Jul 312007

I mentioned Dappled Cities a couple blogs ago, and since then we bought the album and I have given them a thorough listening to. Yes, I am most assuredly liking their unique and somewhat contagious music. I have caught both myself and my daughter humming them.

On the same night we were buying music, I mentioned to Tac I would like to hear more of a band called HelloGoodbye. This is one of a hundred reasons why he is so handy to have around: “oh” he said, “they are on my hard drive.” So we put them on my ipod that night too, and as if that wasn’t tingly enough I saw another band’s name on the hard drive that looked interesting called Animal Collective.

Yes, I got three albums all for my listening pleasure in one groovy night. Hellogoodbye has been fun listening to, one of the songs called “Touch down turn around” was a bit to poppy for myself, but my daughter has declared it her new favorite song so we have been listening to them a lot. Thats OK with me, I like most of their songs quite a bit. I have not listened to Animal Collective enough to come to a solid conclusion, but I plan to.

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I hav’nt found any new music to love as of late, ( hint to to anyone actually reading- SHARE what you are listening to!) but I do have a favorite that I havn’t mentioned on this site yet: Chin Up Chin Up. They are a Chicago band, and I have noticed a lot of very cool music is born in Chicago ( inevitable Smashing Pumpkins reference). Chin Up Chin Up is an indie pop band, they have great vocals and guitars, with neat-O banjo action to boot. In reference to their name they wrote on their website: “think optimism and perseverance, not exercise.”

They have two albums so far:

  • We Should Have Never Lived Like We Were Skyscrapers
  • This Harness Can’t Ride Anything

Cool, I learned something new today after all. I have their second album, didn’t even know there was a first. I now have something else to add to Jen’s list o’ music. Enjoy!

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Top on my list of music to buy when next I have money to do so, comes from an Australian band called Dappled Cities. Their website announced they are: “off to America to do it Crocodile Dundee Part 2 style.” Check out their Myspace page , listen to the music and see if they are playing in a city near you. I get the feeling these guys put on a lively performance.
Their album is called Granddance, I would put it in the category of happy; minus sap and cheese.

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The day before we left for my husband’s family reunion I decided to find out when tickets to The Smashing Pumpkin’s in SLC  went on sale.   Panic immediately ensued when I saw it was the next morning;  we would be in the middle of the Cascade mountains with no internet or cell phones when tickets to see Billy Corgan went on sale.   The SLC show is not only the closest to us, its on a Friday, making it the one most likely for us to find an overnight sitter (its kind of sad when that becomes the deciding factor in your social life).

After breathing into a paper bag for a minute (not really), I realized that I could ask my sister and brother in law to buy our tickets since we had talked about all going together anyway.   So a huge thank you to Jennette and Rich for getting our tickets while we were stuck in the mountains getting devoured by mosquitoes.   Are refusing to go to bed and being cranky all day symptoms of West Nile?  If so,  I’m afraid our 3 yr. old got it.

I just wrote all of that in such a calm manner, because really; I’M GOING TO THE SMASHING PUMPKINS AND I’M TOTALLY HAPPY ABOUT IT. 

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From the very first episode, Tac and I became somewhat addicted to the tv series Buffy the Vampire Slayer. (that’s almost a little embarrassing to say, but it’s so so true.) A couple of years ago Tac bought the first three seasons to keep him entertained while he lived in the back of a skate shop in Vegas that we used to own (one of those situations when the house and the business don’t quite sell at the same time). We started watching it again lately; finished the first season and have started the second. The vampires, Spike and Drusilla show up in the next episode, can’t tell you how much I am looking forward to this. We are so dorky that our yellow lab is named Spike, because they are both blond and have sharp teeth.

You don’t get lines like this from any ol’ show: “I’m an old fashioned gal, I was raised to believe that men dig up the corpses and women have the babies.”

Yes there is a musical point to all of this. First, the theme song was so great. Every time I hear it I want to start head banging ( I actually have never done that in my life, mostly I just think about it). You can listen to a bit of it here, if you want to walk down memory lane. Also, the show had tons of bands playing at “the Bronze,” where Buffy and the gang hung out a lot. The one that stands out the most to me is Cibo Matto. We had never heard of them until we saw Buffy one night, we ended up getting two of their albums. That lead us to be interested in Sean Lennon’s music, who recently made a really good album called “Friendly Fire.” Don’t you love the musical circle of life? Point being: Buffy was cool because she slayed vampires in her prom dress, oozed with witty one liners, and had cool music.

I’m just going to throw this in, the new Smashing Pumpkins album is available to purchase now if your ears are in the mood to be lulled into the seductive, razory, goodness that is Zeitgeist. :) seriously though, it is good.

And The Mummers, who I have previously blogged about have their first single available on i tunes. Check them out, if you like them, support them and buy their single!

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Like so many bands, I wrote the name of this one down intending to look it up when I had time. So glad I did that! Their myspace page is super cool, I highly recommend you go there now and play some of their “psychedelic indie pop from another dimension” while you finish reading this blog. (I’m listening while I write it, and that means I had to stop listening to Zeitgeist which is a small miracle in an of itself.)

On their page is a video of Brian Scary and The Shredding Tears live, all dressed up for a funeral; their own, and now they are back from the dead to perform a very rocking concert. They even introduced each song with a little story. This music is seriously art. Imagine my glee when I read that one of their influences is Electric Light Orchestra, I have been craving them for years! They are one of my all time favorites, but I misplaced or broke my old cassette tape long ago. In another bio I read they were compared with XTC, (i had their tape too) who’s lyrics “over and over we flatten the clover” will be forever embedded in my mind.

This is a fantastic mixture of piano, drums, keyboards, guitars, catchy happiness, a great high voice, and in general no holding back of the creativity.  Here’s a few of their song titles: “The Blood Club,” “Misery Loves Company,” and “The Ceiling on the Wall.”  I will most definitely be buying their music and watching tour info for a live show in or near Idaho.

Valerie, let me know if you like these guys!

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zavsethWhat a great surprise when Dad comes home early from work and plays helicopter in the sprinklers

helicopter in the sprinklers

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Got our kids to bed, dealt with the neighbor kids who were throwing Large rocks at the side of our house, I proof-read my husband’s blog (because I got my degree in English and I LOVE that kind of geeky stuff) and now I finally get to write on my own blog.

Today was the day that I listened to Billy Corgan sing the way only he can, on the new Smashing Pumpkins album Zeitgeist, for the first time. There were days (last year, last week even) that I didn’t think I could ever wait that long. It’s not scheduled to be released until the 10th, but I am lucky enough to have a brother who is cooler than I am. He made me a copy today and Tac picked it up on the way home. We already pre-ordered the album on i tunes so I’m feeling zero guilt, I think its important to support good music with your wallet.

I have been listening to plenty live versions of the new songs, but it was exciting and wonderful to hear the finished studio versions too. I plugged my earphones in, and my ipod and I went out to pull weeds to the mighty Pumpkins, it was great. I guess thats the “mom” part of this blog. But it just meant that I got to listen to every single sound, instrument, lyric, change in voice, etc., without any other noises interrupting me.

And yes, all that insufferable waiting was not in vain. The album is fantastic, and I know what I’m listening to non-stop for the rest of the month. Whenever a new Smashing Pumpkins cd has come out, I’ve binged myself on it for weeks until suddenly I have to listen to something else…..like one of their other albums, then another short binge and then it can take it’s place in the normal rotation of music which is ALL THINGS BILLY CORGAN and other tasty varieties. Some favorite songs that stand out to me are For God and Country, Bleeding the Orchid, 7 Shades of Black, That’s the way (my love is) and the two previously released singles of course. His voice is just as gorgeous and razory as always, I am happy to say that I have just been rocked by the Pumpkins once again.

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