31.12.07

BBBD Best Mainstream Independent Tracks of 2007


I thoroughly enjoyed writing up my list of the best "undiscovered" tracks of 2007. It was tough widdling the list down to a mere twenty-five -- there were many more I wanted to add and many more, I'm sure, that I just simply forgot about! -- but I think it gives a good oversight of the more obscure and unknown music I was listening to and promoting over the course of the year.

Now, on the last day of 2007, I present you all with a new mix (and my final for this year!): the Best Mainstream Independent Tracks of 2007.

Whereas the last list was a compendium of allegedly "unknown" tunes, this one is (1) in order (#1 is my favorite, #25 is my least favorite of the bunch) and (2) one featuring only artists of "mainstream independent" standing artists. So while Rihanna (ugh), for example, won't be on the list (not an "indie" artist), LCD Soundsystem will be since it's a "mainstream" independent artist. Even if this doesn't make a whole lot of sense, I hope you all enjoy the thing!

Download the ZIP file here. Read some notes on the selection after the jump.

(1) Spoon - You Got Yr Cherry Bomb
(2) M.I.A. - Paper Planes
(3) LCD Soundsystem - All My Friends
(4) Justice - Phantom Pt. II
(5) Deerhoof - +81
(6) Klaxons - Golden Skans
(7) Arcade Fire - Black Wave/Bad Vibrations
(8) Panda Bear - Comfy In Nautica
(9) Babyshambles - Delivery
(10)Digitalism - I Want I Want
(11)the Go! Team - Fake ID
(12)Cut Copy - Hearts On Fire
(13)the Raveonettes - The Best Dies
(14)New Young Pony Club - Ice Cream
(15)Simian Mobile Disco - Sleep Deprivation
(16)Enon - Dr. Freeze
(17)Hot Chip - Ready For the Floor
(18)Bonde Do Role - Office Boy
(19)No Age - Everybody's Down
(20)Battles - Race In
(21)Animal Collective - For Reverend Green
(22)Calvin Harris - Acceptable In the 80s
(23)Bumblebeez - Dr. Love
(24)Shout Out Louds - Impossible
(25)Arctic Monkeys - Fluorescent Adolescent

Where's Jens? Where's the National? Where's Beirut? Where's a whole slew of people, for that matter?
I just didn't like 'em as much. These twenty-five songs are my favorites, my anthems, my sing-alongs, my recommendations.

More importantly, perhaps, why is "Delivery" in the Top Ten? Why is Cut Copy's single on this, when there's no album to compliment it? And why the heck is Spoon's "You Got Yr Cherry Bomb" #1? I don't really know ... enjoy it for what it is.

This was the year of solid, matured, intriguing comebacks (Arctic Monkeys, Arcade Fire); the year of New Rave's rise and inevitable, necessary fall (Klaxons); the year that at least some segment of the population learned what good, smart dance music is all about (Simian Mobile Disco); the year we embraced the international music community (Bonde Do Role); the year we finally ironically embraced the irony with which we originally embraced the 1980s (Calvin Harris); they year we finally heard from Cut Copy ... I'd say it was a pretty damn good year.

The twenty-five songs I've listed out seem to me to not only be the catchiest of the lot this year, but also the most significant and important. May we remember them for decades to come.

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30.12.07

Straaatch


Straaatch is a French electronic artist who sounds sort of like MSTRKRFT, Justice, and Teenage Bad Girl all rolled into one big ball and then mixed with some hip-hop beats, extra glitch, and a little dance floor fluff by Girl Talk.

He's fun, he's a little cheesy, he's got a solid sense of rhythm, and certainly the energy and vitality to back it all up. Check out a couple of his tunes below. Fun stuff ... hopefully the Riviera native will be churning out more in the coming year!








Straaatch - Brass Hysteria







Straaatch - For Sure!







Straaatch - Juice Box

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29.12.07

BBBD Best Undiscovered Tracks Of 2007 (Part 5 of 5)


I feel as though I sold myself short with my statistical sum-up of the year. It was a little bit too straightforward and was only an indication of what I most frequently listened to over the course of the year rather than what I really liked in the end. There is a difference!

I now present to you the fifth (and final) installation of BBBD's Best Undiscovered Tracks List of 2007. (So now I've done artists and unknown acts, but still no favorite albums or "mainstream" independent favorites -- we shall see what the future holds!)

You can get the ZIP of all 25 of my favorite tunes here or download the MP3s one-by-one over the course of five days.







Ungdomskulen - Ordinary Son
Bergen, Norway's Ungdomskulen will make more hair pop up on your chest than a straight double shot of whiskey on the rocks. Play them loud. They are the intelligence of Frank Zappa ("pop music is too much of a constrain for my genius) and the stoic metal fun of Black Sabbath. Priceless. Why didn't this band spring to the scene sooner after the demise of Test Icicles?






Vincent Vincent & the Villains - I'm On My Own
Vincent Vincent & the Villains started that whole rockabilly/old school rock trend that we're experiencing today. Step aside imitators, Vincent Vincent & the Villains did it first. They did it best. Had I made a similar list of undiscovered tracks for 2006, these guys would have topped it. Luckily, they released another single this year and now that I've gotten my act together, they're on a list! Woot!







White Rabbits - The Plot
Crafty, smart pop music that draws from a plethora of world and traditional musics is so in right now. White Rabbits preempted that trend and got us all on the band wagon. Give them their due respects.







White Williams - New Violence
I'm from Cleveland originally. White Williams is our pride and joy; our Beck and Pavement all in one ball. He makes me feel proud to hail from such a depressed industrial city. Keep churning out them hits, White. We love you!







Whitey - Wrap It Up
Whitey is the best thing that could happen to the British music scene today. I would post everything from his "lost" album, Great Shakes, if I could/if it wasn't supposed to officially be a 2008 release, but alas, this is all we've got for now. His organic, analog style of dance music is a highly sought-after musical commodity these days -- we need more liek Whitey. Funky, rocky, foot-stomping beats, fat bass lines, and head bobbing guitar/keyboard hooks. Ahhhh ... too good!

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28.12.07

BBBD Best Undiscovered Tracks Of 2007 (Part 4 of 5)


I feel as though I sold myself short with my statistical sum-up of the year. It was a little bit too straightforward and was only an indication of what I most frequently listened to over the course of the year rather than what I really liked in the end. There is a difference!

I now present to you the forth installation of BBBD's Best Undiscovered Tracks List of 2007. (So now I've done artists and unknown acts, but still no favorite albums or "mainstream" independent favorites -- we shall see what the future holds!)

You can get the ZIP of all 25 of my favorite tunes here or download the MP3s one-by-one over the course of five days.







the Dodos - Fools
Innocuous enough name, right? San Francisco's the Dodos are formidable indie-folk players, though. The seamlessly meld the wackiness of Animal Collective with rhythms that almost robotically trudge along and summery Beach Boys-esque vocal harmonies. Oh, and they throw in quite a few mean swooning melodies that will ease you into submission. The Dodos are coming.







the Mules - We're Good People (CSS Remix)
The Mules are a minimalist Talking Heads displaced thirty years forward to a present-day London. They're nerdy and clean-cut, yet exceptionally rhythmic and musically creative. Unfortunately, the band's best song is a CSS remix of "We're Good People." Hate it when that happens ...







the Rumble Strips - Alarm Clock
The Rumble Strips are from the U.K. They are like Madness circa One Step Beyond prefab for 2007. They jive, man.







the Tough Alliance - Something Special
You're still not tired of hearing about the Tough Alliance from BBBD? You shouldn't be. The Swedish duo is just as fresh as it was when their music graced the digital pages of our humble music blog last year. Not only do these guys run Sincerely Yours -- one of the best Swedish record labels -- but they also churn out spectacularly fun and vibrant music. It's like New Order doing a beach party, but with an underlying maturity and somberness that's tough to place but memorable and sincere. Breaking down our preconceived notions of pop one song at a time ...







the Virgins - Rich Girls
The Virgins are still under-appreciated and undiscovered by the masses. They're a sure bet if you're looking for simple and super-hit rock with an R&B/funk twist. And no, you nitwit -- they're not the second coming of the Strokes. Not gonna happen.

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27.12.07

BBBD Best Undiscovered Tracks Of 2007 (Part 3 of 5)


I feel as though I sold myself short with my statistical sum-up of the year. It was a little bit too straightforward and was only an indication of what I most frequently listened to over the course of the year rather than what I really liked in the end. There is a difference!

I now present to you the third installation of BBBD's Best Undiscovered Tracks List of 2007. (So now I've done artists and unknown acts, but still no favorite albums or "mainstream" independent favorites -- we shall see what the future holds!)

You can get the ZIP of all 25 of my favorite tunes here or download the MP3s one-by-one over the course of five days.







Pete & the Pirates - Come On Feet
Remember Tap Tap? Pete & the Pirates is Tap Tap's founder, frontman, and main member Thomas Sanders' latest project, and while the filled-out full band does resemble Tap Tap in many regards, there's a lot more going on here. The U.K. quartet plays insanely hooky tunes with the energy of an original punk band and the smart attitude of the Futureheads or Gang of Four. They're an absolutely delight. Forthright (it take barely more than two seconds for a song to kick off), deliberate, and confident, Pete & the Pirates is making us rethink what makes a good pop song and is reminding us that a sharp, jagged melody and lyric can be just as emotionally evocative as Coldplay slosh.







Ponytail - Start A Corporation
Many a band has risen from (and fallen out of?) the Baltimore music scene. Many of these bands we all know and many of them subscribe to a certain psychedelic, potpourri of styles folk hybrid, but there are several outliers that are hard to place and especially intriguing. Like Ponytail! I like the describe the Baltimore group as Deerhoof on speed. They brazenly rush through hook-filled songs with a squealing vocalist carrying the tunes along (albeit it in a schizophrenic and claustrophobic manner). They will rock your socks off and send you running ... but then you'll jet back to meet them when they return to your town.







Prinzhorn Dance School - Crackerjack Docker
Finally, a band that deserves all the Young Marble Giants comparisons it can rile up. Prinzhorn Dance School is one of DFA's more out there signings. The German U.K. duo sing shout non-sequiturs accompanied by uber-sparse instrumentals. So minimalist are they in fact that the drums, bass, and vocals never seem to hit at once ... the listener is just exposed to one, then the other, then the other. A weird listening experience that requires more concentration and thought than one would expect.







Shugo Tokumaru - Future Umbrella
Shugo Tokumaru is an outrageously talented Japanese guitarist who composes they meandering, slight, mystical guitar tunes that span one to eight minutes. Injected with just enough Oriental twang, the pop ballads slowly and seductively wrap around your ears, subversively build to a crescendo, and innocently enough climax into a bang that's impossible to replicate. Good going, Shugo. Once again, Japan has done it better.







Studio - West Side
Studio is Robert Smith and the Cure done dub. I've been able to say nothing else of worth about this Swedish duo since I was introduced nearly a year ago. Stunning. My jaw still drops listening to them.

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BBBD Best Undiscovered Tracks Of 2007 (Part 2 of 5)


I feel as though I sold myself short with my statistical sum-up of the year. It was a little bit too straightforward and was only an indication of what I most frequently listened to over the course of the year rather than what I really liked in the end. There is a difference!

I now present to you the second installation of BBBD's Best Undiscovered Tracks List of 2007. (So now I've done artists and unknown acts, but still no favorite albums or "mainstream" independent favorites -- we shall see what the future holds!)

You can get the ZIP of all 25 of my favorite tunes here or download the MP3s one-by-one over the course of five days.







Holy Hail - Born of a Star
Holy Hail represents the new New York cool. Sort of like Tom Tom Club goes church-y or something. It's Fannypack done folk. It's indie-dance done twee. It's so many things done backwards and contrary to common belief and hipness ... thereby making them the epitome of hip. It's creatives like these guys that we need more of.







Jana Hunter - Babies
We're tired of Devendra, we're tired of "freak folk," we're tired of nondescript singer/songwriters like Feist ... we want more authenticity and trueness and now Jana Hunter is here to deliver that to us. The Texas-born singer/songwriter doesn't rely on a especially unique or quirky vocal talent, complex guitar melodies or riffs, or ecstatic stylings like many of her folk and country companions but plain and simple talent. She evokes old standbys like Vashti Bunyan, Nick Drake, and Joni Mitchell while refraining from being derivative, trendy, and hip to the now ... which, again, makes her cool, anyway!







Late of the Pier - The Bears Are Coming
I don't know why interest in Late of the Pier sputtered out. They're easily one of the more progressive acts to sprout from the U.K. this year. With their off-kilter tribal-meets-dingy-bedroom-drum-machine beats, soulful singing, and loopy synth and guitar lines, the band represents a weird sort of hybrid of Talking Heads, the Unicorns, and a lo-fi incarnation of the Rapture.







Mancino - L'amour (Or Less)
Mancino is the smartest pop group out of NYC this year. Bringin' grunge back in a nerdier fashion. 'Nuff said.







Parker Lewis - Dirty Dancing
There have been one too many wussy male singer/songwriters to spring from Sweden in the past few years. One daydreaming Jens Lekman is all we really need, right? Nah ... Parker Lewis brings a whole new level of earnest sweetness and endearing pop writing to the table. He sings from the heart, will undoubtedly make you feel so much emotion for him (a stranger!), and will refuse to let you turn him off repeat. The young musician has been based in NYC for a while now ... perhaps it's the detachment from his home and sorrow from homesickness that has given him such talents, but whatever it is, his sadness is pure beauty. Turn all the noise off. Listen. Fall in love.

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26.12.07

BBBD Best Undiscovered Tracks of 2007 (Part 1 of 5)


I feel as though I sold myself short with my statistical sum-up of the year. It was a little bit too straightforward and was only an indication of what I most frequently listened to over the course of the year rather than what I really liked in the end. There is a difference!

I now present to you the first installation of BBBD's Best Undiscovered Tracks List of 2007. (So now I've done artists and unknown acts, but still no favorite albums or "mainstream" independent favorites -- we shall see what the future holds!)

You can get the ZIP of all 25 of my favorite tunes here or download the MP3s one-by-one over the course of five days.







Breakbot - Summer Party
2007 was the year of Justice -- at least on the electronic/dance end of the spectrum -- a statement most clearly illustrated through the sheer number of Justice imitators! From the rest of the Ed Banger crew to Teenage Bad Girl to Yuksek to Brodinski to oh so many more, this year was clearly influenced in a substantial way by the young Parisian duo. Breakbot represents a faction that splintered away from the Justice bandwagon. He retains the same underlying dance aesthetic and robotic swing, but adds an extra dose of funk to the mix. He represents the true successor.







Cheap Beat - Club Cheap Beat
Just when the Swedish pop scene was starting to get boring or at least monotonous, Cheap Beat waltzes onto the scene with contagious power-pop licks, Robert Smith-esque vocals, punkier roots, and an overall fresh approach to popular music that their fellow Scandinavian musicians failed to pick up on. Ashame, but at least Cheap Beat is here to save the day now!







datA - Aerius Light
While Breakbot represents the suave, classy substitute for Justice (for those of us who have just heard "D.A.N.C.E." one too many times), datA represents everything that's good about the overplayed pair's music. The metal-inspired electronic anthems, tremendous distortions, abrasive sound qualities, and angular, sharp beats can culminate into something worthwhile and fun, and datA proved that aptly this year.







Glass Candy - Beatific
I'm not even sure if Glass Candy really counts as an "undiscovered" band, but they certainly haven't received the attention they deserve, so I'm classifying them as such. Johnny Jewel -- a member of Glass Candy as well as of Chromatics as well as the producer for both entities -- is massively under-appreciated. Mr. Jewel is, in BBBD's eyes, one of the greater producers of the 21st century. His crisp and clean style is reminiscent of post-punk legends (Martin Hannett!), but the extra jolt of Italian disco and space rock is refreshing addition (too many New Wave bands these days). Glass Candy's music is all at once digestible and accessible yet exceptionally foreign and excitingly confounding. It's like valuing modern art and pointing out which painter will be "big" in five, yen years time: it's a gamble, but usually, the folks who are most out there and most bizarre are the one who, in the end, will be most prized and valued. So it is with Glass Candy/Johnny Jewel.







HEALTH - Triceratops
BBBD is based in L.A., so HEALTH, a four-piece based just around the corner from BBBD HQ, gets extra Brownie points by default. That being said, though, the quartet is an exciting new band that's making those of us who've become a little jaded with the "noise" scene find some solace in the decaying genre. HEALTH infuses true talent with their noise jams ... I only hope it heightens all our appreciations for solid music and good craftsmanship. HEALTH has shown us that noise isn't just for people wanting to form a band but not having the skills and wherewithal to do so. The really rock.

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New Choreo


Germany's Choreo is back with a new glitchy electronic dance track, "High Five," one of his best yet. Best electronic music his side of Alsace-Lorraine. The sounds and styles of Justice, the Ed Banger Boys, Brodinki, Yuksek, and all those Parisian kids is spreading faster than any modern French invasion (okay, take it down a notch, Nik), and who am I to complain?! Choreo's stuff is great and will certainly get you pumped up for any and all pre-New Year's parties, New Year's eve celebrations, and just about anything else that involves dancing that you'll be attending in the future.

Hope your holidays went well. Feelin' good.







Choreo - High Five

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24.12.07

Coldplay Cover Wham!'s "Last Christmas" Just In Time for ... Christmas!


I've never, not once posted a Coldplay song on this blog, but today, I'm making an exception. While I generally dislike the group (Coldplay = sound effect, not music to me), the video they posted on their website is just too cute. The quartet is staving off the rabid masses with a cover of Wham!'s "Last Christmas" (sorry, no album for you yet).

It's actually sort of sweet and calming -- and I think we can all agree that Chris Martin sings with with a much more endearing and sentimental tone that George Michael ever could claim. Enjoy the MP3 as well! Have a good one, folks!







Coldplay - Last Christmas (Wham! Cover)

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Poney Poney Holiday Single


Our favorite French rockers, Poney Poney, are spreading Christmas cheer from their side of the pond with a brand-spanking-new single, "She Began Telling Me Secrets," which sounds more like a modern rendition of "My Sharona" than a Holiday medley or Christmas carol.

Maybe that's what we need, though! A little romp to spice up our boring (?) yuletide festivities. Enjoy it!







Poney Poney - She Began Telling Me Secrets (Demo)

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23.12.07

BBBD & Stats: Year-End Chart-Toppers


This December, I've been hiding out in a corner, feeling a pretty worthless addition to the Internet music community. No top-fifty, twenty, ten, five ... no 2007 recommendations ... no pulling of forgotten or overlooked gems ... no year-end/holiday offerings from BBBD, everyone's favorite (!) music blog out there!

What's up!?
I felt that I couldn't compete with other bloggers ... my top ten would approximately resemble at least five-hundred others', and the prospect of coming off completely unoriginal with a chart that's not up to snuff compared to other bloggers was ... daunting and frankly saddening.

After twenty-two days of intense thought, I've got something different (hopefully) to gift you this year, so here it goes: my top-ten based statistically on the number of plays each artist received from me this year. So, as the first chart below indicates, I listened to Joy Division 488 times this year, making that band the most popular and therefore number one on my un-adjusted, raw chart. Perhaps utterly boring, perhaps completely enlightening.

There are two charts below: one which includes artists/bands that predate 2007/didn't release anything this year and one which only includes 2007 artists. If anything, this might be sort of fun to look over ... and certainly less pretentious than my prepared list would've been (as much as I may claim Panda Bear was one of my top fives, he didn't end up there). Oh and hey -- there's a mix for each list, too (no carryover tracks). Enjoy the free music ... I've some saved up bandwidth!

BBBD'S 2007 STATISTICAL BREAK-DOWN
(1) Joy Division (488)
(2) Of Montreal (353)
(3) Klanguage (338)
(4) Babyshambles (286)
(5) Klaxons (284)
(6) the Arcade Fire (271)
(7) Clap Your Hands Say Yeah (223)
(8) Shugo Tokumaru (222)
(9) LCD Soundsystem (221)
(10)the Books (216)
BBBD TOP TEN MIX (Raw) (ZIP)

BBBD'S 2007 STATISTICAL BREAK-DOWN (Adjusted)
(1) Of Montreal (353)
(2) Babyshambles (286)
(3) Klaxons (284)
(4) the Arcade Fire (271)
(5) Clap Your Hands Say Yeah (223)
(6) Shugo Tokumaru (222)
(7) LCD Soundsystem (221)
(8) Working For A Nuclear Free City (183)
(9) Deerhunter (176)
(10)the Tough Alliance (175)
(11)Deerhoof (163)
BBBD TOP TEN MIX (Adjusted) (ZIP)

*Animal COllective, Beirut, Digitalism, Justice, Panda Bear, the Go! Team, Marnie Stern, and Liars would've been included on a Top Twenty list.*

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21.12.07

The Hives, Remixed by YYY's Nick Zinner

Very, very cool news here: the Hives (MySpace) have been remixed by Yeah Yeah Yeahs' MySpace) Nick Zinner!

The man-as-pencil guitar god spruced up the otherwise bland "Tick Tick Boom" single with a sharper guitar line, too many "ticks" to count, and a bunch more hand claps. Sharper, more angular, jumpier, more energetic -- I like it.

Damn -- looks like the track's protected. I'll work on that. Download it here. Pretend you're from the U.K. if you don't really live there -- the thing's only available to the Brits.







the Hives - Tick Tick Boom (Post Colonization Mix)

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20.12.07

Mad For It


Mad For It is the newest Swedish record label that ought to be blipping onto our radar screens in the near future.

The first "release" is Parker Lewis' "X-Mas Carol, NYC" video and MP3(both of which you can download here, but why not just check out the video above?)

Parker Lewis seems to have stopped blogging on the blog he once had and closed down his MySpace page recently, so I've no idea what he's up to currently, but he was living in NYC and making great music. This sort of dream-pop stuff infused with the Sound of the 60s that, as usual, works very well for the Swedes in general for some reason. But Parker Lewis creates his stuff in this especially endearing way, so be warned -- download a song by him and it'll be on repeat for at least the day.







Parker Lewis - X-Mas Carol, NYC

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19.12.07

New Cut Copy Mix, "So Cosmic"


Cut Copy (MySpace) has been hiding out since Bright Like Neon Love was released in 2004. Save for some remixes, various mixes, and two new tracks ("So Haunted" and "Hearts On Fire"), they've kept us guessing and wanting more more more!

The wait is coming to a close, though: the Australian trio will be releasing their second full-length album, In Ghost Colours on Modular Records on April 8. Can't wait, right?

The mix below, "So Cosmic," is an exclusive to Anthem Magazine's blog, but since I'm hosting, I've decided to put it up here. Shh.

It's very good. Sixty minutes of Cut Copy compiled tracks, many of which are off the forthcoming LP. In classic Cut Copy fashion, the mix is delicately arranged ... it beautifully showcases some of the more unusual dance tunes and throws in a plethora of special tracks that we're sure most people don't even know! Cut Copy -- forever a band that reverently pays its respects and homage to the past but never loses its modern appeal. Dig it, folks.







Cut Copy Mix - So Cosmic

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Yves Klein Blue


I'll be on a bit of a vacation over Christmas, and while I'll be posting as regular, I probably won't be all over the Internet (*ahem* like I usually am) tomorrow, what with a 4-hour flight and time zone changes and all. As you may've already guessed, I'm writing this post on Tuesday, but you'll all be reading it on Wednesday while I'm probably reading Persepolis or something in the air!

Anyway ... I've a parting gift for you all: Yves Klein Blue. The Brisbane quartet is a perfect cross-breeding of the hygienic garage of Dirty Pretty Things and the folksier, sloppier ramblings of Pete Doherty & Co. Really great stuff that'll get you dancing, tapping your feet, whatever. Not one of the group's songs lacks a killer hook or catchy bass line. The vocalist is definitely a crooner, but he keeps everything in check, never letting too loose while adding in ample amounts of rock star charisma. Oh, and in terms of drumming, Yves Klein Blue has it down pat. The songs have this sort of swing to them that lightens the heavier melodies and arrangements and just makes you ... happy!

Unfortunately, I can only offer "Silence Is Distance" as a stream, but you'll love it, so just suck it up and admit defeat: for now, this MP3 is only residing online!







Yves Klein Blue - Silence Is Distance (Demo)

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Am-boy


Sad as it may be, I've not listened to Boards of Canada's seminal work, Music Has the Right to Children in something like two years. Their masterpiece -- a beautiful and organic melding of IDM, ambient noises, and ethereal, mystical eletronic melodies -- has unfortunately been collecting dust on my shelf, but this is certain to change now that I've thoroughly listened to Am-boy's (MySpace) output ... which one can't help but call at least a slight homage to the great Boards of Canada.

Unlike B.O.C., though, Am-boy is wildly prolific: he's released approximately thirteen albums and EPs since 1998, some of which were on the archaic technology that was the cassette! I can generally dub his music IDM or something along those lines, but there's a depth and maturity to these songs that's truly unparalleled. Listening to Am-boy, in particular his latest LP, Horrible Oracle Blessedness, I get the impression that he didn't actually create these songs ... no, these are simply found sounds that he's meticulously recorded. The album is enjoyable in its naturalness and smoothness of texture ... it's tough to imagine these tunes being developed on a cold, calculating computer.

Buy the stupendous album over at Attacknine. It's quite a work.







Am-boy - Full Circle







Am-boy - Seaward Classic







Am-boy - Rallies, Fads, and Riots

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18.12.07

Justice/LOLA Prize Package Giveaway


BIBABIDI is spreading the Holiday cheer again with another killer contest for all of you! This one will close a day before Christmas, so if you don't wind up getting anything you want next Tuesday, now you can take the gift giving into your own hands (although we don't recommend this -- there's a small chance of winning).

We've two (2) of these suckers to give away:

- 1 Limited LOLA t-shirt
- 1 album by Justice
- 1 Justice tour poster


Nice, huh? I think everyone now owns their own copy of Justice's , but if you're one of ... those ... who didn't pick it up, your opportunity to get your grubby little hands on it has arrived! But what's this LOLA t-shirt!? LOLA is a NYC-based clothing company that makes some threads. They dedicated their awesome skills to make a beautiful tee that subtly indicates the wearer's massive Justice fandom (who isn't?!) ...

If you would like to enter the contest -- which closes December 24 -- just shoot an email over to bibabidi@bibabidi.com with the subject LOLA + JUSTICE = BLISS and include your name, address, and shirt size, and you might just be lucky enough to claim one of the two (2) packages. Cool? Cool. Best o' luck.







Justice - Genesis

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Tybalt


Ahh, Holiday cheer. As it gets closer to Christmas (and other winter holidays that involve gift giving) and people get in an increasingly better mood (no work, presents) the Internet becomes a giant Christmas tree under which loads of free tunes are stashed for all. What a deal!

Tybalt, an Australian DJ and electronic artist, is taking part in the festivities with his new remix of Damn Arms' (MySpace) "Edie." The original, in classic Damn Arms fashion, is this heavy, sludgier number that mixes punk, heavier rock, and the electronic edge and excitement of say ... Klaxons. It's quite a good tune that can be heard at the band's the band's website (I guess they don't celebrate Christmas).

The remix incorporates more club elements into the original, throwing in a dash of synth sleaze and upping the atmospherics with some reverb. I like. It's a great dance track that just got a little chilly and slowed down a bit!

Check out the remix below and grab Tybalt's remix of Cut Off Your Hands' "Closed Eyes" as well!







Damn Arms - Edie (Tybalt Remix)







Cut Off Your Hands - Closed Eyes (Tybalt Remix)

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17.12.07

Pete & the Pirates


It's easy to find a new British band every day, and it's almost expected that half of those said found bands will be like the other half. The U.K., it seems, is full of copy-cats, eager to jump on the next trend's bandwagon in a last ditch attempt at maybe garnering some iota of fame.

Pete & the Pirates (MySpace), a Reading Town quintet signed to the wonderful independent, Stolen Recordings, is attempt to garner their own deserved fame and acclaim through something a little different: actual talent, unique musical vision, and a trueness of sound that most other bands -- regardless of geography -- should aspire for.

Pete & the Pirates play some of the most fantastic pop songs around. Most of the tunes on the forthcoming LP, Little Death, clock in under the three-minute mark but compress within that window of time they convey so much. Wildly catchy angular guitar hooks, phenomenal drumming and rhythm keeping that will keep you on the edge of your seat or, better yet, jumping spastically all over the dance floor, and a frantic interplay between the five parts that is unmatched by most bands and certainly is the lifeblood of this indie-pop outfit. They combine the raw energy, sharp corners, and jagged rhythms of dancier groups with a pure punk aesthetic that dirties the whole sound up, adds a little grit and grime, makes it known that Pete & the Pirates are far from perfect. But it's that authenticity in the end that makes the band so damn good.

I cannot rave about these guys anymore. They are beyond words, really, and just need to be fully let into your system.

If you would like another free song, go here, fill out some information, and you'll be gifted "Not A Friend." Check out a few music videos after the jump. Now you're in love, right? Support them -- buy music from iTunes, or Stolen Recordings' Download Shop, or -- better yet -- get hard copies of it all right here!







Pete & the Pirates - Come On Feet







Pete & the Pirates - Knots







Pete & the Pirates - Lost In the Woods

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Malcom Middleton Remixed by Sportsday Megaphone


Talk about strange pairings ... Malcom Middleton (MySpace) has a new song, "We're All Going To Die" -- which, by the way, is being considered for the BBC Christmas Number 1 Hit -- and it's been remixed by Sportsday Megaphone. Yeah, that hokey group that is notorious for creating these bizarre Kraftwerk-on-crack remixes. And now ... with ex-Arab Strap Malcom Middletone!? For Christmas!?

I dunno guys ... the world's going topsy turvy. Regardless, this is a pretty neat remix, so grab it below, and be sure to vote for Mr. Middleton this Christmas! "We're All Going To Die" would make an unusual Holiday chart-topper.







Malcom Middleton - We're All Going To Die (Sportsday Megaphone Remix)

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The Touques


As I'm unfamiliar with Reno, Nevada's music scene, I'm going to dub the Touques (MySpace) the best indie band to hail from the desert city. (They also get the nomination for best band named after a hat, but that's another story.)

In all fairness, though, the Touques are quite an interesting and fun band. Their debut album, Mustard Pickle Gun (no, it's really called that and I wish I had a clue as to what the hell it means, too), is this off-kilter hybrid of contemplative and meticulous rock akin to Modest Mouse, totally out there experimental pop outfits like Man Man (or, better yet, the founders of the genre, the Bonzo Dog Doh-Dah Band), and grittier, surlier bar bands, perhaps Ian Drury & the Blockheads. While I must admit that, in the end, the Touques don't amount to the sum of the whole of the above stated groups, they prove themselves just as unique and exiting as any one of them on their own.

Every one of the sixteen [obliquely titled] tracks on Mustard Pick Gun will leave you guessing, but the underlying continuity and merits that the band holds -- solid vocalist who reminds me of Roddy Frame from Aztec Camera mixed with Shaun Ryder of Happy Mondays fame, exuberant, nimble guitar playing that squeezes more melodic noodles and hooks into one single song than is normally possible, a funky, singing vibe and energy that carries all the tunes along swiftly -- will make you keep the record on rather than eject it in confusion. Here's some info on how to pick up your own copy of the album. Enjoy three sample tracks!







the Touques - Diggers of Sand







the Touques - Lunatique







the Touques - We're On An Island

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14.12.07

The Do


Imagine a jazzier, folksier version of the Cardigans and you've approximately got the Finnish/French duo, the Do.

The band is comprised of Olivia Merilahti -- one of the most wonderful singers who seems equally well versed in jazz club, musical, rock, and folk singing and alternates between them all through the debut album, A Mouthful -- and Dan Levy who seems to be the main songwriter and arranger. Undeniably, though, these two work as a solid, tight team that produces hooky, serenading pop tunes ... sometimes they lean more towards the ballad side of things, sometimes a little more to the soft-rock end, and sometimes they edge more towards straight-up acoustic folk music.

Regardless, all the songs on A Mouthful -- out on January 14 -- are especially engaging and memorable ... clearly a labor of love. The Do will slowly but surely pull you in tighter and tighter, and by the end of the fifteen-track LP, you'll be dazed by the verisimilitude demonstrated by the small band and ... won't ... be ... able ... to ... get ... those ... blasted melodies ... out ... of... your ... head!







the Do - When Was I Last Home?







the Do - Stay (Just A Little Bit More)







the Do - On My Shoulders

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13.12.07

The Bell


Sweden's most successful pop outfits tend to err on the of major key hooks, bouncy, optimistic hooks, and an underlying aesthetic of freshness and warmth. It's unusual to find a band from the cold country, then, that actually mimics the climate and surroundings. The Bell sounds like they're actually from Sweden -- a dark and distant blend of atmospheric post-punk, sharp yet dance-y rhythms, and bass lines in the higher registers (think Peter Hook's bass playing).

The groups is a solid act, and certainly worth looking into. The remix on the MySpace page is great -- a sort of New Order take on the Happy Mondays with a hokeyness akin to Whitey. The original tunes, though, are great in their own right and are especially suiting me right now, as I write this post in a surprisingly cold L.A. (my fingers are turning purple! -- should I turn on the heat?)

Get the album, Make Some Quiet, from Portland's Badman Recordings Co..Enjoy!







the Bell - I Am History







the Bell - Do You Know How I Feel?







the Bell - On and On

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12.12.07

Glasvegas


Glasvegas (MySpace) -- quite a name, right? The Glasgow four-piece is quite a band, though.

Glasvegas' MySpace describes their sound as "Experimental/Surf/Pop" and, surprisingly, such a classification isn't far off. The band plays heavy shoegaze-infused atmospheric post-punk songs which pull both a page from Echo & the Bunnymen's as well as Slowdive/My Bloody Valentine's. The songs are incredibly deep and at times a little overwhelming because of the vastness of their grand wall of sound. But the quartet keeps the production clean and crisp, enunciating the guitar melodies, stellar bass lines, and vocalist's uber-accent despite the umbrella of reverb and echo that encapsulates the songs as a whole.

"Daddy's Gone" sounds like the Raveonettes meets Interpol meets surf pop (for real). If only I could offer it for download ... check it out on their MySpace. But first -- grab the below demos. Never have I heard such expertly produced home demos! Wow! This is indeed a very good, very solid band.







Glasvegas - Go Square Go! (Demo)







Glasvegas - Geraldine (Demo)

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New Poney Poney


Antoine from France's Poney Poney just sent me a great little live acoustic track the trio recently recorded. The song is called "The Last Day Of School" and it's this very cute, very modest sing-along tune that your inner Jack Johnson/Jason Mraz fan will adore.

Maybe the above to comparisons aren't fair. Whatever -- just know that it's a lovely live song about the frustrations of getting a job and becoming a function member of society and incorporates quite a few sweet hooks. And ahh ... all the more ironic and endearing -- it was recorded on campus!







Poney Poney - Last Day Of School (Live on Campus)

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Deerhoof @ the Avalon, 12.10.07


I've seen Deerhoof (MySpace) four or five times in both Cleveland and Los Angeles, as a trio and a quartet. Every time I've seen the legendary San Francisco group (and yes -- they are legendary), I've been sucked deeper and deeper into my Deerhoof fandom. (I would like to think at this point that, with eyes closed, I could accurately imagine John, Greg, and Satomi's movements and erratic technique).

I go to Deerhoof shows knowing approximately what to expect, but always stunned at what they wind up delivering. I know that Greg will break at least one drum stick; I know that Satomi will remind the audience of her trademark dance moves; I know that John will spend most of his time on stage staring at the floor or gazing off into space, in the deepest expression of concentration I've ever seen on a guitarist. The group never misses a beat, never botches a song up (and when an "error" does arise, they sublimely re-congeal, improvise, and get right back up again), and never seems detached or disinterested in their music. And they've every right to be. After, by some counts, sixteen years as a band (Greg is the only "original" member), the current three know their material like the back of their hand. They've ended with "Panda, Panda, Panda" dozens if not hundreds of times, they've played the crowd pleasers ("Milk Man," "Rrrrright," "Wrong Time Capsule") to death, but they somehow retain their enthusiasm and energy. It's a rare band that sees their group as a means of exploration rather than a hindrance or a box they've trapped themselves in; a glass ceiling of sorts.

While the "core" Deerhoof will remain the same -- same songs, same line-up, same tendencies -- the trio will continue to spring off that unification into a myriad ways. The second time I saw the band, they played with a jazzier, fleshed-out identity, putting some swing into their songs, adding modest melodious accents and bass warbles. The third time I saw them, they sped things up a bit, added a little flash to their style, and swung to a more digestible side of the musical spectrum: they were nearing radio-friendly. This show at the Avalon was like a Deerhoof show done prog ... it was Deerhoof but twisted into this heavy, almost metal sort of mode. John dragged out his usually spiky, enigmatic guitar lines (which serve more like a punctuation rather than a grammatically correct sentence) ... a sort of sludgier, grittier reinterpretation of the studio material. Satomi played around with complex bass rhythms and added another dimension to the noisier jams (and did it all fro atop a second stage behind Greg and John -- very metal of them -- but alas, no smoke machine). Greg led the crowd on more than ever with his eclectic drumming (even though he still uses the tiniest kit you'll ever see -- and wields it better than any mega-kit drummer), but still delivered the "goods" in the end.

Deerhoof tends to release a new album every year. Even if they don't continue this trend in 2008, just know that whatever they've up their sleeve will continue to stun and intrigue you. Another reinvention? Equally as different and divergent as the previous LPs, and certainly just as exciting. Keep an eye out.

Photos here and after the jump!







Deerhoof - Milking (Live)







Deerhoof - Twin Killers (Live)







Deerhoof - Panda, Panda, Panda (Live)







Deerhoof - Milk Man (Live)

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11.12.07

New Beach House


The new Beach House (MySpace) album, Devotion, is a stunning work of beauty. No questions asked. The Baltimore duo's follow-up to their eponymous debut is more complex, more layered, more technical. It's the first album taken to a new level, it's the first album with heightened sensibilities and sans newbie skin.

Devotion is the work of a weathered band that deserves every Mazzy Star, Slowdive, and Galaxie 500 comparison. But Beach House is by no means derivative, and Devotion proves that ... an expertly crafted record of swooning vocals, delicate, fragile guitar melodies and supple organ lines, and an air of maturity and self-awareness that is both unusual and much appreciated. Check out "Gila" below. It'll put you to sleep ... soothing.
"D.A.R.L.I.N.G." is immaculate -- the best song on the album -- and while I would love to post it, I'm not sure if that's cool ... the Grizzly Bear blog has it, though.

Devotion is out on Carpark Records on February 26. Buy it.








Beach House - Gila

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New Cazals Remix


London's hippest and trendiest, Cazals (MySpace), have a new single for "To Cut A Long Story Short" out just in time for the Holidays (stocking stuffer?)

Track a1 is obviously the above mentioned track (which, while you can't download here, you can listen to over at the MySpace page or view the video for after the jump) while one of the b-sides is the Streetlife DJ's Cut N' Run Dub (why can't remixes just be called remixes anymore?) Both tunes are great -- the original being an angular and gritty post-punk dance song, the remix being a robotic head-bashing mix that compliments the original rather well. Download it below!

The vinyl'll will be released on December 17 ... you can preorder a hard copy here (I can't believe I have to say hard copy to clarify these days) or preorder it on iTunes (how the heck do you preorder on iTunes?) Th3 12" features two Vicarious Bliss remixes, too. Of course Kitsune is releasing it.







Cazals - To Cut A Long Story Short (Streetlife DJ's Cut N' Run Dub)

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RIOTMAKER


A new discovery every day ...
Riotmaker (MySpace) is this great independent Italian record label. Who would've thought ...

I found the label through Amari (MySpace), the oldest roster member and -- I think -- joint owners of the label itself. Amari, a quintet, made a name for themselves before the turn of the millennium with their electronic breed of European hip-hop, but have since become more of an "experimental electronic" outfit that dabbles in dance music, hip-hop, pop, and plenty more. Check out some of their stuff below -- it's solid.

The label has an impressively large roster. I really dig Ex-Otago as well ... they're a hype-y cute indie-rock outfit that will certain get stuck in your head after just a listen or two.

Listen to a few tracks by those two groups ... I hope to have more material up online someday soon, but for now, I'll leave you with this. Don't want to doll out too much of a sensory overload ...







Amari - Le gite fuori porta







Ex-Otago - Giorni Vacanzieri (Fare Soldi Ccvaalihh Remix)

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Regina


Sweden's Songs I Wish I Had Written is giving away a great Holiday single, Regina's "Naina mustina iltoina," and it's really quite a wonderful gift!

The a-side sounds sort of like what would happen if Studio produced a female solo artist. The icy cold dub rhythms are perfect for these winter months, too, making it all the better. Regina has a wonderful voice, too ... imagine Annie minus the bubblegum pop aesthetic and hyperactive chirpy-ness. A solid release.

Check out more of Regina's stuff at her MySpace, download the ZIP of the single here, or just grab the two tunes below. The remix is rad as well.







Regina - Naina mustina iltoina







Regina - Naina mustina iltoina (Schmamix)

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10.12.07

BBC 4 Factory - From Joy Division to Happy Mondays


Just got a tip from a friend about this phenomenal documentary on Factory Records. It's an hour and a half and I've yet to finish it, but am stunned. The thing's loaded with tons of footage from the Factory days, plenty of enlightening interviews, and was clearly put together by a fan.

Enjoy!

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SirBilly Remixes


Who the heck is SirBilly!?
He's been involved in music since 1978. Began his carrier as record collector and radio speaker. Then he's been known as vocalist with Templebeat (a combo who gained massive airplay during the 90es, charted in Germany and Switzerlands, played several european festivals and appeared on RAI + MTV's 120 Minutes). He started writing during the 80s for Music Club and Dynamo, now he's a columnist for Il Mucchio Selvaggio and Il Mucchio Extra.
Remixer, alone and in collaboration with The Bloody Beetroots.
Impressive, right?
I've never heard of the Italian jack-of-all-trades until now, but these remixes he did in collaboration with the Bloody Beetroots (AKA the Best DJ Duo In Italy -- funny, huh?) are pretty alright. I've no idea where the Cabaret Voltaire song is in the one and they both sound pretty damn similar, but if you're named SirBilly and you're presumedly pretty damn old ... I guess this is what you get!







A Split Second - Flesh (The Bloody Beetroots Vs SirBilly Remix)







Cabaret Voltaire -- Sensoria (The Bloody Beetroots vs SirBilly Experience Remix)

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