Hello World…

Hello and welcome to Shufflepod! This is my brand new music blog and it’s still a work in progress, so please bear with me during these early days. I promise it will be worth the wait!

A little bit about myself: I’m a music-loving twenty-something-year-old who just got back from an extended visit to New York – an awesome city with an incredibly varied music scene. I used to write a travel blog over at www.nshini.blogspot.com, but now my travels have come to an end for the foreseeable future. I’ve been back in England for over a week now, but I still haven’t managed to shake off the jetlag. The past few nights I’ve found myself staying up til the early hours and listening to music to pass the time…and that’s how this blog was born.

I listen to music pretty much all the time anyway, and I love talking about it.  I know a lot of people complain about today’s music industry – they say Top 40 artists are just soul-less clones who recycle the same hits over and over again, and no-one makes ‘real’ music anymore. Or if they do, it’s impossible to find.

Well, I don’t think that’s true. I actually quite like pop music and I think there are some pretty decent acts around now. But I also like discovering different, original artists – and I think that with the proliferation of sites like Spotify, Youtube and Last.fm, this has never been easier. My hope is that through this blog I’ll be able to share some of these new finds with you. At the same time, don’t be surprised if you find me analysing Jessie J’s latest video or critiquing Rihanna’s new album. It’s all music to me.

You can find good music anywhere – at a random gig, on a TV show, in a coffee shop…you just need to keep listening. And now with smartphone apps like Shazam, you can track down a tune in seconds and discover a whole new field of music. As an illustration – a couple of weeks ago I was shopping in Forever 21, and while none of the dresses really caught my eye, a couple of songs they were playing caught my ear. Thanks to Shazam I can now share these with you:

French Horn Rebellion – This Moment

This is a pretty snazzy disco-pop tune, although I don’t think the video really does it justice. It’s a pretty smart choice for shop-floor music – the upbeat melody and catchy beat made me want to strut around in a brand new outfit. I liked it enough to want to hear more, so I looked it up online. Here’s what last.fm has to say about French Horn Rebellion:

“French Horn Rebellion are Robert and David Perlick-Molinari, two brothers born and bred in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, currently residing in Brooklyn, NY. In 2007, younger brother Robert, found himself going down a career of classical French Horn performance. Standing at a crossroads, and fundamentally frustrated by the demands of mastering such an instrument (that he knew was almost impossible), he finally asked his brother David to rebel with him, and together they embarked on a life-long creative journey.”

Sounds like an interesting transition from classical music to electro-rock, and I’m looking forward to hearing more from them. They released an album, “The Infinite Music of French Horn Rebellion”, in 2010. If you like the sound of “This Moment”, or are a fan of indie-pop dance acts like Foster the People or MGMT, then definitely give it a listen.

Telekinesis – I Cannot Love You

I actually misheard this as “I Can’t Not Love You”, which would have been sweet. Turns out there was no double negative, and it’s actually a pretty bitter song. But something about the racing bass guitar riff and hollow vocals had me hooked. It’s reminiscent of classic British bands like The Cure or Joy Division, but Telekinesis is actually an American solo artist. Here’s the bio, again from last.fm:

“Telekinesis is Michael Benjamin Lerner, an indie rocker based out of Seattle, Washington, United States who is currently signed to Merge Records. Lerner signed to Merge Records in early 2009, and shortly afterward released the eponymously named debut album Telekinesis! on April 7, 2009. Recorded in September of 2008, the album was produced, mixed, and engineered with the help of Chris Walla (guitarist for Death Cab for Cutie), recording one song per day on analog tape.”

Telekinesis released a second album “12 Desperate Straight Lines” last year, which features “I Cannot Love You” and other highlights like “Car Crash” and “Please Ask for Help” (you can definitely hear the Cure influence on this one.)

Click here for a free download of “Car Crash” courtesy of last.fm

So there you have it – I walked into Forever 21 looking for clothes, and came out with some new tunes. Whoever said good music was hard to find?

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