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DEEP


The Black Dog inspires creativity -- its high ceilings, floor-to-ceiling windows and spacious tables encourage daydreaming, journaling, doodling and other precursors to art making.


THE SHOWS




Twin Town High (vol. 8)

Your Locally Grown Alternative Newspaper


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poppoppoppoppop Askeleton: The Future by Keith Pille
Last Updated: 2009-04-12

Here’s one of the weirdest memories I have of my formative years: I remember watching MTV and seeing the video for INXS’s “New Sensation,” in which frontman Michael Hutchence (in suit, tie and ponytail) vamps at the camera with animated neon squiggles radiating from his head and a repetitive two-chord guitar part jangling in the background. For whatever reason, this spectacle left me with an intense feeling along the lines of “Wow, 1987 is soooo futuristic, and I’m lucky to be here.”

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Filesize: 4370.92 kb
Author: Email | WebSite | Stats: Rating 7.67 (6) | | Rate This
poppoppoppoppop Sailor Martin - Jolie Marie's Stocking by Sailor Martin
Last Updated: 2006-12-15

Sung by a tattooed and pierced sailor puppet, "Jolie Marie's Stocking" tells of the pleasure our intrepid sailor takes in wearing silk stockings while at sea.

The original recording is "Second Hand Rose," by the Broadway Dance Orchestra, recorded in 1921 for Edison Diamond Disc. Lyrics and singing are Sailor Martin originals, though.

Filesize: 0 kb Version: 1.0
Author: Email | WebSite | Stats: Rating 6.11 (9) | | Rate This
poppoppoppoppop Sailor Martin: (A Glass of) Chrtistmas Cheer by Sailor Martin
Last Updated: 2006-12-15

Sailor Martin, a pierced and tattoed sailor puppet (read more about him at the Sailor Martin web page, sings a Christmas carol, apparently believing Yule to be a season of alcoholism and sin.

Filesize: Unknown kb Version: 1.0
Author: Email | WebSite | Stats: Rating 7.67 (6) | | Rate This
poppoppoppoppop Hockey Night - For Guys Eyes Only by Donny Doane
Last Updated: 2005-12-01

Whenever I start a new project I always wonder if this is the piece where I’ll get all H.P. Lovecraft on everyone's ass. Well, sadly for all the goths out there, this isn't the one. Why? Because there's nothing frightening or morose about St. Paul indie-rock outfit Hockey Night. No, they are only scary in a Lola Heatherton kind of way. The rank sickness of the moldering universe doesn’t seep through to cast its dead light upon a glowing world when I listen to Hockey Night's soon to be released sophomore effort, Keep Guessin', and the spirits of the night dance not to lumbering minor key malaise but rather to magical flutes, lyres and perhaps a zither or two for good measure. This is the summer where the lowly flip-flop stomps the mighty Doc Marten, where a fun and energetic local band kicks overly serious musical mopesters to the curb. There's nothing dark about Hockey Night's music, and this is precisely its operative virtue.

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poppoppoppoppop Digitata - Spring Fever by Nathan Hall
Last Updated: 2005-12-01

For some strange reason I have yet to be able to explain, local electronica act Digitata's hypnotic new CD, Sexually Transmitted Emotion, is the disc I have consistently been falling asleep to this week. Not in the Good-God-this-new-REM-album-is-so-boring sense, more of a My-what-a-soothing-sound-oh-man-it's-already-3 A. M.-why-am-I-still-working type of vibe. The reason I mention this is that I have also duly noted that Digitata-fueled dreams are by far some of the most bizarre and intense dreams I have experienced in my 26 years on this here planet.

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poppoppoppoppop Seymore Saves the World - Red Wing by Keith Pille
Last Updated: 2005-12-01

So, here we are halfway through 2005, and the world has no shortage of problems. We should be worried, depending on who you ask, about environmental degradation, or military adventurism, or a housing bubble, or steroids in baseball, or the United Nations' bid to overthrow the United States and install some sort of godless One World Government wherein we all have to wear gray and drive tractors around.

What can the average person do in the face of all of this fear? We can chill out, that's what. And that's how the Minneapolis keyboard-pop band Seymore Saves the World manage to live up to their name; light and pleasant and fun, their self-titled debut EP is perfect for sitting back and getting lost in the easy melodies and excellently weird keyboard noises, and, in the process, forgetting your (and the world's) troubles for 20 minutes.

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poppoppoppoppop Divorcee - Still Life by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-12-01

Four years ago Divorcee appeared to be that rarest of all local music commodities, an instant-success-feel-good story. Their debut, Lovesick, was rubber-stamped with the approval of the local rock elites - partially recorded at Semisonic's rehearsal studio and mixed by ace veteran Bryan Hannah. The slick pop milkshake went down smooth wherever it was heard, with the insta-anthem title track finding strong college radio airplay and national press kudos at a level rarely seen for local self-released debuts.

There was every reason to believe Divorcee were going to be the great new local pop hope of the 2000's - that is, until the wheels fell off the project and the band imploded after just a few gigs around town.

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poppoppoppoppop JoAnna James - Wake by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-12-01

JoAnna James the voice: sultry, soulful, a lived-in conveyor of world-weary wisdom alternately seductively breathy or intimidatingly booming in scope. JoAnna James the person: bubbly, personable and - the big surprise - young. It would be hard to reconcile the cheerful 23-year-old woman sitting across from me with the person one envisions after listening to Desire, James' about-to-be-released second album, if I hadn't already witnessed James in concert. I would have had a hard time believing that this chipper, wide-eyed St. Paul native could really be the force behind the poignant ache of songs like "Don't Try" or the feral ferocity of "Desire" if I hadn't seen the proof with my own eyes.

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poppoppoppoppop The Humbugs - One More Zero by Sally McGraw
Last Updated: 2005-12-01

Musical talent can remain dormant for years. Sometimes it takes a perfectly timed, perfectly formulated catalyst to trigger the reaction that brings it forth. For many, that catalyst is the experience of hearing music so powerful and personally moving that it inspires a desire to create music in the same vein. For others, it can be the deliciously heady rush of a well-received performance experience. But for some, that catalyst comes in the form of another musician.

Such is the case for Adam and Kristin Marshall, the musical masterminds behind the Humbugs. Purveyors of an energetic, harmony-heavy breed of quality pop, this five-piece outfit regularly captivates Twin Cities audiences with its bright, clean sound and dynamic live performances. The group relies on the standby pop configuration of drums, bass, lead and rhythm, yet manages to weave surprisingly varied sounds.

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poppoppoppoppop Bryan Barnett - What You Do by Cindy Collins
Last Updated: 2005-12-01

Bryan Barnett sells "large pieces of iron" (cars) far more easily than the small discs of plastic holding his songs. "I honestly live the songs, which makes it hard to detach," he explains. "It's not just playing songs for fun or a hobby. It's part of my life. I'm a pretty miserable guy (laughs). Actually, I hope someday I will write a record of all happy songs, but I want to do it when I feel that way."

At the Chatterbox Pub, he talks about living in South Minneapolis and the hopes, fears and inspirations for his music. Barnett's songs are filled with longing and regret, but gaze toward hopeful and resolved futures. Listening to Barnett’s emotive voice and guitar pulls me into his world, so much so that on first listen I had to take breaks every 20 minutes to go out in the sun.

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poppoppoppoppop The Vets - Raging Scathe by Holly Day
Last Updated: 2005-12-01

"Adam was the one who actually thought of our name, just because he sort of liked the ring to it," explains The Vet's lead singer and guitarist Andy Larson. "I mean, it sounds a little bit like a messed-up take on a '60s garage band name, you know, like The Jets, or something like that, except that it sounds a little weird. Like, nobody would call a garage band 'The Vets.' I, personally, sort of like the kind of vague political context of it, but it's not really supposed to mean anything. It's just supposed to be like 'veterans,' [and not veterinarians, like I'd originally thought - h.d.] because anybody can be a veteran of pretty much anything." He adds, "It's meant to be slightly ambiguous. We don't think about our name too much. That's one of the best things about being in a band, is that once you're named, you don't have to think about it anymore, because the naming process sucks. You just end up the three or four people in a room tossing out ideas, and then somebody'll get excited, and somebody else'll be like, 'no,' and then you’re back to it again, and it goes on for hours. Naming bands is hard."

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poppoppoppoppop Pernice Brothers - My So-Called Celibate Life by Steve McPherson
Last Updated: 2005-12-01

Back when I was living in Northampton, my band briefly considered calling our next album Western Massachusetts, but nixed that idea when a friend informed us that Joe Pernice's Scud Mountain Boys had already put out an album called Massachusetts. "Nuts to them," thought I, and never even gave it a listen. A few years later, my band's "next album" had become our "last album," and looking at the remains of a band and a relationship I had put a lot of work into, I had my second encounter with Joe Pernice in the form of the Pernice Brothers' third album, Yours, Mine and Ours. It seems that things don’t always work out the way you intend them, and are rarely what they seem.

Such is the case with the Pernice Brothers.

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poppoppoppoppop Robert McCreedy - Not True by Holly Day
Last Updated: 2005-12-01

The first time I met Robert "Bob" McCreedy was at my sister-in-law's house. It was sort of a belated housewarming party, but since I'd practically been in labor at the time they’d bought the house, I hadn't actually been able to see it until this point. Anyway, Bob was there, and I was in the kitchen cutting up my fancy housewarming cake when he came up to say "hi," because he really is a nice, polite guy. Myself, I'm a grumpy old bitch, and instead of smiling and making small talk like I was supposed to, I waved the gigantic butcher knife I was carving up the cake with in Bob's face and ordered him to carry plates out into the living room and serve dessert to people. And that was the end of my first meeting with Bob McCreedy.

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poppoppoppoppop Teenage Fanclub - It's All in My Mind by Rob van Alsyne
Last Updated: 2005-12-01

Roughly a dozen years ago Teenage Fanclub was tagged for stardom. Spin hailed their sophomore record Bandwagonesque as 1991's best (above Nevermind) and the Fannies were appearing on Saturday Night Live. Could it really be that a group of Scottish lads schooled in the teachings of power-pop goodness would finally capture the fame that had eluded the likes of their American forebears like Big Star, the dBs and Tommy Keene? Somewhat predictably for those who know their power-pop history, the temporary spotlight proved to be misleading as the Fanclub returned with a "difficult" follow-up album (1993's Thirteen) and gradually slowed the pace of their releases and stateside appearances.

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poppoppoppoppop I Self Devine - Ice Cold by Steve McPherson
Last Updated: 2005-12-01

"I was at the gym at Martin Luther King Park and I was watching the game, and I overheard two cats talking about 50 Cent and Nas and they were talking about who was better. And I heard one cat was like, 'Well, I don't even want to hear Nas; if I want to learn I can go to school,'" explains I Self Devine at a South Minneapolis coffee shop. I've asked him about how he's felt about the different cities he's lived in, but the conversation has drifted to a perennial problem in hip-hop and popular music in general: how to get people's attention without feeling like you've sold out.

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Filesize: 3549 kb
Author: WebSite | Stats: Rating 8 (1) | | Rate This
poppoppoppoppop Beight - Parallels by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-12-01

A lot can happen to one's musical career in just a few short years - ask Michael Jackson - and although the transformation Minneapolis musician Brad Senne's undergone is of a somewhat different nature, it's been no less extreme. Back when the '90s were drawing to a close, Senne was growling atop crunchy guitars in hardcore outfit Picturesque and acting out his Angry Young Man phase. Now, just five years later, it’s a far different Senne who's resurfaced under the name Beight with a polished pop platter in tow, the just released File in Rhythm.

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Filesize: 3179.68 kb
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poppoppoppoppop Lucero - Sixteen by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-08-26

Lucero are a workingman’s rock band. Plenty of groups pay lip service to the ideal of life as a touring musician, but few are actually willing to embrace the harsh reality of playing on a Wednesday night in Idaho (one of many not-so-glamorous gigs currently slated on Lucero’s upcoming eight week long tour). Playing 200 shows a year, self-releasing records, re-injecting much needed passion into rough and tumble rock—Lucero takes on all tasks the same way —full tilt.

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poppoppoppoppop The Blind Shake - Roosevelt by Donny Doane
Last Updated: 2005-08-26

Roughly 13 years ago I was record shopping at Northern Lights on University Avenue in St. Paul. Rifle Sport front man and then proprietor of Big Money Inc., Chris Johnson, was delivering an animated monologue that had something to do with “paying the bills.” The clerk just smirked and rolled his eyes. I quietly paid for The Jesus Lizard’s Head and Cows’ Cunning Stunts, then made my way home to enjoy these twisted masterpieces.

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poppoppoppoppop Cloud Cult - Living On the Outside of Your Skin by Steve McPherson
Last Updated: 2005-08-26

“I'd like to get a piano that works, and I’d like to play piano a lot. And I’d like to work on the farm a little more,” offers Cloud Cult leader Craig Minowa, discussing his plans for the future. It’s a room temperature early summer evening and I’m sitting with Minowa and the rest of his band on cellist Sarah Young’s deck in south Minneapolis.

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poppoppoppoppop The Narrator - Pregnant Boys by Nathan Hall
Last Updated: 2005-08-26

Picture, if you will, a young man fighting with his inner critic, eventually allowing himself to connect with a middle-aged woman he is smitten with over the course of the night at a house party. Then you realize that your storyteller for the evening is, shall we say, highly unreliable. In fact, the story is not about that at all. Instead, it concerns the sorrowful, 110 percent non-ironic mourning of some long-dead house pets.

Welcome to the wonderful and wacky world of the Narrator, a hard-working but still relatively new-ish Chicago-based indie rock band currently signed to Flame Shovel Records.

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poppoppoppoppop eels - Sweet Li'l Thing by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-08-26

Mark Oliver Everett, the 42-year-old mastermind behind the musical group eels is a musical chameleon nearly on par with David Bowie in his penchant for restless re-envisioning. When eels (not Eels or The Eels, just eels, as it is strongly noted in their press materials) briefly swam in the mainstream, thanks to their 1996 hit single, “Novacaine for the Soul,” Everett looked like a poster-boy of the then booming Alternative Nation, replete with neon dyed hair and painted fingernails, only to reemerge just a few years later sporting dark hair and a mangy beard, with a decidedly darker and morbid album (1998’s Electro-Shock Blues) about the untimely deaths of his family members. The intervening years have been just as full of surprises with eels consistently scoring critical kudos even as their stateside commercial appeal has shrunk to the point that the band’s new double album, Blinking Lights and Other Revelations, is seeing the light of day on indie imprint Vagrant Records (the same label that launched the start of Paul Westerberg’s “basement” phase three years ago).

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poppoppoppoppop Redstart - Alien Day by Sally McGraw
Last Updated: 2005-08-26

It is an unspoken rule that too many stars spoil a movie. You just know if the cast list includes more than four big names, it’s going to be a load of unwatchable dreck. This leads one to believe that performers can cancel out each others’ talent in collaborative situations. Yet the rule doesn’t apply across the artistic board. Sure, we’d love to eradicate the Traveling Wilburys from popular memory, but think of the Wu Tang Clan, the Buena Vista Social Club and Gorillaz. Unlike actors, groups of widely renowned musicians seem perfectly capable of complementing each other. In fact, talented musicians seem to bring out the best in other talented musicians. Throwing a group of amazing players on stage or into the studio can yield exceptional—and often unexpected—results. Such is the case with local gem Redstart.

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poppoppoppoppop Okkervil River - For Real by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-05-25

There’s no way getting around it so I’m just going to say it—Okkervil River make difficult music. Their songs are frequently long, the vocalist not always in tune, and their lyrics quick to punish those without a thesaurus at the ready (anyone happen to know off hand what the word “diapason” means?). Like all the best art, Okkervil River require a bit of work for you to fully reap the rewards of their dense and adventurous music—and are worth every second of the effort.

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poppoppoppoppop Vox Vermillion - Wanted by Steve McPherson
Last Updated: 2005-05-25

Vox Vermillion are going places. Or rather, they’ve just gotten back from places all over with Atmosphere, P.O.S. and Grayskull. Come again? They’re not Hip-Hop, but singer/pianist Kelsey Crawford explains, “We were all very stunned at the acceptance we got. Typically the audience members that we met actually looked a little punk rock to me.” I guess it’s not a shock to find Atmosphere fans looking a little punk rock, but the crossover goes a little deeper than that. Hip-Hop acts around the Twin Cities have approached the group asking to sample their creepily compelling blend of cabaret, rock and chamber music, although today the only guy who approaches Crawford, cellist Emily Dantuma, bassist Ollie Dodge and drummer B.J. Wuollet in a Dinkytown coffeehouse is asking for money for destitute children.

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poppoppoppoppop Hello Blue - Ted Is Made of Wood by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-05-25

John Lennon and Paul McCartney, Jeff Tweedy and Jay Bennett, those two dudes from Pinback. Throughout history memorable music has come from the melding of two creative minds into one dynamic duo (some of the time anyway—sorry Captain and Tennille). Jason Fox and Ned Moore can now be added to the illustrious names on the list of terrific twosomes. Inseparable musical buddies since they met a decade ago in their early teens, Fox and Moore’s musical camaraderie has culminated in the release of one of this year’s best local rock releases, What It Takes To Wake Up, the full-length debut from their band Hello Blue.

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poppoppoppoppop The Ashtray Hearts - Rules by Steve McPherson
Last Updated: 2005-05-25

In Elizabeth Bishop’s poem ‘The Moose,’ passengers on a bus late at night fall into fitful rest hearing “[i]n the creakings and noises/ an old conversation/ -not concerning us,/ but recognizable, somewhere.” Those half-heard conversations that feel strangely familiar when you’re alone and it’s late are the Ashtray Hearts’ bread and butter. Their first album (2002’s Old Numbers) was the perfect soundtrack to late night nostalgia and melancholy, and their new long-player Perfect Halves continues in that vein, even if things are a little different this time around.

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poppoppoppoppop James Apollo - Dead Men Weigh More by Keith Pille
Last Updated: 2005-05-25

James Apollo claims to aspire, both in person and on his website, to live by a modern-day version of “the code of the hobo.” While it’s hard to imagine him riding empty boxcars from town to town or smoking old stogies he found (short, but not too big around, if you’re going for the full Roger Miller “King of the Road” effect), some other parts of the hobo mythology actually do make some sense; after listening to his latest opus, Good Grief, I don’t have much trouble imagining him sitting at a fire with a beat-up guitar, belting out a laid-back (and very nicely arranged) version of “The Big Rock Candy Mountain.”

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poppoppoppoppop Fitzgerald - How Far North by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-05-25

Married couples tend to have shared hobbies. Perhaps they’re both bicycling enthusiasts, maybe they take cooking classes together. Nathan and Mandy Tensen-Woolery follow a slightly different path, their shared hobby is the innovative folk-rock band Fitzgerald, and the high-school-sweethearts-turned-married-musicians have just unleashed their second proper album, Raised By Wolves, on local label of the moment 2024 Records.

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poppoppoppoppop Bleeding Hickeys - Roadkill by Cyn Collins
Last Updated: 2005-05-25

“If you play rock and roll, you’ll never get old,” Phil Solem, of the Rembrandts, told “ageless” Chachi Darin, the brand new drummer of the Bleeding Hickeys. Darin’s bandmates (vocalist Jenn Gori, bassist Sarah Black and guitarist Christina Schmitt) agree: “Sometimes rock and roll suspends you, keeps you ageless.” As with vampires, that can be a blessing, or a curse. “Just think of Keith Richards and Iggy Pop . . .” offers Black. “You’re like, how is he alive?” counters Schmitt. “You either die young, or you live forever,” concludes Black. “You live forever. It’s an extreme sport!” declares Gori triumphantly, ending our group contemplation of rock ’n’ roll aging.

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poppoppoppoppop Arthur Yoria - She Looks Like You by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-05-25

With the advent of affordable home recording computer programs putting a thousand synthesized versions of instruments at any musical amateur’s fingertips, instrumental inflation is on the verge of spiraling out of control. More and more the independent musician appears to be a sugar-loving kid spazzing out in the 21st century music technology candy store. Why put out a traditional three-minute pop song when you can throw a computerized flugelhorn bridge on there, or better yet, an extended glockenspiel solo! Thankfully, restraint still reigns in some circles and Arthur Yoria’s debut album, I’ll Be Here Awake, serves powerful notice that plenty more gold can be mined out of traditional pop sounds.

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poppoppoppoppop Mary Timony - Friend To JC by Sean McCarthy
Last Updated: 2005-05-25

The recent resurgence of “The Family Guy” on the airwaves proves that a brilliant concept—say, like a talking dog, or blowjob jokes—can be successfully revisited. And despite Hollywood’s best attempts to discourage retrospection (note: reversing a character’s race does not make a film edgy or interesting, despite the claims of “Guess Who?” or “The Manchurian Candidate”), Mary Timony looks back to her own past on her newest album, Ex Hex. A guitar-heavy record that has more hooks than a tackle box, Ex Hex also features some of Timony’s most interesting compositions. And if we’re really lucky, Ashton Kutcher will star in the movie based on the record right after his relationship with Demi Moore begins to fall apart.

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poppoppoppoppop Wes Burdine & the Librarians - A Sense of Duty (remix) by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-05-25

Wes Burdine was never a rocker—an evocative lyricist, a talented young songwriter, sure, but never a rocker. If one thing was made abundantly clear by his solo debut last year, This Is How I Discovered Gold, it’s that Burdine, 23, was too busy poking at listener’s gray matter or tugging on their heart strings to worry much about making them tap their toes. That’s why my first spins of Burdine’s The Jose Canseco EP, recorded with his newly found backing mates the Librarians, caught me completely off guard. It’s the sunny pop music day that follows This Is How I Discovered Gold’s long and tormented night.

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poppoppoppoppop The STNNNG - My Golden Oldie by Ian Anderson
Last Updated: 2005-04-13

Don’t pick a fight with Chris Besinger—seriously, it’s not a good idea. Ever ready with a witty retort or some clever comeback on the tip of his tongue, the lead singer of the STNNNG just might kick your ass.

The STNNNG’s debut album Dignified Sissy is great. It’s dirty, it’s loud and it captures their untamable live show.

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poppoppoppoppop Crooked Fingers - Call to Love by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-04-13

Eric Bachmann likes to play dress up and his musical resume bears the proof. For nearly a decade during his tenure fronting the Archers of Loaf he was an angry young man bathed in feedback. At the same time, however, he was sporadically sneaking off to change into his ambient instrumental film score music clothes under the alter ego Barry Black. Since the Archers fell by the wayside in 1998, Bachmann’s penchant for quick-change stylistic shifts has only increased. His solo outings with a rotating cast of collaborators under the moniker Crooked Fingers have touched on everything from stripped down acoustic gutter blues to mariachi-horn driven pop pomp—at Bachmann’s current rate of genre-hopping don’t be surprised if Crooked Fingers first reggae album hits shelves sometime later this year.

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poppoppoppoppop Cardinal Sin - Where We Shine by Steve McPherson
Last Updated: 2005-04-13

Remember those commercials for Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups that re-enacted the drama of the first accidental combination of chocolate and peanut butter into one potent mix? Some bright soul at Grey Flight Records should make a promo spot for the Cardinal Sin, but instead of chocolate and peanut butter, insert pop and punk. And no, they’re not the first band to come up with this winning combination, but they are an effective reminder of why this one-two punch is such a sugary and bittersweet delight.

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poppoppoppoppop Ben Glaros - Don't Get High by Keith Pille
Last Updated: 2005-04-07

Some albums fall together almost immediately. Uncle Tupelo, for instance, recorded their best (and least-creatively named) album in the space of March 16-20, 1992.

Others take a bit longer. Local scene veteran Ben Glaros figures it was almost a decade between the inception and the completion of his solo album. “I started taking the solo project thing seriously several years ago,” he says. “Like eight years ago. It’s taken me quite a while to get to where I was actually ready to put out an official release. It’s been a slow process.”

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poppoppoppoppop TELEPHONE!: Life On Hold by Brooke Aldridge
Last Updated: 2005-03-24

Produced by Howard Hamilton (Saucer, The Busy Signals) and Matt Freed (Domo Sound), Electro-Pop outfit TELEPHONE! rox the mic with an infectious tale of modern infatuation!

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poppoppoppoppop TELEPHONE!/Venus/more...: FAME [Bowie/Lennon] by Brooke Aldridge
Last Updated: 2005-03-24

Produced by Chan Poling (The Suburbs, Chan Poling Music), this all-star tribute to the Bowie-Lennon hit features *FAB* lead vox from Lolly Pop (TELEPHONE!) as well as Venus (All The Pretty Horses) and sports cameos from Al Bergstrom (Panda), Dr. Fink (Prince & The Revolution), Hugo Klaers (The Suburbs) as well as Bruce Allen (The Suburbs)!

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poppoppoppoppop The Worn Out Shoes - Ain't Found Home by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-03-24

Things get weirder out in the country. Free from society’s watchful eye, people’s eccentric tendencies are left to grow unchecked, their behavior and style taking cues from the surrounding wilderness rather than the latest episode of the “O.C.”

Donny Moon knows this truth better than most. In a former life, in the city of Minneapolis, Moon was Phil Parhamovich, running mate of legendary local pop outfit the Hang Ups and musical partner with HU guitarist Jeff Kearns in the light pop leaning band the Waves. A few years back Parhamovich made the move to an isolated patch of rural Wisconsin … and things started get interesting.

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poppoppoppoppop Lolly Pop (TELEPHONE!) - Elevator Operator by Jason Baker
Last Updated: 2005-03-24

Telephone head off on a really Electroclash-y direction with their track, with Lolly Pop on vocals. The track has a double-entendre at it's core that has just enough uncertainty in it that you can't quite decide just how dirty they're trying to be. It sure sounds like they've got their minds in the gutter with this song, but that may just be my interpretation of it.

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poppoppoppoppop Fog - We're Winning by Holly Day
Last Updated: 2005-03-24

“I don’t know if I’m a great lover of new technologies,” says Fog front man and multi-instrumentalist Andrew Broder. “I mean, they’re there. I’ll use whatever’s at my disposal that I happen to think sounds good. When you get into electronic music and things like that, there’s always a danger that the music becomes too reliant on new technology, and the music sometimes can feel empty in that way, where the music just becomes a matter of keeping up with the latest products, and if you don’t have them included in your music, you’re somehow behind the times. I’m very hesitant to get into that kind of thing. But that said, you know, it’s really cool to be able to make a whole album on your home computer,” he adds, laughing.

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poppoppoppoppop Midnight Evils - Let Me In by Holly Day
Last Updated: 2005-03-24

The first time I met with the Midnight Evils, it was an unseasonably cold evening in March of 2000. I had been unable to find a babysitter, so the band offered to drive down to my apartment before playing a show at the Turf Club to celebrate the release of their debut CD, Once inside, the core foursome of Curan Folsum (bass), Stevie Cooper and Brian “Vandy” Vanderwerf (guitars), and Jesse Tomlinson (drums) found themselves in an apartment with almost no furniture and a very inquisitive 5-year-old playing Superspy around the corner. They managed to make the “best” of it, however, sprawling out on the floor around the mic of my Norelco tape recorder, pretty much filling my entire living room with arms and legs (Jesse Tomlinson has to be at least 6’4” alone). They were probably the most accommodating bunch of guys I have ever met in my life.

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poppoppoppoppop Ryan Lee - Unconditional by Sally McGraw
Last Updated: 2005-03-17

Singer-songwriters are understated exhibitionists. They are driven to write and perform music as a way to purge themselves of experiences too painful or complex to examine in the mundane light of daily life. They may do it under the guise of high art, or with political undercurrents, or even in a state of utter ignorance—but make no mistake, they all do it.

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poppoppoppoppop Chariots - Twister Party Fails to Get Dirty by Ian Anderson
Last Updated: 2005-03-17

Travis Bos is back with a brand new invention. With his new band, Chariots, the ex-Song of Zarathustra front man has picked up right where he left off, only this time sporting a slightly more user-friendly sound. Chariots’ debut album, Congratulations, is worthy of its title, and will no doubt be earning the group plenty of kudos in the coming year.

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poppoppoppoppop Lou Barlow - Home by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-03-17

At this point in his 20-plus years career, Lou Barlow’s had more musical lives than Madonna. His resume is staggering: bass player in the original lineup of legendary ’80s collegiate rockers Dinosaur Jr., warped lo-fi noisemaker in Sebadoh, unlikely top 40 artist with his band Folk Implosion (whose slinky 1995 single “Natural One” was an unexpected smash). Despite Barlow’s storied career, there was one (seemingly minor) achievement he hadn’t managed until now—making his own solo record.

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poppoppoppoppop Antony & the Johnsons - Hope There's Someone by Holly Day
Last Updated: 2005-03-02

“I wish I could have a kiss at every station, you know what I mean?,” says Antony of Antony & the Johnsons about putting together his concert rider for his upcoming tour. “To have someone there to give me a real, fresh waterfall kiss everywhere I go. That would be nice. But I don’t think they can sort that out for me, you know? So I guess I would just put on it that I’d like a little petting zoo at each concert. That would be really nice, to have a petting zoo with kittens and wombats, and kisses. And maybe an ostrich or an emu, some birds just hanging around eating seeds and talking. That’d be really cool, too. But there would have to be wombats, they’re really incredible. They’re so cute.”

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poppoppoppoppop Sage Francis - Slow Down Gandhi by Sean McCarthy
Last Updated: 2005-03-02

Over the course of his nearly decade-old career in rap’s underground, Sage Francis has been called many names: college radio DJ, vegetarian, battle rap champion, slam poet, white boy rapper, self-bootlegger and even paid spokesperson for ESPN’s X-Games. On his newest album, A Healthy Distrust, Sage is poised to add another label to his ledger—Hip-Hop’s sharpest and most outspoken critic. A Healthy Distrust finds Sage fully conscious of his surroundings, be it examining failed individual relationships or the current climate of national politics. Armed with nothing more than his words and moral outrage, Sage takes aim and unloads on plenty of worthy targets—Clear Channel, trustafarians, ex-girlfriends, the Vote or Die campaign—and renders them all immobile as he tongue lashes them unmercifully.

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poppoppoppoppop Jeff Hanson - This Time It Will by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-03-02

The first reaction to hearing local folk-pop singer Jeff Hanson’s music is inevitably bewilderment. Hanson was born with a head-scratchingly high-registered singing voice, and initial CD player encounters with Hanson’s debut album, Son, had me convinced my stereo was beset with some sort of mechanical malfunction. After getting over the shock of the voice, however, a second, more lasting, assessment took place—this kid can play. The choir-girl-voice-trapped-in-a-man’s-body may be what grabbed my ear, but it was Hanson’s cagey songwriting skills that refused to set my lobe free from its melodic deathgrip in the months to follow.

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poppoppoppoppop The Slats - Teena by Ian Anderson
Last Updated: 2005-03-02

The Slats are a Midwest-spanning power-trio—giving new meaning to the term “separation anxiety”—destined for garage-rock stardom. Based in both Iowa and Minnesota, with band members split up due to various school and work commitments, the Slats have managed to come together as a cohesive unit of noise-rock, with a sound tight enough you could be forgiven for thinking they cohabitate rather than cross state lines to cook up their racket.

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poppoppoppoppop The Centurions - Hyde's In Guys' Heads by Keith Pille
Last Updated: 2005-03-02

There are bands who approach their music and their lives very seriously, practicing a couple of times a week and never laughing; walking around all grim and generally doing the best they can to work the tortured, brilliant artist angle.

And then there are the Centurions.

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poppoppoppoppop A Girl Called Eddy - Golden by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-03-02

Erin Moran is a Jersey Shore girl with a golden voice and a broken heart. When she steps behind the mic as A Girl Called Eddy she belts out emotional open-wound tales of regret, betrayal … and more regret. Is Moran’s own worldview and personality as dark and melancholy as her songs would suggest? “I think the songs are a pretty accurate reflection of me—I’m a depressing bitch,” states Moran laughingly as I catch her cell phone in the midst of her first U.S. tour. “I think it’s a pretty honest expression of who I am, that’s not to say that I don’t have perkier songs in me, but for where I was in my life—and where I am still sometimes today—I do think the songs are an accurate description of myself.”

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poppoppoppoppop The Thermals - A Stare Like Yours by Ian Anderson
Last Updated: 2005-02-11

Coming up with creative innovative music while employing just three chords admittedly sounds like a rather impossible trick to pull off. But Portland outfit The Thermals, rather than throwing in their hat and accepting that perhaps all that those chords can say, has already been said, throw spastic fits of wishful thinking and demands for change.

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poppoppoppoppop Beau Kinstler - Caroline & Beautiful Stars Shine by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-02-10

Beau Kinstler is a musical sponge, ready and willing to absorb whatever music comes his way—and he’s just found himself in the middle of the damned ocean thanks to a regular Thursday night residency in the cozy confines of the 400 Bar. “The 400 Bar was always sort of an icon to me and I never really thought I was going to play there,” claims Kinstler, a laidback Minnesota native and high school classmate of innumerable current Twin Cities musicians in the hallowed halls of St. Paul Central High School during the late’ 90s. “I got put on a show through some friends of friends opening up for Ela in early 2003 and got invited back by the 400 Bar and it just went from there. That was really the first real show that I even played in town.”

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poppoppoppoppop Kill the Vultures - The Vultures by Kandis Knight
Last Updated: 2005-02-10

A few short years ago one of the Twin Cities best Hip-Hop groups, Odd Jobs, left for the bright lights of New York City. Now they’ve returned (well, most of them). With a new album, a new sound and a new name, people get ready, Kill the Vultures have arrived.

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poppoppoppoppop The Tin Horns - Ballad of Nonsenso by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-02-10

“This band was kind of born out of loss,” explains Andy Allen, singer/guitarist for new Twin Cities outfit the Tin Horns. “We sort of all had lost sight of what we were doing and were having a hard time. Then we came together and this band was sort of the answer.” Coming together at a time when all of their previous projects were fizzling out, Allen and singer/bassist Dan Wenz (who had worked together for years in The Tide) found themselves joining forces with drummer B.J. Wuollet (formerly of the Stereo) and guitarist Casey Nelson (formerly of End Transmission) early last year. All involved immediately realized that moping over the demise of their former groups was no longer the order of the day.

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poppoppoppoppop Heavy Sleeper - Back To Me by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-02-03

If you’re a fan of thoughtful local indie-pop, chances are you’ve spotted Marcel Galang sometime over the past decade—coolly plunking the keyboards in the Hang Ups while absentmindedly smoking a cigarette perhaps, or in a similar sideman role with the now defunct Dearly. If you’re in select company you may have even caught the short-lived Komodo, Galang’s anglo-leaning shoegazing outfit(or so I’m told from what little information I’ve been able to gather). None of these previous associations would have properly prepared you for what Galang had in store when he finally got down to the business of starting a proper band in the form of Heavy Sleeper, and unleashed a veritable rock ’n’ roll beast upon the Twin Cities scene in the form of their debut long-player, The Gifted Curse.

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poppoppoppoppop Volante - The Simple Lie by P.J. Morel
Last Updated: 2005-01-06

“It’s not as poppy as the last album,” says Gabe Shapiro. The rest of Volante nods in assent. “I think this is a darker toned album.” Understatement is characteristic of this bunch: Static Until Sunrise, their first record in three years, tends to invite descriptions like “seething” and “relentless.” The riffs are short and fast, following upon one another breathlessly. You could measure the “pop” in this album with an eyedropper.

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poppoppoppoppop Islero - Door to Door Knife Salesman by Ian Anderson
Last Updated: 2005-01-06

Finally, a stocking stuffer you can give without hesitation. Set aside the jello and casserole—or Norwegian sweater—because just in time for Christmas, Islero’s new EP, Like You Mean It, puts the sarcastic “Jesus Christ” back into the holiday, our government and even the voting public.

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poppoppoppoppop Die Electric! - Aries by Nathan Hall
Last Updated: 2005-01-06

With the onset of yet another unimaginably harsh and brutal Minnesota winter, cases of Seasonal Affective Disorder (real or imagined) multiply at an unnervingly high rate around these parts. Some trek over to the tanning beds, others construct crude homemade light boxes to brighten up their dreary domiciles. I, for one, recommend local post-punk band Die Electric! as a cheap, reliable and relatively carcinogenic-free alternative form of cold weather therapy.

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poppoppoppoppop Vicious Vicious - 2 Much Time On My Hands by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2005-01-06

Erik Appelwick’s time is now. After years spent honing his craft—in his native South Dakota, on the coffeehouse “scene” of Montana, and finally in the more fertile creative grounds of the Twin Cities—Appelwick (under his recorded guise Vicious Vicious) has made a record guaranteed to turn heads and shake behinds. There’s only one catch of course—it’s not quite out yet.

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poppoppoppoppop Landing Gear - Surprise, Surprise by Keith Pille
Last Updated: 2004-12-17

The thing that most starkly sets rock ’n’ roll apart from other styles of music is its embrace of amateurism. At a very fundamental level, rock celebrates raw emotion over polished technique. The examples are endless: if you’ve taken four guitar lessons, you’re capable of playing anything the Ramones ever wrote; most of Guided By Voices’ records sound as though the band had to leave the studio in a hurry to escape from mobsters; most of Jimmy Page’s Led Zeppelin guitar solos feature a couple of dead notes; and Minneapolis’ patron saint Paul Westerberg has only in the past few years learned that the quality of his solo albums have a direct relationship with how sloppy they are.

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poppoppoppoppop Magnolia Electric Company - Farewell Transmission by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-17

Jason Molina was born with the kind of high and lonesome tenor any Neil Young-ophile would kill for. Just like Young, it took Molina awhile to come around to embracing his voice (he spent his formative years as a sideman, playing bass in various heavy metal and classic rock cover bands around his native Ohio). For the last decade, however, Molina’s been front and center, unleashing a series of dark and dense albums at a dizzying rate under the moniker Songs: Ohia, and, more recently, The Magnolia Electric Company. In 2003 Molina finally assembled the stable backing band he’s always longed for, and has been indulging his classic-rock jones to full effect ever since.

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poppoppoppoppop Unguided Missile - Do The Right Thing by Donny Doane
Last Updated: 2004-12-17

Music can be medicinal and multi-functional. It can console a lonely heart, turn that frown upside down or inspire an apathetic soul. Sometimes it can act as a tonic or salve to soothe the invisible bruises sustained through human commerce. If Duke Ellington can neatly iron out the wrinkles of a hectic yet not overly traumatic day, local rock band Unguided Missile is the jackhammer that can shatter the hardened residue after the most stygian day atwork.

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poppoppoppoppop Kid Dakota - Winterkill by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-17

Darren Jackson has been to hell and back—and he’s been chronicling the turbulent trip in song ever since. Six short years ago Jackson was near the end of his rope, attempting to break a nasty drug habit and with little sense of where he was headed next. Channeling his inner demons into song after a stint in rehab, Jackson began gigging around town under the name Kid Dakota in the summer of 1999, playing creepy, minor-key songs that were often uncomfortably explicit in dealing with his heroin-addict past.

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poppoppoppoppop Kid Dakota: The Overcoat by P.J. Morel
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Kid Dakota, the ongoing collaboration between local mainstays Darren Jackson, Chris McGuire, and producer Alex Oana, is back this week with a new album. Sorta. Of the eight tracks on So Pretty, being released on Low’s Chairkickers’ Music label, only three are new. They augment the five tracks that were previously released two years ago as the So Pretty EP; but they bring the total running time to over 46 minutes. Indeed, the newcomers are fairly epic compositions. They make for a good excuse to explore the guts of a very clever and original recording.

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poppoppoppoppop Haley Bonar: Drinking Again by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

The Size of Planets, is the kind of fully realized artistic triumph that usually takes musicians at least a few records and years to reach, the end result of relentlessly refining one’s artistic approach and finally clicking on all cylinders. It’s a subtle stunner of a record, effortlessly mixing bluesy Fender Rhodes-led vamps (“Save a Horse, Ride a Cowboy”) with acoustic folk (“Am I Allowed) and gently rollickin’ country-tinged pop (“Drinking Again”)—and that’s just the first three tracks. Now for the shocker.

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poppoppoppoppoptop Jay Farrar: All Of Your Might by Andrew Brantingham
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Seems like no matter how much he tries, Jay Farrar can't help sounding a little like himself. Farrar's new album, Terroir Blues, finds the 36-year-old artist and alt. Country icon striving to twist, undermine, explode and generally make strange the wonderfully atavistic sounds he has made since the beginning.

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poppoppoppoppoptop Weakerthans: Plea From A Cat Named Virtue by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

The Weakerthans music is smart, not in a nerdy math-rock time signature kind of way either, but rather the sort of uncompromising flat-out literary smart that seems downright alien to most rock music. The fact that the band’s dense word play comes packaged in a folksy rock/pop-punk package makes it all the more intriguing.

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poppoppoppoppop Self Evident: Removed by P.J. Morel
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

What’s wrong with complex music? Rock snobs roll their eyes with disdain at the mention of any band that happens to dig something other than the usual verse-chorus-verse pop arrangement.

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poppoppoppoppop Atmosphere: Trying To Find A Balance by Kandis Knight
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

I recently had the chance to sit down with Slug of Atmosphere, aka Seven, aka Sean Daley, at his Uptown Minneapolis home, just before the release of his group’s highly anticipated new album. The undisputed reigning group of the Rhymesayer’s Empire and Twin Cities Hip-Hop, Atmosphere’s latest long-player, Seven’s Travels, was released this Tuesday to hordes of anxiously awaiting beat-heads.

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poppoppoppoppop Ida: Blizzard of 78 by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

New York City avant-garde folk mainstays Ida have crafted beguilingly intimate tunes for nearly a dozen years. Formed around the core of Daniel Littleton (vocals/keyboards/guitar) and Elizabeth Mitchell (vocals/keyboards/guitar), the pair began working together shortly after graduating from Brown University, surfacing with their minimalist debut, Tales of Brave Ida, in 1994.

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poppoppoppoppop The Wrens - Everyone Chooses Sides by P.J. Morel
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Once upon a time, The Wrens all lived together in a house in Secaucus, New Jersey: Kevin, Jerry, Charles and Greg. They wrote very good songs, worked hard and, in 1996 released an excellent album, Secaucus. Critical chatter followed the Wrens then: Some people called them “The Next Big Thing.”

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poppoppoppoppop The Hold Steady - Most People Are DJs by Kate Silver
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

At last count, Craig Finn had dropped the phrase “Hold steady” five times. An assurance for all the sniffling indie kids, the late nightclub crawlers and Page Six stalkers. Memo to the City Center buskers, just take it easy. Hold steady. Add to the list all of the cult Lifter Puller fans with LFTR PLLR knuckle tattoos snapping photos in front of 15th & Franklin. More than a rock band; hold steady is a mantra, and a warning.

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poppoppoppoppop Great Depressions - Violent Goodbyes by Keith Pille
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

The Great Depression have a lot on their collective minds: the human condition; the interactions between the different layers of the human mind, the current singles-driven state of the music industry; traffic conditions between Minneapolis and Madison; the limitations placed on a person by a given location and set of circumstances; the cohesive flow of their newest album, Unconscious Pilot; the music-consumption habits of America's future bomber pilots, and so on.

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poppoppoppoppop Halloween, Alaska: You're It by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Halloween Alaska in short: old faces in new places making genre-defying music. Now for the long version.

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poppoppoppoppop Statistics: Another Day by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

If Omaha is the new Seattle; then Statistics are the new Alice in Chains. OK, that’s a bit of a stretch, the slickly rocking solo venture of Omaha boy-done-good Denver Dalley doesn’t actually bear any resemblance to the sludge-crunch of Layne Staley and company, but the point remains the same. The Nebraska based Saddle Creek record label affiliated family of bands (whose most prominent members are Bright Eyes, the Faint and Cursive) currently finds itself squinting under the harsh glare of a media spotlight not seen in one city since the heydays of Cameron Crowe smooch-fests and unwashed flannels some dozen odd years ago.

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poppoppoppoppop The Alpha Centauri: Cryogenics by Patrick Johnson
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

With all the dramatic new concepts being materialized every day, about the world around us, The Alpha Centauri reminds their listener that big things are happening and warns not to get left behind.

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poppoppoppoppop Ela - I Don't Know if it's Helping by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

It’s a familiar story: college ends, relationships dissolve, people move back home to parentally abetted misery or stay in town and feel like they’re treading water. Almost everyone faces the same question—what the fuck do I do now? Bill Caperton started a band and made a record.

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poppoppoppoppop The Owls - Drop Me A Line by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Accidental supergroup. Inadvertant hitmakers. Family room rockers. Any way you slice it, awkward phrases are the only options available when attempting to succinctly sum up The Owls, the intoxicating indie-pop crossbreed of Twin Cities music veterans Brian Tighe, Allison LaBonne, Maria May and John Jerry. Their music is simply too varied in tone and execution to adequately get at the root of via lazy labels or short synopses—although countless by now de rigueur Velvet Underground comparisons are currently floating around in the press attempting the trick.

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poppoppoppoppop The Olympic Hopefuls - Drain the Sea by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Perhaps only Minnesotans can properly appreciate the beauty of summer - for only those of us who have braved countless snowdrifts and endured endless cold fronts can truly perceive the beauty of the summer’s first rays. It’s something most Twin Cities folk spend a good six months out of the year waiting for, and it was in the heart of yet another brutal Minnesota winter that the audio lover letter to summertime known as The Fuses Refuse to Burn, (the debut release from new local outfit the Olympic Hopefuls) was crafted.

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poppoppoppoppop Rosie Thomas - I Play Music by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

With modern pop music in both the independent and major label spheres increasingly focused on insouciant coolness, artists like Rosie Thomas, an emotionally naked and über-earnest folk singer, appear on the verge of extinction—which is a shame.

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poppoppoppoppop The Plastic Constellations - Davico by Mark Desrosiers
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

First, let it be known that the Plastic Constellations are no longer teenagers, so we music scribes can cease using that played out angle when writing features on the band. Sure, rock and roll seems to have fed and clothed TPC throughout their adolescence, even giving them an absurd growth spurt (all four members must be at least 6 feet tall now). But now they’re adults in their early 20s, ready to embark on a Midwest tour to promote Mazatlan (2024 Records), their first new album in nearly four years.

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poppoppoppoppop The Strokes - 12:51 AM by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

It’s sometimes hard to remember that just four short years ago we lived in a pre-Strokes era — the public consciousness yet to be deluged with lurid tales of singer Julian Casablancas’ epic drinking exploits and woefully bereft of paparazzi shots catching drummer Fabrizio Morreti snogging with celeb girlfriend Drew Barrymore in assumed privacy.

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poppoppoppoppop Candy Butchers Hang On Mike by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

At just 37, Mike Viola has already been through enough bad breaks to last three lifetimes. First came a short-lived shot at teen stardom (Viola cut a record with notorious pop-music Svengali Kim Fowley at 14 that ended up being shelved), next he spent the ’80s on the verge of big things with his band Snap! without even a record deal to show for it by the time the band imploded. And then, when things finally began looking up for his music career in the ’90s, he lost his first wife to cancer. If there was a pop musician version of “The Survivor” television program there’s little doubt where Viola would finish in the standings.

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poppoppoppoppop Deerhoof Sealed With A Kiss by Kate Silver
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

“Words at Work” (1968; Amsco) is the literary equivalent of “Learn to Play Guitar with 8 Chords,” a preparatory workbook with priceless vocabulary tips and etymologies of the English language (the origin of "Assassin" is A drinker of Hashish, did you know that?). For instance, "The names of the different species of fishes have not only a piscatorial value, but a colloquial significance: Riders on the crowded underground trains have been humorously called subway sardines." As the old saw goes, give a man a fish … you know the rest. Likewise, give San Francisco art-punks Deerhoof eight chords, and they’ll forever reinvent the pop song.

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poppoppoppoppop Brice - White Socks by Tim Kindem
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Brice is Minneapolis’ answer to good time indie pop rock. Brice combines the hard rock of Weezer with feel good Ben Folds-like hooks, with tight, top-notch musicianship, savvy use of layered vocals and sounds, and hard work ethic that translates into an orchestra of fun. Brice displays the coveted ability to inject even their most lighthearted songs with a sense of honesty while keeping an underlying level of real emotion and credibility.

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poppoppoppoppop The Violettes - Jugumuga by Tom Hallett
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

"I always wanted to sing, even when I was little, and my mom said, ‘You can't be a singer, because they don't make any money.’ And she was serious, but I ignored her." Minneapolis singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Sarah Khan laughs—she laughs a lot, a light, half-nervous titter that's both endearing and infectious—but the weight of her statement hangs in the air long after her chuckles have subsided.

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poppoppoppoppop Shearwater - Whipping Boy by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Main Entry: shear·wa·ter
Pronunciation: 'shir-"wo-t&r, -"wä-
Function: noun

1): any of numerous oceanic birds (especially genus Puffinus) that are related to the petrels and usually skim close to the waves in flight

2): wondrously adventurous two-headed folk-rock songwriting beast from Austin, TX, blending literate lyricism with woozy keyboards and ornate chamber-pop arrangements

Given the space constraints inherent in music journalism the full merits of the genus Puffinus shearwater will have to be explored another day so as to fully focus on the Shearwater at hand, a group whose stunning third album, Winged Life (Misra Records) blends hazy studio atmospherics with emotionally charged lyricism to create an epic listening experience.

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poppoppoppoppop Gawker Slowdown - Even the Strongest Steel by Keith Pille
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Eric Kalenze is an unusual man. In a city of several million, the odds are better than decent that he’s the only person to be simultaneously acting as a high school English teacher, a football coach, and a fully self-contained one-man rock band. More unusual than that, possibly, he may be the only person in North America to own a 4-track recorder and actually do something productive with it.

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poppoppoppoppop Coach Said Not To - Words That I Employ by Troy Piper
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Coach Said Not To never meant to be a band. The St. Paul quartet simply wanted to get together and casually bash out the music they weren't currently hearing in the local music scene. They wanted to hear more abrupt rhythm changes, strange meters, more humor—so they did it themselves. It was a casual decision, but the results have been anything but as the band has slowly turned into a musically cohesive and lyrically eye-catching unit intent on elevating the mundane details of life to drama worthy of song...

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poppoppoppoppop Lesser Birds of Paradise - A Magnet In You by Sean McCarthy
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Somehow, in the midst of a hazy Sunday hangover, I managed to watch every episode of “The Surreal Life 2” during a marathon session on VH1. The contrived reality TV adventures of c-list celebrities, a porn star and a heavily eyelinered evangelist did wonders for my booze-addled condition...

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poppoppoppoppop Josh Aran - High Like Atmosphere by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

The number of musicians who have mined captivating albums out of painful life experience in the annals of pop history numbers somewhere roughly in the tens of thousands. The Twin Cities’ own Josh Aran and his self-released sophomore release, Between Us There Arose Happiness, can now be added to that count...

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poppoppoppoppop Stiff Little Fingers - Guitar And Drum by Holly Day
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

"You’ll never hear Stiff Little Fingers played in an Irish-themed pub in America, because those places don’t consider us Irish,” says Stiff Little Fingers frontman and founding member Jake Burns. “It’s mainly because we’ve never worn a shamrock. And that’s the thing — I’ll bet you’ve walked into those Irish bars and seen the Dropkick Murphys on the jukebox, and they’re about as Irish as Mom’s apple pie. If we can ever have shamrocks and shillelaghs in our music, or brought them out on stage with us during our shows, I have no doubt we’d be getting played in those establishments."

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poppoppoppoppop The Skinnys - 30-Megaton Love by Donny Doane
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Amphetamine addled artists? Ephedrine energized bunnies? Methed up monkey men? Advocates and abusers of all dietary aids and appetite suppressants? A local punk foursome? The Skinnys (bassist Carlos “Los” Lamas, drummer Damien Tank, guitarist Paul Puleo and vocalist Rusty Detty) are all of the above.

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poppoppoppoppop The Vestals - Telescope by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

The Gordon household, Green Bay, Wisconsin, circa 1989. A teenaged Ben Gordon sits in his room absorbing the Beatles White Album, strumming along on a guitar. His pesky younger brother Jeremy, all of 12, won’t stop banging along on his own guitar to XTC’s Skylarking, cranked at full volume in the adjoining bedroom. Ben gets fed up and stomps across the hall intent on kicking ass, a war of words ensues, and rather than beating the shit out of each other, a truce is called, and a band, The Vestals, is formed.

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poppoppoppoppop The Vestals - Another Way to Kill Me by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

The Gordon household, Green Bay, Wisconsin, circa 1989. A teenaged Ben Gordon sits in his room absorbing the Beatles White Album, strumming along on a guitar. His pesky younger brother Jeremy, all of 12, won’t stop banging along on his own guitar to XTC’s Skylarking, cranked at full volume in the adjoining bedroom. Ben gets fed up and stomps across the hall intent on kicking ass, a war of words ensues, and rather than beating the shit out of each other, a truce is called, and a band, The Vestals, is formed.

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poppoppoppoppop JG Everest - Captain's Log (Alpha Brotherly Love) by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

"James Everest has been a seemingly omnipresent character on the Minneapolis music scene for nearly a decade, making his name with a wide variety of groups and recording projects (among them The Sensational Joint Chiefs and Lateduster) and playing a key role in organizing the wildly successful electronic music showcase “Cross Faded Thursdays” at the Dinkytowner..."

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poppoppoppoppop Little Dirt - Sell Yourself On Yourself by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

People use the internet for lots of things: e-mail, Ebay, surreptitious fetish gratification. The painful truth is that most people cruise the information superhighway with little to show for it other than bloodshot eyes and carpal tunnel syndrome. Not so the members of up-and-coming local rock quartet Little Dirt, a troupe of intrepid music-makers who owe their very existence to the web.

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poppoppoppoppop Malachi Constant - Saigon Kick by Nathan Hall
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

About four years ago, local post-punk quartet Malachi Constant recorded a song called "May Server." It was a great song, but not one that even a person inclined towards grandiose satements would dub "cinematic." Nonetheless, “May Server” was featured prominently in an instructional sex video entitled "Please Don’t Stop: Lesbian Tips For Givin’ And Gettin’ It." Produced by a girl-and queer-positive sex toy outlet out in San Francisco called Good Vibrations, "Please Don’t Stop" marked the historic debut of the first sexually explicit film created expressly for lesbians of color.

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poppoppoppoppop Ol Yeller Nightstand by Donny Doane
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

In 1978, an anthology entitled “The Literary Dog” was published. Within its pages notable writers of all stripes, origins and eras offer their musings, the sole purpose of which is championing humankind’s best friend. No, you moron, it’s not about the Republican Party. Those assholes already shanghaied the noble pachyderm. Talk about white-collar crime.

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poppoppoppoppop The Original Mark Edwards - Wish I Could See Your Film by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

It reads like a movie script: your college band becomes tipped for greatness four months into their career after winning a mail-in contest to perform on "Late Night With Conan O'Brien," your band quickly becomes the toast of the town and you could easily be forgiven for thinking that a life of rock 'n' roll-abetted luxury is just around the corner. Then disaster strikes when, just three years after your big break, the band you lead implodes under the weight of its own expectations just after releasing its arduously labored over debut full-length. The name of the film, "The True Adventures of the Original Mark Edwards.

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poppoppoppoppop Amateur Love - Numbers by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

There are a few things that automatically pop into my mind when I think of Eau Claire, Wisconsin: cheese, readily available beer on Sundays—but a thriving independent rock scene isn't one of them. Or at least it wasn't until I was hipped to the riches of Amateur Love, a young group representin' Eau Claire in all its Wisconsinite glory to fine effect on their recent self-released debut album, It's All Aquatic,
nine tracks of high caliber slightly Mr. Gadget-ed indie-pop.

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poppoppoppoppop The Winter Blanket - Why I Act This Way by Nathan Hall
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

One of the basic unwritten rules in the rock ’n’ roll game is to never date a fellow band member. From Sonny & Cher to the girlfriend swapping madness of Fleetwood Mac, musical twitterpaiting has inevitably ended in tragedy and misery for all parties concerned.

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poppoppoppoppop Thunder in the Valley - Hey Baby It Aint My Funeral by Kate Silver
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Like jamming a safety pin through a felt derby hat or supporting Doc Martens with spats, punk and vaudeville make an unlikely fashion statement. A consultation of Greil Marcus’ counter-cultural backtrack “Lipstick Traces,” however, finds both the punk and European Surrealist and Situationist movements holding common ground in Proletariat vaudeville: entertainment for the people.

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poppoppoppoppop Missing Numbers - Sleep Don't Wake The Dead by Tim Kindem
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

The members of Missing Numbers harbor no delusions of musical grandeur, no aspirations of headlining stadiums, no desire to get on a soapbox, rambling some political diatribe. They prefer to let their music do the talking; let the next note lead the way—and since they started playing together nine months ago, the members of Missing Numbers have been enjoying the ride.

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poppoppoppoppop The Ocean Blue - Ticket to Wyoming by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Unbeknownst to all but a few, David Schelzel, the frontman for early ’90s modern-rock chart toppers The Ocean Blue, has been lurking in our midst for years. The man behind such jangle-heavy hits as “Between Something and Nothing,” “Ballerina Out of Control” and “Sublime” has quietly been making his home in Minneapolis since 2000.

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poppoppoppoppop The Rakes - Satellite Whine by Tom Hallett
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Everybody knows rock ‘n’ roll music is supposed to be about rebellion. From Elvis “The Pelvis” to the British invasion to the advent of heavy metal, the form has always relied heavily on both shock value and a certain, inherent tendency towards danger and excitement. These days, though, when pop songs are used in political and advertising campaigns, kids’ movie soundtracks, and at sporting and family events, good ol’ rock ‘n’ roll seems to have lost a good deal of its bite.

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poppoppoppoppop Valet - Havana by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

The men of Valet are teachers, taxi drivers and grad students. They are also—mostly on weekends and when their busy schedules allow—one of the best indie-pop bands to call the Twin Cities home. This isn’t news to local scenesters; the band’s been universally hailed in the local press since their formation and quick rise to prominence as Foxfire Coffee House regulars at the close of the ‘90s. However, after the fervor surrounding their self-released 2001 record The Glamour is Contagious died down, things got quiet in Valet land pretty quickly.

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poppoppoppoppop Dana Thompson - Ona's Song by Keith Pille
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

The day before this issue of Pulse of the Twin Cities hit the streets, the New York auction house Sotheby’s began the process of auctioning off the estate of Johnny Cash. For the rest of the week, as the collected belongings of one of the giants of twentieth-century American culture go off to the highest bidder, the high-water mark of country music as a vital music force will recede a bit further off into the distance; it’s tough to remember, in the current age of corporate Nashville hat-and-goatee shit, that there was a time when country music was awash in creativity and, well, worth listening to.

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poppoppoppoppop The Good Life - A New Friend by Ian Anderson
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Tim Kasher is growing up. Not in the “moving on and turning away from the past” sense of the word, but rather in scrupulously studying the mistakes he’s made and trying to figure out what the hell went wrong. This self-examination begins with the retelling of his love life during the past four years.

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poppoppoppoppop Mark Mallman - Hardcore Romantic by Nathan Hall
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Bleary-eyed local piano madman Mark Mallman, covered in sweat and swaddled in an American flag, is basking in the adulation and applause that appropriately befits someone who has just performed for 52 and a half hours straight. A banner drops from the ceiling of St. Paul’s Turf Club, proclaiming “Mission Accomplished.” The spectacle has been grim, sadistic and yet strangely exhilarating to witness in person.

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poppoppoppoppop Ben Weaver - 40 Watt Bulb by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

The clichéd term “old soul” was invented for people like Ben Weaver. All of 24, the world weary tunes on his just released third album, Stories Under Nails, sound like the work of a man more than twice his age. His voice is a weathered croak (think a slightly less carnival-spooky Tom Waits) and the tales it tells—of murderous strangers, lonesome travelers and betrayed lovers—ring so authentically true that it feels like Weaver must have been enrolled in the school of hard knocks by the age of 10 in order to have accumulated enough life experience to pen them.

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poppoppoppoppop Bellwether - This Time by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Bellwether reinvented themselves pretty much by accident. “It all started with Jimmy really wanting to make a bluegrass record,” explains singer/guitarist Eric Luoma, 32, of the long and winding road that led to Bellwether’s long-completed but just-released fourth album, Seven & Six.

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poppoppoppoppop Dosh - Dosh - I Think I'm Getting Married by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Martin Dosh is a man of seemingly many contradictions—an artist with a degree in creative writing who crafts music almost entirely devoid of words, the creator of dizzyingly clever and layered instrumental recordings who self-effacingly calls himself “just a drummer.” His just-released second solo album, Pure Trash, continues the trend in contradiction, its dozen cuts of elegant and jazzy instrumental glitch pop about the furthest thing possible from the skuzzy collection of garage rock its title would suggest.

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poppoppoppoppop Julie Doiron - No Money Makers by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Julie Doiron’s music is usually described with a limited set of adjectives by lazy critics: depressing, downcast, lugubrious—you get the idea. Admittedly, the typically minor-key folk-rock explorations that Doiron favors tend to invoke thoughts of clouds and various muted shades of gray regardless of their accompanying lyrics, but Doiron’s plaintive fragile voice probably isn’t helping matters any either—this is a woman whose windpipes could make “Shiny Happy People” sound morose. That said, Doiron views her music in a different light.

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poppoppoppoppop Popcycle - Funny Looking World by Donny Doane
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

It’s been a big year for Scott Peterson. Over the course of the last year, the primary songwriter/frontman for local hip shooters Popcycle has seen the birth of not only his daughter, Saida, but the delivery of a new album to boot. As if being a new father weren’t enough, Peterson still has a rock band he has to nurture and keep in line. And I still can’t decide which would require more baby-sitting.

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poppoppoppoppop The Arcade Fire - Neighborhood #3 (Power Out) by Ian Anderson
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

The Arcade Fire’s debut album Funeral isn’t even three months old yet, but the Montreal seven-piece has already created an increasingly sizeable buzz on Hipster Street—and it’s not just because of the constant Pixies references or cool Debussy name drops. There’s just something undeniably compelling about a mini-orchestra fusing accessible indie-rock with more subtle nuanced forms of artistic expression.

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poppoppoppoppop Pete Hofmann - Mermaid on the Rocks by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-12-01

Pete Hofmann, the musician, as presented on his recently unveiled third album Mermaid on the Rocks: smooth, relaxed, lazing about in sun-baked melodies or lounging in the dark corner of a cool jazz club. Pete Hoffman, the interviewee, as experienced first-hand: fast-talking, massively gesticulating, damn near hyperactive.

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poppoppoppoppop Hayden - Home by Saturday by Rob van Alstyne
Last Updated: 2004-10-21

Hayden Desser turned his back on music towards the close of the ‘90s. After five years of constant touring and recording, a period which saw him grow from a Canadian home-recording troubadour in his early 20s still living with his parents into an artist hand-picked to perform at Neil Young’s Bridge School benefit and signed to a major label in the U.S. with the Spin press clippings to prove it, Hayden had had enough.

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poppoppoppoppoptop Rainy Day Crush: Room to Rage by Rainy Day Crush
Last Updated: 2004-04-13

Rainy Day Crush are a female fronted Alt/Rock band that has been together for more than 5 years and is new to the Twin Cities.

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Symantec Winfax Pro 10.4
SystemsSuite Professional 8
TamoSoft CommView 6 Full
Thegrideon Access Password Professional 2.0
TransMagic Expert
TuneUp Utilities 2008
Uniblue RegistryBooster 2009
Uniblue SpeedUpMyPC 2009
VMware Workstation 6.5
VMware Workstation 6.5 ACE
Web Page Maker 3
Wincare Memory Booster Gold
Windows XP Professional SP3
Xilisoft 1click DV to DVD
Xilisoft Audio Converter 2.1
Xilisoft Audio Maker 3
Xilisoft DVD Ripper Ultimate 5
Xilisoft ISO Burner
Xilisoft Video Converter Ultimate 5.1
Xilisoft Video To Audio Converter 5.1
ZoneAlarm AntiVirus 8
ZoneAlarm Internet Security Suite 2009
ZoneAlarm Internet Security Suite 8
ZoneAlarm Pro 8