Monday, May 11, 2009

New Music Monday Night

I had some technical difficulties last night. It looks like the file server that was hosting my mp3 files has deleted them. I'll save you the jokes and ball busting, this was not user error. Anyway, I'm going to see if I can find another place to put them up. Just wanted to give a heads up as to why the mp3 files are no longer working on the Skog Blog. Because of this I have decided to pick three new live albums tonight and post youtube clips of live performances. Most of them are not necessarily from the performances where the albums were recorded but we can all pretend, can't we?

The Hold Steady - Positive Rage

I have two of the four studio albums that The Hold Steady have released and although I like them I have never fallen in love with any of them. I had the opportunity to see them live a few weeks ago and my feelings for them grew ever so slightly. They are fronted by lead singer, Craig Finn, a guy who looks like he should be your 8th grade science teacher. When he strolls out onto the stage you don't exactly think "Wow this guy is a Rockstar" but then the band kicks in and he begins singing/screaming and the concert becomes some kind of revival with Finn playing the role of the crazed rock n roll preacher. His voice is definitely better live where you can hear every rasp and see the way he flails his arms in such an animated manner. Positive Rage is a fantastic name for this album because that describes their music perfectly. Here are a few of the standout tracks. Perhaps an acquired taste but give them a shot. Sequestered In Memphis, Stuck Between Stations, Constructive Summer, and Stay Positive.

Frightened Rabbit - Quietly Now!

Last year Frightened Rabbit put out The Midnight Organ Fight that was one of the honorable mentions for my top 12. I did put their song The Twist as my number 4 single of the year but I really wish I could take a mulligan and put the entire album on the list because it has never fallen out of my rotation and in fact I have listened to it more than most of the albums that did crack my top 12 last year. Quietly Now! was recorded at a small club in the band's hometown of Glasgow, where the band played The Midnight Organ Fight from start to finish. I once told Flanksteak that Frightened Rabbit sounds like if Shrek had a really kick ACE band and after listening he said, "who would have ever thought that was a compliment?" The Modern Leper, Old Old Fashioned, and Be Less Rude.

Elbow and the BBC Orchestra - The Seldom Seen Kid: Live at Abbey Road

How do you make a masterpiece better? Last year Elbow's The Seldom Seen Kid was the number four album on my top 12. In January of this year Elbow performed this album in its entirety at the famed Abbey Road Studios while accompanied by the BBC Orchestra and a London Choir. The performance was recorded and broadcast on BBC Television on January 31st. So let me get this straight - in England they show GOOD music on TV? What a strange concept. At least we have American Idol (nope). Many of these songs I still listen to on a daily basis. As cheesy as it sounds, One Day Like This is a very therapeutic song for me. Very upbeat, I love the line that is repeated "Holy cow I love your eyes!" because it reminds me of all of my girls (that means you too, Wheels) and the need for us to throw our curtains open in the morning and proclaim that it's going to be a beautiful day. On Mirrorball, I like the imagery of kissing my girls "the self same face that wouldn't let me sleep" and then sneaking out in the street to dance with Wheels while the moon serves as our mirrorball. I realize it isn't as good as sitting on the beach in Mexico but if Weather to Fly, doesn't lift your spirits then you are more cynical than the pre-heart grow Grinch. Grounds For Divorce and Bones of You are sing along classics. I think it's time for KG to move to England.

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