Every Friday, Dusted Magazine publishes a series of music-related lists compiled by our favorite artists. This week: Corsican Paintbrush and Palomar.
Listed: Corsican Paintbrush + Palomar
Tulsa, Oklahoma is probably one place you would not expect to find a bouzouki or a person who can play one. But thankfully for the spirit of international culture, husband and wife team Brad and Eden Hemming Rose live in that very city. They make music under many names (most notably the North Sea but also Wax Ghost, Golden Oaks, and Agilvsga), and with many friends (from Michael Donnelly of Brothers of the Occult Sisterhood to Keith Wood of Hush Arbors), but Corsican Paintbrush is purely their creation, their musical offspring. They are perhaps best known as the proud parents of Digitalis Recordings and Foxy Digitalis webzine, and have been spending most of their time in 2007 planning May's Bottling Smoke Festival in Los Angeles. After a highly-limited, but well-received split 12" w/ Italian space kings My Cat is an Alien, Corsican Paintbrush just recently released their first full-length CD on their own Digitalis Recordings.
1. The Stumps - Split Fleet Dodge LP (Palindrone)
I love New Zealand and this fledgling supergroup of Stephen Clover (seht), Antony Milton (Pseudoarcana figurehead, etc), and James Kirk (Gate, Sandoz Lab Technicians, etc) are at their peak on “Split Fleet Dodge.” Epic sonic landscapes, heavy blissed-out drones, and mad-dash electronics (from none other than Mr. Birchville Cat Motel himself). All the good things about the North island, wrapped up into one dripping epic slab of wax.
2. V/A - I Belong to This Band: 85 Years of Sacred Harp Recordings CD (Dust-to-Digital)
This is simply one of the best pieces of music I've heard in years. It's infectiously joyous and completely inspiring. Endless a capella anthems recorded between 1922 and 2006 that will move even heathens like me. I often have said I'd consider converting to Islam for the music alone, but I Belong to This Band is just as magical and just as important.
3. Pocahaunted - Water-Born three-inch CDR (Not Not Fun)
It all began with a burgeoning obsession with Los Angeles steel squealers Robedoor. Then came an introduction to Robedoor's sister-project (or, significant-other project more accurately as Pocahaunted is the wife and girlfriend, respectively, of the two Robedoor-ites) - Pocahaunted. These two girls are dropping subtle tribal bombs laced with a thick dose of wailing, bone-tingling psychedelia. They hoot and holler with the best of them, and before you know it they've completely and irreversibly infected you. Genius.
4. Munir & Omar Bashir - Duo de Ud CD (Ethnic)
Munir Bashir was one of the greatest oud players around, and Omar Bashir is his son. This collection of oud duets is pure gold. Papa Bashir was one of the great messengers of Iraqi music and culture, and this album shows that his son can certainly make a case as the torchbearer. What I really love about this album is the lack of any accompaniment. It’s straight-up oud with an oud chaser in a bombed-out bar in Baghdad. Totally stunning.
5. Mr. Turner Cody
Wow. Brooklyn’s Turner Cody is an absolute revelation. He’s operating on his own island up north (though sometimes collaborating with the inimitable Herman Düne), doing things no other songwriter around right now is doing. Cody channels the ghost of Townes like few can and has a wry sense of a humor (one listen to the excellent "The Great Migration" will tell you all you need to know). My hands are in the air, Cody's won the war. He's the real fucken deal.
1. Chamellows - Rat Heart CD (Fonal)
Chamellows' Rat Heart is like getting radio reception on the metal plate in your head; each song is distorted by bone and hair and gray matter, but you still get the idea. And there's enough fuzz to keep you warm at night but enough melody and variety that it wouldn't drive you nuts.
2. (VxPxC) - Moving Day CD-R (Self-Released)
I've listened to (VxPxC)'s "Moving Day" about 50 times now, since they asked me to design the cover for it, but it is still as fresh and lovely as the first time I heard it. For some reason it reminds me of oatmeal raisin cookies and homemade quilts, sledding down treacherous inclines, and dancing around my room singing the wrong words. In other words, it is the musical equivalent of unselfconcsious joy and timeless freedom.
3. Paul Wirkus - Deformation Professionelle CD (Staubgold)
"Deformation Professionelle" makes me dizzy. Well, okay, "Exoten" literally gives me motion sickness but "Dogs After Flight" just feels like pinpricks all over. If I'm really lucky, I even get some full-body acid flashbacks, where every skin cell seems to be singing in Wirkus-inspired harmony. When was the last time you felt like you'd gone to heaven without dying?
4. Skull Defekts - Open the Gates of Mimer CD (AA)
If Dante's "Inferno" is ever made into a movie, they'll have to hire Skull Defekts to do the soundtrack. These artfully-menacing Scandinavians make me want to kill myself, just so I can find out whether Hell really is that interesting. Of course, the journey just wouldn't be the same without them, and maybe a cooler full of beer. In fact, drinking heavily while listening to this album might do the trick. Personally, I'm going to stick to listening to this album as loud as I can stand it whenever I feel a destructive urge coming on; I personally don't like beer that much.
5. Tape - Milieu CD (Häpna)
I come back to this album time and time again. It's like going home, like walking into a house who's moods you know and love, with the wind chimes singing in the cool summer breeze outside and hummingbirds visiting the red juice at the window. It's the kind of thing that you just have to share, not just because you'd feel selfish if you kept it to yourself, but because it opens up the little doors into your heart and sweeps out all the greed.
Palomar formed a few years ago in Brooklyn and got their name from an observatory in California. Their first, self-titled album, won them comparisons to Seattle's Fastbacks and England's Talulah Gosh. Palomar II was recorded a couple of years later, and released on The Self-Starter Foundation. Their third record, Palomar III: Revenge of Palomar was completed and scheduled to be released on Kindercore Records when Kindercore closed its doors due to sudden financial inadequacy. Despite the major setback, the record was released the following year on The Self-Starter Foundation. After touring and the release of an EP, Palomar began writing and recording a new LP with producer Britt Myers. Our Haunt All things, forests is the fruit of their labor and marks a major step forward for Palomar.
1. The Decemberists - Some days are long in the Palovan, and we like to pass the hours by counting the number of times words like "sinewy" and "pantaloons" appear in Decembrists songs. We decided on this last tour that we do not love the new album, The Crane Wife. The others, however, have grown on us immensely, especially Picaresque.
2. The Strokes - Is This It
Another van favorite, this album helps to slough off of our driving stupor as we make our approach to the night's venue. Pretty much every song is simple, pleasing, and perfectly packaged. Rachel's favorite is "Trying Your Luck." Brockett likes to approximate the Molly Ringwald dance to "Someday."
3. The Shins - Wincing the Night Away
We were pleased to find this album picks up nicely where their first, Oh Inverted World, left off. Not quite as innocent and endearing, but it doesn't have to be, we don't think.
4. Hella - Dale recently was blown away by Hella at SXSW. So much so that he didn't even mind the 30-block walk home afterward at three in the morning.
5. Mew - We also caught this band at SXSW, at one of the ten or so shows they played, and decided we liked them more than most of the bands we saw--theirs was a solid, gimmickless performance. Of course it was also one of the few shows where we were able to sit down, and the margaritas were toxic, so that probably helped. The album suffers from overproduction, but not enough to scare us away.
Holy British invasion! Somehow these Austinites have managed to resurrect forgotten bands like Gene and to take the Scottish sounds of early Belle and Sebastian further. We first encountered them when we played a show together in DC a few years ago, and they have been satisfying our sweet tooth ever since.
7. Band of Horses
Just discovered their album Everything All The Time, but better late than never. Not sure about the whole album yet, but we definitely are liking "The Funeral."
8. Oxford Collapse
We're happy to see our fellow Brooklynites getting some attention and are still listening to their newish album. We once played a show with them and Franz Ferdinand before anyone had heard of them, at a ridiculous place called the Coral Room, where women swam dressed up as mermaids in a giant tank behind the bar. Rachel especially likes the song "Lady Lawyers."
Our newest acquisition, though we've known of this band for a while through our Portland friends the Helio Sequence. We missed Menomena at SXSW, but are liking their new record a lot. Brockett especially likes "Wet and Rustling."
Spoon is a perennial Palomar favorite, all the way back to Soft Effects and Telephono. Rachel has always liked "Advance Cassette." Christina likes "Me and the Bean." Brockett actually named her cat The Bean, partly inspired by the song. Also, drummer Jim Eno is one of the nicest people we've met on tour. He and Christina once had a drum-off. Christina won. (Although, conveniently, the club stopped us before Jim could play.) Yep, we do like those spoons. Until we heard the title of the new album: Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga . Seriously?!
By Dusted Magazine