I have decided to share my musical interests with you all, and all that enjoy the art. Listed below in, an alphabetical fashion, are the musical acts that have had the biggest impact on my life.
...And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead - At first I enjoyed them for their do-it-yourself style and other punk antics. Then after they released "World's Apart" and "So Divided" I witnessed something entertaining become something epic.
Animal Collective - Some say noisy, I say artistic expression. All the members contribute fully to song creation, and no one member is more important than the other. They also all have their own solo projects.
Architecture in Helsinki - In someway I feel as if I am listening to an evolved B-52s... but in a good way.
At the Drive-in - Emotionally driven punk at it's best. The first thing I noticed about this band, and what I enjoy the most, is the vast vocabulary that the vocalist holds. As well as the cryptic lyrics he puts together with the aforementioned vocabulary.
Beastie Boys - Somewhat of a guilty pleasure of mine. Always fun to listen to at a large gathering. Their newest album "The Mix-up" was an interesting experiment for the group, and it's truly and enjoyable listen.
Beck - Not a huge fan, but he is defiantly worth mentioning, his live show at Bonnaroo '06 was one of my highlights of the event.
Cake - In all honesty most of their songs I really cannot stand, but they do have a few notable gems, such as "Frank Sinatra" and "Jesus Wrote a Blank Check" I also enjoy their lulzworthy cover of "I Will Survive" and their epic cover of "War Pigs"
Chemical Brothers - Fun music and psychedelic music videos.
Circa Survive - Modern poetry. The instrumentals backing this group are entertaining, but sometimes feel generic. When "Juturna" came out, it felt perfect for the real life situation I was encountering at the time. "On Letting Go" should have honestly never have been made.
Coheed and Cambria - This one is an interesting one for me. At first I refused to listen to them due the teeth cringe feeling the vocals gave me. Then I read more into the concept story, and gave them a second listen, and man can that mother fucker play the guitar AND tell a story.
Crystal Castles - What can be better than 8-bit video game music and a beauty screaming? Well a lot of things, but still a fun project, and worth a listen.
Crystal Method - Classic music for a classic period of my life. I had the opportunity to watch their live set at Rothbury Festival which ended with everyone attending the festival to end up holding a silent rave in the woods.
the Cure - All I am going to state is "Three Imaginary Boys" is an amazing album, everything after that... no comment.
Cursive - The greatest band from Omaha, period. I highly recommend the EP "Burst and Bloom" as well as the full length's "Cursive's Domestica" and "The Ugly Organ"
The Dear Hunter - Not to be confused with Deerhunter. A modern epic and a continuing concept of a Mrs. Robinson like experience. As I listen to either of their albums I get this sensory overwhelm and actually feel as if I am witnessing a play of some sort.
Death Cab For Cutie - I honestly do not listen to them that often, but I will admit to their talent and their show was relaxing to watch amidst the chaos that was Bonnaroo '06.
The Dismemberment Plan - Just pure grade A emotional art.
The Fall of Troy - Punk? Metal? Progressive Rock? The lead vocalist plays the frantic lead guitar? Very enjoyable and very talented.
Fear Before the March of Flames - A musical act full of various influences. The lyrics are very meaningful, yet cryptic.
Flight of the Conchords - A friend showed me an episode of their television show. Comedic and musical geniuses rolled into one.
Fugazi - Some cite as the grandfathers of what is known as "Emo" however most of these modern bands are no where close to the phenomenon known as Fugazi. "the Argument" holds a very special place with me.
Gnarls Barkley - A guilty pleasure of mine. Danger Mouse is easily one of today's greatest talents and Cee-lo's vocals put such emotion behind his music.
Glassjaw - One name... Daryl Palumbo.
Head Automatica - Same with Glassjaw Daryl Palumbo, but this time with a different vocal style and Dan the Automator providing the music for this modern disco.
Incubus - Seriously who can admit they do not like a single Incubus song? Ah, the days of waking up and putting on "S.C.I.E.N.C.E." or "Fungus Amongus" that's not to say I don't enjoy their transition into what they are now. Not a fan of "Light Grenades" though.
Interpol - Music that could be a soundtrack to a movie.
LCD Soundsytem - Fun and upbeat, perfect music to set a good mood and promote serotonin flow.
Man Man - Frantic, hyper, and bizarre. I watched a video of an elderly lady giving her review on one of their shows, one of the most hilarious things I have ever watched.
Map and Atlases - A recent discover for me, for some reason I get the feeling that they are playing math equations with their instruments.
the Mars Volta - Where do I begin? This is one of the acts that rose from the flames after At the Drive-in disbanded. Of course the wide vocabulary and cryptic vocals carried on from their previous act, but this time sung in a more falsetto voice. This is my favorite band to watch live, completely full of energy from every being in the venue. To explain what it is like to witness the vocalist live I try to put the image in peoples minds of Bjork and Robert Plants voices coming out of a carcass dancing like that of James Brown.
mewithoutYou - Very spiritual and amazing imagery done by both the vocals and the guitar.
MGMT - One of the most original acts I have heard in a few years. I give my best wishes to these two and may they carry on with what they are trying to accomplish.
Minus the Bear - I have yet to listen to their older work, but "Menos el Oso" and "Planet of Ice" give me an "American Radiohead" like feeling.
Modest Mouse - One of my long time favorite artists. I still remember the day I was shown "Lonesome Crowded West" and how I was blown away by the lyrics. I honestly don't think they have ever created a song that was not enjoyable to listen to. Recently after being a fan for after 11 years I was fortunate to watch them live at the Rothbury Festival and I can truly say I can now die happy.
Nine Inch Nails - Not a fan of all of his work, just mostly a few songs here and there. However "Ghosts" I-IV is an amazing experiment of his that I enjoy.
Oysterhead - I was introduced to this Supergroup at Bonnaroo '06. I still remember to this day the confusion going through my mind as the sun beat down on my psychedelic induced brain, as I sat on the lawn in front of the main stage as nothing was going on as I consumed a rather confusing Onion Blossom. Then all of a sudden Les Claypool came out wearing a pig mask followed by Trey Anastasio and Stewart Copeland. The true definition of mind blowing.
Pink Floyd - I had the opportunity to watch Roger Waters perform "Dark Side of the Moon" live, another truly wonderful experience in my life. "The Piper at the Gates of Dawn" and "Dark Side of the Moon" are both influential to my own musical project.
Placebo - Not much of a fan of them anymore, but they are worth noting. Their live DVD is a good watch.
Portugal. the Man - Easily my favorite artist of the present. Cryptic lyrics put to music that ranges from progressive rock to electronica to native american traditional to gospel to jazz. I have recently had the opportunity to speak to the members and I must say they are extremely intelligent and hilarious beings.
Primus - I listened to them as a child mostly for their weirdness factor. Over the years I have become to understand the mind of Les Claypool and I have determined that... he's still a weird mother fucker, but also extremely intelligent. I have had to opportunity of watching Primus live twice. Once in a venue and most recently after a fireworks display at Rothbury Festival. If you get the chance to see them live, GO, do not hesitate, but remember: do not flip him off or throw shit at him, unless you feel like being humiliated by a clever man.
Radiohead - Words cannot describe what is Radiohead. "Kid A" and "Amnesiac" have completely changed my view of what music can possibly be. When I had the fortunate opportunity to watch them live at Bonnaroo '06 I was left speechless for about 5 hours. The release of the wonderful album "In Rainbows" was, while not original, very groundbreaking for the world of obtaining music.
Rage Against the Machine - Zach's lyrical break-downs over Tom's elaborate guitar work. I am truly ecstatic that they have decided to reunite, as I did not feel Chris Cornell felt in place over the music.
RX Bandits - In the beginning I enjoyed them for being a ska band that I could actually enjoy. Fast forward to today and all I can say is wow. Prog-ska? Who would have thought that would work out. The lyrics are very straight forward and very political.
the Shins - I really can't say much, but I do enjoy this act as well as the side project known as "the Postal Service"
Sigur Ros - Mental Expansion! Imagine rock music orchestrated as if it were classic. Then realize the foreign language behind the music is actually completely foreign to Earth itself. Well the language part is linked mostly the their album "()" as well as a few songs on other albums. A huge influence to me and the idea of what music can be.
A Silver Mt. Zion - ...or whatever they call themselves now. Canada's contribution to the modern progressive rock world, and it does not disappoint.
the Sound of Animals Fighting - Upon listening to either "Lover, the Lord Has Left Us" or "The Ocean and the Sun" one must first throw every idea they have of what music is right out of their mind. A completely groundbreaking act. It all started with an album known as "the Tiger and the Duke" which was recorded without each contributing artist hearing each others parts. I highly recommend the first two mentioned albums in any ones collection. I'm still trying to understand their message in the unknown concept, but judging by the lyrics of their most recent work it seems the story is an attempt at prophecy. Will see...
System of a Down - Political, intelligent, and fast music. One of my old favorites.
Thrice - I first enjoyed Thrice as the punk/metal act they were in the early 00's. Now they have become this epic concept band with music that can only be explained as "What if Radiohead grew up in the Southern United States?" Wither or not Thrice is really from the South (I believe they are from California) their new work somewhat has a classic Southern Rock feel to it, but only slightly.
Thursday - One of the most influential bands when it comes to my own poetry. "Waiting" and "Full Collapse" are both albums that I hold to me as personal crutches when it comes to rather emotional moments in life. Their most recent work is sadly disappointing and destroyed by influence from a major music label.
Tool - Tribal Drums, Mathematical Guitar work, and the power that is Maynards lyrics and vocals. Their artwork that comes along with every album is a rather psychedelic experience in its own.
Weezer - Purely amazing American rock music. I honestly think that they cannot make horrible music, even if they attempted to do so, "Beverly Hills" is an example of this. I own their DVD and it is truly an amazing video experience that all artists should take example of. Rumor has it they are to headline a well known music festival next summer.
Well that's that. Any suggestions on any music I have not listed are greatly welcome and appreciated.