Sunday, January 31, 2010

The Grammys Still Suck

Remember last year when we all thought that the Grammys weren't going to suck as much because Radiohead was nominated for best album?

Remember when Radiohead didn't actually win best album?

Remember who did get best album? I don't. (Coldplay maybe?)

The Grammys have gone right back to sucking. And I'm going to talk about how this years Grammy nominations suck.

The record of the year thing is full of lame albums that aren't worth typing about so I'll skip that.

Remember last year when No Age was nominated for best packaging?

Remember finding out that they had an award for best packaging?

MGMT and Silversun Pickups are all nominated for best artist despite having been in car commercials for the past 4 years. And Oracular Spectacular came out in 2007. 2007!

MGMT is nominated for some group vocals category for Kids. Seriously? If any alternative band should be nominated for this, it's Animal Collective. What with their Beach Boys influences and all.

That David Byrne and Brian Eno album is nominated for best alternative album. I think it should win because it's better than the new Phoenix and the new Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Although, that Phoenix album is really good. This one's going to be a close race.

No lo-fi album nominated for best packaging this year. Neko Case is in there though.

Apparently, surround sound albums exist. I guess Zaireeka turned out to be like influential and stuff.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

The iPad is just a fat version of the iPhone

...but without the phone part, though.

But seriously, look at this thing. It's too large to be portable, and it only runs iPhone apps. The name is stupid too.

The Beach Boys are the new Velvet Underground

Whenever something they like gets even mildly popular, everyone either deny ever liking it or will insist that they liked it before everyone else did.

This leads to hipsters' constant appreciation of things no one cares about, like The Beach Boys.

No one under the age of 60 cares about The Beach Boys, so now hipsters are starting to not only listen to The Beach Boys, but also start bands that rip off The Beach Boys, like how Animal Collective has vocal harmonies and Vampire Weekend has embraced California.

If you want to sound like a music expert, say your favorite album of all time is Pet Sounds. Trust me on this one, people will be asking you to recommend music to them for years.

Fleet Foxes dude ripping off the Beach Boys' look.

This is a band that I found out about via Gorilla vs. Bear that blatantly rips off The Beach Boys.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

New Joanna Newsom - "81"

Have One on Me is gonna be 3 CDs. Hell yeah!

Gronlandic Edit Edit (Of Montreal vs. Sonic Youth)

I recently bought a new blender. It's called Ableton Live.

The way Ableton Live works is pretty simple. You basically put in two songs and then it's like, "Will it blend?" Usually, you end up with a pretty conventional mash-up, but sometimes you get something different.

I used two songs:  "Gronlandic Edit" by Of Montreal and "Shadow of a Dark" by Sonic Youth

So I put these songs into my new blender and soup came out. It's not conventional mash-up soup though. This soup is a little, say, spicier than the average soup. I now offer to share this soup with you.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

The 63 Best Indie Albums of the 00's

 Making a list of the best albums of an entire decade is a bit different than doing one for a single year. With single year best of lists, you can just throw whatever albums you feel like in and say "Who cares? It's just a trivial year-end list." but with decade lists you have to be at least partially objective.

  You never realize how long a decade is until you're making a list of albums and you're like, "Should I include Bright Eyes? I mean, nobody listens to it now, but we used to." Ten years is a long time, man.

  Then, there's always that "What really should be considered indie?" question. For this list I've used the "any good alternative music, that's not Radiohead" definition.

  The 00's were crazy. So crazy we don't even know what we're calling it. Some say "naughts", others say "aughts". Me? I'm just using 00's because it works well in text form and is relatively idiot proof. For the first time, you could had unlimited access to all music ever and didn't have to worry about paying for it or anything. You can spend weeks just digging through music websites trying to find something new and amazing.

  That said, I feel like these are my favorite indie albums of the past decade:

(See the full list after the jump.)

63. Everything All the Time - Band of Horses
62. One Beat - Sleater-Kinney
63. Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not - Arctic Monkeys
60. Boys and Girls in America - The Hold Steady
59. Domestica - Cursive
58. Summer in Abaddon - Pinback
57. Nouns - No Age
56. Oh, Inverted World - The Shins
55. Murray Street - Sonic Youth
54. Atlas - Battles
53. Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix - Phoenix
52. Microcastle - Deerhunter
51. Give Up - The Postal Service

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Hipster Heroes: Panera Bread iMac Man

Hipster Heroes is a new feature here on A Blog For Stuff that I'm starting right now. The title is pretty self-explanatory.

The first of these Hipster Heroes that I would like to introduce you to is known as the Panera Bread iMac Man. Some of you seasoned internet users may already know about him via other sites/blogs. He is a man who is truly admirable.
Panera Bread iMac Man is a man of experience. (i.e. he's old.) And he really doesn't care what you think of him. If he did, do you really think he would bring a desktop computer to a coffee shop? No. Or play World of Warcraft in public? No.

You are not a beautiful snowflake. Panera Bread iMac Man is.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Incoming Pavement best of compilation - Quarantine the Past

 Matador's releasing a compilation of Pavement's "best" songs. It's called Quarantine the Past, and it comes out on March 9.

If you ask me, you're better off just downloading all of Pavement's albums because every single one is good.

They have a remastered version of Gold Sounds on the Matador blog here. Don't worry, it's a free mp3, not some lame stream.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Monday, January 11, 2010

The Rural Alberta Advantage - "In the Summertime" (A History Lesson*)

This is a story. A story of indie rock's recent history. A story that no one else is going to tell you about. They'll insist that they don't want to talk about how they used to listen to The Rapture, but the truth is that they weren't actually listening to The Rapture because they weren't that cool.

Once upon a time, it was 2003. Before that it was 2002 and before that it was 2001. We were all in high school then and blogs and Pitchfork weren't as important as they would become. Emo was an acceptable genre. It was a simpler time.

Indie rock was really seen as a kind of emo-ish thing. Listening to Bright Eyes was still acceptable. Arcade Fire hadn't happened yet. Postal Service was a pretty cool buzzband in the single-oriented time.

There was a record label called Saddle Creek. It was like how Merge or Domino is now. All the cool buzzbands were on Saddle Creek: Bright Eyes, Cursive, The Faint, Azure Ray.

Saddle Creek was located in Omaha, Nebraska. I know this may seem hard to believe, but Omaha was seen almost the same way Brooklyn is now. It's crazy. A stupid little town in the middle of nowhere! What were we thinking?

The Rural Alberta Advantage are a band on Saddle Creek, which apparently still exists. (Hmm, Tokyo Police Club seems to be on Saddle Creek too. The More You Know.*)

I posted "In the Summertime" because it's the only song that they have a video of on YouTube. It's funny how things work out that way.

They got some free mp3s on their website here.

I think "Don't Haunt This Place" is probably their best song. The rest of Hometowns is great too, so don't hesitate to buy the album. The dudes have gotta pay their rent.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Sunday, January 3, 2010

New Magic Wands - "Kiss Me Dead"

Like whoa. I just realized how to do labels. Cool, but now I have to go back and add them to all my old posts.


So yeah. This band called Magic Wands made a video for their song Kiss Me Dead and were dumb enough to release it on December 29th. Hey guys, nobody updates their websites/blogs between Christmas and New Years. We're too busy partying and stuff.

I'm gonna see if I can figure out how to upload an mp3 of this so you guys can download it. This could take a while.

The 10 Best Indie Albums of 2009

It seems like all I do is lists now. I'm tired of doing them and I'm sure some of you are tired of reading them, but it's my responsibility to do at least 10 best of lists at the end of each year AND I haven't even started on all those decade lists. Blogging is harder than you think.

So here's what I thought were the best indie albums of 2009. The year was pretty good. (Especially after last year. 2008 sucked. I mean seriously, Fleet Foxes is great and all if you're in the mood for it, but if you're not, it sucks.)

10. Logos - Atlas Sound

Yeah, the cover sucks.

9. Catacombs - Cass McCombs

For some reason my internet is being slow. Uploading all these album covers is not as easy as it should be.

8. Post-Nothing - Japandroids

Cool band name. 


7. Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix - Phoenix

Remember The Faint? Phoenix is kind of like The Faint only a lot poppier. Eh, maybe not.

6. Embryonic - The Flaming Lips

5. ...For the Whole World to See - Death

I still can't believe this was recorded in 1975. Not really indie, but whatever.

4. Album - Girls

3. Farm - Dinosaur Jr

When most bands reunite or keep putting out music when they're old, it usually sucks. Dinosaur Jr's latest two albums are a notable exception. 

2. Merriweather Post Pavilion - Animal Collective

I think I misspelled it. Oh well.

Animal Collective does it again! They make another awesome album that sounds different than all their other albums, but is still as awesome as the rest of their albums.

The trippy album art is pretty cool too.

1. Veckatimest - Grizzly Bear

I'm pretty sure I misspelled this one too. Why can't bands make their albums easier to spell? I mean the whole elitism thing about hard to spell albums felt tired years ago.

I remember when this album leaked. I was like "Meh, MPP is better." but now I'm like "MPP is okay but it's not the best Animal Collective album. That new Grizzly Bear album grows on you after repeated listening."