Hi there. Sorry about the missing blog. I let my url drop - some Yahoo!/Dotster confusion. We seem to be good now. And life has been - well, hectic. (More on that later.) Also, more and more of this kind of activity has transferred to Facebook and Twitter. But, I do love my blog. My true journal. It feels more like a personal space than anything out there. I think I'll start blogging more. I've missed it.
Plus - it is almost PUMPKIN time!!
Let's start off with yet another music story. I'm currently listening to Red Hot Chili Pepper's Blood Sugar Sex Magik (one of my albums that will forever be 1991 for me.) It made me think: what are going to be some of my albums of 2011? (I know we still have a good 17% of the year to go - so we'll do a "so far" on this post.) I mainly want to do this now because 2 of the top ones are acts we've seen recently that I have yet to blog, so let's get the Top 3 done.
1. Sign No More - Mumford and Sons
OK, I know it seems silly to have an album from 2010 (2009 in the UK) as the number one album - but damn this album is so freaking good. Mumford was on our radar (thanks to the always great "Iron and Wine" Pandora station.) But, we didn't hardcore listen to it until we started prep for the Railroad Revival Tour earlier this year. This album is one of my favorites of all-time - every single bit of it is good, original and deeply unique. I find albums easier to rank than performances - but their performance was up there as one of the best of our music run this year, as well. They just pour energy off the stage and into the audience. It is quite lovely. Did you see them on Austin City Limits? Watch below:
2. The Head and The Heart - The Head and The Heart
Shout out to Khaia (how nice is it to have adventures in Switzerland over LinkedIn for a link...) for making sure we paid attention to this group. We bought the tickets to see them before we actually ever heard them, because they were opening for Iron and Wine. (I love when this happens - we had this happen with Ingrid Michaelson as well; she was main act for an opener we bought.) This album is also wonderful from beginning to end. Three lovely singers - I'm noticing that I'm really into bands that while having a "front man singer," they actually have multiple leads take on the singing in various songs. Charity Rose Thielen has a magic voice - like Norah Jones power and emotion. But rather than having her kick ass throughout - they just give us a spoonful of that honey - and it is pitch-perfect. We had the pleasure of getting to take Sam to see them during a gorgeous sunset in the midst of Treasure Island Music Festival.
Definitely the kind of music that deserves grass under your feet, blue skies over your head and sunshine and ocean breeze throughout the experience.
3. Never Trust a Happy Song - Grouplove
Like the previous two, this is yet another debut album. Also, Grouplove is a band that we bought tickets for before we knew them. Actually, we bought tickets before they were even announced as part of the Outside Lands line-up. They were one of the OL highlights for us ... and for SPIN magazine for OL plus for SXSW and Lollapalooza. The album is a get-up and dance sort of album - the songs have some pop, but depth. However, to see Grouplove live is to love Grouplove. We were fortunate to see them in a small venue (Bimbo's 365) this week. The intimacy between the band, especially Hannah and Christian is touching and authentic. They produce the sort of set that allows you to get lost in all they do, especially when you have such a close view:
Since these are debut albums, I'm excited about many years of beautiful follow-up music. Thanks for the touring guys - now get back to the studio!