Beirut

November 24, 2008

beirut060807_560Beirut: This 22 year-old has been catching buzz since his release of Gulag Orkestar in 2006. Zach Condon started making music at the age of 15. Starting out with electronic lo-fi music, he slowly worked his way into melodies and orchestral elements. A high school drop-out, Zach decided to travel to Europe with his brother. This was when he was exposed to gypsy music, and he instantly fell in love. He recruited others to help him out with a release through his label, Ba Da Bing. Doing this, he added an assortment of instruments to the mix: accordions, ukulele (which he learned how to play), mandolin, trumpet, (something called a) glockenspiel, and (another unique item) a euphonium. [Curious? Wikipedia is your best friend.]

beirut_flyingclubcupAfter releasing a number of EPs and his debut (Gulag Orkestar), his last release The Flying Cup Club received a lot of positive reviews from critics and fans from all over. Once you step into Beirut’s world, you will find yourself in an indie-bohemian-pop wonderland. With Zach’s rich, deep voice, he gives a unique approach to the music world that typical artists could never attempt.

LA BLOGOTHEQUE (good luck reading it) has a plethora of artists perform live in the most interesting places. Check out youtube for performances by others. Here is Beirut walking through the streets singing “Nantes” (The Flying Cup Club), which is one of my favorites:

Unfortunately, Beirut had to cancel his upcoming tour. It was later confirmed he was briefly admitted to an hospital due to extreme exhaustion. Thankfully, he is back to normal and working on his next album, which I am dying to hear. Zach will be releasing a double-EP in February on his own record label, Pompeii records.

Other songs to check out:

1.) Elephant Gun

2.) Cliquot

New fact I just discovered: Cliquot is actually not sung by Zach on the album. It is sung by another unique artist by the name of Final Fantasy (not related to the game at all). In this video, it is the lead singer for Grizzly Bear.

3.) In The Mausoleum (amazing performance)

4.) Scenic World

5.) The Penalty

Have a great Thanksgiving ya’ll.

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No Kids

November 8, 2008

l_3518345d9577bcfa4fb1e7d8611361b2-1No Kids: It seems like a lot of good music comes from Canada nowadays. No Kids hail from Vancouver, British Columbia. The band is 3/4th of another critically acclaimed indie group, P:ano. Justin Kellam plays the lead singer while Julia Chirka and Nick Krgovich back him up with electronic pianos and drums. I would label them under indie-pop-R&B, which is so unique in many ways. Justin’s vocals are either smooth, falsetto, or low key. This also gives them a lounge/chill out kind of sound.

bdab06e9fd5f7275af4f8e5b7bc54668Their debut album, Come Into My House, was released in February of this year. Just like another singer-songwriter by the name of Feist, No Kids received a grant from the Canadian government to finance the recording of their first album. Apparently the name of the album is derived from a 1989 Queen Latifah song. I would definitely pick up this album if you want a change from the usual music out there. Their opening track “Great Escape” gives the feeling of an unreleased Ben Folds song. TAKE A LISTEN

Currently they are still touring with The Rosebuds:

11/19- Vancouver, British Columbia

11/20- Seattle, Washington

11/21- Anacortes, Washington

11/22- Portland, Washington

I had the chance to see them perform in Buffalo a couple weeks ago. (More about that at the end of the post.)

Other songs to check out:

1.) The Beach is Closed

2.) Listen for It/Courtyard Music

3.) Prisoner of Desire

4.) Bluster in the Air

5.) Dancing In the Stacks

No Kids actually opened for another great female indie singer-songwriter Mirah. It was my first time hearing them ever so I was excited.

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I was kind of captivated when they started playing honestly. It was a mixture of pop-R&B but with an indie twist. And the lead singer had a unique voice that seemed to compliment their sound even more.

The show did start off at a sour note:

1.) the event organizer was an hour late

2.) originally doors opened at 8 but we had to stand outside and wait for another two hours

3.) finally we went to a bar to grab a drink and came back to find that they let people in but the show STILL did not start

4.) the show didn’t start till about 10:30

5.) Mirah actually dropped a drum on her foot, so she had to sit to perform with this seriously gigantic swollen foot

In the end, the performances were really, really good. Mirah’s voice is just too pretty. She played a couple of songs and then went to the hospital right after.

And then like crazed fans, we approached her to take a picture and talk. I tried not to keep her long on behalf of her foot, but she was very cool about it.

101_29901All in all, the ticket only cost me $10. It was definitely well worth the money. Try to check these peeps out if they are ever near you. Enjoy this amazing Mirah song…

(What a victory on November 4th, eh?)

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