November 8th, 2010

NEW Sufjan Stevens album and tour! Who and what!?

Sufjan appears to be doing what he wants, when he wants. He’s that guy that can make the most ridiculous things make sense. His new full length album “Age of Adz” is something to be revolutionized by. This album seems to be a dissertation that he has submitted to the world, presenting research and findings on his internal state of being. He completely changed his traditional sound aesthetic, like he was trying to create something that wouldn’t be confused with his previous albums. (Click here to read the details of his inspiration) This is a huge album for Sufjan Stevens like Sgt. Peppers was for The Beatles. “The Age of Adz” has no listener sensitive restrictions. The last track is over 25 minutes long!! It has no boundaries or safe zone. It will be loved and hated.

I’ve heard all the grandiose stories of Sufjan’s live show and even my highest expectations were surpassed with no challenge! He took the stage in Asheville at the Thomas Wolfe Auditorium in angels wings for one song and then performed an onstage costume change into the likes of Vanilla Ice and New Kids On The Block. He described his band as “hippies in space”! His pants were silver with silver streamers coming out of the pockets and at one point in the concert he wore a visor with flashing lights over the bill. He adorned his face and arms with neon green glow-in-the-dark tape like it was native american war paint and with the same tape wrote “Icy Hot” on his electric guitar. Though the show was presented lightheartedly by Sufjan, it was not a joke. He’s back after 5 years and it is evident in his appearance and sound that he has reinvented himself, for himself.

Posted below is a video I recorded at Sufjan Stevens’ show in Asheville on Nov. 7, 2010.  I’d rather you see it live but this video will be a small taste. You’ve got to know that this video doesn’t even come close to translating in actuality how great this show was!!  What do you think about Sufjan’s new music? Live show?  If you were at the show in Asheville let me know what you thought. (leave comments below)

November 4th, 2010

Rock 'n' Roll Dress It Up

This dresser almost gave Tim some headache. But he is a good little guy and finally completed his task.

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November 1st, 2010

Yeasayer's Odd Blood! Beautifully odd.

For artists like myself, new music is mostly business.  Usually when we like/dislike a band or an album, we dissect it to find out what it is we like/dislike so that our music is influenced or not influenced accordingly.  We rarely just enjoy music…BUT

Yeasayer‘s “Odd Blood” is the exception for me. I listen for pure pleasure’s sake!  My ears are enraptured with not only the huge vocal melodies but the massive vocal effects.  I love the gigantic drums and the strange nuances of this over produced 80′s-esq album!!  It ranges from Tears for Fears to Justin Timberlake. Crazy right?  But there is something so amazing buried beneath it all.

When I first got the album my ears were literally offended and caught off guard by the saturation of sound and I didn’t like it at all, or so I thought.  Then several weeks, maybe months later I found it, put it on and suddenly it felt like I was listening to music that I used to know and love.  Like it used to be on of my favorite albums.  It’s very weird and I don’t know how to explain it but I missed not hearing it for so long and I recognized it way better than albums I’ve only listened to once or twice.  Now it actually is one of my favorite albums.  Music I can just enjoy.

Check out these two tracks.  What do you think? (leave in comments section)
yeasayer by jzimbrich

October 25th, 2010

Band of Horses! Become a band with infinite arms.

The Enemy Lovers and Band of Horses play in Asheville, NC on the same night! This Thursday (Oct 28)! If you have $26 to spare go and see BOH at the Thomas Wolfe Auditorium (Find Tickets) but everyone else come see The Enemy Lovers at Stella’s (The basement at Stella Blue NO COVER)!!  We launch The Enemy Lovers Residency (Live Every Thursday 9pm No Cover)!!

**Infinite Arms was released May 18, 2010.  The inspiration to write this review so long after being released came due to their upcoming show in Asheville NC, my hometown!

Let me start by saying that the new record has grown on me and I do really love it now.  But the first couple times through, I thought it was terrible.  Like Ray Lamontagne did with his new record (Click to read our review), Band of Horses ventured out on their own this time and took their touring band into the studio to record ”Infinite Arms”. (Click to listen)

After reading a lot of bad reviews I was shamefully peer pressured into thinking the new album wasn’t worth my $9.99.  Then Amazon did the $3.99 deal and I jumped on it thinking it had to be worth a try.  I downloaded it, moved it to my ipod and plugged it in to my stereo.  The opening track starts with brilliant strings that single handedly had me putting this record on continuously over the next month, even though I thought I didn’t really like the album. Then the background vocals on “Blue Beard” slapped me on the face and said why aren’t you really listening!!  I began then, to hear the understated perfection of this entire body of new music.  No, it’s not old Band of Horses or “The Funeral” but it’s definitely not a step back either.

“Infinite Arms” isn’t just a list of new songs, it’s a mood.  It’s not Band of Horses trying to fill a quota for a new Band of Horses record.  Nothing is the same here as it was with their previous two back to back masterpieces (“Everything All The Time” and “Cease To Begin”) but nothing is missing.  And though understated, there is a lot happening here!  From the stacked lead vocals with equally strong backing vocals to huge orchestral percussion, it comes together to create a full album you want to hear all the way through.  There’s a cadence in “Compliments” that make you want to stomp out the dreary early mornings and “Dilly” seems to smooth off all the hard edges of life, if only for three and a half minutes. And you’ll realize half way through “Evening Kitchen” that you’re lost in some great nostalgic thought you haven’t had in years.  Even in all the newness Ben Bridwell still captures that distinct and strangely unique vocal we all love. “Infinite Arms” is a great addition to an amazing, growing discography from Band of Horses!

This is the first Band of Horses album recorded by “the band”.  They played it, produced it and released it.  Why they made the choice to record without their former producer was puzzling to me at first, but now hearing what was created I understand.  Sometimes to step forward you have to step to the side and go around the looming expectations of how great you’ve been in the past, and create a new great.

Did you get the new record by band of horses?  What did YOU think? (leave in comments section)

October 21st, 2010

The Enemy Lovers set to play Asheville every week!! (starting OCT.28)

The Enemy Lovers are taking up residency in Stella Blue’s basement venue “Stella’s” for a weekly free show. Every Thursday at 9pm, starting Oct. 28, they have joined with Stella Blue to bring Asheville’s 21+ crowd a nightlife option where you don’t have to pay a cover or listen to a cover band.  All tip/donations will be given to Adullam Orphanages who care for 750 orphans in Africa.

Read the cool write up in Mtn. Xpress covering us here. And enjoy our homemade video advertisement below! Pass on the news … click below to ReTweet this video for us.  Thank you!