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Showing posts from January, 2013

Lost Puppies: Eddie Vedder - "San Diego Petroleum" (1989-90 Cassette)

Guess what? Eddie Vender's got a "NEW" solo album out! No, not really; Just a cassette tape that's [been] unearthed from someone's Seattle basement of the Pearl Jam frontman doing originals and covers sometime in the late 80's, pre-Pearl Jam existence. Believed to have been recorded for a co-worker, this-13 track tape includes covers of the Kenny Rogers ballad, "Something Inside So Strong" and "Wonderful World" by Sam Cooke. It's not the first time early recordings from Vedder have surfaced that included some of these tracks (I've personally heard around 50 versions of "Betterman" prior to this collection), but the sound quality for this tape beats out most on the market.


How is it? Well, let's take into account the fact that at the time, Eddie Vedder and his previous band, Bad Radio, were doing live covers of the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Yes, Eddie Vedder covering the Chili Peppers, I'm talking about their 80'…

McFarland & Pecci Present: CZARFACE - "Air 'em Out" (Inspectah Deck, 7L & Esoteric)

I was gonna write up something about Lil B & Joey Bada$$'s Twitter-fueled Rap beef that went down last night. But after a quick 1-2 punch/mediocre track release, that one had already fizzled out by daybreak Wednesday morning. Man, Hip-Hop sure as Hell isn't what it used to be; So, it's a good thing there are still groups like CZARFACE that manage to keep 90's Boom-Bap traditions alive! Inspectah Deck, 7L & Esoteric first linked up for the "Speaking Real Words" 12" (1999) and finally ended up reuniting now, some 14 years later. "We are CZARFACE because they know our faces and they know us for being dope rhyme suppliers, like Tony Montana we are known for our balls and our word; Lyrically we will conquer the world and everything in it,"Inspectah Deck began to vividly detail in a press release ... "CZARFACE is a vigilante. He's and anti-hero character who serves as the face of the project and his focus is on annihilating the Hip-…

Future Sex/Love Sounds: Surfer Blood - "Weird Shapes" (West Coast Tour)

Despite or maybe because of frontman John Paul Pitts' little "domestic dispute" SNAFU, Surfer Blood's long-awaited Astro Coast (2010) follow-up is finally nearing release; Pythons is the West Palm Beach band's first album for new label Warner Bros. and will see a nation-wide release during Summer 2013. Surfer Blood quietly unveiled lead single, "Weird Shapes" Monday afternoon, which was uploaded to their website for email subscription/download. Pythons was recorded in Hollywood with producer Gil Norton (Foo Fighters), amplified through Pixies guitarist Joey Santaigo's stack, then mixed by Rob Schnapf, and somehow received the Timbaland stamp of approval. Surfer Blood have a few California dates lined up, running from Feb. 24-March 3rd, and wrapping up @ SXSW.


"Weird Shapes" sounds like a sun-soaked Power Pop hybrid between Weezer and Blink-182. I can faintly hear someone shouting, "shaking down, breaking ground/hit the ground" @ …

Manic Monday! Review: Pusha T - "Wrath of Caine" (G.O.O.D. Music x Re-Up Gang)

Pusha T is 1/2 of Clipse, which was basically 2 drug fiends-turned-rappers poetically bragging about their assorted exploits over The Neptunes' glitched out production work. Malice changed his name to No Malice last year, found religion, published a book called "Wretched, Pitiful, Poor, Blind & Naked," and decided to peruse a solo career... Right around the same time that his brother, Pusha T inked a deal with G.O.O.D. Music (2010-11). Under Kanye's frantic direction, he soon released Fear of God [mixtape] and it's re-packaged companion EP, Fear of God II: Let Us Pray. I must admit, while I had a Neptunes phase and really got into Hell Hath No Fury/Til The Casket Drops, I haven't delved too far into Pusha T's solo material. He's also been featured prominently on Kanye's recent projects, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (2010) and label comp. Cruel Summer (2012).


Serving as an audio palate cleanser/teaser for his upcoming debut full-length, M…

Thirsty & Miserable: Black Flag/"FLAG" Reunite for 2013 Tours!? (Ron Reyes, Keith Morris)

Re-assembling Black Flag without righteous frontman Henry Rollins (1981-86) is like if Ford just suddenly decided to release their 50th anniversary Mustang sans that iconic, silver-plated pony emblem. But I'm sure founding guitarist Greg Ginn thinks differently, which is probably why Rollins isn't being included in EITHER Black Flag reunion. Whether or not Ginn realizes it, Henry Rollins is basically the sheer genesis of Black Flag! ... It was announced late Friday afternoon that 6 of Black Flag's 16+ assorted members are planning to re-form and tour the nation/across the pond as part of 2 separate groups. Greg Ginn, Ron Reyes, "Dale Nixon," and drummer Gregory Moore are playing 3 summer festival dates @ the moment, supposedly putting the "finishing touches on a new album," and are plotting a "BLACK FLAG US Tour Fall 2013." FLAG, on the other hand, includes Keith Morris, Chuck Dukowski, Bill Stevenson, and Stephen Egerton (Descendents) have …

Ascending Melody: Dirty Projectors - "Climax" @ Triple J (Usher & Diplo)

I first discovered Brooklyn's premier Indie Rockexperimentalists, Dirty Projectors, quite a few years ago; Right around the same time that frontman Dave Longstreth decided to re-record an entire Black Flag record from memory (2007). The band's line-up seems to morph/permeate a little bit with each album and has previously included cats like Angel Deradoorian, Ezra Koenig, Rostam Batmanglij (Vampire Weekend), Adam Forkner, and former-drummer Brian McOmber. Dirty Projectors-13's latest line-up consists of Longstreth, Nat Baldwin, Michael Johnson, and the sultry 3-part harmonies of Amber Coffman/Haley Dekle/Jenn Wasner Olga Bell. I guess I'd almost describe their overall sound as some sort of post-Destiny's Child R&B crooning. Case in point: "Stillness Is The Move," which Beyoncé's little sister Solange just so happened to cover, too. I just ordered used copies of Rise Above, Bitte Orca, and Swing Lo Magellan from Amazon and so should you, if you…

Momma Said Knock You Out: Single Mothers - "Christian Girls" (Re-mastered)

Single Mothers are a righteous Hardcore Punk band hailing from Ontario, CAN who "broke up in 2009 - and have been playing shows ever since." They had re-formed by 2011 and disbanded again soon thereafter, but released one final EP, Single Mothers 7" (Secret Voice). But it seems like Single Mothers are back in saddle again!; The band's currently hanging out in LA, working on their Hot Charity/Dine Alone full-length with guitarist-producer, Joby J. Ford @ Big Game Lodge Studio. For what it's worth, Single Mothers is the best Hardcore band name since... Athlete's Foot, my non-existant Punk band ha. While it was originally released on Bandcamp roughly 1½ years ago, "Christian Girls" was mysteriously re-uploaded to Soundcloud just 16 days ago. Andrew Thomson, Michael Peterson, Matt Bouchard, and Evan Redsky are headed out on a MASSIVE 37-date "reunion tour" across the US/UK with The Bronx from Feb. 2-March 24th.


"For Single Mothers, bull…

The Notorious K.I.T.T.Y: kitty timberlake - "R.R.E.A.M." (Wu-Tang Clan?)

I just turned 25 a few months ago, but "Tumblr rappers" like kitty pryde really make me feel like a terribly out-of-touch old man! Thanks to my older cousins, I was raised on a steady diet of Wu-Tang Clan, No Doubt, Beastie Boys, Blink-182, Now #1-5, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Biggie, Sublime, etc. The 20-year-old, freckle-faced songstress manages to shout out "CHEETAH GIRLS, HILLARY DUFF, JUSTIN BIEBER, S-CLUB 7, ATOMIC KITTEN & CLAIRE'S INC." on her Facebook Influences section; AKA a bunch of 90's-bred shit that I'd really be surprised if she was actually influenced by, cause I was about 11 in 1998 (S-Club 7), but maybe. Bottom line, a lot of kitty's [sarcastic] Tumblr-fied inside jokes and punchlines fly right over my head. I guess that 5-year age gap really does make a difference sometimes! Like what's up with all these weird acronyms? - D.A.I.S.Y. Rage EP and R.R.E.A.M. = Rash Rules Everything Around Me. I mean, I get the Wu-Tang "C.R…

"Talkin' Bout My G-G-Generation:" A Conversation with The Lions' Producer, Guitarist & Founding Member, Dan Ubick (The Witzard Interview)

(1) I read that you've known Peanut Butter Wolf (Chris Manak) for quite a while now. So, what made you sign with Stones Throw after all these years for the joint release of This Generation?

Yeah, I met Wolf back when he started Stones Throw and was still up in San Francisco. He signed a group I played in for 5+ years called Breakestra that my friend Miles Tackett leads. I signed with Stones Throw because Wolf is an artist himself and really believes in the groups he signs. He and the guys at the label put in a ton of time strategizing about how to best help get the band heard by more and more people. I obviously am into that (Laughs), plus they have a great track record and very loyal followers.


(2) For those who aren't exactly familiar with The Lions, would you care to go through each member and their companion instrument/role in the band?

Sure. On drums we have Blake Colie, bass is Dave Wilder, percussion is Dave Chegwidden, organ and piano is Dan Hastie, on guitar is myself …

Bikini's & Big Booties... Harmony Korine Presents: "Spring Breakers" (Trailer #1)

Spring Breakers seems like one of those Pop Culture-ragging statement piece/art films that NO ONE's gonna get, which'll likely get dismissed as yet another alcohol-soaked PARTY flick. Having directed a handful of "cult classic" status short films and music videos for everyone from Die Antwoord to The Black Keys, Harmony Korine is finally attempting to bridge the gap between independent semi-success and mainstream recognition. After months of post-Cannes Internet buzz, Spring Breakers first full-length trailer was unleashed late Friday afternoon. It's primary cast includes former Disney starlets Selena Gomez & Vaness Hudgens, James Franco, Gucci Mane, Ashley Benson, and his wife Rachel. Some of Harmony Korine's past work(s) encompass Gummo, Kids, Above The Below, Mister Lonely, and The Fourth Dimension.


It all starts when "Four college girls who land in jail after robbing a restaurant in order to fund their spring break vacation find themselves bailed…

VICE Records Presents: SAMUEL L. BRONSON? - "Larry Csonka" (New Zealand)

Action Bronson has quickly risen through the ranks of [New School] Hip-Hop since releasing his Indie debut album, Dr. Lecter (2011), partially due to his charismatic personality and sheer rapping skills. He managed to produce 2 of last year's best mixtape collections with Rare Chandeliers/Blue Chips. Even though he semi-recently inked a major label deal with VICE Records, Bronson still manages to keep his good ol' Internet hits in regular rotation, too; Artsy Films shot live footage of Action Bronson performing "Larry Csonka" @ San Francisco Bath House (New Zealand) from last Friday, Jan. 11th.


It's really the kinda thing that makes you slightly re-evaluate your life and ask yourself, "Why the fuck haven't I been to an Action Bronson show yet!?" The top chef-turned-rapper aimlessly navigates his way through the wall-to-wall packed Wellington, NZ venue, mic and milkshake in hand... as fans [sloppily] attempt to pass him blunts, beer, a baseball cap, …

19th Nervous Breakdown: Pissed Jeans - "Cathouse" (Milkboy Studios)

Pissed Jeans are probably the most sobering, un-Rock "N" Roll Hardcore [Noise-Rock] band since like... Straight Edge pioneers, Minor Threat/Fugazi. Weasel-voiced frontman Matt Korvette is an insurance claims adjuster by day, for Christ's sake! "Bathroom Laughter" and "Cathouse" (released Monday) chronicle relate-able, everyday mis-doings that the average Middle American can easily relate to; I mean, we're talking about "crippling pert allergies," hallway screaming/kitchen crying, a "blistering fear of going to the doctor," and unrequited rhapsody with saucy women. "Cathouse" is most likely gonna be our last FREEBIE 'til Sub Pop drops the band's fourth studio album, Honeys, this upcoming Feb. 12th. Former Japanther director/graphic artist, Joe Stakun supposedly made [filmed] a music video for the band, which @PissedJeans' Twitter feed says should be unleashed to The Inter-web sometime during February, too. …

Insensitive Hip-Hop?: Sean Price - "The Genesis of The Omega" (Ruck Down)

On some REAL levels, the only emcees that could/should even attempt to lyrically out-rap Sean Price are Action Bronson, Raekwon, and Ghostface. After while, they'd probably have to somehow channel and combine their skills into one MASSIVE "sonic punch," which still wouldn't even make a dent! What I'm trying to say is that Sean Price is a FAN-FUCKING-TASTIC, criminally under-rated rapper, who's well-respected by Hip-Hop heads, Illuminati and critics alike. Price spreads a thick layer of clever, buttery smooth rapid-fire verses across his latest full-length, Mic Tyson. Honestly, it's a surprisingly short 15-track Hip-Hop album that clocks in @ just under 38 minutes. But even in a 2-3 minute time frame/track, 40-year-old Sean Mandela still manages to conjure up aggressive rhyme schemes that would easily knock out [scare away] almost any run-of-the-mill rapper.


Eccentric hood rich Hip-Hop blogger BIG GHOST fittingly describes your typical Mic Tyson fan as &q…

Don't Call It a Comeback!: Justin Timberlake & Jay-Z "Suit & Tie" (Timbaland)

Justin Timberlake makes the kind of music that's supposed to help you get laid; Let's call it "baby-making music," for lack of a better term. But JT has spent the bulk of last 6-7 years since his last album, Future Sex/Love Sounds (2006) doing damn-near everything besides writing/recording music: re-launching MySpace, sharpening his acting chops, launched a designer clothing line, recorded a few seriously good comedy tracks, and just being charming in general. During his time off, Justin Timberlake managed to record vocals for a gaggle of hits and misses for his musical friends' albums, too... 50 Cent, Jimmy Fallon, [The] Game, Ciara, The Lonely Island, T.I. Madonna, Timbaland, Duran Duran, Diddy-Dirty Money, Talib Kweli, Rihanna, and Chris Cornell? Timberlake finally took the plunge and "wifed up" his long-time on-again-off-again girlfriend, Jessica Biel @ a private ceremony back in October 2012.


Following nearly a solid week's-worth of teasers/ru…

$800 Polo with No Logo: OG Dutch Master - "Raw Dope" (Fiona Apple)

First off, I have to give credit where credit is due: Thanks, Mishka Bloglin for turning me onto OG Dutch Master this weekend! (shouts to David C.) Before even hearing a lick of his music, I was almost instantly reminded of Golden Age Hip-Hop household names like Grandmaster Flash, Biz Markie, Digital Underground, Puff Daddy, Run-D.M.C. etc. based solely off that goofy/AWESOME stage name. There's very little background info online to go along with OG Dutch Master's currently brief discography. But the East Baltimore native's roughly 19-20 and rolls with 7th Floor Villains [LL7FV]. It basically sounds like the "desert island" playlist for a recovering 90's Hip-Hop absorbed Hipster 20-something, ha.


OG Dutch Master's latest output, "Raw Dope" was released right around DOOMSDAY Dec. 21st and features a vocal riff pulled from Fiona Apple's comeback single, "Every Single Night" (2012). Up-and-coming producer Mohlz is essentially The N…

Are You Experienced?: Frank Ocean, Big Boi & André 3000 - "Pink Matter" (OutKast Remix)

While Speakerboxx/The Love Below (2003) was a great album, it kinda seems more like 2 re-packaged solo albums, rather than a cohesive collection of Southern Hip-Hop. In my eyes, OutKast effectively "broke up" after the release of Idlewild [film-soundtrack] around 2006 and they've just been fucking with us all these years since, making empty promises of a long-delayed new album. That was most likely the original post-Speakerboxxx/Love Below plan: Big Boi solo album, followed by an André 3000 record, and then finally, an album full of new OutKast tunes. Now, Big Boi has whole-heartedly kept his promise unleashing Purple Ribbon All-Stars, Sir Lucious Left Foot, and Vicious Lies & Dangerous Rumors back-to-back since about 2005! Meanwhile, André 3000 has kept busy doing pretty much everything BUT rapping... cartoon shows, selling Gillette razors, acting roles, random left-field remixes, etc. But André 3000 was in fact featured on "Royal Flush" (2008), which Jiv…

Burning Down The House: Just Blaze - "BEHOLD! (Exhibit J)" _ Rough Draft

Shouts to critically-acclaimed Hip-Hop producer, Just Blaze for bravely stepping into unknown, spray tan-glazed new territory; His latest genre-blending masterpiece, "BEHOLD! (Exhibit J)" was released online Wednesday afternoon. While it may come to a surprise to quite a few Hip-Hop heads, Just Blaze has been fucking around with House music for a little under 10 years now. While he wasn't producing countless hits for Jay-Z, Ghostface Killah, Saigon, Busta Rhymes, and Jay Electronica... he managed to sneak in a few Hip-House influenced tracks: Cajmere Remix, Joe Budden - "Pump It Up," unreleased Rah Digga, and "Exhibit G, F & P" [Guido Fist Pump].



It sounds like Just Blaze ran into Fool's Gold label-head/resident DJ, A-Trak @ a holiday party a few years back, who's now gearing up to unleash his debut House EP. "Exhibit J" is a rough, NEAR[LY] FINAL cut that won't be featured on the EP, but you get the idea. Just Blaze dipp…

Hit Me, Baby... One More Time: Iceage - "Coalition" (You're Nothing, Denmark)

While I think my overall musical tastes are pretty cultured and broad-spanning/sound, I must admit that I'm not too keen on current world music. Honestly, when I hear "World Music," what first comes to mind is African Tribal drums, Middle Eastern Acid Rock, Swedish Pop, Mariachi, and South Africanjam bands. I'm vaguely familiar with Asian Jazz-Fusion, Grime, bagpipe-led Celtic Punk, and Finnish/Norwegian Death Metal. When I first got my learner's permit [license] back in high school, my buddy Ryan and I were driving all over New Jersey, searching for terribly assembled D.I.Y. Punk shows @ dirty VFW halls and seedy hole-in-the-wall bars/clubs. 1970-80's Hardcore Punk is generally associated with it's formative New York, California, and UK scenes... But I guess we, myself included, tend to forget that there are rebellion-fueled, aggressive, socially awkward teens all over the world! Somehow, throughout my 10-12 year relationship with Punk Rock, I've on…

Appetite for Destruction: kitty pryde & Major Lazer - "dead island" (D.A.I.S.Y. EP)

"It's some random butt-head who told me if I wanted to use his song, I'd have to rip it off Soundcloud myself, so I did..."kitty pryde exclaimed when one of her trusty Twitter Followers asked who produced her #BRANDNEW track. "Dead Island" is pryde's latest stand-alone release, which pulls a sampled drum lick from "Pon de Floor"(Major Lazer) and also has a pretty iced-out STEAMCLAM-directed music video to go along with it. kitty pryde's a Daytona Beach, FL 20-something[?] who's currently prepping the release of her new EP, D.A.I.S.Y. Rage, that should be out online later this month. kitty pryde's cadence and rapping skills seem to have seriously improved since she unleashed haha, i'm sorry.


But let's face it, kitty pryde's just a goofy/socially awkward/love-struck teenager who simply raps about what she knows best... she won't be on the same level as Missy Elliott or Jay-Z any time soon, but that kind of lyrical wor…

"Extraordinary SWAG & a Mouth Full of Gold:" A$AP Rocky - LONGLIVEA$AP (Early Review)

Depending on who you ask, LONGLIVEA$AP is easily the most progressive/digressive Hip-Hop album of the last 5-10 years! A$AP Rocky sprinkles in stylistic touches [musical nods] to Public Enemy's youthful rebellion, Wu-Tang Clan's expert swordsmen-ship, Beastie Boys' "Fight for Your Right to Party" mentality, and Kanye's worldly fashion sense throughout the record. While it leaked back in early December nearly a full month a head of it's impending Jan. 15th release date, it's the sheer power of featured rappers and producers that's either gonna make or break the eventual fate of LONGLIVEA$AP. Shit, almost 1/2 of the album's rapping friends are housed on 2 MASSIVE posse cuts, "F*ckin' Problems" and "1 Train:" Action Bronson, Danny Brown, Kendrick Lamar, Joey Bada$$, Drake, Yelawolf, Big K.R.I.T. and 2 Chainz. Florence [-The Machine], Gunplay, Pharrell, Gucci Mane, and Waka Flocka's assorted talents are all evenly spre…

Chateau Marmont Presents?: Death Grips - "Come up and get me" (silent short film)

Man, Death Grips had one Hell of a 2012: signing and ultimately getting dropped from Epic Records, released 2 full-length albums, made an interactive "I've Seen Footage" video for MTV, teamed up with Galen Pehrson/MOCA for an art project, leaked a few private e-mails, etc. Despite [or maybe because of] all the controversy, The Money Store and NO LOVE DEEP WEB are definitely worth a couple highly attentive, aggression-filled listens. Looks like Zach Hill & MC Ride decided to start 2013 with an Internet-shaking BANG... "Come up and get me" (short film). It's a 13-minute black-and-white, 3/4's silent film/music video clip that was filmed @ Hollywood's infamous Chateau Marmont. "Come up and get me"'s hard-hitting audio track doesn't even kick in til around 9 minutes deep and the rest stars Stefan Burnett [Ride] as a "leading man," of sorts.


Hill & Burnett filmed a bunch of self-directed footage while the band spent n…

Martin Had a Dream... Kendrick Lamar - "Backseat Freestyle" (Black Hippy)

It took Kanye nearly 5 album's time to write something as densely-layered and reflective as Dark Twisted Fantasy. But Kendrick Lamar managed to achieve equally revealing results on his debut album good kid, m.A.A.d. city (if you don't count #Section.80, Overly Dedicated, or Kendrick Lamar EP) that quite honestly, rivals even Mr. West's seasoned talents! What Lamar ended up penning is a semi-autobiographical tale based around his childhood, growing up on the "mean streets" of Compton. good kid, m.A.A.d. city's stone cold grizzly narrative briefly touches on slingin' dope, money, bitches, pizza, freestyling, bloodshed, etc.


"Backseat Freestyle" is easily my favourite [non-]single pulled from the instantly CLASSIC album; Kendrick Lamar weaves a crazy/AWESOME tall-tale that's partially about a neighborhood chick with a fat ass, Sherane, and compares his manhood to the structural integrity ofThe Eiffel Tower. Lamar took the reigns and self-dire…

You're Living All Over Me: California X - "Spider X/Pond Rot" (Don Giovanni)

I usually try to stray away from conjuring up those vague, strangely obtrusive analogies to describe what a band "sounds like." But here's one for good ol' time's sake: Black Flag/Dinosaur Jr./Motörhead. Now, that's a pretty damn accurate description of Amherst, Mass' very own California X's scuzzy brand of guitar-driven Garage Punk/Rock; Lemmy, Dan & "Cool" (guitar-bass-drums) also incorporate stylistic touches of Rock "N" Roll, which sound similar to The Stooges and Foo Fighters. The band's self-titled [untitled] full-length, California X, is out on Don Giovanni this upcoming January 15th. It's the follow-up to their Damage 45, "Sucker/Mummy" from early 2012 and overall, they're describing it as "noisy 80's Western Mass. Rock, fuzzy 90's Garage Pop, and classic Post-Hardcore SST sounds."


While California X and their crew are currently cutting together a SCARY final edit of "Pond …