Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Almost a year and a half ago, we featured the trio of Anders, Jon and Martin who make up the Gothenburg, Sweden based outfit Detektivbyrån, as a highlight of our March 2007 post International Experimental 3. Several months later, in August 07, a mention was also made of their music within a semi-substantial music tribute we ridiculously titled Sweder's Digest. After a recent message from the band, we now have the opportunity to bring you some new, outstanding music from the upcoming 14 track album titled Wermland that is set to be self-released by the band on September 3. Before we submit two of the new songs for your review, it is absolutely mandatory that you view this YouTube video of another track from the latest release. The song is for the video Generation Celebration and you might get a better idea of why we are entirely taken with the idea of checking this mostly instrumental act out live one of these days.
Now that we've been sitting out on our back porch listening, with beers and citronella candles to chase away the insects our cats love to play with (*munch*), we need to give this new album a high recommendation. For more music, please make your extended first stop into the Detektivbyrån MySpace page as well as the Detektivbyrån website for downloads and further information. The band also has a blog you can read that is updated regularly. Here are the two songs we promised from the upcoming album Wermland....
MP3: Om Du Möter Varg
Posted by 4casey4 at 10:49 PM
Sunday, July 27, 2008
Here we are at the end of another standard weekend away from various responsibilities... but this is no ordinary Sunday evening by any measure. If you are a regular visitor to our little corner of the music-blog world, you probably already know there are a handful of artists who are acquainted with/adored by MML and are updated frequently. Today's re-featured musician just so happens to be a good friend and, as a result, we all get to have a first listen to the new stuff. Tomihira is the long time music project of San Francisco, California based multi-instrumentalist Dean Tomihira. Our first pair of reviews happened in March and then May of 2006 with a more recent entry to follow again in March of this year. If anyone had a second thought regarding Mr. Tomihira's whereabouts, musically or otherwise, they can now rest assured that good things are well in the works. According to Dean, the plan is to make available one track per month until the brand new full length release, tentatively set to be titled Blackout, is a done deal. For more information, stop into the official Tomihira website or the Tomihira MySpace page to "add" for more compulsory music stalking, as well as a (new to us) Tomihira blog. This new pre-release version of the following track Memory Metal is perfectly warm and lovely... exactly what we have come to expect. Have an extended first listen...
MP3: Memory Metal
Posted by 4casey4 at 10:27 PM
Thursday, July 24, 2008
Instead of our usual long winded drivel, informative or otherwise, and since the majority of tidbits we could find were only available in French language, we decided to present today's featured music on its own with only a few observations. First, let's get to what we do know. Innersky is an energetic electro-rock outfit consisting of founding musicians Jean Ousmane (vocals, guitar, bass) and Alexandre Pradier (programming, bass, guitar, synth) from Paris, France. They began writing music together in 2004 and eventually enlisted the support of fellow musicians Tony Ribeiro (bass) as well as David Laforge (drums), to complete the full band lineup. If you are already listening, there are plenty of impressive, yet subtle, hints of the band's mixed bag of influences including what we heard in the Sonic Youth guitar tones and later JAMC feel in the track In Space. To get the complete picture, we recommend a visit to the Innersky MySpace page for more music and a quality video that was filmed on a local Paris street. There is also an Innersky acoustic MySpace profile with more sounds and a ton of fun pictures of friends in sunglasses for some reason. Have a listen...
MP3: In Space
Posted by 4casey4 at 10:48 PM
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
While the auto (blog) engine is still warm, we want to keep things purring along in posting yet another artist from the Groningen, Netherlands based label Subroutine Records (Subroutine MySpace). Mike Schepers is the musician behind this Zuid (south) Holland undertaking he has crowned Skipper and the upcoming October 2008 release is set to be titled Architecture And Design. The featured track sent our way didn't actually hit us over the head with a shovel during the first few moments, but we quickly became hooked once the strings kicked in properly and the uncomplicated subject matter, accompanied by a catch-tastic melody, took shape... yeah, we get wasted on occasion. There are three more tracks for listening on the Skipper MySpace page and some of you folks overseas will be able to check out a live performance, as part of a Subroutine showcase, August 29 at a very cool Groningen event known as Noorderzon Performing Arts Festival. Thanks again to Koen of SR for sending the music... we owe him quite a few cheap American water-beers at this point.
Posted by 4casey4 at 9:57 PM
Monday, July 21, 2008
So let's just say we decided to ditch our current existence as part time bloggers/full time office dwellers in exchange for a musical commune, of sorts, out in the desert somewhere in the Southwestern United States. Not that we would ever do such a thing (neither of us being able to handle even the driest of heat), but if we did, it would certainly include an effort to recruit today's featured duo to inhabit a modified school bus, makeshift chimney and all, to... aw, who are we kidding? All dreaming and half-joking aside, the once Lawrence, Kansas based, now Portland, Oregonians Melissa Rodenbeek and Hiram Lucke were first featured here in September 2006 with a follow up of the lovely side project Holland Buffalo just this past January 2008. This couple, known to many as The Harvey Girls, now has a brand new full length Circle Into Square Records digital release, titled Nutate, which is an excellent addition to the ever growing catalogue from two of our favorite musicians. You can listen to some of the new tracks while paying a visit to The Harvey Girls MySpace page and also download a ton of stuff, including some very cool cover songs, from The Harvey Girls website. Project after project, this band continues to hold our attention and make us smile gleefully, and that is probably the most important thing about maintaining this music blog. Simply put... we love em.
From the June 2008 digital release Nutate:
MP3: Hey Little Sprout!
Posted by 4casey4 at 10:02 PM
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
This will be a brief post since the email inbox has been a buzzing little bee while we have remained mostly silent, but that all changes now with the first of a series of featured artists who almost had us overlooking their kind messages and outstanding music. In this case, it might have been the band name (I know what you regulars/dry-tank folks are thinking) but don't make the mistake we almost made. Take a listen to this New York City based rock quartet, consisting of founder Boris Skalsky (vocals, songwriting, multi-instrumentalist(ism) along with fellow musicians Paul Wood (guitar), John Hadfield (percussion), Nate Goheen (bass) and you will find a deep, rich sound that brings to mind too many quality influences to mention without exploring our entire catalogue from 20 years ago. The brand new EP, simply titled Fall In, was just released, through KEI Records, and is completely free to download on the Dead Heart Bloom website. You can also find an amazing amount of downloadable music and more information by visiting the Dead Heart Bloom MySpace page. The next live performance will take place tomorrow night, July 16, as the band lights up the stage at Brooklyn venue The Living Room. Oh, and before I forget... the new tracks? Here are a couple of them to sample and enjoy.
MP3: Is This The Way The Good World Will End?
MP3: Come Back
Posted by 4casey4 at 10:09 PM
Monday, July 14, 2008
One of our latest discoveries, now that the move has been made from the urban core and compartment/apartment life of downtown Cincinnati, to the quiet, tree lined streets of Norwood, is that of not having to hover over our laptops for music listening purposes. A quick new setup enables us to drink spirits outside and do yard work while listening to music. Do the neighbors like it? Who knows, but today's featured artist was a great way to spend one of our first evenings outdoors. El Jezel is a shoegaze-influenced three piece consisting of members George Flanagan (guitar, vocals), Jessica Flanagan (bass, vocals) and Dan Killoren (drums) from Astoria (Queens), New York. To start things off, we randomly decided to feature track number one from the brand new full length release The Warm Frequency. I think you will find Glow to be a good representation of what to expect from the new album, and an introduction to the music we have been enjoying.
Believe it or not, my initial thoughts when listening to the first seconds of that track instantly directed my brain towards some of the later material from The Afghan Whigs, but those old memories quickly faded as the band's solid, and equally delightful, personality invaded our ears. Some of the other songs have a decided Yo La Tengo feel, especially when George takes on vocal duties... and that is not a bad thing by any stretch. Here are a couple of songs, one of which is a Breeders cover, that belong to the 2008-released Champagne & Cold Coffee EP. These are really nice.
MP3: Champagne and Cold Coffee
MP3: Do You Love Me Now? (Breeders cover)
Not that we can imagine it, but if the lead song of the EP were not enough, here is an excellent YouTube version of the video for Champagne & Cold Coffee.
The next live performance will take place Thursday, July 17 at neighboring Brooklyn, New York venue Club Europa and more music can be heard/downloaded from the El Jezel website as well as the compulsory El Jezel MySpace page. As a final bonus, the following track, titled Michigan, features George Flanagan on vocals from the Spring 2006 full length release Elements Of Being Put Together. If you didn't get my earlier YLT reference, just listen to this... Lovely.
Posted by 4casey4 at 9:09 PM
Wednesday, July 09, 2008
If anyone made the unfortunate decision to ask me about the current state of affairs involved with the music scene in my hometown of Columbus, Ohio, I would probably respond with nothing more than an empty, blank stare or (at best) a second hand account of a band/personality that hasn't been seen or heard since $1 pitchers of beer sloshed off the bar at 1980s mainstay Crazy Mamas. The whole thing might seem slightly ridiculous if you consider that we are still domiciled in Ohio, and have decided to blather on about music from other parts of the world instead of our own back yard. This time, however, we had an amazing experience back home that we felt the need to share. After receiving a heads up from good friend, Columbus restaurateur and community action hero Elizabeth Lessner, we made our way 100 miles north to the third annual Parking Lot Blowout at her Garden District establishment Surly Girl Saloon. It only took a few steps into the crowd to find numerous friendly faces from the past, including Marcy Mays and Sue Harshe of legendary local band Scrawl as well as (yes the name dropping continues) long-lost acquaintance Will Fugman of the more recent reverb-tastic outfit Brainbow. After a few cups of beer and a walk around the festivities we were ready for what we considered to be the main event...
It has been almost 25 years since my teenage ass first sat on the sidewalk outside of the now long defunct Columbus venue Staches with stolen parents beers in pocket and more of grandfather's Dippity Do in my hair than I care to remember. Of course I was too young to enter the shows, but the sounds that billowed out of that front door still echo in my brain to this day. One of the more memorable people who stepped out of that place on a nightly basis was local musician/record store guru Ron House. Aside from being the front man of Great Plains, Mr. House also sold me some of the first music I can remember falling for (Death of Samantha, Tar Babies, Workdogs... etc.), so when the chance presented itself to experience his band once again, I jumped that very second. The above and below pictures, however amateur, are ones taken from last Saturday's parking lot event.
The set was tight to the point of throwing me back all of those years, while remaining playful enough to gain favor with some of the younger crowd in attendance who may have considered this day an updated, more relevant mini-version of what Comfest could have evolved into. You can find more information at an excellent Great Plains discography website, and an interview (from ten years ago!) with Ron's latest band/incarnation Thomas Jefferson Slave Apartments. After returning home to Cincinnati, some digging was done and a really interesting article was found on the music website Moistworks. The discussion involved origins of the term "indie" and included music from Big Dipper (who we featured here and here) as well as Great Plains. We grabbed a couple of songs from that submission to share and hope you enjoy them. This is great stuff.
From the Born In A Barn LP (Homestead Records 1984)
MP3: Great Plains - Love To The Third Power
From the Naked At The Buy, Sell And Trade LP (Homestead Records 1986)
MP3: Letter To A Fanzine
Finally, we neglected to mention that the SGS Parking Lot Blowout was an all ages event, which allowed us to to bring along my quickly growing daughter-type-weed Abigail. It was especially cool to witness her excitement when she received her very first underage "X" hand stamps at the door... and here she is showing them off.
Big thanks and love to Elizabeth & Co for making our day a wonderful experience! We love you.
Posted by 4casey4 at 9:59 PM
Friday, July 04, 2008
Exactly one year ago today, we posted a quick theme song for the 4th of July holiday before heading out for the festivities (pubs). This year, however, we've decided to throw you directly into the fire with a completely raw, unpolished new offering from a previously featured artist. We originally featured the music of Brooklyn, New York based duo Boy/Girl during Feburary 2007 with a follow up in early July 2007. Since that time, guitarist/vocalist Eric Stiner seems to have relocated to Los Angeles and is now exploring experimental guitar tones with a handful of new friends. Kill Kill Kill is the new project of Mr. Stiner, and the goal explicitly stated on the Kill Kill Kill MySpace page is to release 12 albums during the next 12 months. Eric's progress can be followed and all of the new music can be heard/downloaded by visiting the frequently updated Kill Kill Kill blog. If you are looking for any type of traditional song structure here, a mild amount of heartburn might accompany your first exposure, but if you can sit back, close your eyes and listen at ear-bleed levels, as we have been doing repeatedly, you will more than likely thank us for the introduction.
Enjoy this 4th of July holiday and the following 8+ minutes of fireworks courtesy of Kill Kill Kill...
Bonus: From the Boy/Girl 2007 released Secret Secret Secret Singles EP
MP3: The Shakes
Posted by 4casey4 at 12:32 PM