29.9.11

Vines

Knoxville-based band Nomadic Firs is here with some sepia-tinged, fuzzylicious pop that will surely brighten your coming weekend. The dude that makes up Nomadic Firs, Ryan Boos, was kind enough to send us "Vines", a single off the self-tited, self-released debut which will be out next month (I'm definitely looking forward to it; this stuff is catchy as hell). The track is cheerfully carried along by an awesome, swirling bass line that's topped with pleasant vocals that remind me a little of Kelley Stoltz. It's quite apparent that Nomadic Firs believes you "deserve a little bit of sunshine".

Feel free to check out some of his other tracks right hair. We'll try not to hold it against him that he doesn't like goat cheese.

She's Mine

As my final bit of bachelor blogging before bliss becomes me in Beckley, WV, I wanted to present everyone with a commemorative Fork because [Liz]... she's mine. Like our relationship to date, Fork stands on its organs and hand-claps, though everyone's guitar work is pretty damn unassailable as well.

Check out a few more forks here.

PBUH025: Pressed And - Imbue Up

Pressed And is the intriguingly named collaboration of Andrew Hamlet and Mat Jones (with a surname like Hamlet, you have to imagine names are being taken at least a bit more seriously than usual), one of the hydra heads of a burgeoning southeastern electronic scene, that we've often seen in association with North Carolina's Denmark Records. Their debut LP, Imbue Up, is a testament to that emergent milieu; some are calling it post-chillwave, but the reality is a more complex interplay of primal effects and synth landscapes, rife with tension in a cascading sequence of loops and glowing drones. This is an album of sensation, that lingers and mingles in ways you rarely expect and despite its coherence never quite master.

Preorder the limited edition cassette here - although we're only streaming "Raid" for now, every preorder will get an immediate download of the entire album.

26.9.11

Video: Holy Spirits - Tongues (live in a tunnel for Invisible Children)


Holy Spirits recently teamed up with Invisible Children as part of their Musician Coalition; 25 bands coming together to help build life-saving radio towers throughout Central Africa. The band has aimed to raise $250 toward building the towers, a number that I think isn't too high for us to help them achieve at all. You can head over here if you'd like to contribute. In related news, Holy Spirits will be playing at Gravity on October 6 with Gem Club. We're still filling out the line-up, but we'll have more info on that for you later this week.

Video: .L.W.H. ft. Main Attrakionz, Shady Blaze & Friendzone - All In Your Hands

Video: Pretty Bird - beeeeeallllyourrrrpotenchall


[directed by Lindsey Klonoski]

Hondora

White Birds, drawn in part from former members of Drink Up Buttercup, put out a tape with our pals at Grizzly Records (also the homes of self-loving DUDES) at least fairly recently, but I've been sitting on it... it feels like a month... while Liz and I've been hand-dubbing 100 cassette mixtapes. In that time, they've actually begun touring the northeast with Asobi Seksu. That and edding preparations aside, their introduction to a discriminating slice of the world is a self-titled four song EP, produced to preview an upcoming full length. If precedents hold, it will be packed with deftly made harmonies, a well-considered abundance of reverb, and (cue sappy wrap up noises) a sound all their own.

Order the limited edition cassette here.

25.9.11

Go Out In Joy

Check out this video for "Go Out In Joy", a song off Halasan Bazar's upcoming album, due out in November. The video footage is taken from a 1921 film by Hans Richter, "Rhythmus 21".

Video: Pregnant - Letter To A Friend

23.9.11

There's a Griffin at the Door

Water Babys is a Denver-based duo that makes guitar-infused, synth-heavy downtempo jams that are laced with danceable breakdowns. Their self-titled debut just dropped and I think my favorite track so far is "There's a Griffin at the Door" -- the tinny 8-bit synth sounds and small vocal samples make it an immediately catchy but somehow relaxing piece. I also really like "Waterbourne", a track with darker vibes but full of killer bass and keys that make me want to dance around our tiny apartment like a fool.

You can download their debut album for free at their community pond. You can also purchase a limited-edition coloring book if you want!

22.9.11

Premiere: Libraries - Get Real

I'm a pretty big fan of Wilmington's own Libraries. Maybe the local factor plays in, but they're one of few local acts I enjoy so I doubt that's all it is. The duo of Justin Chillington (yes that's really his last name) and Tommy Kitrick blast dance music that I can best liken to Justice and Ratatat in an onstage Beyblade battle. Intricate synth patterns slam into pulsing kicks and claps while mind-bending samples clash with smooth guitar lines that after only one song will leave you dizzy on the dancefloor. The duo is currently working on their first full-length; expected to drop early next year via Grip Tapes. "Get Real" is the first new track released from Libraries in almost year, with the promise of plenty more to come soon.

MP3: Libraries - Get Real

Ladies Knight

Based in Charlottesville, VA, the duo of Great Dads has crafted a unique blend of rock, pop, and punk that really hits the spot. Their three-song EP "Crunk Goblins" is a shot of strong, confident vocals and lyrics, layered with slowly unspooling guitar riffs that are held up by a backbone of drums. It all combines to make surprisingly catchy tracks that bear repeating. The song "Ladies Knight" is especially hypnotizing (and hilarious) -- it's perfectly structured and executed, and pretty soon it'll have you singing "good libations" along with it in no time.


Download their EP (for free) here, if ye like.

21.9.11

Science Is My Girlfriend

I present to you: Mr. Alvin Fenner, or neat beats, as they call him in the "biz". His tracks are intricate atmospheres seemingly woven out of sparkling beats, synth loops, and moondust. His most recent album, "Cosmic Surgery", is chock-full of widely varying, lush songs that are perfect to kick back and listen to with your headphones, or as neat beats suggests, "for a rainy day, smoking a cigarette indoors". The track "Science Is My Girlfriend" is a gorgeous, delicate work that expertly blends beats and never comes across as crass. For a very different flavor, check out the equally as dope "Kung Fu of the Astronaut Drunkards".

MP3::
You can download the whole album over at neat beats' spacestation, and like him on the Facebook here.

20.9.11

Video: Konnichiwa - Visions in the Dark

The Falaise Gap

The New Lines made my day yesterday when they emailed me about a new track off their upcoming album. I've loved all of their music thus far, and "The Falaise Gap" is no different; deep, gorgeous synth is joined by Hewson Chen's smooth, 1960s-esque vocals and dreamy drums as the track glides through the stars and time like a velvet, psychedelic spaceship. Get ready to put this on repeat for infinity.

The New Lines' album "All That We See And Seem" is set to drop in mid-October via The Great Pop Supplement.

Streaming :: The New Lines - The Falaise Gap


18.9.11

Ruff

Straightforward and catchy, beat-crafter Pandamosity's track "Ruff" (off his album "I Need a Volunteer To Be My First Sacrifice") is a short trek through various hypnotizing sample shifts that begins and ends with an old dude doling out some wisdom. Pretty sweet. You can also check out all of Pandamosity's experimental beat tracks over at his SoundCloud. I'm very curious to see where he goes with this stuff.

17.9.11

Quixote

Dustin Illingworth, a.k.a. Bone Quida Ida, sent us some lovely gems that are perfect for a relaxed Saturday at home. His music is somewhat reminiscent of Panda Bear and Vampire Weekend, but packs even more of a pop-punch. It's funny that his press photo includes cozy Christmas decorations, because the strings, shaker, and lyrics in his track "Quixote" kind of make me feel like I'm in a snowglobe. The other track that's up on his SoundCloud, "Beneath the Pier", is equally as inviting and catchy; its title fits perfectly with the various warm, blurry synth textures throughout. Both tracks will be on a free digital EP he plans to release this winter, also titled Beneath the Pier. We'll be keeping an eye out.

MP3 ::

Video: Frank Ocean - Swim Good


[Directed by NABIL]

The Story Of Marsha Lotus

The folks at Stroll On Records have announced their second physical release. Hal Williams, bka Pyramid Vritra, is one half of The Jet Age Of Tomorrow, known for their two brilliant album releases as part of OFWGKTA. He's also part of NRK, another group known all around for their extraordinary production work. With all of that in mind, it comes as no surprise that The Story Of Marsha Lotus is one of the best produced records I've heard this year. Things don't end at the production, however, as Pyramid Vritra sings and raps through the entire release. Stroll On has hooked us up with a stream of the title track, a nearly fifteen-minute whirlwind of astral beats guiding Williams through verse after verse explaining his love for Marsha Lotus and their subsequent falling out.

Stream: Pyramid Vritra - The Story Of Marsha Lotus

The Story Of Marsha Lotus drops November 21, is limited to 500 numbered copies, and is available now to pre-order via Stroll On Records.

Nightmare from the 90's

Michael Myerz recently hit me up about his debut album on Holy Page Records, Nightmare from the 90's. This actually wasn't the first time I've heard Myerz, having already been turned on to the album's standout track Space Ape a couple of months ago. Heavy synths and a slow paced clap/bass combo ride smoothly as Carl Miller starts things off, leaving Myerz primed to go. There's also the track immediately following on the record, "Golden Eye". Named for one of the best N64 games ever and also featuring Harriet the Spy in the chorus, it's obvious that Myerz is a child of the 90s as much as he is a nightmare. This probably only matters because I'm from the same generation, but that's good enough for me.

MP3:
Michael Myerz - Space Ape (ft Carl Miller)
Michael Myerz - Golden Eye
You can grab Nightmare from the 90's entirely free via the awesome folks at Holy Page Records.
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In related news, Myerz just dropped this new one on us earlier this morning, featuring Myerz' homie Civil making his debut on the track. Myerz also tells me that he, Civil and Carl Miller are working on an EP together as Bullet Proof Tigers, so stay up on that.

MP3: Michael Myerz - Pianos in Autumn (ft Civil)

16.9.11

Not the 1s - Silverstein Status (prod. by Monster Rally)

Though it's conceivable that Monster Rally's perfect, crystalline loops would seem like an ambivalent backdrop for hip hop of any stripe, Not the 1s create a perfect showcase for themselves on a track that, for me at least, remains the standout on their debut, Why You Cryin?

Streaming :: Not the 1s - Silverstein Status (prod. by Monster Rally)
The band's LP officially dropped this past Tuesday, so hustle on over to Gold Robot to cop a copy.

Hopscotch: Day 3

When I awoke Sunday I had to wait for Audrey to return from her cousin's bat mitzvah. Once she got back we headed out for the third and final day of Hopscotch. We also picked up a friend who was planning on seeing just the Flaming Lips show at the Plaza later that day. We had some time to kill before Flaming Lips played (about 2 hours) so we hit up a few day shows during the wait. Keep up after the jump for more photos from Audrey and how the festival wrapped up for us.

14.9.11

Hopscotch: Day 2

I awoke after about 4 hours of sleep on the hardwood floor of Moving Island. It was time to begin day 2 of Hopscotch and we were all a little groggy. Last Year's Men and Gross Ghost were both slated to play the Churchkey Records and Gravity Records day show at Slim's, so Audrey and I headed that way. I also ate my first sandwich from Jimmy John's, which was no where near as awful as I thought it might be. Apparently I should be a less cynical sandwich eater. Stick around after the jump for the full rundown of day 2, complete with more photos from Audrey.

13.9.11

Hopscotch: Day 1

The first day of Hopscotch was an awesome start to the weekend. We got into Raleigh on Thursday and immediately scoped out the Posterscotch setup at Amplified Art. Our good friend Sarah from Poster Hound Family Workshop, based here in Wilmington, won this year's Posterscotch competition so you know we had to show support. Afterward we hit up the VIP party. That was pretty awkward we didn't really know anyone there, except for Tripp Gobble of Denmark Records, who played giant jenga with us after a rousing bout of miniature plastic swordfighting. It was after this that we finally started hitting up some shows, so stick with us after the jump to catch some rad photos via Audrey and some brief nonsensical words about the shows.

12.9.11

Video: NewVillager - ShotBigHorixon


This video from NewVillager showcases their intense visual aspects as much as it does their minimal pop soundscapes. So much seems to be happening with so little when you listen. Sparse claps and kicks lead a grooving bass over whirring synth leads as homemade monsters plays games in the field. If you're gonna be in Chapel Hill tonight make sure you hit the Local 506 to catch these guys live, along with Morgan's End.

Head over to Insound to pick up their debut album New Villager now.

10.9.11

Upon Some Action / Take Care of Me

Prepare to lose yourself in some sonic sludge from Nashville two-piece Ttotals. Brian and Marty put out "Live At Grady's" on tape earlier this year with No Kings Record Cadre. The packaging is of course beautiful, complete with a letter-pressed J-card and blue imprinted cassette. The four live tracks are an immersive dip into a hairy psychedelic-rock swamp, made up of Brian's entrancing yet indeterminable vocals, crunchy guitar + feedback, and Marty's heavy, perfectly-timed drumming. Check out side B of the tape below, and enjoy, y'all.

I Want The Night To Stay

It's difficult to think of a better musician to cover an Idiot Glee track than Matt Duncan. Both guys are from Lexington, Kentucky, and they each have their own special brand of pop-soul goodness that I love. Matt recently covered Idiot Glee's "I Want The Night To Stay" (a track off his debut EP), and it sounds like the track has gone through a magic washing machine that removed the backing doo-wop vocals and replaced them with an uplifting mixture of smooth brass, piano, and angelic backup singers. It's changed just enough to be interesting without losing the original heart of the song (which is what covers are supposed to do).

MP3 ::

Mixtape: Pocono Yoga Murder Mystery

Everyone knows that the Poconos are known for the prolific local yoga culture, but occasionally the harmony of middle aged movement is interrupted by foulest murder. This mixtape was commissioned by The Pennsylvania Poconos Tourism Board to get everyone a bit more into the spirit of things. Judge Noah Wall presiding.

Streaming: Pocono Yoga Murder Mystery

Order Noah Wall's limited edition debut cassette here.

8.9.11

Young Miss Flora

If y'all haven't already heard, Fungi Girls' album "Some Easy Magic" is now out on cassette from Animal Image Search. I highly suggest grabbing one before they're gone, because these three fun-guys from Texas are getting really good at crafting great psychedelic garage jams. Light up a J and check out their track "Young Miss Flora", a trip that takes you through swirling drums, hypnotic vocals, and loose guitar jangles, going between various tempos until fully taking off at the end like an airplane made of flowers, weed, and velvety rock 'n roll.

Buy the cassette up here, get the digital down there, or get the vinyl over here.

What I Want (Tonight)

Wilmington native David Adusei, bka Golden, recently dropped a new EP titled Desirée on Locus Recordings. My first encounter with Golden was last spring when the guys in Libraries suggested I added him to a show at Gravity Records that also featured Levek. Since hearing him perform that night I've been practically dying to hear more from Golden. His excited, highly danceable tracks and wonderfully soulful voice are almost guaranteed to keep you moving across the floor toward what you want tonight.

MP3:
Golden - What I Want (Tonight)
Golden - Desirée
Hit up the bandcamp to grab Desirée in its entirety.

7.9.11

Say The Code

NewVillager is the name of Ross Simonini and Ben Bromley's prolific arts collective, a platform for an immersive live experience that reports suggest amount to nothing less than a fully realized temporary culture. Until we actually manage to see the show it'll remain unclear to me whether priority is given to the particulars of that culture or simply to the spontaneous realities it generates, but the music has more swagger than most would expect from a "concept" project - I think the premise and the depth of their sound is probably responsible for the "Michael Jackson meets the Beatles" comparison that people are throwing around, more so than just the sound. Whatever the case, these guys are clearly one of the best executed transmissions from the human unconscious that I've seen in my adult life and here's the proof.

Grab the CD from InSound or buy the digital from iTunes.

Tear I Won't Ask

o F F and GR†LLGR†LL just sent over their most recent collaboration, a dizzying slow jam with beautiful vocal work. The two are splitting ways for the time being to continue separate efforts, so the mournful nature of the track seems a bit fitting. I figure this just means double the output now, right?

Stream/Purchase: o F F/GR†LLGR†LL - Tear I Won't Ask

K1ll zon3 b4by 2 dop3 2 fre$h

Clearly someone hasn't been setting enough boundaries for Creepy Marbles.

Hopscotch Music Festival

[Poster by Sarah Parson]
This weekend is the second annual Hopscotch Music Festival in Raleigh, NC. Tons of great shows will be all over downtown Raleigh from the likes of The Flaming Lips, Xiu Xiu, Black Lips, Braids, Twin Shadow, Toro Y Moi, White Ring, Future Islands and so many more. You can catch a full list of all the performers over here. My favorite record store in the world, Gravity Records, also have a killer day show on Friday at Slim's with the folks from Churchkey Records featuring Last Year's Men, Gross Ghost, Mount Eerie and a few others. Audrey and I will be there all weekend snagging lots of interviews and photos of as much of the event as we can. Essentially next week GOTC will be over run by Hopscotch coverage. Stay tuned after the jump for a list of shows we're especially hoping to catch.

6.9.11

Premiere: Free Mason

Our pal Waylon Thornton hooked us up with this jangly little surf jam from his upcoming album Proud Seed. After the fantastic release of Rat Brew it's nice to see Thornton continuing to slow things down a bit. With that said, this one is still a pretty raucous rager. Tangy guitar matches bitter sweet vocals note for note.

MP3: Waylon Thornton - Free Mason
Proud Seed is promised to drop by the end of the month. As usual, we'll keep you posted.

4.9.11

Wildwood Girl

Since they're from Canberra, assumedly Assassins 88 are talking about Wildwood, Australia and not New Jersey in their track called "Wildwood Girl." Either way, this is some seriously good garage-noise-pop. "Wildwood Girl" is one of four diverse tracks on their latest EP, Beach People. The album starts out with a super noisy jam ("Beach People") and moves on to "Raising Phoenix", a slightly gentler track with a flavor very reminiscent of Turbo Fruits. "Summer Vacation" brings us back to full-speed garage awesomeness before we end on "Wildwood Girl", complete with fuzzed-out vocals, heartfelt lyrics and growing, 60s-inspired guitar melodies.

You can download Beach People for free at their bandcamp. You can also purchase their most recent 7" split with TV Colours over at Dream Damage, and the earlier split they did with them at Eighteen Records.

Premiere: Alligator Indian - GLU

Though drawn from the eternal stable of garage-pop, the fast-paced surrealism of Alligator Indian's always seems fresh, with an unpolished self-consciousness that keeps every track sounding vibrant and original. Having said that, I highly recommend pulling out your headphones for these tracks - heavy reverb keeps things dense and if your first listen is, like mine was, on laptop speakers, you're definitely depriving yourself of something.

MP3 ::
Look for the 12" September 13, on Bleeding Gold.

2.9.11

Video: Hear Hums - Shrines


Spiral Style

I'm a sucker for any kind of energetic positivity and D. Gookin's latest album, Spiral Style, is an anthemic masterpiece of over the top electro-pop. Its lush soundscapes of loops and samples are bright and engrossing, and packed so tightly with familiar effects that the whole album seems captivatingly crass. As much as the music is entirely positive, D. Gookin must be completely shameless and as a consequence I presume that he is some kind of Bodhisattva. Address your thank you letters to Moodgadget and cop the album here.

Streaming: D. Gookin - Spiral Style

1.9.11

PBUH021: Noah Wall - Hèloïse

Everything about the sound of Hèloïse unfolds from the centrality of Noah Wall's voice, whether it's new wave disco or simpler pop being treated to his almost maximalist production. Though that same centrality tends to lend the album a melancholic edge, the sensation is in no way inescapable. These songs are an homage - to Noah's mother, Hèloïse Wall - and their emotional significance unfolds in a more spectacular array of color and energy than conventional albums. For those of us still graced by the presence of our mothers, a sense of that significance is elusive, but Noah's homage ultimately achieves a certain unity of transcendence that we can all know.

MP3 ::
Preorder the limited edition cassette here, and peruse your alternatives over yonder.