April 29, 2010


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


THE KLAXONS -- "Atlantis To Interzone"
I've liked these guys for at least a year (though at least two years behind when everyone else said they liked them), but they fulfill most of the checklist points for "Jack-approved late 1990s/ early 2000s British band."

-Kind of batshit? Check. (See Super Furry Animals, British Sea Power)
-Clever without being smug? Check. (See Arctic Monkeys, Maximo Park; on the other side you have clever but TOO smug, i.e. Coldplay, Muse, etc.)
-Like to make dance-y music? Check. (See Franz Ferdinand, Bloc Party)
-With synthesizers? Check. (See Hot Chip, Cut Copy, who are actually Aussies, but close enough)
-Drugs a likely influence? Check. (See, uhhh... Super Furry Animals again)

So, as you can see, there's no way I'm not going to like this band. Plus, the drumming and the bass playing in this song kind of kicks ass, and I enjoy singing along to the "AT-LAAN-TIS! TO IN-TER-ZOOOOOOO--OONE!" part in the middle.

DAN AUERBACH -- "Whispered Words"
Pretty clearly the best track on his solo album, "Whispered Words" strikes me as a song to be played in the company of friends or lovers or when you're all alone, as long as it's a bit muggy and the lighting is dim.

DONOVAN -- "Sunshine Superman"
One of the more distinct memories I have from my childhood involves this song. I loved it, unequivocally, and my parents were very aware of this.

During the summer months, when I'd be at home from school during the day, I remember my dad would call home on his way to work when this song started playing on the then Louisville oldies station (103.1 WRKA). I'd crank it...and it was the best way to start a carefree summer day.

I'm not really into buying 'greatest hits' LPs, but recently did purchase the Donovan greatest hits. No buyers remorse whatsoever...same thing with the Cat Stevens greatest hits. Of course, that's also when I bought the Hall & Oates album on LP, "Private Eyes." No remorse there either...

I find it hard to describe British Sea Power without referencing the Pixies, Echo and the Bunnymen, or Joy Division. It doesn't seem fair, but at the same time, it's hardly an insult to be compared to three really great bands. BSP does, like the Arcade Fire on Funeral, have an affinity for the epic. But they nevertheless deliver a truly immersive experience worthy of their ambition. After listening to the Decline of British Sea Power, I feel like I've been somewhere else. On that note, I still need to check out the 2009 DVD release of Man of Aran, for which BSP recorded an original score.

[No comment]

DESTROYER -- "Rubies"
This is a brilliant goddamned piece of songwriting.

Daniel Silliman is a married man, graduate student and writer in Germany with keen interests in philosophy, journalism, boxing articles and link lists. In his spare time he plays Scrabble and carves wood.

HOWLIN' WOLF -- "Howlin' For My Darlin'"
I've been talking to myself the last few days. Pacing around the apartment -- out of joint, out of sorts, at loose ends and muttering.

My wife's out of town.

For a while it looked like she wouldn't be able to go because of the volcano. Which seemed, as she pointed out, like something I'd do. But then the ashes cleared enough for her to fly and she left me. Alone with this feeling of being lost. Growling around in my own damn house. I was trying to say (to myself, of course, since I'm the only one who's here) what it was, this feeling, and all I could think was that it's like a dog that doesn't know what to do. Which led me back to the music I had on a tape in my first truck, a gutless '82 Toyoto, a blues compilation that came from I don't know where that had John Lee Hooker, Muddy Waters, Little Walter (I think) and that man among men, that raspy, growly beast of a six-foot-six blues singer, Howlin' Wolf.

There're some live performances of his on youtube that'll show you the possible, primal force of this music, why blues wasn't acceptable in polite society and why white America was scared silly of black men with backbeats -- Jeeeesus Chris' -- did he just lick his guitar and laugh!? -- but this one, Newport in the '60s, is what I've been muttering to myself:

My baby. Come on home.
I love you. Come on home.
If you hear me howlin', calling on my darling.



Blogger Daniel Silliman said...

I'm very suspicious that Dunn's choices are not actually Dunn's choices, especially after last week, but the choices are awesome nonetheless.

April 29, 2010 at 6:38 AM 
Blogger Naomi said...

If they're not his I don't know whose they are. They're not mine and he doesn't really talk to anyone else.

I also have a Howlin' Wolf tape in my car. I realized a couple of months ago that I have so few tapes in the car that I tend to listen to one for an entire season. Wolf's been my winter tape for two years now, but I'm afraid he's is starting to get wobbly.

For Every Season There is a Tape:

Winter: Howlin' Wolf, BBC Sessions
Spring/Summer: The Doors, LA Woman
Fall: Michael Jackson, Thriller
Anytime listening: Bob Dylan, Blood on the Tracks

Second Destroyer song on a mix. Nice, Evan. Probably the best song on the album besides European Oils.

Whatever happended to Kyle?

April 29, 2010 at 3:43 PM 
Blogger JHitts said...

Kyle never gets his shit on time. So he's never on here.

April 29, 2010 at 7:38 PM 
Blogger Tony said...

That Kyle-related exchange made me burst a single laugh (I'm alone this evening too, but for the dog).

Chase: Glad to hear the phrase "crank it," which I too would use, especially in my youth.

Howlin' Wolf, you know, is built for comfort, not for speed.

April 29, 2010 at 8:18 PM 

Post a Comment

<< Home