It’s Thursday, and I come bearing sugary gifts. First off, Mausi is a new dance favorite for me – that amazing synth riff will make your legs bounce out of your control. (Or, you know, help get your work done, or whatever?) Next up, the lead vocalist in CHVRCHES, Lauren Mayberry, has this adorable, innocent-sounding voice, with a face to match. (I think she’s actually in her 20′s and blessed with eternal youth.) “The Mother We Share” is their hit single that is guaranteed to land a spot on your Most Played, though I couldn’t tell you what the heck the lyrics are all about. And finally, a crunchy little track from Flume. This version’s not wildly different than the original, and I give most of the credit to the original artist, but producer Charles Murdoch adds a nice bubble-gum beat and perkier sound that is quite pleasant. You and “Sleepless” might not hit it off right away, but give it a chance; I think by a few plays, you’ll find yourself oddly drawn in by those flickering vocals.
Mausi – M O V E
CHVRCHES – The Mother We Share
Flume – Sleepless (Charles Murdoch Remix)
Over the past couple months, I’ve watched a whole lot of SNL, Jimmy Fallon, and the like with my boyfriend. Late-night fame fests are quite new for me – I went many years refusing to pay for TV service. Through the musical segments of these shows, I feel I’m getting a glimpse into the mind of Average Joe Listener, and how the media dupes people into liking shitty music.
Take last night’s show, for example. The entirety of this “Christmas special” was based on cameos by familiar faces, followed by exuberant cheers from the studio audience. The musical spotlight was on Paul McCartney, and at one point he performed as part of Nirvana, in the place of Kurt Cobain. If you were actually listening and not jerking off to the smell of fame, you probably noticed that the music was slushy drivel, made even soggier by McCartney trying to vomit his lung into the microphone. This is a song that could’ve been written by local grunge wannabes in Anytown, USA, and yet it’s being played by superstars with otherwise serious technical talent. And it’s on national TV being drooled over by millions.
It’s incredible how often this happens. “Famous-10-Years-Ago has a new album! Holy hell, it MUST be good, because they did that one song, remember that?” It’s like how Jimmy Fallon says that every one of his guests is amazing and he loves them, even that moody chick from Twilight and Martha “Sandy Vagina” Stewart herself. When did it become taboo to call people out for being shitty?
I get it, though. An ice cream cone that you were told was the best goddamn ice cream in the world will probably taste amazing, even if it’s just Breyer’s from the grocery store. But this is music we’re talking about here. It’s the most meaningful, expressive art form that humans possess, and out of the billions on this planet, once in awhile, a person creates something amazing, something with widespread appeal, something that can reach into people’s heads and make them think a little different that day. And you know what? Sometimes, a person can only get it right once in their lifetime. There is no reason to keep promoting that person’s failures while there are thousands of others in the world, making even better music and going unrecognized and unpaid. Technical talent alone does not make good music.
Remember that the next time you see a famous face on TV playing live music. Close your eyes, and ask yourself if this is a sound you’d buy if it came from a no-name. If yes, fantastic. If not, it’s time to turn off the tube and dive back into the blogosphere jungle, where it’s anybody’s game.
Artful Dodger – Please Don’t Turn Me On (Disclosure Remix)
Bumblebeez – Next To You
Black Van – Inside (Oliver Remix)
Dust off your open mindedness, because this stuff is ridiculous and probably shouldn’t exist. There’s a genre called “Trap” that sounds like the backing of a Timbaland-style disaster, only much more bizarre. It’ll take you a few plays to even figure out what you’re hearing (duck quacks?) before you can decide whether you like it or not. Keep in mind, it’s okay to laugh at it. In fact, there should be more music that’s silly by design! It’s one of my favorite surprises when drudging through the serious stuff. Can this become a thing, please?
Alex Young x The Hi-Yahs – So Much
gLAdiator x LOUDPVCK – Scaley
N*E*R*D – Everyone Nose (Aylen Remix)
Baauer – Harlem Shake
Special thanks to Julian C. for the terminology lesson and that last track!!
In case your ears are sore, here are a couple more chilled out tracks to smooth you over. These utilize those same “808 beats” while avoiding the nosebleeds altogether.
Cashmere Cat – Mirror Maru
Minnesota – Indian Summer feat. G. Jones
This is music deserving of a blog resurrection. Stay tuned; I’ve been on the hunt lately and might just throw a few more posts for you to gobble down.
Seven Lions, unfortunately, is not a band of mythical beat-making creatures, but a brilliant Californian DJ named Jeff Montalvo. Way more than just dubstep, Lions transports you to another planet if your volume is cranked high enough. I’m proud to announce that this music is free of inane clip inserts on the drop (à la Skrillex). Montalvo sticks to the dreamy, other-worldly spatter that everybody came for in the first place. The drops are somehow fluid and wholly satisfying. The melodies and noise are inventive, far from lazy, and don’t bore the listener with too many loops. A good introduction to the genre for somebody who doesn’t think they like dubstep – it’s almost impossible to listen just once.
Seven Lions – She Was feat. Birds of Paradise
Seven Lions – Days to Come feat. Fiora
Seven Lions – Isis
Seven Lions – Tyven
Apparently my blogging ability comes in waves. As does my obsessive drive to find new tracks. No idea if people are seeing this, but I have five “likes” for my blog! I don’t even know what that means in WordPressSpeak. I’ll assume it means I have legions of devoted fans, no doubt secretly disappointed at my lackluster trailing post from February. Well chin up, bucks, ’cause here comes a blast of superfun indie, just like the good ol’ days!
It’s more than appropriate that this post pays homage to a member of my favorite class of animals (and the namesake of my blog). The members of Reptar are clearly nostalgic of their 90s childhood (who isn’t these days), and they’ve got a bright, childlike sound to match. Even with a smiley lead vocal and Rugrats-like marimba bounces all over the place, somehow they manage to get away with album titles like “Body Faucet” and song titles like “Orifice Origami.” Careful with your innuendo interpretations, people. Capping off today’s load is a nice little bopper from fresh New York duo Ghost Beach. Why yes, it is beach-appropriate indie! Turns out, that exists!
Reptar – Orifice Origami
Reptar – Sebastian
Ghost Beach – Miracle
What a moronic blog post title. But that’s the name of the song!
The blindingly-white man you see there is a DJ named U-Tern from that musical genius factory, Vancouver, and these first two tracks are his latest. Disco-funky dance beats! Toe-tappers! Head-boppers! Will you just go listen already?
U-Tern – Da Da Daa Daa
U-Tern – You Don’t Know Me
U-Tern – Style Class Flair