Amoeblog

New "What's In My Bag?" Episode with Beth Ditto

Posted by Amoebite, January 24, 2018 01:12pm | Post a Comment

Beth Ditto What's In My Bag? Amoeba Hollywood

When the multi-talented singer Beth Ditto stopped in to Amoeba Hollywood to do some record shopping she was very upfront about her tastes. "I think I have really dollar bin taste," she told us looking at her stack of records, "which is both great and horrible." Sure, the dollar bins may not be alphabetized, but there's still plenty of overlooked gems in them, including Same by British singer/songwriter Joan Armatrading. "She's a radical and an activist," Ditto told us, "(and) a beautiful songwriter too."

Beth Ditto first burst onto the scene in 1999 with her garage punk band The Gossip's (later simply Gossip) self-titled EP on K Records. The band's hybrid of gospel, punk, and soul styles combined with Ditto and co's feminist, body positive, and LGBTQ-friendly message created an intriguing hybrid that appealed to a wide range of fans. The band gained steady traction with the release of their debut full-length That's Not What I Heard (2001), their first collaboration with indie label Kill Rock Stars. Movement (2003) and Standing in the Way of Control (2006) soon followed with the latter album Beth Ditto Fake Sugar Amoeba Musiclanding in the #1 slot on the UK indie charts. The band signed to major label Columbia for their next album, 2009's Music for Men. Produced by Rick Rubin, the LP netted the band a nomination for Outstanding Music Artist at the 21st GLAAD Media Awards. Gossip's final album, A Joyful Noise, was released in 2012, debuting at #100 on the Billboard top 200.

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my top 50 albums of 2009...

Posted by Brad Schelden, December 15, 2009 01:20pm | Post a Comment

thieves like us play music
#1
Thieves Like Us
- Play Music (Shelflife)

This was one of those albums that I was excited about before I even heard it. I knew I would be falling in love with this one from the review alone. And the love only got stronger as time went on. I couldn't get enough of this one! It may not seem like much at first, but it truly is fantastic. I still don't know too much about this band. All I know is that they are from Sweden and they like New Order. The album is that sort of dark and new wave style but it doesn't really fall into one genre alone. Favorite songs on the album are "Fass," "Miss You," and "Drugs in My Body." The label Shelflife has put out good albums before, but nothing as good as this. I had really big hopes for this band this year to catch on in America but I don't think they ever really got that big here, which is the fate of many bands that I have fallen in love with before. They might just be a bit too weird or dark and slow. The album does not hit you over the head at first but it does get under your skin and the songs are catchy in their own special way. I highly recommend it. They do remind me a bit of the album by The Teenagers that I fell in love with last year, just without the silliness. A fantastic little album.

listen to "Fass" by Thieves Like Us...

 

buy the CD at amoeba.com

the pains of being pure at heart
#2
The Pains of Being Pure at Heart -
The Pains of Being Pure At Heart (Slumberland)


This album still gets me all happy and giggly -- even just looking at the album cover or saying the band's name out loud. The album cover reminds me of Strawberry Switchblade or My Bloody Valentine but The Pains of Being Pure at Heart sound more like Belle & Sebastian or Camera Obscura. This album is 100% pure twee pop, like nature intended it to be. The songs are cute and adorable but they are also so much more than that. They all tell a story and bring you into a different world, like watching your favorite movie when you are sad. This album can cure any bad mood...unless you hate twee music. Then it might make your mood a bit worse! But even then I think you might have a hard time not falling in love with this album. I saw them live at the Echo not too long after the album came out and it was a great show but I think they still had some stuff to work out. It was just hard to capture the brilliance of the album in a live setting. It is one of those records meant to be listened to in your own bedroom, music for those of us that grew up with The Cure and The Smiths; for those of those that fell in love with The Softies and The Aislers Set in the 90's. Slumberland was the perfect label for this band to end up on -- I really couldn't think of a better label for them. I have been a big fan of Slumberland for a while, since it brought us albums by The Softies, Boyracer, Velocity Girl, The Aislers Set, Henry's Dress, Lodger, Rocketship, and The Crystal Stilts. The Pains are one of my favorite discoveries of the year. I am happy to have them in my life.

listen to "Young Adult Friction" by The Pains of Being Pure at Heart...


buy the CD at amoeba.com

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out this week 6/30 & 7/7...gossip...bjork...wilco...moby...bowerbirds...

Posted by Brad Schelden, July 9, 2009 01:39pm | Post a Comment

Sometimes I think that I might throw the word love around too much... I do tend to fall in love with music and sometimes don't know how else to describe it. But I worry that it might take away some of the value of the word. How do I describe an album that I love more than any other if I have already claimed to love dozens of albums this year already? I might need to just start describing albums as pretty good. I do seem to use this phrase a lot when describing my feelings of certain situations, but I really actually mean pretty great when I say pretty good. So when I say love or great, I really do mean it. When an album like this new album by The Gossip comes around I really wish I had a new word to describe it. I do love it...but I really, really love it. I was a bit worried that I might just sort of like it. How could they follow up the brilliance of the last album Standing in the Way of Control? There was just no way. Their albums have been getting better and better but I was worried they had just gthe gossip music for menotten as good as they were going to get. This new album also marks their debut on a major label. They have gotten to be huge stars in England with the last album and were signed. I was worried they were maybe too busy playing big festival shows and doing big fancy photo shoots, too busy to concentrate on making another brilliant album. But I really had no reason to be worried. I had heard rumours that the new album was going to be great, and it most certainly is. Music for Men was released last week digitally and as an import. We will have to wait for the domestic CD and LP until later in the year, but I could not wait for this one. I had to pick up the import. I had to hold something in my hands. I wanted to look through the liner notes as I listened to the album for the first time. I wanted to own the album! You know, like we all used to do.

There is no mistaking the voice of Beth Ditto. That brilliant, strong, fascinating voice. I can't get enough of it. I fell in love with it the first time I heard it -- and I really mean it. Seeing them live is an essential part of falling in love with The Gossip. I saw them live a couple times in Olympia for Ladyfest, once at one of the main venues for the shows, and it was for sure one of the highlights, but I also got to see them play in somebody's basement the night before. Not sure how I ended up there but I am glad that I did. This was right as they were starting to make an impact and get more popular. I already really liked the albums but after that I knew I would be a fan for life. Seeing them live in San Francisco over the next couple of years just made me fall deeper in love. It is hard to explain the energy they have on stage. They just transform the songs to something different when they are played live. And it is really hard to not dance when you see them live. The new album is full of all the catchy songs that I have come to expect from them, but the lyrics are also fantastic! Another reason to buy the actual album is to be able to read the lyrics. Ditto's lyrics are often as powerful as her voice. The first single is "Heavy Cross." I will post the video for you below so you can check out the brilliance in case you are still unfamiliar. Every song on this album is worth your time. "Love Long Distance" is one of my favorites. So is "Pop Goes the World" and "Four Letter Word," but it is really silly trying to figure out my favorite songs on this album because it changes every time I listen to it. And seriously, every song is fantastic. Hopefully they will get over to Los Angeles very soon. They are playing a bunch of European shows the next couple of months, which makes sense, since the album is out there and not here. I know we sometimes don't want our favorite bands to get too big -- we want to keep them all to ourselves -- but The Gossip deserves all the succes they have gotten. They have been around a while and worked hard for it. And I really do want everyone to know about them. I want everyone to love them as much as I do. They are just plain fantastic and there is no getting around it. See them live! If you don't fall in love with the albums you will most certainly fall in love with their live performances. Beth Ditto is like no other.

Check out the video for "Heavy Cross" by Gossip from the new album Music For Men...



also out 6/30...






This Is Our Time by The Big Pink











Voltaic by Bjork











Got Nuffin by Spoon











Wilco (The Album) by Wilco











Wait For Me by Moby







also out 7/7...






Upper Air by Bowerbirds











Until the Earth Begins To Part by Broken Records











LP by Discovery










Blacksummer's Night by Maxwell











Catacombs by Cass Mccombs











Those Darlins by Those Darlins











These Four Walls by We Were Promised Jetpacks




The Pits

Posted by Mr. Chadwick, August 30, 2008 11:00am | Post a Comment
I remember a while back, one of the gossip sites was giving Beyonce Knowles a bunch of crap for posing in numerous photos with her arms up behind her head. She always looks great, so I guess it was a very slow news week or something to that effect.  Anyhow, here's a batch of covers with people also showing off their pits-- some au naturel, some shorn, some covered up.

BTW, Nugent is the king of said pose; there's almost always at least one pic of him doing it on his album covers or inner sleeve.