Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The Big Beat 'cast 27

Turning people onto new bands and new music they may not hear otherwise is what I enjoy most in this blog/podcast endeavor.  And so that's why I'm really into this week's show:  it's heavy on new discoveries like FIDLAR, TASHAKI MIYAKI from the West Coast, OUTFIT, DAUGHTER, EVANS THE DEATH and TOTALLY ENORMOUS EXTINCT DINOSAURS from the UK, M + A from Italy and FRIENDS from NYC.  Not forgetting the ATX, there's BOY + KITE and FOLLOW THAT BIRD.   And what's going on Down Under?  Found a lot great new bands from Australia for this show: TWERPS, GUNG HO, and MAN WITHOUT COUNTRY.  Then, there's new music from WILCO, ST. VINCENT, DUM DUM GIRLS, REAL ESTATE, and THE TWILIGHT SAD.   

And if that's not enough, we'll look back 20 years to some of 1991's most important releases.  Unquestionably an extremely important year in popular music. 

DUM DUM GIRLS “In My Head” (Sub Pop), from Only In Dreams
THE STRANGE BOYS “Me and You” (Rough Trade), from Live Music (via Largehearted Boy)
FIDLAR “Bummed” (n/a), n/a (via Rollo & Grady)  
NIRVANA “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (Geffen), from Nevermind
OUTFIT “Two Islands” (Double Denim), single
ST. VINCENT “Cheerleader” (4AD/Beggars), from Strange Mercy
TWERPS “Dreamin” (Underwater Peoples), from Twerps (via Pitchfork)
R.E.M. “Texarkana” (WB), from Out Of Time
M + A “Liko Lene Lisa” (Monotreme), from things.yes (via Some Of It Was True!)
WILCO “Art Of Almost” (dBpm/Anti), from The Real Love (via Visble Voicei)
MAN WITHOUT COUNTRY “King Complex” (Lost Balloon), from King Complex EP (via Pick Up The Headphones)
MASSIVE ATTACK “Unfinished Sympathy” (Virgin), from Blue Lines
FRIENDS “I’m His Girl” (Lucky Numbers), single (via mu-sique)
BOY + KITE “Think In Stereo” (self-released), from Go Fly (via Citizen Dick)
EVANS THE DEATH “Threads” (Fortuna POP!), single (via Superfan 2011)
PIXIES “Subbacultcha” (Elektra), from Trompe le Monde
GUNG HO “Twin Rays” (self-released), single (via Ride The Tempo)
THE TWILIGHT SAD “Kill It In The Morning” (FatCat), from No One Can Ever Know
DAUGHTER “Love” (Communion), from The Wild Youth EP
PRIMAL SCREAM “Loaded” (Sire), from Screamadelica
RITES WILD “Seasonal Shine” (Faux Friends), single (via No Fear Of Pop)

Friday, September 23, 2011

Keeping up with The Big Beat

Even though I'm just now posting this week's show for download, I'm surprised at how many times it's already been streamed via the same via Soundcloud link. That must mean a few of you are following me over there, so thanks very much.

Aside from visiting the blog, you can keep up with TBB'cast via:

- This Is Fake DIY, for the latest, most recent shows.
- The Big Beat on Mixcloud, where I'm building up an archive of everything back to the beginning.
- Then, there's Spotify, where I'm also slowly building playlists of past TBB'casts (just music, no Mike) in addition to my playlists from KUT (same deal).

By the way, if you like what you hear on DIY, please let 'em know. Likewise, if you're diggin' the KUT stuff, drop 'em a line.

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The Big Beat 'cast 26

Another Beat'cast of brand new tracks this week, delivered compactly in a tight 60 minutes. Hear the return of The Big Pink, and more from Wild Flag, Girls, Still Corners, Weekend, and Lanterns On The Lake. Plus, meet boy/girl duo Elephant, NYC psych rockers The Living Kills, the nerdy, lo-fi indie pop of Yellow Ostrich, and New Build featuring members of Hot Chip. Dig the new grooves...

Don't forget - the show premieres on the most excellent DIY Radio today at 2100 BST & 4p ET / 3p CT.

THE BIG PINK “Stay Gold” (4AD/Beggars), from Future This
STILL CORNERS “Into The Trees” (Sub Pop), from Creatures Of An Hour
YELLOW OSTRICH “WHALE” (Barsuk), from The Mistress
THE LIVING KILLS “Long Shadow Of The Day” (Past/Futures), from Faceless Angels
WILD FLAG “Romance” (Merge), from Wild Flag
ATLAS SOUND “Te Amo” (4AD/Beggars), from Parallax (via You Ain't No Picasso)
ELEPHANT “Actors” (Memphis Industries), from “Allured”/”Actors” single (via The FADER)
WEEKEND “The One You Want” (Slumberland), from Red EP 
GIRLS “Alex” (True Panther), from Father, Son, Holy Ghost 
BLITZEN TRAPPER “Street Fighting Sun” (Sub Pop), from American Goldwing 
LANTERNS ON THE LAKE “Keep On Trying” (Bella Union), from Gracious Tide, Take Me Home (via Chromewaves)
NEW BUILD “Finding Reasons” (self-released), free download (via mu-sique)

Saturday, September 17, 2011

ACL Fest Day 1 - capsule review

James Blake @ ACL Festival. (Photo: Justin Ward, Live Music Blog)

The Austin City Limits Festival is under way here in the "Live Music Capital of the World". Attendees were greeted by a rarity in Central Texas: cloud cover, with an even greater rarity, rain, making a cameo appearance. The rain/clouds mix have helped keep high temperatures in the low 90's rather than the triple digits that have baked locals all summer. It's a huge relief.

I had a purposefully abbreviated schedule for Day 1, highlighted by my first time seeing James Blake. Playing to a decidedly younger crowd in relation to the concertgoers at large, a mid-afternoon slot at an outdoor Festival sure wouldn't have been setting I'd have chosen. But the Englishman held the majority of the crowd's attention during his his hour long set, accented with a few selections from his upcoming EP Enough Thunder, out October 10th. (A humorous exception being a middle-aged man weaving his way through the crowd in a 'pardon me,excuse me' manner by repeating 'this is weird, I don't get this').

The throbbing low end Blake employs on songs like "Limit To Your Love" brought many in the crowd to bust out their best hip hop stance. It's like "why didn't I see this? James Blake, bustin' out of hatchbacks everywhere. Detectable from several blocks away". In any event, I enjoyed the set.

This week's show comes complete with an ACL Preview of select artists. Get the tracklisting and individual song streams/downloads here.

Monday, September 12, 2011

The Big Beat 'cast 25 - Austin City Limits Festival preview

(Godkin Photo)

This weekend's 10th Austin City Limits Festival is viewed by many to be highlight of the Live Music Capitol of the World's calendar. That's saying something in light of the behemoth known as South By Southwest (SXSW) and the upstart Fun Fun Fun Festival. (The Austin Psych Fest and the nearby Kerrville Folk, and Old Settler's Festivals are also worthy of a shout). What started as an extension of the Austin City Limits television series, the lineup focused for many years on Texas singer/songwriters, country and folk performers, and instrument specialists but over the years has evolved into a multi-genre smorgasbord that's included metal, hip hop and dance.

Now, I'll make no excuses: I'm a SXSW guy. Sure, the cost of a badge is ridiculous if'n you can't finagle one otherwise. But while you could argue that the cost keeps casual fans away, the reality is that's simply not the case. They just come for the unofficial free shows, which have exploded in number as a direct response to Festival's high price. Besides, I'll take a seeing a band in a small club vs. a big outdoors crowd every time. Either way, since it's truly the place to catch buzzworthy up-and-comers and that's your thing, then you've gotta be there.

ACL, on the other hand, is where you're likely to spot Mom & Dad out for a day that's been circled on the calendar for months. The lineup is usually stacked with more mature artists who've been around a bit, designed to lure fans who enjoy music but don't have the desire to delve into the blogosphere. Historically, it's much lower on the hipster quotient (which is where Fun Fest comes in, but we'll talk about that another time). Still, they manage to hit the right balance almost every time.

This year's headliners include Coldplay, Stevie Wonder, Kanye West, Aracde Fire, and My Morning Jacket along with Bright Eyes, Fleet Foxes, Death From Above 1979, Elbow, Santigold, Foster The People, Sara Bareilles, Mavis Staples, Pretty Lights, Cults, Iron & Wine, Court Yard Hounds, Alison Krauss & Union Station, the North Mississippi Allstars, Gillian Welch, Cut Copy, Manu Chao, Empire Of The Sun, Cee-Lo, James Blake, Social Distortion, Broken Social Scene, and The Walkmen.  Lots more, too.  

On this week's show I'll touch on a few bands I'm looking forward to seeing this weekend, alongside a host of new music you should be listening to. Two hours of The Big Beat starts at the press on a button below.

LOS CAMPESINOS! “By Your Hand” (Arts & Crafts), from Hello Sadness
LANA DEL REY “Blue Jeans” (Stranger), single (via Earmilk)
NURSES “Trying To Reach You” (Dead Oceans), from Dracula (via Austin Town Hall)
SIMIAN GHOST “Free Agent” (Heist Or Hit), from Lovelorn EP (via Pitchfork)
WILD FLAG “Racehorse” (Merge), from Wild Flag

THE WAR ON DRUGS “Baby Missiles” (Secretly Canadian), from Slave Ambient
KURT VILE “The Creature” (Matador), from So Outta Reach EP (via This Is Fake DIY)
SMITH WESTERNS “All Die Young” (Fat Possum), from Dye It Blonde (via Obscure Sound)
GARY CLARK JR. “Bright Lights” (Warner Bros.), from The Bright Lights EP
THEOPHILUS LONDON “Lighthouse” (Reprise), from Timez Are Weird These Days
FANFARLO “Replicate” (Canvasback/Atlantic), from forthcoming 2012 album (via SF Critic)
CASIOKIDS “Det haster!” (Polyvinyl), from Aabenbaringen over aaskammen (via Consequence Of Sound)
KEEP SHELLY IN ATHENS “Our Own Dream” (Forest Family), from Our Own Dream EP (via Gorilla vs. Bear)
THE ANTLERS “Parentheses” (Frenchkiss), from Burst Apart
TV ON THE RADIO “Wolf Like Me” (Interscope), from Return To Cookie Mountain (via Music For Kids)
CUT COPY “Take Me Over” (Modular), from Zonoscope (via Nite Versions)
STEVIE WONDER “I Wish” (Tamla/Motown), from Songs In The Key Of Life

WIDOWSPEAK “Gun Shy” (Captured Tracks), from Widowspeak (via Rollo & Grady)
RADIANT DRAGON “Terminal” (self-released), from Screengazers (via Pitchfork)
GOTYE “Somebody That I Used To Know” (feat. Kimbra) (Samples ‘n’ Seconds), from Making Mirrors (via The Music Ninja)
SPOTLIGHT KID “Forget Yourself In Me” (Tri-Tone/PIAS), from Disaster Tourist
WE ARE AUGUSTINES “Chapel Song” (Turnout/Oxcart), from Rise Ye Drunken Ships
ELBOW “Leaders Of The Free World” (V2), from Leaders Of The Free World
DEATH FROM ABOVE 1979 “Romantic Rights” (Vice), from You’re A Woman, I’m A Machine (via Austin Town Hall)

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Big Beat 'cast 24 - 120 Minutes You Can Count On

I had so much fun putting together the last, two hour new music extravaganza that I've repeated the trick this week. I'll post a downloadable version of the show, via Soundcloud, in a day or two. However, I love the the idea of you hearing it on the DIY stream as it's first presented. Call me old fashioned and increasingly, that's what radio has become, but I like not knowing what's next. So whether you hear it live, or via stream or download at your leisure, it's great to have you listening. I think you'll enjoy the nearly two full hours of new music on this week's show.

BTW - The Beat'cast has settled in on DIY Radio Tuesdays at 4p Eastern/3p Central (2100 BST).

GIRLS “Honey Bunny” (True Panther), from Father, Son, Holy Ghost (via Side One Track One)
ST. VINCENT “Cruel” (4AD), from Strange Mercy (via Side One Track One)
SISSY & THE BLISTERS “Let Her Go” (Fierce Panda), single

I BREAK HORSES “Wired” (Bella Union), from Hearts
DOVES “The Cedar Room” (Astralwerks), from Lost Souls

GOTYE “Somebody That I Used To Know” (feat. Kimbra) (Samples ‘n’ Seconds), from Making Mirrors (via The Music Ninja)
SBTRKT “Pharaohs” (Young Turks), from SBTRKT
TORO Y MOI “I Can Get Love” (Carpark), from Freaking Out EP (via Thats Deck)
RYAN ADAMS “Lucky Now” (Capitol), from Ashes & Fire
FLORENCE + THE MACHINE “What The Water Gave Me” (Island), single

LOVE INKS “Be Brave” (City Slang), single (via Alive Through Music)
ASH “Burn Baby Burn” (Infectious), from Free All Angels

THE JIM JONES REVUE “Dishonest John” (Punk Rock Blues), from Burning Your House Down
CHARLOTTE GAINSBOURG “Terrible Angels” (Because/Elektra), from Terrible Angels EP (via Klubb ACE)
BODY LANGUAGE “Falling Out” (Om/Lavish Habits), from Social Studies EP (via All Things Go)
THE WEEKND “Lonely Star” (self-released), from Thursday (via Salad Fork)
THREE TRAPPED TIGERS “Noise Trade” (Blood and Biscuits), from Route One Or Die (via Sentric Music)
GARY CLARK JR. “Don’t Owe You A Thang” (Warner Bros.), from The Bright Lights EP

MILAGRES “Glowing Mouth” (Kill Rock Stars), from Glowing Mouth (via Earmilk)
PALLERS “Humdrum” (Labrador), from The Sea Of Memories
THOSE DANCING DAYS “Space Hero Suits” (Wichita), from In Our Space Hero Suits

Shameless Plug: 'Music with Mike Taylor' on KUT

I know many of you came across The Big Beat as a result of my many years at WOXY. Truthfully, I was always warned against getting into radio as a career, so after college I went another way. Nevertheless, I started at WOXY in a part-time role mainly as a hobby, working off and on until 1999, when I left a corporate job and dove in full-time. Hung with it through its ups and downs, right through its relocation to Austin and closure last year. (WOXY's owners Future Sounds finally went out of business itself recently).

Last September, I joined KUT here in Austin on a part-time basis. KUT is, literally, one of the highest rated and most successful public broadcasters in the country. Since then, I've been hosting the news/talk programming block on Saturday mornings and have occasionally filled-in as a host on both prime time news and evening music programs. I've also worked behind the scenes in a few different areas and provided production assistance to the most recent volumes of their KUT Live CD.

Starting tonight, I'll be hosting my own regularly scheduled music program, 'Music with Mike Taylor', on Tuesday & Wednesday nights from 11p to 3a local time. (Note: most of the station's shows are titled 'Music with (Host's name)'.

Straight up: KUT is an adult alternative (AAA) formatted station, albeit well left of center than most others in the format: everything from rock, soul, blues, country, jazz, indie and electronica. You'll hear me play music that I might never feature on the blog or the Beat'cast and vice versa. Still, there's a lot of crossover between the two. I'm pleased that they're committed to presenting quality music, emerging sounds and artists of all stripes, and being second to none in supporting music from local Austin & Texas artists. Here's KUT's latest airplay list.

So, whether it's last call in the East, late night in the ATX, or your wake up call in the EU, I hope you'll give me a listen: