Deadshirt Is Listening… Going Crazy and Strumming Along

Deadshirt Is Listening… Bringing you a rundown of our staff and guest contributors’ favorite new tracks released in the past week after they’ve had the weekend to blast them in their cars, in a club, alone in their rooms, etc.

Mike Duquette is Revisiting…

“Boxing Day Blues (Revisted)”
Courtney Barnett
Boxing Day Blues (Revisited) 7”

We’re getting close to the all-important end-of-year best-of list season—can you feel it? (Probably not, unless you’re a rock critic/dork.) For me, 2015’s musical gifts began with Sometimes I Just Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit, the phenomenal debut album from Australian rocker Courtney Barnett. Loaded with howling guitars and witty, yearning lyrical yarns, Barnett is the perfect link between ’90s riot-grrrl overtures and modern indie tendencies.

Just in time for the creeping list-making deadline, Barnett has released a new single, a sort of companion piece to ethereally sad album closer “Boxing Day Blues.” Cut at Third Man Studios with Jack White himself at the helm, “Boxing Day Blues (Revisited)” ties the ennui of the original tune to a new, laid-back twang of an arrangement that almost belies the overall sadness of the song. May this single encourage you to check out the whole album—you’ll be glad you did.

“When the Night Comes”
Jeff Lynne’s ELO
Alone in the Universe
Older Rock

“Jeff Lynne’s ELO?” you ask. Lynne, the superproducer behind late ‘80s hits for George Harrison, Roy Orbison, and Tom Petty, essentially was Electric Light Orchestra for most of their run between 1970 and 1986. (ELO’s last album, 2001’s Zoom, featured original keyboardist Richard Tandy on one track and a host of guests, including Harrison and Ringo Starr.) So Lynne is embracing his greater-known identity on a new album, Alone in the Universe, and it sounds like it’ll have everything you expect from Lynne and ELO: eerie, harmony-laden hooks; decadent orchestral arrangements; and a hypnotic, clomping snare drum. If it’s even half as decent as Balance of Power, I’ll be happy.

Julian Ames is going a little crazy to…

“I’m Down With That”
I’m Down With That 7”

I spent most of this past weekend huddled in blankets trying to fight off a cold. When I did go outside, I noticed it was definitely fall; the weather’s cool and it gets darker earlier. So I was pretty shocked when I heard “I’m Down With That,” a summery-sounding jam from BOSS, a group fronted by Theresa Wayman from Warpaint. If you don’t know Warpaint’s music, it sounds like the kind of music you’d imagine four cool witches from L.A. would make. Wayman is branching out with a solo record called Right On! this December, and also joined up with Sarah Jones of Hot Chip and Guro Gikling of All We Are to form BOSS. “I’m Down With That” is the trio’s first release, and really sounds like a collaboration of those three. It’s got the reverby, hazy, and discordant vocals of Warpaint, the dance-y feel of Hot Chip, and the sunny indie rock feel of All We Are. The parts all come together in this song to form this strangely groovy tune that feels like it belongs out by the pool. It’s totally great, and catchy, just not something I’d expect to hear in the middle of October, but hey, I’m down with that.

David Lebovitz is strumming along to….

“You’re In The Band”
School Of Rock: The Musical Original Broadway Cast
School Of Rock: The Musical

Ask and ye shall shall receive. I don’t know who asked, but we have received, and it’s better than I expected. School Of Rock is a Broadway musical now, with previews starting at the Winter Garten Theater next week. There’s a lot surprising about this, and I’ll list it in descending order:

  1. Andrew Lloyd Webber did the music.
  2. It’s actually pretty darn good.
  3. It stages well.
  4. Someone picked School Of Rock to be a musical.
  5. Someone hadn’t thought of that sooner.

Actually, number one isn’t that surprising if you ask Roger Waters.

“You’re in the Band” covers Dewey’s first interaction with his students after he learns that they play music and convinces them all to rock out and audition for his band. It’s high energy and is guaranteed to reach the people in the balcony, because that’s what Andrew Lloyd Webber’s been doing for the past thousand years. See how many legendary rock riffs you can pick out. I’m a sucker for rock musicals, and this might do a do a good job converting doubters. (Are there still doubters? Were they not won over by Jersey Boys or The Wedding Singer or Next To Normal or…?”)

I also can’t help but draw attention to the video itself—it’s a 360 video. When you’re watching, you can click and drag the video to change your perspective. When Dewey says “follow me,” click and drag—you can ACTUALLY DO IT. Also the lyrics and some of the chords are on the ceiling. Odds are that by the time you read this, I’ll still be trying to find new things in this video.

That’s what we’ve been listening to this week – what’s got your ear this week? Tweet your recommendations @DeadshirtDotNet or drop us a line on our Facebook page.

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