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Author: "Kate B"

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Game On

Game Rebellion

Afrocentric rock bands are a rare but beautiful thing. Living Colour, Bad Brains, Fishbone — these guys stepped boldly into the mostly white arena of punk and hardcore, bringing with them styles and genres as divergent as jazz, funk, and hip-hop. And history was made. These days there are more and more afro-rock bands, most notably Brooklyn indie darlings TV On The Radio. Game Rebellion hails from the BK too, but is intentionally more lowbrow. Case in point: “Dance Girl,” which combines gnarly synth rock and bombastic hip-hop while cheering on a dancer and her pole. It’s brazen and dirty, infected and infectious. Things get more political with “Blind,” a jagged rap-rocker with lyrics that can slice you open. “We’re zombies of debt, we’ve been buried alive,” spits lead MC, Netic. Whether Game Rebellion is shooting off scathing social commentary or lyrically tipping strippers, there’s never a dull moment.

Sweet Relief

If you love sludge metal bands that drag their guitars and drums through dense bogs of distortion and jolting tempo changes, screaming doom and gloom the whole way, then you’ll want to steer clear of Everett Coast. Hailing from the sunny City of Angels, the duo’s breezy folk rock is antithetical to anything that’s hard edge, hardcore, or hard knock. Like Simon and Garfunkel and the Everly Brothers, Everett Coast is all about harmonics. Layered and staggered vocal harmonies permeate their songs. On “Just Let Go” shimmering keys and glistening guitars create dreamy, ethereal rock. While metal bands like Lamb of God bellow lyrics like, “Destroy yourself / see who gives a f—k,” Everett Coast stays positive, singing, “I know we’ll meet again someday / Where we can be the best of friends.” Our point is this: Life’s hard. Sometimes misery’s company is a catharsis, and sometimes it’s better to stay in the light. Next time you need to feel good about things, you know where to go.

Discourse & Dischord

 

The Good

Missy Elliott performs with Timbaland over Labor Day

Those of you who have been missing a little Misdemeanor in your lives can go ahead and get excited. Missy Elliott emerged from obscurity this weekend at the Fontainebleu BleuLive concert in Miami Beach. Her old pal Timbaland brought her to the stage to rock her new singles “Triple Threat” and “9th Inning.” And lucky for you, somebody recorded it. Enjoy.

James Murphy wants you to be his mood board

Canon has asked James Murphy, formerly of LCD Soundsystem and presently of awesome DJ music, to curate a collection of photos that will be used to inform a short film they are producing. So, being the lazy sack he is, Murphy is asking fans for help. Check out his plea for photography below, and help a brother out. Continue reading ‘Discourse & Dischord’

Young and Wild and Free

Take The Day

Hanging with buds, falling in love, partying all night — that’s what teenage dreams are made of. Take The Day, out of New Berlin, Wis., has dedicated their talent to providing a killer soundtrack for youth. Their songs are high-adrenaline, hooky dance rockers, inspired in equal measure by Top 40 pop and EDM. “Freaks” gets the blood pumping with big synth blooms, pitch-shifted beats, and grungy guitars. Although Take The Day is clearly influenced by artists like Skrillex, they like their rock, as the gnarly guitar solos of “Look Who’s Laughing Now” prove. But it’s “Celebrities” that epitomizes what the band is all about. “Gimme the fame so everybody knows my name,” demands singer Adam Devlin, “I want to party every day.” If you think this band is settling for anything less than supreme rock stardom, you got another thing coming.

Let’s Hear It For The Boy

Talain Rayne

Talain Rayne is shipwrecked.” Thus begins Talain Rayne’s Kickstarter manifesto, a hilarious, touching plea for donations to help the singer-songwriter get a new set of wheels and get out of Dodge. (Dodge being Phoenixville, PA.) Rayne’s ability to raise more than $12K is due in part to his uncanny resemblance to Tom Hanks in Cast Away. But it’s also due to his huge talent. Rayne crafts swooning, emotive indie pop with stomping drums, cascading pianos, twinkling xylophone and awesome boy-girl harmonies. From his dreamy meditations on sibling revelry in “Dear Sister, Your Brother” to the fierce vulnerability in “16,” Rayne knows how to pack a visceral punch. Probably one of his most moving songs is “Family Wall,” written for his father. “I take back everything I said, all because I love you, dad,” he croons. There aren’t a lot of dudes singing love songs to their dads out there, which makes this one all the more touching. Hey Talain — we love you, man.

Discourse & Dischord

 

The Good

?uestlove inherits Jimmy Fallon’s dynasty in “Downton Sixby”

Ever wondered what goes on behind the scenes of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon? “Downtown Sixby” gives you an inside peek the talk show host’s life offstage, where cue card valets come up with hilarious Kardashian jokes, hirsute daughters look for love, and Roots drummers stand to inherit the Fallon dynasty.

Flight of the Conchords reunite for charity

It’s business time again for Flight of the Conchords. The New Zealand duo have reunited to pen a charity single for Cure Kids called “Feel Inside (And Stuff Like That). Check out the lyric video below to hear how robbing robbers and feta cheese just might be the solution to it all. Continue reading ‘Discourse & Dischord’

The Road to Nowhere

The Nowhere Nauts

Most teen musicians play their first gigs in dubious places — their parents’ garage, an empty parking lot, or, if they’re lucky, an abandoned shed out in the middle of nowhere. Not The Nowhere Nauts. Sofie Kapur, Hunter Lombard, Anders Kapur, and Tony Franco grew up in NYC, performing at clubs that more established bands would kill to get into. After being brought together by former Guided By Voices drummer Kevin March in 2008, the group began mining their influences and styles. What emerged was street-smart indie rock with punk and jazz underpinnings. “Try To Light My Fuse” starts with pulsing synths before guitars and bass burst forward, bobbing and weaving around sharp angles while drums whip them on. Sofie’s powerful voice is eerily reminiscent of Ann Wilson from Heart, shaking the rafters with wild abandon. “The prize is in your view / Why not take a chance?” She’s singing to you — turn up the volume and grab your prize.

Anthems Of The Underdog

Matthew Peabody of The Missing Chums

Matthew Peabody and Mike Kegler share a long history, one that spans bands and orchestras and college jam sessions. The Missing Chums is a continuation of that musical synergy. Along with keyboardist Matt Douponce and bassist Henry Van Loon, the band cranks out jumpy, lo-fi rockers. The title track to their debut album, Out of the Gates, is an anthem of uncertainty. “I’m guessing this great flood will wash your conscience clean,” Peabody warbles over furious strumming, handclaps, and tambourines. The excellent “Cover It Up” is more brazen, steeped in the ‘80s with big distorted guitars, rock steady drums, and Peabody’s loosened croon. The Chums’ music is raw and unrefined, equal parts nervous energy and swaggering hooks. On “Yes You May” isolation and desire creep in, but by “Moving Target” the group has pulled out the tambourines for a low-country jig. Life’s tough. Still, every underdog has its day.

Discourse & Dischord

The Good

Avril Lavigne engaged to Chad Kroeger from Nickelback

So you probably heard that Avril Lavigne is engaged to Nickelback frontman Chad Kroeger. The two have been secretly dating for six months, and announced their engagement on the cover of Hello! Canada this week. To quote Lavigne, “What the hell? It’s like Pink marrying Scott Stapp, or Tom Cruise marrying Katie Holmes.” In any case, we can at least enjoy this priceless video one approving fan created for the happy couple.

 

Rihanna still in love with Chris Brown

Rihanna fessed to Oprah that considers Chris Brown the love of her life, and that the two have “maintained a very close friendship” since her restraining order was lifted. Naturally, not everyone reacted positively to that revelation. We think it was pretty brave of her to be that honest knowing the backlash that was in store. Kudos to you, RiRi.

The Bad

Avril Lavigne engaged to Chad Kroeger from Nickelback


Seriously, is this a prank? Where’s Ashton?

Lady Gaga reveals her little monsters in home video

This week Lady Gaga showed her fans some home videos in which she cuddles with her godson, Zachary (whose pop is Elton John), rehearses for a performance of “You and I,” and dances around her living room flashing her breasts to her sister. We know which snippet you’ll be looking for.

The Ugly

Pussy Riot sentenced to jail

Pussy Riot, the Russia punk trio arrested for performing an anti-Putin song and dance number in a church, were sentenced to two years in prison, despite countless musicians throwing their support behind the band. Many expressed their disappointment in the verdict, including Patrick Carney from The Black Keys, who tweeted, “We will never being playing a show in Russia as long as they imprison innocent musicians for speaking their minds peacefully.” Boom.

Avril Lavigne engaged to Chad Kroeger from Nickelback

Why?

Miscellany

Mourning Bells

Warning Birds

Warning Birds is a band of Perthians led by Sam Carmody, a virtuosic singer songwriter with a bent for storytelling that tugs at the heartstrings. With his bandmates—bassist Carmen Pepper, guitarist Bensen Thomas and drummer Tim Bates—Carmody crafts dreamy, fitful indie pop. On “Sally” glistening pangs of guitar meld with gossamer layers of vocals and brisk rhythms in a tale of love gone dangerously wrong. “Plastic Palms” explodes out of the gate with soaring guitars and drums, then settles into a meditative meander through watery guitars and the intertwined vocals of Carmody and Pepper. Nowhere do these two sound more transcendent than on “Ghost Town,” a shuffling, melancholic melody with a chorus that swoons. “There must be something here,” they sing in harmony, before their voices are swallowed by rolling drums and funereal horns. Fans of Arcade Fire will love this. Put it on, sit back, and get your blissed-out brood on.

 


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