Archives for October 2010

Short Takes on Three Albums

Lissie - Catching a Tiger Fat Possum My first exposure to Lissie was the excellent "Little Lovin'" - a magical tune that straddles the lines between all out pop and alt-country. The song first appeared on her EP Why You Runnin (also a Fat Possum release) last year. I love this infectious song in all its hand-clapping … [Read more...]

The Gypsy Nomads – Happy Madness

Happy Madness, the fourth album from the duo affectionately know by fans as "Frenchy and the Punk", is chock full of bouncy, fun cabaret punk. The Gypsy Nomads - Samantha Stephenson (percussion, vocals) and Scott Helland (guitar, vocals) - are hard to pin down to any one style. If the Violent Femmes and and Katzenjammer had babies, this is what it … [Read more...]

Buzzard Lope – Daybreak

Daybreak has been a long time coming for Buzzard Lope, over two years in the making, to be exact. Wouldn't it be terrible if their patience was met with apathy or chilliness? Well, the concept of Buzzard Lope is maybe a bit dull but, somehow, they make what they do work. Led by piano, they kind of take The Fray's piano-pop aesthetic, but unlike The … [Read more...]

The Chicago Odense Ensemble needs YOU!

Chicago Odense Ensemble is a unique collaboration with Tortoise, Causa Sui, Isotope 217 musicians. The special album is released online under a subscription/pre-order process. "Despite our best intentions, this project is in danger if it doesn't get enough pre-orders. We need YOU, fans, to support the project by pre-ordering NOW so the album can be … [Read more...]

Julie Christmas releases solo album in November

Brooklyn singer Julie Christmas has announced the upcoming release of her first solo record, The Bad Wife, this fall. Often celebrated for her intense vocal acrobatics in heavy-hitting bands like Made Out of Babies, Battle of Mice and the supergroup Spylacopa (featuring members of The Dillinger Escape Plan, Candiria and Isis), Christmas' solo debut … [Read more...]

Lovers – Dark Light

Since 2001, Carolyn Berk has been the enchanting voice behind Lovers’ sweetly decorated pop gems. As a voice that is both immediately soothing and enthralling, it’s an easy job getting lost in the Portland-based band’s melodically-enriched pop music. For Dark Light, Berk enlisted the help of Kerby Ferris and Emily Kingan in bringing these ten songs … [Read more...]

Stellarscope – Call Me Destroyer

Stellarscope's This Is Who We Are album was released in February and this EP is a follow up of sorts; not quite a new full release but far from merely outtakes from the album sessions either. If the album had an overall feel to it, it was one of Stellarscope displaying a lightness of touch which balanced their weightier moments with some practised … [Read more...]

Jesse Harris – Cosmo

Jesse Harris may not be a household name, but this singer/songwriter multi-instrumentalist left a noteworthy stamp on 21st century popular music when his formidable songcraft skills on “Don’t Know Why” helped to land jazz chanteuse Norah Jones three Grammy Awards back in 2003.  An enterprising musician who, since his debut album in 1995, has … [Read more...]

Antony and the Johnsons – Swanlights

Although we’ve come to know him as a modern workhorse, Antony Hegarty has always been able to keep his work with the Johnsons that much more invigorating. Whether he’s remixed mainstream artists or assisted on electronic records, albums like I Am a Bird Now and The Crying Light were always adorned with particular touches you couldn’t find … [Read more...]

The Capstan Shafts – Revelation Skirts

Dean Wells is approaching Robert Pollard levels of ridiculous prolificacy at this point. He’s averaged about two records a year for the past decade, all of which have gone more or less unnoticed by the indie press bloodline. His music has stayed constant, a tuneful, increasingly clear-channeled garage-pop structured in modest guitar/drums/bass … [Read more...]