February 15, 2012


Free Music: The Kills Cover the VU & Usher's New Baby-Making Jam

Dimitrios Kambouris
Dimitrios Kambouris

The Kills: “Pale Blues Eyes”
For their new b-side, the garage-punk duo take on one of the most fragile songs the Velvet Underground ever released. They give the acoustic ballad a bluesy bend and the result is stunning: Now I think of Alison Mosshart as, "My mountaintop, as my peak, as everything I’ve had but couldn’t keep." 

Usher & Diplo: “Climax”
Released in time for Valentine’s evening (but sadly, not in time for yesterday’s Free Music), this self-released track finds Usher’s sensual croon paired with a low-tempo, late-night electro vibe courtesy of producer Diplo.

Damon Albarn, James Murphy & Andre 3000: “Do Ya Thing”
Usually 30-second previews aren't worth the click, but in the case of this oddball trio, the curiosity is too strong. What we have here sounds very B-52’s, which really could go either way. [The Fader]

Sharon Van Etten: “Give Out”
Potent and never pandering, Van Etten is back with that confessional folk-rock that’s so popular with the Camus-reading kids these days. [Pitchfork]

Public Image Ltd.: “One Drop”
Backed by a reggae groove that sounds similar to the Clash’s “Bankrobber,” but wailing and kvetching like only he can do, John Lydon and the latest incarnation of his venerable post-punk pioneers are back. They have an EP hitting stores in April for Record Store Day, but enjoy this radio rip of one of the tracks in advance. [Stereogum]

WhoMadeWho: “Under the Cherry Moon”
No, it’s not a Prince cover; yes, they are named after that sublimely horrendous film Maximum Overdrive, directed by Stephen King. A snappy, subtle dance track with a great bass line from these Danish genre-benders. [Stereogum]

Andrew Bird: “The Crown Salesman”
On this b-side streaming at his Facebook page, Bird covers his backing band’s Minneapolis-based side project, Alpha Consumer. “Like.” [Facebook]

The Cribs: “Chi-Town”
A British trio made up of two twins and their younger brother, these cult favorites received a bit more attention when Johnny Marr joined them for a three-year stint. He’s gone now, but they hardly need him, as evidenced by this snarling, fuzzy rocker about Logan Square. [Spin]

Torche: “Kicking”
Torche is rather poppy for an alleged sludge metal band, but hey, they come from Florida. How are they supposed to stay dour with all that sunshine? [CoS]