Thursday, August 31, 2006

The Lemonheads: Comeback

The long awaited comeback of the 90ies indie rock stars, The Lemonheads, is finally coming true.

After a nine-year recording absence, during which Evan Dando, the Lemonheads frontman, performed off and on as a solo act and released a live solo album, it was announced in the summer of 2005 that the band had quietly reformed - with a recording lineup bolstered by Bill Stevenson and Karl Alverez, ex-members of The Descendents - and are working on new material in a studio in Colorado. Recently, the live lineup has fluctuated, with Bill Stevenson, Chris Brokaw (Come (US band)), and George Berz (Dinosaur Jr) all sitting in on drums during 2005, while Juliana Hatfield and Josh Lattanzi - chiefly known for his work with Ben Kweller - have performed a few shows on bass.

In September 2005, Dando, Stevenson, and Lattanzi performed two shows at Shepherds Bush Empire in London, where they played the It's a Shame About Ray LP in its entirety.

In April 2006, The Lemonheads were signed to Vagrant Records. Their self-titled Vagrant debut will be released on September 26th 2006 (US - September 25th UK); the album features special guests Garth Hudson and J Mascis on select tracks. You can think of it as a Best of the Lemonheads Volume II, featuring songs from the band’s greatest era that didn’t quite yet exist, played a little louder and little faster. “You should listen to the DESCENDENTS’ [1982] Milo Goes to College to get an idea of what the next LEMONHEADS record sounds like”, says Evan of his newly reformed band. “I wanted to make a rock record, a melodic rock record.” And more to the point, “Also, I’m sick of selling solo T-shirts.”

Backbone, a track from the new album, is available for streaming at band's MySpace page.

The Lemonheads - Rick James Acoustic Style
The Lemonheads - Into Your Arms
The Lemonheads - Mrs Robinson
The Lemonheads - Ride With Me (acoustic)
The Lemonheads @ MySpace

Indie Albums: Beirut, Danielson, Destroyer, Brightback Morning Light, Hot Chip, DFA, Herbert,
Phoenix, Camera Obscura, CYHSY, Neko Case, The Radio Dept, The Horror The Horror, Girl Talk,
The Pipettes, Tv on The Radio, Wilderness, Voxtrot, The Futureheads, Tiga, Lily Allen, etc.
Tenacious D, Flogging Molly, Alana Davis

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Ben Kweller

Ben Kweller was originially the frontman for the band Radish, a group compared to Nirvana by Rolling Stone Magazine. The band's popularity grew in the Dallas, Texas music scene from its formation in 1993. However, the band was dismissed by critics as little more than an imitation of Nirvana with the novelty of an extremely young lead vocal-guitarist (Kweller was in his teens for the entire existence of the band). Nonetheless, Kweller and his two bandmates, bassist Bryan Blur and drummer John Kent, were signed to a major record label in 1995 by Mercury Records. Regardless of a much-hyped beginning, which included appearances on The Weird Al Show, Conan O'Brien and David Letterman, Radish failed to strike big success with either its first record Dizzy or its sophomore effort Restraining Bolt.

Kweller began his solo career with his first album Freak Out It's..Ben Kweller. Recorded using a basic pro-tools setup, the album attracted the attention from the likes of Evan Dando of The Lemonheads. Dando invited Kweller to perform on tour with him as the main support across America and Europe. In 2001 Ben Kweller signed to ATO Records, and released the EP Phone Home. Several months later in March of 2002 Sha Sha Kwellers first solo studio LPwas released. Sha Sha included the very radio-friendly and popular single 'Wasted & Ready'. The title track reconciles his past career efforts with Radish and the difficulty of finding an identity as a 20 year-old artist beginning a musical career for the second time. The record kept many of the familiar sounds of Nirvana, but also worked in other pop music influences such as Weezer and Ben Folds. The album grew in popularity with a grassroot effort with his website and a promotion group called TeamBK, which promoted word-of-mouth advertising.

In 2003, Kweller toured Australia with Ben Folds and Ben Lee as The Bens. The trio produced an eponymous EP.

2004 saw the release of On My Way. On My Way saw a whole new side of Kweller, the writing showed a more mature and subudued sound well beyond Kweller's 25 years. The album was recorded 'live' - there were limited overdubs and no use of headphones. After the release of On My Way, Kweller embarked on more touring playing to his largest audiences ever.

In September Ben Kweller will be releasing his third album, titled "Ben Kweller". His tour for the album will not be solo acoustic, but rather a 6 piece band complete with an organ.

Ben Kweller - Sha Sha
Ben Kweller - Wasted And Ready
Ben Kweller - On My Way

Mew - And The Glass Handed Kites !!!
Feeder - Comfort In Sound + Pushing The Senses !!!
Tahiti 80 - Wallpaper For The Soul !!!
The Delays - Faded Seaside Glamour
Broken Social Scene - You Forgot It In People
Explosions In The Sky - Live @ LA Troubador 12-17-05
Flogging Molly - Within A Mile Of Home
Tenacious D, Flogging Molly, Alana Davis
Live @ KDGE Adventure Club:
Ash, Ben Kweller, Bright Eyes, Phantom Planet, Rilo Kiley, Snow Patrol, The Zutons, Thrills, etc.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Mando Diao

Mando Diao are a garage rock band from Borlänge, Sweden. According to the band, the name Mando Diao has no meaning at all, but rather appeared to band member Björn Dixgård in a dream.

The roots of Mando Diao date back to 1995 when Björn Dixgård was a member of a band called Butler. Band members came and went and four years later the rest of the current line-up decided to take that project more seriously. Björn Dixgård and Gustaf Norén locked themselves up in a summer house and spent six months writing songs. The now-renamed band made their first public performances in the clubs of their hometown Borlänge in 1999. A local writer described them in an article as the best unsigned band he had ever seen. This was soon followed by a record deal with EMI Sweden. In 2002 their first album Bring 'Em In was released in Sweden. It contains early demo versions of their songs, partly recorded in the basement of keyboardist Daniel Haglund who left the band later in 2003. In 2003 the album was released internationally, along with their debut single "Sheepdog." As of 2004, the band is hailed enthusiastically by the music press as one of the most sanguine newcomer bands of the year. The album Hurricane Bar was released in 2005.

The band supported The Bravery on their most recent tour in 2005, along with Los Angeles band The Colour. Their song "Down in the Past" was featured on the game NHL 2006 by EA Sports. The song "God Knows" was featured on FIFA 06 by EA Sports.

The Mando Diao is releasing their third album named "Ode To Ochrasy". The official release date is set for August, 28 (today). The first single from the album is called "Long Before Rock'n'Roll" and the video for it can be streamed at band's official page.

Mando Diao - Long Before Rock'n'Roll
Mando Diao - Sheepdog

Crowbar - Lifesblood For The Downtrodden
James Mercer (The Shins) - Live Acoustic Set 10-10-2004

Friday, August 25, 2006

Live Weekend

Slowly, the summer gets over and the concert season begins. To warm you up, I collected a couple of links with the live performances of your favorite indie bands :)

Live: CYHSY, DeVotchKa, Elbow, Goldfrapp, Halou, Sigur Ros, Youth Group

Live: The Dresden Dolls

Live: Modest Mouse 2003-07-23

Live: Laura Veirs, Colin Meloy (The Decemberists)

Live: Oceansize

Live: Sun O))) (Tegen Tonen, 3-3-2006)

Live: Remy Zero (KEXP)

Matt Costa - Songs We Sing !!!
The Mountain Goats - The Sunset Tree + Tallahassee
Jack's Mannequin - Everything In Transit
Muse - Showbiz + Absolution
The Decemberists - Picaresque
Billy Bragg And Wilco - Mermade Avenue
VA - Murder Was The Case OST
Electronic Albums
Nelly Furtado - Loose
Too Short - Life Is Too Short
Amon Tobin - Supermodified
Skye - Mind How You Go
Sole - Albums

Thursday, August 24, 2006


The Good, The Bad and the Queen, the act which calls Blur front man Damon Albarn and Clash bassist Paul Simonon members, will have its debut single in stores shortly. The band's "Kingdoom of Doom" is set to hit stores in the United Kindgom Oct. 30 in vinyl and CD single format. No word on an American release for the single, or the band's London-themed album, has been revealed ...

Modest Mouse will have its new album in stores just in time to stuff Christmas stockings. The act's We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank is set to hit stores Dec. 19 from Epic Records. The album, which follows up 2004's Good News for People Who Love Bad News (Epic), features the first appearance of the band's new guitarist, Johnny Marr. The former Smiths axe man joined the band while recording We Were Dead and eventually became a full-fledged member of the act ...

Keane put American tour plans on hold as front man Tom Chaplin checked into a drug rehabilitation clinic. The act had planned to hit North America to support its latest, Under the Iron Sea (2006, Interscope) this fall, but have put the tour on ice as Chaplain retreats from the world of rock'n'roll to conquer problems with drugs and alcohol. "I've been having to deal with an increasing problem with drink and drugs, and the time has come to get the professional help I need to sort myself out," Chaplain said in a statement. "I feel desperately disappointed to be letting down our fans, but I want to get myself right now so that I can be back on the road for the rest of the year." ...

Despite what you might have heard -- from Rivers Cuomo's own mouth, even -- Weezer hasn't split up. The band went online to fire the opening salvos in a battle of semantics and fight rumors that it had split up, posting a picture of three of its members, including Cuomo, at a table together along with a statement saying the power-pop act hadn't thrown in the towel. "Take those 'Weezer Split?' headlines and place them firmly into the 'Don't believe the hype' bin," the band posted on its website. "And have yourself a fine afternoon now." That's news to most of the world. In July, Cuomo told MTV News that his act was on hiatus after a miserable Make Believe (2005, Geffen) received a lukewarm welcome from fans and critics. The band didn't reveal any future plans to go with the "it's not a breakup" post ...

Beck's leaving the art direction for his new album cover up to fans. The cover for his upcoming album, The Information, which hits stores Oct. 3 from Interscope Records, will literally be a blank canvas for fans to decorate. Albums will come with collections of professionally designed stickers to adorn the cover ...

Singer/songwriter Tommy Guerrero will have another album in stores in a little more than a month. The San Francisco indie-rock stylist dabbles in everything from funk and Spanish folk to strings and straightforward guitar pop on From the Soil to the Soil, which hits stores Oct. 10 from Quannum Projects ...

Bob Tilton - Crescent + The Leading Hotels Of The World !!!
Wolfmother - Wolfmother
Indie Albums: The Decemberists, Neutral Milk Hotel, Matt Costa, Final Fantasy, Red House Painters,
Rocky Votolato, Six Organs Of Admittance, Skygreen Leopards, Sufjan Stevens, Sun Kil Moon,
The Weepies, ..Of Sinking Ships, American Football, Angels & Airwaves, etc.
Cocorosie - Noah's Ark
Regina Spektor - Soviet Kitsch + Begin To Hope
Vast - April
Alternative/Rock Albums
Annwn - Anarchy & Rapture + The Lovers Enchained

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

The Thermals

A Portland, OR, supergroup of sorts, the Thermals feature Hutch Harris and Kathy Foster of the twee/folk-pop duo Hutch and Kathy and the All Girl Summer Fun Band, Kind of Like Spitting's Ben Barnett, and Operacycle's Jordan Hudson. The group started in early 2002 as a way for its members to play just for the fun of it, but their insistent melodies and punk-inspired urgency won them a local following quickly. Death Cab for Cutie's Ben Gibbard was one of the Thermals' first fans and got the group in touch with Sub Pop, who signed them within four months of the band's formation. The Thermals released a single in January of 2003, followed by their full-length, More Parts Per Million, later that spring. Fuckin A, the Thermals' sophomore effort, marked their first release for Sub Pop in mid-2004. In the midst of recording the Thermals' third full-length, founding drummer Jordan Hudson left the group. Foster and Harris resumed recording, and played all instruments on 2006's The Body, The Blood, The Machine. Drummer Caitlin Love joined the Thermals just in time for a European tour in spring 2006. Lorin Coleman, of the Portland indie rock act Virga, was added on drums in late summer.

The Thermals music style is similiar to those of the Hold Steady, whose new release is also about to come. With The Body, The Blood, The Machine, the Thermals have succeeded to create a decent, probably even better, follower to the excellent Fuckin A. It's certainly one of the best releases in this year. Highly Recommended!

The Thermals - A Pillar Of Salt (from The Body, The Blood, The Machine)
The Thermals - Stare Like Yours (from Fuckin A)
The Thermals - How We Know (from Fuckin A)
The Thermals - No Culture Icons (from More Parts Per Million)
The Thermals @ MySpace

Cat Power - You Are Free !!!
The Format - Interventions & Lullabies !!!
Ted Leo & The Farmacists - Shake The Sheets + Hearts Of Oak !!!
Snow Patrol - Eyes Open + Final Straw !!!
Mountain Goats - Zopilote Machine + Jack And Faye [EP] + We Shall All Be Healed + All Hail West Texas !!!
+ Dixie Chicks, Darrell Scott, Chris Thile, Sean Watkins, Mark Knopfler, William Shatner, etc.
Boris - Pink
Thursday - A City By The Light Divided
Lucie Silvas - Breath In
Linkin Park - Albums
Cog - The New Normal

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Bel Auburn

Bel Auburn is an indie rock band from Mid-Ohio. They've been playing together for just over three years. The band consists of Scott, who plays the telecaster and sings the most; Mark, who plays the drums and sings the second most; Jared, who writes all the lyrics and makes noise with his guitar; Justin, who is Jared's little brother, and the guy on stage with the laptop; and their most newest addition, Mark Abrams, who plays bass and helps them work the rest of their instruments.

The band's first album, "Cathedrals" was met with quite a bit of attention, and is currently available through iTunes, Amazon, VCast Music, Barnes and Noble, eMusic, Napster,, and many other retailers. Bel Auburn has a new release named "Lullabies in A & C", which is available for preview at band's homepage.

The sound of Bel Auburn is enjoyable, a bit melancholic in the moments, coloured with fuzzy guitars end electronic tunes present in most of the songs. It's perfect music for the moments when you wish to lay down on your bed, close your eyes with your headphones on, and let the music do the rest. Check it!

Bel Auburn - Lullabies in A & C
Bel Auburn @ MySpace

Indie Albums: The Walkmen, Franz Ferdinand, Tool, The Darkness, The Strokes, Sonic Youth,
Placebo, RHCP, Muse, Morrisey, Goldfrapp, Fischerspooner, Elefant, The Flaming Lips, YYY,
Thom Yorke, Radiohead, Regina Spektor, The Boy Least Likely To, Pearl Jam, etc.
Albums: 2raumwohnung, The Go! Team, Kasabian, Asian Dub Foundation, etc.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Thao Nguyen

Thao Nguyen is a Vietnamese-American folk singer/songwriter out of Virginia. Since the anxious age of twelve, Thao has worked in her mother’s laundromat in a suburb of D.C. Between cleaning, making change, and most notably, folding the linens of strangers, she played guitar and wrote songs. Thao credits her intricate guitar playing to the finite hand move- ments cultivated by years of intense laundry origami.See and hear for yourself how life at the ‘mat has paid off big time in the way of folk and blues. In 2005, Thao released her debut album Like The Linen. She's signed to Kill Rock Stars, and she is currently touring around Europe with Laura Veirs and the Tortured Souls.

Thao Nguyen - City Sky
Thao Nguyen - Georgeus Thing
Thao Nguyen - Tallymarks
Thao Nguyen - Daytrotter Sessions
Thao Nguyen @ MySpace

Indie Albums: Adam Green, The Research, Final Fantasy, The Pipettes, Feist, Regina Spektor, The Streets,
The Rosebuds,
The Paddingtones, The Long Blondes, The Libertines, The Jam, The Brunettes, Tegan & Sara,
The Thermals, The Grates,
We Are Scientists, White Rose Movement, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Thom Yorke,
The Unicorns, Ludes, M.I.A., Interpol, etc.

Scot Walker - The Drift
Built To Spill - You In Reverse
Peaches - The Teaches Of Peaches
Nine Inch Nails - Rusty Nails
+ Counting Crowes, Led Zeppelin, etc.