August 26, 2016

The Persian Leaps: Your City, Underwater

photo: Drew Johnson

The Persian Leaps are an EP band. The St. Paul, MN indie noise pop trio have completed Your City, Underwater, their fourth release in their chosen format. Rambling lo-fi with a few woo-hoo's (The Weather), a quirky mashup of Big Star, The Smiths and Dinosaur Jr (It's NothingSee Me Unaware is a clash between distorted guitar and pleading lyrics straight out of the Joey Ramone songbook.

Your City, Underwater contains more of the same - catchy shoestring garage rock - with the notable exception of the final track Short and Sour, during which they try to channel The Damned. Pretty good effort, but singer Drew Forsberg is no match for Dave Vanian.

Bryan Beller: the Innerviews interview

Innerviews has an in-depth interview Bryan Beller, The Aristocrats' bass player. He discusses his thoughts on being an independent artist and band manager of sorts, life on the road as a Joe Satriani sidemen, his friendship with Mike Keneally, and how to make ends meet as a working musician.

He plays down his capabilities as a bass player:

The big joke of my career is that I’ve been thrust into this world in which everyone is a hot-shot player. I’m not. There are so many bass players that can play complete circles around me, technically. I’m really a meat-and-potatoes bass player. I never worked on technique when I was a kid. I only worked on learning songs. If I couldn’t learn the song because there was a technique I couldn’t play, then I would figure out a way to do it. But I never sat and practiced scales with a metronome. I never practiced right-hand technique. I only practice for gigs, recordings and making sounds. I’ll sit in rehearsal rooms with my pedal board and tweak forever until I get something I know will work live.

August 25, 2016

Phish: Free Live Webcasts of LOCKN’ Festival in Arlington, VA (August 26 & 28)

The two Phish headlining shots @ the LOCKN’ Festival in Arlington, VA (August 26 & 28) be offered as free webcasts:

Nearly all the performance of the Festival will be streamed for free:

Watch LOCKN’ 2016 come alive from virtually anywhere with our free livestream! For those of you who can’t attend in person, there are plenty of ways to enjoy the Festival from wherever you are. August 25 – 28, music lovers will have free access to LOCKN’s exclusive livestream, live from Arrington, Virginia.

August 24, 2016

Trails and Ways: Happiness

Dreampoppers Trails and Ways have released Happiness, another single from their forthcoming album Own It. West Coast jangling guitars, a chunky bass and a sparse but highly effective drum beat topped off with handclaps. If anything, it will get that god awful Pharrell Williams song scrambling for the emergency exits of your brain.

Own It, the band's second full-length album will be released October 7.

August 23, 2016

Outset: Outset

photo: Kelly Fleming

Jazz quartet Outset's self-titled debut album is the culmination of long journey. All four band members have made their mark in the Chicago music scene. Led by saxophonist Dan Meinhardt they play music that is driven by textures and rhythm, following a twisted road of motifs, short solos, following the principles of modal jazz. One or two members can take the ball, while the others hold back for a bit, before changing things around. This kind of playing is demanding for the players (and listeners as well). Pay attention or you might miss something out of the ordinary,

They are not above branching out to other genres if the mood strikes them. Dropped comes close to freakout funk with trumpet player Justin Copeland going all out with a barrage of notes, setting up the bass-drum duel by Tim Ipsen and Andrew Green. Something Mellow may be soft but avoid all the pitfalls of easy listening that its title suggests. The sole cover, a barebones, deconstructed version the Thelonious Monk/Kenny Clarke timeless standard Epistrophy, sounds as fresh and modern as it was when it first came to a shellac 78 RPM in 1941.