Every Friday, Dusted Magazine publishes a series of music-related lists compiled by our favorite artists. This week: Beirut and Meneguar.
Listed: Beirut + Meneguar
Zach Condon was only 19 years old when he recorded most of his debut record, Gulag Orkestar, from his New Mexico bedroom. Now a Brooklynite (like so, so many Listed participants), Condon found a trusty label (Ba Da Bing), and some new friends (Jeremy Barnes of Neutral Milk Hotel) to help put the finishing touches on the record. Condon has a voice like melodramatic mainstays Rufus Wainright and Stephin Merit, but his melodies and percussive arrangements are of clear Middle Eastern influence. Much has been blogged about the young Condon, but few have actually seen him play - perhaps this will all change soon enough.
1. The Panorama sandwich from Ridgewood diner in Bushwick, New York
Who would have known pickles could do such justice to a sandwich? I think I'm starting to get the hang of the east coast diet, what with the bacon egg cheese and deli sandwiches and all. I hope I'm doing the Jersey bloodline of my family justice when I attempt to conquer the Philly cheese steak next.
Can't get enough of Caetano Veloso's voice. And the Tropicalia collective's music is the reason I attempted to speak Portuguese in the first place. I'm skeptical that there's a better language out there to sing with.
You'd think people were joking if they said this was their favorite instrument, but there's a reason for playing these things that somehow transcends the miniature guitar aspect of them. Besides, the Portuguese invented the damn thing, and what have they done wrong yet?
Perhaps it was just good timing, but I've always loved dance music, and after living in a grumpy polish apartment complex where I get an eviction notice every time I hum a tune in the shower, hearing this Cd on a loud and booming stereo system on my way to Austin to play SXSW was practically a religious experience. The jury is still out on how good this album can actually be when played in calm and quiet quarters.
5.Gypsy brass bands
The most beautiful music in the world ever derived from marauding Turkish marching bands led by sultans who sleep on silk ottoman sheets. The hair on my neck is standing on end just thinking of the Kocani Orkestar.
Some people had Cypress Hill to look up to in high school. I'm too damn young to understand that kind of stuff. All I ever got in highs chool was the weird college music that my brother would bring back from New York. I blame him for my inability to keep up with the karaoke circuit of pop music from the eighties and nineties. So until they put the king of carrot flowers or Olivia Tremor Control into circulation for karaoke night, I'll never get a date.
Do bartenders have homes? Do I really look like I'm from New Castle Delaware? Does Delaware really exist? Why does my fake ID only work in New York?
I may push my teeth an inch further into my mouth every time I play the thing, but I still find that there's no other instrument that has the same psychotic, beautiful drunken effect that the trumpet has in music. Loud. Exciting. Perfect.
These good ol' boys can express more emotion in a song than any amount of screaming, whispering, lisping, or malisma could ever hope to do.
The most haunting and beautiful song I can imagine. But I have yet to track down the original version I heard in Europe. I do know that Goran Bregovic did an incredible injustice to it in the movie "time of the gypsies". He threw on some incredibly tacky synthesizers and the saddest part about it is the fact that its the most readily available version of that song. Boban Markovic Orkestar does a pretty good rendition at the Guca festival. Dommage....
Jeremy Earl, Christian Deroeck, Jarvis Taveniere and Justin Wertz comprise Meneguar (pronounced with Meh-NEG-gwar), one of the finest bands in the New York metropolitan area. The foursome formed in 2004 and quickly became one of the finest purveyors of '90s culture. Don't take that the wrong way, we're not talking VH1 schlock. Meneguar sound straight off a 1991 WXYC playlist, like Superchunk when they were pissed. I Was Born At Night is one of the better unknown albums (relatively speaking), coming out and selling out on Magic Bullet Records. "House of Cats" is the lynchpin to the early-'90s indie-rock revival.
Check them out this Sunday, May 7th, at UnionDocs (322 Union Ave) in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Show begins at 3 p.m. and includes Ex-Models and Mecca Normal. For more info, check out www.uniondocs.org.
Christian and Jarvis took part in this week's Listed.
Jarvis top 5
1. Can - Soundtracks
This album did for my record collection what those "greatest magic tricks revealed" shows do for magicians. This is the record I get people for christmas.
2. Zombies - Odessey and Oracle
After a bunch of singles failed to top the charts(or chart at all) the Zombies split up and released this LP. I think it's the most perfect pop record ever. Poor guys.
3. Death Vessel - Stay Close
The older I get the less frequently an album comes along and really gets me like this one did.
4. Nation of Ulysses - Plays Pretty for Baby
This record brought me to an adolescent feakout in a way only rivaled by the misfits. I own this record on every format.
5. Bill Fay - S/T & Time of the Last Persecution
Oh, how I love the underdog. These records are absolutely terrific. It might take a listen or two to get over orchestration and sax solos("We Want You to Stay") of the self titled record, but the songs are wonderful. The songs are just as good on Last Persecution, but way striped down compared to the first record. PS- Ray Russell's guitar playing is totally killer all over Last Persecution.
runners up: Mission of Burma(almost everything), The Fall
Christian's top 5
1. Silkworm - Libertine
One of the most underrated bands of the last 20 years. Libertine is the last record they made with Joel Phelps, and his songs add another dimension that i always missed on Silkworm's later records. just a brilliant, one-of-a-kind record by the world's most slept-on band.
2. Gene Clark - No Other
Some of the most heartbreaking music I have ever heard. Gene just sings his fucking heart out on this record, and the depth of emotion is staggering...my words can't even come close to doing this record justice. I need to go back in time and hug the shit out of this man.
3. Teenage Fanclub - Bandwagonesque
Back in 8th grade, while all my buddies were jamming "Territorial Pissings," I filled a 90 minute tape with "the Concept," "Star Sign" and "Alcoholiday" on repeat, and just fucking swooned. Bandwagonesque has been the soundtrack to every crush I've ever had. perfectly crafted pop songs overflowing with harmony, feedback and nostalgia.
4. The Handsome Family - Twilight
Everything about this record is perfect. the stark, bare trees on the cover, the almost too-clean production...it all serves to enhance the eerie, melancholy genius of the songs. Rennie sparks writes some of the best lyrics around, hearing them in brett's booming baritone is absolutely terrifying.
5. Gillian Welch - Time (the Revelator)
Lying under a coffee table listening to "I Dream Highway" is as close as I've ever come to spiritual enlightenment.
By Dusted Magazine