Saturday, May 31, 2008

Fleet Foxy

Their sound has been compared to Band of Horses, My Morning Jacket and Neil Young, but I think there is something truly special about Fleet Foxes. So did Pitchfork, when they gave the band's Sun Giant EP a lofty 8.7/10 a few months ago and the packed-beyond-capacity crowd at Hoxton Bar and Kitchen on Thursday night strengthened my conviction that this is a band on the brink. The Seattle 5-piece brought their 4 part harmonies and bashful charm to London as the extremely poorly concealed "secret" special guest for the last Moshi Moshi night until September, performing alongside F. Lunaire, White Williams and thecocknbullkid.

The Foxes' amazing live presence, the completely enraptured audience and the sheer quality of the band's music wowed everyone in the place and triggered "that's the best show I've seen since yadda yadda yadda" comments from the majority of the crowd. Copies of the EP and new album (not officially released until June 3rd on Sub Pop) were snapped up in record time post-performance. I felt a bit sorry for thecocknbullkid, technically the headliner, as 93.2% of the audience flooded out after Fleet Foxes. And really, their set was not to be topped.

White Williams - New Violence

Fleet Foxes - Mykonos
Fleet Foxes - Your Protector
Fleet Foxes - Oliver James (live)
High-five to Ohmpark; they've got an entire live set in stellar high quality here.


Friday, May 30, 2008

Take me back to East Berlin

Berlin is so choice. If you have the means, I highly recommend a visit. Lawrence, Kansas-based group Les Somnifères recently captured all that is good about this fine German city (absinthe, punks, pretzels, the King Kong Klub, etc.) with their song "East Berlin".

Les Somnifères are Lawrence's newest (only?) French-friendly act, weaving hints of baroque pop, cabaret and folk into their gentle compositions. The majority of the group's songs are half in French and half in English, as the three founding members—Anissa Svenson, Rebecca Watts and Kathrine Bogart—met while studying abroad in France. Upon their return to the mother country, the trio enlisted the help of Martinez Hillard and Jeff Milberger (also of The Jen Say Kwahs) and guitarist Derek Branham.

Les Somnifères - East Berlin

- a.m.p.m.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Rock Steady

Stay Positive, the new album from Brooklyn's the Hold Steady has a lot to live up to. Their last album, Boys and Girls in America collected a large fan base and found itself as Pitchfork's #5 album of 2006. As such, there was a lot of buzz this week as the entire new album, due out July 15, leaked and began being reviewed and posted by blogs worldwide.

However, the band's label, Vagrant Records has seemed to clean up the mess as well as can be expected, and relatively quickly as well. Most (if not all) of the blogs that have posted tracks from Stay Positive have since taken them down, and re-directed all of the hungry eyes toward the band's myspace, and the streaming of the first single, 'Sequestered in Memphis'. The track continues to borrow from the band's most likened legend, Bruce Springsteen, only trading in the eastern sea board nostalgia for a little taste of the south.

The Hold Steady - Sequestered in Memphis
The Hold Steady - Stay Positive (Live at Emo's, Houston)

- bbbykmbrly.

The Corto Maltese

Austin, Texas. The SXSW host has long been regarded as a music hotbed, churning out bands of all persuasions in hopes the world will take notice come festival time. Though the excitement of March isn't breaking news, there are bands from various showcases that happened to slip through the cracks of my playlist. Shuffling aimlessly recently afforded me the pleasure of hearing a band called The Corto Maltese, who've been compared to Arcade Fire by seemingly every journalist who checked out their set. The accuracy of the comparison isn't spot on, but it makes sense. Their arpeggio laced number "Providence" does skip along to deliver a pretty Neon Biblish vibe, with wavering, tense vocals that upon release seem to quell a good deal of anxiety. Wolf Parade fans should definitely give them a try as well.

The Corto Maltese - Providence

- BA

May Mix

Here's a few of our favorite tracks of late, strung together in a shoddy mix. What it lacks in fluidity it makes up for in substance, and riboflavin. Tracklist below.

Walter Meego - Forever
Ratatat - Shempi
Cut Copy - Hearts on Fire (Midnight Juggernauts Remix)
Ninjasonik - Tight Pants
Hot Chip - Hold On
Bloc Party - Flux (JFK Remix)

- BA

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

The Hood Internet vs. Chicago

Here at BTA we've been big fans of The Hood Internet for a minute now. If you haven't heard, basically they'll mash indie rock instrumentals with the last rapper you'd think of, and the results, well...shouldn't have said "basically." Today they bring to us the official release of The Hood Internet vs. Chicago, 24 tracks which as the name implies, run the gamut of Chicago-area emcees and artists past and present. Even before throwing this one on, it's easy to get excited for combinations like Twista vs. Sea and Cake, or Rhymefest vs. The Changes.

You can get the whole thing here as one file (192kbps; 93.7MB mp3 file), or...head on over to their site for better bitrates in zipped files.

- BA

Monday, May 26, 2008

More from LP3

Like "Shiller" before it, Ratatat's latest sample from LP3 is quite simply amazing (update: Mirando's actually not on the album, but was posted as a free download by Beggars Group as a response to the album leak). What's better is the video for "Mirando" remixes Arnie's cinema classic, Predator. Note the head-windshield smash timed sharply on beat.

Ratatat - Mirando

- BA

Friday, May 23, 2008

Da Da Da

Sewdish DJs/remixers extraordinaires Dada Life dropped a red hot mix into our inbox yesterday, and I've been rocking it almost nonstop ever since. Check out the tracklist below and give it a listen.

1. Daft Punk - Teachers (Laidback Luke's 2008 Rework)
2. Surkin - Radio Fireworks (Riot In Belgium Second Remix)
3. Lykke Li - Dance Dance Dance (Dada Life's Guerilla Fart)
4. Elite Force - Kinetic Connection (Rogue Element Remix)
5. Siriusmo - Simple
6. Maral Salmassi - Television Rocks 08 (Fukkk Offf Remix)
7. T.Raumschmiere - E
8. Etienne de Crecy - Punk
9. Tommy Trash - Lover Lover
10. Dada Life - Fun Fun Fun! (Dada Life's Guerilla Fart)
11. Nhan Solo & Daniel Dexter - The Bounce is Back (Malente Remix)
12. Hot Chip - Ready for the Floor (Soulwax Nite Version / Dada Life's Guerilla Fart)
13. Dada Life - Your Favourite Flu
14. The Subs - Papillon (Yuksek & Brodinski Remix)
15. Crookers - Love To Edit

Dada Life - June Mix

- a.m.p.m.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Explosions In My Mind

How do you pick out the highlights from a festival composed of almost nothing but highlights? This year's ATP Explosions in Minehead was an indie rock nerd's dream come true, featuring epic performances from Battles, Animal Collective, Mono, De La Soul, Okkervil River, Beach House, Silver Jews, the Field, Sunset Rubdown, Ghostface, the Constantines, Envy, Iron and Wine, Four Tet, Jens Lekman, Atlas Sound, Stars of the Lid, the National, and of course festival curators Explosions in the Sky, among many more. There really wasn't a dull moment at any point during three days of top-notch sets (but more than a few kids did catch some much needed sleep during post-midnight offerings from ambient masters Stars of the Lid and Lichens).

That said, truly unforgettable experiences included Okkervil River ripping it up with new/temp guitarist Charles Bissell of the Wrens, Saul Williams tearing everyone's faces off, and Broken Social Scene inviting the Constantines, Explosions in the Sky and Dinosaur Jr's J Mascis on stage for some help with Kevin Drew's "Backed out on the Cocks" (video below). I guess BSS's 12 actual members just weren't enough.

The National:

Saul Williams:

Animal Collective:

Broken Social Scene with the Constantines, EITS and J Mascis:

Battles playing "Atlas" on Saturday night:

The National performing "Fake Empire":

Sunset Rubdown - Stadiums and Shrines II

Animal Collective - Grass
Envy - Go Mad and Mark
Stars of the Lid - Another Ballad for Heavy Lids

- a.m.p.m.

thanks to whatkatiedoes for photos

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Remix Artist Collective

The Remix Artist Collective (RAC) is an artist agency strictly devoted to remixing. Awesome remixing. Tegan & Sara, CSS, Family Force 5, The Shins, Justice, Bloc Party, Tokyo Police Club, The Comas and M.I.A. are just a few of the many artists who have received the RAC treatment.

Grab the remixes below and listen to about a zillion more here.

The Comas - Red Microphones (RAC remix)
Family Force 5 - Luv Addict (RAC remix)
CSS - Let’s Make Love and Listen to Death From Above (RAC Remix)
Tokyo Police Club - Be Good (RAC Remix)
Tegan & Sara - Back In Your Head (RAC remix)

- a.m.p.m.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Live: The Death Set & Bonde Do Role - Social, Toronto

Kind words of advice from BTA to our readers: if you are in a band, do not let Baltimore's the Death Set open for you. Unless, of course, it's part of some kind of ironic statement in which you want your band to look as uninspired, uninteresting, and generally lame as humanly possible.
Not that Brazilian electro-funkers Bonde Do Role were any of the afformentioned things - quite the opposite, in fact. But next to one of the most explosive live performances I can recall basically ever, it would have been simply impossible for them to compete for my heart tonight.

When guitarist/vocalist/band mastermind Johnny Siera was surfing on the speakers and climbing up the rafters, there was nowhere in the world I wanted to be except right there with him. And now that I've spent my entire month's allowance on every recording they had available at the show, I may just join him in destroying the whole fucking place the next time his band comes to town.
Aural States has their entire set available for streaming here, taken from a show a month or two ago in their hometown with Matt & Kim.
- bbbykmbrly.

Friday, May 16, 2008

The East Side Boyz

There is something about east coast Canadians that I am totally envious of.

Generally speaking (I’m sure there are exceptions to the rule), Maritimers just seem to be born with a quick wit, a welcoming smile, and a wonderful talent for self deprecation. I am still aspiring to obtain one of these three traits, although I believe I’m closest to mastering the ladder.

My love for easterners is only rivaled by my love for the music they make. I’ve posted about Wintersleep in the past. Buck 65 is getting more looks. Joel Plaskett’s following is bigger than ever (and is a complete mystery to others). As I prophesized, the Maritime Pop Revival has arrived.

And now comes the heir to the east coast throne, Two Hours Traffic. The four-piece has released their second full-length album called ‘Little Jabs’ with Plaskett on as producer; and now their sights are set on world domination.

While they are definitely not the next Arcade Fire, I believe they are stylish enough to be in style and catchy enough to catch on. As long as people can get past the rather horrible band name.

You can give the new album a listen at


Wednesday, May 14, 2008


If you're into Justice, Kavinsky, SebastiAn, et al. be sure to check out Cryptonites. The Swiss duo definitely follow in the footsteps of their mentors, but create some quality beats along the way; "Zodiac", "Glow" and "Hands of God" being among the best. Like their peers, Cryptonites also have an affinity for producing slick remixes and recently got their teeth into the new Coldplay track.

Grab their most recent mixtape featuring Digitalism, MSTRKRFT, Kylie, Bag Raiders, Salt N Pepa, Yuksek, Interpol, The Presets and more here.

Cryptonites - Glow
Coldplay - Violet Hill (Cryptonites Remix)

Cryptonites remixing Justice's DVNO during a DJ set last month:

- a.m.p.m.

Monday, May 12, 2008

RATATAT release new single, announce album

Well, that pretty much sums it up. And it seems everyones been writing about this today. Nonetheless, just a quick line to inform those who haven't heard yet that RATATAT have just released a new 7" entitled 'Shiller'. To add to the excitement, they have also announced that their third album, 'LP3' will be hitting the streets July 8th! Unfortunately for some, the 7" is only available on vinyl. But it does contain 'Mahalo', which is a preview of 'LP4'. As the guys describe it, it's from the future. From what they have been busting out live recently, 'LP3' is going to have some of you're favorite tracks of the summer. Get the 7" here for the low price of $3.00.

RATATAT - Shiller (zshare)
RATATAT - Shiller (ysi)

...And stream 'Mahalo' here at the 'Saul Sierce' Blog.

-Matty B.

"Atmosphere Finally Made a Good Record"

Defiantly tongue in cheek words from Atmosphere's Slug kick off "Trying to Find a Balance," the most accessible and one of 2003's Seven's Travels' best tracks. That album, dropped about halfway between their studio debut and the new one, When Life Gives You Lemons You Paint That Shit Gold, had a massive impact on getting the duo's name out there. Their latest release finds Slug and producer/DJ Ant in a comfortable spot, partly because they're often overflowing with confidence, but also that now they have the knowledge of having paid their dues. Such focus is paying off, as they're hitting personal heights in levels of commercial recognition . According to Billboard, Lemons debuted at number 5 in the states, a career mark for the boys from Minneapolis. There isn't a huge departure in any single aspect of sound or lyric, but sample a few of the tracks below and you'll find beats more reliant on simple, clean sampling and traditional instruments, backing Slug as he explores familiar topics like human inadequacies and contradictions.

Atmosphere - Painting
Atmosphere - Can't Break

Video: Shoulda Known

- B.A.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Contest: Longwave, May 10th - Camden Barfly

Big things are about to happen for Longwave. The Brooklyn band supported the Strokes on North American and European tours and frontman Steve Schiltz has recently been helping out Albert Hammond Jr. with guitar duties. The band hasn't released an album since 2005's There's A Fire, but six fully mastered tracks from Longwave's highly anticipated forthcoming fourth album were recently made available on their myspace page and seven YouTube videos of the guys laying down new tracks in the studio surfaced a couple of weeks ago. Blistering new song 'Sirens in the Deep Sea' has just been released as a free download from the myspace page, so head over and grab it now.

For those of you eager to hear the new (and classic) material live, we've got a pair of tickets for the final show of the band's current European mini tour, taking place at Camden Barfly tomorrow night. To claim the tickets as your own, email us with the subject line "Looooooongwave" before noon tomorrow.

Longwave - Satellites

- a.m.p.m.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Contest: Stag & Dagger, May 15 - London

Thanks to the kind folks at VICE Magazine UK, Bridging the Atlantic has 2 passes to Stag & Dagger to give away to a couple of lucky Londoners. The brand spanking new one day festival takes place in lovely Shoreditch next Thursday, May 15th, from 6pm to midnight and features over 100 acts including SebastiAn, Cadence Weapon, Times New Viking, 1990s, Black Lips, Jay Reatard, A-Trak, Slow Club, The Mae Shi, Diplo, Busy P, Operator Please, Atlas Sound, the debut performance of the new Hot Chip side project Booji Boy High, plus the Ed Banger Records crew. More info is available through the Stag & Dagger myspace page. The winner's passes will include free entry to all shows in each of the festival's 15 venues.

To enter, email us with the subject line "it's about damn time you jerks gave away festival tickets" before 3pm on May 12th.

SebastiAn - Dog
Atlas Sound - Recent Bedroom
Black Lips - O Katrina!
The Mae Shi - Run To Your Grave
Hot Chip vs Diplo - Shake A Fist
Booji Boy High - Doubleshaw

- a.m.p.m.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Coming Back For Even More

Glasgow-based Frightened Rabbit have created one of my favourite albums of 2008 (so far) in their sophomore effort The Midnight Organ Fight, released last month. I really enjoyed 2006 album Sing the Greys, but this new record beats the pants off the band's debut. The video for the first single, "Heads Roll Off", is below.

I really can't recommend this one enough, so check out the following tracks and get more info here.

Frightened Rabbit - The Twist
Frightened Rabbit - The Modern Leper

- a.m.p.m.

Monday, May 05, 2008

Paying Their Dues

Being a music blogger means that sometimes, just sometimes, you'll find a great album from a talented band you've never heard of before in your inbox for free-ninety-nine. Point in case: This Is Ivy League, a duo from Brooklyn who have created an album so full of hooks you could use it to hang an extra large shower curtain (sorry). Yes, it's poppy fare, but if you like your indie rock almost sickly sweet at times you won't be able to get these tunes out of your head. Their self titled debut album was released last month.

This Is Ivy League - The Richest Kids
This Is Ivy League - Visions of Tokyo

This Is Ivy League - London Bridges

- a.m.p.m.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

The New Justice Video is Bad Ass

The Bad Ass Checklist

purse snatching - check
car jacking - check
police beating - check
violence against women - check
molotov cocktails resulting in exploding cars - check
shitkicking strangers - check
attempted rape - check
rad fucking jackets - check

Justice - Stress
Fucked Up - Stress (Justice Cover)

- bbbykmbrly.

Beware of the rule of 3

Eleven years on from their last album, and Portishead have still got it. When began streaming the highly anticipated new album before the official release date, an estimated 250,000 eager listeners flooded the site. The Bristol-based band's third album (appropriately titled Third) was released on Monday and has since sparked debate amongst longtime fans and new listeners alike.

Crap? Genius? You be the judge.

Portishead - Machine Gun
Portishead - Silence

- a.m.p.m.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Friday Grab Bag - Summer In the City

There's a whole ton going on in Toronto right now on the topic of great live music. I've personally been out to shows every night for what seems like a decade (more like a week), and there's absolutely no signs of slowing down in the near future, thanks to the work of the Over the Top Festival (OTTF) and others.

A quick rundown of what's been seen and heard by yours truly in the not-too-distant past.

Will Currie & The Country French (CD Release) @ Sneaky Dee's, April 29th - This group of young music students demonstrated through finely crafted orchestral piano pop exactly what all the fuss is about. Will Currie writes some infectious pop melodies, like a teenaged Ben Folds, and murderecords should feel very lucky to have them on board.

the Constantines w/ Attack in Black @ Starlight (Waterloo), April 30th - The Cons can rock a small room like no other band I'm aware of. As such, I consciously opted out of the Toronto show at the much-larger Phoenix concert hall in favour of the Starlight show the night before. And I'm certainly glad I did. Attack in Black held it down quite respectably as the openers, as well.

the Teenagers @ Lee's Palace, May 1st - The potty-mouthed boys (and now girl?) brought their Franco-swagger to town for the second time in not too long, much to the approval of the slow-on-the-trigger hipsters who missed them the first time around at the sold out show at the Great Hall. Much of the same as the first time, and further reinforced their luke-warm live reputation.

Woodhands @ Sneaky Dee's, May 1st (OTTF) - a review, in haiku:

dance dance dance dance dance
dance dance dance dance dance dance dance
dance mother effer.

Where I'll be for the next few:

the Wooden Sky @ St Stephen's-in-the-field Church, May 2nd (OTTF)
Foals w/ Sebastien Grainger @ Lee's Palace, May 2nd
Ruby Coast w/ others@ Whippersnapper Gallery, May 3rd (OTTF - Pop Montreal! showcase)
Kevin Barnes (of Of Montreal) @ Mod Club, May 4th (OTTF)

Will Currie & The Country French - Centrefold
the Constantines - Trans Canada
the Teenagers - Love No
Woodhands - I Wasn't Made For Fighting
the Wooden Sky - When Lost at Sea
Foals - Cassius
Ruby Coast - Brittle Bones
Kevin Barnes - Harvest Moon (Neil Young Cover)

- bbbykmbrly.