Author Archives: Grant
We took a break over the past few months. We’ll be back soon. In the meantime, check out my favorite song of the summer–Lil Wayne’s “Dear Summer.” It’s from a few years back, but it’s still dope as hell. Stay tuned!
Kinda last minute, seeing as it starts in like 3 hours, but looks like it will be a cool show! Magic Man, jamesDUNK, Michael Parallax tonight at 346 Putnam ave, Cambridge. 8:00 on tha dot. and it’s free! Check it out! byob, son. free shows in the summmmmmmmmer
I work with the L Magazine and we are currently gearing up to put on another Northside Festival here in NYC at the end of the month. This year they have some pretty great bands, but they are also sweetening the pot by giving out a bunch of free passes, and a brand new iPad to a lucky winner. It’s a pretty cool prize and I was thinking that maybe some of The Illin’ Music Thread readers might be interested in checking out the competition and the festival. It would be great if you can give it a shout on the blog, it’s a cool festival for NY and we are really excited about getting the word out about it this year.
You can check out all the info on the festival and the giveaways at this link.
All the best,
Got this email yesterday. I don’t know what I think of the iPad, but the band line-up looks wicked sweet–Gracious Calamity is playing!! Wavves is also super sweet! To my New York friends–I’d check this out, even if it is in Williamsburg. June 24th-27th.
A band I’ve been listening to a bunch recently is Boston’s own BIRTHDAYS. And really, what better music matches a cool, cloudy June day in Massachusetts? Non-traditional percussion, guitar drones, analog synths and yelpy vocals all blend together in a raw, lofi melange, courtesy of messrs. Sammy and Kevin. Listening to BIRTHDAYS reminds me of the feeling of excitement I’d get while falling asleep the night before my own birthday when I was a young’un. THEY’RE SO NOISY AND COOL I wanna be their friends
There’s also something about BIRTHDAYS that is entirely danceable. I can’t help but bob along to songs like “Biggie Shorty” or “part that grows,” even though there is no drum beat that makes your chest reverberate. While listening to BIRTHDAYS, I get the feeling that their band rehearsals are lots of FUN. Where they could be serious, they instead get silly. It’s happy music!!
Fans of BAIXA, Hear Hums, Here We Go Magic, MANNERS, or Truman Peyote may like BIRTHDAYS. It’s good music to listen to during a thunderstorm, or when trying to fall asleep on long car rides. I highly recommend these dudes!
Click here to download a brand-new song entitled “Every Time I Swim (Ariel)”! It’s apparently about “seeing The Little Mermaid when I was five years old and falling in love.. realizing for the first time that I dig girls and that they aren’t yucky.”
The band builds a powerful machine that sends Andy to another dimension and Ben must travel through and save him.
Shot in 1 day in -15 degree weather, with a borrowed camera and $0.
follow-up to my post on FARMS
In my ongoing quest to discover the zeitgeist of the times, I present to you: VACATION DAD.
My friend Mark brought this dude (the drummer of FARMS) to my attention a month or two ago after discovering “ihopeyrfavoritecoloriseverywhere” on some music blog. I’ve been listening to him basically non-stop since then… I’m not really sure why I haven’t posted him on here yet. Better late than never, I suppose.
His EP is more atonal and drone-y than his newer stuff. You can definitely hear FARMS all over this EP–giant swells of sound, blissed-out sonic soundscapes, but a noticeable lack of drums. In the back story to this EP, you can see why Vacation Dad is an artist of the times:
i started flirting with this girl
she was married
then we sex in a tent one thing led to the other
we dated for a while
then we broke up cause i suck
then i got laid off cause the economy is bad
i had a real job one with
i recorded this to make myself feel good
Anyways, I’m not posting the EP for download, so whatever. Download it off his myspace if you’re interested. However, the melancholy sentiment of his explanation for recording his EP carries on to his newer songs.
Since he’s a drummer, his tracks have kick-ass percussion. The drums sound HUGE (especially on “Hemp Scented Body Lotion”), like strange futuristic machines making music because there’s no need to make anything else anymore because IT’S THE FUTURE and the humans are gone. And also these machines have found out how to love. Like Wall-E except less heartwarming and family-friendly.
The synths are also boss. Fuzzed-out to the max, thundering, with gigantic amounts of reverb. The 8-bit tones almost sound like they’re lifted from Super Mario World or something. Mix in some crazy, ecstatic yelps delayed-the-fuck-out with a massive, bleating dance beat (I’m talking about “Dream Boat,” here) and you’ve got a recipe for some nice risotto/balls-to-the-wall awesome song of the summer. Some people are talking about a “chill-wave” “movement” thing, and maybe this “qualifies”, but I don’t really know because I don’t read pitchfork. “whatever” “man”
I like his newer stuff a bit better than his EP. He’s releasing a split with Truman Peyote later this year (“Dream Boat” is a sneak preview from the split), and the songs are amazing. Don’t miss out on this dude–you’ll be hearing about Vacation Dad in the future.
I recently had a dinner conversation with some friends about music. I talked with them about what I mentioned in my post on Totally Nebular–that is, I’m trying to find music that speaks to me, as a 90s baby growing up in the shadow of the 80s, that 80s that defined the sound of music in the last decade. As I said before, how can I relate to music that was created when I wasn’t alive for the creation of it? Obviously, you can have appreciation for music no matter when it was created, but I feel that those who created 80s-derivative music created it out of an ironic appreciation for the shitty music of their childhood. I didn’t grow up with Scorpion and Flock of Seagulls, though…! So that’s where I’m at currently; I’m looking for music that has the mood of my growing up, that reflects conditions I can relate to.
So where does this long diatribe lead us? To FARMS of course! I’ve been meaning to post them on here forever seeing as I’ve been listening to them for a month or so. They’re fucking awesome, and totally have that feeling I’ve been looking for. They do a better job of describing themselves than I could:
One member of FARMS has a fully functional synthesizer in his head and holds his mouth a little open like a third ear. One member of FARMS is a fucking ‘showboat’ who works drums like a middle schooler trying to show an older girl his ‘passion’ or how good he is at making out. One is a pleasant, video game psychic and one applies corporeal metaphors to like everything, and then smiles. FARMS is a Wisconsin band, because sometimes there is nothing else to do here/there than take drugs and go into woods or drive on interstates. They play in a basement with a coal chute and a bat.
Their music is absolutely wonderful. Whooshing synthesizers, delayed-the-fuck-out guitars and intricate, pulsing drums seem to define their sound a bit. Most of their songs are instrumental, but who needs lyrics anyways? They’re also really good at writing subtly catchy hooks. I’ve been whistling along to “We’ll All Be, On The Home Team” and “we got a box of white tape snakes” for weeks now. It’s all pretty lofi and grimy. Their drummer also makes music under the name “Vacation Dad“. Check him out–I’ll be posting him on here later.
When I listen to FARMS, I feel like they’re affirming life for every animal on our planet, like they’re celebrating going outside, like they’ve got nothing to hide from anyone. “All the lies you’ve ever told don’t really mean a thing, the ocean seems to say,” says Machi Tawara (and FARMS duh lol but with music instead of haikus lol lol)
If I were you, I’d download their EP1 and their song “we got a box of white tape snakes” immediately. It’s great summertime porch-sitting music. Put on FARMS and watch the red sun set, and pretend it’s never going to come back