Posted tagged ‘Julie Doiron’

End of 2009: 40 – 31

23 December 2009

And the list goes on…

40. Andrew jackson Jihad – Can’t  Maintain (Asian Man Recordings)

What? Folkpunk opens their bloody doors to wider horizons.

Andrew Jackson Jihad have made my list before in 2007, cause back then they made a huge impression on me with their Fuck-in-your-face Folk punk. The songs were about murders, misantropy and other difficult words that we can’t spell properly. This year they have released at least 2 albums (but I think more), which shows progression in the musical genre. ‘Can’t Maintain’ is no longer 1.2.3 and then 2 minutes of guitar ragging, but it’s got trumpets and kazoos, and all other instruments. They seemed to have traded in some energy for empathy (i just say that because it sounds good, it does not make sense), and made a good album while doing so. Is that the Mountain Goats yelling “This is our sound!”?

Andrew Jackson Jihad – Sense, Sensibility

39.  Haruko – Wild Geese (Bracken Records)

What? The usual folky woman in my list.

I think that if you compare all my end-of-year lists, you will always find at least 1 folky woman in it. Although I can remember that I once said to one of my friends that I don’t listen to female singers that often (I really don’t), the female artist I do listen to, are mostly mesmerizing. Haruko certainly is. I must admit: I don’t know much more about her, and I haven’t listened to ‘Wild Geese’ that often, cause I only discovered it late in the year. But after a first listen, I decided that it HAD to be in the list. That doesn’t happen that often. For fans of Alela Diane, Mariee Sioux and the rest of the bunch.

Haruko – Goodbye My Love, Goodbye

38. Volcano Choir – Unmap (Jagjaguwar)

What? Justin Vernon’s trip down memory lane

I wonder if ‘Unmap’ would ever had been released if Bon Iver hadn’t been so famous? It wouldn’t be completely fair, cause I’m pretty sure that this album will eventually prove to be more timeless than ‘For Emma, Ever Again’, although that could be because we’ve played that last album a time too many. Volcano Choir is too experimental for most people I guess, with songs that don’t have a chorus or just are based upon sounds, but that also means that there is much more to discover by each listen. Everytime I listen to this, it seems that it’s something I’ve never heard before, like some strange new species that looks a lot like a crane bird or a dog, but just not fits the description.

Volcano Choir – Island, Is

37. Gregory Alan Isakov – This Empty Northern Hemisphere (self-released)

What? Heartbreaking singersongwriter eternity

We’ve been doing for about a century now, or even longer, and still people can pull it off to be amazing. Just making simple songs with guitar and sparse instrumentation, and then still getting to the core of things. Gregory Alan Isakov is a name that has to be known by everyone who loves singersongwriters, because he’s one of the best out there, but no one has any clue about who he is. He doesn’t even have a label (order his cd on CD Baby). The songs are heartwarming, without ever being all that special or weird. Just songs. I like that at times.

Gregory Alan Isakov – Evelyn

36. The Cave Singers – Welcome Joy ( Matador Records)

What? Beard fights!

The beard has become a fashion statement in the indie scene. It separates the city slickers from the hippies, it separates the cool poppunk-sound from the folky-rock sound. It is probably no surprise that the Cave Singers have beards.  Next to folky songs with banjos, they have foot stomping folkrock. oh my oh my, what an amount of foot stomping I have done listening to ‘Welcome Joy’. So hard that my foot has turned into a stomp. Am I by the only one who sometimes has to think of Kings of Leon?

Cave Singers – At the Cut

35. Dent May & His Ukelele – The Good Feeling Music Of Dent May and His Ukelele (Paw tracks)

What? Melo-drama on a ukelele

Guys who play the ukelele are wussies (I play one too, so I’m allowed to say that). They are dreamers, who make cut-out hearts and spread them anonymously in the streets, hoping to find their true love this way. Dent May sounds in love. He’s actually the twin brother of Jens Lekman, who can be sooo amazingly corny that you feel ashamed in his place. But that doesn’t mean it’s not good music. Dent May is this guy who walks in the streets of Paris with Jens Lekman and Stephan Merritt. Actually, a lot of songs of this album could have been one of the 69 tracks on ’69 Lovesongs’ by Magnetic Fields. Oh, and the canary loves this the most so far.

Dent May – Oh Paris!

34. Julie Doiron – I Can Wonder What You Did With Your Day (Jagjaguwar Records)

What? Great-Grandmother of female singer-songwriters waves at Kimya Dawson on the bus

Julie Doiron is special to me, but in some weird kind of way none of her previous albums was good enough to end up at my end-of-years list. But this one…oh my, there are no fillers here. It sounds all amazing. It’s especially fun to hear how she pulls out the electric guitar once in a while, to end up with a song that grabs you by the balls (and who doesn’t love that, especially if it’s Julie Doiron). She seems to sound a bit more like Kimya Dawson, with that difference that Doiron can sing. Doesn’t the song Consolation Prize by the way sound like something by Of Montreal?

Julie Doiron – Consolation Prize

33. Intelligence – Fake surfers (In The Red Records)

What? We hired a garage and made ourselves look like retards

Intelligence hired a garage and then made songs the way they have to sound when you’re making songs in a garage. Actually my first plan was to put Eat skull and Intelligence next to each other on spot 33, because of their fake feud this year, but actually ‘Fake Surfers’ was just a bit more convincing than the Eat Skull-record. So flatten your hair, put on your corduroy trousers and dance the polka, you golly fellows.

Intelligence – Moody Tower

32. Deer Tick – Born On Flag Day (Partisan Records)

What? cowboys don’t cry.

Bob Dylan made a christmas album. Fuck. Enough with that senile guy already. No matter how much people say it’s quite good, as soon as you start making christmas albums, you are off my list. Then you’ve got Richmond Fontaine, who didn’t really impress me with their newest album. Luckily there is Deer Tick, who manage to find the perfect balance between Countrysongs and Rocksongs. I guess the singer’s voice has got a lot to do with that. He sounds as if he smoked a pack of cigarettes (and by that, i mean the package instead of the cigarettes). Every album his voice gets rougher and rougher.

Deer Tick – Hell On Earth

31. Phosphorescent – To Willie (Dead Oceans)

What? Even more cowboys!

A Willie Nelson coveralbum! Yihaaa! Phosphorescent turned away from multilayered melancholy and made this album inbetween. You know how cowboys sound. I went to see their show in Antwerp last year, and ran into a colleague there. Then the show started and a couple of days later, the colleague came to me and said “what the hell was that? I felt like I ended up in a redneck bar”. He didn’t enjoy that, but well, he enjoyed the awful opening act (that’s the reason he was there even), so I didn’t take him all that serious. This album is fun.

Phosphorescent – Reasons To Quit

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2008 Galore!, Pt. 743 (i lost count): 30- 21

9 December 2008

And here we are again, for just the following 10 of the list. Yes, It takes a lot of time writing these posts, which is the reason why i postpone it, but i need to finish this. So, off we go:

30. Final Fantasy – Plays to please/Spectrum, 14th Century (Blocks recording club)

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Sounds like: Indie, the musical.

How vaudeville can you get, is a question that you can ask if you listen to these two teasing EP’s by Final Fantasy. They are released on something that i’m not even sure is a label, but i could be wrong. I got it the illegal way, but still I’ll all advise you to go out and buy these two little gems. If you like previous Final Fantasy-releases you get more of the same. Spectrum, 14th Century is filled with nature recordings as an extra, but it’s ‘Plays to Please’ that is really amazingly good. Vaudevillian all the way, so to speak.

Final Fantasy – Nun or Bawd (From ‘Plays to Please’)

29. Cloud Cult – Feel Good Ghosts (Tea-Partying Through Tornados) (Earthology Records => self-released)

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Sounds like: A combination of everything that should make a band really big in evil, big indie-worshipband land

Really, guys. If you like Arcade Fire, you can not not like Cloud cult. That’s like saying you don’t eat chocolate, but you have this craving for chocolate pudding. Cloud cult is witty, rocky, elektronic, folky, muddy, don’t know how many more words i have to put here until someone stops reading and just listens to the song.

Cloud Cult – Everybody here is a cloud

28. Pete Molinari – A Virtual Landslide (Damaged Good Records)

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Sounds like: The 50’s version of Turner Cody, Richie Valentine? (50’s middle class Rock-‘n-roll..my parents dig this)

Retro, retro, retro! I can’t stress it  enough, but 2008 was in my opinion mostly retro. Take Pete Molinari e.g. He sounds as if he’s on some tv-show, black & white, in the fifties. People don’t really know what internet is, and they aren’t yet familiar with never stopping consumerism. Pete Molinari is on, and his innocent singer-songwriter romantic songs fit the times. They aren’t as wild as Elvis, they are middle class white “gosh, Pete is a very fine singer. that boy is gonna be big if he doesn’t die in a plane crash” songs.

Pete Molinari – Adelaine

27. Mount Righteous – When The Music Starts (Self-Released)

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Sounds like: Big Band Hippies

I’ve written about this band before, and so you all should already know them. For those who weren’t aware of my blog at the time: Welcome! Mount Righteous is a big band hippie Texan band, which sounds a bit like the polyphonic spree, but better… if you like this kind of party music where everyone sings along, claps his hands and dances with each other, try this.  And because i’m lazy, i’ll just repost the song i gave away back then.

Mount Righteous – Licorice Night

26. Ezra Furman & The Harpoons –  Inside The Human Body (Minty Fresh Records)

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Sounds like: Finally, we can get rid of Bob Dylan (and clap your hands say yeah)

Ezra Furman was in my list last year, on the number 5 spot, and if I listen to this album just a bit more (cause i haven’t really listened to it that much, not used to the songs yet), I know this album will end up much higher in the list. Ezra should be the one stepping into Dylan’s footsteps. Not “gosh, why did i become so boring” Conor Oberst. This is great Neil Young, Dylanlike Singersongwriter southern rock songs/singersongwriter stuff! Just listen to the song, and notice the background choir. Fucking goosebumps.

Ezra Furman & the Harpoons – Take Off Your Sunglasses

25. The War on Drugs – Wagonwheel Blues  (Secretly Canadian)

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Sounds Like: Bruce Springsteen goes Sonic Youth

ok, i stole that comparison from vaaaaarious other blogs, but it’s really accurate. The War on Drugs has made an album of which you know that it will sound timeless all the time. They’ve made solid songs the springsteen way (and i don’t even really like springsteen), but added a bit fuzz and distortion to them. Adding to that, a great singing voice, and we’re all there, in our farmer shirts and our no wave-hairdo.  It’s like they say: you can not go wrong with Secretly Canadian (you can though).

The War on Drugs – Taking The Farm

24. Raz Ohara & The Odd Orchestra – Raz Ohara & The Odd Orchestra (Get Physical)

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Sounds like: Indie R&B

Damn, another band i already discussed here. this osunds as i’ve said like an R&B version of the Notwist or the Go Find. eeeeh, what else can i say..go buy it? you can read all the rest in the previous post!  or listen to the song.

Raz Ohara & the Odd Orchestra – Kisses

23. Women – Women (Jagjaguwar Records)

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Sounds like: Living on a garbage belt, and getting bored, so let’s make some noise.

I saw Women live a few weeks ago, together with their producer Chad Vangaalen. Thought they were boring. That doesn’t help appreciating the music on the album, but I’m still really enjoying this. It’s sometimes Animal Collective, sometimes lo-fi No Age, sometimes something else. I know everyone with a moderate taste in music would call this absolute rubbish, but I enjoy the fact that you have to look for songs between the noise. Long live layered lo-fi! (there are some more quiet songs on there too)

Women – Black Rice

Women – Group Transport Hall

22. Ratatat – LP 3 (XL Recordings)

Sounds Like: An Electronic Walk through the land of Oz.

I don’t listen that many purely instrumental or electronic music. Mostly because most albums don’t interest me. I know that’s quite the prejudice, but i don’t care (you also won’t find kayne west, or any other hiphop-soul-whatever guy or girl in this list, just to show how amazingly diverse i am. I’m not) Anyway, I got the ratatat album to write a review about it, and to my own amazement really liked this. These little miniature songs take you on a trip through a sort of miracle lollipop land. I imagine this land is Oz, but it could also be Alice’s wonderland (no it’s not weird enough for that), or the land where Mary Poppins live when she’s not taking care of some annoying kids.

Ratatat – Black Heroes

21. Mount Eerie – Lost Wisdom (P.W Elverum & Sun => self-released)

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Sounds like: the great winter depression of lo-fi (and did Jason Molina of Songs: Ohia turn back to its roots?)

I must admit that although i’m very lo-fi minded, the projects of Phil Elverum are always a bit hard for me to grasp. I think you must really listen to it day and night to really find it amazing the way the real Microphones-fans do. Then again, it’s great stuff. And if you ask the wonderful Julie Doiron to accompany on your album, you just know that it’s gonna be amazing. Lost Wisdom is sad, but wooden cabin sad. It’s the christmas melancholy, when you know the last fire is burning and after that you’ll freeze to death.

Mount Eerie – What?