Indie Music Hour with DJ HotJack

A regular journey around the music scene

Episode 19 – Hot 100 (part 5)

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This is part 5 of the Indie Music Hour Hot 100 countdown, featuring 60 to 51. The countdown will return after a short break as I want to feature some newer tracks in the next podcast.

Tracklisting

I Ain’t Losing Any Sleep by The Sunshine Underground

Swagger by The Vox Jaguars

Just A Song About Ping Pong by Operator Please

Release Me by Oh Laura

Action Man by Rotary Ten

Black Cadillacs by Modest Mouse

Mona Lisa by Jesse Malin

A Little More Time by Baskervilles

Never Miss A Beat by Kaiser Chiefs

Nobody Move, Nobody Get Hurt by We Are Scientists

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July 31, 2009 Posted by | Podcasts | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Album Review – Kingdom of Welcome Addiction by IAMX

Kingdom of Welcome Addiction by IAMX

IAMX_

IAMX features Chris Corner from Sneaker Pimps (with a lot of goth make-up on) and is described as synth-rock.

The album opens with “Nature of Inviting” and seems to set out a darker form of dance music. It took me until about 3 minutes into the track before I really tuned into what was being attempted here but I got there in the end. The title track is up next and it starts well, with overblown and dramatic instrumentation. The vocals fit in well and by now I’m thinking I get it. Dance music that goths can also enjoy – LOL.

“Tear Garden” follows and features some war-cry drumming and high-note piano that creates an interesting mental picture alongside Corner’s vocals. Imogen Heap features on “My Secret Friend” and the track is brooding but unspectacular. “I For An I” has a bit of defiant anger built in and sounds like it could feature in a movie quite easily. “I Am Terrified” begins with very straightforward piano chords and a more delicate vocal. This track felt a little less ‘darkwave’ than the others and worked pretty well as a reflective ballad. It leads on to “Think of England” and I thought this track contained the right amount of energy and the vocals didn’t feel as gothic.

Next up was “The Stupid, The Proud” and I was really drawn to this track. It was slowly paced and reflective but seemed to cause me to stop and pay attention to the lyrics more than the others did. The optimistically titled “You Can Be Happy” isn’t all that interesting but “The Great Shipwreck Of Life” has a bit more oomph to it. The album finishes with a touching tale of loneliness in the form of “Running”.

This is a very difficult album to rate for me as I had such mixed reactions to it. I can’t give it a low mark as I felt it had some high points but I also can’t justify rating it too highly as it felt rather obvious and cliched at other points.

Overall then – 7/10 from me. Defiitely worth a listen and maybe you will have a bigger ‘hate’ or ‘love’ reaction than I did.

July 31, 2009 Posted by | Album Reviews | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Music Vidz – Kids by Melpo Mene (MGMT cover)

Interesting interpretation of the original. Certainly evokes different emotions

July 31, 2009 Posted by | Music Vidz | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Music Vidz – Suspended In Gaffa (Ra Ra Riot and Kate Bush versions)

Which version is best though?

July 31, 2009 Posted by | Music Vidz | , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Music Vidz – How Come You Don’t Hold Me No More? by The Hot Puppies

Not very new but a lot of folks won’t have heard of this band or the album the track is from. I recommend both

July 31, 2009 Posted by | Music Vidz | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Music Vidz – Arrows of Eros by Golden Silvers

I can’t get enough of this track lately. Also features in the Indie Music Hour Hot 100 podcast

July 31, 2009 Posted by | Music Vidz | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Music Vidz – Go On Say It by Blind Pilot

Good band for those chilled-out times

July 31, 2009 Posted by | Music Vidz | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Album Review – Post-Nothing by Japandroids

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Post-Nothing is the first full-length album from Vancouver garage-rock band Japandroids after a couple of EPs were released over the last two years.

The album opens with “The Boys Are Leaving Town” and it quickly sets the scene as to what the band are all about. On first listen it sounds like disjointed nonsense but the lo-fi punk elements come through on more listens and the reverb-heavy garage feel does too. “Young Hearts Spark Fire” is a little more accessible but still adheres to the principle of the opening track. “Wet Hair” is a track you want to scream along to and is full of Fugazi style guitaring. In fact, I spotted a fair few Fugazi moments in the album and I can’t think of a higher compliment for guitar bands.

“Rockers East Vancouver” opens with a storming drum intro before guitars and vocals kick in but the overall feeling I had for the track wasn’t great. Something to remember about Japandroids though is that they are only a 2-piece band and yet it sounds like there are at least 4 members from the sound they create. “Heart Sweats” also heavily leans on the drums and the track builds up very well into something full of primal energy. “Crazy/Forever” opens with another Fugazi-style instrumental where guitar and drums compete for attention and create a sustained intensity. It’s almost 2 minutes until the vocals kick in and, to be honest, I’m not sure they are needed as this track is all about the instrumentation.

“Sovereignty” is up next and has a slightly shorter instrumental intro before the vocals begin. This is a track that has a more controlled feel to it than some others but it works well. The album finishes with “I Quit Girls” and begins with the familiar type of intro before a falsetto vocal joins in. I found the vocal pretty annoying in this track and could quite happily just listen to the instrumental element.

Overall, this is an exciting piece of work. A few words of warnings though:

1. Had I only given this album one listen, I’d have been less than complimentary. It sounded disjointed and messy on first listen but that is actually what I’ve come to enjoy about it. It contains just about the right mix of structure and chaos, especially considering the garage-rock genre.

2. Don’t expect poetic lyrics or subjects that make you ponder life. This album is all about being young and the limited, and often facile, things that occupy our minds when we’re young. People say that MGMT captured what it was like to be young on their last album and maybe they did but this album does so much better, especially for the kids who daddy didn’t set up a trust fund for.

Seriously, give this album a listen at least twice before forming an opinion. And, if you like it and somehow have managed not to ever hear Fugazi before, check them out too. Hell, even if you have heard everything Fugazi have ever done, use this as an excuse to dig it all out and listen again.

8/10 from me. Clever work from the boys.

July 31, 2009 Posted by | Album Reviews | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Music Scene News – 30th July Round-Up

latest news

The Raveonettes are due to release the follow-up to their excellent previous album in October. You can hear a demo of one of the tracks HERE

I previously mentioned my cynicism about the Monsters of Folk project. Well, you can make up your own mind HERE

The latest court ruling against The Pirate Bay happened in the Netherlands. It is still unclear whether Swedish company, Global Gaming Factory, will go ahead and purchase the site to transform it into a legal music venture.

Sonic Youth have added another 7 US dates to their tour – extending it to October. Who says old dudes don’t have stamina?

Gerard Way claims that My Chemical Romance have written a track, Death Before Disco, that is as good as Springsteen’s Born To Run. Mmkay Gerard.

Dananananaykroyd had to quit their Australian gigs after their Scottish drummer fell off the stage and broke his arm. I’m sure no alcohol was involved.

Kelly Osbourne is planning to relaunch her singing ‘career’ – eek!!

Skunk Anansie (remember them?) are planning a new single ahead of a UK tour in November.

July 31, 2009 Posted by | Music Scene News | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Pocket TV – worth a look

pockettv

Sarah from Sony Ericsson’s Pocket TV got in touch to highlight a new music show containing a collection of artists and features. A lot of the bands featured probably won’t appeal but there are some good ones so it’s definitely worth a look. You can find the vids HERE

July 29, 2009 Posted by | indie music, Music Vidz | , , , , , , | Leave a comment