Nerdy Heartbeat

Movies, Reviews, News, Insanity

Nerdy Heartbeat’s Best Songs of 2010 (so far) August 9, 2010

Sleigh Bells – Crown on the Ground

Foxy Shazam – Oh Lord

Drake – The Resistance

Arcade Fire – Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)

The Wonder Years – Washington Square Park

Motion City Soundtrack – A Lifeless Ordinary (Need a Little Help)

Against Me! – Because of the Shame

Janelle Monae – Cold War

Kanye West – Power

The Gaslight Anthem – Orphans

Four Year Strong – Find My Way Back

The Morning Of – The Ones That Fall Apart

The Maine – Inside of You

The Rocket Summer – Of Men and Angels

LCD Soundsystem – You Wanted A Hit

B.o.B + Hayley Williams – Airplanes

Los Campesinos! – This is A Flag. There Is No Wind.

3OH!3 – Streets of Gold

Mc Chris – Smackababy

Coheed and Cambria – Far

Nicki Minaj (feat Sean Garrett) – Massive Attack

Frightened Rabbit – Nothing Like You

Portugal. The Man – 1000 Years

Minus the Bear – My Time

M.I.A. – Steppin Up

Youtube them. Download them. Buy their albums. Buy their merch. Go to their concerts and their support their music!

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Foxy Shazam Review May 20, 2010

Filed under: Music,Uncategorized — andthismakesaheartbeat @ 11:05 pm
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“There sure are a lot of dogs out tonight perhaps they can assist me in a song!”

This, well that and a bunch of barking, is how Foxy Shazam’s self-titled album begins: one of the most delightfully eccentric yet surprisingly accesible albums I’ve heard in a while and a strong contender for AOTY.

Foxy Shazam has been around the ropes in the independent scene due to their eccentric sound, unbelievable live shows and frontman, Eric Nally’s outrageously flamboyant and hilarious stage presence. This is their major label debut on Sire Records and the result is a sound more refined, in a good way. Through the 11 tracks, the band jolt between soul, queen-esque arena rock, big band, hardcore and even a showtunesy vibe but even with these drastic genre changes, it all sounds natural. Plenty of bands out there do tons of genre-bending but for the most part, it usually sounds too “out there” for mainstream listeners. Foxy Shazam does all the genre bending while managing to focus on their central sound Foxy Shazam’s new album is simply a great rock record at its core that tends to incorporate different styles of music in the process. And the result is something that is simply exhilarating.

Like I stated before, it starts with some barking and a long scream via Nally which immediately kicks into some pianos and horns on “Bombs Away” a fast-paced upbeat that pretty much sets up the rest of the album. “Count Me Out” has a sing-a-long ready chorus, “If this is what love is all about, you can count me out, count me out, count me out” with plenty of sassy vocal blemishes courtesy of Nally. “Bye Bye Symphony” and “Second Floor” are some great piano heavy ballads while “Unstoppable” sounds like Queen from the future and “Killin’ It” offers some theatrical hardcore akin to their earlier material. Even if you don’t like this type of music, there are genius tracks like “Oh Lord” and “Connect” which bring all their traits together in a gospel styled flair that no one and I mean no one can listen too without having a huge smile on their face.

All in all, Foxy Shazam is a fun, fast and at times truly unique record that is a breath of fresh air in a genre that can take itself a bit too seriously at times. If you crave for rock music that does something different while still be a tad bit familiar or just really miss Queen, you need to check this album out.

Must Download: “Connect”, “Oh Lord”, “Count Me Out”, “Second Floor”, “Killin’ It”

RIYL: Neon Blonde, Queen, Black Parade-era My Chemical Romance, soul, swagger

 

Nerdy Heartbeat’s 09 Recap – Best Music From 2009 December 15, 2009

Top 30 Albums of 2009

30. Every Time I Die – New Junk Aesthetic

29. Japandroids – Post-Nothing

28. The Dear Hunter – Act III Life & Death

27. Plushgun – Pins and Panzers

26. Mansions – New Best Friends

25. Portugal. The Man – The Satanic Satanist

24. All Time Low – Nothing Personal

23. This Time Next Year – Road Maps & Heart Attacks

22. Noah and the Whale – The First Day of Spring

21. Paramore – brand new eyes

20. Mastodon – Crack The Skye

19. Polar Bear Club – Chasing Hamburg

18. The Motorcycle Industry – Electric Education

17. O Pioneers – Neon Creeps

16. Fireworks – All I Have Is My Own Confusion

15. Passion Pit – Manners

14. P.O.S. – Never Better

13. Jay-Z – The Blueprint 3

12. WHY? – Eskimo Snow

11. Kevin Devine – Brother’s Blood

10. Set Your Goals – This Will Be the Death of Us

9. Chuck Ragan – Gold Country

8. Fake Problems – It’s Great to Be Alive

7. A Day To Remember – Homesick

6. Brand New – Daisy

5. Say Anything – Say Anything

4. The Dangerous Summer – Reach for The Sun

3. Kiss Kiss – The Meek Shall Inherit What’s Left

2. Fun. – Aim and Ignite

1. Manchester Orchestra – Mean Everything to Nothing

It was hard for me to pick just 30 but when I went to the top 5, it was even harder to distinguish which one was the best. Mean Everything to Nothing was a flat out great rock album dealing with God and religion with fantastic stand out moments on almost every track. Aim and Ignite was baroque pop at its finest proving that the glory of The Format is far from dead. Reach for the Sun revitalized pop-punk in a scene dominated by catering to teeny boppers with extremely profound, honest and personal lyrics with beautiful echoing guitar lines. Say Anything took the traditional sound we all know and love and meshed it with insight on religion while combining elements of doo-wop, synth-pop and spoken word, all with masterful production. Daisy took the aggression of previous albums and amplified it to the maximum proving that Brand New is not afraid to make the record they want. And The Meek Shall Inherit What’s Left was just well absolutely eccentric and musically insane (in a very good way). Ultimately, I gave the honor to Mean Everything to Nothing for it’s initial “wow” factor. However, all of the albums on this list are absolutely fantastic and I suggest you check them out. It was a damn good year for music.

Honorable Mentions

These are the albums that, while not up to snuff with the top 25, are still great records.

Enter Shikari – Common Dreads

Kid Cudi – Man on the Moon

mewithoutyou – it’s all crazy! it’s all false! it’s all a dream! it’s alright

The Audition – Self-Titled Album

Weatherbox – The Cosmic Drama

Dethklok – Dethalbum II

Top EPs of 2009

1. Bon Iver – Blood Bank

2. Straylight Run – About Time

3. VersaEmerge – VersaEmerge

4. Polar Bear Club – The Summer of George

5. MC Chris – Part Six Part One

Most Disappointing Albums

These are the albums that, while I didn’t hate at all, I just expected to be so much better. Whether it be the hype surrounding it, or hearing an amazing song from the album only to discover that the rest of the record isn’t on par. These are the records that turned out, in one way or another, to be a disappointment.

1. Two Tongues – Two Tongues

2. The Swell Season – Strict Joy

3. New Found Glory – Not Without A Fight

4. Dashboard Confessional – Alter the Ending

5. Animal Collective – Merriwether Post Pavillion

 

Guilty Pleasure of 09: Two Is Better Than One November 3, 2009

Love_Drunk_cover

You have no idea how hard I wanted to hate this song. I really tried. I mean I never really liked Boys Like Girls. To me, they went from mediocre pop punk to bad pop rock to Bon Jovi sound-alike. As far as Taylor Swift, I think she’s insanely attractive and likable as a person. I mean there’s no doubt that she is talented (especially when compared to other pop divas out there) but I can just never own up to enjoying A. Country Music and B. Music that fuels awkward teenage girl hopeless romantic angst, no matter how incredible the person behind the songs is.

So, knowing I’m not a fan of the music of either Boys Like Girls or Taylor Swift, I’m typing on my MacBook in utter confusion and bewilderment. Because after hearing the new Boys Like Girls single featuring Taylor Swift, “Two Is Better Than One”, all of my pretentious music elitism seemed to disappear in the blink of an eye. I don’t know how but I love the hell out of this song.

It may be the combination of the voices. It may be the fact that I will always be a sucker for songs that erupt in gorgeous string accompaniments. It may be the utter realization that *gasp* a guy like me can like sappy love songs. However, after listening to it several times, digging down to the roots of why this song makes me smile, it hit me: the nostalgia.

The first time I heard this song, it instantly reminded me of one thing. You remember all those awesome 90s animation movies you watched as a kid like Aladdin, An American Tale, The Lion King etc (Of course you remember, you probably still watch them)? Well that’s what this song reminds me of; when the film ends with a heartfelt scene that brings your 7-year-old self to tears and as the credits roll your ears are blessed with a contemporary “boy sings one part, girl sings other part” cover of one of the songs in the movie: “A Whole New World”, “Somewhere Out There” etc.

Well, “Two Is Better Than One” sounds like all those songs just refurbished, reshipped and repackaged to our Disney movie-loving hearts just in time for the holiday season to kick in. This is easily the best Boys Like Girls song and obviously the only one I actually enjoy (or even tolerate).

Whew. That was a mouthful. But don’t expect me to like another sappy poppy love song this much anytime soon.
Oh yeah, and expect this to destroy the top 40 charts in like a month or so but before everyone starts singing it, get ahead of the game.

 

Warped Tour 2010 Hopes November 1, 2009

Filed under: Music — andthismakesaheartbeat @ 10:43 pm
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Twitter-Warped_Tour_10-logoIt was recently announced via twitter that the line-up for the 2010 Warped Tour is currently in the works. This year, the Warped Tour garnered some controversy for adding so many (and by so many, in reality like three or four out of 80) abysmal bands labeled under the new extremely unflattering genre dubbed “crunkcore”. This caused a slew of criticism for the tour for several reasons. Not only are these bands in fact make pretty horrible music and give off a bad image for the tour but the endless criticism of this newfound scene of “crunkcore” also turned off many concert-goers. Bands would interrupt their own sets to rant incessantly about how Warped Tour is dead because of the fact that a few of these “crunkcore” artists or “neon bands” were on the tour. As much as I hated this “crunkcore” trend and its appearance at Warped Tour, I also did not welcome this newfound elitism from supposedly real punk bands. So, since I really don’t want another year of awkward auto-tuned screaming or fire and brimstone speeches about how everyone is a poseur, I proposed a list of bands that not only I would personally love to see at Warped next year but would hopefully bring some sanity and credibility back the tour.

The Dangerous Summer

The+Dangerous+Summer+tds4One of the biggest up and coming acts this year, their debut Reach for the Sun is filled with gloriously beautiful guitar lines, introspectively personal lyrics and overall pop-punk perfection.

RIYL: The Starting Line, Valencia

Fireworks

Fireworks

They have “a sound with enough pop quality to keep your little sister’s attention, and enough edge to rid them of ‘guilty pleasure’ status.” Many consider them to be one of the best new punk bands to break into the scene this year and after one listen of their album All I Have To Offer Is My Own Confusion, it’s pretty easy to understand why. Plus, with their extremely enthusiastic live shows, Fireworks will pretty much have something for everyone looking to have a good time at Warped.

RIYL: old Fall Out Boy, New Found Glory

Set Your Goals

Set+Your+Goals2009 was the year pop-punk resurged back into its roots with bands like This Time Next Year, Four Year Strong and of course, one of the bands leading the movement, Set Your Goals. With their aggressive hooks, positive attitude, amazing live sets and this year’s fantastic release, This Will Be The Death Of Us, 2009 is becoming a fantastic year for SYG and frankly would be a perfect heavy-hitter for Warped’s line-up.

Family Force 5

Family+Force+5As Kevin Lyman, Warped Tour founder, awkwardly stated in an interview, “some kids at Warped just want to dance their faces off” (whatever that means). Jokes aside, whether you like it or not, catchier and poppier at Warped is here to say, it’s what the kids listen to. But frankly some of this music can be good, damn good. Family Force 5 are an alternative christian rock band with hip hop and electronic dance music elements mixed together with an over-the-top tongue in cheek attitude. Quite simply, their catchy hooks and silly antics make them one of the best mainstream rap-rock artists out there and frankly, FF5 is the band every “neon band” wish they could be (if they weren’t terrible). Most importantly, FF5 boasts an insane live show that features a giant drum machine dubbed “The Family Force 5000”, ridiculous Power Ranger-inspired outfits and some guy who calls himself “Xanadu” with an epic beard and a silver jumpsuit freestyle dancing on stage (don’t ask).

RIYL: 3OH!3, Alien Ant Farm

Other Bands I Would Love To See:

Alkaline Trio

The Gaslight Anthem

This Time Next Year

Fight Fair

New Found Glory

Against Me!

Say Anything

Motion City Soundtrack

This Providence

The Morning Of

 

Friday Music Recommendations May 29, 2009

Filed under: Music — andthismakesaheartbeat @ 11:45 pm
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Fight Fair

Fight+Fair++2009Fight Fair basically picks up where bands like Four Year Strong and A Day to Remember have left off. These two bands as well as several others started a love-hate  kind of rock, that combines the catchiness of pop-punk with the aggressiveness of hardcore. Fight Fair takes this sound and ultimately makes it even more poppy, giving moments that shine off pop rock bands like The White Tie Affair, Metro Station and Hellogoodbye. At their very worst, they’re a guilty pleasure (but a damn good guilty pleasure). At their best they’re an unbelievably fun band that can and will be the perfect music for your friday and saturday nights. And what better time to listen to them than the summertime? Heck their EP, Settle the Score, is destined to be your soundtrack for Summer 09. It sure as hell is gonna be mine.

RIYL: Fireworks, Four Year Strong

Myspace

Fact

Fact+l_c10354c4aafa4ce89d7b7034ac16Japanese post-hardcore/metalcore that reminds you why you love the genre in the first place. Seamlessly combines both the mainstream and underground aspects of the genre in ways few newcomers to the scene can. It’s aggressive, it’s furious and it’s awesome. Not to mention that the fact that their signed to Vagrant Records means we’ll see plenty more of them in the future. 

RIYL: Thursday, Underoath

Myspace


 

New Clip of Halloween Sequel May 26, 2009

Filed under: movies,Music,trailer — andthismakesaheartbeat @ 10:01 pm
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Here’s a sneak peak of Rob Zombie’s H2, the continuation of his “re-imagination” of the Halloween franchise. H2 will hit theaters August 28th to close this year’s summer movie season.

You can check out the clip here. But be warned… it’s spoooooooookkkkyyyyyyyyyyy

Source: MTV