20 Watts

20 Watts Reviews Groove Armada’s Black Light by JohnCassillo

Groove Armada's sixth album is a positive adjustment for the band

PREVIEW: VISIT Groove Armada’s MySpace
WE GIVE IT: 16/20 Watts

It took over two and a half years, but Groove Armada’s Andy Cato and Tom Findlay have finally revealed their new sound with Black Light. The group’s sixth studio album features heavy 80s dance beats mixed with low-key lyrics. In comparison to previous albums, Black Light contains a new songwriting style while also maintaining the flair that fans have come to expect.

The British musicians didn’t do it alone, though—all of the 11 original songs on Black Light boast an impressive list of guest artists. GA works with SaintSaviour and Nick Littlemore four times over the course of the upbeat, tell-all album.  Roxy Music frontman Bryan Ferry collaborates with the musical pair on “Shameless.” The track combines French-speaking seduction with a more lax sound and less vocals than other songs on Black Light. Coincidentally, Ferry’s Roxy Music was named as one of their inspirations for the release, among other artists like Friendly Fires, Klaxons, Ladyhawke, LCD Soundsystem and MGMT. Continue reading

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Preview: Make sure you check out Audiocandyradio.com

It is Thursday night and 20 Watts Radio is on Audiocandy. Make sure you tune in and don’t miss out on our great selection of awesome tunes.  We have some cool news happening at 20 Watts you simply cant miss. We are gonna give you a run down on some local shows that will be happening this weekend. If you are in Cuse you are most likely snowed in anyway, so join us for a quick getaway as we give you a run down of the awesome stuff you can do in Syracuse once this snow melts. Not to mention if you wanna request a song, all you need to do it tweet at you host here. So make sure to join 20 Watts on Auodiocandy 10 pm sharp. To tune in Click Here.

Show Playlist

1. Taxi Cab – Vampire Weekend
2. Something About Us – Daft Punk
3. Seahorse – Devendra Banhart
4. Actor Out of Work – St. Vincent
5. Laura – Girls
6. Home – Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros
7. where do you go to my lovely – Peter Sarstedt
8. Crown of Love – Arcade Fire
9. Grace Kelly – Mika
10. Hong Kong Garden – Siouxsie & The Banshees
11. Friday XIII – Deer Tick
12. Elephant Gun – Beirut
13. Nothing Ever Happened – Deerhunter
14. Silence Kid – Pavement
15. My Parents Lied – The Static Jacks
16. Gold and a Pager – The Cool Kids
17. Don’t Haunt This Place – The Rural Alberta Advantage
18. The Fox In The Snow – Belle & Sebastian
19. Snow and Lights- Explosions in the Sky
20. Snow (Hey Oh) – The Red Hot Chili Peppers
21. Wintertime Love – Choir Of Young Believers
22. White Winter Hymnal – Fleet Foxes
–Irina Dvalidze

Editor’s Pick #230: Spoon’s “Written In Reverse” by JohnCassillo

"Written In Reverse" is the first single off Spoon's Transference

PREVIEW: Listen to “Written In Reverse” at NPR

The hype’s already getting rolling for a bunch of albums coming out this January–namely new material by Beach House, Vampire Weekend and of course, Spoon.

“Written In Reverse” is the first single off of Spoon’s Transference, and if it’s any indication of the rest of the effort, we’re in for quite a different experience than 2007’s Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga. Lead singer Britt Daniel‘s vocals are less concise–sprawling over the dirty, rock ‘n’ roll background. It’s repetitious, basic and busy. Yet, the track works, somehow. Evoking some visions of The White Stripes‘ experimentation on Get Behind Me Satan, Transference very well could be a new chapter in Spoon’s interesting career. However, we’ll just have to wait until its release to get the final verdict.

Spoon’s Transference is out via Merge Records on January 19th.

–John Cassillo, Reviews Editor

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City Sounds 11/23: Detroit by krkuchta

The Supremes are one of the many influential Motown acts to come out of the Motor City

City Sounds goes to the Motor City this week to listen to some of it’s native sounds.

Detroit is known mainly for it’s automobile industry, but a close second would be Motown.  As the birthplace of Motown Records, Detroit provided the world with one of the most important musical genres of all time. An influence to almost every other musical genre following it’s dominance, Motown and it’s notoriety still stand as the ideal for popular music.

Artists like Smokey Robinson, The Supremes, and Stevie Wonder topped the charts with hit after hit after hit, and it set a new standard for pop.  Motown reigned supreme (some pun intended) through the ’60s and into part of the ’80s. Even though the hits have dwindled in quantity, the quality of music is still heard around the world.

Motown put Detroit on the map, but it wasn’t the only source of great music.  Detroit also had it’s moments during the garage rock revival in the early 2000s with bands like The White Stripes, The Von Bondies and Electric Six.  It also presented the world with arguably one of the most influential rappers of all time, Eminem.

There’s plenty of great music from Detroit that will all be covered on Monday, November 23, from 11pm-1am on WERW. Tune in and listen up!

— Kyle Kuchta

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Editor’s Pick #200: The Theremin by Eric Vilas-Boas

So November 4, 2009, I gained another year of experience in life. Throughout my day of yearly reflection and festivity, I wondered what my dear friends would do for me on this particular day of days. One of my fellow editors here chipped in with a few others and handed me an origami card. Upon opening it, I found a picture of the inimitable Léon Theremin working his magic and a speech bubble coming out of his theremin and saying: “I am coming for you in the mail.”

What is a theremin, you might ask? It’s a box (mine is white) that senses the position of its players hands relative to two antennae, one vertical, the other horizontal and looped, and emits sounds at varying frequencies and volumes to correspond to it.

The theremin is well-known for being the instrument used to make those really weird, oscillating noises in scary movies. Its filmography includes The Day the Earth Stood Still, The Red House, Spellbound, Ed Wood, The Machinist, and Hellboy. Moreover, pop musicians the world over have used it throughout music history, including The Beach Boys, The Flaming Lips, The White Stripes, Pink Floyd, Pixies, and Of Montreal, among others.

Because of the method behind its operation (waving your hands around the antennae), the theremin is notorious for being difficult to play properly. I know I can’t wait to start learning!

— Eric Vilas-Boas, Managing Editor

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