Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Xavier Rudd-Spirit Bird

The word "epic" used to only describe the Lord of the Rings trilogy, extreme events like bungee jumping and big wave surfing, and delicious California burritos. From humble beginnings it, much like "swag," spread and now plagues the vast majority of the English speaking world.

However, there are few words more appropriate to describe today's over 7 minute monster of a jamandahalf from favorite Xavier Rudd. Off of his upcoming album Spirit Bird, this title track is a journey that touches on Rudd's normal themes: environmental issues, Native rights, ancestors. Starting off as mellow as you can get, "Spirit Bird" quickly becomes a moving call to action, with Rudd occupying the pulpit like only he can. The jam can best be described in swathes of words that normally best describe nature: vast, surging, tranquil. Somehow that's very fitting.

Click here to download

Download Xavier Rudd Spirit Bird

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros-Here (Album Review)

Hard to believe that the first time Ed Sharpe and his merry band graced these pages was two and a half years ago. Ever since then they released their debut Up From Below, toured every nook and cranny in the States as well as at least one European tour, and today are releasing their sophomore album Here. Been a busy couple of years for the multitudinous crew, two years which has taken them from indie obscurity to national recognition.

Here, however, is by no means Up From Below 2. Folktales have been traded in for folklore, mysticism for a tad more down home cooking. Rather than trying to explore the other, the group seems to be firmly entrenching themselves into explaining where they are. A current of simplicity runs through the tracks, and while it perhaps has fewer awe inspiring moments than their debut, Here is probably a more complete and sustained album. Alex Ebert and Jade do their best "Home" impression on "That's What's Up" while on "I Don't Wanna Pray" is about as honkytonk as a song can get and the album in general is full of sounds that would sound just as good around as a campfire as your neighborhood venue. Make sure you see them when they're around. Here clocks in at only 38 minutes. Far from a full meal, it instead is the equivalent of eating some Basque pintxos-whetting the appetite yet fulfilling the soul. Check out the ethereal "Mayla" below and buy the album Here (only $5!)

Click here to download "Mayla"

Download Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros Mayla

Monday, May 28, 2012

We're Back!

It's been too long. After a hectic semester, JamandaHalf promises that we're back and we got some funky things cooking in our communal jam kitchen. This resurrection will be a little different because I'll have some friends along. Here's what we're promising:

  • Great jamandahalfs served up at least four days a week.
  • Exclusives you won't find on any other blog out there. 
  • Interesting interviews with artists you will come to love just as much as we do. 
  • Spotify integration with weekly playlists ranging from the smoothest of Jazz to the crunkiest Southern Rap. 
  • Preview every month of the best new albums coming out. 
We're going to get back to being the biggest little blog out there, a site which you want to visit a few times every week to get great music without all the hype and incessant chatter that a lot of blogs are full of. We're not going to post every song that comes out-that's what is for. We're here to provide a filtered taste of the world's best music. We also have some big, big, big news coming. Thanks for sticking with us and now back to the music.