December 29, 2006

Best albums of 2006....

Below I've posted the list of my favorite albums of 2006. Just like it was the case with the songs, I've probably forgotten or ignored some real gems. But it's impossible to know or listen to every album released. And I would probably change my opinion on several albums, if I've had time to give them repeated listens. But overall I'm not really that impressed with this year's crop and I probably will remember 2006 as a year where the songs were a lot better than the albums. Anyway - here's the list.

20. Badly Drawn Boy - Born in the U.K.
19. Phoenix - It's never been like that
18. Razorlight - Razorlight
17. DulceSky - Lands
16. Amber Smith - rePRINT
15. The Oxygen Ponies - The Oxygen Ponies
14. Muse - Black Holes and Revelations
13. iLiKETRAiNS - Progress Reform
12. Murder - Stockholm Syndrome
11. Memphis - A Little Place in the Wilderness

10. VETO - There's a beat in all machines
At first I was quite disappointed, but for some reason I kept getting back to it, and slowly the album started to grow on me.
+ You are a Knife

9. EPO-555 - Mafia
The excellent sophomore album from one of the most interesting new Danish bands in recent years.

8. The Ballet - Mattachine!
According to the band's webpage there are about 100 copies of the album left. So hurry up and get yours!
+ In My Head

7. Band of Horses - Everything All the Time
Everyone in the bloggerworld seemed to fall in love with this band. And no wonder, because this certainly was one great debut album!
+ The Funeral

6. Late Night Venture - Late Night Venture
Must be the "surprise" band of the year. Read a review of the album in my local newspaper, which was enough to catch my interest. Glad it did, because this is a really great alternative pop/rock album.
+ Pay the Moon

5. Camera Obscura - Let's Get Out of This Country
For some reason it took me a long, long time before I actually started listening to this album. Wonder why, because this is a wonderful twee pop album.
+ Lloyd, I'm Ready to Be Heartbroken

4. The Electric Pop Group - The Electric Pop Group
Probably would have cracked the Top 3 had it been released earlier. An album to remind you never to publish your "best-of" lists at the beginning of December.
+ Walk Away

3. The Radio Dept. - Pet Grief
I know quite a lot of people were disappointed about The Radio Dept.'s second album. In my opinion they took a step in the right direction by sounding less noisy and by (unlike on the debut) not including any weak songs on the album. But it would have been great if the album was running for more than 37 minutes!
+ The Worst Taste In Music


2. moi Caprice - The Art of Kissing Properly
For every listen the album unfolds and delivers one great pop song after the other. It rarely happens that an album actually meets my (high) expectations, but this (the band's third) album certainly did. Now if I could only catch them live some day!!



1. Windermere - No One Wins
This is one of the albums that so easily could make me start rambling about the injustice of the world. So great and so sadly overlooked. A month ago I described it as "dark, noisy, beautiful, catchy, atmospheric and at times depressive" and I still believe that this is a pretty accurate description.
+ There's a sun

December 27, 2006

Best songs of 2006.....

When you start making a list like this, you suddenly realize how long a year really is. I have no idea how many songs and artists I've been listening to the past 12 months, but it must have been a lot, because I certainly was having all kinds of problems remembering the best ones, when I compiled the list. Actually I re-did it more than once, and I'm still not sure if this is the correct one. It probably would look different tomorrow and a whole LOT different a week from now. But the year is nearly over, so this was the time to draw a line. Some of the songs included are demos and have therefore never been officially released, so there might be a risk that I'm including songs that rightly would belong on a 2005 list. I've linked or uploaded files, when I felt certain that I'm not violating any legal rights, hyper linking etc. Please let me know if I'm mistaken, and the songs will be taken down ASAP. Finally only one entry per artist was allowed! Enough rambling - here they are - my favorite songs of 2006.

25. C/O/R/D - Winter (video)
Just one of those nice ones that I keep getting back to!

24. Pete White - Hand Signals (MP3)
Every regular visitor to this blog should know by now that this guy is my favorite singer/songwriter.

23. El Video - A Day Off (MP3)
Had almost forgotten this one. Shame on me!

22. The Orders - Desperation Takes Hold (MP3)
Hopefully I'm not the only one looking forward to the album? To be released January 17.

21. Director - Reconnect (blog with MP3)
I've been told that the album is crap. Shame, because this song is fab.

20. EPO-555 - Pizza Tintin
I'm still wondering what's on that pizza?

19. Green Concorde - This Time (remix by tWAMi) (MP3)
Should be on every "car soundtrack."

18. Mighty Six Ninety - Believable
Whenever these guys decide to release an album, it's bound to be great.

17. TempEau - Mädchen aus Greifswald (MP3)
I know it's sung in German, but it's a nice pop/rock track with razor sharp lyrics.

16. Van She - Kelly (MP3)
OH Kelly! Completely irresistible.

15. Under the Influence of Giants - Mama's Room (webpage with MP3)
Probably my "guilty pleasure" of the year!

14. Kent - Nålens Öga (video)
Best band in the world. This was "just" a charity single and still among the best songs of the year.

13. Muse - Map of the Problematique (blog with MP3)
Blew me away the first time I heard it.

12. Beirut - Postcards From Italy (MP3)
Every blogger loves this track. I'm no exception.

11. Days - Simple Thing (MP3)
Could have picked any of their 4 tracks.

10. Oppenheimer - Breakfast in NYC (MP3)
Normally I quickly get tired of songs like this. But 8 months later I still love it!

9. The fridaynight Club - Aeroplanes (MP3)
Mystery track of the year. I still don't know anything about this band(?)!

8. The Holiday Show - Snookerstar (MP3)
Waiting for an album guys!

7. Camera Obscura - Tears for Affairs (blog with MP3)
Even my one year old daughter loves this one!

6. Gentle Touch - Smedby (MP3)
J.A. introduced me to this one by calling it a "big pop song". Couldn't think of a better description myself.

5. Ruined by Martin - Dear Reo (MP3)
Still waiting for them to get that second EP finished.

4. The Electric Pop Group - Popgirly (MP3)
Charming. Guess that word says it all!

3. Anamia - Butterfly in Paris (MP3)
A great, but utterly ignored track!

2. Kind of girl - Poetry Boy (MP3)
The runaway winner of the "most-blogged-about-track-of-the-year" award.

1. moi Caprice - Drama Queen (Stream)
The first time I listened to it I knew that this would end up being my no. 1 song of the year!!

No more talk about Christmas!

The Anthem To Which We Fall by Green Concorde has been tested on MTV Fahrenheit. Do me (and the band) a favor and vote for the boys. If you need to check out the song or video before voting, you can do it here.

The Last.fm Free Downloads Chart has been updated. Cannot spot any new interesting entries, but the new no. 1 is....
+ Okkervil River - Black

Speaking of Last.fm. FALK has sent me two recommendations. One is the 5 track Anger Manifest EP by German Gothic-pop-rock/Darkwave duo All:My:Faults. This still isn't my favorite genre, but I cannot deny that I like this!
+ Forget Me...
+ Sand of Time

The second band he recommends is Finnish electronic pop duo Viola. I'm already quite familiar with Viola and their catchy tunes, so I'll pass on his recommendation to "the rest of the world"!
+ Lovelights
+ Sad Eyed Disco Dancers

Download a 10 track compilation (for free) called Electronica Unplugged over at Aerotone. I really enjoy the fact that more and more labels are giving away music for free. But I cannot help wondering how they survive financially?
+ Leander - Directions

Acoustic duo Austin Atteberry & Friends from Chicago has sent me a message, asking if I would like to receive a copy of their second album. The songs available are (I believe) from the debut, but since they do sound pretty fine, I replied with a "thank you" and asked them to send me a copy. I will write more once I've received the album.
+ Party Tonight
+ Letter of Three Words

I promised no more talk about Christmas, but I just came across this Christmas (inspired?) tune by Gothenburg duo The Lost Homeboys. The vocals could easily be a lot better, but it's very indie, rather catchy and full of seasonal atmosphere.
+ A letter from us

I plan to post my list of favorite songs of the year tonight.

December 26, 2006

New song by Celestial!

On January 1, Music Is My Girlfriend will release the 7" single Fragile Heart by Celestial. But just like every decent Swedish label these days, the label is giving away the title track for free! Unfortunately the release will be a 7" only, and it will feature another track called Brighton Girls as well as remixes of the two tracks. Check it out. It's short, it's sweet, it's catchy and very, very good!
+ Fragile Heart

December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas!

Just a belated Merry Christmas to all of you! I sincerely hope you all had a wonderful time with your families, friends, loved ones etc., and that you all found some great presents waiting for you underneath the Christmas tree!

December 22, 2006

This and That

Stream the new (and pretty good) single Oceanic by Danish alternative rock band Mavis over at Myspace. Unfortunately it's not available for download!!

The dudes over at emodreng og indiepige have started listening to Kind of girl. I told you that they have a fine taste in music!

Check out excellent blog lifeiscarbon. Here you'll find lots of interesting stuff on (as they call it) Scandinavian Æsthetics. That be art, design, music etc.

Brilliant UK quartet Indigo will release a 5 track EP in January next year called The Rain Sessions. 4 of the tracks have already been uploaded to Myspace and are generously available as free downloads. The music sounds like a nice mix of The Smiths and The Stone Roses (perhaps a bit more rocking), and especially the live version of Something New is ace!
+ I Can't Fight This Feeling
+ Something New (Live)

A track by She Wants Revenge called Black Liner Run is available for free at Myspace.
+ Black Liner Run

Both Music Of The Moment and Powerpopulist got inspired and wrote posts on the Last.fm Free Downloads chart.

Apparently all it takes is a bit of whining? I was a cry-baby the other day and immediately the average no. of hits started to grow. I wish it was because people felt sorry for me, but it's quite obvious that those Last.fm tracks did the trick!!

Here's another mixed bag of stuff (I happily admit that the quality varies) found at Last.fm..........
+ Carpenters - They Long To Be Close To You (this is one of my guilty pleasures)
+ El Perro Del Mar - It's All Good
+ Jon Secada - Just Another Day (another one of my guilty pleasures)
+ Micah P. Hinson - The Leading Guy
+ Sambassadeur - New Moon
+ Loons - Holiday Run
+ Lovejoy - In The Rain

And more Last.fm. Danish independent label Quatermain records has created a site where you can download several tracks from the label's back catalogue. Among the freebies are 3 tracks from the great debut album by Late Night Venture. But the track really catching my attention right now is this one by alternative rock band Yellowish.
+ Direction

We all learn something new! When I checked Yellowish's webpage I saw that the correct title of this track is This is my Direction and is available there for free in an even better quality.
+ This is my Direction

December 21, 2006

Last.fm - Free Downloads chart

I mentioned the Free Downloads chart over at last.fm in my post yesterday, but I thought I should put a little more focus on the chart in today's post. Why? Several reasons why? First of all! Wouldn't it be great if this chart became really popular? Then bands and labels would be even more motivated to make their music available for free at last.fm. Furthermore you don't have to be a registered member or login to be able to download the songs, which mean that bloggers can link directly to the songs (which is really, really great). The sound quality of the songs is fairly decent (128 Kbps) and the tags are working properly (thus showing up correctly at The Hype Machine). So if you happen to be a blogger I (with these obvious reasons in mind) strongly urge you to "hype" this chart! Currently there aren't that many interesting songs available, but the number of songs seems to be growing every day. And I guess it's no surprise that artists signed by fab Swedish label Labrador are well represented? I've posted links to a few tracks below, to give you an idea of what you can find there...........
+ The Joint Conspiracy - Tomorrow
+ Ciao TransiztaTake Time
+ My Chemical Romance - Vampires Will Never Hurt You
+ Basshunter - Boten Anna (Silver Nikan Radio mix)
+ The Radio Dept. - The Worst Taste In Music (Extended)
+ Elf Power - Never Believe
+ Johann Sebastian Bach - Air
+ Micah P. Hinson - Jackeyed
+ Cordero - Close Your House Down

December 20, 2006

AirSpiel +++

Scottish indie rock band AirSpiel sent me a mail last week asking if I'd be interested in making a blog post on the band. I quickly recalled that Chris featured the band in his blog a while back, but more importantly I also recalled that I liked the band's songs, when I listened to them. So obviously my reply to the band was positive and in return the boys gave me permission to upload a few tracks.
AirSpiel has existed since 2003 and originally started out as a duo, but is now a 5-piece following some changes and additions the past few years. The band is currently recording (or has recently finished?) their debut album (to be called In Another Life), but I cannot find any information on a release date. The music is really catchy indie rock that for obvious reasons has been compared to bands like U2, Coldplay and The Bluetones. I've posted two tracks by the band below and both of them are just fabulous. So I'm eagerly awaiting news on when the album will be released and I will keep you posted if/when I have any news!
+ Ghosts
+ Smiling at the Sun

Fine Danish music blog emodreng og indiepige is run by two 16-year-olds (?!?!?!?!) with a brilliant taste in music. They have just posted their best albums of 2006 list, which sure is worth checking out. They also give the excellent Kelly by Van She some much deserved exposure.

Check out this (alternative?) Christmas track by American rockers Tone Rodent.
+ Christmastime

Yesterday I finally bought Broom by Someone Still Loves You, Boris Yeltsin. Will be quite interesting to hear if it is as great as everyone else seem to believe it is.
+ Oregon Girl
+ House Fire

Hits In The Car favorite Pete White has teamed up with John Beeson to form the duo beeson and white. 4 very good tracks from an acoustic live recording session are available for download.
+ Run

Another Hits In The Car favorite - Kind of girl - is no. 12 & 13 in this week's Free Downloads chart over at Last.fm! Quite a surprise, but well-deserved!!
+ Poetry boy
+ Slave to your charms

120 Days is picked as band of the year by DoCopenhagen.
+ Come Out, Come Down, Fade Out, Be Gone

It's probably a very good thing that I don't have to make my living through blogging. The average no. of hits per day in December is down to 265 compared to 315 in November. Or down by 16%. Numbers like that could get anyone fired!!

December 18, 2006

The Radio Dept. - Live in Lima

The Radio Dept.'s concert on October 28 in Lima, Peru was recorded and you can download it in its entirety or the individual tracks here. Unfortunately the sound quality is really, really bad.

News from Ruined by Martin......

I've always thought that this time of year was the busiest one for everyone, but still the boys from Ruined by Martin have somehow been able to find enough time to finish a new track called Somewhere. The track has been uploaded to the band's Myspace profile, but since the band agrees that the sound quality of the files there is ridiculously bad, they have mailed me a better copy of the new track to share with all of you. The band has been working on new material for some time now, but still there is no news on when the band's second EP will be released. According to plans (at least the ones I know of) these 3 tracks will be on that EP, if/when it is finished some day. The new track is a bit more electronic than the two other tracks, and sounds more like the songs from the band's first EP, which was Gaffa's demo of the month exactly one year ago. Still Somewhere is a very typical RbM track in the sense that you need to listen to it a quite few times, before realizing how good it really is!!
+ Somewhere
+ Dear Reo
+ Burn The Sun

December 15, 2006

Shorties...

The debut album of Swedish indie pop sensations The Electric Pop Group was released today. Stream the album here or simply pick up your copy of it at Fraction Discs NOW! My copy is in the mail!
+ Popgirly

You Ain't No Picasso (and several others) has a copy of the new song by The Arcade Fire called Intervention. What do you think of it?

Did you download the Purevolume Holiday sampler? Now that I've listened to it, I really have to add that it does indeed include some brilliant tracks!

Remember to make a wish over at Music of the Moment!

Let's get Physical...

I'm really busy at work, but I just had to post this one. Electro rock act Alistair Doomington covers Olivia Newton-John's Physical. Have to admit that I kinda like it!
+ Physical

One more Christmas present....

This time it's a free holiday single by US alternative rock band Aberdeen City called Just Like Christmas. The track was recorded in a hotel room last week, so this isn't the best produced song you'll ever hear, but still very sweet. The "b-side" is a previously unreleased version of the brilliant single God is Going To Get Sick of Me.
+ Just Like Christmas
+ God Is Going To Get Sick of Me (Highway Version)
+ God Is Going To Get Sick of Me (Single Version)

December 14, 2006

Volvoe - Snowscape

Anyone remember Danish indie/electro act Volvoe that I mentioned several months ago? Even if you don't I strongly recommend that you check out the new track Snowscape that has been uploaded to the band's Myspace profile today. The track, taken from the forthcoming album, is a really catchy and up-tempo electro pop tune that easily matches the quality of the band's previous outputs.
+ Snowscape (Myspace quality)

Holiday sampler

Download Purevolume's 12 track Holiday Sampler for free. I haven't listened to it yet, but looking at the bands/artists contributing, I expect it to be great!
+ Holiday Sampler (zip file)
+ Jamie Randolph - White Christmas

December 13, 2006

This and That...

5-piece Ciao Transizta was picked as Gaffa's Demo band in December. This Danish alternative rock band is influenced by the likes of Interpol, Sonic Youth, The Arcade Fire etc. It took me a few listens getting into the music, but now I'm really enjoying these songs..
+ New York Naked
+ Take Time

At least Thomas over at DoCopenhagen agrees that saving up her wishes (for another Christmas) by Celestial is the best new Christmas track of the year.

In his comment yesterday Anders suggested (tongue in cheek I hope) that Wonderland by Heidi Klum is the best new Christmas track of 2006. She sure looks beautiful though!

The current no. 1 in the Danish indie chart - Det Elektriske Barometer - is this stunning track by Decorate. Decorate.
+ Surname of Copenhagen

Perhaps this only happens to me, but doesn't Last.fm recommend the same tracks over and over again?

I'm currently busy compiling my best of 2006 lists, but I still have plenty of catching up left to do. Yesterday I bought the albums by Hot Chip and 120 Days, and the other day I received the really fine A Little Place In The Wilderness by Memphis.

FileDen IS working, but the tags just seem to have gone completely haywire. So you'll have to fix those yourself.

December 12, 2006

Ether Oceans....

Every regular reader of this blog should know by now that I'm quite a fan of Detroit quartet Ether Aura. Today the band has made another track from the brilliant Crash album available for download over at Myspace. This time it's the track called In Oceans, which is a really cool and very shoegaze inspired piece.
+ In Oceans

Super duper.......

VETO frontman Troels Abrahamsen (aka Supertroels) will release his first solo album on March 26 next year. The album will be called I Know That You Know and two tracks are already available to download for free from his webpage. A bit more electronic than VETO, but still pretty good! Found via the excellent It's A Trap.
+ You Need Paths, To Draw Map
+ You Are Always

Another Christmas present......

Brilliant and generous Swedish indie pop/shoegaze inspired band (one-man project is probably more accurate) Celestial wishes everyone a happy Christmas by making the band's seasonal track saving up her wishes (for another Christmas), available for free download! Excellent and definitely the best new Christmas track of the year!
+ saving up her wishes (for another Christmas)
The link isn't working right now. Instead I suggest that you download the Myspace version.

December 11, 2006

December 8, 2006

Jingle bells - party time and hangovers...

We have our Christmas party at work tonight, so I'll probably have the worst hangovers in the history of man tomorrow. Luckily I'm going to another party tomorrow afternoon, which I expect will cure the hangovers in no time. But Sunday is definitely going to be a challenge.

The worst part is that I'm dead tired right now following a couple of horrible nights, where the kids have been keeping us awake. But I’m certain that the first couple of beers tonight will quickly turn the tiredness into a distant memory.

Oh well - after all this is not a drinker's blog, so here are a couple of tracks I stumbled upon this afternoon. Both bands are from Sweden, and even though the songs aren't exactly spectacular, they are still well worth a listen.
+ TIAC - It's Always The Same Anyway (electro/pop)
+ Swoon - Encore (shoegaze/alternative)

December 7, 2006

Marimekko - model...


18 Smiling Pirates....

New single I 18 by Danish rockers Dead Smiling Pirates has been uploaded to Myspace (in the usual poor quality) and Mymusic.dk (in a better quality, but only available if you're a registered user). The debut album produced by Flemming Rasmussen will be released early next year!
+ I 18 (UPDATE - 192 kbps copy)

December 6, 2006

Evening fun....

Download the new Panda Riot demo called Olivia on the Downbeat over at Myspace or watch the very first episode of the DoCopenhagen video podcast featuring Björn Kleinhenz. If you have plenty of time on your hands, you can also watch DoCopenhagen's Top 50 Music Videos of 2006 over there as well!
+ Olivia on the Downbeat

Christmas on the Beach

Here it is. The short and sweet Christmas single from Swedish indie pop surfers Irene.
+ Christmas on the Beach

December 5, 2006

Take it or leave it....

Myspace has (rightfully) been critized for reducing the bit rate of the songs to 96 kbps, but as long as bands/artists insist on using the service (despite all its flaws), it regularly ends up being the only place where you can download certain songs. Below are posted a few songs I've found tonight that I'd love to get in a better quality, but for now I (reluctantly) have to live with these poorer sounding versions.

The terrific indie/dreampop quarter Ether Aura from Detroit has uploaded a wonderful version of Curve's I Speak Your Every Word. Grab it now despite the low quality, because it's fabulous and will only be available for a very short time. The band's second album (will be called Before We Could Sing) is nearly finished, and the expected date of release is February 17 next year.
+ I Speak Your Every Word

Danish electro pop trio Tiger Baby has remixed CPH-Jet's cover of Just Can't Get Enough and uploaded another excellent track from this year's album Noise Around Me called Moved Me. The availability of both tracks could be short lived as well.
+ Just Can't Get Enough
+ Moved Me

Work.......

I'm really busy at work these days, so sorry about the lack of updates.
+ Morning Runner - Work

December 3, 2006

It's a tiger - not a trap :-)

Here are some great pieces of information found over at It's A Trap (arguably the best music blog in the world). So thank you Avi!!!!

Incredible Swedish indie pop band DAYS has been signed to Lavender Recordings. I heard a "rumor" some time ago, but it was really nice to learn that it was more than just that! Know quite a few people eagerly awaiting the band's first release!
+ Never Came To Last

I'm currently enjoying Tiger Baby's Christmas single. I really like this band (and the song) and find it hard to believe that I haven't bought any of the band's releases.
+ This Christmas

Swedish indie/pop/surf band Irene has unsuccessfully tried to upload the band's Christmas single called Christmas On The Beach to Myspace, but for some reason it failed. Instead the track will be available on Wednesday from here or here.