To finish up my end of the year lists, I've asked some friends for their highlights of the year as well. After all, music is best when enjoyed with friends and these are the people I go to for recommendations or who I try to convince to go and see Lightning Bolt with me at 1:00 AM on a Thursday. Thanks so much for participating and thanks to everyone who read omg-nyc this year. See you in 2013.
Hoax | 3rd EP
Merchandise | Children of Desire
Hammock | Departure Songs
Savages | Husbands
METZ | METZ
Andy Stott | Luxury Problems
Give | Voodoo Leather
Kendrick Lamar | good kid, m.A.A.d city
The Men | Open Your Heart
Beach House | Bloom
01 Frank Ocean | "Pyramids"
02 Tame Impala | "Feels Like We Only Go Backwards"
03 Craig Finn | "Terrified Eyes"
04 King Tuff | "Anthem"
05 A$AP Rocky | "Goldie"
06 Andy Stott | "Hatch the Plan"
07 Kindness | "House"
08 Goldroom | "Fifteen"
09 Charli XCX | "Valentine"
10 The Men | "Turn It Around"
01 Frank Ocean | channel ORANGE
02 Tame Impala | Lonerism
03 King Tuff | King Tuff
04 Craig Finn | Clear Heart Full Eyes
05 Kendrick Lamar | good kid, m.A.A.d city
06 Beach House | Bloom
07 The Men | Open Your Heart
08 The xx | Coexist
09 Miguel | Kaleidoscope Dreams
10 Chromatics | Kill For Love // The Walkmen | Heaven
01 Kendrick Lamar | good kid, m.A.A.d city
02 David Brubeck passes away
03 Against Me! singer plays first show as Laura Jane Grace
04 Godspeed You! Black Emperor | 'Allelujah! Don't Bend! Ascend!
05 Ravi Shankar passes away
06 Wild Nothing | Nocturne
07 Crystal Castles | III
08 The Weeknd getting called out on the internet for a shaky ACL Nights performance and subsequently cancelling his ACL appearance due to a doctor's note
09 RAQ Remixes (all of 2012)
10 Fiona Apple getting busted for a serious amount of Hash in Texas
01 Trust | trst
02 Fiona Apple | The Idler Wheel...
03 Azaelia Banks | 1991 EP + Fantasea Mixtape
04 Jessie Ware | Devotion
05 Matthew Dear | Beams
06 Vanbot | Vanbot
07 Sam Sparro | Return to Paradise
08 Carly Rae Jepsen | This Kiss
09 Zowie | Love Demolition
10 Chairlift | Something
01 Usher | "Climax"
02 Loreen | "Euphoria"
03 Flight Facilities (ft. Giselle) | "Crave You"
04 Zebra Katz (ft. Njenna Redd Foxx) | "Ima Read"
05 Mykki Blanco | "Wavvy"
06 Le1f | "Wat"
07 Little Boots | "Shake"
08 Alunageorge | "You Know You Like It"
09 A*M*E | "Play the Game Boy"
10 Cassie | "King of Hearts"
01 Julia Holter | Ekstasis
02 Grimes | Visions
03 Blouse | Blouse
04 Trust | TRST
05 ScHoolBoy Q | Habits & Contradictions
06 Frankie Rose | Interstellar
07 Burial | Kindred EP
08 Lower Dens | Nootropics
09 Crystal Castles | III
10 Gary War | Jared's Lot
01 Danny Brown | "Grown Up"
02 ScHoolBoy Q (ft A$AP Rocky) | "Hands on the Wheel"
03 Grimes | "Oblivion"
04 Frank Ocean | "Pyramids"
05 Kendrick Lamar (ft Dr. Dre) | "The Recipe"
06 ScHoolBoy Q | "There He Go"
07 Todd Terje | "Inspector Norse"
08 Azaelia Banks | "212"
09 Cassie | "King of Hearts"
10 Jessie Ware | "Wildest Moments"
Friday, December 21, 2012
Following my favorite songs of the year, here are my favorite records of 2012. Thank you so much for reading all year. I'll finish up the year end posts with my guest lists next week.
Thursday, December 20, 2012
Wednesday, December 12, 2012
"The great thing about New York is that people always seem to be on your side" stated James Blake shortly after easing his way into a spectacular show in Brooklyn and that statement never seemed so true. With the crowd hanging on every word, it seemed as if there was a cheer after every line he uttered kicking off with the opening lyrics"My brother and my sister" from "I Never Learnt to Share". Playing a heavy dose of material from his incredible debut and other EPs, Blake took a moment during some brief technical difficulty to let us know "the new record is almost finished" and some of the tracks from the forthcoming album even made their U.S. debuts. Carefully blending pristine vocals with tight beats that burst at the seams, Blake, with the support of two fantastic backing musicians playing live guitar and drums, unleashed a gorgeous display of crooning soulful vocals and concentrated dub blasts that hit you directly in your core. The dizzying early classic "CMYK" sounded as fresh and relentless as ever and his cover of Feist's "Limit to Your Love" brought the show to another level. He really seems to have made that song his own. For someone who has had a relatively quiet year, it was sensational to see people so mesmerized by a performance. His vocals can easily be compared to those of Thom Yorke or one-time collaborator Justin Vernon, but his ability to bend and manipulate them to fit snuggly within his deep hypnotic rhythms, displays a genius level of songwriting skills. Adding layers of warbled samples and rich textures only add to his craftsmanship When he announced the final song of the evening, an astounding version of "Wilhelm Scream", the crowd responded with a heartfelt sigh to which Blake simply said, "I was hoping you'd do that". After a brief tease, he was back for more swirling textures that immediately transfixed the entire room. Yet with momentum building, the night came to a close with a delicate and much requested "A Case of You" which absolutely melted the crowd and ended an enchanting performance.
Thursday, December 06, 2012
There was a lot riding on Animal Collective's make-up gig for their cancelled appearance at the Williamsburg Waterfront. My last encounter with the band was during their 2007 tour in support of the awesome Strawberry Jam. It was probably the most disappointing show I've seen in the past five years.
Playing a set of material mostly from the good (but not great) Centipede Hz, the group was surrounded by psychedelic claws and rainbow saturated teeth that hosted an outburst of warped images and television static. Exploding to life during new tunes "Applesauce" "Wide Eyed" and "Moonjock" the group was firing on all cylinders and seamlessly transitioned between each track. The slow burning "Crimson" got the night off to a slow start and lead single "Today's Supernatural" fell flat along with "Mercury Man" as Avey Tare donned his best Pat Smear hair style and sat cornered away while Deakin and Geologist kept the momentum at a high. Schizoid blasts of electric pulses were non-stop and throbbing bass lines echoed the cavernous hall; the band has never seemed so distant from their Sung Tong days. Panda Bear's booming "New Town Burnout" sounded as epic as ever and it was such a pleasure to see him behind a drum kit. As Merriweather closer "Brother Sport" began to take shape towards the end of the main set, the crowd reached a new level of excitement that had laid dormant for most of the new material. An epic sing-a-long from the crowd ensued during the monstrous hit as a wave of bliss overcame the audience. After what seemed like the culmination of sonic ecstasy for the evening, the song bled into "Peacebone" and Avey ditch his postion behind synths and boards for his traditional place in the front. His screams soared and his body lurched during each wail bringing the primitive nature of the band back into the mix. The encore kicked off with the under appreciated "Also Frightened" before the mega-sensation "My Girls" brought the crowd to a near frenzy. Things winded down with "Amanita", the closer from their latest release and probably the weakest track on the album. It was an unfortunate low to an evening of tremendous promise for a band not known to be crowd pleasers. Going into an Animal Collective show with any kind of expectation is a mistake and when you allow the band to take you on their magical journey with an open mind, you are far better off than hoping for them to play some sort of greatest hits set.
02 Today's Supernatural
03 Wide Eyed
05 Mercury Man
06 Lion in a Coma
08 Father Time
09 New Town Burnout
10 Monkey Riches
11 Brother Sport
13 Also Frightened
14 My Girls
Sunday, December 02, 2012
Dinosaur Jr. playing their toxic fueled masterpiece You're Living All Over Me in its entirety is enough of a selling point on a show by itself, however add on a dream list of special guests, and it instantly becomes legendary. As the band catapulted into "Little Fury Things" they were joined by Lee Ranaldo who helped deliver extra backing vocals as the band celebrated the twenty-fifth anniversary of their immortal sophomore record. Played in near perfection, the trio ripped through the entire album busting out prime, oozed-out, renditions of "Sludgefeast", "In a Jar", "The Lung", "Tarpit" and culminating with Lou's lo-fi precursor "Poledo". And that was only the beginning. In the weeks leading up to the celebration, special guests were said to be joining the band onstage, but the onslaught of stars was nothing short of spectacular. Pixies leader Frank Black joined in on a new tune before sticking around for Doolittle classic "Tame" and that was only the beginning. Johnny Marr found his way to the stage along with Kevin Drew for perhaps the most epic version of the already killer "The Wagon" before leading the grunge pioneers into the Smiths classic "The Boy With The Thorn In His Side". And the hits just kept on coming. Kim Gordon pulverized "Don't" off Bug in what was one of the most thrilling and raw performances of the night. Seeing the queen of fuzzed out rock alongside the titans of Dinosaur is not something soon to be forgotten. Hell, they even through in a Deep Wound track. In someways it seemed like a fantasy. Dinosaur Jr. covering the Pixies with Frank Black and the Smiths with Johnny Marr is something straight out of a dream and being there to witness it in person will unquestionably be remembered for years to come. The encore kicked off with Fred Armisen taking on drumming duties and Tommy Stinson picking up the bass to cover the Stooges' "TV Eye" before bringing Kevin Drew back for "Start Choppin". Fittingly, the night ended with the forever fantastic "Freakscene", but not before the absolute annihilation of the audience. Sure there were some jams that lasted too long and some of J's solos were long winded, but that only made the classics shine through in an even greater light and in some moments be down right captivating. It seems strange to be gawking at a Dinosaur Jr. show in 2012, but tonight saw the band in rare form as they were joined by other visionaries that without a doubt influenced almost all in attendance. There are sometimes when Dinosaur Jr. can seem on par with your friend's garage band that you've seen a million times throughout the years, and then there are moments when everything clicks and you are witnessing three men unleashing some sort of magical power. The explosive guitar wails of J Masics and the locked in tight rhythms from Lou and Murph are certainly forces to be reckoned with and twenty-five years after the release of their magnum opus, it is clear that many other bands still have a lot of catching up to do.
02 "Little Fury Things" (w/ Lee Ranaldo)
05 "The Lung"
08 "In a Jar"
11 "Almost Fare" (w/ Frank Black)
12 "Tame" (w/ Frank Black) [Pixies cover]
13 "Alone" (w/ Al Cisneros & Kurt Vile)
14 "Don't Pretend You Didn't Know"
15 "Watch the Corners"
16 "The Wagon" (w/ Johnny Marr & Kevin Drew)
17 "The Boy With The Thorn In His Side" (w/ Johnny Marr) [Smiths cover]
18 "Training Ground" (w/ Dale Crover) [Deep Wound] cover
20 "Crucified" [Iron Cross]
21 "Don't" (w/ Kim Gordon)
22 "TV Eye" (w/ Fred Armisen & Tommy Stinson)
23 "Start Choppin"