Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Just Be Friends and the Eternal Hammjamm


Download: Je Suis France—“That Don’t Work That Well For Us”

Download: Je Suis France—“Whalebone"

I love this band. I love their new album, Afrikan Majik. I once attended a Michael McDonald/Hall and Oates concert with a few of 'em. Instead of parroting the press release, though, I will present some haikus I wrote for the band a while back:

Mystical shaman--
Stringed sticks alight with vibing--
Spew inner brilliance

From France? No, stupid
From Titannia they ride
Mixed-up mastery

Hot and fresh new jamz
From allegiance of jock rock
Fie, New Edition!

Speaker blow-out, bitch!
Fucking France topping the charts
Skanks are for free now

Equestrian run
Loping into red sunset
Cowboys on rock fuel

We are King Midas
Flinging gold from our fingers
The magic of bling

I think those speak for themselves.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Eye In The Sky

Download: Alan Parsons Project -- "Eye In The Sky"

Let's see, how did this track make its way back into our lives? I guess I first thought about the song again when Marc Hogan aptly compared Midlake's 2006 hit "Roscoe" to EITS in his review of The Trials of Van Occupanther. Then, a few months later, as fate would have it, the song reared its head again on a Razor & Tie compilation, Smooth Rock, which we were fortunate enough to have sent our way. While I won't bore you with a description of my entirely sincere, non-ironic infatuation with yacht rock, nor my thwarted plans for an awesome Team Clermont tenth anniversary yacht-rock themed prom, I will tell you that even a potential Smooth Rock enthusiast such as myself was soon rendered powerless to listen to any track other than "Eye In The Sky" again and again. You can't tell me this song isn't the jam, you just can't.

Monday, March 26, 2007


Download: Germans - "I Am the Teacher"

First things first: no, they're not. They're from Toronto, and they're one of the new bands on Portland-based Arena Rock record.

If you were to try to form an opinion of the band based strictly on the picture above, I would not blame you if passed them off as a Napoleon Dynamite joke band. Of course, I would be mad at you for judging a band based on one photograph. Sure, they do for the most part make some light-hearted pop music, but they do it so well.

I am constantly reminded of lo-fi artists like Pavement and Sebadoh/Dinosaur Jr. when listening to Germans, however the record avoids any pretensions and stands up as a great, bouncy, pop rock, without overstepping the bounds of creating too much noise/feedback on any of their tracks.

Aiden Koper, one of the co-founders of the band, was also in charge of making the video posted below, for "I Am the Teacher." According to an interview on Eye Weekly, “one of the computers didn't have any glass in the monitor, so that was the one we could do whatever we wanted with, like roll it down a hill or pour beer in it... when I first saw the video, I didn't know that he planned to blow up the world.” If you really want to know how they manage to blow up the world, you have to watch that video!

According to the Arena Rock site, Germans will be playing some US/Canada shows sometime this spring. We will keep you informed.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Team Clermont Artists at SXSW!

The following is a list of Team Clermont artists that will be performing at SXSW! I think this should keep everyone's schedule full! I personally can't wait to get out there to see all the amazing bands, and of course, to get some Mexican food into my system!

Wednesday, 14 March 2007

08:00PM Shedding (Mohawk)
09:00PM Goldenboy (Soho Lounge)
09:00PM Black Tie Dynasty (The Tap Room at Six)
10:00PM A Northern Chorus (Buffalo Billiards)
10:00PM The Caribbean (Mohawk)
10:00PM About (Beauty Bar)
10:30PM Loney, Dear (Emo's IV Lounge)
11:00PM The Theater Fire (Room 710)
11:00PM Paul Duncan (Mohawk)
11:00PM The Rosebuds (Antone's)
(After midnight, Thursday morning)
12:00AM The Broken West (Antone's)
12:00AM Let's Go Sailing (Blender Bar at the Ritz)
12:00AM Slaraffenland (Mohawk)
12:45AM 1986 (Habana Calle 6)
01:00AM Pattern is Movement (Mohawk)
01:00AM Hayseed Dixie (Momo's)

Thursday, 15 March 2007

8:00PM Say Hi To Your Mom (Buffalo Billiards)
8:00PM The Dagons (Maggie Mae's Rooftop)
08:30PM Future Clouds & Radar (Austin Music Hall Ballroom Austin Convention Center)
9:00PM Apollo Sunshine (Dirty Dog Bar)
9:30PM Daughters (Emo's Annex)
10:00PM Dengue Fever (Emo's Main Room)
10:00PM Black Fiction (Habana Calle 6)
10:00PM Benjy Ferree (Habana Calle 6 Annex)
11:30PM The Little Ones (Antone's)
11:30PM JESU (Emo's Annex)
(After midnight, Friday morning)
12:00AM Aqueduct (Buffalo Billiards)
1:00AM Les Breastfeeders (Maggie Mae's Rooftop)
1:00AM Evangelicals (Mohawk)

Friday, 16 March 2007

6:30PM Ozomatli (SXSW Dew Music Festival at Town Lake)
10:00PM My Brightest Diamond (Antone's)
10:30PM Colour Revolt (Red Eyed Fly)
10:45PM Simon Dawes (Emo's Annex)
11:00PM You Am I (Dirty Dog Bar)
11:00PM Page France (Maggie Mae's)
(After midnight, Saturday morning)
12:30AM The Polyphonic Spree (Austin Music Hall Ballroom Austin Convention Center)

Saturday, 17 March 2007

8:00PM The Show Is The Rainbow (Redrum)
8:00PM The Summer Wardrobe (Latitude 30)
8:00PM Summer Hymns (Habana Calle 6 Patio)
9:00PM The Lovely Sparrows (Mohawk)
9:00PM Field Music (Beauty Bar Patio)
10:00PM Asteroid #4 (Latitude 30)
10:30PM The Cliks (Momo's)
11:00PM Moonlight Towers (Mohawk Patio)
11:00PM Michael Zapruder's Rain Of Frogs (Mohawk)
11:00PM Outrageous Cherry (Latitude 30)
(After midnight, Sunday morning)
12:00AM Midlake (Buffalo Billiards)
1:00AM Friends of Dean Martinez (Habana Calle 6)

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Lost in the Trees

Download: Lost in the Trees—“Tall Trees”

Ari Picker is the crazy-talented leader of the wonderful band, The Never. He was also in the wonderful band, The B-Sides. You may remember The Never from their wonderful storybook record, Antarctica, which featured artwork and words from Mr. Crazy-Talented himself. Well, now Ari is back, with string section in tow, for the ambitious (and wonderful) project called Lost in the Trees, wherein he comes down somewhere between the towering verticalization of a Danny Elfman and the charming quirkiness of Mark Mothersbaugh’s recent work, all with lovelorn vocals that scuff up the polish just the right amount. It is all truly wonderful.

The Grass Roots Record Company

Download: MARIEE SIOUX - - "Two Tounges At One Time"

There is something in the water in Nevada City, CA. I was told that it was gold and I'm inclined to agree. The city that has been called home by some of the most creative figures in recent history including Allen Ginsberg, Utah Phillips, Jonathan Richman, and Joanna Newsom has been a breeding ground for a new breed of musical genius.

The new Nevada City label, Grass Roots Record Company, has collected some of cities brightest for the innagural release Family Album.

From label creator Marc Snegg's linear notes: "Over the course of two weeks, twenty groups from or connected to Nevada City, California crowded into the Brighton Sound Studio to record their songs live and direct into the microphone. Inspired by releases from such seminal record companies like Sun, Motown, Elektra, and Studio One, Grass Roots Record Co.’s Family Album is filled with songs you will want to hear many times over. They are lasting, infectious melodies— honest music in a world where truth telling is a great revolutionary act."

This promise does not disappoint. The album is an organic behemoth that features a diverse collection of artists such as Alela Diane, Casual Fog, Hella, and Mariee Sioux (whose track you should download right the eff now and be prepared to be completely blown away)

The album is currently available online and will receive a national release June 19th.

And you can look forward to new full lengths from other Grass Roots Recording artists later this year including: Aaron Ross, Lee Bob Watson, and Mariee Sioux.

Oneida interviewed on Stereogum

Not that they need the publicity, but Stereogum has a relatively new column, "Quit Your Day Job" that I've been thoroughly enjoying. The one they did yesterday with Oneida, is particularly good. The members of Oneida come off as a breath of fresh-aired awesomeness.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

My Own Private Cinema

Download: Slaraffenland--"Polaroids"

I really want to say something expressive and artsy-fartsy about how this record makes me feel, but it's difficult for me to enunciate what's so engaging about it. I know this sounds like "crit-speak," but it's kind of where I wanted Radiohead to go after Kid A. Slaraffenland doesn't sound like Radiohead necessarily, but it's the kind of experimental, claustrophobic, fractured pop that I wanted them to make after hearing the track "National Anthem." Private Cinema has intertia. It's all tightly wound, tensing on the edge of experimentalism without fully jumping in, like the best of Sonic Youth's work. I listen to it, and it makes me a little unnerved, like listening to (and these are not direct analogues, mind you) There's A Riot Going On or Here, My Dear. That's hefty praise, I know, and I'm not ready to say that Slaraffenland is a Sly or a Marvin Gaye or anything: it just has that smothering, persistent, "on the precipice" feel that I dig so much.

Okay. I've written myself in a corner. Just go ahead and download "Polaroids". It's probably the poppiest thing on the record, but it's weirder than you think. Which is a great thing. How many bands these days are weird AND catchy? Not enough.

Holy smokes!

Um, our female intern told us to post this. I swear to God. It was not my idea.

Anne Hathaway just wrote us! Crazy!?! A movie star writing us!?! AMAZING. For the record, she wrote us an email about "working crazy nose." Wow. She also had this to say:
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Sweateri another one nevernever, leave alone pieces.
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Studied journalism career reporting receiving choosing devote.
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But, theurlhis sternly numberurl where belowurl thoughts friendurl.
Ramirez lohanthis heard, fell excellent, rihanna tells feels.
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Whoa. I knew Anne was going all adult and stuff, but she's really getting edgy!

I think I'm in love.

Rod Falconer

I like that they go to a hot dog bar in this video

Monday, March 05, 2007

Future Clouds and Radar.

Download: Future Clouds and Radar -- "Drugstore Bust"
Download: Future Clouds and Radar -- "Dr. No"

Formerly working under the guise of Cotton Mather, Austin based musician Robert Harrison has once again sprung into form with his new project, Future Clouds and Radar. Of course, Future Clouds and Radar would want to take you futher back into the past than 2001, the last time that Cotton Mather put out a full-length record. Indeed 1,000,000 B.C. is where this band finds its origins, according to the group's bio, which includes mention of the discovery of rice farming and the Industrial Revolution.

Signed to The Star Apple Kingdom, Harrison has assembled a double-disc debut that crosses at least a dozen genre boundaries. That can be expected, given the nature of a two CD release, but what is impressive is the quality of the songwriting througout the recordings. The New Yorker describes Future Clouds and Radar as "orchestral art rock" and elsewhere as "kaleidoscopic art-pop." As Wolf Notes puts it, "Future Clouds and Radar is a glorious mess of sunshine recorded with a full-fidelity, widescreen shimmer and a horn section." If you have ever found yourself craving a combination of Guided By Voices and the Flaming Lips, or if the idea sounds appealing to you now, you will come pretty close with Future Clouds and Radar.

Harrison and company will be performing in New York for the next two nights, and then they will find themselves back home for the glory that is SXSW! By the way, the record is available for sale now on their website.

Upcoming shows:

03.06.07 New York, NY The Living Room
03.07.07 New York, NY Pianos
03.12.07 Austin, TX Egos
03.14.07 Austin, TX Light Bar (SXSW Showcase)
03.15.07 Austin, TX Headquarters (Mint Records Hootenanny, 1:30P)
03.15.07 Austin, TX Acoustic on KUT/WXPN (5:30P)
03.17.07 Austin, TX Cafe Mundi (3:00P)

Friday, March 02, 2007

And if you don't know, now you know...

Team Clermont/Under The Radar/SXSW Party
12-6 p.m.
Flamingo Cantina - 515 E 6th Street, Austin
Free w/ badge or wristband

12:00pm - Dark Meat
1:00pm - Gruff Rhys
2:00pm - Headlights
3:00pm - Loney, Dear
4:00pm - The Pipettes
5:00pm - Architecture In Helsinki

Download: Architecture In Helsinki -- "It'5"
Download: The Pipettes -- "Pull Shapes"
Download: Loney, Dear -- "Carrying A Stone"
Download: Headlights -- "TV"
Download: Gruff Rhys -- "Candylion"
Download: Dark Meat -- "Angel Of Meth"

Killer! Killer!

A couple of days ago a friend of mine pointed out that I might be Indian. I had never noticed before. But over the past few days, I have been looking around this town, and noticing how often I see my Indian culture being co-opted. Girls wearing bindis on their foreheads, handmade silk saris turned into curtain, purses with a screened image of Ganesh, and Tazo Iced Chai lattes. So I started to get extremely angry at you Americans for stealing everything that I my people hold dear.

Until today, when I was first introduced to the video below. It hit me, that those silly East Indians and their 'Bollywood' film industry has been bogarting the Americans for a much longer time.

So everytime I see that a large clothing store chain has manufactured sandals with images of Hindu gods on the soles, I will just bite my lip and imagine how violated Michael Jackson must have been when he first saw that yellow-eyed monster yelling "Killer! Killer!"