October 28, 2005

Got it :-)

Kent - The Hjärta Och Smärta EP

I've listened to each song at least 5 times today (some far more than that) and 2 of the tracks are just brilliant while 3 of them (in my opinion) fail to live up to expectations!

Dom Som Försvann is the standout track and is absolutely fantastic (once you get used to the children's choir it adds another wonderful dimension to their music) though opener Vi Mot Världen is not that far behind.

Ansgard & Evelyne plus Flen - Paris are fairly nice songs, but with the band's back catalogue in mind they are somewhat average. Finally the last track on the EP Månadens Erbjudande is in my opinion pretty weak (could be an entry for the Eurovision song contest), but I really should not focus on the negative aspects, because hearing new music by Kent is always great.

Overall I think the EP is less "dark" than Du & Jag Döden, which might be the reason why these songs weren't included on that album?

October 27, 2005

Ramblings and more…....…

I know it’s not Friday, but since the topic of tomorrow is a lock, I thought I might as well babble on today.

My ambition of listening to every Coldplay album at least three times this week should be reviewed (or rather thrashed)! So far the number of plays is one big fat zero (it's no longer zero - I've actually started listening to it now). It should be an interesting concert Sunday nonetheless.

A while back I preordered The hjärta och smärta EP by Kent. It will be released on Wednesday, but because of the preorder, I can download the songs for free tomorrow. Do you remember what it felt like the day before Christmas when you were a kid? This is exactly how I feel right now! Comments should follow tomorrow.

Title track from the Coles Corner album by Richard Hawley is definitely among the best 5 songs of the year. Laid-back and simply beautiful. The rest of the album is not far behind!

Once you have accepted the fact that Leisure Alaska is a rock band (even though the fantastic Hey There Mr. indicated differently), the debut album The Deja In My Vu is not bad at all. Far from being perfect, but it's playful and includes its fair share of (very) good songs!

Magpie by Stephen Fretwell is a very fine singer/songwriter album. Voice, music and lyrics blends together beautifully. Very intimate.

Did you (yeah YOU!!) remember to listen to The Arrogants yesterday? If no - shame on you!

Another song worth checking out is Black (MP3) by Okkervil River.

My favorite song of the moment is Burning Hearts by NY-band My Favorite (!). I learned about the song through the Coast Is Clear blog and it can be downloaded for free via this link.

Let the bidding war begin ;-()

My blog is worth $8,468.10.
How much is your blog worth?

October 26, 2005

Nice American indie-pop band The Arrogants released their 23 track album called You've Always Known When Best To Say Goodbye last Monday (17 October).

The official webpage generously offers free download of 7 of the songs from the album for your listening pleasure, which (at least it was for me)should be plenty of songs for you to realize that this is a very interesting (and great) band indeed!

While visiting their webpage I also downloaded the brilliant songs from the previous EP's Nobody's Cool and Your Simple Beauty which can be done for free as well.

If you like the music (indie fans definitely will) and want to support the band, the new album can be purchased at Tweekitten.com for the bargain price of $7.50. I, for one, obviously couldn’t resist this offer, so I’ve already ordered my copy (still waiting for it to arrive though!)!

The best of the lot and the one song you "must" check out:
Don't Die Before Your Day (MP3)

October 25, 2005

One new post today after all :-)

3 new albums have been added to my CD-Collection:

Richard Hawley: Coles Corner
Stephen Fretwell: Magpie
Leisure Alaska: The Deja In My Vu

Comments will be added once I've listened to the albums.

Had a (really, I mean REALLY) bad night , so don't expect any updates today :-((((

October 24, 2005

This week Tjeklisten is (if possible) a bigger joke than usual! Kent is not voted onto the chart (apparently close enough to get a second chance), while Gavin DeGraw enters at no. 8!!??!!??

I voted for the following 5 songs:

1. KentDen Döda Vinkeln (OK - it's not one of the best songs by the band, but come on! Still so much better than 90% of the other songs!)
2. Carpark NorthFireworks
3. MewThe Zookeeper’s Boy
4. Bloc PartyTwo More Years (I've mentioned before that I don't like this band, but the song is surprisingly good!)
5. OutlandishLook Into My Eyes (Don't like these guys either, but again a song much better than expected)
My to-do-list this week:

- Moan (as usual) about Tjeklisten (and vote as well of course!)

- Write something about the brilliant Grand Avenue concert Saturday evening.
--What's On Your Mind (EP version) (mp3)
--Everyday (EP Version) (mp3)
--On Your Side (QT video)

- Update my CD-Collection and write a few comments on the 3 new albums I bought this weekend. But not untill I've actually listened to them (of course...)!

- Download, listen to and post some comments on the music of The Arrogants. Peter - not at all surprised that you like them ;-)

- Listen to all of the Coldplay albums at least 3 times as preparation for the concert on Sunday!

- Celebrate that I've listened to Take You On A Cruise by Interpol at work 100 times this year?

October 21, 2005

Friday ramblings:

- Friday always seems to be the perfect time for rambling along........

- I simply don't understand the hype surrounding The Artic Monkeys. In my opinion they are nothing special. Not bad. Just not all that good!

- I'm going to see Grand Avenue in concert tomorrow night! Not too impressed with their second album, but it sure will be nice going to a concert again!

- Hate when this happens! I was out running yesterday, when the Zen started playing a song I know very well. Just couldn't remember the name of the song (or the band), so I had to stop running to check the display. The song turned out to be Neil Jung by Teenage Fanclub. Made me wonder if the line "going nowhere" from the chorus was referring to my brain activity or my running?

- Listened to Darklands by The Jesus And Mary Chain in the car this morning (inspired by my post yesterday). The perfect soundtrack for a dark and rainy morning.

- The Danish Album Chart has been updated. Kashmir enters at no. 1 selling more than 20,000 copies! The Mew album is still selling pretty well and is in 5th place! Some people in Denmark do listen to great music!

- Hopefully the new albums by Leisure Alaska and Richard Hawley have arrived at my local CD shop, so I can pick them up tomorrow (I've just received a mail and indeed they have). And the debut by Stephen Fretwell should arrive by mail today or tomorrow.

- Everyone seems to be raving about the album Set Yourself On Fire by Canadian band Stars. I've listened to the album several times and it indeed seems to be quite nice. However, when the listening session is over I cannot remember one single song, which isn't a great sign in my opinion! I guess that many people cannot be wrong, so I'll have to listen to it again - soon!

- Could someone explain to me what's so great about Boards Of Canada?

- Coast Is Clear strikes again! Check out the two great songs by My Favorite.

October 20, 2005

There seems to be no news available on the release date of the third album from JJ72. While you are waiting go check out this new song Heat. And if you don't know it already listen to She's Gone as well.
Peter - you're right! Heat was originally the b-side of She's Gone. So I guess it's only new to me ;-) If this song only qualify as a b-side the album should be nothing less that spectacular.

The songs Girl Afraid and Secret Hiding Places by Danish indie band Rumskib (Danish for spaceship) have been doing terrible well in recent editions of the MP3 unsigned charts. I'm not totally convinced that these two songs are all that great (I've only listened to them once, so this could change), but if you want to judge for yourself you can download them (plus a few others as well) for free at mymusic.dk. You need to be a registered user to download the songs. It's free but unfortunately in Danish only (though it IS very easy to register!).

Coast is Clear has introduced me this late 80's/early 90's French band Mary Goes Round. If you like the album Darklands by The Jesus And Mary Chain (I do!!!) there is an outstanding chance that you will enjoy listening to this band. 21 (!) songs can be downloaded for free from this webpage dedicated to the band.

October 19, 2005

When I woke up this morning my first words were “ØrenlydInd Under Himlen”. I have absolutely no idea why I had been dreaming of this song, because I haven’t listened to it for a long, long time.

But it has definitely been too long, so the first thing I did this morning was to download the song from mymusik.dk.

This catchy pop song did get a lot of airplay when it was released a few years ago, but they are still waiting (if they haven't split up) for the commercial breakthrough!

Wonder what song I will dream of tonight?

One song I wouldn't mind dreaming of is the wonderful Black Cab by Swede Jens Lekman. If you like The Magnetic Fields you really ought to listen to it and the song can be yours for free if you visit download.com.

October 18, 2005

Two posts from other blogs that I highly recommend you check out:

Lost Band Of The New Wave Era links you to a couple of songs by new (?) LA artist Eugene Edwards and one song by British band Any Trouble. I like the idea of this blog ("the purpose of this site is to give exposure to great music that never had a chance to be heard but should have.") and it just adds to my ever growing frustration of how much great unknown music that is out there!

A visit to Coast Is Clear will introduce you to Finnish band I Was A Teenage Satan Worshipper. Indeed a horrible band name, but they sure make great and catchy music (indie with guitars and an electronic "twist").
And while you're there you should check out Thermostatic as well. Their music is more of the electronic kind, but still pretty damn good!

"The reliable source" Peter has also drawn my attention towards a Danish band called Cartridge. Two MP3's can be downloaded for free from their website. Interesting stuff!

October 17, 2005

Tjeklisten is pretty much the usual joke this week (OK - I know I'm harsh), but I still managed to find these 5 songs worth voting for:

1. Spleen United - In Peak Fitness Condition (No. 18 two weeks in a row!)
2. Kent - Den Döda Vinkeln (I know Kent is my favorite band, but they should get lots of votes)
3. Carpark North - Fireworks (Entered at no. 20. Surprisingly low)
4. Mew - The Zookeeper's Boy (No. 1 for the second week in a row)
5. Nada Surf - Always Love (Probably a wasted vote, because it won't make the list)

Depeche Mode and Kashmir are doing fine without my help, so no votes for them!!

October 14, 2005

It’s a well known secret that I normally refer to Depeche Mode as the most overrated band in the world. Admittedly they have released a handful of great songs through the years (noticeable Enjoy The Silence and Never Let Me Down Again), but since their best effort Violator in 1990 they have managed to release just two good songs (It’s No Good and Precious, the first single of Playing The Angel).

Modern technology (a.k.a. file sharing) has given me the opportunity to listen to the album in full length a few days before its official release.

For my part the quality of the first single from the album has let me build up some uncharacteristic expectations to a Depeche Mode album, because normally I would never expect a new release by the band to be anything but mediocre. However Precious took me by surprise and there is little doubt that I will rank it among the best songs released in 2005, when the time has come for making such a list. So I forgot my aversion towards the band and ordered a ticket for their concert and put Playing The Angel on my list of albums I’m looking forward to.

So the big question now is whether the rest of the album is up to par or if it is just another “typical” Depeche Mode release.

It starts quite pleasantly with opening track A Pain That I’m Used To, which gives me a small glimpse of hope, but unfortunately this track does not set the standard of the album.

Listening to the rest of it won't leave you with any doubt that this is a Depeche Mode album, because more or less all of the tracks follow the typical formula used by the band with either pumping beats or pompous hymns. But only Precious (obviously) and the second track from the end; Lilian; actually make you bother to check the name of the track (because there is an outside chance that you want to listen to them again). The rest just melts together and is sadly quite unmemorable stuff, which easily could have been recorded 12 years ago (or some other time) and added as b-sides to any single of Songs Of Faith And Devotion, because they aren't any better or worse than the songs from that album.

Hardcore fans (still plenty of those around) shouldn’t be disappointed though, because their really isn’t much new under the sun here, which they for some reason seem to fancy!

Sadly this also means that the boys remain stuck in a kind of creative drought, which after all those years still seems to be haunting them.

Sorry guys – I’m not going to buy the album!

MP3's of Precious and Lilian can be found via a PLAGUE of ANGELS.

At lunch I read a review of the album. Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten hands out 5 stars (out of 6). That is at least 2 stars too many in my opinion!

Gaffa also gives the album 5 stars. I'm beginning to wonder if I'm missing something?

October 13, 2005

Two new additions to my CD-Collection:

Rob Dickinson: Fresh Wine For The Horses
Calexico and Iron & Wine: In The Reins

That makes it 90 new additions this year (see the list). Chris - I know I'm trailing you by 10! I guess that makes you the addict? ;-)

The Rob Dickinson album is pretty nice (a few of the songs are really great), though I cannot help thinking of it as rather "unspectacular".

I have yet to listen to the Calexico/Iron & Wine collaboration. Should be quite interesting! It actually is pretty good, so why did they only record these 7 songs?

October 10, 2005

This morning my wife and I became parents for the second time, when my wife gave birth to a baby girl!

I'll resume posting when (if ever) life gets back to normal ;-)

Peter, Chris, Michael, Anders, Bobby, Deb and Eric - thank you :-)

And thank you Chris for reminding me of the number of the girls in my household, though I very much doubt that they'll let me forget about it!

For the curious - pictures of the two girls in charge back home!

October 8, 2005

I've downloaded another bunch of MP3's. Let's see if anything interesting pops up?

Bad start with lots of garbage, but the first decent song coming my way is called Mercy Me and is by Alkaline Trio. Nothing special really. I'll cross my fingers hoping that something more interesting turns up!

Now this one is much better. Leaders Of The Free World by Elbow. Great song! More of this please!

And another brilliant one. Shadowland by Youth Group. Chris - I assume this song is on the Skeleton Jar album?

Three in a row. Demons by Battle is just great!!!

The listening session this evening started really slow, but now it has become so much more interesting (and rewarding). Fourth and fifth in line are Off The Record by My Morning Jacket and Destroy Everything You Touch by Ladytron.

Thank you - and good night!

October 7, 2005

Freaking awesome!

My wife and I watched the movie Lost In Translation tonight (better late than never I guess?). Any movie with a soundtrack including Just Like Honey by The Jesus And Mary Chain and Sometimes by My Bloody Valentine will always be something special to me!

The story? Well - my wife fell asleep, but I enjoyed it :-)
For the second time in what seems to be a very short time, I’m listening to one of those releases, where the first expression to jump to mind is ”finally! finally – it’s here”! A little less than a month ago it was And The Glass Handed Kites by Mew and now it’s the much anticipated (but probably less hyped) No Balance Palace by Kashmir.

Produced by Tony Visconti and with contributions from Lou Reed and David Bowie it is really no mystery why expectations are so high!

Nearly 3 years have gone since the release of Zitilites and to be brutally honest I’ve never really grown into loving it. The Good Life is still a brilliant album in my opinion, but the follow-up never matched its quality or success. But with a legendary producer hired for the project, I’m probably not the only one who hoped that the band would re-discover some of its old “magic”.

So far I’ve listened to the album three times and the more I listen the less afraid I am to declare that the album meets every expectation I might have had.

Unlike Zilities (which in my opinion requires lots of hard work by the listener) No Balance Palace is to my surprise very immediate and is one long pearl string of great songs that seem to battle every opportunity to get stuck in your head. The album is (of course) very well-produced and the songs are more undemanding (thus less experimental) and melodic than we have been used to expect from this band, without the band forgetting that they still are a rock band! The contributions from the aforementioned stars are just minor splashes and cannot be said to have any essential influence on the end result!

In the long run this could (not at all saying that it will) obviously turn out to work as a disadvantage for the band (at least from a fans point of view), because great albums normally need more time to mature than just a few spins.

However from a commercial point of view the straightforwardness of the album could very well mean that the band will reach a much wider audience than they have ever been able to reach before.

Summed up I think this is a brilliant and memorable effort by the band, which should please fans as well as open the doors to a new audience.

If you're not at all familiar with the band I recommend that you watch the video to the single The Curse Of Being A Girl.

Not music related in any way, but today my wife and I have been married for 5 years!

Never thought I’d get married at all so quite a feat.

October 6, 2005

Tonight I (if everything works out) will receive my copy of the new Kashmir album called No Balance Palace. Needless to say, I'm really looking forward to it. In all of the reviews I've seen so far (4) the album is rated 5 out of 6 stars.

Hopefully I'll find enough time to post some comments tomorrow, when I've listened to the album.
I seriously cannot think of anything to post (and I'm rather busy at work as well), so I've decided to re-post my "test" from last week. I know it's just like the dreaded reruns on TV, but it'll have to do for now! Sorry!

According to my counters (got two of them, just to be on the safe side!) this blog is averaging close to 60 hits a day. Does anyone actually read it (I know a selected few ones of you are – that’s at least the impression I get) or are you all just visiting, because the “next blog” button brought you here? Obviously several of the hits are by spammers, who quickly leave with their tail between their legs, because they cannot post their pointless messages here!

So in a naive attempt to find the answer to my above question, I’ve decided to make a small test .

If you (yes YOU!) were the celebrity guest on a radio show and you were asked to pick 10 songs to be played during the show – what 10 songs would you pick?

Would you pick your favorite songs or songs that would show how eclectic your music taste is or what would you pick??

My picks (at least at this very moment) are:

Tears For FearsSuffer The Children
I have to play a song from (what probably is) my favorite albums.
Angie AparoThe American (hidden track)
No one ever seems to have heard of him, which is quite a shame, because everyone should have!
I loved it the first time I heard it and still do!
InterpolTake You On A Cruise
According to WMP I’ve played this song 97 times this year (by far the most times for any song. Precious by Depeche Mode is a distant second with 54 plays). I assume this means that I like it?
KentIstället För Ljud
Wouldn’t be right if I didn't play a song by the best band in the world
Mew - Mica
Or by the second best
Doves - Pounding
Or by the third best
If you see two idiots dancing (slowly) to this song at the mall; it’s most likely my wife and I! And she would probably strangle me if I was on the radio and didn’t play her favorite song!
Sonic YouthTeen Age Riot
The eclectic pick I guess?!?
The La’sThere She Goes or David GrayBabylon
Cannot decide which one is my favorite. And you should play your favorite song. Shouldn’t you?

Hmmmm - what happened to Radiohead, Pink Floyd, The Smiths, The Cure, Coldplay, my new favorite band The Field Mice and ???? And I seriously cannot believe that I forgot The Stones Roses and Gangway! And probably several others I cannot think of now!

Still testing ;-) So far you have made some really good picks and the number of entries has reached 8 (someone is actually reading this!)! More comments to follow some time next week!

October 4, 2005

Before falling asleep last night, I spent quite some time thinking about the most overrated albums list I posted yesterday.

The definition of overrated according to BBC is this "We want to hear about the albums that the consensus insists we hail as works of utter genius but, when you actually listen to them, turn out to be as mundane and inspiration-free as something by Ocean Colour Scene."

First impression was that X&Y by Coldplay doesn't belong in the list. If no one seems to be rating it very high, it can hardly be called overrated. Acclaimedmusic does not rank it among the 2000 best albums ever and according to RateYourMusic the album is the 86th best of 2005! Whether or not the album is any good is one discussion, but I really cannot see (or understand) why it should be in the list! Disappointment (and hype prior to the release) doesn't equal overrated!

Another thought was that you should take (at least) two things into consideration before using the overrated phrase. Of course the listening pleasure is rather significant when rating an album, but I doubt that you can simply ignore the importance factor. I'll never claim to be an expert in music history, but didn't albums like Pet Sounds, Sgt Pepper and Never Mind The Bollocks inspire generations of musicians? What would the music of today sound like without these albums?

Of the 9 albums I own, I only listen regularly to The Queen Is Dead, which I think is a absolutely brilliant! The remaining 7 albums (I just excluded Coldplay and I cannot stand The Libertines, which has prevented me from buying the album) have never entertained me the way I thought they would and I'm almost prepared to accept that they made the list.

But Nirvana made me listen to Pearl Jam, Metallica, Soundgarden etc.
OK Computer introduced me to Radiohead and thus lead me to listen to The Bends.
Maybe I could agree about Sex Pistols (because I don't like Punk at all) but as Michael wrote in his comment; If you're a punk at heart it's a "must have". I don't like Jazz, Soul or Rap either, but it wouldn't be right to call an album "overrated", simply because I don't like the genre.
And so on.....

So my point is that even if I agree that those albums might not be as fantastic as some want them to be, I think it's a bit (if not very) tough to label them as overrated, because they have all been important factors in MY (and others) world of music!

If I should pick one album as overrated I'd pick the debut by Franz Ferdinand. It's not really any good and I very much doubt that anyone will rate it among the best albums of all time once the hype surrounding the band is gone!

October 3, 2005

According to the listeners of BBC-6 Music these are "The 10 most overrated albums in the world....ever!":

1. Nirvana - Nevermind
2. Coldplay -
3. The Libertines -
The Libertines
4. Oasis -
Definitely Maybe
5. U2 - The Joshua Tree
6. Radiohead - OK Computer
7. The Beatles -
Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
8. Beach Boys - Pet Sounds
9. Sex Pistols - Never Mind the Bollocks
10. The Smiths - The Queen is Dead

What do you think?

Before someone insists on pointing this out to me - yes I know that I'm the lucky (?) owner of 9 of those albums!

Cannot say that I'm very surprised (sadly things don't stop being a joke overnight), but cannot help being just a little bit disappointed. Leisure Alaska didn't make it onto Tjeklisten, which I believe more than ever justifies my ranting towards the music taste of Danes in general. However I'm quite happy to see that Crazy Frog didn't make it either!!!!!

Some very good candidates again this week, so I've voted for the following 5 songs:

VetoYou’re a knife
Spleen United
In peek fitness condition
DiefenbachGlorious (apparently they were close to making the list and have been given a second chance!)
MewThe Zookeeper’s Boy

Grand AvenueOn Your side

No point in voting for Depeche Mode. They'll get plenty of votes without my help and the song obviously will (and should, because it's brilliant) make the list! I should have voted for Figurines as well, but somehow forgot! Shame on those who vote for Robbie Williams and Sugarbabes, though both songs will definitely be high entries!

This Friday I convinced two of my friends that they should borrow the Spleen United album from me. After listening to just a few songs they both went straight to the CD store and bought the album! Now I'm waiting for the band to send me my bonus ;-)

In the October edition of Euroman there is a short review of the Spleen United album. They call it one of the best debut albums by a Danish act this year and hands out 5 (out of 6) stars.
Equally interesting is the review of the forthcoming Kashmir album, which also receives 5 stars. The album is released next week (10 October) and according to the magazine it should be worth looking forward to! I forgot to add that there is another review of the album in the new edition of Gaffa. They rate is 5 stars out of 6 as well!

Mew entered the Danish album chart last week as no. 2. Unfortunately And The Glass Handed Kites didn't make the UK Top 75 album chart this week!

I've decided to let my "do-you-read-this-blog"-test run for a few more days. I honestly doubt that we will see further entries than the 8 so far!

I've also decided to abandon my monthly Top 15's, because last.fm works really fine now and more or less provides the same information.