All Hail the Duke Spirit

Artist:  The Duke Spirit
Album:  Neptune [Released Feb 2008]
File Under:  English Indie Rock
Recommended if You Like: Grungy garage rock a la Sonic Youth and P.J. Harvey
Featured Track:  The Step and the Walk

I’ve been a fan of The Duke Spirit since their first album, Cuts Across the Land, hit the US in 2005.  With their second release, Neptune, the band has clearly come of age.  The album is a seductive blend of lead singer Leila Moss’s bluesy-rock vocals and ferocious guitar riffs.   The songs, evoking images of sea gods and ships, are a journey of brooding intensity that, in the end, leaves me only to say… “All Hail The Duke Spirit.”  

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I Heart

The recently launched is one of my latest obsessions.  Especially when they post these amazing live sets like this one from one of my favorite bands of 2007, Caribou. picks up where MTV’s 120 Minutes left off.  It’s everything Indie music television should be and will become. I love you Pitchfork. Rock on.

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Bon Iver, Mon Ami

For Emma, Forever Ago

Artist:  Bon Iver (pronounced bon hiver – as in French for good winter)
Album:  For Emma, Forever Ago ( Released February 7, 2008 )
File Under:  Singer/Songwriter; Make out Music
Recommended If You Like:  Iron & Wine
Featured Track:  Skinny Love

The label Jagjaguwar knows how to pick artists and Bon Iver is no exception.  Their release of the band’s debut album, “For Emma, Forever Ago,” made waves among critics and music lovers alike.  And for good reason, the album is stunning. The band’s driving force – Justin Vernon – wrote this masterpiece holed up in a cabin in Wisconsin for three months during the winter.  The sense of isolation, longing and loneliness are palpable in his songs, but in a beautiful way.  The tempo and rhythm of the CD washes over you in a way that just makes you want to curl up and touch someone. 

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