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unplugged

27 Apr

Today’s Indie: Never Let Me Go / Florence + the Machine [MTV Unplugged, 2012]

Hearing an old song stripped down can quietly breathe new life into it. I look forward to Neil Young’s acoustic-only Bridge School Benefit concert every year in part for the opportunity to hear such a variety of artists from an entirely new angle, from Arcade Fire to the Billy Idol to Nine Inch Nails. MTV has kept a shred its integrity by alloting a slice of airtime between Jersey Shore and 16 and Pregnant to continue the tradition of its Unplugged series, and they just released a great piece with Florence + The Machine. The whole thing is worth savoring. While I love the theatrics in the original versions of these songs, there are so many subtitles to catch in this performance. That voice, that voice.

Oh – and if you haven’t seen the crying baby get cheered up by Florence’s Dog Days on YouTube yet, you are welcome. Happy Friday folks. #indie/tory

slow machine

7 Mar

It can be hard to keep track of seasons in San Francisco, where we often have summer in winter and winter in summer, but the calendar tells me it is just about spring. Festival season is right around the corner, and I can feel it in the air. Receiving this little delivery was just a bit like Christmas morning…

Today’s Indie: Shake it Out (acoustic) / Florence + the Machine

Florence + the Machine: Shake-It-Out-Acoustic

’cause I like to keep my issues strong / it’s always darkest before the dawn’

Speaking of Coachella, Florence + the Machine is one of the acts I am most highly anticipating. Here is a serving of indie chicken soup for the soul/ears from her: an acoustic take on Shake it Out that warms you from the inside out. I came across this yesterday afternoon and it cheered me right up from a dreary afternoon of Excel Pivot tables, instantly taking me somewhere else entirely. Silence is cut by Florence’s strong voice going solo, and when the guitar folds in, I literarily get chills – actual goosebumps. Things build beautifully from there. This video is a nice accompaniment, and definitely adds to the mesmerizing effect this take on the song can have. Enjoy. #indie

Today’s Untz: Slow / MRTN (Final DJs remix)

‘just try and stay calm / baby take it slow’

Nothing about this song makes me want to take it slow, and about ten seconds in on my first listen I knew I wanted to share it. This is the second track that has caught my attention from German duo Final DJs, who are awesome enough to thank just about every person that comments on their SoundClouds. Nice and talented, I dig it. #untz

turn down the love

18 Nov

I am heading down to Monterey for the weekend to run the Big Sur half on Sunday morning, and have been spending the end of the week gathering all my best untz and flashiest indie pop to make an epic playlist to get me through the 13.1. Definitely not a purist who believes running should be silently focused on concentration and meditation… since the whole thing will be OVER by 9:30am, dishing out the loud stuff that keeps my feet off the ground.

Today’s Emo: You Got the Love / the xx (Florence + the Machine cover)

‘sooner or later in life, the things you love you lose / but you’ve got the love I need to see me through’

While my need for new Florence + the Machine has been satiated with the release of Ceremonials, the lack of any new xx has me revisiting old favorites. Florence’s signature harp cut with the Romy and Oliver’s soft yet smoldering vocals and tossed with playful beats is the perfect soundtrack to start your Friday. After all this time it still falls fresh on my ears… but hurry up guys. #emo

Today’s Untz: Turn it Down / Kaskade (Le Castle Vania remix)

‘look before you make your beat loud / can you turn it down’

There is nothing about this song that makes me want to turn it down–it is exactly the kind of sound that will be fueling me through Sunday. Everyone has been talking about how great Kaskade’s new album is and I can’t help but hop on the bandwagon. While I love her, it is refreshing to hear one of Kaskade’s tracks laced with vocals from someone other than Haley, and Le Castle Vania spins a nice little number on the whole thing. The release of Fire and Ice makes me thankful once again that Ryan Raddon forfeited Mormonism for the church of #untz

so shake it

19 Sep

Epic weekend. Epic tunes. Short post.

Today’s Emo: Shake it Out / Florence + the Machine

‘but I like to keep some things to myself / I like to keep my issues strong / it’s always darkest before the dawn’

There’s my girl. Florence Welch is back after a shaky start with the release of What the Water Gave Me. This lead single from Halloween’s upcoming album, Ceremonials, is the stirring, magical, wake me up sound I expect from Florence + the Machine.

Perhaps it is a bit cliche to utilize the “it’s always darkest before dawn” adage, but it fits right into a track about choosing to finally shake off your demons, face the night, and move on into the morning. I know, I know… #emo

Today’s Untz: Feel So Close / Calvin Harris

Feel So Close / Calvin Harris

‘and there’s no stopping us right now’

The softer side of untz… it is really hard not to like this song. Calvin Harris needs no introduction, and his track is happiness, movement and cuddle inducing. Pleased to have. #untz

turn on the water

26 Aug

This week and the month of August flew by. Summer should be arriving in San Francisco shortly.

Today’s Emo: What the Water Gave Me / Florence + the Machine

What the Water Gave Me / Florence + the Machine

‘so lay me down / let the only sound / be the overflow’

Oh great expectations! My hot anticipation for Florence + the Machine’s follow up to Lungs simmered a bit with this week’s release of her first single, What the Water Gave Me. Things start slow and sprawling, to the point where on first listen I felt I had stumbled upon a miscategorized Sarah McLachlan song, and never fully build into something whole. I keep waiting for a kick to stir me up like Dog Days, or something hauntingly/awakening like Cosmic Love. And waiting. And waiting.

Instead, just left with Florence’s beautiful signature vocals and harp, and an interesting, almost tribal sound. Still worth a share, a listen, and another. And quieter anticipation and hope for more umph with November 7’s release. #emo

Today’s Untz: Turn Me On / David Guetta ft. Nicki Minaj

‘come on and turn me on / I’m too young to die’

I got my hands on the new Guetta album and I have to say a lot of it is pretty emo-y for dance. I know he likes to take it Nice and Slow, but who knew Usher was such a softie? Nicki’s steamy Turn Me On is one of the few tracks that is really getting me going the way I expect Guetta to get me going.

With all the auto-tuning you can barely trace this the vocals back to Ms. Minaj (is that you, Gaga?) except for her little signature rap break, and as my friend Derek who tossed me the album put it, Guetta probably could have done better with the likes of a Kelly Rowland who can actually carry a natural tune. I still am loving the sound… turned on for the weekend. #untz