Category Archives: Commentary

Beat The Indie Drum – 2004-2011

About six months back I had a gut feeling that I would be drafting my concession speech for this music blogging website thing and, well, here I am. Lately it feels like I’m beating a dead horse instead of an indie drum, if you will. It’s not for lack of exceptional new music – there will never be a dearth of that – but it’s more about the pressures a blogger can put on oneself to constantly provide content that amounts to satisfying their (in this case, dying) readership. The blogging hierarchy and standards have changed the past few years for better or worse (who can really say?) but I can’t say that posting a pic or video with a few words beneath it constitutes much of what I set out to do originally. Granted, my inability to make BTID so much more is almost wholly predicated on the fact that there simply isn’t enough time in a day to accomplish everything I’d like to achieve. Recent promotions at my job and responsibilities associated with that have also led to less attention being paid to this website.

Another reason for my decision – I’ve been feverishly plowing through new releases, moving from one album to the next with little to no absorption of what the artist is trying to say or relay to its listener. In simpler terms, I’m not ‘experiencing’ music in any non-superficial way. When I was a pimple-ridden teenage just beginning to realize there was a whole uncovered world of music out there to digest I absorbed myself in the art of discovering new music via zines like The Big Takeover, CMJ or Melody Maker right on down to lesser-knowns Skyscraper, Shredding Paper and Jersey Beat. College radio was constantly in my earholes. I stayed up late on school nights to watch new episodes and reruns of 120 Minutes. When I bought an album that I loved it wouldn’t leave rotation for months! I would collect every bootleg from every single band I loved. The Internet hasn’t necessarily ruined all of these habits, it just made it incredibly easier to break away from them. Due to the endless supply of music I no longer make time to listen to records I’ve come to love over the years. I recently took one look at my best of lists from 2005 and 2009 and noticed I hadn’t listened to a ridiculous 90%+ of those albums since I declared them ‘essential’. Simon Reynolds touched upon this in his most recent (excellent) book Retromania, noting that this trend is now widespread and it will only get worse from the experiencing music POV. My goals are to not only revisit personal favorites but dig deep into the archives for classic albums and pioneering artists I chose to ignore over the years for whatever reason. I want, nay, need to spend more time cozying up to my record collection and less time downloading and tagging and sorting albums I will likely never hear. I want to narrow my blog reading down to a select group of established blogs who do bring much more to the table than most.

Those of you following along will know that I’ve recently started a record label (back to the Big School, y’all) and part of my decision to lay BTID to rest involves putting a great deal more effort into this label and promoting the artists I have committed to support. I’ve been wanting to start a record label since those pimply years mentioned above and I’m finally in a position (financially, mentally and knowledgeably) to not only start a label but help make it a successful adventure. This isn’t the end of my blogging days (for sure) – I will continue to post about musical musings, ephemera and random jazz over on my Tumblr. Mixtapes will still be assembled/curated but moreso on an irregular basis than anything else and possibly a little more on the themed side. I also expect to become a little more involved in other activities regarding music but consistent day-in-day-out blogging will not be one of them.

Lastly, I’d like to thank those of you who have stopped by over the years, offered support and helped spread the word. Many thanks to Stephen and friends for all the mix artwork, to Jon for the logo re-design, Mark & Elodie for contributing content, Eric for convincing me to fire this site up for the second time a few years ago, to the THOUSANDS of bands/artists who’ve inspired me to spend so much of my time dedicated to music and everything associated with it and to anyone else who has lent a hand or made suggestions over the 7-year course of BTID. Hopefully I’ve been able to introduce you to new music you might not have heard otherwise. The website will remain live as there is a ton of reference and resources for anyone who happens to stumble on the site. Years of reviews, Monday mixes, the BTID netlabel releases and like, OMG, have you noticed there are almost 90 mixtapes shared on the site! That’s enough music to occupy you for 3 weeks straight. So, go follow me on the Tumblr (or any of these here places) and please help support and spread the word about Big School Records – I’m gonna need you.

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32 Albums You Need To Hear So Far In 2011

‘Halfway’ album lists are probably about as pointless and irrelevant as year-end lists but, for whatever reason, music bloggers (like myself) can’t let go of the notion and burning desire to thrust our ‘well-informed’ opinions upon the ‘uninformed’ masses. So without further ado here are thirty 4-star albums that I consider to be essential listening so far this year. A sample mp3 is included for those who of y’all who need some additional coaxing as well as a link to buy vinyl (if applicable).

TennisCape Dory (South Carolina)
:I was hoping this didn’t stray from the alarmingly endearing Specter-pop they presented on all the ’10 singles; it’s a harmless, worry-free listening experience that also lacks the pretension of others currently mining this territory:
DeVotchKa100 Lovers (All The Sand In All The Sea)
:I find I’m always holding everything new up to everything old in the DeVotchKa catalog and that’s a mistake….even a mediocre LP from this camp is better than 95% of whatever else you’ve been listening to; 100 Lovers sees Nick’s vocals more being up front and ubiquitous than ever and there’s even a folk-mariachi offering for those yearning for the diversity found on How It Ends:
Asobi SeksuFluorescence (Trance Out)
:each new release finds the production getting crisper and Yuki’s signature vocals slightly more discernible but the trademark swirling synth/dream-pop sound is prevalent and beautiful; a few more spins and this might top 2006′s Citrus:
The Binary Marketing ShowBecause Of This, This And This (Blue Glass)
:collage-pop from this Brooklyn duo that follows in the footsteps of their impressive catalog; this is a variation of folk-tronica with tribal, wind-swept melodies and organic instrumentation; RIYL The Books, The Microphones:
Lia IcesGrown Unknown (Daphne)
:minimal, almost naked, goth-pop centered around Lia’s dynamic/expressive vocals and various string accompaniments; includes a duet with Justin Vernon (Bon Iver) on ‘Daphne’, one of my favorite tracks of the year thus far; RIYL St. Vincent, Glasser:
Scattered TreesSympathy (Four Days Straight)
:promising indie-pop that seems like an oddity coming out of Chicago these days; equal parts mellow and boisterous but wholly therapeutic; almost every song is ready for immediate mixtape placement:
The DøBoth Ways Open Jaws (Bohemian Dances)
:quite eccentric, groove-based neo-dance-pop that even borders on the vaudevillian at times; the attentive listener will find a smorgasbord of sounds being deployed in the background of almost all of these tracks, couple that with creative percussion/beats and it makes for one of the most dynamic releases I’ve heard in recent memory; RIYL Björk, Feist, Lykki Li:
Natural Snow BuildingsWaves Of The Random Sea (This Ice Fortress)
:devastatingly beautiful ambient folk that should find itself on every self-respecting music lover’s year-end list:
PJ HarveyLet England Shake (On Battleship Hill)
:I’ve never before listened to a complete PJ album though I’ve been more than impressed with singles I’ve heard over the years but I think I have to work backwards after this LP; Let is bursting with personality and diversity and although I can’t directly relate to the Anglophilic politics they don’t hinder the album at all; easily one of my favorite releases so far this year:
Lykke LiWounded Rhymes (Love Out Of Lust)
:you might not find the dynamic range in voice (assertive-to-twee/timid) and left-of-center percussion as you did on the debut but you can’t ignore the fact that Lykke has returned with a solid collection of organic, progressive-minded, dance-pop and as far as I’m concerned this is a noted improvement upon Youth Novels:
WoodsmanRare Forms (Beat The Heat)
:this album definitely has an omnipresent heartbeat which is what separates it from the now over-saturated field of 2nd wave Animal Collective worshippers; the ambient, percussive pieces reminded me a little of Mt. Eerie/The Microphones a bit as well; regardless of the influences, Rare helped me mentally wander through a few traffic-jammed rides home from work and for that I endorse it:
Peter Bjorn and JohnGimme Some (Eyes)
:forgive PB&J for lacking what some writers are calling ‘depth’ and instead scaling back to the basics centered around penning ultra-catchy, finger-snappin’ pop anthems for a stiff indie scene that could definitely stand to lighten the hell up already….; RIYL Say Hi To Your Mom, Vampire Weekend, Supergrass:
Computer MagicSpectronic EP (Grand Junction)
:one-woman, synth-pop project from Brooklyn (who the hell isn’t from BK these days…) with emphasis on precious melodies and songcraft…odd I haven’t seen Danz remixing others’ work…; get this and a few other of her EP’s gratis here:
Acid House KingsMusic Sounds Better With You (Would You Say Stop?)
:Swedish twee pop royalty who can basically do no wrong return after 6 years to deliver another super-fun LP of feel-good, castanet-chattering, summertime hits; RIYL Belle and Sebastian, Hidden Cameras, Acid House Kings:
Code PieLove Meets Rage (Muddy Shoes)
:one can get the impression that Montreal is the Canadian equivalent of Brooklyn in that every time I check to see where a solid but unrecognized artist hails from…it’s Montreal; the band’s 3rd LP sees them combining elements from the first two albums like well-placed horns and muted ambience and adding even more depth (see the dirty blues homage on ‘Tunnel’ or the Afropop-influenced guitar on ‘Heart Spit’); RIYL Broken Social Scene, Anathallo:
RestorationsRestorations (Nonlocality)
:front page review:
The Joy FormidableThe Big Roar (Cradle)
:the JF’s quick jump to a major and more polished versions of my faves from last year’s ‘EP’ did little to dissuade me from loving every second of this intense, alt-rock powerhouse of a record; go see these songs live…they’ll hit even harder:
Josh T. PearsonThe Last Of The Country Gentleman (Sorry With A Song)
:former frontman for the short-lived but iconic Lift To Experience; whereas that project was dense and angelic this solo effort is a bare-bones approach to intimate folk touching on some pretty ignomious topics with sparse guitar and string accompaniment; I shouldn’t have listened to this while driving as I kept getting locked on Josh’s every word and next move; RIYL Bill Callahan, Jeff Buckley, Lift to Experience:
DodosNo Color (Black Night)
:this is as close to the flagship Beware or Visitor albums as these fellas are gonna get; No Color is opened with and anchored by two of this year’s most unfuckwithable songs:
tUnE-yArDsw h o k i l l (Gangsta)
:whine, complain, spell this however the hell you want – it’s miles better than her debut, easily one of my favorite albums of the year and I am stoked to see her in a few weeks!:
Fleet FoxesHelplessness Blues (Helplessness Blues)
:contrary to some critiques I’ve read, Robin’s arrangements here are just as interesting and stimulating as the debut; this hasn’t quite grown on me like Fleet Foxes yet but I suspect it will after time; one of this year’s best, for sure:
Craft SpellsIdle Labor (You Should Close The Door)
:get this if you love the Drums or any number of the New Order inspired bands of recent memory; there’s also a sprinkle or two of tropicalia and a few older tracks have been cleaned up (arguably for the worse) like the uninhibited joy that is You Should Close The Door, my ringtone for the past year and a half; RIYL Drums, Kisses, chill broments:
FishboyClassic Creeps (Adrian Simmons)
:my only prior experience with Denton’s Fishboy was ’07′s Albatross which featured several infectious/manic indie-pop odes of joy(?); this is no different except it was accompanied by a read-along comic and all the characters involved have their destines entwine before the end (the Magnolia of the music world?); see Mark’s front-page review; RIYL Heligoats/Troubled Hubble, Tullycraft:
MonogoldThe Softest Glow (Spirit Or Something)
:a surprise treat from this Brooklyn (no surprise) collective that features a less-serious take on AC’s good vibes and warm, inviting arrangements; quite possibly the best opening 1-2 punch I’ve heard this year and rad artwork too…someone press it to vinyl! RIYL Sun Airway, Magic Man:
Akron/FamilyS/T II: The Cosmic Birth and Journey of Shinju TNT (Silly Bears)
:these guys have taken a bit of slack lately from the hipster and indie-type crowds because of their unabashed hippiness but based on videos, their live shows are intense and their catalog is slowly filling up with near-classics like S/T II: (buy vinyl)
LowC’mon (Especially Me)
:considering I’ve been a huge supporter of Alan, Mimi and Zak’s evolution since the early 90′s it means a lot to declare this their most powerful and endearing release since ’01′s Things We Lost In The Fire; Low consistently find ways to keep minimalism interesting while maintaining their integrity: (buy vinyl)
High Tension WiresWelcome New Machine (Backbone)
:with Dirtnap it’s already been pre-determined that infectious, high-energy garage-pop is in order here; I’d have to say this is probably one of the signature albums from the genre’s recent history as it sinks its claws into your head and never really lets up; RIYL Marked Men, Jay Reatard, Mind Spiders: (buy vinyl)
JEFF The BrotherhoodWe Are The Champions (Bummer)
:I knew I was going to love this immediately after hearing the opening 30 seconds of swirling 90′s indie guitar jamminess; it’s sweet and hooky when it needs to be and scuzzy/grungy when it loosens up…kudos!: (buy vinyl)
CreepoidHorse Heaven (Enabler)
Dreamers Of The GhettoDreamers Of The Ghetto (Tether)
:a unique Bloomington collective of (mostly) family members with deeply affecting vocals and a rather proletarian feel and approach to their music; we should expect big things from these guys…hopefully a vinyl release of this album…:
The DeloreansAmerican Craze (Buffalo)
:self-described eccentric power-pop from Louisville filtered through show-tunes, modern psychedelia and vaudevillian/baroque pop; a most pleasing experience that very few critics will be able to pinpoint or set to words very easily; couple of these tracks (like the opener and ‘Non’) actually reminded me of Devotchka: (buy vinyl)
Hunx and His PunxToo Young To Be In Love (Lovers Lane)
:a throwback variety of queer-core that champions all that is good with the sub-genre of Spector-influenced garage…handclaps, oohs/aahs, Grease/Rocky Horror flashbacks, his/her call-and-response; if you’re looking for infectious smiles and fun in 2011 consider this your gold standard; next up – ’09′s Gay Singles: (buy vinyl)

A few late bloomers from 2010 that missed the list:

Blue Water White DeathBlue Water White Death (The End Of Sex)
GenerationalsTrust EP (Say For Certain)
The HummsLemonland (Jesus Lied)
Shugo TokumaruPort Entropy (Lahaha)
TalonsHollow Realm (Peter Pan)
The End Of AmericaSteep Bay (Fiona Grace)
PS I Love YouMeet Me At Muster Station (Butterflies and Boners)
French FilmsGolden Sea EP (Take You With Me)
Four TetThere Is Love In You (Love Cry)
Antony & The JohnsonsSwanlights (Ghost)
Wolf PeopleSteeple (Silbury Sands)
TelekinesisParallel Seismic Conspiracies EP (Calling All Doctors)
Beat RadioGolden Age (Golden Age)

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Record Store Day ’11

RSD’11 – This year I ended up taking a 4-pronged approach to the still-relevant Record Store Day celebrations. This past Wednesday I took a trip to Fishtown’s very own Milk Crate Cafe, who announced the grand opening of their bargain bin basement. Most of these titles consisted of the 80’s rock and jazz, both of which I care little for. However, I did manage to score some nice finds upstairs and downstairs:

The Chamelons UKStrange Times (2LP version – MEGA-BONUS!) $5
FranklinGo Kid Go LP (classic local Philly emo-core band from the mid-90’s) $5
R.E.M.Document LP (long overdue) $5
TyvekTyvek LP (garage punk weirdos kinda like Titus Andronicus or Times New Viking on the legendary Siltbreeze label) $5
Nick LoweLabour Of Lust LP (also long overdue) $5
Hüsker DüNew Day Rising LP (arguably my favorite HD album and one of my top 10 fave albums of the 80’s altogether) $10 (VG+)
Saturday Looks Good To MeFill Up The Room LP (one of the most painfully underrated indie-pop bands in recent memory – TWO great songwriters in Fred Thomas & Chris Bathgate) $8

My mother was in town visiting this weekend so my official RSD trek was limited to one stop in hopes of A.) finding the few items I was looking for and B.) spending a little dough at a shop I don’t frequent very often, that being Repo Records. I scored the following (pictured above) but walked away without the repress of Matt Costa’s debut and the Piebald 3LP set (more on that later..):

Big StarThird LP (housed in magnetic tape box with replica music sheets and notes) $39.99 (FYI I did not win one of the 5 test pressing *sad face*)
tUnE-yArDsw h o k i l l LP (I’ve only heard the first single off of this (‘Bizness’) though after watching footage of some of these songs being played live I have no doubts that this will be one of my faves of 2011) $13
The Joy Formidable – Whirring 7″ (after their debut EP and seeing them live I’d buy a can of botulized creamed corn off them) $6
CreepoidHorse Heaven LP (thus far, one of my favorite local albums of 2011 and it keeps getting better with each listen – sad I missed their show @ Main Street Music in Manayunk…of all places)

I showed up at Repo at 10:45 and the doors were already busted open and a line of 30 or so people had formed so my immediate assumption that Piebald and Matt Costa would not be had was correct. The good news is that I found the Piebald release on eBay – sold for a cool $25 by the actual record label (love you, Rise Records) to prevent post-RSD ‘scalping’. A.K.A. Music will be special ordering the Costa LP.

The celebration continued on Sunday when my lady friend and I decided to check out the virtually-unknown Long In The Tooth (no website!) down by 21st & Walnut. A few short-winded reviews on Yelp claimed this place to be ‘off the beaten path’, ‘a treasure trove of gems’ and ‘overseen by a pissy shopkeeper’. Two of these were true – the owner’s main gripe consisted of the lone record-shopping common courtesy – if you flip through records with one hand you’re more likely to bend the edges and degrade the vinyl/jacket/sleeve. There are signs everywhere throughout the store to remind you of this. But man, a treasure trove indeed. I brought my girlfriend along thinking there would be a few crates of Kansas/Jethro Tull/Fleetwood Mac records but I was dead wrong. The used vinyl selection was equal to or even possibly greater than my favorite haunt, Princeton Record Exchange. The selection of used, new, 10″, 7″ records, movies and books/zines/memorabilia to browse through could easily take me an entire day to ingest but, out of respect for my g/f (who managed to pick up a few LP’s herself), I had to quit after the used LP section. LITT, hands down one of the most pleasurable experiences in recent memory and I’ll definitely be stopping back again as it’s literally two doors down from the Helium comedy club. Here’s the shortlist of what I walked away from here with:

ColourmusicF, Monday, Orange, February, Venus, Lunatic, 1 or 13 LP (popsicle orange vinyl) $8
Patsy ClineAlways LP (1964 Italian import) $10 (swoon)
Johnny CashEverybody Loves A Nut LP (his novelty, sing-a-along, not-quite-a-joke-not-quite-serious album) $5
Atom & His PackageMaking Love LP (blue vinyl) (love his package) $8
ThemFeaturing Van Morrison 2LP (1972 anthology in VG condition, shit my pants when I saw it for so cheap…) $20
Someone Still Loves You Boris YeltsinLet It Sway LP (peach vinyl) (the peachiness is sweet and Critical Drain is one of my favorite tracks from last year) $8
The PineLead Blocks For Feet LP (classic obscuro emo-core; muddled, frantic and essential!) $5(!)
VA – A Food Not Bombs Benefit LP (classic OOP hardcore/screamo/emo comp feat. Swing Kids, Franklin, Indian Summer etc. – sadly didn’t include the booklet) $8(!)
Film SchoolFission LP (this was recommended to me via Nada @ FWBA so I took a chance – 180g clear vinyl) $8
Elvis PresleyThe Sun Sessions LP (girlfriend’s squeeze) $10
Otis ReddingLive In Europe LP (girlfriend’s squeeze and I’m not complaining) $5
Bruce SpringsteenBorn In The U.S.A. LP (sure, why not) $4

It was a pretty good week for shopping that sent many worthy acquisitions to my shelves. I could probably live without the rat-race, Black Friday-esque trappings of the ‘holiday’ and the severe exclusivity of some releases but I still love the concept of Record Store Day and I hope to see y’all out and about next year.

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The Beat’s Best of 2010 Pt. 2 – 25-1

25. Blackbird BlackbirdSummer Heart (self-released) (buy)
Kings

24. LCD SoundsystemThis Is Happening (DFA) (buy)
All I Want

23. The Wiggly TendrilsRomance In The Executive Branch (Beat The Indie Drum) (download for free)
Dear Martha

22. ClogsThe Creatures In The Garden of Lady Walton (Brassland) (buy)
Last Song

21. Broken Social SceneForgiveness Rock Record (Arts & Crafts) (buy)
Meet me In The Basement

20. Sleigh BellsTreats (Mom + Pop) (buy)
Crown On The Ground

19. FuturebirdsHampton’s Lullaby (Autumn Tone) (buy)
Man With No Knees

18. Valley MakerValley Maker (self-released) (download/buy)
The First

17. Arcade FireThe Suburbs (Merge) (buy)
Empty Room

16. The WalkmenLisbon (Fat Possum) (buy)
Victory

15. Perfume GeniusLearning (Matador) (buy)
Gay Angels

14. Free EnergyStuck On Nothing (DFA) (buy)
Free Energy

13. The Besnard LakesAre The Roaring Night (Jagjaguwar) (buy)
Albatross

12. Yellow OstrichFade Cave EP (self-released) (download for free)
In The Past I Was An Astronaut

11. SnowdenSlow Soft Syrup EP (self-released) (download for free)
So Red

10. Shy MirrorsReactors EP (Thinking About The Needle) (download/buy)
One Way Rat

9. ListenerWooden Heart (self-released) (buy)
Falling In Love With Glaciers

8. Tame ImapalaInnerspeaker (Modular) (buy)
Lucidity

7. Cotton JonesTall Hours In The Glowstream (Suicide Squeeze) (buy)
Somehow To Keep It Going

6. Sarah JaffeSuburban Nature (Kirtland) (buy)
Before You Go
Clementine

5. YeasayerOdd Blood (Secretly Canadian) (buy)
Ambling Alp

4. Magic ManReal Life Color (Arcade Sound Ltd.) (download for free)
Monster
South Dakota

3. The DrumsThe Drums (Island) (buy)
Let’s Go Surfing
Forever and Ever Amen

2. Beach HouseTeen Dream (Sub Pop) (buy)
Norway

1. MeursaultAll Creatures Will Make Merry (Song, By Toad) (buy)
Crank Resolutions

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The Beat’s Best of 2010 Pt. 1 – 50-26

I wanted to add commentary for all my selections (like I’ve aspired to every year previous) but the time just hasn’t been there lately with all the holidays and whatnot. This year provided equal amounts of musical pleasure as 2009, as evidenced by the uncanny amount of scrill I’ve spent on my record collection this year. Speaking of vinyl – I’m watching it become the format of choice in ‘our circles’, handily trumping CD’s and even the recent explosion of cassette releases. I estimate that I’ve listened to about 500 new releases in 2010 and there’s a stack of about 150 I haven’t even touched yet. I won’t argue the obsessive tone (read: insanity) behind that statement so my intentions for the upcoming year are to spend more time honing my writing skills (or lack thereof) and less time poring over music. I should be absorbing myself in the music and at the same time trying to avoid the fleeting process of one-album-to-the-next just so it can become a means to an end (the below list of albums, for example). I’d like to take BTID in the direction of a true interweb music magazine as opposed to an mp3 blog repository focusing on hype-of-the-moment artists. It’s a tough sell, even for myself, as I quite like the format of my website – little bit of this, little bit of that, here’s a monthly mix of great tracks, short/pointed reviews and so forth.

I’ll be featuring my year-end list of albums in two parts. Next week I’ll post a long-list (50-75) of my favorite tracks from 2010 that aren’t found on any of the albums below. And last, but by no means least, I’ll dedicate a wink and a nod to Daytrotter by featuring 15 of my favorite sessions from this past year. DT continues to provide a bottomless playlist of talent year in and year out for us to indulge in and somehow without demanding any financial support from its users. Daytrotter have become part of a small group of essential cogs needed to fuel our thriving music community (Bandcamp, Free Music Archive & Kickstarter anyone?) and, for that, I will continue to promote and support them in any way I can.

For the handful of you who follow the site on a regular basis (ok, so maybe it’s a few more than that…) – I hope I’ve turned you onto something this past year that you wouldn’t have heard otherwise. Please don’t hesitate to offer up back-pats, *coughpromovinylcough* and opinions – I’d like to keep y’all on-board through 2011.

50. A Sunny Day In GlasgowAutumn, Again (self-released) (buy or download for free)
100/0 Snowdays Forever

49. GlasserRing (True Panther) (buy)
Home

48. The Capstan ShaftsRevelation Skirts (Rainbow Quartz) (buy)
Quiet Wars

47. MenomenaMines (Barsuk) (buy)
Dirty Cartoons

46. The BooksThe Way Out (Temporary Residence) (buy)
Beautiful People

45. SuperchunkMajesty Shredding (Merge) (buy)
Learned To Surf

44. Maps & AtlasesPerch Patchwork (Barsuk) (buy)
Solid Ground

43. Eternal SummersSilver (Kanine) (buy)
Pogo

42. Matt CostaMobile Chateau (Brushfire) (buy)
Can You Tell Me?

41. Crystal CastlesCrystal Castles (Universal) (buy)
Celestica

40. The NationalHigh Violet (4AD) (buy)
Afraid Of Everyone

39. LissieCatching A Tiger (Fat Possum) (buy)
Stranger

38. Everyone EverywhereEveryone Everywhere (Tiny Engines) (buy)
Raw Bar OBX 2002

37. Sharon Van EttenEpic (Ba Da Bing) (buy)
Love More

36. Boundary Jim / Fifty Miles From VancouverBeko Digital Single Series Vol. 57 (BEKO-DSL) (download for free)
Fifty Miles From Vancouver – eternal youth/eternal fun

35. Dinosaur FeathersFantasy Memorial (self-released) (buy)
Family Waves

34. Rogue WavePermalight (Brushfire) (buy)
Stars and Stripes

33. HussaloniaAttention Deficit Disorder (self-released) (download for free)
Are You Ready?

32. Matt DuncanBeacon (Hop Hop) (buy)
Good Times

31. Sufjan StevensAll Delighted People EP (Asthmatic Kitty) (buy)
From The Mouth Of Gabriel

30. Yair YonaRemember (Anova/Strange Attractors) (buy)
Brave Walls

29. Radical FaceTouch The Sky EP (self-released) (buy)
Doorways

28. Delta SpiritHistory From Below (Rounder) (buy)
Salt In The Wound

27. Kanye WestMy Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (Roc-A-Fella) (buy)
Lost In The World

26. Jeremy MessersmithThe Reluctant Graveyard (self-released) (download for free/buy)
John The Determinist

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This Just In…

It’s about that time to update BTID readers with a slew of news-like morsels that we’ve been chewing on for quite awhile now – which is what always happens during the summer-fun months. Hopefully there will be a little more time in the budget for website development and content moving forward into the fall and winter. The good news, other than it not being 95 anymore, is that we’ll all stop hearing how every artist/song is the OMGZ perfect summer cocktail.

While on the topic of fall, The Wiggly Tendrils have announced a (full-length) Halloween album to be released right here on the BTID netlabel! The album proper will be posted and available for download this coming Thursday. I’ve had a chance to sample several of the songs and, boy, is it going to be the perfect summer cocktail a HOOT. Peep their previous releases here or on their Bandcamp to get you warmed up.

How about a new, aural concoction curated by Mark from YVYNYL? Thassome mighty exquisite artwork. These mixtapes are also very awesome, yo.

Since we last spoke there have been no less than three Hussalonia releases to tickle our earbuds. Just when you think Jesse can’t outdo himself – a 6-song EP of (drum roll, please….) Steely Dan covers. It pains me that the Hussalonia machine still meddles about in obscurity.

I’ve been feeling like its time for a little change of appearance for the front page so sometime in the next few weeks/months I will be holding a contest to have the BTID logo redesigned. The booty? How about 250+ CD’s? Yes, that’s right. I’m slowly making the change to strictly vinyl and mp3 formats so these CD’s aren’t unsolicited promos or yo mama’s favorites – they’re choice cuts from my personal collection. Why am I telling you this now? So you can get a head start, duh. More details to come…

Lastly, I updated the Vault Of Free list so that it reads alphabetically with new additions separated and I’m almost finished adding the Yahoo Media Player to every single mixtape so they can now be streamed as well as downloaded.

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