Friday, 31 July 2009

Carries On - Edward Sharpe And The Magnetic Zeros

It's that time of the month again, we get paid, we pay off tickets we've bought on our credit card and look forward to the next pay day. I'm not sure whether there will be a playlist next month as our baby's due any moment and I don't know if I'll have time next month to listen to much music never mind put the posts together. However if you fancy emailing your suggestions for next month I might scrape one together. Let's get this one started...

Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros are a ten piece group from LA. Seemingly '60s influenced and offering rousing choruses this track reminds me of something Richard Hawley and Jarvis Cocker might have had their hand in. An anthemic summer song for a sunny day's drive. Check out their MySpace for more tracks, their album is out now in the UK and US.

MP3: Carries On - Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros

The Great Escape - The Rifles

A Brit band now releasing their stuff in North America and you can't see them failing with this great track behind them. They're also touring Switzerland and Belgium in August. Check out their web site for details.

Hold The Stars - Stoney

Last month I posted a track by Stoney and Guy Chambers and I recommended you head to Stoney's web site to grab some free downloads. Well I've been enjoying one of those free downloads so much this month that it's made its way on to the playlist.

The Blackest Purse - Why?

Every blog and his dog have been writing about Why? this month and why not (sorry Barry Norman) they produce a great sound. They are giving The Blackest Purse away from their new album Eskimo Snow. It's a track that's got a piano setting a steady pace with Jonathan "Yani" Wolf sitting his folk / indie rock lyrics on top. Steadily bringing to the boil and then simmering again.

This Is Not A Love Song - Public Image Limited

So many songs are written about love in one way or another. What would artists do if they couldn't write about love? Repeat This Is Not A Love Song over and over? Well that's what Public Image Limited have done. It works.

Silver Among The Gold - Grand Archives

I've had this track for a while and it's slowly seeped in to my brain. Grand Archives are on the Sub Pop label I found this through a free compilation that they gave out, I featured some other tracks from it last month but this track has taken a little longer to grow on me. I can imagine chilling out on a nice summers day to this, "imagine" because it's peeing it down here at the moment.

Billionaires - Your Twenties

More quality coming from the Neon Gold label, has there been a What's Wrong With The Mainstream playlist that they haven't contributed to? Probably not. This is the second track I've heard from Your Twenties a band from Devon now (as far as I can work out) residing in London. If you fancy more tracks from the band you can get them at where they discuss why you never see seagulls on tree branches and their hate for Editors "I think they're just a horribly manipulative band." Say what you mean boys.

Hum, Hummingb - Probably My Son

There's a pop festival going on in Nebraska in August and to promote it the organisers sent out a compilation of the artists performing. I've listened to it quite a bit and the quality is hit and miss. One hit is Alex Fencl, AKA Probably My Son. This track Hum, Hummingb (a typo? should it be Hum, Humming Bird?) is available on Probably My Son's latest EP Good Morning Hummingbird! A deep steady song with simple backing that really allows Alex's vocals take the lead.

Cut Out Magazines - Sweet Pea

If ever you could be put off by a band by its name then surely Sweet Pea is the one. However the track is a nice summer track so I've given it a chance, the question is will you?

Sweet Pea are also performing at the Nebraska Pop Festival in August.

Rewind To Kickstart - Yes Cassette

I wrote about Yes Cassette and this track here but the originally theme of this playlist was to be a collections of songs I'd be listening to this month, be it from radio, purchases or other blogs. So I've been listening to this track a lot so why shouldn't it make the cut. I will have new material from Yes Cassette for you next month.

Be Aggressive - Orange 38

"Be Aggressive, be be aggressive. b.e.a.g.g.r.e.s.s.i.v.e." It was a great gig last Friday, Paddy Orange is a great front man and got the crowd going from the first minute, making a grand entrance, well as much as you can in a small packed pub. I've been playing this all month "My neighbours banging on the door they're gonna lose the plot" although it's been my wife rather than the neighbours.

If you downloaded this before you may want to get these two versions, the first is my preferred version with slightly different lyrics and the second is a studio version of Be Aggressive (rather than a Myspace rip).

Like Ice In Water - The Rocket Boys

This band from Austin Texas are (I'm assuming here) named after the book of the same name that was made in to a film, October Sky, which is an anagram of Rocket Boys. They used to be called Homer Hickman and the Rocket Boys, Homer being the author of the book so I guess that backs up my theory why they are called that. The book is about young boys building rockets and according to The Rocket Boys like to write music about where they are from, it's the only link I can get between the two. They play atmospheric rock and they have been giving this track away.

I Should Be Born - Jets Overhead

A band that was nominated for New Group of the Year in Canada in 2007 but I only heard about them through recently as they release their second album No Nations.

Hellhole Ratrace - Girls

I wrote about this band/track here but maybe it's best described by the NME "seven minutes of slacker-stoner-psych majesty" Do I need to say more?

143 - The Press Fire!

I've received quite a few emails promoting this bands tunes. Some of their other tracks are a bit too screatchy for me but this one gets the mix just right. I think the track is named after a house on a road I used to live on but that is a guess to be honest.

Vanishing Act - The Fatales

A late entry in to the 3WTM playlist but it deserves its place nonetheless. A steady build up of a minute before anything happens and even then it's a minute thirty before this track shows us the goods. A euphoric feeling track that you can imagine making the hairs stand up on the back of your neck when played live.

Careless Whisper - Ben Folds feat. Rufus Wainwright

So it went down to the wire and in the end two songs were tied on 13 votes each. Unlucky for some but lucky for you dear reader as I have decided to post both tracks rather than using a deciding vote. Hope that's alright with you. When I was tagging this post (little labels under the post that lead you to other stuff on the same label) I was surprised to find I hadn't posted on either Rufus or Ben Folds before. Two bands/artists that love men (Ben Folds himself) that I enjoy but I guess you all know about them already so there's no need for me to mention them. This track is from a b-sides and rarities album by Ben Folds, I think a live version of Song For The Dumped is on there too which is well worth hunting down.

Hoppipolla (Sigur Ros Cover) - We Are Scientists

I remember hearing them play this on Jo "The Pro" Whiley's show and just being sat in amazement. How can you cover a track like this, I mean I make up the words as I go but they can't do that. Afterwards Icelandic people texted in to the show to say how accurate they'd been with their pronunciation, pretty good going guys.

On a separate note I saw their first album in Fopp the other day for £3 (We Are Scientists, not Sigur Ros) now that's a bargain.

Thursday, 23 July 2009

Tramlines '09 - Orange 38

So with Paddy et al a bit busy I've had to make do with a rip from their Myspace site of Be Aggressive, their first single and usual set opener. I can imagine this going down a storm and getting the whole room bouncing from the off. I described them before as The Ting Tings crossed with the The Twang but having listened to them more maybe there's a more local comparison to be made. With lyrics about life and women perhaps I should be comparing them to Reverend and the Makers, especially with Sophie's vocals adding a contrast not disimilar to Laura's in Reverend. Bring on the gig.

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Tramlines '09 - Kalenko

How excited am I that I can finally see this band live? Immensely, that's how much. I usually don't like to hype up bands as when I hear a song as soon as I like it I post about it so I haven't had time to decide how good the band or the song is. However some tracks just come along that exude quality, for an unsigned band the production and quality of the tracks on their Myspace is just amazing. I'm not sure why they haven't been signed but surely it won't be long. Not long until the gig now...

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Tramlines '09 - Dead Like Harry

Other writers have described Dead Like Harry as being "intricate" and having "music diversity" as well as producing a "well crafted, grown up... sound of pop". They have a sound that, despite the various instruments involved, seems to come from the keyboard. Whether it is written on the keyboard first I don't know but it's got that feel. As a man who has enjoyed his fair share of keyboard led bands in the past that is no bad thing.

Sam (man) and Alice's (woman) vocals remind me of Deacon Blue and that describes their sound well. Deacon Blue is not an influence they reference but there are many different influences they list including Arcade Fire and Vampire Weekend but the influence they closely resemble is Tom Petty (they have also been called "the Steel City's answer to Fleetwood Mac").

When We Were 17 was realesed as an EP last year and Sam has kindly allowed us to post that track here for you today. I'm looking forward to seeing them live on Friday.

Taken from the band's Facebook page:

"Songs from this Friday's gig at The Frog and Parrot in Sheffield (24th July) will be broadcast the same night on BBC 6 Music, Radio 5 Live and BBC Radio Sheffield as part of this year's Tram Lines Festival. If you can't make it down on the night, tune in and have a listen!"

Monday, 20 July 2009

Tramlines '09 - The Cartels

Tramlines festival in Sheffield is this weekend and I'll be making the trip north to see it so I thought I'd give you a run down on the bands playing. As I'm only going to the Friday at Frog and Parrott that's all I'm focusing on but I think that's enough.

The first band (they're in no particular order) that I'm going to write about is The Cartels. To me they have a bit of The Verve to them, maybe a bit of Inspiral Carpets with them also citing Bob Dylan and Ocean Colour Scene as influences. However what springs to mind first when listening to their songs is Del Amitri's fabulous Nothing Ever Happens, not a bad track to be compared to. If you've not heard the track before check it out here. Back to The Cartels and they have kindly allowed me to share this track with you. Heart of Gold is a track they recorded earlier this year in Castleford (or Cas to locals but you knew that) with Elemental Recordings.

Sunday, 19 July 2009

This too will pass

Someone close to me has been going through a rough time recently and they handed me this compilation CD the other day. Reading through the track listings, knowing what they are going through, what they've been through and learning more about what they are going through brought a tear to my eye. Lots of people struggle with depression and when I say lots I mean LOADS, it's just all kept under wraps. I don't think it's a taboo subject it's just people are ashamed or embarrassed when they shouldn't be. Often thinking irrational thoughts, people with depression can convince themselves of many untruths, about themselves and about what other people are thinking. It's an illness, it is something you can recover from.

I hope they don't mind me sharing this with you, I'm not sure they read this blog but judging by some of the tracks I guess they might. This is the track listing:

Something Is Not Right With Me - Cold War Kids
Social Anxiety Attack - The Magi
You're Not Very Well - The Charlatans
She's Lost Control - Joy Division
I Wanna Be Sedated - The Ramones
I Can't Stop This Feeling I've Got - Razorlight
Crazy - Gnarls Barkley
This Is How It Feels - Inspiral Carpets
In To Each Life Some Rain Must Fall - Hot Puppies
Release The Pressure - Leftfield
Come In Out Of The Rain - Engineers
Everything Will Be Alright - The Killers
I Made It Through The Rain - Barry Manilow
Dog Days Are Over - Florence & The Machine
Here Comes The Sun - The Beatles
Feel Good By Numbers - Go! Team
Bulletproof - La Roux
Happy Endings - Pulp

I'm glad it had a happy ending.

On a purely music comment it is a very well put together playlist, clever how it takes you from their lows, through their middle ground (very clever) and then on to the recovery. Strangley enough only the other day I was reading a blog I used to read regularly and they seem to be struggling too. Stop by and give some love.

Saturday, 18 July 2009

Rewind To Kickstart - Yes Cassette

I discovered Yes Cassette through hearing a quality song by lead singer and lyricist Dan's previous band Electric Cinema. While Dan wrote that track, Heat Exchange, he is not playing it in his new band out of respect to his old band. That is a shame but the material from his new band is great and perhaps that's why he can afford to put that track on the shelf for now. Anyway back to Yes Cassette, they're a band originating from Watford formed by friends of long acquaintance, Mark (guitar) and Jamie (drums) were in The New Shapes and Electric Cinema respectfully.
They produced a catchy pop sound that you just can't help singing along to, this track Rewind To Kickstart is about "ex-lovers digging up a time capsule and having one last ill-fated time looking through old photos and letters, but they know they shouldn't go back/look back." Dan goes on to explain "On another, more personal level, it's about the old band ending." I like the fact it talks about Polaroids, commodores and cassette tapes. Visit their myspace for more tunes.

Damn That's A Light Tasting Beer

I've just seen the latest Coors Light advert and the music they are using for it is none other than Trash by The Whip. Remember kids, drink responsibly "I wanna be trashed".

It's not my choice for a beer but their "damn that's a light tasting beer" advert meant I went around saying that phrase my whole holiday in California last year and drinking a few along the way.

You should of course check out The Whips album as they are not one hit wonders, it's called X Marks Destination.

Friday, 17 July 2009

Opportunity Rocks - Blane Fonda

Blane Fonda are a band from Chicago with a cool sound mixed from 1980's vocals and present day guitars. Take a listen and see what you think.

Thursday, 16 July 2009

Time To Get Voting

Don't forget you can vote for what cover is part of this months playlist. Voting's on the right hand side and you've got the choice between The King Blues doing a cover of Bonkers, Ben Folds teaming up with Rufus Wainwright for a one off rendition of Careless Whisper or We Are Scientists managing to pull off a cover of Hoppipolla (unlike the dance version on the radio at the moment). The choice, as our Graham would say, is yours...

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Paul Banks from Interpol goes solo

Here at Whats Wrong With The Mainstream we're big fans of Interpol and Schonberg, occasional contributor, spotted this free download from Interpol lead singer Paul Banks' solo project. Going by the name Julian Plenti he has released his debut solo album "Julian Plenti is... Skyscraper". With his vocals at the heart of it I think it's going to be difficult to separate himself from the Interpol sound but the guitars certainly do that on this track.

A little known fact that will please regular reader Dancing Bear is that Paul Banks was born and raised in Clacton-on-Sea, Essex until the age of three, allowing us Brits to claim Interpol as our own.

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Solitude - Girls

Thanks to Merlin at for getting in touch and pointing out this band to me. I think they're a mix between Glasvegas and Spiritualized but Spacetoasters compare them to Animal Collective, Band of Horses and Elvis Costello. Either way they've certainly got a sound to them that I enjoy. Below is the video of their latest single and Merlin has sent me the mp3 of the b-side to the track which is called Solitude. A great track title for their music, it's got a real 'alone' feel to it.

STOP PRESS I've just done a little bit more searching on Radar Maker's web site and they are also offering the single Hellhole Ratrace as a free download so grab it now.

...and I'm sure you'll want to see them live after hearing that:

21st London Lexington

9th Nottingham Bodega Social Club
10th Liverpool Korova
11th Manchester Night & Day
13th Glasgow Captain's Rest
14th Edinburgh Sneaky Pete's
15th Leeds Brudenell Social Club
16th Bristol The Cooler
17th Birmingham Academy 3
19th Brighton The Albert
20th London Hoxton Bar & Kitchen
21st Tunbridge Wells Forum
23rd Cardiff SWN Festival

Monday, 13 July 2009

The XX - Crystalised Accoustic Session

Amsterdam Acoustics - The xx : crystalised from Mokummercials on Vimeo.

Wow! I never realised what intricate guitar work went in to this track. You may remember it from April's playlist, it's a great track but how much work must have gone in to it. Hours must have been spent writing it and then hours practising it. I take my hat off to them.

Friday, 10 July 2009

Local Natives Come To The UK, well London

Local Natives are in the UK and playing three London dates in July. They are playing 13th, 14th and 16th July, visit their Myspace for more details. I assume they are over here to promote the release of Sun Hands which comes out on Monday.

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Great New Band - Orange 38

I've been going on to this bands Myspace nearly every day at the moment as I'm addicted to one of their songs. I was hoping to bring you that very song but sadly I have been unable to get any response from the band. So all I can suggest is that you go to their Myspace site and check out Be Aggressive for yourselves. There are two versions on there, I'm not sure which one I like more. What I do know is that Orange 38 are playing at Tramlines festival, along with Kalenko, Skint and Demoralised and La Folie. All bands that we have mentioned on 3WTM before. What a line up, visit or for more details.

Back to Orange 38, they are the pounding lyrics of Paddy Orange and much softer (and hot) vocals of Sophie Bramley-West. A bit of a mix between The Twang and The Ting Tings. Although that's doing them a disservice, they really do have their own sound and I recommend you check them out. Try this track for starters.

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

The Cribs - We Were Aborted

The Cribs are back with a new album "Ignore The Ignorant" and are giving away the album opener We Were Aborted. They are also touring, details and download below:

21/09 Dublin, Academy
22/09 Belfast, Mandela Hall
24/09 Norwich, UEA [ tickets ]
25/09 Cambridge, Junction [ tickets ]
26/09 Liverpool, Academy [ tickets ]
28/09 Hull, University [ tickets ]
29/09 Glasgow, Barrowlands [ tickets ]
30/09 Newcastle, University [ tickets ]
02/10 Manchester, Apollo [ tickets ]
03/10 Lincoln, Engine Shed [ tickets ]
04/10 Leeds, Academy [ tickets ]
06/10 Exeter, Lemon Grove [ tickets ]
07/10 Southampton, Guildhall [ tickets ]
08/10 Lemington Spa, Assembly Rooms [ tickets ]
10/10 Bristol, Anson Rooms [ tickets ]
15/10 London, The Forum [ tickets ]
20/11 Hamburg, DE, Sportshalle (w/ Franz Ferdinand)
21/11 Antwerp, BE, Lotto Arena (w/ Franz Ferdinand)
22/11 Amsterdam, NL , Heineken Music Hall (w/ Franz Ferdinand)
24/11 Berlin, DE, Arena (w/ Franz Ferdinand)
25/11 Dusseldorf, DE, Phillipshalle (w/ Franz Ferdinand)
26/11 Paris, FR, Le Zenith (w/ Franz Ferdinand)
28/11 Rennes, FR, Le Liberte (w/ Franz Ferdinand)
30/11 Boreaux, FR, Medoquine (w/ Franz Ferdinand)
More details at:

I think it's interesting they are touring with Franz Ferdinand as I think this track has a little bit of Franz Ferdinand sound to it.

Thursday, 2 July 2009

Saw something interesting today

I read this and, as you're not sat watching TV (or if you are you're reading this as well) and you're looking for something a bit more interactive, you may find it interesting.