Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Neon - Skydiver

Skydiver by Neon was released in 1981. It's a song about love and so easy going and sweet, for summer, for spring, a song almost as good as dreaming. It made an appearance on Colette #8 in February 2007, which was mixed by Joakim.

Neon - Skydiver (1981)

I also re-uploaded both Tubeway Army songs, "Down In the Park," and "I Nearly Married a Human." This blog-entry has received a lot of hits, so the songs are back up for your listening pleasure. Just click on the LP Album cover below:

Coincidentally, at the original time of writing this post, a new Replicas Redux album was being prepared to be re-released in March. The album is now available for purchase at Amazon.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Only Joking!

As many of you know, Coachella kicked off today. Today's lineup is probably already closing, if not closed. Tomorrow, Youtube will be flooded with video footage and blogs will be blogging about all kinds of hype that went down. After Sunday there will be an untold number of videos of Justice, whose 2007 appearance was their first live show in the States.

There was a long period of waiting and teasing the virgin crowd. Just as the sun had set, Justice came on. The cross was lit. Many people in the crowd didn't even know who Justice were; emaciated scenesters from LA with really, really cool tattoos about meanings exclusive and unbeknownst to those that have no tattoos confidently told other emaciated scensters (...) "they're cool, plus they're from France, meaning they're not from the States." And other people knew well who Justice were, but had no idea what to expect from them. At that point in time, Justice had only a slew of remixes under their belt. Still, a slew, but they had produced no original material themselves. Close to two years of touring, what would they offer at Coachella?

Everyone there remembers it. For the people that were there, at the moment when Genesis dropped, it was impossible, it was music from another planet. In a word, ineffable. Genesis was not the only song never before heard. Their first "live show" consisted of their never before heard album. Unfortunately, and it is sad, that moment will never happen again.

Now to be anti-climactic. What may happen Sunday maybe exciting for many of the fans Justice have come to win over. SebastiAn's EP has recently been leaked, and in a different medium, Motor had leaked much earlier. Somehow I managed to end up here:

Justice have remixed Motor, least to mention Underworld, and it will probably be dropped Sunday. Why not? It turns out the best blog is Wikipedia. I've been careful not to use this word before, but Let There Be Night has exclusive news. Even Google can't compete.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Sparks: When will they Burn Out?

Of recent, Sparks has surfaced up in many blogs. They have come to light simply because of the fact that French world dominators Justice decided to include their outrageous song "Tryouts For the Human Race" into their Christmas mix, the mix everybody loved, the mix Fabric Live rejected.

Sparks were always considered "different." This difference, however you like to think of it, can probably explain their longevity, and the popularity the can hold today. "Tryouts For the Human Race" is an exceptional piece, but it is not the only song that is as accessible.

With little success leading up to 1979, Ron and Russell Mael found themselves in a stale place. Instead of working with session musicians as they did before, the brothers decided to take an experimental and electronic turn; they hired a producer we should all now be familiar with. Large credit is due to the larger-than-life musical godfather, Giorgio Moroder, as he oversaw production for two albums, the sound probably most associated with the two Mael brothers.

The first album under Moroder, an LP titled "Number 1 Song in Heaven," was the breakout album noted for the essential sound Sparks were established for, and has been noted for influencing Pet Shop Boys, Depeche Mode, and New Order. Here is a song which is probably aware of it's title, and the title aware of the song: it's the number one song in heaven.

Sparks - Number One Song In Heaven (zshare)

Another excellent song from the LP is "Beat the Clock." The song's lyrics are about the fanaticism about being timely, doing everything that can be done tommorrow, but today, excelling in life, when there is probably nothing to life at all, nothing that necessitates an outrageous and almost neurotic attention to time, one held at the expense of peoples' unawareness that they ought to stop and maybe have some fun in life.

Sparks - Beat the Clock

Their second and last album to feature the production of Moroder, "Terminal Jive," produced the single "When I'm with You." This song became a huge hit in France, and the single also broke into the Top 20 in Australia. France and Australia; it doesn't ring a bell . . .

Sparks - When I'm With You

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Tin Cans of the Night

photo credit: jessica g.

When times were simpler, the official album charts and MTV told you what was hot. But now, with the ability to share music within seconds, it's difficult to tell what's popular from day to day. So, when a band like M83 releases a new album, it may seem like a big deal to me, but I have to all but assume that it isn't the case for the rest of the world. There's no surprise that their album released just last week, Saturdays = Youth, might have slipped through the top 40s chart; but it is still surprising to me to see that M83 is currently one of the most searched and blogged bands on Hype Machine.

M83's new album has soundtrack written all over it. The title itself puts it in the category of innocence, rites of passage, intense nostalgia, and angst. Anyone even close to the age of M83's Anthony Gonzalez (26) can note the obvious references throughout the album. Even the cover, which depicts several awkward teens with an interesting, to say the least, choice of fashion, is like an Eye Spy book for pop cultural influences: I spy Donnie Darko, I spy the Brat Pack! Musically, each song seems like a departure from the typical M83 sound, which has been known to be much rawer and more experimental. Ewan Pearson's helping hand clearly gives the tracks a more produced, ready-for-America feel. The album as a whole feels like a soundtrack, and not necessarily one that is produced by one band, but a compilation of bands, from Frou Frou on "You, Appearing," to New Order (think "Age of Consent") on "Graveyard Girl," to Depeche Mode on "Couleurs," to Journey on "Skin of the Night." Some songs even set the visual stage, as in "Highway of Endless Dreams," which starts, "7 a.m., dusty road, I'm gonna drive until it burns my bones." The song--a long build up that ends before it releases--then proceeds to suit quite well an early morning drive on a desert highway. But despite the obvious influences, every note has that special M83 touch that makes you feel as though you are drifting in a barred spiral galaxy.

M83 - Couleurs

After listening to the album nearly incessantly over the past week, I still am unsure whether to dub this album as timeless or a soon-to-be guilty pleasure. The lyrics are campy, though admittedly deliberatly so, and the chord progressions are at times sugary sweet. Whereas M83 was once a band that was not for everyone, now they are open to anyone between the ages of 18 and 35. But for now, unlike the pop culture that Saturdays = Youth refers to, these songs are uniquely ours.

I recommend that you do buy the album! For some less blogged about songs, check out these recent gems as well:

M83 - Graveyard Girl (Yuksek remix)

Midnight Juggernauts - Shadows (M83 remix)

Friday, April 18, 2008

We Do Piknikz

So it's been a while, so I'm gonna try to make it up to you. Plain and simple, I've been (as I'm sure you have) bombarded by really good stuff lately, and I need to share some of my thoughts as well:

1. Jamie Lidell's new album Jim is out now, and it's pretty fantastic. He's gone less electronic and more Motown on us, and it works really well since his voice always had a soul element to it. As is always with the music I like, there are remixes so u can listen to what u like whilst shakin' ur booty. Lidell's single A Little Bit of Feel Good has been remixed by the masochistical melody master from Ed Banger, Mr. Oizo. Peep it:

Jamie Lidell - A Little Bit of Feel Good (Mr. Oizo Remix)

2. Three great albums i'm listening to right now:
- Cut Copy's In Ghost Colours - 5 years people have been waiting for this one if they were avid fans, but if you weren't one then you will be now. Amazing album, light, poppish, full of the cotton candy glaze a summer album should have, and so effortless it makes musicians wanna bonfire their instruments and call it quits:

Cut Copy - Out There On The Ice

-Pnau's self titled is kickin' my ass; I mean, maybe I'm that out of the loop, but these guys came out of nowhere to make kidzbop adult appropriate dance music that is simple and beautiful, on The MFA side of things:

PNAU - Dancing on the Water

-The Presets' Apocalypso is gonna be another Modular juggernaught this summer, but not in the same way as their aforementioned labelmates. They are raw industrial, somewhat cheese but only in the way that it's a compliment.

The Presets - Talk Like That

K this is all for today; I promise to be more industrious in the upcomin' weeks.

P.S. All the contributors from this blog will be together in Davis this weekend, hopefully we see some of our reader base.