‘Wounded Rhymes’ is a Darkened Time

March 5, 2011 § Leave a comment

A lot of people can sense the darkness in Lykke Li’s second album, Wounded Rhymes, which was just released February 25 of this year.  She equates her dark mood to the freezing cold winters of Sweden, her homeland, which is why she chose sunny Los Angeles as the setting for writing this album.  In an interview with Pitchfork, she described the city as mysterious because “there’s so much evil in that city, but there’s also so much light.”  The mystery really comes through on Wounded Rhymes.  There is something barbaric about it yet also very intimate, but always on the darker side.  This is the first single off the album, “Get Some.”

Is Dubstep the New Blues?

December 7, 2010 § Leave a comment

Wait. What? Dubstep? Blues? Let me explain…
Dubstep is a genre that is becoming more and more popular every day (mainly because of this guy). But the problem I am beginning to see is it is reminding me of the blues. Not like Flying Lotus is playing 12 bars in A, but let’s face it, more people play the blues poorly than any other genre. It’s just inevitable. Any slouch who knows how to play a bit of guitar can get on stage and “wail out” on some “blues”. Not to get too far off point, but the following clip out of Ghost Worldshould help prove a point. Basically these girls meet Steve Buscemi, who collects old blues vinyls and I’ll let the clip speak for itself about people playing shitty blues.

Now that’s understood, onto Dubstep. A friend of mine recently stated his disapproval…”Dubstep is often formatted in ways similar to other electronic genres. Mainly, it differentiates in regard to rhythm. The bass & percussion characteristically sounds as if it’s in ‘half-time’ in comparison to the overall track; while I can understand why some people would like this effect, the overall feeling it gives feels sluggish, and not indicative of something someone might feasibly ‘dance’ to. This disjunction between meter and melody (or the rest of the track) creates the grungy, grinding feeling some people look for in dubstep, but this technique isn’t very difficult to do with the right equipment, and doesn’t really require an deep understanding of music. As a result, artists may be lauded for producing work that is really more systematic than artistic.”

So basically the idea is, it’s easy to create, so more people do it and think it sounds great, when it does not. Take the following example.

Smokey – Bad Guy by Smokey Dubstep

Nothing against Smokey Dubstep here, but most would agree, this is just a bunch of noise. It seems too many people are getting away from the original idea of what Dubstep was suppose to be (heavy on the drum and bass) but now people are just throwing in whatever sounds seem relevant. Listen below

Dub War by iron.man

Again, no hard feelings iron.man, but this thing is just everywhere. I’m not someone who says ‘DJs have no talent because they don’t play an instrument.’ This is false. People like Girl Talk, synchronizing songs like that, takes skill and a massive amount of time. I just wish more DJs put in the extra effort and work to create some great new music, like this guy…

Point being, as more and more people can easily create this music, hopefully it doesn’t go too far down hill.
And for a great dubstep resource, check out Generation Bass. Hell of a blog.

Update- Just found this nice piece on Dubstep from Martin Clark via Pitchfork. Maybe a little more legitimacy behind the dubstep topic?

Amadou and Mariam Remix Album

December 3, 2010 § Leave a comment

According to Pitchfork, this month we will supposedly see an Amadou & Mariam remix album. This is a bit startling to hear at first simply because A&M aren’t really the remix ready type of group, but after only a minute or two of the first song release, I am pumped.

Stream Track Here. Courtesy of the fabulous site RCRD LBL

For those of you not in the know, Amadou & Mariam are the blind couple from Mali who have fans all over the world. They met at a school for the blind, with Amadou being Mariam’s teacher. Not only does Amadou’s sexy guitar blend wonderfully with Mariam’s voice, but they come from one of the most musically rich countries in the world (you can bet you’ll see plenty of Mali music on the Sphere in the future). It also doesn’t hurt they collaborated with “world music superstar” Manu Chao on their latest project. Check out “Welcome to Mali” below from the 2010 World Cup Kickoff Concert.

Grizzly Bear and Fleet Foxes Soundalikes for Ads

October 8, 2010 § Leave a comment

Pitchfork recently posted a discovery they made about two commercials that featured songs that sound like they were carefully constructed to sound just like Fleet Foxes’ “White Winter Hymnal” and Grizzly Bear’s “Two Weeks.”  I am assuming with all the lawsuits clouding around companies using indie rock songs in their ads without permission from the artists, marketers are contracting bands and artists to just write songs that resemble the tunes they want to use in the ads.

Clever, but we see what you’re doing.

Arcade Fire Interview on Labels/Recent Success

October 4, 2010 § Leave a comment

So I’m usually not too big of a Pitchfork fan, but this interview just popped up with Win and Will from Arcade Fire and anytime I get to hear what they have to say, I listen. This interview was shortly after they’re stunning MSG performances and the #1 landing of “The Suburbs”

If you are a band and want to know how to do it right, #1 Make good music. #2 Learn from Arcade Fire

Read Interview Here

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