Two major things to mention (or re-iterate, since you may have already seen this):

Photographer/filmmaker Joey Ciccoline has been hard at work on a very cool-looking short film titled 88:88 and my pal Matt Pusti aka Makeup and Vanity Set did the soundtrack. Awesome in every possible way. Here’s the trailer:

You can also download the trailer and free mp3 of “The Cross” at the MAVS bandcamp. There will be a full soundtrack album released in the future as well.

Uncle Skeleton released another (the third and final) teaser single from their upcoming album All Too Human. “The Well-Tempered Albi” is available for free download on their bandcamp, along with remixes from DPAUL, Makeup and Vanity Set, and Shaboi, as well as 2 unreleased b-sides.

What a treat to have all of these great projects originating right here in Nashville. *warm fuzzies*

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Remember Nashville’s own bedroom-pop maestro Kyle Andrews and his catchy tune “You Always Make Me Smile” that was featured in that Holiday Inn commercial? Well he’s back with a full-length record, Robot Learn Love, via Elephant Lady on August 16th, and you’ll find yourself struggling to justify that phrase “bedroom” as you listen to it. On this album you’ll find a thick wash of synths, electronic drums, and layered/distorted vocals that catapult Andrews’ sound into another dimension. I don’t know this for a fact, but I’d venture to guess Mr. Andrews is a fan TN’s own Matt Mahaffey and his horribly underrated band Self. The influence is hard to miss if you’re a Self/Mahaffey fan like myself. In fact this album takes on many of the characteristics of Self’s last proper album Gizmodgery, which was recorded entirely using toy instruments (though it sounds fully fleshed-out, example below). You can hear what would seem to be toy-ish sounds sprinkled through various tracks on Robot Learn Love not to mention the lo-fi and other unorthodox recording techniques. It all pays off for Andrews as this record is his most realized effort to date. No mention of tour dates on his website, but if I had one major critique it would be his live shows. Andrews uses so much studio wizardry and layering of sounds on his albums, it’s hard to make that work in a live setting. Obviously you can’t recreate every nuance, but if you’re going to strip it down at all you’ve got to make it work. His live shows have always felt rather “meh” compared to the albums/EPs. But I recommend Robot Learn Love without hesitation.

Download the track “Lazer Tag With Imaginary Friends” via RCRD LBL

And just for reference/fun:

Self-Dead Man (From Gizmodgery)

Miami Horror at Beauty Bar Backyard, SXSW '11. Photo by Steve Cross

Tomorrow night (6/16) Miami Horror makes their first Nashville appearance at Mercy Lounge, with How I Became the Bomb and Cherub opening. I’ve been hoping for at least a year that Miami Horror would come through Nashville, and it’s finally happening. They come from the land down under, but I’ve heard rumors that they’re making a move to the states. Their debut album Illumination was one of my favorites of 2010, and I caught their live show at the Beauty Bar Backyard at SXSW this year. It was easily one of the best shows I saw the whole festival. They have impressive stage energy and showmanship which easily brought the crowd into a sweaty dance-frenzy in no time.

This show at Mercy will be easily as good, if not better, than the SXSW show because they can flesh out their set and do it “their way” instead of having to setup quickly and rush through their set like bands usually have to do at SXSW. The openers are perfect for the bill, and at a mere $12, this is a really good deal. The band is also doing a DJ set later that night at MAI for the official afterparty. Seriously, get your tix now! Why pay more at the door or risk missing it entirely because of a sellout?

Download:

Miami Horror-Holidays (ft. Alan Palomo)

Listen:
Miami Horror-Holidays (DCUP Remix)

The Rosebuds have been around since 2003, and were one of those “awww it’s a husband/wife band” bands. Little did I know that they’d been going through relationship issues over the past couple of years… in fact, Kelly Rosebud packed up an moved to Brooklyn, NY alone. Amazingly, they put their personal issues aside and made a record, which is coming out June 7 on Merge, called Loud Planes Fly Low. I caught the band opening for British Sea Power at Mercy Lounge several years back… 2008 I believe… and I remember it being a pretty good show. Good enough that I checked out their album Night of the Furies. You won’t find any soaring disco anthems like “Get Up Get Out” on Loud Planes Fly Low, but how could one expect that given the circumstances under which this album was made? These songs are much more honest and emotionally charged than ever before, and all in all the album has a more earnest feel than Night of the Furies. But I can’t compare it with other albums because I only have a few tracks from the rest of their discography. Overall this is a good album. Here’s the track “Come Visit Me”:

The Rosebuds – Come Visit Me (download)

MoogFest is back in 2011, and the lineup is absolutely phenomenal. I wanted to go last year because A) the lineup was awesome, B) the whole idea was awesome, C) Asheville is a pretty cool town. This year, I just don’t see how I can miss it. All efforts will be made to attend. I mean, just look at this freaking lineup:

Consider me there.

Whoa. Did I really just mention those 3 bands in a row?

Cody Blaine has been making music in Murfreesboro for a good few years now in various incarnations. As most artists do, he’s changed, grown, and honed his skills quite a bit along the way. His latest project is called FAMN DAMN, a scaled-down version of his previous project Cody Blaine & The Whole Famn Damnly. That band involved drums, bass, keys, and a horn section. Needless to say, managing rehearsals for such a sizeable undertaking can take its toll on one’s willpower, so the new incarnation is much simpler- Cody Blaine sings and plays keys while drummer Mikey Lieberman caresses the skins. It’s nearly impossible not to compare Blaine’s vocal style to that of Tom Waits, but along the way he’s honed it so that it’s not as derivative. Stripping the instrumental aspects of the songs down to such bare components was also a good thing. The result is his first release on vinyl- the “Honey, Come Pull On My Tie/Borrowed Time” 7″ single. The single is currently being pressed for an unspecified release date. *Disclaimer- I did the photography and cover art for this release, so I’m not completely unbiased here.*

After debating which track to post, I landed on the B-side “Borrowed Timem,” as I slightly prefer it over the A-side.

FAMN DAMN-Borrowed Time

In other news, Jensen Sportag‘s EP Pure Wet is officially out. Stream and purchase via their label Cascine. Like said before: SEXY. This EP could just as easily have been titled Pure Sex. No joke.

Via the A.V. Club- Slayer’s guitarist Jeff Hanneman had to back out of a few upcoming shows for what has to be the most metal thing ever: He got a case of flesh-eating bacteria from a spider bite. Thankfully he’s fine and currently recovering from surgery. Seriously, that’s one of the most metal things I’ve ever heard. And Slayer is probably the most metal metal band ever, because the singer also recently injured his neck and back from headbanging. Somebody needs to give these dudes a trophy.

Loch Lomond: new discovery

February 8, 2011

My appetite for intricate orchestral folk-pop has been waning lately, but Loch Lomond is a refreshing take on that dreamy, melancholy end of the sub genre. In fact, this band sort of embodies the dreary yet ironically cheerful mood of their hometown of Portland, OR. Their instrumentation is perfect for the songs- mandolin, violin, cello, you get the picture. One can’t help but draw comparisons with bands like Lost In The Trees, or even Belle & Sebastian. Their album Little Me Will Start a Storm drops in two weeks on 2/22 on Tender Loving Empire. Highly recommended if you like either of the bands I just mentioned. They’ll be all over SXSW this year, and I plan on checking out the live incarnations of these songs.

Loch Lomond- Elephants & Little Girls

The Zut Alors: Boy Girl Party

December 16, 2010

Local synth rockers The Zut Alors are a shining example of what can be accomplished through Kickstarter. They started a campaign to raise money to press their debut album Boy Girl Pary on vinyl. They succeeded, and now they have the shiny new records in hand, ready to ship. The album is an impressive collection of medium-tempo sometimes dark, sometimes catchy, synth pop/rock. Singer Nick Bennett’s voice is often draped in reverb or delay and fuzzed out with distortion, but always with a clever underlying melody. You can clearly hear a strong Echo & The Bunnymen/Smiths influence on the vocals. Every instrument and layer in every song sounds calculated and precise, and the parts seem to fit together like a puzzle. The end result, though, is a set of carefully crafted pop songs that make an album well worth your money. It took this album a few listens to grow on me, but now I find myself putting it on repeat. Highly recommended.

The album will be available in Nashville at Grimey’s and online at their bandcamp page starting tomorrow, 12/17. Also, they’re hosting a listening party in the Blue Bar at Goldrush this Sunday night (the 19th). The party starts at 9pm and they’ll be selling the vinyl LP (which includes a free download code) for super cheap.

Download- Take Take Take

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