Favorite Discoveries of 2009

Cool bands (in alphabetical order?) that I discovered for the first time in 2009. Rule: they must not have been formed in 2009/must not have released their first record in 2009. Anything questionable, I didn’t include. And no doubts that I forgot some.

– Atlas Sound
– Black Moth Super Rainbow
– Bloodshot Bill
– Bobby Ubangi
– Box Elders
– Galaxie 500
– Mika Miko
– Portugal. The Man
– Thee Oh Sees

CD Review: Alice and Friends

Band: Box Elders
Label: Goner
Release: 2009

1. “Jackie Wood” – 9.6
2. “Alice & Friends” – 9.1
3. “Stay” – 9.5
4. “Dave” – 9.2
5. “Necro” – 9.3
6. “Atlantis” – 9.5
7. “One Foot in Front of the Other” – 9.6
8. “Talk Amongst Yourself” – 9.0
9. “Hole in My Head” – 9.4
10. “Ronald Dean” – 9.3
11. “Isabella” – 9.1
12. “Cougars” – 9.3
13. “2012” – 8.8
14. “Death of Me” – 9.4

Comments: This band! The one with the awesome drummer who stands up. Yeah, you know! Spoken by the Chris DeCarlo machine at one point a month or so back were the following words:  “[Box Elders were] probably the only opening band that I’d listen to again.” That’s some deep shit. You know why they offered CD a rare experience? Because they play quick garage-pop numbers. These songs are over before you know it. But they are (usually) awesome while they last. They are a part of the “bring-back-the-good-times” scene that includes Black Lips, King Khan, BBQ, Strange Boys, and all the fun bands of the like. It’s hard to not like Box Elders. Yeah, there isn’t much variation in their sound, but they know what is up for them. And that’s all that matters. They channel The Beach Boys, The Idle Race, and all other similar minded groups. It’s a bum that these recordings aren’t more hi-fi, but that would kind of defeat the purpose. I actually wrote a song called “Isabella,” so I got a little chuckle. I’ll hand it to these guys and scrap my version all together. Overall…this thing kicks a lot of ass. Quantity over quality. None of the songs on there suck. They are all pretty damn good. There aren’t any over-the-top best of 2009 kind of tunes. So yeah! Check this thing out.

Grade: 9.3