Too. Much. Music. Never thought I’d say that, but we were absolutely swamped with bands releasing new albums, singles, and music videos this past month. At the rate these roundup articles are growing, we might have to rethink the format for July. I really shouldn’t complain, though, as June was an excellent month for music in many genres, some of which we’ve yet to cover on the site. Grab some headphones and have a listen to the music that kept us so busy these last few weeks.
Blinker The Star – “Future Fires”
Blinker The Star is far from being green in the music scene having released six albums to date. Jordon Zadorozny, the main man behind the band, decided to try something new with his latest single “Future Fires”. The single attempts to envelop all of the energy of a full album within just one song. For the most part it works though it left me wanting to hear more (in a good way) of the mix of alternative and pop synth sound. Check out the single below or hit the link for the official music video.
Adelleda - Distress
The invasion of bands from Hamilton, Ontario continues! Adelleda, a skate punk band from that area makes an appearance on our list with the debut of their album Distress. The eight tracks full of driving drumbeats, impressive guitar work, and classic punk vocal stylings are emblematic of the genre and took me back to a time when I listened to a lot more punk on the radio. Good stuff all around. The album is available through iTunes and you can get a taste of it below or by checking out the music video for title track “Distress”.
Kings of Lowertown – “Shotgun Preacher”
I love coming across new music genres, or at least those that meld genres I’m already familiar with. Mike Mackey of Kings of Lowertown describes his band as “alt-country, alt-folk, and dirt blues” and that was enough to persuade me to have a listen. New single “Shotgun Preacher” – inspired by the style of Tom Waits – is part of the album 60 More Miles which is set to release in October of this year. This follows the pattern of new album releases each October over the last few years. Jordon Zadorozny makes a return appearance in this list as the producer and engineer on the track.
Suave x Prospek - Day 2 Day Soul
Soul music makes its first appearance in one of our music roundup features, and I wish it hadn’t taken so long. Soul singer Suave has teamed up with labelmate Prospek on the six-track album Day 2 Day Soul. I was thoroughly impressed with the vocal talents on the album, but it was the combination of Suave with the live instrumentation that won me over. My favorite track was “This Can’t Work” and its mix of great vocals with some excellent guitar and trumpet accompaniment. Have a listen below or check out the music video available here.
Venn - Versus
While much of this month’s list features artists with a few albums to their name, singer-songwriter VENN is debuting her first EP, Versus. The self-produced, four-track EP features an alternative/pop rock sound. It’s the experimental, eclectic twists that she puts on each song that make every track in the album sound very different from the others. My favorite of the bunch might be “Synth Boys and Supercharged Girls” which you can listen to below.
Paul Colilli - Hieroglyphs of the Soul
Simply Saucers co-founder Paul Colilli makes the list this month, but with his 2nd solo album Hieroglyphs of the Soul. It’s difficult to nail down a specific genre that the album would be filed under, but the lyrics reminded me of Talking Heads or They Might Be Giants. The album as a whole is an envisioning of what will pass on Earth between now and its end. Largely featuring the vocal work of Colilli, the piano accompaniment is a nice addition, particularly on slower tracks like “The Soft Ethic”. It’s really a fascinating vision from a musician who spends his days as a university professor teaching literature and philosophy.
Two Peace Extra Spicy - Sophia
Our newest staff writer, Jennifer, actually took a stab at reviewing the debut album from Canadian brothers Two Peace Extra Spicy. In her words, “…the brothers are clearly influenced by artists like The White Stripes and The Black Keys. Their entire album revolves around that same stripped down rock and roll sound…” The duo are fairly young at ages 18 and 15. While there are some growing pains with their talent, they also show a lot of promise in their six-track offering. The debut album can be heard below, and more information can be found at the band’s official website.
Prevrat - Symbols
Electronic, new wave, post-punk, indie rock and synthpop are all applicable descriptions of the music stylings created by Prevrat. That only begins to touch the surface of what’s contained within the eight tracks of Prevrat’s album Symbols. Featuring a wide array of synthesized sounds, I thought the album really hits its stride halfway through in tracks “Safe Distance” and “Abandoned” when the new wave vocals mix with the indie rock guitar. A number of the tracks also have accompanying music videos.
The Dead Projectionists - The Fantasy Farm
Alternative/folk rock group The Dead Projectionists recently released their four-track EP The Fantasy Farm. The six-member band from Toronto has a wonderful acoustic sound to back up the vocal harmonies. The highlight of the album for me is title track “Fantasy Farm” which does the best job of showing off the band’s talents and is a bit more upbeat in instrumentation than some of the other tracks.
The Woodwards – “Nothing”
Folk noir is a term I was unfamiliar with when first introduced to the musical stylings of Peter Schuyff and his band The Woodwards. Upon hearing new single “Nothing”, I immediately understood both the classification and the comparisons to Leonard Cohen and Tom Waits. The Woodwards have seen numerous changes over the years to the band’s lineup and sound, but the current group consists of Schuyff and British singer Stevie Guy. “Nothing” is the first track from the full album that the duo plans to release in September.
Fitness Club Fiasco – “Goldmine”
Few bands in this list have undergone as many transitions as Fitness Club Fiasco. Originally founded in Bristol, England and eventually moving to Canada, the band has seen a number of new additions to their lineup. Change can be good, though, and the band has developed a great sound that combines pop melodies with synths. The group has released “Goldmine”, a track that really shows off both their vocal and instrumental talents. The band describes their music as having “dancey rhythms”. I definitely get that from this single, and the experience reminded me of my introduction to The Killers many years ago. Have a listen below.
Soviet Sleeper Agent - Over and Out
Before I even listened to Soviet Sleeper Agent’s latest EP Over and Out, I got a real kick out of the names of the eight tracks included. Who could deny the opportunity to hear “Fonzie Jumps The Shark”, “Broseph Stalin”, or “I May Have Alzheimer’s, But At Least I Don’t Have Alzheimer’s”? The five-member punk band from North Wales, PA obviously has a great sense of humor, and for the most part they have the musical chops to back it up.
Jenn Fiorentino - From Darkness To Light
Although inspired by punk rock, Jenn Fiorentino’s music is also deeply-rooted in an acoustic, alternative style. From Darkness to Light is the second album from the artist, following up on the 2011 release of Upon Our Wonders. The album is not just all about Fiorentino’s vocals, though. I really loved the guitar work, particularly on the “Artificial Boundaries” and “Happy Are Those Who Forget”. Besides the album releases, Jenn has also spent a few years now covering a wide variety of punk songs, and these can be heard on her YouTube page.
Havilah Tower – “Out To Sea”
Self-described as producing ‘ClassAcoustic’ music, three-member band Havilah Tower are making their debut with their single “Out To Sea”. The band combines country/folk vocals (Havilah Tower) with a number of interesting instrumentation choices including cello (Chris Wright) and djembe drums (Stephen Perkins). “Out To Sea” is one of the tracks from their upcoming LP Behind The Curtain, scheduled to be released this October. I’m looking forward to hearing more of that unique sound later this year.
Chimera – “Lion”
Chimera’s work embodies the truest spirit of indie entertainment due to the fact that the artist wrote all of the music and has paid for everything out of pocket. The first example of that work to hit the internet is the single “Lion”, released in early June. That project has turned into a full multimedia venture that also includes a music video and short film.
Black Dirty - Dirty Water
Although from South Jersey, indie postrock/alternative/math rock band Black Dirty can be found these days playing in Philadelphia, PA. The four-member group released their first EP, Dirty Water, in early June. Despite the album name, the four tracks included on the album feature some great, clean-sounding guitar work. Not to be outdone, the vocals and drums are at the same level of quality and clarity. Have a listen below and then go pick up the album. It’s free!
Well, that’s it for this month. We certainly covered a lot of variety in June’s edition, but I know there’s always more music to be discovered. Was there some band or genre we overlooked? Did you have any favorites in the above list? I encourage you to share your views by leaving a comment. See you all again next month.
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