Releases under the ‘info’ Category:
as heard on radiospin on April 2nd, 2011
under album, ambient, electronic, indie, info, preview, rock, submitted, trip hop
Rebery was formed in 2006 when Matthew and Elisabeth recorded their first demos, the first one I am a Tear. From there they produced and self-released their first album Dying Species (2007), where all the instruments and programming were recorded by them: a mix of alternative rock with elements of blues, pop, metal and electronic music. Live, Rebery has three aspects, one is more electronic, Matthew and Eli guitar voice, respectively, accompanied by prerecorded bases; another more acoustic, with a warm, intimate sound, just with guitar and voice and finally, one more rock with drums, bass and synthetizers. Their second self-titled album Rebery define all these aspects into a darker but still sweet sound where Black Heat Procession meet Devics, The Gathering meet Massive Attack or simply Matthew meets Elizabeth, and vice-versa.
RELEASE DATE: August 17, 2010
TIME: 39:32 min.
01. Inside of Silence [04:39]
02. Rain Ghost [03:46]
03. Let Me Stay [04:31]
04. Dying Species [04:07]
05. On the Quiet [04:18]
06. Promised Land [06:02]
07. Peeping Angel [04:23]
08. Song for Klaus [05:00]
get it here.
as heard on radiospin on March 13th, 2011
under experimental, folk, indie, info, interview, preview, submitted
So it’s time to talk with Nash Smith & Ganges: this mid-west trio recently released its debut self-titled EP, getting positive reviews from various blogs, such as Music That Matters, Dead As Digital, Neon Waves, and Everything Is Chemical, as well as radioSpin, of course. It’s a really interesting collection of songs: that’s why we want to know them better and now we’re happy they accepted to answer a couple of questions.
ARTIST: Nash Smith & Ganges
LABEL: Pretty All Right
LATEST ALBUM: Nash Smith & Ganges
MEMBERS: Mark Arciaga, Rob Kenagy, Melissa Smith
RADIOSPIN - A very classic and over-abused question to break the ice: why the name Nash Smith and Ganges? You are a three-piece band, right? Maybe each words has something to do with each one of you, or there is another reason?
ROB – I’ve been performing as Ganges for a while now. It’s the name of a small town in Michigan, and obviously a river in India. My friend Steve came up with the name and it stuck. Both places are interesting, holy pieces of the globe.
MELISSA – I was Nash Smith as a solo artist: I guess it imparts some gender ambiguity, and ambiguity is always good. The Nash part comes by way of a town which was my email address, which a friend started calling me, and it stuck, much like in the Ganges case.
RADIOSPIN - Your bio is quite unusual (“[...] combine one part of honey with three part of whiskey, add a borderline Vaudevillian temptress, a backwoods noise junkie, a musical bibliofreak, and a dash of lemon [...]“) and radioSpin really appreciated to read something different form a list of people/places/musical genres: it sounds at the same time ironic and poetical. Who did write it down? Melissa? And why did you decide to take this solution? Is it only a way to try not to be ordinary or these are the only exact words to describe Nash Smith & Ganges?
ROB – A friend of ours, poet Megan Moriarty wrote that. She just has a good ear for sound, I reckon. It’s not really an attempt to seem ironic, but the band its self is a collaborative process, so why not get other artists involved, too?
MELISSA - We wanted a bio that, in fact, was somewhat unusual. We have a friend, a fantastic up and coming poet called Megan Moriarty, who writes poetry that is expressive, charming, funny, and evocative in surprising ways. We thought she would be perfect for writing our bio since she knows us and we knew she’d come up with something very unique. I added a bit of prose after the EP was released.
RADIOSPIN - Tell us something about the mid-west indie music scene: is simple/difficult making music round there? Some noteworthy bands/labels/clubs?
ROB – It’s simple in that there’s no lack of imagination in the mid-west and folks for the most part are interested in live music regardless of what you’re playing: so that’s cool. I’m mostly familiar with the Chicago scene, and there’s an abundance of cool, interesting music coming out of there.
MELISSA – The mid-west indie music scene is really, really different depending on where you live. Some places, like Milwaukee, are very insular, with only a handful of artists breaking through. I think, in part, this has to do with the presence of so many “homegrown” artists. In the case of Chicago and Minneapolis, people actually move there to pursue music or other artistic endeavors, but I think it’s pretty difficult to stand out in larger cities like those because there are so many talented musicians and, frankly, there’s just lots to do! Milwaukee has, surprisingly, lots of experimentation with music, lots of weird jazz. There’s a DIY venue there called Borg Ward that’s really great. Chicago has so much to do: the Hideout is such an amazing place because of its diverse offerings. I’m also a fan of the Numero label (and wish I had enough money to buy everything they have on vinyl). Permanent Records is a super record store around the corner from where I used to live and recently a small, cool label. Right now we’re in the South which has a different feeling altogether.
RADIOSPIN - Let’s start speaking about your debut EP. It has been recorded inside a former general store turned into restaurant in Eggleston, Virginia, right? Why this choice? Tell us something more about these recording sessions.
ROB - That place is haunted in the best way imaginable.
MELISSA - We also really wanted to get away from our own places. There are too many distractions if we try to work at home, I’ve learned, and we have roommates/dogs/etc. The Palisades is really in the middle of nowhere and a regular haunt for us. You have to drive up a winding road up a mountain and across the New River (which, by the way, flows northward) and into Eggleston to find it. Blink, and you’ve missed it. We spent two weekends recording (one for recording the music, one for the vocals and miscellaneous overdubs). Basically, we set up in different locations in this huge room and ran through several takes of a song and moved on. It was a lot of work. I was very, very sick and couldn’t speak for two-three weeks, so that comical at best and taxing at worst. Occasionally a train would go by while we were playing. We wanted to keep it really minimal. We had a mic set up across the room to pick up the amazing reverb in the room: I think it comes through best in Dress.
MARK - Melissa had played solo piano there and loved the acoustics of the room, so when we were trying to think of an interesting place to record, she suggested the restaurant. We all agreed that it would be both fun and different. The recordings were done primarily in the morning, while the restaurant was closed, although kitchen staff were working and occasionally a train would roll by! The recordings were done live and it took a while to position ourselves in such as way as to maximize the sonic potential of the room. Ultimately, we’re really pleased with the end result!
RADIOSPIN - The cover art of “Nash Smith & Ganges” reminds of the good old cassette-case. Who did have this idea? And why? Only a nostalgic/vintage solution or there is something more behind it?
MELISSA - We didn’t want to do a CD and we’re all analog junkies in one way or another, but we couldn’t afford vinyl, so a cassette became an interesting option. As a touring band, we also needed to have something to sell at concerts, so a digital only format seemed wrong for us. The cover art is meant to evoke the old 4AD covers of the 80s. I played with loads of ideas for the cover art, but the one that stuck was the warmth and nostalgia of this one.
MARK - The cover art IS a cassette! The physical release of our EP is on cassette. Since the EP was self-released (i.e. funded by ourselves) we had to be creative about a physical product (we would love to have released it on 12″ vinyl, but the cost was too high). None of us were really interested in releasing a CD and the audio on tapes has a warmth and unique hiss in the background that sort of adds to the overall listening experience (much in the same way that vinyl has its own unique pops and hiss).
RADIOSPIN - What about your musical path? Why did you start playing? When/where did you learn playing? Are you self-taught or did you studied somewhere?
ROB - I’ve been messing around on instruments for a long time, just trying to make noise. I had a fantastic guitar teacher in high school: I learned all the Nirvana songs, and needed someone to show me something else to do.
MELISSA - I’ve been piano since I was 3 and it’s just laziness that I didn’t study music in college. I’m a Suzuki kid. I also play guitar and flute (I taught myself guitar when I was 15 by listening to PJ Harvey and the Beatles).
MARK - I started playing drums at 14 in a punk band (I’d started on guitar, but no one needed a guitarist). The people I played with basically put me behind a drum kit and I learned by listening to lots of Minor Threat and Black Flag and copied what their drummers did. As my musical influences expanded, I began incorporating them in my drumming also. I’ve played with several different bands and I wouldn’t say I have any particular style: I just listen to the song at hand and come up with something tasteful that fits its style.
RADIOSPIN – And what about musical influences? Choose three albums you love and three band/artists you’d say your favourite.
ROB - Right now, here are my albums:
1) Spacemen 3, “The Perfect Prescription”.
2) Van Dyke Parks, “Discover America”.
3) John Fahey, “The Transfiguration of Blind Joe Death”.
and my three bands (artists):
1) Chuck Berry.
2) Jim O’Rourke.
3) Neil Young.
MELISSA - Right now, I love:
1) Peter Gabriel, “3″.
2) Peter Gabriel, “4″.
3) Siouxie and the Banshees, “Hyaena”.
2) Kate Bush.
3) Randy Newman (especially after that awesome Oscars speech).
MARK - Great albums that just popped into my head:
1) Stereolab, “Transient Random-Noise Bursts with Announcements”.
2) Spiritualized, “Ladies and Gentlemen We are Floating in Space”.
3) Cocteau Twins, “Heaven or Las Vegas”.
three all time favorites:
1) The Smiths.
2) Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds.
3) Tom Waits.
RADIOSPIN - Could you briefly describe your music-making process?
ROB - Melissa comes in with completed songs. I come in with little fragments of songs and make Mark and Melissa suffer through intense, often incomprehensible changes until it feels right.
MELISSA - Ha, Right. I often try to finish a song in an afternoon, arrangements and all. Sometimes I have a notion of what Rob/Mark will do with them, but I end up being completely surprised. The songs often end up morphing after several months of playing due to new ideas in sound. It’s all very deliberate for me, in the beginning, though.
MARK - Some of the songs already existed in solo incarnations: we all contributed to new (sometimes radical) rearrangements of those. For the newer/new songs, we talk a bit about how we envision the song and how we can attain the particular qualities we imagine. Sometimes, Melissa will have a drum beat in mind or I might have some structural ideas, or Rob will improvise an amazing guitar part: it all comes together somehow. We’re all very close and have a good intuition about what each other wants, sonically: sometimes, we just start making a lot of noise/guitar loops/synth drones and see where that takes us.
RADIOSPIN – I hope I’m wrong, but I guess you aren’t able to live with what you earn with music by now, what’s your secondary occupation?
ROB - Right now I teach English composition to college freshmen.
MELISSA - I used to teach English composition, but most recently I worked in a library.
MARK - Not yet, anyways! I work as an assistant cataloger at a university library.
RADIOSPIN - The EP has been released on a small Chicago label (Pretty All Right). Why this one in particular?
NASH SMITH & GANGES – Our friend Tom runs the label: Rob and Tom have been working together on various projects for the past few years, so we wanted him to be involved. He was gracious enough to say yes.
RADIOSPIN – Are you interested in some other form of art besides music (painting, poetry/literature, film/video etc.)?
ROB - I’m studying towards a Master of Fine Arts in Poetry at Virginia Tech.
MELISSA - I’m particularly interested in film and applied arts. I often write with a vision, more or less, in the back of my head. I actually just wrote a song that was specifically inspired by the film Metropolis: not simply the words, but the ambiance and feeling (cold, mechanical, urban alienation and so forth). I also studied literature, so I sometimes approach songwriting under the influence of a particular writer/setting/theme.
RADIOSPIN – Do you have the shooting of a music video on your to-do-list? Some idea about it? Which of your songs are you planning to choose?
ROB - Nope. But now that you mention it…
MELISSA - Our friend, Natalie Gibbs, who took some photographs for us also has a stop-start video in the works.
RADIOSPIN – radioSpin is a music-blog, so let’s talk about web and music: do you think that free music sharing on the internet is a bad or a good chance of promotion for new bands? Are there more pros or more contros?
ROB - The cons are that people have stopped absorbing music: I’ve listened to that new Radiohead album at least 5 times now, and all I can remember is that it was interesting. I was too busy e-mailing my sister and trying to identify a bird online, I never actually listened to the complexities of the album. I guess if you take the tracks offline it’s different, but streaming music online (while I do it daily) never feels like a full experience. Maybe I’m alone on that, though.
The pros are that more people get to hear your music, and its easier to find more obscure bands than it used to be.
MELISSA - I agree. I remember waiting in line to buy both Kid A and Amnesiac at midnight of their release and then went home and listened to them twice: no distractions, laying down, headphones. A con is that there is a deluge of bands/artists, making it difficult to sift through them. That’s where blogs come in, as arbiters. I really love that there are blogs out there specifically aimed to find new music, not simply the music everyone else is writing about; but, good blogs like that are difficult to find. Ideally, in our case, putting our music online would encourage people to see our shows, not necessarily to get signed/be famous. The ultimate goal for a band is longevity, which isn’t possible without sustainability. Unfortunately, we live in a place which is so small that we don’t have a chance to see bands: in this case, music sharing is especially valuable for us. We also buy music in its finished, product form, which is important, especially if it’s released on LP or cassette.
MARK - I’m a big fan of music sharing and always have been since the days of dual cassette decks, so naturally, perhaps, I’m a huge supporter of music sharing on the internet. We are a new band and we’ve been really lucky to have some blogs (yourself included) support us by showing us to their readers. I can say that it’s an incredibly effective means of getting your music out to a lot of people very quickly: in the 80s, DIY band promotion was primarily via word-of-mouth and ‘zines, which, although wonderful and revolutionary (not to mention truly independent) were structurally limited in their scope; with the internet, a band can get an unbelievable amount of exposure with a computer, email address, and internet connection! The debate over music sharing is certainly complex and subtle: I can appreciate both viewpoints, but for us, with the band’s nascency, it’s hard to find any cons.
RADIOSPIN – What social networks are you using to promote your work?
MARK - Our primary online presence is a Tumblr page which links to most all of our social networking sites, including, Twitter, MySpace, Facebook, BandCamp. The Tumblr page also has review, a link to buy the EP, photos/artwork, upcoming tour dates, etc.
RADIOSPIN – So, in the end, give us three links we should click on absolutely.
MELISSA - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ON8lVgJxMQA (Peter Gabriel plays with a Fairlight: amazing) and http://www.gb.nrao.edu/nrqz/ (this is not far from us, and I just learned of its existence: it is the only place in this country like this)
MARK - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cKPGzX5kZd0 (amazing BBC documentary on the BBC Radiophonic Workshop).
get it here.
as heard on radiospin on March 10th, 2011
under album, cover, folk, indie, info, preview, recommended
It’s about time that Sara Lov recorded a proper covers album. The former Devics singer has already lent her voice to reinterpretations of Arcade Fire’s My Body Is A Cage and Beck’s Timebomb on her Young Eyes EP. For I Already Love You, her second full solo album and first on her own label Splinter Records, she and producer Zac Rae (Fiona Apple, Gnarls Barkley) tackle ten more artists, from Magnetic Fields to Elvis Costello: everyone in the service of her beautiful sweet voice.
ARTIST: Sara Lov
TITLE: I Already Love You
RELEASE DATE: February 17, 2011
TIME: 36:20 min.
01. Square Heart [03:06]
02. Papa Was A Rodeo [05:01]
03. Hold Me Now [04:25]
04. Just My Heart Talkin’ [02:24]
05. There Was a Light That Never Goes Out [04:36]
06. The World We Knew [03:09]
07. Winter Is Blue [02:52]
08. La Bambola [03:56]
09. Cape Canaveral [04:02]
10. I Want to Vanish [02:49]
get it here.
The 1900s‘ second record, Return of the Century, seems refreshing in its straight-faced sunniness: it leaves behind the 60s fetishism and faux-country that make their 2007 debut Cold & Kind sound nowadays like a superior proto-Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeroes, opting instead for a spotless pop sound that your kid sister wouldn’t object to. This six-piece has claimed inspiration from cult activity in the Arizona desert and apocrypha regarding the Incredible String Band, and maybe these unlikely thematic considerations have something to do with the surprising depth and cohesiveness of this breezy half-hour batch.
ARTIST: The 1900s
TITLE: Return of the Century
RELEASE DATE: November 20, 2010
TIME: 35:35 min.
01. Amulet [02:35]
02. Lay A Ghost [03:00]
03. Kidnap Runaway [03:02]
04. Lions Fur [03:44]
05. Tucson [03:13]
06. Zerkalo [02:40]
07. Bmore [03:16]
08. Babies [03:30]
09. Overreactin’ [03:17]
10. Jean Demon [03:59]
11. Sanzimat [03:19]
get it here.
as heard on radiospin on February 16th, 2011
under album, electronic, indie, info, preview, recommended, remix, rock
Matilda is the second album from British outfit Stateless. Produced by Damian Taylor (Björk, The Prodigy) the album sees the band move from the DJ Shadow influenced sound of their debut to a more glitch based electronic sound: a true mix of styles all brought together by Chris James‘ soulful vocals.
LABEL: Ninja Tune
RELEASE DATE: February 21, 2011
TIME: 49:19 min.
01. Curtain Call [06:15]
02. Ariel [03:32]
03. Miles to Go [04:25]
04. Visions [02:59]
05. Assassinations [04:11]
06. Red Sea [02:00]
07. I’m On Fire [05:22]
08. Ballad of NGB [03:30]
09. Song fot the Outsider [05:16]
10. Junior [04:38]
11. I Shall Not Complain [07:11]
get it here.
as heard on radiospin on January 31st, 2011
under album, electronic, indie, info, preview, recommended
Ladies and gentlemen please welcome back Cut/Copy. Ever the gracious houseguests, they’re returning armed with their 3rd and most ambitious work yet, Zonoscope. This is Cut/Copy boiled down to their purest form: a suite of futuristic visions built upon primal rhythm tracks. It is at once their most immediate work to date but also their most sonically exquisite. Zonoscope was dreamt in the comedown of In Ghost Colours, the album which cemented Cut/Copy as a global sensation. Recorded over a 6 month and mixed in Atlanta by Ben H. Allen (Animal Collective, Gnarls Barkley, Deerhunter), Zonoscope paints a mesmerizing picture, conjured by a band at the height of their powers.
LABEL: Modular Interscope
RELEASE DATE: March 8, 2011
TIME: 61:25 min.
01. Need You Now [06:09]
02. Take Me Over [05:50]
03. Where I’m Going [03:34]
04. Pharaohs & Pyramids [05:28]
05. Blink and You’ll Miss a Revolution [04:17]
06. Strange Nostalgia for the Future [02:06]
07. This Is All We’ve Got [04:43]
08. Alisa [04:07]
09. Hanging Onto Every Heartbeat [04:37]
10. Corner of the Sky [05:29]
11. Sun God [15:05]
get it here.
as heard on radiospin on November 27th, 2010
under album, indie, info, preview, RBR, rock, submitted
After 3 years, alt rock trio The Wireflys have just released their first full length album The World We Live. Over this time, the band has surfaced only to play a few live shows, sharing the stage with the likes of British India, Grafton Primary, Kisschasy and Bluejuice. This debut (described as “powerful, harmonious, heart thumping and epic”) has been produced by the bands vocalist/bassist Chris Tester, and while illustrating inventive focus during production, captures the bands live energy and dynamic.
ARTIST: The Wireflys
TITLE: The World We Live
RELEASE DATE: October 10, 2010
TIME: 36:11 min.
01. Bread, Not Bombs [04:10]
02. All This Lies [02:18]
03. Take You Home [03:59]
04. Go [02:33]
05. Taylor’s Reign [03:38]
06. Brown Suits, Black Ties [03:40]
07. Paranoia Jayne [03:44]
08. Since You Noticed [02:57]
09. If Truth Were A Currency Your Pokets Would Be Empty [04:24]
10. The World We Live [04:50]
as heard on radiospin on October 29th, 2010
under album, bonus, EP, indie, info, pop, preview, recommended, rock
Two CD release, the seventh and final album from this band led by Robert Wratten, formerly of The Field Mice and Northern Picture Library. The first disc is the album Fast Trains & Telegraph Wires while the second one is a seven track EP entitled Cicely Tonight (volume one). These songs find the band more intense, organic and spirited than we’ve heard them up to now, giving us the more detailed, subtle, melancholy side of the band, one of their trademark.
ARTIST: Trembling Blue Stars
TITLE: Fast Trains & Telegraph Wires / Cicely Tonight (volume one)
RELEASE DATE: October 19, 2010
TIME: 71:37 min.
01. My Face For the World to See [03:19]
02. All Our Tomorrows [03:40]
03. In Arrivals [04:19]
04. Frosting [04:58]
05. The Imperfection of Memory [03:40]
06. The Dark World of the Broken [06:07]
07. Cold Colours [03:46]
08. Half-Light [03:35]
09. Tropic of Capricorn [03:17]
10. The Last Four Winters of the War / Grey Silk Storm [06:27]
11. The Hidden Quarter [04:39]
01. The Floating World [00:57]
02. The Lowest Arc [04:59]
03. Radioactive Decay [05:30]
04. Not For Second Prize [03:27]
05. Outside [05:06]
06. The Floating World (reprise) [01:00]
07. No More Sad Songs [02:52]
as heard on radiospin on May 11th, 2010
under album, download, indie, info, preview, recommended, rock, submitted
The Kinks gone grunge? The 60′s gone 90′s? The rock gone pop without losing any power?
All these things togheter, i guess. Research Turtles seems to take their name from Wes Anderson‘s film The Life Aquatic and surely they share the same electricity of the genial director. Powerful riff, enough distortion and killer harmonies that won’t easily go out of your ears. Research Turtles‘ self-titled debut album was recorded at the legendary Dockside Studios in Maurice, Louisiana, produced by Justin Tocket (Marc Broussard, Sons of William) and it rocks, it pops, it does whatever you want. But it does it good.
ARTIST: Research Turtles
TITLE: Research Turtles
RELEASE DATE: August 14, 2009
TIME: 46:49 min.
01. Let’s Get Carried Away [03:53]
02. Damn [02:56]
03. Mission [02:28]
04. Kiss Her Goodbye [03:47]
05. Cement Floor [03:56]
06. The Riff Song [04:09]
07. Tomorrow [03:31]
08. Into A Hole [02:59]
09. A Feeling [04:05]
10. 925 [02:24]
11. Break My Fall [12:41]
get it here.
Here Lies Love is a 22 song double-disc song cycle (improbably poignant, decidedly surreal, surprisingly thought provoking) about the rise and fall of the Philippines’ notorious Imelda Marcos. It was conceived by David Byrne, composed by Byrne and British deejay/recording artist Fatboy Slim (aka Norman Cook) and performed by a dream cast drawn from the worlds of indie rock, alt country, R&B and pop. Byrne’s taste in collaborators is as imaginative as it is impeccable, including Cyndi Lauper (who recounts, to lighthearted disco beats, Imelda’s courtship with Ferdinand Marcos), Steve Earle (as the power-hungry Ferdinand), Dap-Kings vocalist Sharon Jones (recalling Imelda’s introduction into New York society) and Natalie Merchant (as spurned Imelda confidante Estrella, anticipating the onset of martial law). Along with vocals turns from such stars as Tori Amos and the B-52‘s Kate Pierson, Byrne works with rising indie rockers St. Vincent and My Brightest Diamond, New York chanteuses Nellie McKay and Martha Wainwright and dance-music divas Roisin Murphy and Santigold. Byrne himself appears as the voice of imperialistic America on American Troglodyte a send-up that wouldn’t have seemed out of places in Talking Heads‘ True Stories.
ARTIST: David Byrne & Fat Boy Slim
TITLE: Here Lies Love
RELEASE DATE: April 04, 2010
TIME: 90:07 min.
01. Here Lies Love [05:51]
02. Every Drop of Rain [05:34]
03. You’ll Be Taken Care of [03:19]
04. The Rose of Tacloban [02:33]
05. How Are You? [02:43]
06. A Perfect Hand [04:57]
07. Eleven Days [02:43]
08. When She Passed By [03:49]
09. Walk Like A Woman [03:58]
10. Don’t You Agree? [03:19]
11. Pretty Face [03:23]
12. Ladies in Blue [04:20]
01. Dancing Together [03:53]
02. Men Will Do Anything [04:06]
03. The Whole Man [04:15]
04. Never So Big [04:00]
05. Please Don’t [03:58]
06. American Troglodyte [04:07]
07. Solano Avenue [03:55]
08. Order 1081 [05:47]
09. Seven Years [05:40]
10. Why Don’t You Love Me? [03:57]