New Music From The Inbox – Tuesday Edition! (July 24, 2018): Mondo Cozmo, El Ten Eleven, Night Flight, and more!

(July 24, 2018): Mondo Cozmo, El Ten Eleven, Night Flight, and more! New Music From The Inbox – Tuesday Edition!
And it has a killer guitar track, too. Watch/Listen:  Artist: Mondo Cozmo
Song: “Tonight, Tonight”
Album/EP: Your Motherfucker

Breezy indie alt with a riffy beat that just won’t quit, “Tonight, Tonight” is a fresh and fun tune ripe for summer pickings. Watch/Listen: 

Artist: El Ten Eleven
Song: “Phenomenal Problems”
Album/EP: Banker’s Hill

Flowing and atmospheric alternative with a welcome dash of post-rock, “Phenomenal Problems” paints quite the expressive soundscape. It hurts, but it isn’t pathetic. Classic! Artist: Night Flight
Song: “God Knows”
Album/EP: Carousel

Simmering indie folk with a chip on the shoulder and a stiff drink to monologue into, “God Knows” is the late night melancholic lullaby every budding songwriter wishes they could nail. It sizzles, but it doesn’t push it. Shimmering and shifting, El Ten Eleven’s single can even feel a bit phantasmic and extra-dimensional at times. Well, optimistic in everything but the lyrics – but that doesn’t count, right? It weeps, but it doesn’t drag. Watch/Listen: 

Artist: The Kooks
Song: “Four Leaf Clover”
Album/EP: Let’s Go Sunshine

Peppy pop rock without any unnecessary complications, “Four Leaf Clover” is an optimistic tune destined for the air waves. Watch/Listen: 
Here, because Bandcamp. Even a suddenly-psych bridge flows back sweetly into the good stuff – and with no time wasted, to boot!

CD sales continue to tank this summer

CD sales continue to tank this summer
Add up the entire Top 200 and you have a total of 478,000 CDs sold. This, of course, only tells part of the story. Drilling down deeper, the top-selling CD in Toronto is This Wild Life with Petaluma, moving 559 copies. It’s fascinating to watch how quickly sales of physical music are cratering in the age of streaming. The #200 album comes from The Grateful Dead with a total of 12. Just 666 CD/vinyl sales will squeak you into the Top 200. Billboard and SoundScan are doing everything they can to maintain the viability of the album. The vast majority of that final number is determined by nearly 300,000,000 million streams. Using all the other weird metrics and weightings involving sales, downloads, and streams, Drake is #1 on the overall Top 200 Album Chart with a “consumption activity” number of 260,149. (Drake has generated more than $100 million for Spotify and Apple alone.)
Here in Canada, Drake is also #1 with a SoundScan figure of 3,812, up about a thousand since last week’s debut. It was possible to make the Top 10 on the American SoundScan chart with less than 8,200 units. To put it another way, 99.991% of the US population did not buy the #1 album in the country. Streaming is killing the format. Yes, eighty-four. SoundScan haven’t seen totals this low since the system was put in place back in 1991. Looking at the American SoundScan charts from last week, Drake’s Scorpion is again at #1, selling a measly 29,369 units, exactly 14 more than it did the week before. Wiz Khalifa’s new album, Rolling Papers 2, debuted at #3 by selling just 14,000 copies.   Makes you wonder how much longer the music industry will bother with the hassle of manufacturing, transporting, warehousing and selling CDs, doesn’t it? Scrolling to the bottom of the Top 200 finds Sam Smith’s The Thrill of It All at the bottom with a total sales number of 84.

How to shoot a music video for about $20

Back in the golden age of music videos, a single clip could cost millions. Mondo headed to Revelstoke Mountain Resort in BC, climbed to the top of a mountain and let ‘er rip. All he used was his previously-purchased GoPro camera in selfie mode. Micheal and Janet Jackson, “Scream” (1995): $7 million (original budget)/$11.2 million (2018 dollars)
Madonna, “Die Another Day” (2002): $6.1 million/$8.3 million
Madonna, “Express Yourself” (1989): $5 million/$9.9 million
Michael Jackson, “Black or White” (1991); $4 million/$7.2 million
Guns N’ Roses, “Estranged” (1993): $5 million/$6.8 million

You get the idea, but there’s more here if you want. With today’s technology, the cost of recreating a serviceable music video–certainly one good enough for fans of YouTube–has dropped to practically zero. Check out what Mondo Cozmo managed to do with about $23 CAD.
How to shoot a music video for about $20

The nerdiest video fo the week: A Behind the Music Parody of the Star Wars cantina band

The nerdiest video fo the week: A Behind the Music Parody of the Star Wars cantina band
This is so far off the nerd scale that even George Lucas is going “Whaaaa?”
Click on the image for a look. It’s Comic-Con season in San Diego and Conan O’Brien dropped in to offer this Behind the Music-style documentary of the cantina band seen in the first Star Wars movie.

This fact may cause you to reconsider your love for The Killers

This fact may cause you to reconsider your love for The Killers
Please? But I don’t drink blood or tears. Rock & roll takes blood sweat & tears. Out of all the guys in The Killers, I’ve always found drummer Ronnie Vannucci to be the most outgoing and fun. However, the idea of Ronnie drinking his own perspiration is a little too weird for me. A post shared by The Killers (@thekillers) on Jul 19, 2018 at 7:16am PDT Please don’t let this turn into a new Internet meme.

Things are so bad in Venezuela that people are trading music for medicine

And if you have something really expensive (say, a cancer drug of some sort), that’s five points. Launched by a group of human rights activists, people are being encouraged to donated medicine in exchange for music. Got some antibiotics? Once you amass a certain number of points, you can choose from a library of over 2,000 CDs and vinyl records. If you need your medication, you’re reduced to looking for it on the black market where you might have to pay up to 3,000% more. Despite having the world’s largest proven oil reserves, the petroleum industry has collapsed. There are riots, crime, and brutal crackdowns. Many international airlines will no longer fly into Caracas. Most pharmacies have run out of supplies for all manner of medicine. For example, an over-the-counter painkiller is worth one point. A new organization, Music for Medicine (MúsicaXMedicinas), is a non-profit based in Caracas. Tourism has dried up. Música por Medicinas by Humano Derecho Records
More at Digitial Music News. Proceeds will go to MúsicaXMedicinas. It works on a points system. That’s three points. There are chronic shortages of food. Things in Venezuela are bad. There’s also an album on Bandcamp featuring some prominent Venezuelan musicians. The place in run by a dictator who has driven the economy into the ground to the point where the inflation rate is 1,000,000%. Then there’s the matter of health care. There is a small glimmer of help.
Things are so bad in Venezuela that people are trading music for medicine

Coming soon: This documentary on 90s ska

Coming soon: This documentary on 90s ska
Here’s a trailer. Money came in from 31 different countries. The projected release date for Pick It Up: Ska in the 90s is next April. Now with donations approaching $120,000, they have enough cash to get this thing into full-scale production. Once complete, we’ll see interviews with No Doubt, Reel Big Fish, Less Than Jake, Goldfinger, the Pietasters, Fishbone, Save Ferris, Let’s Go Bowling, Dance Hall Crashers, the Specials, Mustard Plug, the Toasters, Skankin’ Pickle, Hepcat, the Slackers, Kemuri, Blink 182/the Aquabats, the Hippos, The Skatalites, and Sublime. When the producers of a documentary on 90s-era ska went to Kickstarter to look for funding, they had no idea that they’d read their $40,000 target in less than a week.

Fresh off their World Cup protest, Pussy Riot has two new songs about Russian law enforcement

Fresh off their World Cup protest, Pussy Riot has two new songs about Russian law enforcement
There’s a second song, too, but because I don’t speak Russian, I’m not sure what it’s about. There are two new Pussy Riot songs out today that focus on Russian law enforcement. If you think back to the World Cup final between France and Croatia, there was a field invasion in the 52nd minute. They were arrested and sentenced to a couple of weeks in a “special prison.”
But they won’t be deterred. Those were four members of the band Pussy Riot who wanted to bring more attention to Russian human rights abuses. The first is based on a Russian “prison chanson,” which is something convicts sing to keep spirits up and to annoy the guards. I do know this: Putin won’t like it.

Why did Paul McCartney cross the road? To get to Abbey Road, of course

As The Beatles were wrapping up the recording of their new album, the plan was to call it Everest. Six photos were taken with Macca choosing this one after examining each one with a magnifying glass.   Later, EMI Studio was renamed Abbey Road because of the attention drawn to the facility by this album and photograph. And then there’s that license plate: Paul would have been 28 if (281F, geddit?) had he lived. A couple of fun facts:

The Volkswagen was owned by one of the residents of the apartments across from the studio. Naturally, this drew a crowd. He stood on a ten-foot stepladder facing north whilst a cop help up traffic. Every. Time.) There’s even a 24/7 webcam that you can watch. It was then decided to call the album Abbey Road after the street. This week, Macca was back in St. John’s Wood to play a not-so-secret show at Abbey Road. At 11:35 on the morning of August 8, 1969, photographer Iain Macmillan was given ten minutes to take six photographs. Much of the “Paul is dead” conspiracy comes from this shot. 🎥@maryamccartney #PaulMcCartney #EgyptStation #AbbeyRoad
A post shared by Paul McCartney (@paulmccartney) on Jul 23, 2018 at 5:23am PDT

Traffic is held up at that crosswalk at all hours of the day and night as Beatles fans from all over the world come to annoy the locals. Sick of the attention, the owner sold the car in 1986 and as far as I know, it’s on display in a museum in Germany. Why is Paul out of step with everyone else? Someone (it might have been Paul) wanted the artwork photography to be taken at the foot of the real Mount Everest in Nepal but was quietly reminded how expensive that would be. The band in the brown suit is Paul Cole, an American tourist who had no idea what was going on. Instead, Macca sketched out some ideas that featured the four members walking back and forth across the crosswalk (“zebra crossing” in Brit-speak) just south of the front gates of EMI Studios. Does Lennon’s white suit anoint him as a preacher in a funeral procession? When the album was released, its license plate (LMW 281F) kept getting stolen. Why is he barefoot? (I do it every single time I’m in London. Single. Walking from his nearby house–the place at 7 Cavendish Avenue that he’s owned since 1965–he had to cross Abbey Road at the same zebra crossing he used with his mates in 1969.
To get to Abbey Road, of course Why did Paul McCartney cross the road?

Vans Warped Tour Toronto 2018: A Review by Nerhys

I was quite impressed with all of them. The bands I was most excited to see were:

The Amity Affliction (Gympie, Queensland, Australia; melodic metalcore)
The Interrupters (Los Angeles, California; ska-punk)
Reel Big Fish (Los Alamitos, California; ska-punk)
Silverstein (Burlington, Ontario; emo/post-hardcore)
Simple Plan (Montreal, Quebec; pop-punk/emo-pop)
Sum 41 (Ajax, Ontario; pop-punk)
We the Kings (Bradenton, Florida; pop-punk/emo-pop)

The Amity Affliction

I was also curious about 3OH!3 (Boulder, Colorado; synthpop/crunkcore), Senses Fail (Ridgewood, New Jersey; post-hardcore/emo), and Unearth (Boston, Massachusetts; metalcore). The whole band played with such intense energy that even though their set was in the early evening, I felt energized despite spending all day in the sun. This year, the festival took place at the Flats at Budweiser Stage, the same venue as the 2012 – 2015 Vans Warped Tours (the tour did not come to Canada in 2016 or 2017). I loved that there were plenty of vendors and sponsors selling a variety of products like shirts, jewelry, and pins, in addition to the official Vans tents and all the bands’ merch tents. There was also vendors selling a variety of alcoholic drinks — something I don’t remember from 2009, though maybe I just wasn’t paying attention since I was still underage at that point — alongside water, Perrier, and, of course, one of the sponsors, Monster energy drinks. While in line, I also enjoyed people-watching. I’m glad I did because they were amazing this year. I do understand that bands can have off days, so I was willing to give them another chance. The band totally played off of their audience’s nostalgia, too, performing songs that haven’t been heard on the radio in over a decade and getting the audience to sing along. Several different causes, Sea Shepherds, for example, also set up tents. It was hilarious when he sang the female vocal part in “She Has A Girlfriend Now” (originally performed by Monique Powell of Save Ferris). I’m not one who always tries to get right up in front of the stage anyways, and I prefer staying out of mosh pits, so I still really enjoyed watching the bands perform. Here’s the full list of bands that played in Toronto. They managed to get through the track listing in under 40 minutes and even played a couple of other songs. Reel Big Fish

Simple Plan was one of my favourite bands when I was 14 and bought Still Not Getting Any (2004). That little 14 year old pop-punk kid inside me was quite happy that she finally got to see Simple Plan live. The Interrupters’ front woman Aimee Interrupter took command of the stage and showed everyone just how good of a performer she is. The festival had 6 stages set up; 2 on one big one on RBC Echo Beach where the bands alternated on the side that was being used (Vans Left Foot and Vans Right Foot), 2 Monster stages near each other (White Lightning and Red Dawn), 1 by the entrance (Lemon), and 1 by Budweiser Stage (Full Sail University). It would have been a dream come true back then to see them in concert. It was a lovely, sunny day, so even though I applied sunscreen pretty religiously, my shoulders still burned a little bit. As a teen in the mid-2000s, it’s not really surprising that I enjoy those genres. Even the lines at the food vendors moved pretty quickly, which is always a nice thing. Now I that I have recovered, here is my review:
The Venue
The last time I went to the Warped Tour was in 2009 when it was held at Arrow Hall on Airport Road. Of course, all the booths that offered items for sale was not exactly healthy for my wallet, but it being the last Vans Warped Tour, I figured it didn’t hurt to buy a few things. Unearth

Of all these bands, I’ve only seen 3OH!3, Silverstein, and Senses Fail in the past; all at the 2009 Warped Tour, however I have seen Silverstein plenty of other times. Simple Plan

Taking a different approach than the other bands and getting an extra 10 minutes of scheduled set time, Sum 41 played through their 2002 album Does This Look Infected. There wasn’t a lot of shade, although Fuelled by Ramen Records did have a tent set up for shade, plus there were some umbrellas at a small picnic area. The Interrupters

We the Kings

The three bands that I was the most looking forward to, however, were Reel Big Fish, Simple Plan, and Sum 41. The whole band looked like they were having a ton of fun on stage. Lead singer Aaron Barrett made jokes and got the audience dancing and singing along. I felt like I had travelled back in time 10 years with all the emo fashion I saw: black hair accented with bright colours like hot pink, black skinny jeans, studded belts, and plenty of thick black eyeliner. Once I got past the gates, the venue’s size allowed for the huge crowd to disperse pretty easily. We the Kings’ pop-punk was just as fun to listen to live as it is on recording. 3OH!3 was fun to see both in 2009 and this year. I’ve wanted to see Reel Big Fish for years because I’ve heard so many amazing things about the shows they put on. The Amity Affliction’s brand of metalcore rocked their set. Of course, some areas like the ATMs and drink vendors were busy, but like the entry line, those lineups moved pretty quickly, too. Saxophonist and backup vocals Matt Appleton, aka Saxl Rose, ran around the stage in a lemon yellow suit and sunglasses, with his hair styled up in a mohawk and sporting a massive beard. The Experience
I couldn’t have been more pleased with the overall experience. Silverstein is a band that I have always loved seeing live, they always put on a fantastic show and this time was no different. There were two water stations set up for people who brought their own reusable water bottles, and though the lines at times were long, they moved fairly quick. Festival tickets aren’t exactly cheap on a student’s budget, which was my reasoning for skipping all the years between 2009 and this year. Still, anything I’ve heard did not do the band justice. Senses Fail

Three of the bands I wanted to check out I only recently heard about: The Amity Affliction, The Interrupters, and We the Kings. The first time I saw them was probably the height of their career up here, but that didn’t stop anyone from dancing and singing along to their music. My one experience with Senses Fail, however, wasn’t quite as positive; their set at Warped Tour 2009 was a bit rough and I wasn’t overly impressed back then. In hindsight, I wish I had spent the money to go to Vans Warped Tour more times in the past. I needed a few days to recuperate. The final Vans Warped Tour has come and gone in Toronto and wow, what an experience! I haven’t been to the Flats in about 20 years, so I completely forgot just how massive the area is; it’s a much bigger venue than Arrow Hall, and once you get used to the layout (and stop relying on the awful map on the back of the schedule that cost $2) it’s a much better venue. Festival goers had multiple food vendors to choose from, such as Pizza Pizza, Fancy Franks, poutine, churros, tacos, greek food, and ice cream, to name a few. The experience, however, is well worth the cost in my opinion. At the start of the festival, I was able to get pretty close to whatever stage I wanted to watch, but as the day went on, more people arrived and the crowds got bigger, making it more difficult to get a spot near the bands. When I arrived, the lineup was absolutely massive — it must have taken nearly 5 minutes to walk to the end — but it moved quite quickly and there were promoters for a few lesser-known bands. Same for the bathrooms, where you had the option of going into a proper bathroom with multiple stalls, sinks, and mirrors, or using one of the many port-o-potties. The entire band played off of one another and that really helped the audience have even more fun. The Bands
I make it no secret that I love pop-punk, emo-pop, and ska. The 23 year life of Vans Warped Tour definitely had its ups and downs, but the final Toronto show was definitely a memorable experience. Lucky for me, Vans Warped Tour is filled with pop-punk and ska bands, as well as hardcore and other “alternative” genres.
Vans Warped Tour Toronto 2018: A Review by Nerhys

Random music news for Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Random music news for Wednesday, July 25, 2018
Remember the dude behind the Fyre Festival fiasco? Moving to music news for July 25, 2018…

More “I love cassettes!” nonsense. Ghostface Killah’s cryptocurrency isn’t feeling so good. When was the last time you saw a cop at a concert do this? Best pay attention to the music. Too bad. If you have an Amazon Echo, you can now ask it for a little more bass. R Kelly has decided to respond to all those sexual misconduct allegations in a 19-minute song. It could be coming. It was on this day in 1965 that Bob Dylan went electric at the Newport Folk Festival. We’re getting one. Don’t attack your bandmates on stage, okay? If you’re into high-end audio and wondering about this thing called MQA, read this. Things haven’t been the same since. This is an odd musical Twitter spat between two…stadiums? The choir that performed at the Royal Wedding now has a record deal. A bunch of Deep Purple albums are going to be reissued on purple vinyl. This. Do we really need another remake of A Star is Born? What’s it like to be a DJ at a sex party? He has to pay $27.4 million fines. Bryan Ferry’s ex-wife, Lucy Birley, has died while on vacation. Alex Turner of the Arctic Monkeys has upset some fans with his new look. Behold Another Brick in the Wall. Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler has come clean about his years of drug addiction. Are you watching Sharp Objects on HBO? Now there’s a Pink Floyd opera. (Via Tom)
It’s not a new System of a Down album, but it could be the next best thing. Are you ready for eSports to be an Olympic sport?

More Music From The Inbox 25 Jul 2018 Marble Sounds, Janne Schra, IDLES and More!

Artist: Marble Sounds, “Anyhow (Even Now)”
Album: N/A

Loving the sound of this Belgium band
Sounds like:  realities of life
Link/Listen/Watch:

Artist: Janne Schra, “OK”
Album: OK

The vocals are strong with this Dutch artist
Sounds like:  it will be, I think
Link/Listen/Watch:

Artist: IDLES, “Danny Nedelko”  
Album: Joy As an Act of Resistance

Brilliance out of Bristol
Sounds like:  punk joy
Link/Listen/Watch:

Artist: Duo Elevation, “The Beautiful Ones”  
Album: Omar’s Lament

I really like this organ and drums duo
Sounds like:  jazzy funk
Link/Listen/Watch:

Artist: The Leo Star Electric Band, “Soft and Gentle”
Album: N/A

Awesome new London 3 piece
Sounds like:  Fuzzy brilliance
Link/Listen/Watch:

Artist: James BKS, “Kwele”
Album: N/A

Impressive stuff from this French Cameroon artist
Sounds like:  multifaceted beat factory
Link/Listen/Watch:
More Music From The Inbox 25 Jul 2018 Marble Sounds, Janne Schra, IDLES and More!

Do your musical tastes change with the seasons?

Do your musical tastes change with the seasons?
Interestingly enough, scientists from Durham University found that listening to sad music actually boosts your mood, and makes you feel happier. Photo credit: Robb Leahy
[A guest post from Jess Walter. So how do weather and climate affect your tastes in music? Even changes in barometric pressure can affect our mood, and thereby influence the music that we want to listen to. Think about how many songs that you know linked with bad weather. “I Can’t Stand the Rain” by Tina Turner, “Ain’t No Sunshine” by Bill Withers, “Stormy Weather” by Billie Holliday. It was found that people listened to faster music that was good for running – at around 126 BPM when it was cloudy. The fact is that music is very much entangled with our memories. The weather can affect our mood, and this influences what we listen to. If it is windy, the participants reported that they were more likely to be grumpy. These songs are a way of pouring our heart out through music. They liked high energy tunes that were loud and noisy. The Christmas season
It will come as no surprise that over the Christmas season, we listen to far more seasonal and Christmas music – this is something that fills us with nostalgia. During winter, the songs that we listen to are mentally preparing us for the childlike joy that this season can bring. – AC]
In the Rolling Stone’s list, the 500 greatest songs of all time, 7% of these were about the weather. During this time, we reach for the sad music, whether it is Radiohead or some dark and stormy Chopin. A whopping 75% of people said that they enjoy listening to Christmas music – and the biggest listeners? For instance people living in Chicago and Seattle were more excited by rain than sunshine – this says a lot about the general climate in these two cities. Basking in the summer sunshine
Last year Spotify and Accuweather did a joint study to research how our music tastes change with the weather. A study done by the University of Berlin on 1,223 people found that we are more likely to be sad when the weather is poor, and the days are shorter. Every year Neilsen do an in depth study of music consumers in America.   Millennials. They found that on sunny days, people listened to happier, more up-beat music. It is worth mentioning that the results of the study also showed a correlation between where you live, the type of music you listen to, and the weather. The changing seasons and the weather have a huge influence on not only how we are feeling but also the music that we listen to. The music did not necessarily have a high number of beats per minute (BPM) though. Those April Showers
Music is of course heavily linked with the emotions that we feel. Perhaps in listening to melancholy music, we are actually self-medicating? So yes, it does seem that our musical tastes do change through the seasons. They found that 36% of this age group were holiday music fans.

Why are concert tickets so expensive? Because people demand expensive shows.

Because people demand expensive shows. Why are concert tickets so expensive?
Ten dollars seems cheap, but that was the equivalent of around $40 today. Why? Note the price. The New York Post takes a closer look. Taylor Swift’s ongoing Reputation stadium tour needs 52 semis and 30 flatbed trucks just to haul all the gear. Read this. Here’s a Led Zeppelin ticket stub from a show in Seattle on July 17, 1977. Still, that seems to be a reasonable price to see the biggest band in the world, right? But the soaring costs are also due to the fact that A-list concerts – which have been exploding in popularity as fans in the streaming era seek more interactive connections with their favorite musicians – are now regularly expected to be full-blown, Instagram-ready spectacles. Lady Gaga’s 2013 concert circuit involved a looming five-story Gothic castle. It isn’t fans’ imagination that music tours, particularly ones put on by the biggest artists, are getting more lavish by the year. U2 had its 400-ton, 360-degree “Claw” stage that cost $30 million. Back in ’77, Zep fans were treated to a mostly bare stage with a few lights and sub-par sound. For evidence in hard numbers, look no further than the mid-year report Pollstar released this week: The concert company found that the live market’s 2018 mid-year gross is a record-setting $2.21 billion, up $240 million (12 percent) from the previous year, and that average ticket prices are at a record high of $96.31. Fans are hungry for live shows, and they’re willing to splurge on them.   It’ll explain a lot. Today we expect a huge multimedia extravaganza. Today, it’s all but impossible to find a face value ticket this low for stadium acts. The cost of staging shows has gone up exponentially in the last forty years. “The precipitous rise speaks to the industry’s aggressive pricing strategy to better meet demand and exclude the secondary market,” Pollstar noted, as well. That’s right.

New to the world of turntables? Take a look at this.

Click on the image to see the whole thing. Fortunately, Paste Magazine has this handy infographic that will help you get started. If you want to get into vinyl but you’ve never owned a turntable, the whole process might seem a little…unnerving.
Take a look at this. New to the world of turntables?