This week it looks as though we have jumped in the time machine a bit and got in touch with our younger selves. That is the great thing about STOP SLEEPING, there are artists that we feel never got their due going back generations.
I am sure Joel's dad was smoking banana peels with his friends in some holistic medical lab talking about Johnny Fartstore and his band of Hippie Trippy Fucktards and wondering why that Neil Young guy got all the props.
Back when I was in my 30s, in 1990, I was wondering how it was that Big Daddy Kane was bigger than say Brotherhood Creed. Music is like that, it hits us all in ways that can't be qualified or really understood. Why do I think Jake E. Lee's Badlands a better Led Zeppelin cover band than Soundgarden? Not really sure, but something about the way they move makes me cream.
I think a lot of what we do at SYFFAL is because of these experiences, these bands who bring us so much joy that seem to come and go with little conversation outside of our circles. It is the appreciation for the joy that these fucking assholes have brought us that makes us assholes tell you assholes that you might want to give them a second look.
Tom is talking about a website from 10 years ago.
Del is stuck on some guy named Frank.
Tim talks about a band that he should have been into in high school but he was a fucking homophobic asshole then.
Ted talks about a guy who is from Brazil or some shit to drop hints and make us say "speaking of Brazilians, how did that appointment go?".
Joel, who knows what Joel is talking about, I tuned him out three weeks ago when he wouldn't stop talking about his balls.
Dick, well Dick is just cooler than any of us will ever be.
I fucking love The Black Cab Sessions and it always surprises me when people have never heard of this website. If you are one of these people you need to click here right now. The premise is very simple: musicians pack themselves and their instruments into a back of a cab to play a song. The video is then uploaded on to the interwebs for the world to see. But what makes these performances unique (other than the venue) is that they are completely raw. The acoustics are not good, the space is cramped and this ends up separating the the men from the boys. (Or the Jack White's from the Lana Del Ray's). Some performances are great and some are horrible! Musicians have to be on their A game or their flaws will be exposed. Anybody who is musically relevant will have performed in the back of the Black Cab. I had a tough time choosing a video to feature because there are literally hundreds to choose from. I ended up going with Grizzly Bear's performance of 'All We Ask. The harmonies are spot on and this acoustic performance highlights the beautifully unique guitar chords. It is one of the many reasons why Grizzly Bear is one of the best and most polished bands in music today.
One of Mike Patton's greatest strokes of genius came out years ago in the form of the album Mondo Cane. The record in question consists entirely of straight-up covers of '50s and '60s Italian pop songs. What better way to cement the delicious forthcoming summer than Patton's soothing weirdness? I double-dog dare your ass to try driving more than three city blocks with your windows down and this shit blaring. You're gonna make it all of about two hundred feet before you pull over to the nearest bodega for several pitchers worth of sangria fixins and proceed to blow off any existing plans you had for the day.
I understand that Wes Anderson movies are not for everyone. Many find them too intellectual, obtuse, or flat-out boring. I don't agree with these assessments, but I wouldn't fault anyone for feeling that way. I'd simply put them in a bucket with other people with whom I'd never want to collectively seek higher consciousness. It's hard to fault Anderson's music taste, however. His soundtracks are a rock snob's paradise. One of my favorite Anderson films is "The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou" where Bill Murray plays a Jacques Cousteau-inspired undersea explorer and documentarian in an Ahab-like search for the mythical Jaguar shark that ate his seafaring partner. Brazilian-musician Seu Jorge plays a member of "Team Zissou". The film pauses time and again to focus on Jorge plucking Portuguese translations of David Bowie songs on his acoustic guitar. While the actual Bowie version of "Life on Mars" appears in the film, I prefer the Seu Jorge version that appears on the DVD extras. David Bowie said, "had Seu Jorge not recorded my songs in Portuguese I would never have heard this new level of beauty which he has imbued them with". Word up.
If you haven't heard Malcom Lacey recording as Arrange you're a doorknob, this shit is fucking phenomenal. I've been staring at the fucking ceiling with frozen peas on my balls for a fucking hour already and this is the only fucking thing I want to hear. Jesus fucking Christ this is deliciously comforting, especially around my balls which fucking HURT bro.
Way way back in Track Marks Volume 1 (it's a collector's item!!!) I was hot for Frank (Just Frank). I said "You say you like the Drums...but you'd prefer them to be a bit more menacing and euro?" and some of you smartly listened and sought out more Frank (Just Frank). For those of you who didn't I need to know what more it will take? Consider this your second notice. You only get three.
I have to thank my good friend Ian for this one, he used to play this shit and sing it at the top of his lungs in college. The Ocean Blue made really British sounding music, which I guess is code for kind of gay and sensitive. It was the type of music I would have scoffed at liking in high school and much of college because of the connotations, I am not proud of that, just stating the facts and hoping to help others get over that bullshit. Anyway, The Ocean Blue made these sort of big soring pop songs that made your chest open up, take in the sunshine and then sing its praises. Even the more melancholy numbers were gorgeous and vaguely hopeful. In a lot of ways I think all of their songs might be about that book A Separate Peace.