Oh Glory Day! It's Kaatcha Blog Radio.
Or atleast that's what I dream people say about my podcast. And since dreams usually revolve around fictitious events and over dramatized emotions, I'm not going to hold my breathe in this one becoming a reality either. So yes, moving on, another freshly ripped podcast just to rile your ass. Aren't I nice.
And since my schtick is to play some tunes from some albums that I've currently been glued to: Here are my two featured albums:
Find me a indie rocker that isn't slurping this debut up with a slinky straw! ... Ga Ga Ga Damn. Passion Pit - 2009's MGMT? That's the passing word, and it's hard to disagree. Surprise factor alone. Like MGMT, Passion Pit started paving their way with shocker EP, Chunk of Change. Michael Angelakos, front man, initially made the EP as a gift for a former girlfriend. Soon enough record label Frechkiss got a hold, and told Angelakos to add two additional songs for commercial appeal. Lucky enough for us, and him, Sleepyhead was one of the two added tracks. And people haven't stopped twitting/twatting about it since.
On Manners, Angelakos decided not to forgo this project alone, so he added additional band mates to create a much more richer and complete sound. Chocked full of synth chords, choreographed beats, and falsetto vocal layering, this electronic indie pop album offers a few singles that become a monster hit almost instantaneously with its first listen. It's giddy, sweaty, and energetic as hell. Previously released Sleepyhead and Manner's first single The Reeling definitely fall into this category. They are the epitome of what every new indie single should sound like. It's catchy, yet keeps the listener interested, fascinated, and frothing at the mouth - even after hearing it twenty times. Make Light, Little Secrets, and Eyes as Candles can also gloat about such profound pop-ness, though it takes a little more work on the listener's end to catch on. (But we always like a challenge, right?) And one can't help but think something wonderful is unfolding with Moth's Wings.
This album is definitely in the running for some people's top album of the year. And with valid reason. Their a fresh, new band with all the right snyth samples, snaps, and pops. And us kids most likely will be dancing to it, horribly so, all summer long.
Even though many are comparing them to MGMT, I do believe the fellow(s) of Passion Pit have a bit more promise, and if I had to guess, will have a better follow up sophomore album. They just get it. They know how to shape it. Sing it. And make it magic. And even though some of the tracks don't reflect the same sparky sheen as the others, I do believe Manners, as a whole, is a giant step in what quite possibly might be a bright future for Passion Pit.
Album Grade: B-
King Khan & the Shrines. Yeah Boy. –As of now, this album is in the running for one of my top albums of the year. Even though this album was officially released as an import in 2007, it's now on a new domestic label, Vice Records, with a few more tracks added to the bill. So it's kind of like the previous What Is!? with some other greatest hits thrown in there... So yes, in my eyes, a new album. (Which is complete BS I know, but I'm excited about them and wanna talk about it, Dog nammit!)
So what is WHAT IS?!? A cluster fudge of sound, that revolves around multiple eras, temperaments, and styles... with a kick ass brass section throughout. (These are players who worship Coltrane & played with Mayfield and Stevie Wonder. So no joke.)
To give you a basic recipe of King Kahn & the Shrines, I’ll start with the nucleus of their sound: 60’s psychedelic rock - A mixture of Jefferson Airplane, minus vixen Grace Slick, and Iron Butterfly. Well the one and only song I know from Butterfly – In A Gadda Da Vida Babbyyyyy. (Not the greatest song to have stuck in your memory membrane.) If you're turned off already, please keep reading. (I understand that drugs aren't for everybody.) So this is where King Khan & The Shrines throw a boom-a-rang in the mix, twist it up, and make it their own. They also add a strong sense of garage rock (lots of gritty prod and analog hiss), with a refreshing blast of surfer guitar, and, at times, a straight up ska beat. ON TOP of all that ,they throw in a little bit of Egyptian flare nestled on top of a warming layer of bluesy soul. And lead man, hootn' and hollern' Erick Kahn, sells it perfectly. Little to say, James Brown would be pleased with his pipes. (That came out a little weird, but you know what I'm talking about people.)
Yes, What Is?!, is that fun, brash, rowdy, and humorous... and just tickles my listening senses. It’s NOISE(y) at times, but definitely unique in that it’s different from everything you heard this year, or the last two. Worth the listen, even just to make sense of everything I wrote in the paragraph prior. So get to it ganstas!
Album Grade: B
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Kaatcha Radio Rundown: Passion Pit - Sleepyhead/ Cut Off Your Hands - Oh Girl/ Devendra Banhart - I Feel Just Like A Child/ James - Hymm From A Village/ Deastro - Child Of Man, Son Of God/ Here We Go Magic - Tunnelvision/ King Khan & The Shrines - Land Of The Freak/ Bouncing Souls - That Song/ Deer Tick - Baltimore Blues No. 1/ The G0-Betweens - Cattle And Cane/ Matt & Kim - Lessons Learned/ King Khan & The Shrines - No Regrets/ Grandaddy - AM 180/ Eels - Mr. E's Beautiful Blues/ Passion Pit - Little Secrets/ Tiny Vipers - Dreamer