Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Foxes in Fiction - Alberto

One of the kindest and most modest underground indie artists, Foxes in Fiction just keeps giving away precious bedroom-esque songs and albums, and he's got a lot to share. Alberto EP was recently put out and it really captures all the ambient/indie influences of this severely underrated artist. Download the album for free here, or check out some tracks below.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Toro Y Moi - Still Sound

Exams have subjected this blog to some inevitable neglect, sadly. Anywho, finals aren't over yet so I'll make it quick. Toro is back less than year after his debut LP, and he's all space-funked out. Mmmmmmmm, pomelooooo....

mp3: Toro Y Moi - Still Sound

Update: Za video...

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Destroyer - Chinatown

It's strange how this song feel like 80's, 90's,  and 00's music at the same time, crafted with such subtlety and taste. Very sweet.

mp3: Destroyer - Chinatown

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Here We Go Magic - Casual

Casual. Cuz, y'know, this sort of thing happens everyday.

Also check out one of the best jams of the year...

Girls - Carolina

This is sort of an unexpectedly feel-good progressive track from Girls. They manage to keep it interesting and tied together with just two chords. From a hazy country morning to a party on the beach, "Carolina" gets around, and its over before you know it.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

jj - You Know

The complete love cycle of a crushing teen in one shot. So simple yet perfectly captured...

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The Radio Dept. - The One/Never Follow Suit

Any day The Radio Dept. puts something out is a great day. Earlier this year, Clinging To A Scheme set the bar for mature song writing and brilliant musicality in the electronic, shoegaze pop genre. Now, the team are putting out their latest single "Never Follow Suit" as part of an EP of the same name. Only the first two songs are available in mp3 format at the moment, but they say enough. The upbeat, Ace of Base-y vibe of the opening track, "The One", compliments the terrific title track like bread and butter. Enjoy...

mp3: The Radio Dept. - The One
mp3: The Radio Dept. - Never Follow Suit

Update: Za video...

Memoryhouse - Heirloom

Canadian (yay!) duo Memoryhouse honestly sound their inspiration comes from locking themselves in a dark, foggy house. Dreamy synths and soundscapes are almost overdone nowadays, but this duo balance that ambience with the relatively natural sounds of echoing guitars and vocals plagued with concern. "Heirloom" is the B-side of the Caregiver single, released today.

mp3: Memoryhouse - Heirloom

Update: Here's the video...

Also, the A-side of the 7" and an intimate performance from Yours Truly...

mp3: Memoryhouse - Caregiver

Balam Acab - See Birds (Sun)

What do you see...

Saturday, November 6, 2010

The Tallest Man On Earth - Love Is All

This is the moment the world goes quiet to the solitude of spindling guitars, and serenity floats on every note struck. It's almost off-putting, how a raspy voice can just overwhelm the softness of it all. But give it time. At the end of every verse, the voice and the music quietly trail in harmony,  like a subtle unexpected embrace. "Here come the tears, but like always, I let them go" he growls. The Tallest Man on Earth has a heart.

mp3: Tallest Man On Earth - Love Is All

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Warpaint @Yours Truly

Here's an all-girl band that demands to be taken seriously. Not being sexist or anything, it's just that Warpaint has got that edge and musical complexity that isn't so prevalent with all-girl bands. Yours Truly gives this cozy talent showcase with two tracks from their latest release, The Fool.

Also, something new...

mp3: Warpaint - Undertow

... and something old...

mp3: Warpaint - Elephants

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Violens - Violent Sensation Descends

This band isn't getting the attention they deserve. Their bombastic debut album, Amoral, sounds like 80's pop-rock on acid, and occasionally it's almost Smiths-like. With all the musical morphing, it's a lot to take in, but their bold synth-acoustic sound is hard to overlook.  More than a month after its released, though, we haven't heard much from Violens aside from this video of "Violent Sensation Descends", a song they've been playing for over two years now! It's only the tip of this underrated iceberg of sound that's just about ready to explode. They're on tour now, check them out.

mp3: Violens - Violent Sensation Descends

Some more free music from Amoral...

mp3: Violens - Acid Reign

Friday, October 29, 2010

Nosaj Thing - Fog (Jamie xx Remix)

Nosaj Thing's haunting debut LP, Drift, was one the most unique electronic albums of 2009. Its sound unmistakable, and after more than a year of non-stop touring and an upcoming remix album, Nosaj is definitely getting a lot of love. Jamie, that guy going crazy with the push-button beats in The xx, totally disintegrates what is already an awesome track into this trippy, ghostly remix.

mp3: Nosaj Thing - Fog (Jamie xx Remix)

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Crystal Castles - Not In Love [Feat. Robert Smith]

What may seem like two worlds apart in time and sound merge like star-crossed lovers on this rework of "Not In Love". The song remains mostly in Crystal Castles' original twinkly, crunchy dance form, but Smith's contrasting natural voice and added colossal distortion in the chorus really make for an out-of-this-world listening experience.

mp3: Crystal Castles - Not In Love [Feat. Robert Smith]

Local Natives - Who Knows Who Cares

Good times

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Waskerley Way - Holly

Newcomer Waskerley Way has been keeping busy lately with a collection of songs based on cats (no jk) and his latest EP, Holly. The title song and opener kicks off a chilly autumn gale. Wispy flutes soar above fuzzing leaves and what kinda sounds like a descending oud scale. Whatever it may be, one thing's for sure: it's shaping up to be a bitter fall. Holly EP, or the individual tracks, can be downloaded for free here.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Girls - Heartbreaker

Time to open a new box of tissues and bring back those bittersweet high school memories cuz Girls are back with the soft, swaying breeze of "Heartbreaker", a teenage heart-tickler that's just what you'd expect from a band that can't let go. Their next release, Broken Dreams Club EP, comes out this November, just over a year after their massively popular self-titled debut album. Get the mp3 at the price of an e-mail below.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Sufjan Stevens - I Want To Be Well

Five years after the grandness of his last full-length, Illinois, Sufjan Stevens has finally come back with The Age Of Adz. It certainly doesn't feel like a follow-up, though, neither musically nor thematically. Rather, Sufjan has returned to his original glitch-ridden electronic sound and basked it in orchestration. Although the textures have become more artificial, the message is all the more human. Saturated with nerve wrecking stress, The Age Of Adz is an all-out cry of deprivation of the essential. "I Want To Be Well" is almost self explanatory, considering Sufjan is actually seriously ill, but it's as harsh as they come; a no-sympathy emotional and physical breakdown. 

Hear the rest of the album here.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

TV Girl - If You Want It

The laws that determine the earth's position relative to the sun discriminatingly allow summer to still be alive and well for some, and they had to rub it in our scarfed faces. The latest surge of post-summer chillwave tracks packs a few laid-back tracks from TV Girl. Sample-happy drama scene "If You Want It" takes 60's pop with 90's hip-hop beats and breaks it down with timid trumpets. It's honest, kinda smart, and quite funny.

mp3: TV Girl - If You Want It

Some more light-hearted drama...

mp3: TV Girl - It's Not Something

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Shimmering Stars - I'm Gonna Try

"Walking down the street and I wanna kill everyone I see"... right off the bat, with no explanation, an unwelcoming fit of emo; though it doesn't take long until an epiphany of self-awareness kicks in. Suddenly, ungratefulness and childish pessimism make way for an overwhelming realization that everything needs to change. Yes, he knows what he's gotta do, he knows how he's gonna do it, he knows he can do it... Buuuuuuut he won't. Yes, this is about trying, just not quite hard enough.

Here's another recent cut...

Monday, October 18, 2010

Gruff Rhys - Shark Ridden Waters


A sunny day on a crowded beach, Gruff Rhys explores attraction and the wandering mind. "Shark Ridden Waters" surfs on hypnotizing harmonies and a sneaky beat. It treads the dangerous line between reality and imagination, much like the ghostly presence of the Cyrkle sample. A kind of denial and obsession, it's the Bermuda Triangle of thought. Day dreamers be warned.

Download the track for your e-mail below. 

Update: Here's the video...

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Greatest Hits - Uptown Girl

No, no, this is not another Billy Joel cover. Greatest Hits' "Uptown Girls" is more of a tribute to the sleazy dance-pop music and ridiculous video effects of the 80's. And the awfulness of it all is done quite well, it's almost shameful to like. This is the party girl having too much fun on her own with the karaoke machine getting nothing but dirty looks. But can you blame her? That beat is just seductive!

mp3: Greatest Hits - Uptown Girl

Also check out the destructive, catchy, and (of course) sleazy "Stop and Go".

mp3: Greatest Hits - Stop and Go

Saturday, October 16, 2010

MillionYoung - Calrissian

The first cut off of MillionYoung's latest album, Atmospheric Beast Replicants, unfolds with appetizing tonal uncertainty. "Calrissian" flirts with nostalgic dream-pop vocals, drowned by a shower of snowy bells like christmas has come early. But not the cozy living room kind of christmas, this is more like walking out in the cold when no one else is. And it feels right at home.

mp3: MillionYoung - Calrissian

In contrast, check out MillionYoung's sun-heavy EP SunnDreamm which can be downloaded for free.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

James Blake - Limit To Your Love (Feist cover)

No one is getting as much love around the indie-net right now as much as James Blake; and it's not without reason. There aren't many electronic artists that take advantage of silence like Blake does, echoing the old Debussy saying "music is the space between the notes". It couldn't be more true: on this Feist cover, as well as other recently released tracks, Blake has proven a new formula with soft-spoken electronics and a feel for the life and death of each note. 

mp3: James Blake - Limit To Your Love (Feist cover)

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Antony and The Johnsons - The Spirit Was Gone

Antony Hegarty's profound admiration for Butoh dancer Kazuo Ohno is by no means a secret. Ohno was featured on the cover of his third studio album and now the video for "The Spirt Was Gone" pays tribute to this theatrical icon. Fitting so well with the Ohno's expression and character, it would be no surprise that the music is directly influenced by this subtle, fragile dancer. A gracefully blossoming song that crumbles before full bloom.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Gorillaz - Doncamatic (All Played Out) [Feat. Daley]

Gorillaz haven't finished their Escape To Plastic Beach world tour yet and they've already cooked up a new single. "Doncamatic" has all the sounds that belong in the Plastic Beach album but its song-aware lyrics don't quite fit with the overall theme of the album. Daley's electro-smooth vocals lead this synth-heavy song to a dancey, brain worm chorus making this a sweet tune that's also radio-friendly.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Cloudy Busey - Pound Your Town To Hell

What stories will the kids of today tell their grandchildren? They've heard about the glory days of their own grandparents time and time again but can't seem to live up to it. Well, according to Cloudy Busey, if you're not in a real war just start one for no good reason; besides making an impact that is. In "Pound Your Town To Hell", drums and strings march forcefully like an army while twinkling glocks and marimbas prance around playfully. They cause a lot of damage, but they're just kidding around. Glory isn't about reality anyway.

mp3: Cloudy Busey: Pound Your Town To Hell

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Duck Sauce - Barbra Streisand

Just from looking at the title, this is undoubtedly a ridiculous premise for a song with any substance whatsoever. But after all, this is Duck Sauce, who cares about substance?! This is about having a good time (with Barbra Streisand apparently, don't try too hard to visualize it). Unlike like the excessively nightclub friendly original mix, the video edit has enough quirks and laughs to be considered fun. Even Vampire Weekend's Ezra Koenig is "OooOOo"ing along on webcam! 

A Classic Education - I Lost Time

Italian pop-rock sextet, A Classic Education, can certainly express the feeling of time slipping away, but they're not sure how they feel about it. The video depicts grainy stock footage of busy afternoon streets from the early 20th century double exposed with people moving so slow they seem still. And it feels like the film reel will catch fire any moment now and fall apart. He sings "So happily suspend your time, now join my whole seconds of blank, it's all of I've got". Kinda sums up the love-hate relationship with passing time and wasted days, doesn't it? Also...

mp3: A Classic Education: Gone To Sea

Band leader Jonathan Clancy (a.k.a. His Clancyness) also has some chilled out bedroom-quality tracks of his own. Here's a taste...

mp3: His Clancyness: Summer Majestic

El Guincho - Bombay [NSFW]

High-speed catapult cassette, cheat notes on inner thighs, rifle-man canon bomb, making out with a statue, witch-dude on skates, animal costume theatre, a cock in bed, matchstick crow, egg shampoo, rocket bicycle, what lives under your bed, finger penis fake-out, mustached baghead on the keys, braids intertwined, shooting a giant ass panda... oh! and a whole lot of nudity. This is "Bombay".

mp3: El Guincho - Bombay

Friday, October 1, 2010

Hard Mix - Had

There's a sense of longing and cool sorrow to "Had"; and this goes for most of the tracks Hard Mix has been putting out these past few months. He's still new, but his sound is already found. Hip-hop beats carry repeating hollow melodies while random cut-up vocal samples are sprinkled about. The results are straightforward yet truly compelling.


mp3: Hard Mix: The Chill World (Mixtape, 53mb)

Flying Lotus - MmmHmm [Feat. Thundercat]

Flying Lotus's LP, Cosmogramma, is a glitchy-soulful-jazzy electronic milkshake... with a thick whip cream layer of his signature sound, and that's never a bad thing. "MmmHmm" is one of the more soulful tracks on that album with musical elements that don't seem to fit together paper but are seamlessly blended with Fly Lo's masterful production.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Tame Impala - Lucidity

Wow! Whoever made this video must be high (no pun intended). Launching a video camera to space with a weather balloon is most definitely an awesome way to start a jam. Tame Impala just released their debut album, Innerspeaker, last May with a very consistent 60's psych rock sound: head bangin' beats, phaser guitars, and conveniently relaxed vocals. Here's a few other tastes from the album and off the album...

Local Natives - Wide Eyes

I can't decide whether this video is cute or just plain creepy; but the song's great nonetheless and so is the rest of their harmony-obsessing debut album, Gorilla Manor, which was released earlier this year.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

White Denim - Last Day of Summer

White Denim can somehow make really catchy songs and overdriven instrumentals all in one album... and then give it away for free! Download the entire album here.

The Morning Benders - Virgins

Beautiful new song from the Morning Benders exclusively on La Blogotheque

Tennis @Daytrotter

Head over to Daytrotter to hear some sweet live tunes from the sailing couple that is Tennis. Cape Dory is just ear candy. Also...

mp3: Tennis: South Carolina
mp3: Tennis: Marathon

Magic Kids - Candy

Deerhunter - Helicopter

Standout rippling track from Deerhunter's latest (and greatest?) album Halcyon Digest. Definitely a favorite at the moment.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Rare Mediums Blog

Welcome to the Rare Mediums Blog! A manifestation of love for finding new music from strange corners of the web. I'll be posting what gems I find from the expansive indie community in hopes that you'll find something you like too. Enjoy!