Sunday, December 20, 2009

Renminbi: Surface EP

A Sunday evening this close to the holidays could have easily found us in a tangle on the couch with ambient beardy-man music echoing endlessly throughout the house... yeah, right. With the correct volume levels, floorboards should be rattling around your computer right about now. Our original review of Brooklyn, New York duo Renminbi happened just over two years ago in November 2007, and we now have some belated news to report as an update/highlight before 2009 is in the books. Founding musician Lisa Liu (guitar, vocals) along with SMV (keyboards, vocals) have received a well-deserved amount of attention since our initial mention and have released their most recent collection of songs, titled Surface EP, which was produced by Don Fleming (Dinosaur Jr, Sonic Youth) earlier this year. For a perfect balance of building tension and the recurring flurry of guitar goodness serving as release, we can offer the following track, Set-Up, as an instant favourite from Surface. Have a listen and also visit the Renminbi MySpace page for additional music and information.

MP3: Set-Up

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Elisa Ferrari

Surprising as it may seem, Austin, Texas has never really been a frequent destination for our music explorations. Not that we have anything against the enormous annual arts festival or equally regarded music scene all of those other days the year has to offer. It just seems a daunting task to sort through the gazillion or so artists who happen to inhabit this particular music mecca. That all changes today as we bring you a lovely female vocalist and her unique take on traditional American folk music. Elisa Ferrari is an Argentinian-born singer/songwriter based in Austin who has spent most of her life surrounded by musical influence. From receiving a nylon-stringed guitar as a childhood Christmas present from her uncle, to a Master's degree in ethnomusicology, Ferrari continues her momentum having assembled a backing troupe of local musicians and releasing a November 2009 full-length album titled Isla de Niños. Let's get started with a preview... shall we?

MP3: Yellow Box

For those who are already listening with interest, the balance of music contained within the new album Isla de Niños is an equally impressive and beautiful listen. If the haunting accompaniment of piano, resonating bells and clever hints of guitar were not enough to send your senses off to sea, Ms. Ferrari's warm vocals might easily have you settling into a favourite chair, cocktail in hand and head kicked back, for a blurry ceiling fan meditation session. An unexpected, yet welcomed treat for late 2009. As for the new year, Elisa Ferrari will be performing live on January 15 at local Austin venue Momo's. One last gem of a song from this latest release...

MP3: Bali

Sunday, December 06, 2009

The Sky Drops: Christmas Feels Like Halloween

After releasing their long-awaited debut album Bourgeois Beat earlier this year, which was featured here in August 2009, the Wilmington, Delaware duo of Rob Montejo and Monika Bullette probably could have perched on a successful new release and just watched as well-deserved attention rolled in. Instead, The Sky Drops have remained both active and incredibly festive in deciding to record a holiday song, titled Christmas Feels Like Halloween, that we can now share. It seems like only yesterday we first made mention of this outstanding band. *sniff*

MP3: Christmas Feels Like Halloween

*Bonus Track* Monika along with legendary musician Hangnail Philips from a few years ago... classic!

MP3: The Finest Gifts

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

MML Video Update: Little Big Adventure

Little Big Adventure is a Stockholm, Sweden based solo music project we originally mentioned back in May 2009 as one of a handful of new releases from Labrador Records. We now have an update for this particular artist with a new video of the lovely song Happiest Times which belongs to The Hateful Eye EP we featured earlier this year. Have a look at what could easily be our return from the pubs on any given evening, and a listen to this beautiful song.

As an added bonus we found while poking around, there is also a Little Big Adventure website with additional information and a section where plenty of previously recorded songs can be downloaded. A couple of these less recent experimental songs that piqued our interest in a big way...

MP3: I Water Plants
MP3: Ben And Jerrys