Friday, August 28, 2009

TVD Vinyl Giveaways for the Last 33-1/3 Days of Summer!

With the summer waning and kids here in DC actually going back to school today (...and BTW - what gives with that - in August?) TVD continues to gaze solely on the upside with our Last 33-1/3 Days of Summer Vinyl Giveaways!

This week it's TWO LP's for TWO winners. Get at us in the comments for the LP you prefer to pocket (...and my, how diverse we be, right?) Remember to leave us some contact info with your entry, ok? And if you're feeling Twitteriffic, we'll accept your 140 characters as an entry as well.

This 33-1/3 Days of Summer Vinyl Giveaway ends next Monday (8/31) when we'll queue up yet another! Now, get to it!

After traversing the galaxy as the road crew for fellow Oklahomans The Flaming Lips, a strange yet melodically intoxicating band has emerged - psych/prog/experimental pop quartet Stardeath and White Dwarfs. One-half stoners with nothing to do but roll joints on their King Crimson record sleeves and one-half confetti launchers/space bubble technicians, Stardeath and White Dwarfs debut their own free-floating circus with their first full-length album, The Birth. A mind-trip of emotion and mood, recalling everything from "upper" dance freak-outs to "downer" Floyd-esque anthems, The Birth celebrates a love of all things psychedelic. (Via Insound)

George Thorogood And The Destroyers have returned to Capitol/EMI for the July 28th release of The Dirty Dozen, a scorching new blues-rock album pairing six new studio recordings with six classic fan favorites, including three popular tracks that were previously out-of-print in the U.S. Thorogood And The Destroyers will travel to more than 30 U.S. cities this summer on a tour that includes 22 co-headlining dates with Jonny Lang.

TWITSTOCK! Parting Shots

The last time you have to look at any hippies. I promise.

mukisa / retrospect. ,

I didn't realize how difficult picking selections for Twitstock would be until I paused and analyzed the scope of what was being asked of me. Picking five songs that have and continue to influence me across genres is nerve-racking and painfully hard for me to do. Especially for all of the cool kids that check out The Vinyl District. Yeah. However, I figured that I should instead pick songs that kinda randomly came to mind. Ones that are not only influential --- but could actually work when set against an open, Woodstock-type of scene too. Records that somewhat conjure up and invoke the core, spirit, heart and open-ended creativity of psychedelia/ the very least.

Teardrop Explodes - Sleeping Gas (Mp3)
"It's just like sleeping ethereal...I wander around...I just wander around..."

Just wandering around within and against the average. That has pretty much been my physical and mental status message ever since I could remember. Right, but back to my favorite song from my favorite Teardrop Explodes album. So many layers and with such an epic feel to it. From the initial fade-in to the climbing, claustrophobic sound throughout the length of the whole deal. Golden horns, hyper keys, simple yet aggressive lead and bass riffs, well-timed vocal punch-ins and perfect drums. Pop with depth across the board. As you might have guessed from the entrance, Julian's lyrics struck a chord with me immediately at first listen years ago and still stir me to this day.

Reign Ghost - South Hemisphere Blues (Mp3)
I've been trying to track down affordable pressings of their material for a quite few years now (to no avail, frustrating mess - heh). Why? South Hemisphere Blues for one. Tinged with a haunting, swaying sound similar to early Jefferson Airplane, Subway and other similar prog/psych. artists of that era, this rare song embodies the feel of that time to me. Linda Squires's vocals are chilling as well. Sonically and spiritually haunting.

Cypress Hill - When The Shit Goes Down (Mp3)
DJ Muggs's production is notoriously psychedelic rock-influenced. That's fact and Black Sunday was probably his (and Cypress Hill's) crowning nod to that culture. Even more so than "Insane in the Membrane", the lightly menacing bassline works perfectly against the lazy horns pulled from the Outlaw Blues Band, B-Real and Sen Dog's vocals. The entire low-fi feel reminds me of why hip-hop around that particular era --- roughly '87 to '94ish --- was essentially an extension of 60s and 70s progressive and psych. music. Both on record and culturally in many ways.

Broadcast - Man Is Not a Bird (Mp3)
One of the best titles ever? I think so. I'm not completely sure why, but I really do think so. Incredible production on this song. I mean - really incredible whenever I break it down. Though Trish Keenan's tone and Cargill's bass line are amazing on this song (as with most Broadcast songs, imho), the drum session work of Bullock and Jenkins really keeps me hooked onto this song. The way that the patterns are layered and mixed down add to the downbeat prog feel. I was tempted to select "Pendulum" instead, but it's hard to pick between awesome dark and...umm...awesome lite (but with the same flavor and amount of calories). With that being said, I also really wanted to put a Stereolab song in place of this one. Again, that would be like swapping one family member (daughter) for another (mother)? Maybe "A Flower Called Nowhere", "Infinity Girl" or...

Stereolab - Op Hop Detonation (Mp3)
Stereolab is one of my top five groups, so thankfully I'm not picking a top song from them. However, this song pretty much captures the essence of Stereolab with the Moogs, harpsichord, clavinet and who knows how many other instruments to be named later. Whenever I listen to this, my emotions become ultra-conflicted. Part of me wants to float away. Another part wants to chase the sun. Another part feels like I'm tasting the sun. That's always a good thing to me. Plus, Laetitia's lyrics and voice against Gane and co. always helps to induce lucid dream states during any listening session. Yes. They are that serious to me. Heh. Not their best song (can go on for a while about them), but still so surreal...just like their messages often times.

Honorable mentions:
Dungen - Svart är Himlen (Mp3)
Blue Cheer - Out of Focus (Mp3)
Zakarrias - Cosmic Bridge (Mp3)
Black Moth Super Rainbow - Caterpillar House (Mp3)
Felt - Something Sends Me to Sleep (Mp3)
Scritti Polliti - Flesh & Blood (Mp3)

Bonus beats for TVD:

Portishead - Requiem for Anna (Un Jour Comme un Autre) (Mp3)
(for the TVD Portishead...umm...heads)
Film School - He's a DeepDeep Lake (Mp3)


Day five: the download delirium continues:


Paul Michel

So I decided my tracks would be politically themed. Because politics inherently 'matters', right? And also 'cuz these songs rule. That also matters.

Elbow - Leaders of the Free World (Mp3)
I'll start with one of my favorite bands of all time. These guys are sick -- anthemic songwriting, cinematic orchestration, bad-ass drumming, some of the best lyrics of all time... and they're British! This song's about George Bush, but the chorus line "the leader of the free world/are just little boys throwing stones/and they're easy to ignore/til they're knocking on the door of your homes" is one of the all time best politically-themed choruses ever. And seeing as how Obama's gonna throw some more cannon fodder on Afghanistan, it kind of applies to him, too.

El-P - Deep Space 9mm (Mp3)
Going alphabetically here. El-P's bleak lyrics and anxious beats are great counterparts to one of the best rap songs ever. Loosely political, this one's more urban day-in-the-life type stuff. It also taught me the meaning of the word 'murk' (sp?), as in "getting murked on a train over Roosevelt Island". Whenever I need a new sound, or need to get my head out of whatever creative rut, El-P is there.

Majority Rule - Endings (Mp3)

My favorite Majority Rule song. Disclaimer: it's my brother's band. But these guys matter -- they matter because they're family. They matter because they're absolutely great. They matter because they elevated hardcore music into something more creative and intelligent and melodic. You should've seen the moshpits at the Wilson Center when these guys played. So much energy it literally brought tears to my eyes. Key line "Countdown to endings/broken contracts can break hearts".

Muse - Apocalypse Please (Mp3)
Also British. And the guy kind of sounds like Thom Yorke with a rope around his testicles -- which in the case of arena rock is a good thing. "Its time we saw a miracle/its time for something biblical" -- Matthew Bellamy actually sings this with complete sincerity. I want this guy singing "this is the end of the world" during the actual end of the world. Another song about George Bush (kinda) but so well put together. And who doesn't like a good revolution anthem now and again.

Refused - Shape of Punk to Come (Mp3)
Swedish hardcore at its finest. No one else has ever sung so earnestly about revolution and the punk/hardcore community. If you were straight edge or vegan, you knew about these guys, for sure. They went on to form some horribly crappy bands after this, but this song (and this entire record) holds up after almost 15 years. Whenever I listen to this, I'm instantly transported back to the days of house shows and serious discussions on the state of the world and anarchical syndicalism as a valid social movement. And that idealism is what matters the most, I guess...

Catch Paul Michel this Saturday (8/29) at The Rock and Roll Hotel with Mother Mother and We Were Pirates.