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by Kirstie Shanley

17 Jul 2009

There are almost two different Richard Swifts. There’s the poetic, melancholy Swift whose swirling songs are dreamy in the same way 1930s black and white films are. On the flipside, there’s the entertainer side more akin to an Elton John. Live, he plays this second side up and there’s more emphasis on performance and having a good time rather than dwelling in the lyrics, which is also more consistent with his newest release.

Swift has technically put out eight releases within his nearly decade long career. 2009 finds him touring on his most recent release, The Atlantic Ocean, with a full four piece backing band. Swift alternated between guitar and electric piano with accompaniment that included trumpet, keyboard, drums, guitar, and bass. Swift also whistled and played harmonica while hammering on the electric piano keys. 

Swift’s vocals were also a little more nasal live and less lush and husky than on some of his albums. Occasionally, as in “Lady Luck” they also took on a bit of soul. Gone was the sense of delicateness inherent within some of his songs and, because of this, the set took on a much different mood than a fan of his past recordings may expect, especially when referring to previous albums such as 2005’s The Novelist and Walking Without Effort. Swift appreciated the applause and came off as rather modest throughout his hour-long set and was treated to the audience clapping for an encore.

by PopMatters Staff

17 Jul 2009

Simian Mobile Disco
Temporary Pleasure
(Wichita)
Releasing: 18 August 2008 (US) / 17 August 2009 (UK)

01 Cream Dream (Featuring Gruff Rhys)
02 Audacity of Huge (Featuring Chris Keating)
03 10000 Horses Can’t Be Wrong
04 Cruel Intentions (Featuring Beth Ditto)
05 Off the Map (Featuring Jamie Lidell)
06 Synthesise
07 Bad Blood (Featuring Alexis Taylor)
08 Turn Up the Dial (Featuring Young Fathers)
09 Ambulance
10 Pinball (Featuring Telepathe)

Simian Mobile Disco
“Audacity of Huge” - Naum Gabo Remix [MP3]
     

by PopMatters Staff

17 Jul 2009

The ubiquitous Wilco played another TV date, this time with indie chanteuse Feist.

by shathley Q

17 Jul 2009

‘The whole thing about the first Sin City is that I was rediscovering the love of drawing on that job. I had absolutely no boss, and it was the first thing I completely did from head to toe by myself’, Frank Miller says to Will Eisner in their book-length conversation Eisner/Miller. ‘the rain scene was one of two scenes where I go the idea of simply not thinking about the number of pages. For me it was like I’d just stepped out of the cave into the morning’.

There’s been too much of the wrong kind of talking thus far in Frank Miller’s ‘The Hard Goodbye’ his first graphic novel in the Sin City series. It’s a welcome break to find a piece of honest detective story in this blacker-than-sin neo noir story. It’s a welcome break to find Good Ol’ Marv taking the time to put the pieces together. There’s been a lot of talking, but the action has been so slick and the comics so fluid, it’s easy to forget that there’s been monologue at all.

With Sin City Miller makes a genuine statement about comics. Comics in black & white because black & white comics are read rather than absorbed (as Eisner suggested in Eisner/Miller). Short, episodic tales, because this kind of punchy dialogue works well with the neo noir genre. And a comics of sharp contrasts, and hard-edged negative spaces to depict the ‘town without pity’.

But as elegant as the comics themselves remain, Miller makes an equally significant statement about the comics industry and the responsibilities and freedoms of creator-owned projects. As glimpsed in his comments to Eisner, Sin City was very much the journal of a comics artist breaking free from the decades-old format of the superhero comicbook. It was and remains a profound statement about the risk of art. In the early 90s, Sin City must have been a gamble. Noone yet had conceived of postmodern neo noir comics, no market had been established. Instead of simply replicating the modes of mainstream (superhero) comics, Miller uses this as an opportunity. In doing so, he recalls a favorite saying of web-marketer Seth Godin, that without art, there is no commerce.

by PopMatters Staff

17 Jul 2009

Japandroids is racking up a multitude of accolades. Back in June PopMatters’ Scott Hreha said of Post-Nothing, which is getting an August 4th re-release, that “sonically, the band falls somewhere between forebears like No Age and Death from Above 1979—virile combination of passion and grandiosity that sounds much larger than the guitar/drums instrumentation implies.” Japandroids stopped by the Tripwire to play “I Quit Girls”.

//Mixed media
//Blogs

The Sound and the Warmth: An Interview with Cardiknox

// Sound Affects

"New York's Cardiknox are taking more steps in their goal of world domination. With their debut record Portrait out, the band are dreaming big, wanting to transcend the indie pop scene.

READ the article