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Monday, Feb 2, 2009

Serendipity introduced me to Ray LaMontagne. I decided to just randomly download one of his songs, and after hearing his one song “Trouble”, I decided to download every song that he has written. His voice, is rough, yet soothing.. .a sultry juxtaposition. His influences are Crosby, Stills & Nash, Bob Dylan and Neil Young, just to name a few.  LaMontagne’s words aren’t as complex and lyrical as Bob Dylan’s, but his acoustic, folk-inspired style brings you back to a different era in music. I wouldn’t recommend driving to his music, but put this music on when you are having a late night and you will be instantly relaxed, and find yourself surrendering into a dreamworld.



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Friday, Jan 30, 2009

Robert Harrison’s pop instincts are every bit as on target with Future Clouds and Radar as they were with his previous band Cotton Mather. Cotton Mather produced one of the ‘90s most perfect pure pop albums in 1997’s Kon Tiki, channelling mid-period Beatles far better than Oasis ever dared to. Harrison hasn’t lost his touch. Future Clouds and Radar’s 2008 release, Peoria, is chock full of poppy gems and hook-filled melodies. Here are three songs from this latest album as well as the new video for “The Epcot View”.

Future Clouds and Radar
Feet on Grass [MP3]
     


Mummified [MP3]
     


The Epcot View [MP3]
     



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Friday, Jan 30, 2009

John Forté is out of prison now and getting busy, writing a bi-weekly column for The Daily Beast and making new music. First up is a cover version of Kanye West’s “Homecoming” with PopMatters perennial favorite Talib Kweli.


John Forté
Homecoming [MP3]
     



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Friday, Jan 30, 2009
by PopMatters Staff

Dan Raper said of Fujiya & Miyagi’s Transparent Things (2007), “you get the feeling Fujiya & Miyagi would be appealing no matter what genre they chose to write in, but they’ve chosen what has been called ‘whisper-electro’, or what you could also call electro-twee.” Here’s the latest single, “Sore Thumb”, from their most recent album, Lightbulbs.



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Friday, Jan 30, 2009

Swedish popsters Don’t Be a Stranger formed back in 2002, but 2009 has shaped up to be their year. They’ll be featured in the February 1st episode of The United States of Tara on Showtime and their new record, Don’t Be a Stranger (Cheap Lullaby), hits US shores in April. They’ll be touring throughout the US during Spring as well. Here’s the first track off Don’t Be a Stranger.

Don’t Be a Stranger
Mon-chi-chi [MP3]
     



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