A little while ago we got a taste of Dido's upcoming album, Safe Trip Home, when she was streaming a track off it, "Look No Further." I liked that one well enough, but I'm really digging this new tune, "Don't Believe in Love." There's something sultrier, almost jazzier than what you'd expect, though Dido's light, breathy voice is still at the heart of it all. It's actually a pretty cool combo: some low bass guitar, a great drumbeat and Dido's soft, sweet vocals.
Way back in April we got a taste of "Oh No," one of the tracks that will be included on Andrew Bird's next album, Noble Beast, from a video of Bird playing the song live. Now that it's all produced and polished, I'm love-love-loving it. It is signature Andrew Bird — whistling, strings, dark lyrics accompanying a buoyant tune — but this one's got a fun little drumbeat and hand claps and I think some tambourine. It cheered up my Monday afternoon big time, so to see if it'll do the same for you read more
First of all, I love the name of this band. Woo-hoo, galaxy tour! Their song, "Around the Bend," is basically what you would listen to if you were, say, an asteroid rocketing around the galaxy. So I'm not surprised Apple is using it for the new iPod Touch commercial. The ad shows the fun of playing games on this iPod, and this fun, high-adrenaline song only adds to the "wheee!" factor.
If you've never heard of this band before, that's probably the point since Apple enjoys yanking little bands out of obscurity and plopping them into their ads. The Asteroids Galaxy Tour is made up of two people from Copenhagen, Lars Iversen and Mette Lindberg, who have been together less than a year but are steadily building a fan base here in the States.
I really like this song and the others I've heard from them (you can take a listen at their MySpace page here). Their full-length debut album won't be out until early 2009, so in the meantime, check out this song in its entirety and tell me what you think. To listen, read more
Yay! New Decemberists stuff! And it's so fun! I know — lots of exclaiming here. I just can't get enough of this song, "Valerie Plame," because it makes me giggle a bit. According to a press release, the song is sung from "the point-of-view of one of Plame's inside contacts upon discovering her true identity, the song is an amorous tribute to the onetime CIA operative." "Valerie Plame" is a part of the band's upcoming series of singles titled Always the Bridesmaid. The first volume of the series is due out on Oct. 14, and the Decemberists are scheduled to play "Valerie Plame" on Conan O'Brien the night before the election, Nov. 3.
Political context aside, "Valerie Plame" is a bouncy song with horns and some banjo and a sing-along at the end. It reminds me vaguely of the circus at times. I love this band's flair for the dramatic. To take a listen, read more
I try to keep an eye on the iTunes store top songs list and I've noticed that a duet by Kevin Rudolf and Lil Wayne called "Let it Rock" has been hovering around the top 12. For those of you who aren't familiar, Rudolf is a producer/guitar player-turned-singer (for this single) who's credited on an array of pop songs, like Nelly Furtado's "Say It Right."
"Let It Rock" is super catchy and (almost) makes me feel like I should go for a run. It's exactly the kind of song that could have been the "can't get it out of my head" song of Summer 2008. I can also totally envision a Gossip Girl episode ending to this tune, with Blair leaving a club in slow-motion to the lyrics "Well, you'll get what's yours/ I got mine."
Rudolf's first full-length album, In the City, will hit stores Nov. 25. To listen for yourself, read more
If you haven't seen the commercial for the new iPod Nano yet, you probably will soon (and probably over and over again, at that). And you might find yourself wondering, like I always seem to do these days with Apple ads, "Wow, who is singing that cute and catchy song?" Once upon a time, the Nano made Feist a star, and it feels like just yesterday I was downloading Yael Naim after seeing the MacBook Air ads airing between my favorite shows.
So who's the lucky band who will soon be getting lots of attention? Why, it's the Brooklyn-based trio Chairlift, whose song "Bruises" is upbeat and bubbly in the avant-pop tradition and overflows with adorable lyrics ("I tried to do headstands for you" — or is it "I tried to do handstands for you"? Either way, cute!). The song is on Chairlift's 2008 debut album, Does You Inspire You, and the trio will be opening for Yeasayer soon (see dates here).
If you're eager to hear Jenny Lewis's forthcoming album, then you — and I — are in good company. Death Cab for Cutie frontman Ben Gibbard's also ready for Acid Tongue to hit stores, and in a series of YouTube sketches over the past few days, he's been stalking Lewis around her house, demanding to hear some new songs.
Lucky for us, it's hard to say no to Gibbard, so Lewis has rolled out the second track from the new album (we've already heard the title track, "Acid Tongue"). "The Next Messiah" is a lot of things I'm not used to hearing from Lewis. For one, it's just a lot of song – more than eight minutes, in fact, with several long jam sessions interspersed between the singing. It's bluesy at times, funky at others, and there's a cool shift just after the five-minute mark, when the male backing vocals really kick in and Lewis's voice gets a lot more raw and desperate. On my initial listen, I like the track, but I think it will come alive a lot more in live shows, when the band can really let loose and just rock.
To hear the song for yourself, just read more
I first heard this song a few days ago, and I enjoyed it, so I played it a few more times. Then I was kinda addicted and couldn't stop playing it and now I wake up with it in my head. I had never heard Sonya Kitchell's stuff before recently, but I'm pretty sure I'll add her new album, This Storm, to my collection; it just hit stores this week.
Kitchell's only 19 years old, but her voice and her sound are pretty mature. She's got this nice, throaty voice that reminds me of Dido, but a little sultrier. I often think of music in terms of what movie it would work well in (it's just where my mind goes), and "For Every Drop," with its fast pace and these dark, ominous overtones could probably work in a thriller. To hear it for yourself, read more
Did you kinda forget about Dido like I did? Well, I was reminded of her today when I learned the following things:
- She's releasing a new album this November.
- A track from the new album is available for download here, and it's great.
It's been five years since Dido released her last album and I'm really excited she's still out there, making pretty music for us to enjoy. This new track, "Look No Further," is a delicate, somewhat mournful lullaby-type song about all the adventures she might have taken in life and the people she could have met.
Hurry up and grab your MP3 — as they say, they'll run out by Sept. 7. What do you think? Are you looking forward to Dido's musical return?
A while ago a friend sent me the video for Marc Broussard's low-down soulful song "Home," and I fell in love instantly. The video is beautifully shot; a loving portrayal of Broussard's southern journey, well, home. It's a catchy, percussive song that's made more emotional by Broussard's passionate vocals.
His next album, Keep Coming Back, is due to release Sept. 16 and I was able to get an early taste of the title track.
I gotta say, I'm really liking Broussard's stuff. He's undoubtedly talented and blessed with a powerful, sultry voice. "Keep Coming Back" is a soul-infused frenzy of horns, piano and a lively choral backup. I might like "Home" better as a song, but "Keep Coming Back" is more dancey and mood-lifting. To hear it for yourself, read more