Sunday, February 28, 2010


Saintseneca: not you average indie/folkers. There are no mopey lumberjacks in this band (although they do wear plaid). What's more, their songs are, for the most part, pretty fun. They're just nice to listen to and will definitely put you in a good mood. They remind me a lot of Fanfarlo, but more folk-y and with a bit of rougher, twangier singer. One thing I really like about them is their violin player (Grace Chang). The violin is a really great finishing touch on a lot of these songs, and is probably what sets them apart (to me at least) from a lot of other bands.

They're still pretty unknown, but they've got some East Coast dates lined up for march, so check 'em out if you can!


Tuesday, February 23, 2010


Or maybe it's restlessness. At any rate, my art anxiety has driven me to decide to try to make either some kind of comic or animation. Right now, I'm leaning towards a comic. At any rate, for the first time in a while, I am earnestly busy (thinly veiled excuse for my spotty posting.) While the picture above isn't fantastic, I'm pretty happy with the style and I've been drawing a lot of things like it.
In order to make this post feel more legitimate, I'm going to talk a bit about what's been inspiring and influencing me. Stylistically, my recent stuff is looking a lot like a new cartoon that's coming to the Cartoon Network, and if you've seen it, you will know what I'm referring to.
Adventure Time's the name and I'm trying not to be too similar to what the creator Penn Ward is drawing. If I decide to comic, I think the similarities will become less noticeable, and will mostly amount to hats and bendy limbs.
A video worth watching:

There are other sources of inspiration that I think will not really manifest outside of a comic or animation. I like the idea of using historical events as settings, and working in Norse mythology, which tends to be rather silly in a very hardcore way. In an effort to avoid seeming preachy, I think Calvin and Hobbes can serve as a very effective model of what to do and more importantly, what not to do when trying to achieve subtlety. The humor of Flapjack, as well as its renditions of classic archetypes are both very interesting, and will probably emerge in any stories I come up with. Finally, while I am unsure how it will show itself, I feel the Katamari franchise will have influenced me strongly enough, either with its music, humor, or art direction, to appear in some yet unknown way, but that stands to be revealed later.

Here's a gift to you: Katamari Tunes!

-Love, Daniel

EDIT: Oh yeah, and Kate Beaton!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Show Review! : The Antlers! (and Editors and The Dig)

First off, let me apologize for our very infrequent posting habits (almost a week in between!). We're pretty bad about this, but will probably hopefully get better.
Anyways, last night I popped into DC to go see the Antlers. They were opening for Editors along with The Dig, who played before them. I so very much like their album Hospice (released 2009) (it's definitely one of my favorites ever), plus I'd heard some live recordings (which were great) so I was quite excited to see them. But first, The Dig.

They're kind of an indie-pop band, and the couple songs I'd heard before the show weren't the greatest so I was kinda dreading their set. They started right when they were supposed to (which was really great, sucks standing around waiting) and basically played songs for 30 mins or so, very little talking. Their stuff was much better live, I liked it, and seemed like the crowd was digging it too.

Next, THE ANTLERS. man oh man, was I excited. They opened with Kettering, moved onto Sylvia, then Bear, Two, and ended with Wake. They played slower more atmospheric/shoegazy versions of Bear and Two, which I thought was good, cause the album versions sound a lil' too happy, I think (I actually prefer the album version of Two, though). They were really, really, quite amazing. Their show was more keyboard oriented which was just dandy. Plus, Wake is my favorite song of theirs and is just a completely great song anyway. My one complaint is that their show was not as emotional as the record. Partly because of the arrangements of the songs, but very much also because of the crowd. A lot of people weren't there to see them, and these two asian ladies pushed their way in front of me and kept talking and looking through the crowd the whole time (thankfully they were really short).

Editors. meh. They sound soooo much like Interpol. Their show was pretty enjoyable, everyone was moving and they played several of the small amount of their songs that I actually know, so that was quite nice. However, they completely overloaded their show bass-wise, it was really poundin into ya.

All in all, a good night.

- Alec

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Yes! I said I would do it and I did it! Here's the deal: I've been on a stint of making books lately, or binding them, rather. The satisfaction of actually making something is a feeling I'm not used to, at least not like this. So, for a few months I have been cranking out hard and soft cover books of varying quality (sorry to anybody to whom I gave one of my early ones) and I wanted to share my latest fixation with the world. So without further ado, here's the link to my hastily written instructable:
Handsome? I think so.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Smith Westerns

I hated most of my favorite bands at first. I don't know why this always happens to me, but it does. Then, I hear one song, and I'll listen to it over and over again, craving more stuff like it. Then, slowly but surely, I'll end up listening to (and liking) other songs by the band. Smith Westerns are no exception.

They're a bunch of high school kids who started out as your traditional shitty high school garage band, but then started listening to too much T-Rex and David Bowie and morphed their sound into a kind of psychedelic-garage kinda thing. They've toured and played with bands like Girls, Nobunny, and Best Coast, which should give you a better idea of what they sound like than my pathetic attempt at describing their music does. They're on tour right now (go get tickets!) and they'll be stopping in DC in April, which should be awesome.

Here's a link to their myspace, I'd recommend listening to Imagine, pt 3, which is my favorite song of theirs and probably their best (of course, it didn't appear on their album).

This'll be my last post for a couple days since I'll be out of town (although we don't really post every day anyway), so I'll throw in a couple mixes to this post.

Here's one that you ought to listen to late at night:

And here's one of Daniel's that's pretty rockin' (I've got a hard copy that I play pretty much whenever I drive.) :

- Alec

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

This Is What Science Should Look Like:

Is this not the raddest thing you've seen today? It was when I saw it. The photographer's name is Caleb Charland and his photographs mostly depict contraptions of his own invention that demonstrate science in action. Often, he produces stunning effects of light with long exposure shots and multiple exposures. I'm no photography guy but in my amateur opinion, Charland is a master of both engineering and photography. At first glance, his devices seem intricate and delicate, but most are very simple, and I think that adds to the beauty of his work. I think the pictures will interest you much more than anything I have to say about them, so here ya go:


Sunday, February 7, 2010

I Am Rather Tired of Winter

It just snowed 20 inches down here in DC, and while I quite enjoy not having school, I just want to be warm. Summer's been on my mind lately (for obvious reasons) and I think I'm not alone in this regard, so here's a summer-ish (at least I think so) mix to get ya through to the warmer months. Enjoy


1. Lust for Life - Girls
2. Death to Los Campesinos - Los Campesinos!
3. My Head in Front of Your Head - Best Friends Forever
4. Osaka Loop Line - Discovery
5. Sunlight - Harlem Shakes
6. The Boy With the Arab Strap - Belle and Sebastian
7. Generator ^Second Floor - Freelance Whales
8. French Navy - Camera Obscura
9. Silver Lining - Beulah
10. Rad Pitt - Egyptian Hip Hop
11. Imagine, pt. 3 - Smith Westerns
12. Janglin - Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeroes
13. Girls FM - Happy Birthday
14. Sun Was High (So Was I) - Best Coast
15. Sovereignty - Japandroids
16. Cool Jumper - Wavves
17. Deadbeat Summer - Neon Indian
18. 5K - Matt & Kim
19. Temecula Sunrise - Dirty Projectors
20. Brother Sport - Animal Collective

Listen Here:

- Alec

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Things I'm Eating

Oh hello, I didn't see you come in. Well, since you're here, how about we chew the fat -or rather the cake. A-ho-ho-ho. But seriously, the cake I'm talking about is this:
Pretty yummy, right? Well, being that the only channel I watch is food network, I figured it was about time I started cooking. It was for this reason that I stumbled upon a number of recipes that I've decided to try for myself.

I am showcasing this recipe in particular because I find it to be a very important discovery, personally. This is 5-minute Chocolate Cake. That's 5 minutes, friend. With a very reasonable ingredient list and prep time, it makes for a great (albeit unhealthy) breakfast or snack. Instructions can be found here:

Other sites I'm looking at:
see: Smokin' Red Roasted Potatoes
see: Banana and Chocolate Mascarpone Crepes
see: Singledom Soup for Garlic Lovers

Also, this lovely instructable is a great segue for an upcoming post, which will be an instructable of my own creation, if all goes as planned, so look forward to that!


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Sandwitches

Lately I've been listening to a lot of lo-fi, garage-ish rock, and among all the bands I've found, The Sandwitches really stand out. They put our their debut How to Make Ambient Sadcake, which, aside from having a cool name and sweet sweet music, has a kinda strange drawing of a 2 legged cat on the cover, baggin them extra points.

If the Smith Westerns had a baby with Best Coast, and that baby had a baby with fellow San Franciscoans, Girls, that baby would sound something like The Sandwitches. In case that description didn't help you (and if it didn't go check out all those bands) they've got an almost jangly/retro twist on their lo-fi sound, and they occaisonally have semi-country-ish vocals on a few tracks (but don't let that throw you off, it sounds good).

Don't just take my word for it, have a listen!

- Alec (sorry for the large pic)

Monday, February 1, 2010

Of Montreal (cont.)

SO, Of Montreal, right? Pretty wild stuff. Oh, and James Husband. Just a standard amateur rock sound; highly forgettable.

But on to the good stuff, yeah? Alec covered the show well, but I don't think the strangeness of the performance can be done justice through words alone. The psychedelic air that emanates from their recordings is personified in concert, and the bizarre yet tangible figures that appear on stage magnify the impact of the music. Alec seemed to imply that the girliness of Kevin's was a bad thing, but I think it worked well in the sort of repackaging of their songs that their live performances provide; it was simply a different, more energetic and raw, less relaxed version of Of Montreal.

Not trying to sit on your candle or anything, Alec, but that's my take on it.