Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Indie-Music Reviews for the Attention Deficient, a series

And you may ask yourself, "What is this swine-loving blogger listening to these days?"
Lucky for you I've decided to start a new thread to answer that very question.

In keeping with this increasingly globalized,glibly compressed, irrevocably speedy, and immanently forgettable media culture, I have devised a simple review system that also allows you to voyeuristically peek into my ipod window but without all the trouble of having to wade through a paragraph or two of self-indulgent prose. I mention its 90s,80s, or, sometimes digging way back into ancient history,70s, influence, and give you a sentence or two explaining (sometimes in high modernist poetic fashion or haiku) why it's cool.

Here's how it goes.

1. Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, from Brooklyn/Philadelphia: David Byrne vocals with touches of the Shins and Neutral Milk Hotel.
If you don't like this, then you must listen exclusively to Iron Maiden, Garth Brooks, or Beethoven, or be in thrall of any other musical monomania that discriminates against heady indie quirk pop. Suggested album:"Clap Your Hands Say Yeah" (self-released). DIY, bébé. More remarkably, the numero uno seller on AMG in 2005. Do you like words as well as sounds? They do. This album has memorable lyrics: " You look like David bowie/But you've nothing new to show me/
Start another fire/and watch it slowly die." And song titles: "The Skin of My Yellow Country Teeth." For fun-loving poets and arm-chair revolutionaries who also enjoy jumping around to music.

2. Shout Out Louds, "four boys and one girl" from Stockholm, Sweden. As their website says, the name has nothing to do with KISS, though they have nothing against the legendary 70s camp rockers, either.

80s and 90s influences: Yo la Tengo, James, The Smiths, the Jesus and Mary Chain and The Cure, as if auto-adjusted with Adobe Soundshop.
What? You didn't like Robert Smith's alienated vocals-on-the-verge-of-tears?
As you can tell I'm currently into band names that are imperatives.

3. Jose Gonzales is an Argentinian-Swede, punk-turned-singer-songwriter: Nick Drake, Will Oldham and Elliot Smith's most recent successor. Another DIY story. Signed to Indie label Peacefrog (UK) in 2005 and quickly gained a large and loyal following in the UK. Followed up with Veneer (2003 Sweden/2005 U.S. and U.K., Imperial Recordings). Check out his somewhat extreme but tasteful makeovers of Joy Division's "Love Will Tear Us Apart" and Kylie Minogue's "Hand on Your Heart." What? You're not in to getting beaten to a pulp by sorrow and regret?
There goes my imperative trend.

Time to click the channel.

See you next week on Indie-Music Reviews for the Attention Deficient.

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