Thursday, September 30, 2010

Way Back Home

Photo Credit Melodie McDaniel

No word yet on when it’s going to be released in the US, but until then I’m waiting with bated breath. These guys are great, and from what I can tell by listening to the 30-second song clips available for streaming on iTunes Australia, so is their new album (yes I’m so anxious for the release that it’s come to this).

Bag Raiders craft luscious house/disco/electro-pop songs with an inexplicable knack for getting themselves stuck in your head. Their first single and blog hit, Shooting Stars is a tricky little number: It starts as a slow-burning bower ballad, and just as it ensnares you in it's melancholy web it suddenly hits you upside the head with a chorus comprised of glittering major chords and a vocal line pulled straight from mid-90’s boy-band era pop music. Before you have time to question the overtly mainstream change in tone, you’ve been hooked. At that point all you can think is, I LOVE THE WORLD AND I LOVE THIS SONG.
Honestly I don’t know anyone that doesn’t thoroughly enjoy Shooting Stars. There’s something to be said for feel good, pop-for-the-sake-of-pop music: It’s catchy. Those aforementioned boy bands didn’t make millions of dollars and legions of adoring fans because they thought outside the box; they reached fame and fortune because their music made you feel good. I’m not saying that Bag Raiders lack artistic credibility—they are clearly talented musicians—but their formula works so well because it’s warm fuzzy feel good pop that can appeal to everyone. If Justin Beiber were to cover a Bag Raiders song could it be a Billboard #1? Absolutely. It’s just really, really good pop music.

Way Back Home, the first single off the new album (and the BR-proclaimed sequel to Shooting Stars), employs the same pattern of slow-build-then-in-your-face-pop-explosion, to the same toe-curlingly delicious effect. It's vibe is decidedly more dancefloor-oriented, but is still pop gold nonetheless.

Right Click to Download: Way Back Home--Bag Raiders

*And if for some reason you don't have it, here's Shooting Stars as well. Mmm mm good.

Right Click to Download: Shooting Stars--Bag Raiders

Monday, September 27, 2010

Upcoming Concert Showcase: Ratatat

Tomorrow the fabulous Ratatat will be gracing the Palladium Ballroom for what is sure to be a fantastic show. For those of you unfamiliar with the duo, Ratatat are from Brooklyn, NY and were pioneers of the present day indie-electronica scene; though few have been able to match their technical and melodic prowess, or achieve the same kind of mainstream success the band has found. Their live show is a crazy audio and visual experience; if drugs are your thing I’d recommend them for this one. Their videoscreens basically beg you to be tripping on acid. Think their Shempi video, but weirder, with a lot more Indian people. Though maybe this time it will be more like their Drugs video. Just go see for yourself.

To help pump you up in preparation for the event here’s a few old school remixes from their famous Mixtapes. Released in 2004 and 2007 respectively, the two albums featured creative and catchy remixes of classic rap and hip-hop songs.
If you want new material, support the band and go buy their LP4.

Rick-Click Links to Download.

From Mixtape Vol. I: Get 'em High--Kanye West

From Mixtape Vol. II: Stomp--Young Buck, T.I. & Ludacris

From Mixtape Vol. II: Allure--Jay-Z & Notorious B.I.G.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Introducing Comedown Sundays: Soak It Up

Photo Credit Ashlie Chavez

It’s Sunday. Rough. We all know the feeling: you wake up after partying for two or three nights prior, and every part of you hurts. All you want are some pancakes, a shower, and for your raging headache to go away. After blasting pump-up club beats all weekend, the soundtrack for your Sunday should be mellow, melodic, and kept at a low decibel. In light of this I’m introducing Comedown Sundays. Need a soundtrack to your recouping, rehydrating, and refocusing on your responsibilities? Comedown Sunday Songs will serve that purpose.

This song comes from Chicago-based Houses. Following a recent trend in indie music, they’re a boyfriend-girlfriend duo. A while back, they relocated to a small hut in Hawaii, where they lived sustainably, showering with rainwater and powering their computers via solar panels. While there, working occasionally by candlelight (how romantic), they wrote and recorded a catalogue of music before moving back to Chicago a few months later. The product of that trip, their debut album All Night, is being released October 19th. Sonically it some seriously blissed out, chilled out, and romantic music that sounds quite appropriately….like it was written in a hut in Hawaii. Intimate and delicate, Soak It Up is a perfect background for lounging idly all day, preferably with someone else lying next to you.

Right Click to Download: Soak It Up--Houses

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


A batshit-but-excellent picture for an equally batshit-but-excellent song

You know those songs that you hear for the first time and ask yourself, “Do I love this or do I hate this?” Well, I’ve asked myself that question about Kissy Sell Out’s Joanna every time I’ve listened to it (which at this point has been a lot), and I’m still on the fence. At any rate, this track is unlike anything I’ve ever heard, and regardless of how I feel about it in the end, any track that is this creative, unique, attention-grabbing, and confounding deserves to be shared.

Kissy Sell Out is a BBC Radio 1 DJ and consequently should know a thing or two about what ‘works’ in terms of song composition. But if you tried explaining to me Joanna’s formula without first playing it for me, I would tell you you’re out of your mind. If you look at all the elements separately, this track shouldn’t work…but oh it does. It starts off with electric cellos and then this smooth jazz sax bit, before transitioning into what can only be described as an Electro Irish Jig. Seriously. Then it has this keyboard-heavy cadence that seems destined to be layered over by Pete Tong’s voice announcing “Welcome to the Essentiallll Mixxxx,” before fading to that weird smooth jazz bit again. Like I said, bonkers. But amazing.

Ok, yeah I’ve decided, it’s love.

Right Click to Download: Joanna (Original Mix)—Kissy Sell Out

* BONUS: Figure's dubby remix.

Right Click to Download: Joanna (Figure Remix)--Kissy Sell Out

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Ya Dance So Sexy Bebe

Photo Credit Janelle Dry

Here’s a gem from the consistently impressive Joshua Harvey. As a man of many pseudonyms, you may know him best as Hervé or “The Count” half of The Count & Siden (who have a new EP out, buy it here). Here he utilizes the moniker Voodoo Chili and serves up a spicy Latin–cum-Electro number aptly titled Ya Dance So Sexy Bebe.

This song had me hooked the second it incorporated a salsa sample. It’s that easy with me, really. Then the mariachi trumpets came in, and I lost my cool. Add finally glitching, scratching, and raucous “whoops,” and I knew this song was going to get an embarrassing amount of play time in my car. It’s fun, sexy, and most of all creative. This whole Salsa-Electronica is unlike anything I’ve heard, but in a “Why hasn’t anyone thought of this before?!” way. Is Salsa-Electronica even a genre? If so it’s officially my new favorite. If not, someone needs to call up Josh and tell him he’s sitting on a goldmine.

Right Click to Download: Ya Dance So Sexy Bebe—Voodoo Chili

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Our Time

*The format of this post is going to be a little different, as it's actually not quite meant for Loose Lips (though I'm including it here anyway). It's my first post for Campus Gossip, which is trying to change itself from a purely gossip-based website to more of a college-interest online magazine. I'm going to be writing for them in the music section. Check it out.

Attention: fratstars, sororstitues, GDIs, and everybody who has ever just really liked to party. Here, to start your year off right, is your anthem for the 2010-2011 school year. We only have a year and a half left until the end of the world (2012 oh no), so we better do it right.

It’s called Our Time. It’s by a relatively new DJ duo called Ocelot. They’re two guys split between the UK and Austin, TX, a place that knows a thing or two about partying—UT was just voted Playboy magazine’s #1 party school. It’s unfortunate that this track could never be played on mainstream radio (you’ll understand why as soon as you hear it), because it has the potential to become a college anthem as big as Asher Roth’s “I Love College” which was oh-so-popular last year. The thing is though, “I Love College” sucked. This song will blow your face off.

Right Click to Download: Our Time—Ocelot

It’s going to build, and you’re not going to really be able to understand what the voice is saying because of all the modulation until 3:04. Wait until 3:04. I know, three minutes and four seconds is kind of a long time to wait to get to the meat. But I repeat, WAIT UNTIL 3:04.

Did you wait? Do you hear it? Yes, you're hearing it correctly. The lyrics are:

We’re gonna get drunk, and we’re gonna get down.
We’re gonna take drugs, and we’re gonna get fucked.
And we’re gonna do it all tonight, and we’re gonna make it out alive.

That’s right we are. Welcome back to school.
Party on, this is our time.

Bonus: If you like your party songs with a dirty drop in the middle (at about 2:04), download Bird Peterson’s remix of this song.

Right Click to Download: Our Time (Bird Peterson Remix)—Ocelot