Despite the ill will I harbor for MTV as a whole, I have nothing but good feelings about MTV Unplugged. Of course, that’s probably because the Nirvana performance sticks out in my mind far more than Korn’s appearance on the show. Selective memory is a beautiful thing. Vampire Weekend recently brought their jaunty tunes to the Unplugged stage. Check out the full performance at MTV if you like what you hear from “Cousins” below.
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The Dodos made their network television debut on Letterman last Friday, finally getting their friends and family to believe that they’re a real, successful band. The performance has a charming little fish-big pond feel to it, exactly the kind that makes me wonder how Letterman feels watching the band. Does he spend the whole time spinning a pen on his thumb? Is he initially dismissive but slowly persuaded that “hey, these kids can play”? Something tells me that Paul’s probably paying more attention.
San Diego singer-songwriter John Meeks is, by all accounts, a real quiet and unassuming kind of guy. So it was probably fitting that his newest song, “Been Down by Love”, crept casually into my inbox through a friend, and I didn’t look up again until I realized I’d hit repeat about 15 times. Meeks runs in some pretty esteemed circles (Black Heart Procession’s Pall Jenkins and the Album Leaf’s Jimmy LaValle both contribute with production and bass, respectively), and with heavy hitters like that in his corner, you know the guy’s got the sauce. His sound puts me in mind of Whiskeytown’s classic “Strangers Almanac”, Uncle Tupelo, and the solo work of Old 97s’ Murry Hammond. But at the same time, “Been Down by Love” could have fit in perfectly on Doves’ superb offering from earlier this year, Kingdom of Rust. Like Ryan Adams with humility.
Meeks has a full-length album currently in production, but for now I subsist on the four songs available through all the usual outlets (iTunes, Amazon, etc.). There’s also a pretty cool video for “Been Down by Love” that was shot out in the California desert around Pioneertown, set of many a Western movie and TV show. Gene Autry would approve.
Some years ago—never mind how long precisely—having little or no money in my purse, and nothing particular to interest me on shore, I thought I would listen to a little Animal Collective and see the watery part of the world. It is a way I have of driving off the spleen and regulating the circulation. The new video for “Brothersport” is the image of the ungraspable phantom of life; and this is the key to it all.
Everytime I see Julian Casablancas perform this song, it gets hammier and more awesome. His CGI pagoda songwriting hideout, the quill pen, the inclusion of glockenspiel playing in a getting-down-to-business montage—this, netizens, is the height of succulence!
// Notes from the Road
"Co-presented by the World Music Institute, the 92Y hosted a rare and mesmerizing performance from India's violin virtuoso L. Subramaniam.READ the article