Monday, April 20, 2009

New Music Monday Night

Three new excellent choices up for you this week. Let's get right at it.

Clem Snide - Hungry Bird

This is studio album number six for the talented band led by lead singer/songwriter Eef Barzelay. Clem Snide currently resides in KG's All Time Top 10 Band List and when commissioned by Flanksteak to create a greatest hits mix cd I was unable to narrow the list down to less than 40 songs. Last week after a disappointing concert that left me wanting to disown the band, I repeatedly listened to this album and it got better with each spin. The lyrics are sarcastic yet poignant. I will not be divorcing Eef and the boys anytime soon.

Camera Obscura - My Maudlin Career

Camera Obscura is a band that formed in Scotland in 1996 and this is their fourth release. The band has a 1960's vibe about them, in fact if you heard someone playing this album you might think it was an old record he/she had stolen from their parents. This is another album that grows on you and is good enough that our boy Vanwarmer recently stood in line at the SXSW Festival in Austin, TX for 6.5 hours on a waiting list just to get in to see them play. He said it was worth it and I'd have to agree with him. Luckily for us, Camera will be playing in SLC in June and if you buy tix now you won't have to spend all day waiting in line to see them.

Iron & Wine - Norfolk 06.20.05

For those of you unfamiliar with Iron & Wine, it is basically a one man band by a guy named Sam Beam. Beam might be the finest acoustic guitar player currently in the Indie/Folk scene and sings with a comforting voice that reminds me of Elliott Smith at his most delicate. This album was a special release for the Independent Record Store Day and is just a live concert album from 2005. I have seen Sam Beam in concert once but I did miss him during the 2005 tour so I was very pleased to pickup this CD as a reminder of what a pleasure it is to see him live. Please be advised that The Trapeze Singer contains one moment of salty language and is rated PG-13. I apologize if it offends anyone but the song is a favorite of mine.


I realize Monday night is not a news night but I wanted to pass along this letter written to the SL Tribune by a member of the Graywhale staff. Some of you may or may not have seen that Brandi Carlile had to postpone her Saturday in-store performance until Sunday (as first reported by Skog Blog reader, Mindy) but I think excuse is very understandable and I loved the fact that she seemed to sincerely be upset to not be able to do a show to benefit the Independent Record Stores. Here is just a portion of the letter that can be found on this blog. As a guy who once dreamed of owning his own record store I found it very cool on her part.

But really more than the numbers and the units moved, more importantly was the general feel of the day and the emotional weight we all felt. There were truly some magical moments. I'll never forget how kind and gracious Brandi Carlile was to us. With 48 hours to go to RSD she got a call she had been dreaming of since she was a little girl: Elton John asking her to come record a song. But the only window of time to perform was, yes you guessed it, Saturday afternoon, right during record store day when she was planning on playing at Graywhale. Let it be said that from talking to her, I gathered that this was a big struggle for her (come on, it's Elton F***ing John, but yet she really struggled with what to do!) Luckily a decision could be reached as she had a travel day on Sunday and she could perform on Sunday. So RSD was a 48 hour event for Graywhale. And perform she did. A lovely 80 degree day, sun shinning, mountains in the background, 250 passionate fans, and an amazing set by Brandi, the Twins, and the cellist (sorry, I forgot your name!) Sitting by the door, as Brandi dedicated "The Story" to me and Graywhale, pleading with fans to never take for granted independent record stores and the joy they bring to our lives, fans soaking in every note of that great song ... I couldn't ask for a better day. I won't lie, might have been dusty for a second there outside the 'Whale for me (damn allergies I'm sure). Many thanks to Brandi, Sony/Columbia (especially Liberty and the others I never met behind the scenes that helped make the move to Sunday happen) and Michael Kurtz for making a half hour outside a 24 year old record store so special.


Mindy said...

Thanks for the info on Brandi. I will be totally thrilled to hear the Elton John/Brandi recording. Hopefully she will come again soon. Sounds like Sunday was fun.
Thanks also for the great new tunes. I love new artists and count me as the newest Camera Obscura fan. So cool. Loved the others as well.

Corbie said...

You missed my favorite Iron & Wine song - the big man would be disappointed.

I love the Brandi article - there is nothing better than when artists truly remember who makes it possible for them to do what they love.

kg said...

Mindy - thanks for the kind words about the tunes. I have seen your blog playlist and you need to be a special guest columnist here to share some of your good tune goodness.

Corbie - Sorry but your favorite Iron & Wine song wasn't on that live album. And the only reason you like that song is because you love Mexicans so much.

Mindy said...

KG...anytime. Will I have a limit on number of songs? ;)

Sosiua said...

Ahhh trapeze swinger...I still remember sitting next to Big Gay Al in the top row of the Venue the first time we heard that song live. Sam hushed a packed house for nine minutes of heaven. Well I should say seven minutes, that's when the drunk 40 something guy behind us decided it was a good opportunity to impress the 20 something girl next to him by telling her writing sappy love songs was pointless. Let's just say Sam wasn't the only one who dropped the F-bomb at the Venue that night.

kg said...

And major kudos to you, Sosiua, for finding the name and mp3 of that song and sharing it with us the next day. Good times indeed.

Mindy - Unlimited songs. Actually, just not so many that it will take me 4 hours to link to all of them. Other than THAT, unlimited.