Friday, April 30, 2010

baltimore critical mass apr 2010

today was perfect weather for biking in baltimore....
so bike we did.
the turn-out this time was not bad at all. certainly not as big as last halloween's critical mass, but riding in any group of this size is so much fun.
i was looking forward to next month's until i realized that i probably won't be here, and that this was probably my last baltimore critical mass ever. and to think, right as they're finally beginning to repave the roads... (i can't believe they even repaved druid hill park! definitely need to ride there more often now)
well, i'll certainly miss it. hopefully i can find something similar in LA or NY, but i doubt i'll find a cycling community that is as friendly, welcoming, and modest as it is here (and for this a special thanks goes out to mica cycling/velocipede/baltimorebikeworks). not to mention, with all of the changes being made (repaving, bike lanes, critical mass restarting), it feels like i'm leaving the city just as things are getting so good for cyclists.
but anyways...

Top 5: April 2010

chillwave (or glo-fi if you're so inclined) seems to have had a pretty weak april but things are finally looking up again, and just in time for the sunny spring! so... this month's top 5 songs are (once again) dedicated to the surprisingly resilient genre, even if it has produced some pretty terrible offspring...

5. Best Coast - Our Deal

4. Pure Ecstacy - Voices

3. Korallreven - The Truest Faith
(One of them is in The Radio Dept.!)

2. Teen Daze - Shine On, You Crazy White Cap

1. DOM - Living In America
(This is the best biking song EVER even it is self parody)

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Starkey - Ear Drums and Black Holes


1. OK Luv
2. Murderous Words feat. Cerebral Vortex
3. 11th Hour
4. Numb feat. P-Money
5. Stars feat. Anneka
6. Multidial
7. Spacecraft
8. Neck Snap

9. Fourth Dimension
10. Club Games feat. Cerebral Vortex & Buddy Leezle
11. Alienstyles
12. Capsule
13. New Cities feat. Kiki Hitomi
14. Pleasure Points
15. Fidelio


Damn, I love Starkey. Moody dubstep with an astronomical/sci-fi touch. This album isn't exactly full of the best tunes but Stars is one of the best songs I've heard all year.


Bye Bye Blackbird - Happy High EP


1. Happy High
2. Heartbeat
3. So Sorry, Girl
4. Ups & Downs


I haven't heard anything really good from chillwave in a while, so at this rate I'll take whatever I can get. These four songs are pretty catchy but they certainly don't stand with the best of the genre. The wait continues...

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Noisia - Split The Atom

Noisia Split The Atom
Drum and Bass/Electronic/Dubstep

1. Machine Gun
2. My World Ft. Giovanca
3. Shitbox
4. Split The Atom
5. Thursday

7. Hand Gestures Ft. Joe Seven
8. Headknot
9. Red Heat
10. Shellshock Ft. Foreign Beggars

11. Whiskers
12. Alpha Centauri
13. Soul Purge Ft. Foreign Beggars
14. Diplodocus
15. Paper Doll
16. Dystopia
17. Sunhammer Ft. Amon Tobin
18. Stigma
19. Square Feet


Monday, April 19, 2010

Foals - Total Life Forever

Foals Total Life Forever
Indie/Rock/Math Rock

1 Blue Blood
2 Miami
3 Total Life Forever
4 Black Gold
5 Spanish Sahara
6 This Orient
7 Fugue
8 After Glow
9 Alabaster
10 Two Trees
11 What Remains


One of my most anticipated albums of the year (I feel like I'm saying that all the time this week). I loved 'Antidotes' but the way Foals took their signature sound (insect-like guitars and all) to pretty incredible heights on "Spanish Sahara" and the small previews they provided online kept me counting the days until TLF was [released]. The new album is much more polished and varied than the first, and a lot warmer in tone, but the hyper-energetic feel of 'Antidotes' has certainly been turned down here and I feel like a lot of people will miss it. In my opinion, though, this album has a larger range than the first and is stronger for it. None of the tracks really reproduce the epic build-up of "Spanish Sahara," which is probably for the best anyways. I enjoy nearly every song on the album though, and I find myself getting caught up in them just when I'm about to dismiss them as okay.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Crystal Castles - Crystal Castles (2nd)

Crystal Castles Crystal Castles (2nd)

1. Fainting Spells
2. Celestica
3. Doe Deer
4. Baptism
5. Year of Silence
6. Empathy
7. Suffocation
8. Violent Dreams
9. Vietnam
10. Birds
11. Pap Smear
12. Not In Love
13. Intimate
14. I Am Made of Chalk


Okay, who cares if Crystal Castles are weird and Claudio is the biggest douche and whatever whatever. When I heard that they were releasing a new album, all I asked for was that they take 'Magic Spells' and make that song like 12 more times. In other words, I was expecting to be disappointed... But somehow, I am not!

The album starts off kind of weird with Celestica being surrounded by the scratchy, glitchy Fainting Spells and Doe Deer which aren't really too great (Doe Deer is pretty catchy though). But then the rest of the album is good and it gets better. It's has a glitcher, more lo-fi feel than the first which is perfectly fine, and it leans more toward the rolling, melodic electronica/chiptune that I loved from them. And 'Suffocation' is the 'Magic Spells' replacement I was looking for! Hell yes!

(All of my videos were taken down, this is the last one standing)

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Supercar - Highvision

Supercar Highvision

1. Starline
2. Warning Bell
3. Storywriter
4. Aoharu Youth (Album Version)
5. Otogi Nation
6. Strobolights (Album Version)
7. I
8. Yumegiwa Last Boy (Album Version)
9. Nijiro Darkness
10. Silent Yaritori


An incredible album. Post-rock elements mixed with starry electronica and a healthy dose of infectious J-pop catchiness. This album gets its fair share of haters for straying too far from the post-rock establishment but whatever; post-rock always seems to attract the most uptight of music fans anyways. I wouldn't be surprised if Supercar's decision to pursue electronic music is, for them, akin to putting auto-tune on a folkish indie band or something (I'm looking at you, Nick Thorburn). Anyways, I love something about almost every song so this one is definitely worth a listen. And this video reminds me of Ellegarden, which makes me happy:

Supercar and Ellegarden...come back :(

Scarlet Youth - Breaking The Patterns

Scarlet Youth Breaking The Patterns

1. Gleaming Endless Ocean
2. Wave Goodbye
3. Tokyo Daydreamer
4. High On Sky
5. Before The Surface Breaks
6. Sunshine Girl


Pretty standard shoegazey fare from Finland. Easy to listen to and get lost in. Kind of drags in the middle but begins and ends well.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Baths - Cerulean

Baths Cerulean

1. Apologetic Shoulderblades
2. Lovely Bloodflow
3. Maximalist
4. ♥
5. Rafting Starlit Everglades
6. Aminals
7. Indoorsy
8. You're My Excuse to Travel
9. Rain Smell
10. Seaside Town
11. Mecha Joy
12. Palatial Disappointment
13. Departure
14. Hall


( )

Monday, April 12, 2010

Light Pollution - Apparitions

Light Pollution - Apparitions

1. Good Feelings
2. Oh, Ivory!
3. Drunk Kids
4. Fever Dreams
5. Deyci, Right On
6. Bad Vibes 4
7. All Night Outside
8. Witchcraft
9. Ssslowdreamsss


( )

Broken Social Scene - Forgiveness Rock Record

Broken Social Scene Forgiveness Rock Record

1. World Sick
2. Chase Scene
3. Texico Bitches
4. Forced to Love
5. All to All
6. Art House Director

7. Highway Slipper Jam
8. Ungrateful Little Father
9. Meet Me in the Basement
10. Sentimental X’s
11. Sweetest Kill
12. Romance to the Grave
13. Water in Hell

14. Me and My Hand


Okay, so I had a really positive review all written up but then I decided to re-listen to 'Broken Social Scene' and 'You Forgot It In People,' and I became increasingly disappointed in the new album. Yes, it's good, in fact it's very good, but I don't quite think even the best of the album (All To All/Sentimental X?) holds a candle to 'Swimmers', 'Bandwitch', '7/4 Shoreline,' or hell, any of 'You Forgot It In People.' (Maybe it's the lack of involvement from Feist/Amy Millan/Emily Haines?)
Then again, BSS seem to grow on me in unexpected ways, so who knows...

Speaking of Amy Millan, there's a new Stars album coming soon!!!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Scuba - Triangulation

Scuba Triangulation

1. Descent
2. Latch
3. Three Sided Shape
4. Minerals

5. On Deck
6. Before
7. Tracers
8. You Got Me
9. So You Think You're Special
10. Heavy Machinery

11. Glance
12. Lights Out
13. Last Stand


Sorry for not writing about this one sooner, this was definitely one of March's stand-out albums. I wasn't a huge fan of Scuba's previous, 'A Mutual Antipathy,' so I wasn't expecting much but I was very, very mistaken. The experimental edge seems to have been taken off a bit in exchange for some actual song-structure and the result is a much more enjoyable album. Some garage and house influences can definitely be felt as well. If anything, I can see 'Triangulation' selling some people onto dubstep when they weren't convinced before, for better or for worse.

Bonus points to Scuba for heading up Hotflush and working (previously) with Vaccine, one of my absolute favorites! (Among many, many others...)

Future Islands - In Evening Air

Future Islands In Evening Air
Post-punk/New Wave

1. Walking Through That Door
2. Long Flight
3. Tin Man

4. An Apology
5. In Evening Air
6. Swept Inside
7. Inch of Dust
8. Vireo's Eye

9. As I Fall


Another great creation from the not-always-so-great town of Baltimore. "Wave Like Home" is one of my favorite songs on "A: Reminiscence," so I knew this album wouldn't disappoint. I've never had a chance to see them in person, but this album tells me I should try to catch a show I before I leave. I'm not entirely sold on the singer's voice (Okay, this is kind of mean but he sort of sounds like Weezy on 'Long Flight') but the instrumentals and melodies are engaging enough to make up for it.

Caribou - Swim

Caribou Swim

1. Odessa
2. Sun
3. Kaili
4. Found Out
5. Bowls
6. Leave House
7. Hannibal
8. Labelia
9. Jamelia


Hazy, danceable, flowy, and poppy. Grew on me quite a bit.
Very very hard to pick a favorite song. Definitely isn't 'Odessa' but I can't find any others on youtube...

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Items: Tote Bags


Wm. J. Mills


Engineered Garments


Altadena Works

Blk Pine Workshop

Archival Clothing

The Real McCoy's

Snowden - Slow Soft Syrup

Snowden Slow Soft Syrup EP

1. No One In Control
2. Don't Really Know Me
3. Anemone Arms
4. So Red
5. No Words No More


WTF?? I've been pronouncing "anemone" incorrectly as "ane-no-mee" for my entire life??? Anyways, the video below speaks for itself. Amazing EP.