Making history

Norfolk, Virginia's 1888 have a new EP called Abble Goose Dam. I'd tell you where to get a copy, but dudes are totally not minding their website, so I have no clue. My best guess would be Relative Theory Records. Check out these two tracks:

Unconscious on the Telephone
In a Car

I really like what I've heard by 1888 so far ... lots of fun studio trickery, crackin' guitar solos, thick harmonies, and good, twisty melodies (In a Car's vocal melody sounds like it's being coaxed out by a snake charmer). I hear they put on a good live show too.

These guys should go over well with fans of Broken Social Scene (for the studio experimentation), My Morning Jacket (for the guitar heroics and occasional southern rockisms) and The Shins (for the melodic goodness).



I know I'm tardy

But I can't resist chiming in on Bullette. Everyone else is already going bonkers over her. Hopefully this post will get out to the one person on the Internet who hasn't already heard the word.

What's really interesting to me about this whole Bullette thing is that in just over a week she's become hot shit -- like, majorly. I think it was totally wise and brainy of her to contact all these mp3 bloggers, and even more wise to make her album The Secrets available as a free download. Also, it helps that the record is really good. I'm with a lot of my fellow bloggers in pointing out Your Eyes Have It as a favorite track, but there's plenty of creativity and melodic goodness in every single song. I'm also very fond of Lemonade, Little Bird and Show Me. I hear echoes of The Kinks, Stereolab, Liz Phair, The Breeders ... the list goes on.

Assuming the attention keeps piling on, I can imagine a day when people will look back at Bullette's sudden success as a landmark in rock history. Time will tell.



The Shins Live (video)

Someone on The Shins' messageboard posted a few video clips of The Shins performing last night at The NorVa. The sound quality's not great, but it's still cool to watch.

Last night's show was my second Shins show. I thought they looked a little tired and bored for a good chunk of the set, but picked up steam during the last quarter or so. All three songs they played during the encore -- "Girl on A Wing," "Kissing the Lipless" and "Caring Is Creepy" -- were punchy and energetic, which was nice. It was also cool to hear a healthy bunch of the 1,500-person crowd singing along with James on "Kissing the Lipless."

The Brunettes, who opened, were fantastic. I grinned and giggled through their whole set, and picked up a copy of their latest record, "Mars Loves Venus."

Turns out The Brunettes are coming back in June with Rilo Kiley. I'll be there.


New New Pornographers

Matador throws us a bone:

Here's the title track from The New Pornographers' upcoming record Twin Cinema, which comes out Aug. 23.



I just don't get it

Rilo Kiley, Ryan Adams and Iron & Wine ... all in the same month?

We have the Internet to thank for this.

Thank you, Internet.

Oh, and it's official: the Shins show tonight is sold out. Yes, you heard me right.

And my band The King & Caroline has a new drummer, Brian. He's good ... like, really good. We should be ready to play out soon. I'm not linking to our website because it's in for a major overhaul. Soon. I hope.

Sorry for the really pointless post. I'm just baffled -- all this good music in Hampton Roads! It's a wonderful, if slightly surreal, thing. And the band is back on track. So exciting.

In rotation: Belle & Sebastian "The Boy with the Arab Strap"
Feist "Let it Die"
The Kinks "Village Green Preservation Society"
Sufjan Stevens "Come On, Feel the Illinois" (courtesy of TTIKTDA)




The Old Haunts - Poison Control

This track makes me want to hop around and bump into people ... in a friendly way, of course.

From the Kill Rock Stars LP Fallow Field.



I was never young

A couple of friends and I spent Saturday evening looking conspicuously old and out of place at the Of Montreal show, which took place at the College of William & Mary University Center. I got the distinct feeling that my friends and I were the only non-students there, but whatever -- we had a good time.

Of Montreal was fantastic. They took the stage in slow motion -- literally -- and proceeded to bounce through a set heavy on songs from The Sunlandic Twins and Satanic Panic in the Attic. Kevin Barnes was a hoot. He had a glammy, flamboyant stage persona and managed to create a rapport with the audience without saying much at all between songs. He was just fun to watch.

The musicianship was top-notch. I have no idea who the dude playing the bass was, but dear me, he was smokin'. There were lots of tight, high three-part harmonies, too. All said, I was impressed by how well Barnes' five-piece band recreates the complex, intricate tunes from his albums live, and also by how much my friends and I ended up shakin' our arses. Highlights included "Wraith Pinned to the Mist (And Other Games)," "Will You Come and Fetch Me" and, during the encore, a cover of the Supergrass gem "Alright."

What a treat!

I only wish more people had been there to see it, and that the mix had been a little more balanced.

Cloe Burn opened the show with a ambient instrumental set ... just looped feedback and simple drumming. It was, y'know, interesting. They played on the floor with everyone standing in a circle around them. I'm guessing they haven't been together long.

St. Thomas, pictured, played just before Of Montreal. St. Thomas is actually Thomas Hansen, a former mailman from Norway. He only brought himself, an acoustic guitar and an auxiallary percussionist/banjo player. Despite being plagued by sound problems, Hansen's easygoing, humorous stage banter and winning melodies were enough to keep a decent chunk of the small crowd interested. The St. Thomas website reports that Hansen is planning to record in Nashville, possibly with Lambchop's Mark Nevers producing.

Here are a few St. Thomas tracks:

Heroes Making Dinner
An Artist with A Brilliant Disguise

And last but not least:

622 music videos (lots of cool stuff, mostly in Quicktime, via Metafilter).



Who are they?

My cousin Johnathan's band has played shows with Model Citizen, pictured. He says they're good. And crazy. Based on my cousin's recommendation, the mp3 you see posted below and this review, I'm intrigued.

For fans of The Who and Hot Snakes:

Model Citizen "Protege"