Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Plantlife - Agirllikeudeservesamanwhotreatsuhowulike

It's been a few years since we heard from Plantlife, the L.A. outfit that brought us the funky grooves and electro-soul mash-ups heard on their massive debut album The Return of Jack Splash. This time they seem to be heading in a slightly more electronic direction, but there's no mistaking the Prince-esque crooning of lead singer Jack Splash. Their new album Time Traveller will definitely be rocking your parties if you're a fan of Chromeo, Sly and the Family Stone, !!! or George Clinton. It's available now on Rapster Records... what are you waiting for?

» Bonus Track: Sumthin About Her
» Buy it on Amazon

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Constantines + Feist - Islands in the Stream (Kenny Rogers/Dolly Parton cover)

Who can resist a collaboration between The Constantines and Feist doing a rendition of a song that was made famous by Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton, but originally written by The Bee Gees? Not me. As a clever marketing move to help promote the upcoming Constantines album Kensington Heights, Arts and Crafts have issued this special recording of "Islands in the Stream" on a limited edition 7" (I think it's also available digitally). The b-side is the track "Trans Canada", which also appears on Kensington Heights (the cover doesn't). Either way, both songs are fantastic, even if the new Cons album has been a bit of a grower for me.

» Buy the 7" here

Monday, April 07, 2008

Free Blood - Grumpy

I've been eagerly anticipating a full-length release from Free Blood ever since they posted their first song on MySpace a couple years ago. Although they still haven't delivered on that LP, I'll be more than happy to listen to new material from them in two song increments so long as they keep putting out EPs as good as this. John Pugh used to be the percussionist for !!!, and if you're a fan of !!!, you'll find that there is a very familiar off-kilter rhythm that drives most of their songs. However, "Grumpy" strays from that mold and ups the tempo slightly, producing what could be their most addictive track to date. There's no question that this music was made for the dance floor. Check out their wacky video for "Royal Family" if you want some visuals to accompany the groove. You can currently catch Free Blood on tour across North America opening for Hot Chip.

» Bonus Track: Royal Family
» Bonus Track: Quick and Painful (Hot Chip Remix)

YMCK - Future Invasion

If you're at all into the current 8-bit music scene, which re-appropriates old school video game samples and synthesizer chips to make new songs, odds are you may have heard of the Japanese trio YMCK. They played the Blip Festival a couple of years ago in New York and have been gaining in popularity with the help of their pixel perfect retro music videos. Just last month their third album Family Genesis was released in the U.S., and I'm happy to report that it's basically more of the same sugary pop goodness! Most of the lyrics and song titles aren't in English, but that hardly seems to matter. Be warned: if you didn't grow up on the beeps and bleeps of the NES or Commodore 64, their music just might make you want to stab toothpicks in your ears!

» Bonus Track: Sabita Tobira no Dai 8 Tengoku
» Buy it on Amazon