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    Bernard Sumner, poet

    I think the world is a beautiful place/mountains, lakes and the human race

    Bernard Sumner, poet

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    Tealights Apartment Stories

    Atlanta’s Tealights recently self-released their first E.P., Take Us By Sea, and it is hands and feet and heads and tails and faces and arms and all that, too, above and beyond the best, most forward-thinking thing I’ve heard in 2009. Glistening pop melodies and gorgeous boy/girl vocal-interplay combined with clued-in stuttering electronics and classical instrumentation-I swear if there was a Tigerbeat for electropop Tealights would be cover stars.

    When they were in NY over the past weekend for two shows-one at Matchless in Brooklyn which sadly couldn’t happen because of van issues (“take us by sea”, indeed!) and one at The Tank in Manhattan, Tealights filmed their first-ever acoustic take on my favorite of their songs, “Passport”…on a couch in a Manhattan apartment.

    Thus is born soldout’s “Apartment Stories”-one great band, one great song stripped down to its essence, in an apartment, nothing plugged in instrument-wise. And, kicking it off? Tealights, with “Passport”

    Tealights: Passport (Apartment Stories session)

    Photos from the Apartment Stories Session:

    Mary Tealight

    Brett Tealight

    Nancy Tealight

    Mikey Tealight

    Yes, all of their last names are “Tealight”.

    Visit Tealights’ website and online store for spiffy shirts, EPs (produced by Snowden’s Jordan Jeffares) and other Tealight love, and watch soldout for more live Tealights film.


    No There’s Nothing Else

    No There’s Nothing Else

    Some drink to sleep. Some make piano key neckties. Some drive Dodge Stratuses.

    (Strati? Stratuses.)

    But Bernie Sumner has a very peculiar, very Manchester-ish form of the working man’s blues. After all, this is a guy who, in his working lifetime, fucking wrote the most over-rated New Order song ever “Blue Monday” the most under-rated New Order song of all time, “Temptation”.

    His singular voice, and the ability to pen a line that transcends meaning into the sort of lyric that ends up beating like a heart when you’re fucked up at 3 A.M. (see: “Regret“‘s “look at me/I’m not you”, “Guilt Is A Useless Emotion“‘s “you sure know a lot/for a girl”, “Blue Monday“‘s “how does it feel/to treat me like you do” or, in fact, most of that song…or pretty much every New Order song, ever), leaves him, with the dissolution of New Order as a result of Peter Hook being fat starting a new band, Freebass, which is totally going to be taken seriously, and forging the signature of Ian Curtis obviously being unable to get along with anyone, ever, a daunting task:

    how do you, as Bernie Sumner, lyricist extraordinaire, forge a new band from the ashes of what is arguably the most influential group on pop and indie in the current musical landscape? Hell, Superstar DJ Steve Aoki wouldn’t have a job if New Order had never recorded “Bizarre Love Triangle”.

    You start a band with a name worse than “New Order”-i.e. the only band name ever worse than “Joy Division”-Bad Lieutenant. We owe Johnny Marr for the name, thanks dudeicus.

    So New Order’s Phil Cunningham and Stephen Morris are on hand here, too, and what we have is the album Never Cry Another Tear Never Cry Another Tear (oh god that’s REALLY THE TITLE?!?!).

    The song in this post, “Poisonous Intent”, comes near the end of the album, and it’s the most New Order-sounding thing on the whole record. Other than the regrettably embarrassing slap-bass during the chorus, I fucking LOVE this song-it embraces everything that made New Order so awesome, so great, so lovably exhilarating and synapse-stimulating. They made the sort of music that gets saved up in your spinal fluid, to be unleashed in a way that makes your brain warm and body fuzzy, causing you to lean against the dairy cooler when “Regret” comes on in the supermarket. And this is proof that they still can, to an extent.

    No, I’m not saying that “Poisonous Intent” can stand head-to-head with some of New Order’s best, but it would fit on the more guitar-based modern-day working-class melancholia of Waiting For The Siren’s Call, their sadly-overlooked swan song. Also, come on: there’s something charming about Bernard’s declaration that with his “new-found wealth” he’s going to “buy a guitar” and “nothing else”. Right. And, obviously, some hamburgers-right, Bernie?

    Bad Lt. play Webster Hall in NY on Nov 21 and I will be there.

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    You Talk Big, So I’ll Talk Bigger

    You Talk Big, So I’ll Talk Bigger

    Atlanta’s Today The Moon, Tomorrow The Sun are an incredible band. In-freaking-credible.  They play this fierce blend of electronic rock that comes built-in with hooks and mantras, like breakup music you can dance to if you’re so inclined or rock out to if you’re so inclined or just get absorbed in and listen, listen, listen.

    (photo of TTMTTS at The Tank in Manhattan via This Week In NY)

    They release a new E.P., Heavyweight Champions, next weekend (Oct 17), with a special show at Atlanta’s Drunken Unicorn. This new stuff, some of which they’ve been playing out on tour, shows why TTMTTS are masters of the short turn-around time befitting a barrage of E.P. releases (this is their third): the songs on Heavyweight Champions show a definite new attention to slowly divvying out personal details in the song lyrics, and this song, “Apologia”, is one of the heaviest, hardest things they’ve done to date.  It’s juxtaposed nicely as the second track with the E.P.’s opener and first single, the similarly-shocking New Order-ish nod “Bones”. There’s something devistating in the lines “you talk big, so I’ll talk bigger, you talk big so I’ll…talk”…it’s a promise and a threat, yeah? A promise and a threat that just keeps getting bigger.

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    Bricks and Morter