Secretly Canadian + New DCfC Song

First off, WTTMW can now be found at http://www.welcometothemidwest.com. Update your bookmarks, or just use the old address.

Also here's an MP3 of a new Death Cab for Cutie song.

MP3 Soul Meets Body



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Not only does Bloomington, IN based label Secretly Canadian have a great name, but also a wonderful line-up of bands: from the lounge/jazz/folk act of Antony and the Johnsons to the indie/rock of Damien Jurado. They've really come up with a great collection of bands. Here's a sampling of some great music, courtesy of the wonderful Secretly Canadian:

Antony and the Johnsons
MP3 Cripple and the Starfish (from Antony and the Johnsons)
MP3 Hope There's Someone (from I Am A Bird Now)

Br. Danielson
MP3 Things Against Stuff (from Brother is to Sun)

Damien Jurado
MP3 Texas to Ohio (from Where Shall You Take Me?)
MP3 White Center (from On My Way to Absense)

Danielson Famile
MP3 Good News for the Puss Pickers (from Fetch the Compass Kids)
MP3 Nice of Me (from A Prayer for Every Hour)

Early Day Miners
MP3 All Harm (from All Harm Ends Here)

June Panic
MP3 Let My Lungs Coin Words (from Hope You Fail Better)

Magnolia Electric Co.
MP3 Cross the Road (from Trials and Errors)
MP3 The Dark Don't Hide It (from What Comes After the Blues)

Richard Swift
MP3 Lady Day (from The Novelist / Walking Without Effort)
MP3 As I Go (from The Novelist / Walking Without Effort)

Songs: Ohia
MP3 Lioness (from The Lioness)
MP3 Steve Albinis Blues (from Didn't it Rain)

The Impossible Shapes
MP3 Bombs (from Horus)
MP3 Perfect Timing (from We Like It Wild)

Windsor for the Derby
MP3 Giving Up (from Giving Up the Ghost)
MP3 The Melody of a Fallen Tree (from We Fight Till Death)

Tour Dates / Booking / News / Media / Store


Odds and Ends

Stream "Soul Meets Body," the single from Death Cab for Cutie's forthcoming major label debut at the band's MySpace. (via Stereogum)

The new Harry Potter book is now out. I don't really care, but I guess some people do.

Anyone seen new Charlie and the Chocolate Factory yet? Any thoughts?

CNN has info on what's been up with Chapelle's Show. I'm pulling for production to start again soon.

Sample Devendra Banhart's new album Cripple Show here. (Note to readers: It's really freakin good, even though the album art scares the living crap out of me.)


Okkrevil River

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I really don't remember where I first heard this wonderful band, but I'm thankful to whoever turned me on to them. Okkervil River is a rock band. They aren't just a normal "Foo Fighters/Queens of the Stone/I rip off Eddie Vedder" rock band though. They're a good rock band. By using elements of folk/roots to create very introspective and rockin' songs, they've created some chilling music. Some may be turned off by the vocals, as singer Will Sheff's vocals aren't exactly the smoothist things around. I'm not calling this a bad thing, however, as his shaking, haunting vocals work perfectly with Okkervil River's style of dark, country music-inspired rock. They've had quite the buzz around them for a while now, so be sure to check them out. They just finished tourning with Rilo Kiley, so look for them to play some shows here-and-there this summer.

From Sleep and Wake Up Songs EP
MP3 A Favor

From Black Sheep Boy
MP3 For Real
MP3 Black

From Live Performance on KEXP (5/18/05)
MP3 The Latest Toughs (Live)
MP3 Some Weird Sin (Live)

VIDEO It Ends With a Fall (QuickTime Required) (15MB)
VIDEO For Real (QuickTime Required) (25MB)

The stream of the session at KEXP is here, so listen to the whole thing if you'd like.

Check out their website if you so please. Buy their music while you're there.


Odds and Ends

Thanks to awesome blog press from Brooklyn Vegan, My Old Kentucky Blog, Gorilla Vs. Bear, Stereogum, Muzzle of Bees, South of Mainstream, Largeheartedboy, and many others, I've been averaging over 500 hits a day. Thanks a lot everyone.

The All Good Naysayers message board is in full swing. Man, do those people (including me) love Sufjan.

Sorry for the small entries lately, I'm working double my usual hours this week. Tomorrow will have a full update.


Sufjan Stevens on KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic

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So yea, I'm obssesed with the man and his banjo. So sue me. Anyways... here's his performance from earlier today from KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic:

As always, please right click and save as...

EDIT 10:19pm - I added a freshly recorded version of "Jacksonville," complete with the first 4 seconds or so that were cut off in the first MP3.

EDIT 10:36pm - I cleaned up the beginning and end of all the songs, so now they're not all jagged and what not. I didn't, however, clean up the interview or the intro. I thought it to be kind of pointless. The file sizes are also smaller in order to save space for you and for me. Enjoy this wonderful set.

MP3 Intro
MP3 Casimir Pulaski Day
MP3 The Man of Metropolis Steals Our Hearts
MP3 Chicago
MP3 Interview
MP3 John Wayne Gacy Jr.
MP3 A Good Man Is Hard To Find
MP3 Jacksonville

What a wonderful performance. Make sure you get "The Man of Metropolis Steals our Hearts," it's an amazing song.

Please let me know if a link isn't working, I rushed this up. Enjoy.

Also see Sufjan Live @ WNYC.


Matt Pond PA

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I really don't know why it took me so long to mention this wonderful band. I've been in love with this band and their chamber indie/pop music for a while now. Maybe it's my obsession with the cello, or maybe it's singer Matt Pond's wonderfully abrasive voice, but there was a period of time where I exclusively listened to these guys. A lot of their songs are musically upbeat, with simple driving bass lines and tap-your-foot-along-with-the-beat drums. Some, however, are beautiful and longing, relying heavily on the cello to push along the melody. Pond writes a majority of his songs about the wilderness and nature, with many references to lakes, trees, fire, and the weather. He imposes a beautiful sense of lonliness in a lot of his songs, paralleling the lonliness of a vast open stretch of wilderness. That sounds a little cliche' but he pulls it off really well. They've made an appearence (musically) on the O.C. and on the O.C. Mix Volume 4, and even have a wonderful cover of Neutral Milk Hotel's "In the Airplane Over the Sea." Expect a new full length from them by the end of year. I reccomend checking out "Promise the Bite" and "Measure 3," two of my favorite songs.

From Deer Apartments
MP3 Possibilities of Summer

From The Nature of Maps
MP3 Closer

From Measure
MP3 The Hollows

From The Green Fury
MP3 Measure 3

From This Is Not The Green Fury
MP3 Lily One

From Emblems
MP3 Graves Disease

From Winter Songs EP
MP3 In the Airplane Over the Sea

From Live Performance in Middle East, MA - 10.12.2001
MP3 Promise the Bite (Live)

From @ KEXP Session
MP3 KC (Live)

Check out their neat website here and buy their music at Insound.


Odds and Ends

Of Montreal is planning an extensive summer tour. Check out the dates here.

FUNTIME OK has an awesome set of Intonation previews on Thunderbirds are Now! and The Decemberists.


Stars Live @ KEXP

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(Sorry for the low quality picture... it's all I could find of their KEXP sessions)

I was looking through the archives over at KEXP and saw that Stars had a few performances up. So, as the stream-ripping junkie that I am, I recorded it. So here, for your listen pleasure are four songs from their April 2, 2005 performance and one song from their March 23, 2003 performance.

God, I love these Canadians.

As always, please right click and save as.

MP3 Your Ex-Lover Is Dead (Live @ KEXP 4/2/05)
MP3 Reunion (Live @ KEXP 4/2/05)
MP3 On Peak Hill (Live @ KEXP 4/2/05)
MP3 Calender Girl (Live @ KEXP 4/2/05)

MP3 Look Up (Live @ KEXP 4/2/05)

Well, there ya go. Since I have a bunch of sexy server space, look for cool stuff like this all the time. Enjoy.

Odds and Ends

Thanks to Brooklyn Vegan (LINK) and the almighty Stereogum (LINK) for the hot link action. I had record hit numbers yesterday because of it. Thanks go out to those great blogs. Also thanks to recent mentions from South of Mainstream and Gorilla VS Bear. I appreciate the press.


Monday Mix #5

Here's the good ole Monday Mix. I'm gonna start making them 5 songs every week now, just cus it's easier to assemble. However, I will be offering all of the songs individually for download, thanks to my new server space and bandwidth.

Remember, please "right click and save as."

Here's the goods:

1. Matt Pond PA - New Hampshire (Live @ KEXP)
Anyone who knows me, knows how much I love Matt Pond PA. Here's one of their most well known songs (thanks to the O.C.) performed live for those wonderful people over at KEXP.

2. Sufjan Stevens - The 50 States Song (Live @ Lee's Palace)
This anthem is a must have for any Sufjan fan. It's clever (with the great line "Visit Nebraska, there's nothing to do!") and very Sufan-ish in it's beauty. Download it. Now.

3. The Mountain Goats - Golden Jackal Song (From New Asian Cinema)
I love John Darnielle. His songs are poignant and a graceful, even with his sharp pronounciation. This is kind of an oldie, but I love it. It's classic Mountain Goats.

4. Marzuki - Newmantra (from No One Likes a Nervous Wreck)
This is Sufjan Stevens' old band. They're really quite good. Sufjan played the whistles and accordian, among others. It's beautiful folk/indie music. If you like Sufjan, you should like Marzuki.

5. The New Amsterdams - Strangled By the Thought (All I Want Is You) (From Killed or Cured Demos)
Yea, I know, I'm a sucker for an emotional acoustic song. Matt Pryor will always have a piece of my heart for his role in the Get Up Kids. However, since they are no more, I'll take The New Amsterdams. With all their Folk/Americana/Emo/Indie goodness.

Tomorrow I'll be uploading another KEXP performance from one of my favorite bands. Who? Well... they're Canadian if that helps any.


Odds and Ends

Holy crap... I've mentioned on one of my favorite music blogs: Brooklyn Vegan.

If you love Sufjan Stevens, join All Good Naysayers, a great new message board. There are live show downloads and a bunch of useless info. Plus, yours truly is a Mod.



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Some of you may have heard these girls before, but "hey," I thought, "I'll give them some free press." So here's the deal on Smoosh: they're a pair of sisters (ages 11 and 13) that make catchy, upbeat indie/pop. You're probably thinking "oh they're 11 and 13, how good could it be?" Well, it's damn good. These girls know how to make charming, yet simple pop music. The songs range from funny to inspirational to just plain fun and lighthearted. I don't know about you, but when I was like 12 or 13 I spent most of my time playing Super Nintendo and eating Dorritos, not touring with Mates of State and opening for Pearl Jam or Death Cab for Cutie (all of which they've done). Once you get past the initial "awwww" of hearing these two girls croon and wail like rock stars twice their age, you can easily see how talented they really are. Songs like "It's Cold" and "La Pump" really showcase how talented these girls are.

From 2004's She Like Electric
MP3 Pygmy Motorcycle
MP3 It's Cold

VIDEO La Pump (QuickTime required)

They have websites here(Label) and here(Band).


Odds and Ends

Love Sufjan Stevens? Well, now there' s a message board for you. Head to AllGoodNaysayers.Net for news, reviews, downloads, etc.

Pitchfork has a review up of Wolf Parade's EP.

Saddle Creek Records (home of Cursive, Bright Eyes, The Faint, etc.) plan on opening a club in Omaha. Sweetness...

I've gotten my own webspace, so look for bigger and better files in the near future.