Wednesday, March 31, 2010

A "wave" of delicious sound

Punny, right? Okay, let's get to it!

Rogue Wave is by no means a super unknown band. They were signed to Sub Pop Records up until 2007 and are now signed with Brushfire Records. They've toured with Death Cab For Cutie. They're definitely not unknowns. But this week's episode of "90210" prompted me to blog about them.

I distinctly recall being 14 and hearing "Publish My Love" on The O.C. and thanking God for the existence of Google. Since then, I've been hooked. And while they're already relatively well known in the land of indie music fans, they've been getting some serious playtime - probably due to the release of their new album, Permalight.

"90210" used the song "Eyes" which is three things: classic, well-known and a bit out of date for such a "hip" show. However, the people over at Chuck had the right idea a few episodes back in playing the song "Permalight" from the new album. On top of that, their music has been used in a ton of other stuff.

I'm not going to overdo it and create a music recipe to describe what they sound like. They vary between mellow and poppy. And they were on Sub Pop - you know that means it's good. I predict what is already a successful, independent band gaining some serious popularity in the coming months.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

A bear that is not of the grizzly variety

Iceland may not be the first country you think of when asked "Where does cool music come from?" but the fact is, cool music does come from Iceland! Take, for example, Sigur Rós, Björk and Emilíana Torrini. Now, let's add indie/folk band Seabear to that list.

Seabear is the most quintessential, classic example of indie/folk I've heard in quite a while. As of late, most indie music has been shoe-gazey (even though I refuse to acknowledge that as an actual genre of music), and the folk stuff has been very blues or country influenced. But Seabear's music is full of modest vocals and violins with a little flare of music that sounds like something you might want to sway to on a beach somewhere.

The most recent episode of "Grey's Anatomy" featured their song "Cold Summer" in the closing montage. It's classic "Grey's Anatomy" closer music - strings, keys, horns and heartbreaking vocals. A match made in heaven. Their song "Cat Piano" has also been used in a BBC advertisement for Finding Neverland and in "Gossip Girl."

Okay, so indie/folk is a bit vague. Let's get a bit more descriptive: Seabear is "Sufjan Stevens meets Arcade Fire unplugged," according to Clash Magazine. And Rolling Stone has determined that lead singer Sindri Már Sigfússon is the Icelandic Beck (a la Sea Change). My two cents is that I've got three papers to write over the next five days and this will be just the right music to keep me calm and motivated.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

XOXO, Gossip Girl

"Gossip Girl" is back and let me tell you guys, I could not be more pleased. And Monday's episode? Well, the music choices were so good, I'm covering almost the entire episode's worth!

First, there was Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes. I talk about them at CineMUSic and in daily life constantly, so let me just reiterate: they're awesome.

Then there was "Spirit Horse" by Sea Wolf. Sea Wolf is led by Alex Brown Church (previously of the band Irving) and is a band that creates this comfortable, relaxing (but never boring) indie rock. Their most popular song "You're A Wolf" has been used in a slew of television shows and film and it's this beautiful little piece of music that just gets under your skin in the best way.

"Crystalised" by the xx popped up next and reminded me how good that song is and how enjoyable their debut album is. If you're familiar with The Kills, imagine that duo only a bit toned down and understated. They're a little bit dark and moody, and yet the music makes me want to move. Wikipedia tells me they're "dream pop." I suppose that's an adequate genre choice.

And rounding it all out was Monsters of Folk's "Map of the World." If you're at all interested in folk/indie music, I can say with 99% certainty that you've heard of one of the members of the supergroup. It's made up of Jim James (My Morning Jacket), Conor Oberst, Mike Mogis (both of Bright Eyes) and M. Ward. I've never been a big fan of Bright Eyes (too mopey and sad for me) but Monsters of Folk is... well I think the name of the band kind of says it. It's folk music you can sink your teeth into and enjoy even if folk isn't your favorite genre.

Basically, "Gossip Girl," you dominated this week.

Monday, March 8, 2010

The French are très magnifique!

CineMUSic is turning into this more-often-than-not feminist style music blog. I feature a lot of ladies in this blog, but hey, that's the music I tend to like at the current stage of my life.

Charlotte Gainsbourg's sexy little song "Trick Pony" was featured in the opening (and also sexy) montage of last week's episode of "Grey's Anatomy." It's sexy in that strong, confident way as opposed to strictly sultry and "We are so gonna do it" way.

Gainsbourg has released three studio albums, the first being in 1986, titled Charlotte For Ever, when she was just 15 years old. That kind of thing makes me wonder what I've been doing with my time for the last five years of my life. Better yet, she's a film star. Not like Jenny Lewis who had a brief stint as a child actress and a role in Pleasantville (wonderful film). Charlotte appeared in 21 Grams, Jane Eyre, I'm Not There, and Antichrist.

Want to know why her latest album IRM will crush your soul into oblivion and make your heart explode? As if Charlotte herself wasn't enough, Beck wrote and produced 12 of the 13 songs. I think that about covers it.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Lurking around and being awesome

There is currently an under-the-radar band whose music has quietly been floating around television, and they have major potential to be popular. Like... super popular. I'm talking Sex-on-Fire-please-not-this-song-again popular.

Great Northern is a band from L.A. and is comprised of Solon Bixler, Rachel Stolte, Michael Regilio, Marissa Micik and Dusty Rocherolle. I'll say it right now: Solon Bixler is the former guitarist of 30 Seconds to Mars. It leaves a bad taste in my mouth (aside from the whole Jared Leto part because... look at him) but don't be too quick to judge. The band has an uncanny ability to turn out catchy rock songs and I always give major thumbs up to ladies who kick ass.

It's tough to describe Great Northern. Maybe like the Followill brothers (and one cousin, but whatever) had a younger, rebellious sister who also wanted to make music? Or like someone told Hayley Williams to stop whining and playing the same song over and over again?

This is a band that makes me believe in what some might call "chick rock." It's not Lillith Fair and it's not a 17-year-old singing about how she's simultaneously one of the guys but the only girl you should love.

And since this blog is about television/film, not just music, I'll let you know that they've been heard all over the place. They've had songs featured on almost every CW show, Bones, Grey's Anatomy, Friday Night Lights, The Hills, Nissan commercials and in the movie 21. But the music supervisors have been hiding the goods because the band hasn't been too prominent. At least not yet...