Wed, 26 January 2011
Something Happened - a session at the barn (Norfolk and Suffolk, UK)
A live session from the Suffolk'n'Cool barn features the considerable talents of Terence Blacker and Derek Hewitson, collectively known as Something Happened.
The repertoire comprises new songs of their own and some lovely old songs from up to 100 years ago. If you are into new music, don't let that put you off. So am I - this is rather special. So was the session with Derek, Terence and his dog braving a trip through the snow to the barn for music and fascinating conversation.
Get your listening ears on and appreciate the songs for what they have to say. Their specialism is in material which explores the ways that taste and acceptability has changed over the past century, and will undoubtedly continue to change.
During the course of their full evening show Taboo-be-do! - Hits and misses from the politically incorrect songbook, they aim to be totally fair and in doing so accept that with a bit of luck, they will probably offended everyone at one point or another. That seems reasonable! It is also rather enlightening.
You'll also be able to catch a programme that they are presenting for BBC Radio 4 - due on air in June.
Mississippi Delta Blues - Neville/Rodgers, 1933
Shine - Mack/Dabney, 1910
I'd rather be French - Blacker 2009
Hungry Women, 1922
Sad Old Bastards with Guitars, Blacker
Back to normal next week and join me for AMPed from Monday 30th at musicpodcasting.org
Wed, 19 January 2011
Music from an old friend of Suffolk'n'Cool and a bunch of new friends this week. Also news of the lowest selling number 1 albums since records began - when do you think it was?
There's a quite a pop and power pop showing in the mix this week, along with what you'd expect - great music, informed opinion and free downloads.
I realised that I'd almost left it too late to grab this week's shownotes photograph - and only just caught the last of the light. These huge power lines run from the nuclear power stations at Sizewell on the coast to feed into the national grid.
The Grail - Jesta (Morecambe, Lancs, UK)
An old friend of the show, Jesta has been around podcasting and podcasters since pretty much the beginning. His topical songs are always beautifully built and performed.
Jesta is the musical alter-ego of Bryan Page from Morecambe, United Kingdom specializing in genre-hopping Power Pop. Giving birth to quirky, entertaining songs that make you want to dance, laugh or say huh? wtf? Jesta isn't too concerned with getting too deep and meaningful - who has time for all that anyway? Let's party! Though essentially a one-man project, occasionally some fantastic guest artists are brought into the mix including some of the best session musicians in the U.K.
Bryan’s new album Previously... is, in fact a retrospective collection of songs from the past 13 years and contains some old favourites including Independence Day, Me my music and my iPod and Scully Said as well as some new (to me anyway) treats.
You can get it as a high quality download or as a CD plus an immediate download in the format of your choice.
In fact, you can have a track as a free download so what are you waiting for.
Nothing Keeps Up - Dad Rocks! (Iceland/Denmark)
Dad Rocks! is Icelandic/Danish Snævar Njáll Albertsson, singer in Danish band Mimas. Dad Rocks!, however, is quite different.
The guitar here is acoustic and is accompanied by piano, trumpet, accordion, handclaps and more. As Dad Rocks!, Snævar is inspired by acts such as Bill Callahan, Owen, Why?, Akron/Family and Do Make Say Think. This has led to a sound that is a unique mix of psych folk and lo-fi country with elements of hip hop and use of dubs.
However, Snævar Njáll Albertsson’s primary sources of inspiration are the relations closest to him. Most of all his little daughter who also inspired by name Dad Rocks!, which is of course also a pun on the ’dad rock’ genre. This use of pathos and irony is something that is explored throughout his work. Lyrically, this is also a central aspect. The subjects are both big and small. Sometimes delivered almost cynically with words that are close to naïvism. Underneath this, the irony lurks at every corner, and even the debut EP title ‘Digital Age’ explores the space between pathos and irony.
Dad Rocks! released ’Digital Age’ in Denmark in April in Denmark through Danish label ’Kanel Records’. English label ´Big Scary Monsters Records’ later fell in love with the music of Dad Rocks! and released the EP in the UK on August 16th. The EP was very well-received by the music-media, and even NME featured the video for the single ’Nothing Keeps Up’ on the their website.
Dad Rocks! is in the midst of recording his debut-album to be released this Spring.
Reunion Day - APL (North Carolina, USA)
From the mind of musical genius, Adam Lindquist, comes North Carolina's APL. APL's newest album, Ancient Tunes, comes to us choc-full of uncovered musical gems similar in style to Of Montreal and Dirty Projectors.
Adam Lindquist's songs are brilliant & complex, yet easily accessible.
APL's "Reunion Day" is exactly that - a familiarity that evokes a stroll down memory lane through vocal harmonies, percussive drive, and lyrical play. His music is available from his site at whatever price you can pay.
Pick and mix tracks or full album
A growing number of music-lovers, unhappy about the way album tracks are enjoyed in a pick-and-mix fashion, have decided to take action.
The rules are strict. No talking. No texting. You must listen to every song on the album.
Classic Album Sundays treat our best-loved records like great symphonies and are being set up in London, Scotland and Wales.
Groups of music fans sit in front of a vinyl turntable, with the best speakers they can afford, dim the lights and listen to a classic album all the way through.
This monthly club in north London is run by Colleen Murphy and for her it is a strike against "'download culture", the sense that music has just become an endless compilation of random songs used as background noise.
"Everyone, stop multi-tasking, sit down, open your ears and do some heavy listening."
With Pink Floyd having just gone to court to protect the integrity of albums such as Dark Side of the Moon, I wonder, should we be taking the concept of the album more seriously?
I know of a few instances where podcasters have scrambled a playlist and presented tracks in no particular order. I’m convinced that it sounds like it too so I always compile tracks into an order that makes sense. Do you just put your iPod onto shuffle and get surprises with whatever comes up next? What about mixtapes? Do you make them. If so how do you decide on the track order.
Come to that, do you even listen to a whole album. What about the argument that most albums have weak filler tracks and that the listening experience is better without them? Is there something about collective listening?
Classic Album Sundays seems like a bit of a nostalgia fest. Perhaps the concept album an idea past its prime? Is much attention paid to sequencing tracks on albums in the era of iTunes track downloads
I suspect that it varies from album to album.
By the way, if you like to hear complete albums, AMP member George plays complete EPs and albums on the Sounds of Ambience podcast at http://soundsofambience.com/
Not evident - Narcoleptic Dancers (Holland-France)
Brace yourselves, because nothing can get cuter or sweeter than this Dutch-French brother/sister duo The Narcoleptic Dancers and their infectious sugary sweet pop songs. This is the kind of cavity inducing sweetness that your dentist would drill you for ... and yet it is hugely enjoyable and certainly not manufactured.
It wasn’t until the very beginning of the 00s that Melody and Anton met. Melody writes and sings. Anton composes and produces.
With their track 'Not Evident' from the EP of the same name being released in Europe earlier last year, it IS evident that the band's time to break into North America is rapidly approaching.
The Narcoleptic Dancers take you on a care-free stroll into a world full of animated chirping birds and quirkilicious personalities... or is that just us? Their simplistic instrumentation packaged with melodic vocals and endearing lyrics join harmoniously together to create a sound born to bring a smile to your dial.
The Narcoleptic Dancers were first brought to our attention by French-based labels Bleep Machine & Capitaine Plouf and has been wearing off the digital ink in our iTunes player ever since.
Their music video which you can check out seems like a combo between an unreleased Flight Of The Conchords scene and the newest iPod commercial...but with more hair.
Just Sit (feat jack Hirschman) - Mojo Mancini (NYC, USA)
Put five musicians together in a room and let them improvise. When those five are Grammy-winning producer and guitarist John Leventhal, “Saturday Night Live” drummer Shawn Pelton, saxophonist and engineer Rick DePofi, keyboardist Brian Mitchell, and bassist Conrad Korsch, you’d better hit the record button - hard.
The quintet in question is Mojo Mancini, five of the most diverse and in-demand players in the business, total pros who eat and breathe music even when they’re away from the studio or stage? Artists who between the five of them have worked with—and this is just a partial list—Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Rod Stewart, Paul McCartney, Al Green, Elvis Costello, Van Morrison, Willie Nelson, David Byrne, Ray Charles, Dolly Parton, Sheryl Crow, Buddy Guy, Charlie Haden, Levon Helm, Shawn Colvin, Bruce Hornsby, Joan Osborne, Madeline Peyroux, and Regina Spektor? No surprise in that case the air in that room would be filled with staggeringly great sounds, music that transcends even the sum experience of its makers as it moves from one moment to another. Such moments are found throughout Mojo Mancini’s stunning self-titled debut.
The Worst-Selling Number One Record - on Record
Digital Music News reports that record sales have slumped but someone still has to be number 1.
“The long way down for the recording industry has hit another nadir. Taylor Swift's Speak Now landed atop the album charts in the US, hardly a surprise for this artist. But what's surprising is that she is still at number 1 on sales of just 52,000, according to Nielsen Soundscan. That is the worst sales amount for a top-ranked album since Soundscan started tracking album sales in 1991.
Of course, this a threshold that will probably be broken in the future, though it stands in such stark contrast to the good old days. On the polar extreme, 'N Sync scored the highest-ever one-week sales total of 2.42 million in 2001 with No Strings Attached. That, probably more than any other event, symbolizes the glorious peak of a recording industry now gone.”
It appears that it had just been broken again this week Cake's "Showroom of Compassion" bows in at number 1 on the Billboard 200 with just 44,000 sales
And that, surely is the point. The old record industry has indeed gone, withered to a shadow of its former self and the big labels are struggling. But that doesn’t mean the the music business isn’t thriving with far more live music, a greater variety of artists getting a foothold on making a living and far more recorded music available from more sources than ever before.
Yes, there have been lots of changes and there will be more but we live in exciting times.
It would certainly be interesting to join some of my contact who will be discussing just these issues at MIDEM in the South of France next week.
No Government Rules - A Fate Untold (Ipswich, Suffolk)
Dave Houden from the band dropped this track via the SnC site, A long time ago… and again this morning. Thanks Dave.
“This track is very special to us, the last record we put out felt like a transitional period between our original stuff and somewhere we were yet to go. And we really feel like we've crafted a sound we've all settled on now. This song marks the start of where we go from here.
It's also special because lyrically it's auto-biographical about both my own and Matt (our other guitarists) experiences in life. Obviously it's down to everyones interpretation, but it's packed with meaning for us.
We recorded it at a studio in london called Animal Farm and it was produced by Matt Lepannen who co-owns the studio and label.”
There are lots of UK shows on their Myspace:
The Brewery Tap in Ipswich (@TheIpswichTap) just tweeted that they have duck confit marinaded in Helles lager on tonight - Duckin’ Helles. ... Boom boom
Sleeping Bears - Laetoli Steps (Thailand via Framlingham)
An indie-folk project consisting of members from John Peel favourites Garlic, Thunderclap Newman, Cornershop and The Debutant Hour, Laetoli Steps were born in London in 2008. Their self-titled debut album was released by CD Baby on November 1st, 2010.
"I, Rich, am the main songwriter - originally from Framlingham in Suffolk, actually! Recorded the album in 2009 before I moved to Thailand to teach and travel with my wife. Inspired by Wilco, Bonnie Prince Billy, Bill Callahan and The National. Our claim to fame is that we recorded with the drummer from Cornershop!"
Open Arms and Broken Hearts - The District (NYC, USA)
Once upon a time in the not so distant past, six friends escaped New York City and descended upon Wellfleet, Massachusetts in the dead of a sleepy New England winter to chase ghosts and make a record.
It's colder in Massachusetts in the winter than the band expected. They walked into a quiet bar near the ocean and commandeered the jukebox for two straight hours of nothing but shit kicking country music and cheap beer.
Ron Pope, Zach Berkman, Paul Hammer, Will Frish, Chris Kienel, and Mike Clifford wrote songs, drank whiskey, played blues in the middle of the night, and came away with a collection of songs that they decided to christen Wellfleet. The record is bold and evocative of varied moments from American musical history while finding a way to rest squarely in the here and now.
The District is a band without a lead singer, but somehow Wellfleet is an album that feels remarkably cohesive because, at it's core, whether the band is building a song around one voice or all six, there's a commonality of spirit and purpose that shines through.
The band will debut Wellfleet in NYC at Rockwood Music Hall on February 4th at 8pm I for one would love to be there. You, on the other hand can download the track free at:
Wed, 12 January 2011
On Suffolk’n’Cool this week, music from Northern France, Barcelona, New York, Los Angeles, Marseille, Copenhagen and Wolverhampton including a couple of SnC exclusives.
We’ve also got the result of the Artist of the Month award as well as free music for you to download and news of a hotel for guitar heros and wannabe heros too.
Southwold is looking very shut down for the winter now - actually my favourite time of year to visit.
Raggascat - Eclectek (Lille, France)
Eclectek and Stouffi and the Stouves have been featured on Suffolk’n’Cool a few times. For this new year you will reserve a big surprise for February and waiting for those who have not yet seen the clip here is the first single from the upcoming album.
Meanwhile you can download quite a bit of their music from Jamendo at:
Reyes del metal - El Inkreíble Kinteto Afonía (Barcelona, Spain?)
From the Terra So label in Barcelona comes this remarkable two track EP Vocal Ese
Adnams Artist of the Month - selected by Emma Hibbert
Just a short chat with Emma who had some enjoyable difficulty in narrowing down a large field to make the final selection of The Last Royals as Adnams Artist of the Month.
As usual there will be a slightly longer interview in a player on the AOTM page for December 2010.
Come take my hand - The Last Royals (New York, USA)
Adnams Artist of the Month for December.
The songs that appear on The Last Royals’ debut self-titled EP, out November 16th, 2010, re-imagine tracks originally penned for The Early Hours, which appeared on a self-released album of eight tracks called A Week And A Day. That project, driven simply by Eric’s desire to create solid, expressive songs, was written in eight days, each track representing one day of the week, plus an additional day. Eric’s sense of the performative was initiated in that collection as he built stories around imagined yet brutally real characters in a cityscape.
Theo at Ooh La La , the band’s Brooklyn-based label has come up with this extra demo track from The Last Royals eponymous EP. Thanks Theo.
There’s another track on the EP that I’d love to play for you in the next couple of weeks. Check out their iTunes page and see if you can spot which track. Even better, send me your suggestion perhaps via the Suffolk’n’Cool Facebook page: www.facebook.com/suffolkandcool
So Good (feat Fat Joe) - Tina (Los Angeles, CA, USA)
TINA (Born in Mumbai, raised in New Jersey - music has always been an integral part of pop sensation TINA’s life. Singing and performing since 5 years old, she had an early start with a very musical family who toured as a professional group on weekends.
TINA is a singer, songwriter, guitarist, tabla player, writer, dancer, and actor that has been touring worldwide since the age of five. Recently featured on Style Network’s hit show “Jerseylicious”, she is about to make her mainstream breakthrough with her new single So Good featuring Fat Joe. The video for So Good received 30,000 views in it’s first week, which is extremely rare for an indie artist.
The singer is shunning the old school ideology of shopping the album around, to instead release it through her own production team – Sunset Entertainment Group. With the industry changing so much, an artist has the resources to do so much more independently than in the past. Of her do it yourself movement, TINA says
“I’m not trying to make an anti-record label statement with this album, but with this unstoppable team on my side this is an opportunity to actively make things happen, instead of the waiting game of them happening to you!”
Gimme a whiff - Screamin'tubes (Marseille, France)
From the EP of the same name released just last week on Jamendo. His other EP on Jamendo is also available at:
The You, That You Could Use - Alcoholic Faith Mission (Copenhagen, Denmark)
An overdue return from Alcoholic Faith Mission who I saw play an superb set at The Living Room in New York in October. This year they are playing both SXSW and Canadian Music Week.
While it may be a while after the initial release of their album, Let It Be The Last Night We Care, Alcoholic Faith Mission's brand new music video for the albums single, "My Eyes To See". Directed and produced by Guy Manly Movies, this video cleverly plays with the band's lyrics - "nothing ever really changes", set in a dreamy rural landscape.
Check in - Rock out
Hotel guests who yearn to channel their inner rock star and boast about playing at some of the most acclaimed music venues can now do both with a new amenity program from two of rock 'n' rolls biggest brands, Hard Rock Hotels and Casinos and Gibson Guitar. The two brands have collaborated on "Check In, Rock Out," a program that offers hotel guests a top-of-the-line Gibson guitar to take to their room and jam out at no cost. The program, which debuted at Hard Rock Hotel Chicago, will launch at Hard Rock Hotel San Diego on Feb. 3, 2011 with a special appearance and guitar dedication by legendary guitarist and Black Label Society front man and former guitarist for Ozzy Osbourne, Zakk Wylde.
With the new program, upon check in at the Hard Rock Hotel, San Diego guests can choose from a selection of 14 of Gibson's most coveted guitars including the Gibson SG and Gibson Les Paul to take to their room along with a Pocket Pod Amp and high-definition Beats by Dr. Dre headphones to rock out to their hearts content without disturbing neighboring hotel guests.
El Matador - The Lines (Wolverhampton, UK)
On the surface, Wolverhampton in the West Midlands seems like any other post industrial town. With the shadow of neighbouring Birmingham looming large, it takes a special band to rise above the nothingness and shine through the haze. The Lines are that band.
‘Domino Effect’, was the debut single from the four-piece on Weekender records, it combined the soaring heartfelt vocals of lead singer Alex Ohms with Dean Bate’s punch-the-air guitar melodies.
The driving rhythm section of Danny Pease on bass and Dave O'Connor on drums provides a rigid backbone to their well-crafted songs.
Incredible focus and infectious self-belief elevate their music to a different level - the Lines are here to put Wolverhampton firmly on the musical map. “We’ll burn this town down like nobody else can” sings Alex on their debut. It’s hard to disagree.
After a thunderous series of shows at CMJ in NYC last October, The Lines reveal their plans to return to the North American festival circuit with appearances at Canadian Music Week (Mar. 9th-13th) and SXSW (Mar. 16th-20th).
Fully equipped with their debut self-titled LP, a robust 2nd single “El Matador”, and the full touting support from none other than Led Zeppelin’s Robert Plant, The Lines are sure to raise some eyebrows and knock some socks off.
One Way Ride (gdub Remix) - Standing Shadows (Los Angeles, CA, USA)
Los Angeles based alt-indie-electro band STANDING SHADOWS combine infectious guitar melodies and soundscapes, vintage synth tones and warbles, driving percussive beats, and the intimately emotional vocals...ranging from uber-chill heroin whispers, to heart-pumping, sweat-soaking screams.
Official releases in 2010 include: full-length album "Five Years Of Darkness" and this track is from the upcoming "Remix" EP from their Indabamusic.com remix contest. The EP will be released next week on Analog Kid Records and, of course, through iTunes
The band has performed over sixty shows covering the Southwest in 2010, including several tours through Southern California, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Phoenix, and Austin (SXSW).
“We all want to make a stand for something, but are hidden in the shadows without a voice."
Wed, 5 January 2011
SnC 253 kicks off the new calendar year with a selection of tunes that you'll almost certainly not have heard over the holiday period. There's a couple of tracks that involve the cello this week but in contexts where I've certainly not come across it before.
Congratulations to Pete "Codger" Cogle who was planning to retire PC Podcast and take up residence in this little cottage. Until, that is, he discovered that he'd won the UK section of the European Podcast Awards. The icing on the cake arrived today when we heard that he's taken the European "Personality" Podcast title. Well done Codge.
Money - Ringside (Burbank, CA, USA)
Ringside's title track off their upcoming album Lost Days features Ben Harper, who Ringside singer and songwriter Scott Thomas met when Ringside opened for him on a tour of Australia. Thomas played most of the instruments and produced the new album, but Lost Days features appearances from an impressive list of musicians and collaborators:
The title track Lost Days, a somber rocker with a big chorus, and in the accompanying music video featuring Ben Harper. Check it out:
Bricks - The Damned Choir (Chicago, IL, USA)
The Damn Choir's use of guitar, cello, vocals and drums, along with Gordon Robertson's introspective lyrics, create songs that range from meandering and melancholic to pulsing and vengeful.
The Damn Choir began in January of 2009 on a freezing and fated night in Chicago. Gordon Robertson sat slumped at the bar, drowning his post-horrific-break-up dejected self in whiskey and happened to meet cellist Katy Myers. Although at first Myers rejected Robertson's musical advances, eventually she gave in and agreed to give him a chance.
Within weeks the two were musically inseparable and involved in an (arguably unhealthy) co-dependant friendship. After playing for months under the name, “Gordon and Katy,” the two recorded an album, re-named the band, and recruited Chelsea Heck on vocals and Miguel White on drums. The four-piece creates a sound that rises and falls in harmony with the spirit of Robertson’s angst-filled lyrics.
"...the patient thrumming of an acoustic guitar, an eloquent co-ed duet that’s just off-rhythm enough to raise an eyebrow, and unexpected piano harmonies. The Damn Choir has this formula down pat, but it doesn’t sound like a formula—it’s more like an approach locals Gordon Robertson and Katy Myers are deeply rooted in." - Onion A.V. Club Chicago, January 2010
Gordon Robertson - vocals & guitar
Katy Myers - Cello
Ryan Farner - Drums
Sherri Stouffer - piano
Current album: Faithful Fools
Hiro - Tobias Borelius (Malmo, Sweden)
With the help of producer Carl Granberg from Malmö, Lund Tobias Borelius from Emerald Park (Malmö, Sweden) has recorded a solo album with Swedish lyrics. “Du känner mig för väl, farväl” ("You know me too well, goodbye") is a musical tapas table - small pithy and tasty songs spiced with humour, love, earnest and cynicism.
The musical theme of the record is the old analog synthesizers, the Nordlead and the acoustic guitar. Where Emerald Park sometimes goes against the great and lengthy, Tobias solo songs is short and intimate. The sound is influenced by Swedish artists such as Familjen, Adolphsson & Falk, Kent and Olle Ljungström. But the goal during the recording process has always been to keep that "home-in" feeling that existed in demo recordings.
Released by: Smaragd Records (Smaragd07) Release date: Jan 14, 2011
Tin Pan Band
Playing in Union Square subway station, 6-9 TONIGHT. Lindy Bomb it!!!
I narrowly missed catching Tin Pan Band in New York a couple of months ago. I’ll not be making that mistake again! Upcoming dates on their site:
Undiscovered Colours - Flash Bulb Inventor (Russia)
Inventor is a young producer from Russia. The album The First Step of a Devil is his debut official release. The album contains 7 heavy tracks which are filled with devastating bass and punchy snares. You will hear hard tunes and tracks with a bit of dark atmosphere: “Steps of a devil”, “The Flashbulb - Undiscovered Colors (Inventor Remix)” and all others tracks reflect the power and energy. These sounds, charge unexplained positive emotions and detach you the listener from the craziness of our real world.
This music truly gets you moving in the right direction! Inventor intends to set the framework and goes beyond the format and is not afraid to mix Dub step and Tech-noid with such styles as: Neuro-tech, Darkside, Darkstep etc. This gives the unique sound.
Release: Dec 27, 2010 on Foulplay Records
Synchronised Swimmers - Hafdis Huld (Iceland)
Hafdis was born in Reykjavik, Iceland. From the age of 15 onward she toured and recorded with the Icelandic band Gus Gus. Two world tours later, she left the band to collaborate with chill-out electronic outfit F C Kahuna, co-writing and performing on the classic ‘Hayling’ and ‘Machine Say Yes’. She later studied music at the London Centre of Contemporary Music graduating with Distinction in 2006 and now divides her time between the UK and Iceland.
Hafdis released her debut solo album Dirty Paper Cup in October 2006, which included writing collaborations with highly respected co-writers including Jim Abbiss, Boo Hewerdine, Pascal Gabriel and Chris Corner. The album got great reviews from critics including The Guardian, The Fly and The Independent, received national radio play on BBC Radio 1, Radio 2 and 6 Music and won the Icelandic Music Award in 2007 for Best Pop Album.
Synchronised Swimmers, her second solo album, explores bigger sounds and has a live, organic feel. It was released in November 09 on special early license to the Sena label in Iceland, where it debuted at no, 2 in the album charts. The first single ‘Kongulo’ went to no. 1 in the Icelandic charts. ‘Kongulo’ is the Icelandic word for ‘spider’; the song is a percussion-driven upbeat number inspired by ‘human spiderman’ Alain Robert, who climbs skyscrapers using only his bare hands. The second single, the title track of the album, also reached the number 1 spot in Iceland. Another track, ‘Daisy’, is currently being used to advertise Iceland Airways.
Rebel Music - Coastwest Unrest (Las Vegas, NV, USA)
Combining elements of the eclectic country music style of Beck, the folk punk power of the Pogues, and the edgy, emotional storytelling of Tom Waits come this dynamic group via Las Vegas, NV. Coastwest Unrest is the moniker for the collaboration between violin whiz kid Alex Barnes, and brothers Josh and Noah Dickie who formed the band in the spring of 2009. Immediately after forming they poured out an albums worth of material and went into the studio to record their first full-length album, Songs From The Desert that was recorded and engineered by Larry Crane (Elliot Smith, The Decemberists, Jackpot! Studios). The album was released on their own label, Reclaim Records and was received well on college radio setting up a national tour of college festivals and venues around the country. In the wake of the success of “Songs” and inspired by their travels across the country on tour Coastwest went into the studio in the summer of 2010 to record their second full-length album Old Weird America.
The album is full of material that lives up to its title with songs about redemption, biblical imagery, rebellion, loss, the nightmarish American landscape and the haunting ghosts of Americas past. The album also takes musical cues from many different directions combining americana punk, gospel, traditional folk & country as well as Indie bluegrass and roots. Coastwest plans on touring much of 2011 and has already begun the demo process for their follow up to Old Weird America.
01.09.11 Skylark Cafe Seattle, WA
01.11.11 The Wood Portland, OR
01.12.11 Sam Bond's Garage Eugene, OR
01.14.11 Bootleg Theatre Los Angeles, CA
Earth's Paradise - Dave Eggar (NY, NY, USA)
(vocals by Jamaican roots reggae legend Luciano)
Dave's mission to "not just cross over, but to cross through" multiple genres of music is apparent in all his music. Whether it's classical, reggae, bluegrass, jazz, pop, or world music, he finds a common voice within his musical vocabulary.
Dave notes, “The new project represents to me a new and extreme brand of high-risk, high-impact classical crossover. Kingston Morning juxtaposes Reggae music and Appalachian music in a look at local culture fighting for a voice in an increasingly global environment."
Eggar says this project was an especially moving and emotional recording for to make. He adds, “This is a project of ingenuity and improvisation which took many hours of dedicated perseverance to complete. With open minds and open hearts, our lives were forever changed as these unique Reggae and Appalachian collaborations took shape. As we immersed ourselves in these seemingly disparate cultures, amazing similarities in the history and storied cultures emerged. Their individual hopes, dreams and the power of the music eventually seemed to bring the music and people of Jamaica and Virginia ever closer together.”
Dave continues, “My imagination has always been captivated by the music and culture of Jamaica and Appalachia. These journeys to Kingston and Big Stone Gap were truly a life altering experience for me. I am especially proud of the music that has been produced as a result of our efforts.”
The New York Times said: “Eggar's work is breathtaking ... a deliverance from the sedate formality of the typical cello recital." Truly it is.
Original Release: Aug 10, 2010
God and Me - Kopecky Family (Nashville, TN, USA)
Only a family could write music this intimate. Steeped in the tradition of Nashville, Tennessee, but free of any sort of genre restraints, the eccentric strains of Kopecky Family Band are both universally beautiful and resoundingly unique. Led by the dueling male/female vocals of Gabe and Kelsey, the clan rounds out their sound with an augmented line-up featuring the standard guitar and drums with the added complements of cello and violin, as well as guest spots from various reeds, mallets, and more. The result is the sort of emotive, orchestral rock that has won the band so many fans on their 2008 debut Embraces EP and the 2010 follow-up Disaster EP.
After riding a wave of anticipation from their native Next Big Nashville Music Festival all the way to SXSW in Austin, the band’s 2010 CMJ appearance in New York proved to be a tipping point. With a backdrop of thousands of bands scrambling for attention, Kopecky made their mark, playing the official Paste Magazine showcase and winning the praise of the pundits at NPR Music in the process.
Never ones to rest on their laurels, the clan would quickly return to the studio after the successful stint at CMJ. What they emerged with was like a peak into the Family photo album -- a collection of lovingly-assembled odds, ends, B-sides, out-takes, rarities and everything in between called (Of Epic Proportions). It’s the sort of assortment that lesser bands cram with also-rans and cutting room floor fare. But the Kopeckys’ knack for crafting simple beauty can never be overstated. This is a band whose cutting room floor makes others envious.
Sat, 1 January 2011
Just a little bit extra and an chance to hear the SnC sig tune, "Happy" by Jimmie Bratcher, in its entirety. January 1 seems a good time to make it a "Happy" new year.
Have an interesting and rewarding start to 2011 and, as Garrison Keillor puts it: "Be well, do good work and keep in touch"