March 9, 2010


A weekly sampler of what we're listening to (new and old), and what we think you might like, too.


QUASI -- "Alice the Goon"
Bought my first Quasi album this weekend for $7 at CD Warehouse in Springfield (which might, shockingly, be the best music store in the city). As you all know, I love me some Janet Weiss, and her drumming here doesn't disappoint. Even more engaging is the band's use of acoustic piano (read: real, un-synthesized piano) on top of those sweet drumbeats and Superchunk-style guitars to contribute to their tuneful racket. (More Janet here, with sweet piano breakdown to boot).

GRANDDDY -- "Summer Here Kids"
I learned about Grandaddy two summers back from drummer/juggler friend Nick Laffey, but I didn't especially start listening until about a year later. I hesitated because my first impression was that the band was a fairly brash California pop punk outfit. Boy was I was wrong. They're more up the alley of, I'd say, The Flaming Lips + Weezer. They throw down a lot of moody distortion and soundscapes; some synth. A couple of their songs prove superb on the road.

ARCADE FIRE -- "Intervention"
I checked my iTunes and it says I've played this 14 times since Monday morning. 'Nuff said.

CHUCK MANHIONE -- "Feels So Good"
For a long time now -- maybe years -- I have heard this song every weekday morning at 10:30 a.m. sharp on the office radio, which is permanently tuned to WCSR. I think it serves as a theme for one of their morning programs. For months, the radio version (which might be cover, for all I know) was sufficient to satisfy my musical bemusement per diem as well as take me on a nostalgic daydream back to the Cadillac, Michigan, orthodontist's office where I had heard it countless times on the local "lite" FM mix. After months of casual query into the name of the song, I searched for "flugelhorn", found Chuck Mangione, and found this funky and listenable performance.

ARCADE FIRE -- "Rebellion (Lies)"

I love dark, minor waltzes - this is a really good one. Incredible atmosphere as well with a great transition into the dreamy middle section.

THE GUN CLUB -- "Jack On Fire"
When I first heard of the Bowerbirds I heard theirs was one of the best first full-length releases since The Gun Club. That was the first I'd heard of The Gun Club, but since John Darnielle thought theirs was a first full-length similar to the Bowerbirds', I bought the album.

I don't know if I agree with Darnielle's verdict, but it's a fucking awesome album, and this is one of my favorite songs.

(By way of explaining some other links: it's worth wondering what Jack White was up to when he futzed around with the lyrics here, and you might as well watch The Gun Club perform the song, because they are entertaining.)

Maggie is a SadBear associate who graduated from Hillsdale last year. She now lives in Chicago and works as a web page designer for Sears. She maintains one blog that may or not be dead and another with our friend Carly that has transcontinental photos. She likes squids. She plays (ice) hockey. And she listens to good music.

THE BLACK LIPS -- "I'll Be With You"
For some reason, I really like to listen to Black Lips at work. Everything becomes so fuzzy and focused, that I forget where I am until someone shakes me out of it. It's like having a magic music fairy that gets your work done and makes you forget that you are doing it at the same time.

I will admit that "I'll Be With You" is kind of slow, and the band has been said to sound "like a bunch of piss heads coming home from a late one." I guess I was in the mood for piss heads this week, because this song hit me hard.

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Blogger Margaret Anne said...

Yeah the first blog is pretty much dead. The good news: Carggie is getting a makeover very soon!

March 10, 2010 at 3:35 PM 
Blogger Tony said...

Sign me up for more Black Lips. Where have I been?

March 10, 2010 at 9:41 PM 
Blogger JHitts said...

I thought I'd spread the Black Lips gospel senior year. I guess I wasn't diligent enough.

I really like that Grandaddy song.

March 10, 2010 at 11:01 PM 
Blogger Tony said...

Jack, I think you did, but I think their name led me to think they were too rocking for what I was seeking at the time.

As for Grandaddy, let me review the albums I have (I think I have all 4 full-lengths) and make a recommendation. At the moment they blend together ... perhaps signaling overall quality.

March 11, 2010 at 8:39 AM 

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