Casting Spells

Seattle Washington's Craft Spells played Great Scott in Boston, last night, as part of their 2011 Summer tour. The guys have a way of mixing dreamy pop with sounds of new wave and extremely catchy melodies. Some of their tracks are more memorable than others, for example 'Party Talk', 'You Should Close the Door', and 'After the Moment', for their catchy drum hits and fun aesthetics. However, other tracks like 'For the Ages' and 'Beauty Above All' are sort of reiterations of other, more memorable, songs off their album. The handful of tracks that I do have a bone to pick with, seem to just mimic the more memorable tunes, the same way that a college student copies and pastes from wikipedia and then picks through the research paper, replacing adjectives as they go. I do commend them for keeping the musical theme fluid throughout the album. Each song well defines the type of style and dream pop that you could tell they were going for.

Give 'After the Moment' a listen:

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Ladies we Love|Kate Nash

"I believe in putting money into art and I think it's important to support other artists, if you can give someone a leg up or a break then you should, art should be about creating a community." Kate Nash is starting her own label Have 10p Records, to support upcoming female artists that she's fond of.  Kate Nash's fame  is nothing new to the blogosphere.  However, she's my pick for the week.  With this new take on the indie label Kate's cleaning out a niche for female artists that are actually making something worth listening to today.  She's not acting as Mama bear, taking care of everything for her artists, she's just acting as a creative source to look to when in need of advice.  With her new artist Bridgette Aphrodite she's mentioned that she's just a resource, launching Bridgette and other up-and-coming artists into listeners Ipods.  In her Drowned in Sound interview she commented on labels today and female artist's place in the industry: Do you think that there’s a tendency for labels to try and fit young female artists to a particular mould? As a female label boss who has experience on the other side – how would you like to change this?

I personally feel it's not the label's job to get involved creatively. I think it's down to the act/band that you're working with. The label's job is to get the music out there and help the band progress as much as possible. But only in a way that works for that act. Both men and women should be free to develop in that way if they're true artists.

Are there any labels that you look to for inspiration? Any that you would like Have 10p to follow in the footsteps of?

I love fiction, and kill rock stars, moshi moshi and wichita. I think for now I would like to keep things focused on small footsteps as that's the time that I have to dedicate to it and I want to do justice to the acts I work with.

to enjoy the rest of the interview check it out at Drowned in Sound.

In case you have been living under a rock for awhile and haven't heard Miss Nash, here's a little taste

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DVF does Spring 2011

Last Thursday we made it out to the Liberty Hotel for Diane VonFurstenberg and Yvan Mispelaere's collabortion for DVF's Spring 2011 Collection.  I have my likes and dislikes about the Liberty Hotel Thursday Fashion Nights, but the DVF debut definitely make it all worthwhile.  Aside from the douchey businessmen and sprinkles of overly ornamented, boderline trashy fashionistas - The Liberty's cocktails and DVF's Spring highlights were quite the delight.  There were lots of bright, block colors, paired with cute strappy shoulder purses.  A few highlights I enjoyed were the pair of round vintage inspired sunglasses that she paired with almost every outfit, a lovely burnt orange wrap top, and the blonde, fair model who was easily the "best in show".  Overall the pieces are colorful and nautical with strappy heels.














































NAILPOLISH FOR SPRING: can't wait to bust out the pastels? On you can buy Buttery brand nailpolishes, adorable $14 polishes that come straight from London! These polishes have adorable names like Muggins, Tea with the Queen, and Hen Party.  (pictured at top from left to right are 1) Hen Party, 2) Lady Muck, 3)Rosie Lee)



Oh how the sales of the retail slow season seem to draw me in with their mediocre deals and promises of happiness by way of discounted cardigan.  Today I made a purchase that actually wasn't on a whim.  I have been wanting this hat ever since I saw it last year at LF.  I was going to get it during their winter sale last year but couldn't find enough items to validate just the one hat as a purchase.  This year, some soft basics were cheaply priced so I took the dive and got the little bugger.  I really don't care if you like it or not, it's on my head... so there.  It's complete with paw mittens on the long ear flaps.

Quick! 5 second rant: + Pitchfork's only new music recommendations seem to be for the same ambient disguised electronic creations and it's complete lunacy. I'm bored, give me some real drums for god sakes. + I just watched the 2009 adaptation of Dorian Gray it completely strays from the original book up until the last 25 minutes *makes fart noise with mouth* + I need a new mouse for my desktop because if this one either a) doesn't click when I click it or b) double clicks one more time I'm going to throw it out the front door. Alright! Now for some alternative listening suggestions!

Rachel's February Playlist:

  1. "Bad Day" Darwin Deez
  2. "Little Garcon" Born Ruffians
  3. "Make Nice" Faces on Film
  4. "The Needle Has Landed" Neko Case
  5. "South 2nd" Coco Rosie
  6. "Always" Rilo Kiley
  7. "Undertow" Warpaint
  8. "What a Pleasure" Beach Fossils
  9. "New Beat" Toro Y Moi
  10. "Hindsight" Death Cab for Cutie


Snowed In.

It seems like every other day the city is shut down because of a massive snow/hail storm.  The streets and sidewalks are piled with mush, slush, and snow.  The one downfall of our apartment is that it's a basement apartment, ( a nice basement apartment but half sized windows all the same ) and there are windows above the bed where the snowplow decided to pile up all the excess snow.  They just pushed it into the window enough that it creaked a couple times and scared me awake.  So I am quite literally living in a snowed in state.  But what do you do when the movies, video games, hot cocoa and entertainment run dry?  What do you do when you actually have to leave the house to run a quick errand?  Well here's a quick mock up of my go-to mix and match for cute separates that hide your un-groomed self under layers of  warmth.  Today I needed laundry detergent, shampoo, and Trader Joe's sparkling water.














  • Boots, L.L. Bean, $94
  • Recycled Chunky Knit Scarf, Anywhere! (try thrifted)
  • Winter Leggings, American Apparel, $34
  • Toggle Coat, Forever21, $34.90
  • Creme Hearts Hat, Pinkyotto, $55

So this is the New Year?

Conforming to old standards and traditions is a past time of ours, and one of those traditions just happens to include New Years Resolutions.  "What's your New Years Resolution?" The gyms and weight loss quick fixes are profiting off of the millions of men and women who, year after year, pledge their weight loss resolutions without fail.  Who wouldn't feel obligated to lose weight after an influx of holidays feasts, as well as close and extended family scrutinizing your appearance.  The New Years Resolution is just another one of those vicious circles, just like my buying and consigning clothing circle.  But enough of my vices..

Can we talk about Scarlett Johansson in An American Rhapsody?

I saw this movie when I was 13, and again this afternoon.  Aside from being a horribly sad and true story about a family torn apart during communist Russia's rule over Hungary, I enjoyed it both times.  I fell in love with cute/semi-dressy 50's style of Scarlett's character, which I obviously overlooked at 13.  Admittedly I could watch her in anything and still love her so I suppose I'm biased.  The perfect up-dos, cuffed jeans, and bobby socks are just some of the lovely little 50's pieces that I adore.

Get the Look!
















  • Striped Boatneck Top, $40, American Apparel
  • 1950's Vintage Swing Coat, $32, Etsy
  • Peter Pan Collar Dress, $68.96, Asos
  • BDG Cuffed Jeans, $54, Urban Outfitters
  • Leather Shoulder Bag, $42, Etsy

Holiday Cheer

Without a multitude of holiday activities; such as lighting ceremonies, christmas caroling, and cookie baking, we'd all still be wondering how do I really get in the Christmas swing of things?  Well, I thought I'd share my top 6 (yes top 6) Christmas movies with you.  Nothing beats curling up with a cup of hot cocoa and a fire while watching a Christmas movie just a few days before the big date arrives.

#6 | Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer (The 1964 version)

Between Rudolph's adorable voice, the creepiest abominable snow man ever, and Fox Family showing it every Christmas season on repeat - Rudolph is a staple Christmas film for me.  Yes, the elf does sort of piss me off the whole movie, but I think Rudolph and his cute little reindeer girlfriend make up for it.  Not to mention it's not too long, so you can get your little dose of Christmas spirit, and probably even multi-task by making some cut out snowflakes because who doesn't already know the story of Rudolph? Probably Jehovas Witnesses...

#5 | Babes in Toyland

Okay, so the only reason Babes in Toyland is #5 on my list and not #6, or #10 for that matter is because of the all star cast that's in this movie.  It is a remake, and if I were to watch it now I'd probably think it was hilarious, but for some reason growing up we had this movie on VHS and my Mom had me watch it every Christmas.  The evil villain is Richard Mulligan, who was also the doctor on the Golden Girls - other than that I don't know anything else memorable he's been in.. oh and he's a bird man.  Last, but definitely not least - even better than Keanu and Drew Barrymore - is the great role of the Toymaster played by Mr. Miyagi from the Karate Kid!  Needless to say Babes in Toyland is a must watch, at least once.

#4 | A Muppet's Christmas Carol

I'm not a serial Muppet lover.  I mean I've watched the occasional Muppets Show and Muppet  Treasure Island, but A Muppet's Christmas Carol is probably the only Muppet movie I'd watch more than once.  For some reason thought the Ghost of Christmas Present scares me more than the Ghost of Christmas Future... maybe because giant fat Muppet always give me the feeling that they're going to try and eat me.  Other than that same story, but with Muppets and Muppet flair. the end.

#3 | Love Actually

I don't think I have to convince the majority of the population that Love Actually is a great movie, Christmas or not.  The combination of a short story movie, and then intertwining all the characters towards the end, we get the sense that we're watching a real movie, with Christmas as a sub-genre, or afterthought.  Watch it, it'll probably make you smile.

#2 | Elf

I love Elf, and I would make Elf my number one Christmas movie - although, it is a well deserving #2.  I won't hide it, I love you Will Ferrell - every time he says that Santa smells like cheese and beer i still think it's hilarious.  I also love the fact that there is a Narwhal randomly placed in the beginning of the film.  And who can forget an indie girls obligatory love for Zoe Deschanel.  Their duet on Baby It's Cold Outside is pretty adorable.

#1 | It's a Wonderful Life

It's a Wonderful Life is my number one Christmas movie.  It beats out an amazing hilarious film like elf because it is a classic with something for everyone.  Jimmy Stewart plalys the devoted, loving guy any girl would want, and then the audience gets to watch him flail with despair as he gives all he has to help the town he grew up in and his father's savings and loan.  "What is it you want, Mary? What do you want? You want the moon? Just say the word and I'll throw a lasso around it and pull it down. Hey. That's a pretty good idea. I'll give you the moon, Mary."  This movie embodies the real spirit of the Holidays.

Holiday Icon | Donna Reed aka Mary Bailey


Get the Holiday Look!

  • Cheetah Jacket, Topshop, $200
  • Bow Beret, Thrifted, N/A
  • Burlesque Limited Edition Nailpolish, OPI, $7.50

Here Come the Holidays!

The older I get the more I have to substitute holiday cheer with consumer driven gluttony.  I don't believe you when you say that mixing up your usual coffee order with a tall non-fat peppermint latte doesn't put a tiny bit more pep in your step.  Or how a stroll down the well-known shopper's home-away-from-home, Newbury Street, peering in at all the bright shiny window displays can get you in the mood for purchasing gifts.  Even the run of the mill ice skating at Frog Pond in the Commons runs a steep $12/person unless you're one of those people with your own ice skates.  It seems our cheapest festivity is to bake some cookies and drink hot cocoa while watching Elf, but then there's always the fact that you'll have left-over cookies for the next week and no-one to eat them but you! Never good for the figure...

I may have you wondering, well then what's a girl (or boy) to do?  Well you buy that $4.50 peppermint latte, and pay $35 to go to the The Nutcracker at the Boston Symphony Orchestra, because it's what gives us humans the feeling of holiday cheer.  There's never an end to the holiday events that fill us with sentiments of the season, but they will almost always come at the economy's benefit and the consumer's misfortune.

Hopefully we all know that hoarding ones money away never compared to the feeling of purchasing something.  The feeling of purchasing something to hold in your hand or a nice shiny bag that holds your new purchase, to walk down the street with, is something most people can relate to.  Well, here are a few fun christmas events that you can partake in around Boston, i'm sure more will pop up as we get closer to the date:

  • Annual Santa Speedo Run! Apparently they're all filled up with submissions so it'll be quite the show.                         when? Dec. 11th! where? Back Bay! What time? 1pm!
  • SOWA Holiday Market! SOWA market never fails to please the masses, so obviously their holiday market won't be any less crowd pleasing! when? Dec. 11-12! what time? 12-6! where? kind of hidden.. follow this link!
  • The 4th Annual Awesomely Bad Christmas Sweater Party! What really stood out about this event for me, was the fact that it involves horrendous christmas sweaters and an open bar from 9pm-1am. where? Villa Victoria Center for the Arts when? Dec. 11th what time? 9pm  (event deatils)

At a loss about what to wear? Well Get the perfect Holiday Look here!:
















  • Fur Trim Cape Dress, Topshop, $160
  • Opaque Tights, Topshop, $16
  • Suede Fur Trim Hat, ASOS, $112.06
  • Creme Shimmering Nailpolish, The Makeup Store, $14
  • Fur trimmed wedged boots, H&M, $40

New Music | Fanfarlo

Fanfarlo's melodies are based off of intricately woven motifs, each one just as important as the other.  Their full length album, 'Reservoir'(2008) uses homespun, anthem-like, indie pop to draw listeners in.  Their on stage performances are nothing short of watching a family of musicians interact the best and happiest way they know how - harmonically.  They've been around since 2006, based out of London.   After finally listening all they way through their new album I can safely say I have a new favorite go-to for morning walks to the train. Reservoir is their only full length out currently, mostly they just have a small collection of EPs floating about, in addition to 'Reservoir'.

Tracks like Luna, The Walls Are Coming Down, I'm a Pilot, Harold T. Wilkins or How to Wait for a Very Long, are jingly anthems filled with brass and string accompaniment that make you want to jump in a pile of leaves and eat apples off the trees with a best friend.  Grab a hot cider put your headphones on and take stroll through the park while listening to 'Reservoir', the least it can do is make your heart a little bit fuller.

Listen to 'Luna'!

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Like Fanfarlo? Listen to these similar artists and expand your music library:

  • Local Natives
  • Slow Club
  • Noah and the Whale
  • Jónsi (six degrees of separation: Jónsi worked with the same producer that Fanfarlo used for 'Reservoir', Peter Katis, on his solo album)

Ragtime Tunes

I didn't want to admit it, but I've been watching Boardwalk Empire every week.  I'm not usually a sucker for dramas, but maybe it's the magnificent wardrobes and frequent murders that keep me coming back.  The one thing that's very evident in the show is how beautiful the women are, and how fat and awkward looking the men are.  I'm not even a fan of Michael Pitt, the only actor that I enjoy in this show is Steve Buschemi, and it's rather different to see him in such a powerful role.  The media seems to be going crazy for his on-screen girlfriend, real life name: Paz.  I'm, admittedly, not a fan of the reportedly "on" and "off" screen nut job, an online source gushes, "Evidence suggests that Paz may actually be as eccentric, sex-obsessed, and generally “wacky” as she wants us to believe."  Although, there's no denying each member of Boardwalk Empire's female cast has a collective, subtle, and raw sexual aspect about them.  They leave me wishing it was okay to leave my house dressed for a prohibition party, not having to worry about getting stared at for my flapper era attire.  But a girl can dream, eh?  I have some tips and recommendations for how to tone down outdated heirs of a 1920's outfit, and mix that retro outfit with a little bit of 21st century flair.

Style Icon: The beautiful and timeless Marion Davies

Get the Look!







  • Peter Pan Collared Velvet Dress, Topshop, $190
  • Jungle Lipstick, NARS, $24
  • Rose Leaf Ring, Topshop, $12
  • Bow Trimmed Hat, Brenda Lynn: Barney's,$385
  • Eyebrow Kit, Tweezerman, $45

Mango Pickle

What's better than the lovely M.I.A.? Seeing M.I.A. for free, that's what. This girl's 35 years old with a kid and still one of the most badass live performers out there right now.   Three women dressed in head to toe burkas come out onto the stage as the crowd starts getting riled up for M.I.A.  Then, the most hilarious part of the show, a very british ginger dressed like a dude straight out of the mid 1980's, comes up "popping and locking" all over stage right (who actually later in the show he continues to take a stage dive and fall right on his head onto the floor).  But, we all know we're all here to see the lovely Maya Arulpragasam, so everyone's still pretty jazzed up.  Then- through the neon lights, here she comes, and if I boldly say so, can do no wrong wearing two-toned jeans ( a faux pas attempted by anyone else ).  She can carry a crowd like no other, and has the sass to match too.  Man, who wouldn't aspire to be more like M.I.A.?

Get the look! Hot pinks and two-tones to match our favorite British rappette.

1. Two-Toned Opaque Pantyhose, American Apparel - $14

2. 'Collide' Nail Polish, Illamasque - $12

3. 'Roman Holiday' Matte Lipstick, NARS - $18