by Sean
Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.


One of the best mix CDs I've ever made was for a mix-swap held by The Diskettes'/Popsheep's Dave Barclay, interlacing gangsta-edged hip-hop (50 Cent, Dre, etc) with sad, soft songwritery stuff (Julie Doiron, Little Wings, etc). It was a little mischievous, admittedly, but really I did it because the juxaposition worked so well. Murmurs and ache interrupted by synths, gunshots, tough mutters.

Anyway, I gave my mix to some mystery-person, and never heard any feedback. I suspect they 'lost' it. I, meanwhile, received an angry-woman sampler, ripe with Bikini Kill, PJ Harvey and Ani DiFranco. Which I lost.

from 'Raven' by Tra Selhtrow

Clipse - "Ride Around Shining". There's a great reason that people are talkin' about the soon-to-be-released Clipse album, Hell Hath No Fury: it's really, really good. Hot as coal, hard as a hammer, charmingly devilish. On a blogger messageboard, Matthew wrote a good summary of what makes Pusha-T and Malice tick-tock: "they've skipped right by the 'anti-hero' default of most rap and straight to this mustache-twirling villainy, and that's why their characters are so seductive." This track's not the catchiest on the record but I can't get enough of the Neptunes' beautiful & menacing main riff. It's a deliciously slow harp arpeggio; a sound that's held resounding, resounding, while the boys glare and glower. And pose. [buy]

Leaves From Off The Tree - "Barbry Ellen". Leaves From Off The Tree is an album by, and project of, Meg Baird and Helena Espvall (Espers), and Sharron Kraus. Nine traditional folksongs, beautifully and simply rendered. "Barbry Ellen" is entirely unaccompanied, just three women's voices in plaint. It's a strange lament: what wrong did the narrator commit? Mere "hard-hearted[ness]"? Not recognising a love that was before her? Or was she cruel? The song does not say. All we have is the melody, full of want, and these three singers - solemn, sad, compassionate as dawns. [buy]



A little while ago I jumped the gun and wrote about the outstanding new Of Montreal album, due early in 2007. You can now stream the whole thing. Pre-order it and get a limited edition bonus EP for $3.

Perhaps you remember Felix Lajko, the hungarian/yugoslavian/gypsy violinist who fiddles sparks? The guy who I praised to the skies here and here? Well, he's been added to the bill on the Dirty Three-curated All Tomorrows Parties festival in England in April (alongside the likes of Silver Mt Zion, Smog, Josh Pearson, Low and Nick Cave). Are you thinking what I'm thinking? (Oh, and YouTube has videos!)

I didn't think that Herman Dune's "I Wish That I Could See You Soon" could conceivably get any better, and then... I saw the video. It's one of the greatest films I've seen this year. (I wish I had friends like Y, O and U.) Herman Dune also recently appeared in the Blogotheque's Concerts à emporter series, and there's an amazing bonus video of David and Neman (?) serenading Chryde's little baby boy.


Finally, contest time.

The end of the year is coming up and I am again choosing my favourite songs of the year. Inevitably however there are things I've missed. So, here's the challenge:

Email contests@saidthegramophone.com the greatest-song-of-2006-that-I-haven't-heard.

There are currently 48 songs in my end of year long-list; if the song you send is not already in that long-list, and makes the cut for the short-list, you will win a CD from my pile-of-prize-CDs (Arcade Fire, Antony and the Johnsons, something like that).

How do you know what I haven't heard? You don't. But if it's been posted on this blog, is from a talked-about indie/mainstream release, or has been really popular on other blogs, chances are I've heard it. Then again, my awareness of chart singles this year has been abominable - so a lot of big-name hip-hop and pop stands a fair chance of being new to me.

Other rules? Entries should be sent to contests@saidthegramophone.com with the subject line: END OF YEAR CONTEST. Please do not point to or name a song: attach the mp3. Deadline is 11:59 pm on Monday, December 4. Please no more than two entries per person, and please no more than one song by a given artist. And please, send only the best! This isn't about great albums: it's about splendid, beautiful, fun and devastating stand-alone tracks.

Best of luck!

(img by tra selhtrow)

Posted by Sean at November 28, 2006 4:00 AM

This new Of Montreal release is addictive. I'm hooked and can't wait till it drops.


Posted by Andrew at November 28, 2006 10:03 AM

The best songs of 2006?... quite hard to choose. Waiting to see the final top!

Posted by bassplayer at November 28, 2006 4:58 PM

Is the adding of the pictures new (aside from said-the-guest-artist-things?)? Very pretty.

Posted by Anca at November 28, 2006 10:57 PM

Damn you, Michaels! Not only is that the song I was hoping to eventually write about, you ran with part of my thesis! Ahh! You dastardly man.

And I think it IS the catchiest song on the record, but that's neither here nor there.

Posted by Matthew at November 29, 2006 12:10 AM

Booked ATP today, and it's all because of you, Mr StG. :)

While plenty of it interests me I've seen most of the bands I like before; the only reason I'm traipsing across the Irish Sea for it is Felix. And I think he'll be worth the price of admission alone.

So I'll see you down the front in the pit! I'll be the Irishman dancing with tears in my eyes (living out a memory of a love that died...and all that). ;)

Posted by Robert P, Dublin at December 1, 2006 12:50 PM

looking forward to your new list for 2006. I burned 20 songs from your 2005 list on a cd and listen to it all the time.

Posted by drew at December 2, 2006 3:40 PM

Beirut's Postcards from Italy, Arrah and the Ferns' Skylark, and Swan Lake's All Fires.

Posted by Kirsten at December 4, 2006 11:37 AM

1. Suburban Kids with Biblical Names - Rent a Wreck (I'm pretty sure this was released in '05, but didn't hit the states until this year)

2. Peter Bjorn and John - Young Folks

3. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Turn Into (One of the most overlooked, underrated albums of the year, IMO.)

4. Be Your Own Pet - Bicycle, Bicycle, You are My Bicycle

5. Fucked Up - Baiting the Public

Posted by Ben at December 4, 2006 3:24 PM

joanna newsom's "emily" was breathtaking, M. Ward's "Chinese Translation" had some great lyrics, and Tokyo Police Club's "Nature of the Experiment" was catchy as all get out.

Posted by Jake A. at December 4, 2006 3:59 PM

shut up i am dreaming by sunset rubdown

Posted by hudson goldsmith at December 4, 2006 6:03 PM

"photocopier" by fujiya & miyagi

Posted by Gabe H. at December 11, 2006 11:18 PM

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(Please be patient, it can be slow.)
about said the gramophone
This is a daily sampler of really good songs. All tracks are posted out of love. Please go out and buy the records.

To hear a song in your browser, click the and it will begin playing. All songs are also available to download: just right-click the link and choose 'Save as...'

All songs are removed within a few weeks of posting.

Said the Gramophone launched in March 2003, and added songs in November of that year. It was one of the world's first mp3blogs.

If you would like to say hello, find out our mailing addresses or invite us to shows, please get in touch:
Montreal, Canada: Sean
Toronto, Canada: Emma
Montreal, Canada: Jeff
Montreal, Canada: Mitz

Please don't send us emails with tons of huge attachments; if emailing a bunch of mp3s etc, send us a link to download them. We are not interested in streaming widgets like soundcloud: Said the Gramophone posts are always accompanied by MP3s.

If you are the copyright holder of any song posted here, please contact us if you would like the song taken down early. Please do not direct link to any of these tracks. Please love and wonder.

"And I shall watch the ferry-boats / and they'll get high on a bluer ocean / against tomorrow's sky / and I will never grow so old again."
about the authors
Sean Michaels is the founder of Said the Gramophone. He is a writer, critic and author of the theremin novel Us Conductors. Follow him on Twitter or reach him by email here. Click here to browse his posts.

Emma Healey writes poems and essays in Toronto. She joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. This is her website and email her here.

Jeff Miller is a Montreal-based writer and zinemaker. He is the author of Ghost Pine: All Stories True and a bunch of other stories. He joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. Say hello on Twitter or email.

Mitz Takahashi is originally from Osaka, Japan who now lives and works as a furniture designer/maker in Montreal. English is not his first language so please forgive his glamour grammar mistakes. He is trying. He joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. Reach him by email here.

Site design and header typography by Neale McDavitt-Van Fleet. The header graphic is randomized: this one is by Neale McDavitt-Van Fleet.
Dan Beirne wrote regularly for Said the Gramophone from August 2004 to December 2014. He is an actor and writer living in Toronto. Any claim he makes about his life on here is probably untrue. Click here to browse his posts. Email him here.

Jordan Himelfarb wrote for Said the Gramophone from November 2004 to March 2012. He lives in Toronto. He is an opinion editor at the Toronto Star. Click here to browse his posts. Email him here.
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Said the Gramophone does not take advertising. We are supported by the incredible generosity of our readers. These were our donors in 2013.
watch StG's wonderful video contest winners

our favourite blogs
(◊ means they write about music)

Back to the World
La Blogothèque
Weird Canada
Destination: Out
Endless Banquet
A Grammar (Nitsuh Abebe)
Ill Doctrine
A London Salmagundi
Words and Music
Petites planétes
Gorilla vs Bear
Silent Shout
Clouds of Evil
The Dolby Apposition
Awesome Tapes from Africa
Matana Roberts
Pitchfork Reviews Reviews
i like you [podcast]
Nicola Meighan
radiolab [podcast]
CKUT Music
plethoric pundrigrions
Wattled Smoky Honeyeater
The Clear-Minded Creative
Torture Garden
Passion of the Weiss
Juan and Only
Horses Think
White Hotel
Then Play Long (Marcello Carlin)
Uno Moralez
Coming Up For Air (Matt Forsythe)
my love for you is a stampede of horses
It's Nice That
Song, by Toad
In Focus
WTF [podcast]
The Rest is Noise (Alex Ross)
My Daguerreotype Boyfriend
The Hood Internet

things we like in Montreal
st-viateur bagel
café olimpico
Euro-Deli Batory
le pick up
kem coba
le couteau
au pied de cochon
mamie clafoutis
tourtière australienne
chez boris
alati caserta
vices & versa
+ paltoquet, cocoa locale, idée fixe, patati patata, the sparrow, pho tay ho, qin hua dumplings, caffé italia, hung phat banh mi, caffé san simeon, meu-meu, pho lien, romodos, patisserie guillaume, patisserie rhubarbe, kazu, lallouz, maison du nord, cuisine szechuan &c

drawn + quarterly
+ bottines &c

casa + sala + the hotel
blue skies turn black
montreal improv theatre
passovah productions
le cagibi
cinema du parc
pop pmontreal
yoga teacher Thea Metcalfe

Cult Montreal
The Believer
The Morning News
The Skinny