December 21, 2009

Fuel/Friends favorite things of 2009


Speaking of snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes, I worked my last December day of the year on Friday, and now am settling into two luscious weeks of time off over the holidays (one of the hidden benefits of working in academia!). Before the college closed, I went to the radio studio on one of the snowiest and coldest days of the year and recorded my third year-end appearance on NPR’s World Cafe with David Dye. We chatted about some of my favorite albums from this year, and you can listen on Friday January 1st, at 2pm/ET on the radio or 3pm/ET on the XPN website — or stream the archived show through the NPR site shortly after it airs. Whee!

Now in the waning countdown before Christmas, as we open our advent calendars and go on walks to look at the lights, I revel in concentrated time to do things I enjoy — like talk to you all about some of my favorites things in 2009, this last year of the decade.



Hands down, this is my favorite album of the year. They’re barely twenty, but The xx have created a stunningly complete, addictively good album. I cannot get enough of this London band, formed around the female/male pair of Romy Madley Croft and Oliver Sim — best friends from school since they were age three. Their self-titled debut album fuses sparse, effortlessly cool beats and a new-wave sensibility, with thoroughly delicious male/female vocals that play off of each other like the best doo-wop or soul duets. Their playful back-and-forth chemistry (oddly) reminds me of an analgesic, blissed-out Otis Redding and Carla Thomas, in the perfection of the duet. Romy’s voice is very malleable, an immensely flirtatious alto, and in every place, Oliver’s is the perfect counterweight back.

Recorded largely in a garage at the XL studios, over the course of many nights and in the wee small hours of the morning, the album is meticulous and quiet, but it also laden with space and echoes that get under my skin. It is an unabashedly sexy album, full of insinuating bass-lines that propel the songs forward, and clever bits of minimalistic drum machine or coy xylophone melodies. Everyone that I play this for, even if it’s on in the background, instantly wants to know who it is. I think it would be near impossible to not be drawn into this album. It’s like a sticky spiderweb.

Basic Space – The xx

MUMFORD & SONS, Sigh No More

I first heard this indie-bluegrass folk band from London while prepping for SXSW early in 2009. The friend who sent me the link knows of (and is largely responsible for) my love for The Avett Brothers, and here in the music of Mumford & Sons I found the wrenching honesty of Frightened Rabbit blended with the banjo-plucking soul and brotherly harmonies of the Avetts. I was completely sold from the very first listen, and I have listened to this album more than almost anything else this year. Sigh No More is out in the UK now, coming to the US on Glassnote Records in early 2010.

This young band makes honest, compelling music that veers towards triumphant even as they chronicle the litany of life’s difficulties. It’s epic and substantial music, loaded to overflowing with truth that crawls under my skin with its vulnerability. And perhaps it’s the multiple voices rising together of all the band members, but there is a distinct feeling of kinship here, almost like a gospel choir or a Greek chorus, a community vibe that lends some sort of strength through such raw lyrical content. As one who often mulls over issues larger than I can get my head around, I appreciated this year how folks like David Bazan, Mountain Goats, J Tillman, and Mumford and Sons all truthfully explored matters of God and grace and falling and seeking in their music. Mumford and Sons are intensely wise in their lyrics, seeming to bely a personal understanding of God’s grace to a broken world, but also an intense, brutal struggle. As I wrote to a friend, “I love how they sing both about grace and the Maker’s plan, but also bald-facedly sing, ‘I really fucked it up this time.’”

The Cave – Mumford & Sons

FANFARLO, Reservoir

Fanfarlo exploded this year from Sweden and the UK, with a shimmering, hard-driving, gorgeously colored album. There’s so much brilliant light in their songs that they’re almost like the anti-xx to my ears this year. I first fell in love with their song (and video) for “Harold T. Wilkins” right before SXSW this year, and then was sucked into their debut album deeply and irrevocably. It is rich, primal, earnest, and effervescent. Although I was first enticed by the thumping drums and the cathartic yell-along lines, they use a hugely expressive palette of instruments — heavy on the shiny trumpets, the dazzling saws, mandolins and accordion.

Lead singer Simon Balthazar has a distinctive voice that’s absolutely evocative of a young David Byrne; all swoops and vibrato, but powerful and clear. The songs often feature time-signature shifts and a loosely-corralled sense of musical primal anarchy that reminds me of Arcade Fire at times, but with a greater effervescence (like a sheer wash of fluorescent color dripping down). It is a stupendous album, first song to last.

Harold T Wilkins, Or How To Wait For A Very Long Time – Fanfarlo


Several albums I loved this year fused fascinating, seemingly disparate sounds together to make new amalgamations of awesomeness. Handsome Furs come from Canada via Seattle’s famed Sub Pop label, and have a very simple formula behind this fantastic album: raggedly anthemic electric guitar and howlingly visceral vocals (from Wolf Parade’s Dan Boeckner) with sexy-as-hell electronic drum machine beats (from the whipsmart bombshell Alexei Perry).

Face Control is unrelenting, often veering from effortless cool to earnest anthems in the same song – laced through with a seething mutual lust between these married two that melts the paint off the walls. The album radiates an icy Eastern-European aesthetic that the duo talked fascinatingly about when we chatted in July. I was hooked from the first time I popped the promo CD into my car stereo player on a roadtrip earlier this year, the yellow lines on the highway flying past to their immense beats. And to watch these two create their music live together at the Larimer Lounge (see: Favorite Shows This Year) was scorching, and somehow even more fantastic than this supernova of an album. It all sounds good to these ears.

Talking Hotel Arbat Blues – Handsome Furs

ROMAN CANDLE, Oh Tall Tree In The Ear

I like the way the world looks through a Roman Candle album. You stop to listen to the birds and frogs and cicadas, and see the beauty in every streetlight and every moth, and notice the millions of stars. Oh Tall Tree In The Ear is a fine bluesy Americana album full of richly literate lyrics that keep giving to me, even as I’ve listened to this album dozens of times. It’s hard to think back now in this cold winter weather, but not too long ago this was my soundtrack for the entire sticky warm months of July and August, driving around with my windows down and this sweetly unaffected album playing on my car stereo. It ranges from upbeat, windows-down tunes like this one (which I think channels some Mick Jagger) to slow, easygoing slow-dancing-on-the-back-porch tunes.

Although living in Nashville now, Roman Candle has roots that go back more than a decade in the Chapel Hills, North Carolina area, and those roots intertwine with folks I love like Ryan Adams and Caitlin Cary, which is what made me initially take a listen. I was summarily knocked off my hammock this summer by this thoughtfully-crafted little album, and its real attention to detail. You can listen to the lyrics like they’re poems. The title of the album is taken from a Rilke sonnet, and many songs are woven much more densely with subtle wisdom than you might pick up on first listen through. There’s a mature wisdom in the lyrics about love, attempting to balance growing up and growing old with someone, and that desire to go off and see Rome and watch the river go by, or hearing a song on a radio that makes you want to hop a train. As easygoing as it feels on initial listens, it keeps yielding up new rich appreciations every time I listen to it.

Eden Was A Garden – Roman Candle


Langhorne Slim takes his first name from the rolling farmland town in Pennsylvania, and he makes a delightfully anachronistic blend of music that seems half a step outside of our time. Yet he’s got a youthful passion that I very much relate to, the same stuff I hear in any of the young rock bands I love. Langhorne’s not even thirty yet, but a lot of his songs seem to capture this weight of another generation. There’s a ramshackle, loosely-hinged folk glory on Be Set Free, with threads of everything from soul-stirring gospel to old brokedown blues in his music. It’s all held together with his vulnerable, emotive tenor that’s reminiscent sometimes of Cat Stevens, but with the ragged folksy storytelling chops of the sixties folk troubadour generation. There’s also a larger cinematic quality on this release, where Slim tries broad additions to the recorded sound, whether it’s a horn section or a rootsy group of folks stomping along to his songs (and even a vocal duet cameo from Erika Wennerstrom of Heartless Bastards).

Langhorne is a very charming, earnest man, and this past September as we shared his bottle of wine in the old-fashioned Boulderado Hotel, one thing he said that stuck with me was how all the songs he writes are love songs. On this, his third album, those loves can take so many forms — from bidding farewell on heartbreaking songs like “I Love You But Goodbye,” to the convincing swagger of “Say Yes,” to one of my favorite lines of the whole year here on this song: “You can have my television, long as I got lips for kissin’ you, nobody but you…” over that huge shiny Wurlitzer explosion and the gospel handclaps. I’m a total goner.

Boots Boy – Langhorne Slim


I first fell in love with Lisa Hannigan‘s haunting voice when she contributed mournful duets throughout fellow Irishman Damien Rice’s debut album “O” in 2003 – I think she infused an immensely gorgeous, heartbreaking weight to songs like “The Blower’s Daughter.” So after the two parted ways a few years back, I’ve been waiting for this album of her solo material and it was completely worth the wait.

There’s an unvarnished air of clean-scrubbed honesty and clever inquiry on Sea Sew. I got to see Lisa play an acoustic set the day after Halloween, at a Denver bookstore in the middle of the afternoon, where she captivated everyone effortlessly. In addition to playing really every instrument I could think possible in the live setting (most of which I don’t know names for) she manages to blend whimsy and beauty without being silly, which is very difficult to do. There’s a charming imagination in her songs, a pristine and heartbreaking depth to her voice, and an incisive emotional honesty to this album that kills me.

I Don’t Know – Lisa Hannigan

KAREN O AND THE KIDS, Where The Wild Things Are Soundtrack

It’s a daunting task to take a beloved children’s book, especially one with only a few dozen pages, and make it into a full-length movie that both kiddos and adults can enjoy. It’s even harder to make a soundtrack that fuses all those primal, wonderful sentiments that course hot through Spike Jonze’s vision in the film, and capture the innocence of youth without sounding child-like. I dislike most kid’s music (no Raffi, no); it’s why my little guy likes things like Wilco and the Avett Brothers. Karen O from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and her band The Kids, have made an album we both loved wholeheartedly from the first enchanting singsong melody, which both of us have been humming around the house for months.

This is also a completely palatable album for those who never get near the small people, but who still connect with some of the urgency and imagination of youth. The earliest previews of this film featured a more wild, acoustic version of the Arcade Fire’s “Wake Up,” with the lyrics about “our bodies get bigger but our hearts get torn up.” Perhaps their early involvement in my initial impression are why mentally I get a very similar and marvelous sense from this album, in a year where I also finally truly got into Arcade Fire (!!). This soundtrack takes us to another place, “through night and day and in and out of weeks and almost a year to where the wild things are.”

Building All Is Love – Karen O And The Kids

MAYER HAWTHORNE – A Strange Arrangement

One of my students interned for a semester at the stellar Numero Group in Chicago this past Spring, they of the Eccentric Soul series and countless badass reissues from the lost vaults of cool. For a fresh-faced twenty year-old, Ben has formidable musical tastes, so when he told me to listen to Detroit whippersnapper Mayer Hawthorne, I took his advice immediately.

Mayer Hawthorne is only in his late twenties, and comes from a background of hip-hop/DJing, and despite a lifelong affinity for the sounds coming out of his dad’s old car stereo, he only started making this throwback doo-wop soul stuff just as a joke. Even the label heads couldn’t believe this was new material (not decades old) when Mayer first played his demos for them — even more amazing since he plays all the instruments, and recorded his swell songs on A Strange Arrangement at home in his bedroom. His music feels fresh and deliciously enjoyable – makes you wanna put on your good Sunday slacks and a healthy daub of Brylcreem and come buy me a mint julep.

Your Easy Lovin’ Ain’t Pleasin’ Nothin’ – Mayer Hawthorne

DARK WAS THE NIGHT – compilation album

It’s hard to cohesively talk about this double-disc compilation album, curated by The National’s Dessner brothers to raise funds and awareness for HIV/AIDS. The range of Dark Was The Night is so vast and all so beautiful, so achingly perfect in the variation. The overall mood in the 31 tracks (from a stunning variety of most of my favorite musicians) is mostly melancholy – although there are a few bright shiny spots from folks like Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings.

But from Antony covering Bob Dylan (and breaking my heart), to the duet with Conor Oberst and Gillian Welch that still sounds the closest to perfection that you can imagine –not to mention contributions from Bon Iver, Cat Power, The National, Grizzly Bear, Feist and Jose Gonzalez– this album is oozing with more flashes of talent than many albums this decade. So many things to love here, no wonder Dark Was The Night has already raised over $700,000 for HIV/AIDS. Beautiful.

So Far Around The Bend – The National

2008I didn’t really hear these until 2009, but they sure as heck would have been in the running for my tops list.
- BLIND PILOT, Three Rounds And A Sound (sublime warmth)
- THAO, We Brave Bee Stings And All (sharp and smart and catchy)
- TALLEST MAN ON EARTH, Shallow Grave (newish discovery; I’m addicted)
- ANTHONY DA COSTA & ABBY GARDNER, Bad Nights / Better Days (oh man)

vrg45Song Away – Hockey (hot dang)
When You Walk In The Room – Fyfe Dangerfield (I want you endlessly)
My Body’s a Zombie For You – Dead Man’s Bones (whoa-ohhh)
July 4, 2004 – Jason Anderson (I am, I am, and I love this part)
Quiet Dog Bite Hard – Mos Def (there it go like simple and plainness)

Los Angeles’ Local Natives covering Simon & Garfunkel’s “Cecilia” in a backyard, banging on trees with sticks. This is pure joy, and helped turn me on to their marvelous sound. They’ve released Gorilla Manor on Rough Trade in the UK, but it won’t be out in the U.S. until 2010 (on Frenchkiss Records). I have high hopes for this album next year, once I get some time to sit with it.

Cecilia (Simon & Garfunkel cover) – Local Natives

Mumford & Sons at SXSW.

I wrote this of their set in the open-air Spring humidity of Texas: Theirs was one of my most anticipated shows and Mumford & Sons didn’t disappoint. They opened with that new song “Sigh No More” that I posted last week and it absolutely slayed me. The chorus sings of “love that will not betray you, dismay or enslave you, it will set you free — be more like the man you were made to be.” I felt more like me, only better, when their set spun off at full tilt. Jawdroppingly pure.

- Okkervil River at the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival in San Francisco (specifically the last song, “Unless It’s Kicks”)
- Handsome Furs at the Larimer Lounge in Denver
- Bat For Lashes at Outside Lands in San Francisco (with Josh Groban standing nearby, oddly enough)
- Denver collective Everything Absent or Distorted singing their final song together as a band, “A Form to accommodate the mess,” and hugging when it is over, representing everything that is right and good in the Denver music scene – and in the world of music in general.
- Finally seeing Lucero play “I Can Get Us Out Of Here Tonight” live, and being baptized into that cult.
- The Big Pink melting all of our faces off at the Larimer, a sonic wall of wonderful sound.

Luckenbach, Texas (ain’t nobody feelin’ no pain)

The Dust Jacket Project

joe pug
Joe Pug and I sitting on a Boulder park bench on a quiet summer evening, talking about the burden of the artist, the art of songcraft, and the places where youth and hopefulness intersect. Joe’s had a great year, and I still feel like he could maybe become a key songwriter of our generation. Talking to him felt eerily prescient, like being in the fledgling presence of someone who knows where he is going.

Hymn #101 – Joe Pug

- This.

That about wraps it up for me this year. Bring it, 2010.

August 25, 2009

Standing at the center of the occupation :: Interview with The Handsome Furs

handsome furs tandem bicycle larimer - todd roeth

We were standing in the center of the occupation
Caught between the ground and the gray gray sky…

Talking Hotel Arbat Blues – Handsome Furs

…and with those seven huge and addictive beats, so begins my favorite track on the newest album from the Handsome Furs — one of my favorite albums of the year. Face Control is unrelenting in its danceability and brilliant in its rock and roll hope, replete with sloppy ragged guitar riffs and visceral howls, all bound up with sharp electronic beats that never quit.

In June, this married pair of (short story author) Alexei Perry and (Wolf Parade’s) Dan Boeckner came to Denver’s Larimer Lounge and nearly caused the place to burst. We all danced and yelled along, while the band did calisthenics up the walls and the stage hummed with a palpable sexual energy between the two.

I sat down with them before their set, after photographer extraordinaire Todd Roeth took advantage of some crazy post-tornado light, and we discussed the Cold War influences on the new Handsome Furs album, rallying against despair through music, and butterflies and underwater candy unicorns in songwriting. Seriously.

This was one of my favorite conversations about music in a long time.

handsome furs larimer lounge - todd roeth

HANDSOME FURS INTERVIEW: Dan Boeckner & Alexei Perry
JUNE 2009

F/F: I’m interested in the emotional barometer of (your latest album) Face Control. It seems like it’s applying the metaphor of the Cold War to interpersonal relationships. I’m wondering if that is an accurate read on the record?

Dan: That’s a totally accurate representation – I think like Cold War and post-Cold War, and the idea of places like Serbia or Latvia appropriating this mantle of freedom that maybe they weren’t ready for. Or not ready for, but maybe just like jumping in with both feet into something and just accelerating the culture to the point where it’s almost a parody of Western capitalism, or hyper-capitalism.

I guess you could apply that to an interpersonal metaphor as well, like maybe falling in love for the first time or trying a new personality. You know? Changing yourself. Most of the record was a document of what we were doing while we were touring in Eastern Europe.

Alexei: …and what we were witnessing there.

F/F: To me, if your music could sit with certain artistic movements, I hear a sort of Bauhaus minimalism, blended with this streak of wild romanticism.

Alexei: Yeah, I think I frequently feel dissatisfied with how clinical life seems sometimes and what you have to do within it to feel alive.

Dan: And what we saw in Eastern Europe, too, I mean like the juxtaposition of the blocky sort of soul-crushing, utilitarian, socialist architecture.

Alexei: It’s totally dehumanizing. I mean you’re always the smallest thing. When we were in Warsaw, one of my favorite things that we did was we saw the building that’s nicknamed the Stalin’s middle finger. It’s huge. It was his gift to Warsaw and it’s the tallest thing in the skyline. And you stand in front of it you feel tiny. And yet now things are so changed and all these artists that work around that building want to do all these different things in that area and do different things with that building. Like there’s been these projects about wrapping the whole thing in like brown paper, like weird things. People have all these great ideas that spring through.

Dan: I was thinking about the electromagnetic factory in Bucharest that we went to. That juxtaposition of the music, like what we were trying to get on the record was, and this is a good example, is there was a factory that made magnets for motors, like electromagnetic parts. It’s now completely overrun by dogs. It’s totally decommissioned. And these kids were playing the craziest rock music I’ve heard in a long time in the basement cause they took the basement over, which still has the workers’ showers. So you’ve got that organic, uncontainable art in this awful place.

Alexei: And that’s just how I feel about making art in the world right now. The world isn’t representative of how I want it to be, so I have to always rally against it. And that’s what I want on the record.

F/F: I hear that in the music, very much so. A lot of the songs are pretty unrelenting, minimalistic, and then you’ll have this chorus or guitar riff that just cuts and rises up through that. Alexei, as a writer by trade, are there things you like better about writing songs versus writing a story?

Alexei: Um, it’s been an incredible challenge for me to write lyrics just cause it’s not at all what comes naturally to me. But I think that’s an important challenge and one I really, really like. You have to make things succinct, and you have to make them something that can be twinned with, and something that Dan can emote. Like that he can sing out and have them make sense, no matter whether the words actually do as written on a page. They frequently don’t, but because of how he pushes them out there they do.

Dan: For me, the personal sort of approach to songwriting is not one of sitting at home and inventing a fictional character or using whatever fairytale metaphors to get something across. I’m also not good at doing that other stuff. I can’t, I mean — I’d just feel like a fraud writing like, “the prince came down and the butterflies exploded from your hair and you were dreaming underwater of a fucking candy unicorn.” Grecian metaphor and literary allegory – I can’t do that. Other people can do that really well. Carey Mercer from the band Frog Eyes is kind of one of the masters of that. I love his songwriting. Spencer from Wolf Parade too, God bless him, is really good at that. And I just don’t know how to do it.

I really believe there’s this language of rock, right? Like rock and roll music has been around long enough that when people say stuff like…you take the guy from Spoon. In so many of his songs, he says stuff like “uh-huh” or “yeah,” but it’s just the way he says it, that word ceases to have the same meaning that it does on paper. And it can be interpreted depending on how he inflects it or what point in the song it comes. So, I like that minimalist lyrical school – it works for me.

F/F: Tell me more about the connection you made when you were touring in Eastern Europe with the underground radio station in Belgrade, and what that’s meant to you guys.

Alexei: When we were in Belgrade, there’s a station called B92, that is basically a guerilla radio station that was anti-Milosevic, and they were the people that basically motivated all of the demonstrations against Milosevic. They were the promoters that brought us over.

Dan: On the first visit we became really good friends just right off the bat. One of the actually traveled to Texas to come and see our show at SXSW! I consider them some of my best friends now. We’ve gotten to know a few in particular really well, like Milos and Svetlana. They’ve all had different but equally, completely and totally heartbreaking lives you know.

F/F: How old are they?

Dan: They’re in their mid-30′s. About 35.

F/F: So they’ve grown up with conflict?

Dan: Yeah. And so the first time we went over we became good friends. There was just a real connection between all of us. Then the last few times we’ve seen them it’s grown into this, I mean music, the show is the things that they are putting on and the show is what we a communicating with these kids who are coming out.

But the best part of the visits for me beyond the show is staying up all night getting completely piss fucking drunk and talking politics with them and talking about their lives and them asking us about our lives.

And that’s the whole reason I got into this thing in the first place, is just to be able make connections with people. And I never, never ever thought we’d be able to go somewhere as far away as Serbia and make connections with people there. I mean, who knows when people are going to stop giving a shit about what songs we write. But these connections, they’re permanent.

F/F: It reminds me of a book I loved about the same region called Fools Rush In – just the way that music shines through. There’s this indomitable characteristic of people that wants to play music and be in bands and go out and make love and and do all these things that embrace life. And you have to stay away from the windows so you don’t get shot, or run to the club, to avoid snipers. Meeting people that have lived through that firsthand must have just been really powerful.

Dan: Themes like that really inspired the record that we made, and then to go back — I mean the last time we were back we played for maybe seven or eight hundred kids in Belgrade and to sing those songs about the places that we’ve been to.

Alexei: I was crying after the show.

Dan: …And the shows have been really intense over there. You know like a lot of audience interaction.

Alexei: ..Yeah you got a scar from it.

Dan: It was one of the last songs we were playing in Belgrade. It was at this club called Academy, which has been around since the ’60s. And at the end I had thrown my guitar, and I grabbed the mic, and I was out in the audience. I had twisted and fallen off the stage and cut my head open on the monitors. There was a mosh pit and when I got up…

Alexei: …Suddenly the mosh pit just like moved back like, “What?!”

Dan: Yeah I was gushing blood. But our friend Milos grabbed me after the show and started stitching me up, and I didn’t know what to do. I was like, ‘How do you know how to do this?’ And he said, ‘I cleaned people up after the NATO bombing.’ And I was like, ‘Alright, well, this is slightly more joyful.’ And then we got drunk.


[Interview first appeared in conjunction with [R.I.P.], and all marvelous photos by Todd Roeth]

June 15, 2009

Last night with the Handsome Furs





That was definitely the best show I’ve seen all year. As we shuffled out of the sweaty, dark Larimer Lounge last night, the most we could utter were dazed expletives at the power and the explosive chemistry of the Handsome Furs‘ live show. Dan Boeckner (of Wolf Parade) and the scorchingly smart Alexei Perry combine forces to drill music into my brain that won’t leave. It was a dancing, searing, yelling, blistering rock supernova. Get into this band.

Radio Kaliningrad – Handsome Furs

I’m Confused – Handsome Furs
(And: watch the zombie video for “I’m Confused,” black blood and all, and never be the same; Dan mentioned last night over pizza that he’d read World War Z twice, and that sickly eerie feeling permeates this music video)

AND YOU MUST STREAM:All We Want, Baby, Is Everything

5203Face Control is out now. I highly recommend it as one of my favorites of the year so far — the unrelenting icy alienation of huge drum-machine beats paired with startling streaks of wild Springsteenesque romanticism.

[More tour dates here]

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Bio Pic Name: Heather Browne
Location: Colorado, originally by way of California
Giving context to the torrent since 2005.

"I love the relationship that anyone has with music: because there's something in us that is beyond the reach of words, something that eludes and defies our best attempts to spit it out. It's the best part of us, probably, the richest and strangest part..."
—Nick Hornby, Songbook
"Music has always been a matter of energy to me, a question of Fuel. Sentimental people call it Inspiration, but what they really mean is Fuel."
—Hunter S. Thompson

Mp3s are for sampling purposes, kinda like when they give you the cheese cube at Costco, knowing that you'll often go home with having bought the whole 7 lb. spiced Brie log. They are left up for a limited time. If you LIKE the music, go and support these artists, buy their schwag, go to their concerts, purchase their CDs/records and tell all your friends. Rock on.

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