Category Archives: Rouge

Lost and Found #2


Here are the fruits of my labor a.k.a. the results of my procrastination at work. It’s a tough task, but someone has to shine a light on music that you hopefully have not heard yet. This weeks list is more folk-centric than the recommendations I gave last week. I’ll chalk it up to the weather… all I really want to do is listen to relaxing music while lounging in a hammock. So, for all you hammock lovers out there, these bands can supply a nice soundtrack for your gentle swaying.

  1. Tunng (
    A really nice mix of electronic and folk influences that definitely errs on the side of folk/acoustic (at least on their album “Good Arrows” which I have the most experience with so far). While Tunng prioduces some really chilled out melodic tracks, they also aren’t afraid to inject some extra zest pulling from their electronic influences, keeping you on your toes yet relaxed at the same time. I don’t know many bands that can pull this off as well as Tunng does. Recommended tracks: “Take”, “Soup”
  2. Melpo Mene ( or (
    Sweden is a pretty rad place… let’s recount just a short list of some reasons: Swedish Fish, Ikea (and the meatballs they serve in their food court), Blenda (trust me, the story of Blenda is one you will not regret reading), and now Melpo Mene. Melpo brings some interesting influences into his music, as I hear some subtle almost-latin-jazzy undertones that remind me of a Swedish version Seu Jorge singing in English. Awesome. Strong guitar riffs and electronic influences are offset by Melpo’s disarming voice, placing it firmly in the “folksy” category. He also does a cover of the Gorillaz “Dare”, which added at least 100 points to his imaginary score in my head. Recommended tracks: “Hello Benjamin”, “The Sun”
  3. M. Craft ( or (
    Heading to another land filled with blondes and funny accents, our next featured artist is M. Craft from Australia. Definitely the most traditionally “folsky” of my folk-centric selections this week, M. Craft constucts melodic and lazy vocals over soft percussion and tinny, low-treble guitar riffs. It’s hard to listen without coming to the conclusion that this guy definitely listened to a lot of Neil Young. Recommended tracks: “The Soldier”, “Dragonfly”, “Sweets”

Lost and Found #3

I hope that my first two installments of Lost and Found have treated you well, providing a sufficient amount of inspiration/aural pleasure for your own personal summer soundtrack. This week’s Lost and Found stays on more of the analog side, as I’ve been listening to way too much electronica recently… and for those of you who have seen me inevitably dancing to electronic music (consists of moving my hips and sticking out my index fingers), you know that a change in genre isn’t exactly the worst thing. So, here are three bands that I enjoy immensely but allow me to keep my index fingers in their holsters (aka music that is helpful in avoiding embarrassment to myself).

  1. The Meeting Places ( Are you in the mood to gaze at your shoes? The Meeting Places can hook that up for you. You might think that there is some cognitive dissonance in lacing laid back soothing vocals over chaotic reverb soaked guitars… but you think wrong, my friend. The sweet and salty mix that these guys provide mesh with your brainwaves very effectively to put you in an introspective- yet not sleepy- mood. I guess shoegaze is a good genre to place them, but I’d venture to say it’s more of a amphetamine-like shoegaze as opposed to an opiate-like shoegaze. Recommended tracks:”Wide Awake”, “Now I Know You Can Never Be The One”
  2. The Whitest Boy Alive ( I know, great name, right? That’s what I thought too. And the lead singer is from Norway so you know he’s not pulling your chain. Erlend Øye, the pale lead singer we talk about, first caught my attention as half of the awesome yet maybe-a-bit-boring Kings of Convenience (2 for 2 in awesome names for bands… extra imaginary points). For The Whitest Boy Alive, Erlend transfers his quiet singing voice from slow folk music to more of a catchy uptempo vibe. Being that he has a laid back singing demeanor, the uptempo rhythms are tempered down just a bit… but in a pleasing manner. I think an apt way to describe it is that the instruments send signals to my index fingers that it’s time to come out and bust a move, but then the vocals remind me to chill out, sit back, and soak it all in. Embarassment avoided, thanks Erlend. Recommended tracks: “Burning”, “Done With You”
  3. School of Seven Bells ( Identical twin sisters, of the hot variety, from Argentina. I mean, is there really more that I have to sell you on? I first saw/heard this band when they were opening for Fujiya & Miyagi on tour last winter. Being in the Fujiya & Miyagi mindset going to the concert, I was definitely ready and willing to embarass myself by dancing like an idiot. But when I got to the venue, I first heard this awesome melodic yet intense music eminating from the stage before I could see them, and thought “hm, sounds intriguing.” Then I walked towards the stage and saw them, and that is when full crush mode took effect. It totally caught me off guard, and I shifted my “make an idiot out of myself” mindset to “act cool and maybe one of them will ask you to marry them” mindset. “But Rouge” you say, “they might be hot, but can they rock?” My answer to your query is yes, yes they can rock. Quite well. They produce a pulsing vibe that has a ton of energy to go along with the powerful vocals. Because they are identical, they have the same voice as far as I can tell, and some awesome harmonization ensues. Male of female, you will have a crush on them. Recommended tracks: “Iamundernodisguise”, “Connjur”

Lost and Found #1


Hello all questionable people, please allow me to introduce my humble addition to the QS community. Music in the past couple of years has been pretty outstanding, and with the full integration of music and the interwebs, more prolific than ever. Okay, I have no data to back that up or anything, but a little rhetorical flourish never hurt anyone. Either way, there is a crapload of great music out there, just waiting to be discovered. Usually, the stuff worth discovering is in fact discovered by colleagues such as Amanda, with their incredibly hip taste and finely tuned ear to the ground of the music scene. Or by reading Pitchfork… duh.

With the prolific nature of music these days, a lot of this discovered music gets its 15 minutes in the musical-snob (meant in the best way possible) scene. The problem is, there is such a large gap between the music that is discovered by those inclined to find it and the main stream. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing… keeping a safe distance from the mainstream is a healthy virtue. However, a huge chunk of that “discovered” music simply gets swept under the rug after its 15 minutes are up. It’s still great music, but unfortunately it becomes lost to those of us who aren’t on the cutting-edge of the hip lifestyle. My mission here is to go fishing in the ether of cool-yet-lost music and dredge up some gems for your listening pleasure.

Without further ado, here are my first selections. Please enjoy.

  1. Home Video ( This Brooklyn (yea big surprise there) electrorock outfit pump out consistently solid tracks that involve tight electronic loops, biting percussions, guitar and keys that aren’t overdone, and a voice that will make you think it must be Thom Yorke moonlighting in a side project. Recommended tracks: “We”, “I Can Make You Feel It”
  2. Zoot Woman ( Caught up in the Pitchfork annointed “electroclash” genre circa 2003, Zoot Woman was promptly ejected into the void without much acknowledgement (that I know of anyway). The poppy synth-centric tracks are uptempo, yet not exactly rage-dance worthy. More like moderate foot-tapping and hip moving-worthy. Whatever worthy it is, it’s definitely worthy of your time. Recommended tracks: “Gem”, “Hope In The Mirror”
  3. Grand National ( There’s a lot of different terms out there attempting to describe Grand National, including my personal favorite, “80’s ethereal dream rock”. You can hear plenty of influences in the music, but it seems as if everyone hears something different, which I find cool. Something that everyone can hear is their ability to bridge instruments and electronics seamlessly to produce some great music. Recommended tracks: “Drink to Moving On”, “Talk Among Yourselves”

Lost and Found

Hello there folks, first off, a major lo siento for missing out on last week’s edition. I swear it wasn’t because I had totally forgot that it was Thursday before it was too late. More like it was because I didn’t want to be too much of a music slut, you know, just sharing all the goods with all who want to experience it. I had to take one week off to keep all of you pervs in line. I bet you’re happy that I did, because now you’re even more ecstatic to be reading me than ever before. Just keeping you on your toes. This week installment will be moving from my introspective sissy music suggestions back towards a harder edge electronic genre. Why? Because I’m a harder edged guy and I need musical manna for my badassitude. Just kidding, probably because Justice popped up on my iPod and I thought it would be a good area to rediscover. Whatever my rationale, it’s good friggin music that will get your toes tapping and your blood flowing. What else do you need?

1) Apparat (

I found Apparat in a pretty unconventional manner- from a Showtime commercial that I have to sit through before my Dexter DVDs start up. I pop in the DVD, and the first thing I hear is this awesome pounding yet muted drum beat combined with a sick bass line. What is THIS??!! I was all thrown off because I was expecting to whistle to the theme music from Dexter (my favorite song to whistle), and then a full frontal assault of awesomeness totally unrelated to the Dexter theme song grabbed my full attention. Turns our that the song from the Showtime commercial (Hailin From the Edge) isn’t exactly what most of the rest of Apparat’s music is like, but hey, that’s cool because the rest of his music fends well for itself. The music has an electronic pop feel to it, but is dark and subtle enough to give it a bit of a manic edge. Overall, the experience is varied and gratifying, however a little less appropriate for the dancefloor than my other suggestions this week- definitely more of a headphone “party in my head” type of experience. Recommended tracks: “Hailin From the Edge”, “Fractales Pt. I & II”


MSTRKRFT’s last album title was FIST OF GOD. Whoaaaa there skinny hipster dudes, can you really back up that album title by tapping on some electronic music-boards whilst wearing hoodies (hood up) and skinny jeans? Okay okay, yes you can. Grungy, pulsing, powerful… MSTRKRFT does a great job of pounding out some pretty intense party-ready gems. The surprising part of these intense beats is that a lot of their songs are laced with some pretty interesting guest vocals as diverse as John Legend and Ghostface Killah. These vocals, in addition to the smart sampling and cutting on the tracks that don’t include the vocals, end up transforming the music from pretty hardcore electronica into party worthy songs that will get everyone jumping around. Or if you are alone, it will get you jumping around by yourself… Either way. Recommended tracks: “So Deep”, “It Ain’t Love”

3) Modeselektor (

You know that when you have Thom Yorke making a guest appearance on one of your tracks that you are pretty much the shit. Such is the case for Modeselektor, who’s frenetic “glitch-hop” background provide for music that at first can sound a bit awkward, but rapidly grows on you as you realize the complexity of the sounds they are trying to create. The guest vocals, like those on some MSTRKRFT tracks, provide a diverse layer over the twitchy and frenetic beats that permeate throughout all of the songs. Most of the songs retain a unique signature, but its a receptive enough signature that the mood of the vocals can change the whole experience. One song can be smoothed out and melodic, while the next can be rowdy and sound like a short circuited fem-bot with the voice of M.I.A. is rapping over the track. Definitely give Modeselektor more than one listen, I bet you’ll like it more and more as you come back. Recommended tracks: “Silikon”, “The White Flash”