New music from The Light Footwork
Discovering The Light Footwork over at YANP late last year ranks among my favorite blog-discoveries, reminding me why I started this blog in the first place. I instantly fell in love with their Beulah-influenced pop gems and boy-girl vocals; in particular "The Art of Everyday Communication Part I", which I still think is one of the best songs of 2005. Anyway, after Matt's post(s), the internet proceeded to go nuts, the band went on to be featured as a Stereogum "Band to Watch" and their debut LP, One State Two State, graced numerous "Best of '05" lists (including my own).
The band recently sent me a new unreleased track, and this one is all over the place, recalling some of the quirkier material from One State...The guitars and the pacing of the vocals--especially Becca's, which veer from slightly detached to frenetic, and back--lead me to believe the band's been listening to lots of Pavement, which is a very good thing:
The Light Footwork Melville mp3
In other news, you can finally purchase The Light Footwork's One State Two State on iTunes...if you don't have it yet, I highly recommend it.
Will from DraculaZombieUSA got together with DZUSA superfriend JAMF and "ate a bunch of burritos and remixed a Spank Rock song." Here's the result:
Spank Rock Put That Pussy on Me (DZUSA + JAMF remix) mp3
Finally, everyone seemed to love our friend Austin's "Pitchfork Observations from a Non-Indie Dude" that we posted last week. Well, Austin and his girlfriend went to Lollapalooza too, and his musings are even better this time. Check 'em out by clicking the "read more" link...first up, the cons...
- $$$$$ - This really made you appreciate Pitchfork. Not only was the food cheap at Pitchfork, it also tasted pretty damn good. For a full meal, you were paying 8-10 for concession foods at Lollapalooza, and none of them were that good. I think the pizza was the only decent thing on the menu--ridiculous.
- Distance Between Stages--the setup basically called for 4 big stages, 2 on one side of the park, 2 completely on the other. But when you needed to make that stretch, you'd usually miss about the first ten minutes of whoever you wanted to see. For instance, Friday, Iron and Wine ended at 6:30 and Jacky White and the Raconteurs were way on the other side starting at 6:30. It became one of those "which set do we miss ten minutes of" questions, which really sucks for the fans.
- Boring Front Row-ers-- My girlfriend and I throw "dem bows" occasionally for a good spot up front, assuming that's where the fun crowd will be, jamming out, singing along, and making each set
enjoyable. Well, I guess the trend at Lollapalooza is "I didn't get my press pass so you can bet your sweet ass I'll be up front at one stage, all day, snapping pictures of bands I don't know, and blocking everyone behind me with my super lenses." Never should you be in a crowd and look 4-8 rows back and see those people having more fun. YOU'RE IN THE FRONT! YOU HAVE RESPONSIBILITIES! You start the fun--the "ONE MORE SONG" chants, you keep your hands clapping in the air, etc. (Note: the mainstage where Gnarls and The Chili Peppers was pretty good about this, but the places with the indie, and semi-indie acts, man, we were invaded by people who just wanted good pictures.)
- Tough Decisions on which Bands to See--Man, more props to Pitchfork for the way they set that up. You never really had to miss a band, which is cool. As for Lollapalooza, you didn't have to necessarily miss a band because someone else was playing, but sometimes you had to miss a band to reserve a good spot at another show. (You bloggers with your crazy press passes don't realize how great it is to not have to worry about these things.) Their were tough match-ups for people to decide on--Do you go with Jack White and Brenden and miss Jim James and the boys? Do you like "Crazy" by Gnarls enough to miss Sonic Youth? Are you going to miss a chance to see Wilco in Chicago or are you going with the guys who brought you the feel good hit of the summer? The festival's over and these things are still weighing over me. Tough stuff.
- Accessibility to Each Stage--Remember earlier when I mentioned missing some bands to get a good spot at others? If you went to a stage 45 minutes before the band started, good chance you'd be right behind the front row. It really wasn't hard. Well, except for acts like Kanye, the Chilis, and Gnarls--those were impossible. But even Wilco wasn't too tough.
- Great Music--I figured I'd do this in award style. So here goes...
The "Excuse Me While I Become the Next Great Band" Award goes to Cold War Kids. Nice guys, soulful tunes, the live show to make those tunes even better. A highlight of the weekend which had many great other acts. Enjoy stardom, boys!
The "Yeah, My Album May Sound a Little Mellow, but When You See me Live You'll be Blown Away by How Beautiful my Music Is" award goes to Sammy Beam of Iron and Wine. Wow. You know when you watch a show and you get goosebumps because something is so intensely beautiful? Yeah, my girlfriend was oozing with bumps throughout the set. I actually had a Botox moment during the show, myself. (What I mean by that, is that my face like paralyzed for a second I was in such awe. I used to call this phenomenon a "paralyzed facial," but my buddy told me that means something completely different in the adult film industry, so we're sticking with "Botox" for now.) Regardless of the terminology, ole' Sammy provided the most beautiful set of the weekend.
The "Huh?" Award goes to Ryan Adams. I still don't know how I feel about his set. Musically, yeah, he was good. His song choice was ridiculous and he was wasted out of his mind. He tried to make Mitch Hedburg-like jokes about eggs, but was very unfunny. On the bright side, he covered "Hickory Wind" which is a Gram Parsons favorite of mine, so good for him.
The "Never Miss Me Live Under Any Circumstances" Award goes to Jack White. I chose him over Jim James, even though I feel MMJ is a better band than the Raconteurs. But you just don't miss Jack White. He, and the other dudes, were awesome, raring out their own tunes and covering a Nancy Sinatra song and "Crazy" as well. Watching Jack White the past two years is the equivalent of what it must have felt like to watch Kurt Cobain in 1993.
Very similar to the last award, the "If I'm Playing at a Major Festival, You Need to be There" award goes to Wayne Coyne and The Flaming Lips. I only got to catch a little of this, but the man was dancing around the crowd in a bubble, inflatable aliens were all over the stage, and about 20 guys dressed as Santa also danced on stage during the set. This is something you have to see in your life. You will tell your kids about the Flaming Lips festival set that you caught, I promise. (On a side note: Don't you wish all bands would step it up for festivals? I mean, really bring the best they got? I feel like most bands just said "well, I got an hour, I'll play my tunes, end my set with my best-known song and be on my way. The Lips were determined to WIN this weekend. They wanted to have the BEST show. I love that mentality.)
My last award is individual one, and three people tied for the simply-titled "Celebrity Look-alike" Award. The first recipient is Chad, the Chili Peppers drummer, who is a Will Ferrell-clone. I mean, exact. The second, and a little funnier if I might add, is the drummer of the New Pornographers, who looks just like Rachel Dratch from SNL (and yes, the drummer is a man.) And lastly, the great James Mercer of The Shins, looks just like Kevin Spacey. Not even kidding. I just wanted to shout "LESTER!" in the entire set. Very comical stuff.
- Alright, I know this is long, but I'll leave you with five funny random things seen during Lollapalooza...
1. During the Shins set, I looked back at the bleachers behind the stage, and which 3 random celebrities were standing together? (This is so random) But none other than Shaun White (The Flying Tomato--Gold Medal Snowboarder), Zach Braff, and Chad Kroger, the lead singer of Nickelback. I couldn't stop watching these guys. You could tell Kroger was sucking up to Braff, kind of like a "hey man, so I've liked your soundtracks so far. You know, my band, NB, we're pretty cool, ya know, maybe you'll add us on your next ST, eh?" Braff kept making that "shut up, dude, don't you know this band changed my life" face. To Braff's credit, the man knew all the words and jammed out quite well. Still, those three, together, the comedy highlight of the
2. The women at the "bar," all had the exact same look. They were all big-boned, big breasted, and wearing the lowest cut tank tops known to man...and they were all in their 40s. Gross times all around, but I saw a bunch of old drunk dudes spending heavy cash on those ladies, so the tank tops must have worked to an extent.
3. Port-a-Potties are the hottest places on earth. Period.
4. Parents dragging their kids out of the crowd when they catch them smoking pot could be the funniest thing I've witnessed in awhile. I don't know if I have to into details here, but if you ever see this live, let's just say you'll never laugh harder while feeling so bad for someone.
5. Finally, the bloggers were the easiest people to spot at Lolla. During the first 3 songs of each set, photographers were allowed up front to get their shots, but after the 3rd tune, they had to go. Well, they would all come in with their giant lenses and fancy cameras. That is, except for the Bloggers. You'd see all these newspaper and magazine photographers trying to get a great shot next to some young kid with a digital camera. Very funny stuff. I love the bloggers, you guys are great (even if the dude from the Tribune thinks you were in his way).