“If I were more nocturnal, I would surely miss seeing my shadow. This peculiar dark spot that diligently follows my earthly shell, reminds me of the momentary changes I can make to this physical world. Similarly, it is a constant reminder of the great ball of fire that we rely on to survive on this planet. Lying on my back towards the sun, I am often stricken with guilt that people of the current era do not pay respect to the sun as much as the people of old. With spring fully upon us, the days are getting longer, and our mid-day shadows are becoming much shorter. This provides an excellent opportunity to explore the wonders of your individual world. So the next time you’re feeling the urge to re-watch old episodes of your program of choice, drop your headphones onto that powerful cranium, and romp around for an hour or so. If you truly regret it, then you may be having an uncommon case of springtime seasonal depression, and just might be beyond help.”
- Robert “Bobby” Frost
This month’s Brain Salad comes with its fair share of sunny and bright tunes, most notably, two tracks off the debut release from Vacationer with “No Rules” and “Good as New”. Both tracks are extremely catchy and have everything that I look for in a good synth pop song. Make sure to check out their album,Gone, on their Bandcamp, it’s too legit to be illegitimate. Topping of the mix, is two folky songs, one from an artists I’ve been following for a while, Of Monsters and Men, and a brand new discovery to me, an excellent folk group out of Houston that goes by the name of Buxton. Next, the fun, bounding track from Imperial Teen, has been my international walking anthem for the past few weeks. Delicate Steve teases us with a track his latest album, Positive Force, coming on May 15. I brought in another track off Conner Youngblood‘s free EP Sketches Pt. 1, simply because he’s making some extremely creative music and I firmly believe that more people should be aware of it. Nite Jewel‘s album One Second of Love, caught me completely off guard and I’m simply infatuated with the track “She’s always Watching you”off that one. The mix ends with some peppy, and almost-annoying tunes, from Tanlines and the always reliable Remix Artist Collective. The last track on this is a unique banger from french hip-hop/edm producers Chill Bump. Watch out for them if you dig this track because they’re quite on point.
As always, take care, please share, and Thank you x2. xx
Tracklist and link After the Jumpoff
Brain Salad – March 2012
Despite being relatively absent from the blogosphere for the past few months, I have been listening to a fair bit of music. So here I am picking it back up with a brand new Brain Salad release. March’s mix continues the trend of eclectic compilations with everything from Shigeto’s exciting glitchy remix of Sufjan Steven’s “Futile Devices”, to the light folky soul tune in Michael Kiwanuka’s “I’m Getting Ready”. Highlights from this month’s include a quality track titled “Lonesome” from another quality release from Dr. Dog off Be the Void. The new track from one of my personal favorites Yellow Ostrich, “Shakedown” is a driving rock tune that starts off strong and ends with a crescendo that is as fulfilling as it is hectic. Blood Orange has been ringing its smooth R&B Rock through my head for the past few months, so I figured I’d share “Forget it” with all y’all. By the way, Blood Orange is the project of one Lightspeed Champion, who I found out about through Emmy The Great, won me over with his excellent name and even better music, so check him out, please. Pepper Rabbit comes through with a nice catchy tune that is just plain nice. Michael Kiwanuka and Ben Howard wins the best folk tunes so far this year. Polica and Rhye and Grimes all came out of nowhere this year with some awesome female dance/electronic tunes. Conner Youngblood continues to crank out tunes that I can’t help but love, and even better, “Will You Be There”, came on a free EP called Sketches Pt.1. Last of all comes A$AP Rocky’s “Peso” which if you aren’t already aware of, fix it, because A$AP Rocky is doin his own thang like none other, and gettin paid for it. As always, thanks and enjoy and thanks.
Tracklist after the Jump.
Delicate Steve just might be an enigma wrapped in a mystery enshrouded within the cloaks of secrecy that protect the deepest meanings of existence. Similarly, Delicate Steve is a instrumental rock group that’s been exploring the origins of music by way of NYC, creating waves of sensation in the ears of many and confusion in the heads of all that are perplexed by what they have encountered. Having been paired by nothing less than fate with the wonderfully talented Yellow Ostrich, the most Delicate of Steves recently, were on tour supporting Ra Ra Riot.
Delicate Steve’s story is one that’s been flooded with what our ancestor’s called “Tall Tales”. In a bit of a publicity stunt, a publicist for the band sought out acclaimed music writer Chuck Klosterman to write a press release, without really knowing what the band was about. Chuck did just what he knew he had to do, write a such a ludicrous fabrication that it could easily be taken for the truth by someone who has little time to let it sink in, or at the very least check some facts. So it became a parody of music journalism, and the sad reality of what a press release is, which is merely a cheat sheet for journalists to shirk their duties of investigating and reporting the facts. So by feeding the hungry eyes of bloggers and music journalists with false facts and outrageous (and imaginary) descriptions, Klosterman managed to “Pull a quick one”. This trickery did not go unappreciated by those who recognized, most notably NPR, who’s Ann Powers wrote an excellent article about this situation and the portrait it paints of the music journalism scene.
So the way I will choose to describe the wizardry that Steve Marion, the mastermind behind the luscious compositions that make up the debut album Wondervisions, is with this:
In the hot summer sun, some time ago, I spent a handful of moments to stop and observe/ponder the remains of a squirrel. His time must’ve came, in one panicked moment, a day or two before. The rot had started. Definitely. The flies, seemed to gain vigor from the promise of something to occupy their seconds of flight for many minutes to come. As I took it all in, I thought I heard something. I know I heard something. In the distance, but obviously within earshot, was the soft singing of tree birds, with the accompaniment of the breeze. What seemed like a celebration cantata was occurring just a stones-throw from this location of sudden or slow lonely demise. My feelings were mixed. No not mixed like blended, but more like alternating, or see-sawing. I couldn’t help but to be saddened by the fate of the adorable rodent. I couldn’t help to be delighted by the performances of the natural choir perched above. So I decided to try my best to combine these emotions that I had always felt separately before. And quite naturally, I found myself at a funeral. Celebrating the life of the critter. Rejoicing for the all the smiles that he had caused as he scrambled around a trunk trying to catch a fellow nut-stasher. Accepting the fate that world has brought to this thing. And really, really, really enjoying the music.
Check out these videos, if you so desire.
“Whenever the first leaves would fall, back when I was a child, I would began to count down the moments until there were enough to gather. The amount wasn’t anything specific, more like an estimation of how big the pile would have to be to break my fall. Just beyond the worn away patch of dirt in the lawn, I would corral the leaves. Always careful to try and filter out any twigs or other debris that could later become dangerous. The old rope swing stayed up year round, but some seasons were favorable. You never knew for sure if it was a good cushion until you tried it. So once I felt I had an adequate collection I would back up as far as I could go. Running and leaping with a mighty push, I would launch into the brisk air.”
Sometimes music comes along that just has too much flavor for me to share it with anyone right away. I get nervous that I’m enjoying these sounds just because of how unique it is, instead of it simply just being good music. Its almost that I feel like I might be getting tricked by a facade of production tricks or gypsy magic that makes me THINK that the music is good, as opposed to knowing for sure. Upon first listen of Diamond Mine from King Creosote & Jon Hopkins, I was enamored by the richness of the backing tracks (Jon Hopkins) and the vocals (King Creosote). First off, I’m a sucka for vocalists with blatant accents, and King Creosotes Scottish* drawl plays right into that weakness. The first track that caught my attention was “John Taylor’s Month Away” which is a slowly building track that swells up to large wide sounds and eventually fades into a soundscape beautifully orchestrated by Jon Hopkins. This album was reported as a project that was “a culmination of about seven weeks of work spread over seven years of recording and collaboration” which really shows in the final project. I feel like this started as a dream between the two of them to work with a musician that they respected and because they both had a unique vision for the project, it ended up being such a masterpiece. The standout track on Diamond Mine for me would definitely be “Bubble”, which features Hopkins knack for minimalist percussion and other droning chords that create such a lovely backdrop for the harmonizations of the the vocals. The final product is quite the enchanting adventure, and they managed to capture that with an AMAZING music video. Check out the video and other quality tracks below.
“John Taylor’s Month Away”
“Bats in the Attic (unravelled)”
Check out their concert from the Tiny Desk Series from NPR to see how it all happens.
Thanks and enjoy and thanks. xx
Last night I had a dream that my friends and I were being pulled around a lake (in which one end was a shallow indoor pool) by a rope that had some sort of strange throttle mechanism on it. Hanging on to this rope, my friends and I zipped around the lake just enjoying the ride. All of this was fine and grand until we were pulled back into the pool area and we discovered something written on the floor of the pool. I remember getting just close enough to read it, feeling scared because of the way that my friend had shouted about it, and then I woke up.
Enjoy this months Brain Salad.
James Blake has been blowing me away since I first heard “Wilhelm Scream” early last year. Since then he’s been amazing me with his amalgamation of minimalist, post-dubstep, and r&b stylings. His sorrowful falsetto is the perfect counterpart to his distinct glitchy reverbed percussion that he uses on the majority of his tracks. He is easily one the best new artists (nominated for 2011 Mercury Prize a.k.a. the Grammys of The UK but better because its not in America) and continues to impress the blogosphere with his excellent productions and mixes. I’m really into the whole post-dubstep movement and the new bass music sounds that are coming out of the UK right now (see: PostDubstep Tumblr) and James Blake is one of the defining artists in this movement and alot of what we are seeing are reflections of his sound. It is a wonderful place we live in where artists can be immediately influential in the music world.
I’ve been wanting to post about James Blake for a grip now, and the fact that he’s preparing his new album is a damn good reason to continue building the hype about this guy. He’s collaborated with one of my favorite voices/songwriters in the whole world, Bon Iver‘s Justin Vernon, for a track on the upcoming album. This track “Fall Creek Boys Choir” is just a clue as to what this new album will be like, and its a huge tease. The full track list has been released and the album is to be called Enough Thunder. (Get the deets HERE)This song really illustrates the innovation that James Blake exudes and I sincerely hope that he continues to create new sounds and produce music of the high quality that he has in the past.
If you have never heard James Blake, please check him out. He’s creating extremely intelligent music with a flavor that he’s made all his own, and not surprisingly he’s the best at what he does.
Fall Creek Boys Choir
A Millie (Harmonimix Remix) *Harmonimix is James Blake’s remix/Dj moniker*
1. Once We All Agree
2. We Might Feel Unsound
3. Fall Creek Boys Choir
4. A Case of You
5. Not Long Now
6. Enough Thunder
It’s been said that salad is the only thing that beavers are afraid of. While that is undoubtedly fact, this salad is nothing to be afraid of unless you’re a beaver that also hates nice sounding things. In that case, I’m amazed at your ability to use the internet seeing as you’re a beaver, and less concerned about whether you enjoyed the mix. Anyways, this mix was kind of thrown together from the songs I’ve been listening to all month, and a couple late additions to make up for the plethora of new albums that are coming out or have leaked. The first song, “Bubble” come from Mercury Prize 2011 nominee King Creosote and Jon Hopkins. This is a soft interesting number that has sparse percussion that keeps the songs rolling along at a comfortable pace. Next is “WHALE” from brooklyn indie-folkers Yellow Ostrich. I’ve just discovered these guys and found them to have a number of well done covers (including a Tallest Man “King of Spain” cover that really made me smile). Check it out if you enjoy that sort of thing. The song “Pineapple Girl” from Mister Heavenly, is a fun track that reminds me of Dale Earnhardt jr. jr. with a little less manners. “Suffragette Suffragette” from Everything Everything is a electric guitar led number that has very Two Door Cinema Club esque breaks and rhythm. Also they pose the age old question of “Who’s going to sit on your face when I’m gone?” (jksc) Yacht brings us an very nice synth pop anthem with “Dystopia”. ”Serve the People” from The Handsome Furs (Sub Pop) is such a great song that I really am at a loss of words about it. I saw the duo perform this live and i think the emotion associated with my memory of that show are clouding me from making objective statements about it. so yeah. listen. Next is the fully electronic slash EDM section of the mix, with new songs from CSS and M83. Finally some nice crunchy filth to end out the mix with “All Nite” and “Happy Violence”. Pleeze pleeze enjoy this music and spread it amongst the masses that deserve to hear it. and continue to have fun/be safe.
Thanks and enjoy and thanks.
This month’s Brain Salad is full of wonderfully fun songs that have guided me through the summer days with relative ease. Lookin forward to getting back to the brick streets of the university and enjoy the company of my friends. There was a large quantity of good music released this months, and some wonderful new albums have made their way through my ears (Fruit Bats, Beirut, Portugal the Man) I’m seeing the Head and the Heart(!!!!) w/the Decemberists this week so alot of my listening has been occupied with that. First is a song that I’ve been sitting on for a while, “Wedding Song”, is a song by Anais Mitchell from her Folk album Hadestown featuring Justin Vernon (Bon Iver). Its a sweet sweet song with nice harmonies that have been stickin to the inside of my head for quite some time. Next is my favorite song of the new Vetiver album The Errant Charm. “Can’t You Tell” is a chill song perfect for strolling around in the sun on any given summer day. ”Dolly” by the Fruit Bats is a playful number from one of my new favorite bands. Their new album has been on repeat. The new stuff from The Kooks, Portugal. The Man, and Beirut is all just as quality as one would expect from these wonderful bands. The new song “Go Outside” from the Cults is just too summer (cool) to leave off this playlist, I’m really liking it. ”Somebody That I Used To Know” found its way onto the playlist because it enlisted the magic of a wonderful dual male/female lead vocal part. Just can’t get enough of this track. The next is the electronic section of the salad, is really quite groovin if I do say so myself. The new track from Bjork, “Crystalline”, pleased me to hear because of its similarity in percussion to Sufjan Stevens on the Age of Adz. Tycho’s new song goes in the category of “Superchill” and fit right in. ”Gucci Gucci” by Kreayshawn has been remixed and thrown into mashups and mixes so much since we first heard it, and I put my favorite of those on here. The final track is remix to “Somebody that I Used To Know” that I really enjoyed when I came upon it. Hope you do as well. In addition I hope the entirety of this mix improves your mood and has you better than you were previously.
thanks and enjoy and thanks.
As disappointed as I am that I am missing/missed the Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. concert in Cincinnati, I can’t complain about camping with the fam and relaxin’ after a taxin’ finals week. Also, it doesn’t kill my excitement about the new album. I gave them a chance after hearing their cover of a Beach boys song “God Only Knows“. That had me hooked, I’m totally a sucka for some solid vocal harmonies. This was no exception. The tracks on this album all have a certain amount of intimacy to them that makes you want to get closer to your speakers (or just turn it up). It’s really quite warm. The electronic instrumentation on tracks like “An Ugly Person on a Movie Screen” got me smirkin from the start. The slightly distorted vocals color the tracks really nicely, along with some other subtle effects that let me know that these guys know what they’re doing and not just up to some cheap gimmicks. Give these guys a solid watch or listen. Preeze.
For fans of The Drums, Surf Rock(kinda), quirky people, vintage instruments, NASCAR (jksc)
The final sale on this album/band was this ridiculous KCRW session.
watch the full session at the link below.
Or check out “Simple Girl” from that Session
Stream (listen to) the album here.
Thanks and share and thanks.