Monthly Archives: August 2009

The Best of the Big Takeover on BTR!

Join our resident rock and roll expert, Jack Rabid, as he takes you on a tour of the very best of his show, The Big Takeover.  An excellent anniversary show that you can listen to on BTR by clicking here.

00.00 DJ Jack Rabid
00:25 Aftertaste – For Against
04:00 Voice of the Sea – Secret Shine
08:55 All the Lost Souls Welcome You to San Francisco – American Music Club
11:33 Emergency 911- Sloan
13:20 DJ Jack Rabid
15:22 Haz-Mat – Effigies
18:47 The Couples – Long Blondes
21:15 Complications – Julie Ocean
23:57 Did She Overtake You – Robert Forster
27:15 DJ Jack Rabid
28:44 Talking Words – Darker My Love
31:56 Something Happened – Billy Bragg
34:30 Icing the Snow Queen – Black Watch
37:36 Moving Van – Springhouse
39:15 DJ Jack Rabid
41:03 Modern Girl – T.S.O.L.
44:01 Life and Times – Bob Mould
48:13 All of My Days & All of My Days Off – A.C. Newman
51:57 The Kids Are Sick Again – Maximo Park
54:49 DJ Jack Rabid
56:52 Science is Violence – The Rifles
59:54 No Direction – Magnetic Morning
63:25 Surge – Adam Franklin
66:23 A Nation Fit For Heroes – The Damned
70:11 DJ Jack Rabid
72:12 Code – Sleepover Disaster

Maximo Park
10/7 – Barrowland – Glasgow, Scotland
10/8 – Apollo – Manchester, UK
10/9 – Royal Albert Hall – London, UK
10/15 – Paradiso – Amsterdam, Netherlands
10/16 – 013 – Tilburg, Netherlands
10/17 – AB – Brussels, Belgium
10/19 – Den Atelier – Luxembourg, Luxembourg
10/20  -Grabenhalle – St. Gallen, Switzerland
10/22 – Philipshalle – Dusseldorf, Germany
10/23 – Pier 2 – Bremen, Germany
10/24 – Berlin Arean – Berlin, Germany
10/26 – Liederhalle-Beethovensaal – Stuttgart, Germany
10/27 – Zenith – Munich, Germany
10/28 – Jahrhunderthalle – Frankfurt, Germany

Darker My Love

9/5 – FYF Fest – Los Angeles, CA
10/1 – Riot Room – Kansas City, MO
10/2 – Firebird – St. Louis, MO
10/4 – Johnny Brenda’s – Philadelphia, PA
10/5 – DC9 – Washington DC
10/6 – Local 506 – Chapel Hill, NC
10/7 – Drunken Unicorn – Atlanta, GA
10/8 – Club Downunder – Tallahassee, FL
10/9 – One Eyed Jacks – New Orleans, LA
10/10 – The Lounge on Elm Street – Dallas, TX
10/11 – The Mohawk – Austin, TX
10/13 – Plush – Tucson, AZ
10/15 – The Casbah – San Diego, CA
10/16 – The Echo – Los Angeles, CA

Billy Bragg

9/5 – Electric Picnic – Portlaoise, Ireland
9/26 – Village Green – Essex, UK
10/3 – Golden Gate Park – San Francisco, CA
10/5 – Great American Music Hall – San Francisco, CA
10/14 – Galileo Galilei – Madrid, Spain
10/15 – Bikini – Barcelona, Spain
10/16 – Kursaal – San Sebastian, Spain
10/18 – Palacio Euskalduna – Bilbao, Spain


Artist of the Week: Holiday Shores

The transition from a Miami summer to a New York summer has been a bit tumultuous. A friend’s visit was rained on half the time, resulting in soppy jeans and smelly shoes. My first festival was spent ankle deep in mud, and at these northern beaches no one seems to dip into the water. This is far from the topless sun bathers and Brazilian sepak takraw players that I’m used to. Thanksgiving and Christmas will no longer be spent on the sand, but luckily I have Florida mates in Holiday Shores delivering freshly tanned melodies and reverb soaked in sunlight to fill the void.

The radiant backdrop was inspired by Nathan Pemberton’s childhood spent in the Florida panhandle, where he could hear the waves crashing from his doorstep. His polished demeanor and appreciation of music history beguile his twenty one years. Maybe it’s because his dreams took form at an early age, starting with piano lessons at seven. This led to learning guitar shortly after, starting high school bands with his family and friends, and the eventual formation of Continental Divide, which produced the fuzzy leather jacket sporting single “Golden Throat.”

Pemberton hasn’t strayed too far from home for inspiration. The band is based in Tallahassee and the current line-up is comprised of friends and roommates, who all spent months recording in his living room with vintage gear and the reverb dial turned skyward. Their latest release from twosyllable, Columbus’d The Whim, sets sail with the frolicking diddy “Reruns.” It cruises at a school zone pace, but once it takes full form it feels like you’ve ascended the Turnpike ramp and are ready to roll down your windows to let the air rush in.

The video for “Phones Don’t Feud” matches the pacing of the song perfectly. It starts off with an individual making his way through a shadowy orchard of grapefruits and palms to a lo-fi sun n’ fun riff. Once this figure reaches a tree with veiny roots (accompanied by a tambourine and scaling vocals) there is a tension in the air that the song could overflow at any minute, like an over zealous four-year-old pouring his first glass of cola. Finally, the crash comes at the 1:16 mark when the guitar reaches it’s crescendo and the viewer is transported to a house overtaken by flickering projections of oozing paint and sparklers. Even Nathan has to take a second and sit, while images dance on his back.

Even though my semi-summer is coming to an end, you can still enjoy the sun and surf sounds of Holiday Shores. And now for the sad news. The group just wrapped up their recent tour here in New York, but the great news is that they graced our Live Studio with a visit. Stay tuned in upcoming weeks for the session on BTR.

Link to the article:

– Phillip Nguyen

Review: The Pullout at The Common Grounds

When The Pull Out assumed the stage at the Common Grounds in Gainesville on Thursday night, anything seemed possible.

Singer/guitarist Seth Lyda wore a white Bob Marley shirt, and fellow singer/guitarist Joe Josephson wore a black Led Zeppelin shirt. Drummer Evan Cantwell  wore a shirt boasting cut-off sleeves and a pattern of iconic W’s, indicative of the Wu-Tang Clan (see shirt, pre-sleeve trimming, in the photo above). And bassist Nate Lyda went the plain white tee route, you know, representing a blank canvas for the rest of the band’s band shirts to battle, smash and mingle on.

Having never heard the Gainesville/St. Augustine-based band’s music before, and seeing these three distinctly different flavors of music emblazoned across three different band member’s chests, all proudly given the honor of “that’s the shirt I’m wearing on stage tonight,” well, it horrified me initially.

Inevitably, I thought, I am damned to write in my review that “The Pull Out sounds like what would happen if The Wu-Tang Clan re-animated Russell Jones, traveled back in time, got drunk with Jimmy Page and Robert Plant at Bron-Y-Aur in 1970, chartered a yacht, argued about who would win in a fight  (Gandalf or The Qing Lord), floated down to Jamaica, got high with Bob and then recorded with The Wailers, in Trenchtown.”

This was not to be the case.

The Pull Out played what I came to think of as “Roadhouse Sublime,” incorporating quick-paced ska style rhythms, dozens of dramatic drum fills and similarly skanky, beach-chirpy guitars (you know how that ska guitar be boasting that chirpy/hoppy  character). The band definitely has something there, but the half-growly, quarter-harmonic, eighth grandiose and eighth sloppy vocals need some work. Moreover, it almost  seemed like the vocals were just filler between guitar solos,  and for real, Lyda and Stephenson got some dexterous digits – most of the band’s songs had at least one solo for each. It wasn’t verse-chorus, it was verse-solo, and The Pull Out were Rock Band worthy on that front, aye.

They changed it up a bit toward the end of the set, playing a classic, blues-style jam and then a more dub-influenced, slow-nodding-necker of a song. To my ears, the work-in-progress vocals matched better with the bluesy joint.

Still, The Pull Out are a young band, and they will get better as the days and weeks progress. They return to the Common Grounds on October 3rd, and I am already wondering what band shirts they might break out of the closet for the return engagement. Stay tuned…

Link to this article:

– Matt Lehtola

BTR Live Studio: Israel Darling

Check out this live studio performance from Engine Room Recordings artist ISRAEL DARLING!!

00:00 Israel Darling
00:44 Interview Part 1
02:50 Woman God And Pity For a Man
07:11 Sherwood Street
11:26 Locked In a Safe
14:19 Interview Part 2
20:43 Sampson The Mason
25:18 I’m Dropping By
27:35 Oh My God
31:10 Interview Part 3
32:16 Billy Walker

Hello My Name Is: Golden Bloom, Still Life Still, The Drums

Golden Bloom
is Shawn Fogel, an extremely versatile instrumentalist who is not afraid of constructing a good-hearted indie power-pop song here and there. His major tracks of late include “E.H.M” and “Doomsday Devices,” the first two tracks off off his recently released LP (August 18th) Fan The Flames. Fogel and his cohorts create ear-candy somewhere in the spaces between groups like The New Pornographers, The Shins and  Wilco. With music like his, it’s no wonder why a sunny name like Golden Bloom came about, but beyond the “what,” just what is the “how?”

As Fogel explained to BTR, “One day one of my musical co-conspirators, Jeff Patlingrao, pointed out that I shared a resemblance with one of the greatest thespians of our time, Jeff Goldblum. At that very instance I knew that the name of the project should share a similar resemblance.” But the road to fruition can be a long one, so the two began to sort through a few options before they landed on one that stuck. “Goldbloom’ or ‘The Goldblooms’ felt like plagiarism to me,” Fogel explained, “and ‘The Golden Bloomers’ sounded too much like fancy underpants, thus we became ‘Golden Bloom.”

Surely the Jurassic Park player would be proud, and as Fogel went on to explain, “Although the music itself is not inspired by Jeff Goldblum, I believe that his contributions to the arts have indirectly inspired us all in some way.” Thank you Alistair Hennessey.

Groups like Still Life Still represent one of the most encouraging and profound emerging styles of young artists today. While many Brooklyn and California ensembles have decided to pursue an increasingly popular beachy, dreamy and hazey sound, partially (and albeit most likely unintentionally) established by great groups like Deerhunter and Real Estate, Still Life Still have taken things a step further, marrying that sound with something closer to Sonic Youth or Television. Still Life Still even seems to evoke that sort of post-punk Campbell’s Soup can feeling, but what were the intentions of these Ontario natives?

According to the group, it was originally a song title… “then a much-needed band name, then we found out ‘still life still’ in French means ‘still born babies’ pretty much, trippy.” Aaron, Eric, Josh, Derek and Brendon ultimately felt even better about the name as time went on. As they explained it, “We just thought of the stillness in the world. It’s weird to frame each moment and not actually feel it.” Keep an ear out for this an any other band who find words and thoughts like these coming to mind, you’ll be happy you did.

The Drums have found a little popularity of late, and with good reason. Their pop sound is a sweet one, but Jonathan Pierce, Jacob Graham, Adam Kessler and Connor Hanwick haven’t been complacent therein. The airy melodies that carry their songs are supported by an encouraging bit of spacious experimentation. This combination lets tracks like “Submarine” and “Let’s Go Surfing” turn out to be playful and deep at the same time, something like the story behind their name.

As Pierce explained it, “About 2 years ago Jacob and I started a blog about the things we love, or things we wish we could love, and one of the things we loved or wished we could love was this band called The Drums. Now, this band did not exist in reality, only in our hearts. And they were not just some band, they were the coolest band of all time. They wrote perfect pop songs and played guitars in the coolest way and I dunno, we kinda went crazy with it.” The line between crazy and creative is surely a thin one, but luckily for us these two came back to Earth before creating the music they found in their dreams.

Pierce went on to explain, “When Jacob and I finally decided to start a band together, we naturally stole the name from our dream band. I hope they don’t mind. We have given that dream band a new name and hope they will let us steal it for our side project.” If this dream band could only hear the result of their goodwill… oh never mind, just go listen to the Drums.

Link to this article:

-Ike Stonberg

Brand New Portrait of a Comedian!

This episode brings us two very funny New York comedians, Jay Larson andMatt McCarthy. Tune in to hear Jay talk about his Auntie Gert’s little men in the cupboard, playing percussion in marching band and what he would do with invisibility, while Matt will be discussing the Silver Surfer, his time as the mascot for Fordham University, and you’ll also hear him read from his favorite suicide notes. You’ll also hear music from Spoon, Michael Zapruder, Man Man, The Fruit Bats and The Reverend Horton Heat!  YOU CAN LISTEN ON BTR HERE!

00:00 DJ Marcus Intro
00:54 Jay Larson Interview and Performance Part One
09:30 Honk If You’re Lonely Tonight – Silver Jews
12:08 My Unusual Friend – The Fruit Bats
16:05 Jay Larson Interview and Performance Part Two
25:24 Nurture My Pig – Reverend Horton Heat
29:12 Harpoon Fever – Man Man
32:29 Matt McCarthy Interview and Performance Part One
42:51 Someone Something – Spoon
45:33 Ads for Feelings – Michael Zapruder
48:47 Matt McCarthy Interview and Performance Part Two
57:12 DJ Marcus Outro

Jay Larson

Matt McCarthy

Tom Daschle: The Man Behind Insurance Cooperatives

The former Democratic leader, Tom Daschle, has been very busy performing his dual roles as health care adviser to the White House and “highly paid policy adviser to hospital, drug, pharmaceutical and other health care industry clients of Alston & Bird, the law and lobbying firm,” according to the New York Times.

Daschle also advised UnitedHealth in 2007 and 2008 and resumed that role this year. In addition to being a giant in the health care industry, readers may remember UnitedHealth for its subsidiary, the Lewin Group, the consulting firm whose dubious research has been widely cited by opponents of a public insurance option. The Lewin Group is also famously a target for Rachel Maddow, who has been regularly exposing their sinister public option-busting activities for the past couple weeks.

But it was Daschle who first introduced the idea of nonprofit insurance cooperatives as an alternative to the public option. Daschle and his good buddy, Blue Dog Kent Conrad, came up with the idea of insurance co-ops which included the concept of “triggers” that landed Rahm Emanuel in hot water with progressive groups like Firedoglake when he first floated the idea past the public. Basically, the trigger idea meant that the public option would only become a reality if state co-ops or other programs failed to meet certain cost and coverage goals within five years. The idea sank almost immediately thanks in large part to progressive watchdog groups. Now, Henry Waxman told Roll Call, “[Emanuel] doesn’t stand by the trigger…He said the president and his administration and he are for a public plan as one of the options.”

Privately, Daschle tells his health care industry buddies that the public option is far from finalized. In order to calm the nerves of drug company executives, Daschle told them that “there is no consensus on whether there ought to be a public option.” As recent as last week, he told the hospital executives, “There is virtually no support among Republican members for a public option, and that remains an unresolved element of this debate.” Of course, Daschle is only concerned with support in Congress. Meanwhile, the newest polls indicated that Americans overwhelming support the idea of including a public option in health care reform.

Additionally, some Blue Dogs who have publicly opposed a public option are beginning to feel the heat from their constituents. In Max Baucus’ home state, a majority of Montanans say they approve of the public option idea, while a majority disapprove of Baucus’ actions on health care reform.

It seems Daschle doesn’t include Montanans, or Americans in general, in his pool of “people who have reached an agreement that there ought to be a public option.” That makes sense. After all, it isn’t the American people who pay Daschle an annual salary of $2 million to force the public option out of President Obama’s health care reform bill.

Dan Pfeiffer, a White House spokesman, said the president greatly appreciates Daschle’s advice on health care reform and his friendship. I thought that was the idea behind getting the dog, Bo. A spunky little Portie is a much better companion than, say, an informal lobbyist who has none of the legal restraints placed upon traditional lobbyists, including banishment from the White House, a promise Obama made to his supporters.

If Obama is lonely, he should just stare into Bo’s big, brown eyes instead of humoring the idea of insurance co-ops that won’t help to lower costs, according to the U.S. General Accounting Office.

Link to this article:

– Allison Kilkenny