Britain’s Answer to The Cold War Kids…

Hey Sholay!

The amount of good music floating around this globe seems to be endless. This track came to me by way of the Sheffield-based group, Hey Sholay!, that at first listen reminded me of The Cold War Kids. The vocals especially smacked of Nathan Willett. Although a more accurate description of their sound might be The Cold War Kids meets Local Natives, but whatever the musical reference… I liked it! The group is getting ready to release their first single in June. A double A side of this track, “The Bears, The Bees & No Clocks”, and “Dreamboat.” Good luck guys! We’ll be watching….

Vampire Weekend, Cold War Kids @ The Mezzanine



It was an Indie Pop extravaganza at The Mezzanine in San Francisco this Wednesday. The night began with local band Audrye Sessions putting out a very impressive performance. I posted a cover they did recently of Elliott Smith’s Waltz #2.  One of the more beautiful covers I’ve heard lately.  While their sound doesn’t quite gel with my overall music taste, their live presence gave me motivation to revisit that initial judgement.  Big, orchestral sound and beautiful arrangements.  Very talented and sure to go far.

Next up was Chairlift, who’s performance paled in comparison.  I know many people are big fans of this Brooklyn-based trio and they received oodles of publicity for the song ‘Bruises’ that was featured on an iPod commercial.  (Which I’ve come to realize that if I don’t already hate the band being featured on an Apple commercial, I soon will. The Ting Tings are a perfect example.) But this band does absolutely nothing for me – recorded or live. I mean really, who puts a chorus of ‘stop, drop and roll’, into a song?  Their lyrics are just idiotic. Here’s another one:  “The most evident utensil/Is none other than a pencil/Not a multi-colored stencil.” What?  My 3 year old could write more compelling lyrics. It’s like bad 80s music all over again.  The equivalent of Nena’s ‘99 Luftballons’

Thankfully Cold War Kids turned the vibe around with an energetic performance, albeit short.  Their rousing rendition of Saint John was great. Vampire Weekend played their usual set (this was the third time serendipity brought me to one of their shows this year) and they did not disappoint.  Love ’em or hate ’em, they do deliver.  It will be interesting to see how they follow up all the hype from this year.

Listen to Audrye Sessions‘ cover of Elliott Smith’s Waltz #2

Listen to  Chairlift, Evident Utensil (if you dare)

Listen to  Cold War Kids, Saint John

Listen to Vampire Weekend, A Punk

School of Rock: Cold War Kids

The story of a boy and his toilet paper holder continues.  Judah’s at it again.  This week it’s Cold War Kids, ‘Hang Me Out to Dry’.  While technically not his best work, he gets lots of style points for his Elvis-like footwork. Lead singer Nathan Willett can learn a thing or two from these moves, no?

Cold War Kids and Vampire Weekend top the line up for the Pre-Not So Silent Night Party at Mezzanine in San Francisco this Wednesday, December 10. (Thanks, Joerg for the ticket!)

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Countdown to Outside Lands!

Whoo hoo!  Two more days to Outside Lands and Radiohead.  Here’s a mix I compiled of the bands I’m looking forward to seeing on Friday.  If I can cram it all in. Enjoy!  If you want the MP3 file, you’ll need to sign up for the OCMD Mixtape newsletter.

  1. Carney – Testify
  2. Howlin’ Rain – Dancer at the End of Time
  3. Black Mountain – Angels
  4. The Black Keys – Psychotic Girl
  5. Cold War Kids – Something is Not Right with Me
  6. The Benevento Russo Duo – Best Reason to Buy the Sun
  7. Manu Chao – Welcome to Tijuana
  8. Beck – Gamma Ray
  9. Radiohead – Bodysnatchers