Where should I begin? I'd like to start by talking about his last solo album on warp which was very very different from this release. His last album called "Muddlin Gear" was a wild ride. It was full of all kinds of amazing experimental music that would take another full review to describe well enough. There is one song on there that stands out in my mind as one of my all time favorites which is called Daddy's Car. You can find that over on bleep.com if your curious. you can hear the whole album over there actually. The album is a very dense and relatively dark record. Jamie's new record is more reminiscent of his work with Supercollider which was more on a minimal pseudo R&B kick. It's very bright and it puts you in a good mood to listen to it.
The first song that I heard on Multiply was called The City which I found on a DVD that Warp Records put out that was a retrospective type collection of all of the music videos associated with the label. I fell in love with the song and went on a huge search to figure out why this was not out on a record. Well a couple of months later my questions and hopes were answered when I found out that he was going to release a new album with the song on it. (The video is amazing to by the way and you can see it on his website here. It's the link with the photo of him shaving)
To get a good idea of what the album sounds like over all I would start off with the title track, Multiply. It's a perfect example of the 'get stuck in your head' funk infused semi electronic trip that the album will take you on. When I say the word electronic don't let that scare you off. It's not really an electronic album at all. I am sitting here trying to come up with the best way to describe the album and it's harder than I thought it would be. Tell you what, I think I will do a run through of my favorite tracks on here. That should give you a better idea of what to expect. It's a fairly short record clocking in at around 40 minutes but it's such concentrated goodness. There isn't a single dull moment on the whole album and I like that a lot. Jamie talks about this a little bit on an interview over on pitchfork here.
So lets break this down here. The album starts out with a really short track called 'You Got Me Up' which is such a good opener and has a wonderful composition which progressively gets funkier and funkier as it goes on until it breaks and lands right on top of the next track which is the title track, Multiply. As I mentioned a moment ago, multiply is a good song to define the mood of the rest of the album. The next track called 'When I Come Back Around' is a smashing good time and it's simple yet dense progression leaves a feeling in your muscles that make them want to move about the room. Another one of my favorites on the album comes next which is a song that was recorded and finished in about four hours from what I've read in interviews and it starts out with a loop of him singing the lyric (which is also the song title) 'A Little Bit More.' that loop continues on throughout the song which is such a simple layered approach that also drives the core of the meaning of the song which is best descibed in his own words from the pitchfork interview, "...I had this crazy experience with this girl who was trying to get close to me and it freaked me out because she was really close to another friend of mine, and I thought, "This is a story, I'm gonna make this into a song." The album moves into a slower pace for the following couple of tracks and launches right back into the most lively track on the record 'New Me.' This is followed by the amazing track 'The City.' I had mentioned earlier that it was the first track that I had heard from the record and it happens to also be my favorite track on here. I love everything from the raw editing applied to both the beats and the vocals to the wonderfully written lyrics. The last two tracks take the tempo back down to make way for some soulfull jams that end the album on a really mellow note. The track 'What Is It This Time' is another of the standouts on the record in my mind and gives him a chance to flex his singing ability a bit.
Hopefully that gave you a better idea of what you can expect listening to the album. It really is an amazing release that no one should pass up. It has a wonderful indie feel to it yet has a universal appeal. You can check it out and pick up a copy over on iTunes for ten bucks so head on over and check it out. you wont be disappointed!
Heres a link to the album in iTunes:
so i thought that this was a pretty good deal. try a mac mini for 30 days and if you dont like it or you are not satisfied you can return it for nothing! its a web only thing so dont go running off to an apple store to get your free mac mini rental. you can see all the little details here.
i vaguely remember playing this game when i was younger. there were so many old mac games that i loose track. at any rate i came across this while browsing through my regular sites and thought i would share. its a simple game that you maneuver a paper airplane through various environments with out running into obstacles. hope you enjoy!
heres a link to the program (there are all sorts of various versions including mac osx and windows)
i will be reviewing an album soon by jamie lidell called "multiply" that is absolutely amazing. i was checking out his website today for tour plans and remembered that there are some great videos on his site. i would suggest you head over and check out the video on his site that shows a little glimpse into what his live shows are like. every time i read something about the guy i hear about how amazing he is live and after seeing this video i am planning a trip to go see him live as it would seem to be something that would be foolish to miss!
there is a lot of improve involved in the performance and this is obvious right off the bat as you watch the video. he takes his own beat boxing and loops it as he sings over top of himself. its something that has to be seen to be understood and/or believed.
so head over and click the link in his videos page that is an image of a stack of film reels with some writing on the side. the performance is of a song on his album called the city. (there is also a music video of this song that is equally amazing that can be found by clicking the link with the image of him shaving)
heres a link to the videos!
also you should note that his album differs from the live performance quite a bit as you can find out by checking out his album on itunes or by reading my review when i get that up in the next day or so. heres the itunes link!
(those are eggs in there)
i cant speak for the rest of the contents of the site because i haven't looked through it but i did find it's collection of vending machines from around japan really fun to dig through.
japanese vending machines
its amazing how many of these things there are! i heard a statistic at some point about just how many there are but i forget the numbers. maybe ill remember later. anyone else know the specifics?
these are some custom made m&m's made just for me for fbd (ferris bueller day!) its a monthly celebration of everything good that i share with val. i had no idea you could do this! pretty cool id say.
this was an image of my dad that i took a few years back when we were out west on a trip. i found it recently and made him a desktop out of it because i know he misses the area so much and i thought it would be a nice memento to have around.
thats all for now. see you again soon!
ill leave two links. one will take you directly to what i saw first on the site which is called drum machine. you can find that here. simply click around until the show begins. great stuff.
now for the whole site that this is attached to which you can find by clicking here. i would suggest clicking on the right flower and checking out the thing called "music box" also very cool.
im not sure what the whole story is behind the site but it sure is fun to browse around in. k, thats all for now.
i think the mouse has a nice concept with the two buttons in one and the little scroll ball for scrolling. i think it works well on paper however in the end it leaves something to be desired. the right button has to be clicked without touching the other side of the mouse so you have to kind of lift your index finger up to right click which kind of resembles a dog lifting its leg to... well you understand. this was really frustrating at first but i find myself getting used to it pretty quick and i dont really mind all to much.
now the outside "fourth" button. again, i can see this being an ok idea but its just not working like i want it to. i pinch the mouse to lift it as i drag something on the screen and of course when i do this it triggers the action i assign to it every time i do this. how could this possibly work? i have this function turned off on the mouse. there does not seem to be much thought put into this feature other than, "hey, it might be kind of cool to make this a button." they need to leave these little pinchers alone. if they want some more touchy buttons why not make something like the touch sensitive third gen ipod buttons or something?
now for the little scroll ball. again, its a great idea but it ended up a little strange when it came to actually using it. i imagined it would be like the little do-dad on some pc laptops like ibm's think pad series but its an actual little ball in there. i have gotten used to using the little ball to navigate pages and the more i use it, the more natural it feels. the one other thing i could say about it is that the ball seems too small. after using it for a little while it makes my finger feel strange.i dont know how to explain it. its just not agreeing with me for whatever reason. the ball needs to be a bit bigger i think so its more smooth and not so pokey.
my over all opinion on the mouse is simply that it feels a little unfinished. im used to apple products being really solid and well thought out but this seems a little thrown together and not quite polished. maybe in future revisions we will see some cleaner functionality and a tighter gap between concept and the final product.
update: a couple days into using this mouse i find myself getting used to the quirks that i wine about here. i still have the side squeeze buttons disabled but otherwise i find myself liking it more as i use it more... just thought id add this for anyone interested.
Enter Resilience. This album is supposed to be the album that he has always wanted to release. One that he seems to be willing to stand behind as being his own. If you check the liner notes you will see that it has been dedicated to his mom! So after hearing all of the talk about how he was releasing a record that was not simply a statement on the state of electronic music I got pretty exited to hear it. A few months prior to its release I picked up a 10" record of his called Sugar Coated and turns out the title track of the record was a song on the new album. I took this as a good thing because I liked the laid back approach to the song on the vinyl.
On first listen I heard exactly what I had imagined I would hear after hearing the 10". Every song on the album seemed to fit right in with that aesthetic. Simple, somewhat relaxed and for the most part very analogue feeling all around. I found myself instantly comparing the album to Richard James' (Aphex Twin) Analord series with it's warm analogue synth lines. Ill leave the Analord series for another review but for now ill just say that they were good but not amazing. I find myself enjoying this record more than the Analord work. The album is one of those that kind of seep into whatever your doing as your listening to it. By this I mean that you might catch yourself typing to the beat or getting lost in the feeling presented by the song.
The whole album is so warm and comfortable, even listening to it on the little built in speakers on my powerbook it feels lush and welcoming. Some may find that the record is under developed because of its simplistic approach but I feel as though its all very tightly knit and well thought out.
The standout tracks in my mind would have to be the smooth progression of the head nodding track "Spanish Song", the wonderfully funky synth line that was laid over "Xmas Funk", the calm jam that is "Sugar Coated", the upbeat pseudo dub track "Banana Peel", and the oh so subtle beat hiding in "Short Road Down".
Don't take that list of favorites as the only things I enjoy about the album, it works so well as a whole and every track brings it's own flavor to the mix so if your out for a nice album to put on and relax as you move to the beat, if that makes any sense at all, then this would be a good one to grab.
I need to work on my conclusions. I've always had trouble with conclusions.
Heres a link to the album in iTunes so you can preview it and purchase it if you like it:
Note: Please support artists that I mention on this site and anywhere else for that matter. Don't pirate music. It's just ridiculous if you think about it. These people are trying to make a life making music the same way you make a living at your job. They need support from the people that enjoy there music so they can continue to do so. thanks!
download it here: bite
I will start of my reviews with one of my very favorite albums of the past year. It's the soundtrack for the movie Lost in Translation. It's hard to describe how this album has effected me. I'll start off saying that the movie stirred up my fascination with the idea of being lost somewhere totally new. Getting lost in something or somewhere lets your mind soak in the little things around you. It lets you separate from everything you know and feel insecure for once, giving you the chance to feel alone and totally reliant on your own thoughts to show you the way. This is why I love discovering new music, because I can have something new to surge my creative side as I dive into whatever miscellaneous project I may be working on. This feeling is somehow brought out of me as I listen to this collection of songs. For whatever reason this music always seems to find a way to let me escape my surroundings and crawl somewhere inside that feeling that I am so interested in. That calmness that feeling lost brings. Lost in thought. Lost in time. Lost both physically and mentally.
OK so maybe thats all a bit dramatic, no? Yeah, it probably was, but I think that it may give off how the album gets under my skin. Now I can take it apart a bit further and talk about the music as it is apart from emotion and all that.
The music swirls about from track to track almost seamlessly. Some stand outs in my mind would have to include oh let's say 100 percent of the album. So I've decided that the best I can do to describe the album is going to have to be a laundry list of track descriptions.
The album starts off with a short little sound collage pieced together from sounds recorded as they filmed the movie. It tumbles directly into the first song which just happens to be some of the only music Kevin Shields has released since the fall of 90's legends, My Bloody Valentine. It's a great song and it does drag on a bit if you let your mind notice but its a really pretty song all in all. Classic Kevin Shields id say. Following a short ambient piece Sebastian Tellier's track "Fantino" glides along with smatterings of acoustic guitar that glide along inside the track so effortlessly and beautifully. A lot of this album seems to contain the best tracks by a lot of the artists that appear on it, well in my opinion anyway. The song "Girls" by Death In Vegas is a good example of this. It's got to be the strongest track I have heard them put out. The Squarepusher track on here is short but it's a wonderful haunting ambient tune and one of my very favorites on this album as well as the one it was taken from, "Go Plastic". Listening to the Phoenix track you will notice that it does poke out from the rest with it's bright poppy existance and at first I didn't really care for it but it grew on me over time and ended up being a favorite. The only japanese song thats on the album is a song by Happy End and it fits right in with the rest of the album with its mellow simplicity. There was also a track taken from the My Bloody Valentine album 'Loveless' called "Sometimes" which is a brilliant track that is perfectly placed within this soundtrack. There is a song by Air on here that appears to have been thrown onto the end of there most recent album (which I didn't think fit on that record at all for some reason) but it complemented a scene in the movie where one of the main characters wandered through a garden / temple in Kyoto all too well. The last track on the album is a wonderful way to end both the movie and the soundtrack. "Just Like Honey" really is simply a beautifully written song and as with everything else it somehow melted right on into the movie with ease as if it always just kind of existed in that moment in the film.
So in that chunk of writing didn't mention one of the key elements of the soundtrack and that would be the short ambient interludes between the proper songs on the album. They are the secret stars of the soundtrack as they bridge the songs together with there delicate existence among the rest of the music and if they had been fleshed out into full tracks I think they could stand on there own quite well.
Last but not least is the secret track hidden behind the last song on the cd version of the album which is simply Bill Murray's character singing the Roxy Music song "More Than This" and I'm inclined to admit that I like him singing it more than the original which, after hearing it, didn't really appeal to me all that much.
Now I know that there has been nothing but constant praise in this review and I figured this would happen as soon as I decided to review the album but I can't really help myself. I know that some other reviewers seem to have concentrated more on the fact that Kevin Shields made this strange half comeback into making music with this album and thus seemed to ignore the album as a whole which is pretty aggravating. Why is it that journalists are so cold and ridged about reviewing cd's? Either zeroing in on what might make for an entertaining read or going off on a snotty personal attack on the artist. Even ones that try and be entertaining and clever such as the reviews over on pitchfork.com come across so elitist and unrealistic. What's the point? I mean, there's honesty in reporting and there's good conclusive reporting but where is the line drawn between personal opinions and simply glorifying public opinion by writing what the writer might think people may want to hear. I know people all have different reactions to different music, movies, books, or whatever else but sometimes people seem so damn touchy about things. Sorry, off topic here...
It's funny that I'm ranting on here barely making any viable point about what good reporting is right after going on and on about my personal feelings about an album I'm trying to review. I'm new to this and I don't ever intend to be a professional at this. I just thought it would be nice to review music in a way thats a little more personal than most. Who knows, maybe cause a bit of conversation on something here and there. Thats what the comments are here for after all.
Well I've gone on far to long here on my first review. We will have to see if perhaps I can be a bit more to the point next time around. Or is there a point?