20 Watts


Editor’s Pick #272: Skybox’s “In a Dream” by tjwell01

Skybox's bubblegum electro flavor tastes just right

PREVIEW: Skybox’s MySpace

LISTEN: “In a Dream” by Skybox

It kind of scares me that electro-pop is transitioning to more girl-y bands like Owl City, and Skybox’s “In a Dream” isn’t exactly beer can-crunching kind of music, but it feels good just listening to it while working on school work. Skybox could be one of those bands you like at first, listen to three times on your iPod and then completely bemoan the following week. Regardless though, Skybox is best at being fluid and light-hearted. It only takes one episode of Gossip Girl or one Twilight movie to make this song a global teen girl sensation (God, spare us all). If the music sings to you (to all of you Upstate New York lcoals), go and check them out in Ithaca, NY on March 5 at The Haunt.

–Jett Wells



Hearing Damage on a New Moon by cweeks88

Picnik collageThom Yorke and pale teenage heartthrobs… Like peas in a pod

PREVIEW: STREAM Thom Yorke’s “Hearing Damage”

The corporate entertainment method of using depressing and ghoulish themes and imagery to swindle the money out of disaffected preteens and their parents strikes again with the upcoming release of the Twilight sequel “New Moon.” The “New Moon” soundtrack reflects this money grubbing model by having an all-star listing of gloomy Indie bands contributing a song each. Nevertheless, in this showing of instant classic Indie groups — ranging from Death Cab for Cutie to Bon Iver and Grizzly Bear — who first made their mark earlier this decade, their contributions are easily trumped by the godfather of the beautiful doom-and-gloom style of alternative rock: Thom Yorke. Continue reading



News of Note: Michael Buble’s Crazy Love Beats New Moon, Grizzly Bear and Beach House Play Together in L.A., Epitaph Will Re-Release Most of The Blood Brothers Catalogue, and MORE! by jluposello
Michael Buble's record sales skyrocketed past New Moon's this week after an appearance on Oprah

Michael Buble's Crazy Love's record sales skyrocketed past New Moon's this week after an appearance on Oprah

Not even the New Moon crew could use their vampire powers to outdo Michael Buble’s release of Crazy Love, reports Rolling Stone. The crooner appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, causing album sales to skyrocket to over 55% more than during the record’s first week on shelves, outdoing the new Twilight soundtrack by a score of 203,000 to 115,000, respectively, according to the Nielsen SounScan. Oh, the power of Oprah.

Stereogum gives us a look at last night’s Grizzly Bear gig at the Hollywood Palladium in L.A. with some pretty sweet pictures courtesy of Andrew Youssef. Beach House, the opening act, played a few tracks that will appear on their new release, Teen Dream, due out from Sub Pop Records on January 26th.

Seattle’s post-hardcore pioneers The Blood Brothers practiced one of the 2000s’ most unique forms of punk, and after their breakup in 2007, fans were left with little to cling to other than their old Blood Brother’s records. Until now, that is. Epitaph Records is planning to re-release the entire The Blood Brothers‘ catalogue, minus their 2000 debut, This Adultery Is Ripe, reports Pitchfork. Look for it to the reissues, which will come stocked by B-sides, videos and live performance videos, when they drop on November 17.

Canada’s Kid Koala, Dynomite D and Wolfmother’s ex-rhythm section Chris Ross and Myles Heskett make up the psych group Slew. Their debut release, 100%, is set to be reissued by Ninja Tune, the label responsible for the likes of Amon Tobin, Blockhead, Bonobo and The Bug, just to name a few, reports Pitchfork. Look for the turntable-heavy sounds of Slew when the record drops on November 24th.

– John Luposello



News of Note: New Moon’s OST Features Thom Yorke, Muse, Grizzly Bear, Lykke Li, Bon Iver and More; Flaming Lips Release Embryonic Video; Broadcast Announce an EP; Rihanna Will Bring Big Beats; And Much More! by 20watts
For better or worse, New Moon's soundtrack will feature some of our favorite indie artists

For better or worse, New Moon's soundtrack will feature some of our favorite indie artists

Thom Yorke, The Killers, Grizzly Bear, and Muse have all signed on to contribute to New Moon‘s soundtrack. Other artists that will be on the Twilight sequel’s soundtrack include Lykke Li, OK Go and Editors. The full track listing can be viewed at NME.COM. [Previous 20 Watts Coverage: Thom York and Bon Iver Soundtrack New Moon]

Stereogum reported today that The Flaming Lips released a new video for the song “I Can Be a Frog,” from their new album Embryonic (to be released 10/13). The short song might not seem to make a great video on first listen, but Coyne’s animalistic lyricism makes for a lot of quirky pencil drawings in this unconventional music video. The bikini-clad actress mouthing Karen O‘s “noises” surprisingly adds to the video, but who doesn’t want to see the real thing? Maybe next time. [Previous 20 Watts Coverage: The Flaming Lips at ATP20 Watts Reviews The Flaming Lips' "Silver Trembling Hands" (from Embryonic)]

Birmingham-based electro-pop group Broadcast have announced their second release with Warp Records. Their full-length debut was punctuated by the extensive use of loops and lead singer Trish Keegan’s 1960s psychedelic rock vocals. Filter reports that the EP, entitled Broadcast & Focus Group Investigate Witch Cults of the Radio Age, is available for download from iTunes immediately, but won’t be hitting the shelves until October 27th.  The EP can be previewed for free, though, at your next psycho dance party with the help of their trusty Myspace.

Rolling Stone reports that Rihanna’s next LP promises to bring its audience “Big beats and big bass.” She’s recruited producers Justin Timberlake and Chase & Status to help her bring them. This album is sure to take attention away from Rihanna’s past year of drama. [Previous 20 Watts Coverage: 20 Watts Reviews Jay-Z's "Run This Town" (Feat. Rihanna)]

Pitchfork reports that Grizzly Bear‘s bassist and producer, Chris Taylor has started a record label called Terrible Records.  Through his new label, Taylor will be releasing his solo work on October 13. [Previous 20 Watts Coverage: Editor’s Pick #172: Grizzly Bear’s “While You Wait For the Others” (Feat. Michael McDonald)]

It seems as though Lily Allen and Radiohead guitarist Ed O’Brien are close to duking it out, Pitchfork reports. Radiohead belong to the Featured Artists Coalition (FAC), a British musician’s advocacy group. Apparently Lily Allen disagrees with O’Brien’s stance on file-sharing. After the guitarist released a statement endorsing the practice, the infuriated singer posted her opinion on her MySpace blog.  She believes file-sharing hinders the growth of up-and-coming artists. [Previous 20 Watts Coverage: Editor’s Pick #93: Lily Allen Is Alright with Me]

Psychedelic folk legends Neutral Milk Hotel have announced plans to re-release their discography through Merge Records, as reported by Filter. The reissues of On Avery Island (1996) and the critically celebrated In the Aeroplane over the Sea (1998) will be released on vinyl along with a digital download code, so that listeners can enjoy the reissues without a turntable. Considering In the Aeroplane over the Sea was the best-selling vinyl album of 2008, there’s definitely a market for it though. [Previous 20 Watts Coverage: 20 Watts Reviews Circulatory System (Elephant 6)]

– 20 Watts Staff



Editors Pick 146: Thom Yorke and Bon Iver Soundtrack New Moon by 20watts
Bon Iver may be on the soundtrack to Twilight sequel New Moon

Bon Iver may make an appearance on Twilight sequel New Moon

PREVIEW: Download Radiohead’s “15 Step” on Mediafire
PREVIOUS COVERAGE: (500) Days of Summer OST, Slumdog Millionaire Soundtrack, Top 10 Movie Soundtracks, Editors Pick Soundtracks 1 and 2

Is that the heart-baring croon of Bon Iver?  Or just the sound of hell freezing over?

According to an article posted on Hitfix Thursday, Twilight director Chris Weitz has confirmed that Thom Yorke AND Bon Iver have contributed tracks to New Moon, the Twilight sequel, set to hit theaters in late November.  Previously, Weitz told the Los Angeles Times that Band of Skulls and Muse were also on the soundtrack.

The last film was resplendent in gooey pre-teen romanticism, awkwardly over-long shots of Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson, and forgettable numbers from Paramore and others of their ilk.  Radiohead did, notably, soundtrack part of Twilight‘s credits with the Grammy-nominated “15 Step.”  And the franchise’s new composer, Alexandre Desplat, is practically legendary for his work on films like The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.

Still, the announcement comes as a surprise — as does the fact that these artists apparently approached Weitz, and not the other way around.

“Fortunately, I’m not at the stage where I have to turn anybody down yet, because everything is still kind of up in the air,” he said in an interview with Hollywood.com’s Katie Bain.  “But I am surprised and pleased at some of the bands that have said that they’re interested. It’s really kind of great. The criterion will still be what’s right for the movie at that given moment. Thom Yorke is interested. We might, if we’re very lucky, be able to get Kings of Leon to do something. So it’s exciting to be able to have access to this kind of talent.”

Twilight mania is apparently universal!  Now if only Thom Yorke would write a song for Harry Potter…

– Caitlin Dewey, Editor-in-Chief




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