It’s contest time kids! It seems like forever since we’ve had ourselves a ticket contest and I’m pumped that our first one in a long time is for St. Vincent tickets. So I’ll cut the crap and give you some contest deets:
Rules: Leave a comment below with why you should win and we’ll pick winners with the best answer.
Prize: 2 tickets to the St. Vincent show at ACL live on Monday the 24th. We will pick TWO winners who will each receive ONE ticket.
Timeline: We’ll pick our winners and email them sometime this weekend.
Tickets for this on are still available for $20 if you don’t win. Don’t forget to leave a valid email address in the comment section so we can get in touch with the winners.
Download: St. Vincent – Actor Out of Work [MP3]
Annie Clark has definitely been around the musical world a fair number of times for the short amount of time that her music has been in circulation. Granted, she was in several other bands before her debut as front-woman in St. Vincent, such as The Polyphonic Spree and backing for Mr. Sufjan Stevens. So it wasn’t a surprise when this lady took things by storm and it isn’t a surprise that this third release is just as savory as the previous two.
A clear standout track that you can pick up on first listen, or even before, is “Cruel,” a single from this album. From the beginning, you have this creepy sweeping, lullaby-gone wrong trance-like sound, which then switches quickly to a down-right dance able tune, with psychedelic beat in tow. Clark’s vocals resound solidly through the whole song, switching between power and wispy, but nevertheless, pushing the song forward. The end result is a song that lends itself to almost the dance-pop genre, which is a bit of a surprising, darker twist for St. Vincent that is sure to have you bobbing your head and shaking yourself all over the place along to the buzzing guitar and the steady dance beat.
Something different on Strange Mercy that wasn’t so apparent on the last releases is the shift from innocence and the transition to darker, deeper tracks that aren’t afraid to pack a punch. “Cheerleader,” the third track, holds such intensity, as Clark asserts that she “don’t wanna be a cheerleader no more,” over and over again while resolute drum beats drill her vocals in like a hammer driving in nails. Clark is assertive and adopts a woman-in-charge flair whose presence can be felt all the way until the end of the album, especially on the very last song “Year of the Tiger,” in which the band builds to it’s explosively powerful ending. Meanwhile, Clark’s voice remains impeccable, holding you to listen like a super charged magnet until the gritty musical elements kick in towards the end, and the song switches from sweet to the prowl of a tigress.
Overall, it’s a pretty complete album; there is a range of various types of songs, all of which seem like different aspects of Clark’s soul, as her voice is the delightful motif that makes its way through all the tracks. While the elements that surround her vocals may change, what remains is a strong front woman who isn’t afraid to experiment with varying kinds of sound and you are bound to enjoy at least a few of these lovely songs.
||Friday, May 13th
||$125 for 2 Tickets
Of course I realize that most of us folks don’t have the kind of money to see Jackson Browne, but I absolutely love the guy. I blame my dad of course, who always had folk/country jams about the hardship of life playing around our house as a kid. It’d be easy to dismiss Browne as an oldie (but a goodie), yet his influence over American music, even modern indie rock looms large. One track alone has reverberated for years, as Nico, Mates of State and most recently, St. Vincent, have all covered his fabulous track, “These Days.” It’s just one song in a catalog full of great tracks that you’ll surely be lucky enough to enjoy if you’ve got the dollars to witness this American great. The song below is a live version of the previously alluded to tune, so you can get the jist of it all.
Download: Jackson Browne – These Days [MP3]
We have to start this list off with a disclaimer. We have three writers, all with different tastes, so the list should reflect that a little bit. Also, these are our opinions, and by no means, are they meant to be seen as an “end all be all” to the question of what were the best songs of 2009. That being said, we like our list quite a bit. Sure, it’s got some expected numbers at the top, but the rest of the list is genius. We’ve got some of the songs streaming for you, and the rest take you straight to youtube. Follow the jump for full list.
Everyone’s favorite indie songstress Annie Clark (known as St. Vincent) will be making another much anticipated stop in Austin on Friday. First up is one of those famous free Waterloo Records in-stores going down at 3pm with free keg beer of course. Second is a chance for a full on proper set at Mohawk beginning at 9pm with openers Pattern is Movement. Tickets for this show will run ya $17 and can be bought online now. If you’re planning on making it out, stick around after the St. Vincent set for an inside show by our new favorite Austin band Sad Accordions.
Download: St. Vincent – Actor Out of Work [MP3]
Hip clothing company Urban Outfitters are offering up a free 23 song sampler filled with some of the best acts from this year. Crazy good track listing features singles and previously unreleased material from Phoenix, Delta Spirit, Grizzly Bear, St. Vincent and tons more great artists. You can stream the sampler online or you can download it from the itunes store. Here’s one of the tracks from the sampler by Crystal Antlers called “Andrew”.
Download: Crystal Antlers – Andrew [MP3]
NPR is streaming a few new to stores albums and one that isn’t even out yet as part of their Exlcusive First Listen series. For Starters, they are streaming the new Camera Obscura album, St. Vincent’s latest Actor, and the new Conor Oberst joint. On top of that, a First Listen for Jason Lytle’s new album Yours Truly, The Commuter, which isn’t our for a week or so, went up a couple days ago. We gave you first single “Brand New Sun” from Lytle’s new album a while back and we’re really digging the whole thing. What’s your take?
While we were roaming around town last week, we started thinking about some of the upcoming releases that have got us peeing our pants in anticipation this year. Then we saw some of these artists during SXSW and got even more excited for what’s to come. For today’s Top 5, we wanted to take a look at some of theses new releases and rank them in order of just how excited we are about them. Some big names who were in town (Decemberists, Dan Auerbach, etc.) have already put out some solid releases this year, so we’re hoping that these won’t let us down. Follow the jump for our full Top 5 of anticipated releases from SXSW artists.