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Listed: Need New Body + The Mae Shi

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Dusted Features

Every Friday, Dusted Magazine publishes a series of music-related lists determined by our favorite artists. This week: Off-kilter rockers Need New Body and Los Angeles up-and-comers The Mae Shi.

Listed: Need New Body + The Mae Shi

Need New Body

Riding a fine line between arty strangeness and mathematical noise, offbeat Pittsburgh rockers Need New Body need only be seen live to be understood and enjoyed. They manage to bring any crowd into a partied frenzy without resorting to groove-oriented clap-alongs, but at the same time bring an energy and musical wit that appeals to the most stolid attendees. On record, however, Need New Body's musical frenzy is given a new crispness and clarity that highlights all of the musical nuances that are potentially lost when such a large ensemble plays at a small rock club. Their new album, UFO out now on File 13 Records. Chris Powell and Jamey Robinson took part in this week’s Listed.

Our top 10 live music experiences:

Chris' top five live!
1. Bablicon @ the Knitting Factory, New York NY – Bablicon's live shows mostly consisted of songs mixed with improvisational spots mixed with songs, etc. They had such a great grip on keeping things very interesting at all times. They hit this hot spot during one of the improvised parts of their set and I completely lost all control of my body and mind. I was sitting in the balcony with my girlfriend, got up out of my chair and started screaming at the top of my lungs towards the stage. My girlfriend probably thought I was crazy. I didn't know what else to do with myself. I had never acted like that from hearing music, ever. One of the coolest moments I have ever experienced, EVER!

2. Lightning Bolt @ REDRUM, Providence RI – I had only heard about Lightning Bolt from good friends previous to hearing them and experiencing their live show. Need New Body was lucky enough to play a show with them in their hometown and it was my first time seeing or hearing those dudes. All I could think was that it sounded like the end of the world. So loud and so fucking beautiful! THE BEST live band in America right now! Period.

3. Chris Corsano & Paul Flaherty @ Fleischer Art Memorial, Philadelphia, PA – I filled in with an improv trio called Hirple for a cool show that took place in this gorgeous old church in Philly. We were the opening group for Paul Flaherty & Chris Corsano's "Hated Music" set. I had never heard about either of these guys before getting asked to join Hirple for the set that night. When Paul & Chris started their set, those dudes electrified the whole room like they had super powers. And they do have super powers. SUPER POWERS I tell you!!! I couldn't believe the amount of energy and intensity that Chris Corsano had behind those drums. That dude is the illest motherfucker I ever heard behind a drum set! He'll melt your fucking brain. It'll make you check yourself every day for the rest of your life, to make sure that you are doing something that's even 1% as kick ass as that dude is. Word.

4. Sun Ra Arkestra @ Rittenhouse Square Park, Philadelphia, PA – The Arkestra just has this pure, beautiful magic that nothing else on this planet has. This show was my first time seeing the group play live. Unfortunately, I never saw the Arkestra while Sun Ra was still on this planet. Marshall Allen has been leading the group every time I have seen them perform. They play quite often these days here in Philly. Every time is just as wonderful of an experience as the last. Although, the time they played in Rittenhouse Park was really something else because of all the people in attendance. There was some serious energy in the air and those dudes were tuned right into it. Fucking Awesome !

5. Green Eggs & Ham @ Lafayette Estates School #25, Fords, NJ – This was a local band that played at my elementary school when I was in 2nd grade. They played all kinds of metal & hair rock covers to all us kids. All the grades and classes were crammed into our small school auditorium. It was so strange. We all watched them in this weird sort of daze as they played songs like "Runaway" from Banjo and "For Whom The Bell Tolls" by Metallica. I thought it would be really cool to be in a band. They looked really dumb but they sounded really good. It was such a crazy influence on me at such a young age. The weirdest show ever. Where are they all now???

Jamey's top 5 live!
1. Kool and the Gang @ Six Flags Great Adventure (when I was 10) – I think this was my first show. I was grossed out by the scene and wanted to go on rides - why would I want see an old person's concert? At some point my uncle yelled at me for not dancing and being too full of myself to have a good time. Soon after I started to boogie.

2. The first Lollapalooza – Our Lollapalooza's were very close to my home in an outdoor field. Ten thousand more people than there were tickets showed up and hung out in the woods around the show. We broke sections of the fence down and like army guys, my friends and I snuck in. I can't remember who was playing the first or the second Lollapalooza but what a ridiculous scene it was. I got kicked in the face for the first time in the pit and got my nose bloodied like I was a serious tough dude.

3. Wagner's Ring Cycle @ the MET – When I was in high school my mom decided that she would treat herself to a subscription to the opera. She bought two seats for a few seasons and would bring me to some and my sister to others. I saw many of the old favorites like La Boheme and Aida and whatever, mostly I didn't buy 'em - the love at first sight scene didn't wash with me. The stories were dull, I didn't connect. Then for Christmas I got a gift that I didn't know I wanted. We went every Thursday for four weeks to see the Ring. Each show was no less than four hours. Basically it is like the Lord of the Rings movies only live. We went under mountains and into rivers and into the sky and then set the mountains on fire and fought dragons and had gold and magic powers. I've seen many operas since. What you could do with the medium was unbelievable to me. Only because of the Ring.

4. Bjork @ the Academy in N.Y.C. – This was for her record, Post. It was the first time I ever bought tickets from a scalper. I was in a strange place back then. I had somehow fallen into a stage in my life where I was very emotional and did very little besides sit at home by myself. My sister dragged me to the show even though we didn't have tickets. It wasn't that she was a huge fan either, in fact I had told her that I would pay for her ticket if she would go with me. I think I had a hundred and something bucks in my pocket as we haggled with shady fellas well into the opening act. When we got inside there was electronic music playing with no one on stage. We got up as close as we could. Then the music ended and the lights came up in the house and people cheered. Bjork was amazing. I had developed a huge crush on her when she was in the Sugarcubes. Later people were talking about the opening act. The word on the street was that it was Aphex Twin.

5. Free Fare @ Upper Elementary school during eighth grade – I found my pin from this show recently. Someone at my middle school was a genius for bringing this band to us. It was some kind of hired cover band that toured schools to teach them about being rock musicians. They sold us bandannas and played Journey songs and some originals. The drummer had a half Pearl half Simmons kit. I remember telling my parents that I could do that, but it so happened that middle school was the beginning of the end of decent grades for me so they weren't interested.

The Mae Shi

The Mae Shi are a Los Angeles-based four-piece that sing spazzy, dancy songs about Old Testament violence and other macabre pieces of literature. They just released a 52-minute EP, To Hit Armor Class Zero, on the California-based Join or Die! weblog/label. A full-length record, (which they really think you’ll like), should drop this spring on the Indiana/Ohio-based Liquid Death/Hello Pussy label. Brad Breeck, Jeff Byron and Tim Byron took part in this week’s Listed.

1. Sparks - Angst in My Pants (Oglio) – I just discovered Sparks, which is like just discovering your closet door leads to a secret enchanted kingdom. Two brothers, former models, are found by Todd Rundgren, reinvented by Giorgio Moroder, name-dropped by Sonic Youth, and deified by France. In the process, they ride every wave of musical popularity (glam, disco, new wave) while never losing their identity. Of the 20 or so records they've done since 1971, at least ten are classics. "Angst" is one of them. (Tim)

2. Jeff Mills - Purpose Maker (Axis) – The first Detroit techno producer to really go beyond the housey disco sound of the late 80s/early 90s. Spawned an entire genre of percussive electronic music. Purpose Maker is simple and smooth, the way techno is supposed to sound. (Jeff)

3. Carsten Nicolai & Ryoji Ikeda - Cyclo (Raster-Noton) – About five discreet sounds, permuted into in an album's worth of really engaging material. In Japan they call this kind of music "tech-noise" and write 300-page books on each record. In America we write one-paragraph record reviews and don't have a name for it (but it's not IDM). A friend calls this record a distillation of the past decade of Japanese noise music mapped onto a rhythmic grid. Why not? (Brad)

4. Monorchid - Let Them Eat The Monorchid (Dischord/Simple Machines/Lovitt) – Brainiac's getting a lot of well-deserved post-mortem praise of late, but people don't jack off to the Monorchid and Skull Kontrol like they should. This is the perfect 90s rock record, it does so much more for me than the rest of the 90s Dischord stuff – this ain’t snap-to-grid. I think it sounds like pirate-rock, but other people have called it “stripper pole music.” Those people are weird. (Tim)

5. Raoul Zerna - "Move" (Angel Alanis Remix) (Asquared) – Angel Alanis may be the greatest American house DJ/producer. His live set is tweaky and swirly (like this remix), while his techno production shouldn't go overlooked. Long live the Chicago sound! (Jeff)

6. Tujiko Noriko - Narita Made (Mego) – This is the sound I've been looking for. It kind of bridges the gap between the new American hip-hop production (Timbaland & Neptunes, which I love) and that IDM shit and microsound (which I like). Minimal sound sources, each with some identifiable musi-cultural baggage, are gridded out in an exciting way. Similar to “Cyclo” but with a less Modernist lean and a beautiful Japanese girl voice singing beautiful melodies about the city. Begin to weep. (Brad)

7. Elvis Costello - This Year's Model (Rykodisc) – This is a perfect album from beginning to end. Maybe he stole his aesthetic from Buddy Holly, but I think he's the best of the "smart rockers" of the early 80s (like Joe Jackson). (Jeff)

8. Fat Day - IV (Dark Beloved Cloud) – One of the few downsides to living on the west coast is that Cambridge, Massachusetts’s Fat Day don't come around on tour very often. IV is an album of 21 songs written by fans – they passed out “Order Your Own Fat Day Song” cards at shows and the fans drew, pasted and diagrammed their song ideas for them. The album’s awesome on its own, but it’s great fun to visit the Fat Day web site and see the actual cards that became the songs. (Tim)

9. Drive Like Jehu - Yank Crime (Swami) – Do I really need to explain this one? It's the best. The greatest guitar album ever. It's epic, dude. (Jeff)

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