now playing…

“hello to you hello to me
yeah i really care
i’ll see you all around sometime
i hope that i’m not there
today’s news is yesterday’s news
you don’t remember you forget
that’s the way the stories all go”

Here I am sitting at my desk thinking about what to pontificate about when it dawned on me. Since I listen to music just about every chance I can (which seems to be all the time), I should talk about a song that’s got me all doe-eyed at the present time. Right now, that song would be Goodbye by the one and only Psychedelic Furs. Easily one of my top five favourite songs from an all-time great band.

It’s difficult to pinpoint exactly what it is about this song that makes me swoon. The saxophone? The perfect unison between Tim Butler’s bass and Vince Ely’s drumming? Richard Butler’s Bowie/Rotten lovechild-esque vocals are always a given so that element doesn’t count. Maybe it’s simply the way simply comes together to form an underrated new wave classic. What’s more Goodbye follows the seminal 80s classic Love My Way on what is my favourite Furs record, the Todd Rundgren-produced Forever Now. What better way to follow up such a timeless single than with an absolute stomper such as this?

I think I’m going to listen to this again…

“Goodbye (Dance Mix)”, taken from the Columbia release, “Here Came The Psychedelic Furs”

ever the optimist…

“I want to pretend, I want to pretend
The shape of the past could walk in the present tense
I’m shaking my head, you’ve certainly said
I don’t like you much now”

I don’t know if I’ve stated my love for Australia’s Modular Recordings enough here. They are by far my favourite indie label these days as they consistently put out quality releases and have brought some brilliant tunes from down under giving some great artists a chance to shine. From the Presets to Ladyhawke to Cut Copy to Van She, it doesn’t stop. Of all the bands on the label that have stolen my heart on countless occasions, none do it quite so effectively or with such stealth as New Young Pony Club.

Their 2007 debut Fantastic Playroom was pure new wave heaven. It speaks to how great and solid a record is when you can easily play it two years later and still feel the impact you did when you first listened from track one to the end. That kind of replay value holds true here. At long last, I’m happy to say the band is back!  There is a new single afoot! It’s called Lost A Girl and it retains the band’s relentless charm while making things a tad but darker.

Less pep, less immediate than The Bomb or Ice Cream but the band is better for it.  Tahita is still the star of the show here with her simple lyrics delivered with such panache, you’re sucked in instantaneously. NYPC , on the debut blended perfect pop moments with killer grooves showcasing some honest to goodness musical chops. That is still evident here in case you were at all concerned. Prepare to fall in love with the Pony Club all over again.

Just remember to pick up the new record The Optimist when it’s released in March unless of course you live in the US where you get to wait…

New Young Pony Club on MySpace
New Young Pony Club on Facebook
New Young Pony Club on Twitter

“Lost A Girl” by New Young Pony Club from the forthcoming Modular release, “The Optimist”

merry christmas from chris and neil…

“It’s something
That look in your eyes tonight
Like magic
it’s changing everything in sight
I hear it
all around me every day
in the music that you play”

The new EP from the Pet Shop Boys is out tomorrow via Astralwerks. I can hardly wait! To celebrate the release, Parlophone presents with a promotional video of All Over The World with footage from the recent Pandemonium tour. A brilliant song from a brilliant record. Enjoy!

on a lazy sunday, look into the clouds…

Just a lazy, rainy Sunday here in Brooklyn… While I’m bored, I figured I’d try to brighten the day a little  bit for myself and share it with you. Here’s a recent single from The Sound Of Arrows called Into The Clouds.  Just further proof that no one uses the arpeggiator quite like the Swedes. Enjoy…

the editors us bound. finally…

January 19 will be the date. It will only be roughly four months from the UK release date but who’s counting. The Editors’ new record In This Light And On This Evening will finally reach our shores via the FADER label. Of course, there are those who decided to give the finger to the archaic territorial release date nonsense and downloaded it or bought it as an import…like me. Those who haven’t and decided to wait, let me simply tell you it is worth the wait. The record is solid as solid comes. Editors with an electro twist and the anthems are still abound!

What’s even better is the news that the band will come Stateside in February for a tour. Needless to say, it’s a show you don’t want to miss if they are in your town. Here are the dates!

Seattle, WA Showbox At The Market (February 5)

Vancouver, BC Commodore Ballroom (6)
San Francisco, CA The Warfield Theatre (8)
San Diego, CA House of Blues (9)
Los Angeles, CA The Wiltern (11)
Denver, CO Ogden Theatre (13)
Chicago, IL Victoria Theatre (15)
Toronto, ON Phoenix Concert Theatre (16)
Boston, MA House of Blues (18)
New York, NY Terminal 5 (19)
Philadelphia, PA Trocadero (20)
Washington, DC 9:30 Club (21)

Editors on MySpace
Editors on Facebook

omg! omd’s back…

With all the brilliance of the new electronic pop bands coming to the fore and the second wind we’ve seen this year by the likes of Depeche Mode and the Pet Shop Boys, the time is right for another giant to return to the fold. Yes, friends, let’s rejoice for the band known as Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark is back! I don’t think it’s necessary to go through the band’s voluminous CV. You know the songs, you know the hits. Electricity. Enola Gay. Tesla Girls. If You Leave. The list goes on and on and on. The band had a run like very few of their contemporaries did in the eighties and even after the band splintered towards the end of the decade with singer/bassist Andy McCluskey carrying the torch for a few more records and adding a few more hits to the OMD canon before ending it for good.

Here we are thirteen years from the last release, 1996’s Universal, to discover the news of a new record The History of Modern will soon be upon us in the new year.  With this news comes a bit of a tease for fans ol and hopefully new. It’s a demo of what may very well be the new single called Sister Marie Says. Upon the first couple of listens, the song begins with a choral sample before opening wide into yummy electro-pop. Very reminiscent of OMD circa Sugar Tax/Liberator. Welcome back Andy and Paul!



OMD on MySpace
OMD on Facebook

“Sister Marie Says” by Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark, taken from the forthcoming release, “The History Of Modern”

i’m obsessed with the mess that’s america…

“Hollywood infected your brain
You wanna kiss it in the rain
Oh oh, I’ve been living in a movie scene
Thinking American dreams
Oh oh, I’m obsessed with the mess that’s America
I’m obsessed with the mess that’s America”

I’d say it’s becoming quite evident that Marina Diamandis aka Marina & The Diamonds is quickly proving that she is not the woman to take lightly. If her first official single taken from her forthcoming debut record The Family Jewels, Mowgli’s Road displayed her penchant for whimsy, the followup Hollywood shows her cojones pretty boldly. She’s got something to say, not afraid to say it and this time the good ol’ US of A is in her crosshairs.

Now I’m very aware that dissing the States is a well-worn path to generating applause in the rest of the world, scorn Stateside all the while ensuring plenty of publicity throughout. There will also be many haters, armchair patriots and defenders of Old Glory who will chastise the concept of a silly pop artist, a pop artist who isn’t American no less, who has the audacity to drag America and everything she stands for through the mud. To those people, I say, give it a rest before you even start. Is Marina being an attention-whore ensuring she is on the mouths of the music buying public in America and the UK a month before the album drops? Perhaps… Is it a move doomed to fail? Possibly? Is it gutsy above all else? Heck yes! Is the song any good? Without question.

Hollywood takes our disposition to idolise our pop culture heroes and throws it back in our faces with the help of a very funny video. The video, as camp as it may be, delivers the point quite clearly. This is what good pop music does. A lesson bands like the Bravery could learn is that pop music when done right not only has the ability to whip the listener into an emotional frenzy but also gives the listener a purpose. It makes us think. About love. About ourselves. How we feel at this present moment. About the world around us and our place in it. This is the first pop song in a while by a new artist who had the gumption to buck the trend and not be satisfied with a simple pop hook or two to get the word out in hopes of making her the nest pop icon. This isn’t Lady Gaga. Marina’s brand of pop is something more sinister, more genuine. If the USA can’t handle it, we’re in worse shape than we ever imagined.

Marina & The Diamonds on MySpace
Marina & The Diamonds on Facebook
Marina & The Diamonds on Twitter

“Hollywood” by Marina & The Diamonds, taken from the forthcoming 678/Atlantic release, “The Family Jewels”