The Morning Benders – “Ram On (Paul McCartney Cover)”

The Morning Benders – “Ram On (Paul McCartney Cover)”

Irresistible defined. When one of my favorite local acts cover a track from one of my all time favorite albums, ever. Love it. And if you’ve never laid your ears on Paul McCartney’s 70s masterpiece, Ram On. Do yourself a favor and get on it.

The Morning Benders – “Japan Echo” Benefit EP

Last week The Morning Benders were supposed to play their very first show in Tokyo, Japan. That didn’t happen for obvious reasons. In support of the terrible disaster, they’ve put together an EP of unreleased material. Visit their site to donate and download.

Japan Echo EP (日本・エコー) Tracklisting:

1. Cold War (Star Slinger Remix)
2. Better In Blue
3. Hand Me Downs (Wild Nothing Remix)
4. Excuses (RAC Remix)
5. Mason Jar (Twin Sister Remix)
6. Wet Cement (Aislyn Remix)
7. Little Riot
8. Promises (Star Slinger Remix)

SF Spotlight: The Morning Benders – “Excuses”

The Morning Benders – “Excuses

Every year San Francisco unleashes a break out band on the indie music scene.  Last year it was Girls, the year before that, The Dodos.  This year I’m putting my bets on The Morning Benders.  The Berkeley-based group are getting ready to release their next album, Big Echo, on March 9th and boy do I like the direction they’ve headed with their sound. The album’s opening track, “Excuses”, has a bit of a throwback sound to 50s du wop. Very symphonic, harmonious and just lovely. Check it out.

Foreign Born Live SXSW 2009

Foreign Born started in San Francisco in 2003 after singer Matt Popieluch and guitarist Lewis Pesacov graduated San Francisco State University. After playing a few shows, the pair went down to LA to clean up their rough demos. The results were promising enough for Lewis and Matt to quit their menial jobs and move down to LA where the current line-up of Foreign Born was, yes, born. 

Their first LP, On The Wing Now, was released in 2007 and their latest effort, Person to Person, is due out in June.  I’m in love with the first single from the album, “Vacationing People.”  Judging by the number of recognizable faces in the audience at this show, I’m not the only one.  Chris from The Morning Benders was as equally excited as I was to be there.  And Grizzly Bear guitarist Ed Droste called Foreign Born his “favorite new band” recently.

Listen to “Vacationing People”

San Francisco Bands You’ve (Probably) Never Heard Of – Part 7 and Last

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The Botticellis

These guys have a great 60s surfer, AM radio sound.  Soaked in reverb and sunny California pop harmonies, their debut album Old Home Movies sounds (and looks) like a classic from the past.

Listen to ‘Home Movies’:

 

The Dodos

The Dodos

Okay, you’ve probably heard of this band.  Their debut album, Visiter, was a darling of many a music critic.  And for good reason; it’s exceptional.  To see them perform live is spellbinding. They are one of those artists whose energy and passion translates better in a live forum. Their world tour is already underway, so all of you international readers have no excuse!

Listen to ‘Fools‘:

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The Morning Benders

Another Bay Area indie pop group on the verge, their new album, Talking Through Tin Cans, was my go to album of the summer.  Fresh and irresistible. That and my little boy loved it.  He’s got a good ear, that kid.  It was his first concert too.  If you’re local, be sure to catch their last show of the year, December 5 at The Rickshaw Stop with The Muslims and Miniature Tigers.

Listen to ‘Boarded Doors’:

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Ty Segall

I caught this guy opening for another local favorite, Girls, recently and was smitten.  Admittedly, when I first saw this virtual one man band take the stage with his jerry-rigged drum kit and guitar, I couldn’t help but think, ‘Oh Christ.’ Which was quickly followed by ‘holy shit!’  He’s touched with that way back sound I love so much. Just take a listen and you’ll see what I mean.

Listen to ‘The Drag’:

Listen to ‘So Alone’:

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8tracks is the New Muxtape

With Muxtape still battling the RIAA, 8tracks has emerged as the new online MP3 playlist solution.  8tracks allows you to create a playlist of 8 tracks and share it with your friends online.  It’s easy to use and they are Beta testing an Uploader feature for Mac users that allows you to drag and drop a playlist directly from iTunes to 8track. Hmmm, given how DRM happy Apple is, I wonder how long that will last.  Well, go check it out now before the RIAA shuts them down too.

Here’s a mix I created for the Treasure Island Music Festival this Sunday in San Francisco, featuring Fleet Foxes, Port O’Brien, The Dodos, Okkervil River, The Morning Benders, Vampire Weekend, Dr. Dog and The Raconteurs.  Can’t wait!

Listen to Treasure Island Music Festival Playlist.

For a more complete sampler of Sunday’s line up, check out HearYa’s complete playlist of all the artists featured.

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the OCMD Mixtape: Best Songs of 2008…So Far

It’s the last day of July and half the year has gone and passed.  To celebrate, I’ve compiled a mixtape of my favorite songs (not albums) of the year…so far.  You can listen here, but if you want the file, you’ll have to subscribe to the OCMD Mixtape.  Enjoy!  

  1. The Raconteurs - These Stones Will Shout
  2. The Duke Spirit – This Ship Was Built to Last
  3. Elbow – Grounds for Divorce
  4. Black Angels – You on the Run
  5. The Black Keys - Psychotic Girl
  6. Beck – Soul of a Man
  7. Women – Black Rice
  8. The Raveonettes – Aly, Walk with Me
  9. The Ruby Suns – There are Birds
  10. Handsome Furs – Handsome Furs Hate this City
  11. Girls – Hellhole Ratrace
  12. Atlas Sound – Recent Bedroom
  13. High Places – Head Spins
  14. Beach House - Gila
  15. Fleet Foxes – White Winter Hymnal
  16. Bon Iver - Skinny Love
  17. Citay – Little Kingdom
  18. The Helio Sequence – Lately
  19. Art in Manila – The Sweat Descends
  20. The Dodos – Paint the Rust
  21. Port O’Brien – I Woke Up Today
  22. Tilly and the Wall - Pot Kettle Black
  23. Rafter – zzzpenchant
  24. School of Language – Extended Holiday
  25. Jason Collett - Charlyn, Angel of Kensington
  26. The Morning Benders – Boarded Doors
  27. Jim Noir – Don’t You Worry
  28. Cut Copy – Lights & Music

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The Morning Benders – Talking Through Tin Cans

ArtistThe Morning Benders
Album: Talking Through Tin Cans
File Under: Indie Pop
Recommended if You Like: The Shins, The Kooks, Brian Wilson
Featured Track: Boarded Doors

The Bay Area’s very own indie pop rockers have released their debut album, ‘Talking Through Tin Cans’, and…I’m liking it!  I had to sit with it for a while because…nah, I couldn’t like a pop band, could I? But there’s something about the groups’ sunny California sound – catchy hooks and melodies, jangly guitars – along with their collegiate youthfulness that makes this an irresistible summer album.  That and I may be a bit nostalgic to the fact that they happen to be my little boy’s first official concert.

To add to my momentary love affair, they’ve just compiled an album of covers called, ‘The Bedroom Covers’, that they are releasing for free download.  The EP features 11 tracks from artists such as Velvet Underground, The Smiths, Fleetwood Mac and more.  Here’s a good sample from the Talking Heads:

Pull Up The Roots (Talking Heads)

Maybe I’ll look back on this as a summer fling or passing trend.  But until then, I plan on working this album for the summer, like my white jeans.

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