Thursday, November 27, 2008


Happy Thanksgiving, Too Poppers.

Best news I've seen all day: is having a hell of a saletomorrow now on their top 50 MP3 albums. Five bucks for several on my "to-get" list: Raveonettes, Fleet Foxes, She & Him, Dr. Dog, and Ra Ra Riot, plus favorites by Mates of State, R.E.M., Nada Surf, Radiohead, Coldplay, and Mariah Carey.

Man, I just can't wait to hear that new Mariah Carey.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

We Forward in This Generation Triumphantly

RED(WIRE)RED(WIRE) is a new digital magazine (what the hell does that even mean these days) that will feature exclusive songs and will ultimately benefit HIV-infected Africans. The nice thing about this venture - aside from the obvious good it's trying to do - is that it seems the songs will not be throwaways from third-rate artists.

U2, Coldplay, the Killers, the Dixie Chicks, John Legend, R.E.M. and Bob Dylan are on board for the initiative, which is an outgrowth of the Bono-reared activist organization (RED).

For $5, users will receive a new issue of RED(WIRE) every Wednesday, featuring an exclusive song from a major artist, a song from an artist (RED) aims to showcase, a multimedia piece that could encompass video or photography and a look at how proceeds are directly benefiting Africans in need. The materials will be downloaded to a custom player and automatically loaded into iTunes.
I don't know exactly what it means that it will be downloaded to a custom player and into iTunes (DRM-crippled?), but this thing has potential. The other feature is that you can forward two free issues to friends and if they join, you'll end up reaping some rewards from that.

Oh, and not mentioned are a couple tunes of Elvis Costello and the Police jamming. Good work!


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Are We Human or Are We Dancer?

The Killers - Day and AgeFind out why when Killers' guitarist Dave Keuning recently met Paul McCartney it "was probably the weirdest thing [he'd] ever seen in [his] life." Alice Cooper has a minor role in this encounter.

Day and Age, the Killers' third album, is out today. Download it now and enjoy.

Perfect Endlessness

Matt Pond PA - The FreeepIn honor of Thanksgiving - so they say - Matt Pond PA is giving away a free EP. It's called The Freeep - not a typo.

1. Hearts and Minds
2. Our Braided Lives

3. #5

4. One and Only

5. Imperfect
6. #3

7. First Light

8. Amazing Life

9. #1
Download each song here or click here for the full EP. And a Happy Thanksgiving to you, Matt.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Like a Serenade of Sound

Coldplay - Prospekt's MarchColdplay's new EP Prospekt's March is now out.

Six tracks are leftovers from the Brian Eno-produced "Vida" sessions, many of which make noticeable, if not exactly terrifying, departures from the band's swelling rockery. "Life in Technicolor ii" (which is a song, Chris Martin cracks on the band's Web page) gets words, "Glass of Water" is unusually bombastic, and "Rainy Day" sports a jittery electro beat in the vein of U2's "Zooropa."
I don't get the collaboration with Jay-Z, but I guess everybody needs a gimmick. I actually quite enjoy Viva La Vida - especially the title track and Strawberry Swing - so I'll likely pick this up as well.

Did I Tell You I Need You?

In promoting his new Fireman album (out tomorrow in the states), Paul McCartney provided an update on when The Beatles' catalog(ue) might hit iTunes:

"We are very for it, we've been pushing it. But there are a couple of sticking points, I understand. So the last word I got back was that it had stalled, the whole process.

"They [EMI] want something we're not prepared to give them. Hey, sounds like the music business.

"It's between EMI and The Beatles. What else is new."
Right, so, in the meantime, just rip those crappy-sounding CDs you already have and get by for a while.

Update: Here's a decent write-up of the situation at Apple 2.0. I'd have the agree that the window is rapidly passing for the digital Beatles to be a huge success unless they just knock it out of the park with marketing, extras, etc. I think most casual fans already have the songs they want ripped from CD's or "borrowed" from friends.

I've Waited So Long recently spoke with Fountains of Wayne's Adam Schlesinger to get a progress report on the next FOW album:

"We still have a ways to go, but we have eight songs that are relatively close to complete now. We're looking to regroup after the New Year and do the second batch," Schlesinger tells "I think we're trying some different things on this record, but we're still the same band, to me. It's kind of too early to say what direction it's going to as a whole."
I hope doing "different things" means getting away from the Stacy's Mom FOW and back to the Troubled Times FOW - or at least finding the right balance of the two. The last album faded fast for me because it seemed too gimmicky.

He also reported he's working on a new Ivy album as well. It'll be a long while before that one's out, though.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

I Just Believe In Me

People can finally rest easy and breath now that the vatican has forgiven John Lennon for his "more popular than Jesus" remark over 40 years ago. Phew, I was holding my breath.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

There Is Nothing Wrong With the Music Business

Music biz innovator Ian Rogers gave a fascinating keynote address at the GRAMMY Northwest MusicTech Summit a couple of weeks ago about the need for the music industry to adapt to the new world. It's a great read for those of us on the fringe as well as any of you who make a living in the music business.

I’d like to challenge you to consider a different perspective, IMHO the only perspectives that matter, that of the artist and the fan.
Nutty concept. In the address, Rogers provides some results to the David Byrne/Brian Eno experiment we told you about a couple of months ago.

via BoingBoing

If You Want to Kiss the Sky

"The president of the company is singing better than ever and the tracks are wildly innovative. I would never have thought things would have gone this way. I believe, well, rock 'n' roll has been reinvented one more time."
Hmm, I wonder who DL could possibly be talking about...

Don't Dream It's Over

Neil Finn follows up his 2001 live album 7 Worlds Collide in similar form in the studio by convening with part of Radiohead, all of Wilco, Johnny Marr, son Liam, and others. They'll gather in New Zealand over the holidays to record.

The amount of talent in that one studio will be jaw-dropping. As a bonus, all proceeds go to charity. Stunning.

Look At Him Working

I'm starting to worry about Paul McCartney. First he wants to release a long-lost Beatles moment, now he's spilling the beans about the true origins of Eleanor Rigby.

What's it called when you start giving everything away before you die?

Seasons Flying Past Til They Blur

NPR's All Songs Considered is quickly becoming a favorite resources. Yes, I'm definitely aging. They've posted their annual listener poll have have quite a few of the expected nominees:

You can also write-in a favorite from the year, as I did, here. Results will be posted in early December.

Let's Do The Things We Normally Do

Dido - Safe Trip HomeI've read several reviews of Dido's first new album in five years: Safe Trip Home. Using my highly scientific aggregating skills, here is my official review without hearing a note from the album:

Safe Trip Home is Dido at her Didoest: boring and forgettable yet remarkably likable and pleasant.

So there you go. I know ... impressive. It's a trade secret so don't even ask. I'm not ranked in the top million on Technorati for nothing!

Safe Trip Home is safely available today at your favorite digital outlet. Evidently, the genius of Jon Brion and Brian Eno can only do so much to make her any more interesting.

Sunday, November 16, 2008


Paul McCartney is lobbying for a legendary unreleased Beatles "tune" to be released, but considering the others vetoed its inclusion on the comprehensive Anthology series, I'm not too hopeful. Carnival of Light is a 14-minute experimental piece the boys recorded in 1967.

It reportedly includes distorted guitar, organ sounds, gargling and shouts of "Barcelona!" and "Are you all right?" from McCartney and John Lennon.
I appreciate efforts to release every last note the Beatles ever recorded, so let's make this a two-fer and release it with the mythical 27-minute version of Helter Skelter.


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

I Can't Shut Off This Stereo

All Of Us In Our NightThis just in from Modern Skirts (my inbox is hopping today!):

1. The new record - All Of Us In Our Night - is available for purchase in hard copy directly from the band. Any other copy is false and treasonous.

2. The album will be released nationally on January 20th, 2009, distributed across the country courtesy of Redeye Distribution.

3. At this time you can find the record on iTunes, eMusic, or any other online digital music purveyor with an uppercase second letter.

4. Until that point, the album is for sale to the true patriots only at Modern Skirts shows across this great land.
I don't find it yet on the "online digital music purveyor[s]." It's a mystery. Typo? Soon please? Check out tour dates - heavy in the native Georgia - and tunes streaming at TheirSpace.

Let It Flow

Roger Joseph Manning Jr. - Catnip DynamiteThis just in from Mr. Willie Wisely:

Many of you are big fans of Roger Joseph Manning Jr. (Jellyfish, Imperial Drag, Moog Cookbook, TV Eyes, also Beck, Air, Morrissey, Glen Campbell, Cheap Trick and more).

Roger has a new record coming out on Oglio Records, home to my latest release "Wisely". As his label-mate, I've been invited to welcome him to Oglio, in a sort of "Rush Week" gesture, with an artist-on-artist video interview (aka: a Paddling).

Do you have a question you'd like me to ask our favorite songwriter/keyboardist wiz. Email it to me and I'll try to slip it into the punch.

Dig Roger's forthcoming album, streaming here:
It's been a bit less than a year since Catnip Dynamite was released in Japan. This is indeed great news for all of you unwilling/unable to pay import prices. A release date is unclear at this point, but I'll keep digging. It also appears the track list is a bit different and longer than the Japan-only release. Sweet.

Wisely's email address - can't wait to read/hear the interview.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Fit So Well Into Your Plans

Someone uncovered the Japan-only video for Fountains of Wayne's classic Trouble Times. Great tune.

Also noteworthy, Dar Williams covered the tune on her new album Promised Land. I prefer the original, but if you're into lady folksters, here you go.

FOW is playing a few acoustic shows in early January. Jon Auer (of Posies fame and composer of one of my favorite albums of the past several years) is joining them on the following dates:

January 14th - Bellingham, WA - Walton Theater
January 15th - Seattle, WA - Triple Door
January 16th - Portland - Wonder Ballroom
Here are the other dates sans Auer:
January 18th & 19th - SF - Cafe Du Nord
January 21st & 22nd - LA - Largo
January 23rd - San Juan Capistrano - Coach House
January 24th - San Diego - Anthology
More tour info here.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

It Goes On and On and On and On

According to, Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" is the number one downloaded catalog song of all time on iTunes. I just found that little tidbit interesting. You can thank me for putting the song in your head for the rest of the week later.

This reminds me of the Journey Escape video game for the Atari 2600. Ah, memories.

Friday, November 07, 2008

The Same Me That Stands Here Now

Evidently, Paul McCartney "stole the show" yesterday at the MTV Europe Music Awards where he was named Ultimate Legend.

"This is the man who invented my job," said U2 lead singer Bono, introducing McCartney.
Brilliant. After the well-received Memory Almost Full (by me at least) and his upcoming Fireman project, which looks to breathe some - well - fire into his career, perhaps it should have been the Ultimate Living Legend award. Congrats, Macca.

Totally Awesome

The Pop Project t-shirtThe Pop Project, whose Stars of Stage and Screen is currently competing for my fave album of the year (yes, even in a year with a new Matthew Sweet release), has a spiffy new shirt that I must purchase for obvious reasons - therefore you must purchase. There's some sort of gift-giving occasion coming up I believe. Forgive the picture with the booblies. It's the only one they have and it makes me feel funny and tingly.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

I've Paid My Dues

Queen - News of the WorldQueen's News of the World is dirt cheap at Amazon MP3: $1.99! Worth it just to get delicious digital copies of We Will Rock You and We Are the Champions to play during your favorite sports competition on television.

While digital supplies last!

What's It Going to Do, Vanish?

Oasis - I'm Outta TimeThis week, Oasis released the new trippy-lite video to their new single I'm Outta Time, a classic Oasis ballad that might possibly be Liam's best songwriting contribution to the band's catalog. It's certainly a highlight of Dig Out Your Soul, which I obviously need to spend more time with.

The single for I'm Outta Time is out in the UK on 12/1.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Wondering Where You've Been

The Smithereens sent around an update via TheirSpace detailing upcoming projects. Wow!

JANUARY 27TH, 2009
This is the live video counterpart (A 5-camera shoot) to our recently-released CD The Smithereens Live in Concert, which was recorded at our old stomping grounds, The Court Tavern, in New Brunswick, NJ.

MEET THE SMITHEREENS/B-SIDES THE BEATLES - 12" Audiophile Vinyl 2-Disc Gatefold Deluxe LPs Release (KOCH)
This is both of our two recent BEATLES TRIBUTE CDs in 12" Audiophile Vinyl packaged together in one collectible fold out/gatefold sleeve/package, and there is also talk that comic legend Jack Davis (MAD MAGAZINE & EVERYTHING ELSE!) might be personally signing/autographing the "B-SIDES" cover he did for us.

MARCH 24TH, 2009
A brand-new Smithereens original album/CD (the first all-new original compositions/recordings studio CD in 10 years!) (KOCH) This is being written in now and will be recorded in New Jersey in December 2008.

MAY 5TH, 2009
This is our take/interpretation of one of our favorite albums by one of our favorite bands ever, The Who, in celebration of the 40th Anniversary of its original release in 1969. We are doing a one-disc abbreviated "Live At Leeds"-styled version of "Tommy.
Regarding the new studio album, it's about f-ing time! Enough with the tributes and live albums - well, keep 'em coming as long as they don't interfere with new stupid albums!

We All Want to Change the World

Please vote today.

Find your polling place here.

Wait as long as it takes.

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Thank you.

Monday, November 03, 2008

You Know I Work All Day

Who knew that by "disassembling the sampled amplitudes into the original frequencies using Fourier transforms," you could solve the mystery of the opening chord of A Hard Day's Night. I do that shit every day.

Math rocks.

via 'gum

It Seems They Cannot Leave Their Dream teases fans of the original Genesis line-up today.

Keep the dream alive, poppers.

Because They Took Channel 23 Off the Air Last Night

Matthew Sweet superfan and fairly frequent Too Poppy commentator Dan has established a new Matthew Sweet message board. As a decidedly old school web tool, I still find message boards to be a great source of information as well as a great place to commiserate with fellow fanatics; and I've missed the official Sweet forum since he updated his site and eliminated it (although it was overrun with porn spam anyway.)

Nice work. Thanks, Dan! Now join up!

UPDATE: Goldenfiddlr shared a great video dug up by Addicted to Vinyl of Matthew's network television debut: Girlfriend on Letterman! Awesome.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

I Tried My Best To Leave This All On Your Machine

The on again/off again second album from The Postal Service seems to be back on - somewhat. There are 7 1/2 songs completed and they're targeting the end of '09. I guess it's better than "not likely in this decade".