I am a big Jack Cooper fan. Mazes, Ultimate Painting and of course, his incredible solo album. I was stoked to hear about Cooper’s new project, Modern Nature, with Will Young (Beak>), Aaron Neveu (Woods) and Jeff Tobias (Sunwatchers).
On their debut album, How To Live, they combine their vast musical abilities to create 10 tracks of jazz-tinged, psychedelic rock that’s packed with layers and full of depth, which is heard throughout the entire album Check out the killer groove of “Footsteps” (below) for an example.
How To Live is available now via Bella Union. I highly recommend it.
Midlake’s debut album, Bamnan and Slivercork, has spent the last two years flying well below the radar. Not as quirky as Grandaddy and less pretentious than Radiohead, Midlake gently nudged their way, sonically and alphabetically, between those two bands in my music collection. With the recent unveiling of their new album, The Trials of VanOccupanther, in stores July 25th, Midlake won’t be able to avoid the spotlight for much longer. For the most part they’ve ditched the keyboards replacing them with more guitars, acoustic and electric, as well as more vocals. The resulting sound boldly embraces the country/folk rock of the mid-70s as Midlake channels the likes of The Eagles and Fleetwood Mac. Midlake wears their influences on their sleeves while managing a classical, button-down sound all their own.
*A note on the downloads: with the exception of “Roscoe” all links point to .zip files containing the MP3s so you won’t be able to preview them directly. They’re all worth downloading. Trust me.
A friend and I were talking about The Walkmen appearing on the OC (Thursdays on Fox!) recently, and he brought up a conversation he had with some teens about a band selling out cause some big corporation used one of their songs in a commercial. He pointed out to the kids that, actually, a kid like them had grown up, landed a job at an ad agency, and had the power to place a favorite song in a big commercial. Speaking of The Walkmen, I have Saturn to thank for helping me discover that some members of my beloved Jonathan Fire*eater were back in action as The Walkmen. And how about the odd couple of Fischerspooner and Hummer? So take Jetscreamer and their song “Black Hole” being used in a Nissan commercial. Sellout? Listen to their blend of Sonic Youth and the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion and make your own decision.