Mar 5 2012

Free Press Summer Fest 2012 Has Outdone Itself

This year’s Free Press Summer Fest has been announced, and, wow, I must say I am impressed. Snoop Dogg, The Avett Brothers, Primus, Big Freedia, Danny Brown, Jeff the Brotherhood, Willie Nelson, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Flaming Lips (performing Dark Side of the Moon), Wavves, Diplo, Best Coast, Major Lazer, Turquoise Jeep! I’m gonna have a hard time avoiding the miserable Houston heat this summer!

Apr 27 2011

My Top 300 Songs of the 2000s – 30-21

Today I continue my ongoing feature showcasing my personal picks for the best songs of the past decade, posting ten songs at a time.

30. Johnny Cash – Hurt

Some artists are so talented they have the capability to make a cover song sound like their very own creation.  The Beatles, Tom Waits, and, most recently, Lissie, come to mind.  But no one did it like the Man In Black.  Johnny took Soundgarden’s grunge-ridden “Rusty Cage” and made it a Wild West, gun slinging, outlaw affair.  And then he took Nine Inch Nails’ haunting, spooky “Hurt” and turned it into a somber deathbed lamentation.

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Oct 29 2010

My Top 300 Songs of the 2000s – 130-121

Today I continue my ongoing feature showcasing my personal picks for the best songs of the past decade, posting ten songs at a time.

130. Flaming Lips – Do You Realize?

Just a couple of days ago, I talked about how awesome this song is, but as fate would have it, the list compels me to elaborate.  In three-and-a-half glorious minutes, Wayne Coyne sums up our life….or at least it feels like he does.  With a simple question, he gives the most personal compliment to everyone listening, then continues to examine the beauty we take for granted – the sun, our friendships, our life.  It’s a sweet call for a simple enjoyment of who we are and what we’re doing, in this very moment of our fleeting lives.  Because it’s hard to make the good things last….

The Flaming Lips – Do You Realize?
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Oct 27 2010

The Top 50 Albums of the 2000s – Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots

Today I continue a series of posts dedicated to the best albums of the last decade, posting analysis of one album at a time.

49. The Flaming Lips – Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots

There’s plenty of works to choose from, and yes, there are die-hards who would claim several alternatives, but for many Flaming Lips fans, the “favorite album” answer is more or less split right down the middle between 1999’s masterpiece The Soft Bulletin and the 2002 follow-up Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots. And while the former isn’t eligible for this list (check the release date, yo!), I still am partial to the latter, which was, at the prime age of 16, my first introduction to these Oklahoma City darlings.

I suppose you could say the two go hand in hand – Bulletin being the Rubber Soul to Yoshimi‘s Revolver.  But the comparison kind of ends there.  Because while the Liverpool lads went from Dylan-esque to full-on studio experimentation and reinvention, the Lips took the celestial sounds of their newfound popcraft to a more consistent level.  Sure, the experimentation is all here, the sonic whooshes and blips and beeps and crunchy electronic noises found on previous works, but here Wayne Coyne’s earnestness is at the forefront, and usually accompanied by a solid backing of beautiful sounds.

Take the acoustic foundation of the album’s highlights (of which there are many) – “Ego Tripping At the Gates of Hell,” “Do You Realize,” and the title track all have memorable strumming to provide a background for Coyne’s honest, revealing croon.  He takes the topics discussed previously to a deeper level, as heard on the classic aforementioned tearjerker “Do You Realize.”  Love, life, and the universe are all taken to task here with sentimental, trademark sonic flourishes to bask in while you ponder.

Upon its release, much like the Soft Bulletin, Yoshimi was compared to the latest effort from Radiohead.  Much of the comparison was the electronic experimentation used, and the stark differences in mood; one reviewer even described the album as music that Radiohead would make if “Thom Yorke believed in God.”  In retrospect, these comparisons seem apt for the time, but no more, because the brilliance that is Yoshimi, made by a band who had already been blowing minds for two decades, is in a league of its own.

The Flaming Lips – Fight Test

The Flaming Lips – Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots Pt.1

The Flaming Lips – Do You Realize?

Oct 3 2010

Sunday Night Videos 10/3/10

Jun 4 2010

My Weekend Will Rock

Here’s what I’m doing this weekend (and beyond)!  Be jealous.

Friday – Kid Sister @ Mohawk

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Apr 9 2010

My Top 100 Songs of 2009 – 80-71

Today I continue my ten-part series showcasing my personal picks for the best songs of last year.

80. Nickel Eye – Brandy of the Damned

Seems like all last year, the Strokes were running around doing all kinds of different things unrelated to their core band.  Julian and Albert pursued solo projects, while Fabrizio started Little Joy.  The only one that sat around and counted money was Nick Valensi.  Bassist Nikolai Fraiture started the Nickel Eye project, churning out a debut album in January of 2009.  While I was mostly underwhelmed with the majority of the disc, “Brandy of the Damned” is the ultra-repetitive, ultra-catchy standout.

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