I Can Be Your Hero, Baby: The 10 Best Music Superheroes

LxL_TopTenThursdays_900x300

Editor’s Note: This list originally published in 2013, but with the new Avengers movie releasing tomorrow, it seemed like a great time to revisit the list.

In a concerted effort to make it seem we do not take ourselves too seriously, perhaps out of a fear of taking ourselves too seriously sometimes, we like to mix up our more scholarly lists with those that make us out to be a handful of nerdy jackasses.  This is one of those lists.  There has been a lot of hysteria surrounding superhero movies this summer.  I mean, damn, a Batman, Spiderman, and Avengers movies all in the same summer.  We are all extremely partial to Batman, especially those of the Nolan/Burton persuasion, and decided to save this dopey collection for around the time The Dark Knight Rises was released.  As comic-book/superhero movie fans,  we thought we could fantasize a little bit about which musicians would make the best superheroes, and speculate a little bit about their key attributes.  For awhile there, we considered doing a joint heroes/villains list, but ultimately decided to make two separate lists, with the heroes list today, and the villains list coming at you next Thursday.  Enjoy.
Continue reading “I Can Be Your Hero, Baby: The 10 Best Music Superheroes”

Atoms For Peace Show Review

Atoms For Peace
UIC Pavilion
Chicago, IL
October 2, 2013

Atoms for Peace, UIC Pavilion

Last Wednesday, I had the privilege of witnessing a live Atoms For Peace performance for the second time in my life. The first time I had the pleasure of seeing this rare supergroup perform was at Coachella in 2010. Fellow LxL’er Wes and I were lucky enough to land spots right next to Jay and B (seriously) near the sound stage and were gifted a performance of a lifetime. One that I thought I would never have the opportunity to see again. Luckily, that would not be the case, and after haggling my way into a cheap general admission floor seat, I was gifted that opportunity once again.
Continue reading “Atoms For Peace Show Review”

Atoms for Peace Review: Amok

Atoms for Peace

Amok

Atoms for Peace Amok album cover art

Atoms for Peace started very differently than many supergroups: on tour. The project started when Thom Yorke, frontman of Radiohead, released a sparse electronic solo album called The Eraser all the way back in 2006. In 2009, Yorke got the idea to tour the album he created mostly with his laptop with a live, organic band to bring it fully to life. Thom Yorke assembled a heavily percussive band in Flea (bass) of Red Hot Chili Peppers, Joey Waronker (drums) of Beck and numerous other alt-rock projects, Mauro Refosco (percussionist) of Forro In The Dark, and legendary Radiohead producer Nigel Godrich (programming, producer) to make this mostly synthesized, glitchy album full-bodied and warm-blooded. The nameless band debuted The Eraser and some fresh material live at the EchoPlex in L.A. in October 2009, and something really sparked with this all-star lineup. A full-blown U.S. tour would follow in 2010, as well as deciding on a name for the band in Atoms for Peace, coming from the Eraser song of the same name. Now, four years since its conception, the band releases their debut album in Amok, which many will call a followup to Thom Yorke’s The Eraser, but is a sound entirely new bringing the strengths of each member to bear.
Continue reading “Atoms for Peace Review: Amok”

Ear to the Ground: Listening for the Newest Tracks of 2013

ear to the ground, guy with ear by near ground

The past 24 hours have been quite the wellspring of music news. From leaky twitter accounts, to legitimate releases, some of the bigger names in music seem to have tracks just dropping from the sky quicker than the snow that is currently falling outside my window. Yesterday, Thom Yorke’s collaborative group Atoms for Peace (consisting of Flea, Nigel Godrich, Joey Waronker, Mauro Refosco, and of course, Thom) released my favorite track of 2013 thus far. Seeing as how it is only the eighth day of the year this may not seem tough, but give it a listen for yourself and see if you think differently.
Continue reading “Ear to the Ground: Listening for the Newest Tracks of 2013”

Finally, Thom Yorke’s Atoms for Peace Album Details

Atoms for Peace album details

After about three years of speculation, Atoms for Peace, Thom Yorke’s other band not named Radiohead, released album details yesterday, and 2/3rds of LxL couldn’t be more excited about it. I say 2/3rds because Austin is luke-warm on Radiohead and Thom Yorke, but Todd and I both saw Atoms for Peace a few years ago alongside Jay-Z and Beyonce (another story for another time) and were blown away. For the uninitiated, Atoms for Peace consists of Radiohead’s Thom Yorke, Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea, renowned producer Nigel Godrich, Beck drummer Joey Waronker, and Brazilian percussionist Mauro Refosco. Not a bad group of musicians to say the least.
Continue reading “Finally, Thom Yorke’s Atoms for Peace Album Details”

Top Ten Thursday: I Can Be Your Hero, Baby

In a concerted effort to make it seem we do not take ourselves too seriously, perhaps out of a fear of taking ourselves too seriously sometimes, we like to mix up our more scholarly lists with those that make us out to be a handful of nerdy jackasses.  This is one of those lists.  There has been a lot of hysteria surrounding superhero movies this summer.  I mean, damn, a Batman, Spiderman, and Avengers movies all in the same summer.  We are all extremely partial to Batman, especially those of the Nolan/Burton persuasion, and decided to save this dopey collection for around the time The Dark Knight Rises was released.  As comic-book/superhero movie fans,  we thought we could fantasize a little bit about which musicians would make the best superheroes, and speculate a little bit about their key attributes.  For awhile there, we considered doing a joint heroes/villains list, but ultimately decided to make two separate lists, with the heroes list today, and the villains list coming at you next Thursday.  Enjoy.
Continue reading “Top Ten Thursday: I Can Be Your Hero, Baby”

Rocket Juice & the Moon Review

Rocket Juice & the Moon

Rocket Juice & the Moon

Rocket Juice & the Moon album cover art

Damon Albarn is a man who has worn many hats. In the last ten years, he has released albums with four different bands (most notably Gorillaz and Blur), all projects which have been more than respectable. Flea from Red Hot Chili Peppers fame is another person who has started spreading his wings, having played with Thom Yorke’s super group Atoms for Peace and now with this new project with Albarn. Rocket Juice & the Moon is a space funk super group from Damon Albarn, Flea (bass), and Tony Allen (drums) from Afrobeat legend Fela Kuti’s band. For their self-titled debut release, the funk trio also pulls in plenty of guests from rappers to brass bands to world music artists, for what is no doubt a fun listen but not much beyond that.
Continue reading “Rocket Juice & the Moon Review”