“Every Song”- ON AN ON
Can’t stop listening to… ON AN ON
When most people hear the word “addiction”, it often prompts the visual of an emaciated 26 year-old at her wit’s end, turning tricks for the drugs she needs to live on; syphoning toilet water for heroin injections. Grody shit like that. I tend to gravitate towards the less extreme addictions like eating chocolate after every meal, or obsessively reapplying my Pomegranate flavored Burt’s Bees chap stick every 6 minutes. I’m sure it’s no news to you that I share a similar addiction to music **(See posts about Gotye, Land of Talk and Purity Ring.) Well I think it’s safe to say that my newest obsession is the newest band from Toronto, ON AN ON.
I’ve said it once before and I’ll say it again, Canada sure knows how to breed their musicians! ON AN ON is so new that they don’t even have a Wikipedia page yet. I know… hard to believe. But my outside sources tell me that they are the remaining members of late, Chicago-based band Scattered Trees. Hopefully, whatever plagued Scattered Trees in the past doesn’t carry over to this branch known as ON AN ON (…See what I did there.) These guys are an instant hit in my book, with their indie-pop, synth heavy, vocal effects; they embody a Coldplay-infused Washed Out, on the rocks.
ON AN ON is currently on tour with another one of my obsessions, San Francisco based Geographer. They share the catchy indie-pop sound and strong lead vocals. I recently saw this show at the Larimer Lounge in Denver a month ago. Not only was Geographer a dancey delight, but ON AN ON was the hidden treat of the night, which so clearly went in one ear and out the other of the 20-something, female marketing assistants who (like so many others) discovered Geographer through Pandora Radio.
The band’s debut album Give In is now on sale after a number of months spreading their sound with such bands as Rubblebucket, Reptar, and previously mentioned Geographer. The album title Give In is an ironic subliminal message that seems to be working for me. With songs like “Every Song”, “American Dream” and “Cops”, it’s easy to let go and give in to this new addiction. I mean, who am I kidding, this sick habit is just too good to give up.
Upon first viewing this video, I was entranced by the story line of the video itself. It wasn’t until a number of views later that I got around to checking out the music that Alt-J (∆) has to offer. On their latest album An Awesome Wave, this England-based band has mastered the unity of acoustic and electronic sound; with acoustic fingerpicking and drum-rolls accompanied by angelic, shoe gaze-esque electronic melodies. Needless to say, Alt-J’s music is something new that has put me under a spell. Just like this unique, slow motion rewind video, their music always keeps me guessing; leaving me pleasantly hypnotized by each song.
“Wet Blanket”- METZ
Sometimes, this is just the kind of mood I’m in. It’s the tantrum after the “last straw”; it’s weaving through cars to beat the traffic; it’s cranking the amps to 10 and carelessly wailing away till blisters form. The true feeling behind this mood isn’t necessarily fury, but it for sure is one that calls for complete and utter sensory overload. METZ provides the satisfying dose of basement punk rock noise. Yet this mood strikes once in a blue moon for me, its nice to know who I can turn to when it comes time to drop everything and just noise the fuck out.
“Fineshrine”- Purity Ring
Purity Ring shows off their unique light performance with their single, “Belispeak” at this past year’s Pitchfork Music Festival in Chicago.
Am I dreaming or what?
I’ve recently been enjoying the hell out of this unusually fall-like weather in Colorado. If you’re familiar with the Boulder-Denver area, than you know that the Autumn season is beautiful, yet shortlived. It’s almost as if the climate can sense all of the avid skiers/snowboarders willing for a snowy, powder-filled day on the slopes. As for me, I tend to root for the light jacket, fallen leaves under my boots kind of day. Lucky for me, my walks home from work have been under these exact conditions, and I couldn’t be happier.
After a long day at work, nothing makes me more excited for a walk home than the perfect November day and some solid shoegaze in my ears. Purity Ring has been the perfect accompaniment to my crisp, late afternoon walks into the Colorado sunsets over the flatirons. This Canadian electronic duo specializes in those erie electronic drones, backed up by heavy bass and the soft, distant voice of front woman, Megan James. Their sound is unique yet familiar in a way that makes you feel as though you’re dreaming.
Their debut album Shrines has been circulating its way through the Urban Outfitter’s playlist since late July of this year. Their performance is unlike any I have seen before. Keeping in mind the atmosphere that their music creates, instrumentalist/dj Corin Roddick strives to conserve that atmosphere with a hypnotizing, synced up light show. More specifically, Roddick’s dj station is hooked up to a tree structure of light orbs that double as an electric drum set.* They are currently tearing their way through Europe right now, but my fingers are crossed that they make it out to Colorado before this season is taken over by the wallops of snow of Colorado’s notorious, 7 month long winter. In the mean time, I’ll be floating home on my very own, dream cloud of bliss, courtesy of Purity Ring ;)
*(Having trouble picturing this? Check out the video above. It is equal parts confusing and mind-blowing.)
Brotha PEP has got something to say about…
“Younger Us”- Japandroids
Brotha PEP has something to say about… Japandroids
After many months of writing this blog, I’ve decided that it could use another blogger’s opinion. Considering my biased taste in music, I thought that it would be important to represent a harder edge of music these days. Of all the music lovers I know, I thought, who better to run this segment than my older brother Colin. His tumblr, colinthepepper.tumblr.com, is dedicated the music he loves and I am glad to showcase his writing talents and underground, basement rock taste.
Post by Colinthepepper
There’s something about two member bands that is fucking awesome. Like the Black Keys and the White Stripes before them Japandroids kick you in the ears with attitude. They play music that make you wanna run to the nearest basement genie and wish for a crowd a keg a drum kit and the opportunity to spit in your shitty boss’s face (A MOMENT OF VICTORY). Compiling gang vocals, relentlessly choppy waves of drum fuck-yeah, and distorted out the ass guitar grunge this band is sure to please those who want a new life anthem.
“Hamburg, Noon”- Land of Talk
Can’t stop listening to… Land of Talk
I don’t normally double blog about the same artist, but this band is too good not to. I just recently posted a live performance of their song “Goaltime Exposure”, but ever since then, I have become obsessed. Usually, I spend this time of year collecting fallen leaves and listening to the Garden State soundtrack on repeat, but this one snuck up on me.
I first discovered Land of Talk from my new favorite outlet for new, up and coming music, the online airing of KCRW’s Eclectic 24. They play everything from live performances from their archive of Morning Becomes Eclectic to classic Motown. It’s the greatest thing since Pandora pre-constant ads. I was posted up at a local coffee shop, plugged into my third hour of Eclectic 24 when Land of Talk started pumping through my headphones. I made a point to write them down and immediately look into them.
Land of Talk hails from the birthplace of such great bands as Arcade Fire, Stars, Broken Social Scene, and Metric. These Canadian gems sound much like the bands that they share citizenship with. The soft lull of frontwoman, Elizabeth Powell’s voice is like that of Emily Haines from Metric; paired with the simple drum pattern and clean guitar melody creates a sound straight out of the Broken Social Scene songbook. These guys follow the traditional Canadian, Indie rock template but add their own special twist to the sound.
Their most recent album, Cloak and Cipher, came out back in 2010, which leaves me hoping that they have been working on something new in the meantime. Regardless, this album is quickly climbing to my top 25 most played list. Every song puts you in a different mood, all of which coexist in the most pleasant way. My favorite songs from the album are “Quarry Hymns”, “Swift Coin”, “Color Me Badd”, and “Hamburg, Noon.” I highly suggest you check these guys out, if not for the sake of this wonderful Fall season, than for the sake of our friendly Northern neighbors.
“Goaltime Exposure”- Land Of Talk
So this song has been on repeat for the past 2 hours or so. Land Of Talk is the Canadian, less-whiney Eisley. This song is from their sophomore album, Cloak and Cipher, from back in 2010, which makes me a little bummed that I’m just now hearing it. But I’d say this came to my attention just in time for these cold, Autumn nights creeping in.
“Forget”- Lianne La Havas
There’s nothing better than using the hallowed grounds of a church for a solid music recording. The warm ringing of an electric guitar and soft belting of Lianne La Havas’ beautiful voice inside a church really make for a killer acoustic cover of her single “Forget.” I just recently became obsessed with this song and her, but hearing the acoustic version of this is like listening to a completely different tune. This English jazzy vocalist pulls it off and let me tell you, I believe in Lianne La Havas. (Amen!)
“Too Insistent”- The Dø (Trentemøller Remix)
DUBpep: “Too Insistent”- The Dø (Trentemøller Remix)
Now I know that in my past these DUBpep songs have been more of a fun, filthy beat to dance to, but I have been known to change things up a bit, even just a little. What this song lacks in beat drops and bass breakdowns, it more than makes up for with simple syncopations and erie piano riffs. This song creates an immediate draw with its simplicity that gradually builds up, ironically and insistently asking “why won’t you let me go?”
Trentemøller is a Danish producer who has been in the EDM game for 15 years. I hadn’t heard of him before this song, but he sure is a nice break from your typical, beat heavy producer these days. I hope this light and refreshing remix catches on so we could take a breather from the party for a little while.