Archive for June, 2008


Posted: June 30, 2008 by dillion in Uncategorized

Sock Obama: Offensive, satirical, bizarrely ignorant coincidence, or genius?

THAILAND-“The Remote Controller”

Posted: June 30, 2008 by dillion in Uncategorized

Gosh, I hate the band Thailand. What they’ve done with “The Remote Controller” is unforgivable. Because it’s only an EP.

Marc Linquist is, frankly, one of the best indie rock (new new wave) songwriters performing today. He’s a fantastic abstract lyricist (From Down in the Trenches: “You look great now how’s your coma?/Sugar and dough and we’re all bleached out/Check the body count, look you dropped ten more/Does it feel like we’re down in the trenches?” From Heartland Failure: “One more year hating your country/One more year tearing your hearts in two.”) He writes powerful music as well, and his bandmate Jonah Flicker (on guitars) and Staci Roark (synths, vocals) are perfect by his side, all of them playing together, incredibly tight. The band manages to be lucid and soaring without being shoegazy, and their debut album, Motorcade, was my pick for the third best indie album of 2007.

“Control Control” sounds much like Thailand’s debut, which is to say that it’s lo-fi, low-key indie rock
that washes your ears and mind with a sense of calm and wonder. The vocals stretch a little more than last time, approaching an Arcade Fire whine-and-howl, but all in all, this is just more Thailand. Which is to say, I love it!

Why is it an EP? There’s only one answer: They suck.


Posted: June 29, 2008 by dillion in Uncategorized

Jamie Lidell’s been in the business for a while,
making top-notch whiteboy soul, and he’s releasing “Jim” this summer. It’s an old-sounding album, a la Amy Winehouse (but Jim was doing it before she was), that borrows from gospel, funk, R n’ B, disco . . . There’s a little something for everyone here. A touch of Otis Redding, a pinch of Marvin Gaye . . . The influences are obvious, but that doesn’t mean Jamie doesn’t make his own music here.

“Wait for Me” sounds like a Ray Charles cover, complete with blazing piano solo in the classic my-piano-is-a-guitar style of Jerry Lee Lewis. And if you think that sounds like tons of fun, you’re right. “All I Wanna Do” sounds like The Neville Brothers, a sweet, gospel lament much like Sam Cooke’s “Change is Gonna Come.” This is a solid album with just enough nostalgia to make you smile, and enough originality to keep you guessing.

Out of My System


Posted: June 27, 2008 by dillion in Uncategorized

Two releases from one of the best indie labels in the business . . .

BOWERBIRDS-“In Our Talons”

The Bowerbirds make the kind of folk music you’d expect from this label: Low-key and anything but bright and hopeful. “In Our Talons” has all the vocals you’d expect from an old-fashioned folk tune (think Joan Baez or Joni Mitchell), complete with “dee dee dee” harmonies, but over it all is a churning menace—an acoustic guitar recorded low and gravelly. Take a listen: If you like this song, you’ll love this album.

In Our Talons

LORD DOG BIRD-“Lord Dog Bird”

The mystical moniker that serves as both the name of the band and the name of their debut album is no coincidence: Lord Dog Bird is strange and medieval. It is the product of guitarist Colin McCann, who wrote it while his band Wilderness (on the Jagjaguwar label) was on extended hiatus. It sounds like most of what you’ll find on his band’s label: Emotionless, slightly sad, drone-y, and somewhat creepy. Although McCann is a guitar player by trade, and the guitar work is the star here, you’ll also find plenty of good keyboard work. An interesting work from an always interesting label.

The Gift of Song in the Lion’s Den


Posted: June 26, 2008 by dillion in Uncategorized

THE CLASH: 5/21/81

Posted: June 26, 2008 by dillion in Uncategorized

I’ve been lax on my Clash posts of late, so maybe this will make up for it. As far as I know, this is the whole show, a rare Italy live performance from the greatest band in the world.


Set list:

London Calling
Safe European Home
White Man In Ham Palais
Train In Vain
Lightning Strikes
Junco Partner
The Guns Of Brixton
This Is Radio Clash
Complete Control
The Call Up
Ivan Meets GI Joe
The Leader
Charlie Don’t Surf
The Magnificent Seven
Wrong ‘Em Boyo
Somebody Got Murdered
Career Opportunities
One More Time
Brand New Cadillac
Janie Jones
Armagideon Time
I Fought the Law
Milano’s Burning
Jimmy Jazz
White Riot

WAR ON DRUGS-“Wagonwheel Blues”

Posted: June 25, 2008 by dillion in Uncategorized

It’s easy to dismiss War On Drugs as another Sonic Youth soundalike band, but if you do that, you’ll be doing them, and yourself, a big disservice. On this,
the band’s debut full-length, the unfortunately named band breaks out some of the best Americanapsychedelia I’ve ever heard, making tough, druggy rock that’s as classic as it is contemporary. If there’s any justice, the band will be discussed alongside My Bloody Valentine, Neutral Milk Hotel, The Pixies, Ryan Adams, and all the other indie greats.

What exactly is the album like? Well, “A Needle In Your Eye #16” sounds like Winn Butler covering
Springsteen’s “Working on the Highway.” “Arms Like Boulders,” like many of the songs on the record, has a strong Bob Dylan feel (from his mid-to-late ‘70s electrified period—the best Dylan out there). Even the instrumentals like “Reverse the Charges” and “Coast Reprise,” which some might call filler, fit nicely here—establishing mood and focus between songs that seem to be about everything and nothing at the same time. Indeed, War On Drugs have created an album—that elusive creature that has a beginning, middle, and end, and wasn’t made for this world of iTunes and mp3 downloads. “Wagonwheel Blues” is best listened to in its entirety, from track one to the end, so that you can bathe in its brilliance.

It is one of the best albums of the year, hands down.