Wednesday, March 21, 2007

A Better Offer

So, you may be wondering what happened to The Two Mirrors? We've moved our site and our mission. Here is what we are hoping to do at our new blog...

Our goal here is to spotlight a band for an extended period of time. We anticipate wrting about one band exclusively for approximately two weeks. If something really worthwhile comes up, We'll most likely post it over at the two mirrors and post a link on this site. Please support the bands featured on A Better Offer by purchasing thier music, wearing their t-shirts, seeing them live, or telling your friends about them. The majority of bands covered are independent artists that would love your support.

And big ups to Jeff at Out With The Kids, for giving A Better Offer the royal treatment! Read his post here.

Monday, October 09, 2006

A contest

So I have been posting a little less than normal lately. It's for many reasons, but mostly because I've also been posting over at (sm)all ages while Clea is away. Read my guest posts here.

Also, you should all have bought Letting Up Despite Great Faults new EP by now. I mean for god sakes, did you listen to the song of the month? Go back down and listen if you haven't heard it yet. And if you didn't buy it yet, I have some great news for you. The guys from Letting Up... have graciously given the two mirrors a copy of thier new EP Movement to give away. So all you have to do is send an email to with the subject Letting Up and send your mailing address in the body. And in two weeks RD and I will randomly pick a winner. Come on its that easy. You might even say, easy like sunday morning.

And finally Jeremy Enigk has announced some more tour dates (thank you Brian Newton), this time opening for Cursive. I am one extremely happy camper. You can bet I'll be down in Gainsville for this show. Check them out if they happen to come near you.

10/31 - Marquee Theatre, Tempe, AZ
11/01 - Rialto Theatre, Tucson, AZ
11/03 - The Black Sheep, Colorado Springs, CO
11/09 - Sokol Auditorium, Omaha, NE
11/11 - The Blue Note, Columbia, MO
11/12 - Young Avenue Deli, Memphis, TN
11/13 - Bottletree, Birmingham, AL
11/14 - Variety Theatre, Atlanta, GA
11/16 - Satellite Ballroom, Charlottesville, VA
11/17 - Tremont Music Hall, Charlotte, NC
11/18 - Cats Cradle, Carrboro, NC
11/20 - The Moon, UF, Tallahassee, FL
11/21 - Reitz Union Ballroom, UF, Gainesville, FL
11/22 - The Club @ Firestone, Orlando, FL
11/24 - Warehouse Live, Houston, TX
11/25 - Emo's, Austin, TX
11/26 - Gypsy Ballroom, Dallas, TX

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Song Whores--October ZC

Song: Maybe I'll Hide With You

Band: Letting Up Despite Great Faults

Album: Movement

Time: 3:48

Photo by Ejen Chuang

So it's time for the post formerly known as song of the month. I cannot say enough amazing things about the Letting Up Despite Great Faults. I will definitely say this more than one time in this post...GO BUY THE RECORD. You can buy it from their website or amazon or cd baby. And now on to my review.

So Letting Up first and foremost has a very unique sound. I would say you could think Postal Service or Plus/Minus but that is just because of the electronic feel. Just think really good music. Music that evokes some emotion. There is a heavy emphasis on the piano and acoustic guitars. And an interesting side note is that the vocals are intentionally mixed as to not dominate the songs. The band feels that vocals are simply another instrument and should not dominate the mix. For me, my song of the month is undoubtedly Maybe I'll Hide With You. And as promised, I was able to spend some time talking (via email) with the Mike (the singer from Letting Up Despite Great Faults) about this track.

The first thing you will notice as you listen to this track is how beautiful the melody is. And around 2 minutes and 15 seconds there is a change that changes the way the song feels. I asked Mike specifically about how this musical change played into the story being told. Mike informed that lyrically this song was written about suicide and that when this musical change occurs it was for a very specific reason. "The "goodbye"-s came very naturally. It was a blatant statement about leaving the world but I think the fact that the music becomes more upbeat and the vocal harmonies (which later I re-recorded with Kent and Patrick) become brighter makes it ironically uplifting. This was something very conscious on my part when writing it b/c you can commit suicide (I'm not referring to the physical kind) and it frees you in ways you never thought possible." Now during this change in the song Mike sings "and we will all be there for you." He commented on how fake that statement can sometimes feel. How many times have we heard those words in tough times only to feel completely alone throughout. Mike calls it a, "play on the insincerity that can be expressed at our caring for one another."

Next I asked Mike about some specific lyrics in the song. He talks about a "town" that he can always hide from. I asked if this town was a real place or something more metaphorical. His response was, "The physical "town" I'm referring to is a suburb– well 2 particular suburbs in southern California. They exemplify how some people try their best to make everything picture perfect, but forget that sometimes that means sacrificing character and substance." We also talked about, in my humble opinion, the most prolific lyric in the song. Towards the end of the song Mike sings, "And all you say to me is hanging on to yesterday." I wondered how much that line played on the importance our past and how it affected our future. And maybe how other people view our pasts. Mike wrote me some amazing insight into this line. He wrote that the line, "was actually ad-libbed when I was recording. I needed an end so I just pushed record and sang (well sort of mumbled) that line. This is probably my favorite line in the song because I know I had to have meant it. I never wrote it down." He then expanded this idea with, "I think I meant that some people can be a bit over-obsessed about the past. Everything they say is something that is hanging on from the past. Sometimes it is best to let go as much as you can and not let the past devour the bright future you have. Sometimes you have to stop hiding."

Okay Two Mirrors readers. If you purchase one cd in the next few weeks, get your hands on a copy of Movement by Letting Up Despite Great Faults. Listen to Maybe I'll Hide With You and you'll understand. I assure you that it is worth your $9. That's right folks it's only $9 from their website.

Letting Up Despite Great Faults--Maybe I'll Hide With You

And you can also download a few other tracks from their website. Check them out.

And for even more Letting Up, listen to Shifted Sound Podcast #27

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Letting the Tall Poppy Shine

So my good friend Rachelle passed on to me a two disc collection of Australian indie musicians. She compiled some of Australia's finest and I'd like to share a sampling of my favorites. And as always if you find something you like, click on the link and buy their stuff.

Youth Group had some success recently as they opened up for Death Cab for Cutie on the first leg of their Plans tour. They are from Sydney and in July of 2006 they released Casino Twilight Dogs on Ivy League Records. I had some knowledge of Youthgroup's music, but didn't understand how stellar their stuff is. They have a nice rockin sound. Nothing too strange and a really easy listen. Check out these two tracks.

Youth Group--Shadowland

Youth Group--Catching and Killing

Goyte (pronounced goit) was next up and by far these two songs were my favorite songs from the Australia comp. His music is simply stunning. He has that quality in his music where it's almost uncomfortable to listen too. Think early Bright Eyes with an electronic edge. Both of these tracks are highly recommended! You will be hearing more from Goyte when I get the new record. You can order it here.

Goyte--Hearts a Mess

Goyte--Thanks for Your Time

Carly and Paul provided nice change of pace during the 2 disc compilation. Carly and Paul do not have a record out nor do they even have a webpage to view. They simply have a couple of stunning songs. This track is called Without Me. Clearly they have quite the influence of Tori Amos. And for those of you who really know me, know about my addiction to Tori. RD has even gone to a few shows with me in the past. Back to Carly and Paul. While this rough mix was recorded in one day, this teacher and milkman (its true) duo provide one of the smoothest melodies I have heard in a while. The piano mixed with an acoustic guitar is always a nice combination and Carly and Paul do a fantastic job with this track.

Carly and Paul--Without Me

And Finally is the spirit of Australia, I just need to post this cover of Ben Lee doing Modest Mouse's Float On. I blatantly stole this cover from I Guess I'm Floating from one his Thursday and Covers posts. So check out his site cause he's got some outstanding stuff over there.

Ben Lee--Float On

And on a COMPLETELY SEPARATE note, if you are not listening to the Shifted Sound Podcast yet, you better recognize. Shelby has turned me on to some really great bands lately and has played many a Two Mirrors favorite over time. So go to ITunes and download the podcasts. Also, while you are dowloading the podcast or these great Australian tracks, go over to Shifted Sound and vote for him at podcast alley. I want to see Shifted Sound in the top ten. Just follow the simple directions. Go do it, I promise it doesn't take long.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Check out (sm)all ages and Oh No! Oh My!

So I RD and me are guest blogging over at (sm)all ages while Clea is away. Along with slew of other guest bloggers. I put the first guest post up over there tonight. Read it here. You may be wondering what the hell RD is going to post at site for kids (Cash reserve your teddy bear jokes if at all possible) but you'll see what he's got.

Anyway. I got some stuff you should be listening too. I think one of things I should make clear about my role in this site is that very rarely I am going to bring you a band that no one has ever heard of. In fact if you read often enough, you'll know that in the blog world, I am usually one of the last to know about a band. Having said that, maybe my role here is to remind you of a band that just blew up on the blogs and then faded away. With blogs wanting to give you the next big thing first, sometimes the old big thing (which was REALLY good) gets pushed aside. Anyway Oh No! Oh My! have a self released record that you can buy at insound and it's really good. Here is sampling of tracks from that record. Like I said these songs have floated around the blogs for a while but you may have forgotten how great they are. Listen especially to The Backseat. It's one of my current favorites.

Oh No! Oh My!--The Backseat

Oh No! Oh My!--Walk in the Park

Oh No! Oh My!--Skip the Foreplay

Saturday, September 23, 2006

My mom is cooler than your mom

So the story goes something like this...

We have Friday night family night every week at my folks house. My brother and his wife (who are expecting), my family of four, and my mom and dad get together every Friday for dinner. Madness ensues as we laugh and enjoy life. Anyway, last week mom says check out this band I heard on NPR. I obliged thinking what could she possibly have heard that I hadn't heard yet. My arrogance backfired as she turned me on to the Silversun Pickups. Somehow in my endless search for good music these guys went unnoticed. Not that others hadn't blogged about them, but I just didn't pay attention. I am really digging this track right now. The melody is just amazing and it has this great 90's indie rock feel. I have placed an order for their new album which can be purchased here...

Purchase Carnavas from Silversun Pickups from Insound

Go buy it.

And take a listen here...

MP3 Silversun Pickups--Three Seed

And they are on tour right now with Viva Voce. Check them out if they come near you...

September 28, The Rickshaw / San Francisco, CA
September 29, Howie & Sons / Visalia, CA
September 30, The Echo / Los Angeles, CA
October 1, Modified / Phoenix, AZ
October 3, Emo's / Austin, TX
October 4, Opolis / Norman, OK
October 5, Randy Bacon Gallery / Springfield, MO
October 6, Jackpot / Lawrence, KS
October 7, Courtyard Cafe / Champaign, IL
October 8, Southgate House / Newport, KY
October 10, Iota / Washington, DC
October 11, Mercury Lounge / New York, NY
October 12, Mercury Lounge / New York, NY
October 13, Johnny Brenda's / Philadelphia, PA
October 14, Boston University / Boston, MA
October 15, Middle East / Boston, MA
October 16, Bug Jar / Rochester, NY
October 17, Lee's Place / Toronto, ONT
October 18, Lime Spider / Akron, OH
October 19, Little Brothers / Columbus, OH
October 20, Empty Bottle / Chicago, IL
October 21, The M-Shop / Ames, IA
October 22, Mojo's / Columbia, MO
October 24, The Hi Dive / Denver, CO
October 26, Neurolux / Boise, ID
October 27, The Crocodile / Seattle, WA
October 28, The Doug Fir / Portland, OR

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Now It's Overhead

I know I know I should have gone to the show. I can't tell you guys how many times I have said those words to RD. I always seem to miss the really good shows. Now I have seen my share of amazing ones too, but life sometimes gets in the way. (It's a life that I wouldn't trade for the world by the way).

Anyway Now It's Overhead have been a band that I have listened to for quite some time now. Yet, for some reason they have never made it to that level of "the next greatest thing" (or something like that). Well this new record may just change that. I am really enjoying thier new album Dark Light Daybreak. I think the following two tracks are two of their finest. I think you should be listening too.

Now It's Overhead--Night Vision

Now It's Overhead--Nothing in Our Way