Yuck – Natsu Nandesu

Yuck - Natsu Nandesu

Here’s one to ease you into the latter half of your week.

Yuck has been getting some well deserved buzz this year, due to their fuzzy, shoegaze-y 90’s alternative sound. Basically, if Dinosaur Jr  and Pavement had a band-baby, it’d be Yuck.

Anyway, in addition to their solid self-titled debut, the band has released a string of standalone singles. This one comes straight off the Japanese edition of their album.

“Natsu Nandesu” is actually a cover; the original is by the Japanese folk-rock band Happy End. The original version is lovely, but I’m in love with Yuck’s rendition. Bassist Mariko Doi’s voice is so sweet, and I love how they really made the song their own, while managing to stay faithful to the earlier version.

Also, the fact that I can’t understand any of the lyrics turns Doi’s voice into another instrument. It adds texture to the overall composition, instead of being the main focus. 

Hopefully you can just ride this breezy track into the weekend.

The Rest – Always on My Mind/The Last Day

The Rest - Always On My Mind

I’m so far behind on music, it’s ridiculous. I’m just talking about the music I want to write about; forget about the submissions to go through to find the music I want to write about, that’s becoming a lost cause.

For example, these two songs from The Rest were sent to me about a month ago. In an ideal world, I would have shared it a month ago. I’m just working on getting the great music like this to your ears. Slowly, I’ll get through the awesome music from September like The Rest’s Always on My Mind/The Last Day EP. It’s available for free at Bandcamp until Halloween.

The Rest’s latest album SEESAW will be released in early 2012. The band resides in Hamilton, Canada. You can like them on Facebook. Enjoy!


The Appleseed Cast – As the Little Things Go

Where has all the post-rock gone? I’d be willing to be we will soon look back on the early/mid 2000’s as the golden-age of genre that had little chance of becoming popular. With its obscenely long songs and few-and-far-between lyrics and vocals, it does seem like quite a miracle that bands like Explosions in the Sky and Mogwai ever got to quit the day jobs. But maybe the fact that they were the antithesis of radio-pop’s 2.5 minute formulaic entries could be a reason for their success.

Kansas’ The Appleseed Cast are one of the forebearer’s of America’s post-rock wave. Having been to their hometown of Lawrence, KS, I can totally empathize with the solemnity of their music. On the uncommon occasion when vocals do enter the fray, one can never tell if the melodies are signs of triumphant victory or helpless exasperation. The jangly guitars are often soaked in healthy doses of reverb and delay, perhaps mirroring the expansiveness of their homeland.

I have a playlist on my computer of songs that I enjoy at times when I’m too tired to focus on words, intricate drumming, or anything really. This playlist features endless minor chords, chorus and string swells, and a consistent, wounded tone. The Appleseed Cast’s album Sagarmartha is on this list in its entirety. Its lead-off track “As The Little Things Go” is the perfect soundtrack to laying flat on your back on your bed, staring at your ceiling, and considering past defeats and future victories. But the hidden hopefulness of the music always reminds me that things could be worse- I could live in Kansas. Ha!

Inspired and the Sleep – While We’re Young

I’ll put a pause on personal stories today and get straight to the music. Yes, you’re quite welcome.

Inspired and the Sleep’s track While We’re Young from the album Teenager has absolutely everything I look for in a song. Every single thing. That’s hard to come by.

It has the quirky beginning to snag my interest, a relaxing back-tone, fun instruments in between verses, and overall blissful beats.

Hope ya dig it!

Until next Monday, catchya later tricks!


While We’re Young by Inspired and the Sleep