Friday, September 29, 2006

Lily Allen archeology

I was actually thinking of doing something similar to this. But mine was going to be songs that influenced Lily's debut. I still might do it, but this is a good start.
Check out Music Like Dirt for a download of a bunch of the original songs Alright Still grabs samples from. It's a great informational vinyl archeology experiment. Especially good if you dig reggae.

Monday, September 25, 2006

The Legends

From the land of Sweden, the Legends confound a bit. Originally touted as a 9-piece, the band counted 3-4 gals who clapped along to their songs as the percussion section. But with their latest release, Public Radio, they are now a one man band. Confusing.
The first record, Up Against the Legends was my favorite record of 2004. It's perfect; a mix of Motown girl group melodies and fuzzy Jesus and Marychain ambience. The new record is less Motown with more tunes reminiscent of the Cure, and it's good, but it still hasn't grown on me. Definitely not like the first one did. The official count? Up Against The Legends: 10; Public Radio: 6. But this could change. I'll keep you posted.

See if you can guess which of the following is from which album.

The Legends- He Knows the Sun
The Legends- Call It Ours

Saturday, September 23, 2006

The Ponys

It took me a while to get into the Ponys. They definitely didn't grab me right away. Luckily they put out two records in quick succession, and I kept hearing them. After a few months I realized that the catchiness of the songs and the original punk rock styling was really refreshing. (By punk rock I do not mean Sex Pistols, I mean more like Richard Hell, the Ramones, early NYC punk. The stuff that no "punk rock" kid now would ever accept as really "punk".) Very much a sing-along. And I LOVE singalongs.

The good news is they just signed to Matador, so the chances of the getting lots more deserved exposure soon is very good. Look for a new record in 2007. For now enjoy the track below, it, the record it's from, and its predecessor all get solid 7s.

The Ponys- 10 Fingers 11 Toes

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Tim Burgess

One of my fave britpop bands of all time... The Charlatans. Even when folks hate their records, I honestly still think they make some of the best tunes. Obviously, a big part of my love for them comes from my love for Tim Burgess's (their lead singer) voice/writing. Whether its baggy madchester drone or falsetto pseudo motown, he kills it. So I was hopeful, but filled with trepidation when his first solo record arrived. But I should have known I'd love it, which I do. This is one of those releases thaat people might have missed, but should pick up. I give I Believe a solid 8.

Tim Burgess- Who The Cap Fit
Tim Burgess- I Believe In the Spirit

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Lady Sov's "Battle"

I know I posted some Lady Sovereign earlier, but I really dig this track. It's got SOV and Shystie (another female UK MC who can really hold her own) and two other MCs, who give you a good feel as to what is going on in UK hiphop right about now.

The styles are all their own and sometimes a bit hard to follow, but the beats are hot and they each ride it in their own way. I give the battle win to the ladies here, but I think Frost P does a pretty damn good job as well. All in all, a great track and worth at least a 7. And if you already dig grime, youll think it's a 9.

Lady Sovereign- The Battle (feat. Frost P, Zuz Rock and Shystie)

Sunday, September 10, 2006


Just to switch things up, I figured I'd post a gem by a band you probably know.

I have been a Black Rebel Motorcycle Club fan from the beginning. I can't say the same about the White Stripes. But since their latest record and after meeting Jack, I am a converted WS fan. So when I found this WS cover by BRMC (performed at the NME Awards in 2004), I was pretty excited. And when you think about it, it totally fits. Both are influenced by American roots music, as much as the modern era of true rock and roll. It's a fitting pairing. And the Californians do a great job. They make it their own, but give the song it's due. This performance gets an 8.

BRMC- The Hardest Button to Button (Live)

Saturday, September 09, 2006

The Rakes

Like lots of other UK bands right about now, The Rakes sound like Wire, Gang of Four, and lots of post punk angst. And initially I wrote them off as another one of those wannabe bands. But once saw them live, I found them much more compelling. With an overwhelming sense of awkwardness, playfulness and sillliness, they reminded me more of early touring Blur. Punky and spirited, without taking themselves too seriously, The Rakes know how to have fun.

The record came out at the beginning of this year, and is definitely worth a listen. I give it a 7. And if you get a chance, see them live. And here's my fave track:

The Rakes- 22 Grand Job

Sunday, September 03, 2006


Ok so I am off to London tomorrow (for work). But hopefully I will be back with some awesomely new hot UK jams. I'm actually setting aside time for record shopping, but I am mainly looking for cheesy awful pop vinyl. If i find other stuff tho, I'm sure I'll buy it anyway.

But since I'm going there, I figured I should post something totally not from the Uk. Autolux is from LA. Yes, they do have this shoe gazer type sound, but they are beter than just wannabes. These are great yet basic pop songs layered under lots of reverb and echo. And I love me some reverb and echo.
They should be working on a new record now, and i am not sure when that will come out, but I'll let you know when i hear something. I give their debut, Future Perfect an 8.5. If you dig this one, you'll like the whole record.

Autolux- Turnstile Blues

Friday, September 01, 2006


Ok so here's my latest fave UK act, Klaxons. It's been awhile since I have been flabbergasted by a song, but that's the case with "Atlantis to Interzone." Klaxons are arty enough to confuse you, danceable enough to get your booty shaking, and (if you're old enough) enough UK dance music touchstones to get your brain really working. Imagine the Test Icicles with some KLF thrown in. Or maybe less abrasive and more guitar based. Add to that lots of English majorly literary allusions. And white jeans.

I had the songs a few months ago, but lost the tracks somewhere, then stumbled across this one. So I tossed it into my player for the walk home from work. Lo and behold... jaw dropping. I will preface this with the fact that lots of these songs aren't easy to listen to. Nor for the faint of heart. You can get more tracks at their My Space page.

I keep explaining this remix as "a 4 minute tribute to the last 20 years of UK dance music." See what you think.

Klaxons- Atlantis To Interzone (Third Eye Mafia Re-Fit)