Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Random YouTube Video of the Day-

A Beatle-eee song by Harry Nilsson-

9 Year Old Director produces 'You Done Messed Up" by the Lovely Bad Things

Director Joshua Tomoyasu conceived, directed, shot and edited this "unofficial" video for You Done Messed Up by the Lovely Bad Things when he was only 9 years old. Now at the ripe old age of 10 (his birthday was Feb 28th) I wonder if he is planning other video escapades. Kudos Joshua for approaching The Lovely Bad Things in hopes of doing their music video and Kudos times 4 for The Lovely Bad Things letting Joshua do his directorial thing!

Hotel Sessions With Josh - The Lovely Bad Things from Lovely Bad Things on Vimeo.

Screaming Females Video- 'It All Means Nothing' - is the cats pajamas

Screaming Females video for It All Means Nothing has some Fargo-esque snow scenes. Hmmm... What's in that bag??

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Andrew Bird- 'Break It Yourself' -Album Review- An Immaculate Musical Conception.

Andrew Bird is a strange bird, indeed. I mean, how many 38 year old musicians can truthfully say that they have been playing music for 34 years. He can and as you listen to 'Break It Yourself', his latest foray into soul searching and self discovery, you may consider Mr. Bird to be more of a magician than musician as he seems to effortlessly conjure up his intriguing aural alchemy of sounds with elements of jazz, indie folk pop, Calypso and Scottish folk.

Self produced and recorded in his barn in Illinois, Bird has created songs that feel very immediate, often times like live performances. Almost every composition has both spartan, simply elegant passages that give way to pretty dense productions or like the bipolar Give It Away can feel like two songs at once moving from folk pop to a kind of progressive folk thing. Lazy Projector with it's dreamy cadence and Bird's earnest vocal performance sounds so cozy and terribly sad at the same time, (some of the swelling sounds could be a violin against a saw). Near Death Experience has a great percussive sound that could be paint sticks against a wooden box moving this cafe pop song seductively along. It has a smooth groove and a pop undercurrent that could be part 60's French Riviera Hip, part Mentos commercial. Hole in The Ocean Floor feels like a saga of sorts, it's emotional narrative sways you with it's beautiful lush string bed. The chorus with Birds vocals intertwined in the string bed has an art rock feel. At times he reminds me of David Byrne. It plays like a Talking Heads Opera.  Lusitania with it's almost Winchester Cathedral whistled melody is lush and lost at sea and enhanced by a female vocalist. Orpheo Looks Back needs to be in the next Wes Anderson film. With it's plucky demeanor and stirring strings it is full of bluster, it rocks too as a fusion of Scottish folk and country and more. It has that transcendent quality that you feel in some of the best Van Morrison songs. Eyeoneye is a surprise. Of all the songs on this album it is the most playful with a decidedly 60's Brit pop feel. Sifters feels less like a composed song than something that just happened... like some immaculate musical conception. A nontraditional love song that seems to move through worm holes, "what if we hadn't been each other at the same time... would you tell me the stories from when you were young and in your prime... would I rock you to sleep... would you tell me all the secrets you don't need to keep... would I still miss you."

'Break It Yourself' is sonically diverse and enchanting. Every song is so well rendered that you hear more nuances the more you listen. The clear masterpieces, to me, are Orpheo Looks Back and Sifters. Andrew Bird has created haunting songs that literally transport me to some other place, but then magicians can do this sort of thing.
For a limited time hear the entire album at NPR

Tony and Gabe Video- Pangea - 'Killer Dreams' with Matt and Kyle from Audacity

Tony and Gabe go around and video cool bands. Check out this video of Pangea performing Killer Dreams with Matt and Kyle from Audacity! And then check out a re-posting of my review of the amazing 'Killer Dreams' EP! (originally posted 1/30/12)

Pangea (featuring Audacity) - Killer Dreams from Tony and Gabe on Vimeo.

2012 Tour: Radiohead debuts New Songs and Thom sports a pony tail.

Miami- oh you are so lucky as you were the location of Radiohead's first stop on their 2012 tour! Thom Yorke doing that vest over a t-shirt look and sporting a pony tail looked very much like some jazzy French hipster. Courtesy of Consequence of Sound- below is their Set List which included two new songs- Identikit which would of felt quite at home on Kid A (it instantly has great melody lines and dynamic breaks that pull you in) and Cut a Hole which feel a bit Hail to the Theify to me.

1. Bloom
2. The Daily Mail
3. Magpie
4. Staircase
5. National Anthem
6. Meeting in the Aisle
7. Kid A
8. The Gloaming
9. Codex
10. You and Whose Army?
11. Nude
12. Identikit
13. Lotus Flower
14. There There
15. Feral
16. Idioteque
17. Separator
Encore 1
18. Airbag
19. Bodysnatchers
20. Cut A Hole
21. Arpeggi
Encore 2
22. Give Up the Ghost
23. Reckoner
24. Karma Police

Monday, February 27, 2012

Listen: 'Your Hand' by A Whisper In The Noise

There are severe weather alerts posted and rain storms headed toward my tiny part of the world today. My old house seems to contain the cold on days like this so it is time to put on that raggedy sweatshirt and boil water for a cup of hot tea. The dreamy sullen sounding 'Your Hand' by A Whisper In The Noise fits the mood this morning.  Check it out and the great review of 'To Forget' - by John Boursnell.

- Adler Bloom

A Whisper In The Noise – To Forget

Wyatt Blair - 'Candy Eyes' Single and Unofficial Videos for Another Day and Cross The Line

Wyatt Blair is a man musically possessed. Whether with TRMRS or Mr. Elevator and The Brain Hotel or self titled projects, Blair likes to keep things moving. His latest entree is the single from his upcoming EP 'Candy Eyes' featuring Another Day and Cross the Line. Starting with twisted feedback, Another Day has a deep acoustic rhythm, forlorn lead lines, and a tortured sounding vocal that is buried in the mix just enough to make you want to hear every word, "I'd stop the time and fall inside... to see you in my eyes... I'd walk the tide for when you die... to see you in the...."  Some of the lines are left open ended and the broken syntax on the chorus only makes this cool song more poetic. Cross the Line has a pulsating beat, soaring hooky guitar lines, and a lush lead vocal bed courtesy of Lauren Curtius of the Lovely Bad Things. This song grows quickly on you, the driving beat wraps you up in the sound. For some reason I thought of the Shins Caring is Creepy and Radiohead's Let Down although Cross the Line doesn't sounds like either of them- it sounds more raw and leads with it's heart more than it's head.

We here at American Pancake are currently in between video shoots and had some fun incorporating public domain footage into unofficial videos for both songs. You can check them out below and keep your eye out for the 'Candy Eyes' EP- as Another Day and Cross the Line are both stellar songs that portend a cool EP.

Candy Eyes Single - Wyatt Blair

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Many California Bands @ the Get Bent SXSW Party-

Congrats to all the bands playing at the Get Bent Party but we got to send props to local So Cal bands: Fidlar, Cosmonauts, Public Dims, Summer Twins, Alla lahs, Lovely Bad Things, and Audacity!! (and our friends Bare Wires from up north)

SXSW 2012: Get Bent SXSW Parties (3/14, 3/16, 3/17) :: [RSVP Info]

with Southpaw Records, Oops Baby Records, Evil Weevil Records, and Nu Rave Brain Wave


-Missing Monuments (New Orleans, LA)
-Dead Ghosts (Vancouver, BC)
-FIDLAR (Los Angeles, CA)
-Cosmonauts (Fullerton, CA)
-Ketamines (Lethbridge, AB)
-Public Dims (San Juan Capistrano, CA)
-Mujeres (Barcelona, Spain)
-Summer Twins (Riverside, CA)
-Rayon Beach (Austin, TX)
-Allah-Las (Los Angeles, CA)
-The Amoebas (Grand Rapids, MI)
-Mannequin Men (Chicago, IL)
-Mouthbreathers (Lawrence, KS)
-Nightmare Boyzzz (Muscle Shoals, AL)
-Brown Brogues (Manchester, UK)
-Guantanamo Baywatch (Portland, OR)
-Lola Cola (Austin, TX)
-Crooked Bangs (Austin, TX)
-Psychic Palms (Houston, TX)
-Natural Child (Nashville, TN)
-Turbo Fruits (Nashville, TN)
-Habibi (Brooklyn, NY)
-Fungi Girls (Cleburne, TX)
-Lovely Bad Things (Los Angeles, CA)
-The Band in Heaven (West Palm Beach, FL)
-Bare Wires (Oakland, CA)
-Puffy Areolas (Cleveland, OH)
-Dikes of Holland (Austin, TX)
-Audacity (Fullerton, CA)
-Heavy Times (Chicago, IL)
-Las Ardillas (San Juan, Puerto Rico)

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Therapist Debut Video for "Suicide Box"

Therapist- a 3 piece dance punk band (from Phoenix, Arizona / Calexico, California) has a lead foot. They happily push the petal down all the way to the floor boards, run red lights and smile for the traffic cams. The Heart Beats EP contain, and I do mean contain, five stripped down frantic paced songs. Like Death From Above 1979, the music bed consists of only a bass player (Ant) and drummer (Luis). Thrashing around lyrics is Suz.

In songs like "She Doesn't Know" and "Heart Beats", Ant churns out a driving bass throughout and never lets up except to let his bass lines breath in spots. The dynamics are provided by Luis' drumming as Suz sings in over modulated screams and yelps. You can't help but move to the sonic energy. The sound is raw and unscripted even though I am sure every down beat is planned perfectly. Despite being drenched in a punk mix these are well crafted songs and Suz has a captivating quality to her vox. "Suicide Box" - "Downtown" seem to be compendium pieces. On both tracks, the distortion on Suz's vocals are pulled back and more produced revealing a different more refined quality. Luis' high hat work and Ant's trance dance bass line edge these tracks into punk mirror ball rave land (that is until Therapist gleefully fall back into full punk mode at the end of "Downtown"). Heart Beats EP by Therapist is a tasty dance punk treat leaving me hungry for more.

TODAY see the video debut of the aforementioned Suicide Box- It is stark and cool just like Therapist.

Therapist - Suicide Box from Adrian Carmona on Vimeo.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Sleigh Bells- "Reign of Terror" - a Heavy Metal Dream Pop Mirage.

 Sleigh Bells latest album - "Reign of Terror" is a heavy metal dream pop mirage.  Derek Miller seems to know every rock prog and tasty lick this side of Def Leopard and thankfully he comes up with some sweet lead lines that feel dreamy and glammy like Bill Nelson or Brian May. His guitar work all blended together creates a wall of sound that Alexis Krauss unabashedly stands upon in her white sneaks. She may have that bad girl persona down but but the lilt of her voice says otherwise. With her pouty, breathy vocal performances she comes off more vulnerable than dangerous. Songs like Born to Lose, Crush, Demons and True Shred Guitar come across like stadium pep rally rock. The cadence is closer to hip hop than 90's monster rock. In my minds eye I could hear Kanye West or Eminem sampling some of this.

Another part of Sleigh Bells appeal is the endearing feel they create by stepping back into 60's teen angst genre. In this regard they are similar to Cults, just a hell of a lot more bad ass. It is swoon rock done up big. In fact, three songs (End of the Line, Road to Hell, and Leader of the Pack) could be Cults songs in another life. End of the Line is the most captivating song on the album. It feels like a dozen teen heartbreaks with it's swaying beat and Derek's hooky lead guitar lines staccato stair stepping around Alexis's quick "out of breath" vocals, "you know it didn't have to be this way... but it's the end of the line... so goodbye."  Road to Hell a few tracks away feel like it is part of the same narative. Krauss's lush whispering vocals conjuring up 50's bad teenager movies- picture James Dean as a punk rocker. Leader of the Pack is in your face. The wall of guitar bluster sits firmly on top of a machine geared beat all reverbed out as the pretty girl vocals are all stacked up as well. It is so pretty and mean sounding at the same time.

Sleigh Bells also does dark teen dreamy affairs befitting any Pretty Little Liars episode. You Lost Me sounds forlorn, sad and sweet. Derek's guitar work is stellar and enchanting. The lyrics dark and detached, "Face down in the dirt, in your mini skirt.. touch the ground... back oh I got your back... I don't want you to see me this way." Comeback Kid has a pure pop melody that if not surrounded by industrial beats and heavy grungy guitar could be a theme song on a Saturday morning cartoon. Never Say Die, again has a hip hop cadence with punchy guitar licks and Alexis cooing rapid fire lines. It feels chaotic like a diamond heist gone wrong.

"Reign of Terror", upon first listen, with the pulsating beats, guitar wails and full tilt breathy vocal attack can wash over you so much as to blur your senses. It can, at times, feel like one long noise / dream pop opera. The second time you listen the nuances come to light as does the myriad of textures buried in the layers of sound. The third time and beyond, with the lyrics discovered, the emotional tug felt, the songs inhabit your brain and psyche and won't let go.

Adler Bloom

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Fanfarlo- Rooms Filled With Light is worth getting dressed up for.

Fanfarlo's second album "Rooms Filled With Light" reveals a more polished and sparkly sound as produced by Ben Allen (Animal Collective, Deerhunter, Gnarls Barkley) and engineered by David Wrench (Bat For Lashes, Everything Everything, Beth Orton) at Bryn Derwen Recording Studio in North Wales. For those of us who love a more organic sounding Fanfarlo, the result may be a mixed blessing and, I was, at first taken aback by some of the controlled chaos I was hearing but then I always do gravitate to songs and artists that gleefully display their rough edges. And while those rough human edges feel a bit smoothed by such a lush sound on this record, the songs do drop you into some amazingly rich musical landscapes.   

Replicate with the sticatto strings and dramatic touches feels busy and flows like a Twyla Tharp modern dance. Deconstruction rocks like an 80's teen movie ala Modern English. Lens Life is funky and feels art rockish with growing organs that swell until a wall of sound takes over, only to diminish again. The chorus is pretty fuckin fantastic, the drum sound harkins back to the 60's when only 2 or 3 mics would do and the overall production sounds more fully live than tracked. Shiny Things with it's spacy vocoderish synth sound and dancy beat is pure electronica pop in the Future Islands vein. Tanguska, one of the true gems on Rooms Filled With Light, has a 50's sock hoppish sway with a glam ballad like feel. It is a dreamy slow dance of a song. Simon Balthazar's voice feels a bit more stripped down and bare on this track making it all the more lush.

Other highlights. Bones and Dig which apart from the spacy psychedelic touches feels like a more organic Fanfarlo and A Flood, which is one of my favorite tracks on the album. It is a simple and elegant folkish ballad (wrapped in a dream pop blanket). Sections of it actually reminded me of the earnest classic folk sound of Jackson Browne, the Band or the Byrds.

In Rooms Filled With Light, Fanfarlo walk a bit of a tightrope in between the more organic folk / indie / post punk they are known for and a more sophisticated dream pop / electronica / "dolled up" organic folk / indie / post punk. In the end, their earnest indie folk / pop songs (at heart) paint evocative artscapes that are more broad and multicolored, more mature in a sense. Their heart and soul is not lost at all, just dressed up a bit.

Sharky McWilliams

Fanfarlo Official Site

New Blur Song? Under the Westway

Is this a new Blur song?? Who knows but the audience at the War Child's benefit concert was treated to Damon Albarn and Graham Coxon gracing them with this song entitled Under the Westway. With it's piano down beats and bittersweet melody it feels like a glam ballad and brings bands like Procol Harum (Whiter Shade of Pale), King Crimson (Starless) and a hint of Bowie to mind.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Santigold - Disparate Youth is Pure Alt Pop Ear Candy.

Santigold releases the single Disparate Youth from the EP of the same name that is due out on Itunes April 8th. Possessing a drum / bass bed a bit like 311's Amber (sped up and turned on it's head), Disparate Youth with its percussively charged sparkly "new wave" snyths and lazer like guitar shots is pure pop ear candy. I can't wait to see Santigold perform it live.

Makeup Monsters - Nervous Case

Makeup Monsters (based out of Tacoma - Olympia Washington) are Isaac Solverson, Shayne Weeks and Jay Clancy. Their alternative, jungle, tropical, punk pop songs are cool and dance around in your head for days.

Nervous Case by makeupmonsters

Make Up Monsters Facebook

Sunday, February 19, 2012

AP Review - Sinead O' Connor's ninth album- 'How About I Be Me (And You Be You)?' Shines like a Beacon of Truth.

Sinead O' Connor's ninth album- 'How About I Be Me (And You Be You)?' shines like a beacon of truth. O'Connor has never been content to make merely catchy songs. The 10 songs on this latest effort are either forged from characters she embodies,  rendered from her own experience or born out of socio political issues. They all carry the gravitas of truth (as she understands it to be) that she brings forth in the beauty of her voice and command of her vocal performance. She is not to be messed with. After all these years she still makes you stare unflinchingly at emotions that she strips bare and she is never afraid to speak her mind. In this day and age when artists seem content to not be political, to fly diplomatically well below the opinion radar, she is a rare bird indeed.

Reason With Me inspired by a heroin junkie she met moves slowly like the song is pushing a boulder up a hill. Sinead's voice carries the weight as well in a poised beautiful performance, "Hello, you don't know me but I stole your laptop and I took your TV.I sold your granny's rosary for 50 p."  Old Lady penned as a tongue and cheek love ballad of sorts for her long time friend director Neil Jordan, opens tenderly and then erupts into a post punk rock song. Very Far From Home plays like a love song to her children with a stripped down and vulnerable vocal performance. Back Where You Belong is a body swaying ballad. O'Connor says it is "a love song from a dead father killed in war to his son." With the snare beat, trancy organ strains, and thick breathy beautifully lush vocal bed it is lovely and uplifting. O'Connor's rendition of John Grant's potently bitter and funny "fuck you letter" of a song, Queen of Denmark feels right in her voice.

Sinead O' Connor is at her best when something is firmly stuck in her craw. Two songs on 'How About I Be Me (And You Be You)?'- (Take Off Your Shoes and VIP) absolutely stun you in their unbridled attempt to jar us for all the right reasons. Take Off Your Shoes is directly influenced by the 2009 Murphy Report that investigated Sexual abuse scandals in the Catholic Archdiocese of Dublin and, in particular, how the sexual abuse of children became institutionalized and covered up by the church hierarchy. Even if you don't know the back story, the song is a powerful piece of work, the lyrics building on itself like broken pieces of church rubble, "Take off your shoes you're on hallowed ground...even you can't lie when I'm around." and "If you believed at all in your breviary... If you believed even in just the ghost of me... You wouldn't now be so surprised to see me... In vanity you took the name of me... You brought me into infamy... And now you're so surprised to see me." The lyrics are so evocative that it makes you want to find out what inspired the lyrical content and inspired vocals. O' Connor likens the song to The Holy Spirit speaking to the Vatican, she says, "What makes me angry and a bit of a soldier is I don't like the Holy Spirit disrespected. To me that's how it comes across, that they don't have any respect for the Holy Spirit if they can stand in its presence and lie over the rapes of small boys, covering these crimes up and yet it takes them two minutes to condemn Harry Potter for being evil." The last track on the album is VIP which directly challenges her fellow Irish musical artists to take up the torch against the issues raised in the aforementioned Murphy Report. In a sense, it challenges us all to take up a cause, any cause.

After 25 years of speaking and singing her own truth, Sinead O'Connor (at 45 years old) seems to be even more entrenched in her beliefs and the belief that that the truth can set her free. 'How About I Be Me (And You Be You)?' may be her most passionate and personal work to date.

For a limited time you can stream the entire album at NPR's First Listen

 Take Off Your Shoes- Sinead O' Connor

I bleed the blood of Jesus over you,

I bleed the blood of Jesus over you,

And over every fucking thing you do.

Seven times I bleed the blood of Jesus over you.

Take off your shoes--you're on hallowed ground,

Take off your shoes--you're on hallowed ground.

Even you can't lie when I'm around.

Take off your shoes--you're on hallowed ground.

Behold, at the last lamplight,

At the very end of your street,

I'm whispering something,

"Come closer to me,

Come closer to me."

I say you're running out of battery,

You're running out of battery,

And I don't see no bunny

Around here.

If you believed at all in your breviary,

If you believed even in just the ghost of me,

You wouldn't now be so surprised to see me.

In vanity you took the name of me.

You brought me into infamy.

And now you're so surprised to see me,

And now you're so surprised to see me.

Behold, at the last lamplight,

At the very end of your street,

I'm whispering something,

"Come closer to me,

Come closer to me."

I say you're running out of battery,

You're running out of battery,

And I don't see no bunny

Around here.

Take off your shoes--you're on hallowed ground,

Take off your shoes--you're on hallowed ground.

Even you can't lie when I'm around.

Take off your shoes--you're on hallowed ground.

Take off your shoes--you're on hallowed ground.

Take off your shoes--you're on hallowed ground.

Even you can't lie when I'm around.

Take off your shoes--you're on hallowed ground.

Timberlake channeling Justin Vernon from Bon Iver saves a terribly flat sketch.

This sketch featuring celebrities stopping by Jay Z and Beyonce's estate to see baby Blue Ivy Carter falls terribly flat. Thankfully Kristin Wiig dug up her Talyor Swift impersonation which is always pretty funny. In the end, Justin Timberlake as Justin Vernon from Bon Iver absolutely saved this unfunny bit.

Stepdad - A Must See at SXSW

Stepdad (Ultramark, Ryan McCarthy, Alex Fives, and Jeremy Malvin) will be creating their neon dreamscapes at SXSW. Their 2010 EP, Ordinaire with it's Nintendo meets 80's romance was deservedly well received. Songs like Jungles and Wolf Slaying as a Hobby feel like technicolor melodramas for cartoons yet to be rendered. My Leather, My Fur, My Nails is instantly infectious. The bendy synth lines and pumping beat definitely hit the 80's new wave feel dead on but the vocal melody and evocatively askew lyrics are what raise this song into pure pop electronica perfection.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Big Deal's Songs are intimate, tentative and sometimes scarey just like a budding romance.

Alice Costelloe and Kacey Underwood voices often times coalesce like those couples you know that finish each others sentences but as Big Deal this merging of male and female voices is not annoyingly syrupy sweet like that but, instead feels more like the tentative and some times scarey first steps of a budding romance. Bolstered by simple acoustic and electric guitars (merging as well) their songs hinge on the intimacy of their voices and the trepidation of love and loss. After awhile you will not be able to imagine one voice without the other.

Read about how they came to be here: Big Deal SXSW Showcase

Love Interruption Video - Jack White (and friends). A Tasty Musical Pie.

Love Interruption with it's Rolling Stone-ish clarinet riff and Ruby Amanfu's luscious buttery vocals accompanying Jack White is a tasty piece of down home musical pie. It is the first single from Mr. White's upcoming album entitled Blunderbuss. The official Love Interruption video features the aforementioned Ruby Amanfu on guitar and vocals,Brooke Waggoner on piano, Emily Bowland on clarinet and an unnamed pooch.

blun·der·buss/ˈbləndərˌbəs/ Noun: 

1. A short-barreled large-bored gun with a flared muzzle, used at short range. 

 2. An action or way of doing something regarded as lacking in subtlety and precision.


The Mad Mackerel - It's Valentines Day!

The Mad Mackerel is a great blog focusing on Americana, Country, Folk, Garage, Indie, Psychedelia and more. Check out some of their mp3 streams / downloads of bands doing covers- including The Chromatics doing Neil Young's Into the Black and Exlovers covering Chris Isaak's Wicked Games.

Happy Valentines Day from The Mad Mackerel

Cool Vapors - Jacuzzi Boys

Iggy Pop said this about the Jacuzzi Boys: "There's a band here in Miami called the Jacuzzi Boys. It's a stupid name, but they've got a good spirit." HOW cool is it to even be on Iggy Pop's radar screen let alone have the iconic Pop throw you a compliment. The Jacuzzi Boys are the hottest thing to come out of Miami since Crockett and Tubbs and in the last couple of years have blazed a path of garage psychedelicious rock that has engendered them a solid following.

Jacuzzi Boys - Cool Vapors by subpop

Upcoming Shows

Mon - Jan 30/12
Tampa, FL New World Brewery

Tue - Jan 31/12 w/ King Khan & The Shrines
Atlanta, GA Graveyard Tavern

Wed - Feb 01/12 w/ King Khan & The Shrines
Tallahassee, FL Club Downunder

Thu - Feb 02/12 w/ King Khan & The Shrines
Birmingham, AL Bottletree

Fri - Feb 03/12 w/ King Khan & The Shrines
New Orleans, LA LBC Quad (Tulane Universty)

Sat - Feb 04/12 w/ King Khan & The Shrines
Austin, TX Mohawk

Sun - Feb 05/12 w/ King Khan & The Shrines
Houston, TX Mango's

Mon - Feb 06/12 w/ King Khan & The Shrines
Dallas, TX Sons of Hermann Hall

Wed - Feb 08/12 w/ King Khan & The Shrines
St. Augustine, FL Cafe 11

Thu - Feb 09/12 Bruise Cruise Launch Party
Miami, FL The Stage

Fri - Mar 23/12
London, UK Shackewell Arms

Sat - Mar 24/12
Manchester, UK Kraak

Sun - Mar 25/12
Glasgow, UK Nice & Sleazy

Mon - Mar 26/12
Leeds, UK Brudenell Social Club

Tue - Mar 27/12
London, UK Madame Jojos

Wed - Mar 28/12
Brighton , UK The Green Door Store

Fri - Mar 30/12
Gent, Belgium Charlatan

Sat - Mar 31/12
Nijmegen, Netherlands Merleyn

Sun - Apr 01/12
Groningen, Netherlands Vera

Tue - Apr 03/12
Brussels, Belgium Ancienne Belgique

Wed - Apr 04/12
Rotterdam, Netherlands Rotown

Thu - Apr 05/12
Amsterdam, Netherlands Paradiso

Fri - Apr 06/12
Eindhoven, Netherlands Effenaar

Sat - Apr 07/12
Hamburg, Germany Hafenklang

Sun - Apr 08/12
Copenhagen, Denmark Bakken

Mon - Apr 09/12
Berlin, Germany Comet

Tue - Apr 10/12
Munich, Germany The Atomic Cafe

Wed - Apr 11/12
Luzern, Switzerland Treibhaus

Thu - Apr 12/12
Savignano sul Rubicone, Italy Sidro Club

Fri - Apr 13/12
Rome, Italy Circolo degli Artisti

Sat - Apr 14/12
Milan, Italy Agora

Sun - Apr 15/12
Dijon, France Deep Inside

Tue - Apr 17/12
Paris, France Point Ephemere

Wed - Apr 18/12
Nantes, France Stereolux

Thu - Apr 19/12
La Rochelle, France Le Barbarella

Sat - Apr 21/12
Barcelona, Spain LA 2 

Monday, February 13, 2012

TMZ reporting that Whitney Houston did not drown.

TMZ is reporting that Whitney Houston did not drown but died from a combination of Xanax, possibly other prescription drugs and alcohol. According to TMZ, the coroner indicated that there was not enough water in the lungs to conclude death by drowning.

TMZ article

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Whitney Houston may of accidentally drowned.

Whitney Houston's untimely death may of come down to the capricious decision to take a bath instead of  a shower. Eye witness accounts of how her body was found in her Beverly Hilton Hotel room suggests that she may of fallen asleep or passed out while in the bath and accidentally drowned. Reports also indicate that there were 3 types of prescription pills found in her room but until toxicological reports are completed it will not be known if and how they may or may not of contributed to her death.

Houston's much publicized struggles with illegal drug addiction and stints at rehab seemed to be behind her. Her long time friend and musical director Ricky Minor had met with her on Thursday at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. On the E-channel Minor told Ryan Seacrest,“She’d just been swimming. It was before 9am. She loves to swim. She had wet hair and she was getting it all over me.” (Minor was getting ready to rehearse Brandy and Monica for a medley of Supremes songs for Clive Davis’s dinner) “She stayed, gave the girls advice. She was singing along from the theater. She said, Can I have a mike? And I said No, this is their show,” Minor said, (joking). He continued to explain that Whitney had showed him her "cut arms" from swimming as she was proud of being so fit, saying,“She said she was very excited about producing Sparkle and wanted to produce more films. It’s unbelievable.” 

Adler Bloom

Saturday, February 11, 2012


The UK indie pop band Los Campesinos who names their influences as the literature of B.S. Johnson, obsessions with death, and football will be playing to an undoubtedly packed house tonight at the world famous Echo Plex in Los Angeles. Lending support is the experimental pop sounds of Parenthetical Girls.
Parenthetical Girls: The Privilege from Parenthetical Girls on Vimeo.


Haybaby - A musical fray you want to step into

New musical discoveries are so much fun. I recently found out about Brooklyn based post punk rock band Haybaby. A great introduction to them is posted below. It is a link to a live studio session on BreakThruRado. As I listened to this great music I thought of pioneering bands like The Talking Heads and the related Tom Tom Club as well a bit of the Pixies and Yuck. Their songs are sonically diverse but always sewn together by heavy- well composed bass lines. Guitarist / sometimes drummer Leslie Hong's vocals can disarm you in about 3 seconds. She has a cute and crazy undertone with melodies that masterfully dance from strident - to pretty - to on the edge of dissonance. There is the breezy punkish beauty of Mad Girls Love Song to the quirky yet sonically explosive My Mother Tells Me were she sings "I'm shivering because I'm scared of things that grow like love and... mold" in a distant self reflective "koo koo" sort of way as the song pumps slowly around her only to burst into big glorious rockish breaks. I love the dynamics in this song.

As much as I am having in instant crush on Leslie's vocals, I would not specifically say she is the lead vocalist as the drummer / sometimes guitarist Zach Ellis pops up in many of the songs. In Noodles, he sings "I don't need, need, need, need, need, need, need, need you.... there's a needle, needle, needle, needle, needle, needle, needle in you..." amidst a very sweet punchy music bed as Leslie provides an array of harmonious and contra-posing vocal lines. This song, in particular, has an art rock feel in that aforementioned Talking Heads vein. It is as quirky as it is catchy and the lyrics (as potent as a bottle of Jack Daniels) could be swallowed straight or with a dash of metaphors. 

Yeerks ("Sometimes, I'm nervous but mostly I'm crazy") moves so well. Babies is a silly sock hoppish slow punk dance and deliciously fun. Summertime with Zach on guitar /vocals and Leslie on the drums is a bit of garden rock that makes me think of Woodstock and Lou Reed.  Wash You starts with an almost porch blues rock feel as Leslie croons with a fair amount of punch drunk swagger, "Wash your dirty face girl, glance your dirty hands. Go put in your eyes girl, start taking commands. You... just written on my wrists... my viens were cold and dry. Your ear against my hollow chest... a desert in my eyes. All my words have left me... mouth thick with useless tongue. An empty brain and shrinking skull directs my breathless lung."
Soon after... all Hell breaks loose.

Haybaby is a band to get excited about.
Adler Bloom

you've been sent a show from BreakThru Radio

 00:00 Themetune
00:43 Mr Jason talking
01:40 Cellar Door - Haybaby - Live @ Old School Studios
03:52 Mad Girl's Love Song - Haybaby - Live @ Old School Studios
07:52 My Mother Tells Me - Haybaby - Live @ Old School Studios
14:04 Noodles - Haybaby - Live @ Old School Studios
19:43 Summertime - Haybaby - Live @ Old School Studios
23:24 Yeerks - Haybaby - Live @ Old School Studios
28:16 Babies - Haybaby - Live @ Old School Studios
31:22 Wash You - Haybaby - Live @ Old School Studios
34:44 The Moon - Haybaby - Live @ Old School Studios
39:51 Mr Jason talking
40:43 Themetune

Haybaby is:
Zach Ellis
Sam Jacoff
Leslie Hong
Caleb Larson

Haybaby Facebook

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Die Antwoord- I Fink U Freaky - Charm the Pants off Letterman

Zef, rave, rap, hip hop outfit Die Antwoord (meaning The Answer in Afrikaans) performed "I Fink U Freaky" on Letterman to promote the official release of their album Tension. Yolandi Visser can sport large black contacts, an Appalachian meets the Apocalypse hair cut and still look adorable. Watkin Tudor Jones (Ninja) looks like a high desert meth head cleaned up to party. The performance was cool, mesmerizing and even charming. When Yolandi whispers the last line she almost cracks herself up and reveals the humor in their "tongue placed firmly in cheek" persona.

- Sharky McWilliams

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Kristen Wiig's Pointed (and Hilarious) Defense of Lana Del Rey's SNL Performance

Kristen Wiig does an incredible pointed defense of Lana Del Rey's SNL performance as Lana Del Rey herself. While the impersonation may of not been spot on it was really funny and the comedic commentary itself poised some serious questions too about internet bullying. I guess it is safe to say that if you are a performer these days then you cannot let the hordes of internet babble get to you at all. Face it, most of those on You Tube and other forms of internet media will never scratch the success of those they ravish with their snarky comments. While I was not enamored with Del Rey's performance either, it was clear that someone in her camp attempted to make her intimate songs grander than previous performances. It was a big mistake and clearly Del Rey seemed to approach the songs differently as well, singing in a lower register in spots. It is only one performance and as a songwriter, Lana Del Rey is writing some amazing songs like Video Games which can bury itself deep in your musical soul if you allow it to. My favorite live Video Games performance is at Corinthia Hotel in London. The performance is stripped back with little reverb on her voice. Less is more with Lana. Enjoy.

Adler Bloom

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Andrew in Drag and Lola hold hands and walk off into the sunset. - Magnetic Fields Video

The Magnetic Fields single Andrew in Drag has been sputtering around on line for a while but today NPR premiered the kind of provocative video.  The music bed totally understated and Casio-fied sounds like it could be played by an Iphone which makes the tune itself feel like it could be on a Target commercial. It is not that exciting but it doesn't have to be, this bed after all has Stephin Merritt lying in it singing in a "who cares" after thought kind of way and sounding at times like a less dramatic version of a young David Bowie. He has an amazing and hypnotic quality to his vocals. As reported on NPR- Merritt says the song is "about a straight guy who falls madly in love with the drag persona of his straight friend Andrew" and the lyrics are clever and to the point, "A pity she does not exist, a shame he's not a fag... the only girl I ever loved was Andrew in drag" with the chorus refrain swelling in a delicious bit of echo.

The video directed by Scott Valins is not as good as the song and is basically a stylized look at a girl becoming a guy and a guy becoming a girl. I, personally, would of loved to see a less stagey approach, maybe make it more filmic and taking place in real locations.

As I watched this video and listened to Andrew in Drag I could not help but think of the Kinks epic song Lola which traversed similar social logical terrain way back in 1970. While Merritt speaks of his adoration of Andrew in Drag in a direct matter of fact way, the protagonist in Lola went on more of a journey of self discovery as he realizes that Lola is a cross dressing man. This makes for a more interesting musical narrative, there is just more drama there and the particularly loving lyric (especially in the context of 1970 England)  "Girls will be boys and boys will be girls. It's a mixed up muddled up shook up world except for Lola... Lo-lo-lo-lo Lola" - has always seemed to me, to be embracing the idea of feeling free in your own skin (what ever gender's close and fashion is adoring it) and the straight up morality in society embracing it.

Will society every embrace such forward thinking concepts? I don't know, we seem to take two steps forward and one step back. Hurrah to the Magnetic Fields for carrying on the good fight. Of making the prudes squirm in their seats. Will Andrew in Drag become a classic like Lola? I guess I really don't care- I can just envision Andrew in Drag and Lola holding hands and walking off into the sunset.


Aldler Bloom

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Guadalupe Plata by Guadalupe Plata Album Review

Guadalupe Plata's self titled crosses all cultural barriers with a narcotic dose of a blues slide guitar and choppy swampy surfy porch blues back beats. These 3 guys from Ubeda, Spain dig a groove so deep in their blues dirt that you will find it hard to climb out of it. It is infectious stuff. It feels sweaty and cool, it rolls it's cigarettes in it's shirt sleeve. It is twangy semi-hollow bodied sex guitar blues rock. All 13 songs on Guadalupe Plata burn grooves and dance. In truth, these songs are not built on hooky choruses- they don't feel like conventional songs at all but more like free-form jams. It is a kind of blues- rock - rockabilly - swamp blues with a punk rock take no prisoners sort of mayhem that you will yearn to hear live.

My favorite tracks are the inspired barn burner Lorena, the almost blues meets surf rock Estoy Roto. The psychotropic Rai which feels like a chemical stewed swamp dream and El Tigre y La Yedra which feels like a carnival of lost souls with twisted organ, blues guitar and bicycle bells. It strolls along like a sped up Ferris wheel. Experience this music. You will not be disappointed.

Adler Bloom

Guadalupe Plata will be performing at SXSW
Guadalupe Plata Bandcamp