Posted tagged ‘the postal service’

An Inside Out Sock’s best of the Decade list: 26 – 20

14 November 2009

So, I can’t even keep up with regular posting on this blog, but I decided to chip in on the trend to, now that 2010 is only a month and a half away, reflect on the past decade. In terms of society, we’ve entered a new Dark Ages as far as I’m concerned, but because one of my mission statements for this blog was to not talk about me, I’ll only bother my friends in the bar with that. I don’t consider myself important enough to be sharing my opinion on everything that’s going on.

So, let’s talk about music then! In my list there will be no Wilco, no Arcade Fire or no Radiohead. The first two surely would be in my traditional decade list, but I decided to focus on those bands that aren’t in any lists, albums that have been ignored or forgotten, or albums people have never even heard about. 26 albums precisely, and I believe all of them are timeless. At least to my ears, because I give them a spin all too often.

Making this list sucked. I had to leave out a lot of favorites. And quite a few of the bands have featured on this blog before. I won’t upload new songs for them, unless the uploaded songs are from another album.

Anyway..here is number 26 to 20. Oh yeah, no albums from 2007, 2008 or 2009. I wanted to make it really obscure.

26. Hudson Bell – Captain Of The Old Girls (Upperworks, 2002)

captaincover Sounds like: A nineties indie-retro melancholy soup

Hudson Bell is one of those bands I got to know by just downloading everything that was in my way. Ninety per cent of those songs disappear into the Microsoft Trash can, where it will be monitored how much illegal music I have once owned, so that it can be used against me. Hudson Bell is the bastard son of Neil Young and Built To Spill, but just a little bit sadder then. I wrote about them here. You can also find some songs there. And release that new album man.

25. Arab Strap – Monday At The Hug & Pint (Chemikal Underground, 2003)

Monday_at_the_Hug_&_Pint-Arab_Strap_480

Sounds like: Scottish pub-sadness, but as long as there is beer in the end, we’ll be happy.

Arab Strap wasn’t known for their happy songs. The collaborative project of Adrian Moffat (who released a fine album this year by the way) and Malcolm Middleton (who has been releasing good stuff since he started a solo career) was all Scottish melancholy. It was rough, but musically amazing. The Mumbling of Moffat, combined with the sometimes uptempo melodies, makes this album a master in duality. Ok, this is crap, but it’s really good. As an extra I’ll add a song of a sideproject of Moffat, The sick anchors, where he sings a cover by Atomic Kitten in his own amazing way. If you have that single, I’ll marry you.

Arab Strap – The Shy Retirer

The Sick Anchors – Whole Again (Atomic Kitten cover)

24. the Love of everything – Handjob Community ( Redder Records, 2004)

51DSQ9vxYPL._SL500_AA280_

Sounds like: Daniel Johnston’s squeaky basterd nephew, but even worse at singing.

I have not known the Love of Everything for more than a year, but already they are among the most played bands on my last.fm pages the last six months. It’s got this sincerity I’m looking for in music. Anyway, i wrote about the band not so long ago. You can download some songs there.

23. Havergal – Lungs for The Race (Secretly Canadian, 2001)

e722001mkr7

Sounds like: The Postal Service who didn’t care about being poppy. Why, but not Why?

Havergal..damn, i wish he would resurrect from whatever grave or coffee bar he’s in, to release something new. He made two albums and then kind of disappeared from the face of the earth. the last login on MySpace is from beginning of 2009. Maybe i should become a documentary maker and then go on a search for Havergal. Anyway,  I wrote about him here.

22. Black Bear – The Cinnamon Phase (Baskerville Hill Records, 2006)

840617

Sounds like: Casiotone for The Painfully Alone, you’d better watch your back.

Another project that hasn’t been heard of after this album. Too bad, cause I think this is one of my favourite bleep-bleep indie squeak bedroom projects. I wrote about this project here. Download those songs.

21. Chauchat – Chauchat (Free digital release, 2006)

chauchat350

Sounds like: the sadcore indie project no one knows about, but everyone should know, cause it’s fucking underrated.

I don’t use the word ‘fucking’ that often, but in regard to Chauchat, it’s necessary. There is no vessel in my mind that would doubt that this band can be really big with the american indie crowd. It’s got all what indie bands need. Damn. Luckily, it’s not too late to discover, cause this album can be found for free on the internet. And therefore I applaud them even more. Also try out their other stuff. And by writing this, I found out they released a new album for free this year, to be found on Last.FM.

Chauchat – Olde Smuggler

Chauchat – Young And Dethroned

20. Okay – High Road (Absolutely Kosher Records,  2005)

5BKP7F2HABFN6BAEAUNWIZJWSG3BKT77

Sounds like: A cricket singing about heartbreaking emotions.

This cd was rediscovered by me the last week. It’s been my wake up-cd. The unique way with which Okay connects the sad lyrics (and voice) with poppy melodies..It breaks my heart each and everytime. another bastard son of Daniel Johnston, with the ability to unite melancholy with uplifting indie pop.

Okay – Compass

The rest is for later this week! (or two or three or four. Eventually I’ll get there)

 

Advertisements

2008 Galore!, part 3: Best Promising Artists for the future

18 November 2008

Well, this is quite the Osar-category i know, but it’s just a way for me to talk about 10 artists that i like, but just don’t seem to fit in the top 50-list that is coming up after this post. (well, not immediately after it, somewhere this week). The albums of these people have their flaws, but they are promising enough to make me look forward excitedly to when they release their next album. So, without no further ado, here they are.

DISCLAIMER: ok, first add this. The songs I add aren’t necessarily my favourite of the record, because i’m planning to keep those mp3’s for a big 50 best songs at the end of all these lists. So you’ll get twice the goodies!

o1371216

10. Pwrfl Power – PWRFL Power (EP) (Catbird Records)

what? Crazy Japanese guy makes antifolk songs

I wrote something about this crazy Japanese American here, so i’m not gonna keep on blabbing about it. He’s Japanese, naïve, and has released 2 albums this year. His full album – also named PWRFL Power  – was a bit too long and tends to get boring, but the small EP was just the right size. From one of the coolest small Indielabels in town, Catbird Records. Too bad it’s sold out!

PWRFL Power – Alma Song

liam-the-younger-clear-skies-over-black-river-2008

9. Liam The Younger – Clear Skies over Black Water (Self-released)

What? An early acoustic Bright Eyes without the emo-stuff

Everytime I hear this guy, it makes me think of the first time I heard Bright Eyes. The year was 1999 (or maybe not, i really don’t remember), and Conor Oberst still made homerecordings. The only difference he sometimes had the urge to start screaming instead of singing (what i really liked as a teenager), whereas Liam The Younger just keeps on singing in his own voice. You need to be in the mood for this though, cause it can get quite monotonous if you’re looking for exciting music. But on quiet nights, when you’re looking for something acoustic that resembles Mt. Eerie, Bright Eyes and other indiestuff (i know that this is really really very broad), you can always listen Liam The Younger. Oh I forgot to mention the cool part: you can download the entire album for free here. Don’t worry, he provided the link himself on his Myspace-page. (together with other albums that i haven’t heard yet!)  Thank You Liam!

Liam The Younger – Walking

wavvescs1

8. Wavves – Wavves  (Fuck It Tapes)

What? Sunny Californian Lo-fi Noise

2008 was the year of the return of the Noise pop. Bands like No Age, Times New Viking and many more were suddenly considered cool by Pitchfork and others. And franktly, i like them too. The time when people passed tapes around i missed by just an inch (let’s say 10 years), but it seems all to be coming back. I made noise once too (you can listen to the result here), but Wavves is much better. This release is only available on cassette until now, but it well get re-released on LP by Fuck it Tapes. And his next album will be on De Stijl which isn’t a very small label. I’m really looking forward to that!

Wavves – Wavves

twoshortstories_lores

7. Jayber Crow – Two Short Stories (Self-released)

What? Indie folk, very reminiscent of The Decemberists

Is it a crime to sound like a big well-known indie-singer? Especially if that guy’s voice is quite recognizable. I guess the guys from Jayber Crow don’t do it on purpose, but everytime i hear their album, it’s like hearing an early tape of Colin Meloy from Decemberists-fame. The only difference that Jayber Crow is less pompous, more direct. I must admit not all songs appeal to me, but the ones that do, do it really good. You can buy their album on their website (by PayPal)

Jayber Crow – Saint Anthony

download

6. The Wind Whistles – Window Sills (Aaaah Records)

What? Singalong Folk, moldy peaches reference in their own bio isn’t entirely accurate, but accurate enough

Another band i’ve blogged about in the past. And another album that you can download entirely for free. It’s amazing how many great albums get released for free every year. Radiohead isn’t the only one. You should try this, cause this music makes you feel happy. I had a rough day at work today, I put on my Mp3-player and found myself singing along out loud (not based on a true story, but it’s just for the dramatic effect). Really enjoyable music.

The Wind Whistles – Man By Name Of Denver

front_cover_promo-778408

5. Michael Rault – Crash! Boom Bang!

What? It’s rock-‘n-roll!

Michael Rault is retro. So retro that his albums sounds as if it’s been recorded during the late fifties, early sixties. It seems as if one has found an album that has been lying between your father’s record collection for over 40 years now.  This brings you back to times you probably have never experienced but really wish you were part of. It makes me feel at least a little rebel. You can buy his album at CD Baby. (knowing that this bloke is 20 or so, makes it even more fantastic!)

Michael Rault – Pretty Thing

coverart

4. Entire Cities –  Deep River

What? Canadian Indie, with really solid songs.

Ok, it’s hard for me to give a very appealing description of Entire Cities. The songs are just really good, the voice has this great grunt in it (it’s not metal). It’s perhaps a bit alt. country, but then the rockier version. God, this isn’t making any sense at all. Let’s start over again: Entire cities has made a bloody good album with Deep River and instead of reading this, you should listen it. (Their site seems to be offline for now, but i guess you can order the album there.)

Entire Cities – Talkers

final-album-cover

3. James Yuill – Turning Down Water For Air (Moshi Moshi Records)

What? Indie electronics, The Postal Service is no longer needed! (Styrofoam, meet your competitor)

James Yuill was on my wishlist for over 2,5 years. I once listened to a song of his and then planned on buying his debut album. That was 2005, and then I forgot. Sometimes i remembered his name or found this mp3 I had and thought of looking for it again, but it’s only with this album that I really got to know the guy. He’s responsible for one of the top 5 songs this year (which i won’t offer for download YET, excitement!), and has brought out an album that makes me forget that The Postal Service had planned on releasing an album this year and didn’t. I don’t listen to indietronica that often, but this one made me feel really happy. Thanks James. (On his website you can download some of his remixes.)  His album can be found at all good record stores, normally.

James Yuill –  No Surprise

this-is-ivy-league

2.  The Ivy League – This is Ivy League (self-released)

What? Kings of Convenience with a pinch of typicall Swedish Sounds and the zombies or something like that.

Every year there is at least one album somewhere in my lists that sound a bit Swedish. You know, the sound that bands like Jens Lekman, Suburban Kids with Biblical Names and Irene have. It’s this bittersweet sound, with a lot of trumpets and stuff. Now these guys are from New York, but they sounds as Swedish as Sm°orrebr°odt. Next to that, they seem to pick up the sound that Kings of Convenience have left (what happened to those guys, well, to the Not Erlend Oye-guy). Really enjoyable sweet romantic. One but though. Guys, if you ever end up here reading these words of praise: make your album not only available on iTunes store. Many people aren’t fan of that (well, i’m not). More distribution canals would be really cool.

The Ivy League – Impossible Love

mumford-and-sons

1. Mumford And Sons – Mumford And Sons (EP)/ Love your Ground (EP)

What? Incredibly Sounding Young New Indie Folk in the tradition of bands Like Deer Tick

Okay, if you think that these are just too many tips for you, and can’t handle all that music, then ignore everything I have said until now. Last year, my number one on this list was Bon Iver (if I remember it as well) and he really boomed. Well, let me say you one thing: Next year is gonna be the year of Mumford And Sons. They have a really incredible sounds, and surely, they should be in the big list, but i realized that i would give them more credit by putting them on a number one spot. Everybody GO OUT AND LISTEN THIS . (And now if someone can tell me where i can buy a copy of both ep’s and when they will release their debut album, i can end this piece in peace)

Mumford And Sons – Little Lion Man

What Happened to the poetry?: Havergal

24 October 2008

Who? Havergal

What? slacker folk with dots of elektronica

Sounds like? slowed down Postal Service sung by some pavement-fan, The prenatal Birth of Why?

There once was a time, that there was a guy, that was called Havergal by many people in many nations. Havergal was a musician, who made music for the sad lonely indie kid who enjoyed his folk with a bit of modern electronics. He sang as if he didn’t really care. Both songs down here are from his masterpiece ‘Lungs For The RAce’.

I really wonder what happened with him. I want him back.

Havergal – Lungs For The RAce

Havergal – Hey

You can find his albums at Secretly Canadian.

If anyone can tell me what the guy is doing right now (musically i mean), just let me know!