Monday, June 27, 2005

The New Vague

Is it a parody? Is it sincere? One listen leaves me feeling, well, vague. How is Nouvelle Vague any different from The Moog Cookbook? Or Bud E. Luv? Or Richard Cheese? I'm a lover of kitsch as much as any other collector of vintage skinny ties, but seeing this one-joke-pretending-it's-not-a-joke cd (and-not-even-a-good-pretend-joke-cd-at-that) receive heaps of praise (not to mention that it's on David Byrne's label) leaves me scratching my head in befuddlement. If I wanted to hear watered-down bossa-nova, I'd listen to Tropicalia.

Friday, June 24, 2005

The Sadness Of Sex

It's probably been up for a while, but I'm just now bothering to discover it: Secretly Canadian has a music video posted to accompany the sadness of Hope There's Someone, the still-stunning-no-matter-how-many-times-I've-heard-it first single off I Am A Bird Now by Anthony & The Johnsons. If you'd rather own the video (and who doesn't?), the EP contains the video in all its melancholic gender-bending glory.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

The Selling-Outiest Guy On The Lower East Side

The connection between the dysfunctional family on The Lucky Ones and the new Mercury Mariner SUV is still a head-scratcher (navigating through the labyrinth of clues doesn't help much, either) but the soundtrack makes it all worthwhile: it features a new song (as far as I can tell) by Stephen Merritt of The Magnetic Fields (whose title, I'm guessing, is The Lucky Ones). I hope he's making a bundle off this thing. If you want an available-for-a-limited-time super-duper illegal download of this track minus the visuals, click here. Please note: I've saved it as an AAC file, so if you're living large PC-style, you're shit outta luck. As Flava Flav once sang to me, "I can't do nuthin' for ya, man." UPDATE: I'm told by some of my readers that Real Player can sometimes play AAC files. Hopefully this will prevent any anti-Mac comments flying my way.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Good Music And Circular Beats

Today, two songs instead of one, (mainly because I've been unable to find cd covers at the proper pixel size to illustrate the postings). The northern Swedish town of Umeà, has given us two worthy pop bands: Komeda and Ray Wonder. Komeda is still going strong (as far as I know) but Ray Wonder ended some years back, splintering into a few new outfits (including Hank, not to be confused with Hank). All that's left is Good Music, from which General Hugging Center is taken. The uplift in the song's message is genuinely heartwarming, without coming off maudlin or soppy. The other side of the coin, literally, is Coin, formed by Thermos Malling after Bob Log went solo upon leaving Doo Rag. Back in 1999, when Coin's self-titled CD-R debut was released, the Apple synthesizer voice motif on songs such as Circular Beats were still a neo-post-electronica novelty, but now it just sounds dated. Seeing the band play is the key, where the live vocals of Malling's über-Teutonic bride assist in easing the deadpan irony. There appears to be no way to buy this CD on the web--perhaps sending an e-mail to Coin via their e-mail address ( might net something. Good luck.