Too Many Summer Fridays

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As summer roars out we have a fun, synth-heavy pop edition of Summer Fridays. Cover art is a photo by me of this custom upcycled Summer Fridays fabric notebook made by my friend Kelly who has a company called Too Many Sparkles that makes notebooks, cards, and art like this. That yellow thing is not a headband but a vintage pair of impractical new wave sunglasses that I’ve owned for over 30 years. Radical.

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Tracklist:
1. Babybird – No Children
2. Yumi Zouma – Text from Sweden
3. Kero Kero Bonito – Lipslap
4. Betty Boo – Where Are You Baby?
5. TEEN – Example
6. The Raveonettes – This World is Empty Without You
7. Nik Kershaw – Wouldn’t it Be Good?
8. Weaves – Tick
9. Duchess Says – I Repeat Myself
10. The Clash – Hitsville UK
11. Kristin Kontrol – Don’t Wannabe
12. General Public – Never You Done That
13. TV Girl – Song About Me
14. Younger Younger 28s – Gary
15. Super Furry Animals – Bing Bong
16. Missing Persons – Destination Unknown
17. ABC – Viva Love
18. Blood Orange – EVP
19. Big Audio Dynamite – Around the World in 80 Ways

Dog Days (Pt 1?): Summer Fridays 9.4

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Dog Days is right! The heat index in NYC is like 110 and you don’t even wanna go out in that stuff. Here’s a cool mix of hot indie rock, both old and new, including one song I can’t tell you what it is. Infamous digital graffiti artist King of the Streets is back again to do cover art, and you may spy rising dog-of-internet Kate Moss The Dog in the rearview. Follow her on Instagram, won’t you?

Stay cool party people.

DOWNLOAD SUMMER FRIDAYS 9.4

Tracklist:
1. Mystery Artist! – Mystery Song!
2. Unrest – Cath Carroll
3. Dinosaur Jr – Tiny
4. Car Seat Headrest – Fill in the Blank
5. Belly – Dusted
6. Dog Chocolate – Plastic Canoe
7. SAVAK – Drop the Pieces
8. Deerhoof – Life is Suffering
9. King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard – Gamma Knife
10. Savoy Motel – Souvenier Shop Rock
11. Built to Spill – Carry the Zero
12. B Boys – Other Head
13. Boston Spaceships – How Wrong Are You
14. TERRY – Hot Heads
15. Parquet Courts – Captive of the Sun
16. Honey Radar – Fort Wayne Mermaids
17. Sonic Youth – Silver Rocket
18. Proto Idiot – Better Version
19. TUNS – Mind Over Matter

Conditions Mild: Summer Fridays 9.3

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It’s a laid-back mix this week as Summer Fridays head into the long shadows of August. I really love this Ultimate Painting song that leads things off, and the whole thing works pretty well in a chilled out groove. Cover art this week is by my good friend Don Gochenour who actually made that “hours” sign and then stuck it on some store’s door and then photographed it! Very cool.

DOWNLOAD SUMMER FRIDAYS 9.3

Or stream it:

Tracklist:
1) Ultimate Painting – Bills
2) Steve Gunn – Conditions Wild
3) Salako – The Bird & the Bag
4) Eerie Wanda – I Am Over Here
5) The Go-Betweens – Surfing Magazine
6) Amber Arcades – Fading Lines
7) The Radio Dept. – This Repeated Sodomy
8) The Chills – Rolling Moon
9) The Goon Sax – Sweaty Hands
10) Miracle Legion – Butterflies
11) JC Flowers – China Girl
12) Morgan Delt – I Don’t Want to See What’s Happening Outside
13) The Feelies – Sooner or Later
14) EZTV – High Flying Faith
15) Let’s Active – Talking to Myself
16) The Moles – Dreamland
17) Chook Race – Hard to Clean
18) Starbreaker – Sound of Summer

I play just what I feel: Summer Fridays 9.2

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I really wanted to use this great new Dent May single (song title of the year?) which sent me down a ’70s soft/yacht rock direction, and I really just went for it (see: Boz Scaggs and The Dan). There are some obscurites on here (The Poppy Family, Doris) and a song off Love’s funk/disco record. I end things with a Flo & Eddie (of The Turtles) song that is both fitting of the mix, but with lyrics that seem like they could’ve been written today (like, literally today).

Artwork by frequent contributor Heloise Chung. Download or stream to your heart’s content.

DOWNLOAD SUMMER FRIDAYS 9.2

1. Dent May – Face Down in the Gutter of Your Love
2. Boz Scaggs – Lowdown
3. Love – Be Thankful for What You Got
4. The Bees – Get to Let Go
5. Klaus Johann Grobe – Lieb am Strand
6. The Poppy Family – Where Evil Grows
7. Britta Phillips – One Fine Summer Morning
8. The High Llamas – Checking In, Checking Out
9. Steely Dan – Deacon Blues
10. Metronomy – Nite Owl
11. The Lemon Twigs – These Words
12. Doris – Did You Give The World Some Love Today, Baby?
13. Drugdealer – Suddenly (ft. Weyes Blood)
14. Breakbot – Too Soon
15. Flo & Eddie – Keep it Warm

Pop a tall, cool Shark: Summer Fridays 8.1

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Hey, wow! Welcome back to Summer Fridays now in its unbelievable eighth year. You’d think I’d run out of songs by now. (“He has!”) We kick things off with a typically curious mix that manages to start with Hawkwind, make room for Swedish indiepop like Eggstone and Pelle Calberg, as well as 10CC, and wrap things up with FFS (Franz Ferdinand + Sparks). There’s also awesome new songs by Destroyer, Tame Impala, Stealing Sheep, onetime Girls frontman Christopher Owens, and more. It all works, at least I think so.

Frequent contributor Kate Bryant illustrated this week’s cover art and she did an awesome job as usual. Actual Summer Fridays Shark Beer coming soon to a distributor near you. If you’re downloading this mix, remember: no shuffling. You can also stream it too:

DOWNLOAD SUMMER FRIDAYS 8.1

Summer Fridays 8.1 by Soundbitesnyc on Mixcloud

And here’s the tracklist:
1) Hawkwind – Assault & Battery Pt. 1
2) Tame Impala – Let It Happen
3) DJango Django – Vibrations
4) Eggstone – Birds in Cages
5) 10CC – The Things We Do For Love
6) Pelle Carlberg – Clever Girls Like Clever Boys Much More Than Clever Boys Like Clever Girls
7) Juan Wauters – Grey Matter
8) Stealing Sheep – Deadlock
9) Kate – Strange Girl
10) BC Camplight – Thieves in Antigua
11) Steely Dan – Caves of Altamira
12) Part Time – Fallin’ 4 U
13) Christopher Owens – Another Loser Fuckup
14) Destroyer – Dream Lover
15) Amason – NFB
16) FFS – The Man Without a Tan

Enjoy! See you next week.

Brand new shoes for you and me: Summer Fridays is back!

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Some of you may have been wondering if I’d be back with these this year, being as it’s a later start than usual, but here we are. Yay! I was waiting till actual summer, but as tomorrow is the solstice, I thought I’d jump the gun by a day. Hopefully I’ll have this every Friday through the whole season. We’ll see. I’m a busy guy these days, ok? I’ve been wanting to use this Equals song since I heard it back in February so it inspired this first mix of the season. (That’s Eddy Grant’s old band, btw.) Please enjoy.

DOWNLOAD SUMMER FRIDAYS 7.1

TRACKLIST:
1. The Equals – Michael and Slipper Tree
2. Super Furry Animals – Play it Cool
3. Doug Gillard – Ready for Death
4. Stephen Steinbrink – Now You See Everything
5. Metronomy – Resevoir
6. Tommy Roe – Jam Up Jelly Tight
7. Kiss Kiss Karate Passion – Hope the Sky’ll Never Fall
8. Sloan – Take Good Care of the Poor Boy
9. The Notwist – Kong
10. Liam Finn – Snug As Fuck
11. Teleman – In Your Fur
12. Paul McCartney & Wings – Mrs Vanderbilt
13. Alvvays – Adult Diversion
14. Rocketship – I Love You Like the Way I Used to Do
15. Trans – Thinking About a Friend
16. Ohio Express – Sausalito (Is the Place to Go)
17. The Bangles – Live
18. J.C. Satan – Italian Summer
19. Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks – Lariat

DISCLAIMER/WARNING: This mix is indeed “mixed,” the songs flow together. Don’t listen on shuffle!

Burrito Metal & Pizza-Tween Twee: Bent Shapes talk food, playing final Sound Bites show of 2013

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Summer’s almost over and this weekend is the last show of this year’s Sound Bites Series at South Street Seaport. The final band was supposed to be Leapling but had to pull out, unfortunately. While I’m sad they can’t play, I’m very very happy to have Boston’s Bent Shapes fill in at the last minute. It’s kind of appropriate, actually, as both bands are on Father/Daughter records. Bent Shapes’ new album, Feels Weird, just came out this week and is full of the kind of smart, hooky, highly-quotable songs that gives indiepop a good name. You can stream the whole thing via Spotify (or P4k for the time being) and a few songs right here:

Alright here are the details of Sunday’s show. (August 25.) It’s at the Front/Row stage at South Street Seaport on the corner of Front and Fulton. (It’s where Smorgasbar is.) I’ll be DJing from around 3PM and Bent Shapes will be on at 4PM sharp! It’s free, there’s a giant astroturf field you can stretch out on, the weather will be sunny and beautiful Why wouldn’t you come down?

I should say that Bent Shapes are also playing Cake Shop on Saturday as part of a crazy-good show that also has Gross Relations, Butter the Children and Two Inch Astronaut. You should go to that AND come to Sound Bites.

Bent Shapes’ Andy, Supriya and Ben indulged my questions about food and their answers are below. Food tubes will be available at Smorgasbar, btw.

Summer is prime farmer’s market time. What’s your favorite vegetable? And why.
B: I like zucchini, because it’s so versatile. It’s good grilled, cooked into ratatouille or jagacida, or baked into muffins with chocolate chips. Can’t go wrong.
S: I like broccoli because it tastes so nice in pizzas, soups, as a stand-alone item, oh jesus christ just everything! I might mention avocado but note that it is a fruit or a nut or something, I dunno.
A: My favorite food in the world in salad, so I will go with “mixed greens” as my favorite.

What’s your least favorite and why?
B: Never met a vegetable I didn’t like.
S: Celery because it is fucking awful, although I like it pureed to oblivion in soup context etc., etc.
A: I think “wedge of iceberg lettuce” is the most depressing sounding thing on the menu.

Bent Shapes just released their debut album. Did any particular food fuel the making of it?
B: We ate at Shanghai Village in Arlington, MA quite a bit before sessions, but the $5 Suffering Bastards had a lot more to do with it than the food, I think.
S: Yes, anything distillable and always fresh greens.
A: Also, we ate a lot of barbecue, which sounds pretty awful. Can you imagine eating ribs and then doing vocal takes? I can.

Has food ever influenced your songwriting?
B: Sure. You are what you eat. I was ingesting too much caffeine during the writing of this one, but I just quit coffee, so maybe my contributions will be mellower in the future.
S: We’ve brushed against burrito metal and pizza-tween twee.
A: We used a lot of food props in the Panel Of Experts video, does that count?

Any good food-related band anecdotes?
B: We used to go for ice cream after almost every practice, but we’re getting too old for that shit now.
S: I never fucked with that shit.
A: *sigh*

Who is the best cook in the band?
B: We all have our specialties, I think. Andy makes a mean brunch.
S: I make a mean weettucini weefredo (is that ok?).
A: I make a mean brunch.

What can you tell us about eating in Boston?
B: We’ve got some great restaurants. I think the diversity in the neighborhoods we call home guarantee variety, too, which is cool.
S: It is one of the destinations of our greatish country in which the winter food makes you fat AND the summer food makes you fat.
A: God Bless America.

What’s your favorite local restaurants?
B: Top 5 on my side of the river are probably Cantina La Mexicana, Dosa Factory, Sound Bites, Veggie Galaxy, and Chilli Garden.
S: Go to the Publick House in Brookline, order the macaroni and cheese, add broccoli, accompany the aforementioned with an Houblon Chouffe Belgian IPA, go on with your life knowing you’ve felt the pinnacle of satisfaction and nothing else matters now.
A: There is a diner in Watertown called the Deluxe Town Diner. Very very delicious. Le’s is a Vietnamese chain here in Boston and it’s also quite niiiiiiiiice.

What’s your go-to hangover food?
B: I’ve only been hungover once or twice, but I mostly just moaned a lot and ate dry toast in bed.
S: The snooze bar on the alarm clock. Cuz, yunno, “Sometimes you eat the bar, and sometimes the bar eats you.”
A: WATER

What food would you imagine Bent Shapes music being paired with?
B: Some sort of food tube (burrito, dosa, calzone)?
S: Yeah, probably Indian-fusion, which is my fault entirely. Something authentically inauthentic.
A: Def a food toob.

Chewin’ the fat with Radical Dads (who play Sound Bites Series this weekend!)

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The Sound Bites Series continues this Sunday (8/18) at the Front/Row stage which is located at the corner of Fulton and Front streets at South Street Seaport. It’s right by Smorgasbar which has beer, wine and some great food. I DJ at 3PM with the band on at 4PM sharp! I am super-psyched for this week’s band: Radical Dads.

Brooklyn trio Radical Dads (make indie rock the old fashioned way, recalling the glory days of ‘90s college radio. But they’re no slackers, gigging constantly locally and around the country. The world even: they just got back from a tour of Japan. Their hook-filled new album, Rapid Reality, came out in the spring and I asked them a few food related questions…

Summer is prime farmer’s market time. What’s your favorite vegetable? And why.
Kohlrabi for sure. Because sometimes we say to Robbie, “Hey Kohlrabi!” and he responds. I am not sure if there is any kinship between their tastes.

What’s your least favorite and why?
The “Cleft Butt” heirloom tomato. Because it looks like a butt.

Radical Dads released their second album this year. Did any particular food fuel the making of it?
But of course! The making of Rapid Reality was fueled by gummy snacks, ginger brews, cucumber fizz concoctions, bahn mi, ‘za slices, and those massive jawbreakers, eaten Lady and the Tramp-style.

Has food ever influenced your songwriting?
Yes. Sometimes you (well, we) eat some seitan or broccoli and it’s hard to sing a particular melody because of particular things that food does to your (well, our) G.I. tract. So you change the melody.

Any good food-related band anecdotes?
One time Robbie threw a gummy bear across the practice space and it caromed off my tooth and into my mouth and I swear I heard that sweet little ursa emit a yelp.

Who is the best cook in the band?
Definitely Kohlrabi.

You folks recently toured Japan. Please list in exhaustive detail all the most delicious/weird things you ate while there.
Basashi, a.k.a. horsemeat
Gyutan, a.k.a. beef tongue
Sashimi, a.k.a. cool fish
Sake juice boxes, a.k.a. drunk on the train
Gummy fruit of every variety, a.k.a. a gummy apple a day keeps the doctor away but brings the dentist very near indeed
Soba noodles, a.k.a. it’s ok to slurp
Soda, a.k.a. soda
Onigiri, a.k.a. triangles

What’s your favorite local restaurants?
We live in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn, and some of our favorite restaurants are Nam Nam, Williamsburg Pizza, Post Office, Taco Chulo, and a secret speakeasy spot called Robbie’s Roof Deck.

What’s your go-to hangover food?
As straight-edge gutter punks, we don’t get hungover.

What food would you imagine Radical Dads’ music being paired with?
Our songs go great with soda. Especially artisinal types sold in throwback bottles with sexy-ass graphic design or illustrations redolent of a simpler era when Eisenhower ruled with his hidden hand and we all commuted from the suburbs.

New York, ice cream, TV, travel, good times: Summer Fridays 6.6

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We’re back to dancing this week and no song has me acting dumb in my apartment that Todd Terje‘s “Strandbar” but you’ll have to wait till the end of the mix to hear it. Unless you’ve heard it already, then good for you. We’ve also got the return of Norway’s awesome Annie (with Richard X), the equally awesome return of Gramme, plus new tracks from Hot Chip, Soft Metals, Jagwar Ma, Chateau Marmont and more. Plus, some oldies (New Order, 808 State, Human League) that I’ve been listening to lately too. Kate Bryant was kind enough to do this week’s cover with almost no notice. Someone please refill her glass.

UPDATE: Kate also made an animated version of this week’s cover art, which you can watch “below the jump” as they used to say. That’s a first (and someone’s bored).

DOWNLOAD: SUMMER FRIDAYS 6.6

Tracklist:
1 Annie – Back Together
2 Chateau Marmont – Wind Blows (Yusek Remix)
3 808 State – Pacific 202
4 New Order – Special
5 Hot Chip – Dark & Stormy
6 Gramme – Rough News
7 The Human League – The Things Are Dreams Are Made Of
8 Jagwar Ma – Man I Need
9 World’s End Press – Second Day Uptown
10 Soft Metals – When I Look INto Your Eyes
11 AlunaGeorge – Attracting Flies
12 Toro Y Moi – Say That
13 **** ****** ** ****** – ************
14 Rainbow Arabia – He Is Sorceror
15 Todd Terje – Strandbar (Samba)

You know the drill: no shuffling.

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Rrrrrrrrev UP: Summer Fridays 6.4!

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I don’t know about where you live, gentle reader, but here in Brooklyn we are in the midst of a heatwave. It was 90° at midnight last night. Midnight! That’s some tropical shit right there. When it’s this hot, my mind turns to the ocean…and surfing. Well maybe not the latter part, but this week’s mix is vaguely surf inspired, partly due to seeing wonderful Seattle band La Luz last weekend. Their terrific track “Sure as Spring” is track #5 this week, but don’t skip ahead!

There’s also new music from Florida’s Jacuzzi Boys, The Resonars, Aussie band Dick Diver, great new UK band Hookworms and a “Mystery Track.” Plus Revillos’ “Rev Up” (which you may recognize from Sixteen Candles), The Tyde, and bonehead/offensive garage rock obscurity “Beaver Patrol” by Wylde Knights which was later covered by Pop Will Eat Itself. And lots more! Cover art this week is by veteran Summer Fridays contributor Kate Bryant whose new blog Lady Copywriter dissects the ad world in entertaining fashion. Check it out.

Also check out the mix, which you can grab right here:

DOWNLOAD SUMMER FRIDAYS 6.4

Tracklist:
1. The Revillos – Rev Up
2. Hookworms – Radio Tokyo
3. The Tyde – Go Ask Yr Dad
4. The Cryan Shames – Sugar & Spice
5. La Luz – Sure as Spring
6. Wylde Knights – Beaver Patrol
7. The Resonars – The World is Wrong
8. Revolving Paint Dream – Seven Seconds
9. Go Violets – Josie
10. The Keepsies – She (Was My Babie)
11. The Kinks – Big Sky
12. Yawn – Bed Rugs
13. Super Furry Animals – (Drawing) Rings Around the World
14. Dick Diver – Lime Green Shirt
15. Jacuzzi Boys – Double Vision
16. Fever B – Pop Punk Love
17. Devo – Through Being Cool
18. The Hombres – Let It Out (Let It All Hang Out)
19. ???? ???? & ??? ??????? – ???? ?? ???
20. Allah-Las – Long Journey
21. The Sandals – Theme from Endless Summer

Not to beat a dead horse, but this is an actual mix where songs smush into one another. No shuffling, man. Until next week, stay cool.