Thursday, June 29, 2023

Blur gets all 'Scary Monsters' on y'all.

I have been eagerly hoping this track would drop as a single, since it is one of my favorites from the new album. That's all I'll say about that for now, and I will totally understand if you find yourself playing this one again, and again, and again, and...

Wednesday, June 28, 2023

Chicago's Lurk creates an infectious collection of 'Natural Causes.'

Photo by Andy Eclov
Before putting on their latest EP, Natural Causes, I knew absolutely zero about the band Lurk, other than they were based in Chicago. After listening to the album, I still know nothing about the members personally, but I can tell you that this is a potent mixture of powerful rawk that often stunned me with its locked-in approach that manages to also feel totally organic and natural. But I did find myself looking up the dummer's name in particular (it's Pedro Unzueta) because HOLY HELL the choices he makes while perched on that drum throne makes my ears positively cry in awe (and awe often resolves itself into joy, at least in my case).

But truly, the entire band is a marvel. Give Natural Causes a listen once and you'll be like, well this sounds pretty neat. Listen a second time and you may find yourself going, well wowWOWwow, how did they do that? It's a good feeling: try it out!

Monday, June 19, 2023

Sunday funday!

I went to a lovely gathering yesterday, filled with people (writers, artists, academics) I'd never met before, and usually wouldn't cross paths with these days. I kept quiet early on—I still need a little time to acclimate to groups before I feel comfortable jumping into the conversation—but was quickly drawn into a series of discussions with people who had already led remarkable lives in the arts, treating their accomplishments as commonplace when they would stun the average listener (including me!). You know, the kind of brains that just floor you. It was glorious!

I need more of that in my life. In fact, I think we all do!

Wednesday, June 14, 2023

Heavy riffage on a sunny summer's day.

Photo by Steph Montani
It's been a rainy couple of days in the Midwest but the sun is finally riding high in the sky, but wherever you may be, today is an excellent day to let the technicolor riffs of The Dirty Nil carry you off to a world where rock and/or roll is simple, crushing and catchy, and dead-set on having a dang good time. 

As these folks have toured across the U.S. recently, I see each of their stops reflected in posts from friends who are having a blast / having their faces melted / dancing their derrières off at each tour stop, so it seemed like a good time to make sure you were clued into their latest album Free Reign To Passions, out last month.

Consider yourself clued!

Friday, June 02, 2023

A new Sloan video...17 years in the making!

I guess I'd never realized Sloan never made a proper promo video for the ultra-catchy "Who Taught You To Live Like That?" off 2006's sprawling double album Never Hear The End Of It. Since 2005's A Sides Win singles compilation originally also included a DVD of the band's videos to date, I guess maybe the band was "video-ed out" by then? Or maybe they were struggling with the realization that videos seemed to have less purpose without something like a dedicated destination like MTV / Fuse / MuchMusic. And YouTube was only a year or so old at that time, so the easy dissemination of online video wasn't really a mainstream idea yet.

Luckily for all of us, in advance of the vinyl reissue of Never Hear The End Of It (and a double 7-inch of demos and unreleased tracks) the band handed over a ton of photos and material from that era, allowing for an "official" promo video of "Who Taught You To Live Like That?" to finally debut. Enjoy!