Wednesday, July 29, 2009

You Should Be Glad

Yes indeed! Wilco is coming to Iowa City October 1! Tix not on sale until August 28 so just chill.

I've Been Trying to Break Down for Years

X Levitation Cult - Happiness in HellThe latest from Joie Calio of Dada & X Levitation Cult:

i have 17 songs that i've written this year. i will be keeping most of them very stripped and acoustic. there will be a few that will be built up but will still have a far less aggressive sound than XLC.
XLC's debut Happiness is Hell is stellar collection of well-produced, no-nonsense rockers. Highly recommended: Morning Sickness, Habit Forming, Breaking My Rhymes in the Rain, Stupid Songs About Love.

Anything new from Calio is worthy of attention.

I Jump In My Car and Ride Ride Into Oblivion

Kenna is unique - new wavey, hip-hoppy, electronicky, and of course too poppy. He's had a miserable go of it in the record label world and it appears he's now doing the indie thing, which will probably serve him quite well. According to HisSpace, Land 2 Air Chronicle 1 - Imitation is Suicide EP will be released in September. Here's a video preview that is relatively useless unless you want to see what he looks like.

Highly recommended: Vexed and Glorious, Freetime, Baptized in Blacklight.

Time Has Gone Since I've Been With You

He's a simple man deserving of a simple post:

My next record is scheduled to come out early 2010.

Julian (Lennon)
Can't wait!


Be the envy of all your hipster friends - NPR helps you catch up with the year's best releases (so far) as chosen by listeners. C'mon, you don't want to be left out come 12/31 when you've only heard a fraction of what will make the cool lists this year!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

I Hope the Party Never Ends

Holy freakin' moly, look at this lineup for the Charlotte Pop Festival on September 24-26, 2009 -

The Posies | Roger Joseph Manning Jr. | The Spongetones | Pat DiNizio | Mike Viola | Myracle Brah | and so much more!

Tickets are $25 per day. Proceeds from Charlotte Pop Fest will benefit The Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason & Science. I have no idea what the hell that is, but it sounds like a good enough cause for me!

Charlotte is 3 hours from me. Anyone up for a road trip??!!??

Convinced of the Hex

The Flaming Lips - Songs From the Future Album EmbryonicAt digital stores today, The Flaming Lips' EP preview of the new album Embryonic. It's obviously titled Songs From the Future Album Embryonic.

Featuring these brand new tracks from the band's first studio album in over 3 years!
“Convinced of The Hex”
“The Impulse”
“Silver Trembling Hands”
Download now. New album this fall.

Monday, July 27, 2009

With Tangerine Trees And Marmalade Skys

One of the downsides of an all-digital music world is the lack of album art, liner notes, lyrics, and more. I'm old enough to remember good ol' vinyl records and their wonderful packaging. When CDs came along, they at least had booklets that mostly recreated the experience.

Sure, iTunes throws in an occasional PDF of stuff, but it pales in comparison. According to the Financial Times (via ZDNet), Apple is working with the four major record labels to launch an enhanced offering in September.

Instead of just a bunch of PDFs, they will include photos, lyrics, liner notes and possibly even videos. You'll be able to click on items that interest you and play songs directly from the content without having to load iTunes. Reminds me of a handful of old interactive CDs I have laying around from Sarah Maclachlan and others.

I certainly am interested in what they come up with. I really do miss the days of sitting down listening to a new album and thumbing through the booklet, looking up lyrics I couldn't decipher, photos, etc. If they can somehow recreate that experience electronically, I'm all for it.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Sometimes It's Hard, But You Get By

Thanks to a Facebook post from our friend Brandon Schott, I just learned Michael Penn has three new songs out as part of the Bollywood Hero soundtrack. "Untouchable", "Two Worlds", and "This Is The Life". That last one is definitely a keeper - classic Penn. Head on over to for a listen...

Friday, July 24, 2009

Try Again The Best You Can

"Julian Lennon is going to write music to go with lyrics dad John wrote in 1960s"

So reads the Internet headline connected with "bizarre" tabloid news via The Sun. If you actually read the story, the reality is a bit different:

Julian said: ... "If the time was right, if it felt right, then I would consider looking at the lyrics and maybe trying to work with them and write something."
IF, IF, CONSIDER, MAYBE, and TRYING do not equal IS! True journalism right there, friends.

Regardless, this would be frickin' awesome.

Thanks, JBro, aka DirtyPop!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Hear the Sound of Falling Love

The Raveonettes announced details about their new album this week.

"What strikes me is that more so than ever before the mood of the music and the subject of the lyrics are in extreme conflict with one another," says Foo. "Our past records have tended to sound like different perspectives of one controlling emotion, both sonically and thematically, almost like a drone. But this record is very much a collection of songs which each has their own individual emotion, energy and personality."
In and Out of Control is due out October 6. Reserve your tix to see them live. Also register at Vice Records to download a few free demos to give you a taste of the new album.

I Don't Deny What I'm Seeing

Thenewno2 debuted a new video this week for Yomp. See it here. Uncanny how much Dhani looks and sounds like his pop.

Download the debut full-length You Are Here via iTunes.

See How They Fly Like Lucy in the Sky

Earlier this week The Beatles released the "Opening Cinematic" to Rockband and it ... looks ... awesome.

View a higher quality version here. Don't forget to pre-order so you can get all the exclusive previews.

And He Told Us of His Life

Heinz Edelmann (Yellow Submarine Art Director)

Friday, July 17, 2009

You and Your Angelic Shout

Mogul = Bleu, Mike Viola, Roger Joseph Manning Jr., and Rooney.
Mogul performing Jellyfish's That is Why = stunning.

Thanks, @myhmphs!

It Crackles Underneath

Brandon Schott's new album DANDELION is out 9/22, but he is previewing a new track from it called Fire Season on HisSpace. Outstanding - smoldering, moody, unforgettable. Coupled with May the Sunrise Keep Us Warm, which debuted here first as part of his Homegrown Recordings series, it sure sounds like Brandon has a shot of topping the excellence of Golden State!

Can't wait for more.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Sing His Praises

Paul McCartney is on the verge of becoming a curmudgeon. I wasn't too impressed with his interview last night on Letterman. Lately he seems to swing back and forth between annoying goofball and crotchety old man. I'm sure he's tired of answering the same ol' questions, but Letterman handled him with respect, admiration, and humor. McCartney hardly reciprocated in kind.

That said, his performance on the marquee was well executed. He played Get Back and Sing the Changes on the show, but there was more to it than that:

Craig Ferguson's inevitable follow-up FTW!

As for this nonsense, cut it out. There's absolutely nothing controversial about a teleprompter.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

How Are You Going To Give It Up If You Ain't Got It?

Paste Magazine lives to see another day.

We Can Still Be Friends

Mates of State are just like us! Yes, poppers are people too.

It Got You This Far

Guster - Lost and Gone ForeverGuster released their classic Lost & Gone Forever a long ten years ago. Guster is celebrating this occasion by hitting the road and playing the album in its entirety.

10/28/09 - Charlotte, NC @ Neighborhood Theater...Tix / Facebook Event
10/29/09 - Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club /
Tix / Facebook Event
10/30/09 - Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club /
Tix / Facebook Event
10/31/09 - Boston, MA @ Orpheum Theater /
Tix / Facebook Event
11/04/09 - Cincinnati, OH @ Madison Theatre /
Tix / Facebook Event
11/05/09 - Cleveland, OH @ House of Blues /
Tix / Facebook Event
11/06/09 - Rochester, NY @ Armory /
Tix / Facebook Event
11/07/09 - Burlington, VT @ Higher Ground /
Tix / Facebook Event
11/27/09 - New York, NY @ Beacon Theater /
Tix / Facebook Event
Guster must have known there's a distinct possibility I'll be in DC when they're in DC. Guster is nice. Guster also provided some random facts about Lost & Gone Forever.
Produced by Steve Lillywhite, who was our #1, I Can't Believe He Said Yes, dream producer choice. We played Woodstock '99 right before the album came out, well before we were ready to play a show that big, and mere hours before people set the place on fire. The Barenaked Ladies liked the album and brought us on tour with them, thus doubling the size and Canadian-ness of our following. Karl Denson played sax on Fa Fa, one take, that was it. There were no drum sticks used on the album, only hand drums, and I said so in the liner notes -- Ryan would later make fun of me for including this detail in the album package. We recently found another band's album with the same cover photo of the boy throwing the big rock on the piano (first person to reply with the name of the photographer who took that photo gets two free tickets to the Rochester show). Paige from Phish played theremin on All the Way Up to Heaven. We almost didn't put Happier on the record. What You Wish For and Rainy Day were featured in the movie "Life as a House," which is about cancer. When we toured with Ben Folds in the summer of 2004 he made All the Way Up to Heaven sound so good with his piano chops we never played the song again after that.
Guster surprised me by admitting my favorite Happier almost didn't make the cut. Guster wants you to experience this great album and so do I - HERE.

Me gusta Guster.

See All Without Looking

First another Bleu post, now let's do it again with The Beatles!

Paul McCartney is doing Letterman tonight for the first time ever - interview and performance. Set the Tivos! Can't wait, though I hope Cheeky Geeky Macca stays home.

The Beatles - Box of VisionYesterday we talked about the upcoming remastered box sets. Well some enterprising folks have found a cool way to possibly squeeze another $80 out of you: The Box of Vision. Yes, it's a box for your new box set, people! Of course there's more to it than that: a LP-sized book with all the album art and a catalography. Catalography? Whatever. Looks cool for you Beatle completists. See more here. Thanks, Uncrate.

Can't Be That Bad

Two Bleu posts in a row? Sure, why not? It's his week after all. is offering a bonus EP with six songs not found on A Watched Pot. If you're not familiar with how works, all you have to do to download the tunes is tell at least five friends about it and/or pay what you want. I love this model.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Life is Full of Living

Bleu - A Watched PotToday marks the release of Bleu's long-awaited new album A Watched Pot. Download it from iTunes or Amazon, or get physical copies from Not Lame (w/bonus EP) or Newbury Comics (w/autograph).

He's playing with Roger Joseph Manning Jr., Mike Viola, and the Rooney rhythm section - collectively known as Mogul - tonight at Hotel Cafe in Hollywood! Those Hollywood bums have all the luck.

Here's what Roger said is on tap tonight:

The 4 songs I will be playing with the band are: That is Why, Sebrina Paste & Plato, The Land of Pure Imagination, and a song that Bleu and I recently wrote called Everything Is Fine.
Excuse me for awhile - I need to somehow lift my jaw from the floor.

To Lead a Better Life

Beatles Mono Box SetCheck out a snippet from the new making-of documentary included on the remastered Revolver CD coming out 9-9-09 here. Also, has created a clearinghouse page for all things Beatles merch here. There's supposed to be a snippet from the Sgt. Pepper's doc, but I've yet to find it.

Pre-order the stereo box set here.
Pre-order the limited edition mono box set here.

Pre-order the digital playlist here. Where? Nowhere.

Monday, July 13, 2009


Brandon Schott - Homegrown Recordings Vol. 6Brandon Schott - Homegrown Recordings
Vol. 6 - Simple Life (Too Poppy Acoustic Remix)

Special treats this month, Too Poppers - a remixed acoustic version of Simple Life and a glimpse of not only the sound of his new album but how Brandon recorded it as well. Where else can you get this? Look up "exclusive" for your answer.

"Welcome back, folks! This month's free offering is a special acoustic remix of SIMPLE LIFE created specifically for the Homegrown series. I cracked open the original SIMPLE LIFE session, pared it back and added a few new bells and whistles (including a backwards music box, glockenspiel and percussion). The original (and more rockin' version) can be found on GOLDEN STATE, now available on iTunes.

See you next month right here at for more exclusive content as we count down to the release of my 3rd LP, "DANDELION" - coming September 22, 2009. Until our paths cross again, much love to you..."

MP3: Brandon Schott - Simple Life (Too Poppy Acoustic Remix)
Video: Brandon Schott - May the Sunrise Keep Us Warm

All of Brandon Schott's singles and albums via iTunes
Brandon Schott - RELEASE (2003) via iTunes, Not Lame, CD Baby
Brandon Schott - Golden State (2007) via iTunes, Not Lame

Brandon Schott MySpace
Brandon Schott Official Site


Friday, July 10, 2009

Maybe This Is Something

Spiffy new video for Bleu's Come 'n Go from his upcoming album A Watched Pot out July 14. Nice work.

I Promise to Leave Before Your Mother Wakes Up in the Morning

Taking a cue from The Postal Service, Rostam Batmanglij of Vampire Weekend and Wes Miles of Ra Ra Riot have collaborated on a new synthy, dancey project called Discovery and the samples sound cool. Get it now at Amazon MP3 for a cheap 4 bucks. I'll download it this weekend myself and if it sucks I'll retract my recommendation!

Thursday, July 09, 2009

It Feels Good When I Stop

Joe Pernice - It Feels Good When I StopJoe Pernice (of the heady Pernice Brothers) is releasing a book. Judging by his lyrics, it will be awesome, a complete head-scratcher, or both. Pre-order it here. He's also releasing a soundtrack to go along with that book. Here you can pre-order it and receive a very limited edition poster of the CD/book cover. Hurry. July 27 is your deadline.

We Shine Like Potential on an Unimagined Day

Jon Auer - Songs From the Year of Our DemiseListen up, Dubuquers. You people in northeast Iowa will be treated to something special tonight. Given that I am 3+ hours away, have a day job, and am not the young buck I once was, I must live vicariously through you. Jon Auer has found a break in his tour of bigger cities with Fountains of Wayne to return to your fine city:

[T]he Silver Dollar recently announced that Jon Auer will make a special appearance at the Cantina, Thursday, July 9. Those who missed his previous show might want to get there early as anyone who witnessed it will surely be there on the ninth.
Evidently back in 06 he blew everyone away. Naturally. Enjoy the show for me.

Here are the other dates for his tour with FoW. And you must acquire his solo masterpiece Songs for the Year of Our Demise. It is my favorite album of the past five years. Favorite.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Money Can't Buy Me Love

Free Music! Free Music! Get your 20 free indie songs from the iTunes Facebook page. The link is in the left column.

I've never heard of 98% of the bands featured, but there is a choice track from the Eels. And hey, it's free. If you don't like any of the songs, you can delete them. Or whatever. It's your hard drive space - do what makes you happy.

We're All Different and Nothing's Universal

I was click-wheelin' through my collection this morning on the way to work looking for something different when I landed upon Ro Sham Bo. Let me take you back in time. The year is 1993. Grunge has not yet disrupted the growing popularity of power pop. Matthew Sweet's Altered Beast is in the record shops (remember those?) just a few rows down from Jellyfish's Spilt Milk.

Recently departed Jellyfish member Jason Falkner teams up with power pop royalty Jon Brion, Dan McCarroll and Buddy Judge to form The Grays. Their only album, Ro Sham Bo, is released in April 1994 and kicked off by the single The Very Best Years. Wow. This is power pop at it's ultimate best. Even 15 years later, this album is fresh, inventive and inspiring. It's also filled with kick-ass hooks. The album takes you on a roller coaster ride of melodic wonders.

Unfortunately, The Grays disbanded shortly thereafter and went their separate ways. I guess all good things have to come to an end eventually, but this was too quick. What is even sadder, Ro Sham Bo is long out of print. All you can get from iTunes is the music video of The Very Best Years. Amazon offers up a few physical copies but nothing to download. Hell, even YouTube won't let me embed the video for The Very Best Years on this post. This is one album that begs to be rediscovered.

If this isn't part of your collection, do yourself a favor and track down a copy today.

Monday, July 06, 2009


Bleu - A Watched PotNot Lame is offering a special deal with the purchase of Bleu's new album A Watched Pot:

[R]eceive a super cool, exclusive 3 song CD-R EP that contains the following songs:
1. Go (Acoustic)
2. Come N Go (Acoustic)
3. The Blame Game (A Watched Pot B-Side)
THIS IS A LIMITED OFFER and only good until August 15, 2009. You will, also, receive an another exclusive. An MP3 audio of an interview I am going to be doing with Sir Bleu next week.
Nice. Not Lame Guy Bruce Brodeen is soliciting questions from you for the interview. Just email him here ASAP.

Check out samples and pre-order right here from Not Lame. If he's not careful, he's going to have to change the name to Way Not Lame.

Hey Moon, Please Forget To Fall Down

Say it ain't so!! Panic At The Disco is breaking up!!! Just announced on their Facebook page:

Ryan Ross and Jon Walker will be leaving Panic at the Disco to embark on a musical excursion of their own. Though the four of us have made music together in the past, we’ve creatively evolved in different directions which has compromised what each of us want to personally achieve. Over the years, we have remained close and honest with each other, which helped us to realize that our goals were different and that parting ways is truly what is best for each of us. We are all excited for the future, you should be too.

-Ryan & Jon

Stay posted to the Panic site for updates on Ryan and Jon’s new project, as well as a message from Brendon and Spencer who will continue on as Panic At The Disco. All touring and album plans for Panic will continue as previously announced.

I'm so bummed!!!!! If you haven't yet picked up Pretty. Odd., do yourself a favor and get it now! One of my 2008 favorite albums!

Sunday, July 05, 2009

You Leave Your Smell Like An Alley Cat

The Beatles' former manager, Allen Klein, died today after suffering from Alzheimer's. He was 77.

Allen Klein wrestled his way into the Beatles' and was their controversial manager for a short period of time before they broke up. He also managed the Rolling Stones, Sam Cooke, Herman's Hermits, Bobby Darin and others. His independent ABKCO record company was unique in the sea of colossal corporations. His first client, Sam Cooke, had unprecedented ownership of his own music through Klein. George Harrison hired Klein to put on the Concert for Bangladesh in 1971.

On a lighter note, Klein is said to the be in the inspiration for John Belushi's Ron Decline in 1978's film The Rutles and John Lennon's song Steel & Glass.

Saturday, July 04, 2009

In The City Built On Laughter

If you love Jellyfish, you'll love this -

The Peppermint Tolley Company

And they sung the Brady Bunch theme song on the closing credits in season one. More