Me again, had a couple of things I thought I'd highlight. Couple of Guardian links to begin with:
First, a link to a neat page they've got where music bloggers from around the world put up a compilation of their favourite new tracks once a month; each compilation is downloadable, or you can just hear individual tracks if you'd like. A cool way to hear some different, and worldly, sounds I think -- though of course it's only one track by one band picked by one blog per country, so hardly representative of what's happening in China or Denmark or wherever. Still, worth checking out here.
Next is a good article on the recent NPR-intern-thinks-Public-Enemy-are-crap "controversy". Agree with this writer's view, though I'd probably say the same about someone arguing the other side if it were convincing enough. You can read that here. The gist of it is, why should a 19 year old give a crap about an album that came out before his time if he doesn't like it when listening to it? I'm sure many of us had the same experience with supposedly classic albums -- we want to like them, we spend money on them, but they're a bit ... crap. I've had this argument in the past with my Rush and Pink Floyd loving friends -- is music appreciation an objective exercise? I would say NO! Especially when it comes to those last two bands -- I don't think I'll ever make time for them.
Now for some actual music. I first heard of Bicep thanks to Resident Advisor, perhaps a year ago. RA highlighted the fact that they make some funky house tunes, the best type of dance music basically. They had a review of their latest single recently, and that's when I noticed that they're from Northern Ireland. That got the old nostalgic-romantic-sentimental imagination working and I pictured really white young Irish people, in some sweaty little club, dancing to this funky stuff -- and you know they'll actually be dancing, as people on the other side of the Atlantic really like to get down to their dance music -- it's not just background for drinking and gawping (though I'm sure plenty of that happens as well). Well I checked out their Soundcloud, which is full of tracks, and I recommend you do the same. Gonna stick some below to whet your appetite: