Sunday, December 8, 2013

November '13 Music Box

Whoops, I just realized I heard one good track during the whole month. Well, actually it isn't even a good track at all- it is brilliant. Enjoy.

Shelf Nunny & Eriko Toyoda - About The Boy

Friday, November 29, 2013

Friday Feature: Kidaudra

The first song I heard from Kidaudra was actually a cover of a Depeche Mode song I hadn't heard before. It was last summer, when I was still living at my friend's place. That place had such a bad Internet connection that I knew I had to wait until next morning to hear it at work. Yet, I remember pressing play and hearing five seconds of it and being absolutely annoyed.

Absolutely annoyed, because the first seconds were so great and I was dying to hear the rest of the 5-minute song. So, in the end it took like an hour for it to fully load (and then another hour to listen to it repeatedly).

Her voice was just simply stunning, which my colleague who is almost 50 agreed on when I played the song to her in our tea shop.

Shortly, Kidaudra does not only make others' songs her own, but she also makes songs of her own that others would want to own. And she's got one of the most amazing art too. One day I hope to witness this awesome music live.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

October '13 Video Box

1. Anna Calvi - Sing to me

2. Summer Camp - Two chords

3. Yeasayer - Glass of the microscope

4. CSS - Into the sun

Pick of the month:

Arctic Monkeys - One for the road

Saturday, November 16, 2013

October '13 Music Box

1. The Carpenters - Rainy Days and Mondays (Shelf Nunny remix)

2. Elliott Smith - 2:45 am (TwentyOneRoots cover)

3. Elliott Smith - Condor Ave. (Kidaudra cover)

Pick of the month:

Dum Dum Girls - Lost Boys and Girls Club

Friday, October 25, 2013

Friday Feature: Safari Al

Rap isn't good when you're rapping about pimps and hoes. Rap isn't good when you're rapping about cheesy stuff like world peace. Rap isn't good when you're rapping about feeling sorry for yourself or how good you are (what happened to you, Kanye? :().

So, is there any good rap in the world? Yup, and that's called Safari Al.

Not only are the lyrics something you can listen to without getting annoyed, but also the beats and melodies are brilliant! So is the art work.

More facts about Safari Al aka Alexander Kollman in the artist's own words:

  • 21 yr old going to engineering school in milwaukee, wi. i write songs to help stave a sincere sadness that comes from straddling either side of a venn-diagram.

Let the music speak for itself now.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The Elliott Smith Full Moon Tribute

Yesterday marked 10 years since my favorite artist Elliott Smith died. I wanted to do something special to honor him, and I was lucky enough to get two heart-warming, amazing musicians to not only cover a song of his, but to make their own art cover for the track. Can't give enough credit for these two, as I love when genres are mixed and really appreciate when someone makes a song their own.

So, big thank you to Audra and Christopher for using their time to make a fan's request come true. Also, a special thank you to Droid Daughter for mastering the tunes.

I had a hard time coming up with the name, but yesterday when I was walking home I noticed it was a full moon, and remembered reading that Elliott liked the moon. It's been a decade, but I must say that the timing was perfect.

Hope you enjoy the covers and art work as much as I do.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Friday Feature Special: Elliott Smith

This one time listening to my favorite record label's Spotify list, I came across with a song called Roman Candle. It captivated me from the first second until the very end. That song changed it all.

I remember sharing the first few songs I listened from him to my friend, who after the second time asked: "What's this Elliott Smith thing you got going on now?"

After two years I still can't say what hit me. Obviously, he was a talented artist and had the most angelic voice, but I guess it's the emotional factor. Elliott's debut album was there to accompany me when I had left many dear friends and a dear place. Misery loves company, they say.

Each new song I heard, I was like wow. It didn't take too much time for me to think that this guy was actually better than Bon Iver and Iron & Wine, the two other singer-songwriters I love a lot. And that is a lot said. A lot.

I wont' be listing any facts about Elliott, Wikipedia is for that. This is more of trying to explain why I like his music so much. As you can read it's not that easy- not everything can be everyone's cup of tea, which is what I said to a friend who didn't get Elliott's music. Yet, in my mind I was thinking "dude, how can you NOT GET IT?".

Last autumn when I spent my days writing my thesis I placed six of his albums in our CD player, so I'd have suitable music in the background playing repeatedly. You could just hear how the music had developed from album to next. It had developed in a way that it took me until this summer to hear all the beauty the latter records had to offer. Man, his skills.

At the moment I'm reading a book by Autumn de Wilde (who directed the video above), a famous rock photographer and a friend of Elliott. The book has all the pictures used in the video and many interviews with people close to the artist. It's funny how we often make assumptions of people we don't know at all! Or in this case no assumption at all, but still to get to know more about his personality makes his music even more worth-while. The book makes you laugh and cry. Sometimes at the same time.

The most surprising thing of all was to realize that he had been nominated for an Oscar. That moment in 1998 and when Arcade Fire won a Grammy for best album in 2011 are probably the biggest moments in indie music.

The first thing Elliott said to me after the Oscars was that it didn't matter that there were a hundred million people watching and a huge audience and that it was on TV. The only person he could see was Jack Nicholson sitting there staring at him. He said it just freaked him out. He couldn't get past the fact that  Jack Nicholson was just sitting there right in front of him.
-Dorien, Elliott's roommate in New York

I'm not going to wrap this Special Feature with my favorite Elliott song, but with an unreleased instrumental. The "story" behind it is kind of interesting- it might be that he made it as a homage for himself or it simply is unfinished. Well, either or the song is wistfully optimistic and I'd like it to be played at my funeral.