I AM FUEL, YOU ARE FRIENDS

...we've got the means to make amends. I am lost, I'm no guide, but I'm by your side. (Pearl Jam, Leash)

Monday, September 08, 2008

Monday Music Roundup

The Getaway
Hawks of Paradise

I'm gonna dive right into this week's roundup with another great Denver band, this one of four I managed to see on Friday night through a combination of clever planning and masterful club shuttling. Hawks of Paradise were recommended to me by someone who is very much into the Dandy Warhols, and they absolutely dial into that sound as well as folks like Brian Jonestown Massacre and, more recently, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club (notably their beat-poet-influenced Howl album). They are amazingly fun to see live, even if you're just coming to watch their female tambourinist, who was cool and calm and fantastic as she kept her beat. A few more free songs are up for download on their MySpace, and they open next month for the Drive-By Truckers.


The Truth And The Lies
Rubies

My grandma's given name was Ruby Nell, and I am fond of that name and this band. And I think she would have been too. Rubies is something that you can listen to with your grandmother, but that is not to say it is staid, boring, or a waltz. This trio of ladies from California makes songs that are throaty and gorgeous, whether a coffeehouse slowburner or a dance-floor filler. Members of Kings of Convenience, The Concretes, and Feist guest on their current album Explode From The Center (out now on Rough Trade) and this could be the perfect soundtrack to those moonlight winter nights that, sorry to say, are coming soon. Also speaking of Feist, Simone from Rubies designed that stunning artwork for The Reminder, which makes me want to give her a very enthusiastic hug. That was some of my favorite album art of the year. [tune via Julioooo]

Acid Tongue
Jenny Lewis
At that DNC shindig, Jenny Lewis charmed us early in the set with this ballad and her indie-supergroup backup choir that night. The song is absolutely winning, and really illuminates her warm, open, and slightly knowing voice. But after hearing her perform it live twice now, I gotta say that this studio version sounds like Sunday gospel in a a full church with those backing vocals swelling up. Her solo album Acid Tongue is due on Warner Bros September 23, and 2 of her Unconventional stage-mates (Johnathan Rice and Zooey Deschanel) guest on the album, along with M Ward, Elvis Costello, Chris Robinson. Not bad, Jenny. Not bad.


Dying Is Fine
Ra Ra Riot
This Syracuse band blew me away when I saw them live in the tiny, sweaty Larimer Lounge this spring. Ra Ra Riot blends this irresistible "chamber pop meets indie rock meets synthesizer danceability," and they all were so tightly unified as a band that they practically cast off a humming vibration of synergy. Or something like that. I am so pleased to hear that their new album The Rhumb Line (out now on Barsuk Records) sounds absolutely divine, and this song in particular will stick in your head for days -- those delicate strings, the hipshaking syncopated beat, the chimey female harmonies that try to assuage your fear of dying.

You Don't Know Me
Ben Folds and Regina Spektor
I'll admit that Ben Folds may be an acquired taste, as he doesn't have a traditionally pretty voice but rather one that's ... pretty dorky. But he writes amazing songs. On this new tune he goes and experiments around with some early '90s-feeling beat samples and high school musical duet play. But for whatever reason, I still enjoy listening to this perky collaboration with the lovely Regina Spektor (whose set I so enjoyed at Outside Lands). Way To Normal is out September 30th, and Ben plays with his reunited five in North Carolina on September 18th.

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5 Comments:

At September 08, 2008 10:54 PM, Blogger Steve said...

I love "The Rhumb Line!" One must note that it is markedly different from their EP, but still a powerful album. On the original EP I couldn't resist Ghost Under Rocks, but Dying Is Fine is my favorite on the full-length. Great track and great album from a great band! I'm jealous you got to see them live!!

 
At September 09, 2008 12:07 AM, Blogger rickdog said...

You have a great music blog here! I've added you to my mp3blog list and custom search, check it out.

Rickdog's collected over 5,000 mp3blog links, accessible from the alpha menu at page top. You can open frames on these blogs to view them directly on my site, and you can also view the feeds in a frame.

The newest mp3blogs
http://chewbone.blogspot.com/2008/01/alphanew.html

You can search your blog and all the others in my custom google search:

Chewbone MP3blog search
http://chewbone.blogspot.com/2008/03/mp3-blog-search-results.html

I add new blogs to the alpha lists once a week, but your site is immediately added to the custom google search engine.

 
At September 09, 2008 2:40 PM, Blogger Nathan said...

wows this Jenny Lewis song is great. I like this sound much better than pop-ish stuff on Rilo Kiley's latest. The backing chorus seems very CSNY, in a good way. I'm looking forward to the full release. Thanks for pointing this one out!

 
At September 09, 2008 9:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't wait for the Jenny Lewis album to drop and for her performance later this month @ ACL. Thanks Heather!

- Neil

 
At September 10, 2008 7:11 PM, Blogger PicturesqueMusiq said...

I love ben folds! I'm so pumped they're getting back together! Have you ever seen him in concert? Absolutely incredible. I saw him at Langerado http://womenartmoney.blogspot.com/2008/09/langerado-dude-you-won-throw-that-piano.html
amazing!

 

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