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The Friday Refrain: A bit of what's new in music...

It's the week before Halloween and the commercial world is ramping up to Christmas. Which means mucho releases this week. But what about last week? What happened to all those releases? Do they just evaporate into thin air? No. They're still here. Waiting. Crying. Wishing it was still their week but no, those mean new releases pushed them off the limelight into the cobwebs. But it's okay. Here I come to rescue them.

Wait. I'm just going to stop there or I might not ever. It is Friday and I do have some things to say about music though so here we go

Wheeeeee! The List of week past!

Today, our big fish are 5 Seconds of Summer with Sounds Good Feels Good. Synthy indie from across The Pond Hot Chip and Dancing in the Dark (yes they do cover the actual song). Megastar Carrie Underwood released Storyteller today. Remember back in the early 2000s when piano started to be cool again instead of not? Vanessa Carlton definitely lent a single to that craze, and here she is again with Liberman. Veterans of the music scene Rod Stewart and Harry Connick Jr have albums out individually not together, that would be crazy. So much iconic smiling. Anyway Mr. Stewart has Another Country and Mr. Jr has That Would Be Me. And Opera guy Andrea Bocelli is here with a film influenced album titled Cinema. So that's that, eh.

Last week... Well it's a Half Pints Whole Notes week so head over to csicon to check out latest episode hopefully posted later today or this weekend. And podcast weeks suck up my listening time, so I didn't get much of a chance to do more than what we review in the show. But here are few things to put a dime into the jukebox for if it's your fancy...

In your face rock, punk, whatever... I really have a narrow vision of punk, so I have a hard time using that but the aggressiveness is there and it's raw and short, Skinny Girl Diet, Reclaim Your Life.

Some good old weekend morning lazing country? Edward David Anderson, Lower Alabama: The Loxley Sessions

Maybe you desire some reggae/dub? Try out Lee Scratch Perry, Mr Perry I Presume

Perhaps you really loved when Offspring and Blink 182 were huge? Throw on Zebrahead, Walk the Plank for some new blood.

And it's Halloween season, I have to round up the evil sounding ones (whether they are or not)

Rival Consoles, Howl

Never Young, New Villain

Magenta, Songs for the Dead

Lenkemz, Skeletonz

Foreveratlast, Ghosts Again

Zombi, Shape Shift

All right that's all I got. You all have a fun weekend and Happy Listening!


The Friday Refrain: A bit of what's new in music...

Welcome to Friday everyone! It's gotten blustery outside and the wind is definitely howling that cold times are coming but the music is hot! Hee hee... um, yeah. Do you ever just stare out the window at cars that park in front of your home? I do. Though we kinda live on a busy street and most of the time it's just people figuring out directions, or probably killing time like I have to do sometimes between lessons. Which is why I usually park in the far corners of parking lots. So much less suspicious, right? Maybe not. Anyway...

Frontloading The List! There it is. Almost at 140 releases for last Friday.

And today? Well, it was almost going to be awesome. I thought I had a perfect trifecta. First, off !!! released As if. Then I find Here We Go Magic also has one out today, namely Be Small. And then... Then I was certain that The Go Team or OK Go were also supposed to have something today, but I was wrong. I had been looking forward to this release day for at least month with that knowledge in my head. Maybe some of you are trying to find the connection - they're all band names with action in them. At least I consider three exclamation points to be action. Maybe you don't. Maybe you think Computer Magic (Davos), Here We Go Magic, and Majical Cloudz (Are You Alone?) are a better trifecta. That's cool too. A little more obvious, but it's cool. Maybe I was thinking of Holly Golightly & the Brokeoffs with Coulda Shoulda Woulda. That fits. So we'll go with that.

What's that? You're wondering if more big names have releases today? Uh... Pop star Demi Lovato is back with Confident. Coheed & Cambria (who I don't get, and I get excited to listen to them and then I just... It just... I know a lot of people really like them and their Prog-Rock/Pop-Metal but I just don't know) released The Color Before The Sun. And Beach House has their 2nd album of the year out today, Thank Your Lucky Stars. This is becoming a thing isn't it? Multiple releases in a year. I blame Robert Pollard who is probably secretly gunning for some sort of Guinness World Record. If you just can't stand pop music and would rather listen to today's hottest songs sung by children, then you're in luck because Kidz Bop 30 is finally out today. And lastly you can get your acapella on with the eponymous Pentatonix album.

Sppooky listening...

Not really, I'm just going to lump all the albums or bands with Halloween-esque stuff together in a list now.

The Spook School, Try To Be Hopeful - Pretty solid indie rock.

Zomby, Let's Jam!! - Electronic music

Monster Magnet, Cobras & Fire - Some sort of hard rock prog rock stuff?

Kill The Noise, Occult Classic - More electronica

Evil Blizzard, Everybody Come To Church - Kinda heavier rock.

Chavo, Don't Wake The Dead- I don't know what this is. It's a guy making different songs. I know that much.

Cold Chisel, The Perfect Crime - bluesy rock

Okay, it has become very apparent to me that I need a nap. And this is my chance. Take what you will from today, namely that I'm pretty tired, and I hope something piques your ears. Happy listening!


The Friday Refrain: Saturday Edition!

I've had a pancake and an egg, I'm sipping on my coffee and ready to pine about music of this week and last. How about you? Well let's at it then.

It's a Half Pints Whole Notes week so head on over to csicon to check out our latest episode. And while Josh was pretty dismissive of the releases of the past two weeks, I have found some things of note in there. So read on. Read on.

Read this. Bangzap it's The List of last week's releases genrerified by me if I listened to a snippet of it.

Well, what's coming out today, er, I mean yesterday? Tori Amos helped out with a musical a bit back and the cast recording has been released. The musical is The Light Princess and it's the only musical cover with Tori Amos, so you can't miss it. Growing up from Disney star to just a normal pop star Selena Gomez is out with Revival. The Zombies (yay!) released Still Got That Hunger and I'm looking forward to finding out the truth behind that statement. Country megastar - right? He's a megastar, yeah. -  Toby Keith made his fans wait a bit but here he is with 35 mph Town. There are two unique releases this week:  The Decemberists released Florasongs EP, the cutting room floor songs from their January release. I wonder if I will agree or disagree with their decisions... And Elvis Costello has a companion album to his biography (also released this week) titled Unfaithful Music & Sountrack Album. I believe there are 2 tracks unreleased or new on it.

It's been awhile since we highlighted the 80s...

so here are some 80s inspired releases of last week:

Desperate Journalist, Good Luck

Editors, In Dream

Dirty Ghosts, Let It Pretend

Girls Names, Arms Around A Vision

Colour of Spring, Grey

And Other Things I Liked

Dave Douglas, Brazen Heart - It's also been awhile since I had a jazz album in my list

Express Rising, Fixed Rope - Oh instrumental rock, you always get me right in the gizzard

Emilie & Ogden, 10 000 - A woman and her harp is all you need to know. While at first I couldn't decide if it was just too sweet (such as her cover of Elliot Smith's "Closer") but just an odd track later I really dug "Nothing New." So give it a whirl - but make sure to sample a little here and there to get a good idea of how you feel before you make a decision.

Ironing Board Sam, Super Spirit - The album cover alone is worth looking this one up, and the fact that it is good blues is another. Blues as an overall genre, not just that fixed "blues pattern" music that seems to take up the category on the virtual shelves of our musical ideas.

Things on my To-Listen-To List

Gregorio Uribe Big Band, Cumbia Universal - it gets cold and I crave Latin music?

Childbirth, Women's Rights - Yeah this isn't for the faint or conservative of hearts. Or it is.

Emily Kinney, This Is War - Singer songwriter with teeth.

Dragonheart, The Battle Sanctuary - you know those locked guitar riffs, double kick, all that. It's that kind of metal.

Wild Throne, Harvest of Darkness - Just got a taste of this today, something in the brief 30 seconds I sampled of a few songs made me think of Mars Volta which alone puts it on the To-Listen list. We'll see.

Man that's pretty varied this week. Nice. Well it looks to be a beautiful weekend so hopefully you will find something to complement it. Happy Listening!


The Friday Refrain: A bit of what's new in music...

Don't worry everyone, I didn't get buried under the avalanche of music from last week. I'm still here. Just kinda was on vacation and decided to, well, vacation. So... that means I'm not really ready for today either. But head over to to hear the latest Half Pints, which we recorded last Friday. And I'll be back next week with recommendations from today's releases (and maybe a catch up of the past couple weeks). But you know what else I realized as I stared at the unfilled in list? IT'S OCTOBER. And that only means one thing - I have two months to hammer out my best of list. Jiminy Crikey. This is a doozy of a year for releases too. I liked a lot. And I might still like a lot. We've got Adele, maybe, still to come, and other people. Blitzen Trapper? Wait, that's today! Today! Blitzen Trapper is here! It's like Christmas. Hey all, let's just all go listen to the new Blitzen Trapper and forget I ever didn't compile a list from last week, eh? Eh.

What else am I missing from this week? Let's see here... (rummages through imaginary treasure trove of music contained in old large wooden treasure chest that shoots rainbows and bright light from its depths) Garbage is doing the 20th anniversary thing for their eponymous album. Avicii dance pop is back with Stories. Collective Soul here with Swe What You Started By Continuing. Wavves are dropping V. Oh yeah, and Eagles of Death Metal duke it out with Zipper Down.

Hey we just won tickets to Blitzen Trapper. Sweet. I'm going to end my weekend on that. Also, go listen to the new album. Just do it. And - THE DOMESTICS ARE OPENING. I might be more excited for the opener. But not, because Blitzen Trapper is super awesome. Otherwise we wouldn't go see them every time they are in town. Anyway, Happy Listening!


The Friday Refrain: A bit of what's new in music...

I always wait and wait, thinking, "I can just listen to a few more bands... Oh I really should have gotten to ___ first..." And then it's the afternoon and I still haven't posted the refrain. So I'm just calling it people. (As I keep skimming through albums while writing this) I'm feeling a little cloudy though this morning so I'm not really sure how to organize my thoughts. A MAN OUT FOR HIS RUN JUST RAN BY IN JUST SHORTS - IT IS 57 DEGREES FARENHEIT. I am in my house with socks, pants, and a long sleeve on. What are you thinking dude? No wonder he was going so fast. Probably just trying to get it over with. Br. I feel colder suddenly...

Today! Today is Friday September 18th and Keith Richards is releasing a solo effort titled Crosseyed Heart. Speaking of famous classic rock bands and solo work - David Gilmour is also on the scene today with Rattle That Lock. Divisive singer-songwriter alt pop pseudo star(?) Lana Del Rey is back again with Honeymoon - and none of that description is meant in a snide or off-handed way but my honest to goodness trying to remember/relate her work and its reception. Slowly Battles has been eliminating the vocals off their albums, and today is the day (or so I read somewhere I think) that it has transmorphed into with La Di Da Di. Judy Collins returns with Strangers Again.

Shaka List! That doesn't really work. Well, just as well, I didn't have any pudding today and I think I'm going through withdrawal.

So Low released their album last week, as well as a band named Lower (a touch of rock with a Smiths sound to it) released I'm A Lazy Son... But I'm The Only Son - but no Lowest. I mean... Come on fates! WHY? WHYYYYYYYYYYYEEEEE? It would have been so comedic and now I'm left hanging. Low... Lower...

 And then what are the chances that I randomly press play on the perfect song for my morning to begin? Well, that is what happened when I started Jackson Boone's new album Natural Changes on the track "Runaway." Vocal effects reminiscent of T. Rex and dreamy vintage harmonics with a grooving bass line kinda made me feel like I was listening to a soundtrack of a movie. Maybe something intriguing will happen today...

Well I can report back that nah, not much has happened yet. Except I need a nap, it is somehow 1:20 pm and I'm still coming back to work on this post. Admittedly, it wasn't the constant listening's fault this time, it was my need to shower before the boy awoke from morning nap. And now he's down for afternoon nap so I'm going to catch a few winks as well. Dergh - I can't just leave it with those two quips above. All right, this is the rest of my Liked List followed by my To-Listen list (which isn't very interesting this week I think):

Shannon and the Clams, Gone By The Dawn

Lazy Knuckles, Bucolic - electronica stuff with interest and full album length

Kocleo, Pacific Time - Electronica stuff that I just kinda like the beats

Grey Lands, Right Arm - got to bring the rock at some point today, right?

Twin Tones, Ojo De Luz - trippy

Ben Folds, So There

Orrin Evans, The Evolution of Oneself - Jazz stuff

HSY, Bask - noise/weird

Fitness, Fitness EP - my kind of 80s type sound pop fun

Nightfell, Darkenss Evermore - Metal

Sergey Khachatryan, My Armenia - classical stuff

Late Night Tales With Nils Frahm - I listen to this series in general ever since that Benedict Cumberbach thing

Nicholas Angelich, Different Spaces - Classical stuff

Okay I feel better now, that's a bit more substance. Anyway, I'm going to catch a few winks, or watch a little tv... Ahh... Relaxing. Happy Listening and embrace the autumn of today!