Friday, March 29, 2013

Free Friday - Neon Warship - "Neon Warship" EP


Dayton sludge rock trio Neon Warship recently released their self-titled debut EP as a free download on their Bandcamp page.  The band is led by vocalist and guitarist Kevin Shindel formerly of Dayton post-hardcore favorites Twelve Tribes and Mouth Of The Architect along with bassist Matt Tackett also formerly of Twelve Tribes and drummer Jay Bird who played with Shindel in Waking Kills The Dream.  Together they blend stomping riff-heavy stoner rock with a heavy Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin influence but incorporate enough melody and atmospherics to create a sound all their own. 
The epic-length EP (5 songs in over 36 minutes) opens with “Carry You Away” and its blistering blues rock riffs, mammoth-sized drums and melodic extended guitar solos that set the tone.  Standout track, “Weather Beater” follows and is highlighted by a head-banging rhythm, chugging guitars and a Southern rock-tinted vocal that recalls later-era Corrosion Of Conformity.  “Paralyzed” is over ten minutes long and showcases the band’s prog-rock tendencies with some slower psychedelic passages that contrast nicely with the more raging and rocking moments.  Another standout, “In Waves” reinforces their stoner rock with energetic elements of 80’s thrash metal and some fancy fretwork.  Closing out the EP is “Burn The Breeze” with another thunderous burst of heavy psych-rock complete with fuzz-fueled bass lines, a crunching breakdown and Kevin’s soaring vocals.      
You better break out your lava lamp and black light posters and get on this ship before it launches!

Stream/Download the Neon Warship EP here: 
     


For more info: http://neonwarship.com/  

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Plates Of Cake - "Teenage Evil"


Brooklyn-based indie rock quartet Plates Of Cake released their long-awaited sophomore album, Teenage Evil today via Uninhabitable Mansions.  The band is led by songwriter, vocalist and guitarist Jonathan Byerley along with bassist Gann Matthews and rounded out by lead guitarist Josh Carrafa and drummer Ian Burns, also of Old Monk.  Together they create a 50’s-inspired brand of psych-infused rock & roll with scorching guitar riffs and solos along with loads of catchy pop-leaning melodies.  Add to that, Jonathan’s barreling baritone and that darker edge gives them a unique sound akin to Leonard Cohen fronting a garage rock band.    
The album opens with the catchy first single, “Late Last London” and its propulsive take on British invasion rock with enough melody and charm to spare.  “A Capital Is Born” follows with Josh’s searing and soaring classic rock-loving guitar lines and a marching drum beat on the standout track.  “Transit Trials” showcases Byerley’s rich and rumbling baritone along with crashing cymbals and some sunny 60’s pop melodies.  Another standout, “Hey, Hey That’s Devotion” features an infectious, sing-along chorus, some melodic guitar runs and a bouncy Reggae-tinged beat.  The arena-worthy “Underwater Moonlight” is highlighted by delirious background vocals and a frantic, feedback-fueled guitar solo.  The title track, “Teenage Evil” has a hysteria-inducing and hip-shaking swagger that only Chuck Berry and Elvis Presley could top.  “Ticket To The Races” slows down the pace a bit with some swaying sock hop melodies.  And “Aviation Show” is built on a mammoth-sized Led Zeppelin-like guitar riff and a stomping rhythm along with some higher-pitched background vocals that perfectly contrast with Jonathan’s deeper tone for yet another standout moment.  The dynamic “Better Than Cruel” features the contrasting interplay between guitars that alternate between cascading and crunchy with a dark romantic bent.  The eleven song album closes out with the one-two punch of “Jade Vine” with its noisy bursts of guitar distortion and the super-melodic and jangly “As If The Choice Were Mine”. 
Plates Of Cake create a nostalgia-laced retro rock sound with a modern touch on their excellent new album Teenage Evil.       

Download “Late Last London” here: https://soundcloud.com/platesofcake/late-last-london


Monday, March 25, 2013

The Breeders - LSXX (Deluxe 20th Anniversary Reissue of Last Splash)


Dayton alt. rock icons The Breeders are set to reissue their excellent platinum-selling 1994 album Last Splash to celebrate its 20th anniversary.  Out on April 23rd, it will be available in an extensive seven-disc deluxe vinyl box set that will include a 12-inch vinyl pressing of the original recording of Last Splash along with four 10-inch EPs of each single that was released - Safari, Cannonball, Divine Hammer, and Head to Toe.  And a 12-inch vinyl of the live concert recording, Stockholm Syndrome, which was recorded in Sweden in 1994, during the band's last European tour.  Seven tracks from the recording originally appeared on a fan-club-only CD but nine additional unreleased tracks from the concert are now included. 

The set also includes another 12-inch vinyl record comprised of a BBC radio session recorded July 24, 1993 (available for the first time) and the original Last Splash demos made in November of ’92.  Also included is a 24-page booklet featuring previously unpublished photographs taken during the recording of the album, personal photos taken during two years of touring, and reminiscences written by band members and others, including Kim Gordon and J Mascis.  A 3-disc CD version of the reissue is also available that includes all of the above recordings. 
If that wasn’t enough, the band featuring vocalist and guitarists Kim and Kelley Deal, bassist Josephine Wiggs and drummer Jim Macpherson have also reunited for a world tour during which they will play for the first time together since 1994.  But before heading overseas in May, they will play a handful of dates in the States including a sold out quasi-hometown warm-up show on Wednesday March 27th at the Southgate Revival in Newport, KY. 

For more info, a list of tour dates and to pre-order LSXX click here: http://thebreederslsxx.com/   

“Cannonball”:

Friday, March 22, 2013

Free Friday: 1,000,000 Light Years - "Rainbow Keys" EP


Patrick Hangauer, the bassist for Kansas City indie rock band Fourth Of July also moonlights as an instrumental electronic producer, under the moniker 1,000,000 Light Years.  This week he released his excellent new EP Your Spaceship Awaits You, My Love via Range Life Records.  On it he blends together hypnotic New Age elements with more energetic danceable moments for an experimental and progressive sound that has been influenced by both his world travels and classically trained musical background.      
The symphonic swell of “Pythagoras” opens the EP and is followed by the standout single, “Sevens” with its rolling rhythm, glimmering synths and stuttering beat.  “Waves” features chiming bells and a propulsive beat and is over before you know it.  Another standout track, “Hoyas” brings out a vocal sample and a funky, club-banging beat as a nice surprise.  And the five-song EP closes out with the soaring and glassy synths of the atmospheric “Breakaway”.      

In celebration of the release of Your Spaceship Awaits You, My Love, Patrick and Range Life are offering up his 2007 self-titled debut EP as a free download on his Bandcamp page.  In addition, he is also giving away the Rainbow Keys EP he self-released in January which features four new songs plus a remix of the title track by producer and fellow Range Life Records label mate Say My Name.   

Download the stunning single, “Sevens” from Your Spaceship Awaits You, My Love here: http://e5937ff0061c61b5993e-2e6271fbea13c88f10abf0b72e42320f.r71.cf1.rackcdn.com/1000000lightyears_Sevens.mp3


Download the Rainbow Keys EP here:

Download the self-titled debut EP here:



For more info: http://1000000lightyears.com/ and www.rangeliferecords.com

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

3 Songs: On Repeat


Songs: Ohia – “Lioness” (Singer-songwriter Jason Molina had been battling renal failure due to alcohol abuse for quite a while and sadly, lost that battle over the weekend.  He leaves behind a beautiful and expansive musical legacy that includes his sparse, dark folk musings with Songs: Ohia, and the Neil Young and Warren Zevon-inspired classic rock-leaning full band rock of Magnolia Electric Co.  I could have posted an entire year’s worth of 3 Songs features on Molina’s work but here is the song that first hooked me and brought me into his world.)  http://www.secretlycanadian.com/artist.php?name=molina  


Low – “Just Make It Stop” (The veteran indie rock trio released their new album, The Invisible Way this week on Sub Pop Records.  The album was recorded in Wilco’s studio with Jeff Tweedy at the boards but it doesn’t sound like Jeff fronting Low or Alan now leading Wilco.  In fact, the band remains as sparse and as beautifully melancholic as ever with Mimi taking lead on nearly half of the songs for one of their best albums yet.)  http://chairkickers.com/


Kait Lawson – “Place In The Ground” (The Memphis-based indie folk singer-songwriter released Until We Drown, her promising debut album this week via Madjack Records.  The first single and ode to her hometown comes complete with Kait’s classic country crooning, rafters-reaching vintage organ and a shuffling beat, which is the perfect introduction to the album and her heartfelt yet biting lyrics of love and loss.)  http://www.facebook.com/kaitlawsonmusic

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club - "Specter At The Feast"


Black Rebel Motorcycle Club is set to release their sixth album, Specter At The Feast, as a split release with their own Abstract Dragon imprint and Vagrant Records today.  The highly-anticipated album was a difficult one to make after the loss of bassist Robert Levon Been’s father, Michael Been, who was a member of the 80’s band The Call and was also B.R.M.C.’s live sound engineer.  The resulting album though, is probably their most personal and strongest collection of songs yet. 
“Firewalker” opens the album with some ominous guitar ambiance and droning organ before a lurching fuzz-fueled bass line propels the song forward, setting the tone.  Next, as a touching tribute to Michael Been, they cover The Call’s “Let The Day Begin”, putting their own unique, rumbling and cathartic spin on the track as their first single.  “Returning” stands out with tumbling drums and a soaring and sentimental chorus.  As a change of pace, “Lullaby” features some folk-inspired acoustic guitars and ethereal vocal harmonies.  “Hate The Taste” brings out the band’s blues rock swagger with snaking guitar melodies and an upbeat, almost danceable rhythm.  Another standout track, “Rival” follows with an anthemic chorus and a fiery psych-rock explosion for the album’s hardest rocking moment.  Keeping in that same vein, “Teenage Disease” is a howling noise-addled punk rock anthem with buzzing guitars that proves the band has not lost any of its fire, even after fifteen years.  “Some Kind Of Ghost” slows it back down with some oscillating organ and bluesy acoustic guitar figures that bleed into the Gospel-drenched “Sometimes The Light” with its rafters-reaching organ swells and sweeping melodies for a nice mid-album comedown.  “Funny Games” is built on an elastic bass riff and echoing vocals that explode into an arena-worthy chorus.  The 12-track album closes out with the one-two punch of the moody and noisy “Sell It” and the introspective “Lose Yourself”.
With heavy hearts, Specter At The Feast was a cathartic release for the band and is living proof of the therapeutic power that music has for both the creator and the listener.    

Download a free 3-song EP that includes the first single, “Let The Day Begin” here: http://blackrebelmotorcycleclub.com/letthedaybegin/

For more info: http://blackrebelmotorcycleclub.com and www.vagrant.com            

Friday, March 15, 2013

Free Friday: Glorie - "Falling" EP


Memphis-based instrumental post-rock band Glorie released their new EP, Falling this week on CD and as a free download on their Bandcamp page.  The band is led by keyboardist and vibraphonist Jason Paxton, formerly of The Satyrs, who formed the group after an eight-year hiatus from playing music and cellist and guitarist Jonathan Kirkscey.  Their progressive sound involves moving and beautiful string sections and soothing vibraphone-led textures with other striking experimental touches to create a visceral brand of music that you can actually feel. 
The cinematic “Sunshine Then Nightmares” opens the EP with an almost danceable rhythm and some soaring, ozone-layer busting strings.  Standout track “Run Away” follows and is highlighted by the contrasting interplay between rippling vibes, chugging strings and ambient guitar distortion.  And the title track, “Falling” stands out as well with a pounding piano riff, a propulsive beat and some sweeping strings.   

Download the Falling EP here:    



Download the gorgeous and smoldering single, “Smoke” here: http://www.planetarygroup.com/pressassets/glorie/glorie-smoke.mp3

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

3 Songs: On Repeat


Aly Tadros – “Sweet On Me” (The Brooklyn-based singer-songwriter recently released her stunning sophomore album The Fits, which showcases her self-taught finger-picking guitar playing style on the ukulele, classical guitar and a 5-stringed Mexican instrument called a Vihuela.  The album is also highlighted by her smoldering and smooth jazz-inflected vocals and melodies.  This sweet, waltzing first single is the perfect introduction to her graceful and gorgeous brand of indie folk.  Be sure to catch her captivating live show this week at SXSW!) http://alytadros.com/      


Sea Wolf – “Old Friend” (Singer-songwriter Alex Brown Church recently released Old World Romance, his third album as Sea Wolf via Dangerbird Records.  This time around, he chose to record the album himself at his home studio in California and the glorious result is a more melodic, personal and even experimental affair, with the addition of drum machines.  But Alex’s distinct, literate lyrics always seem to weave relatable tales with memorable melodies and take the spotlight once again.) http://www.seawolfmusic.com/         


The Lovely Bad Things – “Fried Eyes” (The California-based garage rock quartet blends psych-pop and surf punk with a Pixies and Sonic Youth-like dynamic including, crazed male/female vocals and buzzing guitar freakouts on their new Burger Records released new album, The Late Great Whatever.  The album is out now and they are on tour so go check them out!) http://lovelybadthings.bandcamp.com/    

Friday, March 08, 2013

Free Friday: The ACBs - "Stona Rosa"


The Kansas City-based indie-pop group The ACBs just released their stunning sophomore album, Little Leaves this week via High Dive Records.  Led by frontman Konnor Ervin’s higher-registered James Mercer-esque croon; the band effortlessly blends strutting bass lines and crisp, jangly guitars with upbeat rhythms and quirky yet poppy melodies in two-and-a-half-minute spurts, sounding like The Strokes on a beach blanket.  The infectious first single from the album, “Record Store” features a deliriously catchy sing-along chorus with a bouncy melody and falsetto vocal cadence and “Ocean” is a 60’s-inspired nugget of reverb-rich pop with spacey synths and flickering guitar figures.  Another standout track comes in the form of the swaying doo-wop melodies of “Television” as well as the sly, slinky 80's funk of album closer, "Lover Yeah".      
In celebration of the release of their new album, The ACBs are giving away their excellent debut album Stona Rosa as a free download on their Bandcamp page.  Stream and download both albums below:         
 Little Leaves:



Stona Rosa:



Download the single “Record Store” here: https://soundcloud.com/theacbs/record-store-1

For more info: www.highdiverecords.com

Thursday, March 07, 2013

Stream It From The Mountain: Northern Faces - "Southern Places" EP


Northern Faces are an exciting new folk-leaning indie rock band out of Albany, NY and they just released their debut EP, Southern Places via Equal Vision Records this week.  Their rustic, punk-infused brand of folk rock is highlighted by anthemic choruses, close knit harmonies and atmospheric guitars that fit right in on the label next to Circa Survive and The Snake The Cross The Crown.  The single, “Poor Moonlight” stands out with a rumbling grunge-covered bass line and soaring classic rock guitar riffs and the propulsive percussion and arena-worthy sing-along chorus of “You Not Me” provides another standout moment. 
Stream the very promising Southern Places EP here:



For more info: http://www.facebook.com/northernfaces and www.equalvision.com

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

3 Songs: On Repeat


Lightouts – “Want” (After over 2 years of anticipated build-up; releasing single after single, the Brooklyn based indie rock quartet has finally self-released their debut album, Want this week.  Their unique sound grafts dark romantic Cure-like post punk onto a wall of fuzzed out guitars with poppy melodies that bloom from the cracks within.  Catch the moody and catchy title track and first single below.) http://www.lightouts.com/     


Caitlin Rose – “I Was Cruel” (The Nashville-based Country crooner released her highly-anticipated sophomore album, The Stand-In this week on ATO Records.  Her voice recalls classic country singers such as Patsy Cline but with her own modern indie edge and her lyrics weave relatable stories of heartbreak, love and loss.  Two of the songs on the album were co-written by Gary Louris of The Jayhawks and it also features a cover of The Felice Brothers track, “Dallas”.) http://thecaitlinrose.com/      


Úlfur – “So Very Strange” (Úlfur Hansson has toured with Jónsi of Sigur Ros and has now released his mystical debut solo album White Mountain via Western Vinyl.  He captures organic field recordings like, rocks being thrown into ponds and blends them with droning and ethereal electronic instrumentation to create some very psychedelic and vivid soundscapes that are easy to get lost in.  The album also features guest vocals from Alexandra Sauser-Monnig of Mountain Man and Sigrun Jonsdottir, who has collaborated with Bjork.)  http://ulfurhansson.com/    


Bonus:
Waxahatchee – “Peace & Quiet” (Katie Crutchfield formerly of the punk band P.S. Eliot with her sister Allison of Swearin’, released her excellent sophomore album, Cerulean Salt this week via Don Giovanni Records.  The excellent first single is a nostalgic and bittersweet slice of 90’s slacker guitar rock with an insanely catchy chorus.  This is easily one of my favorite songs of the year so far. Stream it below.) http://www.facebook.com/waxahatchee   

Download: http://pd.npr.org/anon.npr-mp3/npr/downloads/2013/03/Peace%20and%20Quiet.mp3 (Via NPR)

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

Water Liars - "Wyoming"


After releasing Phantom Limb, their surprising debut album, just last year on Misra Records, the Mississippi-based indie rock duo Water Liars are set to release their stunning sophomore album Wyoming today via Big Legal Mess Records.  Such a quick follow-up may seem hasty but the production this time around is more focused, as it allows their blues-soaked two-part vocal harmonies and melodies more room to soar within the space created by their crafty yet sparse arrangements.       
The album opens with “Sucker” and its distorted blues guitars and the close knit harmonies of vocalist/gutarist Justin Kinkel-Schuster and drummer/vocalist Andrew Bryant.  First single and standout track “Fake Heat” follows with guitars that alternate between mesmerizing and crunchy along with some aching vocals and thunderous drums.  The other single released is “Linens”, which offers up earnest lyrics and a breezy classic Country & Western vibe with a catchy chorus and is the only song with a proper bass line, provided by guest Matt Patton.  The dynamic “Backbone” opens as a stomping blues barn-burner before relenting into a beautiful waltz.  Next, “Cut A Line” features an intriguing mix of glimmering 50’s doo-wop tones along with soulful, Gospel-drenched vocal harmonies for another standout moment.  “How Will I Call You” is a short and sweet folk tune with a timeless quality.  “Wyoming”, the title track is appropriately titled, with its wistful and wispy melodies that are reminiscent of the windy plains found in the namesake state.  “You Work Days I Work Nights” showcases the relatable everyman lyrics and sentiments that these Midwesterners are steeped in.  “Fine Arts” switches between quiet, gorgeous moments and contrastingly louder moments with crashing cymbals and squalling feedback noise.  “Bird Of Song” offers a change of pace as a piano-led ballad.  And the eleven track album closes out with the heartbreaking, feedback-drenched closer, “Fire”. 
Showing incredible growth from their already great debut, Water Liars prove with their new album, Wyoming that they are a force (and voice) to be reckoned with in the crowded musical landscape.