The Power of Ten: 10 Albums for 10/10/10

It’s 10:10 AM on 10/10/10. A perfect 10. These tri-numeral dates come around once a year and this year it falls on the number 10. Is it an auspicious day or a bunch of hullaballoo? There is a certain completeness of order with the number 10. For the Chinese the number is lucky, representing perfection or completion. We’re born with 10 fingers and 10 toes after all. Perfect beauty is measured on its scale. Top 10 lists are ubiquitous. And any respectable album contains at least 10 songs.

If you’re technologically-inclined, today is a “binary” day. The ones-and-zeros representing the binary code or the mathematical language “spoken” by computers to create all things digital. Converting the date 10/10/10 to binary code gives us 101010. And in the binary counting system, that number translates to 42, which means…absolutely nothing.

But hey, it’s a nice theme for a post isn’t it? And everyone loves a top 10 list. So, here’s mine.  The 10 albums I’m obsessed with on this month, this day, this year. The albums I have on heavy rotation right now and keep coming back to again and again. Ten, in a long list, of albums you should most definitely own. Listed in no particular order, they are:

Artist: Royal Baths
Album: Litanies
Track: “Nikki Don’t”

Artist: Deerhunter
Album: Halcyon Digest
Track: “Desire Lines”

Artist: Sea of Bees
Album: Songs for the Raven
Track: “Marmalade

Artist: Sonny & The Sunsets
Album: Tomorrow is Alright
Track: “Lovin’ on an Older Gal”

ArtistLower Dens
AlbumTwin Hand Movement
Track: “A Dog’s Dick”

ArtistTame Impala
AlbumInnerspeaker
Track: “Vital Signs”

Artist: Future Islands
Album: In the Evening Air
Track: “As I Fall”

Artist: Ty Segall
AlbumMelted
Track: “Cesar

Artist: Tamaryn
AlbumThe Waves
Track: “Mild Confusion”

Stuck In My Head: Atlas Sound – “Walk A Thin Line” (Fleetwood Mac Cover)

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Atlas Sound“Walk A Thin Line (Fleetwood Mac Cover)”

The solo project of Deerhunter’s Bradford Cox, Atlas Sound, has released a most amazing cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “Walk A Thin Line”.  Genius. Atlas Sound is playing The Great American Music Hall on November 3 with Broadcast.  An excellent show indeed.

Like Deerhunter? Meet Circulatory System

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Circulatory System, “The Spinning Continuous“:

More than likely you’ve heard of Deerhunter.  Their last album, Microcastle, topped many ‘Best Of’ lists last year, including mine. But what about Circulatory System?  Yeah, me neither but you soon will – trust me.  I got tipped on their forthcoming album, Signal Morning, recently, took a listen and have been smiling ever since.  It was like listening to Deerhunter on a Beatles Magical Mystery Tour. Holy head trip! This is fan-fucking-tastic, who are these guys?

As it turns out, Circulatory System has been around a while and share much in common with Deerhunter.  Both were formed in 2001 in Georgia, have received critical acclaim and have front men tormented by disease. Circulatory System was founded by Will Cullen Hart after Olivia Tremor Control fell dormant in 2000.  He and most of the other Olivias now comprise much of the band.  Their eponymous debut album was released that same year to much critical acclaim and their long awaited sophomore release, Signal Morning, is finally due out September 8.

Seven and a half years in the making, Signal Morning has been sculpted from countless hours of recordings.  The end product is a heady, complex and orchestral sonic journey.  The songs, composed by Hart, explore his battle with Mutliple Sclerosis – much in the same way as Bradford Cox explores his plight with Marfan Syndrome in his work with Deerhunter and Atlas Sound.  And like Deerhunter’s trajectory with Microcastle, I expect this album will explode and take them to a higher level.

P.S. Rumor has it that Olivia Tremor Control is together and recording again too!

Thanks Adam for the tip!

Album of the Week: Jeremy Jay – “Slow Dance”

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Artist: Jeremy Jay
Album: Slow Dance
File Under: Indie Pop
Recommended if You Like: Early Bowie meets Jonathon Richman
Featured Tracks: “In This Lonely Town”

While on holiday in Greece, nothing has bridged the gap for me musically better than Jeremy Jay.  It’s just the right mix of down tempo electro pop fitting for the sunny Mediterranean climes I’m inhabiting at the moment, and the perfect transition from the Euro electro madness I’m assaulted with on a daily basis.

Described by Pitchfork as “the type of guy who tours with Deerhunter but covers Madonna,” Jay’s latest album, Slow Dance, is disco done right.  With just the right touch of that 80s synth, early Bowie sound, it really is the perfect album for my European vacation – cool and sexy. Listening to it is comfortably familiar and, just like the soundtrack of  a John Hughes film, it nails my ethos perfectly.

Outside Lands Initial Line Up Announced

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Here it is.  The initial line up for Outside Lands.  And all I can say is WTF? Pearl Jam, Black Eyed Peas and The Dave Matthews Band for christ sakes? We’ve gone from Radiohead to Fergie. That’s definitely going to draw the wrong crowd.  Too bad because the ‘opening’ bands look great – Band of Horses, Silversun Pickups, The Dead Weather (definitely interested in Jack White’s latest venture), The National, Deerhunter, The Duke Spirit. 

Ah well, it’s up to you Treasure Island Music Fest.  You haven’t let me down yet.