Hype Machine 2008 Catch-Up Live-Blog

Seeing all these year-end lists, it’s clear that I’ve missed a few things. Starting right now, I’m going to sample all of the 20-30 hip young new bands that slipped through the cracks this year over on Hypem. Strap in, folks, and feel free to suggest some tunes we can jam out before the weekend hits. Crystal bands and curse-word acts alike, after the jump. [Continue reading…]

Frightened Rabbit — The Once soundtrack gone wrong. There’s potential in tracks like “The Modern Leper,” but the band never quite pulls the songs off.

Telepathe — “So Fine” is sooo ’80s. This song reminds me of a sassier, street-savvy Au Revoir Simone. “Islands” has more potential with its broken-down chamber-pop vibe. “Devil’s Trident” goes back to the synths mixed with a weirdo spoken-word monologue, but the Velvet Underground these girls ain’t. Too much clutter.

Crystal Castles — After the Knife, I guess people are into this Legend of Zelda meets New Order buried vox shit, but, uh, what the hell? “Untrust Us?” “Knights?” These songs are terrible!

Crystal Antlers –– A step up, as far as crystal bands go, but still a B-grade Wolf Parade recording in a cave.

Crystal Stilts — Here we go! “Departure” is on some druggy, dirty surf-rock shit. See, guys, this is what lo-fi is for.

Fucked Up — The only fucked up thing about this band is how silly they sound for having such a hard-ass name. “No Epiphany” and “Twice Born” both have the titles of would-be metal juggernauts, but while the band churns out reliable chord-fests, Growly McGrowlerson’s singing borders on the satirical — dude, we get it, you’re in a rock band. BWAAAAAAH! Somebody get these guys the Les Savy Fav discog, stat.

The Mae Shi — We’re YELPY! And we just drank COFFEE! And none of us can SING! Barf.

Max Tundra — Oh Max, where have you been all my life? “Which Song” is glitchy and glitzy, a whirlwind of texture and groove and romance.

Gang Gang Dance — This band is way more interesting than Portishead. Not for me, though.