Well holy crap. A few months ago the only thing we were hearing from the Sufjan Stevens camp was that he didn't know what an album or a song was anymore and that his 50 albums for 50 states project was all a big farce from the get go. It certainly didn't seem like the man who, according to pretty much every music critic in the Western world, recorded the best album of 2005 with Illinois was going to be releasing anything soon. Yet today he surprise birthed onto the world a brand new eight song, 60 minute "EP." It's currently only available digitally, but also only costs five dollars. Go.
(Via Pitchfork)Read More
Back in 2008 Washington D.C. rapper Wale The Mixtape About Nothing, which, despite the fact that it's a hip hop album based around Seinfeld references and soundbytes was one of my favourite albums of the year. Many others agreed with me in regards to the quality of the mixtape and it quickly skyrocketed Wale up to the uppermost reaches of blog love. Naturally, Wale tried to channel his online successes into commercial success with his label debut Attention Deficit and, this being the post-millennial musical landscape, failed spectacularly. Not only was Deficit unable take any money out of consumers' wallets, its attempts to woo radio listeners made it nowhere near as good as the stuff he had been giving away to the Internet … Read More
This will be brief as there are far too many things going on today to spend too much time writing blog posts, but it bares mentioning that Bjork and the Dirty Projectors have a digital collaboration out called Mount Wittenberg Orca. You might remember hearing that the two creative forces got together about a year ago for a one off acoustic set about Dirty Projectors' Amber Coffman seeing a family of whales. Mount Wittenberg Orca is a studio recording of that initial collaboration. The EP is available with a donation to the National Geographic Society that will be put towards helping create protected marine areas.Read More
About a week ago I was unable to resist the pull that Television’s routinely dismissed sophomore album Adventure exerted on me from the shelves of Hot Wax. Even though I had recently come home with a 50+ haul at The Inner Sleeve’s all you can carry sale and had sworn to lay low in terms of dropping more money on records, the appeal of Tom Verlaine and company’s guitar theatrics was too strong. Sure, Adventure is widely considered a disappointment in the wake of the band’s debut Marquee Moon, but Marquee Moon is damn perfect, so of course Adventure would appear the lesser in comparison.
My last post was about the artist behind my second favourite album from last year, so it's only fitting that today I'm here to do a quick drive-by about Raekwon, who's Only Built 4 Cuban Linx, pt. II was the only album I liked more than DM Stith's Heavy Ghost in 2009.
Continuing to issue quality material at a dizzying rate more befitting some 20 year-old kid desperately courting fleeting blog buzz than a 40 year-old veteran from one of rap's most influential groups, Rae has floated another mixtape, Cocainism Volume 2, onto the Internet. It's hard to believe that a guy who broke in 1993 could be enjoying the most prolific run of his career in 2010, but that seems to be the case with The Chef. The insane Wu-Tang money from the '90s might have … Read More
I remember back when the 2010 Sled Island lineup was announced I eagerly pointed my browser to the festival's site and began scrolling, hoping for awesome announcement after awesome announcement. While there were indeed a lot of names listed that brought a smile to my face, I'd by lying if I said there was much that really surprised me; that made me sit up and begin planning to get tickets immediately. Once I got through the names in big print though I had my first eyes bugging out of their sockets due to awesomeness moment when they glanced across the name DM Stith.
DM Stith is the stage name of David Michael Stith, a multi-instrumentalist and graphic designer signed to Sufjan Stevens' Asthmatic Kitty label. Heavy Ghost, his 2009 … Read More
I'm a firm believer in the age old maxim that I totally didn't just think of on my walk home from work: Jarvis Cocker can make anything interesting.
Adding further credence to this maxim, the longtime Pulp front man, current solo artist, Michael Jackson interrupter and stop motion animated, banjo wielding yokel has recently compiled a half hour worth of pleasant background noises recorded by Britain's National Trust. The album was cobbled together from "British natural sounds including birdsong, crashing waves and wind breezing through a country garden" (from the National Trust's site) and sounds like you'd expect something like that to sound. Normally, such a project would drop without so much as a glance from the online … Read More
What if the Vivian Girls or the Dum Dum Girls were Costa Rican? Well, they'd be like the Vivian Girls or the Dum Dum Girls we know, only they'd be Costa Rican. Rim shot!
Assuming anyone is still reading after that the horrible lede, I urge you to click over to Las Robertas' Bandcamp page to download their grimy, fuzzy, garagey album Cry Out Loud for free. I haven't had a chance to listen to all of it yet, but, based on the little I have heard, I feel confident that it will make a fine soundtrack to wasting the summer away. It might not be very summery outside right now, but it's never too early to get started on failing to meet your goals because of the bewitching appeal of passing the time with a bottle of wine, a good book and some scrappy Costa Rican … Read More
Dedicated FFWD readers might recall a strange, bold text heavy article about hip hop mixtapes that they had to flip past from time to time over the past couple years on their way to Savage Love. That was Radio Silence the column, a mostly monthly look at free and legal music available online. This is Radio Silence the blog, a mostly whenever I feel like it look at the same, and probably some other stuff every now and then. Unfortunately, the legal element can be next to impossible to figure out in the bowels of the Internet, so I might slip up on that one from time to time, but free is pretty cut and dry.