April, 2014 Archives


Stream Wye Oak’s Imminent Album “Shriek” and Song Of The Week “Logic Of Color”

by Lefort in Music

Comments Off on Stream Wye Oak’s Imminent Album “Shriek” and Song Of The Week “Logic Of Color” Comments


What a long, strange trip it’s been at Chez Lefort these last few weeks.  It’s enough to make ya wanna Shriek.  Speaking of which, Baltimore’s Wye Oak is set to release their new album, Shriek, on April 29th on Merge.  The band had a major breakthrough in 2011 with their Civilian album, which featured and capitalized on the rousing guitar-play of leader Jenn Wasner.  We were initially shocked that Shriek eschews Wasner’s guitar-work to focus on synths and bass, but repeated listens reveal that the broader palette has paid off soundly for the band.  Along the way Wasner takes on the vocal mien of many of the great female vocalists to great effect (check out the closing trilogy of the Kate Bush-like Paradise, followed by the decidedly Joni Mitchell-y I Know The Law, capped off by the pop brilliance of Logic of Color).

The first sample we heard from the album came in the way of the first official video from the album for the ebullient marching-mode of track Tower, which you can watch below in all of its painterly, Mary Poppins-y glory.  We’ve since sampled the album in its entirety, and can tell you it is a superbly deep and rewarding album.  To get a feel, you can now stream it over at NPR until the 28th.  If you do nothing else with the stream, put the melodic-beauty Logic of Color (track 10) on repeat.  It was our Song of the Week last week and helped pull us through.

Get ready to Shriek.  The album’s tracklist is below the video and you can pre-order it HERE.

Shriek Tracklist:
1. Before
2. Shriek
3. The Tower
4. Glory
5. Sick Talk
6. Schools Of Eyes
7. Despicable Animal
8. Paradise
9. I Know The Law
10. Logic Of Color


Watch Broken Bells “Control” Conan

by Lefort in Music

Comments Off on Watch Broken Bells “Control” Conan Comments


During the week between the Corpchella weekends, the usual media-fest has unfurled.  Last night Broken Bells (The Shins’ James Mercer and Danger Mouse) appeared on Conan and performed Control from their recent album After The Disco.  Check out below as the band performs Control, which could be a Brit synth-pop-soul song from the likes of ABC/Thompson Twins, but minus the synths and with much-needed horn-section embellishment.  As great as they are as songwriters/producers/players, the boys might want to lose a little more control on stage.


Buellton Plays Soho Tonight (Thursday) In Support of New Album “Silent Partner”

by Lefort in Music

Comments Off on Buellton Plays Soho Tonight (Thursday) In Support of New Album “Silent Partner” Comments


In case you missed it, one of our favorite bands, the Central Coast’s own Buellton, plays Soho tonight in support of their sensational new album, Silent Partner.  The band has also just announced they have inventively teamed with great local brewers Telegraph Brewing to release Silent Partner as a digital download with bottles of Telegraph’s saison-style ale (see label below) beginning May 1st.  Beerton anyone?  Get your tickets for the Soho show HERE.  And make sure you pick up Silent Partner and craft-beer at your local Telegraph distributor or separately the old-fashioned (sorta) way HERE.



Watch Glen Hansard, Elvis Costello, Lisa Hannigan and a Host Commemorate Ceiliúradh at Royal Albert Hall

by Lefort in Music

Comments Off on Watch Glen Hansard, Elvis Costello, Lisa Hannigan and a Host Commemorate Ceiliúradh at Royal Albert Hall Comments


Last weekend a host of Irish artists and musicians performed in London’s Royal Albert Hall to commemorate Irish President Michael D. Higgins‘ historic visit (the first official visit of an Irish President) to the UK.  The event was dubbed Ceiliúradh (celebration).

Watch below first as the great Glen Hansard performs Parting Glass in Myles O’Reilly’s (Arbitus Yarns) short video of the event’s rehearsal and celebration.

Next up watch the entire gang (including Hansard, Lisa Hannigan, Elvis Costello and a host of other fine musicians) perform the modern Irish anthem The Auld Triangle.   The song was made famous by The Dubliners and attributed to Irish writer Brendan Behan about the occurrences in a prison (actually Mountjoy Prison where Behan had once been ensconced for his IRA activities) and the triangle’s beating on the day a convict is set to be executed. The triangle in the title evidently refers to the large metal triangle which was beaten daily in Mountjoy Prison to wake the inmates.  The triangle still hangs in the prison at the center where the wings meet on a metal gate.  The beauty/irony of the song’s performance (near the “Royal canal”) is not lost on the joyous crowd.

After, watch Hansard, Hannigan and John Sheahan perform Hansard’s Oscar-winning song Falling Slowly.

And finally, watch President Higgins’ speech.  And give thanks.


Watch Arcade Fire’s Festival-Topping Set At Coachella

by Lefort in Music

Comments Off on Watch Arcade Fire’s Festival-Topping Set At Coachella Comments

Lead vocalist Win Butler of rock band Arcade Fire performs at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Indio

Arcade Fire headlined and closed out Corpchella last night.  We admit we’ve been partially nonplussed by their album Reflektor, which comprised the large majority of their set at Corpchella.  But live those songs take on a less-produced power, and the band also piled on some “golden oldies,” including Keep The Car Running, Tunnels, Power Out, Rebellion, and of course closing with the all-time finisher Wake Up (out in the audience with The Preservation Jazz Hall Band in step).   And there were cameos, including Blondie’s Debbie Harry’s appearance to help the band cover Blondie’s seminal Heart of Glass and an epic version of Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains).

Check out a replay of their entire set below (with the setlist listed after with embedded song times):

Arcade Fire’s fantastic headlining set at Coachella Festival 2014, weekend 1. April 13, 2014. Setlist:
0:00 intro music (Reflektor backwards) + Mirror man introducing.
1:03 Reflektor
7:57 Flashbulb Eyes
11:07 Neighborhood #3 (Power Out)
15:20 Rebellion (Lies)
21:30 Joan of Arc
26:13 The Suburbs
31:55 The Suburbs (Continued)
33:18 Ready to Start
37:57 Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels)
43:33 No Cars Go
49:31 Keep the Car Running
53:17 Afterlife (w/ ‘My Body Is a Cage’ intro and New Order’s “Temptation” snippet)
59:39 It’s Never Over (Oh Orpheus)
1:06:58 Heart of Glass w/ Debbie Harry (Blondie)
1:10:49 Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains) w/ Debbie Harry (Blondie)
1:16:15 Normal Person
1:20:18 Here Comes the Night Time
1:27:29 Wake Up
1:33:14 The band w/ Preservation Hall Jazz Ban



The World Has Lost One of It’s Best Songwriters–RIP Jesse Winchester

by Lefort in Music

Comments Off on The World Has Lost One of It’s Best Songwriters–RIP Jesse Winchester Comments


We received the sad, sad news over the weekend that the great singer-songwriter Jesse Winchester passed away last Friday after a valiant fight against esophageal cancer.  Winchester was a songwriter’s songwriter (lauded by Bob Dylan, Janis Ian and the who’s-who of songwriting) wrote some of the best songs of our day (Yankee Lady, The Brand New Tennessee Waltz, Mississippi, You’re on My Mind, A Showman’s Life, and Biloxi, amongst them, each covered by many an artist).  But Winchester could also deliver those seminal songs with understated grace and nuance.  He will be sorely missed.  One of the earliest vignettes we put up on these pages (in April 2010) was an homage to Winchester’s beautiful, dehydrating delivery of his love song Sham-A-Ling-Dong-Ding on Elvis Costello’s much-lamented Spectacle show.  Check it out below.  And now pardon us while we join Neko Case in honoring Jesse Winchester.  We’ll see you on the other side Jesse.

Photo:  Mac McAnally


Watch Tom Brosseau’s Tiny Desk Concert on NPR with Sean Watkins

by Lefort in Music

Comments Off on Watch Tom Brosseau’s Tiny Desk Concert on NPR with Sean Watkins Comments


Long-time favorite Tom Brosseau has purposefully slow-burned a superb songbook and musical legacy, and yet has managed to save his best songwriting for his new, career-capping album Grass Punks.  Throughout his career, Brosseau has collaborated with the talented likes of Angela Correa (Correatown), Sara Watkins, Hilary Hahn, Becky Stark (Lavender Diamond), Shelby Earl and John C. Reilly, amongst others.  On Grass Punks, Brosseau has continued his collaborative ways and brought in Sean Watkins (Nickelcreek) to produce and to tour in support, and Watkins has proved to be the perfect musical confrere for Brosseau.   To get a feel for this well-wrought album and the Brosseau/Watkins confab, check out their new Tiny Desk Concert on NPR below.  The set features three of the finest songs from Grass Punks (though the album is riddled with many more).  First up is Cradle Your Device, with its hilarous send-up of we humans’ device-driven dramaturgy.  Next up (as Brosseau explains during the set) is the homage to his fellow-native North Dakotan food critic/author Marilyn Hagerty.  And finally, the duo perform the melancholy, but ultimately hopeful, Today Is A Bright New Day.  With appearances in recent years on Prairie Home Companion and NPR, Brosseau continues to build on his brilliant career.  Never has a singer-songwriter been more deserving of the spotlight.  Do yourselves a huge favor, and go buy Grass Punks HERE.  And make sure to not miss his act and tour when it comes near to you.


Watch Coachella Stream Starting Soon

by Lefort in Music

Comments Off on Watch Coachella Stream Starting Soon Comments


Hate ’em or hate ’em, the folks at Coachella are at least streaming the musical acts that they’ve monopolized (but only for the entire year) in California.  Watch the largesse unfold via the stream that you can watch HERE.

Of the available viewings today on the stream are of Wye Oak, Afghan Wigs, Neko Case, Bonobo, Bryan Ferry (coming to the Santa Barbara Bowl next week), and Outkast.

On Saturday we suggest Foxygen, Temples, The Head and the Heart, Cage The Elephant, Warpaint, and The Pixies.

And on Sunday check out Superchunk, Blood Orange, Darkside, Daughter, Arcade Fire and Disclosure.

Again, these are our suggestions based upon the available streams.  Happy viewing!


Watch Mavis Staples Sing “We Shall Overcome” at Civil Rights Summit

by Lefort in Music

Comments Off on Watch Mavis Staples Sing “We Shall Overcome” at Civil Rights Summit Comments


Yesterday (appropriately on throw-back-Thursday) Mavis Staples appeared at the Civil Rights Summit in observance of the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Civil Rights Act.  Watch below as Ms. Staples, as usual, nails the Civil Rights Movement’s adopted anthem We Shall Overcome.  She could make a believer out of Richard Dawkins.


To Match The Mood: Watch Regina Carter Perform “I’m Coming Home” on WNYC

by Lefort in Music

Comments Off on To Match The Mood: Watch Regina Carter Perform “I’m Coming Home” on WNYC Comments


The fog’s in and there are heavier lamentations at Chez Lefort.  This morning when we watched jazz violinist Regina Carter and her fine band perform the gospel hymn I’m Coming Home on WNYC we were taken home.  To a better place.  Carter’s new album, Southern Comfort, is part exploration of her Alabama family history and part Appalachian hegemony.  She chose the album’s songs from the seminal field recordings by John Wesley Work III and Alan Lomax.  One of those songs is the great gospel hymn I’m Going Home, which you can watch/listen-to below courtesy of WNYC.  You can listen to the whole WNYC session HERE.