Friday, January 31, 2014

SHOW ALERT: Shy Boys @ Canal Public House | Monday 02/03/14 8PM

The K.C. based indie pop band Shy Boys, led by Collin Rausch and rounded out by his brother, Kyle and Konner Ervin - both of label mates, The ACBS – will bring their loose and raw brand of “landlocked” surf rock complete with reverb rich guitars, propulsive rhythms, infectious 60’s pop melodies and swooning falsetto vocals to the Canal Public House on Monday, February 3 at 8 PM ($5 admission) in support of their recently released self-titled debut album on High Dive Records.     
Stream the excellent album below which is highlighted by the propulsive first single, “Keeps Me On My Toes” with its jangly guitars, wispy vocals and sing-along chorus and “Heart Is Mine”, featuring all three vocalists combining for a dreamy, 50’s rock and doo-wop inspired standout moment.

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Wednesday, January 29, 2014

3 Songs: On Repeat (featuring a premiere from diNMachine)

diNMachine – “LPSE” (The experimental electronic art-rock band led by composer and sound sculptor Michael J. Schumacher is set to release their highly-anticipated debut album Dance To Reason, on February 18.  Schumacher together with producer Bill Laswell (Ramones Herbie Hancock) and a host of expert musicians effortlessly blend lush dynamic layers of organic instruments like jazz flute and saxophone with propulsive Afro-beat and drum & bass inspired polyrhythms along with synths and odd samples for a deliriously danceable and controlled chaotic caterwaul that remains true to their moniker.  Check out the Benton-C produced video for "Minor Me" here:       

Gem Club – “Braid” (Singer/pianist Christopher Barnes along with cellist Kristen Drymala and vocalist Ieva Berberian return with the beautifully melancholic In Roses, out now on Hardly Art.  Barnes recruited arranger and conductor Minna Choi of The Magik*Magik Orchestra to help shape his devastatingly gorgeous piano-led elegies with a much fuller and much more visceral sound for their best album yet.)     

Hospitality – “Rockets And Jets” (The indie-pop trio return with their stunning sophomore album, Trouble - out now via Merge - which is a touch darker and stripped-down than their stellar debut but retains their whip-smart wit and infectiously catchy retro-inspired pop sound.  The slinky guitars and danceable post-punk-like rhythm of the standout first single here, provides the perfect introduction to their slight shift in sound.)

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Dum Dum Girls - "Too True"

Dee Dee Penny and the Dum Dum Girls return with her highly-anticipated third album Too True, released today via Sub Pop.  The dynamic new album leans heavily toward dark yet sparkling 80’s goth-pop, with touches of early 90’s Brit-pop and poetic lyrics influenced by Rainer Maria Rilke, Nin, Plath and others that perfectly complement her gorgeous voice and lush layers of guitars and swirling synths that have become her calling card.      
The one-two punch of the nostalgia-inducing “Cult Of Love” with its dreamy 80’s atmosphere and spaghetti-like guitar lines and the soaring “Evil Blooms” opens the album before new single, “Rimbaud Eyes” steals the show with a throwback sound and sing-along chorus.  Other standouts include the infectious glittering quasi-title track, “Too True To Be Good” with its bright melodies and tumbling drums and “In The Wake Of You” with guitars that alternate between propulsive and jangly.  The catchy first single, “Lost Boys And Girls Club” is built upon a rumbling bass line, reverb-rich drum beat and a smoldering guitar line.  The excellent album closes out with the bittersweet slow-burning twinkle of “Trouble Is My Name”.        

Stream Too True here:
Dum Dum Girls - 'Too True'

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Wednesday, January 22, 2014

3 Songs: On Repeat

MiWi La Lupa - “Radio” (Buffalo-based folk singer and multi-instrumentalist of Red Baraat offers up his stunning debut solo album, New Way Home, this week via Team Love Records.  The album features guests like Bill Frisell, and Conor Oberst but it’s his effortlessly graceful voice that is the star along with his biting lyrics and blend of bluesy folk and dream-pop instrumentation.)    

Mogwai – “Remurdered” (For Rave Tapes, their excellent eighth album out now on Sub Pop, the Scottish post-everything troop experimented more with analog synths, adding another layer to their already grandiose sound.  The result is their most fascinating and propulsive album yet and the rumbling undercurrent of the epic first single here, is the perfect introduction.  A very limited LP box set edition of the album is available that includes a 40-page hardcover book.)   

Warpaint – Biggy” (Recorded and mixed by Flood, their long-awaited and hotly-anticipated self-titled sophomore album released this week via Rough Trade delivers on the mountainous hype that arose from their 2010 debut.  The new album is much more dynamic yet still as devastating and beautiful.  Check out the standout trip-hop inspired second single here, with its ethereal vocals and driving beat.)    

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Shy Boys - "Shy Boys"

K.C. based indie pop band Shy Boys are set to release their self-titled debut album via High Dive Records today.  Led by Collin Rausch and rounded out by his brother, Kyle and Konner Ervin - both of label mates, The ACBS - the band plays different instruments than what they are used to and recorded live to tape to create a loose and raw brand of surf rock with reverb rich guitars, propulsive rhythms, infectious 60’s pop melodies and swooning falsetto vocals. 
The album opens with rhythmic chugging guitars and a strutting bass line on the standout track, “Is This Who You Are”.  The propulsive first single, “Keeps Me On My Toes” follows with jangly guitars, wispy vocals and a sing-along chorus.  “Notion” is highlighted by crashing drums and some catchy Beach Boys-like melodies and “Bully Fight” was inspired by a school bully made infamous on YouTube.  The twitchy “And I Am Nervous” with its rafters-reaching vocals harmonies ends with an extended jam.  “Heart Is Mine” features all three vocalists combining for a dreamy, 50’s rock and doo-wop inspired standout moment.  Next, “Postcard” features shimmering guitars and a loping bass line.  The aptly-titled “Submarine” is bolstered by a low, rumbling guitar line that is contrasted nicely by the weightless vocal harmonies and the pretty guitar flourishes of “Fireworks” will be remembered long after.  The cascading guitars and ethereal atmosphere of the last-dance-worthy “Trim” closes out the album which breezes by in twenty minutes and begs to be repeated.             

Download “Bully Fight” here:

This review was first printed in the Dayton City Paper:

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

3 Songs: On Repeat

The Lowest Pair – Living Is Dying” (Banjoist Kendl Winter and Palmer T. Lee of Boys n' the Barrels have joined forces to form the double banjo duo, The Lowest Pair.  Their impressive debut album 36c is out now on Team Love Records and is highlighted by their complementing voices and spirited musicianship for a timeless yet modern spin on bluegrass and folk music.)  

James Vincent McMorrow – “Gold” (Lush layers of  shimmering guitars, triumphant trumpets and clicking percussion combine to create the background for the spotlight to shine on McMorrow’s gorgeous lilting falsetto vocals that recall and rival only those of Bon Iver on his stunning sophomore album, Post Tropical, released this week via Vagrant Records.)  

Painted Palms – “Spinning Signs” (The duo of Reese Donohue and Christopher Prudhomme released their highly-anticipated debut album, Forever this week via Polyvinyl Records.  The bright and bouncy electronic beat and pumped up 60’s psych-pop of the infectious first single should be enough to chase away the winter blues.)

Friday, January 10, 2014

Free Friday: Smug Brothers – “Strictly Triggers” EP

Dayton mid-fi indie rock band Smug Brothers returned this week with the digital release of their new EP titled, Strictly Triggers via Gas Daddy Go! Records.  The seven-song EP was released in anticipation of a full-length due later this year and is being offered as a free or pay-what-you-want download or on limited edition cassette which is due in stores on January 21.  Or you can also grab a copy at their co-release show with The Motel Beds at the Old Yellow Cab Building in Dayton on January 18.     
The EP opens with the short acoustic intro, “A Ghostly Host” before fuzzed out bass and an appropriately-liquid guitar line ushers in the infectiously catchy standout first single, “They Are Fluid”.  “Heavy Feather” quickly follows with big open chords, rumbling drums and some danceable 60’s pop melodies.  The less-than-a-minute-long “1900 Man” features a blown out atmosphere of loose acoustic guitars and a simple, repetitive refrain.  Another standout, “Behind The Vines” features cascading guitars and a sweet sentiment along with some noisy outbursts.  Next, “She Grew Up To The Block” is highlighted by a propulsive rhythm and chugging guitars, sounding like a New Wave version of Guided By Voices and the EP closes out with the bouncy pop of “You’ll Wake To Salute”.         

Download the Strictly Triggers EP here:

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