Thursday, August 31, 2006

drinkin' pabst 'til a half past noon...

Unlike Joe, I sometimes have a difficult time willingly "representing" my home town of Denver, Colorado. Don't get me wrong, the mountains are nice, but somewhere in between the excess amounts of Nalgene's and Croc's, has caused me to slowly disown my state of eighteen years.

But every once in awhile, something will come along and join the mountain tops in holding a special place in my Colorado heart. Today, that something is the Denver-band Pee Pee. Now, although Pee Pee aren't as big of a Colorado fixation as the Rocky's, I can definiely picture their band/ensemble/collective traveling up into the foothills and playing all night long next to a campfire. Wait? You are sill stuck on the name huh? Well don't be deceieved. Pee Pee packs in mature lyrics and orchestral jams that easily dismiss their beer-in-hand vibe and childlike name.

Their songs range in style as they are able to casually accompany strings, horns, and accordians at will with their 9 members. "Over the Hill" is the standout track(imo) as it incorporates pop melodies fronted by laid back lo-fi folk singin'. Go ahead and donwload 'em all. Then head over to their Myspace for another. Enjoy.

-mp3- Pee Pee - Over That Hill
-mp3- Pee Pee - Dixie Cup Song
-mp3- Pee Pee - Impossible

Pee Pee's Myspace

I'll Believe In Anything

Since we have been so Wolf Parade obsessed lately I figured we might as well rep there new video, which came out yesterday and has already debuted on the likes of megablogs Pitchfork and Stereogum. I really don't have much to say about it. It was directed by Matt Moroz, it takes place in what I believe is the early 19th century England. Then again I know nothin' about history, nor do I know where they actually shot the video. BUT they do shoot each other a lot. Once again, a little more insight into the mind of a canuck.

p.s. Their olderish video for Modern World by Adam bizanski is freaking awesome too.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

The Language Arts

This is my first post on RMDS. So forgive me poor grammer and bad spellings.
Anywho. My favorite caucasian Canadian rapper apparently realized it was Joe's birthday because he has shared with us the best gift of all. The gift of free music (because nobody gets free music nowadays.) It's called Strong Arm. Which is a very appropriate title for this album/mixtape because it feels a little like someone putting you into a headlock and forcing you to take in some strange, dark music. And oddly enough, this album makes such an event not seem so bad. If you've ever listened to Buck 65 before you know he is intrigued by the odd, desperate, and sinister side of life. Strong Arm is no execption to these previous works. Ranging from blues to dub and everything in between it's a lot to take in at 35 minutes. But I dig it. Maybe you will too.

-mp3- Buck 65 -Part I
-mp3- Buck 65 -Part II

Buck has also recently made a new music video for Devil's Eyes. Just a little more insight into the mind of a canuck.

There's bugs in my shoes...

Ok. Lot's a stuff going on at RMDS (as I mentioned in the previous post).

After hassling for nearly an hour with all of his demands, we are proud to now have Mike S. on board with us. Mike is a fellow student at our University and a friend. His music taste is impeccable, and I think it will add a really nice dimension to our blog. Look forward to posts from him coming soon. Like real soon. I'm pretty sure he's writing one now.

I don't quite feel like making a "real" post right now as I have many ideas I need to sort out in my head, before I start firing on a all cylinders. I will say, however, we have some great new bands/tracks to spit at you in the following days. So keep tuning in.

But, being that I'm not in the mood for a well structured post, I'm not just going to leave you hanging. Instead, I will share with you some of the treats I found surfing the blogosphere today...

-mp3- Rogue Wave - Debaser(live)
I owe Largehearted Boy for directing me to this live set of Rogue Wave performing in Boston earlier in August. This is a Pixies cover, but it definitely sounds like it could fit right in with Descend Like Vultures. Zach is back to his usual antics: sweet, soft, catchy, and sincere melodies. Enjoy.

-mp3- Page France - Weatherman, Section Three
I finally received my copy of Page France's split EP's Pear and Sister Pinecone, and although I already had Pear, it was a wonderful treat. Anyways, I am always a bit biased concerning Page France and Michael Nau as I typically instantly fall in love with everything they produce. This song is no exception. It's more Pear than Hello, Dear Wind. It's poppy, it's sunny. It's Page France, what's new?!

-mp3- Ted Leo & The Pharmacists - Sons of Cain(live)
I owe this mp3 to Bradley's Almanac who has a bomb diggity Ted Leo post today full of mp3's, live reviews, and sweet links. Go here to check it all out. I don't have much to say about this song as it is just more solid, catchy rock from Mr. Leo.

-mp3- The Mountain Goats - Alpha Omega (live on KEXP)
Like I have mentioned before, I'm new to The Mountain Goats. By that I mean: I love Sunset Tree and the new Get Lonely but I am pretty ignorant to the likes of their old stuff. This song is from a KEXP session Josh Darnielle recently did in Seattle. After a little research, I discovered this song was originally released on a compilation abulm in 1995, Our Salvation is at Hand. The song is the last in a series of stories about a couple. This song documents his first breakfast alone after his wife leaves him. The song breathes a sigh of relief. He eats boiled peanuts.

Well enjoy those semi rare/live/new songs. Thanks to the people who originally found them. I'm such a thief. Happy Tuesday.

happy birfday to you...

So today is Joe's birthday(the one on the left, another peter, not me, is on the right ...hi petooor). And being one of the two primary members here at RMDS, I find it appropriate to show him some love on his bday as he ventures into life outside of the "teens."

So enjoy the picture. Enjoy the birthday songs, and leave Joe some love in the comments.

-mp3- Sufjan Stevens - Happy Birthday
-mp3- Andrew Bird - The Happy Birthday Song

also, asides from Joe's birthday we have some really exciting things going on at Renaissance Men. We are most likely going to have another memeber join us on board soon which is going to increase the musical goodness here ten fold. More news on that to come. We also have some neat posts lined up along with a grip load of cocnerts in the near future. Siq. We look forward to your continued readership...

....happpppy birfday to youuuu.

*update* joe's friend rachel took this photo. its very artistic. thank you dear.
*update* apparently i very rudely mispelled the aeformentioned photographer's name. i'm very sorry rachael. i even hyperlinked ur name this time. that should make things right. k? thanks!

Monday, August 28, 2006

I'm gonna build an airport, put my name on it

I was reading The Dharma Bums last night, and there was a beautiful passage in which the narrator described his first glimpse of Mt. Hozomeen (obligatory WA bragging) from a fire lookout on Desolation Peak.
I was familiar with Desolation Peak, but not with Mt. Hozomeen. So I google image searched it.
Above is one of the pictures that I liked the best. I hope no one is afraid of mountains or anything.

I really like vocal harmonies in music. They are like mountains on a musical landscape if you will. Or maybe I'm just trying to tie two unrelated thoughts together. It's the latter.
Here are 3 songs, all of which have been favorite songs of mine in the past, all of which come with strong memories attached, and all of which contain killer vocal harmony moments.
You may well have heard one or two or all of these before, but try to listen to them as if you were hearing them for the first time. You may also find this all very corny, if so, I am sorry, I will try to find some really ironic, cynical type music to post soon.
but for now...

-mp3- Ben Folds - Fred Jones pt. 2
-mp3- Denison Witmer - Stations
-mp3- Damien Jurado and Rosie Thomas - Window

have a nicccccccccceeeeeeeeeeeeeee day everybody. i just got a really nice package in the mail, spirits are high here at RMDS.
bye bye

try to catch me shaking that laffy taffy

This is my attempt to do one of those more normal type posts where I find a sweet new band and type about dem.
So here it is

The Volta Sound are from Ohio. They play some happenin' tunes that are somewhere between a more chillllll version of the mighty Pink Mountaintops and the sound of what would happen if Pete Townshend got really into some psychedelic folky type jams. That's my first impression, take it as you will, and please oh please listen to the songs and formulate an opinion and give these guys some smoochin'

-mp3- The Volta Sound - We'll Be Fine (I think I love this one the best)
-mp3- The Volta Sound - Couldn't Eat It All
-mp3- The Volta Sound - I Knew You'd Know

The Volta Sound on Myspace

so yeah, enjoy that. There might be some more RMDS posts coming up here right quick, I am on a roll.
bye bye

To sail, to pillage...

The weekend is over and we are already back to school here at RMDS. The weekend was good. We went to the beach yesterday. There was splashing. And Joe's fair Washington skin got burnt. Good times.

I bet Jacob Borshard likes playing his ukelele on the beach. In fact, the ocean would be an excellent companion to his breezy lyrics - simple stories that strike a chord for kids with geos wanting to become pirates. Borshard's songs at the core, however, evoke thoughts of high school and being a teenager. I particularly can relate to his thoughts about girls and speeding tickets. And if Joe was writing this post, he would most assuradely point out that he hails from Washington. I don't know what that has to do with anything, but it just goes to show that Joe's shameless WA shout-outs everyday are now starting to permeate into my writing. Ahhh. Anyways...regardless of who you are or where you are from, you should be able to enjoy these down to earth folk songs with pop melodies.

Oh, and the best thing about Jacob Borshard is that he has both of his albums available for download at his website. For free! Check out his artwork too. What a renaissance man.

But in case you are too lazy to jog on over to his site, I provided four of my favorite songs below. You should download them all. Enjoy.

-mp3- Jacob Borshard - Brains Brains (for you pirate people)
-mp3- Jacob Borshard - Grass Stains (for you lover people)
-mp3- Jacob Borshard - Vincent and Theo (for you wandering people)
-mp3- Jacob Borshard - Full of Aces (for you poker people)

Jacob Borshard's Website
Jacob on Myspace
Jacob's Sculptures
Other write-up's about Jacob Borshard's music here, here, and here. pass the rum and draw your swords.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Waiting for something that will never arrive

We saw Wolf Parade last night. It was really sweet and a good time was had by all. Even the nasty people making out and the 15 year old babies with novelty t-shirts. Good time rock music.

The opening band (as throughly covered in our concert review post which I am too lazy to hyperlink to because it should be right in front of your eyes) was Whalebones. They had some blues sound, some monster guitars, some jam band crazyness, some meanness to their music, some grime (not like Dizzee) in their vocal harmonies, some weapons in their hands, some fire in their bellies, etc.
I loved them, you should too. Try kicking your leg or throwing your fist up at appropriate times in the song. Worst case scenario, you make yourself look stupid in front of a hottie. On the plus side, you would burn calories.

-mp3- Whalebones- Ladyfingers
-mp3- Whalebones- Another Jungle
-mp3- Whalebones- Blood Bank (Highly Recommended!!!)

Whalebones on Myspace

That's about it. Have a beautiful weekend. Tell me some sweet stories.
bye bye

Wolf Parade/Frog Eyes - Live at the Wiltern

Let me just start off by saying that Wolf Parade absolutely killed it last night at The Wiltern. The night could not have gone better as we were able to get right up front, sneak in my camera(shh), and listen to three kick-ass bands. Enjoy our first ever concert review at RMDS...

The night got off to a great start with opener
Whalebones. They had a supremely confident stage presence and a blues/jam band type sound equally reminiscent of both Black Mountain and Black Keys. Now, that may sound like Urban Outfitters' answer to The Grateful Dead, but let me tell you, Whalebones was legit. The songs had claws, the guitars dropped bombs on my head, expect a post hyping them up to arrive very soon.

Frog Eyes
Frog Eyes' set really brought out the worst in one of the most obnoxious crowds I've ever been a part of. They had some kickin' jams and a unique stage presence that steadily improved throughout the set. However, their music is not very accessible (say it ain't so), and even though we here at RMDS were very into their style, the set did drag a bit. Nevertheless, they kept it real, and Casey Mercer's Black Francis-esque showmanship accompanied with tweaked out solos and high energy deserved a much more respectful audience.

Wolf Parade
I'm not going to lie, I was somewhat apprehensive about Wolf Parade's live show. Of course, I love their recorded work, but it seemed like every live review I ever read of WP played them off as nothing special. Reviewers praised Sunset Rubdown and their live set, but seemed hesitant to give as much credit to Wolf Parade's show. Fearing Krug had over extended himself with all his other projects, I went into the concert hoping simply for a solid performance.

In retrospect, I shouldn't have been so timid about having high expectations. Wolf Parade came out firing. They blazed through the first half of their set with a barrage of seemingly effortless jams. One thing we really noticed about Wolf Parade's live performance was how many different influences and stylings they pull together to make their unique sound. Seeing Spencer Krug and Dan Boeckner alternating on lead vocals lead to a new appreciation for their recorded work. It is very easy to listen to Apologies to the Queen Mary and forget about the intricacies that went into the songwriting because it is so well produced. Wolf Parade pulls all of this musical meshing off with ease, all while managing to pack in a grip load of fun-filled energy.

The latter half of the set was to be particularly noted as it was practically perfect. "I'll Believe in Anything" procceeded directly by "This Heart's on Fire" was enough to leave us both in awe.

Other than that, we don't have much to say other than that you should definitly see Wolf Parade live if you are given the chance. Below, we have the setlist, accompanied with mp3's of our favorite songs of the night. Enjoy.


Things I Don't Know
(New Song) (mp3)
Shine A Light
Grounds For Divorce
It's a Curse
Dear Sons and Daughters of Hungry Ghosts
We Built Another World
You Are A Runner And My Father's Son/Fancy Claps
Modern World
(New Song)
(New Song)
I'll Believe in Anything (mp3)
This Heart's On Fire (mp3)

The National People's Scare
Dinner Bells

Friday, August 25, 2006

Nobody knows you...

So Joe and I (along with another cool cat: Mike) are headed up to L.A. tonight to see Wolf Parade and Frog Eyes. My excitement is overflowing. Spencer Krug might be the busiest man in indie music these days with Wolf Parade, Sunset Rubdown, and now Swans Lake all occupying some of his musical efforts. Hopefully he's ready to howl all night long at The Wiltern.

Also, this will also be the first of many live reviews here on RMDS. So hopefully, my outdated camera can snap a few blog-worthy photos. Regardless, we'll have a review up in the following days.
That's about it. Here's a couple mp3's from the respective Canadian outfits. You probably already have them and have listend to them on repeat like me. But here they are anyways...

Wolf Parade - I'll Believe In Anything
Frog Eyes - The Akhian Press

...and nobody gives a damn.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Someday when I'm older...

Basically I'm making this post because The Boy Least Likely To recently posted this picture on their myspace and I really like it. Yes, I'm very articulate.

Well, I guess to make this post more than just a picture, I'll offer you a a couple TBLLT songs that you might not have heard if you only own
The Best Party Ever. Um, I dont feel like writing about these songs much, but I will say "Rock Upon A Porch With You" sure gets me excited to get in touch with my geriatric side.

The Boy Least Likely To - Rock Upon A Porch With You (Do It !!!)
The Boy Least Likely To - Every Grubby Little Memory

The Boy Least Likely To's Website

Is it just me?

what up what up.
the beautiful piece of greenhouse photography to the north was taken at my place of employment over the summer.
it is a nice place and they let me drive a sweet lawn mower sometimes, but I sweated a lot while I was there. Such mixed feelings...

before I start posting songs and all that normal stuff, allow me to direct your attention to Pitchfork's review of Get Lonely. Lack of a 10.0 aside, this is the type of review that gets me all excited for an album. Actually, who am I fooling? I've already listened to Get Lonely all the way through and it rules. Don't have a lot more to say about that, go buy it!!!

ok, now for some tunez.
Addition is the name taken by a strapping young man from Renton, WA (the 425). He plays some good old fashioned angsty acoustic music. Now, that may sound a bit tongue in cheek, but please don't let me be misunderstood, this is good stuff. There are 10 billion sad boys with acoustic guitars making mediocre music, but I think Addition really manages to rise above a lot of other acts. His voice reminds me of Will Sheff's, which is a huge bonus. His influences are solid as a rock, and it shows.
enjoy this while you can cause someday you will be dead.

-mp3- Addition- Someday Soon (Highly Recomended)
-mp3- Addition- So Cheap

Addition on Myspace

There are many bands that I've found on myspace, and many that I can't wait to blog on. Unfortunately, some of them don't let me download their mp3s. I am going to see what I can do about this. In the meantime, here are two lovely ladies you should listen to and fall in love with. They may not be new to you, but you know, it never hurts to hear a song more than once.

-mp3- Pink Nasty- May It Always Be (Bonnie "Prince" Billy cover)
-mp3- Pink Nasty- Groove and Grind

Pink Nasty on Myspace
Pink Nasty's Website

-mp3- Mirah- Person Person
-mp3- Mirah- Monument (Recomended More Highly Than a Kite)
-mp3- Mirah- Don't Die On Me (You Have No Idea How Good This Song Is)

Mirah on Krecs

I think I need to work on recommending things in more straightforward ways. Any suggestions?
Ok, since this blog is new and it could use a bit of a jump start, I'm going to just go ahead and post two songs that you probably/maybe have already heard but are still so freaking good I can't even believe it and you must have them. They also both touch on the possibility that maybe America/mankind in general sometimes does bad things. Sorta. You'll see. I consider them sister songs.

-mp3- Sufjan Stevens- The Star-Spangled Banner (Live)
-mp3- Bob Dylan- With God On Our Side

Hope you enjoyed this post and that it finds you all well. In less than 24 hours Peter and I will be done with our first week back at school and headed for a weekend o' fun.
bye bye

Brand Spankin' New Format Video

This is going to be a quick post because I am in between classes. But I just wanted to tell you all(by that, I mean our 3 or 4 occassional readers) that The Format just debuted their video for "The Compromise" on their myspace page this morning. The video has loads of paper mache bobbleheads and creatures, along with giant robots in the desert. Oh ya, its a real good song too.

The Format - The Compromise

Vote for the video on
The Format's Website
The Format on Myspace

(Check out the Tour Dates!
Joe and I will be at the Sept. 1 show in San Diego)

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Ratatat - "Classics"

In case you guys didn't already know, yesterday was an incredibly good day for music releases. I know I already posted on the new Mountain Goats' album, but I also wanted to share with you another one of yesterday's dope release (head over to the Yellow Stereo sometime for an even better roundup of August 22's releases).

In case you aren't familiar with Ratatat, they are a two piece group who jumble hip hop, electronica, and rock into jam-worthy instrumental beats. Coming off their self-titled debut album, Ratatat expands their sound on Classics. And rightfully so, given the name. Blips, bleeps, blops, and twangy guitar riffs make up most of the songs, but cellos and sleigh bells can be found in the mix as well. Not interested? Sounds too bland? Just give "Wildcat" a listen and hear that feline breathe down your throat at the 0:19 mark. Cruise down a midwest highway with "Montanita" at 80 miles an hour. And with "Lex" you might as well have just beat a hidden level in Mario. Bust it...

-mp3- Ratatat - Wildcat
-mp3- Ratatat - Montanita
-mp3- Ratatat - Lex

Buy Classics at Insound
Ratatat's Website
Ratatat's Myspace (Check Out Their Tour!)

also, I just got a notice about a couple of new Beck shows in the Southern California area. So if you have more money than me, go see 'um live and tell me about it. Oh, he's opening for Tom Petty at the show in Chula Vista. Siq. If only I had 86 dollars to spare.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

I think my laptop battery is about to catch fire

Over the summer I was anti-social and watched lots of movies. I denied this endlessly, but basically, that's the gist of it.
I love Netflix like a fat kid loves cliches.

Here are 3, all of which you have probably heard of, that really made an impact on me this summer. And of course, some songs that compliment them. hopefully.

Mean Streets

This movie fascinated me for several reasons. Most obviously, it's amazing to be able to watch Scorsese and DeNiro showing the beginnings of what would become two of the most legendary talents in cinematic history. That may be the most overdramatic sentence yet here at RMDS. Sorry. Despite Scorsese's early experiments with follow shots and other directorial feats of strength and DeNiro's vulnerable, out-of-control portrayal of Johnny Boy, I think it's Harvey Keitel who really steals the show in this film. He perfectly captures a character who is being driven to desperation by forces out of his control. And yet, Keitel's Charlie is still pursuing an escape, freedom, love, opportunity, life, the American Dream. Oh crime films, you get me every time.

"if you and me were free, we'd do as we please..."

-mp3- The Kinks - Till The End Of The Day

Cache (Hidden)

I had heard so much debate over whether Cache was genius and thought-provoking or pretentious and pointless that I practically lost interest in seeing it. That would have been a bonehead play on my part.
This film blew me away. I found myself thinking about it more and more and more as the days went by and the mailman took my magic red envelope far away from me. Oh well, mail is one of the many things I'm distrustful of after seeing this film. This is a film full of dread.

"And watch it all come down..."

-mp3- Bonnie "Prince" Billy - Another Day Full Of Dread

The Asphault Jungle

I have a soft spot (maybe a dark spot?) for film noir. I eat up the dialogue, I get all butterflied about the sinister cinematography. My pretentiousness grows and grows the more famous noir scenes I mentally catalogue. I think it might be because I used to read lots of Hardy Boys and other mysteries. I love me some detection. And as I have already pointed out, crime movies really do it for me. So yeah, Film Noir.
I think I loved this film because it really demonstrated a skillfull director's ability to take the typical "morality tale" style crime film to a deeper, more compelling level. Go rent this movie next time you feel like black and white for dinner.

"Are all my failings exposed?...As desperation takes hold..."

Calexico- Love Will Tear Us Apart

In other news, my fellow renaissance man/surfaholic and I bought our tickets for 2 upcoming concerts tonight. Guess which ones...Hint: they tend to sing with their voices, not holler and whatnot.

bye bye

The Mountain Goats - "Get Lonely"

Josh Darnielle's memoir The Sunset Tree wows me every time I listen to it. Actually, I think anyone who has given the album a few listens, is probably sucked in like me. It's ability to make you dance, cry, and sympathize with Darnielle's troubling relationship with his stepfather was something only accomplished through honest and emotional lyrics that Darnielle delivers with the utmost sincerity.

The Mountain Goats newest endeavor, Get Lonely, is released today on 4AD records. Throughout the album Darnielle fights to forget about the aeformentioned troubling relationship and move on. The scars are still there, but songs such as "Woke up New" resonate with new hope. "Get Lonely" finds Darnielle taking trips downtown and painting pictures by himself. Where does he go from here? And "In the Hidden Places" zips around Darnielle's mind, seeking out solitude from his haunting past. The Mountain Goats' Get Lonely is another lyrical masterpiece by Darnielle and a wonderful follow up to The Sunset Tree.

-mp3- The Mountain Goats - Woke Up New (Mega Recommended!!!)
-mp3- The Mountain Goats - Get Lonely
-mp3- The Mountain Goats - In the Hidden Places

Buy Get Lonely at Insound
The Mountain Goats Website
Check out the video for "Get Lonely" on YouTube!

Monday, August 21, 2006

I Heart SD, Kite Flying Society, and The Donkeys

Mmm. Southern California. The sun shines, the girls wear skirts, and even more importantly - the music resounding from the region these days is just as good as the the weather. At least this is the case for the new indie bands emerging out of San Diego.

As I spent hours upon hours sifting through blogs and bands during my summer in Colorado, I was delighted to find out that two of my favorite finds of the summer hailed from San Diego (Joe and I's new home for the school year). So, um, here they are...

Kite Flying Society

After I heard these guys named their band after a scene in Wes Anderson's
Rushmore, I was pretty much sold. Since hearing their debut album Where Is The Glow? it's safe to say the music is so good it wouldn't matter if they had named themselves after this movie. Anyways, Kite Flying Society says on their myspace that their influences include The Shins and Rogue Wave, amongst others. Works for me. Although Beach Boys seem like a strikingly obvious, and complimentary, influence as well.

Where Is The Glow?
is the epitome of a summer time record. The incredibly poppy "Love and Seagulls" might as well be played on every oceanside boardwalk during the day. "Thick as Thieves" on repeat in your bobbing sailboat and "Groundflower" softly whispering through a field at sunset would be appropriate as well. Ugh. Just listen.

Kite Flying Society - Love and Seagulls (Highly Recommended!)
Kite Flying Society - Thick as Thieves
Kite Flying Society - Grounflower

Check out their SD tour stops and merchandise here...

KFS on Myspace

KFS's Website


The Donkeys

The Donkey's are just a few guys living in a basement. They sleep amongst their instruments and occassionally drink water. Some nights people will even come to that basement to hear them play their wonderful mix of indie folk and blues.

I'm kidding, but their pictures sure had me fooled. The Donkey's are simple and fun. Their lyrics are honest and realistic. "Come on Virginia" may be the summer's anthem - perfect San Diego folk if there is such a thing. "Lower the Heavans" is the most accessible instrumental I've heard in along time. Just make it to the 1:07 mark for me. And finally "Walk Through A Cloud" hums along like an amped up hymn. Go for it...

-mp3- The Donkeys - Come on Virginia (Download it! Come on San Diego, Do It!)
-mp3- The Donkeys - Lower the Heavans
-mp3- The Donkeys - Walk Through A Cloud

Check out their recent Daytrotter session (once they get the site fixed!)
The Donkeys on Myspace

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Whats Up Internet What Up / 1st Real Post

Summer is over. And our blog is here. To kick things off, we have a bunch of goodies for you that we hand picked for your enjoyment. (Just bare with the picture as it is a quasi practice for posting pictures as well as a hilarious inside joke).

Joe's Picks...
Ten billion paragraphs have been written about hot summertime goodtime fun in the sun music. Think Beach Boys or happy dance music or something. And I'm not about to try and put a dent in that stereotype. It's only our first post after all.

So here is some fun summer music. It's "fun" because it's so monumentally profane that if you took it seriously, your soul would die. Most of this song is typical N.W.A. gangster misogynist type of what have you, but Easy E's verse towards the end of the song holds one of the single most ridiculous, joyful, over-the-top moments I've ever heard in any song. Enjoy.
-mp3- N.W.A. - Gangsta Gangsta

At the beginning of the summer, I bought Paste Magazine's 100 greatest living songwriters issue. I like Paste, and I enjoyed reading the list as I sat at the San Diego air port listening to a large woman in a J-LO sweatsuit advising a friend against ever having kids. I could only hope that the child that she was holding was too young to understand what exactly was going on. Anyways, Paste ranked Neil Young #2. Solid choice, old news, so what? Welllllllllllllllllll as it turns out, they quoted lyrics from "Ambulance Blues" in the article, and they really turned my head. I'd listened to the song 4 or 5 times before, but it had yet to blowwwww my mind.
I listened to this song most days after I got home from work this summer. I don't know if Mr. Young meant for this song to mean as much as it can and does, but regardless, it is heavy heavy heavy. Acoustic music doesn't get any heavier than this. Dig in.
-mp3- Neil Young -Ambulance Blues

More songs need spelling. More songs need Okkervil River and Daniel Johnston.
-mp3- Okkervil River ft. Daniel Johnston - Happy Hearts

Lastly, I have to give credit to the massively underrated Puritan Blister for providing me with this last song. I figure there is no way I will ever find anything to post without snagging great songs from cooler people, so I might as well get off to a proper start.
There is probably no quicker way to sound like your brain is made of diamonds than to sing a Leonard Cohen song. It also helps if you have a beautiful, almost overdramatic, voice.
-mp3- Regina Spektor - Chelsea Hotel 2

Pete's Picks...
As ambiguous in nature as this post it is, I personally had to narrow the focus for my own sanity. Therefore, the four songs I will present to you today come from my four favorite songs I saw live this summer. So, um, ya. Here they are in no partiular order of "bestness.'

I have a crush on Lady Sovereign. I'm just going to throw that out there right now. Given the ultimatum in this song by the S-0-V it's obvious I would not pick that latter. Anyways, despite being inebriated her entire set, the UK teen wonder managed to maintain some of the best stage presence I'd ever seen on a performer, regardless of age. Ok, before you start thinking this post is from Zach Slow, I'll just give you the song...
-mp3- Lady Sovereign - Love Me or Hate Me

Going into the most blogged about tour of the summer (Cold War Kids, Figurines, and Tapes 'n Tapes duh?), I must admit that I was pretty much ignorant to the music of Cold war Kids. Sure I'd heard the soul packed "Hospital Beds," but I was completely unprepared for the energy Cold War Kids put in their live show. The song posted below floored me the most. If lead singer Nathan Willet has never had an alcohol addiction or struggled to pay rent as he describes in this song, he sure has me fooled. His emphatic punches on the piano solidified this song in my head for days. And on top of all its goodness, it left me with my anthem for the summer as I awaited to head to Califronia for school: "This will all blow over in time...'
-mp3- Cold War Kids - We Used To Vacation

I had called nearly ten people in my cell phone before venturing to see The Boy Least Likely To by myself. Some may say this is a testament to my likeability and social skills, but I simply justify it by saying that none of these friends understand the perfect indie pop that TBLLT produces. Anyways, the lonely drive to Boulder, Colorado was well worth it. Playing nearly all of their wonderful debut The Best Party Ever was a nice treat, but even more delicious to my ears was their cover of George Michae's "Faith." If you can't enjoy this song, you probably need to seriously evaluate what traumatically happened to you during your childhood. And if you can't get past Michael's painfully cheesy lyrics, just please make it to the 0:57 second mark of the song to hear TBLLT toss in some bango, glockenspiel, and overall goodness into this oldie.
-mp3- The Boy Least Likely To - Faith

Rock Votolato plays songs for lovebirds. Well, maybe that's not his intent, but it sure seemed like it at the side stage of the Sasquatch music festival over Memorial Day Weekend. As a few buds and I stood amongst twenty some lovestruck couples, the wind blew crisp throughout the Eastern Washington air. Sounds too cliche? It was. But at the same time it was perfect. Rocky played almost his entire set off of Makers, and I couldn't have asked for more. The highlight being this tune. Everytime I hear it I can picture the grass swaying at the Gorge. No? Well, I can. Ok. Indulge.
-mp3- Rocky Votolato - Uppers Aren't Necessary

Well, that's all for now. The blogging life is rough, so makes us feel loved and leave us comments, be our myspace friends, send us e-mails, etc. We are not really sure what direction this blog is going to take. Basically, we are just doing this for fun right now. So I hope you enjoyed. Thanks,

Peter and Joe

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Come Back August 20th

Welcome to Renaissance Men Don't Surf. We are a mp3/movie blog that will be starting on August 20th.

Why not now, you say? Well, because the two contributers: myself(Peter) and Joe are far away from eachother currently. However, on the date of August 20th we will be reunited at the location in the picture.

See, we are going to be sophomores at Point Loma Nazarene University and spent the whole summer in our respective states of Colorado and Washington. But once we regroup in San Diego it will be all fun and games in the blog world. That is if I can get Joe to stop surfing to make some posts. We'll see.

Anyways, sorry for all that ramble. This will be the only post until the 20th, and from then on we will hopefully have continuous posting!

But for now I'll leave you with a little preview of what is to come:

Michael Leviton is just a man with a ukulele, who according to his myspace, sounds like "loneliness, misery, and longing." For me this is a spot-on description as he sings this song.

When I was little I would have never thought I would
ever hate summer. But combine 40hr work weeks with a boring town and summer becomes the worst. Go ahead all you summer debbie-downers, sing along with Michael Leviton and I:

-mp3- Michael Leviton - Summer's The Worst