Tag Archive: Experimental


The New Pornographers is a Canadian indie rock band that formed out of Vancouver, British Columbia in 1999.  The band currently consists of Dan Bejar (vocals, guitar), Kathryn Calder (vocals, keyboards, guitar), Neko Case (vocals), John Collins (bass), Todd Fancey (lead guitar), Carl Newman (vocals, guitar), and Blaine Thurier (keyboards, synthesizer).

The name of the band was chosen by Carl Newman, who has said that he came up with it after watching a Japanese film called “The Pornographers”.  Many writers have assumed that the name was a reference to Jimmy Swaggart’s claim that rock and roll was “the new pornography”.  The band has released six albums to date: “Mass Romantic” (2000), “Electric Version” (2003), “Twin Cinema” (2005), “Challengers” (2007), “Together” (2010), and “Brill Bruisers (2014).

The band’s first four albums each placed in the top 40 on The Village Voice’s Pazz & Jop year-end poll of hundreds of music reviewers.  From 2000 to 2006, either a New Pornographers’ album or a solo album from one of the band’s members ranked in the top 40 on the list each year.  In 2007, Blender magazine ranked The New Pornographers’ first album, “Mass Romantic”, the 24th best indie album of all time.  It is the second highest Canadian album on the list, behind Arcade Fires’ “Funeral”, which came in sixth.  In 2009, Rolling Stone magazine ranked the band’s second studio album, “Electric Version”, No. 79 in the “100 Best Albums of the Decade”.

With the release of the band’s sixth studio album “Brill Bruiser” in 2014, which was also highly praised by fans and critics alike, it seems like The New Pornographers can do no wrong.  They are definitely a band worth checking out and I’m sure that their next album will be just as good, if not better, than their last.

Check out some of the band’s biggest hits below and see why these guys are so highly regarded within the indie music scene.

Sources: Info: Wikipedia – Videos: YouTube – The New Pornographers – Picture: Google Images

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That Handsome Devil, often shortened to THD, is an American rock band that hails from Brooklyn, New York, by way of Boston, Massachusetts.  The band consists of frontman Godforbid (vocals, songwriter), Jeremy Page (guitar, bass, keyboard, banjo, pedal steel, glockenspiel, percussion, accordion, synthesizer, kazoo, background vocals, songwriter), Naoko Takamoto (backing vocals), Evan Sanders (keyboard, trumpet, trombone), Jeremy Siegel (bass, background vocals), Sam Merrick (drums), Deflon Sallahr (live show hype man), Andy Bauer (drums, percussion, accordion, guitar, backing vocals).

The band mixes genres such as rock, funk, jazz, jive, blues, surf, R&B, reggae, rockabilly, rap, and psychedelic.  Their sound has also been described as “equal parts Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, bizarre electronica, creepy hip-hop, and in-your-face gonzo rock”.  Others have described the bands sound as gypsy jazz and the band’s own frontman Godforbid has described the sound as “fringe pop”.

The band was founded by Godforbid and Jeremy Page.  Before “That Handsome Devil” existed, Godforbid and Page were both members of the hip-hop group Alaskan Fishermen, along with Thirstin’ Howl III and Father Time.  In late 2004, THD released their first singles “Dating Tips”, “How To Get Money”, and “Don’t Go”.  On July 26, 2006, the band released their first EP titled “That Handsome Devil”.  The fourth track from the album “Elephant Bones”, was featured as a bonus song for Guitar Hero II.

Their first studio album, “A City Dressed In Dynamite”, was released on August 5, 2008 to scores of positive reviews.  The album was praised as “profoundly entertaining, bizarre in a beautiful way, and a madcap musical frenzy as dizzying as it is dazzling”.  Although the music continued to be as stylistically varied as their previous releases, the album expanded on the band’s prevalent themes of emptiness, drug addiction, materialism, and death.  It also continued their trademark of using dated soundbites from the 1950s.

In December 2008, the band released a compilation album titled “Good Riddance, George W. Bush”, which consisted of anti-George W. Bush songs.  One of the biggest singles from the album “Rob The Prez-O-Dent” actually didn’t refer to George W. Bush or his policies at all, though their song “Viva Discordia” does contain overt references to the Iraq War and the Bush administration, referring to the later as “a bunch of mobsters looking for Osama”.  “Rob The Prez-O-Dent” was a featured song on Rock Band 2 and help the band gain more recognition.

On August 9, 2011, the band released their newest full-length album, “The Heart Goes To Heaven, The Head Goes To Hell”.  The album garnered favorable reviews from both fans and critics.  The band kicked off the album with a heartland tour and the launch of an independent website.  This was financed, in part, by a fundraising effort through Kickstarter where the band reached their pledge goal of $2,000 within a few days and ultimately raised $6,013 after a month.  Many people chose to donate at the $100 level in order to receive some highly sought-after unreleased songs, along with exclusive accessories.

On August 2012, the band announced a new EP titled “The Jungle Book” which was available for free download through their website.  The EP consists of covers of several songs from the original “The Jungle Book” Disney movie with the songs being redone and quasi-reimagined.

On November 25, 2014, THD released their third studio album “Drugs & Guns for Everyone”.  This album, much like their previous albums received positive reviews among fans and critics as well.

It seems like THD can do no wrong.  Their constant willingness to experiment and blend almost every genre of music together constantly helps keep their music new, entertaining, and very random.  This, it seems, helps add to the bands appeal, making fans of multiple genres able to connect with THD.  They are innovators within multiple musical genres and God only knows what their next album will sound like but I’d bet that it’ll be just as bizarre and random as the last.  In the case of THD, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Check out some of the band’s biggest hits below and keep an eye out for what they release next.  I’m sure it’ll be worth a listen.

Sources: Info: Wikipedia – Videos: YouTube – That Handsome Devil – Picture: Google Images