Monday, December 29, 2008
It's not often at all we have the chance to feature music from Finland, but thanks to a heads-up from Matthew Bice of Portland, Oregon label Shelflife Records (Shelflife MySpace), we find ourselves with another favourite release for early 2009. Burning Hearts is the Finnish duo of Henry Ojala (instrumentation) who often serves as the drummer for Åbo/Turku based outfit Cats On Fire (flaming feline MySpace) and Jessika Rapo (vocals) with her beautiful voice that can also be found as a driving element of Helsinki band Le Futur Pompiste (LFP MySpace). Together they've created an impressive music project and now have a debut album, titled Aboa Sleeping, that is set to be released through above mentioned Shelflife Records on February 10, 2009. Do yourself an enormous favour and have a listen to this track from the upcoming debut Aboa Sleeping.
MP3: I Lost My Colour Vision
Posted by 4casey4 at 9:21 PM
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
We are off to complete some last minute Christmas shopping and pick up supplies for our first annual attempt at a Mexican-themed holiday dinner/margarita-fest tomorrow. For this reason the writeup will be brief, but the artist is muy bien and, to be honest, this particular song has been waiting patiently on our computer desktop for over a month now. Twiggy Frostbite is a five piece indie pop outfit consisting of musicians Elin Lindfors (vocals), AnnaKarin Berglund (keys), Emma Sjöberg (bass), Joel Thedéen (guitar) and David Kramer (drums) from Gävle, Sweden. The band has been performing together since 2006 and their debut album, titled Though Fire, is set to be released through Stockholm based label Despotz Records (Despotz MySpace) on Feburary 19 in Scandanavia and April/May 2009 in the UK. Today's featured track is a beautifully warm pop offering that borders on an equally dark simplicity, with Elin's vocal strength providing illumination for the journey. There is an excellent animated video for Heroes as well as additional information and music to be found by visiting the Twiggy Frostbite MySpace page. This one is well worth some of your time...
As a holiday related side-note:
We recently discovered that the town of Gävle, Sweden is known for having the world's largest "Yule Goat", known as The Gävle Goat (Gävlebocken in Swedish) that was originally built in 1966 for the town square. Just about every year since that time, local vandals have attempted to burn this helpless straw goat to the ground and we felt a bit sad, yet amused, about the whole thing. You can find all of the unfortunate events surrounding our new goat-friend by visiting this Wikipedia page. It will be our new holiday tradition to report on the well-being of Gävlebocken every year from now on. Poor thing.
2008: 10,000 people turned out for the inauguration of one of this year's goats. No reserve-goat was built to replace the main goat should the worst happen, nor was the goat impregnated with flame repellent (Anna Östman, spokesperson of the Goat-committee said the repellent made it look ugly in the previous years, like a brown terrier). On the 16 of December the Natural Science Club's Goat was vandalised and later removed.
Posted by 4casey4 at 4:04 PM
Sunday, December 21, 2008
As much as we'd love to paint ourselves as typical 70s kids who grew up listening to Edgar Winter with black-light posters and incense burning in the basement or attic of a parental nest, our childhood music memories might be a bit closer to early Black Flag or Siouxsie Sioux blaring out of a beat-up car stereo while loitering in the parking lot of a local pub. For reasons that might become obvious after first listening, today's featured artist seems to have a solid grasp on both of these worlds and the result has us absolutely smitten. So Shush is the long time music project of Carole Smart and Ian Drumm from Manchester, UK who were in various local bands throughout the 1990s and have been working together since 2000. The influences vary widely, from My Bloody Valentine to The Hollies or even Yes (yes that Yes), and so a well seasoned Hammond organ and generous helping of guitars are exactly what we have in store for you this evening. The first track for listening will soon belong to an upcoming Skratch Magazine (Skratch MySpace) music sampler that will be the latest in a series of 49. Here you go.
MP3: People Need Something
After listening to People Need Something, an overwhelming thought of Homestead or Sarah Records snatching this band up back in the day is an easy one to fathom. If you are looking for more of the classic sound we mentioned earlier, a track from the self titled, 2008 debut release, complete with a decidedly retro progressive rock intro, can be found below as a definite bonus. For information on how to grab a copy of this debut CD, a visit can be made to either the So Shush MySpace joint or Carrie's supplemental So Shush MySpace extravaganza complete with all-things Hollies. Plenty of good music to be found in both places. From the debut... nice!
MP3: Lucid Dreamer
As an extra bonus and thanks to Ian and Carole for sending their music in our direction, we just had to do this:
MP3: The Hollies - Carrie Anne (1967)
Posted by 4casey4 at 10:18 PM
Thursday, December 18, 2008
So we opened a message from one of our favorite labels today, but had no idea just how much fun was in store for us. Honestly, the timing couldn't have been more perfect for a couple of bloggers who are admittedly feeling the effects of this cold and gloomy grey season. The Sound Of Arrows is the lovely indie pop duo of Oskar Gullstrand and Stefan Storm from Stockholm, Sweden, and their latest single M.A.G.I.C. will be released through Labrador Records on January 28. For today's featured song, a classroom of chanting children as well as the accompaniment of a vocalist from Tokyo, Japan were enlisted and the result is exactly what the track title suggests. To check out a video clip that serves as an introduction for the new single, you can visit The Sound Of Arrows website and for additional information or music there is also The Sound Of Arrows MySpace page. It seems almost impossible to imagine a happier start for early 2009. Listen Listen!
Posted by 4casey4 at 9:19 PM
Monday, December 15, 2008
Temperatures are dropping to the extreme here in Cincinnati, with precipitation that looks more like stuffing from a faulty 1970s era beanbag chair rather than any type of proper snowflakes. In order to warm the ears this evening, we have an update on the Bergen, Norway musical collective Herr Nilsson who were featured here just over a month ago [October 29 review + download]. Guitarist and vocalist Terje was kind enough to send us a link to the new Herr Nilsson Blog where we found a brand new EP, titled (for now) No Man is Iceland, completely free for download. The songs were recorded in true bedroom fashion with limited polish or production and the lo-fi result of these efforts deserve nothing less than a high recommendation by our estimation. The big sounds and more information can still be found on the Herr Nilsson MySpace page and hopefully the Herr Nilsson website will be finished addition sometime soon. For now, we decided to share a couple of must-listen tracks from this DIY release. These songs are outstanding.
MP3: Olympic Fire
MP3: The More You Change, The More I Stay The Same
Posted by 4casey4 at 11:05 PM
Saturday, December 13, 2008
The end of the year is quickly approaching and we've decided once again to escape the scramble for last minute offerings in order to bring you music we happened to have missed earlier this year. A belated message was received this past week from Lindsay and Joel of Covington, Kentucky based label The Mylene Sheath (TMS MySpace) and we couldn't be happier with the release they sent, not to mention the realization these dry-tank local folks exist just across the Ohio River from our Cincinnati home. With that out of the way, we need to get started in digging into the music. Eksi Ekso is a six piece from Boston, Massachusetts consisting of musicians Nate Shumaker (vocals, guitar), Tom Korkidis (bass, vocals, keys, samples), Clara Kebabian (violin, vocals), Beth Holub (viola), Sean Will (trumpet, keys, samples) and Alex Mihm (drums). They were previously known as The Burning Paris and eventually On Fire, but have since changed up much of the mechanics, or at least the instrumental duties involved, in order to create a June 2008 full length debut release titled I Am Your Bastard Wings under this new moniker. For those who've not had the chance to listen to this debut album from Eksi Ekso, a first exposure is definitely in order.
MP3: Killing Texas
After taking a few evenings to explore the collection of songs that make up I Am Your Bastard Wings, we immediately discounted any genre classifications made in the handful of previous reviews we read. With music this beautifully intelligent and effortlessly focused, it almost seems a crime to describe the sound as any sort of random texture, soundscape or ice cream flavor. Instead, we will simply ask you to listen to another lovely track with us.
MP3: Just Leave
For more music and information, be sure to check out the Eksi Ekso website as well as the Eksi Ekso MySpace page. I Am Your Bastard Wings is also available through Fredericksburg, Virginia based label Magic Bullet Records (MB MySpace) and, from what we've gathered, a follow up release is also in the works for 2009 with recording set to start in the spring. The next live performance will take place tonight, December 13, at legendary Worcester, Massachusetts venue Ralph's Diner. Before I forget, below is a YouTube video of a live performance from the release party for the debut CD on June 21. Once again, the song is Killing Texas. Enjoy.
Posted by 4casey4 at 2:33 PM
Monday, December 08, 2008
While plenty of bands seem to wait until the closing months of any given year to release new music, we are noticing an increasing number of artists choosing to wait until after the holiday rush for January and February to unleash their goods. So would be the case for today's featured music and since notification that an early copy was mailed in our direction, thanks to a certain drummer, our ability to wait for its arrival was nothing less than a challenge. Once received and opened, an incredibly professional press kit was our prize but, to be perfectly honest, they could have simply scotch taped a bar napkin to the CD and scrawled something like "play this" in crayon and we would have been no less excited. It wouldn't be the first time. East Hundred is a five piece from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania we originally featured in June 2006 with a follow up in February 2007. The lineup remains the same for a brand new full length CD, titled Passenger, which is set for a launch date of January 13, 2009. Before we begin our most recent gush-fest regarding EH, let's check out the second track from the album... ready?
MP3: Plus Minus
As if that song were not enough incentive for a mad stir to kick early 2009 into motion, we've also included a video below for the lead track Slow Burning Crimes which is an equally good view and listen for the current direction of the band. After taking some time to experience the new release in heavy rotation over the past week, some notable observations were made and we felt the need to share just a couple of them. The familiar sound East Hundred originally endeared themselves to us with is kept fully intact for Passenger, however, a new urgency emanates from all angles with more aggressive rhythms combined with an enhanced layering of guitars that will surely please most any indie rock-minded listener. This would all be well and good enough for a stellar MML review, but what ultimately sent our thoughts over the top were the enchanting vocals of Beryl Guceri which have become much more powerful as a guiding element for the band. Since the East Hundred website is currently being updated, a visit to the East Hundred MySpace page should be your destination for additional music and information from the band. The next live performance will take place tomorrow night, December 9, at local Philadelphia venue Johnny Brendas.
And now for the video. It was suggested we feature the Vimeo version of Slow Burning Crimes (which is far and away better quality) but we honestly had no idea how to embed it into the blog without sending the width restrictions of blogger into a tailspin... so here is the YouTube version for quick reference. Yeah, the above Vimeo link is what you should view for full effect. Enjoy!
Posted by 4casey4 at 11:43 PM
Thursday, December 04, 2008
If you happen to visit our music blog on even a semi-regular basis, it will be no mystery that we adore plenty of music that was released during the late 1980s to early 1990s on labels such as 4AD, Creation and Sarah Records. If you are familiar with this era and the specific sound/direction of which we speak, it might be assumed that more recent offerings of a similar persuasion would most likely be found in the UK or maybe even a few larger music scenes here in the states... ahh, but locations aren't always this obvious. The city of Bandung, in West Java, Indonesia is where you will find musicians Buddy (bass), Vian (guitar), Aduy (guitar), Oscar (drums) and Devita (vocals) who make up the ambient shoegaze influenced outfit Jelly Belly. The band has been together, with a few lineup changes along the way, since 2000 and have been featured on a number of compilations as well as releasing a debut titled Intro EP in 2005. As a long-overdue follow up, there is another upcoming EP that will be released through Bandung based music label Maritime Records, titled A Gorgeous Day To Remember. All of the details and additional music can be found by visiting the Jelly Belly MySpace page or the Jelly Belly Last FM profile. Don't let the playful name of the band fool you for a second... Jelly Belly is more than capable of sending any skeptic into a dream-like state with their impressive take on one of our favourite genres of music. Have a listen to this track from the new EP...
Posted by 4casey4 at 9:26 PM
Monday, December 01, 2008
It's been a busy holiday week spent away from computers, mostly being traditional consumers of seasonal food, spirits and retail goods, but all the while new music has been filtering into our email inbox and we need to get back to things in a hurry. Tonight we start once again on familiar ground with a side project and new demo tracks from our friend Perry, a founding member of the Chicago, Illinois shoegaze outfit Skylight, who we first featured in March 2008 with a follow up in September 2008. The new, mostly solo endeavor from Perry is Bliss City East and the idea for the music couldn't be more simple or effective. Using only two chords for each song, surrounded by an accompaniment of beautiful noise and drifting vocals, a series of what could easily become impressive soundtracks take shape around each and every droning turn. From what we have learned, there are more songs, nearly completed, that will be available for listening on the Bliss City East MySpace page in the coming weeks.
In another bit of related news, we were informed that Skylight is moving forward with 2009 plans for a split/mixed EP (or something of the sort) with Seoul, South Korea based Vidulgi OoyoO as well as The Beijing Tangs from Scottsdale, Arizona. From the links you will find that all three of these artists have been featured on MML... so we can't wait to listen when the time comes.
MP3: Need Another (demo)
MP3: The Sun Is Cold (demo)
Posted by 4casey4 at 9:41 PM
Monday, November 24, 2008
Another Monday evening is at hand and we find ourselves sorting through plenty of brand new/unreleased music to share here on the blog. This time, however, we have an amazing offering from almost a full year ago that deserves the serious attention of anyone who may have overlooked it over the past several months. Chapman & Brocker is a Thousand Oaks/Los Angeles, California based duo who happen to be brothers and got their start working on the score for a surfing documentary titled Best Hours Of The Day in 2004. Since this initial project, three years of collaboration in the writing, recording and production were spent on a full length, December 2007 collection of songs titled Dance Of The Crazy Man. The album was completed and made available without any assistance or support of a record label and although this might seem more common than not in these DIY days, the result is not usually this striking. We'd definitely suggest a first listen to understand our most recent music fixation...
The experimental goodness that is Chimes serves as the lead track for this debut release and is the perfect introduction for what turns out to be an impressive assortment of Tin Pan Alley flavoured fairytales. Imagine the creativity of classic Todd Rundgren, warmth of Benjamin Folds and subtle savvy of Trentemøller, intertwined if not completely fused, and you probably have the closest estimation of our new-found love for the sound this duo recently brought to our attention. Before having another listen, let us first direct you towards the Chapman & Brocker website as well as the C&B MySpace page for more music and information. Another favourite for you...
MP3: The Hearth
Posted by 4casey4 at 10:38 PM
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Just over two years ago, we featured a talented Los Angeles, California based outfit known as Gertie Fox [October 2006 review + download] and ended up having some fun expanding on a few non-related music peeves in the process. Since that post and the eventual dissolution of the band in 2007, member Matt Molchany remained in LA for some time, then relocated back to eastern Pennsylvania and began working on new music. At various later stages of his progress with the new project, Matt kept in touch with us and, as a result, we now have quite the treat to share as a sneak peek for you.
New Madrid Faults is the name of this new trio, consisting of musicians Matt Molchany, John Kimock and Matt Juknevic who now, at least on a part time basis, call Bethlehem, Pennsylvania home. Today's featured track is an excellent first listen to a yet-to-be-titled debut album, set to be released through Brooklyn, NYC based label Ropadope (Ropadope MySpace) in the earliest part of 2009. For more music that could possibly make the cut for the upcoming CD as well as additional detailed information on the band and it's musicians, check out the New Madrid Faults MySpace page. There is also an ongoing series of observations and updates from the band to be found on the New Madrid Faults blog. The next live performance will take place tomorrow night, November 21, at local Bethlehem venue Funhouse Pub.
If this new material is any indication of what to expect from the debut release, we might have an incredibly good start to 2009 on our hands.
Posted by 4casey4 at 8:55 PM
Monday, November 17, 2008
Every once in a while, a message containing new music deserving of immediate attention makes its way into the MML email inbox and eventually our unsuspecting ears. To be honest, we know next to nothing about this evening's featured artist, but felt compelled to present this outstanding music that now serves to rattle the windows of our makeshift office without any hesitation. What we do know is the following. The Argument is an indie pop duo/music project consisting of musicians Marcus and Niklas from Malmö, Sweden. The brand new, self-released debut album is titled Summer/Winter Nights and it is completely free for download if you visit The Argument MySpace page. Also, be sure to check out The Argument Blog for more updated info. This is a good one.
MP3: Forget About The Politics
Posted by 4casey4 at 10:39 PM
Sunday, November 16, 2008
Another weekend comes to a close as we find ourselves sorting through various emails and sounds while having an extended glance at occasional snowflakes now dancing around the window view from our office space. Today's featured music is a perfect audio example of what seems to be pulsing through the senses while making a gentle path to our collective brain at this very moment... and the listen is absolutely beautiful. Suturee is primarily the duo of multi-instrumentalists Julian Brau and Rebecca Adorno from San Juan, Puerto Rico. After forming the band in 2007, Julian and Rebecca relocated to New York City and currently enlist the assistance of fellow musicians Fernando Samalot (bass), Kristian Prieto (guitar) and Eduardo Martinez (drums) for the purpose of live performance dates. Earlier this year, in May 2008, Suturee released a self-titled debut CD and we are just now fortunate enough to have a belated listening party of sorts here at MML.
For those who have already skipped ahead to listen and are having something of a déjà-vu experience, an underlying feel of Yo La Tengo, or more specifically the 2003 release Summer Sun might come to mind in each of the songs featured today. Be it the soft, breathy vocals or attention to detail where each and every string takes its place, the subtle mood created within this offering is one we can highly recommend. For more information on the debut CD and plenty of the music from it, a compulsory visit to the Suturee MySpace page, as well as the official Suturee website should top your list of plans. Let's make an evening of it... shall we?
MP3: Afraid Of Hands
MP3: This Hour
Posted by 4casey4 at 10:19 PM
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Out of all the regional Midwestern city music scenes we unfortunately neglect on a regular basis (and by "regional" our measure consists of responsible road-trip distance), Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania has to be the one destination we admittedly know the least about. Meeting Of Important People are a trio that call this Steel City home, and who were also kind enough to send today's featured track our way. From what we read, this single was released as part of a compilation titled Playing Favorites from The Key Party which is a collection of related local artists who have interchangeable musicians crossing over to take part in multiple bands and sometimes perform each other's songs in various live settings. 1000 copies of the CD were originally passed around for free at a music festival in Pittsburgh's south side this past August... and if anyone has a spare copy we would love to take it off their hands!
Upon taking in the very first moments of the song Mothers Pay More, you might be lured into expecting an altogether radio-friendly listen, but as the underlying classic garage feel of the vocals and guitar take shape, any thought other than that of infectious indie folk-rock should quickly disappear. For more music we seriously recommend, as well as information on the upcoming full length debut slated for release in early 2009, pay a visit to the MOIP MySpace page. The next live performance will take place as part of a Roustabout! event at College Station/PSU venue Bar Bleu on December 3. Have fun with what we consider a truly addictive song and expect a follow up on MML once the debut album is released.
MP3: Mothers Pay More
Sunday, November 09, 2008
As a follow-up to our most recent feature of Zuid (south) Holland, Netherlands multi-instrumentalist Mike Schepers and his music project Skipper [July 2008 review + download], we are more than pleased to give a heads-up on the release of a brand new, full length debut album titled Architecture and Design. Having only heard a limited amount of this music at the time of our previous review, we had no idea what to expect from the long player once it arrived in our post. While we were peeling back the plastic film and examing the artwork included within the CD case, a collision of drums began the opening track Wrong Man, Wrong Place and, at that moment, it became clear we were in for an experience. Throughout the 10 tracks that make up Architecture and Design, Mr. Schepers accomplishes an effective mix of traditional instrumentation and experimental electronic accompaniment many artists of the same ilk find a difficult balance. After having listened to the entire new collection of songs, and admittedly coughing up a slight cackle at the direct Human League reference in the closing track Perfect, we can recommend Architecture and Design highly as one of the more solid and well thought releases so far this year... regardless of genre. To pick up a copy of what is certainly destined for daily rotation in the CD player of our car (which hardly ever happens), you only need to visit Groningen, Netherlands based Subroutine Records (Subroutine MySpace) or the Skipper MySpace page. Now let's get to the music.
MP3: Moving On
Posted by 4casey4 at 10:35 PM
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
Every once in a while, we are fortunate enough to feature multiple artists in a single post, with music that fits a certain theme or belongs to a compilation release of sorts. Today we have just such an occasion on our hands in bringing you a few samples from a brand new, sixteen-band compilation that was released November 3rd through Brooklyn, New York-based Self Storage Recordings. The CD is aptly titled Self Storage Compilation Volume 1, and this fantastic collection of music was made possible, available and easily pluckable from our post box last week thanks to label proprietor Andy Durutti. If Andy's name sounds even vaguely familiar to some of you MML regulars, it is probably a result of a certain promotion/support structure he also maintains for like-minded musicians, widely known as Loveless Music Group (LMG Blog). The CD actually includes five artists that have been presented here in the past, but instead of revisiting our friends, it was decided to dig into three bands we had not experienced previously. Self Storage Compilation Volume 1 is a listen we can easily recommend... so let's get to some of this lovely (or should I say loveless) music that will serve as a good cross-section of what you can expect from the CD.
The Invisible Kid
MP3: Where'd You Go?
BNS Profile: http://www.bnssessions.com/bands/soundscapes.html
MP3: Here's When
Saturday, November 01, 2008
As a follow up to their debut full length album Sewn With Stitches, Washington DC based lo-fi rock outfit The Antiques have just released a brand new long player, titled Awake, through artist run label Safranin Sound. Our original feature of the haunting loveliness this band exudes happened well over a year and a half ago [July 2007 review + download], so when we received our copy of the latest album last week, an immediate listen was in order. What we found was a gorgeous collection of distressed fairytales set to an ever-building tension that instantly reminded us how much of a dark mood an effective accompaniment of organ can bring to the surface. To have a listen to additional tracks and find out where to purchase the new album, you can visit The Antiques MySpace page as well as The Antiques website. For those who live close enough, or feel the need to plan a quality road trip in the near future, the next live performance will take place November 21 at Kalamazoo, Michigan venue Dino's Rock Room.
From the October 2008 release Awake
MP3: The Microphone Died
From the 2007 release Sewn With Stitches
MP3: Tied To Nowhere
MP3: One Day You'll Be Sorry Too
Posted by 4casey4 at 11:45 AM
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Photo: Sandra Jecmenica
It's always a welcome surprise to find an artist we've featured in the past involved with additional music projects of which we were previously unaware. As for today's offering, we find Norwegian multi-instrumentalist Ragnhild Hogstad Jordahl a.k.a. Soda Fountain Rag, who we first featured in September 2007 and updated most recently in February 2008, now contributing to an impressive indie pop collective. Herr Nilsson is an eight piece from Bergen, Norway consisting of Terje Bringsvor Nilsen (vocals, guitar), Ragnhild Jordahl (keys, fiddle), Eirik Utne (guitar), Lars Jakob Stava (guitar), Einar Olsson (drums), Jan Otto Nerdal (drums), Mjorten Mjørlaug (bass) and Johannes Førde (trumpet). The band's third and most recent release is an EP titled Tuesday Is My Birthday that was made available through Karisma Records in late April 2008. The EP is a follow up to their previous two full length albums I'm No Elvis (2005), Downhill Thrill (2007) and, from what Terje explained to us, there is yet another full length collection of songs slated to be recorded in the early part of this upcoming year.
Photo: Sandra Jecmenica
If you've already snuck down for a listen to today's featured track, the festive warmth surrounding the music will have been an immediate ear perk as the instrumentation gives validation far beyond any thought of this band having too many cooks in the kitchen. Since the Herr Nilsson website is still a work in progress, you will need to visit the Herr Nilsson MySpace page for more information and upcoming live performance dates. Have a listen to this song from the latest EP...
MP3: Don't Put Your Money On My Horse
Posted by 4casey4 at 6:57 PM
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Almost an entire six days away from the blog it's been, and a substantial amount of outstanding music has been filtering into our email inbox all the while. In starting the week off a bit early, a return to a city we've recently come to realize as being a hotbed for indie music is well in order. The neighborhood surrounding Hongik University, affectionately known as Hongdae, in Seoul, South Korea is where you will most likely find band mates Seung-jae Yoo (vocals, guitar) and Gye-hyun Shin (guitar) who formed Daydream in 1998 as well as more recent addition Mekong (bass) along with a number of contributing friends/musicians to complete the current lineup. In case you were wondering after listening, the band name is indeed an homage to Sonic Youth's highly regarded release Daydream Nation and there are subtle hints of SY along with plenty of other influences from the same time period to be found within the music. A Land Of April is the title for this brand new, debut gem of a long player that has been in the works since 2003 and was just made available earlier this month. For more of a listen to the new album and to view number of live performance videos, check out the Daydream MySpace page. There is also a Daydream Cyworld profile to visit and an extensive interview from February 2008 for more background information on the band.
MP3: A Land Of April
Posted by 4casey4 at 7:25 AM
Monday, October 20, 2008
We really had no plans on accomplishing anything blog-related tonight, but after a quick listen this new track, our Monday hibernation session away from MML seemed less than possible. Singapore based multi-instrumentalist AZ who we originally featured a few months ago with his band Disco Ditto [June 2008 review + download], now gives us some love with the noisy new music project Stellarium and a song we recommend be heard at elevated volume levels... I think ear-bleed is the correct saying? Please take note of the unmistakable JAMC influence and how it works so well with more of a solid guitar presence in command. Impressive.
MP3: Any Day Is Fine
Posted by 4casey4 at 11:00 PM
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Tonight's featured artist is one we originally mentioned over a year and a half ago and, in order to appreciate the true international flavor this troupe of musicians present, we highly suggest a visit to our previous post [April 2007 review + download]. Le Man Avec Les Lunettes is the music project of Alessandro Paderno (vocals, eastwood guitar, microkorg, acoustic guitar, diamonica), Fabio Benni (vocals, gem imperial organ, omichord, glockenspiel, theremin, tape echoes machine), Simone Gelmini (percussion), Ombretta Ghidini (vocals, guitar, synth), Giorgio Marcelli (bass) and Daniela Savoldi (cello, violin) from the northern Italian city of Brescia. The brand new album, titled Plaskaplaskabombelibom, was two years in the making and has now been released through Italian label My Honey Records (My Honey MySpace) as well as Cake and Coffee Records in Germany. The new album, with a title that sent our spell-check into a spiraling meltdown, gives another glimpse into the experimental nature of the band, while moments of dancing playfully around classic influences completes this unique sound. For more music and information, check out the Le Man Avec Les Lunettes MySpace page or, more importantly, the official LMALL website where you can order the new release without delay. The next live performance will kick off a string of regional live dates as LMALL takes the stage November 8 at Fusignano (near Ravenna) venue Brainstorm. Enjoy.
Posted by 4casey4 at 10:36 PM
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
With all of the obvious, ridiculous and often fleeting resources available online to assist us in finding new artists to feature here at MML, it really is a true comfort to have like-minded friends lending a helpful hint/clue once in a while. This time around, it happened to be Perry, of Chicago based loveliness Skylight (that we last featured here), who gave us a heads-up on an incredible band from an unexpected location halfway around the planet. Vidulgi Ooyoo is a shoegaze-influenced rock quartet consisting of musicians Ji-hye Ham (guitar, vocals), Jong-seok Lee (guitar, vocals), Ki-hun Sung (bass, vocals) and Yong-jun Lee (drums) from the capital city of Seoul, South Korea. The band name actually means "pigeon milk" in Korean language and they have been making this dream-tastic music together since 2003. Our initial thought was to describe the sound as something of a textbook shoegaze lesson for aspiring upstarts here in the west, but after listening further, today's featured submission proved to contain a building presence that escapes any simple genre classification. The latest full length album/CD, titled Aero, was released in April of 2008 and you can find more music, from what we consider an extremely solid debut LP, by visiting the Vidulgi Ooyoo MySpace page as well as the VO Cyworld profile. Oh, this is so gooood.
MP3: Seeing me Through Your Eyes
Posted by 4casey4 at 10:41 PM
Sunday, October 12, 2008
In consuming our Sunday beers, while also making plans for another week of music here at MML, we happened to be listening to a number of bands and stumbled upon one that deserved our immediate attention. If already listening, or if you are even remotely aware of our current midwestern location and penchant for a lovely wall of guitars, today's showcased artist will come as no surprise where featurability is concerned. Satin Gum is a true-to-form rock trio from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania consisting of Brian Spekis (vocals, guitar, keys), Dan Vavro (drums, backing vocals), and Travis Craig (bass) who just so happen to have a brand new, self-titled EP to share. After listening to this new EP release, our initial thoughts involved locking the band securely in a studio, with occasional raw meat rations thrown under the door, in order to induce the best full-on rock record in future memory... or something along the lines of Amusement Parks On Fire at the very least. All fantasies aside, you can listen to more music at the Satin Gum MySpace page and check them out live, this Thursday October 16, as a performance is set to take place at local Pittsburgh venue/varnished treehouse Lava Lounge. Oh yes, this is a good one... and probably the longest title for a song ever.
MP3: No, We Are Not Naming Our Kids After Ikea Products
Now that I am out of review mode (whew)... I have to say, this band fucking rocks. As a non-related bonus, we are also giving you a similarly themed track from Copenhagen, Denmark trio The Floor Is Made Of Lava who we previously featured in 2006 and 2007. For some strange reason, I have the feeling these two bands would get on just swimmingly.
MP3: The Floor Is Made Of Lava - Ikea Did A Job On You
Posted by 4casey4 at 8:47 PM
Thursday, October 09, 2008
As promised in far too many of our earlier posts, more attention has been paid to messages sent our way (well, sort of) and today this new practice pays off nicely. I have to be honest in saying that when a music project includes any more than five, or even six members, our interest fades into skepticism rather quickly... so listening before reading was probably for the best in this instance. Photons are an eight piece collective from San Francisco, California who formed recently and now have a self-released/titled debut EP ready to share as of tomorrow, October 10. From what we learned after checking out the brief communication they sent, one of the guitarists in this band was, at some point, a part of now wildly famous UK trio The Wombats who we featured way back in July 2006. The band also shares a practice space with fellow bay area outfit The Dodos (Dodos MySpace). There will be a CD release party tomorrow night as Photons take the stage at one of San Francisco's oldest bars House Of Shields. The debut EP is nearly 18 minutes of downright enchanting guitar pop that is effective in escaping the background clutter that can sometimes result when multitudes of musicians are involved. Very nice... and we highly suggest taking a few moments to listen. Here is the lead track for you...
MP3: This Must Be Love
Posted by 4casey4 at 7:15 PM
Sunday, October 05, 2008
So we spent another Sunday morning, with beers, sitting on the front porch watching elderly couples gently helping each other down front steps for church. It really is one of the charming aspects of calling middle-America home, regardless of the fact we would most certainly burst into flames upon entering any house of worship. Not to worry though, this time we remain non-combustible and only needed to visit our email inbox for great new music. Church is the experimental trio of Brandon Laws (vocals, guitar, moog, taurus, banjo), Richard Laws (vocals, drums, sampler) and Cristof Hendrickson (fender rhodes, minimoog, omnichord, glockenspiel) from Portland Oregon. A first listen to today's featured track, Happiness reveals exactly what the title suggests. From the initial keys that build into something of a quick guitar tribute to both Big Dipper and Bow Wow Wow in under two minutes, Church managed to capture the warmest depths of our ears... and then some. The featured song we now adore belongs to a So-Hi-Tek Records release, titled Gold and you can listen to more upon visiting the Church MySpace page. Happiness is more than alright.
Posted by 4casey4 at 8:50 PM
Saturday, October 04, 2008
Ok... this one is beautiful, so we will spare everyone another extended blather-fest. MML friend Az, of previously featured music project Disco Ditto, gave us the heads-up on what we would consider a textbook example of how to make the both of us melt in our house slippers. Sharesprings is a Jakarta, Indonesia-based quartet consisting of members Abdul Wahid Sabilillah (bass, vocals), Rusli Budianto (drums), Riftyza Gestandi (guitar, vocals) and Ardhi Yudho (guitar, vocals) that formed as a complete band in 2006. There is more music to check out upon visiting the Sharesprings MySpace page and we highly suggest taking a few moments to do so. Since the myspazz music player is down for an extended repair session at present (completely fucked forever), we only needed to skip down the street in order to borrow a cup of sugar from neighboring music blog Coast Is Clear. Today's featured track is listed as a demo but it really is difficult to imagine anything else needing to be done here... just lovely!
MP3: Ceiling Blossom
Posted by 4casey4 at 10:04 AM
Friday, October 03, 2008
One of the cool things we encounter in maintaining this music blog is occasionally e-bumping into people who also spread the word and sounds of good music. This time around, we received a nice message from JAX who runs the west coast music blog Rock Insider. Aside from her long time blog, JAX also runs a Los Angeles-based label, aptly named Jaxart Records (Jaxart MySpace), that just released a brand new EP from a band we originally featured back in March 2006. Rademacher is an ever-evolving music project from Fresno, California which has undergone enough lineup changes to leave us hard pressed in giving an accurate headcount at present. There are plenty of releases available, beginning with an outstanding series of EPs as well as the band's first full length album Stunts that we recommend checking out. Now included in their discography is the most recent (as of three days ago) offering, titled ERA EP, which brings to mind an initial, however unexpected, comparison in something of a middle ground between unlikely bookends Polyphonic Spree and Yo La Tengo. Whether or not you agree after listening to today's featured track, the sound works well and ERA EP is more than a good reason for us to hope for another full length release... some day soon?
MP3: If U Know
*Bonus* From the 2006 EP Heart Machine:
MP3: You're Never Gonna Hear From Me
Posted by 4casey4 at 6:06 PM
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
We really should make an effort to check our email inbox a bit more closely, or at least loosen the filter in my brain as to what constitutes PR firm megamail. I received a message the other day from a friend of MML who just so happens to run the lovely music blog Powerpopulist, regarding a band we remembered (if only by name) receiving information on and unfortunately overlooking. What we mistakenly thought was another one of "those" emails around a month ago, now turns out to be something of a must listen for those of you who share our footwear-fixation when exploring new music. My First Days On Junk is a five piece rock outfit consisting of primary musician Steven Hazen Williams (guitars, bass, percussion, vocals), along with Colin Clary (vocals), Jason Routhier (drums), Jedidiah Mayer (drums) and Brooke Dooley (vocals) from Burlington, Vermont. They've been around since 2003 and now have a brand new, sophomore release through State Capital Records, titled No Order. If you are already listening to the featured track right now, it might be easy to understand our thought of any given late 1980s/early 1990s haughty traditionalist having an impossible time looking down the nose at this music. In the same breath, this new offering seems to present the perfect introduction for unfamiliar listeners to this particular genre of music. The swirling guitars that caught our initial attention are complimented by an equally effective series of low-key songs which are threaded warmly into No Order. For more raised eyebrows and perked ears, a visit to the My First Days On Junk MySpace page as well as the MFDOJ website is recommended. Have a listen..
MP3: Try Hard
Friday, September 26, 2008
If you frequent the MML blog and just so happen to keep up to date with Swedish label Labrador Records, today's featured artist will be no surprise to you. Not because of any similarity in a sound that could easily be mistaken as having a nouveau-shoegaze influence, or even that the band hails from a country of choice for plenty of our content. Instead, it might be obvious (for those who have skipped ahead to listen while reading) that the combination of heavy noise and beautiful pop would be an instant favorite for us. There might not be any other way to describe the manipulated feedback involved in this track, other than something of a semi-functioning hairdryer accompanied by a coin-operated car wash vacuum cleaner, but if you can think of something fun we would be more than interested to hear it. The Legends are a nine piece from Stockholm, Sweden fronted by multi-instrumentalist Johan Angergård who started the band in 2003. Today's featured listen will end up being a single that is set for a release date of November 5, through Labrador, and we highly suggest a listen. This is beautiful noise that leaves us rather smitten. Enjoy.
MP3: Seconds Away
Posted by 4casey4 at 12:23 PM
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
As concerned as we are about the world economy and the ridiculous political stunt that was leveled upon our country today, by a supposed war hero no less?... uggg, we have decided to turn away and wish for a happy place we can share. Imagine yourself at an outdoor summer festival, cold beer(s) in hand, sitting on a lush lawn with eyes closed enjoying the music... now that's more like it!! Fest is an aptly titled song that was recorded, in various forms, for an EP and LP last year and the 8+ minutes of this instrumental track provides us with a much needed warm fuzzy feeling. BlindPlace is a four-piece consisting of Hiroshi Sanse (vocals, guitar), Koji Tsuruno (percussion), Syun Katsumi (bass guitar) and Haruhiko Sagawa (guitars) from Tokyo, Japan. There are a pair of additional songs to download on the BlindPlace website as well as some more information if you visit the BlindPlace MySpace page and/or the Pure Volume profile... This song is quite nice and the perfect distraction from our deteriorating daily news.
Posted by 4casey4 at 10:06 PM
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
The Beijing Tangs have a name that might bring to mind a lost gang from the classic 1979 film The Wanderers or even a give the impression they are a slick-ass media-cultivated rockabilly outfit from NYC, but we can assure you they are neither. Bandmates Mike Parkin and Nick Olsen (sharing vocal/guitar/bass duties) started out as a recording project and have since added Mario on percussion earlier this year to complete a full trio plenty of you will be more than pleased with. The influences involved are decidedly shoegaze-era, however, an undeniable sound that falls somewhere between later favorites Ride and Swervedriver is what struck our collective fancy after a few listens. You can find more music upon visiting this Scottsdale, Arizona band at The Beijing Tangs MySpace page and there will hopefully be a website, at some point, to coincide with the full length release they mention is in the works. There is also the amazing possibility of of a split EP with previously featured lovelies Skylight and, to be honest, both of our heads would probably explode if that one arrived in the post. Let's have a listen... shall we?
MP3: Faster Than The Dream
Sunday, September 21, 2008
So we open the mailbox that barely hangs from the side of our house late last week and, after sorting through various coupons and credit bills, a package containing the CD we have been waiting for had finally arrived. With the brand new debut release, titled Earth Beings On Exhibit, from Washington, DC trio Girl Loves Distortion now in hand, a decision was made to do the unthinkable. Review this music in the car?? Oh yes, our trusty mobile sound unit (Mazda 3) was put to good use as our otherwise mundane series of daily tasks were fulfilled and the outcome was more than we ever could have expected. No, this is not a bad episode of Top Gear, but after starting up the car to the amazing lead track we featured back in February, a quick stop to the local fuel station revealed a JSBX-threaded gem in Luminance, while our extended drive to northern Kentucky in search of cheap cigarettes offered even more of the music we can now easily recommend. From the scorching guitars that introduce Earth Beings On Exhibit, with the track Transition + Resistance, to the ramped-down conclusion of Upstart, GLD maintains a tension that serves to remind us of the possibility they could become unglued at any given moment. This is a beautiful thing the hierarchy of new(er) Washington DC bands have seemingly forgotten... so a listen to the previously featured song is a mandatory refresher course.
MP3: Transition + Resistance
Earth Beings On Exhibit was just released on new label Etxe Records (Etxe MySpace) and is currently available through fabled DC label Dischord Records. You can find more of the music at the Girl Loves Distortion MySpace page as well as some insight into the dislocated honesty we have come to love at the Girl Loves Distortion website. Since the band was generous enough to give us an opportunity to post another track, we bring you a steady, driving slug fest plucked from somewhere in the middle of this gem of a debut. Enjoy!
MP3: Psychic Raygun
Posted by 4casey4 at 10:20 PM
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
It's hard to believe it actually happened, but those hurricane winds that originated in the Gulf of Mexico made their way up to southwestern Ohio on Sunday, at category one strength, ripping apart trees and houses while leaving a half million people in our area alone without power or internet service. We are grateful, however, to report that the new house was untouched and our internet service is back up to full speed in order to bring you a great band this evening. Summer Jets are the Bedfordshire, UK duo of Mark Mills (guitar, bass, keyboard, tech geek) and Suzy Mills (lovely vocals, bass, tech geek) who have been members of various bands since the late 1980s. If some of you MML regulars have taken the high road and skipped past my endless blathering to listen, the sound will be satisfying and distinct. 50 Reasons is the most recent track from the band, and it might have admirers of traditional wall-of-sound shoegaze raising more than an eyebrow as all out Lush fans will probably need to be removed from the ceiling of any given room in which they happen to be listening. Oh, it's that good. There is currently no website for the band, so you will need to visit the Summer Jets MySpace page for more music/video as well as their Silver Sound MySpace page where you can find an impressive listing of gear Mark and Suzy have commandeered over the years... check the blog section for sure.
MP3: 50 Reasons
Interesting Note: The last live or, at least public, performance took place just a couple of weeks ago in the kitchen of Andy Clegg (yes that Andy Clegg) formerly of The Chameleons (Chameleons MySpace) and The Sun And The Moon. I must admit that I was completely unaware of these bands before this post but Michelle assures me they were both well in circulation during her early 1990s tenure at Reading, UK record shop The Sound Machine. (Well yeah, they'd been around for a decade or so at that point! - M.) Anyway... Andy ended up providing accompaniment in the form of a children's drum set and we can only hope someone videotaped the event. We love Summer Jets.
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
As we've mentioned many times in the past, Subroutine Records (Subroutine MySpace) is a Netherlands based label that we keep in touch with on a regular basis and there seems to be no shortage of outstanding new music emanating from their lineup. This time around, we have the chance to offer up a band we originally featured as part of our first Milk Mixer almost one year ago. Vox Von Braun is the impressive, fuzz-tastic collective of Wymer Vaatstra (vocals, guitar), Ben Wennekers (guitar, organ), Maike Doornebosch (bass, backing vocals) and Janwillem van der Veen (drums) from Groningen, Netherlands. The band has a brand new, debut, full length release, titled Something Ain't Wrong, and we can easily suggest a proper first listen. Here you go...
From the 2008 full length debut Something Ain't Wrong:
MP3: When Did You Become So Popular
One of the things we love about Vox Von Braun is the playful approach they take in recognizing their varied and semi-retro influences while maintaining a unique, strong sound that stands more than well enough on its own. For additional new music, you can visit the Vox Von Braun MySpace page and also check out the Vox Von Braun website. A very cool event will take place later this month in nearby Tilburg as the band takes stage on September 20 at the ZXZW Independent Culture Festival. As an extra bonus, the following is a live video for the track Julia... oh yes, we love this band.
Posted by 4casey4 at 9:59 PM
Monday, September 08, 2008
Another week at the day-job/office has begun for the both of us, and refreshed or content is probably the last way I would describe one of these type of days. Often times I think the music we find, or that finds us, is one of the bright spots that help us maintain a semi-reasonable level of sanity... and today's featured artist is just what we needed. Haruki is the experimental music project of a multi-instrumentalist named Boris from Ghent, Belgium. His impressive repertoire of shared musical endeavors with a number of international contributors, along with plenty of additional tracks from new and previous releases can be found on the Haruki MySpace page. From what information we were generously given, the evolution from purely electronic music to more of an acoustic sound (including banjo, accordion, mandolin and guitar) was a gradual and purposeful one. We highly recommend the following tracks and look forward to a more expanded review of upcoming music.
MP3: I Had It All Planned Out
MP3: In The Garden
Posted by 4casey4 at 9:37 PM
Saturday, September 06, 2008
Around six months ago [March 18, 2008], we featured the swirling shoegaze-threaded music of Chicago, Illinois based outfit Skylight. As mentioned in our previous review, the band has been an on and off project of Perry and Brent since 1990 with the most recent core addition of Kim and her lovely vocals in 2007. Earlier this week, we received a heads up and access to some of the brand new demo material that will eventually belong to a yet-to-be-named debut release that will become available late 2008/early 2009. After listening, we had a difficult time cherry picking for a favorite since all of the tracks were amazingly solid, even if not completely polished, so we decided to post the first one we wrapped our ears around. To be honest, If there were ever any questions as to what exactly we look for where featured music is concerned, this new demo should provide an easy answer. As it turns out, the song we chose to feature was first recorded in 1990 and you can listen to that original version on the Skylight MySpace page. Now we need to get to business with the new music for you:
MP3: As You Leave (demo 2008)
As if that were not enough, Perry & Co. also provided us with an additional track from back in the day.
*Bonus MP3: She Got Lost (1990)
Posted by 4casey4 at 11:43 AM
Thursday, September 04, 2008
If you are a regular visitor to MML and enjoy the darker side of experimental pop, today's offering might serve as another reason to explore and/or follow some of the featured musicians a bit more closely. Our original review of New York City based outfit Phillip Eno took place earlier this year in April and there are now two brand new releases to report. Blueprint is an impressive collection of new songs, while Maybe Tomorrow gives an acoustic look back at some of the band's previous material. Both new albums are freely available for download on the Phillip Eno website and you can also visit the Phillip Eno MySpace page to meet a few like-minded friends. Before I forget, the next live show will take place September 18 at local NYC venue Lit Lounge. Have a few listens?
From the 2008 release Blueprint:
MP3: Try As I Might (highly recommended!)
MP3: Your Name
From the 2008 acoustic release Maybe Tomorrow:
Wednesday, September 03, 2008
Our most recent (unannounced) mini-vacation turned out to be an enjoyable week with family in from overseas and some quality time spent mostly away from computers, but it really is good to be back with music we could wait no longer to feature. While away, I had the chance to take in a fair amount of lo-fi/swirling noise rock from the inbox which ended up being an instantly favorable series of spins and so, with that being said, it may seem strange that we decided to return with a crisp guitar-based indie pop artist instead of our original plan to come out of our corner pelting you with an array of distortion pedals... ohh, but just you have a listen. Kai Reiner is a musician based in Hamburg, Germany who kindly sent us a copy of his brand new self-titled release. After listening to several rotations, we will not attempt to paint this as anything close to complicated or avant-garde in any way, shape or form. Instead, what we found was a solid catch-driven collection of well crafted songs we can highly recommend from start to finish. For more music and information on purchasing this summer 2008 release, check out the Kai Reiner website as well as the compulsory Kai Reiner MySpace page. Hopefully you are already listening... enjoy.
MP3: Cold Summer
Posted by 4casey4 at 8:56 PM