Mar 2, 2011
The music this week is trawled from London Los Angeles, Chicago, Brooklyn, Nashville and Copenhagen and a fine catch it is too.
There was a strange light this afternoon which is admittedly, slightly enhanced in this week's pic, taken just outside the barn. Oh, and one bit of late news the Tawny Owls are getting very interested in the nest box that is built into the barn again. Must be that time of year ;)
Alignments Bend - Anchorless (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Anchorless is a 6-piece band out of Copenhagen forming late 2009. Starting out with just a single song on MySpace in December to show for themselves, the band has definitely not been wasting time. Within it’s first year of existence the band has embarked on a European tour, including shows in Germany, France, Luxembourg, Austria and Czech Republic.
The band has released a 6-song EP on vinyl via PonyRec (Alcoholic Faith Mission, Marybell Katastrophy) and is furthermore giving it away as a free download with the idea of spreading the music as much and as fast as possible. The EP is licensed under Creative Commons and can be distributed freely as anyone wishes. From Kasper Find Rasmussen at Pony Records at www.ponyrec.dk/release_030.php
Naked - The YuYa (London, UK)
After first meeting at a fancy dress wedding which ended in tragic circumstances, the duo of Constance and Eliseo formed The YuYa and decided to write about happy moments of acute sadness, disappointment and twisted emotions.
Described as having influences which are untraceable but refreshing The Yuya have already branched out of the UK with gigs in countries such as Senegal, Gambia, Holland, Spain, Belgium and Italy where they recorded their debut album which will shortly be released.
Since returning back to the UK in September, the duo have gone on to perform at Ronnie Scott’s and the Chelsea Arts Club to name but a few.
With 2011 already shaping into a bigger and better year for them, you can keep up to date on their progress and find out more at:
Alone on a train - Leila Broussard (Los Angeles, USA)
Acclaimed LA-based 21 year-old songwriter Lelia Broussard has been selected by Rolling Stone for their “Do You Wanna Be A Rock & Roll Star” Contest.” Announced recently, Lelia is one of sixteen unsigned artists chosen by the editors of Rolling Stone. Voters can rate the bands by going to http://www.rollingstone.com/choosethecover and eight artists will be eliminated by March 16th with only eight artists proceeding to the next round. The final round will see the last two artists compete in a battle of the bands on stage at the Bonnaroo Music Festival with the ultimate winner being the first unsigned act to ever appear on the cover of Rolling Stone.
Oh, and there’s a recording contract with Atlantic up for grabs too - if she decides that she wants it.
Lelia who just finished an appearance at the Hotel Café in Los Angeles is supporting her fourth independently released record, MASQUERADE. A deluxe edition CD version with bonus tracks (as well as the original ten tracks in the November 2010 digital release) will be available on April 5th through various independent record stores and on-line retailers in the United States.
Todd Murphy, The Jazz Lawyer, posted about record deals this week. Strongly worded, very clear and, I think he’s right on the money.
WHY DO ARTISTS STILL WANT A FUCKING RECORD DEAL?
I don’t get it. Not a day goes by that I don’t get 5, 6, 7, or more calls or emails asking me to shop an artist’s demo to record labels. My response? What fucking planet have you been living on for the past two years?
Road - The Damn Choir (Chicago, IL, USA)
A "mixed but not mastered yet" version of Road. It will be interesting to hear the fully mastered version when it is available.
The Damn Choir's use of guitar, cello, keyboards, vocals and drums, along with Gordon Robertson's introspective lyrics, create songs that range from meandering and melancholic to pulsing and vengeful.
Personally, I think it resonates with the emotion of life without getting you down at all. The effect is one of relentless optimism.
Gordon Robertson - vocals & guitar
Katy Myers - Cello
Ryan Farner - Drums
Steve Stokes - e. guitar
6 person Choir - Vocal.
Jack McClain - Percussion
“This is dark pop music—depressing lyrics to pop music”
Blood on my Hands - Dynamite Walls (San Diego, CA, USA)
A sonic embodiment of the bright San Diego sunshine in which the band was formed, Dynamite Walls brings the world their first major label LP Chemicals after six years of working hard and playing harder.
Tom Pritchard with Alex Blundell (guitar), Eric Pritchard (drums), Paul Kimmel (keys), and Allan Bates (bass) built a strong following in the San Diego scene, playing at venues like The Belly Up and The Casbah and in Los Angeles at Spaceland and The Viper Room. Determined to hit the road, they converted an “obnoxiously large” airport shuttle bus to run on veggie oil, recorded The Blinding Lights LP, and toured the country. Says Prichard, “We called it ‘the piece of shit death trap’ as there was basically no brakes and it broke down a lot. In this bus we became one with our mission. We met so many great people, played a ton of cities, and the bus was always the rolling after-party. It signified a lot about who we are. It was a lot of work, (try getting used grease late at night in New Mexico!), but it was from our own hands. We loved it, we hated it – such is life.”
The band’s sophomore full-length is a diverse mix of influences resulting in indie rock that’s polished enough for a good hook and rough enough to keep you interested.
www.facebook.com/dynamitewallsband (with free download of the track)
Oyster Stout from Adnams
I’ve really been enjoying this fabulous brew.
Fergus, the head brewer points out that the mini-casks need special treatment: “This is a live, cask conditioned beer with yeast in. The shelf life will be less than 5 weeks as it as a live product, similar to what you would get on tap in the pub.”
It tastes, feels and behaves just like a good beer from the pub. But please, keep using the pub. We are losing far too many and unless they are used they will be gone, as will the interesting breweries.
Let Back - A House for Lions (Los Angeles, CA, USA)
Daniel Norman, now songwriter, vocalist, and guitarist of A House for Lions, moved to Los Angeles four years ago to pursue the Tinseltown dream that is all too familiar. Finding acting less artistically satisfying than he’d hoped, Daniel spent some time in Berlin with friends to escape the LA scene and clear his head. While walking through a park, the melody for the first track on the record, “Let Back”, stuck in his head and it never left. That is when the first inkling of A House For Lions was born. The song is about wanting to build something of consequence while facing an uncertain future and though that’s how most great dreams start, the future for A House for Lions now looks bright.
It’s hard to believe that I Want Us To Be Remembered is A House for Lions’ first release. The band’s debut EP is the kind of indie folk rock that can make even the coldest heart melt.
Cirque du Lune (part 2) - Azoora (Gothenburg (Sweden, Essex and Hertfordshire - UK)
John Purcell from Azoora sent me a really interesting track from the new Azoora album.
“A bit different this time, Ben and I have knocked up a few instrumentals.
Don't worry though, Paul hasn't left the band or anything. He's just a very busy boy these days what with the little 'un and his uni coursework to contend with.
So while we wait for new songs Ben and I have been keeping ourselves busy in the meantime.
You can download free from: www.23seconds.org/056.htm
The track I sent you is called Cirque fu Lune (part 2). And yes we know the first couple of bars are suspiciously similar to a certain well known piece of classical music (clue's in the name). Call it artistic license. ;)
The full band will be back with a new release (of proper songs again) this summer. In fact we are recording one tomorrow. :)
In the meantime there's six other tracks on the Instrumentals release to check out.
(I'm not sure what you call a release with 7 tracks on it though, too short for an album, too long for an EP).”
One more bit of useless trivia about it, towards the end it features a very unusual instrument called a Cracklebox, check one out on youtube: http://youtu.be/EO96lK0Fvx4
Glitch Shake - Pet Ghost Project (Brooklyn, NY, USA)
Hailing from the Pacific Northwest, Justin Stivers started the Pet Ghost Project musings as a basement recording experiment around 2003. With comparisons to Neutral Milk Hotel, Animal Collective, Pavement and Tortoise (to name a few), the band has successfully carved out an endearing niche in a dark corner of the musical world that is entirely theirs.
Once a member of The Antlers (bassist on Hospice), Justin has recorded and produced 6 albums to date. Acquiring the help of fellow multi-instrumentalist Justin Gonzales, along many other talented Brooklynites, has only further broadened the palette and expanded upon the raw, unbridled soundscapes of Pet Ghost Project.
Pet Ghost Project retain a rare quality seldom found in the creative world these days. A passion for art that requires significant sacrifice, a gamble to win, a constant struggle against time itself. For the listener though, it is evident that the sacrifice is worth the reward.
With the help of a few other Brooklyn multi-instrumentalists, the pair crafted an album that is more urgent and mature than anything Pet Ghost Project has released to date. These songs hit you with equal parts noise, texture, ambience, and unexpected left turns, all while remaining highly melodic and memorable.
4/9 - Brooklyn, NY @ Littlefield (The Brainwave Festival)
Animal - Kopecky Family Band (Nashville, TN, USA)
The Kopecky Family Band has released a limited edition, hand-assembled split 7” vinyl with friends, and Seattle locals Ivan & Alyosha on February 4 2011. Animal and I Was Born to Love Her feature on the two-track release.
Both bands have long been vinyl enthusiasts and thought it the ideal time to offer their friends and fans a limited edition piece of music to not only listen to, but to keep as a creative addition to their music collection. The artwork was designed in-house by Kelsey Kopecky, and the vinyl was lovingly packed and assembled at Kopecky Headquarters.
Kopecky Family Band is readying themselves for a busy 2011 after achieving much in 2010. The band kicked off the year at SXSW in Austin, wowed locals and industry execs at Next Big Nashville, and floored the likes of Bob Boilen at CMJ in New York. A solid work ethic and collaborative approach to songwriting resulted in two EP releases in the second half of the year - The Disaster and Of Epic Proportions. The band is now back in the recording studio and plans to release a brand new EP in April off the back of another stint at SXSW 2011where their showcase dates are:
Wed 16th - 5.30pm - Paste Magazine Party @ Stage on Sixth
Thurs 17th - 3.00pm - Mannatt Showcase @ The Blind Pig
Thurs 17th - 4.55pm - Schubas Day Party @ The Yard Dog
Thurs 17th/18th - 1am - Next Big Nashville @ Maggie Mae's
Fri 18th - 3.30pm - Home Slice Pizza Party @ Home Slice Pizza
Sat 19th - 4.00pm - The Deli Mag/MuseBox party @ Lipstick 24
On their way to Austin they’re playing dates in Cincinnati, NYC (Piano’s in the Lower East Side), Philadelphia, Greenville SC, Nashville and Memphis TN, Springdale and two dates with Ivan & Alyosha in Fayetteville AR and Tulsa OK.