Best Live Shows of 2011

2011 was packed with some amazing shows and great discoveries and one of the best yet! I am looking forward to the music of 2012 and attending new locales. What were your favorite live shows of the year?

10 :: Deadmau5 @ Outside Lands Music Festival – San Francisco CA

9 :: Phosphorescent @ Tractor Tavern – Seattle WA

8 :: Explosions in the Sky @ The Crocodile – Seattle WA

7 :: Head and the Heart @ Capitol Hill Block Party – Seattle WA

6 :: Battles @ Crocodile – Seattle WA

5 :: Grouplove @ Prophet Bar – Dallas TX

4 :: Jason Lytle (of Grandaddy & Admiral Radley) w/ Midlake @ Good Records‘ Record Store Day party – Dallas TX

3 :: Baths @ Lovejoy’s (SXSW) – Austin TX :: video here

2 :: The Seedy Seeds @ High Dive – Seattle WA :: video here

1 :: Beirut @ Outside Lands Music Festival – San Francisco CA

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What We Call Christmas

Our Christmas was spent in Seattle, away from our usual holiday locales of San Antonio and Philadelphia. It is fun to change things up once in a while and spend Christmas wearing hideous sweaters and drinking way to much with friends. I can say, there is way less stress hanging out with friends than with family. Why is that?? Anyhoo, we are starting to take down the decorations so here is one last Christmas post. The last few days were fun! Here’s hoping the next few are just as rad!

Friday Finds: Etsy Holiday Gift Edition

Handmade gifts are the best! I am not the craftiest and have issues finishing projects I start so Etsy to the rescue! Here are some cute gift ideas for those friends and family members you love so much.

For the foodie fashionista :: Necklace from FreshlyFig

For the dreamer :: Typography print by MursBlanc

For the retro geek gamer :: Coin purse by BraveMoonman

For the vintage lover :: Peacock Feather Vase from filedaway

For the traveler :: Luggage tag by squigglechick

For the germaphobe :: Playful soaps by LoveLeeSoaps

For the design junkie :: Roses sofa from sprucehome

For the serial plant killer :: Fabric Leaf Potted Plant by janejoss

For the beer snob :: Etched Pint Glasses by BreadandBadger

For the old skool board gamer :: Backgammon cutting board by 1337motif

Happy Holidaze!!

shirtless, sheetless, and…

if you live in new york or connecticut and like good music, then watch this short video. those who can decipher the “subliminal” advertising will be awarded nothing except the chance to see these amazingly entertaining fellows, known as WHY?, live in a nearby city. a few months back the us tour was cancelled due to yoni breaking his hand so here’s hoping yoni and josiah make it back to the northwest soon.

best songs of 2011: part two

here is part two of my top songs of 2011. did you miss part one?

 

grouplove – itchin on a photograph 

2011 has been the ‘year of grouplove.’ as of tomorrow night, i will have seen this band five times live this year so chances are high they will appear on my top live shows list of 2011. they were my top choice to check out at sxsw and since march they have gained so much momentum and have recently played on the letterman show. it was difficult to choose a favorite grouplove song, for i also like tongue tied and lovely cup. funny thing…i’m in the video for lovely cup which was all filmed during sxsw.

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high highs – open season

i am anxiously awaiting for more music from the high highs. currently they have a ‘4-track album’ but last time i checked that was called an ep. anyhoo, a close eye will be on the high highs for the next year.

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the joy formidable – whirring

ritzy bryan’s voice is a combination of innocence and bad-assery…i love this song and am kicking myself for missing the joy formidable live.

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oh land – son of a gun

nanna øland fabricius has an amazing voice and is absolutely gorgeous! oh land is basically a danish version of nelly furtado and kylie minogue combined. she has really good dance moves too for she was a former ballerina.

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sin fang – because of the blood

sindri már sigfússon (of seabear) has been working on his solo project, sin fang, for several years now. the latest release, summer echoes, is absolutely beautiful and a bit more experimental than seabear’s folk sound. i love the simplicity and creativity of sindri’s videos. so lovely!

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Best Songs of 2011: Part One

these lists are often difficult to compile, but this year it was quite easy to find the top songs. some of the artists chosen are old favorites while some bands are discoveries as recent as a month ago. i could probably list 20 or more, but more than ten seems a bit overkill. i love reading other music lists to check out stellar stuff that i might have missed in the last year. largehearted boy does a fantastic job at compiling some of the best end-of-year music lists on the web.

in alphabetical order, these are my choices for best singles of 2011. what are some of your favorites?

astronautalis – contrails (featuring tegan quin of tegan & sara)

astronautalis (aka andy bothwell) is a touring machine and has made an interesting progression with all of his album releases from his electro/rock/spoken word beginnings to his current alt hip-hop sound. i’ve been a fan for years since his days as a resident of north texas (he has since lived in seattle and now local to minneapolis). and can say his fourth full-length album, this is our science, is incredible from start to finish. check him out live if you have the chance. i took some friends to see him at sxsw and they were incredibly impressed.

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bad lamps – never know the difference

this is a catchy song with an interesting video… so interesting that it was all over reddit so naturally the song got some notice. bad lamps are a dude duo with just four songs under their belt, aka the soultronic ep. hopefully they will release more in the near future.

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beirut – santa fe

zach condon continues to pop out amazing albums one after the other. the most recent album, the rip tide, has the same balkan sound we all love about beirut while adding a bit more pop. i’ve been a fan of beirut since 2006’s gulag orkestar and finally got to see zach live for the first time a few months ago. i guess that is what happens when touring is mostly spent overseas and that hiatus when beirut’s future was in question. one of my favorite songs of all time will always be postcards from italy.

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dom – living in america

i don’t know much about dom but i stumbled upon this song somewhere on the interwebs and i like them. a lot. dom reminds me a bit of css.

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the drums – money

i dare you to listen to this track from the drums and tell me you don’t like it. the band’s second album, portamento, was just released a few months ago and already this song is in heavy rotation, especially on kexp. the album is fantastic!

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check back tomorrow for part two!

also coming this month…best music festival, best live shows and best beers list!