Friday, December 19, 2014

weekend thoughts...

You made it to the weekend, friends! Even if you have a few days of work next week, you're in the final stretch until Christmas, so turn on those Christmas jams, put some Bailey's in your hot cocoa, and finish your online shopping!!

Your Weekend Jam: We’ve got another year-end mashup to start your weekend. Get dancing, people!

TIOJ Thoughts: 

What the holidays would look like if kids were in charge.

Where was our invite to T Swift’s birthday party?

We’d like a Dr. Dreidel for Hanukkah, please and thank you. 

Serial's Sarah Koenig on Santa's Hit-and-Run Murder of Grandma.

Christmassy Dad jokes FTW. 

Yep, this is basically how I feel.

Free! So many free Christmas jams for you kiddos! Grab Gaby Moreno’s “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas” on iTunes, Young War’s “I Won’t Come Home For Christmas (I’m Serious)” on Soundcloud, The Line of Best Fit’s 6th volume of Ho! Ho! Ho! Canada on Soundcloud, and DCers Skyline Hotel rounds out the list with a download of their single “Winter’s Warmth” on Soundcloud. WHEW!

And in case you missed it: We recapped some of our favorite things of 2014 -- including our gift guide, favorite concerts, favorite albums, and favorite songs!

three dudes give taylor swift's "blank space" a run for its money

This year has been a weird one for TIOJ. We went from actively despising Taylor Swift to secretly jamming to her in the privacy of our cars to losing all pretense and DOWNLOADING HER ALBUM. We regret nothing -- that new album is perfect pop and we know you all agree.

Our new-found admiration for Swifty has us loving (almost) all the covers bands are doing of her songs. We rounded up some of our "Shake It Off" favorites and now we have to share this AWESOME cover of "Blank Space" by L.A. trio The Ceremonies. Their cover is casual and perfectly complemented with acoustic guitar and strong vocals that are heartfelt without being cutesy. I can't stop listening.

{PLAYLIST} merry christmas!

Merry Christmas, you little elves!! We hope you have super exciting holiday plans, whether you're planning on playing in the snow with your little cousins or heading to the movies and getting Chinese food. In between your viewings of Love Actually and Elf, jam along to these Christmassy songs as you decorate your Christmas tree, hang your stockings, and put up all of your twinkly lights.

a very bey christmas (via)

Keep your Christmas music flowing with our holiday jams from 2011, 2012, and 2013!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

{THROWBACK} "friday i'm in love"

Boy oh boy am I in love with Swear and Shake's cover of "Friday I'm In Love" -- and it's only Thursday!

And, of course, The Cure's original:

{RECAP} cymbals eat guitars

We sent Concert Correspondents Sara and Sarah (ridiculous power team name pending) to DC9 to check out Cymbals Eat Guitars last Wednesday night-- check out her review below! (And she gives us good reason to always be wary of that DC9 floor...)

Cymbals Eat Guitars rocked a hole into the ground of DC9. Literally.

Fans packed a sold out performance that proved perfect in style and scope for the intimate DC9. Lead singer Joseph D'Agostino lead the charge of a 70-minute set that was just as anthemic, sincere, difficult, and free as their 2014 release, Lose.

Cymbals dove right in to the show, setting the stage for the rest of the set, all of which seemed a perfect visual and sonic representation of Lose. From the start, each member of the band seemed to be playing with the perfect combination of a restless, I-don’t-give-a-shit-and-nothing-matters attitude along with an obvious searching need to get the songs out; as if there was no alternative and there would be no survival for these guys beyond tonight if they didn’t. Perfect searching, soaring, bemoaning New Jersey punk rock.

At one point, D'Agostino said that they would be playing mostly material from their new album. He observed, “seems like some of you may have heard it already” as the majority of attendees sang along dedicatedly.

Did we mention the hole in the floor?

Musically, Cymbals was tight and confident. There was no "dialing in" at any point in the show -- each performance was engaged and engaging. D’Agostino was dripping sweat by the second song.

Lose's theme was presented loud (literally) and clear in the enthusiasm with which the songs were played. In the stomping track "XR," D'Agostino sings, "wanna wake up wanting to listen to records / but those old feeling elude me." It's a searching and a desire that is quiet. What we hear is the frustration for that elusion - loud and boisterous and sure of itself. After all, if you can't wake up with the desire to listen to records, might as well make them up yourself.

D'Agostino said it best himself when describing Lose: "It's about being in mourning for your long-held belief that music could literally change the world." It's that exact belief, the belief that D'Agostino himself once questioned, that he proved true during Wednesday's set. Music, especially live music, can change you. And it's safe to say that every member of the audience was changed by the last drumbeat of the show.

Closing with "Child Bride," D'Agostino took the stage solo, acoustic, and completely raw. As his fingers perfectly strummed the tune, his voice delivered a message worth hearing, "slow the years down." Time stood still for those four minutes. The years slowed down. And we all believed that music could literally change the world.

Thank you again to Sarah for seeing Cymbals Eat Guitars at DC9!! 
Next up: Morgan checks out Bear Hands AND Good Great Fine Ok at U Street Music Hall TONIGHT!
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