Read a little. Learn a lot. • Tightly-written news, views and stuff • Follow us on TwitterBe a Facebook FanTumble us!

02 Aug 2010 11:06


Music: “The Suburbs”: Arcade Fire’s new album available to sample

  • Pitchfork gave it an 8.6 today. It’s been universally feted by other critics (minus The Boston Phoenix, which seems to be contrarian for the sake of being contrarian). It’s got people using big words to describe how awesome it is. But hey, decide for yourself. NPR has the Arcade Fire’s “The Suburbs” up for streaming today. You can therefore decide if the Pitchfork guy is full of crap or if the Boston Phoenix guy wasn’t really loved as a child. Your pick. source

31 Jul 2010 18:11


17 Oct 2009 14:16


Music: This week’s Saturday Mixtape covers some of 2004’s best tunes

OK, we're halfway through the naughts after this week. In case you haven't noticed, we've been going through some of our favorite songs of this decade, year-by-year, since August. Once every other week or so. This week, we hit 2004. (Want to hear the others? Click here: 2003, 2002, 2001, 2000)
  • 1. If we had to pick one song of the decade, this would be it. In four and a half minutes, The Walkmen’s “The Rat” nailed the unnecessary gravitas and self-seriousness that defined this decade. No other song has come close to best defining it.
    2. Animal Collective essentially did the opposite of what Radiohead did to become famous. Starting out as a strange, dense, openly experimental band, they found themselves making pop music by the beginning of 2009. We still heart 2004’s “Sung Tongs,” though, and “Who Could Win a Rabbit?” is the bridge between the two sounds.
    3. The Arcade Fire suffered greatly at the hands of overhype, like many other perfectly-good bands of the era – Bloc Party or Vampire Weekend, anyone? But they deserved every bit of the hype they got, especially on “Neighborhood #3 (Power Out).”
    4. The Streets – aka Mike Skinner – nailed the best album of his career in 2002 with “Original Pirate Material,” but as far as singles go, “Fit But You Know It” is easily his best. With that roughshod beat – the kind of beat that Lily Allen rides up the charts nowadays – backing a story of a drunk ticked about the unattainable hottie in front of him, it synthesizes the best of Skinner’s sound and storytelling.
    5. The great secret of Sufjan Stevens’ “Seven Swans” – an album openly loaded with religious imagery – was that you didn’t need to be Christian to be deeply affected by it. “The Transfiguration” is beautiful on its own terms, but not without questioning its listener: “Consider what he says to you, consider what’s to come.” source

02 May 2009 10:22


Music: ShortFormBlog Saturday Mixtape: Five killer new songs

  • 1. Welcome back, Kate Bush! Seriously, though, Bat For Lashes’ latest album has been showered with crazy praise, and “Daniel” sounds like the best single of 1987.

    2. The second we heard The Cool Kids make references to the Bad Boy-era Detroit Pistons, we were enamored with “Pennies.” It sounds like the best single of 1989.

    3. Eddie Argos makes recovering from a bad hangover sound like the funniest thing ever on “Alcoholics Unanimous.” Bring me tea! Bring me coffee! The ending kills, BTW.

    4. The trend towards fuzzy continues with Woods, who sound like Crazy Horse-era Neil Young on “Rain On,” except with dissonant noise giving it a layer of intrigue.

    5. In the fuzzy vein, Times New Viking’s recorded-through-a-telephone, cheery cover of the Arcade Fire’s “Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels)” is as interesting as the original. source

05 Mar 2009 09:45


Music: Amusing catfight #1: The Flaming Lips’ Wayne Coyne vs. Arcade Fire

  • I don’t know why people put up with it. I wouldn’t put up with it. I don’t care if it’s Arcade Fire or Brian Eno. If either of them walked into a room and treated people like (*&% I’d be like, ‘%*%& you, get outta here.’
  • Wayne Coyne • In a Rolling Stone interview where he ripped everyone’s favorite indie band a new one. Coyne has a history of this – he famously ripped Beck a while back. Arcade Fire lead singer Win Butler responded by saying he played with the Lips over three years ago when the band was jet-lagged. “I am not sure Wayne is the best judge,” Butler wrote. • source