Articles tagged with Dirty Beaches

Dirty Beaches – Hotel

Dirty Beaches - Hotel
I mentioned before that I’m a huge fan of the instrumental dirges found on Dirty Beaches‘ album Love Is the Devil. I’m also enjoying his new Hotel EP, a short collection of piano pieces that was originally released as a bonus disc in Japan. It’s got four tracks, which can be purchased for $5 or streamed for free below.

While we’re on the subject of Dirty Beaches, I should mention that his large discography can be streamed in full from Bandcamp.

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Dirty Beaches – “Love Is the Devil”

Dirty Beaches
Speaking of locks for my Polaris ballot, the new double album by Dirty Beaches is fantastic. Drifters/Love is the Devil is a strong contender for the top of my list — particularly thanks to the gorgeously solemn instrumental dirges that make up the Love Is the Devil side of the collection.

Listen to “Love Is the Devil” below, and go to Exclaim! to read my interview with Alex Zhang Hungtai.

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Masterchef – “Canadian Palm”

How haven’t I posted this yet? Masterchef is an instrumental post-rock collaboration between two stellar Vancouver indie songwriters, Adrian Teacher of Apollo Ghosts and Alex Zhang Hungtai of Dirty Beaches. The duo released the album Mae Mae in the summer, and below you can hear the dreamy track “Canadian Palm.”

By way of background, Masterchef is the name of a restaurant in Vancouver’s Hastings Sunrise neighbourhood (where this blogger just so happens to live). It’s run by an old dude named named Tony (the album includes a song called “Uncle Tony Drinks Coffe”) and his wife, Mae Mae.

Go to Exclaim! to read more about the release. Kudos to Herohill for the picture.

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She was just seventeen

Doesn't look dirty to me
When I recently posted the new track by Dirty Beaches, I wrote that songwriter Alex Zhang Hungtai used to be based in Vancouver but moved to Montreal. Well, someone recently told me that he has moved back to Vancouver. Can anyone confirm of deny? His MySpace lists his location as East Vancouver, so he could be my next door neighbour for all I know.

Pitchfork has picked up on his upcoming album, Badlands, which means that a new track has been cleared for download. It’s called “Sweet 17,” and it’s a lot more ominous than the title makes it sound. Over a threatening blues groove, our protagonist (I’m going to start referring to singers this way) mumbles and yelps like Elvis on drugs (oh wait). The only real switch-up comes at the 1:32 mark, when a feedback-laden guitar solo floats into the mix. It scarcely has any notes, as it mostly consists of amorphous, reverb-soaked noise.

I think I prefer the gentle stuff, but this is cool too.

MP3: “Sweet 17″
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I don’t give a damn ’bout anything

Singing from the rooftops
Dirty Beaches is the musical alias of Alex Zhang Hungtai, a dude who used to be based in Vancouver, but is now living in Montreal. He’s got an LP called Badlands coming out soon. Go to Exclaim! to read my article about it.

Check out the single “Lord Knows Best” below, which is a slow-burning ballad that manages to be both creepy and totally blissful. It’s a simple two chord vamp, with a tinkling piano loop and cavernous, crooning vocals that sound like they’re being sung at the opposite end of a long tunnel.

Just as good is the ’50s-infused previous single “True Blue.” See the video here.

MP3: “Lord Knows Best”
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