the oh so quiet show

midlake happiness

The Trials of Van Occupanther
rejected title: “random people in the woods”

I really like Midlake’s new-ish album, The Trials of Van Occupanther. That doesn’t mean you’ll like it. But you might. Aren’t you curious now? Huh? [poke poke]

Yup, I lost any ability to actually describe music, but that’s what myspace is for. It lets you listen to stuff! Wow! I’ve uploaded a lovely mp3 too, if that helps:

Midlake – Branches [removed]

“Branches” is the song where I think Tim Smith sounds very freakishly like Thom Yorke. It’s not good or bad, unless Thom Yorke’s voice triggers a self-destruct command in your brain and you nonchalantly listen to Midlake thinking, “Oh, this won’t make me explode,” but then it does, and you can’t do anything about it because you’re dead.

It happens.

My favorite song from the album so far is “Young Bride”. The music video adds to its beauty:

I listened to it two days ago while driving/hydroplaning down Route 4 in the “likely to cause deathly collisions” downpour. Fun times!

Banman and Silvercork
I don’t know what it is either

Midlake’s first album Bamnan and Silvercork is playful and sunshine-happy compared to the mellowed-out TTVO. It’s kinda like freshman year versus senior year of college: “Yaay, I’m in college, all carefree and stuff! / Oh crap, I have to find a real job and make money and be all serious and worry about making my life less doomful.” It’s just like that….but in music form. Maybe.

It’s hard to be a rock ‘n roller

poster Damn you, weegies! There are so few films I’m interested in seeing and then you make one that…I’m interested in seeing! But I probably won’t get to see It’a Hard To Be a Rock’n Roller (via it’s a trap), coming out on September 1st in Norway, unless you play it somewhere I can see it and give it English subtitles.

Actually, I’d be willing to see it without the subtitles and just pretend I understand the Norwegian.

It’s not just hard to be a rock ‘n roller. Some of us [points to self] are helpless and could use some inspiration. Here’s the synopsis (from the Norwegian Film Institute):

A documentary about the music group Merkesteinane from Volda in the region of Sunnmøre. The group consists of mentally challenged individuals. The band has ten members – all of them with distinct personalities, abilities and, not least,
with widely differing ambitions. Eight of them are disabled, two are participating leaders; Øivind and Jostein. With generosity, cheerfulness and love of music, the band has survived for 11 years. They have become an odd social and cultural institution in the Volda district.

You can watch the trailer on the official site or with Quicktime (via twitchfilm).

the keyboards should sound really warpy

Elyse Sewell could write about the act of boiling water and I’d probably find that more enjoyable than reading about…most other things. Because she’s funny! Not because I am entranced by liquids transforming into gases.

In her latest livejournal entry, she talks about The Shins‘s recording sessions (not randomly–Marty is her boyfriend). I’m not a fan of The Shins (well…it’s not like I hate them), but I read it anyway and was amused and somewhat educated about the recording process (recording with a producer = no impromptu mac’n’cheese). If you like The Shins, you should find it more interesting than I did.

After reading that, you should read her commentary on questionable Chinese snacks.

la la la…la la la

I have mutiple blogs to cover my main interests, but I don’t have one for “animated farting pigs”. Because it’s not a main interest. [phew] However, “animated singing farting pigs” kinda fits here. Just barely.

Pig meets hens army, pig farts as hens lay eggs, eggs end up being full of farts. Is that the whole story or am I missing something?

I am confused.

please god, no, I just ate

This music video for Guster’s “One Man Wrecking Machine” explodes with so much cuteness that I think I need a puke bucket.

Yes, little yellow buddy, you move those nubbins like never before! And find love while you’re at it.

…I lurve youuuu, yelllow doooood!

(Monsters courtesy of Monster Factory, which is also blindingly cute.)

The Pipettes – Pull Shapes

Is it alright that I really like the video for The Pipettes’ single “Pull Shapes”?

It’s so…random. I mean, the cast of overly happy dancing characters is deliberately random and awkward. But that’s the point, right? They should’ve thrown in something even more random, like in this fan-made video for OK Go’s “A Million Ways” that features a dancing mattress in the background. It doesn’t matter if the dancing is only mediocre— it has a dancing mattress.

I hadn’t heard of The Pipettes until I read about them The Music Slut. Identical outfits, coordinated dance-ish moves, and poppy 60s tunes. So cute, it hurts. I like it.

ching chong ching chong ching

It’s probably a horribly reflection of my character that I automatically laugh at so many Wonder Showzen clips, but sometimes they write catchy tunes:

I wish I wrote that song. Kinda. …Well, it’s good to have a goal. Otherwise, what is your purpose in life?

Do you even have a purpose? DO YOUUU?

Have fun thinking about that.

This is the first clip of Wonder Showzen I ever watched:

Yet another fine example of something….er…of something. Something about as frightening as Teletubbies.

This is probably horribly offensive:

But I laugh anyway.

On a more serious note, it is rather genius how they incorporate so many different styles of animation and music. Not that that’s why I watch it. I watch it because I’m a horrible person.


the tale of the sad jellyfish

I’ve loved The Notwist’s “One With The Freaks” for years, but only saw the music video a few weeks ago:

Is it just me or is that a impressively emotive fake jellyfish? Probably better than most humans.

Director Keith Schofield makes a bunch of cool music videos. And other things. I especially like the ET game storyline behind When I Wake Up (and the song happens to be catchy).

Elephant Parade

squirrels are cool

I’m not sure where the name for Elephant Parade came from, but it seems to fit. What does that mean? …I have no idea. If I replace “elephant” with a different animal, it just doesn’t work–Squirrel Parade, Hamster Parade, Whale Parade? They don’t sound right. (But maybe that’s because there is such a thing as a parade of elephants while as far as I know, a parade of squirrels/hamsters/whales is less common.)

What does Elephant Parade sound like? I would come up with my own description, but other people have done a much better job at it than I could. Here is an equation of choice words pulled from various reviews:

*simple* + *beautiful* + *intimate* + *whispery* + *sweet* + *fragile* + *introverted* = *Elephant Parade*

What I thought most (I mean, aside from the adjectives I just listed) while listening to their album “Bedroom Recordings” was that I felt as though I were listening to something too personal and lo-fi for it to be meant for the general public to hear. A fun album for close friends to enjoy that somehow leaked out to others who were lucky to hear it. And I mean that all in a good way. The occasional bit of unintentional distortion/wind adds makes the songs lovelier. More than that, I like Estelle Baruch’s and Ido Fluk’s soft, effortless singing over simple acoustic guitar and keyboard melodies. My favorite song features Estelle’s warm voice accompanied by sustained piano arpeggios:

Elephant Parade – Boat Song [removed]

They look as cute as they sound, possibly more so:

cue heart melt-age

You can download another song at Zion B’Ayin and read an interview at Whiskey & Apples. If you like what you hear (and you do), support them by buying their painfully short CD. It’s over before you know it, but hey, 22 minutes is still better than zero.

Elephant Parade sounds more “real” to me for some reason than other music. And it’s not like other music sounds…”fake”. But. Well. Maybe you know what I’m talking about after listening to their songs. Nothing is overdone. All I hear is sincerity.

New Yorkers can see the pair in action for free at Pete’s Candy Store on August 25th.

Sing-a-long with Kings of Convenience

on the beach
gather ’round, kiddies!

Kinzaza went to perhaps the best Kings of Convenience performance ever in St. Petersburg. Totally worth the 10 hour trip from Moscow? Yes. Read about it in her journal entry.

First the guys played in the club itself (well, it isn’t even a club, just a few large white tents with a restaurant arranged inside). However, Erlend & Eirik were obviously not prepared for a +30 C degrees at 10 pm in a North-West city, and after having played about 8 songs Eirik suggested leaving the tents and going to the beach nearby.

[…] Following my example, a lot of fans then surrounded Eirik and he had to stop, while Erlend went farther and sat on the sand not far from the water, and about 20 people sat around him in circle. First he we were talking for a while, then he played Röyksopp’s Remind Me and after that I suddenly said “Erlend, let’s sing something altogether! Maybe Homesick?” – “Ok, – he answered, – but not altogether, let’s do it you and me!”

[…] Don’t trust the name of the band – Erlend and Eirik can hardly behave as Kings or as superstars (who they are, in fact:). They’re just 2 simple guys, awfully nice and open to everyone. And they really made everyone happy that wonderful night.

Awwww. I think that’s even cuter than thi blind puppy romping in the snow. Seeing Kings of Convenience live was one of my most memorable concert experiences. I love dem weegies.