Posts Tagged ‘My Dear Disco’

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Internet Roundup

March 21, 2011

First in Idol news, here is further verification of the Scotty McCreery/George W. Bush comparison. When Melissa McEwan of Shakesville juxtaposes pics and videos of the two “country boys” with similar smirks and expressions, it kind of reminds me of those old protests signs that put ol’ W’s face with that of a chimp. The end result is just eerie. When McEwan elaborates on what might lie beneath McCreery’s expressions and what his run represents, it makes me rethink what’s going on with the kid who ruined my favorite Josh Turner song. I don’t have the antipathy towards Scotty that I’ve seen on other sites, but I reiterate that my reason is that Scotty has never been in a position of power, so he has never had a chance to say, as Todd Barry would put it, “Fuck you. War!” If that’s how he responds to one of Randy’s wooden complements, all bets are off.

On a different note, the Ann Arbor dancethink band My Dear Disco has changed their name to Ella Riot. I think this is a good move on their part. As the band has indicated on their site, it clears up any confusion with the Australian band My Disco as well as any preconceptions that they make disco music (they don’t). I’ve written about the band before on this site and saw them live with their current lineup back in November. They have shown no signs of slowing down in their high-intensity dance-rock rave-ups. Ella Riot is currently touring and I look forward to seeing them when they come to metro DC next month.

Finally from my inbox, I had a chance to listen to the new release Warm Blooded Lizard by San Francisco hip-hop producer Nym. The album focuses on spaghetti western music, like the kind Ennio Morricone composed for Sergio Leone’s movies. It’s a territory you don’t see mined a lot for instrumental hip-hop. It’s also not a whole album of “flute flute flute….wah wah WAH.” I was impressed with the variety of instrumentation and the mix of vocal lines from old movies long forgotten (at least to me). There are a lot of standout tracks. “Redwood’s” simple but effective mix of beats and guitar made me feel like an outlaw badass. “Rats” features the ominous vocal intro, bass, and piano combo-ing that put RJD2 on the map back in the Deadringer era. “Cucko” ambles along leisurely and quirkily like a sepia-toned Wagon Christ track. Oh, and just when you thought you weren’t gonna get any original vocals or Morricone, along comes “Bandida.” There’s this sexy male + female vocal rap duet over a certain iconic melody that for me was the centerpiece of the album. You can pick up Warm Blooded Lizard for a cool $5 at Nym’s Bandcamp page.

Rest In Peace Jet Harris, 1939-2011.

 

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DJ On A Dime: Michigan Talent Showcase

July 24, 2010

Image from Voxphoto @ Flickr

As my home state of Michigan struggles with one of the highest unemployment rates in the country and the restructuring of its biggest city, let it be known that the state’s pedigree of top musical talent shows no signs of slowing down.

Like many Michigan natives in a troublesome economy (including myself), Rai Knight had to leave home and work on the West Coast and Scotland before she could come back and be a dope hot R&B singer on Detroit’s own FrontStreet records. Knight cites Gwen Stefani as an influence and it shows. Imagine if Stefani took a time machine back to 1961 and signed to Motown. Like a true D-Town resident, Knight comes on with the bite of a Cass Corridor buzz band. You can catch her single “Pivotal” for free on On Fire Music.

Staying in Detroit, we have Black Milk, an MC/Producer who has put in some time on the mixtape circuit, worked with the legendary Jay Dee/J Dilla (rest in peace) as well as some Rawkus and G-Unit alumni, has five albums under his belt and a new one, Album of the Year, due in September. Black Milk’s style is pure G-Funk: trippy keyboards and hard-ass drums. Check out a preview track, “Welcome (Gotta Go),” on RCRD LBL.

Finally, let’s head to one of Michigan’s fine cultural capitals, Ann Arbor. This college town produced Bob Seger, and now a new band is bringing the night moves. I first caught My Dear Disco in a dive bar in Birmingham, Alabama on a “Michigan Bailout Tour” with garage superstars The Hard Lessons. MDD’s electronica antics got me hooked! Unlike a lot of the dance-rock bands that are making waves, MDD’s members come from music school backgrounds, plus they are total hippies (they tour in a modified biofuel-burning bus), so their off-kilter rave music really stands out above the pack, plus their singer Michelle Chamuel sings with a richness that you don’t hear much anymore. Their website has some of their bootleg remixes and a mixtape from their DJ Body Rock up for grabs, and you can direct-buy their records from their Bandcamp page.

As a bonus hit, one of the top 5 contestants in MTV’s Twitter Jockey competition is a native Detroiter. Gabi Fresh is the founder of Young, Fat, and Fabulous, and she’s in the running to be MTV’s first jock on Twitter. Head to her page on MTV to get more info, or what the heck, just follow her on Twitter. Support Midwest talent. Support diverse talent. Hell, support TALENT.