RAVE’S FAVES: PJ Harvey – The Words That Maketh Murder


PJ Harvey said that at 41, she wasn’t going to write in the same way she did years ago. In her case, I’d say time is treating her well. “The Words That Maketh Murder” is my fave song of hers to date, and what takes it over the top for me are the killer backing vocals. (Program note: My weekly Go Deep show on Moheak Radio returns Friday, April 22 after a two-week hiatus.)

PJ Harvey – The Words That Maketh Murder

Catch Bruce on Moheak Radio Fridays 1-3pm PST

PJ Harvey: (Official) (Myspace)

Rating: 8.0


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PJ Harvey – The Last Living Rose


“The Last Living Rose” is new today from PJ Harvey. The track plays like paean to its singer’s home nation. Weaving imagery of England that winds through the tune’s sing-songy instrumental; an instrumental that acts as a screen for the motion picture reel projecting through the eye of PJ Harvey’s mind. The video’s not half bad either. Get into it below.

PJ Harvey – The Last Living Rose

Purchase / Info

Rating: 8.0


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Black Honey – Bloodlust


“Bloodlust”, which follows the all B3 rec’d tracks “Sleep Forever”, “Teenager”, and “The Taste”, is the fourth and final song to be revealed on Brighton buzz band Black Honey’s untitled debut EP. Elastica and PJ Harvey are a few of the relevant references on the 90’s arty but accessible sound of “Bloodlust”. Black Honey play the Notting Hill Arts Club in London on November 2.

Black Honey (Soundcloud)

Rating: 8.8


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Interview with Courtney Barnett


Interview by Cher Dunn

Courtney Barnett has been living and playing music in Melbourne, Australia for the past five years. This year, she released a wildly acclaimed EP, “A Sea of Split Peas”, toured non-stop in the US and abroad, playing sold out shows and festivals, all while maintaining her label Milk! Records. I caught up with the multi-talented artist and asked her about her start in music, her year so far, Australian artists we should know, and what we can expect for next year.

Wanting to start from the beginning, I first asked Courtney Barnett how she got started playing music and what her early experiences as a music fan were like.

“I grew up in Sydney and then moved to Hobart down in Tasmania.” She continues, “I started playing music when I was 10 in Sydney, and went to my first gigs when I turned 18 in Hobart.” Growing up her early experiences going to shows were a lot like ours, even now. “I started going to heaps of gigs and I’d stand right up the front. I would just get really obsessed with bands and buy all their stuff and try to get their signatures… I really made a connection with certain bands and artists.”

Courtney Barnett’s sound is unlike any other. From her storytelling lyrics to wailing guitar, I needed to know how she found her sound.

“I listened to a lot of different music, you know?” she states matter-of-factly. “So all of the different stuff kind of blended together.” She continued, “When I was a kid we listened to loads of Nirvana, and then I got into bands like the Australian band called Magic Dirt, and PJ Harvey,”. With so many classic musicians as influences, it’s no wonder she is quickly becoming legendary for us, but her influences didn’t stop there. “But then I would listen to my dad’s jazz records and mum’s classical records… and then I started listening to The Beatles,” she states. You can hear in her music that such a vast musical upbringing has helped her to create a sound all of her own.

I recalled finding a video of her on YouTube in the band Immigrant Union. The video was a live acoustic performance with her bandmates Bones and Dave, also in the band. I had to ask about the current band and if she met the them through her time with Immigrant Union.

“Yes I kind of met Bones before that, but yeah pretty much. I joined that band and they were already in it and then we became friends,” she says. Courtney Barnett had been writing her own music and playing solo for five years before she joined the band, and never stopped writing. “I kept my songs pretty separate,” she said. When she finished working with the band she would go home and record her own music. After releasing her EP A Sea of Split Peas, it started getting difficult to juggle both bands, so Courtney left to tour her first EP. Courtney, Bones, and Dave have been touring ever since.

I asked her what her writing process was like, did she set aside time to write? Or did she write as songs came to her? “I normally just do it as it comes or when I have time.” Courtney says then pauses, “I should probably set aside more time to do it!” laughing, she continues, “I haven’t really been able to work like that.”

Courtney Barnett has a lyrical style that is easy to connect with. Her songs really tell a story and build a world of experiences easy to relate to. She told us that most of her songs are from her own experiences, while others are inspired by other outlets. “Most of them are real life. There’s probably a few bits of stuff I’ve heard from friends or just inspired by something else- whether it’s books, music, T.V. or something strange,” she explains.

When we were talking to her, Courtney was in Australia finishing up a nearly sold-out tour, only to come back to the US to headline venues across the country. She has been non-stop after releasing A Sea of Split Peas. I had to ask her about her non-stop year and what she does to recoup between tours and festivals. “Yeah [this year has] been crazy! Crazy good! Yes, very hectic,” she continues “It’s the busiest I’ve ever been in my life.”

Courtney Barnett has not had a lot of time off between all of the touring and festivals she’s been playing this whirlwind of a year. But she let us know what her ideal time off is like. “Just hang out at home, sometimes get out of town go to the beach or the bush or something. Just read books.” Reading isn’t something she does on her time off. She reads many books while touring. “It’s the perfect setting to read, I’m reading that Pussy Riot book. It’s been really cool, good reading that!” she says.

As Courtney Barnett plans for her upcoming US tour, I asked her about what to expect, and a new member she has added to the band. She explains, “Dan’s played with us a bunch in the past and recorded with us. He helped produced the album we just wrote. It’s going to be released next year.” Trying to hold in my excitement on word of a new album, I listened as she continued, “Yeah, he’s great he’s a great guitarist. We’re playing mostly songs off A Sea of Split Peas, and then a couple of new songs we are busting to play. We kind of still haven’t played in some of these venues so we should probably play some of our old songs.” I laugh, as she explains, “Just very different from last time. With Dan playing with us as well, it’s kind of a different sound,”. This news has me even more excited for the tour. Courtney Barnett’s sound as a three piece was already electrifying, adding another guitar is bound to sound massive.

Courtney Barnett has had such a stunning year, from releasing her successful EP to endless touring. I wanted to know if she was documenting her year, through writing, photography or video.

“I document it through writing a fair bit, I try and do lots of photo and video. I think it’s very important to have that documentation. I’ve got a friend that’s actually making a documentary on part of the Melbourne music scene and she’s been following us around as an offshoot to that. So she’s traveled to some of the places with us. So that’s pretty cool capturing that moment in time,” she said.

Fans will have to wait for this insight into Courtney Barnett’s crazy year. She explained that the documentary will probably not be out for a little while, as her friend is still making it.

Barnett started her own record label Milk! Records. Originally, she started it to release her own music, but now the label has grown to include some of her favorite musicians in Melbourne and collaborative projects with her and friends. “It started slowly building into something else,” she continued, “it’s just grown into this awesome community.” She told us of one of her favorite artists, and friend on the label, “I play in Jen Cloher’s band and we made an album and put it out on Milk. It’s our own little project, helping each other out.”.

With so many Australian artists currently making waves, I asked her some of her favorites we might not have heard yet. “Darren Hanlon, The Drones, East Brunswick All Girls Choir, Beaches, Jen Cloher,” Courtney states, just to name a few. Sharing her vast musical knowledge of great music from now and of the past is enough to give everyone an addition to their record collection.

Courtney Barnett really seems to take control of the whole creative process of being in a band, including creating the artwork for her albums and merch sold on tour. I asked if she had a hand in the creation of the music videos from a concept level and if she thinks she will add any of her artwork to her live shows.

“Oh yeah, I wrote about five videos for the new album. We just did one the other week. I did the ‘Avant Gardener’ video as well,” she said. On adding art to her live show, she told us “Maybe! My friend Celeste Potter who’s an artist she did the ‘Anonymous Club’ video. It’s an animation. We’ve been showing some of that on stage which is kind of cool. It adds a different dimension.”

What is she looking forward to most with the upcoming US tour? “It will be fun to come back again and play different venues, slightly bigger venues which will be kind of scary,” she said. For a musician who has such a high-intensity, electric, mesmerizing live show, there is really no need to be scared. If Courtney Barnett doesn’t win you over with her vocals, slaying guitar and energetic interactions with the band, then you may need to have your pulse checked.

Courtney Barnett’s new album is due to be out early next year. Her US headlining tour with San Fermin begins on October 16th in Atlanta, Georgia and will end in Austin, TX with Fun Fun Fun Fest. Check out her tour dates and music below. You do not want to miss her live!

Courtney Barnett australia (Facebook)


16th OCT – Atlanta, GA @ The Loft
17th OCT – Charlotte, NC @ Visulate Theatre
18th OCT – Washington DC @ Black Cat (SOLD OUT)
19th OCT – Washington DC @ Black Cat
20th OCT – Philly! @ Union Transfer
22nd OCT – NYC @ Webster Hall
23rd OCT – Clifton Park, NY @ Upstate Music Hall
24th OCT – Montreal, QB @ Caberet Mile End
25th OCT – Toronto, ON @ Lee’s Palace
27th OCT – Chicago, IL @ Metro
28th OCT – Kansas City, MO @ The Riot Room
31st OCT – Seattle, WA @ Neptune
1st NOV – Portland, OR @ Wonder Ballroom
3rd NOV – San Francisco, CA @ The Filmore
4th NOV – Los Angeles, CA @ El Ray
5th NOV – Phoenix, AZ @ Crescent Ballroom
8th NOV – Austin, TX @ FUN FUN FUN FEST!!!!

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Jimmy Tait – Eyes

jimmy tait

Jimmy Tait (not one dude, but five Aussies out of Melbourne) remind a bit of PJ Harvey on the visceral minor-keyed stomper “Eyes”. Sampled from Jimmy Tait’s Golden LP, “Eyes” ticks all the right impactful you need to listen to this right now rock and roll boxes (to start: a terrific, gets you in the gut vocal; tuneful, memorable but still challenging melodies; and an instrumental suited up w/ all manner of interesting extra textures – tinny organ, great harmonic guitar leads, etc). Listen now.

Jimmy Taitaustralia (Soundcloud)

Rating 8.4


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Meg Myers – Monster (Semothy Jones Remix)


A building wave of blog buzz behind her the fierce Meg Myers rolls into b3sci station with this Semothy Jones remix of “Monster”. The 90’s influence tag gets tossed about quite a bit with Meg, and while we hear it (Fiona Apple, PJ Harvey, etc), the indomitable Ms. Myers is a force wayyy too potent to box up so tightly. For his part, UK producer Semothy Jones sets “Monster” up with a subtle (tasteful lol) creepstep sheen. First thing’s first, Meg’s gonna eat your brains.

Meg Myers california (Facebook)

Rating 8.3


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Although we’ve come to the end of the road, still Adele we can’t let you go. We’ve reached 2011’s closing hour and now it is time: b3sci presents it’s Top 50 Albums of 2011. No one’s even come close to having the year Adele’s had. The most albums sold in a single year since 2004, two of the biggest singles of the year, etc, a truly international breakthrough both commercially and critically on a level we haven’t seen in a long time. Adele, our girl, the crown is yours. 21 is b3sci’s Album of the year.

So where the fuck is Adele on many of these respected-indie-press-dude best of lists? That period between Nov 2010 when “Rolling in the Deep” first broke and the lead up to the album’s release in late January, Adele ruled the blogosphere, the fold was united. Then “RITD” got overplayed to the point of absurdity, your mom bought the record, probably your grandma bought it too; those bros that listen to Foo Fighters and Deadmau5 started bumping “Someone Like You” out their trunk. Soon, the “wrong people” liked 21 and Adele’s brief moment atop the indiesphere was over. Right.

Thanks for reading this year, y’all. We’ve got some big plans for 2012. Stay tuned. Much love.

01. Adele – 21 (Buy It) (Read)

02. The Weeknd – House of Balloons (Buy It) (Read)

03. Drake – Take Care (Buy It) (Read)

04. James Blake – James Blake (Buy It) (Read)

05. Kendrick Lamar – Section.80 (Buy It) (Read)

06. Gil Scott-Heron & Jamie xx – We’re New Here (Buy It) (Read)

07. WU LYF – Go Tell Fire on the Mountain (Buy It) (Read)

08. Jay-Z & Kanye West – Watch the Throne (Buy It) (Read)

09. The Horrors – Skying (Buy It) (Read)

10. M83 – Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming (Buy It) (Read)

11. Wye Oak – Civilian (Buy It) (Read)

12. Girls – Father Son, Holy Ghost (Buy It) (Read)

13. Real Estate – Days (Buy It) (Read)

14. A$AP Rocky – Live Love A$AP (Buy It) (Read)

15. Sepalcure – Sepalcure (Buy It) (Read)

16. PJ Harvey – Let England Shake (Buy It) (Read)

17. The War on Drugs – Slave Ambient (Buy It) (Read)

18. Charles Bradley – No Time For Dreaming (Buy It) (Read)

19. Metronomy – The English Riviera (Buy It) (Read)

20. SBTRKT – SBTRKT (Buy It) (Read)

21. Oneohtrix Point Never – Replica (Buy It) (Read)

22. The Vaccines – What Did You Expect From the Vaccines (Buy It) (Read)

23. Destroyer – Kaputt (Buy It) (Read)

24. The Antlers – Burst Apart (Buy It) (Read)

25. tUnE-yArDs – w h o k i l l (Buy It) (Read)

26. Beyonce – 4 (Buy It) (Read)

27. Wild Flag – Wild Flag (Buy It) (Read)

28. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds (Buy It) (Read)

29. Big K.R.I.T. – Return of 4eva (Buy It) (Read)

30. Clams Casino – Instrumentals (Buy It) (Read)

31. Gillian Welch – The Harrow and the Harvest (Buy It) (Read)

32. Low Roar – Low Roar (Buy It) (Read)

33. AraabMUZIK – Electronic Dream (Buy It) (Read)

34. Active Child – You Are All I See (Buy It) (Read)

35. Fleet Foxes – Helplessness Blues (Buy It) (Read)

36. Raphael Saadiq – Stone Rollin’ (Buy It) (Read)

37. Cults – Cults (Buy It) (Read)

38. Radiohead – The King of Limbs (Buy It) (Read)

39. Florence + The Machine – Ceremonials (Buy It) (Read)

40. Alex Clare – The Lateness of the Hour (Buy It) (Read)

41. Nicolas Jaar – Space Is Only Noise (Buy It) (Read)

42. Jhene Aiko – Sailing Soul(s) (Buy It) (Read)

43. The Stepkids – The Stepkids (Buy It) (Read)

44. Freddie Gibbs – Cold Day in Hell (Buy It) (Read)

45. Gardens & Villa – Gardens & Villa (Buy It) (Read)

46. Laura Marling – A Creature I Don’t Know (Buy It) (Read)

47. Kurt Vile – Smoke Ring For My Halo (Buy It) (Read)

48. Foster the People – Torches (Buy It) (Read)

49. Explosions in the Sky – Take Care, Take Care, Take Care (Buy It) (Read)

50. Friendly Fires – Pala (Buy It) (Read)

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B3SCI STAFF PICKS: Top 10 Albums of 2011


2011, it’s been real! To kick off our b3sci 2011 year end coverage, we start with Top 10 albums lists from each of b3science’s seven contributors. (We’ll detail our overall site picks in the next few days). 2011.



01. Drake – Take Care
02. The Weeknd – House of Balloons
03. M83 – Hurry Up We’re Dreaming
04. Metronomy – The English Riviera
05. A$AP Rocky – Live Love A$AP
06. PJ Harvey – Let England Shake
07. James Blake – James Blake
08. Kendrick Lamar – Section.80
10. Active Child – You Are All I See



01. WU LYF – Go Tell Fire to the Mountain
02. The Vaccines – What Did You Expect From…
03. Jay-Z & Kanye West – Watch the Throne
04. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds
05. Low Roar – Low Roar
06. The Weeknd – House of Balloons
07. Wye Oak – Civilian
08. Explosions in the Sky – Take Care, Take Care, Take Care
09. Fleet Foxes – Helplessness Blues
10. Raphael Saadiq – Stone Rollin’



01. WU LYF – Go Tell Fire To The Mountain
02. Girls – Father, Son, Holy Ghost
03. Giraffage – Comfort
04. The Vaccines – What Did You Expect From..
05. Washed Out – Within and Without
06. James Blake – James Blake
07. The War On Drugs – Slave Ambient
08. The Postelles – The Postelles
09. Harrison Hudson – American Thunder
10. Caveman – CoCo Beware



01. James Blake – James Blake
02. A$AP Rocky – Live Love A$AP
03. Wale – Ambition
04. Raphael Saadiq – Stone Rollin’
05. Harrison Hudson – American Thunder
06. Fiore – Fiore
07. Benjamin Francis Leftwich – Last Smoke Before the Snowstorm
08. M83 – Hurry Up We’re Dreaming
09. Mike Higbee – Secret Life
10. Chris Wollard & The Ship Thieves – Chris Wollard & The Ship Thieves



Let’s be honest. I probably didn’t listen to ten complete LPs this year that I would somehow deem “best” – it just isn’t in me anymore, maybe. I did, however, have enough musical bests paired with actual full records I loved to complete a top ten. Let’s review my 2011 faves: there are ten, they are not ranked.

tUnE – yArDs, W H O K I L L (4AD)
If someone forced me to name my best record of the year, I’d bet this would be it. While I’ll never get over the late 90s stylization of her musical pseudonym, Merrill Garbus made songs that said things I wanted to hear couched in melodies and harmonies that push me from Africa to doo-wop to “America.” There is true joy in the music she makes, even if she’s talking about eating disorders or inner-city violence. High up on the “things I danced to alone in my room” list of this year.
While I’d consider mostly dead in my day to day life, it ruled my world for a few weeks over the summer. I heard more great stuff I know I would’ve never come upon on my own, but I guarantee you it wasn’t in dubstep rooms. I spent time chatting and playing jams with friends I wouldn’t see for months. Turntable gave me all of the plus factors of a 1996 chatroom backed with a way better soundtrack than I would’ve had then. Spotify swooped in a few weeks later, and now I find myself listening to nearly anything I want at any time while creating playlists with friends throughout the day. Not as immediate as turntable, but somehow less of a time suck. I don’t love the ads, but I know I can get rid of them if I want.

PJ Harvey, Let England Shake (Island/Vagrant)
Overwrought concept albums can be a drag. (Confessional: I am a long-time PJ Harvey fan, guilty of knowing all of the words to “Rid of Me” by heart at a very young age.) If someone had told me a concept album by Harvey about England, bloodshed and warfare would be one of my favorite releases this year, I might have been a bit perplexed. The melodies, language, and instrumentation around this record, however, do more to transport listeners rather than alienate them. “Inaccessible” is a word often used to describe records, and I could see how some of Harvey’s records may be that way. This, however, works magic.

Jay-Z & Kanye West, “Why I Love You” (Roc-A-Fella/Roc Nation/Def Jam)
I know this record is on everyone else’s list, and that’s fine, but only one of its tracks got repeat plays with me. The production on Watch The Throne is amazing, I can’t deny it, but nearly nothing about that record sticks for me. I revisited it months after it leaked and I still couldn’t get into it as a whole. Jay-Z and Kanye West are two of my all-time favorites and I thought this record would be my dream. It wasn’t. “Why I Love You”, though, is a jam. Great sample, great chorus, okay-enough rapping.

Iceage, New Brigade (What’s Your Rupture?)
There will never be a time in life that I don’t like channeling my inner teenage dude. I know he’s there, just waiting for me to listen to the Stooges for another few hours or cackle while watching episodes of Beavis & Butt-head. 24-ish minutes of gothy punk energy (the longest track at 3:08), Iceage are my Ramones for 2011.

Drake, Take Care (Young Money/Cash Money)
I can’t stop playing this record. Merrill Garbus and Drake might have to duke it out. I thought Thank Me Later was lackluster – too much bravado and cameo, not enough actual persona. With Take Care, though, I feel like Drake is getting back to a place where he’s comfortable: an introspective, lonely look in the mirror at fame and alienation from where he thought he was a few years ago to now. On hip-hop records I’m usually disappointed if they’re not full of bangers but this one tempers enough production with the same amount of restraint.

Willie Mae Rock Camp & Kelly Clarkson, “Since U Been Gone” (RCA)
Over the summer, I volunteered for the first time at Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls in Brooklyn. I spent an exhausting and fulfilling week making sure a bunch of 8 & 9 year olds made it to their instrument class, ate their lunches, and sort-of listened during workshops about the blues, gender, and other topics regarding women in music. Every counselor had her musical kryptonite and everyone very quickly found out Kelly’s jam was mine. I danced & sang to it all week when it played during various end-of-day dance parties, and one of the campers and I shared it as our best memory of the week from songwriting class. At the showcase wrapping up camp, the volunteer band played it as their song for soundcheck. I belted it just as I had every other day.

Party of Helicopters at Death By Audio, Williamsburg, February 13, 2011
I got my knees slammed into the stage all night long at this show, with terrible bruises to show the next day, but it was well worth it. They are my favorite band from my most formative years, the one whose album art my body will carry to my grave; every opportunity to relive that time while seeing them live is worth it. Even though they’ll never play “A New Kind of Power” for me no matter how many times I request it, I don’t care. I love them. Forever.

Björk, Biophilia (One Little Indian/Polydor)
There was a time growing up that I spent most hours lying on the floor in my room listening to records. Bjork was always a part of this ritual, and listening to this record sends me back to that time in my life (I am full of memories this year). “Crystalline” is a perfect hybrid of Telegram-style remixes and Vespertine vocals. “Cosmogony” hearkens back to the antics of Medulla. Everything is nostalgic, but everything is new. The David Attenborough-narrated companion iPhone app is an excellent companion if you can’t make up your own visuals in your mind.

Sharon Van Etten, “Serpents” (Jagjaguwar)
Seeing her play this live last Tuesday only further got me stoked for her record next year. Her voice is the most haunting to me, and this is that quality at its finest. Percussion and expansion of her sound into what it is on this track alone (I hear you, Aaron Dessner) bode well for the rest of Tramp. Can’t wait.



01. The Kills – Blood Pressures
02. Elbow – Build A Rocket Boys
03. The Airborne Toxic Event – All At Once
04. The Vaccines – What Did You Expect…
05. Foster The People – Torches
06. TV on the Radio – Nine Types of Light
07. The Black Keys – El Camino
08. Sleeper Agent – Celabrasion
09. The Rapture – In The Grace Of Your Love
10. The Wombats – This Modern Glitch

11. Honorable mention to My Morning Jacket and Teddybears



01. Alex Clare – The Lateness of the Hour
02. Nero – Welcome Reality
03. Thievery Corporation – Culture of Fear
05. Tyler, the Creator – Goblin
06. Bassnectar – Divergent Spectrum
07. Dave Nada – Blow Your Head Presents: Moombahton
08. James Blake – James Blake
09. M83 – Hurry up, We’re Dreaming
10. Crookers – Dr. Gonzo

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The High Wire – Odds and Evens


“Odds and Evens” is the first single off The High Wire’s full-length debut The Sleep Tape which drops march 2010. this shoegaze inspired, dreamy psych-pop group must not be fond of pictures (hence this shot we found of Philippe Petit.. who by the way, actually crossed a high wire between the NY twin towers 8 times in a row in 1974?! dude is beast), in addition to their apparent lack of fondness for record producers. with glowing reviews from the likes of Chris Martin and major british press, a dec producer wouldn’t be too hard to come by. and while typically we like to believe that self-produced albums are a death sentance for any band, the arrangements and melodies in “Odds and Evens” go some distance to make us think twice for The High Wire. although we should add, the band did recieve production guidance and mixing from Rik Simpson of Blur, Portishead, Coldplay and PJ Harvey fame. in conclusion, The High Wire is on the b3sci radar, we’ll keep you posted..

The High Wire – Odds and Evens

buy it

rating: 7.5

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