PLAYLIST

Stern Remix Angus

Stern Remix Angus & Julia Stone {0}

Wow. This is one of the most poignant and wistfully beautiful pieces of music I’ve heard in a very long time.

ANGUS & JULIA STONE – BIG JET PLANE (STERN* REMIX)

Reminds me of The Twelves’ 2009 remix of “Blue Skies” by Noah & The Whale. So timeless.

NOAH & THE WHALE – BLUE SKIES (THE TWELVES REMIX)

Clock Opera Remix Architecture In Helsinki

Clock Opera Remix Architecture In Helsinki {0}

This is not to be missed. Clock Opera eats the concept of song enhancement for breakfast!

ARCHITECTURE IN HELSINKI – CONTACT (CLOCK OPERA REMIX)

Introducing: WALK THE MOON

Introducing: WALK THE MOON {0}

Cincinnati-based four-piece Walk the Moon create loud, sweat-soaked indie rock anthems with perfectly crafted sing-a-long choruses. The band formed out of a love for creative pop songs, exuberant live performances, and, presumably, Michael Jackson. These dudes are all about having fun, and you really gain a sense of their zest-for-life-attitude on first single — and indie.mix.40 standout — “Anna Sun.”

Back in 2008, Walk the Moon’s debut EP, The Anthem, stirred up attention with prominent critics, and even took them to London, UK; there they played a week of shows at the London City Showcase as the only band from North America to be selected by Sonicbids for the spot. Since then, led by singer/synth/keytar-player Nicholas Petricca, Walk has continued to make noise around the US, named by NYC’s historic Arlene’s Grocery as one of their ‘Best Bands of 2009.’

Last year, they released their debut LP entitled I Want! I Want!, which features future summer 2011 hits like “Anna Sun” and “Lisa Baby.” Have a listen to the latter of the two below, and be in the know before this band inevitably attract the widespread fanbase they deserve. (Word on the street is that they crushed their SXSW performance a few weeks back!)

File next to: The Killers, Young the Giant, Matt & Kim, Foster the People.

WALK THE MOON – LISA BABY

New: TVOTR

New: TVOTR – Caffeinated Consciousness {0}

Friday morning jolt of energy. Boom.

TV ON THE RADIO – CAFFEINATED CONSCIOUSNESS

Re-Introducing: HOLY GHOST!

Re-Introducing: HOLY GHOST! {0}

Holy Ghost! is one of the best things happening in music right now.

It’s been over 3 years since my ears first experienced the joyful sound that is “Hold On” — the 2007 Italo disco-influenced anthem that put the Brooklyn duo on the map. Since then, I’ve eagerly anticipated each of their subsequent releases: 2009′s “I Will Come Back,” followed by “Say My Name,” “Static on the Wire,” and “I Know, I Hear” in 2010. Each song is a smartly crafted electro-dance concoction, teeming with 80′s inspired analogue synths and crisp vocals. Needless to say, the quality of these initial 5 tracks only heightened my enthusiasm for the upcoming debut LP.

Well, the wait is finally over! I am absolutely loving the 7 new songs that fill out a 10 track / 50 minute debut LP of epic proportions. It isn’t hyperbole to say that this is one of the best debut albums I’ve heard in a LONG time. Some early standouts include “Wait And See” and “It’s Not Over,” as well as closer “Some Children,” which flawlessly employs yacht rock legend Michael McDonald on backup vocals. (Could Mike McD come to be the Nate Dogg of indie collaborations?)

Although the album will officially drop on April 5th, you can catch a sample of things to come below.

HOLY GHOST! – SOME CHILDREN (FT. MICHAEL McDONALD)

File next to: LCD, Juan MacLean, Garçon Garçon, Miami Horror, Classixx

Also, these guys put on an awesome live performance that is not to be missed. I’ve been lucky enough to see them play twice; the first time opening for LCD Soundsystem (5/26/10 @ Metro, Chicago) and the second opening for Chromeo (8/26/10 @ The Cannery Ballroom, Nashville). Can’t wait to check them out a third time when they open for Cut Copy (4/8/11 @ The Riviera, Chicago). See you there?

New: The Wombats

New: The Wombats – Addicted to the Cure {0}

Awesome B-side track off their “Jump Into The Fog” single. So pumped for the new album, The Modern Glitch, to drop on April 25th!

THE WOMBATS – ADDICTED TO THE CURE

Glasnost Remix The Ting Tings

Glasnost Remix The Ting Tings {1}

This is what happens when cheeky Brits collide with a Houston dance party.

THE TING TINGS – HANDS (GLASNOST REMIX)

Katy Perry Remixes That Do Not Suck

Katy Perry Remixes That Do Not Suck {2}

The music purist within me is slowly dying.

Let me explain. The proliferation of independent music into mainstream culture has blurred the lines of classification to such a degree that I don’t even know what “indie music” is anymore. Did you happen to see The Grammy Awards a few weeks ago? For the first time ever, an independent label album won the award for Album of the Year, beating out heavyweights like Eminem, Lady Gaga, and Katy Perry. Talk about a sign of the times.

So how does this affect me? I’ve always loved art, with music being my favorite medium. In the past, I’ve ripped commercial radio for pumping out generic entertainment masquerading as art. Heck, I even started a blog geared towards that contempt. (saynoradio.com.) But things change, and people evolve; and as it turns out, indie and mainstream can coexist.

For me, uber pop-star Katy Perry is a good example of this fresh outlook. I recently become an appreciator of her 2010 platinum-selling sophomore album Teenage Dream. Yes, she’s signed to a major label that have paid commercial radio station’s big money to play her singles. But for a moment, eliminate her mainstream appeal and focus on the artistic output.

Personally, I see little difference between her musical style and that of indie label artists such as Robyn, Annie, La Roux, and Ellie Goulding — whose latest works have respectively earned an impressive 8.7, 7.7, 7.0, and 6.8 on Pitchfork. Also, from what I understand, Katy Perry writes or co-writes all of her songs, which I’m sure is comparable to the aforementioned artists. (All of whom I enjoy, by the way.)

So, here’s the key takeaway: until recently, the only thing keeping me — and probably a lot of us — from getting on board with different types of music has been “labels.”

I’m over it. And it would seem that many highly respected producers such as Fred Falke, Mstrkrft, and DJ MegaMan are over it, too.

KATY PERRY – FIREWORK (FRED FALKE REMIX)

KATY PERRY – CALIFORNIA GURLS (MSTRKRFT REMIX)

KATY PERRY – TEENAGE DREAM (DJ MEGAMAN & PANIC CITY REMIX)

Louis La Roche Remix Duck Sauce

Louis La Roche Remix Duck Sauce {0}

Looks like my favorite NYC disco house DJ duo, Duck Sauce, are back in the lab working on some fresh new jams. Start your weekend off right with this colossal Louis La Roche remix of their single “Good 2 Me.”

DUCK SAUCE – GOOD 2 ME (LOUIS LA ROCHE REMIX)

Oldies: Home Video

Oldies: Home Video – The Smoke {0}

Brooklyn-based electronic rock duo Home Video create atmospheric jams that aims to heighten the senses, evident on “The Smoke,” my top pick from their 2010 sophomore LP The Automatic Process. There’s a heavy Radiohead influence on this track, too — always a plus.

“The Smoke” is perfect headphones music; best when played during a thunder and rain storm. And while reading a leather bound book. By candlelight.

Haha, I told you these guys were atmospheric ;)

Enjoy! – and apologies for the lack of recent posting. Expect regular updates in the very near future.

HOME VIDEO – THE SMOKE

Introducing: OREGON BIKE TRAIL

Introducing: OREGON BIKE TRAIL {0}

Meet Zach & Ben Yudin: the talent behind Los Angeles-based lo-fi duo Oregon Bike Trail. Their music is heavily influenced by iconic 60′s pop groups like The Beach Boys and The Zombies — making them a timely discovery given that the current temperature in Chicago is south of 10° F. Not surprisingly, I’m really digging “High School Lover,” a lighthearted Drum ‘n’ Keys (DnK = new genre?) tune that serves as a lovely auditory escape from the chilly Midwestern winter.

File next to: The Explorers Club, Tennis, Ducktails, Animal Collective.

OREGON BIKE TRAIL – HIGH SCHOOL LOVER

New: Mitzi

New: Mitzi – All I Heard (12″ Mix) {0}

Solid newcomers from Brisbane who sound a bit like NYC’s Holy Ghost! — translation: they totally rule! Enjoy the extended 12″ mix of their first single “All I Heard” below.

MITZI – ALL I HEARD (12″ MIX)

Re-Introducing: PENGUIN PRISON

Re-Introducing: PENGUIN PRISON {3}

Penguin Prison is Chris Glover, another talented NYC electro-pop wunderkind who makes intelligent dance music influenced by erudite New York disco types like Talking Heads and LCD Soundsystem. On his track “Golden Train,” I really dig the anti-techno intro, which features analogue bleep textures layered under Chris’ pop star vocals.

PENGUIN PRISON – GOLDEN TRAIN

File next to: James Murphy, Hot Chip, Strange Talk, Holy Ghost!

Also, update your calendars and mark Feb 11 as the date the debut album drops. Soon after, when the record gets picked up by the mass media/communication channels, I predict that we all start throwing out the Prince, JT, and Pharrell comparisons — and with good reason. Let’s do the math on this guy: (1) he has the proverbial voice of an angel, (2) he’s one of the best guitar players you’ll ever see/hear, and (3) he can do an amazing Aaron Neville impression. He’s the total package; a one-man pop machine.

The only question remaining, though, is can he dance? If Chris can indeed pop and lock like MJ, then the world may want to get ready for the second coming of the King of Pop.

New: Memory Tapes

New: Memory Tapes – Today Is Our Life {2}

In September 2009, Memory Tapes delivered a dance-pop gem with Seek Magic — an album that no one saw coming, but one that was ubiquitously loved. Fifteen months later, new music from the NJ-based producer could not possibly arrive soon enough.

My eyes lit up last week when I saw frontman Dayve Hawk tweet “New Year // New Album.” One week later and we already have a sample of things to come!

Check out the new single “Today Is Our Life” from that forthcoming second LP. The track is also available on the Love SIC Disco compilation.

Around 1:04, I’m fairly certain that I hear the opening synth line from Bruce Springsteen’s “Dancing In The Dark.” Perhaps a small ode to the most famous celebrity to ever come out of Jersey? (Aside from Snooki, unfortunately.) Respect for The Boss.

MEMORY TAPES – TODAY IS OUR LIFE

Introducing: AVICII

Introducing: AVICII {0}

Avicii happens to be a young Swedish producer with a preternatural power to churn out golden progressive house music. Since bursting onto the scene in 2008, he’s managed to release 7 singles (all very good) with the most recent being a seven-minute gem called “Street Dancer.” Check it.

File next to: Deadmau5, Mylo, Wolfgang Gartner, Daft Punk.

AVICII – STREET DANCER

New: Foster The People

New: Foster The People – Houdini {0}

Outrageously catchy new track from LA-based indie pop four-piece Foster The People, who just released their debut self-titled EP. No wordy write-up necessary for this one; hit play and enjoy!

FOSTER THE PEOPLE – HOUDINI

New: Oh No Oh My

New: Oh No Oh My – Brains {0}

Oh No Oh My are a four-piece indie rock band from Austin, Texas. Their 2006 debut album heavily favored experimental pop (e.g., “I Love You All The Time”), while the new material on upcoming LP People Problems indicates a move towards melodic pop. For that reason, the new record may be a grower for some folks, but it’s nothing compared to the ocean that lies between other band’s debut/sophomore releases. (Ahem, MGMT.) Check out the track “Brains” below.

OH NO OH MY – BRAINS

New: Outasight

New: Outasight – Losing My Mind {0}

Time to spice things up with some fresh new sounds from the world of non-radio (as of now) hip-hop. Check out this track from New York rapper/singer Outasight, who describes his art as “energetic hip-hop mixed with melodic soul.”

OUTASIGHT – LOSING MY MIND

Eumig

Eumig & Chinon Remix Ginger Ninja {0}

Can you say Best post title of all time?

Contrary to popular belief, Eumig & Chinon aren’t a duo, but rather, just one superstar Danish producer by the name of Christian Kastbjerg. It’s no secret that I’m a big fan of synth-rich house-influenced dance grooves, and I love what he’s done with the aptly upbeat tune “Sunshine” from (fellow Danes) Ginger Ninja. Simply put: the guy is phenomenal. And not to sound overly complacent, but this remix should be the gold standard for how to enhance a song without diminishing its original appeal. Give it a spin below.

GINGER NINJA – SUNSHINE (EUMIG & CHINON REMIX)

Introducing: THE UNION LINE

Introducing: THE UNION LINE {0}

The Union Line are a young indie band from the music mecca that is San Juan Capistrano, California. (#sarcasm.) I was initially introduced to the group when they opened for Local Natives in Chicago this past year, and was instantly drawn to their brand of less-beardy Fleet Foxes-esque Americana rock. From what I know, they’ve been busy working on new material for their debut album, which hopefully sounds a lot like the as-yet-untitled demo below.

File next to: Local Natives, The Ruby Suns, Fleet Foxes, Surfer Blood.

THE UNION LINE – UNTITLED (demo)

Oldies: Tame Impala

Oldies: Tame Impala – Half Full Glass of Wine {0}

This understated gem from Tame Impala’s 2008 self-titled EP exudes classic rock a la Cream and Led Zeppelin. The Perth four-piece hit it big last year with the release of their critically acclaimed debut LP Innerspeaker, but this previous record is equally deserving of your time.

Their label, Modular, assembled a great reflection of the track:

“['Half Full Glass Of Wine'] is the type of song you come across rarely with it’s half speed, double riffing magic. Kevin’s vocals float through the air like a magic carpet ride through an aural wonderland; the guitars dual each other in a call and response frenzy; which all leads up to a beast of a solo that holds you by the soul, galloping away in oblivion.”

TAME IMPALA – HALF FULL GLASS OF WINE

New: MillionYoung debuts Replicants LP

New: MillionYoung debuts Replicants LP {3}

Let’s keep the introductions short as I’m sure most of you are already familiar with Floridian dance-rock prodigy Mike Diaz — otherwise known as MillionYoung. To date, he’s released two breathtaking EP’s (Be So True and Sunndreamm) and a handful of shimmering synth-soaked singles. On January 11, his debut LP Replicants will be released as a digital download and, after many consecutive listens, I can certainly attest to how wonderful it is. So good, in fact, that it’s currently my Top Album of 2011. (Only 355 more days to go!)

If you’re a fan of fellow chillwavers Toro Y Moi, Washed Out, Neon Indian, Memory Tapes, and/or Teen Daze, then be sure to pick up the album tomorrow. And while you wait, check out a few of my favorite tracks from Replicants below.

MILLIONYOUNG – COSMONAUT

MILLIONYOUNG – EASY NOW

MILLIONYOUNG – REPLICANTS

Friday Extended Play Mix 010711

Friday Extended Play Mix 010711 {0}

Happy Friday everyone. Thank you all so much for supporting this site over the past few months — I’ve had a blast getting things rolling. We’re now averaging 200+ unique visitors per day which is absolutely thrilling.

Here are a few gems that I’ve been loving the past few days; should help you finish out the week strong. Thanks again!

01. The Magician & The Gates of Love – Harvest (Teen Daze Remix)
02. The Concretes – All Day (Niva Remix)
03. Dent May – Eastover Wives
04. Waylayers – Fires
05. Gypsy & The Cat – Sight Of A Tear
06. Work Drugs – Third Wave
07. Reading Rainbow – Wasting Time
08. Futurecop! – Venice Beach (Germany Germany Remix)

New: Brothertiger

New: Brothertiger – Evening Glow {0}

Brothertiger is John Jagos from Athens, Ohio. I’m a big fan of his melodramatic synth-pop and hushed accompanying vocals. The new single, “Evening Glow,” exhibits a higher degree of danceability than his previous work on the superb Tunnel Visions EP — and I have no problem with that. Mr. Jagos’ music has that decisive ability to evoke imagery of sunny far-off destinations; perfect for the cold months ahead. (I’m looking in your direction, Chicago.) Give it a spin below and check out his bandcamp page for more.

BROTHERTIGER – EVENING GLOW

Oldies: The Voom Blooms

Oldies: The Voom Blooms – Lovers {0}

The Voom Blooms were a four-piece indie rock band from Loughborough, England, who disbanded in 2009. Their sound was a blend of Bloc Party and Interpol, albeit leaning more to the post-punk side — a genre that I have worshipped for years. Although they released only one EP, entitled Nine Ships, it should be noted that this was probably the best one-off EP release from any band in the past decade. Bold statement, yes. It’s just that good. Check out “Lovers” — one of my personal favorites.

THE VOOM BLOOMS – LOVERS

Introducing: PAINTED PALMS

Introducing: PAINTED PALMS {0}

Loving this track from San Francisco-based experimental pop duo Painted Palms. “All of Us” is the opener from the new Canopy EP, which is available as a free download on their bandcamp page.

File next to: Animal Collective, Dan Deacon, Atlas Sound, (old) MGMT.

PAINTED PALMS – ALL OF US

Introducing: PANDIT

Introducing: PANDIT {0}

Pandit is Lance Smith from Lumberton, TX. With the right equipment in hand, a locker full of songs, and a strong determination, Pandit released their debut, self-titled EP in January 2010. Since that time, the band has stayed busy, having just recently released a 17 track demo record in December 2010. You can download that for free here.

Pandit’s debut LP, “Eternity Spin,” is slated for release on February 22, 2011. Show some love for Texas and keep an ear out for this great new addition to the indie landscape.

File next to: Dirty Projectors, Sleigh Bells, Grizzly Bear.

PANDIT – ARTICHOKE

New: Diamond Messages

New: Diamond Messages – Liquid Summer {0}

Diamond Messages is the solo project of Miami-based producer Jason Craig. Check out his track, “Liquid Summer,” which features a perfect blending of early Four Tet electronic textures and Delorean-esque vocal samples.

DIAMOND MESSAGES – LIQUID SUMMER

New: Teen Daze

New: Teen Daze – Let’s Fall Asleep Together {0}

Another amazing track from Vancouver chill-waver Teen Daze. I’m a big fan of his electro-pop sound that was featured heavily on debut album Four More Years, but have zero issues with the lo-fi simplicity of his latest work on the new Teen Dreams EP — be sure to grab it as a pay-what-you-want over at his bandcamp page.

TEEN DAZE – LET’S FALL ASLEEP TOGETHER

Introducing: FRIENDS ELECTRIC

Introducing: FRIENDS ELECTRIC {0}

I’m not sure how I missed this band a few months ago, but better late than never. Based in South Wales, UK, Friends Electric are an electro-rock quartet in their early 20s who formed their first band aged fourteen. Sneaking in to a Soulwax show in 2006 persuaded them to swap their guitars for synths, move together into a terraced house and do jobs as diverse as delivering pizzas to fund the purchase of enough equipment to fill their front room.

Their debut single “Wall of Arms” was released via Self Raising Records in summer 2010, with its follow up, “Golden Blood,” released November 2010. (The latter of the two is definitely one of my personal favorite tracks of 2010.) Keep an eye out for these young lads to do big things in 2011.

File next to: Young Empires, Ginger Ninja, Miike Snow, Innerpartysystem.

FRIENDS ELECTRIC – GOLDEN BLOOD

New: Mesita

New: Mesita – Somewhere Else {0}

Mesita is the project of a 22-year-old from Littleton, Colorado. He is a self-taught multi-instrumentalist with fresh production skills and impressive pop sensibility. That’s really all I know. Oh, also, his EP and LP are both available for free over at his website. And they’re both really good.

MESITA – SOMEWHERE ELSE

Oldies: The Rosebuds

Oldies: The Rosebuds – Get Up Get Out {1}

I recently discovered a boatload of backlogged albums that have been treading water in my iTunes library for several years now. This happens far too often in this day and age. In an effort to revive the classics of yesteryear, I’m starting a new category that spotlights the understated indie “oldies.” Here’s a solid track from 2008 called “Get Up Get Out” by a Raleigh band called The Rosebuds — who some of you might recognize from The Hood Internet’s mash up with Aesop Rock.

THE ROSEBUDS – GET UP GET OUT

Video: TEEDinosaurs

Video: TEEDinosaurs – Garden {1}

Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs. That’s 11 syllables for those of you keeping score at home. “Garden,” the first single from the UK-based producer, features Louisa from Lulu and the Lampshades on vocals, and comes complete with this *totally* bizarre video. Have a listen and bask in the song’s delightful medley of cutting-edge bleeps and beats.

Demo: TOTALLY ENORMOUS EXTINCT DINOSAURS – GARDEN

Video: Holy Ghost!

Video: Holy Ghost! – I Know, I Hear {0}

The basic principle of “quality over quantity” comes to mind when considering that NYC nu-disco duo Holy Ghost! have only 5 original tracks to their name. The group aims to beef up their song catalogue with the release of a debut LP in early 2011. While we wait, check out my personal favorite tune off their EP Static On The Wire:

HOLY GHOST! – I KNOW, I HEAR

Video: Stornoway

Video: Stornoway – Zorbing {2}

Stornoway is a British alternative indie folk band from the Cowley area of Oxford, UK. Listen to their breezy tune “Zorbing” ten times in a row and I promise you’ll fall in love.

STORNOWAY – ZORBING

Song 1 (

Song 1 (“The One”) of 70 this week {0}

I generally try to listen to 10 new, “never-heard-that-before” tracks each day. History has told me that, in a given week, it typically takes 70 new tracks to equal “The One” that fully penetrates the auditory cortex — the sweet spot for good music.

This is that song:
BODY LANGUAGE – YOU CAN

Introducing: SATELLITE STORIES

Introducing: SATELLITE STORIES {0}

Hailing from Oulu, Finland, these four young men are churning out energetic guitar-pop with little regard for how similar they sound to fellow European rockstars Two Door Cinema Club; and I have no problem with that.

File next to: Two Door Cinema Club, Friendly Fires, Delphic, Foals.

SATELLITE STORIES – HELSINKI ART SCENE

New: Cut Copy

New: Cut Copy – Take Me Over {0}

Sydney’s Cut Copy is one of my favorite bands of the last decade. Needless to say, the release of their new album, Zonoscope, will be greeted with rapturous applause. Thanks to the wonders of the internet, I’ve been able to indulge in the demo of their upcoming single, “Where I’m Going,” and, as of today, was able to hear their first official single “Take Me Over.”

The track exhibits a heavy synthesis of 80′s pop songs from Fleetwood Mac (“Everywhere”) and Men At Work (“Land Down Under”). This is no surprise given the band’s affinity for new wave/synth-pop in the style of late 80′s New Order singles. Nonetheless, I detect maturation in their technique and wouldn’t be surprised if the new album deviated from their signature sound. Either way, color me enthusiastic.

Zonoscope drops in early February of next year. Let the countdown begin.

CUT COPY – TAKE ME OVER

New: MillionYoung

New: MillionYoung – Desperate Measures {0}

South Florida’s MillionYoung delivers yet another dream-washed melody on his latest track “Desperate Measures.” The tune kicks off with a staccato guitar-laced intro—reminiscent of numerous tracks from The xx’s self-titled debut album—and slowly scales upward before launching into a massive synth line at 1:54. It’s a worthy payoff for a great winter jam that will keep you cozy through the icy weather ahead. Give it a spin below.

MILLIONYOUNG – DESPERATE MEASURES