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Honorable mentions, Compilations, Reissues and Ep's of 2013

As promised, here is my list of favorite records that barely missed the cut, compilations, reissues and ep's. I hope that you find some things on here that are to your liking.

Happy New Year!

Honorable Mentions

1) Bill Callahan- Dream River
2) Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears- Electric Slave

3) Day Ravies- Tussle
4) Jeffrey Novak- Lemon Kid
5) Magik Markers- Surrender to the Fantasy
6) Sebadoh- Defend Yourself
7) Steve Gunn- Time Off
8) The Liminanas- Costa Blanca
9) No Joy- Wait to Pleasure
10) Mike Donovan- Wot
11) The Shivas- Whiteout
12) Dirty Beaches- Drifter/Love is the Devil
13) Retribution Gospel Choir- 3
14) Follakzoid- II
15) Charlie Megira and the Modern Dance Club- Love Police
16) The Spyrals- Out of Sight
17) Mdou-Moctar- Afelan
18) Kurt Vile- Wakin' On a Pretty Daze
19) Julian Lynch- Lines
20) Girls Names- The New Life
21) Ghostface Killah- 12 Reasons to Die
23) Tape Deck Mountain- Sway
24) Akron Family- Sub Verses
25) Pond- Hobo Rocket

Compilations

1) Enjoy the…

Favorite Albums of 2013

It's once again that time of year where I listen solely to records that I have bought or downloaded that were released in 2013. This year, it was going to be different. I already had been working on a list several months ago, and I had planned to have most of my post written a couple months before the year-end lists from magazines and music blogs were posted on the internet. By doing this, I could look through the other year-end lists to see if there were any records that slipped below my radar, and that warranted a spot on my list.

Sadly, the universe had other plans for me. Starting in late September, I started to experience neck and back pain which didn't get better for 2-3 weeks. Then, I got a terrible cold that lasted over a month, leading into a period of fatigue that left me with no energy to do much of anything. Needless to say, my brain could barely function at the level necessary to do my job,  let alone to write reviews of my favorite albums of 2013. After late Oct…

Blood Curdling Sounds of the Night

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The Halloween edition of the I Hear a New World Podcast is available to listen to here, and to listen/download at http://ihearanewworld.podomatic.com.

Last night, while working diligently at finishing this mix before the weekend was over, I found myself struggling with the reality that I couldn't make this year's mix be everything to all people.    When my girlfriend inquired as to how things were going, I told her that I was having difficulties with trying to round it out with songs that were less scary and more suitable for a general audience. She smiled and said "I bet there are some people out there who would really appreciate a scary Halloween mix".  Thankfully,  my girlfriend was able to steer me in the right direction with her infinite wisdom.

From here, all the pieces started to gradually fall into place.  I worked on narrowing the amount of songs from over forty to around twenty, and I finished putting the intro together this morning. On previous mixes, I h…

MusicFest NW 2013- Recap- Fri-Sat-Sun

With the Halloween season creeping up on me once again, I will be presenting a more concise overview of my last three nights of Music Fest NW 201 to focus my energy on compiling a new Halloween mix over the next week. My hope is to have this year's mix posted within a week of Halloween so that everyone will have a sufficient amount of time to enjoy it.

Friday

La Luz- 9:00

Since I had already seen Mt. Eerie with Bonnie Prince Billy on Thursday, La Luz was definitely the best choice for the 9:00 time slot. I heard a few songs from their Damp Face ep that was released last year, and I was completely sold on their twisted surf noir sound that seemed to draw from influences as diverse as  Brenda Lee, David Lynch and The Ventures. After arriving at Dante's, the band started promptly at 9:00, and proceeded to deliver a fantastic set filled with seductive ballads, surf instrumentals and garage rock rave-ups. Their set was concise at 35 minutes, but filled with enough memorable moments …

MusicFest NW 2013- Recap- Wed- Thurs

Ideally this post would have been up shortly after Music Fest NW was over, but I have been fighting a cold for almost a month now. Due to this, I will be providing a much shorter breakdown of the shows to allow time for a new podcast and some new Halloween-themed posts.

Wednesday

Eyelids-8:00

I decided to check out Eyelids at the Doug Fir Lounge, but due to a late start and a difficulty with finding a parking space, I arrived in the middle of their set. My initial feeling was that they were an adequate rock band who was lacking a strong, engaging stage presence. The highlight of their set was when they brought out a special guest to sing lead on a cover version of the Gun Club classic "Sex Beat".

Lonnie Holley- 9:30

I arrived at the Crystal Ballroom about 15 minutes prior to Lonnie Holley's performance, and it already felt like a sweat box despite the fact that it wasn't even close to capacity. I think that I had fairly high expectations for his performance because of v…

MusicFest NW 2013 Recap- Tuesday

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In my last post I had alluded to a forthcoming post detailing my experiences at MusicFest NW. While I would have liked to get this post up sooner, time and energy have not been on my side this past week. In fact, it's even an understatement to say that my experience at Music Fest was a whirlwind. After spending hours strategizing about which bands to see, planning travel time between the venues and speculating the  average waiting times for specific acts, I was finally ready to brave the streets of Portland for a fun-filled week of musical adventures.  Nevertheless, I restlessly tossed and turned the night prior to Music Fest, leaving me to start out the first night of Music Fest with much less energy than I had planned.  I wasn't going to let this stop me though. There was music to see, and even if I was starting out with an energy deficit, I was bound and determined to make the best of it.  Armed with only my wits, and my handy Music Fest NW 2013 app, I was ready to hit the…

Music Fest NW 2013 Guide

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Every year around the first week of September, thousands of fanatic music lovers hit the streets of Portland, anxiously scanning their Music Fest schedules to determine how to see the best cross-section of bands in a finite period of time. While Music Fest NW started out as a relatively small event featuring mostly local bands and a few assorted venues, it has radically expanded into a six day extravaganza showcased at practically every venue in Portland covering musicians from all over the country.

This year, I was fortunate enough to win a free pass to Music Fest NW, thus allowing me the ability to cover the event in full on Eclectic Grooves. Considering the abundant scope of this event, I figured that I would provide a schedule of my picks for Music Fest NW to the readers who plan on attending it this year.

The following is my suggested itinerary to get the most out of this year's festival. Those of you who dig the music regularly posted on Eclectic Grooves will likely agree …

Summertime Rolls On By

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Before the last vestiges of summer slip through my fingers, I wanted to share this incredibly catchy tune from  Jacuzzi Boys' soon to be released S/T record called "Domino Moon". Had I heard it prior to compiling this year's summer mix, there is no doubt that it would have been featured prominently in the mix.  "Domino Moon" is a perfect little slice of energetic garage pop that lodges itself into your brain matter, and doesn't let go.  I simply can't get this song out of my head, and I don't think that you will be able to either.

For those of you who are interested in buying the new record, it will be released on Hardly Art on 9/10. 

Jacuzzi Boys- Domino Moon


The Fall of Google Reader and the Rise of Braen's Machine

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On July 1st of this year, Google had decided to suspend it's Google Reader service after 8 years due to a ongoing decline in usage, and most likely because they wanted to focus their energy on new services like Google Plus.  Even though I knew that Google Reader was slowly coming to its demise, I still neglected to let my readers know to transfer to another service before this happened. While I didn't notice a drop in subscribers until two weeks after the official shut-down date, it was fairly clear that most of my subscribers used Google Reader as the number of subscribers had dropped from 890 to 180. The reason I bring this up is that the future of Feedburner is clearly hanging in the balance, and it is difficult to ascertain how long it will remain active.  For those of you who would like to know when the blog has been updated, I suggest that you do one of the following things:

1) Follow my blog by clicking on the "Join this Site" button at the top left corner of…

Cambodian Grooves

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Recently, I checked out the latest full-length movie from Portland filmmaker James Westby entitled Rid of Me. While I had been trepidatious about wasting my time on seeing a movie with Storm Large (kitschy lounge singer from Portland) in it,  I have to say that it was well worth it for the music alone. I'm not going to go into a synopsis of the movie because there are other avenues like Metacritic or IMDB at your disposal if you so desire to go down that road. The reason I am posting today is to let you know about these two fantastic tracks by Ros Sereysothea that are featured at the end of the film.

For the esoteric music aficionados out there, you may recall these tracks being featured on the long out-of-print classiccompilation Cambodian Rocks.  The first track entitled "Chnam Un Dop-Pram Muy", translated to "I'm 16" in English,  was a perfect song to show the transformation that the main character Maris was undergoing after dealing with an unexpected t…

Summer Mix 2013

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As the Breeders so aptly stated on their infectious slice of summer jam “Saints”, “Summer is ready when you are”.While I’ve been ready for summer since it ended last year, I wasn’t quite expecting the sudden onslaught of heat that the Portland area received at the beginning of July. But once the days started to stretch longer and the warm air was hitting my skin, I became inspired to create a new soundtrack for my summer days. Since summer weather in Portland doesn't typically start until around the first of July, I started to compile my summer playlist at this point. Over the past few days, I have managed to narrow my selection down to an eclectic mix of songs spanning genres as diverse as funk, jazz, rap, soul, gospel and rock that clock in at just over an hour.
So fire up the barbecue, bask in the afternoon sunlight and don't hesitate to dive right into this year's summer mix!
Summer Mix 2013
1) New Dawn- There's a New Dawn 2) The Pastel Six- Twitchin' 3) Sic A…

Choice Cuts Vol.6

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It's been awhile since the last Choice Cuts was posted, but I wanted to get some music up here since the last post was primarily meant to spread awareness about my partner's health problems. Happy 4th of July to everyone! Be on the lookout for Summer Mix 2013 in the next week or so.

It is once again time for me to reach back in the refrigerator for some "choice cuts". Each time, I will be featuring sizzling and succulent morsels that are grabbing my ear right now that range from funk to country, from afro-beat to garage rock, etc. Sometimes there will be a theme to these songs that ties them all together in a nice bow, but other times the songs featured will just be a musical hodgepodge of eclectic delights. Without further ado, lets see what "choice cuts" the vinyl butcher has prepared for us today.


Blossom Toes- Peace Loving Man From: If Only For a Moment [1967, Marmalade]












When first hearing the name of the band and the overtly positive song title, …

The Uncertainty of Life

I know it's been a while since I've posted, but over the past few months life has thrown some high speed curve balls at my girlfriend and I that have required my complete attention. In fact, the material in this post has been on the back burner for a couple months, coming to fruition only after the thoughts have had ample time to gestate in my mind.  You may be asking yourself, what kind of content would be in a post with the title "The Uncertainty of Life"?  I assure you that right now I am fit as a fiddle, so I am definitely not here to retire the blog in any way, shape or form. Instead, I wanted to share my situation with you all to let you know what's been going on. While I don't normally open myself up to be scrutinized by the public, I figured it was high time that I explain to you all what has been going on in my life during the past 3 years.

My girlfriend of over 10 years had first started experiencing the onset of severe digestive problems back in t…

I Hear a New World Vol.20- Trippin' Through Your Mind

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The latest edition of I Hear a New World is available to listen to here, and to listen\download at http://ihearanewworld.podomatic.com/.

As usual, this episode of I Hear a New World has been brewing in my head for quite awhile. What started out as a simple idea has expanded into a complex project that has dominated many of my days and nights over the last couple months. Regular visitors may recall that I did a podcast featuring a hodgepodge of psychedelic funk back in 2008. While this one has smatterings of funk, it's sole purpose is to take the listener on a guided trip through the mind of someone tripping on LSD, regardless of the style of music. It is the result of countless hours of listening to many different shades of psychedelic music from all over the world, weeding them out one by one and finally tweaking the flow of the mix until it sounded perfect to my ears.

In keeping with the continuity, I have opted to record this as a single mix with no interruptions relaying th…

I Hear a New World Vol.19

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The latest edition of I Hear a New World is available to listen to here, and to listen\download at http://ihearanewworld.podomatic.com/.

On this edition of I Hear a New World, I have deviated from the usual Stacks of Wax format to make way for some of the newer records that I have been listening to lately. My girlfriend and I have been operating with a single income for a couple years now since she was diagnosed with a systemic digestive disorder that has rendered her unable to work at all.  Since times have been hard, I haven't been able to purchase enough new vinyl to keep the podcasts interesting. Until there is a shift in my financial situation, I will be doing podcasts from albums that I have on my hard drive.

For those of you who would like to help, please consider making a small donation to my Paypal page from http://www.podomatic.com/podcast/.  Every dollar earned from this will go straight into buying records that will be played on future podcasts, purchasing equipmen…