"There's, like, always money in the banana stand, Scoob!"

Like, Zoinks Scoob!: On the Ambiance of All Hallow’s Eve

It’s that time of year again – people are making costumes, buying candy, and starting blog posts in the most clichéd ways imaginable. That’s right, anonymous internet stranger, it’s time for Halloween! That can only mean one thing: time for some tunes to soundtrack that spookiest of holidays! Below are a few classics for your listening pleasure:

Slint – Nosferatu Man

Never mind the fact that the song’s title alludes to the classic 1922 German horror film, it’s the atmosphere of it which really amps up the creepiness factor. With lyrics about a prince in a dark castle, attempting to “please [his] queen,” and subsequently chasing a trespasser into the darkness, the song is perfect for an eerie Halloween night. Its off-kilter beat creates a tension which puts the listener on edge, a trick which ultimately becomes a treat (See, cause it’s Halloween! Get it? Hello? Where did everyone go?)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=im74bBeOT74

Ramones – Chainsaw

From the fathers of punk rock comes something a little more upbeat but no less appropriate. The song is all about the use of the titular instrument being used in all sorts of creepy and terrifying ways. The most disturbing aspect of the song, however, may be Joey Ramone’s pronunciation of the word “massacre.” What’s up with that?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ltyC3DEYoZ4

Bobby “Boris” Pickett & The Crypt Kickers – Monster Mash

I never claimed to be original.

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Album Review: Tilly And The Wall’s “Heavy Mood”

When it comes to going back to school, nothing is better than new music that keeps your walk to class up-beat and motivated. Tilly And The Wall’s new album Heavy Mood is filled with stomps and claps, making it the perfect anthem to pump up your stroll to class, as well as tug at your heart strings. Since their debut album Wild Like Children, they have evolved to encompass much more in their style. The heavy-folk-electronic sounds are accompanied by honest, genuine lyrics that emphasize love, friendship, and a power to the people attitude.

Although the entire album is phenomenal, some tracks from the album you definitely want to check out are:

Love Riot, Heavy Mood, Thicker Than Thieves (best BFF song ever), and Youth.

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Lil’ B – A Golden State Warrior?

The Santa Cruz Golden State Warriors tryouts were this weekend and there were many a talented players who came out to tryout for this NBA D-League team. Among all the players there was one that brought the attention of the folks from Pitchfork Magazine. The one and only Bay Area rapper and internet meme, LIL’ B BASEDGOD. LIL’B had tweeted about trying out for the team and he surely showed up to do just that — let’s hope that LIL’ B makes the team and we will make sure to go to every game.

Check out the Golden State Warriors website for more information about their upcoming season and check the link below for a video of Lil’ B practicing on his basketball skills.

 

http://www.nba.com/dleague/santacruz/

 

Do you think he has the skills to be on the team? If the Space Jam reference is any indication of his love for basketball, I’m sure he’ll be great.

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What a Month for Jazz!

If you haven’t already heard, it’s another great month for jazz is Santa Cruz. Some of the heaviest hitters on the scene today will be gracing us with their presence in our wonderful town. All of the shows are at the Kuumbwa Jazz center in downtown Santa Cruz. You do NOT want to miss these shows!

10/8- Kurt Elling 7/9PM

10/10- Hafez Modirzadeh/Vijay Iyer 7PM

10/15- Danilo Perez 7PM

10/18- Lionel Loueke Trio

10/22- Eliane Elias

And there is STILL more to come. Keep that radio dial tuned to the great 88 for more jazz programming starting this week! See ya’ll on the band stand.

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Fall for Hip-Hop

Fall is here, and Santa Cruz is the place to be for hip-hop enthusiasts! The next few months are crammed with hip-hop shows all the way until December. Starting on October 13th, Zion I will be at the Catalyst followed by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis on October 24th and Brother Ali on October 25th. Blue Scholars will be playing the Catalyst on December 7th as well. If you feel like heading over the hill, Oakland’s Fox Theater will be hosting Aesop Rocky on October 24th and Nas & Lauryn Hill on November 19th. Get your hip-hop fix and go see some live shows this fall!

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“Discovering” Jacques Brel

As I perused our station’s labyrinth of a record collection in search for some “European” music a couple of days ago, I found a record from an artist with a name that rang a bell, but with a track-list that truly seemed foreign. I soon remembered that I had heard the name “Jacques Brel” in Amanda Palmer’s song “Ukelele Anthem”, explaining the slight sense of familiarity; other than that, I had no clue who he was. But I figured, if one of my favorite singers digs his music, it should be decent, right? So I played it and listened to “La Valse À Mille Temps”, which I chose at random.

This tune was stuck in my head for the rest of the evening, and as I naturally do after listening to such an exceptionally incredible piece of music, I immediately read Brel’s biography (on Wikipedia, of course) while listening to his most popular songs on Spotify. Not only was Brel a singer in the ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s, but this godfather of French chanson also starred in various French films. Additionally, he was the original mastermind behind the classic “Ne Me Quitte Pas”, which has been covered by Dusty Springfield, Nina Simone, Barbra Streisand, and literally countless other artists.

Of course, through all my internet-searching I learned one main thing; that this so-called “discovery” of mine was far overdue, and I (and everyone else, in my opinion..) need to listen to his music whenever possible.

Something about Jacques Brel’s work truly stands out. I am familiar with the more modern side of French music – also known as nouvelle chanson – and while I’ve always enjoyed it, something has always felt missing. Nothing ever beats the classics, I suppose! (Even Amanda Palmer’s cover of “Amsterdam” didn’t click with me…but I digress.)

I found his music on the 9th of this month, exactly 34 years after his death. There is no doubt in my mind that his music has left an impact on the world that transcends age and time, and that it will never leave us.