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Listening Party

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Paradise Lost are just a few weeks away from releasing their thirteenth album, Tragic Idol, through Century Media Records. So far, the hype around the album seems to suggest that this is finally the release that fans have been wanting since Draconian Times. In a Q&A done a month or so back, Guitarist Greg Mackintosh tried to help adjust expectations when he stated that, “The core of the sound on Tragic Idol has an essence of Draconian Times and Icon, and I think that’s what people are picking up on. For the past five or six years we’ve been hearing people say that Paradise Lost has gone back to the roots, which is an absolutely horrible term in my opinion. I do think that you can draw lines between a few of the tracks on the new record and Draconian Times or Icon, but when we were writing the music for Tragic Idol, I deliberately made a choice to strip everything back down to the bare bones. It’s a very simplistic record in a lot of ways, really.” I’m not sure if he was directly referencing ‘Honesty in Death’ when referring to a few songs that have that Icon vibe, but to me, it definitely does. Check out the song and hopefully it keeps you content until the final album release on April 24th.

Paradise Lost – Tragic Idol
Release Date: April 24th
Record Label: Century Media

The Neighbourhood

Oh yes, I can dig this. Give me indie-pop made solely with hooks and blow ‘em up. Cut the beat so they stick in your head. Give that familiar indie-wail a little swagger. The lyrics? They weren’t that important anyway. Make them vague and sexual enough to blend into the song, but give me a lyric or two to hold on to. “One love one house/ no shirt, no blouse”? That’ll do.

The Neighborhood have of yet released only two songs, which makes it difficult to say if they’ll blow up the way “Sweater Weather” demands to blow them up, but here’s hoping. “Sweater Weather” is a masterfully done series of ear worms, bridging RNB and indie-folk-with instantly recallable pop-hooks, the kind of genre mish-mosh that likes to explode. It’s simply too irresistible for some company looking to corner the grad-student demographic to not nick the song’s phenomenal chorus for an ad. If that doesn’t sound appealing, I don’t blame you. But if indie-pop with this much potential mass appeal is this good, I’m totally okay with it.

Sweater Weather by theneighbourhood

So if you’re a fan of Scuba, chances are you’ve probably already streamed his latest LP Personality. And if you haven’t had the chance yet, head over to the official soundcloud page for the album to check out one of the more controversial electronic releases of the year so far.

So with the material now out for the world to hear, what’s next? Well if you’re Scuba, hopping on to ustream for a 2 hour set for Beatport would seem to be the most natural thing. And you can catch the whole thing below.


Video streaming by Ustream

Tracklist:

1. Something In Between Us – Sigha
2. Like Sun – Toasty
3. Empire – Distance
4. Guts N Bones – Slaughter Mob
5. Take It Personal – Toasty
6. Anger – Search & Destroy
7. Angel – Toasty
8. Nomad – Distance
9. Brood – Boxcutter
10. The Knowledge – Toasty
11. Deep Under – Elemental
12. Candyfloss – Search & Destroy
13. You Got Me – Scuba
14. The Lights (DJ Joseph Remix) – Eric H
15. L’Amour – Slaughter Mob
16. Plate – Scuba
17. So You Think You’re Special – Scuba
18. Cognitive Dissonance – Scuba
19. Obsessed…

Prime Meridian Album Art

Sometime in 2009 I drifted away from music fanaticism. People who read this site might remember when I contributed album reviews and music criticism as a staff member and not emeritus. Similarly I had a couple of composition projects I was working on around that time that moved from amateur to professional (in aspiration only) and then to shelved before I could finish the mixing and mastering process. I have no interest in dredging the depths of my hard drive to complete these sessions, but I do think it’d be nice to share the demos.

The music is guitar-centric but is best identified as trip hop if only for the chill but detailed drum patterns. I wanted the textures to be pretty languid throughout so I sampled a lot of Javanese gamelan (a closeted love of mine) and combined this with an amazing drum kit library shared by a buddy who some of you may know as PSY/OPSogist. Compositionally I was heavily influenced by him as well as similar artists like Team Sleep, Blue Sky Black Death, DJ Shadow, and Xiu Xiu, among others.

Hopefully there’s a track or two in this collection you enjoy. Though the whole album is meant to have a flow (I’m an artíste bro), if you only have time for one track check out “These Arms.” It’s definitely the most energetic song on the album and I haven’t heard of anybody who thinks it’s scrubby (yet). Thank you!

-Nick…

Imminent Sonic Destruction – Monster

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I’ve pretty much said everything that I can about this album on my review, but here is an abridged version. Imminent Sonic Destruction play a version of progressive metal that mixes a large dose of modern metal riffing along with some different vocal styles. The main style sounds like a cross between Voivod and Mudvayne, but there are also black metal shouts, death grows and even some Hetfield-ish parts. As far as the song goes, it is actually one of the weaker tracks on the album but it can, at least, give listeners a decent idea of what to expect from the album.

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 Imminent Sonic Destruction – Recurring Themes
Release Date: Feb 24th, 2012
http://www.imminentsonicdestruction.com

 

Lindsey Pavao – Say Aah (Live on The Voice)

Outside of the U.S. — Use this link

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When I learned that Dia Frampton had participated on season one of NBC’s The Voice, I decided that I would give season 2 a chance when it finally aired after the Superbowl. The episode that ran after the Superbowl was better than the crap that American Idol had been pushing, but, despite the talent, nobody really caught my attention — today was different. Lindsey Pavao is a bartender out of Sacramento, California that counts Radiohead, Bjork and Fiona Apple among her influences and it totally shows on her rendition of “Say Aah” by Trey Songz. The song on the video is an abbreviated version of her full performance, but it was enough to convince me to buy the full version on iTunes.

Lindsey Pavao definitely has a unique look and voice, and her take on “Say Aah” shows that she also has a bit of a creative side too.

So 2011 was a lot of fun.

25. Youth Lagoon – Year of Hibernation

Spotify || YouTube

Trevor Powers’ music makes me feel a lot of things I just can’t put my finger on. When I first heard it, the walls of reverb and slow burning melodies seemed tailor-made to lull me to sleep. Like the best dream-pop records, though, it kept bringing me back, searching for the power in these seemingly nonchalant, mumbled lyrics and those chords that surge upwards, eternally hopeful. It’s more of a feeling than anything I can write down, though, the kind of satisfaction you get from waking up from a really good dream that you just can’t remember the details of. Dream music, that sounds about right.

24. White Denim – D

Spotify || YouTube

If this is what jam bands do nowadays, I need to start growing my mustache out and cultivate a stash of patchouli, because this is the kind of 21st-century music that you air-guitar along to. I don’t know what front man James Petralli is mumbling on about half the time, but that’s hardly the point – when they’re infusing psychedelic rock with prog and jazz and a healthy dose of innovative looping techniques, you’ll be plenty focused on just trying to keep up.

23. Bibio – Mind Bokeh

Spotify ||…

All expressions of jubilation and pleasure (and depressing-looking hand claps) are property of the Great Leader, who likes to look at things.

Err’day I’m shuffarin’.

Dia Frampton – The Broken Ones

Dia Frampton is one-half of the duo known as Meg and Dia (mind-blowing shit, I know). Apparently, she decided to audition for the TV show The Voice after her band was dropped from their record label. Her only goal was to try to bring attention to their current release, Cocoon, but she ended up finishing second overall. So, with fame comes the  great responsibility to go solo, and that is where we are now. Dia was signed by Universal Republic and is set to release her debut solo album, Red, on December 6th. This is the video for her first single, “The Broken Ones”. I haven’t heard the album yet, but apparently she will be sticking with her ‘indie roots’ throughout the album. As long as she releases more music videos, who cares ;)

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Dia Frampton – Red
Release Date: December 6th
Record Label: Universal Republic

Stream Full Album Here

Actor-Rapper-Comedian? Rapper-Actor-Comedian? Whatever order you place them in, rapping is no stint on the side for Community’s Troy Barnes. With three albums under his belt all released all for free, the upcoming album Camp (due for release 15th November) marks his first commercial full-length release.  Earlier in 2011 came the simply titled EP which alone probably justified a blind purchase of Camp. But for the content hungry comes some delicious early previews of the upcoming Camp.

Heartbeat (radio rip) by Childish Gambino
Bonfire by Childish Gambino

The album can be streamed in full over at NPR for free.

ACYLUM – “Angel” (download) by alfa-matrix


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Twisted electronic industrialists, Acylum, have released the first single for their upcoming album Karzinom. The song is called “Angel” and is one of the more subdued and ‘friendly’ tracks on the album. That doesn’t mean that the band have suddenly started making feel good music or anything that could be appreciated by your average music consumer. The music is still dark, the vocals are still heavily processed and the lyrics are still twisted. On the other hand, it perfectly showcases the band’s enhanced use of melodic elements to further increase the creepiness factor that has always been a part of their sound. Just don’t let this song lull you into a false sense of security, because the full album is still full of dissonant sounds, disturbing samples and a much more confrontational style, overall.

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Acylum – Karzinom
Release Date: October 28th
Record Label: Alfa-Matrix

The Jezabels’ first full length album, Prisoner, will be released on September 16th.  If you pre-order the album here you will also recieve a bonus CD that contains four early demo tracks. The album is streaming in its entirety here.

The album release will be followed by a tour of Australia, UK/Europe and Canada/US. The tour will begin in Australia at the Caloundra Music Festival on October 7th and wrap up at the Corona Theater in Montreal, Canada on November 26th. (click links for full tour dates). 

 

 

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“Endless Summer” Video

Dream Theater – On the Backs of Angels

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This is the first single from the latest Dream Theater album, A Dramatic Turn of Events. A Dramatic Turn of Events was released on September 13th through Roadrunner Records, and is the first to feature new drummer Mike Mangini.

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