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by John Garratt

24 Jun 2010


Earlier in the year, I was smitten with one of my new assignments; the debut album Creesus Crisis by a Calgary avant-garde trio called No More Shapes. I loved the shambolic nature of this certain music that didn’t seem to have a name. And not because its creators where trying to be esoteric, but because it just seemed to fall out of the sky that way. It was naturally weird.

I ran down the rabbit-hole with that one. Their label, Drip Audio, has some truly special talent on their roster including Peggy Lee (the cellist, not Ms. Fever), Butcher/Müller/van der Schyff, and my new personal favorite Inhabitants. Their latest album A Vacant Lot is so indescribably rich and odd, so very startlingly… ah, hell, I’ll just say it… original, that I easily would have given it at least an eight if it were one of my assignments. In a few words, this quartet is able to push their sound to wherever their muse fancies, making cascading trumpets and billowy guitar feedback sound like mere child’s play.

Many thanks to the Drip Audio rep who directed my attention to Inhabitants. Hopefully I can bring more people to their attention.

by L.B. Jeffries

23 Jun 2010


Appreciating this clip from Everyday Shooter takes some explanation if you’re unfamiliar with how the game works. Everyday Shooter is an emergent music game, which means that the normal beeps and pews have been replaced with sound effects meant to compliment the background track. Everytime the glowing dot hits something with a bullet, a unique guitar note is struck. Keeping everything musically coherent is very difficult and even the most talented designers opt for House music or techno to make the work easier.

Everyday Shooter is unique in this already small genre because it draws on inspirations like Steve Reich’s Electronic Counter-Point along with a hefty amount of Don Caballero. The music is almost entirely electric guitar, performed by programmer and designer Jonathon Mak. Some tracks work better than others depending on your tastes, but all are designed conceptually as songs because of how rigidly you have to play to have much chance of survival. For that reason the game is brutally difficult. Each level is its own track and designed completely differently from the other. Enemies do not repeat, you have to study each level individually and figure out how to win. By doing so, the level’s song starts to make more sense and come together the more you play. The video is from the last level. It’s a moody and cathartic guitar solo, which is appropriate considering how hard it is to get to this point in the game.

by Matthew Blackwell

23 Jun 2010


Clinic has announced that their sixth album, titled Bubblegum, will be released on Domino October 4 (UK) and October 5 (US). Domino has also provided a brief medley of the album.

by Alex Suskind

22 Jun 2010


Since 1970, the Glastonbury Festival for Contemporary Performing Arts in England has been a staple for music festivals all over the world. It began 40 years ago (although this isn’t the 40th time the festival has taken place. There have been several years where Glastonbury did not happen), when Marc Bolan, Keith Christmas, Stackridge, Al Stewart and Quintessence played for 1,500 music fans on a farm in Pilton, UK. Back then, the price for admission was £1 including free milk from the farm.

A lot has changed in the past four decades. Glastonbury is now regularly attended by more than 100,000 people each year and tickets run well over £200. This year’s event is being headlined by Gorillaz, Muse and Stevie Wonder.

In honor of the 2010 Glastonbury Festival, which takes place from 24th June - 27th June, we take a look at back at some of the most memorable performances in the festival’s history after the jump…

by Alex Suskind

22 Jun 2010


For almost five decades, Herbie Hancock has provided listeners with a wide variety of traditional and experimental jazz records. With 46 studio albums, 12 Grammy Awards (including the award for Best Album for 2008’s River: The Joni Letters) and one Oscar under his belt, there is very little the iconic pianist and composer has left to accomplish.

Therefore, it is always interesting to see what route Hancock plans on taking with each project. Since his 1962 debut, Takin’ Off, he has written and recorded everything from jazz standards to electronic and hip-hop based instrumentals.

For his newest record, The Imagine Project, Hancock decided to go a route similar to that of his last two albums. For 2005’s Possibilities, he recruited John Mayer, Carlos Santana, Paul Simon and Trey Anastasio, among others, to cover a range of popular R&B and rock hits. In 2008, he invited singers like Leonard Cohen, Tina Turner and Norah Jones to cover songs by singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell on River: The Joni Letters.

On 22 June, Hancock’s Imagine sees him collaborating with more contemporary artists, including John Legend, Pink and Dave Matthews. On the record’s opening track, a cover of John Lennon’s Imagine, Pink, India.Arie, Jeff Beck and Seal join Hancock for a jazzed up version of the 1971 tune. Matthews shows up later to help out on another Lennon-penned tune, 1966’s “Tomorrow Never Knows”, off the Beatles’ Revolver.

The album is currently streaming on NPR.

//Mixed media
//Blogs

Double Take: 'The Public Enemy' (1931)

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"Maybe The Public Enemy is a swell dish. Or maybe it ain't so tough. The Steves take on the classic tale of beer and blood.

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