Posts Tagged ‘Parquet Courts’

The countdown of our Favourite 200 songs of the past 10 years has taken over everything over the last two weeks, so here is our (belated) round-up of some of the best new songs of the past 14 days.

  1. Parquet Courts – Mardi Gras Beads
  2. Protomartyr (featuring Kelley Deal) – Wheel Of Fortune
  3. Lumerians – Silver Trash
  4. The Plainviews – Bladerunner
  5. The Lovely Eggs – Big Sea
  6. LUMP – Late To The Flight
  7. Jess Williamson – Wild Rain
  8. Rayland Baxter – Casanova
  9. Damien Jurado – Percy Faith
  10. The Goon Sax – She Knows
  11. Beach House – Black Car
  12. Wand – Pure Romance
  13. Milo Greene – Move

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We’re celebrating ten years of MM. Today we’ve reached the top 50 of our favourite songs of the past decade.

50 Discount Guns – I Heard (2012)

 

Ass kicking blend of blues rock and country and western with big riffs, plenty of fuzz and loads of reverb. Like the Black Keys with balls.

 

49 Thee Oh Sees – Toe Cutter/Thumb Buster (2013)

 

A bass line and guitar riff that are simple genius, massively addictive and unwavering in ferocity as the song crescendos during the chorus. It was the one song that year that whenever anyone heard it for the first time they sat there quietly, and then at the end, would say without fail “That was awesome, Who was that?

 

48 Beth Jeans Houghton & The Hooves Of Destiny – Lilliput (2011)

 

Experimental freak-folk, pop song writing, and a slyly humorous outlook all combine in a stunning fashion. Lilliput’s gentle opening soon gives way to cantering drums, gilded strings and some marvellously versatile falsetto vocals.

 

47 Parquet Courts – Stoned And Starving (2012)

 

Two irresistibly hypnotic chords carry a song of deadpan delivery, like Wire doing slacker rock (which obviously would be a very good thing indeed).

 

46 Blitzen Trapper – The Man Who Would Speak True (2010)

Like a companion piece to Black River Killer (still to come folks, still to come), a surreal, dark fairytale with tumbling rhymes over minimal percussion and a splash of lovely harmonica and always remember “You better guard your tongue like your enemy

 

45 Water Liars – Linens (2013)

 

Gorgeous heartbroken country ballad, “And what I would give to be quiet beside you / with the window open, a record playing low / to feel your skin between the clean bed linens / inside a room where sadness never goes”

 

44 Port O’Brien – My Brain Is Hanging Upside Down (Bonzo Goes To Bitburg) (2010)

Amongst other things Port O’Brien were a fabulous covers band. This is the sweetest Ramones cover ever.

 

43 Felice Brothers – Fire At The Pageant (2011)

Voodoo, zombies, sinister nursery rhyme chants, classic Felice Brothers lyrics and a woozy, old-timey, back porch rhythm means this song should have been an utter mess. That it was the complete opposite stands tribute to this bunch of ramshackle mavericks of increasingly experimental Americana.

 

42 The Decemberists – June Hymn (2011)

June Hymn crafts pastoral and emotional imaginery into exquisite, literate, and ultimately hopeful indie rock.

 

41 Magnetic Fields – Drive On Driver (2008)

A serpentine melody couched in woozy, soft-focus feedback. The ultimate distorted road trip.

 

Check out numbers 200-181, 180-161, 160-141140-121, 120-101, 100-9190-8180-7170-61 and 60-51.

Mad Mackerel has been around for ten years now.

We’ve come a long way.

Early days using Google’s blogspot where our posts were regularly and erroneously taken down through DMCA notices until the moment when Google just erased us completely, our move to WordPress in April 2010 where Kurt Vile, Beach Fossils, Johnny Flynn and Band of Horses were among our first posts. Those were the days of Mrs Mackerel’s TFI Friday posts, downloadable Best of the Month round-ups, and the early days of Soundcloud and Bandcamp. On we went with our MM Shorts series reaching one thousand posts, Best of the Month was replaced by Songs You Should Have Heard This Week, and a collection of 15-1 interviews with the likes of Blitzen Trapper, Simone Felice, Torres and Young Knives. And every year we published our collection of favourite tunes from some of our much loved and stalwart contributors – Mrs Mackerel (of course), Chris T Popper, Barry-Sean, The Italian Job, Polly Pocket, Dr Roddy, and even some Mackerel sprat contributions.

So to mark ten years of tunes, over a million hits, 6,174 posts on WordPress, 9,993 tracks listed on Hype Machine, 5,691 WordPress followers and even 1,113 likes on Facebook, we’ve asked our key contributors to share their favourite songs of the past ten years and compiled them into one lovely big list of 200 wonderful tunes for you.

Bit by bit, over the next few days we’ll be sharing them all for you – check through and see what you might have missed.

PART 1 (200-181)

200 Paul Hawkins & Thee Awkward Silences – The Evil Thoughts (2008)

The black humour, the self-deprecation, the slightly carnivalesque musical stylings and a story of self loathing. A wounded, nihilistic anthem with a wonderful, British oddball-ness about it.

 

199 PortisheadWe Carry On (2008)

Hypnotically oppressive and menacing. Built on a insistent two-note electro riff, We Carry On is as claustrophobic as music can get.

 

198 Dune Rats – Dalai Lama (2014)

 

Just about the dumbest stoner anthem ever written and that’s high praise given the competition, and definitely the best song with only one line and five words. Altogether now Dalai Lama Big Banana Marijuana

 

189 Dutchess & The Duke – The River (2009)

Stark, sparse campfire song, with a captivating, morose beauty.

 

196 T. Hardy Morris – OK Corral (2013)

 

Pure back-porch Americana, dark alt-country shot through with a touch of psychedelia.

 

195 together PANGEA – River (2014)

 

A hyperactive smear of ripcord riffs and sneering angst. Garage punk perfection.

 

194 Jessica Lea Mayfield – Kiss Me Again (2008)

 

Sultry, utterly gorgeous, and captivating opening track from her second album, recorded when she was only 19. Weary beyond her years.

 

193 Grasshouse – A Cockroach (2010)

Excellent, brooding indie rock. A malevolent and dark-hearted sonic delight.

 

192 Fat White Family – Bomb Disneyland (2013)

 

A Stooges style riff and sordid lyrics aligned to an irresistibly malignant rockabilly groove.

 

191 Father John Misty – Hollywood Forever Cemetery Sings (2012)

 

Long before the Emperor’s new clothes of recent releases, Fear Fun was one of the finest albums of 2012 and this track with its nod to the Wall of Sound days and echoing guitars was one of the standouts.

 

190 Parquet Courts – Dust (2016)

Droning, danceable guitars brilliantly provide a backdrop to a jittery 50 word essay on the inherent grossness of dust and the futility of cleaning. “It follows, now swallow, You’re biting it now, Suffocate, suffocate, Breathe, Dust is everywhere, Sweep”.

 

189 Eagleowl – Motherfucker (2008)

 

Like a Scottish Low, Motherfucker is a devastating slow burner with an opening line to match, “Can I call you motherfucker, would your father be offended?

 

188 Elvis Perkins In Dearland – Doomsday (2009)

Brassy, infectious, sad but happy, New Orleans style folk.

 

187 No Age – Fever Dreaming (2010)

 

This song simply steams out of the traps like it has just been released from the punk heyday of 1977.

 

186 The Cave Singers – I Don’t Mind (2009)

The finger-picking guitar is a brilliant back-drop to the soaring vocals. Low lights, Friday night, bit of kitchen dancing. Irresistible.

 

185 Mazes – Skulking (2013)

 

A krautrock inspired, four to the floor drone classic that ends in a classic Velvets style fuzzed up breakdown.

 

184 Twilight Hotel – Mahogany Veneer (2011)

 

A brilliant combination of alt-country and spaghetti-western desert twang that moves languidly to conclusion via poignant, scalpel sharp lyrics

 

183 Greylag – Yours To Shake (2014)

A moody take on the nature of good vs evil told through the lens of muscular, gnarly folk-rock.

 

182 Last American Buffalo – Baby I’m Alive (2012)

 

Perfectly paced, mournfully traditional Americana.

 

181 Two Wounded Birds – Night Patrol (2011)

 

Stunning surf-rock twang with echoes of Link Wray and Roy Orbison.

 

Here is the title track from Parquet Courts’ upcoming new album, out on 18th May via Rough Trade.

Wide Awake! is a shout along anthem propelled on something akin to tropical percussion and a sparse, funky and naggingly insistent guitar refrain.

Watch the video.

 

Ah, how we’ve missed the marvellous Parquet Courts

They’re back with a new album, Wide Awake!, and a track of two halves, Almost Had to Start a Fight/In and Out of Patience. The first typically frenetic and jerky, the second half a classic Courts’ indie-punk anthem.

Watch the lyric video below.

 

Ten new songs for you collected from the week’s new releases. Lots to discover including two stunning covers by The Tallest Man On Earth and Marie Danielle, snotty punk done to perfection by Amyl & The Sniffers, tracks from Americana heavyweights Deer Tick and Blitzen Trapper and classic country from Margo Price. Plenty more besides… enjoy.

  1. The Tallest Man On Earth – Both Sides Now (Joni Mitchell cover)
  2. Deer Tick – Card House
  3. Daniele Luppi & Parquet Courts featuring Karen O – Talisa
  4. Margo Price – A Little Pain
  5. Gun Outfit – Strange Insistence
  6. The Dream Syndicate – Filter Me Through You
  7. Amyl & The Sniffers – I’m Not A Loser
  8. Marie Danielle – White Shoes  (Conor Oberst cover)
  9. Blitzen Trapper – Rebel
  10. Acid Tongue – Humpty Dumpty

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  1. Daniele Luppi & Parquet Courts – Soul & Cigarette
  2. Protomartyr – My Children
  3. Wilco – All Lives, You Say?
  4. Alvvays – Plimsoll Punks
  5. Quilt – Black Night Woman  (F.J. McMahon cover)
  6. Duds – Elastic Feel
  7. Spray Paint – Cussin’ (Live at Third Man Records)
  8. Silver Torches – If I Reach
  9. Reptaliens – If You Want
  10. Hope Sandoval & The Warm Intentions – Sleep
  11. Julien Baker – Intentions

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

best of the weekAfter last week’s bonanza of new tunes, we’re back with eleven more tracks gathered up from the past seven days. No reduction in quality either with another (and the best yet) taste from Laura Marling’s new record Semper Femina, a brand new instrumental track from pastoral psych rockers Allah Las and another ominous slice of brooding Americana from Timber Timbre.

We also have new singles from Hater, Luxury Death and WATERS, a Talking Heads cover from Japandroids and another entry from the Our First 100 Days Project – this time it is DRINKS and a hazy, 60’s inspired tune. We have another song from Adam Torres’ upcoming EP and an unbearably sad Mount Eerie track. Finally that rarest of sightings on MM, a remix of sorts with Parquet Courts’ Captive of the Sun brilliantly reworked in tandem with rapper Bun B.

Enjoy y’all.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

mms-top-20

Our final Best of post of 2016 is MM’s own selections. You can also listen via Spotify here.

20 TRAAMS – A House On Fire
I always think I don’t really like long songs and yet they always seem to end up in my favourite tracks of the year. This TRAAMS song is nearly nine minutes long yet hurtles along in a blur of krautrock inspired grooviness that is irresistible.

 

19 BAIT – I’m Still Here
Out-slaved anything on the last Slaves record and mentions evil genius Timmy Mallet. Top marks.

 

18 Mind Spiders – Running
An unstoppable, frantic force of razor sharp guitars and seething urgency.

 

17 Underworld – I Exhale
See what I mean about long songs… Another eight minutes of hypnotic, motorik techno that cannot be denied.

 

16 King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard – Gamma Knife
Described by the band as a ‘never-ending album’, Nonagon Infinity features nine songs connected by musical motifs which flow ‘seamlessly’ into each other with the last track ‘linking straight back into the top of the opener’. The first single, a psych-rock/trash metal wig out, Gamma Knife contained a riff from the song People Vultures and both songs are our favourites on the record. This just edges it for its sheer grooviness.

 

15 Terry – Don’t Say Sorry
I love this song for making me feel 15 again and discovering all those now punk classics. Nervy, incessant, catchy as hell and the best deadpan vocals of the year. Why would you say sorry for that?

 

14 Van William – Revolution
We still miss Port O’Brien and (whisper it) Van Pierszalowski’s new musical vehicle WATERS haven’t really been a patch on PO’B, so we were delighted to discover Van William, another new project, but this time returning to the folksier roots of his previous band. Add in a mournful trumpet and the gorgeous harmonies of First Aid Kit and a lovely record is suddenly elevated to another plane altogether. Fingers crossed for more from Van William

 

13 Flat Worms – Red Hot Sand
Starts like the Butthole Surfers and then gets better. The bit from 45 seconds to one minute is my favourite 15 seconds of punk rock this year.

 

12 Damien Jurado – Exit 353
Concluding the single story he has been telling over a trilogy of albums with Visions of Us on the Land, the lead single Exit 353 was a snapshot view of life and death, love and betrayal told through a perfect combination of expansive, evocative guitars with their roots in the heyday of classic 70s psych and Western movie strings that called to mind sun-blasted vast, parched sands.

 

11 James Arthur’s Manhunt – Kill Zone
An intense, tribal, maelstrom of churning, filthy guitars and pounding percussion that veers into space rock by way of spaghetti westerns and Italian horror films.

 

10 Great American Canyon Band – Undertow
Only You Remain was an excellent debut album of beautiful, pastoral Americana cut through with an almost sinuous psychedelic haze – imagine Beach House and Mazzy Star with Gram Parsons and Neil Young. Undertow was a dreamy, reverb-rich, reflective highlight.

 

Lucy Dacus – I Don’t Wanna Be Funny Anymore
A song about gender, identity and being taken seriously as an artist that manages to be funny and biting and smart. It is a perfect rallying cry, all wrapped up in biting lyrics and a driving riff that has as much Joey Ramone in it as it does Pavement or Yo La Tengo.

“I don’t wanna be funny anymore / I got a too short skirt, maybe I can be the cute one / Is there room in the band? I don’t need to be the front man / If not, then I’ll be the biggest fan”

 

Cave Singers – That’s Why
A perfect, slightly fuzzy, rolling baseline, stomping drums and Pete Quirk’s unmistakeable vocals. The Cave Singers gave us a new album this year. That’s Why was the first single and as soon as we heard it we knew they at least wouldn’t be letting us down in a year that turned out to be one of monumental disappointments.

 

7 Pixies – Um Chagga Lagga
A late entry thanks to Mrs M as the Pixies finally manage to turn back the clock and deliver a southern gothic rocker of bracing urgency and delirious intensity.

 

6 Black Mountain – Florian Saucer Attack
I imagine that one of the ten commandments of music might be “Black Mountain shall deliver the riff of the year” and so, just as it was with 2010’s Let Spirits Ride, so it was with 2016’s Florian Saucer Attack. This is just top notch rocking out of ‘turn it up to eleven’ Spinal Tap proportions – I mean that in an entirely good, and non-ironic, way of course, which is a shame for American readers as “apparently” you don’t get irony. I doubt it is true although while many of your countrymen and women were damning the celebrity support of Hilary Clinton as out-of-touch and unrepresentative, millions were happily voting for a billionaire celebrity on the other side. Go figure…

 

5 Parquet Courts -Dust
Droning, danceable guitars brilliantly provide a backdrop to a jittery 50 word essay on the inherent grossness of dust and the futility of cleaning. “It follows, now swallow, You’re biting it now, Suffocate, suffocate, Breathe, Dust is everywhere, Sweep”.

 

4 Ashley Shadow – Tired
A bleary, resigned mid-tempo rocker from the twin-sister of Black Mountain’s Amber Webber that somehow feels like being stood in the epicentre of a mini-hurricane.

 

3 Car Seat Headrest – Fill In The Blank
I came late to the Car Seat Headrest album because everyone was pushing the Drunk Drivers/Killers Whales song which was OK, but not good enough to make me want to check out the album. Turns out that was my mistake as it is by far the worst song on the best album of the year. It opens with Fill In The Blank, which pushes Black Mountain mighty close in the riffage stakes for a start and also has my favourite lyric of the year: “You have no right to be depressed, You haven’t tried hard enough to like it.”

 

2 Dr. Dog – Bring My Baby Back
Laying a yearning, plaintive vocal over the top of a perfect mix of  pop, gospel and psych rock, Dr Dog created the nigh on perfect Bring My Baby Back. Majoring on themes of betrayal, repentance, solitude, and revenge, wrapped up in a perfectly strummed acoustic guitar, it was the most innocently beguiling tune of the year.

Simple plea, make them pay and make them bring my baby back to me. Oh make them pay and make them bring my baby back to me

 

1 Car Seat Headrest – (Joe Gets Kicked Out of School for Using) Drugs With Friends (But Says This Isn’t a Problem)
Sounding uncannily like Will Sheff of Okkervil River at the start of (Joe Gets Kicked Out of School for Using) Drugs With Friends (But Says This Isn’t a Problem), Will Toledo delivers a stunning combination of self-deprecating disgust, mundanity and insight without sacrificing one ounce of musicality. Equally rich and raw, with an honesty and openness that is all too rare these days, Car Seat Headrest is a genuine poet – the closest thing to a modern day Leonard Cohen that I have heard and  I simply can’t praise him more highly than that. Sheer genius.

 

And our other annual ‘awards’..

Gig of the Year: Protomartyr at the 100 Club, London

 

Cover of the Year: Julien Baker – Ballad of Big Nothing (Elliott Smith cover)

 

Car-run anthem: Insane Clown Posse – Chicken Huntin’

 

So there we have it for another year.  To check out the Italian Job’s top 20 click here or here for Chris T Popper’s selections and here for Mrs Mackerel’s. Click for the full run down of our 100 favourite tracks (100-76, 75-51, 50-26, 25-1) and albums.

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Our second individual listing comes from long-standing contributor Chris T Popper, he of the creaking joints and club foot (and yet still the second-best footballer in his family). Another cracking collection of tunes, and you can always listen on Spotify here.

20 Big Thief – Paul

 

19 Mind Spiders – Running

 

18 Hooded Fang – Dead Battery

 

17 Van William – Revolution

 

16 Staches – Total Commitment

 

15 Yowl – The Imminent Return

 

14 Ultimate Painting – Bills

 

13 Great American Canyon Band – Undertow

 

12 Flat Worms – Petulance

 

11 Jacuzzi Boys – Lucky Blade

 

10 Neighbors – Angel O

To begin my countdown we have the troubled Neighbors. The band are new to me and unfortunately I won’t be getting to hear any new material as they split up earlier this year. Thankfully they did have the good sense to sign off with a cracker. Angel O with its spiky guitars, rhythm changes and Jose Diaz’s Rohena’s distorted vocal ending the song audibly weeping is definitely one to pique my interest in checking out their back catalogue.

 

9 Parquet Courts – Dust

Dust is everywhere – it’s all around you ‘you’re biting it now’ it taunts. Held together by a driving tempo that breaks occasionally for a trip around all kinds of added extras including traffic noise it’s a celebration of the mundane. Sweep.

 

8 PJ Harvey – Guilty

The foreboding nature of the beat – a combination of tom tom through a whammy pedal – and lyrics feels particularly pertinent considering what a strange year’s 2016 has been. Decrying the US drone strikes ‘what’s he doing with that stick, which one is guilty?’ and ‘nobody asked us if we’re one of ‘them…’’ feels like a question likely to be repeated in 2017.

 

7 Magic Potion – Milk

I love the weirdly tuned guitars, slacker attitude and the way it just does it’s thing almost unnoticed. There is a kind of warmth to the whole thing (it was recorded and produced by the band) that seems to permeate and the doleful tones of lead singer Gustaf Montelius are a perfect match to the fab wonky guitar.

 

6 Terry – Don’t Say Sorry

Melbourne quartet Terry are a band made up of Australian post punk royalty. With members from different bands (including the wonderfully monikered Constant Mongrel) they’ve created an insanely catchy song with the sort of chorus that strikes earworm gold. Obviously I can’t help but sing along with it every time – it’s just instinctive.

 

5 The Wave Pictures – Pool Hall

This one ambles in to my top 5 with a nicely laid back swagger. Inspired by the disconnection of a society that’s seems intent on closing all our interesting places of social interaction, it’s a bluesy lament to those smoky pool halls now disappeared ‘your past gets closed down bit by bit’ says guitarist/vocalist and songwriter Dave Tattersall, adding (we’re now living)‘…in a bankrupt culture, one that celebrates bongo pop morons and largely ignores the real thing’. About right.

 

4 Underworld – I Exhale

From humble beginnings it’s when the synth cracks in to life that I Exhale starts it’s inexorable rise to becoming my go to record of the year. How many times did I put this on really loud when I was feeling shitty and found Hyde’s spoken word lyrics carrying me off to a different place, ably assisted by that pounding hypnotic beat.

 

3 Little Barrie – I.5.C.A.

Little Barrie made an appearance in a previous top 10 of mine and they’ve delivered another beauty with I.5.C.A. Bit of a slow burner, but that filthy opening riff soon pulls you in and the guitar throughout is just extraordinary. Inspired by hallucinatory trips driving up and down Interstate 5 on their last tour goes some way to explaining it’s otherworldly appeal.

 

2 Terry Malts – Used To Be

I have a real soft spot for Terry Malts, their tune I Was Not There was a big favourite from 2013. Now three years later they’re back with another cracker. I love the lyrics, grieving for a life that is just a nostalgic mirage. Do you want it back how it used to be? it asks before signing off with a ‘not me’ slapping any rose tinted glasses off your face in the process.

 

1 Yak – Victorious (National Anthem)

The chaos this song provides in just over 2 minutes is quite magnificent. The monster bass break preceding the chorus is proper badass and coupled with the strangulated vocals it gallops along with such an endearing lunacy I knew it was my favourite record of the year pretty quickly. There is something I love about a band doing exactly what they want… and it works a treat.

 

Tomorrow we have Mrs Mackerel’s dirty dozen. To check out the Italian Job’s top 20 click here or click for the full run down of our 100 favourite tracks (100-76, 75-51, 50-26, 25-1) and albums.