Wednesday, August 30

THE LOVEMAKERS



Considering the fact that I'm albino-white, utterly assless, and possess all the groove, grind, and grace of Rush Limbaugh on an Oxycontin-and-crack cocktail, it seems more than passing strange that I enjoy dance-rock music as much (and as often) as I do. Call it overcompensation.

Oakland, CA's the Lovemakers make quite the raucous racket on their debut album, Times of Romance. They may remind some of an amped-up Human League (and some may already be familiar with their falsetto-and-bass bangin' "Shake That Ass" from earlier forays into the blogosphere). Singers Scott Blonde (Simon Le Bon remixed?) and Lisa Light (Shirley Manson goes to the disco?) are ex-lovers who trade off tunes and occasionally (see: "Shake That Ass") bring their talents together to serve the same song. (A third member of the outfit goes by the name "Jeesh le Guillotine," and how can you help doing a little Safety Dance to that?)

The Lovemakers will be playing the Sausalito Art Festival on September 2. Just as soon as Dick Dale finishes his set. (No joke.)

The Lovemakers on MySpace? That would [here].

Now... dance, my pretties!

[MP3] "Dance"

[MP3] "Hypnotised"

Tuesday, August 29

DAN WALLACE



Chicagoan Dan Wallace is the former singer/songwriter for the Pindrops - a group that released a self-titled album in 2004 that can be sampled and purchased at CDBaby [here].

Mr. Wallace is seemingly omnipresent on the Chicago musical scene, scoring film soundtracks, composing chamber pieces, and just generally working to support modern classical music in the city. He is also, however, very much the indie-pop rocker, as his solo LP, Neon and Gold [Torito Bravo Records], fully attests. Some reviewers compare Wallace to Rufus Wainwright and Ben Folds, but methinks this might be a bit misleading and simplistic in this case. While the songs on Neon and Gold tend to be solidly melodic, they also feature adventurous instrumentation and just slightly off-kilter arrangements.

So... try to the two rather different-sounding songs below on for size. If you like what you hear, you can purchase Neon and Gold at CDBaby [here], at Amazon.com [here], at iTunes, or directly from his website [here].

(Dan Wallace's MySpace page is [here].)

[MP3] "Fell"

[MP3] "Vante Left Them Human"

Monday, August 28

THE LIGHTNING SEEDS



The Lightning Seeds may or may not be the latest entry in my "dead bands" series. For one thing, this was always a "band" that had the "one-man show" thing going on. That man would be Ian Broudie, who has made his name producing artists from Echo & the Bunnymen to the Zutons; the Coral to I Am Kloot. For a second thing, Broudie has had a habit of pulling the "band" out of mothballs every now and again, though the only recent release was a best-of collection back in June (only available in the U.S. as an import).

As a creative entity, the Lightning Seeds has never received a great deal of credit. Somehow, the sound was deemed too "clean"; "whispy"; "lite." All Music Guide writer Alex Ogg all-but-tore Mr. Broudie a new one when reviewing the album Dizzy Heights: "[the Lightning Seeds are still] obsess[ed] with the perfect '60s pop song, polite guitars, and saccharine vocals on an endless quest to rewrite 'Unchained Melody'." Now, for one thing, "Unchained Melody" is a pretty great song - one capable of overcoming the awful image of Patrick Swayze playing in clay. Beyond that, there's plenty of room in my life (and perhaps yours) for the occasional foray into "clean, whispy" pop.

From the LP Cloudcuckooland, 1989 >>>
[MP3] "Pure"

From the LP Jollification, 1994 >>>
[MP3] "Lucky You"

From the LP Dizzy Heights, 1996 >>>
[MP3] "You Showed Me"
[MP3] "Sugar Coated Iceberg"

From the LP Tilt, 1999 >>>
[MP3] "Sweetest Soul Sensations"

Sunday, August 27

DIRTY ON PURPOSE



Not to be confused with Dirty Vegas, Dirty Three, Dirty Pretty Things, or Ol' Dirty Bastard, Dirty on Purpose is a Brooklyn four-piece who released their debut CD, Hallelujah Sirens, this past June.

This is very low-key stuff, perfect for the gray, rainy Sunday that's been taking shape here in the Great Lakes area. Comparisons have been made between these guys and laid-back outfits like Yo La Tengo, and there may be some semblance of truth there. Gentle washes of guitar. Pretty, if soft-spoken, singing. Subtle, gotta-dig-a-bit-to-get-to-them melodies. Again, not recommended for all tastes and/or moods, but pretty terrific as the sonic wallpaper for a gloomy Sunday.

You can purchase Hallelujah Sirens from North Street Records [here]. And, if you visit Dirty on Purpose's MySpace page [here], you'll see that they'll be playing the South Street Seaport in New York City [with the Spinto Band] on September 1.

From the LP Hallelujah Sirens, 2006 >>>
[MP3] "Always Looking"
[MP3] "Lake Effect"

From the EP Sleep Late for a Better Tomorrow, 2005 >>>
[MP3] "Mind Blindness"

Wednesday, August 23

JOHAN


After sating ourselves in Sweden, we have been beckoned to the Netherlands to take a gander at the thoroughly Swedish-sounding band Johan. These guys released their first album in 1997. At the time, All Music Guide gushed that it "marr[ied] the jittery indie guitar strum of the Wedding Present to the cool, ironic retro-pop charms of the Cardigans and the manic hooks of the best Buzzcocks singles." Yikes! "Damning high praise" alert!

Granted, I haven't been able to lay ears on that first, self-titled album, but I have heard the two follow-ups - Pergola and THX JHN. Now, please understand, I obviously like the sound of these guys (thus, this post), but I can't help thinking that AMG is over-selling them just a bit with that rather breathless description. To me, they sound highly pleasant; a bit mellow; hardly revolutionary.

But here's the thing (and I may need a little assistance here): Lead singer Jacob de Greeuw sounds like a dead ringer for the singer of a band we're all familiar with, but, for the life of me, I can't think of the name of that singer or the name of that band. Please. Help. Me. Before. I. Go. Completely. Insane.

[Actually, is it Neil Finn? From Crowded House? Have I seen the light? Oh hell, I don't know....]

[Get to know Johan just a little bit better by visiting their MySpace page [here].]

From the LP THX JHN, 2006 >>>
[MP3] "Walking Away"
[MP3] "Oceans"

From the LP Pergola, 2001 >>>
[MP3] "Day is Done"
[MP3] "Why CP"

Tuesday, August 22

PAUL BRILL


You know, even after multiple listens, I can't quite decide whether Paul Brill's "Paris is On" is going to be the next big Midlake/"Roscoe"-type, MP3-blog sensation, or if it's just the best song David Gray never got around to writing and recording. Possibly both? I'll leave the ultimate decision to you fine folks...

From his forthcoming LP Harpooner [11.21.06/Scarlet Shame Records] >>>
[MP3] Paul Brill/"Paris is On"

[Paul Brill's MySpace page is [here].]

Monday, August 21

THE CONCRETES


After Friday's post on the Knife, we're staying in Stockholm to suck down some pickled fish and to take an in-depth listen to the Concretes. (True, in-between, we had a brief stopover on Sunday in Montreal - birthplace of cool-cat crooner William Shatner. But surely Shatner is as huge in Sweden as Jerry Lewis is in France and David Hasselhoff is in Germany, yes?)

Until fairly recently, I was only familiar with the Concretes' 2006 release, In Colour. You may already be familiar with that album, or at least with a number of its tracks. You may NOT know that the band first formed way-the-hell-back in 1995 as a three-piece, then gradually added members thereafter. As far as U.S. releases go, the group has put out two proper albums, as well as a U.S.-only collection of b-sides and extras in 2005 (Layourbattleaxedown). They've also been a bit cursed when it comes to working with record labels - with their first two efforts ending in utter frustration.

Despite receiving wide acclaim for In Colour, the Concretes have experienced even more frustrations in 2006. First, while touring the U.S., they had the bulk of their instruments stolen. Then, they had to cancel a number of dates on that tour due to "illness." Finally, just about a month ago, the group announced that lead singer Victoria Bergsman had left the band to... you guessed it... "pursue a solo career."

The Concretes, however, are forging ahead - getting together this September to begin recording their next album. Life, as they say, goes on....

From the LP In Colour, 2006 >>>
[MP3] "Chosen One"
[MP3] "Song for the Songs"

From the LP Layourbattleaxedown, 2005 >>>
[MP3] "Oh Baby"

From their self-titled LP, 2004 >>>
[MP3] "Seems Fine"
[MP3] "Lonely As Can Be"

Sunday, August 20

WILLIAM SHATNER



It seems that Comedy Central is roasting Captain Kirk/T.J. Hooker tonight (Sunday) at 10 PM EST. Thus, it seems appropriate that we take at least some small sliver of time to celebrate this mercurial Canadian's multi-dimensional talent(s). He is, after all, a singer at heart.

Well... more like a "TALK-singer," with a style so car-crash compelling you just can't look away (or plug up your ears) quickly enough to prevent your brain from imploding out of sheer, self-preserving mercy.

Now... partake of the unique, self-satisfied-yet-self-deprecating genius that is WILLIAM SHATNER!

[MP3] [YouSendIt] "Common People"
[MP3] [YouSendIt] "It Was a Very Good Year"
[MP3] [YouSendIt] "Mr. Tambourine Man"

BONUS TRACKS >>>

[MP3] [YouSendIt] Pulp/"Common People"
[MP3] [YouSendIt] Frank Sinatra/"It Was a Very Good Year"
[MP3] [YouSendIt] Bob Dylan/"Mr. Tambourine Man"

MORE BONUS TRACKS >>>

[MP3] [YouSendIt] R.E.M./"Where's Captain Kirk?"
[MP3] [YouSendIt] Spizzenergi/"Where's Captain Kirk?"

Friday, August 18

THE KNIFE



Talk about preaching to the choir.... Few bands have been more "blogged upon" than the Knife in the past year or so. Of course, their new album, Silent Shout [Mute Records], wasn't officially released in the U.S. till late July '06, but songs from that record, as well as countless remixes, have been buzzing the blogosphere for just about forever now.

I don't really know where this Swedish duo came from (well... Stockholm, apparently). But they've been together seven years now, and it wasn't till sometime in '05 that I first heard of them. (They're brother and sister, actually, so I guess they've been "together" for more than seven years - which sort of automatically makes them more interesting than, say, Roxette. But perhaps still LESS interesting than, say, ABBA.) (Marital dynamics, and all that.)

The first time through Silent Shout, I was especially impressed by just four of its songs - "Marble House," "Forest Families," and the two offered - for a limited time - below. With repeated listens, however, one comes to realize that this is an of-a-piece album; the mood it evokes is as important as the tunes themselves. Honestly, I can't remember the last time I heard something this cool, spooky, and spectral. It's night-driving music. In winter. While contemplating suicide. Or lost love. Or some such.

Go to the Knife's MySpace page [here] to check out some U.S. live performances they have planned for November.

From the LP Silent Shout, 2006 >>>
[MP3] "Silent Shout"
[MP3] "Neverland"

From the LP Deep Cuts, 2003 >>>
[MP3] "Listen Now"

From the soundtrack to Hannah Med H, 2003 >>>
[MP3] "The Bridge"

BONUS TRACK >>>

[MP3] Stina Nordenstam/"Parliament Square" [The Knife Remix]

Thursday, August 17

SILVERSUN PICKUPS


Don't feel like typing today. Or yesterday. Maybe tomorrow. But wanted to share some music. From Silversun Pickups. Of Los Angeles. USA. Hopefully will feel like typing again soon. Stay with me.

From the LP Carnavas, 2006 >>>
[MP3] "Lazy Eye"
[MP3] "Dream at Tempo 119"

From the EP Pikul, 2004 >>>
[MP3] "Kissing Families"

Tuesday, August 15

COSMIC ROUGH RIDERS


Lead singers leaving (or being left behind) by their bands is hardly a new phenomenon. Think: Syd Barrett and Pink Floyd. Peter Gabriel and Genesis. Tim Fletcher and the Stills (sort of). David Lee Roth, Sammy Hagar, Gary Cherone, and David Lee Roth (again) with Van Halen.

So it shouldn't have come as a huge shock when Daniel Wylie - lead singer/songwriter for Scottish folk-rockers Cosmic Rough Riders - left the band after their acclaimed first album to pursue his solo aspirations. The Riders' other principal songwriter, Stephen Fleming, quickly stepped into the breach, and the group released their latest disc, Stars Look Different from Down Here, back in July.

There are plenty of people in the world who have never come to grips with the loss of Wylie and long ago gave up on Cosmic Rough Riders. And it's undeniably true that the group's newer material lacks some of the Byrds-ian harmonizing that they were once known for. You can decide for yourself whether this "new" incarnation of a once highly-promising band is worthy of your time and attention.

Visit Cosmic Rough Riders' MySpace page [here].

From the LP Stars Look Different from Down Here, 2006 >>>
[MP3] "When You Come Around"
[MP3] "Don't Get Me Down"

From the LP Enjoy the Melodic Sunshine, 2000 >>>
[MP3] "Revolution (In the Summertime?)"
[MP3] "Baby, You're So Free"

From the LP Deliverance, 1999 >>>
[MP3] "Still a Mother's Son"

Friday, August 11

SING-SING/LUSH


Friday nights just cry out for carefree, borderline-frivolous pop, and I am here to supply it.

Sing-Sing is led by vocalists Emma Anderson and Lisa O'Neill. Anderson, some may recall, was also part of the '90s shoegaze/pop outfit Lush.

But it's Friday night, the Tigers are playing the White Sox, and that's all I feel like writing. Enjoy the tunes.

From the LP Sing-Sing and I, 2006 >>>
[MP3] "Lover"

From the LP The Joy of Sing-Sing, 2002 >>>
[MP3] "Feels Like Summer"

BONUS TRACKS >>>

[MP3] Lush/"Ladykillers"

[MP3] Lush [w/Jarvis Cocker]/"Ciao!"

[MP3] Lush/"Light from a Dead Star"

Thursday, August 10

GUSTER





If I'd had a blog back in 2004 and had compiled a Top 10 album list for that year, Guster's Keep It Together would have likely made my top five. So it was with much anticipation that I popped their new record, Ganging Up on the Sun, into my CD player and punched PLAY. Alas, beware great expectations....

Way back in 1999, I wrote a review of Guster's then most recent release, Goldfly. At the time, I referred to them as a "bongo-pop band," as they did seem to have an affinity for that particular instrument back in the day. I also made the point that the trio had made whatever reputation it had at the time through its tireless touring and eagerly-received live performances. In reviewing the album, however, I found their sound to be somewhat generic. I compared them to everyone from Counting Crows to Gin Blossoms; Rusted Root to Ben Folds Five. Well, what goes around comes around, I guess, as the Ben Folds reference seems fresh and fitting again on Ganging Up's piano-poppy "Manifest Destiny." And "One Man Wrecking Machine" - one of the new album's true highlights - nonetheless veers uncomfortably close to mid-tempo Fountains of Wayne.

The last point I made in my Goldfly review of yesteryear was that it sometimes takes time for performance-oriented bands to find their feet in the recording studio. Hell, some never do.

But Guster proved with Keep It Together that they could master the recorded form by expanding their sound and slickening it up without selling out to the suits. Production-wise, Ganging Up on the Sun continues in the same expansive, layered vein, but the tunes just aren't as sharp as the ones that appeared on its predecessor. The melodies just aren't as memorable. And the second half of the record drags a bit, pace-wise.

Still, Guster has made great strides in their 14 or so years of existence, and there's every reason to believe that their next album could be an absolute masterpiece. In the meantime, I'll pull Keep It Together off the shelf, shake off the dust, pop it into my CD player, and punch PLAY.

Guster's MySpace page.

[Guster will be performing with members of the Boston Pops on Late Night with Conan O'Brien tonight. Check your local listings.]

From the LP Ganging Up on the Sun, 2006 >>>
[MP3] "Satellite"
[MP3] "The New Underground"

From the LP Keep It Together, 2004 >>>
[MP3] "Careful"
[MP3] "Amsterdam"

From the LP Goldfly, 1997 >>>
[MP3] "Rocketship"

Wednesday, August 9

NEW LONDON FIRE



Okay, now on to Sleep Station singer/songwriter David Debiak's OTHER band - New London Fire. Their debut album, Sing the Body Holographic, was released yesterday on Eyeball Records. You can also purchase it at Amazon.com [here].

New London Fire definitely has a different sound than Sleep Station. It tends to be fuller and perhaps a bit faster. It's electro-pop of a sort - somewhere between the Killers and Keane. They also are clearly not afraid of incorporating borderline-cheesy synth sounds into their mix (check out the "Final Countdown"-ish freakout that serves as coda to the song "Different").

[MP3] "Different"

[MP3] "We Don't Bleed"

Tuesday, August 8

SLEEP STATION


Today's post was supposed to be about the New Jersey group New London Fire and their new album (out today) Sing the Body Holographic. First things first, though....

NLF leader David Debiak is also the primary creative force behind Sleep Station - a somewhat... well... "sleepier" sounding outfit than his current side-project. Mr. Debiak has an obvious fondness for concept albums, and this may send some of the less hearty souls amongst you scurrying for the hills. Hell, it would have sent THIS less-than-hearty soul scurrying for the hills but for the happy fact that I heard the man's music before I started reading about his rather esoteric and analytical proclivities.

Now, I fear I'm doing Sleep Station a great injustice by suggesting that their songs are somehow both dull and dense. And the very term "concept album" tends to conjure thoughts of cold, emotionally impenetrable, oft-times tuneless sonic terrains. Thankfully, Sleep Station proves to be the exception to that rule - with songs that are warm, inviting, and gently infectious, much like Debiak's voice.

Up until recently, Sleep Station had been almost impossibly prolific, producing five records in just four years. Lately, though, Debiak (along with his brother Jason) has been focusing on the aforementioned New London Fire. Still, Sleep Station has not been retired entirely, apparently; it's just on a bit of a hiatus.

Finally, Sleep Station is incredibly generous when it comes to sharing their tunes with the masses, so you'll find endless MP3s on their website [here], MySpace page [here], and on their record company's (Eyeball Records) site [here] as well. Dig in.

From the LP After the War, 2004 >>>
[MP3] "Caroline, London 1940"

From the LP Hang in There Charlie, 2003 >>>
[MP3] "Broke Your Trust"
[MP3] "Fading Out"

From the EP Von Cosel, 2003 >>>
[MP3] "My Last Desire"

From the LP Runaway Elba-1 (v. 3.0), 2002 >>>
[MP3] "Goodbye Elba-1, Part 2"
[MP3] "Silver Hills"
[MP3] "Chicago (Reprise)"

From the LP Anhedonia, 2001 >>>
[MP3] "Happy"

Monday, August 7

FUNKY NASHVILLE



Oh, how misleading a band name can be. Suffice it to say, the Danish band Funky Nashville doesn't sound anything like you'd expect it to based on that particular, misplaced moniker. Imagine Coldplay calling itself Kamikaze Blitzkrieg. Got the picture?

Thankfully, Funky Nashville's music saves the day and restores all faith. No, they are not funky (or, if they are, they're about as funky as Clay Aiken covering a Lionel Ritchie ditty). And no, they do not sound like a band out of Nashville (Memphis, maybe... but even that would be a stretch).

So... what DO they sound like? Well, they've got the American thing down, to be sure - but it's the American Southwest that comes to the fore. Think Calexico. Maybe a dusting of Ennio Morricone. Think pedal steel & surf guitars. Think mariachi bands playing '60s spy themes.

Maybe this all sounds like a great big mess. Well, it's anything but. In fact, it's rather undeniably beguiling. And leave it to three guys from Denmark to do the Americana thing better than just about any American you could name.

Funky Nashville released their second album, Hitch a Ride, in the U.S. in July on 215 Records. Their first effort, A Good Day to Drive, hit the streets in 2003 and features a peyote-cloaked, spaghetti-western spin on Gloria Gaynor's "I Will Survive." It also finds them getting about as funky as they're capable of getting on the bass-driven "Witch Queen of New Orleans."

If anything, though, the new record is the far more assured effort of the two and is certainly worthy of your exploration. For starters, you could visit their Myspace page [here]. Just remember: don't judge a book by its cover; and don't judge a band by its name. Because when you're roadtrippin' south on I-169 and hit Tulsa, you might just find yourself making a right turn instead of a left.

From the LP Hitch a Ride, 2006 >>>
[MP3] "Hitch a Ride"
[MP3] "Mexican Stars"

From the LP A Good Day to Drive, 2003 >>>
[MP3] "Witch Queen of New Orleans"
[MP3] "I Will Survive"

Sunday, August 6

THE FLINTS



Seeing as tomorrow is some sort of holiday in the great northern nation of Canada, I thought I'd finally get around to posting a couple songs by the Flints. Fact is, I had intended to post on the Flints a long, long time ago, but so many better, more popular blogs had already covered them that I thought: What the hell's the point? Well, I recently re-discovered a couple of their songs on one of my old mix CDs, and it occurred to me that not everybody who stops by here has necessarily heard about these guys.

"These guys," by the way, are Stan Flint and Al Huizenga, a couple of friends from Toronto who craft unabashedly sunny, Beatles-esque pop songs. Five of these songs - including the two below - can be found on their EP There Used to Be a Time. Said EP can be purchased at CDBaby [here].

The Flints' MySpace page is [here].

[MP3] "Laugh With Me"

[MP3] "Girl"

BONUS TRACKS:

In keeping with today's '60s pop vibe, I thought I'd offer up a couple more tracks from the Pipettes' debut CD, We Are the Pipettes, which I have been enjoying to an almost ridiculous extent. (And no, they're not from Canada; they're from the UK, which is close enough.)

[MP3] "Judy"

[MP3] "Tell Me What You Want"

Friday, August 4

20TH CENTURY SONGS (A LITERAL MIX)


As my July was so damn erratic (in so damn many ways), there will be no Best of July mix for 2006. Alas, alas....

However, here's a rather random mix celebrating the last century that I put together for your listening pleasure.

Please left-click [here] for the songs.

TRACKLIST >>>

01) Salim Nourallah/1978
02) Neutral Milk Hotel/Holland, 1945
03) The Connells/'74-'75
04) The 1900s/Bring the Good Boys Home
05) Ed Harcourt/Born in the '70s
06) Tim Wilson/Past Cure 1974
07) Belle and Sebastian/A Century of Fakers
08) The Indelicates/Julia, We Don't Live in the '60s
09) Pelle Carlberg/Summer of '69
10) Smashing Pumpkins/1979
11) Placebo/20th Century Boy
12) Morrissey/Munich Air Disaster 1953
13) Patti Smith/1959
14) The Hives/Inspection Wise 1999
15) Sleep Station/Caroline, London 1940
16) The Golden Dogs/1985

17) Montt Mardie/1969
18) Matt Pond PA/1985
19) Witch's Hat/Glodyany, 1972
20) New Order/1963 ['95]
21) The Alarm/Spirit of '76

Wednesday, August 2

HELLOGOODBYE


Well, I think I'm in the mood for a bit of straightforward power-pop to give me a lift after two-going-on-three nights of humidity-induced sleeplessness.

I don't know a whole hell of a lot about Hellogoodbye. Until recently, I'd never heard of them - despite the fact that they apparently put out a self-titled EP in 2004 and appeared in several episodes of The Real World: Austin (now THAT's your ticket to artistic immortality).

I do know that these four guys from Huntington, CA look and sound ridiculously young (and that they look like they could only POSSIBLY come from Huntington, CA). I also know that they sound a hell of a lot like a hell of a lot of other bands. I think you might agree that "Stuck to You" (below) sounds somewhat strikingly similar to any number of Muse tunes.

Hellogoodbye's debut full-length, Zombies! Aliens! Vampires! Dinosaurs! comes out August 8 on Drive Thru Records. And the fact is: You don't have to be the most original band in the world to produce some catchy-ass songs, and there are moods for this type of music in just about all of us. Obviously, I am in one of those moods right now.

[Also, I am clearly envious of their youth, geographical location, and - one can only assume - their inherent ability at this point to lay or be laid by whoever/whomever they could ever want to lay or be laid by. Bastards.]

[MP3] "Stuck to You"

[MP3] "Baby, It's Fact"

THE YOU



The You is a young, essentially unGoogle-able four-piece from Pittsburgh, PA. I discovered them through the song "I'm Going to Kill Myself," which begins all lo-fi and acoustic-guitar-unassuming but starts to kick in around the 1:10 mark with the simple addition of drums. Then, lo and behold, some piano joins the party, and the singer gets almost giddy on the tough-love-but-too-true closing call-out: "You'll never succeed in this life." Ultimately: a highly charming little ditty.

Charming from a somewhat different angle is "Nothing Goin' On," which has a slightly "spacier," Wilco-ish vibe to it.

Apparently, the You has an album called For the Masses (produced by Brian Deck, who has worked with Iron & Wine and Modest Mouse) coming out sometime in the not-too-distant future. I don't have any specifics to offer on that at the moment, but you can hear more of their stuff on their MySpace page [here]. Also, while there, you'll see that they'll be playing a number of shows in the Pittsburgh area in August.

[MP3] "I'm Going to Kill Myself"

[MP3] "Nothing Goin' On"

Tuesday, August 1

CONCRETE BLONDE


I've been battling a broken tooth and 97 degree weather of late, so posting to this blog has taken a bit of a backseat. As a result, maybe we'll keep it brief today with something that might be filed under "nostalgia."

Concrete Blonde is one of those bands that a lot of people were at least somewhat aware of back in the day, but the L.A.-based band never quite managed to break through to the big-time. This, despite the fact that they produced a number of solid songs and probably a couple of pretty solid albums during those years. They also featured the very distinctive pipes of lead singer Johnette Napolitano.

The band officially broke up in 1995 but resurrected themselves - at least temporarily - with 2004's little-heard Mojave. I've heard nothing about any imminent recording projects, but here's a selection of songs I think hold up rather well....

From the LP Bloodletting, 1990 >>>
[MP3] "Joey"
[MP3] "Tomorrow, Wendy"

From the LP Walking in London, 1992 >>>
[MP3] "Someday?"

From the LP Mexican Moon, 1993 >>>
[MP3] "Heal It Up"

From their self-titled LP, 1987 >>>
[MP3] "True"
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