Archive for the website Category

Todd P NYC

Posted in music, shows, Tom, website with tags , , , , , on September 22, 2008 by criticalreviews

I emailed Todd P NYC about the Mount Eerie show at the Lutheran Church of the Messiah this past Friday because there was some banter about advanced tickets between Phil (Mount Eerie) and the crowd at the Bowery Ballroom show the night before. And I got this response:

if you’re really worried, print this thread and bring it to the door.
we’ll make sure you and your date get in even if it’s tight.

I hear alot of people talk trash about Todd P, but I thought this was super nice. I enjoy going to his shows, and I’m just using this as a way to say thank you!

Although we got in without a problem the show did sell out really fast. Mount Eerie was amazing, as always.

(Tom)

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Caff/Flick Records: Mailorder and Podcasts

Posted in mailorder, music, podcasts, records, Tom, website with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 5, 2008 by criticalreviews

So a while ago I was looking to find any of the High Places records (I know I have been talking about them a lot lately), but after turning up empty handed in the record stores I turned to mailorder. I found that Caff/Flick put out the picture disc for “Shared Islands/Universe,” and that they were still available (this is a collaboration series with David Horvitz whose photos appear on the record). Normally I wouldn’t mailorder all the way from England, because the conversion rate is so bad (the 7″ cost £5, and with shipping this came to almost $15 US…the US dollar is pretty much crap right now). Luckily I had a credit on my paypal from when it got hacked.

I was a little confused when I got the email receipt…I wasn’t sure what exactly I had just ordered. The receipt said:

Item Name: HIGH PLACES/ LUCKY DRAGONS 7
Item Number: CF/F03 + CF/F04RR
Quantity: 1
Total: £5.00 GBP

So I emailed the label to ask what it was that I was actually purchasing…I wanted to make sure that I was getting the High Places 7″. I got the response from Caff/Flick:

“Lucky D is on special offer so you get it plus High Places for the price of one! You should receive within 2-3 working weeks. Thanks, CF.”

So I already had a good vibe from these guys. Not only did they make amazing looking records, but they are really nice and are giving me a super limited 7″ by Lucky Dragons as well (also in the David Horvitz picture disc series). Since these were coming from the UK I was expecting them to take the whole three weeks, but they showed up at my door in about two. Caff/Flick really cares about their records, and ships their 7″s in a perfectly sized mailer. I was overall really impressed with the label.

The records are beautiful, and sound wonderful!

This week I got an email from Caff/Flick saying that there was a new podcast up on their website that was curated by K Records. I didn’t see the podcasts when I was initially on the website, but they are there. There are a couple of them by Caff/Flick records, but the rest are curated by Tomlab, High Places, Lucky Dragons, Upset the Rhythm, David Horvitz, and Champagne Diamond/ The Brilliant Light…and they are all free. I love hearing what other people are into, and this lets me into the stereo of some musicians and record labels that I really respect! These have been on my ipod for most of the week: Check it out!

Pictures of the 7″s are from Caff/Flick Records and David Horvitz!

(Tom)

TinyMixTapes.com

Posted in music, Tom, website on March 14, 2008 by criticalreviews

So everyone knows about Pitchfork Media, but where else do you get the latest music news? I have become a huge fan of Tiny Mix Tapes (TMT). While they break music stories as well as Pitchfork (but slightly less frequently), you also get a huge dose of humor, and usually some of the more obscure happenings around the world. I have been reading TMT for a couple years now, and I think I found out about it because KLK stumbled across it, but I have become a huge advocate.

Tiny Mix Tapes does about two album reviews a day. The amount of news stories vary, concert review, and there are always a couple weekly features. Not to mention the massive list of themed mix tapes, and the random quote generator at the top of the page!

While Pitchfork does “Best New Music,” a section of the website telling people what is the cream of the crop (most things that get higher than an 8.0 out of 10 in their rating system). As you probably already know this is the section that makes and breaks bands…most notably, in my opinion, responsible for the success of Arcade Fires’ debut. I personally find this questionable, and have even discussed it with a couple Pitchfork writers…how some releases get really awesome score, but don’t make “Best New Music”(apparently since these discussions, for some reason, Les Savy Fav’s Let’s Stay Friends has been removed from the section). It seems that “Best New Music” is aimed at what the most common reader of Pitchfork will find awesome, and for things that don’t quite make this section the have a “recommended” section(while other totally awesome things that get over 8.0, but don’t make either of these sections). TMT tapes comes to the aide of music with their “Eureka!” reviews. Here is a quote from them about what these reviews mean:

“Eureka is our attempt to reflect a sensibility that is not so common in the music world, one that emphasizes looking at ruptures in music, finding disjunctions while locating traditions, pointing to new forms and ways of receiving music. While many of these musics can potentially function as a reflection of personal mood, as pure entertainment, or as a sort of escapism (depending on the listener), others outwardly defy these conventional ways of receiving music and test the boundaries of what exactly discerns music from noise. Avant-garde, experimental, creative — call it what you want. We’re not here to mark boundaries, and we’re certainly not trying to polarize the underground music world. It’s not one versus the other; it’s one with the other. Yet at the same time, it’s music appreciation for sounds that are not already bloated with cultural meaning. Because of this semiotic ambiguity, these albums may require more ’effort’ on your part to find any personal worth. There has been a rich history of experimentation, and these newest albums either compliment or continue the tradition, in the most general, far-reaching sense of the word. Due to the vastness of this realm of music, the following list is very much specific to our tastes, and in no way should it be understood as a one-stop shop for ’experimental’ or ’avant-garde’ music. Enjoy!”

“Eureka!” is pushing boundaries, not to say that I don’t love a lot of what Pitchfork deems “Best New Music,” but I am always interested in hearing something that could potentially be ground breaking in a way I never expected. These “Eureka!” releases have tended to be much more obscure featuring bands doining very experimental things (like Purient, Yellow Swans, Boris, among others). I can’t say that I am into everything that makes this list, and TMT admits that some of it has to do with personal tastes (which I think is a given, but says a lot when they come straight up and admit it) but I have to admit that I think it is bringing to my attention somethings that might have slipped through my radar.

On top of tours, industry, and releases, some of their news posts are refered to as Shrimp Scampi and this is possibly possibly the best part about their news feed. These posts are not only informative, but typically cartoons, animated, or even interactive. (Please see these example above and to the left)

Overall TMT is much more than informative, they provide a light hearted side to music news, and I personally think that we can all learn a lesson from them. I personally am going to try to make an effort to intergrate a little more humor into my writing, and maybe Pitchfork should take a cue from their former writers too.

All images from Tiny Mix Tapes…please follow the links inside the pictures.

(Tom)

GarfieldMinusGarfield.tumblr.com

Posted in Tom, website on February 27, 2008 by criticalreviews

Who would have guessed that when you remove Garfield from the Garfield comic strips, the result is an even better comic about schizophrenia, bipolor disorder, and the empty desperation of modern life?” – (GarfieldMinusGarfield.tumblr.com)

So I found this website via a status update that Cat posted on G-Chat (and apparently Jason shared it with her….Thanks Cat and Jason!). I have quickly became a huge fan! No comic could pick better topics than the listed “schizophrenia, bipolor disorder, and…depression.”

I really love this, and it is the first Tumble Log that Critical Reviews has chosen to follow.

I present to you: Garfield Minus Garfield!

(Tom)

barack obama is your new bicycle!

Posted in klk, website on February 15, 2008 by criticalreviews

barack obama is your new bicycle!

Awesome new website discovery part one! I don’t want to write too much about it, for fear that I might spoil the fun. Imagine that Barack Obama is your best bud. These are all of the things he would do! Maybe if he was elected, he would be our fine nation’s BFF. Is Barack Obama America’s NEW BICYCLE? Who knows at this point, but it will be fun to refresh this silly website 3948585 times a day until the November election.

love, klk.