Friday, December 15, 2006

Album of the Year: 2006

The Eels: With Strings, Live at Town Hall

(In order to win Album of the Year for my blog, the album must be released in that year - which is unlike the criteria for my Album of the Month.)

Of course I haven't heard everything released this year (including Tom Waits' 'Orphans: Brawlers, Bawlers and Bastards'), but the year is coming to a close and its time for me to post what I think is the best listen of the calendar year 2006.

This album is a new side of the Eels that came through to us slightly in last years release of 'Blinking Lights and Other Revelations'. Only this takes it to the most personal and beautiful level that I have ever imagined the Eels could play.

Instead of trying to make your ears ring, Mister E swings us through his extensive library with string arrangements that will sometimes make you smile, and other times haunt you. I have been a big fan of the Eels collection for at least a couple years now, and never have I heard it presented this way. Its is one of the best live albums I have ever heard.

Honorable Mention: Jenny Lewis and the Watson Twins, 'Rabbit Fur Coat'.

Album of the Month: December 2006

Brian Wilson - SMiLE

Sometimes when I think of my childhood, I think of listening to my Dad's old Beach Boy records all the time throughout the house. Of course it was more of the post-Wilson insanity surfer records during their brief stint of touring with Uncle Jesse, but I still managed to take something away from it.

Call it nostalgia, but lately this Album has taken over my listening schedule.

The vocal harmonies on this album are amazing, as is the overall arrangement of the entire pieces. I also like the cohesive feeling of the album and its repeating melodies and whatnot. While this is one of the most hyped up and praised releases in the history of records I feel it lives up to every expectation. Just imagine if it had been released in the 60's when Wilson first dreamt it up.

This is one of those albums that teaches you what music really is all about. If you sit and listen to it, it will take you in directions you'd never thought you'd enjoy. Thats the only way I can describe it.

Holiday Mix

Well, since I don't have any Christmas music (despite my overwhelming urge to buy 'Twisted Christmas') I have decided to fashion myself a mix to get me through the holidays.

And here it is;
  1. What's This - Danny Elfman - Off of the 'Tim Burton's - The Nightmare Before Christmas Soundtrack'.
  2. On A Holiday - Brian Wilson - Off of his album 'SMiLE'. This is the Album of the month, so you can give this track a listen to get a little taste.
  3. Wind Chimes - Brian Wilson - Also off of 'SMiLE' which is the Album of the Month.
  4. Christmas - The Who - Off of their album 'Tommy'.
  5. I'm In No Mood - The Fiery Furnaces - Off of their album 'Bitter Tea'.
  6. Black-Hearted Boy - The Fiery Furnaces - Off of their album 'Bitter Tea'.
  7. Christ For President - Wilco/Billy Bragg/Woody Guthrie - Off of the Mermaid Avenue Vol. 1 Album.
  8. Holidays In The Sun - The Sex Pistols - Off of their album 'Never Mind The Bollocks Here's The Sex Pistols'.
  9. One Big Holiday - My Morning Jacket - Off of their album 'It Still Moves'.
  10. Styrofoam Plates - Death Cab For Cutie - Off of their album 'The Photo Album'.
  11. So Much Wine - The Handsome Family - Off of their album 'In The Air'. This is my favorite folk song right now. It is one of the best songs ever in my opinion.
  12. Living Life - The Eels - Off of their album 'With Strings, Live At Town Hall'. This is the Album of the Year so you can listen to this track to get a little taste of that.

I normally wouldnt put two songs from the same album on a mix, especially twice in one mix, but both combinations were perfect for this mix and the mood I was trying to capture throughout. So it was worth it.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Album of the Month: November 2006

Yo La Tengo: I Am Not Afraid of You and I Will Beat Your A**

I never found myself too into this band, until I purchased this album after researching some of the best reviewed albums of this year so far, and I couldnt have been happier with this purchase.

I have listened to this album over and over since I bought it, and it has even caused me to retrace my steps through Yo La Tengo's collection, even though nothing can even touch this album in my opinion.

It captures their sound ideally and it is as close to perfection as Yo La Tengo can get. I am still discovering things that I love every listen and it really has a little bit of everything.

Whether you are a Yo La Tengo fan or not, I highly recommend this album.

Rain Mix

This is a mix I slapped together in the period of time where I had just come back to California from Syracuse, where it was raining the entire time I was there. Then when I returned to the wonderful town of Vacaville, the skies opened up here and it rained for a couple days straight. So I made this Rain Mix.

I can honestly say I havent been putting super amounts of thought into these mixes lately cause I have been so busy, but for the most part you can get a pretty good idea of what I am listening to, since the mixes reflect that these days. Instead of adding a lot of diversity to the mixes I have been sticking to mostly things I have been listening to at the time or the type of mood I am in. Of course that also has to do with the busy-ness and the slacking on my part...cause its just easier that way.

I don't know how long I will continue to do a mix every month, I'm not even sure if anyone actually reads this page.

  1. Venus Stop The Train - Wilco - I got this from the 'Yankee Hotel Foxtrot' Demos.
  2. Train Under Water - Bright Eyes - From their album 'I'm Wide Awake It's Morning'.
  3. Black Rain - Ben Harper - Off of his album 'Both Sides of the Gun'.
  4. A Hard Rain's Gonna Fall - Bob Dylan - Off of his album 'The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan'.
  5. Rain on Tin - Sonic Youth - Off of their album 'Murray Street'.
  6. Everybody Thinks I'm a Raincloud (When I'm Not Looking) - Guided By Voices - Off of their album 'Half Smiles of the Decomposed'.
  7. Raining in Darling - Bonnie Prince Billy - Off of his album 'I See A Darkness'.
  8. Flowers Never Bend With the Rainfall - Simon and Garfunkel - Off of their album 'Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme'.
  9. City Rain, City Streets - Ryan Adams - Off of his album 'Love is Hell'.
  10. And It Stoned Me - Van Morrison - Off of his album 'Moondance'.
  11. Woodgrain - Wilco - Off of the 'More Like the Moon EP'.
  12. Another Song About the Rain - Cracker - Off of their album 'Cracker' or 'Brand'.
  13. I Feel Like Going Home - Yo La Tengo - Off of their album 'I Am Not Afraid of You and I Will Beat Your A**'. This is from the Album of the Month. Check this track out to get a taste of this album.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Album of the Month: October 2006

Candid - Misinterpreter.

The sixth installment from the local Syracuse band Candid, and it shows no signs of slowing down. It is their second and (unfortunately) last (for now) release with producer and engineer Pete Walker formerly of Syracuse, NY.

It was Candid's first release with Walker that really put them on the map for me. I mean I have always been a supporter and fan, but it was 'A Comforting Thought' that really allowed these four guys to release their full potential, and made them sound one hundred times more professional on record.

And it was this album, where they had already harnessed this potential and professionalism and made this great record. Corey once again brings his great sense of melody, and catchy intelligent lyrics to the table. Combined with the collaborated efforts of all the members musically, the end result is one great listen.

Candid has always made great records to me...but there are always a few soft spots in my opinion. This album does not have these soft spots. I could listen to this album over and over again and not get sick of it, despite the fact that the version of 'Termites' pales in comparison to the live version.

I am excited to see what else these guys are capable of. They have been one of my biggest influences, and have provided more musical memories for me then anything else.

If you would like to get this whole album, email me or go to

Green Mix

In sticking with the color themes, I decided to go with the 'Green Mix' this month. I know you were probably expecting the 'Orange and Black Mix' because of the wonderful upcoming holiday of Halloween that we all love so much, but I'm sorry. October is officially the green month from now on. Thats right, I have authority over months. Booyah.

Moving on, here is the mix...It will make you feel green. I promise.

  1. The Last 8 Seconds - Candid - Off of their album 'Misinterpreter', which is also the Album of the Month. So check out this track to get a glimpse of that album.
  2. Better Version of Me - Fiona Apple - Off of her album 'Extraordinary Machine'.
  3. Hash Pipe - Weezer - Off of their 'Green Album'.
  4. Evergreen - The Fiery Furnaces - Off of their EP.
  5. Ingrid Bergman - Billy Bragg/Wilco/Woody Guthrie - Off of Mermaid Avenue Vol. 1.
  6. Little Green Bag - George Baker Selection - I got this one off of the 'Resevoir Dogs' soundtrack album.
  7. I Remember California - R.E.M. - Off of their album 'Green'.
  8. Big Green Country - Neil Young - Off of his album 'Mirrorball'.
  9. Please Tell My Brother - Golden Smog - Off of their album 'Weird Tales'. This is one of my favorite songs.
  10. Green Onions - Booker T. & The MGs - I got this off of The Very Best of...
  11. Green Grass - Tom Waits - Off of his album 'Real Gone'.
  12. Casimir Pulaski Day - Sufjan Stevens - Off of his album 'Illinoise!'.
  13. Vege-Tables - Brian Wilson - Off of the album 'SMiLE'. So much to say about this album.
  14. Neighborhood #2 (Laika) - Arcade Fire - Off of the album 'Funeral'.
  15. Good Guys & Bad Guys - Camper Van Beethoven - Off of their self titled album.
  16. Green Disease - Pearl Jam - Off of their album 'Riot Act'.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Album of the Month: September 2006

Beck: Mutations

Lately I've been getting really into Beck again, and this album has been the dominating factor. I used to be a huge Beck fan back in his 'Odelay' days. I still managed to get my hands on all his albums after 'Odelay' but never really got into any of them.

But time has brought Beck back into my life. And this album has dominated my ears this last month. It has everything you could ever want, or expect from Beck.

Its filled with a lot of folk and blues influences, but at the same time is filled with Beck's individual creativity and sound. Its quite the album considering it was recorded in a two week period.

Blue Mix

Listen to this Mix by Clicking Here and Following the Link.

Ive decided to start going with the color themes, and what better color to start with then Blue. Everyone knows the blues, or has felt blue and turned to music. There's nothing more blue then a lot of the music out there...every shade possible...even periwinkle.

  1. Invitation to the Blue - Tom Waits - From his album 'Small Change'.
  2. Yer Blues - The Beatles - From 'The White Album'.
  3. Disco - Mike Gordon and Leo Kottke - From their album 'Clone'.
  4. Cancer for the Cure - The Eels - Off of their album 'Electro-Shock Blues'.
  5. Railroad Blues - The Beastie Boys - I got this one off of 'The Sounds of Science'.
  6. Bottle of Blues - Beck - Off of the album 'Mutations' (which is also the album of the month).
  7. Hear My Train A Comin' - Jimi Hendrix - I got this acoustic version off of the album 'Jimi Blues'.
  8. Come on in My Kitchen - Robert Johnson - I took this from 'Martin Scorsese presents Robert Johnson'. No Blue Mix can be complete without him.
  9. Blue Orchid - The White Stripes - Off of their album 'Get Behind Me Satan'.
  10. True Blue - Bright Eyes - Off of the 'Lua' EP.
  11. Pale Blue Eyes - The Velvet Underground - Off of their self-titled album.
  12. Rollercoaster - M. Ward - Off of his new album 'Post War'.
  13. Have You Forgotten - Red House Painters - Off of their album 'Songs for a Blue Guitar'.
  14. It's All Over Now Baby Blue - Bob Dylan - Off of his album 'Bringing it All Back Home'.

I decided that I am going to include one track from the album of the month in each mix from now on, so you can get a slight taste of that album, and maybe it will peak your interest to check out the rest of it.

Cause you should.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

New Mix of the Month Feature!

I have decided to make it possible for you to listen to the Mix of the Month online. You can do so by clickin here.

Follow the links and you will get an audio-player that pops up which I got from Be sure and turn off your pop-up blocker if the audio player does not load. You can continue to browse the World Wide Web while listening, so you have nothing to lose.

I will be making the current months mix available to listen to, so you have about a month to listen to each one and check out all the songs/artists contained within. I will still be posting the content of each mix in a tracklist on this blog, and will also continue to post my album of the month. I am still debating posting a couple sample tracks from the album of the month. I am not sure how I will approach this if at all. And to avoid any major legal implications I am not making any of the tracks available for download.

I tried to post the audio player directly on this blog, but had some problems with this site accepting the html code. If anyone can help with this let me know. But its no big deal, and is really a few minor clicks away. So now you can see what I am listening to!!! Aren't you thrilled?

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Album of the Month: August 2006

Nine Inch Nails - The Downward Spiral

This might come as a surprise again to those who know me well, but I have been listening to this album non-stop for most of this month. No matter how many times I listen to it, there are still times when some of the arrangements kick me in the face with the direction they take. This album has influenced my own approaches towards some of my songs musically, and has really allowed me to come at things from a different angle.

There are times when the lyrics in this album can be kindof juvenile, but there are other times when they can be just as powerful as the music behind them. Its a great listen if you want something to dissect, or if you just want something to give your ears a swift kick in the gut.

I have always known about this album, and it wasnt til recently that I really sat down with it, and I couldnt be happier with what I heard. I highly recommend it if you havent listened to it, it will catch you off guard. And if you have listened to it, I highly recommend listening to it again. Just because.

And if you havent, listen to it with headphones'd be surprised what type of interesting things are there that you would never notice on your boombox CD player.

Summer Mix I

Listen to this Month's Mix!!!

Everybody knows summer is the best time of the year for music. You can listen to it blasting on your car stereo while driving wherever it is you are going with your windows down and just enjoying the summer. And lets not forget outdoor concerts, which make the whole concert experience that much more fun, cause you get sunburn waiting in line and there is a better chance of a mudpit happening.

Of course I could make a million different mixes related to the summer, which is why this is technically labelled the Summer Mix I, because I know someday there will be another summer mix being made by myself.

So I hope you enjoy this mix of what my summer has been so far.

  1. Rock N' Roll (Could Never Hip Hop Like This) - Handsome Boy Modeling School - Off of their album 'So How's Your Girl...'.
  2. Good Fortune - PJ Harvey - Off of her album 'Stories from the City - Stories from the Sea'.
  3. Hot Tamales - Cassandra Wilson - I got this off of the 'Martin Scorses presents Robert Johnson' Collection.
  4. 35 in the Shade - A.C. Newman - Off of the album 'Slow Wonder'. I really enjoy this whole album.
  5. Plans Get Complex - All-Time Quarterback - Off of their album 'All-Time Quarterback!'. I recently got into this album a lot.
  6. Tropicalia - Beck - Off of his album 'Mutations'.
  7. Make it Hot - Mirah - Off of the album 'Advisory Committee'. This song makes it hot.
  8. Mankind - Pearl Jam - Off of their album 'No Code'.
  9. Arco Arena - Cake - Off of their album 'Comfort Eagle'.
  10. San Tropez - Pink Floyd - Off of their album 'Meddle'.
  11. She Belongs to Me - Bob Dylan - Off of his album 'Bringin' It All Back Home'.
  12. Haiti - Arcade Fire - Off of their album 'Funeral'
  13. Lightning Strike Rescue Op - Mark Mothersbaugh - I got this off of 'The Life Aquatic' Soundtrack. One of the best soundtracks I have heard in awhile.
  14. Alta Mira - The Edgar Winter Group - Off of their album 'They Only Come Out at Night'. Who knew these albino rockers wrote more then 'Frankenstein'.
  15. Castles Made of Sand - Jimi Hendrix - I got this one off his album 'Axis: Bold as Love'.

Anyways I hope you enjoy this mix. For those of you who dont know, I make as many copies of this mix as I am allowed by itunes (7), and then I hand them out at my acoustic sets at the Mocha House in Vacaville, CA which occur once a month. So stop by after the show and ask me for a copy before I give them all away.

Or just buy all the music you see listed and put the mix together yourself. Or make your own mixes and post them in my comments so I can check out what you are listening to.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Album of the Month: July 2006

Gnarls Barkley - St. Elsewhere

For those of you who know me, you are probably baffled at this album of the month placement, since Hip Hop and/or Pop have never been my cup of tea. Some might even think its 'Crazy' that I am doing this. Pun definitely intended. But I recieved this album about a week and a half ago and I haven't stopped listening to it since.

Musically the album is amazing. I cant get enough of the energy and the amazing beats throughout this record. There isnt a whole lot of rapping as much as there is some great singing, which was a huge plus in my book. I enjoy the feel of this entire album, and it really was the perfect album for the summer feeling (thanks George). It has everything from songs like 'The Boogie Monster' which made me think of Frank Zappa, to the ultra catchy 'Crazy'. The only weak spot in my mind was the Violent Femmes cover of 'Gone Daddy Gone'...but no matter who re-does it, the Violent Femmes always end up being annoying eventually.

So basically this album easily replaces 'Justified' for me as my favorite pop record, and not only that, but it bitch slaps it on the way up.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Track 2 Mix

I've always considered Track 2 to be the most important track of an album. I don't know why. I guess from a listener's perspective, if you are listening to an album for the first time and aren't sure about it, everyone always makes it to atleast track 2. Track 1 gets the initial reaction of whether or not you think a band sucks or not, but if you hate track 1, most people will at least press skip once, and Track 2 is sometimes the only chance an album has to redeem itself.

Of course I've been wrong before.

Anyways, here is a mix of some track 2's. Some of my favorites, and some unique stuff that might intrigue you to hear more.

  1. Staring at the Sun - TV on the Radio - Off of their album 'Desperate Youth, Blood Thirsty Babys'. This is one that intrigued me to listen to the rest of this album.
  2. Date With the Night - Yeah Yeah Yeah's - Off of their album 'Fever to Tell'. I love this band...they rock. I'm a man of few words.
  3. It's a Boy - The Who - Off of the album 'Tommy'. Short but sweet.
  4. Clap Hands - Tom Waits - Off of his album 'Rain Dogs'. Tom Waits does some bizzare stuff and some really great stuff. This is a little of both.
  5. I'm Ready - The Twilight Singers - Off of their album 'Powder Burns'. I just got this album from a friend and this song left me wanting to hear more.
  6. Hell is Chrome - Wilco - Off of their album 'A Ghost is Born'. This is one of my favorite track 2's off of one of my all time favorite albums.
  7. Frail and Bedazzled - The Smashing Pumpkins - Off of their album 'Pisces Iscariot'. This is one of those great bands I often overlook when looking for music to listen to, especially this album.
  8. Stephanie Says - The Velvet Underground - This is a pretty song. I got it off of an Album of unreleased tracks I found somewhere once.
  9. Prologue - Trey Anastasio - Off of his album 'Seis de Mayo'. This is a beautiful classic piece based around the song 'Pebbles and Marbles'.
  10. The Ruling Class - Loose Fur - Off of their album 'Born Again in the USA'.
  11. The Bends - Radiohead - Off of their album 'The Bends'. This is another one of my favorite Track 2's from before the time of Ok Computer and Thom Yorke making himself a self-proclaimed musical genius.
  12. The Wake Up Bomb - REM - Off of their album 'New Adventures in Hi-Fi'.
  13. Flings of the Waistcoat Crowd - Robert Pollard - Off of his album 'Kid Marine'. I heart Robert Pollard.
  14. Unconsciously Screaming - The Flaming Lips - Off of their album 'In a Priest Driven Ambulance'.
  15. Straight Street - The Fiery Furnaces - Off of their album 'Blueberry Boat'. There is no way to explain this band.
  16. GhettoMusik - Outkast - Off the album 'SpeakerBoxx/Love Below'. Shake it, but not like a polaroid picture.
  17. Evil - Interpol - Off of their album 'Antics'. Great Indie band.
  18. Romantic Rights - Death From Above 1979 - Off of their album 'You're a Woman, I'm a Machine'.
  19. Secret - Candid - Off of their album 'Traffic and Old Habits'. One of my favorite Candid songs, despite the crappy mix from this era in their careers. If you want to hear more Candid get in touch with me.

Well thats all for now...Until next month. Mix it up...


Friday, June 30, 2006

Album of the Month: June 2006

Wilco - A Ghost is Born

Well it was only a matter of time before I posted about a Wilco album. Hell for those who know me, you are probably shocked I even made it three months.

Yes I am obsessed with Wilco and I think all their albums are worthy of this post. But this album is in my ears moreso then any other album of theirs, or any other album I own. Especially this past month, I have turned to this album for inspiration before heading into the studio myself, and I always turn to this album when I just need music like when I am on a plane. This album is my default album. For those of you who have no idea what I'm talking about, it means whenever I am unsure of what I want to listen to, I just want to listen to music, I put this on. I have dissected this a million times over and it always sounds new to me each time.

I don't think this is Wilco's best work, but it is certainly my favorite. This album marks Wilco's return to their roots. Its much more guitar driven then the previous two efforts 'Summerteeth' and 'Yankee Hotel Foxtrot', but the hints of experimentation that they touched on with those albums are still here as well. This album has everything. It will make you laugh, it will make you cry and it will make you go 'what the hell is that about?'. This album has been very important in the shaping of myself as an artist, and of myself as an overall person.

This is by far one of my favorite albums of all time, and if it were possible, this would be the album of the month almost every month, considering the amount I listen to it. But that might get boring for you readers.

The Flying Mix

In light of all the flying I did this month, on top of the countless trips to the Airport to pick up friends coming in, and to drop off friends leaving, I decided to dedicate this mix to flying. Hence the name. Other then that I am trying to capture my feelings about flying, and what I feel when I am flying in this mix. Maybe you can relate to a bit of it...maybe not.

I know its late, and I know that there is no June acoustic I won't be handing this one out. But here it is anyways. If you really need a copy let me know and I will try to get you one. But remember I am only allowed to make seven copies of each one thanks to itunes. Sure there are ways around that, but Im lazy remember.

  1. At the Bottom of Everything - Bright Eyes - Off of their album 'I'm Wide Awake It's Morning'. This is the first Bright Eyes I ever heard, and I instantly fell in love with them, this album in particular.
  2. Helicopter - Bloc Party - Off of their album 'Silent Alarm'. There are a lot of bands trying to make this kindof music and in my opinion Bloc Party is the best at it.
  3. Airline to Heaven - Wilco/Billy Bragg/Woody Guthrie - Off of the Album 'Mermaid Avenue Vol. 2'. Wilco writing music for Woody Guthrie lyrics? BOOIING!!!
  4. I Think I See the Light - Cat Stevens - Off of the album 'Mona Bone Jakon'. He may not be allowed to fly anymore, but he can be on my flying mix.
  5. Fly - Nick Drake - Off of the album 'Bryter Layter'. A beautiful song, you may recognize it from a beautiful movie.
  6. Such Great Heights - The Postal Service - Off of their album 'Give Up'. I recently just got into this band. I like the way they use electronic music and I enjoy the overall sound of this band a lot.
  7. Flying - The Beatles - Off of their album 'Magical Mystery Tour'. Its about that point in the flight where you start to daydream a bit and this song is a good soundtrack for what might be going on in your head.
  8. My Flying Saucer - Wilco/Billy Bragg/Woody Guthrie - Off of the album 'Mermaid Avenue Vol. 2'. I know I know I already used one from this same album, but this song is perfect to snap you out of your daydream.
  9. Fly From Heaven - Toad the Wet Sprocket - Off of their album 'Dulcinea'. This is sort of the halfway point where you've peaked and instead of departing you are officially arriving.
  10. White Fluffy Clouds - Camper Van Beethoven - Off of their album 'New Roman Times'. Something to listen to while you watch the clouds fly by underneath you.
  11. Coast to Coast - Elliot Smith - Off of the album 'From a Basement on a Hill'. One of my favorite singer/songwriters, I often find myself listening to him while I'm people watching twenty thousand feet in the air.
  12. There is a Mountain - Donovan - Off of 'Donovan's Greatest Hits' album. What better way to say it.
  13. Omaha - The Counting Crows - Off of their album 'August and Everything After'. Somewhere in Middle America.
  14. I Turn My Camera On - Spoon - Off of their album 'Gimme Fiction'. Another great new band.
  15. Sweet Ones - Sarah Slean - Off of the album 'Night Bugs'. I first heard this song when my friends band covered it, and I've decided that everyone needs to hear it, because it is a great song.
  16. Let's Get Ready to Crumble - The Russian Futurists - Off of their album 'Let's Get Ready to Crumble'. Its about that time that the plane has landed and parked and you are just sitting in the back row waiting for everyone to get out of your way so you can continue living.
  17. Exit Planes - Tobin Sprout - Off of the album 'Moonflower Plastic'.
  18. I'm Lonely (But I ain't that Lonely Yet) - The White Stripes - Off of their album 'Get Behind Me Satan'. Just because you don't feel like hopping on the next jet.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Album of the Month: May 2006

Andrew Bird - The Mysterious Production of Eggs

Andrew Bird and The Mysterious Production of Eggs has been in my ears the most this month. Its one of those albums that you really have to dissect to appreciate. Its so diverse and so well arranged in my opinion.

I didnt know anything about Andrew Bird when I was told to check out this album. Me being the person I am, always take peoples word on good music, so I bought this. I was blown away.

It is nice to see artists making music like this. Some of the tones he captures and things he does on this album musically are things most artists would never even think of. Thats what I admire most about this album, is Bird's understanding of each song. I dont think there is a sound he didnt consider. He is one of those artists that has successfully created his own style which is something that grows more rare everyday. He is very inventive, and unique and this is all apparent on this album.

I will definitely be checking out more of his stuff.

Also dont forget to check out this month's mix below...

Ready Go Mix

I wanted to approach this mix like I was going for a drive. Usually when I feel like getting in my car and driving around for a bit I am pretty pumped up at first...and then things just mesh from there...I was trying to capture an hours worth of driving on this mix. Whether it be driving alone and trying to do some self reflection, or driving with your drunken friends in the back of your car singing along.

To me this mix was all about capturing as many of those moments as possible in 1.2 hours. It has some songs that will make you laugh, make you think, and most of all, make you shake your rump. So put it together, get in your car, and drive around with this playing for a little more then an hour.

I hope you all like it.

  1. Lapdance - N*E*R*D - Off of their album 'In Search Of...'. This song gets the road trip started nicely.
  2. Hey Man (Now You're Really Living) - The Eels - Off of their album 'Blinking Lights and Other Revelations. This is another one of those bands you absolutely have to check out if you haven't already.
  3. San Ber'dino - Frank Zappa - I took this one of 'Strictly Commercial'. Zappa is one of those musical genius' who has never been taken seriously because he never really took himself all that seriously. But I think he is great.
  4. Girls of Wild Strawberries - Guided By Voices - Off their album 'Half Smiles of the Decomposed'. The indie band of all indie bands peps up the road trip with this catchy number.
  5. Paper Bag - Fiona Apple - Off her album 'When the Pawn Hits...'. She is my favorite female artist, and this is one of my favorite songs by her. I first heard it on a road trip to Maryland, but thats a story for another time.
  6. Car Carrier Blues - Mike Gordon and Leo Kottke - Off of their album 'Clone'. This is my favorite post phish side project, and this song is always perfect for a nice drive.
  7. A Day at the Races - Candid - Off of their album 'A Comforting Thought'. This band has kept me from sleep on many late night drives through boring cities.
  8. Do You Realize?? - The Flaming Lips - Off of their album 'Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots'. This song always cuts into the back of your head and gets the mind racing.
  9. Lonesome Johnny Blues - Cracker - Off of their self titled album (also known as 'Brand'). This song is about the half-way point and is supposed to remind you that road trips are fun but it has that hint of loneliness as well.
  10. Senorita - Justin Timberlake - Off of 'Justified'. There isnt much to say about this song, other then "Gentlemen Goodnight...Ladies, Good Morning".
  11. Mess Around - Ray Charles - I got this one off of the 'Ray!' Soundtrack. I thought of slappin 'Ive Got A Woman' on this mix to kick Kanye West in the preverbial balls, but this is the ultimate road trip song thanks to Planes, Trains and Automobiles.
  12. Little Room - The White Stripes - Off of their album 'White Blood Cells'. This is one of those simple ones, but it gets me thinking. Not only that, but one of my first big road trips is highly centered around this album in my memory bank.
  13. Discotheque CVB - Camper Van Beethoven - Off of their album 'New Roman Times'. This one is supposed to take the road trip to a different step. Maybe your friend fell asleep, or you just want to listen to the thoughts in your head for awhile, and this song gives you a nice soundtrack to do so.
  14. Is Chicago, Is Not Chicago - Soul Coughing - Off of their album 'Ruby Vroom'. This song reminds me of so many things. Not only that, but its a great song from a great band.
  15. Pink Bullets - The Shins - Off of their album 'Chutes too Narrow'. This song mellows things out a little bit.
  16. Woman Driving, Man Sleeping - The Eels - Off of their album 'Souljacker'. Its rare for me to put a band on a mix twice, but this song is perfect for this point in the road trip.
  17. Mr. Self Destruct - NIN - Off of 'The Downward Spiral'. This is about the time your eyes might start to feel heavy and you are going crazy from looking at nothing but white lines zinging by you and pure blackness in front of you.
  18. Surf Wax America - Weezer - Off of their Blue Album. Wake up, we're here!

Well I hope you guys liked this mix. I could make a million road trip mixes, cause every different road trip requires a different mix. As a matter of fact, I envision you all listening to all my mixes while driving, cause really, mixes were invented for the purpose of driving entertainment. In my opinion anyways.

So happy travels...

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Album of the Month: April 2006

The Flaming Lips - At War With the Mystics

This album is my album of the month, not only because it was released in this month, but because it occupied my stereo for the longest time this month. Which is the main criteria for this to begin with.

This was the Flaming Lips follow up studio release to 2002's 'Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots'. It has already reached # 11 on the US charts and #6 in the UK.

It is a lot more guitar driven then their past two studio albums, and the subject matter is a little more serious lyrically as Wayne Coyne adds a lot of political undertones. At the same time he points the finger at himself (or perhaps to us all) wondering if he would be able to do any better with all the power the people we blame everything on have attained. They continue their experimentation on this album and some of their arrangements include sounds not many would throw on a record. But they always find a way to pull of the bizarre and make it completely interesting and completely accessible.

I wouldnt say this album is genius, especially comparable to things like 'The Soft Bulletin' and 'Yoshimi...', but it shows no signs of The Lips slowing down, and it shows a lot of maturity as a band.

So you should not only check out this album, but this band entirely.

This album was an obvious inspiration for the mix listed below.

The Yeah Yeah Yeah Mix

This mix was obviously inspired by the Album of the month (posted above) and numerous other 'Yeah' related tunes I was introduced to in the month of April...a lot of which you will find on this mix. For the most part I didnt know what I wanted to include on this mix, which is why its so short...but I was mostly looking for short spastic rock songs and of course anything with the word yeah in it...haha...sounds really scientific I know...

Anyways I hope you enjoy it. Come to my acoustic shows at the Mocha House in Vacaville, CA and get a free copy of these mixes.

  1. The Yeah Yeah Yeah Song - The Flaming Lips - This is the B-side long version. Mainly so I could include the maximum amount of Yeah Yeah Yeah's in this mix. Check out the album of the month if you like this tune.
  2. Television - Ok Go - Off their album 'Oh No'. This band rocks in my opinion.
  3. She Loves You - The Beatles - I got this off of their greatest hits album '1'. Not too much to say about the Beatles that you dont already know.
  4. I'm a Wheel - Wilco - Off of their latest studio release 'A Ghost is Born'. This is one of the best bands of the last thirty years, if you havent checked em out, you should.
  5. Yeah! Oh Yeah! - The Magnetic Fields - Off of their album '69 Love Songs'. This song slows things down a bit but keeps the yeah's in the mix.
  6. Let the Cool Goddess Run Away - Clap Your Hands Say Yeah - Off of their self-titled album.
  7. Fresh Feeling - The Eels - Off of the album 'Souljacker'. Another great band thats still doing magnificent stuff.
  8. Movement - LCD Soundsystem - Off of their self titled album. This band really is what got me into this type of sound recently. They are quite good at what they do.
  9. Mushaboom - Feist - Off their album 'Let it Die'. I first heard Bright Eyes do this song on a live album, and a friend introduced me to Feist's version. I also saw these guys and gals on TV the other night, and they rocked.
  10. Mysteries - The Yeah Yeah Yeah's - Off their album 'Show Your Bones'. This is a really great new band. I was unexpectedly impressed by both of their albums that I have heard.
  11. She Said Yeah - Paul McCartney - Off his album 'Run Devil Run'. It turns out McCartney did do some ok work after the Beatles...and he kept the Yeah's alive for my mix.
  12. Welcome to the Working Week - Elvis Costello - Off his album 'My Aim is True'. The ultimate short spastic rock song from back in the day.
  13. Things is Burnin' - Candid - Off their album 'Crooked Things'. This is one of my favorite bands and one of my biggest influences as a songwriter is the singer in this band. This is from one of their older albums, but it fits this mix nicely. If you want to hear more of these guys get in touch with me.

So thats it for this month...Its my first time making a mix. Also Im sorry I didnt write a lot about each song, but I am feeling lazy and I wouldnt know what to say right now anyways.

Anyways, check out all these bands if you havent already.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Mixes at Acoustic Shows

From now on I will be handing out Mix CD's at my acoustic shows. The mixes will have a different theme each month, and will consist of music that I am listening to at the time.

There will only be a limited number made each month, but I will also post the tracklisting of each mix here, so you can look it up and check stuff out on your own as well.

So come down to the Mocha House in Vacaville, CA on the third thursday of every month, listen to some good live music, and get a free CD out of the deal.