Archive for June, 2011

The Best Songs of 2011 So Far: Purling Hiss, “Walking Down the Street”

Thursday, June 30th, 2011

As we near the end of June — and thus the end of the first half of 2011 — I’m going to post a bunch of my favorite songs of the year so far.

To see them all, click here. And to read about my favorite albums of 2011 so far, click here.

Larry and His Flask: new video, album preorder

Thursday, June 30th, 2011

A couple of notes on local thrashgrass blur Larry and His Flask:

1) The guys’ new album, “All That We Know,” is now available for preorder right here. There’s an array of colored-vinyl options for collector nerds, plus one package that comes with a hip flask engraved with the LAHF logo. Awesome!

2) The band filmed its first official video at the Rise Up Warehouse in May, and today, it showed up on Altpress. Behold:

I’m starting to wonder if the Flask might return home from the Warped Tour an even bigger deal than I thought they would. Scroll through their Facebook, Google their name … you’ll find a lot of folks out there falling in love with this band.

The Best Songs of 2011 So Far: Big K.R.I.T., “Dreamin’”

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

As we near the end of June — and thus the end of the first half of 2011 — I’m going to post a bunch of my favorite songs of the year so far.

To see them all, click here. And to read about my favorite albums of 2011 so far, click here.

The Best Songs of 2011 So Far: Adele, “Someone Like You”

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

As we near the end of June — and thus the end of the first half of 2011 — I’m going to post a bunch of my favorite songs of the year so far.

To see them all, click here. And to read about my favorite albums of 2011 so far, click here.

The Best Songs of 2011 So Far: Robin Pecknold, “I’m Losing Myself” (feat. Ed Droste)

Tuesday, June 28th, 2011

As we near the end of June — and thus the end of the first half of 2011 — I’m going to post a bunch of my favorite songs of the year so far.

To see them all, click here. And to read about my favorite albums of 2011 so far, click here.

[Video / review] Vandaveer and Cheyenne Marie Mize at McMenamins

Tuesday, June 28th, 2011

(Note: I just realized I never posted this. D’oh!)

So here’s how this works, in reverse: It took me a while to publish this blog post. Why? Because it took forever for me to edit and upload all this video. Why? Because there’s a lot of it. Why? Because I was compelled to just keep rolling Wednesday night as up-and-coming folkies Vandaveer and Cheyenne Marie Mize lit up a dark Father Luke’s Room at McMenamins Old St. Francis School.

It was a night full of gorgeous songs. Mize opened with an hour-long solo set that featured a handful of moments so arresting, you could hear a pin drop in a room that rarely lacks for chatter. The sine-wave keyboard line of “Have You,” the minimalist violin plucking of “Rest,” and the jaw-droppingly beautiful love song “All I Am” not only commanded the attention of the audience, they seemed to stop time. (Video of all three is below.) Mize is an enormous talent, and I wouldn’t be surprised if in a couple years, the folks who saw her play an intimate (not to mention free) show Wednesday in Bend will be thanking their lucky stars they did.

If Mize’s set was a thing of understated beauty, Vandaveer’s was more like the confident swagger that comes when you know you’re looking good. The band’s principle, Mark Charles Heidinger, has it all: catchy and clever songs, cinema-star good looks, and charm pouring from every pore. He’s got an affable, self-effacing manner and a million-watt smile, and he pairs those two things with a seemingly endless well of memorable melodies. I really believe the guy has all he needs to become a huge star in the post-Avett/Mumford age. I know if I were a record label exec, I’d be swooping in on him as we speak.

Anyway, about the set: Heidinger plays his acoustic guitar in a propulsive, percussive style, and his voice is strong and clear. His cohort — harmony queen Rose Guerin — is a show-stopping alto that adds a bit of needed grit to the mix. Heidinger bounced around his catalog, from the title track from his new album “Dig Down Deep” to the Simon & Garfunkel-ish shuffle of “How Many Takes it Takes” to the apocalyptic chop of “Spite.” He played an impromptu cover of The Beatles’ “Rocky Raccoon” to honor a little girl’s purchase at the merch table (“Our cutest customer ever,” Heidinger said), and he had Mize join the band on drums for a run through Vandaveer’s “hit single” (he said with a laugh) “The Nature of Our Kind.”

Overall, the two sets were nice counterpoints. Mize’s was soft and supple and vulnerable, Vandaveer’s was sharp and solid and airtight. Both were brilliant in their own way. And they added up to one of the best shows I’ve seen in Bend so far this year.

Here’s lots of video evidence. I would strongly encourage you to take a listen. First up, five songs from Mize, including, I believe, three new ones.

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The Best Songs of 2011 So Far: Yuck, “Holing Out”

Monday, June 27th, 2011

As we near the end of June — and thus the end of the first half of 2011 — I’m going to post a bunch of my favorite songs of the year so far.

To see them all, click here. And to read about my favorite albums of 2011 so far, click here.

Countdown to Shabazz Palaces Day / The Best Songs of 2011 So Far, Part 1

Monday, June 27th, 2011

As regular readers know, Frequency was fortunate enough to read about and fall in love, love, love with Shabazz Palaces a full two years ago, when it was still a mysterious, futuristic hip-hop project bubbling up from Seattle. So I’ve been anticipating for a while now the release of “Black Up,” the first full-length album from former Digable Planet Ishmael Butler’s amazing new project.

Anyway, release day is tomorrow, and y’all should all go cop the record from Subpop so you can get a sweet patch with your order. In the meantime, check out the final track on “Black Up,” below. It’s called “Swerve… The reeping of all that is worthwhile (Noir not withstanding)” and it is without question one of my favorite tracks of the first half of 2011. The whole album blazes, but the smeared, shimmering synth line here marks “Swerved” as a standout. I cannot get enough of this track right now.

You can stream “Black Up” in its entirety by clicking here. Oh, and Pitchfork just weighed in with an 8.8.

[MP3] Tonight: Tuck and Roll CD-release show

Saturday, June 25th, 2011

Bend-based pop-punk kingpins Tuck and Roll have a new EP out called “Broken Radios,” and they’re celebrating it with a free show tonight at Madhappy Lounge (850 N.W. Brooks St., Bend). The music starts at 6 p.m. outside the bar with Harley Bourbon and Confederacy of Dunces, and then Necktie Killer and Tuck and Roll will wrap things up inside. There’s also going to be barbecue! Here’s the first track on the EP:

Tuck and Roll, “Bum Shot”

And here’s (part of) what I had to say about “Broken Radios” in Friday’s GO! Magazine:

Clocking in at 15 minutes long, the EP is pop-punk done right, where Sean Garvin’s urgent drumming and Ben Jones’ sturdy bass lines provide the power and guitarists Sam Fisher and Chris Murra chip in buzzy power chords arranged to ensure maximum toe-tapping.

Atop it all, Fisher’s melodies shine. The chorus of “Bum Shot” is a bounce-along beauty, framed by classic “whoa-oh, whoa-oh” background vocals. “Joke’s On Us” puts the pedal on the floor, paying homage to old-school Bay Area punk. “Grey Skies,” in turn, hits the brakes a tad, showcasing Tuck and Roll’s sensitive, nostalgic side.

That’s only 60 percent of “Broken Radios,” and the final two songs are terrific too. But I’ll leave that for you to discover. It suffices to say they hold up Tuck and Roll’s tradition of packing their releases with taut, catchy songs that reflect an understanding of the importance of efficiency when making records.

Tonight’s details again (click to make it bigger and more readable):

This week in GO! Magazine’s music section

Friday, June 24th, 2011

This week in the music section, we bring you sort of a hodgepodge of stuff, ranging from benefit shows to CD-release events to concert series kick-offs to brand new venues opening. So here’s a list:

KPOV’s raising funds with its second Beatles Singalong, and …
Friends of Megan Cecil are raising funds for her battle against cancer, and …
The High & Dry Bluegrass Festival’s raising funds by blending barbershop and bluegrass.

Also!

Local pop-punkers Tuck and Roll celebrate their new EP at Madhappy Lounge on Saturday, and …
Electro-soul-hop duo Dinner at the Thompson’s will also visit Madhappy on Thursday, and …
Slow Trucks nods to ’90s indie rock at Madhappy on Monday.

Meanwhile!

The Moon Mountain Ramblers kick off the summer concert series at Angeline’s Bakery in Sisters, and …
The Sweet Harlots kick off the Pickin’ and Paddlin’ series along the Deschutes River in Bend, and …
Brent Alan and friends kick off a new venue, Sugar Mountain Amphitheater near Terrebonne.

And then there are the things that don’t fit neatly into one of the groups above!

Deschutes Brewery is celebrating 23 years in business with a party in their parking lot, and …
Oh Sugoi! and Third Seven will fill McMenamins with experimental sounds, and …
I saw Brett Dennen and Dawes at the Athletic Club of Bend and then wrote what I thought about it.

Click here to read it all!