March 9, 2004  




TV on the Radio
Franz Ferdinand
Definitive Jux Presents: III



Coco Rosie
Sondre Lerche
Modest Mouse (7" single)


MAR Sun 7 Mon 8 Tues 9 Wed 10 Thurs 11 Fri 12 Sat 13



Michael Mayer
Miss Kittin
Bogdan Raczynski
DJ Rephlex Records
plus special guests

VOLUME: 99 N. 13th Street (at Wythe)
Williamsburg, Brooklyn

9 p.m. to 4 a.m. (18 + with ID )
$15 advance/$18 at the door
Tickets available in store at Other Music
Or on-line through TICKETWEB

MAR Sun 21 Mon 22 Tues 23 Wed 24 Thurs 25 Fri 26 Sat 27




In-Store Appearance

Monday, March 22 (8:00 p.m.)
Free Admission/Limited Capacity

(Pre-order Sufjan's new album "Seven Swans" now, available in store at Other Music on March 12.)

$12.99 CD








$13.99 LP


Desperate Youth, Blood Thirsty Babes
(Touch & Go)

"The Wrong Way"
"Staring at the Sun"

Over the last few months I've watched the trio TV on the Radio grow from a whisper in the wind, moving across the Williamsburg Bridge, to becoming a swift current tunneling across the Lower East Side on its way uptown. Their full-length "Desperate Youth, Blood Thirsty Babes" picks up where their enthusiastically received yet sleeper debut EP "Young Liars" left off; but it is a different beast altogether. Gone are the Peter Gabriel-esqe overtones and the spooky, dark atmosphere, all replaced with a frantically shimmering sheet of shoegazed fuzz and distortion by guitarist, David Sitek, as well as the surprisingly strong influence of classic soul and R&B from the vocal duo of Tunde Adebimpe and Kyp Malone.

These two elements of rock guitar and harmonizing soul voices work incredibly well together, creating a fusion of energy lacking in the current crop of Brooklyn-birthed bands. Theirs is a sloppily tight, bluesy and soulfully rocking brew where tracks build to a hip shaking, hand waving frenzy of inspiration. For the most part a drum machine is used instead of a live drummer. (Antibalas' Martin Perna also makes an appearance on horns and Yeah Yeah Yeahs' guitarist Nicolas Zinner shows up for a cameo as well.) "Desperate Youth…" is full of songs that you want to sing along to, with an approach and sound that's hard to resist. Remember the first time you heard the Strokes or the Rapture? It's not the same thing but a flip of the coin. Don't sleep on the next ones out of the gate and up the charts, and definitely catch them on tour. Absolutely recommended! [DG]







$13.99 LP

Franz Ferdinand

"This Fire"
"Take Me Out"

I suspect you probably have heard, or more appropriately read, the music press buzz - including past installments of the Other Music Update - about Franz Ferdinand. Truth be told, I will always have a warm spot for all those "next big things" that the NME are spouting off about on a weekly basis; still, rarely do I truly believe the hyperbole. However, the first time I heard Franz Ferdinand's first single "Darts of Pleasure" I had no idea that they were already darlings in the British press. Without any preconceived notion or knowledge of the band, I was instantly hooked.

A few months later, Franz Ferdinand finally drops their first full-length, and in my opinion, it's the strongest debut album from a rock band since the Strokes' "Is This It." In fact, I prefer it. The Glaswegian quartet stirs a potent mix of musical ingredients combining jagged post-punk guitar hooks and bouncy garage rock rave-ups with Merseybeat-inspired harmonies and meaty, dirty disco pulsed choruses. They pull from some of rock music's finest: Bowie, Bolan, Davies, the Stranglers, Gang of Four and even Blondie. But Franz Ferdinand make it their own and unlike many of their peers, you're not name-checking late-'70s and early-'80s bands while you listen. They've got miles of style, swagger and the songs to back it up. Believe the hype - This Is It! [GH]







$16.99 LP


Various Artists
(Def Jux)

"Make News" Carnage
"WMR" El-P & Camu Tao

EL-P's Definitive Jux records drops the third in their "Def Jux Presents…" series and once again it is filled with mind blowing tracks from all of your favorite Def Jux artists -- most of them familiar with some new acts thrown in for good measure. You have unreleased tracks by well-knowns such as Aesop Rock, Rob Sonic, RJD2, El-P, S.A. Smash, Murs, and C-Rayz Walz, while also featuring newcomers Carnage, The Perceptionists, Hangar 18, Despot, and 4th Pyramid. All tracks are unreleased and superb taking us back to the quality that we all expected from the beginning of the label's inception, back when they introduced the world to Cannibal Ox, Co-Flow's swansong release, Mr. Lif and many, many more. Sixteen tracks in all and initial copies contain a bonus DVD featuring six classic Def Jux videos and much more. For all of you that thought that Def Jux fell off, pick this up because it is sure to change your mind... welcome back. [JS]







Your Blues

"An Actor's Revenge"
"New Ways of Living"

Destroyer's 2002 "This Night" may have technically been the follow-up to their much loved "Streethawk: A Seduction," but the latest from Vancouver-based Daniel Bejar feels more like "Streethawk"'s rightful successor. Forgoing the unhinged, loose full band approach of "This Night," Bejar goes it solo this time, using just a few instruments (mostly guitars) and a wild arsenal of MIDI sounds. While the backing tracks are pushing the outer limits - to the point, at times, of post-modernism -- his lyrics and singing, mixed right to the forefront, are his smartest and most nuanced yet. The orchestra of MIDI sounds takes on an audacious feel - imagine Scott Walker's over-the-top production, only Bejar generally has a lot more in common with the Mountain Goats or Syd Barrett than with Pulp or Divine Comedy.

On previous albums, Destroyer utilized a fairly standard "rock band" assortment of instruments - pianos, guitars, bass, drums - but this time around there are (synthesized) harp, hand claps, flute, horns and strings, all done in a completely vulgar yet oddly compelling way. Lyrically, he's come up with more fascinating narratives than ever before, yet somehow the listener still has even less of an idea what his meaning really is by album's end. And it's all delivered with Bejar's unmistakable yet indescribable voice (which you've heard on the New Pornographers albums).

Whether he's detailing, "I was a desert/in love with extremes/you married well/a gentle woman of means who/kept the word 'destroyer' embroidered on her jeans, too" or "an actor will seek revenge/upon the ones who fed him those ridiculous lines/saying, 'what we really need now is an emotional history of the Lower East Side, 'cause it was wild! It was wild!'/ Oh no, here we go," it's his most evocative set of lyrics yet, every line infectious and poetic.

All this may lead to head-scratching, which is likely part of Bejar's intent, but what we are left with is not only Destroyer's finest yet, but a wholly original and groundbreaking work. "Your Blues" not only merits a slot among the classics on your modern music shelf, it might deserve its own row. [PW]







$19.99 LP


"Iambic 9 Poetry"

I will admit that at this point, you do know Squarepusher, and you probably like him or not, and in some ways I feel like this review is superfluous. Tom Jekinson has delivered another dense, hypnotic, chaotic and psychedelic record that flits between hyper breakbeat programming, haunting soundscapes and jazz-fusion inspired live instrumentation. As you might guess, this is not an easy meal to digest, but Jenkinson has generously offered a full serving of melody and groove, and "Ultravisitor" is chock full of some of his most compelling mania in awhile. Whether micro-managing the beat as he does on the Aphex-inspired opening opus ("Ultravisitor") or jamming with himself on bass 'n' drums 'n' keys on the warmly melodic swell of "Iambic 9 Poetry", he has managed to create a remarkably welcoming record that should satisfy his many fans and perhaps even win him a few new ones. [JM]







$17.99 LP


"Rifle Eyes"
"3 Twenty"

If the question were, "Is this hip hop," the answer would be, "I guess?" In a world where all is valid, and influences cross generations, countries, and color lines, if you want to call it hip hop, why not. The long anticipated follow-up to their self-titled debut finds cLOUDDEAD's "Ten" placing them in a unique place. In a lineage that begins during the late-'80s/early-'90s, where groups as alike and different as De La Soul, 3rd Bass, Beck, Prince Paul, and the Beasties began to stretch the form and function of rap music, cLOUDDEAD members Why?, Odd Nosdam, and Doseone stretch it further, creating a collaged, multi-layered album that's bound to inspire as much as it may annoy.

Checking influences and or inspiration from Spice Girls, B. Fleischmann, Carson Daly, Jamie Lee Curtis, John Lennon, Mulholland Drive, Flying Saucer Attack, Boards of Canada, and Christian rock gives you a glimpse into the world they live in. That's the odd thing about cD, their voices and technique are unorthodox, their attention span may be short, the beats not steady or "hard" enough, yet you feel that they are honest in what "they do", and they do "it" well. You might not "get it", but does that make their brand of outsider music any less valid?

The question remains. Is it any good? That depends on your frame of reference and how open you are. Even still, their weird, space-head Beach Boys harmonizing, and rapid-fire slurred vocals abounds in a more cohesive, if not stranger way. Maybe they're just ahead of their time, or purely and inventively giving voice to what's already existed, but has yet to be heard. Not for everyone, but an interesting and challenging listen. Out now on Mush. [DG]







La Maison de Mon Reve
(Touch & Go)

"By Your Side"
"Good Friday"

CocoRosie, a pair of once-estranged New York sisters -- one an up-and-coming Opera singer -- recorded this unusual little album in their Paris apartment last summer. Word on the street is that one of these young women is the lady friend of the one and only Devendra Banhart, an artist with whom the duo shares a similar but not entirely derivative sonic sensibility. While Devendra and CocoRosie have a lo-fi recoring aesthetic and a painstakingly nonchalant method of vocal delivery in common, the Casady sisters (Bianca and Sierra, for the record... could their names possibly sound more affluent?) draw heavily from blues and soul influences that have little to do with Mr. Banhart's psychedelic folk sound.

Their voices call to mind the earliest blues singers, especially since all the tape-hiss makes them sound like they were recorded on some archaic medium from the 1920s, or maybe just on a 4-track cassette machine that's had one too many bottles of vin rouge spilled onto the head. The sparse guitar and piano accompaniment is sometimes joined by a mostly disintegrated hip-hop beat or a distant electronically-processed field recording. The girls' other apparent influences are literally all over the place. The sped-up vocal sample on "By Your Side" is straight out of a Kanye West production. The chorus on the closing track "Lyla" is strongly reminiscent of "Joey" from Bob Dylan's "Desire" album. Somehow, "La Maison de Mon Reve" takes cues from this incredibly diverse array of artists without ever becoming as schizophrenic as you might anticipate.

When it comes down to it, the eclectic and adventurous sounds all serve as a backdrop for an album's worth of simple, lonesome, yearning, and extremely masochistic love songs. While the group fails to match Devendra's sophistication and songwriting prowess, they make up for it with their sincerely insincere lyrical content--I have a hunch they're being sarcastic when they sing "all I want with my life is to die a housewife" and "I'd throw myself to the sea if God told promised you were inside." It seems quite likely that this album will appeal as much to fans of trip-hop and neo-soul as it will to those who prefer to listen to contemporary indie singer-songwriters including Cat Power, the Microphones, Mirah, Entrance, and Iron And Wine. [RH]







$20.99 LP


(Big Dada/Ninja Tune)

"I Want 2"
"Groovement Pt. 1"

On the follow up to "Awkward," his debut on Big Dada, British MC Ty now moves "Upwards" finding some similarities with labelmate Roots Manuva. However this is purely an original and stronger follow-up with smart, energetic beat programming that ranges from modern hip-hop backdrops to more soulful and groove inspired choppy rhythms, but not as disposable as The Streets or as frantic as Dizzee Rascal. He aligns himself with a fresh crew of vocalists, producers, and musicians from London's bubbling broken beat scene (Michelle Escoffrey, Eska and Bembe Seque on vocals, guitarist/producer Eric Appapoulaye, and former Fela drummer, Tony Allen!!). Using lots of live players -- including a string section, guitar, Fender Rhodes, bass, moog, percussion, and horns -- helps the rapper create a fluidly moving, steady groove. "Upwards" was mostly co-produced by Ty and draws on influences like Afrobeat, R&B, and of course hip hop, all from an UK perspective. A strong yet not overbearing MC, he spins tales that get you moving, swaying, and even cuddling (!?!). One of the more refreshing and solid rap albums I've heard in a long time. Big up to the UK! Recommended. [DG]







Two Way Monologue

"Track You Down"
"It's Too Late"

At the age of 21, Sondre Lerche now has two records under his belt. The first established him as a Burt Bacharach in training, having penned extraordinarily well-crafted pop songs such as "Sleep on Needles" and "On Again Off Again." Both of these songs had hints of elements to a more complicated songwriting. With "Two Way Monologue," Lerche has realized this aforementioned aspiration. All of the tracks are at their most basic, catchy guitar ballads. The album is heavily produced, not necessarily a bad thing, it may require many listens to really grasp what is going on in each track (and there is a lot). The songs vary greatly and one could criticize that the record lacks fluidity, if it was not for Lerche's vague and charming vocals holding this symphonic smorgasbord together.

"Stupid Memory," a country ditty, as well as the accordion jam "Maybe You're Gone" at the close of the record, free him of the bubble gum pop moniker. As a whole it has a slightly bizarre "Pet Sounds" / "Let it Be" feel to it. A much more grandiose feeling, in the vein of Jeff Lynne, presides over hum-able melodies and swooning harmonies. There is a lot of attention to the background layers of sound, such as the backing vocals and synth samples, horns and compared to "Faces Down," plentiful and sweet string arrangements. Lerche possesses a level of maturity in songcraft not often found in indie pop. However, having personally witnessed his songs scraped bare of their finery, played live, in an acoustic setting it is important to note that they retain their integrity. That is how one can tell a good songwriter I think, when it's down to the bare minimum and is still just as compelling. [NL]





7" Single

Float On

It's been four years since Modest Mouse’s groundbreaking "Moon & Antartica" and if their new single is any indication, the band is taking another remarkable step in their musical evolution. "Float On" is upbeat and almost hopeful, moody introspection replaced by Isaac Brock's jaded optimism.







8 eme Ciel
(Green UFOs)

"8 eme Ciel"

Phillipe Katerine came to prominence in the mid-'90s international lounge-pop scene -- perhaps that sounds to you something like saying he rode the wave of skiffle, or the electro revival. But despite an inherent lightness and perhaps a too-strong dose of kitsch, that scene, embodied by disparate international artists like Kahimi Karie, Bertrand Burgalat, the Tindersticks and April March, was grounded firmly in the style, attitude as well as the high production values and pop sensibilities of '60s classics, and has spawned some fine modern music.

Influenced by Bacharach, Gainsbourg, and their contemporaries, Katerine has released a number of subtle and wonderful albums over the last several years, including the pop masterpiece "Mes Mauvaises Frequentations" in '97, and his somewhat maudlin '99 release of dark and drunken piano pieces, "Les Creatures L'homme a 3 Mains." Five years later, Katerine makes his triumphant return with this wonderful new album of bubbly orchestrated pop. The production is a masterful mix of classic analog sounds (warm clean guitar tones, snappy drums, and carefully placed keys, horns, strings and other orchestrations) and the occasional subtle modern flourish (be it from a modern looping sampler or a vintage tone oscillator).

Add to this Katerine's soft and catchy vocals (please be aware that I speak not a word of French, but that only adds to the comforting effects of this audio wallpaper), and you have a stellar new album that should appeal to both fans of traditional orchestrated pop, and the more modern café-crowd. But this is not music of fashion, but of passion. Timeless and satisfying, and well worth the wait. [JM]









Milk Man
(Kill Rock Stars)

Deerhoof deliver a concept album of sorts inspired by Japanese artist Ken Kagami. No one song is alike, the unpredictable San Francisco ensemble moving through their signature oddball-pop outbursts, otherworldly sounds, and even Spanish-language electronica.



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[DG] Daniel Givens
[GH] Gerald Hammill
[RH] Rob Hatch-Miller
[NL] Nicole Lang
[JM] Josh Madell
[JS] Jeremy Sponder
[PW] Phil Waldorf

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