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At least Noel Gallagher

28 Oct

understands that dance music is on the wane.


Yes backlogged news

21 Oct

Mazzy Star is back!!! Oh wait actually they never technically broke up according to Hope Sandoval. With the recent dream pop revival of the past few years and a successful solo tour by Sandoval herself, now might just the time for a return. However if they tour, I’m expecting them to play moments from all three of the previous albums.(ok an all Among My Swan show would be the top.)

This should be the big news of the week, but of course everything got trumped by The Stone Roses “return.” Now I quote this, because I’m still not sure Squire and Brown can make it 6 mos without getting into another fight again. I’m also not sure Ian can sing all the old songs…However, I want it all to work. Every person in England wants it to work. And a selected brilliant group of American tastemakers want it to work. If you haven’t heard the first album, drop what you are doing and do it now. So great news.

Ok They Got This Wrong:The Worst 90’s song is

7 Sep

I’m sorry Rolling Stone readers you got it wrong.(of course you are Rolling Stone readers in 2011 so I am not surprised) Barbie Girl by Aqua is a bad song, but at least people have some semi fond memories of it. And at least the chick singer was hot. And there is no possible way that it is worse than this song which no one ever requests, sings at karaoke, or potentially enjoys with fondness as it passes across the airways at a shitty Starbucks.

Seriously, you and I both know there is nothing more neutered or absurdly shit as the Spin Doctors. Two Princes is the most Godawful of the lot…watch it at your own risk.

Official Congrats To PJ Harvey On The Mercury Prize

7 Sep

I’d say the Mercury Prize gets maybe one out of three right and even then if you look at their shortlist, they tend to choose the year’s better British records pretty well.

However, score one for the music fans today. Now I’m not saying Adele isn’t a great singer, because if you go back to many rants from 2007/2008, you will recall me saying how great 19 was as an album.

Many of you will have also heard that I kind of hate 21, her new album. First off, I hate albums whose whole tonal message is “Giiiiiirl, my man is so bad to me and yet I looooove him!” (This message is also known as the Waiting to Exhale soundtrack  and every country album by a female artist not named Loretta Lynn.) Here’s a thought, how bout not dating a guy who’s such an asshole. It worked for Tina Turner and she=legend!

My two main problems with the 21 album are in fact that

1)21 has become that album that chicks who know nothing about music rep as an album that PROVES they have good taste in music…

2) There is no Mark Ronson production work…which basically leaves a super talented singer to sing behind spare beats that would make Florence and The Machine blush.(and while I’ve supported Florence for years, she will never be a naturally talented as Adele. In fact after her first single I compared her to our Mercury Prize winner, who we’ll get back to later.) Mark Ronson made the late Winehouse sound even greater, Duffy sound half credible, and Nikka Costa a potential world beater with his funky-nouveau 60’s influenced productions full of sass and brass. If you don’t believe me, you can watch the brilliant Cold Shoulder video…which channels a cool Shirley Bassey vibe instead of being all emo and underproduced.(you can google this because this post really isn’t about her)

Now lets get to the WINNER, who is also  the first two-time winner of the Mercury Prize which is none other than PJ Harvey. For 20 years she’s stomped, rocked, and taken chances all over the musical landscape culminating in this fantastic album. Let England Shake really is the best album of the year for scope, risk, memorable songs, and playing to the artist’s strength. Maybe it’s time for all those PJ haters and those that left the bandwagon post Songs of The City to reappraise what’s really going on in modern times! There’s no doubt that this album ranks among her finest achievements and is THOROUGHLY deserving of the Mercury this year!(It is also worth checking out the video version of the album which is in fact on youtube, it’s a cool achievement.)

PJ Harvey-Written On The Forehead

PJ Harvey-The Words That Maketh Murder

Spotify: Taking The Good The Bad Taking Them Both And There Ya Have…

21 Jul

If you want a bunch of logistical information about Spotify, such as costs or invite status, then you should totally go to one of the 8000 websites that can give you the information you need. I’m here to give some initial impressions now that I’ve actually used the service. I will try and update it after I’ve used it a few days.

In general:
I like being able to select full albums and add them to my queue.(take that I don’t have to sit through any songs I hate(take that Pandora) Playlists.

Good: There really is a lot of music on Spotify.
I searched for a lot of different artists from an array of genre’s and was shockingly impressed. For example I started with post punk legends Young Marble Giants, only to find not only their masterwork Colossal Youth, but also a live album of the band that I’ve never actually seen before. The idea of clicking on an artist and instantly being transported to their whole discography all of which is listenable is impressive. I used Dexter Gordon as my test run(since he’s certainly famous, but not sooooo famous) and was shocked at the amount of albums that were pulled.
I will also props the section referred to as “Appears On”, which culls the array of guest appearances an artist has made onto the same page as their albums. This is ABSURDLY useful for hip-hop artists.
No Joanna Newsom=fail. There are certainly bands that are missing. Sometimes from an album that has every other song available(stupid licensing). Noteworthy internet moments such as the array of mixtapes are definitely not always a part of the service(For example some of the seminal Weezy mixtapes are there, but something like M.I.A.’s original Piracy Funds Terrorism mixtape is nowhere to be found)
In fact this whole idea of cloud music availability via licensing could set a dangerous precedent.(In fact I think iCloud could in fact end up a huge main offender in this realm) For example I decided an excellent test would be My Bloody Valentine. Now Spotify has both of their main albums and awesomely enough has both of the main Loveless era EPs. That’s all great, but what about those equally awesome Isn’t Anything era EPs…or maybe even Ecstacy and Wine? Nope those aren’t anywhere, in fact there’s no mention of them. Now I don’t expect Spotify to have everything, but as we transition to more of these services and digital distribution, what ends up missing could create a depressing state of affairs/mind wipe of intellectual information, which could make the idea of deleted/out of print albums look almost quaint.

Taking Both Good and Bad: Organization and search features
I like being able to make playlists I can share with both friends and the public. I also like the idea of making a collaborative playlist(excellent for parties). However, why can I not search for playlists directly through Spotify itself? Why should I have to go to another outside site or collection of sites(such as to find some sweet Italo disco mix some dude in Holland made? While it links instantly from those sites, I should really be able to search by tags or genre directly in the Spotify search bar.
It’s easy to favorite songs, share them, and add them to your queue, but having to right click to do all of the above = fail. A few well-designed buttons Apple-style would make all of this even more streamlined and effective.
I would still love to see Spotify merge with, because mixing the extensive database with the turntable platform would allow one to broadcast and party with friends all in one package.(Perhaps some actual turntable software for scratching and mixing would be awesome too.)
I doubt I’d pay a monthly fee to access the service, because I have a lot of albums and will continually get more. I also don’t need to access spotify on my phone since I have limited bandwidth. But I welcome the ad supported free version and recommend you check it out.