Date Archives February 2009

Be A Star And Fall Down Somewhere Next To Me | A Kitsune Noir Mixtape


Be A Star And Fall Down Somewhere Next To Me | A Kitsune Noir Mixtape
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I got an email from a +KN reader named Jodi earlier today, telling me that she wished I had released a mixtape for Valentine’s Day. I wrote her back saying that I hadn’t even thought about it, but that it was a good idea. Her response cracked me up:

Maybe I should have let you know beforehand that I was expecting one, but in true girl Valentines Day form, I waited until I didn’t get one to tell you that I really wanted/expected one.

So in honor of Jody, and all the other girls out there who might not get what they want for Valentine’s Day, I give you Be A Star And Fall Down Somehwere Next To Me. This mix in a lot of ways is a continuation of the last mix, They Don’t Pierce The Night. But this is less about longing, and more about hope.

The title of the mix comes from a Rufus Wainwright song, which actually isn’t on the mix at all. But after I heard the lyric, I knew I had to use it for an eventual mix. I think it’s quite fitting for Valentine’s Day, and as always I hope you all enjoy it, and would love to hear your feedback.

01 I’m The Drunk and You’re The Star by New Buffalo
02 Long Time Ahead of Us by The Walkmen
03 Will You Be There by Port O’ Brien
04 There Is a Place? by Pale Young Gentlemen
05 It Was A Beautiful Car by M. Ward
06 You Said It Before by Mojave 3
07 Lump Sum by Bon Iver
08 Nothing Matters When We’re Dancing by The Magnetic Fields
09 Involuntary by M. Ward
10 Oh My Love by John Lennon
11 Some Racing, Some Stopping by Headlights

Bobby

Edit: I meant to mention that two of the songs on the mix were taken from Daytrotter sessions. The songs I used were Bon Iver’s Lump Sum and Headlights’ Some Racing, Some Stopping. Both of these versions were almost more magical then their original counterparts. Click here to hear the rest of the Bon Iver set, and here for the Headlights.

The Desktop Wallpaper Project featuring 123KLAN

The Desktop Wallpaper Project featuring 123KLAN

123KLAN

Hey hey it’s still Wednesday, and you all need a new desktop!
I’m totally stoked on this weeks wallpaper, it’s definitely one of the coolest I’ve ever featured. I got an email about a month ago from Scien of 123KLAN saying that he enjoyed the site. So I obviously had to take the opportunity to invite him and his wife Klor to participate in the project!

What they came up with was the awesome little guy you see above. As I do a lot of the time, the words of the artist sum this one up best:

As the temperature is very low over here,
We had to kill the “kitsune noir”
To make a typical canadian beanie with it,
we are sorry but we really had no other options…

So hysterical. I love the color palette, his Kitsune Noir jersey, his dunks vandals, and the mustache especially. I hope you all enjoy this weeks wallpaper as much as me, and be sure to check back next Wednesday!

‘The Stand Ins’ by Okkervil River

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Starry Stairs by Okkervil River

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On Tour With Zykos by Okkervil River

If there was one modification to my Favorite 15 Albums of 2008, it might be the inclusion of the Okkervil River album, The Stand Ins. I hadn’t realized that the album had even been released until after I made my list, so I wanted to praise this gem of an album some.

The album is a continuation from the last album, The Stage Names, and continues Will Sheff’s obsession with pop culture. This is by far one of Okkervil’s best albums, hopefully the songs above will help you get a sense of how amazing this album is. Also, the cover is pretty neat for two reasons. First, it’s hand sewn, and second, if you place The Stage Names album above it, you get one whole image.

Bobby

Sam Weber

I’ve been a big fan of Sam Weber’s work for a while, he’s an amazing illustrator that I think I’d classify more as a painter than an illustrator. He has this great sense of textures and colors that I haven’t really seen anyone else match. The two pieces above are for the Soulpepper Theatre in Toronto, the top one is for Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and the bottom for The Guardsmen. I love all the smudges and galaxies and fingerprints in the top one, and the texture in the bottom one is amazing.

Definitely check out the rest of Sam’s work, and his store as well, which has a bunch of his pieces for sale.

Bobby

Jamie McLellan

I came across Jamie McLellan’s work after he sent me a random reply on Twitter. As I always do, I check and see if he had a website, and sure enough he’s an absolutely amazing product designer. He’s recently worked as senior designer for Tom Dixon, and now works in his own studio making all sorts of rad stuff like furniture and even racing sails, no biggie. He has a really impressive portfolio of work, but I really loved these simple scissors he created for Ordning&Reda. I love that they’re metal, but still have soft edges, a really nice juxtaposition.

Bobby

Moving Brands Gives Norton & Sons A Fresh Look

I love love love this redesign by Moving Brands of Saville Row tailors, Norton & Sons. Not only redid their logos and marks, they also helped re-shape their entire brand including their storefront. There’s something really elegant and simple about the rebrand that I’m really enjoying. I also think it’s rad that their crest was “awarded by a Prussian emperor in the 19th century.” Too cool.

For more information about their process click here.

Bobby

Newsweek Is Getting A Redesign

Newsweek Plans Makeover to Fit a Smaller Audience
by By Richard Pérez-Peña

I thought this article about Newsweek redesigning their magazine for a niche community was an interesting read. With so many magazines closing these days, it’s kind of cool to see one of the old guard taking some drastic steps to keep their doors open.

A deep-rooted part of the newsweekly culture has been to serve a mass audience, but that market has been shrinking, and new subscribers come at a high price in call centers, advertising and deeply discounted subscriptions.

“Mass for us is a business that doesn’t work,” said Tom Ascheim, Newsweek’s chief executive. “Wish it did, but it doesn’t. We did it for a long time, successfully, but we can’t anymore.”

The magazine will replace its thin paper with heavier stock that is more appealing to advertisers and readers. It will also put more emphasis on photography. Pages of a mock issue that Mr. Meacham displayed in his office on West 57th Street in Manhattan show a cleaner, less cluttered layout that has more open space and fewer pages that seem an uninterrupted sea of words.

It sounds to me like they’re trying to turn themselves into Monocle, which with it’s $10 price tag and luxury advertisers in every issue, isn’t a bad move. I just wish they’d redesign that logo of their’s. The red block is iconic, but that type needs to be refreshed and re-set.

Bobby

Fifty People, One Question

This one’s been floating around for a while, but I fall in love with it every time I watch. The concept is simple, Fifty People, One Question. It’s an extremely human video that really shows how unique people are and how interesting anyone can be. The way it’s shot is rather dreamy, and the music does a great job of intensifying the mood of the video. There are two more videos, but the one above shot in London is my absolute favorite.

Bobby

A Few More Beats – And Maybe, A New Sound: 03

It’s been a little while since I’ve posted one of these puppies, and I know how much you all enjoy some new tunes, so hopefully I’ve still got the knack. I’ve got 4 tracks for you all to preview, things I’ve been listening to recently and I think you’ll like.

M. Ward

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Shangri-La by M. Ward

First up is M. Ward, one of my favorite musicians right now. In my eyes, the guy can do no wrong. He’s got a new album called Hold Time coming out on Feb. 17, and if you liked his old stuff, you’ll love this as well. He’s got a bunch of guest stars including the lovely Zooey Deschanel and Lucinda Williams. The song above is my ABSOLUTE favorite song on the album, and I listen to it on repeat. It sounds old and magical to me, maybe you hear it to?

Ryan Adams

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Meadowlake Street by Ryan Adams

This is an older track that caught my ear a few weeks back. I had never heard a Ryan Adams album before, all I could think of was around 9-11 when he had some song about New York. So I grabbed a couple albums, and well, this song instantly stood out to me. One morning I woke up humming it but unable to think of what it was, and it drove me nuts! I like that the song has a subtle build up, getting more intense as it goes. I’ve also been told I look like Ryan Adams, lucky him. You can find this song on the album Cold Roses.

Bishop Allen

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Dirt on Your New Shoes by Bishop Allen

After a two year wait, Bishop Allen is finally releasing a new album titled Grrr…, and so far I’m really loving it. It’s a lot different from The Broken String, which was mostly a collection of songs recorded as a part of their EP a month project. This album is still pop-tastic, but it seems a little less polished than the previous one. But if you enjoy the song above, definitely pick up the album when it comes out on March 10.

Andrew Bird

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Not a Robot, But A Ghost by Andrew Bird

I complained a lot about Andrew Bird’s last album, Armchair Apocrypha, even saying that Pale Young Gentleman made the album that Andrew should have. But then Andrew Bird released Noble Beasts on January 20, and I took it all back, the guy is definitely back and in a good way. He put away a lot of the gimmicks of the strings and busted out a guitar, which gives the songs a much better sound and feel, freshening them up a lot. When I first got this album I listened to it non-stop, and I’m sure I’ll see this album on my best of the year list. Also be sure to check out the second, instrumental disc called Useless Creatures.

Bobby