Wednesday, April 30, 2008

If You Love Me, Won't You Let Me Know?

In a surprising display of self recognition, Coldplay, upon realizing nobody wants to buy their music anymore, is giving away their new single Violet Hill free for one week.

I kid, I kid. Obviously there's a bit of demand for Apple's daddy's music considering 600k have already downloaded the damn thing. Tonight I'll make it 600,001. Can't be as bad as Fix You, right? Right?!

lyric source

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Out of Dead Air

Dr. Dorian needs you, and do you really want to disappoint him? Zach Braff of Scrubs and toilet paper ad fame is directing a new video for Jay Clifford (formerly of Jump Little Children.)

I came up with this idea to make a music video by cutting together clips of people from all over the world singing the song and shooting the video themselves as though it were their own song.
Uh, ok. You can go to a special website to download the tune and upload your video. Download the tune? Free? Yes. Free. Free so you can make a video out of it, not free so you can enjoy it. Tune is ok. Sounds like exit music for Men in Trees or something, but that's his thing and that's cool.

MP3: Jay Clifford - Know When to Walk Away (click Get the Song, via)

For Scrubs fans, Braff said there will be another season, but did not divulge any further information.

lyric source

Sunday, April 27, 2008

I stand my earth Me here in body

The Charlatans (aka The Charlatans U.K. :-) release their new single, The Misbegotten, on May 5th for CD, 7" vinyl and download (yay). Following on May 12th is their latest album, You Cross My Path. Check out the new song on iLike. Starts off a little to dance mix-y for me, but it finishes more classicly Charlatans. Also check out the video for Oh! Vanity which is very good.

Charlatans - You Cross My PathIf you haven't checked out their last couple of albums, they're worth it.

UPDATE (from 2poppy): The full-length album You Cross My Path is still freely available digitally courtesy of XFM. The cover art has changed since we first reported this (the original cover art was for the single, not the album of the same name.) It's got a very cool New Ordery, New Wavey vibe to it. I'm enjoying it.

For you plastic poppers, pre-order the import here. It is not clear whether it will be available stateside, which is a crying shame.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Sometimes I Can't Remember

Big Blue BallWow. This one has slipped by me for over 15 years. In the early 90s, Peter Gabriel convened a varied group of musicians to record a truly global musical effort. It appears Big Blue Ball will finally see the light of day on 5/24 for vinyl and 6/27 on CD. I'm hoping for a digital release as well, but I can't seem to find anything on that. The first single is on iTunes so that's a good sign.

I learned about this from World Party. Karl Wallinger was involved in this project, along with other greats like Tim Finn, Joseph Arthur, Sinead O'Connor, and Vernon Reid. Holy crap, this should be cool.

Learn more here and here
Download Whole Thing here
Pre-order vinyl and CD here

lyric source

I Ain't Got a Thing to Prove to You

Weezer - Pork and BeansWeezer is back and Weezer is rocking. Weezer's "Blue Album" will always be their high point imho, but judging from their new single Pork and Beans, they still have a bit of fun to share.


New album out 6/24, and it's red. Hurts my eyes.

lyric source

Let's Stay in Bed, Baby

From Bubblegum to Sky - A Soft KillOn 6/3, From Bubblegum to Sky releases (digitally and vinylly) their (his) third full-length album called A Soft Kill. FBTS = Mario Hernandez and he has some issues:

A Soft Kill brings to mind the concept of the vices people use to kill themselves slowly. Not a murder, but a soft kill. Feelings we’ve all felt are wrapped in pristine pop melodies, sandpaper-y guitars and a vocal style dictated by the radio programs of second generation pop songs and high voiced singers that Hernandez listened to before departing Japan for America at the age of 12.
Right. Well, at least it sounds cheery. Check out the MP3 below and see if you agree with me and hear his vocal resemblance to Sean Lennon.


MP3: Bubblegum to Sky - Even the Sunbeams (via Fanatic)

lyric source

You're Hanging On

Ben Folds will be releasing his next album in September. It's going to have songs on it. It's going to be called something. You did not hear it here first.

lyric source

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Speaks to Me of Comfort

I've really softened on Sarah McLachlan these past few years. Hmm, ok, maybe that's not the best turn of a phrase. Fumbling Towards Ecstasy remains a favorite album of mine and a creative zenith of her career (with Surfacing being a worthy commercial high point). Her last studio album had its moments (Stupid, Train Wreck,) but didn't really grab me like her previous work.

Nonetheless, I will likely pick up her upcoming compilation Rarities, B-Sides and Other Stuff, Vol. 2, an uninspired title to match some of the lackluster covers and duets featured on the album. For example, ten years ago I never would have imagined that Marilyn Manson's actress girlfriend's version of the Beatles' Blackbird would blow away Sarah's, but indeed, Evan Rachel Wood's stunning cover from Across the Universe is a high point of the movie and soundtrack. Many of the tunes are available elsewhere, but I guess it's nice to have it all in one place for us completists. If anything, though, the compilation is worth it for her version of Rainbow Connection alone, just because it's such a damn fine tune. Nevermind - found the link for that one too!

Pre-order here (due for release next week)
Sample here

lyric source

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

That Is What My Youth Was For

In this month's esquire, Chuck Klosterman has an interesting and logical theory about why people don't buy albums anymore:

People stopped buying albums because they wanted the fucking money.
lyric source

We Know You Well

Powerpopaholic had a great review recently that caught my eye (9/10), comparing an artist's style to Jason Falkner, Paul McCartney, Elton John, Beatles, Elliott Smith, Nick Drake, and Ben Folds. Do you really need to know more after hearing those comparisons?

Adrian BourgeoisThe review is on Adrian Bourgeois' self-titled debut album and judging from the samples on HisSpace, those comparisons are spot-on and worthy of further investigation. The question when you wear your heroes on your sleeve like this is whether or not your own musical identity comes through. I'll have to listen to the full album to reach my own conclusions.

I know. You just can't wait to hear what I think. Find out for yourself. Your in-home record store has it available for download right now. Click here. Ain't that a dandy?

lyric source

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

A Million Bright Ambassadors of Morning

Pink FloydThere are only a few artists that I consider default music. Some days, I don't feel like taking a risk by listening to something new. It's much like comfort food - sometimes you want the spaghetti because it's easy and it makes you feel good.

Pink Floyd = spaghetti default music

If you have a paltry Floyd collection, I have great news. Today, iTunes released Pink Floyd's box set Oh By the Way, which contains all the studio albums for only $139.99 (dirt cheap, my dear poppies.) Sure, you can buy the discs, but it's so much frickin' easier to download it because you know it'll end up on your iPod anyway.

Oh, by the way, if you just want to download my favorite Floyd album, here you go.

(lyric source)

Monday, April 21, 2008

My Imaginary Friend

It's not everyday you receive a package from Japan. But today, Roger Joseph Manning's follow-up to the awesome Solid State Warrior (Land of Pure Imagination stateside) arrived. While I'm still listening to it as I write, it is AWESOME so far. Everything I expected, hoped for, and more! If you liked Solid State Warrior, you'll like Catnip Dynamite. That's a TooPoppy Guarantee™. Rock, Pop, Power Pop, Retro - it's all there.

Order from Not Lame today!


I Can See It In Your Eyes

Shake Some Action! - Sunny Days AheadAfter getting my first dose of sunburn this season, it seems apropos to tell you about Shake Some Action!'s upcoming album Sunny Days Ahead. In Des Moines, we've been up to our gills in rain so I hope they're right.

Of course, I need the sun right now, not in mid-June when the album will be released. Nonetheless, here is a mild dose of the good stuff on an otherwise quite nice Monday morning: an MP3 of Looking for Someone. Damned if they don't sound like an Americanized La's.

Their previous self-titled album is available at iTunes and Not Lame, naturally. Not Lame keeps comparing it to Matthew Sweet so I may just have to explore SSA! a bit more.

Official Site

MP3: Shake Some Action! - Looking for Someone

Friday, April 18, 2008

He Could Play a Guitar Just Like Ringin' a Bell


In a shocking revelation that turns a half century of rock-and-roll history on its head, legendary musician Chuck Berry recalled Monday...

This Is the Definition of My Life

Record Store DayTomorrow is Record Store Day. Why? Well, it's obvious, isn't it? Read today's New York Times article to be reminded that record stores are truly a relic. That is not meant to be disrespectful or cynical about the role record stores play(ed). Some of my best memories as a teenager involve something to do with record stores. My brother and I would spend hours every single week hitting record stores in search of new discoveries or import singles or an excuse to blow our zoo paychecks.

Today, though, I struggle to find the need for a record store. In Des Moines, we have two decent record stores: Zzz Records and Nebraska's Homer's Music, but I don't find a lot of reasons to go. True, I don't have as much free time as I once did, or as much money to budget toward music, but when everything I could possibly want is online ... well, you get it.

Here's what High Fidelity author Nick Hornby has to say about record stores:

Who's going to tell you to stop listening to that and start listening to this? Go ahead and save yourself a couple of quid. The saving will cost you a career, a set of cool friends, musical taste and, eventually, your soul. Record stores can't save your life. But they can give you a better one.
Sure, it's an extreme sentiment, but with that said, I'm going to make every effort to hit a record store tomorrow and maybe bring my kids. Someday they'll be able to say that there used to be brick and mortar stores that actually sold music.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

I Like Your Style

At first, I was going to post about She & Him strictly because I find Zooey Deschanel irresistible. Then I read this NY Times article and listened to their free download and found it, well, irresistible. Imagine that - posting about music on a music blog because of the music. I'm nothing if not an innovator.

Now she is showcasing her harmony-loving side in a new band, She & Him, with the singer-songwriter-guitarist M. Ward. Their debut album, “Volume One,” is a collection of vintage-sounding country-tinged songs written mostly by Ms. Deschanel and produced by Mr. Ward. Released last month on the indie label Merge Records, it has received surprised acclaim from magazines and blogs alike.
Her voice is uber-cool and M. Ward's music is top-shelf, even with some Beatley vibes to boot. I feel guilty listening to this with headphones on a crappy computer because it would be much better with headphones on a crappy turntable. Her voice is uniquely mid-20th century and his music is decidedly worthy of airplay in the oughts. It's not my normal taste, but what fun is music if we can't push our own limits! I'll be examining She & Him a bit more, this time for the music.

Official Site
Download Volume One

MP3: She & Him - Why Do You Let Me Stay Here (via New York Times)

Can I Have a Little More?

The Beatles - All Together Now DVD - AWESOME COVER!The Beatles are releasing a DVD chronicling the production of Love, their extravagant Vegas collaboration with Cirque du Soleil, which spawned a pretty cool mash-up compilation that is quite necessary for both completists and casual fans.

'All Together Now' faithfully recounts how the "LOVE" project came into being, borne from the personal friendship between George Harrison and Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Laliberte. George saw how the twin talents of Cirque's artistry and The Beatles' music could be fused into something new and totally original.
It's a feature-length documentary and will be released June 24. Awesome cover. 8)

Pre-order here.

Gonna Take a Ride Across the Moon, You and Me

Today, Neil Diamond announced his 2008 tour. Sweet! ... uh ... Caroline.

Here's the Midwest swing in July:

7/19/2008 St Paul, MN - Tickets on sale April 28th / Presale April 21st
7/22/2008 Sioux City, IA - Tickets on sale April 28th / Presale April 21st
7/24/2008 Omaha, NE - Tickets on sale April 28th / Presale April 21st
7/26/2008 Chicago, IL - Tickets on sale April 28th / Presale April 21st
7/29/2008 Indianapolis, IN - Tickets on sale April 28th / Presale April 21st
7/31/2008 Auburn Hills, MI - Tickets on sale April 28th / Presale April 21st
All dates here.

Growing up on Neil, I can't help but want to go - really bad! I recently sang Heartlight karaoke on a cruise so I feel I should have a chance to sing it along with the man.

Broken Bits of You and Me

The Smithereens have announced a live album:

"Live In Concert - Greatest Hits and More" features music from The Smithereens' four-night stint at The Court in New Brunswick, New Jersey, a musical home away from home for the group, which took place January 30th - February 2nd, 2008. The band, all hailing from surrounding Central Jersey towns, played the Court Tavern often at the start of their career.
If anything, The Smithereens have always been a stellar live band. I've seen them a couple times and they still remain near the top of the list - it's always a fun show. It'll be interesting to see if their energy translates to a recording.

Tracklist includes a couple new songs and a cover of a Buddy Holly tune:
1. Wall of Sleep
2. Drown in My Own Tears
3. Miles from Nowhere
4. Room Without a View
5. Only a Memory
6. House We Used to Live In
7. Spellbound
8. Since You Went Away
9. She's Got a Way
10. Yesterday Girl
11. Well Alright
12. Especially For You
13. Any Other Way
14. Top of the Pops
15. Time and Time Again
16. Blood And Roses
17. A Girl Like You
18. Batman
And yes, that is a cover of the Batman theme. The album is available May 27.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Upwards to the Vanguard

I gotta hand it to the Des Moines Music Coalition. Last year, they set off to organize the 80/35 music festival, a big-time fest in the city where two major interstates meet. Despite being well funded, I was skeptical they could land a great national act. I was wrong.

Today, DMMC announced that the Flaming Lips and the Roots will headline the two-day, 40+ band festival in downtown Des Moines July 4-5 - a nice one-two punch that will appeal to many music fans. Just to see the Lips on my home turf is worth the price of admission:

A limited number of pre-sale tickets go on sale Friday, April 18 for the discounted price of $40 for a two-day pass at General ticket sales begin May 1st with two-day passes at $50 and single day passes at $30. Day of show pricing is $35 for single day or $60 for a two-day pass.
Seems like the discounted ticket is the way to go and you can count on my purchase. More bands to be announced so stay tuned!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Pleasure Is Mine


Sorry, but this is worthy of yelling. Matthew Sweet has FINALLY released details about his new album Sunshine Lies:

“When it rocks, it rocks hard with lots of attitude,” Sweet told CMJ, speaking about the upcoming album. “Then again, it's really very melodic overall, with plenty of dreamy jangling psychedelic poppiness.”
Ah, poppiness - sweet sweet poppiness.

The album will be released July 22 on Shout! Factory. Quite honestly, that is just too damn long to wait. In the meantime, you can preview the new song Badass at HisSpace, which has been there for a long time (and rumors of a new album even longer.)
Sunshine Lies tracklisting:
1. Byrdgirl

2. Flying

3. Feel Fear

4. Sunrise Eyes

5. Sunshine Lies

6. Badass

7. Daisychain

8. Stick It

9. Meltdown

10. Back Of My Mind

11. Burn Through Love

12. Pleasure Is Mine

13. Time Machine

14. Let's Love

15. When You're Gone

16. Could You Need Me?
I have no doubt that this will make my summer! Swoon!

Yes, I just swooned.
The vibrant Sunshine Lies will certainly revolve in your mind long after each listening.

UPDATE: Warren just noticed a difference in the tracklisting above and the Paste article I originally linked it to. Paste's tracklisting is below. The above tracklist is from the CMJ article (I've since fixed the link.) I prefer 16 songs over 13 so I guess we'll have to wait from Mr. Sweet to clarify.
Sunshine Lies tracklisting:
1. Time Machine
2. Room To Rock
3. Byrdgirl
4. Flying
5. Feel Fear
6. Let’s Love
7. Sunshine Lies
8. Pleasure Is Mine
9. Daisychain
10. Sunrise Eyes
11. Around You Now
12. Burn Through Love
13. Back Of My Mind

Tuesday, April 08, 2008


Not LameI should do a count of how many times I've said something like this on Too Poppy: "Not Lame does it again!"

In its undying quest to put cool music in our hands, Bruce and the rest of the Not Lame team have compiled 22 choice tracks from their top picks for a free download! Bryan Scary! Brandon Wilde! P. Hux! Michael Carpenter! Andy Bopp (of Myracle Brah)! And more.

Get the full track list and the links to download each track here. For the sake of convenience, I've zipped the whole compilation as well, which you can download here.

Happy popping and thanks Not Lame!

You Want a Taste of What's Going Around

Brandon Wilde - Songs from the Deep SleepIt sounds like Brandon Wilde's Songs from the Deep Sleep is one to consider. Powerpopaholic drops names like Paul McCartney, Elliott Smith, David Grahame, and Radiohead in their 8/10 review of the album. As if you need any more to sweeten the deal, Brandon's group Thisway has had a WB-style hit (link to video) with Crawl, which is a great tune.

Official Site
Download via iTunes

Monday, April 07, 2008

You Look Like a Monkey

Happy birthday to us.
Happy birthday to us.
Happy birthday dear Too Poppy.
Happy birthday to us.

3 Years Old! May we have many more.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Hello, It's So Nice to See Your Face Again

Gross Domestic ProductTomorrow is the big day in Des Moines for Gross Domestic Product, a multi-genre local music showcase sponsored by the Des Moines Music Coalition that is not to be missed.

What: DMMC presents Gross Domestic Product
When: Friday, April 4, 2008
Doors: 5:30 p.m. Show: 6:00 - 1:30 a.m.
Where: Hotel Fort Des Moines, 1000 Walnut Street

Tickets: IowaTix $10 advance/$15 day of

Happy Hour: 5:30 - 7:30

After-party: Raccoon River Brewing Co.
The two big shows (that I'm most interested in) are Dirty Little Rabbits and Poison Control Center, who finish the evening in the Grand Ballroom. Most interestingly, DLR is a relatively new band with their roots in local and now international favorites Slipknot and is led by Stella Katsoudas, who has also performed (quite well btw) as Sister Soleil and Stella Soleil. More about their story here. I worked for the radio station mentioned in the article at the time we were pushing Sister Soleil and Slipknot so it's especially rewarding to see them in this interesting new band.

For the complete lineup, click here.

MP3: Poison Control Center - Thrill (via Des Moines Music Coalition - link takes you to a compilation of GDP artists)

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Look to the Heavens

Bryan Scary - Flight of the KnifeThe Not Lame blog continues to rave on and on about Bryan Scary. The latest is an interview with Scary.

Note: the new album Flight of the Knife, which Not Lame deemed a "good ear worm," is now available for purchase. To buy from the source of such praise, go here. To download from iTunes, go here. To read my meandering thoughts on his first album, go here. To download a delicious tune from the album, see below!

MP3: Bryan Scary & The Shredding Tears - The Zero Light (via Spinner)

Don't Get Any Big Ideas

Radiohead - Nude (single)You've likely read about it elsewhere, but for some reason I feel compelled to at least link to the details about Radiohead's new single Nude, with which you can remix and do other shit. Here are the "stems" you can download from iTunes:

String, FX, etc.
Full Single

Better come up with a cool DJ name before you're famous.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

I'm Not Alone, A Thousand Others Dropping

R.E.M. - AccelerateEverybody's talking about the new R.E.M. album Accelerate, which came out today. You don't want to be the only one who has yet to download it, do you?

Download here now to conform and be cool.

You Don't See, But You Hear

Matt Pond PA announced more tour dates - and even an Iowa date popped up:

Apr 4 - New York, NY - Fillmore @ Irving Plaza*
Apr 5 - Washington DC - American University (AU Students Only)
Apr 6 - Washington DC - 9:30 Club*
Apr 7 - Philadelphia, PA - World Cafe Live*
Apr 8 - Columbus, OH - The Basement
Apr 9 - Cincinnati, OH - 20th Cent. Theatre*
Apr 11 - Williamstown, MA - Williams College (WC Students Only)
Apr 12 - Wilkes-Barre, PA - Metropolis Cafe
Apr 14 - Atlanta, GA - The Loft*
Apr 15 - Orlando, FL - The Social*
Apr 16 - Gainesville, FL - The Atlantic
Apr 17 - Charlotte, NC - The Milestone Club
Apr 19 - New York, NY - peaceXpiece live from Central Park Bandshell (Afternoon show - 3pm set)
Apr 23 - Bloomington, IN - Dunn Meadow @ Indiana Univ - Free Show, OPEN TO PUBLIC
Apr 25 - Pittsburgh, PA - Diesel #
Apr 26 - Detroit, MI - Alvin’s #
Apr 28 - Toledo, OH - Frankie’s #
Apr 29 - Indianapolis, IN - Birdy’s #
Apr 30 - Grand Rapids, MI - Intersection
May 1 - Madison, WS - High Noon Saloon #
May 2 - Iowa City, IA - Picador #
May 3 - St. Louis, MO - The Bluebird #
May 5 - Nashville, TN - 3rd & Lindsley #
May 6 - Atlanta, GA - Eddie’s Attic #
May 7 - Greensboro, NC - Greene Street Club #
May 9 - Baltimore, MD - The Ottobar #

*w/ Carbon/Silicon
#w/ Pete Francis

Choose What You're Watching

Thenewno2 now has two new singles available for download via iTunes. Go here and here to grab them - I'm pretty sure they'll be worth your time and two bucks.

1. Another John Doe - from the soon coming album You Are Here.
2. Choose What You're Watching.

Looks like a new album is coming - excellent!

Reminder: this is George Harrison's son Dhani's band. Read more about thenewno2 here.