Saturday, May 26, 2012

Morning Parade [Fans of Keane, Coldplay, Snow Patrol, etc.]

Not so much as "indie" as I've been going, but I recently discovered this band from Essex. For those of you who like kind of the pre-packaged, adult contemporary, teen friendly sound of Coldplay and Snow Patrol with some tiltings towards more Keane type material, this is your new band. Why do I like them? Probably because I'm kind of a Keane nut and it really reminds me of their sound and I am crazy about the use of synthesizer (which I have a love affair with) in their song "Headlights." Here it is below (sounds a bit like Snow Patrol/Jimmy Eat World):

Their second song I'll showcase is more along the lines of Keane a la 'Under the Iron Sea':

You can find their album at iTunes or anywhere else you buy music. 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

One of my favorite music videos right now is the little video for "The End of That" by Plants and Animals. A take-off/parody of Engelbert Humperdinck, this type of creativity shows what a smaller band can do on a low budget and with the right creative minds. The video was filmed with vintage equipment and features the lead singer acting and looking like Engelbert, complete with a cheesy backup band who push the absurdity of their appearance to the limit. The video is incredibly well acted and put together. If one didn't know better, one could mistake it for a real lip-synced cheap TV show out of the 70s.

You can buy the album from your favorite online retailer.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Hey everyone, I apologize for my absence. With finals and becoming addicted to Breaking Bad + listening and finding great new music for you guys, I didn't get a chance to update the blog.

Today's update comes from Miniature Tigers,  an indie pop band based in Brooklyn, NY that combines elements of indie rock, synthpop, and dream pop.

To me they sound like a mixture of Of Montreal's vocals laid over The Silver Seas' 70s song-writer/pop influence, filtered through the 80s via The Mystery Jets. This album has some really great tunes and should be great for a summer listen.

Here's the first song which introduced me to them which wraps all the influences into a nice tidy sandwich, with some tasty Jeff Lynne-esque guitar thrown in on the top. In fact, I'm quite certain they ripped off "What's the Drawback" by the Silver Seas which was a love letter to Jeff Lynne and ELO:

Here's one more song which I think encapsulates the album, going even more 'Of Montreal' on the vocals while adding what sounds like a Japanese influence:

You can buy their album 'Mia Pharaoh' online everywhere.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Matt & Kim, Soulja Boy + Andrew W.K. [Converse "3 Artists, One Song"]

Another Converse collaboration I've been obsessed with in the car is the "I'm a Goner" song by Matt & Kim, Soulja Boy, and Andrew W.K.

The song is dominated by Matt & Kim and Soulja Boy, while Andrew W.K. chimes in on background and one verse. One even wonders why Andrew W.K. is even on the track because he doesn't really contribute a whole bunch to it.  The lyrics aren't that great and repeat themselves incessantly: "I'm a goner, all my life I've known I'm a goner, believe me I'm a goner" [repeat 15x] but the melody is insanely catchy.

The video shows all of our subjects waking up in a morgue, having died from what can be interpreted as on-stage accidents.  Soon the rest of the morgue wakes up and a party breaks out, with dancing and tasty formaldehyde sampling. Overall the video is actually better than the song but again, the song is so catchy it doesn't really matter.

Here's the video:

You can download the track for free here

Monday, May 14, 2012

Daniels [Music Videos]

The Daniels are a two person team who make creative music videos.  Their style is characterized by dark subject matter, lens flares, slow-mo shots all the sudden sped up, explosions, crashes, physical stylized comic book type violence, quick cuts and inventive camera moves that keep the subject in focus, and a somewhat choppy frame rate. They've made videos for Manchester Orchestra, Foster the People, The Shins, and Chromeo. They even made a video of a guy stuck on an escalator. Here are some of their videos which represent their best work:

You can find the rest of their work at their site here

Sunday, May 13, 2012

'Warrior' - Converse "3 Artists, 1 Song" [Mark Foster, Kimbra, DJ A-Trak]

Hello, loyal reader(s)! After a break yesterday, it's time for some new songs.

The first is a really cool song which is a collaboration by Mark Foster, Kimbra, and DJ A-Trak called 'Warrior.' The project was done for Converse and is part of the "3 Artists, 1 Song" series.  The Daniels team directed the video (I'll put up another post about them tomorrow) and really shows off their style.

A-Trak came up with the underlying beat while Mark Foster (Foster the People) came up with the rest of the material (lyrics, melody, music), with Kimbra contributing the main vocal duty internationally utilizing the power of the internet. It's got a harder edged sound than most of the Foster the People material but it suits itself great. If you're a fan of Foster the People and/or the Daniels team, you'll love this track which sounds plucked from the mid-80s:

You can download the track HERE

 I'll post another video from the series tomorrow as well!

Friday, May 11, 2012

The Arkells

The Arkells (from Canada) are a band I discovered a while ago and I'm unsure why Hollywood hasn't been beating down their door for permission to license their songs.  They have a very strong Hall and Oates sound, if Hall and Oates were updated and had an "indie" flavor. The Arkells' music has strong production and rich melodies obviously drawn from the 80s bands they grew up listening to on the radio. Their last album is called 'Michigan Left' and is a very solid listen. One can imagine "Kiss Cam" playing over the opening credits of the latest Justin Long romantic comedy as the camera pans over the night skyline of New York and the Brooklyn Bridge. (I choose New York because it tends to have a little more romantic element than LA, in my opinion. YMMV)

Here's "Kiss Cam":

Another song that beautifully depicts the general sound or "vibe" of the album:

You can buy the album at the following sites: