Latest Metronome Posts

R.I.P. Jason Molina

By Rob Hakimian; March 18, 2013 at 2:34 PM 

jason molina

R.I.P. Jason Molina

It was announced today that Jason Molina, who released a bunch of beautiful albums under the names Songs: Ohia and Magnolia Electric Co. (amongst others) has passed away from organ failure due to alcoholism. His alcoholism was known about for a while, and not too long ago his family put out a plea asking for donations to help Jason get into rehab, but Molina’s notoriety was never that high, and had faded substantially in the last few years as he fell off the map, so evidently they never managed to get him together. Which is a real fucking shame.

Why is it the deaths of the artists that made sad music and had sad back stories that affect me the most? I remember when Mark Linkous (Sparklehorse) died a few years ago I was depressed for days, and I have a feeling it’s going to be the same with Molina. I think it’s because they had tough times and it seems like they never got their happy endings, which is just how brutal life is in reality, I suppose.

Linkous suffered from depression his whole life and mal-formed legs following his overdose while supporting Radiohead in the 90s. It had seemed like the problems were behind him though, having just released an album with Danger Mouse and David Lynch in 2009 and with talk of a new Sparklehorse album in the works, when the news came that he had killed himself in March 2010. By shooting himself in the heart.

With Molina, I had ignorantly assumed that his friends, family and fans would gather around him and nurse him back to health and he would release a stunning comeback album filled with stories beautifully rendered in song about the pain and strife that he’d been through. Alas, it was not meant to be.

Both Linkous’ and Molina’s music is hauntingly beautiful and I think that’s also part of the reason why their deaths affected me; their music is so brutally honest it was refreshing and crushing in equal measure, and I had endless time for it. Now their songs will haunt me in different ways.

Molina has such a vast back catalogue that I still haven’t even managed to get through it all, but I’ll be doing my best to do so in the coming months. My favourite album of his is The Magnolia Electric Co., the last album he released under the name Songs: Ohia in 2003, before taking up the album’s title as his new artist name. Below I’ve posted the opening track “Farewell Transmission,” which seems appropriate as Jason makes his journey to wherever we go to after we leave this plain. In fact, I’ve been listening through the album as I write this and pretty much every song seems perfect for this moment – particularly the closing “Hold On, Magnolia,” but you should listen through the whole album to reach that point – he was a genius at tapping into these moods. I recommend you listen to it. (It’s here on Spotify.)

So farewell Jason, I hope the next life treats you better.

Here are the full and brilliant lyrics to “Farewell Transmission”

The whole place is dark
Every light on this side of the town
Suddenly it all went down
Now we’ll all be brothers of the fossil fire of the sun
Now we will all be sisters of the fossil blood of the moon
Someone must have set us up
Now they’ll be working in the cold grey rock,
in the hot mill steam… in the concrete
In the sirens and the silences now
all the great set up hearts
all at once start to beat
After tonight if you don’t want us to be
a secret out of the past
I will resurrect it, I’ll have a good go at it
I’ll streak his blood across my beak and dust my feathers with his ashes
I can feel his ghost breathing down my back
I will try and know whatever I try,
I will be gone but not forever
The real truth about it is
no one gets it right
The real truth about it is
we’re all supposed to try
There ain’t no end to the sands
I’ve been trying to cross
The real truth about it is my kind of life’s no better off
If I’ve got the maps or if I’m lost
The real truth about it is there ain’t no end to the desert I’ll cross
I’ve really known that all along
Mama here comes midnight
with the dead moon in its jaws
Must be the big star about to fall
Long dark blues
Will-o’-the-wisp
The big star is falling
Through the static and distance
A farewell transmission
Listen

Michael K. Williams AKA Omar from The Wire Reveals the Mix He Made for His Character

By Evan Kaloudis; September 5, 2012 at 6:56 PM 

Need a playlist for when you’re running around Baltimore and raiding stash houses? Omar’s got you covered. Check out the playlist below or stream the whole playlist over on Spotify.
(more…)

Graphics XLR8R Podcast

By Will Ryan; July 18, 2012 at 11:38 PM 

I’m not the best at keeping up with mix podcasts week-to-week, but, fortunately, I was alerted to the incredible mix UK garage / house artist Graphics dropped on XLR8R at the end of June. The reason I want to mention it here is it’s comprised entirely of original and unreleased works by Graphics, functioning as tight, continuous patchwork debut. And it’s kind of unbelievable. Like debut-of-the-year unbelievable. The liquid dark atmosphere of the mix is incredibly immersive amongst its ghostly vocal samples, skittering percussion, and Chicago house synth hooks. It gets more remarkable the further in you go, anthemic, skyward melodies and climactic vocal centerpieces abound. Not to mention its warped, clanging experimental tendencies. “Black Ice” (I think that’s the track – the one with the vocalist and hand drums) is worthy of a cut of the year contender. Gah, it’s just so good. Head over to XLR8R to grab the thing right now.

Pre-order the new BPM basketball shirt

By Evan Kaloudis; July 11, 2012 at 6:28 PM 

#HELLOBPM!

We’re back with a new t-shirt design for b-ball enthusiasts. Help support the site and pre-order one here. Only $10 with shipping within the US.

Thank you.

Paris Hilton is a terrible DJ

By Andrew Bailey; June 25, 2012 at 12:11 PM 

You don’t need any witty commentary to explain to you how awful Paris Hilton is at everything she does as a DJ. All you need to do is check out the video above, in which the hotel heiress and societal non-contributor makes a mockery of electronic music the world over by playing the same tired “club bangers” as every iTunes “DJ” you’ve ever heard. She also accidentally overlaps a beaten-to-death Rihanna song over one of her new “tracks,” which makes for quite the LOL.

Enjoy!

Watch this kid shred Led Zeppelin’s “Ten Years Gone” in a BPM shirt

By Evan Kaloudis; June 21, 2012 at 11:51 AM 

Just had to throw this up. RAWK!

The Roots Take On “Call Me Maybe,” Change The “Let’s-Make-A-Call-Me-Maybe-Video” Game

By Weston Fleming; June 14, 2012 at 2:45 PM 

Face it: in absence of a year-defining single of “Midnight City” proportions (as discussed here in our newly re-launched BPM Forum!), 2012 looks like it may go down as the year of Calling People, Maybe.

You’ve seen the webcam-shot video the Biebz and his gang of teen Disney stars (or whoever they are) lit the internet ablaze with. You’ve been involuntarily stuck with such lines as “And this is craaaazy” in your head. You’ve heard your peppy friends suggest making a copycat video of, like, you and your friends lip-syncing the same. You’ve agreed, not followed up on your flimsy, flimsy word, and subsequently watched the sometimes funny videos of more motivated and impressionable youngsters ask you to Call Them, Maybe.

Now, the game has changed. Behold the hardest working band in hip-hop, The Roots, sit down Jimmy Fallon and Carly Rae Jepsen herself to throw down an enormous, world-shaking remake of “Call Me Maybe”…on tiny, “classroom” instruments! To try and describe every bit of brilliance here would be futile. But Jepsen sounds good, The Roots are at once hilarious and consummately professional, and Fallon contributes too.

Maybe this will inspire the youth to dust off their recorders, triangles, and kazoos, and a fresh wave of unconventional “Call Me Maybe” covers will flood the YouTube. Probably not. Anyway, Share This, Definitely.

Are we getting a Ryan Adams vinyl boxset on Friday?

By Evan Kaloudis; June 12, 2012 at 9:41 PM 

From the Ryan Adams Facebook page:

Live After Deaf. Friday. This will not be repressed.

We’re not quite sure what it is but we’ll keep you posted as we find out. Our bet is a vinyl boxset of his LPs. Stay tuned.

The Flaming Lips change “Race For the Prize” lyrics for the Oklahoma City Thunder

By Evan Kaloudis; May 28, 2012 at 3:00 AM 

The Oklahoma City Thunder are in the NBA Western Conference Finals and hopefully on the way to their first NBA title. In support of the team, Oklahoman band The Flaming Lips have rewritten the lyrics to the classic song “Race For the Prize” off of their landmark album The Soft Bulletin and made it a fight song! I guess everyone raps about the Knicks so I shouldn’t be too jealous. Thunder up!

[Via P4k / the Future Heart]

Classic Rock presents…the fan-pack as album alternative

By Daniel Griffiths; April 26, 2012 at 6:35 PM 

I’m not sure how many of you guys over the pond know of this, but over here in the UK there’s a magazine in the UK called Classic Rock who’ve been blazing ahead creating magazines that are made to be released in conjunction with albums; it’s like the ultimate guide to that album. So far they’ve only been released with smaller acts and albums like Slash or Whitesnake, but it’s just been announced they’ve pulled off a big signing – They’re doing the next Rush album. Not a band that settles for mid-level UK venues and small US venues for tours but a genuinely massive band. It got me thinking; how valid is this model as an alternative to a regular release.

You’d have to wonder if it’s transferable to other musical demographics. Can you see a kid who never normally pays for his music parting with £15 of his scarce cash? Bear in mind that vinyl’s collectability factor and maybe the artwork is the reason why people are still buying physical releases, so does a magazine that relates to that band and album really have the ability to draw people in?

There’s also the issue of release dates. The fan-pack magazine relies on being released three weeks early to really get the sales, which is fine and dandy if it’s being released three weeks earlier than every market, but this Rush one is going on sale one day before the rest of the world. Basically, if you’re in the UK and want the album the same time as everyone else you’ve got to get the fan-pack. Is that too much of a strong-arm tactic? Some people might only want to pay £7.99 for their CD and forego the magazine. It probably won’t matter to the die-hards, but the casual fan won’t be too pleased about the price, and by July 9th, unless RoadRunner UK have something up their sleeve, the interest in the band may have gone due to all the marketing being centred around the June release date.

That being said, as a Rush fan I find this a totally awesome idea. It’s being billed as having “the ultimate sleevenotes” which is true. Who wouldn’t want an extensive track-by-track guide of the album by the band themselves to read while you’re listening? Couple that with some articles about the making of the album and you’ve got something that’s incredibly in depth, and can really immerse you in that album. In addition, there’s always some kind of ephemera involved which can interest the kid inside us; I love a good keyring!

I’m not really sure this is a wide scale good thing. But, if you assume that the casual fans are going to go to iTunes or Spotify for their musical fix, this could go a long way to keeping the fans who want physical releases interested and spending money.