Give thanks to Matt Pond PA

It’s not a novel concept – giving away free music – but it’s still nice to recognize and say thanks to Matt Pond PA for allowing fans (and potential fans) the opportunity to download a new EP on this day before Thanksgiving. Following in the footsteps of Fiona Apple and giving the EP a rather lengthy title, Matt Pond PA – in an effort to make things more user friendly – have given the 9-song recording the nickname of Freeep.

Give it a listen, it’s not like it’s going to cost you anything and give thanks to the fellas for this wonderful Thanksgiving gift.

DOWNLOAD: Matt Pond PA – The Freep

Trippin’ the light fantastic with Papa Roach … er … Darker My Love

The touring year is almost over for LA psych-rockers (sorry guys, being a lazy journalist today) Darker My Love. The band is rolling through my hometown the night before Thanksgiving and then doing a few more weeks worth of dates that will return them home to the West Coast just a week before Christmas. The band’s second album, simply titled 2, is a swirling and dreamy ride through the clouds – full of noise, guitar pedals, keyboards, Darker My Love seems to draw influence from bands ranging from the Dandy Warhols and Spiritualized to the Beatles and the Beach Boys (just check out the rich harmonies in “Two Ways Out”). Other reference points include the Stone Roses, Ride, and (here comes the ’90s hair metal geek in me) Saigon Kick (seriously, the vocals on “Blue Day” sound like something from SK’s The Lizard album).

I called bassist/vocalist/heavily bearded Darker My Love member Rob Barbato yesterday before a DML gig in Indiana.

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Gregory And The Hawk (photo tour diary)

Sometimes you get that feeling. I got it when I blindly asked Gregory And The Hawk to take some digital photos while on their current tour and send them to me to put up here. They could have sent a bunch of crummy shots, but they didn’t. They delivered … big time.

Here’s the obligatory plug for GATH – go out and buy the new CD Moenie and Kitchi if you’re a fan of female-fronted indie/folk pop (I definitely am). It’s one of the better releases I’ve heard in 2008, female-fronted or not. While there are some moments of beautiful and simple acoustic rock, it’s hard to pigeonhole this band led by Meredith Godreau and featuring Mike McGuire. Godreau says her biggest influences are The Lemonheads, The Blake Babies, My Bloody Valentine and The Sundays. Over on Donewaiting, I said that while Godreau doesn’t site them, you can toss Lisa Loeb and Tanya Donelly into the influences list if you want a good idea what to expect.

Here’s a sampling of the photo tour diary. The rest are after the jump.

(cambridge, ma) mike outside the post office in cambridge, this was right before our first show of the tour at tt the bear’s place

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Christmas is next week

Chinese Democracy finally hits store shelves (well, only at Best Buy) on November 23. I’ve been waiting a LONG time for this, as has everybody else. I’m resisting the urge to listen to the streaming version, mainly because I’ve heard a bunch of the leaks over the years and now can wait just a few more days to make this a true listening experience. But, if you can’t wait or if you’re not going to buy the CD but want to see what all the fuss is about … stream Chinese Democracy now on MySpace.

A moment of reflection; a moment of beauty

One night later and I can’t get Nine Inch Nail’s performance of “The Great Destroyer” (at the 70% full Schottenstein Center in Columbus) out of my head. It was truly a thing of beauty, especially the last half as the LED screens (or whatever they were) flashed television static in sync with the electronic blips and bloops coming out of the keyboard and keyboard-like samplers that Trent and band were playing (at about the 2 minute mark in the video below).

(This isn’t from the Columbus show – it’s from a August 2007 show in Sweden – but it looked exactly the same)

There has been enough talking about the show and the crowd size on the Interweb so I’ll just say that I thought the show was well worth the $17 (plus $12 service fees) that I paid.

Related reads:
* The New Model (Idolator.com)
* Donewaiting Message Boarders review the show (Donewaiting.com)
* Can Touring Really Save Musicians? (Houston Chronicle blog)
* Flash shows artist at his creative best / Live photos (Columbus Dispatch)
* Columbus setlist