Sunday, March 31, 2013

It really is.

I actually like Sarah's version more than Irma's.

It's Raining

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Exclusive Dr. Spaceman track on new compilation

Our own Dr. Spaceman is branching out, contributing a track to the latest compilation on Modoc Records, a very inventive electronic music label run by some very creative and enterprising San Francisco State students.

Here is the good doctor's contribution. But check out the whole thing!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Soundcloud hassles

Soundcloud has recently decided to disable certain songs on our page because they are copyrighted material, not considering they are in fact copyrighted by US. Why do you think the page is called "earcandleproductions"? Like, DUH.

We are disputing their shenanigans and hope to resume normal service soon. In the meantime, you can always buy our music and listen to it all you want!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

More where that came from (On The Deep End)

Cross-posted on The Deep End:

On last Friday's show, we played "I Don't Need Help", a track by Johnny K. Killen and the Dynamics, from the marvelous compilation album, Eccentric Soul: The Deep City Label. A man is talking to his oldest and closest friend who has helped him in times of need. Suddenly, his friend seems to be showing a little too much interest in our protagonist's sweetheart, and he needs to be set straight:
We've been buddies for a long long time
And you've always treated me kind
And whenever I was down and out
You were always there to help me out

But now I see you watching my baby
I see you giving her the eye
Well, let me tell you something:
It's classic soul, with a catchy tune, a ring of truth and a clever twist on some basic human emotions. How, you wonder, was this NOT a monster hit back in the 60s?

Of course, the music business is a ruthless world, and talent does not always equal success, even in the revolutionary years of the 60s and early 70s when anything seemed possible. People have been endlessly rediscovering, reassessing, and reissuing music from also-rans from various musical scenes who have turned out to have back catalogs that match or surpass any of the established acts of the canon. From the Velvet Underground to Rodriguez, artists who went nowhere in their time have eventually made their impact on the world. The whole phenomenon of Nuggets (and its even-more-obscure little brothers like Pebbles and Rubble), from the original double album compiled in the 70s to the Rhino series in the 80s to the various comprehensive box sets of the present day, has shined a light on the once-forgotten geniuses of garage-rock, a genre that was once thought of as horrid trash that had no place in a rapidly progressing musical world.

But what about soul? Where were the great lost artists and songs that couldn't compete with Otis, Aretha, Smokey or James Brown? In the last decade, a small reissue label called Numero has answered this question with the Eccentric Soul series, doing an astounding feat of research and recovery and gifting us with a staggering number of hits from an alternate universe's jukebox. Not everything on these albums hits the mark, but the ones that do will touch places in you you didn't even know were there. I can't recommend them more highly.

Here is Numero's Ken Shipley guesting on the Onion's AV Club, playing some of his personal Eccentric Soul favorites and telling some stories of his own about the project. Absolutely fascinating, and essential for anyone who loves great, passionate music.

We also played a track by the wonderful Lijadu Sisters, a phenomenal pair of identical twin sisters from Nigeria who combined close harmonies, sexy voices, funky African grooves and conscious lyrics. After putting out a series of albums, they resettled in Brooklyn, where they live today. What made them unique was their strong, assertive natures and unwillingness to be stopped by the patriarchial traditions of African society. Here they are, stealing the show in the fascinating Nigerian music documentary, Konkombe:

The sisters' career got a shot in the arm recently when their song "Life's Gone Down Low" was included in the compilation album The World Ends: Afro-Rock & Psychedelia In 1970s Nigeria, a mind-opening collection of stunning, funky music that shows how the cultures of the planet influence each other, and how we all recreate our own culture from exposure to others.

Here are the Lijadu Sisters in a more recent video, still as gorgeous and grounded as ever:

We played a classic track by the Pretty Things as well, but the band seems to have ensured that none of their YouTube videos can be embedded, so I'll be leaving them out of this post. Go get yourself some Pretty Things albums right now, though! I recommend S.F. Sorrow, Get The Picture?, and Emotions, in that order. Immerse yourself in the only band that has shared members with both the Rolling Stones and the Mekons! This is the sort of thing The Deep End is all about.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Ear Candle business: The new albums are out!

We have fixed up the thumbnails on our right side for all the Ear Candle music currently in circulation. Click on an image and you'll be taken to the Soundcloud page for the album. If you like what you hear, we encourage you to click the buy button and help the hard-working artists of Ear Candle Productions pay off their student loans!

We also have direct links to iTunes for our two newest releases:

Dr. Spaceman - Zwanzig Kilometer Stau
The Experimental Bunnies - Aranka

And yes, there is a Granite Countertops album in the works, but singing and songwriting are forced to take a backseat to schoolwork until the summer comes. By then Neo and Davis will have new songs bursting out of them. So far, the partially-completed ones sound like the 'Tops are on the verge of a great evolutionary leap. It's gonna be worth the wait, we promise! 

Saturday, March 2, 2013

The Deep End

By the way, I have another radio show, The Deep End, on KSFS at San Francisco State. Listen to me and my cohorts as we do our best to subvert the very idea of "Classic Rock" every Friday evening from 7-8 PM, Pacific Time. Click here for the KSFS stream.

Ear Candle Radio's Top 20: February 2013

The Experimental Bunnies! Curtis Mayfield! Blaims! Nervous Norvus! Epizootics! Keep on tuning in, dear friends!

1. The Velvet Underground - Ocean - 1969: Velvet Underground Live
2. The Rolling Stones - Mona (I Need You Baby) - The Rolling Stones Now!
3. Weekend - Nostalgia - The '81 Demos
4. Serpent Power - Nobody Blues - Serpent Power
5. Soft Machine - Why Are We Sleeping? - The Soft Machine Volumes One And Two
6. The Experimental Bunnies - Ready For Your Instructions - Biology And Physics
7. Curtis Mayfield - Other Side Of Town - Curtis
8. The Cramps - Zombie Dance - Songs The Lord Taught Us
9. Blaims - Can't Sleep - Modoc Records Sampler, Vol. 1
10. The Minutemen - Hell (Second Take) - Ballot Result
11. Jon Langford - Sentimental Marching Song - Skull Orchard Revisited
12. The Experimental Bunnies - No Sleep Till The Pleiades - Aranka
13. The Dirtbombs - Strings Of Life - Party Store
14. Vomit Launch - Lift - Exiled Sandwich
15. nervous norvous - transfusion - lux and ivy's favorites volume one
16. Curtis Mayfield - Hard Times - There's No Place Like America Today
17. Bob Mould - The Descent - Silver Age
18. Siouxsie And The Banshees - Icon - Join Hands
19. The Kinks - Flash's Dream (The Final Elbow) - Preservation Act
20. Scott Walker - Epizootics! - Bish Bosch