Wednesday, March 07, 2007

DIBIDIM "Riders"
CHRIS & COSEY "Take Five"

I got completely floored today. I mean blindsided. So I did what any good blogger did and rushed to get this posted. Like within 15 minutes of hearing the band for the first time. Gosh, I hope it holds up well next week. You haven't heard of them before. They aren't playing SXSW. The only thing I know about them is that they are from the UK and the record is fairly new.

I came across Dibidim on MySpace. Yes, fucking MySpace. They have only like a thousand hits and a few friends so I guess they ain't no Arcade Fire. Where did they come from? Tell me! I listened to about 20 seconds of "I Woke Up" and I got distracted by the phone or something. But something in that 20 seconds made me go over and click it again and I got through another minute before becoming distracted again. Once I finally got to the end of the song, I was certain I'd heard this before. But I hadn't and I needed more. I searched the blogs for a freebie mp3.... nada. It's kinda got that Thompson Twins "If You Were Here" vibe to it, but only 700% cooler. They could be Air in 1983, those soothing synthesizers, filling in each black hole between hooks. Oh, and then... it hit me....

It sounds a little like Chris & Cosey, refugees from the legendary Throbbing Gristle. Well, that makes sense, Dibidim could easily slide in there on the early Mute Records' roster. "October Love Song" was a total sellout, like Ministry's With Sympathy, but I love every oscillating second of it. I know it's March, but hopefully both of these songs will come as a complete discovery for you. I need to go find the rest of this Dibidim record now and hope that's it's every bit as Juno 106'd out as I want it to be.

Monday, March 05, 2007

SILVER LAKES "The Great Pretenders"
FIONN REGAN "The End Of History"

Continuing with our "bands who are appearing at SXSW" theme, Little Elpees today presents you with two distinctively different artists who at least share one thing in common: gorgeous gorgeous melodies.

Silver Lakes are from Atlanta and is the creative offering of Steven Satterfield, one time singer for Too Pure band, Seely. I've been listening to the Great Pretenders for the entire year of '06 and now into '07 and would desperately release it on my own label, if I only still had one. As it goes, he's self-released it (it's available on CD Baby), and the whole thing is a partly cloudy floating post-shoegaze lullaby. It's not all mellow, but even the upbeat rockers seem to have been softened with not Ambien, but maybe a pillow fight. It's highly recommended.

Silver Lakes plays the Paste magazine party on March 17 at The Belmont in Austin, TX as NOT part of SXSW. Really? Did SXSW not get them a real show? Wow.

I've posted Fionn Regan's brilliant video for "Be Good Or Be Gone", but here's two brilliant songs from his brilliant LP, The End Of History. Fionn is Irish, brilliant! The one thing to note about Fionn is his brilliant guitar playing, the guy isn't just a folk singer, he's a guitar hero. Brilliant! You will see me getting my Guinness on with Fionn at either Stubb's (Mar 15) or Buffalo Billiards (Mar 17) at SXSW. Fionn also returns to Brooklyn on March 19 at Union Hall with Hayes Peebles.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

A very rare late night post from the Little Elpees, but it's a world premiere. Maybe not, I'm sure some eager blogger has beat me to the punch. I'll have more to say later about Chapel Hill's Rosebuds, but let me plainly state this: I absolutely love to see an indiepop type grow up into a big ole dance party monster of a band. By late spring, people will be uttering the word "rosebuds" in conversations at dinner parties, work, play, kickball practice.... the world will know. There's nothing overly complicated or mathematical about Rosebuds. They are equal parts Blondie and !!! (that chk-chk-chk for you newbies). It's laid back, it's a rave up, it's southern, it's Manchester. Hey you, new wave. Try it.

The Rosebuds release "Night Of The Furies" on Merge Records in April. Spring for an extra copy for a friend who needs a little pick me up circa 1991. Spring is sneaking into your bones! Darling Buds or Rosebuds? Hmmmm....

The Rosebuds play at SXSW at Antone's on the Merge Records' night, March 14 at 11:00pm. Bring your dancing shoes or dancing horses.

Friday, March 02, 2007

HOODOO GURUS "Stoneage Romeos"
HOODOO GURUS "Mars Needs Guitars"

Is anyone still debating what is "alternative" music or not?
It's a pretty banal conversation to have, but one thing I've noticed is, the word "indie" has taken the place of "alternative". As long as you slap "indie" on there, you're different. Pretty soon, real unknown underground stuff will be called "Corprock", short for corporate rock, because, of course, corporate will have its meaning twisted as well. Dude, we're so corprock!

OK, in the 80s, I ingested anything that anyone deemed "alternative". If WHTG or WPRB played it, I bought it. Looking back, I can see how certain things were not destined to be "alternative", they just were. Screaming Blue Messiahs? Oh yuck. Enough old man ramblings (I haven't had any coffee yet), let us get to the good NEW music, shall we?

The Hazey Janes are from Scotland. They are young and cute. Their record "Hotel Radio" is a little schizophrenic, bobbing and weaving from Teenage Fanclub to Flying Burrito Brothers to The Primitives. Overall, it's very charming. My guess is they slapped on some early singles at the end of this and that's what gives it that wanderlust. No surprise, my favorites are tracks 9 & 10, here for you to enjoy.

The Hazey Janes play Union Hall in Brooklyn on March 9 and at SXSW at Maggie Mae's rooftop at 11:00pm on March 17.

Getting back to "alternative", I loved the Hoodoo Gurus. Still do really. I'm floored that they are playing at SXSW. I saw them on the Blow Your Cool tour with Redd Kross opening and the Bangles came out and sung "Good Times" with them. These Australians are not alternative, they have a twang and a rock that anyone could easily dig. The Hazey Janes are similar except they don't seem to be dirty hippies.

Bust out your sandalwood, the Hoodoo Gurus play the Blender Bar/Ritz at SXSW on March 16 at 11:40pm. Below you will find my absolute two favorite Gurus tracks. There's a cute video for "My Girl" on YouTube, too.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

THE BEES "Octopus"
OTIS REDDING "The Soul Album"

I hate that I'm only posting once a week now. I'm also hating that this post is like 3 months overdue. I'm supposed to share with you and I've been lame. Wait, bloggers are supposed to talk in the third person, right? Little Elpees is very very ashamed of themselves. Bad Little Elpees! K, now, get ready to be blown away.

According to my nifty iTunes program, I added the Bees forthcoming "Octopus" album on December 31. As of January 1, it's the best record of the year. Forget what I said about Dean & Britta (though that's a close running second). As of this post, it's still not out. Another thing I hate is being lost in advance music to the point where you can't answer a question like, "when is the release date?". I don't know. Soon. The Bees are good, real good. We knew they had good taste when they covered Os Mutantes, but Octopus is their first offering I feel has the "glue". The glue is what makes an album, an album.

The Bees got soul. Yes, they rip off quite a bunch of their influences, but they convince me, as they should you. I'm not comparing them to Otis Redding, I'm just saying. Hopefully they are playing at SXSW. I'm going, are you going? What are you seeing? Should I dedicate Little Elpees to SXSW until the day I leave? Does anyone read this except Liz and Bethann? Scratch my back, people.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

THE SEA AND CAKE "Everybody"

Whoa. The Sea And Cake have made a classic rock album. Parts yacht rock, parts dueling guitars, parts bouncy 60s pop, Everybody is certainly for everybody. I'm smitten after two listens. What grabs you is the actual sound of this record, a little different from their previous offerings. My favorite song so far is "Middlenight", almost like a slowed down "Too Young" (see Phoenix). In fact, there's quite a few Steely Dan-isms in there which shouldn't surprise fans of TS&C, but what should....the verse chorus verses.... it's a complete pop record. Run, don't crawl, to your local record store on May 8 and buy a copy for a friend or someone who needs a shot of sunny spring melodies.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

THE RESEARCH "Breaking Up"
MOI CAPRICE "The Art Of Kissing Properly"

I'm about to say something really deep. Not, really. Every song ever is about love. There you go. Seriously. So, this is the day that we are told we are supposed to be in love or show our significant other how much we love them. Thankfully, mine let me off the hook this year because she wants to go to a party instead. Good, because I'm burnt out and have a problem with people telling me to do things, even Cupid
. Can't every day be Valentine's Day? Oh, sigh.

Have I posted about the Research? I didn't bother to check if I have, but even if I have, please please please seek out "Breaking Up". This amazing trio do amazing things with a Yamaha Portasound that's been duct taped together, a bass guitar, drums, and cocky, but vulnerable ba-bas. "I love you, but I'm scared I'll fuck it up" has to be the best lyric of last year. The whole record is dynamic and very special. Send this song to your special Valentine.

Going the other way are Denmark's Moi Caprice who are set to play their first US shows soon. An unreal thing about Scandavians, they can SING. All of them. Name a band from Denmark, Sweden, or Norway, and you can bet, even if you don't dig their music, they can sing like no one's business. Maybe they were weaned on ABBA or at least a-ha. Moi's "I Hate The Place But I Go There To See You" comes from "The Art Of Kissing Properly" and is a little more sentimental and less cheeky than the Research.

Happy be in love day. Hope it works out for you. You can always go outside and make snow angels today.