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Posts Tagged ‘pop’

Oak and Gorski must raise $10,000 by this week (Oct. 1st).

They’re at around $9000. It’s pretty much an all or nothing deal. Please help them not fail. Thanks.

Oak and Gorski Album/Music Video/Press/Tour KICKSTARTER CAMPAIGN.

After you make your “contribution,” watch Ed shave his luscious locks and donate it to a charity of your choice. And/or have Ken come to your place during their tour and give you a private cello lesson. (No innuendo. It’s an actual cello lesson.) Hell…BUY Ken’s cello off him if you can. These guys have. no. limits. Nor shame for that matter.

Help them out if you can. Please. It’s for a good cause. =)

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Originally published in the Daily Trojan. (No longer archived on the DT website.) This is also the unedited version I originally submitted. I didn’t have any problems with the changes my editors made…except for them altering the entire perspective of the article by changing it from present tense to past tense. (Also, they asked for 1000 words. I gave them 1900…so yeah…cuts/edits obviously had to be made somewhere.) But yeah…this is how it originally felt.

Ken Oak, in a white long-sleeve shirt, jeans, and slightly messy hair that covers his face a bit, sits in a dimly lit, small, cozy Los Angeles cafe near Koreatown, nervously fidgeting just a bit. Ed Gorski, his bandmate, dressed in a moderately wrinkled grey button-down, cargo shorts, and a scruffy beard, leans back casually in his seat, one arm hanging loosely behind his chair. Both have faint but noticeable bags under their eyes — effects of the successful release of their new album at the Hotel Cafe in downtown Los Angeles earlier this month.

They are waiting for this interview, and this article, to get started as the cafe barista very slowly prepares the three mochas. The drinks arrive, Oak sits up, Gorski remains in his casual pose, and the interview gets underway.

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Wow…has it really been 3 years? Where’d all the time go?

Well…each year, this post has gotten less and less ambitious, but even with my blog being dead for a few months, I can’t resist doing this.

So here it is. The top 15 albums of 2009, along with single download links and links to where you can buy each record.

One thing that I’m adding this year is the “specialty” selections: Best Remix, Best Mash-Up, Best Sample, Best E.P., and Best Collaboration.

This should be an exciting one!
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Sorry about the title, I couldn’t help it. I think it’s rather humorous.

To the delight/lament of music fans everywhere, Coldplay released their 4th album this week, with the Ricky Martin-inspired title, Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends.

Maybe it was just me keeping myself less exposed to it, but it seemed like there was not nearly as much hype and build-up as there was for their previous album, X&Y. I count that as a good thing. X&Y was doomed from the beginning by all the ridiculous hype and expectations. (I do think they definitely took a few steps forward on that album though.)

When they released their first single from Viva La Vida, “Violet Hill,” it was pretty obvious they were going in a different direction, much of which can be attributed to first-time Coldplay producer, Brian Eno. There was a darker tone to the music along with some added depth. And a guitar solo. I was going to be pretty excited about the album regardless, but “Violet Hill” really drove up expectations.

I listened to the entire album online a few weeks ago when the band released it for streaming, so I’ve been able to enjoy it for some time already.

And man…it is a great listen.

All right, on with the review. This will go like the post for Radiohead’s “In Rainbows.” I’ll list the title of each track and my favorite part of each song, with a blurb of thoughts for each. Then I’ll give some wrap-up thoughts on the album as a whole afterwords.

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I got this cassette tape image at http://says-it.com/cassette/. It’s pretty cool. You put what you want on the label.

I like songs with multiple parts or nice, abrupt but well executed shifts. It’s like getting two or more songs for the price of one. And while going through my music library to make a playlist of my favorite “medley” type songs, I decided I had more than enough to make a nice mixtape out of it. It’s been a while since I made my last mixtape (BDJ Volume 2 is nearly ready!), and I’m long overdue for another one.

So I am pleased to present to you all the first volume of the Melodious Medlies compilation mixtapes. This inaugural volume is culled from music mostly made in this millennium (there were a couple favorites I had to include). All of the tracks are filled with smooth and exciting transitions and bridges that connect their various parts. These multi-faceted songs will make you laugh, they’ll make you cry, and they’ll make you want to hug your loved ones — then dance with them.

As I usually do with mixtapes, I tried my best to arrange the songs so they flow together as smoothly as possible. This one proved difficult because I didn’t know it was going to be a mixtape while I was compiling the songs in a playlist. But I’ll make no excuses. This mixtape is still bloody brilliant. I’m a pretty stingy guy when it comes to my iTunes song-rating system…but ALL of these songs are no less than 4 out of 5 stars…yeah…these songs are gooood.

Update: I just realized that the program I used to calculate the run-time of this mixtape is a piece of crap. The whole thing doesn’t fit on a CD (by about a minute)…which was a big disappointment to me. So, of course, I had to re-work the songs and make it fit. I eliminated a track (to be sneaked into a later volume) to make it fit on one CD, then I decided to take this opportunity to adopt the true cassette tape limit of 12 songs by making the last 2 songs bonus tracks that fit on the “B-Side.”  Those of you who downloaded the first, now discontinued, edition of Melodious Medlies – Volume 1 have a real gem in your hands. I’m sure 20 years down the road, it will be worth thousands, maybe millions, of dollars.

So from now on, Melodious Medlies will be made up of 12 main “A-Side” tracks with a “B-Side” of a couple bonus tracks. Both A and B-sides combined will still fit on a regular burned CD.

Now, wouldn’t it be awesome to make a mixtape with both the A and B sides filled to the brim? I agree…so I’m going to make my bigger “Bomb Diggity Jams” mixtapes 24 tracks, split evenly into A and B sides. A more relevant question would be: Does anyone but me care about all this? In a word, no. But I’m excited about it.

Tracklist for Melodious Medlies – Vol. 1

A-side:
1. The Beatles – “You Never Give Me Your Money”
2. The New Pornographers – “The Bleeding Heart Show”
3. The Postal Service – “Brand New Colony”
4. The Rolling Stones – “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”
5. The Format – “Dog Problems”
6. Sufjan Stevens – “Come On! Feel the Illinoise!”
7. Belle and Sebastian – “Your Cover’s Blown”
8. The Decemberists – “The Crane Wife 1 & 2”
9. Radiohead – “My Iron Lung”
10. Anathallo – “Hanasakajijii (Four: A Great Wind, More Ash)”
11. The Polyphonic Spree – “Section 24: The Fragile Army”
12. The Beatles – “The End”

Bonus B-Side:
13. Franz Ferdinand – “I’m Your Villain”
14. Silverchair – “Those Thieving Birds”

Download them all in a .zip file by going to the Divshare download page.

If you can’t download at the moment, or are too lazy and/or want to hear a sample first, here are the first 12 tracks streamed at my Muxtape page.

Why not stream the whole thing at Muxtape? ‘Cos 12 is the maximum number of tracks allowed on Muxtape — that being, more or less, the limit for one side of an actual cassette tape. I made my compilation with the CD-limit in mind…but I kind of like the retro cassette literal mix-tape concept. I might consider that for my future volumes…to pay homage to the mighty cassette tape.

Bonus Songs:

And just so no one rolls over in their graves or anything, I guess I have to give some representation to the O.G. experts at this multi-part song business:

Ludwig Van Beethoven – “Symphony #5 In C Minor, Op. 67 – 1. Allegro Con Brio”
Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky – “Piano Concerto #1 In B Flat Minor, Op. 23”

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cans

Now THIS Is What I Call Music.

I was sort of getting tired of listening to the new Radiohead album (I’m pretty sure I’ve listened to it about 60-70 times now), so I decided to make a little mix-tape for my car (I left my cd’s in my non-rental car, which is being repaired at a shop that is kinda far away…and I’m lazy). I went through my iTunes library and put about 60 songs that I felt were “bomb-diggity” and put them in a playlist. Then I whittled that down until I felt I couldn’t cut anymore. Then for the final stage, I took those songs and rearranged and forced myself to cut a handful more of them so the compilation would resemble some form of “flow.” I did this until I had a group of 20 songs that would fit onto one audio cd (mp3 cd’s don’t work in the car). This got me the most select of the bomb-diggity jams I’m feelin’ at the moment. And then I was done and saw that it was good.

But I decided it was so good that it would be a sin not to share it. Hence, this post on my blog. (The download link is at the end of the entry, for you lazy people.)

Here’s a breakdown of the compilation:

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