of Montreal

I live in NYC, read music blogs, and have friends playing CMJ shows so even if I wanted to ignore it I probably couldn't. I didn't RSVP to any parties and have no plans to go check any bands out. In fact, tomorrow night I'm trekking to Jersey City to see The Magnetic Fields. All of this because my first year here I was ruined.

See, I went to see of Montreal play during CMJ in 2005. Easily one of the most fun shows I've ever seen and one of the best as well. My mind paints it as what it would have been like to see New Order at the Hacienda. At that point in time I was kind of bored with music if I wasn't playing it. I wasn't really enjoying the live experience. They renewed my faith in fun shows that night.

It's odd but I haven't been able to get into any of the albums that have come out since. I haven't gone to see them since. The photos I saw of the show here a couple of weeks ago looked like it was a really good time. However, I fear that none of their shows will compare to the CMJ 05 show. After that show I couldn't get this song out of my head... The Party's Crashing Us

I was even happier when I found this remix because it felt more like the live experience to me. Even though the original version sounds more like the one they played that night the energy of the remix feels more authentic to my memory. I'm a person who usually strongly dislikes remixes so I feel that the fact that I possibly like this version more than the original is quite astonishing. Funny what memory will do! The Party's Crashing Us (i am the world trade center remix)



Quasi is one of those bands that used to mean so much to me but sort of lost me a couple of records back. If we were in a relationship the speech probably would have been of the "It's not you, it's me" variety. So I guess what I'm really trying to say is that they didn't lose me but we grew apart? (Forgive me, it's actually very late as I write this. I'm fond of setting times for these to go up and not posting them immediately.)

ANYWAY. The first few records lyrically are really it for me. Sam Coomes was already nailing a funny turn of phrase in sad songs even earlier in writing for The Donner Party. By the time Quasi was roaring he was a master. The recordings were always enjoyable but I absolutely loved to see the band live. I have a very distinct memory of Sam humping his roxichord in pure frustration during the tour that Quasi served as Elliott Smith's backing band. Janet seemed completely befuddled by Sam's nervous breakdown and if I recall correctly they had to start the song over several times. Can't remember what song though! When they tour again I think maybe we can rekindle our romance.

The records that really stand out for me are R&B Transmogrification, Featuring "Birds", and Field Studies. Those are the records that I related to most when they came out. These are songs that are born out of a relationship falling to bits, hopes and dreams falling apart, and other downer subjects. In other words, my favorite types of songs.

Here we have probably my favorite Quasi song. It's a song that describes the loneliness you feel after a breakup so well.
The Skeleton
Another song about love gone wrong.
In The First Place
I didn't do a very good job of getting some of the songs with humor in them on here. Sorry about that. Perhaps an excuse to go pick up one of the records mentioned above if you do not have any Quasi of your own.


The Ballet

The Ballet are one of those bands I saw so often in 2006 and 2007 that it was a little weird when they stopped playing live. Then I kind of forgot about them, but when we were unpacking a couple of weeks ago I saw the cd and decided to do a post. I generally hate describing bands, (which is why you hardly ever see me do it here), choosing to let people come to their own conclusions and opinions on music. I hate hype to the point where I will unfairly hate a band because of it. However, I do admit that with the Ballet I often tell people that if they like the Magnetic Fields they will like the Ballet. Since I know A LOT OF PEOPLE like the Magnetic Fields (as witnessed by me going over my bandwidth last month!) I figure that for those of you who haven't heard the Ballet this might be a treat.

If you go to their website you will find two of their very best songs to download. These are some of their other best songs though I do recommend ordering Mattachine! from the band directly or getting it from itunes if that's your thing. The entire record is excellent! Hope to hear some new music from the band someday soon though I believe they might be in grad school hell.

Cheating On Your Boyfriend


The Monochrome Set

Another band that I'm afraid I don't know all that much about. I'm pretty sure that the first time I heard them was through Little Hits who posted the single version of The Jet Set Junta a few years back. A few weeks ago while at Kim's for their closing clearance sale I came across a copy of The Independent Singles Collection which I got for a steal. It was just released earlier this year by Cherry Red Records who have worked with the band off and on since the 80s. I'm quite pleased with the purchase and think that it was probably a good starting place.

This is probably my favorite song from the collection. It makes the stomach fluttery like watching porn for the first time when you're not quite old enough to know what's going on. A great blatantly perverse song about sex.
The Mating Game

I tend to hate songs that use the bands name like a theme song of sorts. When I read that they wrote this because they were inspired by The Monkees theme song I thought that was pretty entertaining. Of course, it helps that this is a good song! If you like these songs it is safe to say that you will like the band.
The Monochrome Set


18 Wheeler

Pretty much anything I could tell you about the band I just learned from the 18 Wheeler wikipedia page. I came to know of this band because a guy I worked with was a huge britpop fan and buyer for the record store I worked at. He was constantly buying these imports for the store that really had no market where we were located. If you weren't Slowdive or My Bloody Valentine you weren't going to sell in our store. Anyhow, he bought this for the store and he must have played it in the store one day. I liked it and bought it. It's power pop for the most part, but I know that when I listened to their later albums I didn't like them - they went electronic for the third record. Maybe I never heard the second record. The 90s are a fuzzy haze of depression!

I've probably discussed before that my favorite songs tend to follow the verse/chorus/verse/chorus structure. Certainly not all of my favorites but a good number. This song is no different. Definitely my favorite 18 Wheeler song and an excellent starting point if you've never heard them.
I Won't Let You Down

I thought I would post a song that is just about the opposite from a straight ahead up-tempo pop number. A good song if you've recently (or perhaps ever) been heartbroken.
Hotel 167

I loaned my copy of this record to a girl I once had a crush on. The crush fizzled and I never got my record back. I ended up having to buy this again on import. I'm pretty sure it's out of print by now, but I'm also pretty sure you could find it if you wanted it. The record is called Twin Action, and it came out on Creation Records in 1994.