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What is this site:
• On this site you can recommend music to your friends (through your own personal music recommendation feed), and discover new music by seeing what your friends have recommended (by subscribing to their feeds, through email or rss).
• This is not a music sharing site. We presume that users can find any recommended music on their own. (There are currently various legal options for access to great wealths of music.) Where recommendations are legally available on the internet, we encourage posters to link to these places.
• Essential to this site is the conversation of recommending music. Users have the option to be notified (by rss or by email) when their friends recommend music. So you'll know immediately - without having to constantly check back at this site - when your friends recommend something new.
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They Might Be Giants - The Onion A.V. Club Undercover series - Tubthumping
My last recommendation was also from this series - seriously, watch all of them - and mentioned the terrible cover of Birdhouse In Your Soul. This one redeems that and then some, as TMBG recruits a random crowd to shout the chorus and fill the small, round room with more joy than could possibly have been squeezed in any other way.
Rocky Votolato and Matt Pond - Don't You Want Me
AV Undercover: get your weekly fix of awesome (and a few awful) covers here.
For awesomeness, see also Wye Oak's Danzig cover. If you have any but the steeliest of constitutions, skip Titus Andronicus' awkward flogging of "Birdhouse in Your Soul."
Crooked Fingers - Reservoir Songs
So I've liked this band quite awhile, and I'm always a sucker for good covers. I'm super-excited about this album for the sheer audacity of covering this particular group of songs: the best song by Kris Kristofferson (Sunday Morning Coming Down), the only Neil Diamond I listen to (and sing along with) unashamed (Solitary Man), a top-5 best Prince song (When U Were Mine), the best Springsteen song (The River), and maybe the best individual rock song ever (Under Pressure). Who the hell puts these five songs on a single covers EP?
Neutral Milk Hotel - In the Aeroplane Over the Sea
Apparently all the ancient hipsters loved this album, something something internet something. Maybe the ancient hipsters were correct.
The Ruby Suns - Cranberry
This one comes in at #6 in my moderately-tentative O Ten Top Ten list, favorite tracks of 2010. Check it and demonstrate your superior taste here:
Mumford & Sons - Sigh No More
So if you listen to The Current, you've probably heard most of this album already. It contains elements of country music, and what sounds to me like strong Christian imagery. From the song Roll Away Your Stone, the lyrics:
“It seems that all my bridges have been burned
But you say 'That's exactly how this grace thing works’
It's not the long walk home that will change this heart
But the welcome I receive with the restart”
All the Lutheran pastors I've talked to about this song agree that this description of grace is consonant with ours, and it seems to fall into the realm of "translating Lutheran theology to normal-people talk" that I'm always on about.
For a lengthier theological exposition of this song, see here:
I'm certainly not one to use some made-up-by-random-people eucharistic liturgy, but I would consider using this song to shape a prayer or worship or sermon experience, I think.
The New Pornographers - Together - Valkyrie in the Roller Disco
So I'm sure I need not recommend The New Pornographers to anyone here, as their utter awesomeness is well-documented. I just needed to point out this track, my favorite from the recent disc. I never really know what any of them are talking about in these songs - neither Newman nor Bejar seem to value comprehensible lyrics - but in my interpretation this song is about falling in love with someone at a roller rink, and never actually speaking to the object of one's affection. Besides my love of roller derby, this story is basically what happened to me every Friday night for a couple of years at the end of elementary school. Skating was the only thing for kids in my town to do, and I was nearly as silently-romantic as I was hopeless. I've grown to be calculating and heartless, of course, but this song brings me back to the overwhelming vulnerability of childhood in a way that doesn't make me want to poke myself in the eye. The rest of the album is also great, obviously.
Free Energy - Stuck On Nothing
A while back, The Aforementioned David Brusie recommended that I check out this band. I didn't pay much attention. Then I was at Grand Old Day in St. Paul this summer, and they happened to be playing. Holy cats, they were great. Total new-skool hippie band, and they couldn't have been having a better time.
Just think of it: A band playing on a stage next to Dixie's on a summer afternoon, everyone on stage with long hair, and the singer (who might be 10 years younger than me) points at the crowd during the chorus of the first album track:
"This is all we've got tonight
We are young and still alive
and now the time is on our side."
Old-style guitar rock. Sometimes with cowbell. Music to high-five strangers to.
Considering all the music I've been listening to lately, I'm way past due to start using this site again. Tracks I've listened to include "Take It In" and "I Hope You Die," which are great and can be downloaded free at amazon.com. Actually, the entire Merge Records 2010 sampler that's free on amazon is well worth checking out. I was put on to this band in stunning fashion by the Onion AV Club's truly stellar AV Undercover series, here: http://www.avclub.com/articles/the-kinks,38871/.
Boogie Down Productions - Ghetto Music: The Blueprint of Hip Hop
The other night, the title track from this album showed up on the radio. It was weirdly awesome, in an old-skool kind of way. Turns out, the MC is KRS-One, and the album was released in 1989. You'd never know that it was that old. It's perfect.
Joshua Radin - Simple Times - Sky, Brand New Day, You Got Growin Up To Do (featuring Patty Griffin)
All in all a really great album, but those three songs I find particularly catchy. I find it hard to write, or read with lyrical music in general, but this album somehow breaks that rule (I wrote a couple of my very final seminary papers to this album). It's got a pleasant, folky, productive feel to it.
Two Star Symphony - Danse Macabre ...
My favorite sermon writing music is a station that I have created on Pandora Radio, seeded with the soundtrack by Clint Mansell from the movie "The Fountain." I get all kinds off eerie orchestral music, and I love it. This song "The 9th Level" popped up sounding like it had come from a Tim Burton film, but it took a lot of digging to find anything about it, or the band. I clicked the "buy it on Amazon" link Amazon didn't have anything by "Two Star Symphony." This of course made them all the more intriguing. After finding the official website/blog I found that this track was written as part of the "sophisticated and dark puppetry art (theater) in the three-part collaboration, Danse Macabre."
The Grates - Teeth Lost, Hearts Won
With bands like Bis and Yeah Yeah Yeahs slowly shifting over to a more electro-disco sound, it's kind of great to find a band that's still rocking that late-90's good-natured-Riot-Grrl rollerskate-punk sound. If Bikini Kill had to play at a high school sock hop, it would sound a lot like this.
The Magnetic Fields - Realism
So, I tend to listen to The Magnetic Fields a whole bunch at a time, and while that's always a great thing, it lets me forget how different in both form and content they are from other bands. They always have this weird folky instrumentation, and on this album in particular, the lyrics are really simple but describe situations that are kind of fascinating and weird, and combination of all of it makes me wistfully remember a fictional time when I was in the circus in spring and all day long clowns were straightforwardly professing either their love or dislike for each other, regardless of whether there happened to be an audience there right then or not.
Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears - Tell 'Em What Your Name Is!
Sugarfoot. Man, it's been a long time since I played air bass guitar this hard.
They Might Be Giants - Here Comes Science
I've been really digging "Here Comes Science", TMBG's 4th children's album, the last few weeks. Their other children's albums were varying degrees of ok. But this one stands out from the others. I think I actually like it better than their last "grown-up" album, The Else.
I haven't posted anything for a very long time, so I thought I'd throw something different at you. Bela Fleck, banjo playing like you've never heard before.
Danger Mouse and Sparklehorse - Dark Night of the Soul
You can read the convoluted story and listen to the album free and whole here:
The opening track just kills me, and was one of my top songs of the summer, and now that I've bothered to find the above-listed website I can get further into the rest of the album.
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