I’ve gone stark raving mad for Starfucker. I saw them again this weekend at The Hemlock Tavern in San Francisco, to an overly packed crowd I might add. They are so much fun live. And the lead singer Ryan has some hot dance moves that can rival Beck. They’re on tour right now promoting their forthcoming album, Jupiter, due out May 5. Catch them at a venue near you.
Friday at SXSW kicked off in style with a great day party hosted by Insound at Club De Ville. Obits opened the day with an impressively scorching set, followed by one of my favorite bands, The Handsome Furs, who’s energy and chemistry did not disappoint. I had yet to see them live so was thrilled to get up close and personal with them at such a great venue. (Loved Alexei Perry’s leopard print jumpsuit too.) American Analog Set followed but they were a bit too quiet to be appreciated with a crowd in the full throws of an all you can drink PBR pint party, so off I headed to the Spin private event at Stubbs.
At the Spin party, which was a blast, I caught The Black Lips – who lived up to their infamous stage performance reputation — Glasvegas and the seminal band of the 80s Echo and The Bunnymen. Ian McCulloch’s voice was amazing and the band’s performance was one of my highlights of the festival for me. Between sets we were entertained by the likes of The Crystal Method and NASA. A great show all around! Thanks Spin!
Without missing a beat, we headed to the TopSpin party to see White Denim crush it. If you don’t know this band already, you are missing out. Exposion is my favorite album of 2008 and they are absolutely incredible live. Whew, okay. I’m a good nine bands in and we haven’t even gotten to the official SXSW schedule yet!
The evening kicked off with Alberta Cross. Man, these guys are good. Really, really good. One of the SXSW sleepers, in my opinion. Loney Dear was up next with a lackluster performance, but all was redeemed when we made it to Emo’s Jr. for King Kahn & The Shrines. Holy crap! I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything quite like them. Absolutely and completely crazy live performers. People were hanging from the rafters, taking off their pants, moshing and giving puja to the holy Hindu, King Kahn. I didn’t think the night could get any better until we ended up at the mother of all after parties to see Starf**ker. My new favorite band. I loooovve them!
Rawnald Gregory Erickson the Second:
Here it is. My last Album of the Week recommendation for 2008! And what better way to close out the year than with a little Starf**ker. Come on, say it. You know you want to. Starf**ker!!
The debut album of this Portland-based group has grown into one of my favorite listens these last few weeks. The band’s dreamy, tranquil grooves are just the right anecdote for these foggy, wet San Francisco days of late. It’s just downright refreshing and fun from start to finish. Their lyrics are whimsical and kooky – but never kitschy – bringing a smile to my face with every listen. From the hilarious ‘German Love‘ (I’m gonna give it to you) and the completely nonsensical ‘Iaadeedaa’ to the obsessively catchy ‘Rawnald Gregory Erickson the Second’, this album has me hooked. Now go get your groove on.
As many of you who read this blog already know, I’m mostly indie rock girl but I do dabble in a little indie pop/electronica from time to time. I am attracted to that Euro/ambient/dub pop/downtempo groove. However, it’s the rare album in this genre that can hold my interest all the way through. Which is why you won’t find many (if any) electro/pop albums on my top 20 list for 2008.
But there were many great songs of this variety that stood out to me this year. And here is a compilation of some of those tracks that moved me. I love listening to this mix and hope you will too. Enjoy!
Listen to Best Songs of 2008 – Electro/Pop:
- Koushik, ‘Lying in the Sun‘
- Air France, ‘Collapsing at Your Doorstep’
- Martina Topley-Bird, ‘Phoenix’
- The Black Ghosts, ‘Full Moon’
- Nightmares on Wax, ‘195LBS.‘
- The Notwist (Panda Bear Remix), ‘Boneless’
- Tobacco, ‘Hairy Candy’
- Lemonade, ‘Sunchips’
- Raised By Robots, ‘I Love You/U Luv Me 2′
- Starf**ker, ‘Florida’
- Rafter, ‘Juicy’
- Cut Copy, ‘Lights & Music’
- Nightmares On Wax, ‘Da Feelin’
- Rainbow Arabia, ‘Omar K’