Today’s the day! 2ube Xtra, Liverpool’s first and only live streamed music festival kicks off, giving us eight days of live music from some of the best emerging artists active in the city right now together with interviews and exclusive performances from more established artists. Watch it here!
L.A.-based singer-songwriter MEIKO has recorded a remake of the Paul McCartney holiday classic, “Wonderful Christmastime”, and has made the track available as a free download on her website, http://www.meikomusic.com
Meiko will perform an online concert, viewable worldwide, via Stageit.com on Sunday, December 15 at 2PM (PST). A portion of the proceeds from this ‘pay what you can’ performance will be donated to the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
Today sees the US release of The 2 Bears’ debut album, Be Strong, which is available on vinyl and CD from the DFA store, and digitally via iTunes. In celebration of the full-length release, the Bears are sharing a new mix, “Whatever The Weather,” which premiered on Spinner RPM. The mix features new tracks from DFA labelmates Factory Floor, as well as tracks from Armand Van Helden, Henrik Schwarz, Gino Soccio, Davina and more. You can still snag the first free single from the album, “Work,” via DFA’s Soundcloud too!
A London record through and through, Be Strong ducks and weaves to the myriad sounds of the city, as The 2 Bears pursue the perfect party record. Raf Daddy – aka Raphael Rundell – met Joe Goddard (taking time out from his day job as one fifth of Hot Chip) through a party scene that saw them share deck duties at the legendary Greco-Roman parties. Upon venturing into the studio in an attempt to replicate some of the records that they’d lost themselves in the night before, Raf found himself laying down vocals over Joe’s skipping, bassomatic backing tracks safe in the knowledge that they’d soon be replaced by someone with sweeter, more melodious tones. In the end, it was Raf’s voice that characterized and personalized The 2 Bears.
Over its ten tracks, Be Strong conjures up that elusive spirit of the dancefloor without pretension, and with ultimate precision. It’s a soul record in that it’s from the soul, wearing its imperfections with pride. It’s a dance record in that it’ll get you off your seat. It’s a London record in that it couldn’t have come from any other city in 2011, echoing the glorious schizophrenic sound of a late night cab ride listening to a radio with a mind of its own. With minimal effort and maximum respect from their peers, tracks began to be hammered in clubs and on radio by the likes of Andrew Weatherall, Erol Alkan, Pete Tong and Annie Mac. This summer’s Bear Hug EP cranked things up yet another notch with Chris Moyles giving the track some early morning airings and Elton John and Paul McCartney declaring themselves fans.
Erland & The Carnival: vocalist Erland Cooper, drummer David Nock (producer and engineer for The Orb, Paul McCartney, David Gilmour), and guitarist Simon Tong (former member of The Good the Bad & the Queen, The Verve and now guitar-for-hire for Gorillaz), recorded their forthcoming album, Nightingale, in a small, dank studio.
Erland & The Carnival’s debut North American full-length album, Nightingale, will be released March 29th on Full Time Hobby/Yep Roc. The band plays SXSW in March.