The Dog Days of Summer Fridays 3.10

The hottest month on record since the oppression that was July 1999, the heat finally broke today. This mix was made under high heat and higher humidity, though, and it's definitely a bit crazy. After trying to make all the mixes thus far work thematically as a whole, here's a bunch of songs — mostly new — that I really like. My only criteria being that the segueways not be too jarring.

Cover art this week is by D. Crane of Seattle's amazing BOAT who have appeared on multiple Summer Fridays mixes in the past. Truly an honor. Dave's a vegetarian, I wonder if the dog knows it's just asparagus and eggplant under the grill cover. BOAT are working on a new album and graduate degrees as we speak. Without further salivation.


  1. Versus – Invincible Hero
  2. Al Green – I'm Glad You're Mine
  3. Alex Kemp – I'm on Your Side
  4. Papas Fritas – The Way You Walk
  5. Edwyn Collins – Losing Sleep
  6. The High Llamas – Rollin'
  7. Summer Camp – Jake Ryan
  8. The Arcade Fire – Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)
  9. The Clientele – Jerry
  10. The Rolling Stones – Monkey Man
  11. Flamin' Groovies – You Tore Me Down
  12. The Electric Bunnies – I Swear I'll Never Let You Go
  13. Charlotte Hatherley – Bastardo
  14. Wet Illustrated – Born Stoked
  15. The Car is on Fire – Cherry Cordial
  16. Disappears – Magics
  17. Surf City – Crazy Rulers of the World
  18. Dukes of Stratosphear – My Love Explodes

It doesn't bear repeating but…No shuffling. If you do this mix will make even less sense than it already does. Liner notes after the jump.




Continue Reading

Get Back on the BOAT


I've got a stack of new CDs on my kitchen table that remain unlistened-to, because all I seem to be able to play is Setting the Paces, the new album by Seattle's BOAT. I became a superfan when they played Cake Shop and Union Hall last summer, so I knew I was gonna like the new album, but I didn't know I was going to like it this much. Self-depricating indie rock of the mid-'90s variety where the song, not the attitude, is king. Giant hooks, lyrics that are funny without being novelty (and have just enough of the crying-on-the-inside clown thing going on too), and production that is neither slick nor low fi. This is how it's done, and I've no doubt this will find its way into my Best of 2009 list.

The album doesn't come out till October 30 (I know!) but the band have given the world two tasters from the album:

MP3: BOAT – We've Been Friends Since 1989
MP3: BOAT – Prince of Tacoma

While you're waiting, maybe you should pick up the other two BOAT albums, both of which are great. 

BOAT will be touring for Setting the Paces and are tenatively going to be in the NYC area mid-November. Toby at Finest Kiss saw them play last Friday, so read his report which contains an MP3 of "Name Tossers," maybe my favorite song from the new album. 

Summer Fridays 2.8


Hope you're not getting tired of these, I still enjoy making them. This is Number Nine in the Sound Bites Summer Fridays series, designed specifically to eliviate seasonal stress and alergies. This week's edition features fake reggae, real reggae, fake Thin Lizzy, French pop, goth pop, Swedish pop, an appearance from the Elephant Six roster, various aural ephemera and new tracks from BOAT, The Xx, Champagne Socialists and Cornershop. That's exciting, isn't it? Cover art this week was done by me, mainly because I forgot to get back to the people who've actually offered make one. (Will get back to you, I promise.) Have a swell weekend, and no shuffling!


Here's the tracklist:

1. 10CC – Dreadlock Holiday
2. Hot Chip – The Warning
3. Augustus Pablo – King Tubby Meets the Rockers Downtown
4. The Blue Nile – Tinseltown in the Rain
5. Broadcast – Come on Let's Go
6. Belle & Sebastian – I'm a Cuckoo
7. BOAT – Lately
8. The Boo Radleys – Wish I Was Skinny
9. The Xx – Basic Space
10. The Chrysler – While the Tide is High
11. The Olivia Tremor Control – Courtyard
12. The Champagne Socialists – Blue Genes
13. Imperial Teen – Ivanka
14. Phoenix – Consolation Prizes
15. Modern English – Life in the Gladhouse
16. Cornershop – The Roll Off Characteristics (Of History In The Making)
17. Max Eider – Who Loves You Now?

If you're interested in making cover art for one of these, do get in touch.

Liner notes after the jump.

Continue Reading

Soundbites Best of 2008 | Singles, Tracks + EPs


So here's my list of best singles, album tracks, and EPs from 2008. Unlike my Best Albums List, songs that were from a 2007 album but were released as singles in 2008 are eligible. But single reissues are not. (Which is why "Time to Pretend," Friendly Fires and Pacific are absent from my list.) With the concept of the "album" diminishing in this world of digital downloads, singles are becoming more important. I'm not calling the death knell for the Album, but if groups whose music leans toward the poppy and immediate side of things wanted to just release singles or EPs every couple months instead of a full-length, I'd be okay with it. As I've said before singles are ephemeral in nature, and though I've hit my yearly limit on a few of the songs on this list, there was certainly a period of time in 2008 where all 50 of these were stuck on repeat.

1. Mystery Jets feat. Laura Marling – Young Love (MP3) (Video)
The most inventive, deceptively simple (but actually kind of crazy complex; listen to all the little flourishes), repeatedly-rewarding pop song of the year. Great video too.

2. Metronomy – Heartbreaker (MP3) (Video)
Fantastic bassline + creaky doors + whistling = my second favorite song of the year.

3. The Pains of Being Pure at Heart – Everything With You (MP3) (Video)
A great big hug wrapped in a fuzzy indie pop sweater.    

4. Violens – Violent Sensation Descends (MP3
Loud Quiet Loud as has never quite been done like this before. I can't wait for their full-length.

5. Dizzee Rascal w/ Calvin Harris – Dance Wiv Me (MP3) (Video)
I've never been much of a Dizzee fan, but add Calvin's '80s-style production and you've got a dancefloor killer.

6. Sam Sparro – Black and Gold (Video)
The rest of this album does nothing for me but "Black and Gold"'s glammy throb is irresistible.

7. TV on the Radio – Golden Age (Video)
2008 was the year of Change and TVotR made the perfect soundtrack. This is the sound of hope with a good beat.

8. Sexy Kids – Sisters Are Forever (MP3)
Just try not to bounce 'round the room while listening to this slice of Scottish pop perfection a la Altered Images.

9. Esser – Headlock (MP3) (Video)
Effervescent single, ridiculously catchy, like superballs set free inside a perpetual motion machine… yet loaded with downer lyrics like "I've got a problem, it's called living." Perfect.

10. Summer Cats – Lonely Planet (MP3) (Video)

Like the Rosebuds backed by Stereolab, Australia's Summer Cats put a sunny coat of paint on the krauty VU groove. 

11. Metronomy – A Thing for Me (MP3) (Video)
I could put almost all of Metronomy's Nights Out on this list, but restrained myself at two. Be sure to check out the video to this one.

12. David Byrne & Brian Eno – Strange Overtones (MP3
Too bad the rest of the Byrne/Eno album didn't deliver on the promise of this great single.

13. Sky Larkin – Fossil, I (Video)
Old school indie rock done with vim and vigor by this Leeds, UK trio. Vim and vigor? Really. Just listen to the song. It rocks. 

14. Lykke Li – Little Bit (Video)
Lykke Li's coquettish delivery slightly disguises just how hot this is.

15. Ida Maria – Queen of the World (MP3) (Video)
One of the most joyous songs ever about being smashed on whiskey.

16. MGMT – Kids (Video)
Hate their fashion, hate their friends, hate their rich hippie-ness, but MGMT have some great songs. The hooks are undeniable!

17. Girls – Lust for Life / Morning Light (MP3) (MP3) (Video)
There are too many "Girl" groups right now, but I've got room for San Francisco's shoegaze folk rock wunderkinds. Especially on this double A-side.

18. Animal Collective – Water Curses EP (MP3) (Video)
Animal Collective have finally started to get poppy enough for me to genuine like them. Bring on Merriweather Post Pavillion!

19. Late of the Pier – Heartbeat (MP3) (Video)
One of the many "this shouldn't work" songs on LotP's great debut Fantasy Black Channel. Yet it does, brilliantly.

20. Vivian Girls – Tell the World (MP3) (Video)
Every time these girls open their mouths to the press, it's a disaster, but give 'em instruments and hard
to hold it against them. So many things in that sentence could be construed the wrong way.

21. Casiokids – Grønt Lys I Alle Ledd / Togens Hule (MP3) (Video)
You don't need to speak Norwegian to dig this double A-side. I imagine it would help, though. But not that much.

22. The Last Shadow Puppets – Standing Next to Me (MP3) (Video)
Alex Turner and Miles Kane seem a little young to already be going through their Jacques Brel/Scott Walker period, but that's also probably why it's as good as it is.

23. The Wild Beasts – The Devil's Crayon (MP3) (Video)
Not since the days of the Associates and the Triffids has pop attempted to be so grandiose… and successful at it. I must say I can't really stomach the resto of them album, but but "The Devil's Crayon" is a bullseye.

24. Adele – Cold Shoulder (Video)
I'll take Adele over Duffy any day… "Cold Shoulder" perfectly-produced soulful pop. Ronson-produced, natch.

25. Amazing Baby – Infinite Fucking Cross EP (download EP) (Video + Video)
Hated by Brooklynvegan commenters, loved by me. Harder, more-rocking Roxy Music? About as close to a good description as you can get with there pigeonhole-adverse Williamsburg residents.

26 – 50 after the jump…

Continue Reading

BOAT + Creeping Weeds | Cake Shop | 8.17.2008


If BOAT lived here instead of Seattle I have a feeling they'd be my favorite local band.  All their songs are catchy,  and funny without being jokes. The band also has good stage banter and a penchant for props — big signs, confetti and shakers made out of Solo cups. But they know when to say when on that stuff. They remind me a little of '90s NYC band Muckafurgason (who were the see-them-every-time band for me) if you remember them, though BOAT are definitely more a straight-up rock band and less about the laughs. But you will laugh. This was BOAT's first NYC show, the third date of their first-ever East Coast tour and they seemed pretty happy to be here. As did the sparse but jazzed crowd. Fun!

: BOAT – Bee Buzz

MP3: BOAT – Period, Backslash, Colon

MP3: BOAT – Elephant Ears

Buy some BOAT. All their records (all two of them) are great. Though I'm sure they'd love it more if you bought them from the merch table when you go see them play live.

BOAT are currently on the "We Jam Super-Econo" Tour where they share instruments with Philadelphia's Creeping Weeds. More earnest than their tourmates, they are similar musically with a "classic indie rock" sound, embellished with glockenspiel and, on one song, didgeridoo. They finished their set with a "cover" of BOAT's "I'm a Donkey for Your Love" that featured both bands at once, a nice segue into the second half of the show.

MP3: Creeping Weeds – Long Way Down

"We Jam Super-Econo" Tour heads to the Northeast before swinging back to Brooklyn's Union Hall on Wednesday where they share the stage with My Teenage Stride. That's a hard bill to pass up, though the Muslims/Howlies show the same night at Union Pool (confusing, isn't it?) makes a tough decision. There's also the Vivian Girls at Death by Audio that night too. When it rains it pours.

Here are all the BOAT/Creeping Weeds dates…

August 18th-P.A.'s Lounge-Boston, MA
August 19th-The Oasis Pub-New London, CT
August 20th-Union Hall-Brooklyn, NY
August 21st-The Lantern-Blacksburg, VA
August 22nd-The Brillobox-Pittsburgh, PA
August 23rd-Schuba's-Chicago, IL

I went a bit crazy with videoing BOAT at this show. Here's "Make Way for the Genius to Appear":

And three more after the jump:

Continue Reading