Xiu Xiu’s "Fabulous Muscles" was certainly one of my favorite albums from 2004. This particular song is just simply amazing, I once started a remix of it but never finished; chalk that up on the to-do list for when I get home. Jamie Stewart’s style is so intense and this song is no exception; he’s been accused of being over the top or too melodramatic in his songwriting but it’s just right if you ask me. I think he’s now based out of San Francisco which makes it all that much better (There are very few Bay Area bands that I really enjoy). Hope this finds you well, greetings from Amsterdam.
Xiu Xiu – I Love The Valley
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I find myself listening to less and less "electronic" music these days so it’s rare that I find new tracks I really enjoy. I remember being pretty blown away by this album when it first came out and I keep going back to this track in particular. I really wish I knew what this song was about though, such great lyrics but a bit confusing when you try to piece it together. Anyone have any ideas?
As for the cover art, it’s nice and clean and i like the use of Avant Garde in this context. Sadly, AG is becoming less and less appealing to me unless used very carefully.
LCD Soundsystem – "Someone Great"
Broker / Dealer is a San Francisco based duo now recording for Ghostly International. They also seem to be one of the most under appreciated bands I know of. They released their debut album "Initial Public Offering" in 2003 on Asphodel (SF) and it seems to have stayed just a bit below the radar ever since. I have been loving this album since that time and it’s been a big influence on my own music over the years. Not unlike the Field record, I have found this album serves as a great backdrop for the vibe of Tokyo. Here’s a couple tracks to whet your appetite.
Broker / Dealer – Initial Public Offering
On a Claire Day
Was walking around Tokyo last night listening to music and took note of the songs I gravitated towards. In spite of the less-than-inspiring cover art, I really enjoyed listening to this album and particularly enjoyed this standout track. A very nice soundtrack to the futuristic utopia that is Tokyo.
The Field – From Here We Go Sublime – "Everyday"
Thought I’d kick the new year off proper with a song from the French Kicks album "Two Thousand". Buy the album, it’s great, here’s a taste. French Kicks – So Far We Are:
Another track from what is fast becoming my favorite poet-scientist-philosopher-band, Mahogany (you may remember them from this post). This one is off their "Connectivity!" album. It doesn’t get much better than this bassline; I think they used a Rickenbacker bass and that sounds a lot like a Casio for the chorus melody, simply amazing. They also happen to have some beautiful album covers. Anyone know who does the artwork? Also, anyone know why I don’t live in Lima, Peru so I can see them live?…Seems to be the only place they play. Click below to hear "Mahogany – The View From The People Wall"
Mahogany on Myspace
M83 – Run Into Flowers (Jackson Mix)
This is the Jackson remix of M83’s "Run Into Flowers", simply beautiful. The cover art above is from the full album which did not contain this version, but I like that cover better than the single (which did include the remix) so I went with it. Anyone know who art directed these covers? Have a listen below.
Here’s the video for the original version, a decidedly more psychedelic outing. It’s quite pretty, but a little monotonous for a four minute video; seems more like an outtake from some live visuals. But considering the chorus is "give me peace and chemicals" it’s not such a stretch that most of it’s intended viewers could remain transfixed for it’s duration. I saw M83 a couple years back when they came to San Francisco with Ulrich Schnauss. It was a pretty impressive show, complete with an entire band and live instrumentation.
After a short period of exclusivity with iTunes, the new Tycho single & B-side "The Daydream / The Disconnect" is now available for direct download in DRM-free 320Kbps MP3 format. The single now includes both songs and will run you $2. Get your copy at the Tychomusic MP3 shop.