Monday, December 31, 2007

"Make em, make em clap to this!"

FILE UNDER: New flava in ya ear!



  • Just What I Needed [Titsworth Edit] - The Cars



  • Spotted over at
  • Discobelle.
  • Think.



    Check yo ingredients, before you overdose on the cool...

    Da Art of Storytellin'.



    "Top 5 MCs, you ain't gotta remind me..."

    On Christmas Day I wrapped up my favorite albums of 2007 list. Since I started on December 1st and ended on the 25th, many albums released in December got shafted, even the good ones, and this disc right here is one of the good ones.

    Lupe Fiasco's the Cool is easily one of my top 5 rap/hip-hop albums of the year. [Along with Jay-Z's American Gangster, Talib's Ear Drum, Kanye's Graduation, and Devin the Dizzude's Waitin' to Inhale in case you were curious.]

    And had I purchased it prior to December 23rd, it would have easily made it's way into my top 20, or top 10 this year, which is funny when you consider my history with Lupe Fiasco's catalog. I dug the shit out of [and still dig] his debut single Kick, Push, but as was the case with many a rapper for me circa 2002-2007 [a.k.a "The College Years"] I had no time for rap albums, but [all too easily] fucked with a rap single. And Food & Liquor, despite having album art that only I seemed to enjoy, did nothing for me once you turned the cover art face down and placed the disc into a stereo. After a few run throughs it quickly faded into the darkness, shining only when Kick, Push set into gear.

    But this album?

    No such luck avoiding it. No sir. I can now stand here and say that I fucks with Lupe Fiasco. And you should too. You too should finally give in to the melodies and the twisted wordplay that weaves in and out of every track, no matter the speed or type of beat, something Lupe has no problem trying to catch. Dig the opening poignant yet brief and opening poem that fades into the melodic [and also brief] overture that is Free Chilly. [Which makes me appreciate that whole neo-soul, wordless opening Common and Kanye gave us on Finding Forever that much more.]Listen as he goes to the West Side with Snoop Dogg and Pooh Bear and then ventures onto the Soulaquarian express to Paris, Tokyo, unconsciously stopping to tip his fitted cap to A Tribe Called Quest. Get over the Chris Martin aping of soul crooner Matthew Santos, and applaud Lupe for not letting his "commercial" tracks get lost in chart chasing dreams, fitting along nicely with his thoughts and reflections on everything from the current state of hip-hop [Dumb It Down], video game violence [Little Weapon], and his Go Go Gadget Flow, which in the end, is the thing that brings you back. His speed, vision, breaks, pauses, and momentum, when coupled with words he places on the page, is a thing of wonder. Does it all work? No. Are there many other hip-hop albums 19 tracks long, free of skits, and interludes, that dares you to press skip, when you know damn well you shouldn't?

    Nope. Not really.

    And that is why you should get hip to Lupe Fiasco's the Cool.
    KEY TRACKS: Paris, Tokyo/Hip-Hop Saved My Life/Dumb it Down

    The Coolest:



    Paris, Tokyo:



    Hip-Hop Saved My Life:

    Friday, December 28, 2007

    Gravity.

    FILE UNDER: A Moment of Clarity



    "Douchebag."

    "What a douchebag."

    It feels good to say, "douchebag. It's got two different plosive sounds, the "D" and "B", and nicely wedged between is a wonderful "sh" sound (technically known as a voiceless palato-alveolar sibilant, at the risk of coming off douchey) that when preceded with "oooooh", give your lips the sensation of sliding on a hardwood floor in a pair of woolen socks.

    And "douchebag" was on the vinegary tips of everyone's tongues this year. Trouble is, I'm not really clear on what it means, and I don't know that anyone does. I know that I get called one. Pete Wentz from Fallout Boy, by measure of a google search, is a douchebag 11,100 times over, or the number of results that the search engine says exist. Zach Braff, who himself wrote one of the better films I've seen in the last decade is also frequently 'bagged, as is some guy named Brody Jenner. In fact, if you want to go big, so is Michael Stipe, Bono ("supreme douchebag"), Thom Yorke, Will Smith and Brad Pitt..."


  • JOHNMAYER.COM: "DOUCHEBAG"
  • Thursday, December 27, 2007

    Just fine.

    Little known fact: I can't get enough of this song. [or the first half of her new album for that matter.]

    Glad to see that I'm not alone:



  • POPWATCH: NBC's David Gregory is my (funky) new hero
  • Wednesday, December 26, 2007

    This is how we do it.

    Yes it is Usher. You don't even know...

    Now if you visit this blog often, you know that old school jams are more often than not posted under the "Old School Funk for the True Funk Soldiers" headline. But sometimes old school joints are so good, so well put together, so classic to a brotha, [see Montell Jordan's This is how we do it] that all I can do is marvel at their goodness as they boldly play on and show us how's it done. This jam, presented below, is one such example.


    So you know what album I listened to for a hot second today? [whispers. room fades to black and white like a perfume commercial. Drapes billow in the wind as the windows blow open] 8701... And when it got to track five, it took every ounce of strength in my extroverted body to not close my book and start singing along out loud, on the bus, like it was my music video. [Or that old school Coca Cola ommercial with Tyrese where he sings on the bus and shit, and people smile and look on in awe/with pride as if saying sit yo ass down and shut the fuck up! is not an option.] Seriously, put on U Got It Bad right now. Do it. Go on. Press play and get you grown man [or woman on]. Close your eyes, bob your head, and shout out real talk non-sequiturs as if homeboy is right in front of you singing it; "boy you ain't never lied", "I know that's right" and such. It's okay. U Got it Bad. We understand. Though I wouldn't advise doing so on a bus...



    Damn. Remember him and Chili?

    BONUS:

    And you know what other Usher video knocks? This one:

    A Moment of Clarity.

    B2K. Chris Stokes. Allegations. I am sure that many of you all are up on this by now. If not, here's urban commentator B. Scott with his two cents. [It's like Countdown with Keith Olbermann on a tighter budget.]

    And I be?

    The coolest nigga, what?


    Kara Walker, Keys to the Coop, 1997, Linoleum Cut

    " 'I wanted to make work where the viewer wouldn't walk away,' Walker has said about her shadowy representations of America's dark conscience, where 'he would giggle nervously, get pulled into history, into fiction, into something totally demeaning and possibly very beautiful.' That she has done, and in spades. Few exhibitions are as important as Walker's array of formal elegance and cruel imagery currently at the Whitney. An achievement on the scale of the great art dramas (think Guernica or the cultural reach of Mexican muralism), Walker's capacious art addresses everyone—young and old, black and white, guilty-feeling and not— as ultimately sinning and sinned against."

    You know what made my day? Checking my e-mail and finding a link to not one, but two articles on the art, life, and times of Kara Walker.

  • THE VILLAGE VOICE: Kara Walker's Thrilling Whitney Retrospective


  • THE VILLAGE VOICE: The Coincidental Cousins
  • Tuesday, December 25, 2007

    One-A-Day! Tauwan's Top 25 Albums of 2007!

    From the makers of POP...LIFE!: Tauwan's Top 25 albums of 2006.


    Clamour for glamour...

    ONE/HISSING FAUNA, ARE YOU THE DESTROYER?/OF MONTREAL

    He spent the winter on the verge of a total breakdown while living in Norway. Stuck in this crisis, he relied heavily on the drinks and the chemicals, asking them to shift his mood back back to good again, before fatigue set in, leaving him to sleep away another day. At the moment, sleep evaded him, so he buried his head in a book, over-thinking, trying to restructure his character. And when that didn't work he lied awake at night praying to a God no one else had heard of, waiting for some high times to come again. And come they did, once he plugged in his guitar, fiddled with the knobs, dubbed some vocals, and let his words jump from the page to the stage. What came next was this, the intimate avant garde ruminations of the one they call Kevin Barnes and his traveling wilburys, known to you and me as Of Montreal. Now if you were been paying attention this year, then you would have noticed that 2007 has been all about the little bands that could breaking out into the spotlight, crafting music far more astonishing and fine tuned than that of their chart topping "veteran" counterparts. Of Montreal is one such act. You'll be hard pressed to find another post-modern rock album that is damn near perfect from track one onwards; An album that is tight and focused, yet ready to fall apart at the seams at any moment, sometimes within the span one track. [Check She's A Rejector]. The emotional clarity Barnes and Co. sought leading up to and throughout the duration of this album's creation is mirrored in the words, the rise and fall of a track's backing beat [see the bridge of Heimdalsgate Like a Promethean Curse, in which the beat drops slightly evolving into the sound of grinding gears, or the musical depiction of a migraine as Barnes' inner monologue repeats aloud "I'm in a crisis. I need help. Come on mood shift, shift back to good again. Come on mood shift, shift back to good again. Come on, be a friend!"]. The vocal dubs, the layered harmonies, the tonal shifts, and radical sonic experimentations should all be oh so overwhelming, but here's the thing: they're not. These songs and compositions just emote til they're dead, keeping it physical, cerebral, and most importantly, relatable all at the same time. Hissing Fauna, you are NOT the destroyer.
    KEY TRACKS: Heimdalsgate Like a Promethean Curse/A Sentence of Sorts in Kongsvinger/The Past Is A Grotesque Animal

  • TWO/NEON BIBLE/ARCADE FIRE


  • THREE/AMERICAN GANGSTER/JAY-Z


  • FOUR/MYTHS OF THE NEAR FUTURE/KLAXONS


  • FIVE/ICKY THUMP/THE WHITE STRIPES


  • SIX/EARDRUM/TALIB KWELI


  • SEVEN/GA GA GA GA GA/SPOON


  • EIGHT/BACK TO BLACK/AMY WINEHOUSE


  • NINE/KALA/M.I.A.


  • TEN/SMOKEY ROLLS DOWN THUNDER CANYON/DEVENDRA BANHART


  • ELEVEN/SOUND OF SILVER/LCD SOUNDSYSTEM


  • TWELVE/BECAUSE OF YOU/NE-YO


  • THIRTEEN/INFINITY ON HIGH/FALL OUT BOY


  • FOURTEEN/GRADUATION/KANYE WEST


  • FIFTEEN/THE CON/TEGAN AND SARA


  • SIXTEEN/THE MAGIC POSITION/PATRICK WOLF


  • SEVENTEEN/+/JUSTICE


  • EIGHTEEN/PRINZHORN DANCE SCHOOL/PRINZHORN DANCE SCHOOL


  • NINETEEN/BECAUSE OF THE TIMES/KINGS OF LEON


  • TWENTY/SOME LOUD THUNDER/CLAP YOUR HANDS SAY YEAH!


  • TWENTY-ONE/BLACKOUT/BRITNEY SPEARS AND GOOD GIRL GONE BAD/RIHANNA


  • TWENTY-TWO/UNDER THE BLACKLIGHT/RILO KILEY


  • TWENTY-THREE/MYTH TAKES/!!!


  • TWENTY-FOUR/SKY BLUE SKY/WILCO


  • TWENTY-FIVE/FANCY FOOTWORK/CHROMEO

  • Singled Out.

    TAUWAN'S "TOP TEN" SINGLES OF THE YEAR

    ONE.



    No! I choose you.

    For Pimp C...

    Where did this song come from? No, wait a minute, let me finish. Go back to last summer. Think about promotions. We all knew Kanye had a new disc coming, people across the country were being transfixed by a teenager encouraging them to captain save a ho or something, as well as riding on Lil Wayne's jock, and of course, UGK had a new album to give to the masses. Some cared, others got excited, and many waited for a lead single, but none of us were expecting this. We didn't all expect to wake up one day, turn on our computers, crank up our stereos, hit up BET and see this. Beneath all the ringtone, one note, here today gone tomorrow bombast, UGK and Outkast came in and went for the heart, tugged at our heartstrings, and rapped about grown man business like commitments with soul stirring clarity and conviction. Everybody's on point, offering up nothing but their best, and the track, which gorgeously samples Willie Hutch's I Choose You, builds as the song progresses, adding vocal flourishes, 808 cracks, and drops in volume or tone when the time calls for it. In other words the music here matters just as much as the words that are coming out of their mouths. And then of course, there's this:




  • TWO. - The Magic Position - Patrick Wolf


  • THREE. - Please Don't Stop the Music - Rihanna


  • FOUR. - Wipe Me Down - Lil Boosie feat Webbie and Foxx AND
    Crank Dat Soulja Boy - Souljaboytellem


  • FIVE. - D.A.N.C.E. - Justice


  • SIX. Buy U A Drank (Shawty Snappin') T-Pain feat Yung Joc AND -Get it Shawty - Lloyd feat. Yung Joc


  • SEVEN. -Must Be the Moon - !!! AND - Gronlandic Edit - Of Montreal


  • EIGHT. - Makes Me Wonder - Maroon 5


  • NINE. - Icky Thump - The White Stripes


  • TEN. - All My Friends - LCD Soundsystem


  • 11. What Goes Around Comes Around - Justin Timberlake


  • AND


  • 11. Ice Box - Omarion


  • 12. When I See You - Fantasia


  • AND

  • 12. Like This - Kelly Rowland Feat. Eve


  • 13. I Get Money - 50 Cent


  • 14. Boy Looka Here - Rich Boy


  • 15. Four Winds - Bright Eyes


  • 16. I'm A Flirt [RMX] - R.Kelly Feat. T.I. and T-Pain


  • 17. Can't Tell Me Nothing - Kanye West


  • 18. Blue Magic AND Roc Boys - Jay-Z


  • 19. Gravity - John Mayer


  • 20. Back in your Head - Tegan and Sara


  • 21. Silver Lining - Rilo Kiley


  • 22. When Did Your Heart Go Missing? - Rooney


  • 23. Dashboard - Modest Mouse


  • 24. No One - Alicia Keys


  • 25. Let It Go - Keyshia Cole feat. Missy Elliot & Lil' Kim
  • Monday, December 24, 2007

    One-A-Day! Tauwan's Top 25 Albums of 2007!

    From the makers of POP...LIFE!: Tauwan's Top 25 albums of 2006.



    Take em to church!

    TWO/NEON BIBLE/ARCADE FIRE

    Halloween weekend 2004. Some castle on a cliff overlooking the ocean in Maine. It was here that Lucy O. caught a glimpse of a little Canadian band that could. Sweeping, majestic, guest-list only, show of a lifetime. 60 or so people.

    "Ladies and Gentlemen we are Arcade Fire."

    And so it began. Not just for Lucy O., but the rest of the world as well, who would slowly but surely fall truly, madly, deeply in love with this band's grand statements, lush arrangements, and big ideas. We all, like Lucy O., hung on to every word, analyzed every visual, admired every arrangement, and had no qualms waiting three years for this, album number two, the Neon Bible. With album number one, Win Butler and Co. found themselves surrounded by death, using music to help them cope, maintain, and find hope in a world that, despite its faults, still needed to be held onto and fought for. With Neon Bible, that world has grown bleaker, cold even. Death may not be as prevalent, but there is a loss of innocence, and a sense of doom that seems to be bubbling on the horizon, ushering in Black Waves and Bad Vibrations. The only saving grace? These words. This music. The belief that there is a place where no cars go, a vial of hope between the click of the light, and the start of the dream. Beneath that organ, above the clouds, within these harmonies. Side by side, hand in hand. This collective, their ideas, these compositions. They will set your spirit free, offering hope, this ocean of noise and the Neon Bible.
    KEY TRACKS: Keep the Car Running/Black Wave/Bad Vibrations/No Cars Go

  • THREE/AMERICAN GANGSTER/JAY-Z


  • FOUR/MYTHS OF THE NEAR FUTURE/KLAXONS


  • FIVE/ICKY THUMP/THE WHITE STRIPES


  • SIX/EARDRUM/TALIB KWELI


  • SEVEN/GA GA GA GA GA/SPOON


  • EIGHT/BACK TO BLACK/AMY WINEHOUSE


  • NINE/KALA/M.I.A.


  • TEN/SMOKEY ROLLS DOWN THUNDER CANYON/DEVENDRA BANHART


  • ELEVEN/SOUND OF SILVER/LCD SOUNDSYSTEM


  • TWELVE/BECAUSE OF YOU/NE-YO


  • THIRTEEN/INFINITY ON HIGH/FALL OUT BOY


  • FOURTEEN/GRADUATION/KANYE WEST


  • FIFTEEN/THE CON/TEGAN AND SARA


  • SIXTEEN/THE MAGIC POSITION/PATRICK WOLF


  • SEVENTEEN/+/JUSTICE


  • EIGHTEEN/PRINZHORN DANCE SCHOOL/PRINZHORN DANCE SCHOOL


  • NINETEEN/BECAUSE OF THE TIMES/KINGS OF LEON


  • TWENTY/SOME LOUD THUNDER/CLAP YOUR HANDS SAY YEAH!


  • TWENTY-ONE/BLACKOUT/BRITNEY SPEARS AND GOOD GIRL GONE BAD/RIHANNA


  • TWENTY-TWO/UNDER THE BLACKLIGHT/RILO KILEY


  • TWENTY-THREE/MYTH TAKES/!!!


  • TWENTY-FOUR/SKY BLUE SKY/WILCO


  • TWENTY-FIVE/FANCY FOOTWORK/CHROMEO
  • Singled Out.

    TAUWAN'S "TOP TEN" SINGLES OF THE YEAR

    TWO.



    Take a look at the picture up above. Vibrant, shimmering, splendid right? All sunshine, lollipops, and rainbows going dosey-doe, round and round, in technicolor! Now stop and think about your last carousel ride. The joyous and repetitive melody that reverberated from the carousel's speakers, the sheer joy you had going up and down, round and round, smiling widely, hamming it up for the cameras, and clapping your hands. It's quite the magic position to be in right?




    Right.

  • THREE. - Please Don't Stop the Music - Rihanna


  • FOUR. - Wipe Me Down - Lil Boosie feat Webbie and Foxx AND
    Crank Dat Soulja Boy - Souljaboytellem


  • FIVE. - D.A.N.C.E. - Justice


  • SIX. Buy U A Drank (Shawty Snappin') T-Pain feat Yung Joc AND -Get it Shawty - Lloyd feat. Yung Joc


  • SEVEN. -Must Be the Moon - !!! AND - Gronlandic Edit - Of Montreal


  • EIGHT. - Makes Me Wonder - Maroon 5


  • NINE. - Icky Thump - The White Stripes


  • TEN. - All My Friends - LCD Soundsystem


  • 11. What Goes Around Comes Around - Justin Timberlake


  • AND


  • 11. Ice Box - Omarion


  • 12. When I See You - Fantasia


  • AND

  • 12. Like This - Kelly Rowland Feat. Eve


  • 13. I Get Money - 50 Cent


  • 14. Boy Looka Here - Rich Boy


  • 15. Four Winds - Bright Eyes


  • 16. I'm A Flirt [RMX] - R.Kelly Feat. T.I. and T-Pain


  • 17. Can't Tell Me Nothing - Kanye West


  • 18. Blue Magic AND Roc Boys - Jay-Z


  • 19. Gravity - John Mayer


  • 20. Back in your Head - Tegan and Sara


  • 21. Silver Lining - Rilo Kiley


  • 22. When Did Your Heart Go Missing? - Rooney


  • 23. Dashboard - Modest Mouse


  • 24. No One - Alicia Keys


  • 25. Let It Go - Keyshia Cole feat. Missy Elliot & Lil' Kim
  • Sunday, December 23, 2007

    One-A-Day! Tauwan's Top 25 Albums of 2007!

    From the makers of POP...LIFE!: Tauwan's Top 25 albums of 2006.



    LET THAT BITCH BREATHE!

    THREE/AMERICAN GANGSTER/JAY-Z

    One of my favorite singles [and Prince songs] of all time is Adore. This is due mostly to the fact that it just so happens to be one of the first songs I heard booming throughout my house as a child that stopped me dead in my tracks and just made me listen. This mostly occurred on the weekends, post 8PM. The back of house? Darkness. Kids nestled in bed, pajamas with the footies. Front of the house? Alive. Constant. Grown folks enjoying the party life; drinks, smokes, and old soul records. Peering through a crack in the hallway door is me, wide eyed and in awe of all the things that I hear and see. The words and conversations shared over Marvin Gaye's Soon I'll Be Loving You. Ooh wee. This soulful, invigorating Party Life is, for me, a manifestation of the American Dream. Constant. Grown. Minute after minute, track after track I remain wide-eyed with open ears. Seeing this, hearing that.

    "And if Al Sharpton is speakin for me, somebody get him the word and tell him I don't approve. Tell him I remove curses if he tell me our schools gon be perfect. When Jena Six don't exist tell him that's when I'll stop saying Bitch... BITCH!"

    "I missed that part where it stopped being about Imus. What do my lyrics got to do this shit? Scarface the movie did more than Scarface the rapper to me. Still that ain't to blame for all this shit that's happened to me."


    Damn. And the way in which these lines are delivered. Pauses. Breaks. Fast. Slow. Clear. Pointed. Grounded. Phrases [and phrasings]played with, chewed, and spat out in ways I thought was privy only to those we call singers. Yes, tonight I can sleep easily, for my heart, mind, and soul have been invigorated by the stories I just heard, the sounds and the beats underlying it all, and everything in between. Sweet.

    KEY TRACKS: American Dreamin'/Ignorant Shit/Blue Magic

  • FOUR/MYTHS OF THE NEAR FUTURE/KLAXONS


  • FIVE/ICKY THUMP/THE WHITE STRIPES


  • SIX/EARDRUM/TALIB KWELI


  • SEVEN/GA GA GA GA GA/SPOON


  • EIGHT/BACK TO BLACK/AMY WINEHOUSE


  • NINE/KALA/M.I.A.


  • TEN/SMOKEY ROLLS DOWN THUNDER CANYON/DEVENDRA BANHART


  • ELEVEN/SOUND OF SILVER/LCD SOUNDSYSTEM


  • TWELVE/BECAUSE OF YOU/NE-YO


  • THIRTEEN/INFINITY ON HIGH/FALL OUT BOY


  • FOURTEEN/GRADUATION/KANYE WEST


  • FIFTEEN/THE CON/TEGAN AND SARA


  • SIXTEEN/THE MAGIC POSITION/PATRICK WOLF


  • SEVENTEEN/+/JUSTICE


  • EIGHTEEN/PRINZHORN DANCE SCHOOL/PRINZHORN DANCE SCHOOL


  • NINETEEN/BECAUSE OF THE TIMES/KINGS OF LEON


  • TWENTY/SOME LOUD THUNDER/CLAP YOUR HANDS SAY YEAH!


  • TWENTY-ONE/BLACKOUT/BRITNEY SPEARS AND GOOD GIRL GONE BAD/RIHANNA


  • TWENTY-TWO/UNDER THE BLACKLIGHT/RILO KILEY


  • TWENTY-THREE/MYTH TAKES/!!!


  • TWENTY-FOUR/SKY BLUE SKY/WILCO


  • TWENTY-FIVE/FANCY FOOTWORK/CHROMEO

  • Singled Out.

    TAUWAN'S "TOP TEN" SINGLES OF THE YEAR

    THREE.



    Umbrella, ella, ella, eh, eh, eh, An avant-garde, top notch, off the charts pop single, no doubt about it. Highly addictive, highly enjoyable, yessir. But this joint? This shit right here? Classic. Stadium status. The Michael Jackson sample, that echoing hiccup rally call of a demand, the early to mid 90's Quad City DJ trance of a beat. And the lyrics. Listen closely as you get down, and you'll soon realize that your night is being narrated by Rihanna; I just came here to party, but now we're rockin' on the dancefloor acting naughty. Your hands around my waist, just let the music play. We're hand in hand, chest to chest, and now we're face to face. And all I ask is that you please, please, please don't stop the music



  • FOUR. Wipe Me Down - Lil Boosie feat Webbie and Foxx AND
    Crank Dat Soulja Boy - Souljaboytellem


  • FIVE. - D.A.N.C.E. - Justice


  • SIX. Buy U A Drank (Shawty Snappin') T-Pain feat Yung Joc AND -Get it Shawty - Lloyd feat. Yung Joc


  • SEVEN. -Must Be the Moon - !!! AND - Gronlandic Edit - Of Montreal


  • EIGHT. - Makes Me Wonder - Maroon 5


  • NINE. - Icky Thump - The White Stripes


  • TEN. - All My Friends - LCD Soundsystem


  • 11. What Goes Around Comes Around - Justin Timberlake


  • AND


  • 11. Ice Box - Omarion


  • 12. When I See You - Fantasia


  • AND

  • 12. Like This - Kelly Rowland Feat. Eve


  • 13. I Get Money - 50 Cent


  • 14. Boy Looka Here - Rich Boy


  • 15. Four Winds - Bright Eyes


  • 16. I'm A Flirt [RMX] - R.Kelly Feat. T.I. and T-Pain


  • 17. Can't Tell Me Nothing - Kanye West


  • 18. Blue Magic AND Roc Boys - Jay-Z


  • 19. Gravity - John Mayer


  • 20. Back in your Head - Tegan and Sara


  • 21. Silver Lining - Rilo Kiley


  • 22. When Did Your Heart Go Missing? - Rooney


  • 23. Dashboard - Modest Mouse


  • 24. No One - Alicia Keys


  • 25. Let It Go - Keyshia Cole feat. Missy Elliot & Lil' Kim
  • Saturday, December 22, 2007

    One-A-Day! Tauwan's Top 25 Albums of 2007!

    From the makers of POP...LIFE!: Tauwan's Top 25 albums of 2006.



    STA-DIUM STA-TUS!

    FOUR/MYTHS OF THE NEAR FUTURE/KLAXONS

    Something strange happens when you see the Klaxons. I don't quite know how to explain it, but the young spry crowd all come into whatever venue this young, fiery English four piece happens to be playing that night, on one accord, jumping, singing, harmonizing, and sweating like one nation under a groove. Together. No crossed arms, no vicious stare downs, or too tall fellas remaining static and steadfast in that close to the stage spot, arms wrapped around their significant other, blocking many a fan behind them. No. It's a party y'all, sheer killer with no filler, and quite the exhilarating ride. The same can be said of every single track on this here disc, Myths of the Near Future, a cosmic, out of this world wave of the future; a live action Neverending Story or Land Before Time set to disc for the exuberant and hipster sets. Whimsical flights of fancy, fairytale like compositions, and all encompassing metaphors are married to jaunty, ring the alarm type instrumentation, speedy, joy seeking vocals, and lush, lush harmonies. Oh my God those harmonies. Nu-rave, bloghouse, dance music psychadelia; throw whatever term you like at this band, and it probably won't stick, cause at the end of the day this is just another one of those rare, smart and imaginative, body rocking LPs that aims to be nothing more but fun and show you a good time as you ride atop Gravity's Rainbow.
    KEY TRACKS: Atlantis to Interzone/Golden Skans/As Above, So Below

  • FIVE/ICKY THUMP/THE WHITE STRIPES


  • SIX/EARDRUM/TALIB KWELI


  • SEVEN/GA GA GA GA GA/SPOON


  • EIGHT/BACK TO BLACK/AMY WINEHOUSE


  • NINE/KALA/M.I.A.


  • TEN/SMOKEY ROLLS DOWN THUNDER CANYON/DEVENDRA BANHART


  • ELEVEN/SOUND OF SILVER/LCD SOUNDSYSTEM


  • TWELVE/BECAUSE OF YOU/NE-YO


  • THIRTEEN/INFINITY ON HIGH/FALL OUT BOY


  • FOURTEEN/GRADUATION/KANYE WEST


  • FIFTEEN/THE CON/TEGAN AND SARA


  • SIXTEEN/THE MAGIC POSITION/PATRICK WOLF


  • SEVENTEEN/+/JUSTICE


  • EIGHTEEN/PRINZHORN DANCE SCHOOL/PRINZHORN DANCE SCHOOL


  • NINETEEN/BECAUSE OF THE TIMES/KINGS OF LEON


  • TWENTY/SOME LOUD THUNDER/CLAP YOUR HANDS SAY YEAH!


  • TWENTY-ONE/BLACKOUT/BRITNEY SPEARS AND GOOD GIRL GONE BAD/RIHANNA


  • TWENTY-TWO/UNDER THE BLACKLIGHT/RILO KILEY


  • TWENTY-THREE/MYTH TAKES/!!!


  • TWENTY-FOUR/SKY BLUE SKY/WILCO


  • TWENTY-FIVE/FANCY FOOTWORK/CHROMEO

  • Singled Out.

    TAUWAN'S "TOP TEN" SINGLES OF THE YEAR

    FOUR.

    Wipe Me Down - Lil Boosie feat Webbie and Foxx taken from


    AND

    Crank Dat Soulja Boy - Souljaboytellem taken from


    Little known fact about bandwagon hoppin, instruction givin', ringtone rappin singles: avoid them like the plague in the comforts of your own home if you can, but once they come on in a Black club, you're shit out of luck, cause you'll gain a newfound love for said throwaway single when it's booming like an 808 and got everybody around you showcasing their best two-step. That's how I was introduced to Wipe Me Down. A ode to being so motherfucking on and goody goody nigga. Dark, menacing, full force, with a nice lean back and sway swagger. Go on and brush your shoulders off. And then there's souljaboytellem. I am not, repeat NOT, supposed to like this song, but like Mary Had A Little Lamb and Down Down Baby before it, the repetitious melody and instructions get stuck in your head, and really, how can you resist them P.I.M.P.-style calypso drums and that Sportscenter back to the news room like slam that hits you every five to ten seconds or so. Yes, he's young and ain't much in the lyrical dexterity department, but what else is southern teenage bravado supposed to sound like? Huh? What?

    Thought so.



    AND



  • FIVE. - D.A.N.C.E. - Justice


  • SIX. Buy U A Drank (Shawty Snappin') T-Pain feat Yung Joc AND -Get it Shawty - Lloyd feat. Yung Joc


  • SEVEN. -Must Be the Moon - !!! AND - Gronlandic Edit - Of Montreal


  • EIGHT. - Makes Me Wonder - Maroon 5


  • NINE. - Icky Thump - The White Stripes


  • TEN. - All My Friends - LCD Soundsystem


  • 11. What Goes Around Comes Around - Justin Timberlake


  • AND


  • 11. Ice Box - Omarion


  • 12. When I See You - Fantasia


  • AND

  • 12. Like This - Kelly Rowland Feat. Eve


  • 13. I Get Money - 50 Cent


  • 14. Boy Looka Here - Rich Boy


  • 15. Four Winds - Bright Eyes


  • 16. I'm A Flirt [RMX] - R.Kelly Feat. T.I. and T-Pain


  • 17. Can't Tell Me Nothing - Kanye West


  • 18. Blue Magic AND Roc Boys - Jay-Z


  • 19. Gravity - John Mayer


  • 20. Back in your Head - Tegan and Sara


  • 21. Silver Lining - Rilo Kiley


  • 22. When Did Your Heart Go Missing? - Rooney


  • 23. Dashboard - Modest Mouse


  • 24. No One - Alicia Keys


  • 25. Let It Go - Keyshia Cole feat. Missy Elliot & Lil' Kim
  • One-A-Day! Tauwan's Top 25 Albums of 2007!

    From the makers of POP...LIFE!: Tauwan's Top 25 albums of 2006.



    You've come a long way baby!...

    FIVE/ICKY THUMP/THE WHITE STRIPES

    This Friday I decided to rope it in; Take a little time out for me. A drank, a smoke, a shuffle through the Los Angeles Times strewn about the floor. Television had little to offer [it was Friday night after all], but CBS caught my eye. The Grammy's top [insert arbitrary # here] Performances of All Time. Oh shit. Gotta watch, oddly scripted, emoitionless intros from Alicia Keys, Melissa Ethridge, and Faith Hill nonwithstanding. Why? Cause I knew that I would be able to relive that moment from the 2004 Grammy's when Jag and Meg White ripped, no shredded, no tore through Death Letter, rocking the crowd and letting the whole world know that they are a force to be recokened with. [Say it with me now: Jack and Meg White ain't nothing to fuck with!] Sadly the performance did not make the list in which a somber Green Day performance came in it at number one, but it's okay, cause when I pop the Stripes' latest disc Icky Thump into my stereo I find myself reminded of and repeating that Jack and Meg White ain't nothing to fuck with ad nauseaum. Hard to believe that this band was once "indie"-pendent, below the radar, or underground when the 14 tracks that make up this disc are so wonderfully constructed, chaotic, focused, and full formed; And that there once was a time when all they wanted was their "ice cream colder and a little cream soda", when this hard rockin, lo-fi aestetics in surround sound LP begs [no needs] to be heard. Guitars are ripped to shreds, gaelic bounces weave their way in out of the disc's sequencing, vocals are strained, and humor interjects itself when you least expect it. Yes, the formula ain't broken, but it ain't locked in stone either. Nearly ten years in the game, and the White Stripes are still doing more with two people than most bands do with four members or more. Rustic, passionate, falling apart at the seams, this thump sure is icky, but like a car crash on the side of the road it's worth taking a look. Even if it slows you down for a bit.
    KEY TRACKS: Icky Thump/Rag & Bone/Catch Hell Blues

  • SIX/EARDRUM/TALIB KWELI


  • SEVEN/GA GA GA GA GA/SPOON


  • EIGHT/BACK TO BLACK/AMY WINEHOUSE


  • NINE/KALA/M.I.A.


  • TEN/SMOKEY ROLLS DOWN THUNDER CANYON/DEVENDRA BANHART


  • ELEVEN/SOUND OF SILVER/LCD SOUNDSYSTEM


  • TWELVE/BECAUSE OF YOU/NE-YO


  • THIRTEEN/INFINITY ON HIGH/FALL OUT BOY


  • FOURTEEN/GRADUATION/KANYE WEST


  • FIFTEEN/THE CON/TEGAN AND SARA


  • SIXTEEN/THE MAGIC POSITION/PATRICK WOLF


  • SEVENTEEN/+/JUSTICE


  • EIGHTEEN/PRINZHORN DANCE SCHOOL/PRINZHORN DANCE SCHOOL


  • NINETEEN/BECAUSE OF THE TIMES/KINGS OF LEON


  • TWENTY/SOME LOUD THUNDER/CLAP YOUR HANDS SAY YEAH!


  • TWENTY-ONE/BLACKOUT/BRITNEY SPEARS AND GOOD GIRL GONE BAD/RIHANNA


  • TWENTY-TWO/UNDER THE BLACKLIGHT/RILO KILEY


  • TWENTY-THREE/MYTH TAKES/!!!


  • TWENTY-FOUR/SKY BLUE SKY/WILCO


  • TWENTY-FIVE/FANCY FOOTWORK/CHROMEO

  • Friday, December 21, 2007

    Singled Out.

    TAUWAN'S "TOP TEN" SINGLES OF THE YEAR

    FIVE.



    The knobs turn on your FM dial. Static. Tone Loc. "Wild Thang." Static. Talk Radio. Static. Fastball. The Way. Static. Huh? What is this? Knobs turn. Clarity. The voices of few kids singing in harmony comes through the speakers:

    Do the D.A.N.C.E./1,2,3,4,5!/Stick the B.E.A.T./Get ready to ignite/You were such a P.Y.T. catching all the lights!/Just easy as A.B.C. that's how you make it right!/Do the D.A.N.C.E.!/Stick to the B.E.A.T.!/Just easy as A.B.C.!/Do the DANCE!

    The voices rise, the beat bubbles underneath. Bass. A get into the groove like melody. Infectious. Harmonious. A slick piece of ear candy, hell bent on having a good time. Inescapable. Umbrella's quieter, but just as affecting Michael Jackson loving little brother. [And arguably just as popular]Under the spotlights/Neither black nor white/It doesn't matter/Do the DANCE!



  • SIX. Buy U A Drank (Shawty Snappin') T-Pain feat Yung Joc AND -Get it Shawty - Lloyd feat. Yung Joc


  • SEVEN. -Must Be the Moon - !!! AND - Gronlandic Edit - Of Montreal


  • EIGHT. - Makes Me Wonder - Maroon 5


  • NINE. - Icky Thump - The White Stripes


  • TEN. - All My Friends - LCD Soundsystem


  • 11. What Goes Around Comes Around - Justin Timberlake


  • AND


  • 11. Ice Box - Omarion


  • 12. When I See You - Fantasia


  • AND

  • 12. Like This - Kelly Rowland Feat. Eve


  • 13. I Get Money - 50 Cent


  • 14. Boy Looka Here - Rich Boy


  • 15. Four Winds - Bright Eyes


  • 16. I'm A Flirt [RMX] - R.Kelly Feat. T.I. and T-Pain


  • 17. Can't Tell Me Nothing - Kanye West


  • 18. Blue Magic AND Roc Boys - Jay-Z


  • 19. Gravity - John Mayer


  • 20. Back in your Head - Tegan and Sara


  • 21. Silver Lining - Rilo Kiley


  • 22. When Did Your Heart Go Missing? - Rooney


  • 23. Dashboard - Modest Mouse


  • 24. No One - Alicia Keys


  • 25. Let It Go - Keyshia Cole feat. Missy Elliot & Lil' Kim
  • Thursday, December 20, 2007

    One-A-Day! Tauwan's Top 25 Albums of 2007!

    From the makers of POP...LIFE!: Tauwan's Top 25 albums of 2006.



    "Yo son, what the deal son? What's really hood son? (what's really hood?)
    Word is bond, shit is real, shit is real..."


    SIX/EARDRUM/TALIB KWELI

    I don't, remember the first time I heard Kwe-li
    I don't remember what I was doing
    There were no remembered witnesses to my doings
    But it seems like I've known him, forever
    He who has, moved through mornings and midnights
    Through, deaths and dawns
    To document our bones our blood our lives
    Listen, listen to his exact wings
    Strumming mists from clouds
    Listen, listen a man always punctual with his, mouth
    Listen to his, revolution of syllables
    Scoping lightning from his pores
    Keeping time, with his hurricane beat
    Asking us to pick ourselves up and become, THUNDER!


    Listen.
    Listen to this man's rhymes.
    Listen to him wax poetic about the nickel and dimed.
    wayward souls.
    countless lost lives.
    youngins caught up.
    embedded in crime.
    unguided,
    unkempt,
    unaware of better ways to kill the time.
    press play and listen,
    enjoy the company of his guests,
    constant,
    coming in,
    presence gift
    offering nothing but their best.
    from the top to the bottom,
    from the bottom to the top,
    20 tracks, never long, well sequenced, non-stop!
    this knowledge,
    that wordplay,
    his hunger, those beats;
    soul mongering,
    spine tingling,
    can't just listen,
    must think.
    commercial,
    "backpackin'",
    chitlin cicuit,
    underground;
    this knowledge,
    that wordplay,
    his hunger-
    Lifted these stories
    from the soil
    aboveground.
    press play,
    juslissen,
    bob ya head,
    tap ya feet,
    feel it,
    fell this,
    feel the heartbeat, feel the heartbeat,
    "on your eardrum you got a new heartbeat"
    Just listen,
    take it in,
    takes note if you need.
    press play and just listen.
    then repeat.repeat.
    KEY TRACKS: Hostile Gospel Pt.1/Country Cousins/The Perfect Beat

  • >SEVEN/GA GA GA GA GA/SPOON


  • EIGHT/BACK TO BLACK/AMY WINEHOUSE


  • NINE/KALA/M.I.A.


  • TEN/SMOKEY ROLLS DOWN THUNDER CANYON/DEVENDRA BANHART


  • ELEVEN/SOUND OF SILVER/LCD SOUNDSYSTEM


  • TWELVE/BECAUSE OF YOU/NE-YO


  • THIRTEEN/INFINITY ON HIGH/FALL OUT BOY


  • FOURTEEN/GRADUATION/KANYE WEST


  • FIFTEEN/THE CON/TEGAN AND SARA


  • SIXTEEN/THE MAGIC POSITION/PATRICK WOLF


  • SEVENTEEN/+/JUSTICE


  • EIGHTEEN/PRINZHORN DANCE SCHOOL/PRINZHORN DANCE SCHOOL


  • NINETEEN/BECAUSE OF THE TIMES/KINGS OF LEON


  • TWENTY/SOME LOUD THUNDER/CLAP YOUR HANDS SAY YEAH!


  • TWENTY-ONE/BLACKOUT/BRITNEY SPEARS AND GOOD GIRL GONE BAD/RIHANNA


  • TWENTY-TWO/UNDER THE BLACKLIGHT/RILO KILEY


  • TWENTY-THREE/MYTH TAKES/!!!


  • TWENTY-FOUR/SKY BLUE SKY/WILCO


  • TWENTY-FIVE/FANCY FOOTWORK/CHROMEO

  • Singled Out.

    TAUWAN'S "TOP TEN" SINGLES OF THE YEAR

    SIX.



    AND



    T-Pain likes to go around with his chest all out linking himself to Teddy Pendergrass as if he's the second coming or some shit. No, not quite buddy. But with this track he does get on some turn the lights down and light a candle type shit, turning down the b-boy swag so prevalent in male R&B, playing it simple, and dare I say it, being a gentlemen, with a two-step beat and a few snaps of the fingers. This feeling, those repeat after me harmonies and that synth line that underlies it all is more Teddy Pendergrass than that voicebox where his larynx used to be. The same can be said for Lloyd whose delicate tenor rides the beat [provided by Usher's younger brother?!@#] with ease. [And that chorus? Ooh Wee!] Get it Shawty may sound vulgar on some "A! A! A GIRL! WHAT YOU NAME IS?" type shit, but Ay Bay Bay it is not. Shawty is bangin', he wants to get close, and he's gonna do it in the most natural and easy way possible, by inching forward, letting you do you, while he cuts the bullshit and simply asks you to dance and try to talk to you. Nothing wrong with that right?



    AND




  • SEVEN. -Must Be the Moon - !!! AND - Gronlandic Edit - Of Montreal


  • EIGHT. - Makes Me Wonder - Maroon 5


  • NINE. - Icky Thump - The White Stripes


  • TEN. - All My Friends - LCD Soundsystem


  • 11. What Goes Around Comes Around - Justin Timberlake


  • AND


  • 11. Ice Box - Omarion


  • 12. When I See You - Fantasia


  • AND

  • 12. Like This - Kelly Rowland Feat. Eve


  • 13. I Get Money - 50 Cent


  • 14. Boy Looka Here - Rich Boy


  • 15. Four Winds - Bright Eyes


  • 16. I'm A Flirt [RMX] - R.Kelly Feat. T.I. and T-Pain


  • 17. Can't Tell Me Nothing - Kanye West


  • 18. Blue Magic AND Roc Boys - Jay-Z


  • 19. Gravity - John Mayer


  • 20. Back in your Head - Tegan and Sara


  • 21. Silver Lining - Rilo Kiley


  • 22. When Did Your Heart Go Missing? - Rooney


  • 23. Dashboard - Modest Mouse


  • 24. No One - Alicia Keys


  • 25. Let It Go - Keyshia Cole feat. Missy Elliot & Lil' Kim