Saturday, June 23, 2012

Friday Feature: fun.

Because of living abroad for sometime and therefore not watching TV regularly anymore, I was absolutely shocked to see a band I discovered on an indie music site being played on commercial music channels. I've been meaning to write about that band for a while now, but I have to admit that after noticing them getting some mainstream success I thought of leaving the feature out.

Of which I feel extremely ashamed.

It would have also been a complete musical murder not to feature the alternative rockers/power poppers fun. Based in New York, the band relies on quirky melodies and lyrics, which reminds me of British pop star Mika. On top of that I get a feeling of being preached by a missionary somewhere in Africa with the passion lead man Nate Ruess sings and how the drums are being hit.

You probably might know fun. already from their hit single "We Are Young", which reached number one on the US Billboard Hot 100, becoming the first alternative single to reach the chart since Coldplay's "Viva la Vida" in 2008. In addition to their success in the music scene, the band promotes gay rights, which is always a plus when someone with influence uses their voice for good.

I'll definitely try to go see fun. at their Helsinki gig in September; I'm dying to get myself one of their cool band shirts.. In the meanwhile have a listen to their second album "Some Nights" below.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Friday Feature: Chairlift

When I last winter discovered the Brooklyn- based now duo Chairlift, I immediately told my friend to check them out. The only comment she gave to me (besides her liking their music) is you seem to really like this 80s stuff.

There's been some kind of disgust towards what that decade had to offer; synth-driven tunes weren't really my cup of tea and big hair made everything worse. However, my time listening to depressing, angry guitar music in a dark room has come to its limit.

And that's when cheery bubbly synth pop acts as a getaway.

Although the lyrics can be for example about revenge and guilt, the danceable melodies make you ignore the seriousness of the song's topic. Chairlift is a perfect example of this.

Just imagine yourself dancing like the kids from The Breakfast Club, while singing I'm gonna hunt you down. I'm gonna run you down.

It's all fun.

  Also, which clearly will be one of my top videos of 2012, is the band's interactive video for "Met Before". By using the arrows of your keyboard you can choose, which direction the story goes. My story ended with the singer dying of bee stings. Click here to see how your story ends, and share it with everyone in the comments below or on the Facebook page.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Life in a piece of luggage

Last week me and my most loyal travel companion, for almost two years now, were off to another destination. Luckily this time we didn't have to leave the country, which meant that I would be living in another Finnish city for the first time.

In my new room I finally got the decoration I've always wanted.

Not really. They belong to my newest and noisiest flatmate yet.

my nephew nate

It's weird to be living under the same roof with my brother again. Also I will have to adjust properly into the nightlife. Not parties, but night shifts at my summer job. The rest of the day hours are invested in sleeping, writing my thesis and eating. Blogging of course now and then too, but don't be surprised if you don't hear much from me for a few months.

Here's some pictures of a sunny Sunday in Helsinki.

The ice-cream flavors I had are called wanhan ajan terva and wanhan ajan salmiakki. The direct translations are old-fashioned tar and old-fashioned ammonium chloride. Yummm.

One day I wish to be able to unpack my suitcase in a place of my own. With a wall full of setlists I've collected...

Friday, June 8, 2012

Friday Feature: Oberhofer

Brooklyn’s  4-piece, Oberhofer, has been spending their time making philosophically- minded, energetic melodies that make people smile. The band is led by Tacoma native Brad Oberhofer, who has a tendency to write songs about how he feels in the moment, which can clearly be heard in their songs. Perhaps this is why they put themselves in the genre of ‘coincidence pop’. 

Oberhofer’s debut album Time Capsules II has been praised to be the best guitar music many have heard in a while, despite the riffs being simple.  But the life we live in today’s society, simple is very welcome. 

Monday, June 4, 2012

Wild Beasts @ Shepherd's Bush Empire, London

November 24th, 2011

Sometimes the best way to realize a band's true talent is by going to their live shows. English Wild Beasts sound great on record, and they look even greater playing music. Their way in working their instruments and singing is something everyone needs to witness.

In my opinion a sign of a successful live show is when you start loving songs, which you before hadn't. In this case I can honestly say that the band's whole third album finally opened to me. Actually it wasn't about loving, but more of understanding. That record is a difficult one compared to the two others.

So basically all we needed was perfect acoustics, lighting and London's most beautiful venue to get me all smothered by musical enlightment.

I remember it was Thanksgiving Day that day,and naturally I was thankful for being able to see Wild Beasts play (and Zola Jesus the day earlier). Also, next to me were these Spanish and Italian guys, who I'm glad to have met -> good reason to go to gigs alone.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Friday Feature: Haim

Three sisters from LA, whose parents tried brainwashing them into little classical rock monsters, while the girls' 90s R&B enthusiasm rebelled back... What could sugar, spice and everything nice result into, when mixed with chemical X?

The answer is not The Powerpuff Girls this time, but Haim.

And damn it's hard to explain their music! Though, looks-wise imagine a part of The Kelly Family forming a band of their own, and not having their hair look like it's inspired by Conan the Barbarian. Or simply a female version of Hanson (ie. the pretty version).

Ok this will be the best I can do for now; Haim's music saves the music world as much The Powerpuff Girls save Townsville. I'm assuming that my older readers (mama) won't understand my references, so just give their songs a listen below and download their debut EP Forever for free here.