Friday, September 23, 2011

Youth Lagoon : The Year of Hibernation

Good music keeps coming out of its shadows of release including Youth Lagoon's The Year of Hibernation.
This takes a unique turn from my current listen, Blind Pilot's sophomore album We Are The Tide and I'm glad. It's different. It's got a summer nostalgia feel. Like summer is ending and this is how you say goodbye. But in the midst of autumn, just take a listen to this and reminisce your secret rendezvous or those long conversations that you never want to end. Trevor Power of Youth Lagoon actually wrote the song "Montana" based on that premise: conversation. A specific one. Read more about his album and stream it via SPIN.
This album comes out September 27 via Fat Possum or Amazon.
Am I considering getting this on cassette? Yes. That's still in right?

Youth Lagoon - Cannons by abrecaminos

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Austin City Limits 2011 : Recap

After sprinkles of rain, dripping sweat, and several bike rides later, Austin City Limits 2011 is over and C3 has already set a date for 2012. Sidenote: it will be in October - and thank goodness for that. Even though we got lucky with the weather for the most part this year, having it in October will put everyone's minds and body temperatures at rest.
Overall, I thought that it went by pretty smoothly, this year I went by bike and it was significantly faster than going on foot or getting dropped off. I would suggest it to anyone with a bike and some courage. What did I learn from biking? It's fun, fast, and really scary sometimes.
Here's a recap of some of the shows I went to:
Friday: Here is the flag I made. If you guys have watched Pixar's film, Up, you should recognize it. It is a replica of Russell's Wilderness Explorer pennant flag. I made one for the group like I did last year and that's generally how we met up, it's a great tool. It wasn't as big as the others but it did the job.

Here I am at Big Boi's act. Nostalgia rushed through when he played "Ms. Jackson" and everyone in the crowd sang along. It was pretty good set for my Friday afternoon.
I missed Delta Spirit's act because one of our bike tires blew out on the way to Zilker Park but no fear, we met them at the Waterloo Signing Tent. They were super nice, very friendly, did I mention good looking? I heard that they had a great set too, watch some videos hosted by ACL's YouTube.
Yes, I chose Coldplay and I totally think it was worth it. A bias opinion because I don't listen to Kayne as much. But specifically talking about Coldplay, they did play a lot of their new songs like "Charlie Brown", "Paradise", "Myloto Xyloto", but they encored with "Clocks", a rendition of Amy Winehouse's "Rehab" that played into "Fix You". Their light show was absolutely spectacular. The lasers. It's all about those lasers. Watch some of the videos here.
Saturday started off with some sprinkles which cooled down the atmosphere. I was so thankful...until Dallas Green made us flick off the cloud and jinxed us. The 2-hr light shower was nice while it lasted. On the musical sense though, Dallas Green of City & Colour was great. "Body In A Box" sounded as heart-wrenching live as it does in his album. 
And then there's Skrillex. I find it absolutely amazing how cooperative humans can be as a crowd when there is a person on stage telling us to do things. We raise our hands, shout "new shit", and jump up and down. It's fascinating and I'm guilty of joining in on all of those things.
TV On The Radio was by far my favorite show of the whole festival. We were pretty close to the stage, the sound was big and loud, the crowd made it a gigantic festival, and I loved every second of it. One little treasure was that we stood next to this man who had a "mister". He would use this pump to get the water (I really don't know how it worked) and then mist himself...and then everyone within distance of him. It was very refreshing. Did I mention that I saw Mr. Batman aka Christian Bale? Well, there's my mention. I don't know why he was at ACL but he has some good taste standing side-stage at TV On The Radio.
Zilker Park// ATX Skyline
My friend and I really wanted to see The Head And The Heart and I'm so glad we did. Although the sun was shining brightly, we were in good company and a great performance. Charity Rose, the violinist and vocalist in the group really took me by surprise. She belted it out during songs like "Winter Song" and especially "Rivers and Roads". It left me going woah and imagine, she used to be a manger at Anthropologie.
Sidenote: I unfortunately missed Fleet Foxes for the most part but I say "most" because as I was riding into the festival on my bike, "Helplessness Blues" was playing in the background. It was like a victory song coming into the park and I thought that was perfect timing. 
Closing with Arcade Fire, Austin City Limits 2011, I'd say was a success. I've still got an ACL hang over and I can't wait to see what C3 has in store for us next year. (Please bring Florence Welch...)

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Blind Pilot : We Are The Tide

Tuesday is here and after streaming the album constantly on NPR, I finally have the mp3's in my possession and they lay rest in my iTunes. Blind Pilot's sophomore, We Are The Tide, has turned out to be a pleasantly wonderful album. Amazingly consistent with their first one. I am always afraid that the sophomore album might go a bit wonky because the artist/group wants to go in a different direction or they do something dramatic. And I'm not saying that it doesn't work, but doesn't. For Blind Pilot, they're soft jam of indie folk; the trumpet, banjo, and sweet voices of Luke and Kati work so well together, hearing the second album is like melting butter.
Stream here. Buy and download it on their website, amazonmp3, or iTunes.

Tune In Tuesday : ACL Edition

This weekend commences the 10th Anniversary of the Austin Cit Limits Music Festival so I thought that I would give you guys a sample of what is to come and which shows you'll probably find me at. For those of you who are not attending, they will be streaming the festival via YouTube, I encourage you to check some performances out if you have some time. I'm a sucker for those kinds of things; like Delta Spirit's act during Lolla? It was awesome, I can't wait to see them at ACL. For those of you who are attending, come find me...I'll be trying to keep myself from dehydration and sun sickness. Remember: Bring your water bottle, sun screen, sun goggles, and your musical spirit.


No Widows - The Antlers
We Used To Wait - Arcade Fire
Comin' Home - City & Colour
Politik - Coldplay
Walk The Night - Cults
Devil Knows You're Dead - Delta Spirit
Walking On A Dream - Empire Of The Sun
Helplessness Blues - Fleet Foxes
Houdini - Foster The People
Down In The Valley - The Head And The Heart
Rock & Roll Mountain Troll - Miniature Tigers
Still Rockin' - Pretty Lights
End Of The Night - Smith Westerns
Will Do - TV On The Radio
Don't Haunt This Place (cover) - Yellow Ostrich

Download the playlist by clicking this link.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Austin Shows : The National w/ Local Natives

The National just announced their tour starting in November with various bands taking turns opening for them: bands like The Walkmen, Wye Oak, Local Natives, Neko Case, the War on Drugs, Sharon Van Etten and So Percussion are on the bill.
Once upon a time last year during ACL 2010, I was in a dilemma. Broken Bells and Local Natives were in the same time slot and I couldn't go to both. I wanted to stick to just choosing one. By recommendation of a friend's cousin (I believe), I was told that Local Natives do not disappoint so I went to that show. And they were right. I went and saw them again earlier this year and it was as special as it was at ACL, just a different environment is all. I highly recommend going to a show w/ Local Natives, or any of the other opening bands for that matter. I'd love to see Wye Oak or Sharon Van Etten.
The show in Austin is on December 4th at the Austin Music Hall, tickets go on sale for e-listers on September 22 and for the public on September 23.
Here is another one of my favorite La Blogotheque Take Away Shows:

Thursday, September 8, 2011


I couldn't choose one album so I'm choosing a few to write about today. Aren't those album covers (above) beautiful though? They were made by Scott Hansen, design name: ISO50, musician name: Tycho, which happens to be the artist I'm talking about today. He's a double threat. His art is imaginative and original; I think it pours over into his music as well. Tycho is electronic but the connotation of that word will make you do a double take when you actually hear his music. It's more chill, dreamy in a sense, and very relaxing. I really love listening to "The Daydream" because it's one of those build-up songs. But there isn't epic guitar strumming or drum thrashing at the end. It just builds up and you feel so consumed in the song when it ends, you want more. The song "Red Bridge" is almost child-like when there's a voice saying "Dora" peppered throughout the song (Is it "Dora"? That's what I think).
His new full-length album is called "Dive" and it is due November 15, 2011.

Tycho - The Daydream by Tycho

Monday, September 5, 2011

Video Frenzy

I love Vimeo. Here are some videos that I have saved for this very special occasion. Enjoy.
His voice is so raw. The video is strong and so beautiful. Spoken word and music. I have never seen anything quite like it.
I want to write about this San Diegan band soon. (Fun fact: everyone in the band except Darla the drummer are actually from the Pacific Northwest.) This music video was put on repeat after I watched it. So artistically thought out. Habitat House (where the video was shot) is a venue that I hope to visit someday. The Tree Ring, check them out.
Kopecky Family Band. I discovered them via my friend Hannah via NPR Tiny Desk Concerts. They stole my ears the moment they started playing and it goes the same for this very friendly video. Or at least, that's how I would describe it. It marries a lot of bands that I listen on my iPod, a listeners' dream right?
Spoon. If any of you don't see them at Fun Fun Fun Fest, you will regret it for the rest of your life...or until they decide to tour again. La Blogotheque captured the rock essence of Britt Daniels, Jim Eno, Rob Pope, and Eric Harvey in such a cool place in Paris, France. La Blog's Take Away Shows are some of my favorite. Did you know that they're Austinites?

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Live // Pretty Lights

I've been waiting to do a review for Pretty Lights for awhile too. Not a live review but it just so happens I went to my very first Pretty Lights concert for something called Identity Festival. The doors actually opened at 1:00 P.M. but we didn't arrive until 8:30 P.M. because we were only there for Pretty Lights. I went with my brother, Tommy, and he has told me only good things: free music on his website, killer set up, and all-in-all great performance. The only thing I can report disappointing was the crowd. They acted like they were uninspired or maybe they were exhausted from the heat and being there all day? 

Anyways...PL's one-man frontman Derek Smith is a bad ass. And it's not just because he's from Colorado. From the time my brother saw him at a venue with just a backdrop with his "PL" logo on it to a fully-lit city-like set up, I understood why Tommy kept coming back. He came onto the stage on time and went to work his magic. Now I don't think there is an exact genre of Pretty Lights because I think he's made up one of his own. Funk, hip-hop, electronic. A combination of those three. There's slow beats here and there, then you can feel the bass (which was actually one of the best parts of the whole show, the sound was amazing), and then there are words in some of the songs.
Side-note: Pretty Lights is not dubstep. I think that was also what people expected from PL but that's not his genre. It's hip-hop, funk, electronic. More of a groove as opposed to head banging?

I'm proud to say though, that when Derek played "Finally Moving", I belted that chorus as loud as I could. What a great performer and I cannot wait to see him again at ACL.

Pretty Lights - Finally Moving by prettylights