Until I get the reviews up and running again, I thought I'd give a little rundown of three records I've enjoyed in these late summer months.

20070817albums1.jpgGlen Hansard & Markéta Irglová - The Swell Season

I've dragged Jori to plenty of shows in our time together, so when she asked me to see the Swell Season, despite knowing nothing about them, I accepted. They are the stars of Once and Hansard is also the lead singer of the Frames, whose show I once walked out on. I'm glad I didn't know about the Frames connection in advance as my jaded hipster side would have emerged. Instead, I was taken away by their harmonies and amazing chemistry. Glen has a fantastic voice and Markéta complements him beautifully (I'm a sucker for harmonizing hipster folkies). While the album is excellent, I'm not surprised to find that the live show is better. The magic just didn't translate to the studio. Of course that hasn't stopped me from playing the record several times already.

Buy The Swell Season
Buy the Once soundtrack

20070817albums2.jpgThe Hood Internet - Mixtape Vol. 1

Okay, I'm friends with half of the Hood Internet, but their mashups are awesome. They mix up indie rock and hip hop with great aplomb. Sure, everyone has a mashup blog these days, but STV SLV and ABX have found their calling, which is why you keep hearing about them. The first mix tape is almost all winners. I especially enjoyed "Girls Just Wanna Fix Up" (Madonna and Dizzee Rascal) and "Rock Yo Sea Legs" (Crime Mob and the Shins). You can download the whole thing or just hit up the blog and download the tracks individually. As long as you're there, check out today's track, which was especially awesome.

Download Mixtape Vol. 1

20070817albums3.jpgThrow Me the Statue - Moonbeams

Somehow, I landed on the mp3 blog I Guess I'm Floating (a link from a link from a link, probably) and found a couple songs by this Seattle band. For the first time in a long time, I went straight to their label's site and bought a copy of the record. The album starts out twee but isn't the slight bit abnoxious. It feels like I just happened upon a really cute coffee shop with Throw Me the Statue playing and bopped along as I ate my egg salad sandwich. Then it starts rockin' a bit, albeit quietly. The album won't win awards and won't sell a million copies, but I'm enjoying it and it's perfect for summer. If you pick up the record, check out "About to Walk" and "This is How We Kiss".

Download "Lolita" and "Conquering Kids"
Buy Moonbeams from Baskerville Records