Tag Archive: Up-Beat


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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This band has some of the happiest songs I have ever heard.

Noah and the Whale are an English band from Twickenham, London, England.  The band was formed in 2006 and consists of Charlie Fink (vocals, guitar), Tom Hobden (violin, keyboard), Matt Owens (bass), Fred Abbott (guitar, keyboard), and Michael Petulla (drums).

The band became very popular within the British folk scene with the release of their first 2008 album, “Peaceful, the World Lays Me Down.”  The album cracked the U.K. Top 10 and spawned the hit single “5 Years Time.”  The band formed in the southern suburbs of London, and also served as the starting point for Laura Marling, who left the band in 2008 for her award-winning solo career.

The band moved ahead without Marling and released their second album, “The First Day of Spring,” in 2009.  Marling and Fink’s relationship ended shortly after she left the band and many songs from the album are inspired by the breakup.  The album garnered praise from many critics for its cinematic arrangements.

The bands third album, “Last Night on Earth,” followed in 2011.  The bands sound moved beyond the folk-rock sound of their earlier material, due in part to the departure of Charlie Fink’s brother and drummer, Doug Fink, and the addition of guitarist Fred Abbott.  Without a drummer, the band was forced to experiment with a drum machine, which produced much of the electronic influence found on “Last Night on Earth.”

In the following year they recruited Michael Petulla on drums and toured the country.  In 2013, the band announced their fourth record, “Heart of Nowhere,” which was accompanied by a film also named “Heart of Nowhere,” that was written and directed by Fink.

This band is one of the happiest, catchiest bands I have heard in a long time.  Many of their songs make you imagine a fun-filled summer day, or, in “5 Years Time’s” case, the joys of your childhood.  All of the songs they’ve made, especially when Marling was singing with the group, are excellent.  They leave you, at least for me, in a better mood and often have you humming their catchy tunes long after you’ve heard them.  If you don’t believe me, listen to “L.I.F.E.G.O.E.S.O.N.,” which was one of the bands top hits and one of their happiest and catchiest songs.

Below are some of the band’s top songs.  I recommend at least listening to “5 Years Time” and “L.I.F.E.G.O.E.S.O.N.”