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For Your Ears: My Top 10 favorite tracks from Tegan and Sara’s discography

15 Mar

Although Tegan and Sara have surpassed a decade in their career as working musicians, things are starting to take off for the two.

But though they’ve toured with the likes of Neil Young, Death Cab for Cutie, The Killers, Weezer and Paramore, their upcoming tour with fun. might skyrocket them into an arena that they’ve been working towards since they first started out. Well, there’s that, and the fact that their latest single, “Closer,” was covered on last night’s episode of Glee, the same hit TV series that helped make fun.’s second album, Some Nights, a breakthrough album.

Right now, the twins are on tour support of their newest album, Heartthrob, and I was lucky enough to score tickets. So, what better way to celebrate than to compile a list of my favorite Tegan and Sara songs?

10. I’m Not Your Hero (Heartthrob)
I’ve only had this track to listen to since January, but it has already become one of my favorite songs of theirs. I love the optimism of the second verse, when Sara says, “Learning all I know now/losing all I did/I never used to feel like I’d be standing so far ahead.” Though I’ve always loved the darkness and uncertainty that can sometimes come from the twins, this is truly a breath of fresh air, and a reminder that sometimes you just have to live in the light and enjoy life.

9. Living Room (If It Was You)
“Living Room” has a voyeuristic feel to it that will always remind me of photographers who photograph other tenants from their apartment window. It’s easy to close your eyes and imagine having an all-access view into the apartment of someone you desire. Is it creepy? Maybe a little bit. But it’s human, and it’s also an old track. Either way, there’s something endearing about it.

8. Feel It In My Bones (feat. Tegan and Sara, from Tiesto’s Kaleidoscope)
This track was the first time, to my knowledge, that most people heard Tegan and Sara dapple in electro/dance/house music. It was a breath of fresh air, and a reminder that the best dance tracks often feature artists with unique and unsuspecting voices.

7. Dark Come Soon (The Con)
I’ve always said that if you can understand and relate to The Con in a personal way, you’re in a dark place. This song only reiterates that. It’s different for everyone, but in the end, we all just need a little darkness to wallow in our sorrows.

6. On Directing (Sainthood)
This song is so sexy. Sainthood was pretty sexy, but this track has always knocked me on my back. Musically, it’s equivalent to the feeling you get when you meet someone who just steals you away. But this song is coy, it’s unsuspecting, and it leaves the listener with a lot of questions. Perhaps its mystery is what keeps bringing me back. That, or it reminds me so much of myself.

5. Nineteen (Get Along)
I fell in love with an acoustic version of Nineteen that Tegan and Sara did in Paris before a show. Unfortunately, it was an mp3 that had been ripped from a video, so I could never quite hear it. That, and Tegan accidentally repeated the first verse twice. Good thing they played it acoustic in their DVD, because this one is a keeper.

4. Someday (Sainthood)
This will forever feel like an anthem for anyone who feels like they’ve been put down. It’s so easy for the world to tell you no, when your heart and soul tell you yes. Luckily, Tegan and Sara face their  fair share of hardships and know that even when things get good, someone will still need their encouragement. That’s why one of my favorite lines they’ve ever written will always be, “Mark my words, I might be something some day.”

3. I Won’t Be Left (So Jealous)
Relationships can be frightening, for one or both partners. Sometimes you just need that verbal reminder that running away from your problems won’t solve a damn thing.

2. Burn Your Life Down (The Con)
I’d heard this song so many times, but it wasn’t until I was going through some really terrible shit that I came to appreciate it. I don’t know how, or why. But something about hearing Sara’s voice saying, “Keep on fighting to remember that nothing is lost in the end,” really just kept me grounded and made me struggle through it.

1. Night Watch (Sainthood)
When I heard this song, the push and pull of the layered instruments really messed with my head. It was heartbreaking, truthful, self-deprecating and firm at the same time. Sometimes, doing what’s right isn’t easy, and doing what’s easy isn’t right. Needless to say, Sainthood was a work of art that Tegan and Sara labored over, and the picture that the music paints deserves to be hanging next to the damn Mona Lisa.

I hope you enjoy this list of songs I’ve compiled, but I’ve got a letter to write and a concert to get to.

Brand New writing new, “happier” album

26 Apr

According to PupFresh, emo-kings Brand New are working on writing a new album.

The Long Island-based band gained popularity after their successful sophomore album, Deja Entendu, was released in 2003.

Now, following the highly successful The Devil And God Are Raging Inside Me and latest effort, Daisy, the band have confirmed they will be writing something new.

Although many fans were speculating that the band had run its course, lead singer/guitarist Jesse Lacey confirmed they would continue making music at tonight’s Baltimore show, according to AbsolutePunk.

“We’re writing, it’s just hard to figure out what to write about.” said Lacey. “We don’t wanna keep bumming you guys out. We’re trying to write something happy.”

The band have not released any more details yet, but have scheduled shows the next four days.

April 27 – Philadelphia, PA @ Electric Factory
April 28 – Allentown, PA @ Crocodile Rock Cafe
April 29 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Club Zoo
April 30 – Grantham, PA @ Brubaker Auditorium, Messiah College

Stay tuned for more updates. Additional information can be found on Brand New’s Official Website.

Upcoming: Record Store Day

14 Apr

Record Store Day 2011 has been set for this coming Saturday, April 16.

The “holiday”, which was started in 2007 by Chris Brown, was an idea conceived to breathe life into long-struggling independent music stores across the country.

Brown, along with founders Eric Levin, Michael Kurtz, Carrie Colliton, Amy Dorfman, Don Van Cleave and Brian Poehner jump-started the concept to try an save independent music stores that have become hidden gems in a country that has been over-taken by retail chains such as Best Buy, Borders and Hastings. The idea became a reality in 2008 when the first official Record Store Day was jump-started by Metallica in San Francisco.

Now the holiday, which is celebrated on the third Saturday of every April, has come to be more like the Black Friday for music fans and has spread globally.

The best part of the day has become the ever-growing list of special releases that come out by the industry’s most celebrated bands. Many releases are rare or unreleased tracks, special editions of previous releases or limited edition deals. Additionally, many bands and stores have turned the day into an event with live music, giveaways and special deals for those who come out to support their local shops.

As an avid fan and supporter of the message and idea behind the day, I urge everyone to go to their local shop this coming Saturday. The list of releases is one of the best I’ve seen yet, and I will never turn down an opportunity to support shops that have done so much for the industry.

For more information on Record Store Day, where shops are located in your city, as well as special videos, merch and news, visit the official website. You can also follow Record Store Day on Twitter, as well as ‘Like’ them on Facebook for year-round information from the organization.

Tell everyone you know and take a friend, but most importantly, get out and buy a record or two from your favorite local shops. Whether you buy a used CD, a brand new vinyl or one of the many RSD-special releases, I can promise you that your ears and the shop will thank you.

Upcoming: Bright Eyes, Live from SXSW

15 Mar

I’ll be doing an interactive Cover It Live event from the Bright Eyes show at SXSW on Saturday at 7:30 PM (CST).

You can tune in here to join in the discussion, or use your Twitter account to add to the discussion by using the hashtags: #brighteyes, #brighteyessxsw or #besxsw. Also, make sure you’re following me on Twitter for more in-depth SXSW Coverage!

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