A week has passed since last week’s news of Chilly B – RIP. I remember the very first time I heard Jam On It when I was on the playground in fourth grade. Even kids in MA were first break dancing to this along Run DMC’s Its Like That, now some Twenty plus odd years later and I am seeing this video for the first time. What a mind trip. What really blows me away is how much raw energy they have. You could rock this at a house party Friday night and it would still get people on the dance floor. Slaves to the beat.
Broken Bells, the collaboration between Danger Mouse and Shins lead singer James Russell Mercer deliver a gem with The High Road and I can’t wait to see how they pull off the live show when they visit The Troubadour in LA on March 14th. The show is sold out so don’t sleep on the opportunity to see them perform. Album release March 9th and you can pre-order it from Brokenbells.com
60 Minutes had an interesting report on Bloom Energy who claims they can replace the big power plants and the electricity grid with their new Bloom Box technology. Made from baked beach sand and ink, its a new kind of fuel cell with no need for burning or combustion to create energy, clean energy. Sound too good to be true? Fed Ex, Google, Wal-Mart and Staples are all currently using the Bloom Box. It is obvious that clean energy technology is the new gold rush for the 21st century and Bloom may hold the holy grail. Of course there are going to be skeptics to any new technology in the clean energy space claiming to have all the solutions but I also applaud Bloom’s vision and am hopeful that through human ingenuity and science we will create alternative energy solutions that will solve many of today’s challenges in the near future.
Slash’s first solo album features an amazing line-up of vocalists, making it quite an eclectic experience for anyone who’s had a chance to listen. One of my favorite songs is Andrew Stockdale’s “By The Sword,” as well as Ozzy’s “Crucify The Dead” and Rocco De Luca’s “Saint Is A Sinner Too.” Regardless of favorites, each track in the album makes it a classic journey led by the riffs of an icon.
SLASH, will release in April 2010. The all-star roster of guest musicians includes Ian Astbury, Chris Cornell, Rocco DeLuca, Fergie, Dave Grohl, Myles Kennedy, Kid Rock, Lemmy Kilmeister, Adam Levine of Maroon 5, Duff McKagan, M. Shadows of Avenged Sevenfold, Ozzy Osbourne, Iggy Pop, and Andrew Stockdale of Wolfmother.
“By The Sword” just premiered on Spinner and you can listen to it here.
Animal Collective & Danny Perez: Transverse Temporal Gyrus
This is surely something I would love to see more of: a collaboration by two artistic mediums to deliver an experience that surpasses their individual art. Psychedelic science. Experimental visual artist Danny Perez and Animal Collective are going to manifest their theory through sound and colors in an already sold-out exhibit at the Guggenheim Museam. Transverse Temporal Gyrus is inspired by the senses, elements that heighten & affect them, and our reactions.For the Guggenheim’s 50th Anniversary, the band Animal Collective has collaborated with artist Danny Perez on a site-specific performance piece that will transform the museum’s rotunda into a kinetic, psychedelic environment. Transverse Temporal Gyrus will feature original recorded music composed specifically for the event along with video projections, costumes, and props, rendering the band members and performers into intense, visual abstractions. During the evening, guests are invited to freely explore the space in order to fully immerse themselves in the environment created by Animal Collective and Danny Perez.
“all I have left is my soul, for left me with this winter so cold. take me away like I overdose on heroin. baby we were born for fun or maybe to sleep in the sun. a place where new waves come in, a place to begin.”
Coming back from a vacation is never easy. When that vacation is 30 days of summer in Brazil in the middle of winter here, well, coming back is really, really, rough. It took me weeks to get my head out of a haze, but I also discovered my latest swedish indulgence, jj. After finding they were the one act I didn’t recognize in some year-end lists of “best records of 2009″, I burnt through jj n2 faster than I have any other album in months. A couple of weeks later, the harmonica melody and wave sounds in the band’s new single Let Go instantly transported me, once again, to a paradise beach sippin on cold coconut water and eating fire-grilled cheese. It is contagious and announces the band’s next release, jj n3, out in March. The new album also features an amazing cover of The Game & Lil Wayne’s song My Life, with a similar style to the band’s great adaption of Lil Wayne’s Lolipop entitled Ecstasy.
“How quickly are you gonna get up?”
NIKE once again delivers a dramatically beautiful spot for it’s Winter Olympic campaign, featuring the sound of indie-rockers The Hours’ “Ali In The Jungle.” The song, a personal favorite, was first featured in EA Sport’s FIFA 08 soundtrack released in October 2007. Check out the full track here:
Copyright Criminals explores the craft of music sampling from the rise of hip-hop to its current state. The documentary provides interesting view points from various perspectives of the industry including Chuck D from Public Enemy to seminal D.I.Y producer Steve Albini. The film questions, ‘Can you own a sound?’
Sample culture is ultimately pop culture and I think this debate is a very interesting one. Can you own a sound? I’m still not sure what side I am on. I don’t think you should prevent or inhibit artistic expression yet somehow the original creator should still be compensated. I’m not saying we should only create art to make money but those that do should at least get the recognition and respect they deserve, ask the funky drummer himself, Clive Stubblefield.
What is even more interesting to me is where technology is taking us. Sample culture, hip-hop and its cut-and-paste ethos are driving innovation and art beyond sound. Pop culture is multi-media and we live in a multi-media world. Audio and Video. What we should really be asking is not ‘Can you own a sound?’ but what ownership of art for the creator really means?
Congratulations to Unidos da Tijuca for winnin Rio de Janeiro‘s Carnaval 2010 and taking the show to a “magical” level. Below is the video of the samba school’s parade at Marquês de Sapucaí. It’s narrated in portuguese, but you can hear the samba enredo in the background and it is a beautiful show to watch!