Monday, September 30, 2013

My Dad and the New Orleans Saints

 It's been a long time since i've written or posted about football.  When i first started writing on this blog back in 2009, the original intent was to post about everything from movies to music to sports to my workout regiment and subsequent attempt at weight loss (maybe publicly shaming myself to keep it up), but as time progressed, the little music monkey inside my brain slowly took over.  It's not a bad thing.  I LOVE music, and really, one of my favorite things to do is introduce people to stuff they might have never heard before that i adore, so we'll keep on with that.  But secondly, sports subsided from my writing because of the 2009 New Orleans Saints and their triumphant run to a Super Bowl victory (and also the Texas Longhorns making it to the National Championship game, but falling short to Alabama).  That win numbed me to all sports for a long time after.  It might seem silly, but it was a very emotional night for me and my brother.

I'm a Texas boy, but my heart belongs to New Orleans, the city of my birth, and the long time central hub of my extended family.  My dad was a Saints fan from the beginning of the franchise.  He went to some of the Archie Manning games.  His support, while constantly being tested, was unwavering.  I grew up a Saints fan because my dad was a Saints fan.  And my brother a fan for the same reason.  Regardless of where we moved, we were Saints fans.  Regardless of how many games we lost, we were Saints fans.  Losing season after losing season, we were Saints fans.  And it wasn't easy.  Growing up in Texas, especially into the early 90's, everything was Cowboys, Cowboys, Cowboys.  Enough to make you want to puke.  In my house, they were the Cowpatties, but they still won all the time anyway.  I clung to my Saints.  And so did my family.

Pictured:  Saints fans for decades and decades...
Years went by.  The Saints had some decent seasons here and there.  A couple of playoff appearances and wins, but nothing special.  And then came Katrina.  And my city was destroyed.  And the probability of my team leaving my city for greener pastures became a very real thing.  Fortunately for me and the city, that didn't happen.  Instead, in 2006, Sean Payton and Drew Brees (and Marques Colston) became a part of my team, and suddenly, we weren't so bad anymore.  Suddenly, it was a delight to watch my team play and win.  The bags finally came off.

In Autumn of 2008, my dad was diagnosed with a very aggressive lung cancer.  Five months later, he was gone.

It's still very hard for me to write to about my dad, maybe even more so now that i'm a father, but what his New Orleans Saints would go on to do that coming season was the kind of sentimental crap you see in bad movies.  A 13-0 start to the season.  Complete and utter dominance in a playoff game.  An NFC Championship game decided by a field goal in overtime.  And then finally...finally...a trip to the Super Bowl and a win in spectacular fashion.

A couple of years ago, there was a commercial on television (i don't remember what for) that was a series of home videos recorded on cameras, phones, and what have you of various Super Bowl XLIV parties and the fan reactions when Tracy Porter intercepted Peyton Manning and ran it in for the touchdown.  They very well could have taken a video of my house that night.  My brother and i went bananas.  We called my sister.  My mom was with us.  Everything felt right.  My dad waited 40 years for his team to win, and they finally did it.

And that is why that football season, and that championship win pretty much sated me for all sports ever.  More than when my 2005 Longhorns won a championship.  More than when my Boston Red Sox defied a decades long baseball curse back in 2004.  That Saints Super Bowl win was about the most cathartic thing in the world for my grieving family at that time.  And i love them for it.  Who Dat?!

(To lighten the mood for a sec, one of my favorite texts that i received that night came from an old friend and read, "I just had a vision of you running down the street...sans pants!")

Sunday, September 29, 2013


Shoegazey, proggy, post-metal band Vaura have a new album on the horizon next month on Profound Lore.  "The Missing" continues the New York band's Queensryche-inspired take on shoegaze-prog-rock.  Great stuff for a gray day.  Take a listen to "Incomplete Burning" below.


Creepy, processed noise/drone music seems to be oozing out of cities and valleys all over the world, each artist with a different take, tone, and frame of mind, but all drawing from similar inspirations: drone, noise rock, industrial, techno, classical, and experimental compositions.  It's all music to watch the cosmos by, or to shrink down and examine the natural world on a molecular level.  Edinburgh duo Dalhous are purveyors of these waters and their work is the soundtrack to watch the world disintegrate away to.  Take a listen to "He Was Human and Belonged with Humans" below and look for the "An Ambassador for Landing" LP on Blackest Ever Black.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Sun Kil Moon

Mark Kozelek is prepping a new album under his Sun Kil Moon moniker, and if the first taste, "Richard Ramirez Died Today of Natural Causes," is any indication, this new record is going to be intense.  Kozelek's practically unmatched acoustic guitar picking skills are paired with the drumming of former Sonic Youth member Steve Shelley, and a stream of consciousness style vocal delivery that is unsettling, and at times almost confusing.  I fucking love it.  Listen below and look for the album in February on Caldo Verde.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Loss of Self

Here's some post-rock-black-metal that's become all the rage this year from Melbourne duo Loss of Self.  The band's debut album "Twelve Minutes" comes out in November on The Flenser, but listen to the "pretty" and pop-length "There Must Be Great Wisdom with Great Death" below.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Mark Lanegan

Mark Lanegan's latest solo effort, "Imitations," is a collection of cover songs from Lanegan's youth, beautifully arranged and fronted by his wonderful worn and smoky vocals.  Take a listen to "Deepest Shade" below and sink into the mood.  Get the LP from Vagrant Records.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Found Vinyl: Berlin Express - The Russians Are Coming

Here's a slice of cold wave techno to get the the foot tapping with the ever present Krautrock motorik beat.  Berlin Express's "The Russians Are Coming" is reminiscent of a lot of the early propulsive beats and sample heavy jams that were coming out of Wax Trax back in the 80's.  Elements of factory sounds and fascist imagery abound, but it's still an enjoyable work (as a fan of 80's/90's industrial music, this comes as no surprise).  I couldn't find a lot of info about the group online, but electronic artist Conrad Schnitzler was a member, which is pretty damn cool.  At any rate, i don't normally do 12" singles on the Found Vinyl blogs, but the cover alone on this one just begged to be done.  Take a listen to the tune below.

As a bonus, here's the German version, "Die Russen Kommen."

Tuesday, September 24, 2013


Here's a moody thumper from Bristol producer Vessel (Seb Gainsborough from Young Echo).  "Misery Is a Communicable Disease" comes from the upcoming EP of the same title on Liberation Technologies.  It sounds like the intro to some heady sci-fi movie.  Listen below.

Van Dale

That crunchy 90's alt-rock vibe and sound is verily making its way into the aesthetic of a lot of younger indie bands of late, and i'm kind of torn on the whole thing.  For one, it's just another thing to make me feel old, as the stuff i grew up with is now a part of the current revival, but at the same time, it's a sound that i repeatedly go back to, so let's see where this thing goes.  Columbus trio Van Dale just nail the classic-Modest-Mouse-meets-classic-Weezer aesthetic for a batch of catchy, catchy tunes.  Listen to "Bed of Bricks" below and grab the band's self-titled album digitally here (name your price).

Monday, September 23, 2013

Cannibal Movie

I'm really digging on the evil, experimental noise rock tonight.  Last year, Italy's excellently named Cannibal Movie released the droning, psychedelic cult freakout record "Mondo Music" on Yerevantapes.  It's a sonic trip into dark to say the very least.  Drink some of the special Koolaid and listen to "Mondo Music (I)" below.


A creeping, brooding, foreboding pulse of noisy post-rock, pressing ever so gently at your neck where your spine meets your skull.  That uneasy feeling of impending doom.  A wave of nausea from out of nowhere.  Such is the evil, driving music of Moin, the duo of Tom Halstead and Joe Andrews (Raime).  The self-titled EP is out now on Blackest Ever Black, but listen to "Clancy" below and beware.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Postiljonen - When All the Wild Things Die

Sweden's Postiljonen have had me nodding and swaying all through the summer with their "Skyer" LP, a wash of warm synths, and breathy, echoed vocals.  So, it's very encouraging that a one-off single that didn't make the cut for the album is totally essential to send our summer off and welcome the moderate heat as opposed to the oppressive heat (here in central Texas anyway).  Take a listen to the beautiful, wistful "When All the Wild Things Die" below and get the "Skyer" album on Best Fit Recordings.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Bill Callahan

Somewhere between the psych-tinged country drawl of Lee Hazlewood and the spirited and vast mountain and valley folk music of America lies one Bill Callahan.  Having made music for decades (previously under the moniker of Smog), Callahan has perfected his songcraft into one of introspective lyrics, often taking an almost mournful tone due to his vocal cadences, but all the while retaining a sense of humor.  New album "Dream River" finds the man completely comfortable with himself and his surroundings, his warm vocals like an old friend you've missed for years.  Listen to "The Sing" below and grab the album from Drag City.

"Beer and thank you."

Friday, September 20, 2013

Nine Inch Nails remixed by Oneohtrix Point Never

Nine Inch Nails get the remix treatment from Oneohtrix Point Never.  "Find My Way" comes from this year's "Hesitation Marks," and OPN's mix throws a barrage of organs, disjointed beats, and analog synth freak outs that makes the whole outing just lovely, while retaining that trademarked Reznor moodiness.  Listen below.

Thursday, September 19, 2013


Hearing it described as "Wolf Eyes meets party rap" was all it took to pique my interest and check out LA noise-rap outfit clipping.  The group are a screeching assault on the eardrums with brief marijuana numbing reprieves splattered throughout the mix.  As close a contemporary as Death Grips could ask for.  Get the "midcity" album here (name your price) and listen to "Loud" below.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Mamiffer & Circle

On again off again experimental metal label Hydra Head Records always shines when they put like minded artists in a room together and hit record.  Weirdo acts Mamiffer and Circle gathered in a 19th century church in Finland to give us the epic collaborative "Enharmonic Intervals," a smoking, brooding, cascading mantra of organ, chimes, deep and echoed vocals, and hard, repetitive drums.  There's a definite Swans-vibe going on here.  It's organic,dark, and full, and unbelievably cool.  Take a seat and listen to "Tumulus" below.  You're in church now.

Found VInyl: Lucifer (Mort Garson) - Black Mass

It's no secret that i am a big proponent of analog synthesizers and the compositions composed and performed with them, and so, needless to say, i am glued to the 1971 album "Black Mass" by the late, great Canadian composer/songwriter/all-around-cool-guy Mort Garson, here making music under the moniker of Lucifer.  This 30 minute opus is a collection of instrumental meditations on witchcraft and satanism performed on the always lovely and addictive Moog.  The whole thing is pretty psyched out and trippy which makes it all the more intoxicating.  It feels really retro, yet faux futuristic at the same time.  Take a listen to "Witch Trial" below.

And here's the rumbling "Incubus."

And one more for the road, the cartoonishly evil "Solomon's Ring."

This album is making its way into steady rotation around here, and i think you should give it a shot too.  No one makes anything like this anymore, and that's a damn shame.

Gap Dream

California's Gap Dream has a new record of fuzzy, psyched-out electro-pop headed your way later this year from Burger Records.  "Fantastic Sam" is the first single from "Shine Your Light," a hypnotic, smoking cigarettes in your back yard kind of jam.  Listen below.


Chicago band Mines are all over the place on their debut "Just Another Thing that Got Ruined" LP.  The band roll and fold back and forth touching on different genres and textures.  Everything from shoegaze to psych pop to prog to math rock to space rock to an almost early Modest Mouse stomp keep this record alive and pumping from start to finish.  Listen to the lovely "Bad is the New Better" below and get the album from Lake Paradise Records.

Four Tet

The wonderful progressive electronic act that is Four Tet have a new record, "Beautiful Rewind," on the horizon on the band's own Text Label.  New Four Tet is always a good thing.  While we're waiting, here's new jam "Parallel Jalebi," a smooth and sexy spattering of click beats and sampled and looped female vocals.

More music from Ejecta

Here's another warm, synth anthem from the upcoming debut album "Dominae" by Ejecta (Leanne Macomber of Neon Indian/Fight Bite and Joel Ford of Ford and Lopatin).  "Afraid of the Dark" is another slice of 80's pop bliss.  Listen below and look for the album in November from Driftless.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Odonis Odonis

Toronto punk trio Odonis Odonis just released a new digital single called "Are We Friends" that takes a real, pounding, industrial approach that makes me all kinds of happy.  This is slurred, noisy disco-punk at its very best.  The single is out on Buzz Records.  No word on an album yet.  Listen below.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Arnold Dreyblatt & Megafaun

Okay, so this one comes at you like a train running through your head.  Think of seeing the world through sepia tones while an Americana guitar jangle plays in the foreground.  Meanwhile, the thump, thump, clap, thump, clap precision of an almost Krautrock beat blasts in the background.  Vocals are useless and not needed.  The swirl of guitar, beat, and chimes and tones is the sound of the rails running through your brain, the sound of progress, the sound of the past colliding with the future.  And so we have the collaborative album "Appalachian Excitation" from Arnold Dreyblatt and Megafaun.  Listen to the clatter of "Home Hat Placement" below and get the album from Northern Spy.

Saturday, September 14, 2013


Liz Harris (Grouper) has a new project called Helen.  The group craft fuzzy, reverb-drenched bliss, lo-fi shoegaze in an echo chamber.  Take a listen to "Felt This Way" below.  You can get the songs digitally now on itunes, but a physical release is soon to follow.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Flatbush Zombies

Checking out the lineup and schedule for Fun Fun Fun Fest this year, i came across Brooklyn hip-hop group Flatbush Zombies.  I knew nothing about them except that their name was cool.  After a second's worth or research, i discovered that the group just released a new mixtape called "Better Off Dead."  And it's available for free here.  And it features Action Bronson and Danny Brown.  That was all i needed.  Take a listen to the Bronson-aided jam "Club Soda" below.

Woman's Hour

Here's some warm synth and pretty vocals to start your weekend to.  "Darkest Place" is taken from the upcoming 7" single on Luv Luv Luv Records from indie-pop group Woman's Hour.  Listen below.

Russian Circles & Chelsea Wolfe

I know i just posted about post-rock metal act Russian Circles' upcoming new album "Memorial" the other day, but i just heard the album closing title track today, and it features haunting and wistful vocals from the awesome Chelsea Wolfe.  This song soars.  Take a listen below and look for the LP in October on Sargent House.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Danny Brown - ODB video

Detroit weirdo/rapper Danny Brown's new album "Old" is due out later this month on Fool's Gold.  In the meanwhile, watch the video for the aptly titled "ODB" below.  The disorienting jam is exactly what i assume the inside of Ol' Dirty Bastard's head was like.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

New music from Jacco Gardner

Last March, Dutch artist Jacco Gardner was easily one of the best acts i saw during SXSW.  His album "Cabinet of Curiosities" is a total contender for my favorite albums of the year, and the man's got a new 7" single out on Trouble In Mind.  A-side "The End of August" continues the Gardner's exploration of 60's psych rock, utilizing a folky sing-songy sound as a harbinger of the impending Autumn.  Pretty stuff.  Listen below and get the record here.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Found Vinyl: Hal Galper - Now Hear This

I wish i knew more about jazz.  It just fascinates me.  Every aspect of it.  Every genre and sub-genre therein.  The history, the spontaneity, just the overall essence of the music.  It's transcendent.  It's remarkable.  And i'd be a liar if i said i understood the first thing about it.  So, i will not critique.  I know nothing.  I will just sit back, listen to, and enjoy Hal Galper's 1977 album "Now Hear This."  We'll start with "First Song in the Day."

And here's the title track.

And finally, we'll finish with "Red Eye Special."

Go and listen to some jazz music right now.  I swear it makes you smarter...or at least it will make you think you're smarter.


For some years now, Portland, Oregon's Grails have been offering up an eclectic tome of music on albums pulling from everything from psychedelia to heavy metal to Eastern mysticism to stoned beats to Lalo Schifrin.  Always new.  Always original.  Always interesting.  I recommend everything they do.  Next month, Temporary Residence will release the 6th EP in the band's "Black Tar Prophecies" series.  Listen to the worldly and haunting "Invitation to Ruin" below.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Arcade Fire - Reflektor video

Despite some meticulous work to debut a new single today, the new Arcade Fire jam from the album of the same name actually leaked on Saturday.  You damn kids and your internet.  At any rate, there's a real disco vibe going on here (thanks James Murphy) and even David Bowie pops up.  Watch the Anton Corbijn directed video below and be on the lookout for the album on Merge at the end of October.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Moby & Wayne Coyne

Moby has a new album called "Innocents" due out this month...and for the first time in 10 years, i care that there is a new Moby album.  That might have something to so with the assortment of guests and collaborators he has joining him this time around, including Mark Lanegan and Wayne Coyne.  Watch the video for the glorious and joyful Coyne-assisted "The Perfect Life" below and get the record from Mute.


Violetshaped is the electro-industrial-noise collaborative project of Violet Poison and Shapednoise.  It's murky and pulsing, dirty and hypnotic, the kind of music to listen to while driving at night on your way to commit some heinous act of revenge.  Think somewhere in between Cabaret Voltaire and Vatican Shadow.  The self-titled album is out now on the Violet Poison record label, but you can listen to "The Lord Won't Forget" below.

Bad Cop

Here's a retro stomper from Nashville garage rock outfit Bad Cop.  The band's "Light On" EP is out now on Jeffery Drag Records.  Listen to the title track below.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Skogen Brinner

1970's inspired stoner rock is a live and well in Sweden.  Skogen Brinner's debut LP "1st" is available now from Subliminal Sounds and pairs the down-tuned guitar tones of Black Sabbath with some of the crunchier classic rock vibes.  Think Black Foghat Sabbath.  Yeah.  Watch the video for "Pundarvarning" below (it translates to "Junkie Warning").

Friday, September 6, 2013

White Poppy

Last month i posted about the ethereal and dreamy sound of wonderful that is Canada's White Poppy.  The band have a new self-titled full-length LP out on Not Not Fun right now, and it's a beautiful reverby and shoegazey daydream of an album.  Get it here and listen to "Wear Me Away" below.

Disco Doom

Part Dinosaur Jr guitar fuzz, part 70's glam rock grandstanding, the new jam "Ex Teenager" from Swiss band Disco Doom is two minutes of pure sonic bliss, a lo-fi love letter to the masses.  Keep an eye out for the band's upcoming new album on Exploding In Sound, and listen to the jam below.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

LX Sweat

Fog machines and strobe lights blurring out sections of an ancient and weathered city, as dirty and sweaty city dwellers move and bump and collide among one another, a gathering of Eurotrash despair.  Germany's LX Sweat provides the soundtrack to the slithering masses with their cocktails and designer drugs and S&M bars.  The little 90's raver living inside me is just dying.  Take a listen to "V.I.P. L.I.F.E." from the new "City of Sweat" LP out now on Not Not Fun.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Found Vinyl: Jan Hammer - The First Seven Days

Long before there were mountains of cocaine and the "Miami Vice" theme song, composer and musician Jan Hammer used his considerable talents...and probably a little write and record the 1975 album "The First Seven Days."  The record is a grand mix of old school synthesizers, guitar wankery, and overt new age mumbo jumbo.  It's the perfect blend of cheese and awesome.  Needless to say, i love it.  But enough with the formalities, here's some music.  Album opener "Darkness/Earth in Search of a Sun"...

"Oceans and Continents"...

And finally, here's "The Animals"...

Enjoy your cheese for the evening.

Russian Tsarlag

Warbled and dirty lo-fi recordings of longing that sound like they were recorded in a dumpster about sums up the newest album by Providence's Russian Tsarlag, "Gagged in Boonesville."  If the preceding sentence wasn't enough to win you over, then i'm afraid we're on different wave lengths my friend.  Take a listen to the lonesome sounding title track below and get the record from Not Not Fun.


Following their excellent reworking/re-imagining of Daft Punk's "Random Access Memories" earlier this summer, electronic duo Darkside (Nicolas Jaar and Dave Harrington) are back with a new album of original material in October called "Psychic."  Bits of static and computer fuzz give way to a trance-like beat and pulsing bass and synth tones, ending in a crescendo of warped vocals on album opener "Golden Arrow."  Get hypnotized with the video below and keep an eye out for the album on Matador.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Russian Circles

I have been digging on the heavy metal lately.  I'm not sure why.  It's probably something to do with the economic and political climate of the moment.  Anyway, reason or not, i'm finding all kinds of excellent music on the horizon, like the new one from post-metal instrumental juggernauts Russian Circles.  Listen to the driving and crunching "Deficit" from the forthcoming "Memorial" below and look for the record soon on Sargent House.

Monday, September 2, 2013


Chapel Hill experimental metal band Horseback just released a three-disc compilation of rarities and one-offs for Relapse Records called "A Plague of Knowing."  It's amazing.   The half decade's worth of material on this comp finds the band taking on elements of a number of different genres and molding them into a unique sound all their own.  Black metal, drone, stoner metal, doom, psych rock, krautrock, and Americana all make appearances in this sprawling and excellent mix of jams.  They even do us a solid and cover The Stooges.  I highly recommend it.  Take a listen to the slow burning "Heathen Earth" below.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Awesome movies currently streaming on Netflix

Phil Nobile Jr writes an excellent column for the always entertaining Badass Digest.  His monthly "Big Streaming Pile" compiles awesome films currently available to watch on different movie streaming services.  You should read it.  But first, you should read my blatant rip-off.

Here's four films you should watch on Netflix right now.

Upstream Color - Shane Carruth's second feature is a trippy love story about...well, i think it's actually best to go in cold on this one like i did.  It's a beautiful, thought-provoking film that feels like Terrence Malick courting Philip K. Dick.

It's A Disaster - The debut (i think) feature from Todd Berger about a brunch.  A brunch among friends who are all hiding things from each other.  A brunch among friends who are hiding things from each other while a terrorist chemical weapons attack goes on outside the house.  This movie is way funnier than it has any right to be.

Prohibition - You really should watch every Ken Burns documentary.  They're all excellent.  This three-parter about the Prohibition era is a lot of fun and exhaustively researched.

Once Upon a Time in the West - Ending with a classic, this is probably my favorite Sergio Leone film, my favorite Ennio Morricone soundtrack, and my favorite spaghetti western period.  It's beautifully shot, acted, scored, and on and on and on.  If you've never seen it, you owe it to yourself to check it out.

Okay, so go and watch these now.  You've got a great Sunday ahead of you.