Amoeblog

Pick Up 15 Coachella Releases Digitally Before the Show

Posted by Billy Gil, April 11, 2013 05:01pm | Post a Comment

Amoeba.com has many of the bands playing at Coachella this weekend and next available digitally. Pick up some of the albums below before your drive out to the desert!

 

Dinosaur Jr. - Chocomel Daze (Live 1987)

Dinosaur Jr. Chocomel DazeRecently released live set from 1987 from the legendary college-rock band, in all their You're Living All Over Me glory.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Divine Fits - A Thing Called Divine Fits

Divine fitsA surprisingly strong side project featuring Spoon's Britt Daniels and former Wolf Parade/Handsome Furs barker Dan Boeckner.

 

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Album Picks: Grizzly Bear, James Iha, Allah-Las, How to Dress Well, Plus More Albums Out Today

Posted by Billy Gil, September 17, 2012 05:23pm | Post a Comment
Grizzly BearGrizzly Bear – Shields

One of the year’s finest rock albums comes with Grizzly Bear’s Shields, improbably even even more consistent album than 2009’s excellent Veckatimest. Beginning with the soft explosion of “Sleeping Ute,” in which Daniel Rossen sings of his “wanderings dreams” amid regal electric guitars, fluttering synths and acoustics, Chris Taylor’s grounding basslines and Chris Bear’s dynamic drumwork, Shields continues through a back-and-forth between the more immediate pop thrills of Veckatimest and more ambient feel of their older material. “Speak in Rounds” has the same sort of glorious harmonies we heard on “While You Wait for the Others” but with more rock propulsion than the band usually employs. Meanwhile, tracks like the wordless “Adelama” and slowly shuffling “The Hunt” highlight their placid side. But Shields is also a progression of their sound in addition to a refinement of it. “Yet Again” scales back the grabbiness of an older song like “Two Weeks” for a lushly expansive take on the rock single, perhaps showing some influence from Radiohead, with whom they toured a few years back in a dream bill. Similarly extended and confident, “A Simple Answer” is one of Daniel Rossen’s finest showcases to date, building on his typically mysterious melodies to a gratifying, grandiose chorus. An addictive listen, it’s easy to lose yourself in the layers of Shields and find something newly impressive each time.
 
james ihaJames Iha – Look to the Sky
 
Anyone who’s been a big Smashing Pumpkins fan knows the pleasures the Pumpkins’ “George Harrison” could bring with his subtle guitarwork and gorgeous songs like “Go,” “Blew Away” and “Take Me Down.” Fourteen years after his first solo album released while still in the Pumpkins, James Iha is back with a fuller sound that capitalizes both on his folky Neil Young-inspired leanings and his ability to create spectral space rock soundscapes. Both qualities are in full flair on the beautiful “To Who Knows Where,” which features a typically beautiful Iha chorus and an awesome space-folk breakdown in the middle. Classic Pumpkins fans can find plenty to sink their teeth into in songs like “Gemini,” which moves from eerie folk to swoony big-chord rock. Elsewhere, he breaks from his past more decisively, as on the ’60s by way of ’80s pop “Till Next Tuesday” and the addled blues of “Appetite,” moments that show Iha has more tricks up his sleep than at first appears. Some of his folkier tracks veer toward sappy, but Iha’s smart production, learned from the interim years of producing for acts like Cat Power and Isobel Campbell as well as various remixes, usually saves things with orchestral flourishes and surprises like the twinkling synths that pop up at the end of the Karen O duet “Waves.” It’s an assured work that speaks to the talents of Iha as a guitarist, producer and songwriter who knows how to paint wonders from a modest palette.

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New Preorders: Grizzly Bear, The XX, Bob Dylan, Two Door Cinema Club

Posted by Billy Gil, August 2, 2012 02:02pm | Post a Comment
grizzly bear shieldsGrizzly Bear have thus far released two songs from their upcoming album, Shields (preorder here), which comes out Sept. 18 and is now available to preorder at Amoeba.com. Whereas Daniel Rossen sings on the first single, the bizzaro country-jangle of “Sleeping Ute,” warm-voiced Ed Droste lends his vocals to “Yet Again,” which the band debuted today. Like most Grizzly Bear songs, it’s a grower and takes a few listens for everything to sink in. I’m picking up some Radiohead vibes on this one — nice downward-angling melody and shuffling drums, with some of GB’s now trademark harmonies and vocal acrobatics in the background. Judging by these first two songs, there could be a more laid-back vibe than on Veckatimest, which always suits this band quite well.
 
 





The XXAlso, The XX have begun the promotional push for their new album, Coexist (preorder here), out Sept. 11, debuting its first single, “Angels,” and playing it on the late-night circuit. The XX are pretty weird to have gotten this popular, but I think that says something good about people’s taste, right? The first time I heard this song, I thought it wasn’t so great. Kind of too slow and spacious for a single, even for them. Today I listened again and it had me within the first seconds, even before that hallowed out drum roll comes in and lifts Romy Madley Croft’s vocals skyward. Pretty, simple and pure. The fact that it will probably soundtrack a lot of breakup scenes in movies or whatever is irrelevant; the song sounds written from the gut, and that’s why people respond to this band.
 
 


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Album Picks: Daniel Rossen, Julia Holter, The Men, Tanlines

Posted by Billy Gil, March 20, 2012 02:20pm | Post a Comment

daniel rossen silent hour/golden mileDaniel Rossen’s Silent Hour/Golden Mile EP came out today, and true to form for Grizzly Bear’s Rossen, it doesn’t disappoint. Though he’s perhaps the lesser-known entity of Grizzly Bear (the other being gravy-voiced Ed Droste), everything Rossen has released to this point, both within the band (his gorgeous “Deep Blue Sea," for instance”) or without it (as part of Department of Eagles) has born an unmistakable stamp. It’s a tribute to his talent that you can say that without being able to describe just what that stamp is. It’s a certain mysteriousness that is part of what makes Grizzly Bear so alluring, where you’re very much hearing folk-rock with a kind of doo-wop vocal delivery — sounds simple enough — but everything is curiously out of reach. Lyrics are more suggestive than descriptive, intimating nostalgia and loss without really being forthright about it, and arrangements tend to spiral out rather than circle back to where they’ve started. Silent Hour/Golden Mile is actually more direct than some of Rossen’s other work. “Up On High” wouldn’t be out of place on a Grizzly Bear album, while “Silent Song” and “Golden Mile” are relatively straightforward rock songs that still spin off from typical construction, with spindly guitars and high, cooing vocals that remind me a bit of mid-period Radiohead without actually sounding anything like that. Both songs also benefit from hummable moments — not something Rossen is always known for — as well as the kind of high, lap steel guitar lines found famously in Santo & Johnny’s “Sleepwalk” or George Harrison’s “My Sweet Lord.” At five songs, Silent Hour/Golden Mile leaves you wanting for much more, which I’m guessing we’ll get in the form of the next Grizzly Bear or Department of Eagles album, but the EP is far from a departure or indulgence. It’s more like a treat, an appetizer for something bigger.

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Lineup Announced for 2010 Bridge School Benefit Concert, Buffalo Springfield Again

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, September 14, 2010 01:43pm | Post a Comment
buffalo springfield

Buffalo Springfield is reuniting -- at least, the three surviving members of the classic rock group are! And three fine rock stalwarts they are: Neil Young, Steven Stills and Richie Furay will be hitting the stage at the Young's 2010 Bridge School Benefit Concert and playing tracks from their albums together as the Springfield.

Buffalo Springfield "Broken Arrow" 1967


Buffalo Springfield "On the Way Home" 1968


Other artists set to perform at the always-epic acoustic annual fund raiser Oct 23 and 24 at Shoreline are Modest Mouse, Pearl Jam, Grizzly Bear, Lucinda WIlliams, Merle Haggard with Kris Kristofferson, Jackson Browne with David Lindley, T-Bone Burnett's Speaking Clock Revue (Neko Case, Elvis Costello, Ralph Stanley, Elton John, Leon Russell and Jeff Bridges) and more!

Tickets will be available for snapping up on September 19.

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