May 9, 2013
Pop culture aficionado and singer-songwriter Allie Goertz released her debut full-length album this week. Cossbysweater is a fan-funded collection of send-ups to “Freaks and Geeks,” “The Simpsons,” “Arrested Development,” Dungeons & Dragons and other geek faves. Goertz’s new music video for “Stagnant’s Fine” seems to stand apart from the rest, seemingly without any blatant pop culture references. Just a nonchalant song about being stuck in place and apathetic. Most of Goertz’s songs are presented beneath a sheer shroud of melancholy, with “Everything’s Coming Up Milhouse” serving as a candid look at the blue-haired character’s pathos, or “Tonight” emphasizing a D&D campaign as an escape from the drudgery of real life. And I’m okay with that, because it’s a strangely beautiful and unexpected perspective.
August 28, 2012
There actually is something quite exotic about Stripmall Architecture‘s new EP, The Exotic Sounds of Stripmall Architecture. At its heart, it’s electropop, but each song is strikingly unique in how it frames that sound on the San Francisco band’s collection. Album opener “Rockin’ Back Inside My Heart” brings forth a little doo-wop flair while “Experiment 1″ takes a turn toward chillwave. My favorite, “Missing Piece,” is retro-spacey, laid out with glamour synths. It’s all a definite steal at “name your price” on Bandcamp right now.
August 23, 2012
If you are basically anybody, you probably have not heard anything by Netherlander Jacco Gardner. Mostly because he has not done much, but the little he’s done has captured my complete attention. The video above is one of a few he’s posted this year to promote his pair of singles and B-sides. While much modern popular music purports some kind of vintage quality, Gardner’s music literally sounds like it was made in the ’60s, his videos look like they were filmed in the ’60s (and in fact the video for “Where Will You Go” uses footage from Frank Capra’s 1956 film “Our Mr. Sun”) and, heck, Gardner himself looks like he stepped out of the ’60s.
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August 21, 2012
If you’re lucky enough to have a sibling, it tends to become one of the most important relationships of your life. Despite our differences, my brother and I share a bond that can’t be replicated with anyone else. I remember when my dad was in a hospital bed, dying, my brother and I found ourselves in each other’s arms, because we were the only two people who knew exactly how the other felt. That was one of the most powerful moments of my life, and it could not have been had I felt those feelings alone.
I bring this up because siblings Ike Peters (of one of my favorite bands The Coasts) and Katie Mitchell have come together as The Rough Drafts to celebrate that special relationship. The pair have released their three-song Valley Forge EP in an effort to help raise money for a family looking to grow. You can read about the Townsend family at a website they set up to accept donations for a new adoption. Robert and Amy are looking to give their daughter Layla a sibling.
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August 16, 2012
Super-chill London band the Cold Spells takes something simple and makes it something you can’t draw your eyes away from: Vintage-style footage of a woman swimming, with the video distorted to amplify some of the creepy sounds within their latest single, “Simone.”
It’s the definition of psychedelic personified. Download this track and more for free at the Cold Spells’ Bandcamp page.
August 14, 2012
Discovering Rhode Island band Kid and the Wolf‘s debut EP, Lights // Fire, was one of those pleasant “I can’t believe this music is free!” moments. Sure, there is tons of good, free music on Bandcamp that you’d probably be willing to drop some coin for if necessary, but then there is the good, free music on Bandcamp that, when you hear it, you completely expect to have to pay money.
So slick, so well-produced. Clearly these guys put some work into these recordings, and yet here they are just letting listeners name their price to download them. This is where the benefits of discovering a practically unknown artist come to fruition. Of course they’re going to give away their music, because hardly anybody even knows who they are! Your prize, for being an early fan, is free music while they’re still building exposure.
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