Friday, February 7, 2014

The Well-Played List, 02-07-2014: Beck, Behemoth, Har Mar Superstar, Robert Pollard & more

Posted By on Fri, Feb 7, 2014 at 4:44 PM

It’s the end of the week, which means it's time to get your jam on. The ongoing listening series otherwise known as The Well-Played List features the most listened-to, jammed-out songs, albums and artists of the week as submitted by the CL Music Team along with a rotating crew of tastemakers — local music promoters, record store and venue owners, music fans and scenesters, DJs, musicians, and a radio personality or two; check the past several week’s worth here. Audio and video included, along with any applicable show information. And on that note, what are you jamming this week? Tell us in the comments…

LEILANI

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Surfer Blood I'm screening music for the upcoming Whigfest in downtown St. Pete, and realized I'd never dived real deep into the new Surfer Blood, Pythons (2013) . Then I realized that I had, actually, it's just not very memorable or gripping; I've already walked away from the grungy, Weezer-y beach-imbued sounds a few times, not to mention forgot what I was listening to once, too (and not in a good way). My feeling of general disinterest has only been allayed by a few good tracks off Tarot Classics (2011) and the majority of fantastic debut, Astro Coast, though I'm still prompted not to return for another listen and instead, move on to a second Whigfest artist that I have hot and cold feelings about, Pinback.

Air, Moon Safari (1998), Talkie Walkie (2004), Love (2009) Aural xanax; the band is an all-time fave and these three albums are frequent fallbacks to break up the tedium of every day (critical) listening.

Beck, Morning Phase (out Feb. 25 via Capitol) Another album that's not quite hitting me right to from an artist I quite like. Beck's 12th full-length could be a slow-burner; it's definitely slow, swirling and trippy/folky, befitting the crunchy loop he's been caught in since Modern Guilt but with a more earnest Sea Change vibe, neither of which are my favorite of his work, though the former is looking pretty appealing right now. I hope this one's creeper; can't figure out if Rolling Stone is just blowing steam with its review ("gently psychedelic suspense and warming cosmic-cowboy reflection" Check out the vinyl cutting set to "Blue Moon" after the jump.

ADAM KUHN | Music fan and scenester with discerning taste | Front End Designer, Big Sea Design & Development

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Behemoth, The Satanist (2014) Absolutely crushing blackened death metal, heavy on theatrics and production but not at the cost of intensity. Seamless transitions from orchestral sludge to organ-layered blast beats, these Polish creepers bridge the gap between desolate black metal and prog much like Deafheaven managed with shoegaze. A highly technical accomplishment.

Cheveu, BUM (2014) These Parisian post-punks have finally busted out of the garage and built far more instrumentation into their latest while maintaining the sparse sound the band was founded on. This is one of the weirdest, most scattershot, playful and decidedly French albums I have heard in some time, yet perfectly paced and with a backbone of pop sensibility that you'll find yourself nodding your head to without nodding off. Light fare.

Angel Olsen, Burn Your Fire for No Witness (out Feb. 18, 2014 via Jagjaguwar) This is a huge departure from my typical fare; Ms. Olsen fluctuates between downcast indie folk (not my bag) to upbeat garage stompers of the sort I often favor. She manages to find a niche somewhere between the coffee shops of today and the soda shops of the '50s, conjuring shades of Nancy Sinatra and Ronnie Spector (and sometimes a dash of Slim Whitman-style warbling) melting into slow-burners that bring to mind a female Mark Kozelek. "Hi-Five" video below.

DEBORAH RAMOS

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Har Mar Superstar, Dark Touches (2009), Bye Bye 17 (2013) From Wikipedia: "Har Mar Superstar is a character who bears several behavioral and physical similarities to porn star Ron Jeremy; he is chubby ... he often performs his shows nearly nude, and appears obsessed with his own sexual prowess." Spotify's Related Artists: Jim James, Father John Misty, French Kicks, Thao and the Get Down Stay Down, Elvis Costello

If you're like me at all, from seeing the above you'll be driven to dig a bit deeper into Har Mar Superstar. After hearing his music, I'm thinking, what's not to love about this guy? Not only is he witty, he's got the vocal and songwriting chops to back it up over a variety of musical genres. Dark Touches is slathered in sexually charged lyrics, fluctuating between '80s-influenced electro beatbox funk, New Edition-style R&B, and pure disco. Bye Bye 17 is silky smooth horn-driven soul; Sam Cooke incarnate. Someone, PLEASE bring this man to Tampa.

Check a snippet of both styles below — the breakdance inducing song about a marijuana dealer, "Dope, Man" and "Prisoner," a brass heavy tribute to Stevie Wonder (featuring Fabrizio Moretti of The Strokes.)

GABE ECHAZABAL

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Tony Hadley, Live From Metropolis Studios (2013) Brand new, UK-only CD/DVD combo pack that documents a small, intimate show ex-Spandau Ballet lead singer Tony Hadley treated diehard fans to in 2012. Hadley's pipes are still as clear and resonant as ever as shown in the sparkling rendition of "True" he delivers here, his former band's worldwide smash hit single from 1983. Tony and the stellar band that backs him on the energetic live recording work their way through plenty of Spandau favorites but also throw in some interesting covers for good measure. The tall, debonair Hadley and company borrow from the catalogs of David Bowie, The Killers, Stereophonics and, most noteworthy, Duran Duran, Spandau's stiffest competition for the New Romantic throne in early-1980's glamour-obsessed England. Hadley turns in a faithful, kickass rendition of Duran's signature 1982 classic "Rio" here that is sure to raise the eyebrows of any loyal DD fan. While Spandau Ballet live reunions are few and far between (and tend to only occur in the UK lately), this fun live disc and its video counterpart are sure to please fans who long for the days of the decadent 1980s. Video of "To Cut A Long Story Short" below.

JERRY DUFRAIN | DJ Lazy, Orpheum co-owner

Dangeruss, Brick Flair Mixtape (2013)
My dude in a trap. Get the mixtape presented by DJ Ritz here.

Tides Of Man, Young & Courageous (2014) If you aren't checkin' for the new Tides of Man, then I just don't know what to say to you. This has everything that I want in a record right now. Probably my favorite band out of Tampa Bay. Find out more here.

Potty Mouth, Hell Bent (2013) These Massachusetts women are so great! Just presses every single mid-90s East Coast indie girl band button that I have. The snide monotone delivery is straight out of Liz Phair's Exile In Guyville. My new obsession! Check out brand new video "Black and Studs" below.

ROBBY MCDONALD | Mojo Books & Records
Robert Pollard, Blazing Gentlemen (2013) This must be Pollard's 50th or 70th full-length between Guided By Voices and solo material but nonetheless, concise and brilliant as always.

The Three O'Clock, Aquarius Andromeda (2013) Burger Records has always been one of my faves and it's records like this that remind me why I keep going back after all these years.

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