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#100 - One Hundred

I finally made it to the 100th episode!  I would have been there sooner, had I stuck with a bi-weekly schedule.  Nonetheless, we're fina...

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Roar - I Can't Handle Change

I don't have a lot of time for a full post today - I only have half a day at work, and then I'm going to a great big water park for the afternoon.  So!  Allow me to just give you a quick link post today.

FrostClick wrote up a nice piece about the band Roar (Quote Unquote Records), and their album I Can't Handle Change.  It sounds like a neat pop album - I only was able to stream the first track so far, because the QUR website doesn't stream music very well, but said title track was very good and enjoyable.

Get all the download information from FrostClick.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Mouth's Cradle: The Next Big Thing

The other day (actually, it was probably last week - I'm slow at keeping up with these things), I stumbled across a FrostWire exclusive offering.  I didn't actually read the article - which is over here, by the way - but instead listened straight away to the music.  It was a selection of 7 songs from the album The Next Big Thing by Mouth's Cradle.  At first, I assumed it was the entire album - this is the way FrostWire/FrostClick does things, because they are awesome in that way.

Mouth's Cradle is also awesome - and the minute I heard "Front Porch, Back Porch" I realized that I heard these guys before.  I can't remember exactly where, but I'll assume it was on the local alternative radio station.  I don't know how to classify these guys, though.  I mean, they're not exactly an alternative group straight-up, but rather an amalgam of pop, hip-hop, and of course, alternative.

The result is an amazingly unique sound, and I really like it.  You can either buy the full album from iTunes (where they were featured for a little bit according to FrostClick), or you can take a sampling of 7 tracks (which is a LOT to sample), including the very fantastic song "Front Porch, Back Porch".  The download is via torrent, so you'll need to have a bittorrent client handy.

Once again, you can download Mouth's Cradle from FrostClick.  If you're interested in other albums from Mouth's Cradle, be sure to check out Mouth's Cradle vs The Hype and Mouth's Cradle is Terrible!  Both albums are name-your-price digital downloads.

Note: As far as I can tell, none of the three albums are licensed via Creative Commons - they're just free tracks given generously by the band.

Edit: Apparently the seven tracks released by FrostClick ARE licensed via Creative Commons.  The license info is in the torrent.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Reduced Summer Schedule

No jokes about my infrequent updates as it is, please!  Just kidding.  Actually, what I'm referring to when I mention my reduced summer schedule is lowering my podcast output.

Currently my schedule calls for a new podcast every two weeks - with the next episode due out July 9th, 2011.  That podcast will come on time, but after that is when my schedule is going to change a little.  I'm going to add a third week of waiting (I know!) between episodes.  Here's how the schedule will pan out:
  • #30 - July 9, 2011
  • #31 - July 30, 2011
  • #32 - August 20, 2011
  • #33 - September 10, 2011
After that I'll go back to the regular two-week schedule.  I'll also note that this will NOT affect the Weekly Airwave - as long as my friend Mike is doing his show, I'll have a Weekly Airwave for you (with the exception of this week, because as I mentioned on Facebook/Twitter, my friend Mike did not do his show today due to prior commitments).

The posting schedule will not be interrupted either, as there is no such thing as a posting schedule right now.  But I'm going to do my best to keep pumping out links to free music and talk about them as much as I can.  Beginning with a post tomorrow about Mouth's Cradle.  You'll love this album if you haven't heard it already.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Huntley Slim - Make Work Project

Nice to see a band from Ottawa giving away some free music.  In this case, it's a nice bluegrass EP entitled, "Make Work Project" by Huntley Slim.  I'm not going to write much about it, because I got it via A Truer Sound who in turn got it via My Aimz is True, who wrote a great deal about it (and did so very well).

Get the details here: http://myaimzistrue.blogspot.com/2011/06/free-music-huntley-slim-make-work.html

Excuse me while I go figure out how I missed this free album that was posted three weeks ago.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Show Notes: #29 - St. Jean Baptiste Podcast

I hope everyone is having a wonderful St. Jean Baptiste weekend!  I had a fun time finding tracks for this podcast, and there's a little bit of every genre in the show this week.  I hope you enjoy it.  In the meantime, please enjoy some reading material on St. Jean Baptiste Day:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Holiday_%28Quebec%29
http://www.sootoday.com/content/news/full_story.asp?StoryNumber=52762

Direct Download - Now hosted on archive.org! (32.5MB)


Playlist:
  1. Malajube - Luna ** - turns out I played a track that's not on Jamendo, because I got confused.
  2. Alek et les Mauvaises Raisons - L'anniversaire
  3. Hi Jack - Pears from New Zealand
  4. Sweet Mother Logic - Ghost Army
  5. Metatronik - Tortured Mind
  6. Two Green Cats - They Want Me To Play
  7. Les Residus Plasmiques - Elvis est mort ce matin / ce soir
  8. Bombolesse - H.I.V.'ER
Total running time: 35:29

#29 - St. Jean Baptiste Podcast

I hope everyone is having a wonderful St. Jean Baptiste weekend!  I had a fun time finding tracks for this podcast, and there's a little bit of every genre in the show this week.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Metatronik - Tortured Mind

Happy St. Jean Baptiste Day, Quebec residents!  This is the last post before the special podcast that features artists from Quebec.

I thought I'd try something a little different today, and just picked an artist at random.  I lucked out, in that I ended up picking an artist from Saint-Hubert, Québec (hence the logo of one awesome French-Canadian restaurant chain - their version of Swiss Chalet).  The group is Metatronik - and as far as I can tell, their name stems from a combination of "Metal" and "Electronic".

Their album, Tortured Mind, is all instrumental, and is sort of a combination of metal and 80s synth pop.  The result is rather interesting, and just oozes talent.  I can't imagine how difficult it is to drum and strum like they do.  If there's one thing I definitely will never be, it is a musician who plays in a metal band.

Tortured Mind was released in 2008 and published to Jamendo in 2009.  Here's their description, copied straight from Jamendo:
Metatronik is the music that comes out of one man's head: me, Kevin Lorrain, a guitar player that tried for years to form a band but never found the right musicians. So I decided to compose everything myself. What kind of music is it you ask? Well, it's metal, it's electronic, it's instrumental, progressive, agressive, melodic... it's Metatronik.




Oh, and do yourself a favour and check out their website.  It's very entertaining.

Postscript: It turns out that I've been referring to Metatronik as "they", when it seems to be a "he" - Kevin Lorrain.  I'm not entirely sure, but I also didn't do much research.  Either way, check out Metatronik if you like metal.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Sweet Mother Logic Revisited

As part of "St. Jean Baptiste Week" at Alternative Airwaves, here is another great band from Quebec.

Late last year, I blogged about Sweet Mother Logic - an instrumental group out of Montreal.  Since I already spoke about their awesome instrumental prowress to great extent, I won't break out the purple prose here a second time - but I still think that their self-titled album holds up very well.

I will admit, on a listen separated by almost a year, it took a little bit to get into the music.  To be fair, that's mostly because I wasn't really in the mood for instrumental at the time I put this post together.  I still think that SML (my own acronym) is one of the best outfits Quebec has to offer when it comes to the Creative Commons scene, and that is why I'm re-linking their music this week.

You can download the full Sweet Mother Logic album as well as The Ascension Island EP from Jamendo.com.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Weekly Airwave #6 :: Hi Jack: "Radio"

As part of St. Jean Baptiste Week here at Alternative Airwaves, this week's Weekly Airwave is another Quebec artist.  Also the "announcer" in this week's Airwave is a text-to-speech program, as the Alternative Airwaves studio is currently a temporary guest bedroom.

Original Air Date: Tuesday June 21, 2011
Artist: Hi Jack
Track: Radio
Album: Choose Your Side
Genre: Punk / Ska

Info in Brief: Self-described as a punk / reggae / ska band, based in Sherbrooke, Quebec.  Their songs are mostly high in energy, and sung in English.  Their website doesn't seem to function anymore, so likely they are (unfortunately) defunct.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Alek et les Mauvaise Raisons - Ma plante s'est jetée du troisième

All this week Alternative Airwaves is celebrating St. Jean Baptiste Day by showcasing artists from Quebec.  It'll all lead up to a podcast featuring some of these artists on Saturday.

Just a quick reminder before I get started - don't forget to tune into CKCU FM (93.1 FM if you're in Ottawa, http://www.ckcufm.com/ everywhere else) between 1pm and 2pm for Audio Sensory Resuscitation.  You'll hear some fun music plus my Weekly Airwave (which I did not have the time to properly record, but there is still a pick this week).

The first highlight this week is Alek et les Mauvaise Raisons.  They're an alternative / rock group out of Montreal, Québec.  Actually, I think I'd probably call their music pop-punk, as there is a lot of both of those elements in their music.  They currently have two albums up on Jamendo, and the one I listened to was Ma plante s'est jetée du troisième.  I think that translates to "my plant was thrown from the third" - third floor maybe?  I could be completely wrong here.

I'll be perfectly honest - I wasn't able to pick up on all of the lyrics, so I'm not entirely sure what they sing about (beyond the titles of the songs, which I do understand).  However, I liked the music behind the lyrics, and that's usually just as important (if not more so) to me.

Oh yes - if you haven't yet inferred from that paragraph, these guys sing completely in French.  I'm sure that if you are used to listening to French-language music, you'd have an easier time picking out the lyrics in the song - but to me, most of them just pass over my head.  That's unfortunate, but as I said - I think the music is good enough that the listening experience is not hampered by not understanding the lyrics.

Definitely worth the download - I say give them a chance!  I particularly recommend "L'éclaircie" and "Le film".

And as a book-end to this post, Jamendo.com has come out with its Jamendo Awards 2011.  Basically, you vote for your favourite artist in 7 categories: Instrumental, Pop, Electro, Urban, World, Experimental, and Rock.  Whoever wins that category gets $500!  It's pretty sweet, and if there are any bands you really like on Jamendo you should show your support by voting.  You can vote once per day in each category; personally I'm throwing my votes specifically to Bella Ruse and Brad Sucks (in the Pop and Rock categories, respectively).  The other ones I'm not sure about yet.

You can get more details over at Jamendo.com.  Oh, and this round of voting goes until July 10th, followed by a second round of voting from July 11th to 15th.

Monday, June 20, 2011

It's St. Jean Baptiste Week!

Happy Monday, everyone!  Definitely a good start to the week here in Ottawa, with the sun shining brightly.  I don't have a link to free music today - I simply enjoyed the weekend far too much (and I don't mean I drank a lot, the weather was just really nice and I didn't use a computer very much), so I'm not really prepared for the week yet.  But I do have some things to link to and talk about, so let's get started!

As the title of this post indicates, it's St. Jean Baptiste Week here at Alternative Airwaves.  What does this mean?  Well, June 24th is the Quebec National Holiday - otherwise known as St. Jean Baptiste Day.  You can read the full history via the Wikipedia link I provided, but the gist of it is that it is a European tradition that trickled down to the French colonies.  Everybody gets a day off, and I'm pretty sure it's often a good excuse for a party (just like Canada Day!).

Why is this relevant?  Because there is a veritable boat load of artists from Quebec who release their music under Creative Commons licenses.  Probably too many for me to play them all this week, but that is the aim: to introduce you to some great bands from La Belle Provence.  And then it'll all be capped off on Saturday, when the podcast will feature some of that great music (and maybe others I don't blog about in four days).  It's sure to be a great time for everybody.

 I said I had a link - and I do.  I just listened to episode 54 of Rathole Radio, and it was a very good show.  Well, it always is, but I particularly enjoyed the music this time around.  I highly recommend giving it a listen, and to subscribe to it.  You can do so at http://www.ratholeradio.org/, or you can find it on iTunes.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Review: Josh Woodward - "Sunny Side of the Street"

I mentioned earlier in the week that I liked artists who record a lot of music.  That being the case, I really, REALLY like what Josh Woodward is doing.  I don't even know how many albums this is for him, but his latest effort - Sunny Side of the Street - came out in February 2011, at any rate.  It's strange that I missed the release, since - with apologies to Roberto Luongo - he gets his tires pumped by nearly everyone in the Creative Commons community.

Sunny Side is a bit of a mixed bag.  First and foremost a pop album, it's a fun listen.  It's like Josh woke up one day, and said, "I'm going to record a new album!" and just ran with it.  There are only two tracks that I didn't like on this album: "Snooter" and "Baba Ganoush" - beyond that, it's a very creative album with songs that could have come from the Barenaked Ladies or Ben Folds Five.

Some stand-out tracks for me: "Coffee", "Fast Food Fantasy", and "Chainsaw".  I'll warn you about "Chainsaw" - it's a bit of a macabre song if you listen closely to the lyrics, but melodically it sounds fantastic.  If you're interested in following along with lyrics, you can get those from Woodward's website.

You can get Sunny Side of the Street from a number of places for free, but Jamendo is where I got mine.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Weekly Airwave #5 :: Bestie Boys: "Now Get busy"

Original Air Date: Tuesday June 14, 2011
Artist: Beastie Boys
Track: Now Get Busy
Album: The WIRED CD: Rip. Sample. Mash. Share.
Genre: Hip Hop

Info in Brief: Released in 2004, The WIRED CD features a collection of mainstream artists who released a few tracks for the purpose of sampling them, mashing them, and most importantly, sharing them.  You can read more about the CD and its history here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wired_CD

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Derek Clegg - It Seems as Though...

If there's one type of artist I really like amongst those who release their music under creative commons licenses, it's the prolific artist with frequent releases.  Derek Clegg is one of those artists, and his latest release - It Seems as Though - marks his sixth (I think?) album to date.  I'm not 100% certain of the number of releases, as I can't seem to find a reliable discography; the point remains, however, that Clegg likes to record a lot of music and make it available to as many people as possible.

If you've never heard any of Derek Clegg's music before, here's what you can expect: light folk-pop that deals with a variety of subjects.  On this album, there are some slight hints of other genres that pop in from time to time - mostly a bit of a country twang - and overall the It Seems as Though gives us a consistent folk-y sound.

It's a really good album, and I wish I could write more about it - but I'm just not very good at writing about music.  Just go ahead and download the album (or purchase his other albums from iTunes, if you want to support Clegg directly), and enjoy "Sante Fe" in particular.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Show Notes: #28 - The 27th Non-Themed Show

Thanks for joining me for another fun-filled show.  Some great tracks, ranging from the 1970s (Single Bullet Theory) to a new track from 2011 (Josh Woodward).  I started the show a little differently today thanks to a fun song by Hot Fiction; I also announced the next themed podcast, coming up June 25th.  But it's still June 11th, so enjoy this podcast now!

Direct Download (Length: 32:23, 29.6 MB)

  1. Hot Fiction - Start it Off
  2. Boxing Fox - Friends For Life
  3. Single Bullet Theory - Lies (Get their compilation album here)
  4. Nicolas Falcon - Big Big Boss (Get the Aaahhh Records compilation here)
  5. Longsleeves - A Man Crossed Out
  6. The Patinettes - The Man With the Electric Flag
  7. Motoroma - Compass
  8. The State Lottery - Fourth Street
  9. Josh Woodward - Coffee (Get Sunny Side of the Street here)

#28 - The 27th Non-Themed Show

Thanks for joining me for another fun-filled show.  Some great tracks, ranging from the 1970s (Single Bullet Theory) to a new track from 2011 (Josh Woodward).  I started the show a little differently today thanks to a fun song by Hot Fiction; I also announced the next themed podcast, coming up June 25th.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Friday Morning Mysteries

I don't have any music for you today, but I do have something pretty cool.  I was browsing archive.org this morning and came across CBS Radio Mystery Theatre.  I only listened to the first episode - "The Old Ones Are Hard to Kill" - but I was struck by how well-written and acted it was.  At times, yes, it was a little ridiculous; and near the end, when the second boarder was introduced, I figured out where it was going.  But it was fun to listen to for 40 minutes while I worked.

There are 1399 episodes available, so it will take you quite a while to get through them.  You can find all the episodes at this link: http://www.archive.org/details/CbsRadioMysteryTheater_cbsrmt

In other news, I mentioned yesterday that Capital Grass and the No Men are playing tonight at Zaphod's.  Well, there's another show this weekend too.  Brad Sucks is playing the Elmdale - probably his last Ottawa show for a while, according to his blog.  That's unfortunate for me, because I don't think I'm going to be able to make it.

Here are the details in poster form, though, in case you want to check it out.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Patinettes + Show Announcement

  I was looking for a catchy bluegrass band to link to (reasons why will become apparent below) - but did you know that Jamendo does not have a bluegrass tag?  Of all the styles and genres on Jamendo.com, no one has tagged anything as bluegrass.  Interesting!  At any rate, I found a band that I thought played the exact style that I was looking for anyway: The Patinettes!

The Patinettes are a band based in Zaragoza, Spain (I don't even know where that is, to be honest) that plays a mix of country, folk, rock, bluegrass, and even a little bit of surf thrown in for good measure.  The result is a fun album - called Bliss - with a little bit for everyone.  I think the track that won me over was the second one - "The Man With the Electric Flag".

There's not too much else information about them online, but if I've missed anything, please point it in my direction!


Now, the reason why I was looking for a band of this type: coming up tomorrow night (Friday, June 10th) is another show by Capital Grass and the No Men!  This time they are playing at Zaphod Beeblebrox with Mark Martrye & Justice R.F. 

Their music is similar (but a little different) than The Patinettes, and they put on a pretty good live show.  Check them out if you're in the Ottawa area!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Weekly Airwave #4 :: Bad Fate: "Brain Enthusiast"

Original Air Date: Tuesday, June 7, 2011
Artist: Bad Fate
Track: Brain Enthusiast
Album: Olympic City
Genre: Noise / Pop / Indie Rock

Info in Brief: Bad Fate is made up of (from their CBC Radio 3 Profile): Kate Grave, Miss Bean, Water Works, Chester Chuckles, and Largo.  Influenced by Eric's Trip; album was recorded between March and May of 2009.  Bad Fate are from Vancouver, British Columbia - Go Canucks Go!

Side note: If you hadn't noticed, I've changed the name from Steve's Pick to Weekly Airwave.  I've included the Steve's Pick tag on this post just this once, but it's gone from here on out.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Frontregen - Frontregen

Still catching up on my little backlog of free music to listen to.  Up today is Austrian group Frontregen, with their self-titled December 2010 release Frontregen.

It's hard to classify this album into a particular genre, which is why I think it's tagged only as "Indie" on Jamendo.com.  At times, they're playing a really intense alternative rock, while at others they're on a lighter, folk-pop sound.  It all works pretty smoothly overall though, so don't take this as a complaint!

They have an interesting blend of instruments apart from your standard guitar/bass/drums.  They've got a piano in there on some tracks, and probably a few more I can't immediately pick out.  However, it all comes together to make a very nice, melodic sound.

Some tracks I would recommend: "Master Plan", "Stories", and "Get Up, Get Out, Get On".  Great album!

Also, don't forget to tune into CKCU FM today at 1:00 PM EST for Audio Sensory Resuscitation with Mike Mersereau!  You can hear my next pick of the week at some point in there as well.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Monday Morning Free Music :: Dan Masquelier

Here's something to get your morning started; a free album from Californian singer/songwriter Dan Masquelier.  The album is called - appropriately enough - Wake Up.

It's availble for free download from Jamendo.com; in particular I recommend the tracks "Remain True", "Summer is a Blonde Girl", and "If I Could See".  It's a nice indie-pop / folk album, and should wake you up this morning.

Enjoy!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Friday Free Music - Workshop O.S.T.

One of my emerging favourite netlabels, Aaahh Records, recently released a fun little compilation album featuring some rare / secret tracks from artists on their label.  It's a good mix of sounds, and is available for free download from their website.  Here's the track listing:

1. Nicolas Falcon – Big Big Boss (cc-by)
2. Entertainment for the Braindead – Coming Back (cc-by-nc-nd)
3. Keyboard Rebel – Of Late at the Fairground (c)
4. Emilie Lund – Something is Eating me (cc-by-nc)
5. Bryyn – Lunar Patterns (cc-by-nc)
6. ne:o –glückinderluft (cc-by-nc-nd)
7. Uniform Motion – Roll Over (cc-by-nc-sa)
8. MSC – Schrott, Mann! (cc-by-nc-sa)
9. The Wind Whistles – Ballad of a Murderous Wife (c)


You can download Workshop O.S.T. here: http://www.aaahh-records.net/2011/05/20/workshop-o-s-t/

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Viola - Anything Can Stop Us

I mentioned this album on Twitter earlier, but thought I'd give it a full post.  Finnish indie group Viola recently published their 2005 sophomore album, Anything Can Stop Us on Jamendo.com - and it's pretty sweet!

I listened to this while I was working this morning, and I found it to be a good upbeat album - well, apart from the first track.  It's a little slow and meandering, but everything quickly picks up with the second track.  FrostClick called it "80s Electronic", and I guess that's an apt description.  It certainly does have an 80s vibe to it.

A couple tracks I singled out: "I Don't Know How to Party" and ""A For Apathy" were among my favourites.  Anything Can Stop Us is available on Jamendo.com!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Steve's Pick #3 :: Alison Crowe: "Halelujah"

Original Air Date: Tuesday, May 31, 2011
Artist: Alison Crowe
Track: Halelujah
Album: N/A (Live)
Genre: Folk

Info in Brief: Canadian singer/songwriter, Alison Crowe is a big name in the Creative Commons circles.  She releases all her original tracks under a Creative Commons license.  She currently has at least 8 albums of her own work, plus numerous covers apart from this Cohen classic.  A bit of trivia: her version of Halelujah was originally supposed to be played during a scene in the film The Watchmen!  Unfortunately, according to director Zack Snyder, her version was "too romantic" and "sexy" for a scene that was supposed to "come across as ironic".  See her laundry list of covers here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allison_Crowe#Cover_Songs