This blog is now closed.

Please go to the new blog, Desert Island Mixtapes for all the latest posts.


Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Covers beat Originals #1

Covers Beat Originals #1
an MP3 series dedicated to cover songs that are better than the original

Who loves Phil Collins? Anyone? Anyone? Yup, thats what I thought. Phil is nostalgic however - conjuring up memories of the soft rock channel playing in the background as I got my hair cut by some lady named Denise when I was 11 years old. Hence, a good cover of Collins would be greatly appreciated: humorously nostalgic, but without the overt nausea-inducing effect of '80s soft rock. I even have a friend who considered starting a Phil Collins cover band called "Stu-Studio." Rusty, this one is for you.

This track is by The Postal Service, the creative side-project of Death Cab for Cutie's Ben Gibbard and DNtel's Jimmy Tamborello. It was featured on the Wicker Park soundtrack of all places. It starts slow, but kicks in at about 1:20. Enjoy.

If you haven't already, be sure to go buy everything the Postal Service has ever released [here] and pray that their next LP (currently in the works) will come out soon!

If you like this, then you should probably buy some of the stuff below!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Songs With Strings #1

Songs with Strings #1
an ongoing MP3 series featuring good songs with good strings

For our first installment we turn to the early career of one of my favorites - Ben Folds, who, in my opinion, is one of the most talented songwriters and musicians of our time. One of his best songs came early - on his 1990 demo. It was a bluesy track called Kalamazoo. Great song, fan favorite, but the original sound quality left MUCH to be desired. Thankfully, in 2004 Ben re-recorded Kalamazoo and put it on Super D, the third in a 3-part EP project. Explaining the new recording, Ben Folds said the following:

There's a couple of demos of this song floating around for years. I wrote it when I was about 19 or 20. One of the demos is really upbeat, recorded with my old band, Majosha. The other one was a four-track demo that I made of the song by myself in my apartment. I had to consult that version a few times to work out how the hell I was going to play drums, bass and piano on this and stay in time. Got it worked out. I added strings because I could.

Personally, I love when the drums come in. This is one of my favorite Ben Folds solo tracks. Enjoy.

You can purchase this song on the original Super D EP.

Be a Pal and buy some Ben Folds or Ben Folds Five tunes!!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Blue Scholars - Joe Metro video

One of my favorite NW hip-hop groups, the Blue Scholars just put out their 2nd single from the Bayani LP [buy it here]. Don't miss the DJ Sabzi playing the part of the bus driver.

As an added treat, check out this video of the Blue Scholars' fellow Massline Media label-mates Common Market performing live together with Geologic of Blue Scholars and Gabriel Teodros.

Add them to your collection!

Also, consider their associated act Common Market (same DJ, different MC)

Friday, November 16, 2007

Better Half - The Get Up Kids (new version)

Better Half was one of the best tracks off the Get Up Kids' 1997 LP debut Four Minute Mile. However, as the entire album was recorded over 2 days, the sound quality has always bothered me. Yes, yes, I know they remastered it in 2001 - but still pretty rough.

On this note, I recently stumbled across a newer recording of Better Half. And, as I always loved the music and lyrics, but chaffed at the low sound quality (and the fact that Matt Pryor's vocal skills were still in their early developmental stages), I was excited for this more polished version. It was labeled as an iTunes Exclusive Sessions acoustic track, but I haven't been able to find it on iTunes. I also read somewhere that it was at one time for sale as part of a digital EP from their label, Vagrant. But, Vagrant's website is not currently selling it. In anycase, I have the whole EP, recorded during their Guilt Show era. Enjoy the track, and let me know if you find where this is actually available for purchase.

"Better Half"

i saw my better half, the better half of a decade
slip through my hands inside her hands inside my pockets

when she reached for her advatages i should have done something

i saw my baby boy digging his own hole, keeping alive family traditions
when he lied about intentions i should have done something

well, i blame myself for everything
it keeps my conscience clean -
i've got bandages to prove it

Friday, November 9, 2007

Elliott Smith v. Onelinedrawing

Elliott Smith versus Jonah Matranga's Onelinedrawing . Lets have an indie-acoustic throwdown!

Here are 2 of my favorite tracks by these two bands - both about parades.

This is off of Smith's 1997 Either Or LP, which is possibly my favorite of his albums. I vacillate a lot on which is my favorite Elliott Smith album - Either Or, Figure 8, XO. It changes daily. however, the recent posthumous New Moon release is climbing in the rankings!

This is off of Onelinedrawing's Sketchy EP #2. It is about the disillusionment of a returned-home soldier (Vietnam era perhaps?). It may be one of the saddest songs in my collection. In other news, Jonah has dropped the Onelinedrawing moniker, and has a new album called And. Its good - a lot better than the Sketchy EP 3 he put out right before it.

Give each a listen and comment on which one you like best.

Buy some Elliott Smith

Buy some Onelinedrawing and associated bands