Record Highlight – J. Allen

Posted in For The Record | by Matt Earley

J. Allen’s songs are folk songs written inside the whirlwind that is NewYork City… country hymns tuned in to the traffic hum and the subway rumble.

His forthcoming singles, “Bring Her Back Home” and “Fall Out of Love” mark a turn from the atmospheric, indie-folk aesthetic of his previous work to a more traditional American palette, as well as a renewed collaboration with Alan Weatherhead (A Camp, Sparklehorse) as mixer, arranger and multi-instrumentalist.  “Bring Her Back Home” is available now as a limited edition 7inch.


Record Highlight — The Chloes

Posted in For The Record | by Matt Earley

no filter cover art

The Chloes are an American rock band formed in 2010, started as a jam project between the lead singer and songwriter April Wenzel and bass player Brandie Dawson in Dallas, TX. They started playing live at the local act launch venue, LBG. Popularity for their live show grew and they’ve played to audiences across major clubs in Dallas, Austin, San Antonio, OKC and Tulsa including the Norman Music Festival, SXSW and with touring acts such as BRONCHO, The Screaming Females, Shannon and the Clams, and The Coathangers.

Their latest LP — No Filter — is available now!


Record Highlight — A House Safe For Tigers

Posted in For The Record | by Matt Earley

Indie duo A House Safe for Tigers has released its self-titled debut album through Headless Actor Records.

Borrowing its name from an obscure Lee Hazlewood soundtrack, A House Safe for Tigers has garnered accolades for its reflective, haunting, yet melodious songcraft.  In theory, the pairing of vocalist/songwriter Mark Costantino and multi-instrumentalist Brandon Delmont shouldn’t work. The two musicians come from seemingly disparate backgrounds. Costantino’s last group, The Exit Strategy, earned praise for its raw, post-hardcore recordings and sweat-soaked live performances. In its review, Pitchfork singled out Costantino’s vocals for “adding a youthful, spirited feel to the tracks.” Meanwhile, Delmont earned his stripes as the drummer for Mercury Rev side project Odiorne, a synth-heavy, symphonic-rock group that recorded with famed producer Dave Fridmann (Flaming Lips, Sparklehorse, MGMT).

While owing a debt to some past performers, A House Safe for Tigers has captured something original and compelling on its debut. Songs like “Ann Marie,” “Searchlights,” and the lead-off single “Evaporate,” are aural delights-memorable and contagious, while bearing fruit with each new listen.


Record Highlight — Dick Diver

Posted in For The Record | by Matt Earley

Dick Diver - "Melbourne, Florida"

Dick Diver managed to avoid the dreaded “sophomore slump” with their 2013 album Calendar Days (Chapter Music) & look to perfect a “three-peat” with their third album Melbourne, Florida.

This is their first domestic release & first for Trouble In Mind. Recorded in a former sheep-shearing shed in Apollo Bay, Victoria by Mikey Young, the album hums with a strident assurance, buoyed by the benefit of the band’s four talented songwriters whose singular voices sit comfortably beside each other in the albums twelve tracks. The crack of a snare starts off the lead-track, “Waste The Alphabet” an anthemic, jangling stomper full of bluster & swagger, while other tracks like “Leftovers”, “Year In Pictures” & “Percentage Points” yearn with a bookish intensity, complimenting the band’s dichotomy of erudite pop smarts and and idiosyncratic approach to composition (see Montfort’s charming & disarming “Beat Me Up (Talk to a Counsellor)”). If Dick Diver weren’t already leading the pack of new-school Australian pop, then Melbourne, Florida is sure to put them in the pole-position.


Record Highlight — Hardcore Live! Devo

Posted in For The Record | by Matt Earley

Performing 21 oddities, this is a tribute to departed, original Devo bandmate, Robert “Bob 2″ Casale. Recorded live on June 28, 2014 at the Fox Theater in Oakland, California.  This is a double 180 gram vinyl set.  An accompanying DVD is also available.


Record Highlight — Jesse Dee

Posted in For The Record | by Matt Earley

Jesse Dee‘s new album On My Mind / In My Heart was co-produced by Jesse and kindred spirit Jack Younger at Watch City Studios, just outside of Boston. It features Jesse’s core band of guitarist Johnny Trama, bassist Jim Larkin, drummer Matt “Pie” Beaulieu, and horn brothers Scott and John Aruda. Scott has played with The Temptations and Wilson Pickett, while John has wailed behind Boston legends Superhoney and Dwight & Nicole. Further help comes from other aces such as saxophonist Paul Ahlstrand (who has worked with Eddie Floyd), trombonist Jeff Galindo (who has played with Ray Charles), and singers Joanie Pimental and Rachael Price, who have fronted Superhoney and Lake Street Dive respectively. “Ultimately, it’s a testament to the local crop of musicians here in Boston,” says Jesse.

It’s also a contagious victory for romantic soul music. “A lot of his music makes me smile,” says Bruce Iglauer, president of Alligator Records. “His music feels like spring. It’s soul music, but it’s really happy soul music. It’s in the tradition of Sam Cooke and Chuck Jackson. And there’s a little spirit of Joe Tex in there. All of those things make me feel good.”


Record Highlight — Sober Daze

Posted in For The Record | by Matt Earley

Split w/ Knockin' Chucks cover art

Austin based punk band Sober Daze have released a music video for their new song “Live To Shred”, the first single from their forthcoming split 7” with Knockin’ Chucks, coming in April from Dazed Records. “Live To Shred” is a fast paced skate anthem for the ages; an ode to the insatiable urge that pulses in the veins of skaters everywhere.

Sober Daze was born in Puerto Rico in 2002 by friends Peter Figueroa, Alex “Korn” Rivera, and Chris “Fatty” Bourcy. Fresh out of high school, the band set their sights to the proclaimed “Live Music Capitol of the World”, and relocated to Austin in 2003. Sober Daze garnered early support from other bands in the Austin punk scene, opening their first Austin show for the Lower Class Brats, and building friendships with Krum Bums and The Applicators. In the years since they have made their name in the Austin by throwing punk rock house parties with half pipe ramps, and playing shows across Texas and the US with bands like The Vandals, Reagan Youth, Angry Samoans, and The Freeze. Now a 4-piece, with the addition of Alex “Rager” Loughborough on guitar in 2013, “Live To Shred” is the testament of band that refuses to stop having fun.  

You can catch Sober Daze in Austin during the SXSW music festival, playing the Punk Vs. Rockabilly and Eastside Throwdown showcases. Pre-order their new split 7 inch (with Knockin’ Chucks) now.

Record Highlight — Hallelujah the Hills

Posted in For The Record | by Matt Earley

The limited edition vinyl release of Have You Ever Done Something Evil? is available now.  The purchase comes with a bonus digital EP!


Record Highlight — Jeremy Jones

Posted in For The Record | by Matt Earley

Sharing an infectious spirit of musical creativity, freedom and community, the cities of New Orleans and San Francisco are kindred. Whether in the Bay or the Bayou, music flows constantly and plentifully – a tragically uncommon phenomenon in this country. Resonating with the energy of both San Francisco and New Orleans, Jeremy Jones introduces Keep On Movin’, a full-length album of signature “Swampedelic Rock & Soul” sound: when the mud of the Louisiana swamps meets the grit of Southern roots and blends with the groove of San Francisco psychedelia.



Record Highlight — DRKWAV

Posted in For The Record | by Matt Earley

DRKWAV is Skerik (saxophones), John Medeski (keyboards) and Adam Deitch (drums). The three master musicians have come together for The Purge, an entirely uncompromising album debut that delves deep into the psychedelic corners of the human psyche. The recording was co-produced and mixed by venerated studio wizard Randall Dunn.
DRKWAV conjure a wall of intricately detailed sound as each of The Purge‘s eight tracks surge and swell in a cinematic overture. True to its name, the trio revels in the pitch black, yet continually discover beauty and shed light through sonic exploration.  The album will be released on February 24 by Royal Potato Family.