimless and out of place, but strangely coming back together to make sense, jams were a reoccurring theme throughout the night and were included on "Endors Toi" and after "Why Can't You Make Up Your Mind."

Without the aid of excessive stage props, Tame Impala showed up with a projector screen, the perfect compliment to their unique psychedelic rock sound. "Elephant" brought a heavy psych rock element to the table, while "Endors Toi" and "Why Won't You Make Up Your Mind" (a personal favorite) showcased the bands spaced out dream pop sound. If everyone in attendance wasn't already uncontrollably dancing, "Music To Walk Home By," made sure of it. With the distinct heavy bass intro, "Feels Like We Only Go Backwards" was an immediate crowd pleaser (for good reason).

As mentioned earlier, multi-instrumentalist Jay Watson picked up guitar to close the set with "Half Full Glass of Wine" from 2008's Tame Impala EP. Although, they didn't make us wait long before coming back out to play "Nothing That Has Happened So Far Has Been Anything We Can Control" from their latest release Lonerism.

Other than a few "thank yous" and "it's nice to be here" the humble band didn't say much, but they didn't need to. To say the least, from the set to the sound the overall show was astounding and I wouldn't be surprised if they continued to sell out more shows in larger venues. With that being said, GET YOUR TICKETS NOW!


Setlist:
Desire Intro
Solitude is Bliss/Jam
Apocalypse Dreams
Be Above It
Endors Toi/Jam
Music To Walk Home To
Elephant
Why Can't You Make Up Your Mind?
Oscilly
Feels Like We Only Go Backwards
Auto-Prog
Mind Mischief
Alter Ego
It's Not Meant to Be
Half Full Glass of Wine
Encore:
Nothing That Has Happened So Far Has Been Anything We Can Control

For upcoming news and show dates visit tameimpala.com

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Watch: CHVRCHES - The Mother We Share LIVE

I have been a bit of a casual fan of CHVRCHES in the early going, and know that they have been hyped pretty highly by fellow music sites.  I have always enjoyed this 'The Mother We Share' song but have a new respect for it when I watch Detour's live take on it. 

Although electronic music is not my favorite thing in the world as I would prefer to listen to something with some hefty guitars and drums but what CHVRCHES have been doing so far has really kept my attention, and I keep continuing to listen and gain more and more respect.