VIDEO: The Living End – “Song For The Lonely”

Aussie rockers The Living End have just released their sixth full length album, The Ending Is Just The Beginning Repeating, and “Song for the Lonely” is the second single from the release!

Check out this brand new video from the guys. Not sure how I feel about the artistic choice to blur the guys “parts”, would’ve been better to cover them up another way. Overall the video has some cool slow-mo footage, but that seems to be about it. You can weave together any explanation you want about the water and paintball bombardment being a metaphor and how these people are lonely or oppressed or whatever, but it really doesn’t seem all that revolutionary. That said, it’s a cool song, and well, the video is at least interesting.

See what you think.

FEATURE: Michael Bublé drinks fire water

Most of you will have seen the video for Michael Bublé’s hit “Haven’t Met You Yet” (if you haven’t, take a quick look over here).

A couple of weeks ago, I noticed someone post a link to one of those funny lip reading videos. You know, the ones where people mute the audio and then talk over the video with different words? Yeah, those ones.

It was for Michael Bublé’s video, and it was extraordinary for a few reasons.

1. Not only was the video muted, but someone (or a group of people) had crafted an entirely new song over it.
2. Despite the nonsensical lyrics, the result was a truly brilliant pop song. And I mean brilliant.

Check it out.

The drop into each chorus is absolutely huge, and the brass section not only fits with the video, but provides a perfect hook for the bridge. To me it seems insane that a song like this can be written so well, sound so good, and fit the video so closely. At the end of the day, this is great pop song. Everything about it, bar the lyrics, scream “PLAY ME ON MAINSTREAM RADIO”, and the thing is, it sounds really good. It’s definitely got more flair and stronger melodies than most of the other pop songs I hear on the radio these days.

And to add icing to this already delicious cake, Bublé himself loves it. I’ve got much more respect for the guy – where other musicians would get angry and sue, he’s able to laugh at it and enjoy it.

BRAND NEW: Yr Friends and Johnny Foreigner

As if it wasn’t enough to have their anticipated third album slated for a November release (right near the new Los Campesinos! album as well!), Johnny Foreigner’s vocalist and guitarist Alexei Berrow has just released some new material that he played at a solo show. He performed under the moniker of Yr Friends, and right now there are four tracks for you to listen to or buy right over here (I might even review it soon). They’re fairly stripped back, acoustic numbers. Nothing too loud or fast – especially in comparison to a lot of JoFo’s existing work.

“But Jeremy!” I hear you say. “This post title is misleading. It implies there is new material from our favourite Birmingham band: JoFo. Not solo material from Alexei!”

Well fret not readers. Even though Yr Friends is ace, there is a new song from JoFo! If you pop on over to Sounds of the Camper Van you can hear a new song of theirs done acoustically. In the back of a van. Unfortunately it doesn’t look like the song title is given, but even though the van is less than ideal for recording a song in, it still sounds pretty neat. I’m getting very excited for this new album. Very excited indeed.

“I swear I’ve never been so far from home.”

BRAND NEW: The Living End – “The Ending Is Just The Beginning Repeating”

This morning Aussie rockers The Living End premiered their brand new track on triple j at 7am – it’s called “The Ending is Just the Beginning Repeating”.

The band teased fans earlier this week by posting a short snippet on their website, a sample of lyrics, and a timer counting down to, well… pretty much now.

So what’s it like? Chris Cheney’s vocals sound great as per usual, and the song has a bit of an old Western vibe to it with the bell rings. The guitars sound great with the chugging verse, although I’m a bit concerned the chorus lyrics (the title) don’t have any kind of special hook to them – it just sounds a bit dry. On the other hand, in a live setting I can see the whole track going down brilliantly. It’s got an anthemic kind of feel, and I reckon it’s going to please fans of their more recent work.

Interestingly, the timer is still there after the premiere! But it’s longer. It’s counting down to 9am on the 22nd of July – the release date of their new album.

Take a listen to “The Ending is Just the Beginning Repeating” for yourself over at the band’s website right now. It’s out on iTunes too.

VIDEO: Foo Fighters – “White Limo”

What a week to start regular blogging again! Not only have Radiohead announced their new album for release in approximately five days (however that’s another soon to be covered story), but we finally have some new Foo Fighters material from their forthcoming record.

It’s been stated before that this was going to be some of their hardest, roughest, and loudest rock, and by going to producer Butch Vig (of the famous Nirvana record Nevermind), I had no idea what to expect. Well I can tell you now, the Fooies have delivered quite solidly on their promise.

“White Limo” is an adrenalin-fuelled race, one which never seems to let up at all. Grohl’s slightly distorted vocals display a re-found enthusiasm for the occasional coarse-edged scream, and to be honest, it’s quite refreshing. I like that they’re mixing it up and doing something different – especially at the expense of possibly alienating some of their pop-inclined fans. Not that I have anything against those fans, but it shows a certain degree of independence to break away from that cycle of almost guaranteed commercial airplay. It has some grinding guitar riffs and fills, and it certainly springs to mind that perhaps Mr Homme has had some influence on Dave, because the song is almost reminiscent of some QotSA (circa Songs for the Deaf, in particular).

Take a listen yourself, let me know what you think.

Foo Fighters’ new album is out on the 12th of April, and the first single, “Rope”, will debut to radio on the 1st of March.

BRAND NEW/TOUR: Birds of Tokyo – “Plans”

I’ve been wondering for quite some time what Birds of Tokyo were doing with the new album. They released new single “The Saddest Thing I Know” a while ago (the clip is in 3D if you’ve got a pair of glasses floating around!), but there were no details on the new album.

But, good things come to those that wait. And things don’t get much better than this.

Due to be released on the 23rd of July, Birds of Tokyo’s third album, which is to be self-titled, is looking to be amazing. As always, Ian Kenny’s vocal melodies are brilliant. The softer ambient atmosphere is a bit of a throw away from previous tracks like “Silhouettic”, but let’s not forget, in terms of alternative music BoT really are on the poppier side of things, which is not intended as a derogatory description at all. I can easily see this being the album where they really break onto mainstream commercial radio. For such a solid band they deserve it too. So perhaps self-titling this album is the beginning of a new era for the band. Regardless of whether this actually happens or not, it doesn’t matter. This track is great, and I’ll be picking up their new album on release.

Birds of Tokyo have also announced an up-coming tour. It’s going to be their “every album tour”, and will showcase their new material alongside their classics. The band are now “bigger, bolder, more refined and more fearless”. And it certainly looks like they’re planning one hell of a special tour.

Dates:

September 22, 2010 – Adelaide, SA

September 24, 2010 – Brisbane, QLD

September 26, 2010 – Hobart, TAS

September 30, 2010 – Sydney, NSW

October 01, 2010 – Melbourne, VIC

October 02, 2010 – Fremantle, WA

BRAND NEW: The National – "Afraid of Everyone"

I know I said I wasn’t going to blog much, but I couldn’t pass this opportunity up! A new song from The National!

"Afraid of Everyone" begins slowly, but manages to develop into a rumbling layered repetitive song, for want of a less negative sounding description. It isn’t a bad repetitive, but I do feel like certain sections are dragged on a tad too long. The guitar line adds a nice atmosphere to it though.

To be honest, it’s not quite up there with "Bloodbuzz Ohio". But altogether it isn’t bad. Might be more of a grower. But it certainly isn’t going to deter me from buying "High Violet", because I know that in a sense The National are an albums band. They have good songs that can stand on their own too, but it’s definitely more enjoyable to listen to an album completely when you’re in the mood for it.

Score: 6/10

Grab a free download from Pitchfork here.

BRAND NEW: The National – "Bloodbuzz Ohio"

“Bloodbuzz Ohio”, the new track from The National, has been floating around the internet as live bootlegs for a while now, but today it was premiered on BBC 6 Music. Shortly afterwards, it was made available as a free download from the band’s website.

Matt Berninger’s deep vocal melodies are present, as expected, and they don’t disappoint. However don’t expect any “Mr. November” style shouting on this track. The drumming seems to have taken a slightly more off-beat approach than previous material (in a good way), but it’s so subtle that it’s almost not worth mentioning. The string arrangements sit at the back for the majority of this song, effectively adding flourishing undertones to the track.

“I’m on a bloodbuzz. Yes, I am.”

I’ve got a good feeling about “High Violet”.

Grab a free download here.

BRAND NEW: MGMT – "Flash Delirium"

I awoke this morning to the sound of my lovely radio playing triple j for me. Then I remembered that Tom and Alex would be premiering the new MGMT track today. And oh the surprise! They played it about 5 minutes after I woke up! I didn’t have to wait around listening to the track being hyped up for hours on end.

But as for the song. Everyone wants to know what kind of album MGMT’s new one is going to be. Everyone wants to see where they’re going with their music.

Well, let me tell you this. It won’t be what you expect.

To me the song still has that MGMT feel to it (some may say it’s an… electric feel. I’m sorry. That was terrible.). But "Flash Delirium" is a little more unconventional than their other work. It doesn’t sound like the same kind of radio-friendly music that I heard on "Oracular Spectacular". Don’t get my wrong, I really enjoyed "Oracular Spectacular". It was quite a good album. But this new song really has me doubting exactly how good "Congratulations" is going to be.

"Flash Delirium" has no discernible structure, no chorus. It’s a flow of sounds and ideas, building up to frantic jumping yell, before being abruptly cut off. There’s even a little flute (?) solo in the middle! It really needs to be heard to be understood. The layered vocals, the trumpets, just everything feels a bit out there.

This kind of music, as an album, can be pulled off successfully. It’s different. It’s a bit strange. It’s a bit out there. But if it’s done right, it can be quite successful. I get the feeling "Congratulations" isn’t going to be the album of instantly catchy hits its predecessor was. I get the distinct feeling that "Congratulations" is going be what will be described as a more mature album. I think that if anything, "Congratulations" is going to be one of those albums that grows on you. And there’s nothing wrong with that at all.

At the risk of giving a premature evaluation of the quality of the song, I’m going to give it a score. The song may grow on me in the future, but this is how I feel now after 5 or 6 listens.

Score: 3/10

Grab a free download here. You don’t even need to give up an e-mail address.

The score was bumped down on 18/03/10.

BRAND NEW: Broken Social Scene – "World Sick"

After 5 whole years, Broken Social Scene are releasing a new album. Titled "Forgiveness Rock Record", I’m getting the distinct feeling that this is an album I’m going to have to pick up on it’s release (which is around May the 4th, apparently May the 3rd in Europe). Though I never caught onto Broken Social Scene when their other albums were released (likely due to both terrible taste in music 5 years ago, I would’ve been 12, c’mon, and not being exposed to them at all), I have heard very good things about them. I know that the current line-up has been pulled back to 6 members (a relatively low amount compared to previous line-ups), but that various other musicians, including older members, have popped in to contribute to the album.

"World Sick" begins with some rolling drums, and a simple light-hearted guitar riff. Echo-laden notes drop in once the vocals come in, and lead in an absolutely epic, clashing, and soaring chorus. The drums make me want to bounce, and the chorus makes me want to sing along . This song really brings together what grand majestic indie/baroque rock should be made of. It brings back distinct memories of those moments of pure explosive movement and great song composition, not unlike those that I experience when I listen to Arcade Fire’s "Funeral" (despite stylistic differences, this comparison was inevitable for me). "World Sick" moves between expanding chorus’ and bopping verses, and for once, I’m genuinely excited about what I’m hearing. If this is an indication of what’s to follow on "Forgiveness Rock Record", I think I’m going to be very pleased.

Perhaps in the future I should be harsher with my review scores, to allow a clearer distinction between what is brilliant and what is just pretty good. But this is brilliant.

Score: 9/10

Grab a free download here. Do it now.