Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Bird of the Day: The Bobolink

"The Way to Know the Bobolink" by Emily Dickinson
The Way to Know The Bobolink
From every other Bird
Precisely as the Joy of him –
Obliged to be inferred.

Of impudent Habiliment
Attired to defy,
Impertinence subordinate
At times to Majesty.

Of Sentiments seditious
Amenable to Law–
As Heresies of Transport
Or Puck’s Apostacy.

Extrinsic to Attention
Too intimate with Joy –
He compliments existence
Until allured away

By Seasons or his Children–
Adult and urgent grown –
Or unforeseen aggrandizement
Or, happily, Renown –

By contrast certifying
The Bird of Birds is gone–
How nullified the Meadow–
Her Sorcerer withdrawn!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Adventures with Poison Dart Frogs

I sort of want this guy's life. Not his paunch nor his lousy Latin American impression, but the rest of his life...

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

"Yes, now I know, you must reap what you sow. Or sing."

It begins with a breath. A quick inhalation. A gasp. Though what follows contains nary a surprise. It's more of what we've come to count on with Callahan: commanding, stark, understated Americana with lyrics rivaled only by Berman. And, of course, the voice; that unaffected, bottomless baritone always hinting at some deep, enigmatic soul. Who else could breathe new life into the tired metaphor of flowers for women? "She was not a weed; she was a flower."
How could I run without losing anything?
How could I run without becoming lean?

Smog — "Baby's Breath" (from Apocalypse)

Apocalypse comes out 4/19 on Drag City. You can pre-order it from Insound now.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

City Center: "Cookies"

Fred just took City Center to the next level...

CITY CENTER "COOKIES" from Peter J Brant on Vimeo.

From Fred:
"This is our first video, for a song from our upcoming record REDEEMER. Shot/directed/written/everything by Peter J Brant in Los Angeles. REDEEMER drops in early May on K Records."


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Lost (Then) & (Now) Found

Remember that video about the lost roll of film and the search for its owners? Well, the guy found the photographer and—you've gotta admit—it's a pretty touching story...

"County Line"

I cannot stop listening to this song. It's been a while since I had a tune on repeat like this, and it just keeps getting better... McCombs's songwriting is impeccable, and his stuff always has an understated subtlety that might be unassuming at first but reveals more and more stunning nuances as it grows on—or, better yet, into—you.

Cass McCombs - County Line by DominoRecordCo

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Dust and Light

Tape - "Dust and Light"

I've been a fan of the Swedish trio Tape since their magnificent collaboration with Tenniscoats, Tan-Tan Therapy.

The gorgeous sleeve art looks like a Hala Strana cover, and that might be an interesting reference point. Tape, though a lot more polished than Steven R. Smith and a lot more interested in the mix of synthetic and acoustic textures, is exploring timbral and dynamic juxtapositions similar to those plumbed by the Jeweled Antler crew. On "Dust and Light" they create blankets of swelling and gurgling synths, sparse percussion, and gentle acoustic guitar on top of which resonate mellow (always an apt word when discussing Tape) vibes and what sounds like subtly bit-crunched reeds. It's music entirely ambivalent to climaxes, steeped in subtlety, and seemingly content to soundtrack ambiguous pre-dawn emotions. And at that it's pretty top-notch.

Revelationes is available now as a limited edition LP from Immune Recordings.