Does anyone else think we ought to have the option to pay money not to have celebrities pretending to know about tragedy while boosting their own egos and profiles and convincing us to give our own money when they have millions of dollars lying around?
At least let Kanye West be a part of it, then at least we can have the "did you see what douchey thing Kanye did this time?" conversation.
Yes, the world of "music" rallied around the Haitians this week, completely missing the point of that Simpsons episode which lampooned such shenanigans so perfectly. For further amusement, consider the song which Simon Cowell has chosen for his group of singers to cover: R.E.M's "Everybody Hurts". Nothing says 'we feel empathy for you' like a song about how everyone in the world has their own kind of pain which is just as bad as yours.
Carlsberg don't do crass and offensive charity singles...
The prestigious Spoon from Austin, Texas will be adding a seventh studio album to their already killer discography this week, following up their 2007 release Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga this album has a slightly more imaginative name: Transference. Thanks to the Got Nuffin E.P released in June of last year we have already heard one song from the album and as a benchmark we can easily say that this album has enormous potential.
This will be the second of Veirs' albums to be released on her very own label Raven Marching Bands in the United States, with Bella Union having bought the rights to distribute the release in Britain. Jim James from My Morning Jacket has contributed some of his talent to July Flame, you may also like to know that the album is named after a peach....
It may be one of those unfortunate titles which sneaky people could twist and apply to the band themselves. No Hope No Future will try to capitalise on the success of the band's 2007 début Think Before You Speak, and by "success", we mean number 65 in the British album chart. That puts it somewhere in the region of Mr. Blobby Covers Nickelback and James Blunt: Guantánamo Edition. Still, it could be worse, they could be dead...
As far as super-groups go The Company Band are nothing spectacular, their début E.P Sign Here, Here and Here faded from the limelight within minutes of its release back in 2007 due to its supreme lack of goodness. They were never going to be anything special when you consider the musicians that make up this particular 'supergroup' are Clutch front-man Neil Fallon, Fireball Ministry front-man James Rota, CKY drummer Jess Margera, Guitarist Dave Bone and Fu Manchu bassist Brad Davis.
It's not often that we get to announce a release all the way from Chile and unfortunately we're not that psyched about this release anyway. Being the first record from this side of the millennia to paddle across the Atlantic and earn some exposure in Britain just so happens to be a Grunge Metal album by a bunch of exaggerated, uninspired and rather lost makeup artists.
NYC based Isles focus their talent on creating some of the most pleasant Indie Pop that we've heard since Vampire Weekend stormed the globe. With a completely new sound and armed to the teeth with catchy, melodic tunes we can see this three piece collective reviving the city of New York as the prestigious centre of excellence after its title was cruelly snatched away by Swindon.
Pit Er Pat have released an abundance of alternative records since their début in 2004 all of which have received favourable reviews from the majority of music publications. After catching them at last year's ATP festival we've decided to keep a close eye on their material, we'll certainly be giving The Flexible Entertainer a thorough listen. Honestly, there could be finger-tapping.
Another band launched via MySpace, Exile Parade start their tale way back in the forgotten year of 2007. Having formed the year before, they chose this year to upload their demo tracks to their MySpace account. From this we can only conclude that A&R guys really like working from home, trawling through band profiles all day long. How they make it through all the awful metal-core is a source of great amusement to us all.
Farmer Dave Scher has always managed to bring daylight to the darkest of places, his melodramatic pop songs create a relaxed atmosphere which will accommodate for any mood. He has been busy working with a range of respectable bands over the past few years and has finally found time to release a record that will certainly be one of the ones to pick up from this week's releases.
Stephin Merritt loves concept albums. Tell him to write twelve songs with zero interconnectivity, we're fairly sure that he would detonate his C4 coated jacket. The central idea behind Realism is to make an album devoid of mains power supply. Yes, we're aware that essentially that makes this effort just your average acoustic album, but we're not going to tell him that. Besides, if anyone can bring new life to the somewhat staid concept, Merritt can.
There's a band called Hadoken who we always like to tease people with, like by saying "my turn to pick the next album in this inescapable car journey. I know, let's have some Hadoken." The fact that four people simultaneously leapt to their deaths having removed themselves from a moving car at 75mph should tell you that you really need child locks when you try that one, and that death is preferably to having to listen to an actual Hadouken! album.
An E.P by the name of 'Drunken Trees' has been bandied about alongside First Aid Kit since their inception three years ago. The Swedish folk duo comprising siblings Klara and Johanna Söderberg now have a real album, actual and whole ready for your approval. Since they began their life on the label operated by much-loved European dignitaries The Knife, you can pretty much throw the word "unappealing" out of the window.
Fool’s Gold is an Afro-pop band which formed in Los Angeles in 2006. The band rotates around Luke Top (real name Nativ Top) and Lewis Pesacov and also enlists friends and colleagues that include members of bands Foreign Born and Glasser, former members of We Are Scientists, The Fall and a variety of visual artists. Their major influences include South African, Ethiopian and Eritrean music,
Essentially Supergrass without the benefit of royalty payments, Hot Rats takes Gaz Coombes and Danny Goffey from the aforementioned band and sets them up against a myriad of cover version. So far the duo have recorded tracks originally written by Beatles, Kinks, Doors, Beastie Boys, Gang of Four, Pink Floyd, Sex Pistols, Roxy Music. Essentially every song your average pub covers band is expected to play then.
Basia Bulat is a Canadian pop music singer-songwriter. Based in London, Ontario, she released an independent E.P in 2005. She subsequently signed to Rough Trade Records, which released her first full-length album, Oh, My Darling in April 2007. The album was later released in Canada by Hayden's Hardwood Records. Her album Oh, My Darling made the short list for the 2008 Polaris Music Prize.