Archive for July, 2008

10 REASONS TO DIG ELVIS IMPERSONATORS

Posted: July 25, 2008 by dillion in Uncategorized

Actually, 8 reasons and two reasons to love Elvis remixers. And before you start commenting about what an ignoramus I am, I do know that Elvis wasn’t much of a songwriter. But I submit that these songs are Elvis covers because the songs wouldn’t be famous but for The King’s involvement.

1. Little Sister-Pearl Jam. Is there any song Eddie can’t sing well?

2. Stairway to Led Zeppelin-Neil Pepper. The only better Stairway parody is “Stairway to Gilligan’s Island,” which, if you’re lucky, I’ll post some day.

3. Suspicious Minds-Bush (unreleased studio outtake)

4. Crying in the Chapel Elvish mashed up against the Wailers

5. Suspicious Minds-My Morning Jacket

If you get enough plastic surgery, you can impersonate yourself!

6. A Little Less Conversation (dance remix)-Elvis himself

Image removed!!!

7. Play House-Pee Wee Moore. I love this version.

8. Elvis Presley Stole My Car-Drive By Truckers. Not a cover, a tribute, but hilarious.

9. Go here to find a bunch of remixes of The Pet Shop Boys doing “Always On My Mind.” Yeah, they’re about as major lable/un-indie as possible, but I always enjoyed this cover.

10. Can’t Help Falling In Love-Pearl Jam.  Eddie bookends!

Sometimes, I wonder if the only regular reader of Berkeley Place who digs the hippity hop is me. I wonder that.

But in the event that there are some headz out there, I’m letting you know that 9th Wonder (producer extraordinaire, best known for his work with Little Brother) and Murs (reknowned underground rapper) have teamed up for a third project (if you don’t have 3:16, you don’t love underground hip hop). There were a few leaks of it, but this is the official version. You can download it, free and legal, and you can give a donation. Looks like the duo are taking a cue from Saul Williams, who distributed Niggytardust the same way about 6 months ago.

And while I’m on the subject of rap music, I recently read that Game is going after the white king of hip hop because Eminem allegedly told Dr. Dre not to make music with Game anymore. I haven’t heard if the track has actually been released, and apparently The Game denies the whole story, saying he’s focusing on acting right now. Huh? Focusing on acting? Doesn’t L.A.X. drop soon? I got to say that I’m really looking forward to L.A.X., ’cause I think Game drops some of the most consistently good gangsta rap on a major label, but his recent mixtapes are showing age. Like so many giants before him, he may be suffering burnout. We’ll see, I guess, when the album finally comes out.

D. STICKER ENSEMBLE and WAR TAPES

Posted: July 25, 2008 by dillion in Uncategorized

Today, a double feature.

First, the D. Sticker Ensemble band. When I saw the cover of the new album, “Seasons of Sticker,” I thought this was a joke band. First of all, the font made it look like “Seasons of Sucker.” Second, the track names included “Born With 3 Eyes,” “That’s My Bah!,” and “Space Noodles.” Then I played the first two tracks, and still thought it was a joke band. But as I continued to listen, I realized there’s some real talent here. The music is incredibly varied (“Space Noodles” turned out to be a very interesting instrumental jam), the lyrics are as bizarre as they come, and the album overall is quite good. Theh band’s press release puts them out as a kind of Gnarls Barkley thing, creating a fictional “reclusive Sticker” person, so it’s hard to tell what’s really the deal wtih this group. But from what I can tell, they’re a California group. You can stream a few songs here, which I recommend doing before you buy. This album isn’t for everyone, but those who will like it should really enjoy it.

For fans of: Morphine, Dresden Dolls, Neutral Milk Hotel. And Adam Ant.

Nowhere

Ballad of Han, Luke and Leia

I Wanna Hold Your Hand (Beatles cover)

The other band I’m featuring today is War Tapes, who are releasing their eponymous EP on Sarathan Records. I’m featuring it along side D. Sticker because it’s got a similar sound, although War Tapes is a far more traditional, 1980s Joy Division/New Order/gloom sound kind of band. I know, there are lots of bands with this sound. But this one is a cut above the rest. In particular, “My Mind is Ugly” is a great tune.

THE DRESDEN DOLLS A to Z

Posted: July 24, 2008 by dillion in Uncategorized

For those who don’t know, The Dresden Dolls were partly responsible for the goth cabaret movement to which current bands like My Chemical Romance owe a great, unacknowledged debt. They’re a power duo, and they’ve got a new album out called “No Virginia,” which is basically previously unreleased stuff and B-Sides, but it’s got a great cover of the Psychedelic Furs on it. It’s also got a cool studio version of their Jane’s Addiction cover (“I Would For You”), which I won’t post to encourage you to buy the album and support the band.

Plus, the new album gave me the idea for this post: Dresden Dolls covers! I’ve also included some originals that are available at their website, so you can hear a little more of what they’re about.

There’s a zip file of the ones that aren’t direct links from their site, so if you don’t see a savefile link for a song you want, it’ll be in that file. All covers are live except for Pretty in Pink, which is off “No Virginia,” as a teaser to encourage you to buy that album!

A is for A Night At The Roses.

B is for Beasties! Fight For Your Right to Party (Beastie Boys)

C is for Cosmic Dancer (T-Rex cover)

D is for David Bowie! Life on Mars (Bowie cover).

D is also for
Digg!
Help me get higher ratings!

E is for Eisbar.

F is for Blueprint (Fugazi cover)

G is for Golden Age (Beck).

H is for Herr! Mein Herr (Liza Minelli from Cabaret).

I is for I Would For You (Janes Addiction)

J is for Amsterdam (Jacques Brel).

K is for Karma Police (Radiohead cover) with Jerome Dillon .

L is for Lennon! Imagine (John Lennon) with Ryan Ross of Panic! at the Disco

M is for Mad World (Tears for Fears).

N is for Nilsson, and O is for One feat. The Ambitious Orchestra (written by Harry Nilsson).

P is for the Psychedelic Furs!

Pretty in Pink (Psychedelic Furs).

The Ghost in You (Psychedelic Furs)

P is also for In the Flesh? (Pink Floyd).

R is for Rid of Me (PJ Harvey).

S is for the hilarious Sheep Song.

T is for 2 Headed Boy (acoustic) (Neutral Milk Hotel)

U is for Ultimate Esperanza.

W is for War Pigs (Black Sabbath)

Z is for ZIP FILE!!

TANYA MORGAN-“The Bridge EP”

Posted: July 24, 2008 by dillion in Uncategorized

I don’t know if you heard yet, but Tanya Morgan ain’t a woman
Tanya Morgan is three guys, surprise surprise!

That’s the opening couplet from the song, “Tanya Morgan is a Rap Group,” the title track of the excellent 2008 mixtape.

Brooklynatti is back in the house, with The Bridge EP. Their last official release was the 2006 record, “Moonlighting,” a stupid deep release that showed amazing promise. The follow up isn’t a full-length, but it’s far superior to the first record. The trio (Donwill and Ilyas of Cincinnati, Von Pea of Brooklyn) have even smarting lyrics, and even better beats. One of the things that makes Tanya Morgan better than the average intelligent underground rappers is their ability not only to laugh at themselves but also to laugh at their own ideas. Black power and street philosophy can be brilliant (check out Nas’ new record), but it can leave one feeling heavy and full. Tanya Morgan never stop urging hip-hop to improve, but they do it without sacrificing the art form’s most powerful tool: Moving your butt. Not since Tribe Called Quest’s first album have I heard a band so able to mix message with music.

I’m told a full length will come in the fall. Can’t wait.

3 QUICK HITS . . .

Posted: July 24, 2008 by dillion in Uncategorized

NEGATIVLAND-“Thigmotatctic”

Sampler masters Negativland have dropped a new album, and this one is more song oriented. Usually their collages are pretty vague, but these come closer to forming actual musical compositions, complete with lyrics (albeit sampled ones). This group always surprises.

JIHAE-“After Thought”

Jihae is pretty much the opposite of Negativland. I first wrote about her in 2006 on my old site–sweet, honest songs. But she’s back with a remix EP! So maybe she’s not as far from Negativland as I thought . . .

Do I Move You (Nina Simone cover)-Jihae (remix)

THE DIRTY HEARTS-“Pigs”

Want high energy postpunk that won’t rock your world, but should make you move your feet?

PICTURE OF THE DAY

Posted: July 23, 2008 by dillion in Uncategorized