viktor_haag: (Default)
I had probably only casually heard of The Decemberists. And then a friend of mine who is a music nut (he's even in a band, which to me seems a bit of a novelty and rather special) pointed out that he was a Decemberists fan and insisted that I listen to their newest album on NPR's First Listen.

Woah. I don't know about their entire catalog, but "The King Is Dead" in particular aligns strongly with what I'm liking to listen to right now. It's nigh perfect. Shortish, very smartly crafted roots-folk-guitar-pop with tight harmonies and obliquely spiritual lyrical vibe. One might almost call it American Myth Pop. It evokes the best of REM's heady middle years, but with perhaps a bit more musicality and less edge. And it certainly helps that Gillian Welch provides harmony vocals on many of the tracks: carefully constructed to draw me in.

You might not like it, but I think it's definitely worth a listen to see if you will.
viktor_haag: (Default)
I had probably only casually heard of The Decemberists. And then a friend of mine who is a music nut (he's even in a band, which to me seems a bit of a novelty and rather special) pointed out that he was a Decemberists fan and insisted that I listen to their newest album on NPR's First Listen.

Woah. I don't know about their entire catalog, but "The King Is Dead" in particular aligns strongly with what I'm liking to listen to right now. It's nigh perfect. Shortish, very smartly crafted roots-folk-guitar-pop with tight harmonies and obliquely spiritual lyrical vibe. One might almost call it American Myth Pop. It evokes the best of REM's heady middle years, but with perhaps a bit more musicality and less edge. And it certainly helps that Gillian Welch provides harmony vocals on many of the tracks: carefully constructed to draw me in.

You might not like it, but I think it's definitely worth a listen to see if you will.
viktor_haag: (Default)
Hie thee off to NPR's website and snag the podcast of Tom Waits just recently live in Atlanta, Ga. And a fair number of other cool concert 'casts. Waits' concert is (wait for it) over two hours long (with encore). The man works for his livin'. I'd pay cold hard money to see Tom in concert after listening to this, but sadly, his tour doesn't include any stops near my house, and, well, his tour wraps up tomorrow in Dublin. (So, [livejournal.com profile] myles_corcoran, if you don't have tickets, then what are you waiting for, man!)
viktor_haag: (Default)
Hie thee off to NPR's website and snag the podcast of Tom Waits just recently live in Atlanta, Ga. And a fair number of other cool concert 'casts. Waits' concert is (wait for it) over two hours long (with encore). The man works for his livin'. I'd pay cold hard money to see Tom in concert after listening to this, but sadly, his tour doesn't include any stops near my house, and, well, his tour wraps up tomorrow in Dublin. (So, [livejournal.com profile] myles_corcoran, if you don't have tickets, then what are you waiting for, man!)
viktor_haag: (Default)
Good gawd, Professor Longhair was a bona-fide geenius of the first order. If you don't have any in your collection, run don't walk. (Once again, I'm listening to Harry Shearer's Le Show archives, which is wall-to-wall with New Orlinian music and topics from time to time.)
viktor_haag: (Default)
Good gawd, Professor Longhair was a bona-fide geenius of the first order. If you don't have any in your collection, run don't walk. (Once again, I'm listening to Harry Shearer's Le Show archives, which is wall-to-wall with New Orlinian music and topics from time to time.)
viktor_haag: (Default)
After some anticipation, especially after the uniformly excellent "Witching Hour", I snapped up Ladytron's latest, "Velocifero", pretty much instant it was available through the iTunes Music Store in my region.

For those with the (perhaps valid) criticism that "Witching Hour" had not enough Bulgarian, and not enough of Mira Aroyo's dark, foreboding tones. "Velocifero" addresses that to some extent: "Black Cat" and "Kletva" principally feature Aroyo, and not in English, where as "Season of Illusions" features her in English. But three out of thirteen still feels a bit spare, perhaps.

There are some notable weak points on this album: the seemingly pointless three-word choral repetition of "Runaway" followed by the only slightly less dreary "Season of Illusions" (which high point is that the lead vocal duties are handled by Aroyo, giving the tune a dark edge it just wouldn't have otherwise: and to prove that point, it sits right after "Runaway" as a point of cruel comparison). The somewhat anti-melodic "Predict the Day" also seems a bit like an experiment that just doesn't quite work. And the vocals on "Versus" are handled by Marnie in duet with a male voice, Daniel Hunt or Reuben Wu I assume, which was interesting but I didn't think quite worked.

Still, the album has its strong points. As with "Witching Hour", it starts out quite strong: the first three tracks are good, especially "Ghosts". The back half of the album isn't as strong as the front, but "They Gave You a Heart, They Gave You a Name", "The Lovers", "Deep Blue", and "Tomorrow" are all strong enough to bring the album home to a satisfactory finish.

Ladytron are evolving. This isn't the same seamless synth-pop found in "604" and "Light and Magic". But it's not the uniformly strong, hard-edged "Witching Hour" either. It's not a step backward, but it's not as far a step forward. Recommended for fans, and even tentatively recommended outside that. I widely evangelize "Witching Hour", which I wouldn't do with this, but if you like their other albums I can't see you'd be disappointed with this one.

Postscript: I find it a bit amusing that, although AllMusic's review pretty much accords with my general opinion, there are some interesting differences. Where as I liked "Tomorrow", and thought it was a strong track, the boffins thought it "downright dull and repetitive". By contrast, I would have used exactly those words to describe "Runaway" (and did!), the boffins recommend the track (sic) and say "[track's] punchy, cavernous sound recalls the heyday of industrial dance". Well. This may help underscore why I was never a big fan of the industrial dance movement, and far prefer the melodic (brief) pop of "Tomorrow".
viktor_haag: (Default)
After some anticipation, especially after the uniformly excellent "Witching Hour", I snapped up Ladytron's latest, "Velocifero", pretty much instant it was available through the iTunes Music Store in my region.

For those with the (perhaps valid) criticism that "Witching Hour" had not enough Bulgarian, and not enough of Mira Aroyo's dark, foreboding tones. "Velocifero" addresses that to some extent: "Black Cat" and "Kletva" principally feature Aroyo, and not in English, where as "Season of Illusions" features her in English. But three out of thirteen still feels a bit spare, perhaps.

There are some notable weak points on this album: the seemingly pointless three-word choral repetition of "Runaway" followed by the only slightly less dreary "Season of Illusions" (which high point is that the lead vocal duties are handled by Aroyo, giving the tune a dark edge it just wouldn't have otherwise: and to prove that point, it sits right after "Runaway" as a point of cruel comparison). The somewhat anti-melodic "Predict the Day" also seems a bit like an experiment that just doesn't quite work. And the vocals on "Versus" are handled by Marnie in duet with a male voice, Daniel Hunt or Reuben Wu I assume, which was interesting but I didn't think quite worked.

Still, the album has its strong points. As with "Witching Hour", it starts out quite strong: the first three tracks are good, especially "Ghosts". The back half of the album isn't as strong as the front, but "They Gave You a Heart, They Gave You a Name", "The Lovers", "Deep Blue", and "Tomorrow" are all strong enough to bring the album home to a satisfactory finish.

Ladytron are evolving. This isn't the same seamless synth-pop found in "604" and "Light and Magic". But it's not the uniformly strong, hard-edged "Witching Hour" either. It's not a step backward, but it's not as far a step forward. Recommended for fans, and even tentatively recommended outside that. I widely evangelize "Witching Hour", which I wouldn't do with this, but if you like their other albums I can't see you'd be disappointed with this one.

Postscript: I find it a bit amusing that, although AllMusic's review pretty much accords with my general opinion, there are some interesting differences. Where as I liked "Tomorrow", and thought it was a strong track, the boffins thought it "downright dull and repetitive". By contrast, I would have used exactly those words to describe "Runaway" (and did!), the boffins recommend the track (sic) and say "[track's] punchy, cavernous sound recalls the heyday of industrial dance". Well. This may help underscore why I was never a big fan of the industrial dance movement, and far prefer the melodic (brief) pop of "Tomorrow".
viktor_haag: (Default)
Every now and then the universe surprises you, pleasantly. This morning, I stumbled across an online music review for the B-52's new album ("Funplex"). New album!? But they haven't released anything in a decade and a half!

Yes, indeedy sir! The whacky foursome from Athens is still shaking their moneymakers. In their mid to late fifties.

Foursome!? But didn't Cindy drop out of the band to get on with her life?

Yes, indeedy sir! She's back and her voice slots in alongside Kate's once again for that edge that was just plainly not there on "Good Stuff".

Happy Tuesday.
viktor_haag: (Default)
Every now and then the universe surprises you, pleasantly. This morning, I stumbled across an online music review for the B-52's new album ("Funplex"). New album!? But they haven't released anything in a decade and a half!

Yes, indeedy sir! The whacky foursome from Athens is still shaking their moneymakers. In their mid to late fifties.

Foursome!? But didn't Cindy drop out of the band to get on with her life?

Yes, indeedy sir! She's back and her voice slots in alongside Kate's once again for that edge that was just plainly not there on "Good Stuff".

Happy Tuesday.
viktor_haag: (Default)
However, Brian Posehn is sometimes a very funny man. Prolly not particularly SFW unless you have headphones. I haven't seen something this on the nose since White & Nerdy (Seth caboose-slapping his action figures still cracks me up).
viktor_haag: (Default)
However, Brian Posehn is sometimes a very funny man. Prolly not particularly SFW unless you have headphones. I haven't seen something this on the nose since White & Nerdy (Seth caboose-slapping his action figures still cracks me up).
viktor_haag: (Default)
... about media that reminds you what your passion is, my buddy Milosz (of Knock Knock Ginger fame) provides this shining three minutes of glory:

The Potter Puppet Pals

Revel in the silliness.
viktor_haag: (Default)
... about media that reminds you what your passion is, my buddy Milosz (of Knock Knock Ginger fame) provides this shining three minutes of glory:

The Potter Puppet Pals

Revel in the silliness.

1966!

Mar. 8th, 2007 09:19
viktor_haag: (Default)
Yoinked from [livejournal.com profile] pyat.

meme: search for your birth-year on YouTube; post a music video.

Those of my birth year apparently suffer from an embarrassment of riches. What to chose?
I think, in the final analysis, it would have to be this by the master monk hisself.

1966!

Mar. 8th, 2007 09:19
viktor_haag: (Default)
Yoinked from [livejournal.com profile] pyat.

meme: search for your birth-year on YouTube; post a music video.

Those of my birth year apparently suffer from an embarrassment of riches. What to chose?
I think, in the final analysis, it would have to be this by the master monk hisself.
viktor_haag: (Default)
Parody is not my genre. In fact, parody is almost my kryptonite. Still, I'm absolutely positive that there are at least three people on my friends list who will be hard put not to laugh when they see this (yoinked from [livejournal.com profile] a_nony_meese).

Even when he's prancing, Christopher Lee manages to carry about that air of menace...
viktor_haag: (Default)
Parody is not my genre. In fact, parody is almost my kryptonite. Still, I'm absolutely positive that there are at least three people on my friends list who will be hard put not to laugh when they see this (yoinked from [livejournal.com profile] a_nony_meese).

Even when he's prancing, Christopher Lee manages to carry about that air of menace...
viktor_haag: (Default)
I've seen this meme floating around, but when [livejournal.com profile] mylescorcoran bared his toonz, I figured I might as well hop on the wagon. If it's good enough for Myles, it's good enough for me.

peek below the cut if you wanna see what my headphones are full of )
viktor_haag: (Default)
I've seen this meme floating around, but when [livejournal.com profile] mylescorcoran bared his toonz, I figured I might as well hop on the wagon. If it's good enough for Myles, it's good enough for me.

peek below the cut if you wanna see what my headphones are full of )

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