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John Mayer 2/24/2010
02/25/10 at 12:57 AM by Keagan Ilvonen
Let me just say that John Mayer is a living legend. No matter what the man does he will always be relevant in music. I'm also fairly sure that the man can conquer anything that is thrown at him. After attending various concerts I can honestly say I think I witnessed the best tonight. Better than Brand New, Taking Back Sunday, anything. There is just something about John that stands out. This is what he was made to do and he is the best at what he does. Playing his guitar and making timeless music. Note for note the man was on fire and played his heart out until the end. It doesn't get much better in music, and more people should appreciate the raw talent that is John Mayer.
Tags: John Mayer, Live, TD Banknorth
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Year End Lists For 2009
01/01/10 at 09:32 PM by Keagan Ilvonen
Finally finished, Hopefully people like it.

Top Albums of 2009

1. Grizzly Bear - Veckatimest

Look no further for 2009ís album of the year. Grizzly Bear have captivated fans since their 2006 release Yellow House and have had everyone hanging on the edge of their seat for a follow up. That follow up finally came and what a follow up they created. Veckatimest is everything you could ever want out of this band. Grizzly Bear have created an album that not only reaches out to the hardcore indie elite, but also the mainstream kids who feel like they need to fit in. This album is a huge grower as it wasnít what I was expecting or wanted after listening to Yellow House for so long. But as time went by I began appreciating and dissecting the music with every listen, and finding the simple and complex beauties within. With pop sensibilities and vocal arrangements fit for the grandest of occasions, Grizzly Bear has reached all star status without your typical charades. This New York four piece are the new kings of everything. Indie rock, pop, psychedelic, you name it and Grizzly Bear can perfect it. Just donít dare them to try because all hope would be lost for everyone else.

2. Animal Collective - Merriweather Post Pavilion

Titling a record the ďAlbum of the yearĒ and ďAlbum of the decadeĒ is quite a statement for something to be released the first week of a new year. But somehow Animal Collective lived up to the hype in an undermining fashion. After dabbling in various different forms of music Animal Collective have final found their niche, psychedelic pop music. Sure they have basically done that from the beginning but Merriweather Post Pavilion is their masterpiece. No matter how great this album is people are going to hate on it because thatís human nature. But if you put all biases aside this is one awesome piece of work and will be looked back upon as one of the defining albums of this decade..

3. Fun. - Aim and Ignite

Nate Reuss should be regarded as one of the new kings of pop. The man just gets melody and harmony. First he won fans over with one of my personal favorite bands, The Format. Then when that journey came to an end another started in the shape of Fun. Aim and Ignite has everything that a pop masterpiece needs. The song structures and compositions on this record are beyond basically every other pop act out there. Then you throw Nateís distinct vocal style on top of that and you have one hell of a time.

4. Dirty Projectors - Bitte Orca

This was one album I didnít expect to land in my top ten upon the initial listen but over time it slowly became one of my favorites. Led by Dave Longstreth, Dirty Projectors take you on a spastic artsy ride that many expected. From the extremely talented set of pipes by the female supporting cast to Longstrethís avant-garde guitar work, there is something everyone can appreciate. When everything is said and done, you still canít pin point the Dirty Projectors sound, but youíre okay with it.

5. The Antlers - Hospice

Again. Another album came out of left field for me. I bought The Antlers Hospice on a whim and ended up falling in love with a masterpiece. The Antlers tell a story of man finding a woman at his cancer ward in which he falls in love with. The album switches from first to second person narrative as it tells the heartbreaking story of the man falling in love with the woman and watching her die. This is probably one of the most emotional albums I have ever experienced and is a must listen for anyone with a heart.

6. St.Vincent - Actor

While St. Vincentís debut album Marry Me was solid in itís own right, nobody was ready for the album she had cooking over the past two years. Actor improves on everything Marry Me wasnít. The indie pop quirks are still there, just in a more abrasive form. With time this album continues to grow on you, showcasing multiple highlights that are never expected. If the year had been any longer this could have possibly been a contender for the album of the year, but at the end of the day it still holds itís own.

7. The xx - xx

All kinds of hype had been surrounding this English pop group for awhile before the release of their debut album xx, but needless to say they lived up to the hype. The xx delivered one of the most relaxing yet upbeat albums of the year. Whether you feel like zoning out in your room, or driving around town this album fits all needs. The band makes a perfect mix of indie/trip hop/and dream pop that anyone can enjoy.

8. The Flaming Lips - Embryonic

Not that there arenít artists out there doing it, but Wayne wanted to create an album that you canít just pick out songs. He wanted to create an album in the traditional sense that itís made to be listened to front to back. Embryonic is that album. Two discs of straight up Flaming Lips quirkiness that may be the bands best work yet. Pushing the limits of the indie psychedelic rock, Embryonic dares listeners to dig through its complex layers and find new meaning behind every note. Right now this album is just considered great, but down the road this will be considered a classic in the historic legacy of The Flaming Lips.

9. The Dear Hunter - Act III

So what is there to say about Casey and the crew that hasnít been said? Casey continues to be one of the best musicians out today. Whether it be creating masterpieces known as Between The Heart and The Synapse, or drawing out a multiple album concept story that involves wars, prostitutes, and love, Casey continues to prove his worth in the ever changing music scene. Act III is the follow up to the other masterpiece Act II which left listeners wanting more. Well Casey didnít fail yet again. Act III delves into more luscious instrumentation and an overall greater production feel as the story starts to come into focus. Itís safe to say as time goes Casey just gains fans because when you make music like him itís pretty damn hard to lose them.

10. The Pains of Being Pure At Heart - The Pains of Being Pure At Heart

Itís weird that out of all places for me to fall in love with an album, I fell in love with this one at work. I was working before the store opened and decided that I would give it a shot based on all the praise it had been getting and I was hooked instantly. The Smiths being on of my favorite bands Iím always looking for something to compare, and while no one ever does, The Pains of Being Pure at Heart are pretty damn close. Think of The Smiths from America, mixed with My Bloody Valentine and you have The Pains of Being Pure at Heart.

11. Girls - Album

12. Phoenix - Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix

13. Passion Pit - Manners

14. Neko Case - Middle Cyclone

15. Cymbals Eat Guitar - Why There Are Mountains

16. Mos Def - The Ecstatic

17. Japandroids - Post-Nothing

18. Dinosaur Jr. - Farm

19. Raekwon - Cuban Linx Part. II

20. Fuck Buttons - Tarot Sport

21. Portugal. The Man - The Satanic Satanist

22. Camera Obscura - My Maudlin Career

23. Bat For Lashes - Two Suns

24. Caspian - Tertia

25. Wavves - Wavvves

26. Atlas Sound - Logos

27. Neon Indian - Psychic Chasms

28. The Avett Brothers - I and Love and You

29. Manchester Orchestra - Mean Everything To Nothing

30. Why? - Eskimo Snow

31. Miike Snow - Miike Snow

32. Thrice - Beggars

33. Thursday - Common Existence

34. The Swell Season - Strict Joy

35. Yo La Tengo - Popular Songs

36. Mastodon - Crack The Skye

37. Volcano Choir - Unmap

38. Wild Beasts - Two Dancers

39. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Itís Blitz!

40. John Mayer - Battle Studies

41. Jj - jjn2

42. Dan Deacon - Bromst

43. A Sunny Day in Glasgow - Ashes Grammar

44. Great Lake Swimmers - Lost Channels

45. The Decemberists - The Hazards of Love

46. Wale - Attention Deficit

47. All The Day Holiday - The Things Weíve Grown To Love

48. As Tall As Lions - You Canít Take It With You

49. RX Bandits - Mandala

50. Nurses - Apples Acres

51. Metric - Fantasies

52. The Cambiata - The Cambiata

53. P.O.S. - Never Better

54. Built To Spill - There Is No Enemy

55. Set Your Goals This Will Be The Death of Us All

56. Wilco - Wilco (The Album)

57. Bibio - Ambivalance Avenue

58. Lily Allen - Itís Not Me, Itís You

59. Antony and the Johnsons - The Crying Light

60. Morrissey - Years of Refusal

61. Kevin Devine - Brothers Blood

62. The Mercury Program - Chez Viking

63. Tegan and Sara - Sainthood

64. The Thermals - Now We Can See

65. Cassino - Kingprince

66. Clipse - Till The Casket Drops

67. Brand New - Daisy

68. Converge - Axe To Fall

69. The Dodos - Time To Die

70. Mute Math - Armistice

71. Paramore - brand new eyes

72. La Roux - La Roux

73. The Mountain Goats - The Life of the World To Come

74. As Cities Burn - Hell or High Water

75. Kid Cudi - Man On The Moon

76. Real Estate - Real Estate

77. Every Time I Die - New Junk Aesthetic

78. Regina Spektor - Far

79. Say Anything - Say Anything

80. The Damnwells - One Last Century

81. Gavin Degraw - Free

82. Bear in Heaven - Beast Rest Forth Mouth

83. DOOM - Born Like This

84. Mayer Hawthorne - A Strange Arrangement

85. The Artic Monkeys - Humbug

86. We Were Promised Jetpacks - These Four Walls

87. Third Eye Blind - Ursa Major

88. Minature Tigers - Tell It To the Volcano

89. Between the Buried and Me - The Great Misdirect

90. Basement Jaxx - Scars

91. The Dead Weather - Horehound

92. Jay-Z - The Blueprint 3

93. Julian Casablancas - Phrazes for the Young

94. Them Crooked Vultures - Them Crooked Vultures

95. Noah and The Whale - First Days of Spring

96. The Sounds - Crossing The Rubican

97. Native - Wrestling Moves

98. Grammatics - Grammatics

99. Discovery - LP

100. A Fine Frenzy - Bomb in a Birdcage

Honorable Mentions
Ö And You Will Know Us By The Trail of Dead - The Century of Self
A.A. Bondy - When the Devilís Loose
A Day To Remember - Homesick
A Loss For Words - The Kids Canít Lose
A Place To Bury Strangers - Exploding Head
Akron/Family - Set Emí Wild, Set Emí Free
Alexander the Great - Face Change
Alexisonfire - Old Crows/Young Cardinals
All Time Low - Nothing Personal
Amanda Blank - I Love You
Anchor & Braille - Felt
Andrew Bird - Noble Beast
Andrew Dost - Columbus
Appleseed Cast, The - Sagarmatha
Audrye Sessions - Audrye Sessions
Barcelona - Absolutes
Baroness - Blue Record
Big Pink, The - A Brief History of Love
Bird and The Bee, The - Ray Guns Are Not Just The Future
Black Dice - Repo
Black Moth Super Rainbow - Eating Us
Blakroc - Blakroc
Blessthefall - Witness
BLK JKS - Mystery
Brendan Rivera - Body of Land
Broadway Calls - Good Views, Bad News
Brobecks, The - Violent Things
Bowerbirds - Upper Air
Brother Ali - Us
Califone - All My Friends Are Funeral Singers
Cartel - Cycles
Chariot, The - Wars and Rumors of Wars
Chase Pagan - Bells and Whistles
Clientele, The - Bonfires on the Heath
Closure In Moscow - First Temple
Coconut Records - Davy
Condo Fucks - Fuckbook
Consider The Thief - Signs and Wonders
Cribs, The - Ignore The Ignorant
Crystal Antlers - Tentacles
Cursive - Mama, Iím Swollen
Dance Gavin Dance - Happiness
Dangerous Summer, The - Reach For The Sun
Dashboard Confessional - Alter The Ending
Dave Mathews Band - Big Whiskey and The Groo Grux King
David Bazan - Curse Your Branches
Dead Manís Bones - Dead Mans Bones
Deas Vail - Bird and Cages
Deer Tick - Born On Flag Day
Derek Webb - Stockholm Syndrome
Destry - It Goes On
Devendra Banhart - What Will We Be
Devil Wears Prada, The - With Roots Above and Branches Below
Do Make Say Think - Do Make Say Think
Doves - Kingdom of Rust
Dr. Manhattan - Jam Dreams
Dredg - The Pariah, The Parrot, The Delusion
Editors - In This Light and On This Evening
Emeralds - What Happened
Emery - ÖIn Shallow Seas We Sail
Empire! Empire (I Was A Lonely Estate) - What It Takes To Move Forward
Eye Alaska - Genesis Underground
Fake Problems - Itís Great To Be Alive
Fireworks - All I Have To Offer is My Own Confusion
Felt - Felt 3:
Fever Ray - Fever Ray
Flight of The Conchords - I Told You I Was Freaky
Florence and The Machine - Lungs
Foolís Gold - Foolís Gold
Frank Turner - Poetry of The Deed
Franz Ferdinand - Tonight: Franz Ferdinand
Fray, The- The Fray
Freelance Whales - Weathervanes
Four Year Strong - Explains It All
Future of The Left - Travels With Myself and Another
Ghostface Killah - Ghostidni: The Wizard of Poetry in Emerald City
Harvard - The Inevitable and I
Health - Get Color
Here We Go Magic - Here We Go Magic
Horse The Band - Desperate Living
Husband & wife - Dark Dark Woods
Ida Maria - Fortress Round My Heart
Ingrid Michaelson - Everybody
Islands - Vapors
Ivory - Goodnight, Goodbye
Jay Farrar and Ben Gibbard - One Fast Move or Iím Gone: Keruacís Big Sur
Jay Reatard - Watch Me Fall
Jeremy Enigk - OK Bear
John Nolan - Height
Johnny Foreigner - Grace and The Bigger Picture
Jonsi and Alex - Rice Boy Sleeps
Karen O and The Kids - Where The Wild Things Are Soundtrack
Little Boots - Hands
Lucero - 1372 Overton Park
M. Ward - Hold Time
Major Lazer - Guns Donít Kill PeopleÖ Lazers Do
Mars Volta, The - Octahedron
Matt and Kim - Grand
Meg & Dia - Here, Here and Here
Metavari - Be One of Us and Hear No Noise
mewithoutYou - Itís Crazy, Itís False, Itís All a Dream, Itís Alright!
Modern Electric, The - The Modern Electric
Moneen - The World I Want To Leave Behind
Monsters of Folk - Monsters of Folk
Muse - The Resistance
New Found Glory - Not Without A Fight
NOFX - Coaster
Norah Jones - The Fall
Number Twelve Looks Like You, The - Worse Than Alone
Omar Rodriguez-Lopez - Xenophanes
Owen - New Leaves
Paolo Nutuni - Sunny Side Up
Paper Route - Absence
Pearl Jam - Backspacer
Person L - The Positives
Peter Bjorn & John - Living Thing
Phish - Joy
Polar Bear Club - Chasing Hamburg
Poison The Well - The Tropic Rot
Propagandhi - Supporting Caste
Rain Machine - Rain Machine
Relient K - Forget and Donít Slow Down
Rocketboys, The - 20,000 Ghosts
Rodrigo y Gabriella - 11:11
Royksopp - Junior
Russian Circles - Geneva
Seabird - Rocks Into Rivers
Sea Wolf - White Water, White Bloom
Sherwood - QU
Silversun Pickups - Swoon
Sleeping At Last - Storyboards
So Long Forgotten - Things We Can See and Things We Cannot
So Many Dynamos - The Loud Wars
Sonic Youth - The Eternal
Stars of Track and Field - A Time For Lions
Swellers, The - Ups and Downisizing
The-Dream - Love vs. Money
Therefore I Am - The Sounds of Human Lives
Throw Me The Statue - Creatuesque
Tim Williams - Careful Love
Tortoise - Beacons of Ancestorship
Touche Amore - ÖTo Beat A Dead Horse
Trophy Scars - Bad Luck
Twilight Sad, The - Forget The Night Ahead
Weezer - Raditude
We Shot The Moon - A Silver Lining
White Rabbits - Itís Frightening
Winston Audio - Winston Audio
Woods - Songs of Shame
Working Title, The - Bone Island
Worldís End Girlfriend - Air Doll
YACHT - See Mystery Lights
Zechs Marquise - Our Delicate Stranded Nightmare

Top EPís of 2009
1. Animal Collective - Fall Be Kind
2. Drake - So Far Gone EP
3. The Republic of Wolves - His Old Branches
4. Bon Iver - Blood Bank
5. Delorean - Aryton Senna EP
6. Man Overboard - Dahlia
7. Modest Mouse - No Oneís First and Youíre Next
8. No Age - Losing Feeling
9. Sleigh Bells - Sleigh Bells
10. Death Cab For Cutie - Open Door EP
11. Kinch - Collars and Sleeves EP
12. Transit - Stay Home

Worst Albums of 2009
Brokencyde - Iím Not a Fan But The Kids Like It
Cobra Starship - Hot Mess
Breathe Carolina - Hello Fascination
Jeffree Star - Beauty Killer
Dot Dot Curve - Your Ears Will Bleeping Bleed

Biggest Letdowns of 2009
Taking Back Sunday - New Again
The Fall of Troy - In the Unlikely Event
Nightmare of You - Infomaniac

Best Mixtape of 2009
Lilí Wayne - No Ceilings

Best Live Show of 2009
Brand New

Band to Blow Up in 2010
Los Campesinos!

Most Anticipated Records of 2010
Los Campesinos! - Romance is Boring
Spoon - Transference
Motion City Soundtrack - My Dinosaur Life
Vampire Weekend - Contra
Broken Bells - Broken Bells
The Shins - TBA
Yeasayer - Odd Blood
Rocky Votolato - True Devotion
Seabear - We Built A Fire
Jonsi - Go

And much much more.
Tags: End of the year list, albums of the year 2009, 2009 recap, ep's of the year, live
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Late Nights With John Mayer
12/27/09 at 01:43 AM by Keagan Ilvonen
In the same vein as my last blog post I'm still amped about getting to see John Mayer so I have been watching him live all night. So for anyone else who is up drinking kombucha green tea, baking my mom a birthday cake, and finishing up my year end list.

Albums of the year tomorrow probably. I hope people actually like it, I took quite some time with this.
Tags: John Mayer, Live, Full Concert, Albums of The year, ramblings
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Dirty Projectors on Jimmy Fallon
09/29/09 at 05:26 PM by Keagan Ilvonen
They played a new song, "When The World Comes To An End" which sounds fantastic. The girls harmonies are better than ever.

Tags: Dirty Projectors, Jimmy Fallon, Live
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The Dear Hunter - He Said He Had A Story (Live)
08/04/09 at 08:08 PM by Keagan Ilvonen
If there hasn't been enough reasons presented in the past, for you to be a fan of The Dear Hunter, this may do the trick.

Hands down my favorite band in the scene. They can do no wrong in my eyes.
Tags: The Dear Hunter, HE Said He Had a Story, live
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Ben Folds
03/22/09 at 08:30 PM by Keagan Ilvonen
I guess thats my rec for taoday. Rock all things related to BF, whether it be solo or Ben Folds Five. Just bought tickets to see him April 28th. So stoked!
Tags: Ben Folds, Ben Folds Five, Live, Recs
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Clutch - Full Fathom Five
03/06/09 at 02:44 PM by Keagan Ilvonen
Everyoneís life goes through changes. Whether it be the clothes you wear, people you hang out with, or music you listen to. I have to admit that at one point in my life I enjoyed Clutch. Iím not exactly sure why as I look back now. But as the saying goes, with age comes wisdom. I can happily say that I have become wiser thanks to Full Fathom Five.

There probably is a large amount of people that have never even heard of Clutch or what they do. So to make sure people know I will fill you in. Clutch is a Canadian rock band that mixes many sub rock genres to make a big mess. Eventually there comes a time when people realize that they need to grow up and act somewhat mature, but Iím not sure Clutch has reached this day yet. Songs about smoking weed and getting drunk sang by middle ages men use to be amusing when I was 13 because that was what I wished I was doing. Now when I hear the said songs above by bands like Clutch I cringe. Full Fathom Five is a live CD/DVD of recordings taken from various shows and its far from good. Probably as far away from good as you can get. The whole 95 minutes seems like it is one endless song that has no end in sight. If I had to pick one complaint out of the many it would be the lyrics/singing. Vocalist Neil Fallonís voice seems as if It canít get any more monotonous and boring. A good 95% of the time you can hardly understand what heís saying which makes this release totally intolerable for me. I was hoping that because this is shot in a few different places that Fallon may have had an off night in the beginning, but this isnít the case. His voice goes unchanged for every venue that was shot. Although I feel as if I must give credit where credit is due. The rest of the band is spot on with everything they play and the actual instrumental aspect sounds great. But sadly one part can bring the whole group down and thatís the case here. Full Fathom Five proves that after you have had a couple beers in your system you can get excited about anything.

Its obvious that my tastes have just changed from what they use to be. I believe that the changes I make in my everyday life such as my underwear, contacts, and music I listen to are for the better, while Iím sure others will disagree. But I guess thatís what music is for.

In all honest I would only recommend this to diehard fans of the band that feel they need to own everything Clutch has ever put out. Aside from that I would probably try to steer away from this album and go with a studio album so you can possibly enjoy it.
Tags: Clutch, Bad bad bad live, Review
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