Kwaping! Music

Archive for July, 2009

Album at a Glance: Telekinesis!, by Telekinesis

by on Jul.26, 2009, under Album at a glance, Album Review, Music

Telekinesis!, by Telekinesis

I stumbled across this band the way I usually do, on Sirius-XM’s XMU station (formerly Left of Center), channel 26. The song was Coast Of Carolina, and I liked it right away. I wrote it down for further research then proceeded to forget about it. Well, a few days ago, I was going through some notes and came across that one. I went to Amazon to check them out and ended up buying the whole album.

Telekinesis reminds me a bit of Phoenix and Everclear, though not exactly like either band. The album is really easy to listen to, though not “easy listening” by any stretch. Especially impressive is the fact that this is their debut album – off to a great start, for sure. I love the whole album, but the most notable songs are the previously-mentioned Coast of Carolina, Tokyo, Great Lakes, and Calling All Doctors.

One thing I like a lot about this album is that the songs are simultaneously consistent with each other and varied. They all have a similar upbeat feel to them, kinda poppy, but there are different flavors to each. Some are more grungy, while other sound more like classic 50s rock. Some even sound folksy.

I saw another reviewer refer to them as power pop, and I guess they do fit that description a bit, but I think they lack the raw wall-of-sound feel to truly fit that genre. They’re a bit smoother and poppier than that. There is a definite low-fi feel to the album, especially Rust and Coast of Carolina. I don’t think it works 100% of the time, such as the equipment noise at the end of Rust, but overall it’s not bad.

Check out Coast of Carolina. If you like that song, go ahead and buy the whole album. You won’t be disappointed.

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Album at a glance: Zee Avi, by Zee Avi

by on Jul.10, 2009, under Album at a glance, Artist at a glance, Music

Zee Avi by Zee Avi

I discovered Zee Avi the way I discover many other artists, through Amazon’s free download library. I heard Bitter Heart and was instantly hooked. She has a very pleasant voice and her style is very similar to classic jazz singers. Adding to that mood is the swanky instrumental backing, with guitar, upright bass, piano, horns, and even ukelele. (Zee is self-taught on the guitar and ukelele.)

She reminds me a lot of a female Jack Johnson, which is not a coincidence considering he signed her to his Brushfire Records label. It’s the perfect place for her. One way she differs from JJ is that her lyrics are much darker, even though the music is upbeat. In that way, she reminds me of Death Cab For Cutie.

Besides her music, what I found most interesting was the fact that she’s from Malaysia. You’d never know it, listening to her music. Just a funny little tidbit.

I know I haven’t really done much of a review of the album, but go listen to the Amazon preview. I’m sure you’ll like it!

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Hanger 18 – Bakin Soda

by on Jul.10, 2009, under Music, Song of the Day

Bakin Soda [Explicit] by Hangar 18

It’s been a while since I’ve listened to rap. I used to be really into it, but lately I’ve been all about indie rock. Well, every Tuesday, Amazon releases a fresh batch of free MP3 downloads. This was in the latest batch. I’m not sure what made me check it out, but I’m glad I did! It has a great old-school vibe to it, but modernized well with an up-tempo, danceable beat. Imagine RUN-DMC fast-foward.

It’s virtually impossible to listen to this song without moving some part of your body. In that sense, it reminds me a bit of Girl Talk. They also make heavy use of samples and artificial beats, though of course not quite as much as GT.

If you like this track, also check out their excellent 2004 release, The Multi-Platinum Debut Album [Explicit].

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