Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Suggested Viewing - Once

Today the Content would like to continue with its summer movie recommendations with a film whose story finds its feet planted firmly in music. Once is being described as a modern musical where the songs are integrated seamlessly into the film without sensational dance numbers and over the top costumes. The film’s premise is simple where the relationship between the characters develops through their collaboration in song writing and recording. Throughout the film the musical numbers are displayed more as a progression of the songwriting process and the pair’s collaboration.

The film is somewhat a reflection of the real lives of the film’s actors, played by Glen Hansard (of Irish rock mainstay the Frames) and Czech songwriter Marketa Irglova who previously had met to write songs for the soundtrack. With writing and directing credits going to previous Frames bassist, John Carney, and some of the film’s scenes being filmed in Hansard’s flat, the film takes on a representation of the real life of all those involved in the film’s production.

Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova are now on a promotional tour for Once playing songs as the Swell Season. The couple is doing a taping of the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson tomorrow followed up with a gig at the El Rey.

Once is playing in selected theaters. (Fandango)


8/1/07 – The Swell Season @ the El Rey - $16 SOLD OUT

[mp3] The Swell SeasonLies

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Monday, July 30, 2007

Summer's (Obvious) Surprises

Summer movie releases have little intention of winning the Oscar for "Best Picture." It is both their blessing and their curse. The ideal example of a summer flick is Transformers. With all it's amazing visuals and brain crippling dialogue, it wears the mark of "Summer Blockbuster" well; however, I'm not here to talk about Michael Bay films - they're motivations and appeal are pretty self explanatory. I want to champion two summer films from polar opposite genres, which find commonality in the field of awesomeness and the letter "S."

Sunshine and Superbad may be the two best summer films you'll see this year. I'm calling them "(obvious) surprises" since it needn't take a prophet to predict that
both Danny Boyle and the producers of 40 Year Old Virgin have the ability to make great movies. Yet, the surprise is still warranted once I discovered how face hurtingly, hilarious Superbad is, and creepily, crazy and beautiful Sunshine turned out.

I saw a preview screening of Superbad three weeks ago, and I wake up everyday excited about its release on August 17th. Jonah Hill, Michael Cera and Christopher Mintz-Plasse are about to be the new comedy A-Team; Judd Apatow, Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg the new creative visionaries. Together they may soon show the door to current kings Will Ferrell, Vince Vaughn, Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson. Check out the plot summary for Step Brothers for proof of Ferrell's comedic decline.

While the plot behind Sunshine made me a touch nervous - shooting an atomic bomb into the sun to save it from dying - I remained confident in Danny Boyle's eye for visual construction. It turns out Sunshine is not only was it a treat for the eyes, but a shock to the nerves. I went in picturing a tense space movie, and went home slightly terrified of going to sleep (in a good way). You will definitely had a "didn't see that coming" moment in the theaters, and I bet you will enjoy the ride.

Go forth and pay your $10 to the movie gods.

[mp3] James Brown - Super Bad
[mp3] Liars - Sunset Rodeo

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Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Preview: Aaron Schroeder - Black & Gold

Just as we'd hoped, one of RC's Fresh Faced Artists has spread his wings and left the nest. Aaron Schroeder is the man in question - he is also the artist that debuted the Fresh Faced series.

During my discussion of Southern Heart in Western Skin, I admitted that the songs still needed work, but believed Aaron had a strong foundation. These two new songs from Aaron Schroeder's second full length, Black & Gold, prove my original point nicely. Aaron no longer sounds like a kid in his basement (which was endearing by the way) - his vocals are solid and "Call Out to Me" has a great guest spot by Ben Barnett (Kind of Like Spitting). The whole production is a step forward musically, and made me proud of our graduated Fresh Faced Artist.

Exclusive preview tracks:

[mp3] Aaron Schroeder - Call Out to Me
[mp3] Aaron Schroeder - What We Don't Know


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Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Stream: Bishop Allen - The Broken String

It seems like musicians and labels alike are beginning to understand the concept of fully streaming albums, and no site is doing it better than Virb. The latest addition to their streaming catalog is Bishop Allen's new LP The Broken String. I've always admired Bishop Allen from a distance, but now I'm getting all nice and cozy. This album feels like a perfect, lazy summer night soundtrack. Enjoy.

[www] Bishop Allen - The Broken String


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Friday, July 20, 2007

Suggested Viewing: Mike Sloat - Radiapathy

[www] Mike Sloat - The Velvet Teen - "Radiapathy"

This is one of those kicks I give myself. Such a simple great idea I wish I’d thought of before seeing.

For Velvet Teen fans, one to take you back. Its the jam.

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Thursday, July 19, 2007

Caribou "Melody Day"

The return of classic melodies has been building for sometime now. I feel like the rebirth of Brian Wilson, the 40th anniversary of Pet Sounds and the gloomy social state of the world may have combined to create a perfect pop storm. Two years after the release of The Milk of Human Kindness, Caribou (aka Daniel V. Snaith) is back with Andorra, and it's clear that Daniel has been sharpening his melodic swords. I want Panda Bear, Caribou and Feist to start a gang.

Prior to Andorra's release on Aug 21st, Caribou has released the single "Melody Day" with a gorgeous Four Tet remix featuring Luke LaLonde of Born Ruffians, Adem and One Little Plane and b-side (I believe) called "Zoe." The cover photo says it all - beautiful, fragile and timeless.

[mp3] Caribou - Melody Day

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Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Stream: 4 new Liars songs!

Look what I stumbled upon! Liars have been working hard lately, and have treated us with a new Myspace page, including cover art for their s/t new album and four new streaming songs. I was so excited about this discovery that I haven't even had time to sit with the new material. You guys are my first priority - so go enjoy.

Visit the myspace page

Also, Liars are opening for Interpol at the Forum on 10/23/07. Although, I doubt I'll be going to such a massive show, we can only hope there will be a club stop in LA sometime that week.

Here is the tracklist for Liars:

01 Plaster Casts of Everything
02 Houseclouds
03 Leather Prowler
04 Sailing to Byzantium
05 What Would They Know
05 Cycle Time
06 Freak Out
07 Pure Unevil
08 Clear Island
09 The Dumb in the Rain
10 Protection

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Morning Music Mixtape

Waking up, you click your computer mouse
on the way to the bathroom . There were songs stuck in your head from the moment you opened your eyes. Tracks that need to be heard first, before the barrage of emails and the setting of devices to shuffle.

Here's a mix that'll stretch some groggy-ness out of you in the beginning and get you out of the house by the end. Leave it on and take a shower in the middle of it somewhere. Let it help you pick your outfit for the day. Have some chocolate cake for breakfast.

[mp3] Athlete - One Of Those Days
[mp3] Anniversary - Sweet Marie
Antônio Carlos Jobim - Wave
LCD Soundsystem - Someone Great
Papas Fritas - Girl
[mp3] Panda Bear - Ponytail
Bobby Hebb - Sunny
[mp3] Young And Sexy - Conventional Lullabyes
The Presets - Mia's Mouse
Left Banke - She May Call You Up Tonight
[mp3] The Skatalites - Black Sunday
[mp3] Tom Waits - Come On Up To The House
[mp3] David Banner - Cadillac on 22's
[mp3] Stars - My Radio (AM Mix)
[mp3] Phoenix - On Fire

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Tonight: Eastern Conference Champions CD Release Party

Important news: Although Eastern Conference Champions were scheduled to have their CD release party at Cinespace tonight, the venue has been changed to Silverlake Lounge. Here is the revised lineup:

07/17/07 -
Silverlake Lounge 2906 W Sunset Blvd

Eastern Conference Champions – 11 P

The Vampire Weekend 10p
Faker 9p
The French Semester 8p

[mp3] Eastern Conference Champions - The Box

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Monday, July 16, 2007

Scattered Posts

With 1/2 of The Content in Europe, posts have been/will be a bit sparse* until the beginning of August. Go enjoy your summer, pick up a book, let the sun roast your skin and make some dance party mixtapes.

*sparse being about three times a week

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Friday, July 13, 2007

I Heart Links

I Guess I'm Floating have an mp3 from Stars new LP, In Our Bedroom After The War. The album was slated to release in September, but due to the recent leak, they put it out earlier this week.

Pitchfork has a video of Devendra Banhart singing "Long Haired Child" at last year's Pitchfork Fest.

Gorilla vs. Bear has a Justice remix of the JT song "Love Stoned." This might be old news, but it was new to me.

Internet Radio lives another day thanks to the efforts of Pandora,Live365 and KCRW.

Photo cred: Natalie Citro

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Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Suggested Viewing: The Mo (Feat Kris Le Mans) - Nostalgia Locomotiv

[mov] The Mo feat: Kris Le Mans - "Nostalgia Locomotiv"

Not much is known about the defunct Swedish pop band
The Mo, but as the song name would indicate this video is one melodramatic choo-choo. I can bet it won’t be a video you’ve seen before, and if given a chance you might find yourself nostalgic enough at the end to watch it a second time.

Nostalgia Locomotive, released in 2004, unabashedly glams back to misfit duets of the 70’s (ELO, Bowie, Klaus Nomi). The video, one-take and one tracking shot, offers some charm and some orange hair, and some serious pining. Even boys in dresses miss their ladies lost. I couldn’t find much information on Miss Kris Le Mans, but she’s not working with the worst haircut either.

“Whatever you do, don’t look at the camera.” - Of Leaf and Lime


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Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Crystal Castles // HEALTH Split

Oh how I love the discord. The metallic chatter and heavy breathing of Crystal Castles have joined forces with the gloomily-awesome HEALTH (their myspace says "all caps," and I follow orders) to release a 7 inch. This time there will be no versus, only unity.

Be sure to add these songs to your summer mixes. If someone at the party doesn't like it, they are no longer your friend.

[mp3] Crystal Castles - Mothers Knows Best
[mp3] HEALTH - Crimewave

Get a taste of the CC vs. HEALTH song "Crimewave" here:

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Monday, July 09, 2007

Brother Reade - Rap Music

“Back to the beginning, rap’s first inning, penny on the needle with the turnstile spinning”

The first line from Brother Reade’s, Rap Music, serve as manifesto of what the hip hop duo hope to achieve. The most affective way to revitalize an art form is to strip it down to its most basic root - for the art of rap that foundation is a mic and a beat.

With Jimmy Jamz on the mic and Bobby Ev
ans covering beats, Brother Reade turn their back on the heavy production and hyper-rugged lyrics of popular rap, without sacrificing the sharp energy of great hip hop. Jimmy's barrage of pop culture and self conscious references keep his rhymes smart and fresh, while Bobby Evans' modern production is best served by his commitment to old school structure. Although comparisons to MF Doom or Jay Dilla are viable, Brother Reade stand a step removed from even underground hip hop. The subject matter for songs ranges from tongue in cheek to deadly serious - remaining honest throughout. There's no false talk of Bentley's and chrome pistols, just great stories of coming up in LA.

It's summertime in Los Angeles, and Brother Reade has the perfect soundtrack for the hot days and long nights.

[mp3] Brother Reade - Life Ain't Easy For Y'all

[mp3] Brother Reade - Like Duh

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Thursday, July 05, 2007

Sunshine Pop

It is too apt a time in my imagined California summer to bring about the idea that sunshine can in fact be infused with the power of pop. My nostalgia of the tourist trap of summer sun, lay a mere week in passing but its sandy memory, made fertile under the wrestle of these London showers, still tears at my heart strings with every digital spin of my formerly mono, wax recordings. All of this pop once thought a passing fad, now turned eternal, celestial, somehow utilizes musical and production techniques that infiltrate passed usual musical understandings to sonically define the sun and summer weather. Its an important and magnificent example of how experience in a physical nature, be it summer love or catching curls of ocean currents, can be symbolized into sound waves and magically translated by a sound recipient miles and lifetimes removed from such happenings.

In listening to the Turtles’ “Happy Togeth
er”, the flagship example of sunshine pop, a routine early morning, California cloud cover takes shape over minor chord arrangements, a somewhat dismal portrayal of the pre noon doubts that are met by every California beachcomber praying for a break in the gray overcast. These prayers give life to the hope for breaking rays of noonday sun, embodied in the filled out harmonies of major chord chorals and lyrics of proclamation: “I can’t see me loving nobody but you for all my life”. In listening to these recordings it feels as if some part of my history is buried back there in 60s and 70s California. Have my parents’ experiences of their carefree summers of past somehow been transmogrified into my being to help me more fully understand the symbolism of these songs? Or is there something here that speaks on a higher plane in some secret sonic language that others can similarly identify with?

Or maybe I just watch too much TV.

[mp3] The TurtlesHappy Together
[mp3] The Beach BoysCatch A Wave
[mp3] The Mamas and the PapasMonday, Monday
[mp3] The AssociationAlong Comes Mary
[mp3] The Fifth DimensionOn The Beach (In Summer Time)

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Tuesday, July 03, 2007

St. Vincent's Blessings

While our hosting company figures out why they hate us, I wanted to share some music from the ever-so talented St. Vincent (aka Annie Clark). My first encounter with St. Vincent was while watching a video of her one woman show here:

Needless to say I was mesmerized with her unrelenting guitar work, brooding vocals and inventiveness.

On July 10th, St. Vincent will be releasing her debut LP, Marry Me, and a few weeks later she'll be playing The Echo.

[mp3] St. Vincent - Now. Now.

Check out the video for "Your Lips Are Red" and the mp3 for "Now. Now." and I'll see you at the show.

08/04/07 The Echo

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Monday, July 02, 2007

Summer Activities

Yikes, July snuck up on me this year. In honor of the quickly rising temperature, here is a Summer "Activities" list for all you apartment dwellers. The great outdoors can only take you so far.

Beach Reads
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay

The Human Stain

Y: The Last Man

Sunny Sounds

[mp3] Oh No! Oh My! - The Party Punch

[mp3] The Cribs - Men's Needs (CSS Remix)

Summer Flicks
The Science of Sleep

The Sopranos (DVD collection)


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