Album of the Week: Desertshore - Arc of an Arrow Blind

From the family tree of Red House Painters/Mark Kozelek -- one of my favorite artists -- comes the fifth Desertshore album, Arc of an Arrow Blind (Darkan Records). This is a wonderfully engaging instrumental album of sublime depth and beauty. Think of a more textured Red House Painters or Sun Kil Moon with arpeggiated guitars and piano/keyboard riffs with the bass and drums anchoring the proceedings in various rhythmic rock, jazz and even hypnotic world beat patterns. (Check out "Descend Like The Sun.")

Recorded in just 4 days with the core trio of former Red House Painters guitiarist Phil Carney, classically trained pianist Chris Connolly and drummer Mike Wells. The album also features Benjamin Powell on violin and Erik Kertes on bass. Ben is a gypsy jazz enthusiast, La session cat and has collaborated with jazz giant Peter Erskin and Gonzalo Beraga. Erik is a young La session player and touring musician.
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Steve's Favorite Rock/Pop/Folk/R&B/Electronic Albums of 2016

This is where I'm supposed to summarize the past year, find some overaching theme or thread running through my choices, spot trends, or something along those lines. Instead it's just another mea culpa for my continuing and accelerating estrangement from mainstream pop music. Don't mind me, I'm just a grumpy old fart. But these twenty new albums made me less grumpy.

1. Diiv: Is the Is Are (Captured Tracks)

I enjoyed their first album, and far from a sophomore slump, their second is even better. Sure, I'm heavily predisposed to love bands that conjure a moody '80s vibe with thrumming bass, chiming guitar jangle, and submerged vocals, but this is greater than the sum of those parts, simultaneously updating the sound while tapping into a new level of melodicism for this band.

2. David Bowie: Black Star (Sony)

I wrote about this at length. What can I add now that
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2015 Sundance Trading Card Series: #28. Karrie Cox (Tangerine)

Eric Lavallee: Name me three of your favorite “2014 discoveries” …

Karrie Cox: 1. Red House Painters, “Cruiser”. 2. Andrew Wyeth, “Christina’s World” @ Moma NYC 3. East Village, Manhattan.

Lavallee: You come from a background in acting, so I’d like to have your perspective on Sean’s working process with actors and non-actors alike….how would you describe the synergy that he creates?

K. Cox: Sean has a talent and sensitivity in creating a space for humanity and inspired moments in a story to pour through. So whether he is working with a seasoned actor or not there is a safe place that he creates for one to feel they are protected while being vulnerable.

Lavallee: After Tiff (Ross Katz’s Adult Beginners) and now Sundance, this is back to back major film festivals for your Through Films venture. How do both features fit into your philosophy/mandate?

K. Cox: Our company
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Sesame Street Star Wars and the latest Kanye rant plus the rest of today's breaking pop culture news

Keep this frequency clear Guide Daily is live til five (pm)!

Passing todays pop cultural torrent through a filter of skewed opinion

Coming up: Kanye ranting, Bono flushing, indie-rockers beefing and cookie-control techniques

Get involved: comment below or tweet @guideguardian

4.58pm BST

If youre in Edinburgh, go and see Cate Le Bon at Electric Circus.

4.15pm BST

Remember we told you earlier this year about underground dance music supergroup Future Brown? Well theyve just signed to Warp, and heres their first single due out in November.

4.00pm BST

We all love Eraserhead, right? The heartwarming tale of a sexually harassed chubby man with high hair, caring for his wailing, skinless, deformed child in a desolate post-industrial world while hallucinating about a singing radiator.

I like to have people be able to form their own opinion as to what it means and have their own ideas about things. But at the same time,
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Review Roundup: Quick Looks Back at More 2011 Releases

I've already gone over the best of 2011, and periodically rounded up rock and pop releases as the year went along, yet there were many more albums that came out last year that I also meant to review but didn't get around to then, for one reason or another. Here are a few of them.

Pink FloydWish You Were Here Experience edition (Capitol)

Last time I did a review roundup, I dissed the Dark Side of the Moon two-cd remaster's second disc. I'm happy to report that this one's a lot more interesting.

Three extended tracks from a 1974 Wembley concert open it. The concert version of "Shine on You Crazy Diamond" predates the studio version and is significantly different from it in both arrangement and improvisation. It's Parts 1-6, so that's a good 20 minutes right off the bat. "Raving and Drooling" and "You've Got to Be Crazy" are very
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Music: Music Review: Desertshore: Drawing Of Threes

Guitarist Phil Carney has played alongside Mark Kozelek off and on since the latter’s Red House Painters days, so there’s nothing that unusual about Kozelek sitting in with Carney’s band Desertshore for its second album, Drawing Of Threes. Except that Kozelek does more than just sit in; he sings and plays bass on the first six of the album’s 10 tracks. The remaining songs are all instrumentals—just like all the songs on Desertshore’s 2010 debut album, Drifting Your Majesty—but since Carney and his co-founder/pianist Chris Connolly favor dreamy soft-rock, halfway between Windham ...
See full article at The AV Club »

Music: Review: Sun Kil Moon: Admiral Fell Promises

Mark Kozelek has long operated under the guise of band names—first Red House Painters, more recently Sun Kil Moon—but even when backed by other musicians, he always sounds like a man alone. On Admiral Fell Promises, his fourth album under the Sun Kil Moon moniker, Kozelek is literally alone, accompanied only by his own nylon-string guitar on 10 starkly unadorned songs. The limited medium ends up being the message on Admiral, which announces itself as a concept album of sorts with the opening lines of “Alesund”: “No, this is not my guitar, I’m bringing it to a ...
See full article at The AV Club »

Clem Snide: Hungry Bird

Barzelay delivers hushed collection of song-poems

Eef Barzelay has dusted off the Clem Snide moniker for the first time since 2005’s End of Love, an infinitely listenable emo-tinged power-pop record with hints of twang betraying the group’s alt-country roots. Barzelay had put Clem Snide on hiatus while he cut two solo albums, one in 2006 and one in 2008. During this period, a slow evolution began taking place, as he more fully embraced his sad-eyed Red House Painters side, making increasingly hushed, autumnal (yet still melodic) music. Rather than picking up where End of Love left off, Hungry Bird sounds like an extension of previous solo outing Lose Big. Barzelay’s soft, depressed poetry is brushed across the canvas of his wispy songs as if he could float into the ether at any moment, becoming a ghost singing from the wizenened remove of the afterlife. And yet he remains earthbound, believably
See full article at PasteMagazine »

Mark Kozelek

Red House Painters released an excellent two-disc retrospective in 1999, and Mark Kozelek has kept his Caldo Verde imprint busy with repackaged and reissued solo and Sun Kil Moon material, but for the most part, he's a compilation newbie. That might explain why The Finally LP—a 10-song collection that's mostly covers—feels a little thin and unnecessary. Or maybe Kozelek is just being a shrewd businessman, and he plans to roll out one of these every year just in time for the holidays. Whatever the case, there are some great Kozelek covers and comp contributions floating out there that are missing from this half-hour disc, which still manages to finagle a whole lot of beauty out of the brevity. Bookended by a pair of original instrumentals, including Kozelek's five-minute soundtrack to the short film "Gaping Mouth," The Finally LP is a solo-acoustic affair, with its name coming from a...
See full article at The AV Club »

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