TVD Vinyl Giveaway: Bad Books, II

“Over the past few decades of music, so much has changed; yet vinyl is still a special way to listen.”

“It’s more than background music, or a download. It is a warm experience you have with the songs. For me, one of the greatest rewards of making a record is when it comes back on vinyl. It allows our albums to become a part of the legacy that seems to be keeping the industry alive.”
Robert McDowell (Bad Books)

And shock – we couldn’t agree more with Mr. McDowell of Bad Books, the collaboration between Kevin Devine and Manchester Orchestra. And to hammer that point home, we’ve got a copy of their recent release, II to give away to one of you.

Quoting their bio, “The second collaboration between singer/ songwriter Kevin Devine and Andy Hull of Manchester Orchestra, Bad Books II finds these two extraordinary tunesmiths untethered from their respective brands, joining forces to reach new stylistic and emotional terrain. Accompanied by members of Manchester Orchestra – with guitarist Robert McDowell also producing and keyboardist/ percussionist Chris Freeman once again supplying distinctive album art – Hull and Devine offer up a series of magnificently etched songs which light upon everything from anthemic stadium rock (“The After Party”), and reflective balladry (“42”), to energetic bubblegum (“No Sides”), gloriously baroque psychedelia (“Petite Mort”), and whistling big beat pop (“Forest Whitaker”).

The real-time sound of a group of talented friends synthesizing into something altogether more cohesive and accessible, Bad Books II reveals a remarkable new band in the truest sense, emboldened and at ease enough to set out together for places unknown.”

Enter to win a deluxe copy of Bad Books’ II on 180 gram vinyl (with an embossed hardcover jacket and 24 page booklet!) by citing in the comments below your favorite dual band or artist collaboration akin to Bad Books. We’ll choose one insightful commenter with a North American mailing address a week from today, 2/13!

2/13/13 – Thompson House – Newport, KY
2/14/13 – Subterranean – Chicago, IL – SOLD OUT
2/15/13 – Crofoot Ballroom- Pontiac, MI
2/16/13 – Newport Music Hall – Columbus, OH
2/17/13 – Mr. Small’s Theatre – Pittsburgh, PA
2/19/13 – The Sinclair – Cambridge, MA – SOLD OUT
2/20/13 – Bowery Ballroom – New York, NY – SOLD OUT
2/21/13 – World Café Live – Philadelphia, PA – SOLD OUT
2/22/13 – The Recher Theatre – Towson, MD
2/23/13 – Local 506 – Chapel Hill, NC – SOLD OUT
2/24/13 – New Brookland Tavern – West Columbia, SC

Purchase tickets here.

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  • JLando

    Love the hell out of Middle Brother.  Deer Tick + Delta Spirit + Dawes sounds sweet to me.

  • emkeefe

    Monsters of Folk! A little My Morning Jacket, M. Ward, and Bright Eyes!

  • BrianJMellon

    I was just about to post Monsters of Folk, great band. How about Two Tongues featuring members of Saves the Day and Say Anything or The Postal Service which includes members of Death Cab for Cutie, DNTEL, and Rilo Kiley (Jenny Lewis is on a song or two, can’t remember for sure)

  • pmangia

    One that comes to mind is Anthony Green’s “Avalon”, which has the guys from Good Old War playing on it. Another favorite is The Dear Hunter’s “Color Spectrum” which featured most notably our friend Andy Hull and MO, but also the likes of Jessy Ribordy (The River Empires/Falling Up) and my personal favorite Naive Thieves, among others. Combining the talents of Casey Crescenzo and all of those other people was brilliant.

  • snakesgotaleg

    Well although Mount Eerie is centered around one musician(Phil Elverum also singer of The Microphones) he is constantly collaborating with others. His album Lost Wisdom is a collaboration with Julie Doiron and Frederik Squire and it is fantastic. But everything else he has done is spectacular. His catalog seems to be focused on a collective approach towards music and has lead to some amazing albums.

  • kaips23

    If you want to stick with the Favorite Gentlemen theme you could look at when Andy Hull and Harrison Hudson teamed up to record a couple songs under the name “Life on Spider Island.” Even though it was never actually released under their label (I believe it was just posted on Andy’s Tumblr), their song “Whatever Time” is pretty catchy.
    Then again you can’t go wrong with Them Crooked Vultures. Dave Grohl, John Paul Jones, Josh Homme…what’s not to love?

  • GenesisLomax

    Typically I would answer this question with a band like She & Him, but i have been so wrapped up lately in a viral marketing campaign for a band called Shone, which is members of Brand New, ROBBERS and of course, Bad Books. I bought tickets to see this band before i even knew who was in it, and i really, really cant wait to see how things play out tomorrow. It has been the most fun because of a band that i have had in a really long time.

  • Bizzle

    Manchester Orchestra and O’Brother. “Don’t Speak”

  • Mattjones88

    Bright Eyes and Emmielou Harris when they did Land Locked Blues.

    • Bizzle

      Mattjones88 nice.

  • Mattjones88

    Also when George Harrison played on Won’t Back Down with Tom Petty. That made history.

  • lyssa_ex

    Kevin Devine, Manchester Orchestra and Brand New – Where Have You Been

  • lyssa_ex

    Straylight Run and Taking Back Sunday

  • moon23a

    Two Tongues comes to mind, but not much tops two of my favorite artists coming together to form the beauty of Bad Books and creating the best album of 2012 hands down.

  • vincelacovara

    I’m not sure if this counts, but for Big D and the Kid’s Table’s fifth album, they joined with three female vocalists that dubbed themselves the Doped Up Dollies. The collaboration of the band and these vocalists resulted in one of the most unique and best albums of that year. The element that three additional vocalists can add is insane if the chemistry exists, and in the album Fluent in Stroll, the chemistry is undeniably there.

  • gtwrckd

    Feist and The Constantines covering the Kenny Rogers/Dolly Parton version of “Islands in the Stream”. They take the world’s cheesiest, most vapid excuse for a love song, and turn it into a quiet, understated declaration of devotion, loyalty, and love. The instrumentals (the minimal guitar, the quiet, fuzzy bass) create an addictive yet calming foundation for the vocals which, given the low registers of both singers, meld beautifully. Bry Webb’s gravelly voice, generally heard either growling, belting, or yelping on the Cons’ records, is well suited to this more subdued approach (as would later be heard on his solo effort “Provider”), and Feist’s voice is, as ever, beautiful. This song is the dumbest of the dumb, but in their hands, it’s stunning.

  • Ctmahoney34

    I would say Postal Service, but we all know the answer is David Bowie and Mick Jagger’s – Dancing in the Street

  • EddieSchillo

    Hmm…I’d have to say, apart from Bad Books, a fantastic collaboration of my liking takes place on The Dear Hunter’s “The Color Spectrum”: when The Dear Hunter teams up with Naive Thieves for a couple of the EPs (Yellow and Blue). Also on the same collection, they are joined by Andy Hull (Red).

  • ray_man

    Eddie Murphy and Rick James – Party all the time

  • ray_man

    Eddie Murphy and Rick James – Party all the time, this collaboration really showcased Eddie’s amazing talent on screen and in the studio. There is no way you can not dance when you listen to this song.

  • BastianKunu

    One of my personal favorite’s is Service Bell by Feist & Grizzly Bear…but if Manchester, O’Bro & Thrice were to write an epic opus or something, then that would probably be my new personal favorite. And it’d be f___ing sweet!

  • bands_music

    Two Tongues featuring Max Bemis of Say Anything and Chris Conley of Saves The Day!

  • Drew Johnson

    I really enjoyed the two songs Andy put out with Harrison Hudson under the name “Life On Spider Island”. “Whatever Time” is really fun to play over and over and over. I never get tired of it. “Heart” is one of those songs that just makes you feel insignificant to the world, in the fact that I’ll never write a song half that good. It’s good shit.

  • AndrewDoland

    Elliott Smith and Pete Krebs: Shytown/No Confidence Man. I guess it’s more of a split, but both musicians are on both songs, and I really wish there was more of it. Cool art, too.

  • Dan Stavarz

    Issac Brock and The Six Parts Seven with “From California to Houson, On Lightspeed” The instrumentation style coupled with Brock’s incomparably honest vocals and simple yet effective lyrics…it’s an awesome song.

  • Jefferson Randall

    I absolutely love The Front Bottoms. They are incredible and totally underrated. I was so freaking excited when I found out they were going on tour with Bad Books, but then the Bowery Ballroom sold out and now I’m sad. I listen to their self titled album all the time and I never get sick of it. Their punk/indie dance vibes always get me in a good mood, and watching them live was amazing.

  • bands_music

    The zany and sprawling musical prowess of Max Bemis, the mouthpiece and creative genius behind the delectable Say Anything mixed with the beautiful angular songcraft of a one Chris Conley of Saves the Day. Put them together and what do you get? The absolutely incredible and powerful TWO TONGUES!

  • jakeheise

    Adam Green and Binki Shapiro just released a fantastic album together, perfect for island parties.  Another favorite is the Strokes b-side Modern Girls and Old Fashioned Men featuring Regina Spektor. One of my favorite songs in general

  • MollyBenson

    Ben Gibbard and Jay Farrar for the One Fast Move soundtrack. It was perfect for the type of film a Kerouac novel would inspire.

  • BastianKunu

    Björk & Thom Yorke I’ve Seen It All! ..One of my personal favorites is Service Bell by Feist & Grizzly Bear…but if Manchester, O’Bro & Thrice wanted to write an epic opus of some sort, then that would probably be my new personal favorite. And it’d be f___ing sweet!!

  • TomHinsley

    Despite many of the YouTube comments, I actually quite like this collaboration between Paul McCartney and Nirvana. Hearing two completely different genres from different eras merging together is fascinating.

  • BrianIngersoll

    I have to say the self entitled album Broken Bells by Broken Bells, duo consisting of the Shins brilliant singer/ guitarist James Mercer and Brian Burton aka Danger Mouse. It’s a brilliant song one a brilliant album. With Burton’s approach in avoiding sampling and using only live instruments, and with Mercer’s broadening vocal style including falsettos and deeper registers to create an absolutely wonderful musical experience and collaboration. With fantastic lyrics and songwriting in songs such as “The High Road”, “The Ghost Inside”, and “October”.  It’s a magical experience the duo collaborated to make.

  • JPC

    There is a song by Relient K called “Sahara” featuring Tim Skipper of House of Heroes, Matt MacDonald of The Classic Crime, and Aaron Gillespie of The Almost / ex-Underoath. I thought this was an amazing collab and will be forever known as one of the best collab songs I have personally listened to.

  • AndyMcCotter

    I would have to say the  U2 and Green Day collaboration song “The Saints Are Coming.”
    Great hard rocking tune but with great meaning behind it. Just like Bad Books, the song and collaboration is three-dimensional. The first thing you think of, of course, is the great music, groove, etc. But beyond that is a meaningful and in-depth story written for the listener. That’s what I’ve always appreciated.

  • Deanowitz

    I really enjoy Andrew Jackson Jihad and the work they do as a duo. If I had to cite a reason it’d be the vocals and songwriting. Both Ben and Sean produce such gritty, funny, serious and beautiful songs about everything from addiction to hipsters. Their vocals are not typically polished, the recording quality is typically pretty poor but it doesn’t matter, they’re better that way. They have a song for every mood, for every incident and you can tell it’s done with genuine love for music and their fans.  The band, along with other groups (especially Bad Books) inspire me to be a better writer and a better person, and that’s a really meaningful thing for a band to do.

  • TroyPenny

    A while back Andy Hull posted some songs on his tumblr under the band name “Life on Spider Island”.  It was a duo project with Harrison Hudson and himself.  They only released two songs but they were both really quality songs.

  • Bert

    Tim mcGraw and Faith hill in Its Your Love. These are two separate sexy singers in their respective genre that joined forces in country music just as Kevin and Manchester Orchestra collided in what we call rock and roll. Harmonies and catchy beats are as fluid as the emotions between these eventual lovers. On their own they are beautiful. But together they are eternal.

  • conn250

    O’Brother/Sainthood Reps split 7″
    Lay Down and Condor – enough said

  • JusTho

    Martha Wainwright  and Snow Patrol – Set Fire to the Third Bar

  • joeyfenster

    I have always been a big fan of Kevin Devine and Manchester Orchestra and when Bad Books got together I was instantly Excited. I really like Brand New’s Jesse Lacey and Kevin Devine Together, and the combo of Kevin doing Jessie’s songs and vice versa was absolutely great. I have had my eye on this vinyl ever since it was announced. I just haven’t had funds to purchase it yet! I’m a student  and musician myself so I really appreciate the depth of the lyrics and the music behind the lyrics.

  • JusTho

    Cast Spells and Maps and Atlases — A Badge 

  • ESchus

    Manchester and Kevin Devine’s split, I Could Be the Only One. Not Bad Books, but the two exchanging each other’s songs and creating their own version by incorporating their two very unique sounds. It was very exciting to see what two very different lyricists and musicians did to songs that weren’t their forte. And with the sophomore album, Bad Books has become one sound comprised of many, with songs so obviously Hull and so obviously Devine, and songs so surprisingly Hull and so surprisingly Devine. So now Bad Books is no longer a collaboration of Manchester Orchestra and Kevin Devine, but it’s now Bad Books.

  • Bertrand

    I was all about the Mick Jagger David Bowie Collaboration, too bad someone already mentioned it!

  • Kevin Vela

    I really enjoyed Broken Bells! The collaboration between James Mercer and Danger Mouse made for some killer songs and a great live performance at ACL 2010, same year as one Manchester Orchestra I think you’ll find! Great to see bad Books at ACL this year, come back to Texas more often! We love you guys!

    • pottyt

      Kevin Vela Broken Bells….. Well played sir

  • SeanBevis

    After reading through the comments I saw a lot of really familiar bands and collaborations, and I was torn about whether to be original or echo the sentiments of some of the other commenters. But when I think about artist collaborations, the first thing that comes to mind, for me, is The Postal Service. Maybe it was the fact that they they recently announced their 10 year reunion tour, or maybe it was the fact they announced a deluxe edition LP of Give Up that I desperately want to add to my new, but growing vinyl collection. But the real reason is that Ben Gibbard (of Death Cab for Cutie) and Jimmy Tamborello (of Dntel) made a truly great record that completely captured me.
    Can’t wait to see Bad Books and The Front Bottoms next week in Pontiac!

  • Nehemias

    One of the best artist colabs was the Undertow Orchestra: David Bazan (Pedro the Lion and Headphones), Mark Eitzel (American Music Club), Will Johnson (Centro-Matic), and Vic Chesnutt. So many good artist touring and playing together. I know that Bazan has influenced Devine and Hull both. Also, Vic Chesnutt was a gem. What more could you want.

  • bspaunhorst

    The Transplants with Tim Armstrong (Rancid) Travis Barker (blink-182) and Skinhead RobRob

  • RAGC

    Can it get better then bad books?

  • Derplodocus

    Can we forget about Jay-Z and Linkin Park? I think not.

  • Derplodocus

    But seriously, One of my favorite collaborations is Matt Skiba and Kevin Seconds on the song “Good Fucking Bye”

  • JimRGriffin

    Such collaborations like Bad Books shows the meaning of Aristotle’s quote “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.” I picked up the vinyl of Miss Sarajevo when it first came out and I still get a kick out of listening to Bono, The Edge, Brian Eno, and Luciano Pavarotti make one heckuva recording.

  • Sillybarry

    The Dark Night of the Soul album…by Danger Mouse & Sparklehorse with collaborations with The Flaming Lips, Neutral Milk Hotel, The Shins, The Strokes, and more… The collaborations were beautiful and haunting and will always be at the top of my list. See “Revenge” featuring The Flaming Lips!

  • televate

    I’d definitely have to say the band Orbs, featuring Dan Briggs of Between the Buried and Me, Adam Fisher and Clayton Holyoak of Fear Before the March of Flames, Ashley Ellyllon, formerly of Abigail Williams and Cradle of Filth, and Chuck Johnson of Torch Runner. Such an awesome combination and such a great sound

  • JackiePetito

    The soon to come Weatherbox and Sainthood Reps split will be awesome! Weatherbox has been a favorite of mine for 4 years and Sainthood Reps has quickly become a favorite of mine as well. You just can’t go wrong.

  • kylevans

    Scott Ian and Rob Caggiano of Anthrax, Andy Hurly and Joe Trohman of Fall Out Boy, and Keith Buckley and Josh Newton of Every Time I Die all join forces to create The Damned Things. And for some reason, it works. Straight up, rock and roll music.

  • Chucky Nagel

    Monsters of Folk, hands down. They put out one of my all time favorite records.

  • HaydenDominguez

    Blakroc for sure! Its got Hip-Hop, Soul, Blues, Rock, and Blues Punk! Got love The Black Keys and Mos Def!

  • HaydenDominguez

    Blakroc for sure! Its got Hip-Hop, Soul, Blues, Rock, and Blues Punk! Its full of artists but you gotta love The Black Keys and Mos Def!

  • JonathanFlatt1

    i would say that Good Charlotte and M Shadows of Avenged Sevenfold would have to be the best… just kidding. I have been listening a lot to Louis Armstrong lately and he does a bunch of tunes with Ella Fitzgerald. The combination of Ella’s incredible voice and Louis’ incredibly gravelly, soulful vocals, you just cant beat it. Two monsters of music in one place is a beautiful thing

  • lkemp

    Isles and Glaciers for sure. Who doesn’t love to hear Craig Owens, Vic Fuentes, and Johnny Craig trading vocals. Not to mention the amazing talent of the rest of the musicians in the band.  Overall a great collaboration, with a lot of dynamic.

  • HaydenDominguez

    “BLAKROC” …Blakroc is a rap rock collaboration album by Ohio-based blues rock band The Black Keys and several hip hop and R&B artists! The album has Rock, Hip-hip, Soul, and Blues! Album guests include Raekwon, RZA and the late Ol’ Dirty Bastard of the Wu-Tang Clan, Jim Jones and NOE of ByrdGang, Mos Def, singer Nicole Wray, Pharoahe Monch, Ludacris, Billy Danze of M.O.P., and Q-Tip of A Tribe Called Quest. Its pretty much the best thing ever!!

  • ZachGriffin

    Middle Brother is the one that came to mind, featuring the front men of Deer Tick, Dawes, and Delta Spirit. Their respective bands are spearheading some of the best songwriting today. The songs are timeless.

  • pottyt

    I would have to say “dead weather” 1. Allison Mosshart kills people with her energy and great vocals. 2. Jack white on drums….. Seriously, I think he plays kazoo and the washboard to f you didn’t know. 3. Jack Lawrence from the Racontoures drop bass on people’s faces on the daily ….. 4. dean Fertita from QOTSA riffing like its his job…. oh wait it is. 5. Their first album was only supposed to be a 7inch for fun but sure enough 15 days later Horehound was birthed and people cried…..

  • xcallmejesusx

    small brown bike and the casket lottery.  two original songs, two where they switch singers, and two where all members from both bands are all mixed up.  one of my favorite.  
    a close second for me would have to be the entire judgement night soundtrack.  this is probably the culprit for bad music of today, yet this is so amazing.

  • EmilyGraceAnderson

    am i allowed to say Shone yet?

  • LeighMeredith

    Scott Murphy of Allister and Rivers Cuomo of Weezer.

  • Kaputt

    I was going to say either The Postal Service or Two Tongues, as those are what really come to mind, but they have already been spoken for, and I’m not one for stealing others ideas, so I suppose I’ll have to go with Madvillain.
    MF Doom dropping rhymes over Madlib’s production  is pure hip-hop gold, and the two really make it work together, so to speak. I’ll always love Madvillainy, and I can’t wait for them to release the next album, but who knows when that’ll be. They’ve been hinting at it for years.

  • caribouslady

    The Halo Benders! 
    Doug Martsch of Built To Spill’s (One of my favorite bands) noodly guitar work and Calvin Johnson of Beat Happening’s smoky baritone get me every time!

  • walkingwallofbeards

    Team Sleep for days!

  • JesseSpeelman

    My favorite duo similar to Bad Books is a band called Hawkboy.  Hawkboy is made up of two former members of my favorite band As Cities Burn, Cody and Aaron.  They’ve released two EPs, and both are excellent.  I think you’ll all enjoy this band.  Only having two members means the music is stripped down to bare essentials.

  • MelloV

    Broken Bells!
    Those textures and Jame’s vocals with Danger Mouse on the boards. It didn’t do too well critically, from what I remember, but I’ve always found it to be a super enjoyable album.
    Here’s a cut from the album, “The High Road”:

  • MelloV

    Probably not I, but one can dream.

  • MelloV

    Probably not I, but one can dream.


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