you better let the mind go

Twin Atlantic – Heart and Soul

If you’ve been wishing that someone would blend the sounds of “Get Free” by The Vines and “Sowing the Seeds of Love” by Tears for Fears, then Twin Atlantic has got you covered. A bulk of the song is powered by a level of testosterone that can only come from a group of young men, but the chorus has that shiny-happy Beatlesesque gloss of the late 80s/early 90s (and the video to match).

please please me oh yeah

Fifty years ago The Beatles released their debut album and the world of rock and roll was forever changed. To mark the occasion, we thought we’d share our favorite songs from the record.

Please Please Me


The harmonies. The edge to John’s “come on”s. The perfect balance of rock and pop.
Check out this live video to see some of the charisma our favorite foursome exuded at the height of their fame.

Love Me Do


A little bit bluesier and subdued with a not-so-subtle nod to the Everly Brothers.

Twist and Shout


Yes, it’s a cover, but goddamn if it’s not one of the best. We all wait for that “woo!” and we’ve all pretended to be Ferris Bueller at some point. The raw quality of John’s vocals abutting the sweetness of Paul and George’s backup efforts is incredible.

Baby It’s You


I almost didn’t include this as it’s another cover, but it’d be a lie to leave it out. There’s something so sad about it that I can’t help but love it. Damn you, Burt Bacharach!

I Saw Her Standing There


What a way to open a record. This is one of my favorites not just on Please Please Me, but of The Beatles’ entire catalog. If you can sit still through this song, I’m concerned that you’re not actually hearing it.

If you’ve got half an hour, go ahead and listen to the whole album:

yo la hannukah mix by yoni wolf of why?

WHY? is a weird, weird band, and that’s why I dig them. I first encountered them when a coworker at the public library I worked at in college gave me Elephant Eyelash and was surprised to find it was nothing like I’d ever heard. M|H has been featuring WHY?’s work over the years and when we saw they were coming to town to play a free show at the Sett in Union South with Astronautalis and Dream Tiger we jumped on the chance to have them make us a mixtape, and WHY? founder Yoni Wolf passed along his Yo La Hannukah mix to us. Be sure to check out WHY?’s website for more tour dates, videos, and Yoni’s blog.
Yo La Hannukah
01| I Shall Be Released by Bob Dylan
02| True Love Will Find You in the End by Daniel Johnston
03| Lady May by Michael Wolf
04| Prince Song by Dump
05| Wonderwall (Oasis Cover) by Cat Power
06| Blimps Go 90 by Guided By Voices
07| Kids Party by Chris Morris
08| Tears of Rage by The Band
09| Hide Your Love Away by The Beatles
10| Among Those Killed in the Dawn Raid Was a Man Aged a Hundred by Dylan Thomas
11| 8 Million Stories by A Tribe Called Quest
12| Money Trees (feat. Jay Rock) by Kendrick Lamar
13| Nice Train by The Donkeys
14| What’s Up Freaks? by Fog
15| Ol’ English by The Game
16| Bad Religion by Frank Ocean
17| Night at the Knight School by Thee More Shallows
18| Figaro (101 Remix) by Madvillain
19| Hit by Guided By Voices
20| I Like Dat by Lil’ Wayne
21| Minha Galera by Manu Chao
22| Nehadar Zéytkéwen by Teweide Redda
23| Deny Deny Deny by Hood
24| Tshitua Fulia Mbuloba by Kasai Allstars
25| Long Ears by Serengeti
26| On a Good Day by Joanna Newsom
27| Song One by cLOgs
28| Elevators by Outkast
29| Dying Crapshooter’s Blues by Blind Willie McTell
30| Mermaids by Liz Hodson
31| Queston by May Swenson
32| I Shall Be Released by The Band
33| Grave Robbers by Mount Eerie, Julie Doiron, Fred Squire

i’ve got smoke in my lungs and a past life in my trunk

“Jesus Christ, girl.” At only three words into “Hollywood Forever Cemetery Sings“, the lead single off Fear Fun by Josh Tillman’s new project Father John Misty, it’s clear there’s something special happening. The reverb and strung-out-sunset hollowness crashing against Tillman’s vocal turns is like a car wreck – you can’t turn yourself away from what’s going on.

Tillman, formerly of Fleet Foxes, has a gorgeous voice. While he’s technically sound, it’s the charisma and humor creeping at the corners that pushes it to another level. The religious/cult leader implications of the Father John Misty moniker (“Joseph Campbell and The Rolling Stones / couldn’t give me a myth / so I had to write my own”) are apt; in person Tillman is handsome and witty but approachable, and both live and on record could sing the phone book and make it the most compelling thing happening in the room. You’ll happily follow him wherever he may go, and he goes everywhere.

“O I Long to Feel Your Arms Around Me” is pretty and hymn-like; the man has an ear for the spirit. Lofty, too, is the apex of “Only Son of the Ladiesman”. “Teepees 1-12” is a country shaker, complete with fiddle dance hall swing. FJM brings to mind The Beatles a couple of times on the album, both with “This Is Sally Hatchet” and “I’m Writing a Novel” (which is a cross between “Pleasant Valley Sunday” by The Monkees and “The Ballad of John and Yoko” – a move that seems intentional based on the song’s lyrics). In general Tillman nods to the past but makes it sound new, a dusted-off find from deep in the vault and not some lame apery.

Every track on the record is solid, a rare find in a singles-driven industry. Unsurprising, though, considering “Hollywood Forever Cemetery Sings” is a contender for favorite song of 2012. Fear Fun is an instant classic, prime for those sunny summer mornings and lazy front porch afternoons.

Fear Fun dropped 05.01.12.
Click to download “Hollywood Forever Cemetery Sings” and “Nancy From Now On“.

on leaving home

Talented. Beautiful. Sweet. These are the words I’d use to describe Kelli Cohen if I was following the advice/rules of crappy internet dating sites. I met Kelli through a friend at the now-defunct Club 770. Our paths kept crossing and we decided we should probably just man up and be pals. A passion for music, photography, and whiskey runs common through our veins, and I quickly grew to love Kelli like a little sister. This summer while bonding over movie moments and summer nights, I tapped her to make a mix for M|H. Perfectly timed for the trading in of one year for the next, On Leaving Home explores change and embraces it. While Kelli and I no longer occupy the same city, leaving our trademark trails of red lipstick and dominating karaoke with “Dog Days Are Over” and the doubled power of our voices, I sit secure in the fact that absence only makes the heart grow fonder.

ON LEAVING HOME
01| She’s Leaving Home by The Beatles
02| I Don’t Feel Young by  Wye Oak
03| Everyday by Rogue Wave
04| Lost Coastlines by Okkervil River
05| What Me Worry? by St. Vincent
06| Never Going Back Again by Fleetwood Mac
07| Chains, Chains, Chains by Elvis Perkins in Dearland
08| Winds of Change by Fitz and the Tantrums
09| Don’t Forget Me by Neko Case
10| The Past and Pending by The Shins
11| Troubled by Land of Talk
12| Ghost Town by First Aid Kit
13| Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right by Bob Dylan
14| Murder in the City by The Avett Brothers
15| See You Then by Roberta Flack

i’d love to turn you on

Much like our recent post about Bon Iver, there’s no criticism here,  just a string of videos chronicling our whole-hearted love for Paul McCartney. The video quality isn’t the best, but the sound is pretty good. Enjoy these Beatles hits performed on August 1, 2011 at Wrigley Field in Chicago, Illinois.

The Night Before

Eleanor Rigby

A Day in the Life/Give Peace a Chance

Let It Be

Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight/The End

 

SET LIST
Magical Mystery Tour, Junior’s Farm, All My Loving, Jet, Got to Get You Into My Life, Sing the Changes, The Night Before, Let Me Roll It, Foxy Lady (Jimi Hendrix cover), Paperback Writer, The Long and Winding Road, Nineteen Hundred and Eighty Five, Let ‘Em In, Maybe I’m Amazed, I’m Looking Through You, And I Love Her, Blackbird, Here Today, Dance Tonight, Mrs. Vandebilt,  Eleanor Rigby, Something, Band on the Run, Ob-La-Di Ob-La-Da, Back in the USSR, I’ve Got a Feeling, A Day in the Life/Give Peace a Chance, Let It Be, Live and Let Die, Hey Jude
ENCORE ONE
Lady Madonna, Birthday, I Saw Her Standing There
ENCORE TWO
Yesterday, Helter Skelter, Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight/The End

they take away the lonely days, for now

Seattle six-piece The Head and The Heart have started the year off right by teaming up with Sub Pop Records to release their self-titled debut. Filled with beautiful vocal harmonies, lush piano, and a rich sense of Americana, The Head and The Heart is the perfect album to sink into.

The pervading feeling on The Head and The Heart is one of moving on, both physically and emotionally. Snappy percussion and piano lay the groundwork on the first track which proclaims, “my roots have grown, but I don’t know where they are.” The meandering piano and bass on “Lost In My Mind” echo the sentiment, as do the lyrics of “Ghosts”. Talking about wanting to escape from one’s hometown but seeing no one do very much to actually make the dream a reality, the song is a hearty, piano-driven jam that is a bit old-timey but doesn’t fall into the trap of caricature or parody.

While “Heaven Go Easy On Me” employs some Beatles-esque chords to build and break into serenity, “Couer d’Alene” takes the same idea of transformation but executes it a bit differently. What starts as a concession to ending a relationship finishes as a jaunty resolution to keep things going.

The Head and The Heart really strike gold, though, on the song “Down In the Valley”. Acoustic guitar and a violin that sounds like a disappearing train lead the song in, cradling the world-weary vocals. Our singer asks, “Lord, have mercy on my rough and rowdy ways,” and succinctly reveals a bit of truth with “call it one drink too many / call it pride of a man / but it don’t make no difference if you sit or you stand / ’cause they both end in trouble and start with a grin.” Then things kick in, and there’s a feeling of transcendence. We let go, and there’s clarity – an understanding so beautiful it could break your heart. Lovely vocals, a propulsive forward beat, and a piano line that calls to mind “Marching Bands of Manhattan” by fellow Washingtonians Death Cab for Cutie make for a truly excellent piece of music.

Earnest without naivety and sentimental without sappiness, let The Head and The Heart soundtrack your journeys in the upcoming year.

The Head and The Heart dropped 01.11.11.
Check out their website to get a free download of “Down In the Valley”.