easy meat

Doomtree – Final Boss

“Final Boss” is the first track on Doomtree‘s excellent album All Hands and it comes hard. The Minneapolis collective’s hearts might be cold but there’s a fire burning behind their eyes. Watch the crew slay lyrically and literally, then get right back up to do it again.

Check out the mixtape Paper Tiger made us here.

i need to hear your sweet voice

St. Paul & The Broken Bones – Call Me 

While visiting Minneapolis last weekend my friend Rob turned me on to St. Paul & The Broken Bones. I’ve been losing my mind over them ever since. Paul Janeway is a soul shouter of the first degree with a top-notch band that keeps it so tight that Janeway can’t help but spring up and out. You can check out “Call Me” above and enjoy their KEXP session below.

always it’s in my head

I know I’ve said it many times already, but another affirmation won’t hurt: Night Moves is one of my favorite bands to see live. Last week we featured a video mixtape from bassist Micky Alfano before their show in Madison, Wisconsin at the High Noon Saloon on January 24, 2013 for FRZN Fest and then caught up with the band that night. Their performance was one of the tightest I’ve seen by them – they’ve settled into a well-worn groove of a band whose members are comfortable with each other. Be sure to catch them on tour and let us know what you think!

Click on any of the photos for more shots from the night, or click here.

the night moves video mixtape

Over the course of 2012, I fell in love with Night Moves. The first time I saw them play “Horses” I was hooked, and having a hard-won, mid-set staring contest with vocalist/guitarist John Pelant at the Swan Dive in Austin during SXSW sealed the deal. Pelant, bassist Micky Alfano, and multi-instrumentalist Mark Ritsema bring the sounds of the sun-baked south of the 70s to their Minneapolitan home, drenching it in Purple Rain-soaked vibes. On Thursday, January 24th, 2013, Night Moves will play the first night of FRZN Fest at the High Noon in Madison, Wisconsin along with Wild Belle, Psychic Twin, and Ramona Falls. When we heard Night Moves was coming to town, we asked them to make us a mixtape. Below is their video mix, just in time to set the mood for their upcoming set. Hope to see y’all there!
Burt Bacharach – Nikki
Lil Wayne – This What I Call Her
Leon Russell – Tightrope
Link Wray – Tucson, Arizona
Black Sabbath – Changes
Billy Nichols – Girl from New York
The Impressions – You Want Somebody Else
Rolling Stones – Plundered My Soul
The Flying Burrito Bothers – To Love Somebody
The Isley Brothers – The Highways of My Life


married to the weekend

Motion City Soundtrack has never done me wrong, and their latest release, My Dinosaur Life, is no exception. I got to know MCS as a live band, benefiting from going to college just a few hours from their home base of Minneapolis, MN. In the span of a couple years I saw them more times than I have fingers, booking them several times myself. The thing that always struck me when working with them was their clear joy for making music and performing, a feeling that comes through on My Dinosaur Life.

MCS gave itself a shot in the arm on MDL, ramping up considerably from the stripped-down Acoustic EP.  Though their songwriting has expanded and matured, My Dinosaur Life is closer to their debut release than anything else in their catalog. The songs are big and polished, but not bombastic or over-produced. The excellent track “Disappear” is an excellent example, encompassing the raw emotion of I Am the Movie‘s best songs with singer Justin Pierre’s delivery a pointing, accusatory finger in your face.

Don’t fret if MCS’s pared-down efforts are more your style; the album offers a mid-list breather with acoustics and hand-claps, and it lets off emotional steam with the wink-and-nod sing-along “@!#?@!” – a bouncy garage jaunt that politely invites interested parties to eff themselves. Don’t worry – the quintet hasn’t gotten bitter, they’ve just learned to put a spin on their smiles.

My Dinosaur Life drops 01/19/10.
Visit Motion City Soundtrack’s site for more info.