We’ve featured the Magnetic Fields as one of our ‘BAMM Legends’ before (on this very blog), so it stands to reason that we’re pretty excited about their brand new release ‘Love At The Bottom Of The Sea’ – another collection of wistful, witty, brilliantly-crafted songs from frontman Stephin Merrit and his rag-tag group of merry misfits. This time – after meddling with synth-free sounds for the duration of their previous three albums – they’ve re-embraced the slightly more playful sound that made them popular in their early days (check out 1994’s ‘The Charm Of The Highway Strip’ to get a taste of this).
‘Love …’ is released on March 6th, but if you head over to NPR right now, you can treat yourself to the full 34-minute pop experience without delay. And why wouldn’t you want to do that?
Hey: we’ve got some exciting news. Pretty soon there’ll be yet another new way of accessing your favorite BAMM.tv content—and quite a special one at that. You may have heard about our friends at Mozilla deploying HTML5 web apps on Mozilla Marketplace. Soon, it will be yet another platform where you can get your BAMM.tv fix.
We’ve already nailed down lots of great outlets for BAMM.tv. We’ve recently announced a great new deal with Flingo, allowing you to watch our hi-def vids on your hi-def home entertainment system, and you can also find our videos on Samsung Apps for Android and our songs on Samsung Apps for Bada. We’re working night and day on crafting something really incredible for the iPad. Oh, and did we mention that we have a new website coming along soon?
We’re lucky to work with talented developers, and we always listen up when you tell us what you want. (“When’s your iPhone app coming out?” “Soon!”) But here’s the thing: developing specific products for specific devices and markets takes a lot of time. It’s worth it, sure, because it lets you adapt to the strengths of each device. Yet… How cool would it be if someone could simply make something for the web, and have it work on any device?
Well, that’s exactly what tech pioneers Mozilla are introducing at the Mobile World Conference in Barcelona. It’s a huge trade show, and they’re unveiling something genuinely new for their company. The Mozilla Marketplace has a unique twist: an HTML5 app can be released on any internet-connected platform with zero need for re-coding or re-development.
This is all part of Mozilla’s quest to build a better internet, along with their dedication to keeping it free, open and accessible to all. It will make for a revolutionary multi-platform experience. So, expect an upcoming whirlwind of awesome, innovative new apps…
…including ours. Soon, your internet-connected device will never be more than a tap away from the world of BAMM.tv. Through Mozilla Apps, if your device is online, your device can play BAMM.tv, simple as that. We’re recording new stuff all the time, and we want it to be available to everyone—any time, any place. We’re hugely excited to be joining Mozilla in this great new venture, and we hope you’re excited too!
Today’s the day that the new album by Geographer – ‘Myth’ – is released (you may remember we flagged this up a few days back when we linked to a streaming feed of the whole thing in advance). As luck would have it, this year is also a leap year, which means that you can bookmark tomorrow’s extra day for staying at home, chilling out and listening to ‘Myth’ over and over. Hey – it’s not as if your boss can do anything. It doesn’t even count as a real day anyway (warning – this may not be accurate workplace advice, and BAMM holds no responsibility for any angry phone calls incurred).
Before you fire up ‘Myth’, however, why not get inside the heads of the creative busybodies behind the album itself – check out our exclusive interview with the Geographer lads by clicking on the video above.
Hardly a day goes by without exciting news regarding some new technological innovation – particularly in the music industry, where the locomotive progression of a decade-plus digital overhaul is still gathering pace. But there’s an interesting element in all of this – something which belies a constant yearning for the past (or at least, for certain aspects of the past).
No matter how much convenience and streamlined super-quality is at hand, it seems that people always retain an affection for the imperfections of yesterday’s technology. Take the remarkable success of Hipstamatic – an app that intentionally ‘ages’ perfect digital photographs to make them look like they were snapped on a 1970s Kodak in the queue outside a Led Zeppelin concert. And check out the number of retro video game re-releases that always top the smartphone app charts: despite the lure of amazing graphics and modern multiplayer on, say, ‘Modern Warfare 3′, Generations X and Y would rather thrill to the 20-year-old neon glare of ‘Sonic The Hedgehog.’
So: what about music? Has this ‘new retro’ vibe seeped over into that market yet? Well, not to the extent of other creative sectors, sure, but we’re getting there. Take a look at Retro-Fi – a new app which offers you the chance to filter your music collection through the scratchy, hissy sound of AM Radio.
What’s the actual point of this? Nothing – and maybe that’s the point in itself. As technology becomes increasingly easy and accessible, the market for the ‘flawed’ aesthetics of history is beginning to grow. In short, people want the difficulties they used to endure without having to experience, y’know, the actual difficulties.
The interesting thing is: where will this lead to in the future? What will nostalgia entail twenty-five years down the line? What elements of modern digital/music technology – that, by then, will seem hopelessly archaic and useless, despite how amazing they are right now – will be embraced as an ironic novelty or warm, fuzzy reminder of the past? Where do you guys think we’re heading?
Spiritualized have quite rightly gathered a reputation as the great survivors of British rock. Since their formation in 1990, they’ve endured countless line-up reshuffles as well as the serious illness of legendary frontman Jason Pierce (Pierce’s lungs filled up during a battle with pneumonia, and upon two separate occasions he was declared dead).
Despite these titanic hurdles, they’ve managed to produce some of the best spaced-out indie-rock in history. Studio albums ‘Ladies And Gentlemen, We Are Floating In Space’ (1997) and ‘Let It Come Down’ (2001) remain perennial rock favorites – their orchestral soulfulness and epic scale have given them a timeless quality that other guitar-based odysseys from the era are sorely lacking. Plus their ‘Live At The Albert Hall’ is the second-best live album ever recorded (it’s not as good as Talking Heads’ ‘Stop Making Sense’ – but then what is?).
Now they’re back with new single ‘Hey Jane’ – a nine-minute blast of stop-start energy which acts as a prelude to their April album release ‘Sweet Heart Sweet Light.’ We’ve given you the chance to take a listen above, because we’re nice like that.
We’ve pointed out the greatness of Geographermany a time before here at BAMM.TV, and we’ve also been lucky enough to capture live performances by these San Francisco-based indie-rock favorites. If you’ve yet to experience their awesome sound for yourself, now would be the ideal time to catch up … seeing as their all-new album ‘Myth’ is set for release on the 28th February (next Tuesday).
Those of you lucky enough to count yourself as existing Geographer fans will be pleased to know that you can enjoy a sneak preview of the entire album before the official release, thanks to the lovely people over at Paste magazine. They’re streaming the whole thing online right now, and it’s in the best interests of your ears that you go and investigate right now.
Once you’ve enjoyed their new material, why not relive a classic BAMM performance too? Enjoy the above video which captures a fantastic live version of ‘Paris.’
So – there’s this band called The Beatles. You probably won’t have heard of them, to be honest – history seems to have forgotten them altogether, rather unfairly consigning them to the dustbin of obscurity. Here at BAMM, however, we have a sneaking suspicion that one day this little-known ’60s four piece will finally, finally obtain the recognition they deserve. Until then, we’ll just have to keep searching for an elusive copy of their ultra-rare album ‘Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’ (yeah, they actually called an album that! Crazy, huh?). There must be one out there somewhere, surely.
Silliness aside, fans of the Beatles – and George Harrison in particular – who are also equipped with one of them there new-fangled iPads are in for a treat on Thursday (that’s tomorrow!). Seeing as pretty much everyone is a fan of the Beatles, and how pretty much everyone has an iPad nowadays: this means you.
George Harrison: The Guitar Collection is a nigh-on essential app for anyone with either a fondness for strumming the strings, or just a general love of Beatles trivia and memorabilia. Enabling the user to take a musical journey through Harrison’s legendary collection of instruments, this is a technological marvel which will waste hours of your time, guaranteed …
If you’re a long-time follower of BAMM.TV, then surely you know our feelings about the CD by now – it’s an outdated medium which your grandchildren will surely chuckle at (as they mainline their magical sound-beams into their genetically-altered skull-capsules. Erm, or something). One man, however, has decided to turn this redundant format into something genuinely incredible …
Say hi to Mr. Sean Avery, whose artistic talents have turned these otherwise useless discs into stunning works of art. There’s a sneak preview in the pic above, but feel free to check out further masterworks here and here …
For a man who arguably helped define an entire era with his sneering antics in the Sex Pistols, then followed it all up with the revolutionary post-punk outfit Public Image Limited, the last couple of decades haven’t exactly seen John Lydon (a.k.a Johnny Rotten) on stellar form. Apart from his remarkable guest appearance on Leftfield’s dance classic ‘Open Up’ circa 1993, it’s a sad fact that most people now associate him with butter commercials and tacky reality gameshows than musical ability.
Let’s hope he can claw that reputation back, then, with this: the first material from Public Image Limited in twenty years. ‘One Drop’ is the lead single from an EP to be released on April 21, which itself is a precursor to a brand new album in the summer. It’s certainly an interesting new path Lydon seems to be taking. What do you guys think?
No matter how visually exciting a band or artist may be, sometimes sticking to the ‘real world’ can put something of a limit on creative imagination. Sculpting a whole new universe from scratch has always been one of the imperatives for any good animator: be they the 1920s pioneers who knocked together those first flickering Disney cartoons, or the computer whiz-kids who sculpt the next Pixar masterpiece.
What happens when this animated wonderland is combined with the world of music? Great, great things – as our rundown of the five best animated music videos will attest …
5. The White Stripes – ‘Fell In Love With A Girl’
Superstar director Michel Gondry combines two of the greatest inventions of the latter half of the 20th century – lego and rock ‘n’ roll – into this whirlwind high-octane blast.
4. Dire Straits – ‘Money For Nothing’
Okay, okay, so the music itself may sound like the kind of thing your parents used to play on the car stereo, but no-one can deny the innovation of this video. In the mid-80s such computer animation was as incredible as flying to Venus on a robot eagle.
3. Radiohead – ‘Paranoid Android’
How best to translate the paranoid netherworld inside Thom Yorke’s head into an animated nightmare? Like this.
2. Peter Gabriel – ‘Sledgehammer’
One of those rare instances in which the viewer can be impressed by the technical profiency of a production, while also become swept away in the fact that the video itself is a three-minute odyssey of pure joy.
1. A-ha – ‘Take On Me’
Smartly taking on a timeless element (pulp comic book artwork) to ensure that its aesthetic will never date, this still remains a jaw-dropping experience from start to finish.