Wednesday, August 27, 2008


Barsuk Records, based out of Seattle, is one of my favorite record labels. Actually, they are one of two labels whose bands I will listen to simply because they are Barsuk bands (Fat Cat is the other one). So I have to be honest, I was a little disappointed a few months ago when I heard Barsuk signed Ra Ra Riot. Everything I'd heard about the band made me think I would hate them, and after all of their SXSW buzz I just wrote them off as the next overhyped band. But I was wrong and I would have never known it without Barsuk. I forced myself to listen to their new record, The Rhumb Line, and I love it. It's pop in all the right ways...intelligent, captivating, and sweet all at the same time. Ra Ra Riot has been getting tons of press recently, and they deserve it. I'm sure there's a lesson somewhere here about not jumping to conclusions or making swift judgments but I'm not really sure.

New video for "Ghost Under Rocks," the first track from The Rhumb Line:

Buy tickets to see Ra Ra Riot in Austin. They play Stubb's on October 3 with The Morning Benders.

This summer Barsuk also released Lackthereof's, Your Anchor. Fans of Danny Seim's other band, Menomena, will probably be into his solo work as Lackthereof. A few of the songs on Your Anchor ("Choir Practice," "Last November") have actually made me forget, albeit briefly, that I haven't heard a new Menomena album since January of 2007. Seim closes out the record with a stripped down cover of The National's "Fake Empire" that's definitely worth a listen as well.

Purchase the new Lackthereof record, Your Anchor here. You can also find this album as well as a whole slew of older Lackthereof material for sale all over the Internet.


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