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Archive for January, 2010

Efterklang+SurferBlood+HotChip+S. City

Posted by Jakub


The pleasing Danish popstars Efterklang have stepped it up with a new LP entitled Magic Chairs, the song I grabbed has a Coldplay feel maybe to some people but Efterklang puts more personality into the sound by not taking it to uncomfortably perfect epic studio music. The band still holds their glimmer in my eyes by keeping their lively instrumentals which include trumpets, tubas and shakers.

I recently went to see The Drums play in New York and surprisingly Surfer Blood was on the bill as well. Their singles Take It Easy and Swim really stand out, those songs were something that sounded so easy to like. I hope this makes it in the mainstream but I know most people won’t “get it” but what is there to get? its serenading updated 50′s feeling pop completely transformed into an easy to swallow pill called indie rock.

The new Hot Chip LP is out and they made a great song for all the girls with cats which is pretty much every girl if i’m not mistaken.

If Surfer Blood had a bad boy cousin that did speed and listened too much older Animal Collective and he made music in the basement this Surf City band would be that cousin and I kind of want to hang out with him on weekend nights.

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New Animal Collective Video

Posted by Scott





The Jack Kubizne directed video for Animal Collective’s “Brother Sport” came out earlier this month. The song is a favorite of mine but not since Blonde Redhead’s 23 has a video for a song I love met my expectations so I didn’t go into this one hoping for much. During the first minute or so I wasn’t sure how I felt; I’m not a huge fan of the MGMT / kids running amok / Where The Wild Things Are vibe that sort of got bludgeoned to death last year. But the song is so solid it works and the final freakout pulls it all together. All in all a nice trip. Although I think the animation would have meshed better if the live action was shot on film.

I wonder how much input the band had on this? I think I’d find it very difficult to hand over the reigns and let someone else interpret my music visually.

Video link

Naming Your Brand // A Tip

Posted by Alex

Sourced from Man About Town -- note the interesting article name


A while ago I posted on an article about different techniques for naming your brand. I’ve found that method of brainstorming to be particularly helpful, but sometimes you need an extra spark. I wanted to put another tip out there I’ve found success with recently. Maybe if you’re in need of a brand name this will help you find what you’re looking for. (Of course this sort of thing works for band names too — really any entity that you’re charged with naming.)

So if you’re like me, eventually you run your brain dry of ideas if you’re just sitting around trying to think of the perfect name. Per project, I usually have about two or three days worth of *just* thinking in me. After that I go crazy and try desperately to convince myself that something I thought of is actually amazing. One week later, when I realize I’m delusional, I am back to the drawing board, nameless. My favorite place to look for inspiration these days is no longer song lyrics or the dictionary — it’s fashion magazines.

I suppose any sort of magazine would do, but fashion magazines seem to work best. The titles of articles and photo spreads in fashion magazines are rife with clever turns of phrase and exciting word combinations. Basically anywhere they have to think of clever titles for something pretty abstract is where you want to look. A photo shoot where everyone is wearing black for example, probably has some unusual name (otherwise it’d be really boring). You don’t really see it on blogs, but print writers seem to have a insatiable desire to think of the cleverest name for every article they ever write. Some are completely useless for our purposes, but you can usually find enough of a catalyst to get on the right creative track. I like to make a two column list and combine cool words at random, in hopes of striking something exciting. Here is a short list of a few I noticed in the magazines sitting on my desk (and my thoughts on what they could refer to):

Away with Words (maybe for a publisher?)
Under Statements (minimalist clothing line)
Mind Field (think tank or angel fund)
Sharpsuiter (lame prom-type clothing line)
Her Friend the Bandit (versatile…could be clothing, or maybe a hipster joint)
Elements and Gravity (probably for a jewelry line OR cosmetics)

Some fun ones — if you look for long at all you are bound to find something amazing. Of course it may be perfect for a project you aren’t even working on, but it’s always good to keep a running list. I have the PERFECT name for a bar if I ever decide to start one (I’m not telling). Anyway, it’s an idea, hopefully it helps out!

(I realize there are elements of creative thievery at work here. In a way, you are harvesting another person’s creativity for your own benefit, but I don’t think there are any trace elements of plagiarism at work. In most cases, the phrases or words implemented by the writer are common, and are structures you would have come across eventually, either in conversation or everyday life etc. People may disagree, but I think this is a safe technique.)

ISO50 Playlist 7

Posted by ISO50

Cover by S.Hansen


ISO50 Playlist #7 is now available for your listening pleasure. This time around Aarnio (Jakub’s alter-ego) does the honors and it’s a little out of hand.

So sit back and enjoy… And if you like what you hear, let us know in the comments.

ISO50 Playlist 7 – Compiled By Aarnio

Get the Flash Player to see the wordTube Media Player.


Track Listing:
Black To Comm – Trapez
Paul White – Highlife
Beach House – Norway
Juana Molina – Un Dia
Lone – Karen Loves Kate
Pogo – Alice
Grizzly Bear – Cheerleader (Neon Indian ‘Studio 6669′ Remix)
Little Dragon – Feather
Beach Fossils – Daydream
Caribou – Schedules and Fares
The Mercury Program – Stand & Sing
Arovane – Seaside
Boards Of Canada – Kaini Industries (Bibio cover)
Kurt Vile – My Best Friends (Don’t Even Pass This)
Cocteau Twins – Lorelei
Peter Broderick & Machinefabriek – Homecoming
A Setting Sun – Raspberry
Brock Van Wey/BVDUB – Lest You Forget
High Wolf – Don’t Fuck With The Tropics
Lusine – Cirrus
Studio – Radio Edit

ISO50 on Hype Machine

Posted by Jakub


If you haven’t already been on Hype Machine then today might be a good day to jump on and check it out. It’s a stream of select blogs and the music that is being posted on them. The ISO50 blog stream is located here and today we have one of the popular song (Matthew Dear’s remix of The xx) on the charts. The standings only last 14 more hours so click here on the heart and help us vote it up if you’re a member. Also be sure to check out all the other blogs on there, always a lot of great music coming up on there.

AllienApparat+Geist+WagonChrist+Bonobo

Posted by Jakub


I have a couple of staple electronic acts to share with you today. Apparat’s collaboration with Ellen Allien which during its release was the pinnacle of that epic synth techno trying to be pop which others like Josh Holden, Superpitcher, and Nathan Fake also made a name for themselves.

Morgan Geist who you might know from working with Junior Boys and Metro Area puts together dreamy synth melody that I want to hear Erlend Oye sing over.

You probably remember this Luke Vibert project called Wagon Christ, it was the most catchy thing you’ll hear from Luke Vibert that was accepted by the mainstream, I remember going to lounges and hearing it everywhere I went.

NEW BONOBO! just came out in December, I thought this track was a real stand out on his new EP Blur, it has this Four Tet meets Zero 7 feel, he is really sticking to his guns on his sound, I admire that.

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Naive: Modernism and Folklore

Posted by Alex





If you’re a fan of the 60′s style illustrations I’m fond of posting sometimes, you will love this book: Naïve: Modernism and Folklore in Contemporary Graphic Design. I picked it up the other day to assist me in an illustration project I’m working on now (more on that later). It’s been especially great for sourcing inspiration about color palettes. Could use a little more text though (there isn’t a word in there). There are a lot of familiar favorites inside (was nice to see Siggi Odds make an appearance), and also a ton of artists I had never seen before. Highly recommended if you’re on an illustration kick.

Naïve documents the extraordinary renaissance of Classic Modernism, from the 1940s to 1960s, in contemporary graphic design. This compilation introduces a new wave of young designers who are rediscovering the stylistic elements reminiscent of classic graphic design such as silkscreen printing, classical typography, hand lettering, woodcutting and folk art and integrating them into their work. [Link]