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Cole aka DEAD GAZE sent over the new jam from his upcoming Group Tightener release (we all saw that coming, amiright?) this morning. It’s, as you’d expect, an 80s pop-happy trip song, with vocals so thick in reverb it’s hard to hear what’s going on. That’s the intention, right?

When I listen to this I can’t help but picture a combination of Tom Cruise and Molly Ringwald. Like if they met in 1986 and decided that they were the future of pop culture. That didn’t quite happen, but maybe if they had teamed up then we’d have a different world today. Anyway, it doesn’t matter because we have DEAD GAZE to provide that daydream for us. For me, I mean.


Dead Gaze: We All Belong to You

Cole Furlow is moving to Brooklyn, so if you missed his show last week, no worries. You’ll get another chance soon.

One week ago, some great minds in music writing/blogging converged at Newtown Radio in Brooklyn. The reason was to discuss the ethics of music writing online, and the recent increase in blogger run labels. The conversation was lively, informative and above all, fun. Those taking part say it was constructive, those listening in were tweeting up a storm.

The forum was organized by Visitation Rites and Microphone Memory Emotion. Ari Stern of Underwater Peoples helped us lead the conversation, and Mark from Newtown Radio contributed immensely with his technical assistance.

Guests:

Ryan Schreiber, Founder of Pitchfork Media; Sam Hockley-Smith, Editor at The FADER magazine and co-owner of Group Tightener, Michael McGregor, founder of Chocolate Bobka and The Curatorial Club, Mark Schoneveld, founder of Yvynyl and co-owner of upcoming label Trig Club and Chris Cantalini, of Gorilla Vs. Bear and  Forest Family Records.

Topics covered:

What’s the difference between a writer/journalist/critic and a blogger? Does the difference lie in the medium in which said person writes?

Is objectivity possible in blogging? Is it even desirable?

Should we think of bloggers more as “curators” than as writers?

Can and should blogs write negative reviews? Does criticism have a place in the blogosphere?

Is it ethical for a blogger to sell what they have created a demand for?

Can a blogger ethically write about something he or she is also releasing? Is transparency enough?

How important is the question of scale? Would a blogger-run label represent a conflict of interest if it ceased to operate on a limited-run basis, and became a more commercially-minded operation with wide distribution?

Does the fact that a blogger-run label boasts its own built-in pr-outlet give it a natural advantage of the traditional record label? Do blogger-run labels have the potential to transform the record industry from the inside-out?

Are blogs the new A&R?

The concept of “firsties.”

At the end of the conversation we took a few calls and tweets with questions including what we had every reason to believe was a request for Tumblr advice from Carles himself. Unfortunately we ran out of time mid-discussion. This conversation was the first of many so stay tuned.

Stream and download the whole conversation below. Newtown Radio is a DIY operation so keep that in mind while listening. And no, someone was not trying to call in via fax machine.

See comments on this discussion on the Tiny Mix Tapes debate post or the Drowned in Sound community thread.

Enjoy a bit of intro music as we did to get you in the “zone.” The song is “Aftermath: Isle of Self” by Dolphins Into the Future.


Blogger Ethics DOWNLOAD

Words by Emilie Friedlander and Georgia Kral

Twin Sister actually sounded a little bit like a different band on Saturday night. Not more grown up, per se, but more confident. In the past four or five months, Twin Sister has gone from good band to great band, and have charmed the ears off some of the harshest critics I know.

It’s not just that Twin Sister has good songs that make you feel like art can make life better. They certainly have that going for them. But what Twin Sister has more than anything, is an electric magnetism that is literally impossible to steer clear of. Once singer Andrea Estella begins with lines like, “I can’t see the other side of your face. But I know that it is mean,” you’re fixated.

“The Other Side Of Your Face” is Twin Sister’s best JAM. It’s a 7-minute crusher of echoes and crashing waves and deep sighs. It builds with insurmountable tension for what feels like forever before exploding out with brilliant colors all over the stage and audience.

“I could try to start over this week. But I can’t change the way I feel.”

The song goes on in psychic bliss and halfway through breaks down. Simple drums and one synth and one plucked guitar string builds and grows and grows and grows. This is moving on the band’s forthcoming EP, Color Your Life, but live it’s a different monster. Not only is Estella’s tiny tattooed frame dancing right in your face, but the jam goes on longer and bursts at the end. The bubble must pop. And it does.

Tortilleria Taqueria Tres Hermanos was filled to the gills, much like the tacos they serve. Covered in veggies and spicy chorizo. An employee of the factory was actually the biggest fan of all. He danced all over, right in Estella’s face for practically the entire performance. Not a care in the world held him back. In a way, that’s what Twin Sister’s music inspires: complete submission.

Twin Sister mostly played their newer, more spaced out shoegazer jams on Saturday. And while guitarist Eric Cardona sang at least one song, most were handled by Estella. This is a band that knows how to feature their talents. Cardona plays his guitar upside down, by the way, which is probably why you’re always aghast at his guitar sounds. So sweet and melodic?! I think he’s left handed… or maybe he’s just crazzzzzy.

If you haven’t seen Twin Sister yet, you must do so very soon. The way they move, the way they perform, what they give you, it’s priceless. And can’t be found anywhere else right now.

Mercury Lounge on April 28. Open Road Rooftop, 350 Grand St. on May 14.

The band was giving away their upcoming EP, but no longer. Pre-order from Infinite Best. You can also get some demo stuff on cassette from the Curatorial Club.

See more photos on Flickr.

Cloud Nothings came out of nowhere and are the biggest thing right now. To have two premieres in one day on two of the biggest music sites on the internet (Gorilla vs. Bear and The Fader)… that can only mean one thing. OK, it could mean two things.

a) You’re a buzz band.

b) You’re good!

In this case, both are true. I saw Cloud Nothings first show. They opened for Real Estate and Woods at the Market Hotel. It was fun, energetic, and they played loud and ferociously. (Big Up’s to Todd P. He heard the band and booked them on that show.) I saw them play again less than a month later, opening for Alex Bleeker and the Freaks and others. Also a great show.

The band is playing SXSW and MtyMx. I’ll be seeing a lot of them and will report back.

Here’s one new song, off a Group Tightener release. (BTW, Group Tightener is the label run in part by Sam Hockley-Smith, an editor at The Fader. Conflict of interest?) CLARIFICATION: See Hockley-Smith’s comment. There will be no conflict.


Cloud Nothings: Morgan

There’s something about the music of Alex Bleeker that makes me want to retreat to swingsets and treehouses. I guess it could be mostly because he sings about adolescence- not wanting to go back to school, swimming pools, the backs of pick-up trucks, etc. Or maybe that’s just suburban life. Either way- i’m really feeling it. This song popped up on MySpace last week and today the main man Chocolate Bobka posted the mp3- thanks brother.

“Never Goin’ Back” is on an upcoming Group Tighener 7″. Catch Alex and the Freaks Wednesday night at Monster Island Basement with best Coast, Ducktails and more!


Alex Bleeker and the Freaks: Never Goin’ Back

is this a metaphor?

is this a metaphor?

I really don’t know. What I do know is this fuzzy New Jersey song has an infectious beat. The vocals sound like they could be coming from a 12-year-old but there’s no way a 12-year-old could come up with this. Or is there….

No matter thinking anymore on that. Fluffy Lumbers is Samuel Franklin and he’s another of the Group Tightener acts. A 7″ is forthcoming. FL has already released this.

See Fluffy Lumbers at some upcoming CMJ related shows…including Underwater Peoples, Chocolate Bobka, Group Tightener, etc. You know, all the cool ones!


Fluffy Lumbers: Harry Dolland’s

tweetstreet

Flickr Photos

Conover Street in Red Hook, Brooklyn at 11 a.m. Tuesday.

Flooding on Van Brunt Street next to Fairway

Van Brunt Street, Red Hook

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