Sunday, November 20, 2011

The Blue Jean Committee - 'Massachusetts Afternoon'

"Do you have one of those afternoons you wish would never end?"

Watch one of the best SNL skits from last night's episode below. A brainchild of Fred Armisen, The Blue Jean Committee is a faux band from Western Massachusetts that harnesses the glory of AM soft rock.  Simple, but clever stuff:

Monday, November 07, 2011

Portico Quartet - 'Ruins'

If you've never listened to Portico Quartet before, do yourself the favor.

My little sister got me hooked on this modern ethnic jazz-fusion quartet after seeing them perform in Paris several years ago.

The London-based group brings a level of chilled out intricacy and creativity to their sound that is exciting and refreshingly current.

The contemporary combo of soprano saxophone, acoustic bass and drums is taken to new sonic heights through the use of digital drum effects and an instrument called the hang. The hang is a style of lap drum, with a shell-like appearance that sounds similar to a steel drum and metallaphone.

That rhythm combo sets a deep and unique groove to Portico Quartet's cinematically-noir experimentalism.

Smoldering squelches of exotic sax sweep over the foundation in heartbreaking waves.

Portico Quartet are set to release their third full-length album in early 2012.

The first song released from the upcoming self-titled effort is called "Ruins" and it sounds as strong as anything I've heard from the band to-date.

The track is currently available as a FREE download at

Watch the video to "Ruins" below to see the band creating their unique sound:

Marley v. Marley

I had the strangest conversation this past weekend.

While attending an old college friend's wedding reception on Saturday, I met a middle-aged gentleman and struck up some conversation.

He pointed to a young lady's arm tattoo, of a sunset with poetry beneath it. The man asked me what I assumed it meant and the woman overheard and chimed in that the words were lyrics to a Bob Marley song.

The man gave her a rather puzzled look, then turned to me and asked, "Who the hell is Bob Marley? You mean the comedian?"

I returned the puzzled look and replied, "The singer. There's a comedian named Bob Marley??"

We both looked at one another as if we were communicating from separate planets.

He further tried to convince me that Bob Marley was a comedian and I tried to explain that Marley was one of the most famous reggae singers of all time. Neither of us seemed to comprehend how the other didn't know what we were talking about.

The conversation ended with both of us utterly confused.

So, for any of you who somehow still have no idea who Bob Marley the musician was, allow me to clear this up with the video below:

...and for those of you like me who didn't realize Bob Marley is also a comedian, visit his official website at

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Real Estate - 'It's Real'

'It's Real' is a warm and summery track from Real Estate.  The kicker is most definitely the layered chorus, which bears similarity to Animal Collective and Grizzly Bear--but to a much jauntier melody.

Stream 'It's Real' below:

 Real Estate - It's Real .mp3