Monthly Archives: July 2009

Listen Up: Holiday Shores

Ahoy! Holiday Shores are coming to Chicago and they are bringing with them an arsenal of catchy loud pop music tinted in spirit of the Florida sunshine. It’s altogether low-fi, vibrant, atmospheric, with distorted vocals, bright melodies that rise to a crescendo and then come crashing down all in the same track. Holiday Shores are preparing to release their first LP Columbus’d The Whim August 4th on two syllable records.  Check ’em out when they play Empty Bottle on August 25th.

Watch the video for the single “Phones Don’t Feud”

Chicago Tour Dates:
AUG. 25. 09 @ Empty Bottle (with Distractions)

DOWNLOAD: Holiday Shores -“Phones Don’t Feud” – [MP3]

Holiday Shores on Myspace | website | Pre-Order Columbus’d The Whim

Video: Fitz & The Tantrums – “Winds of Change”


A little white soul for your bowl, Fitz & The Tantrums are a hip, mod suited group of boppers that create a modern soul influenced by the records of Motown and inhabit the true coolness of the vibe. Check out their new video for the “Winds of Change”, don’t adjust your bandwidth this video utilizes a stop motion technique as well as notecards though not quite as effective as “Subterranean Homesick Blues” and there is no Ginsberg chatting in the background.

Fitz and The Tantrums on Myspace | Buy Songs For a Break Up, Vol. 1

Live Pics: Ebony Bones!

(photoset on flickr)

After a disaster involving an exploding tour bus that devoured their instruments, passports, belongings, a slightly smaller lineup of Ebony Bones introduced themselves to Chicago at the Wicker Park Fest on Sunday (7/26) and did not disappoint the dance curious crowd.  After posting about them last week, I was waiting all week to check them out in a live setting. Ebony Bones has an exciting, flavorful sound only further solidified but an excellent live showing, I wasn’t sure how it would translate to stage, but Ebony and her crew nailed it! The effort they put into their costumes and makeup as well as the choreographed dance moves is just another element to the performance that makes them incredibly fun to watch. When they played the final song “Don’t Fart on My Heart” (yeah, that’s the song name, it’s witty, but not obnoxious), I was surprised how quickly the time flew! Ebony’s voice is amazing live, it’s soulful and unique.  You could tell she was having a blast performing. Next time Ebony Bones comes to Chicago, don’t be surprised if it’s on a huge tour, they have everything it takes to blow up! 

Ebony Bones! on Myspace | Buy Bone of My Bones [IMPORT]*

*Buy the album, the girl could use the support!

Listen Up: Malakai

“Malakai! He wants you too, Malakai!” :  Malakai is a duo from Bristol, UK who masterfully combine beats and samples to create an intriguing and addictive soundscape of amalgamated styles and references. It’s incredibly refreshing, yet familiar. I just picked up an import copy of their LP Ugly Side of Love.  It is audible treat right from the first track “Warriors”, which sets the tone for the sonic cluster bomb that are about to transpire. “Warriors” which combines this UK dub sound with nuggets-era guitar riffs, sonic pitches and samples of the 80s cult classic  The Warriors, with it’s call ‘warriors come out to play…yay…’ Right off the bat, you know are going to be taken from a ride, it’s a wild genre mashing one. It’s hard for me to choose a favorite track off of Ugly Side of Love, there are so many standouts, like: “How Long” which reeks of the beauty and the beat of 60s era pyschedelic soul; “Shitkicker” has the rollicking fervor of hip hop meets garage rock meets high noon showdown, it’s the kind of track that would make Gorillaz jealous; “Simple Song” is a delicate beat ballad that strikes a subtle groove with it’s simplicity and congested stream of consciousness lyrics; Another Sun is simply gorgeous, a Love song with “bruises and damaged goods.” Ugly Side of Love is an exciting, must listen album of 2009, already making it’s way into my top LPs of 2009. I hope a tour  to the US is in the works.

Check out the video for “Shitkicker” (aka The Battle):

and “Snowflake” on the Lily Allen and Friends show:

Malakai on Myspace | youtube | Buy Ugly Side of Love on Amazon

Live Pics: Grand Duchy

Mr. Frank Black aka Black Francis and his wife Violet Clark showcased their work as Grand Duchy at Wicker Park Summer Fest on July 25th. Playing songs off their debut album Petits Fours, which is pure Black Francis to the core, it rings of the guts of Pixies, the pop of The Breeders and peppered with electronic samples, it has everything you’ve come to expect from Black and warrants it’s own space to exist. They kicked off their set the scourging single “Come On Over To My House”, which is loaded with Black’s iconic howls. The cover of The Cure’s “A Strange Day” was driving standout as was the explosive “Volcano”, which put a nice capper on the modest set. It definitely made me excited for the upcoming Pixies’ Doolittle tour!

Grand Duchy on myspace | website | Buy Petits Fours on Amazon

Listen Up: Thee Oh Sees

Thee Oh Sees deliver an avant garde, noise rock attack from the Bay Area with an undeniable allure. This is the type of music that emerges from the wreckage of a burning garage set ablaze by the sound of fuzzy guitars, placed feedback, and trashy female/male vocals that haunt the rambling compositions. Their recently released LP Help (In The Red Records 2009) is loaded with nuggets worthy of the 60s garage rock underground, a more focused step forward from their previous release The Master’s Bedroom is Worth Spending a Night In, though very much in the same dirty psychedelic veins. Thee Oh Sees take their root  influences and create a world of their own and it’s one that I can get lost in.

Chicago Tour Dates:
SEPT. 27. 09 – Schubas (w/The Fresh and Onlys)

DOWNLOAD:   Thee Oh Sees -“Enemy Destruct” – [MP3]

Thee Oh Sees on Myspace | Buy Help on Amazon.com

Video: Florence + The Machine – “Kiss With a Fist”

When I first heard this song “Kiss with a Fist” last year, I couldn’t wait to hear Florence Welch of Florence and the Machine‘s full length album. Then, I heard her cover of Cold War Kid’s “Hospital Beds”, I was still interested. She possesses the type of voice in a female singer that I gravitate towards, playful, smoky, and with a dangerous little bite. One year later and the F+TM full length Lungs is released and while the LP does possess the some of the intrigue I hoped for, I was a little underwhelmed. Of course the first single that attracted me holds strong and there are a few highlights like the jazzy pounding cover of The Ludes’ “Girl With One Eye”, which is a subtle yet meticulous track that holds true to it’s internal threats. Overall, you get the feel that she is capable of really going wild and you want her to let go and release the beast and the moments on Lungs when she does make the whole record pop with potential.

Video for “Kiss With A Fist” – 2008

Florence and The Machine on Myspace | website | Buy Lungs on Amazon