Thursday, February 17, 2011

TNDRNSS :: Demos

An earlier project of Nathan Williams was TNDRNSS, and Demos are about all he put out with it. The TNDRNSS Demos have been distributed online since Nathan sent them around a few years back. There are only four songs, and most of them are just chuggy acoustic with fuzz-muttered vocals; all except the song "Fun In The Sun", which sounds like a 1950's space dream. None the less, they're catchy tunes. Give them a listen, and if you look around, I'm sure you can still find them.

TNDRNSS - "Getting Out Of Bed"
TNDRNSS - "Fun In The Sun"
TNDRNSS - "More Fur"
TNDRNSS - "Ghost Ramp"


Saturday, February 12, 2011

Bayside :: Killing Time

     Bayside is my favorite band, of all time. I have branded my body with the bird and I am proud of it so all ya' haters can gtfo! I first started listening to Bayside in about 7th grade (2004) and I have never looked back. This punk quartet are the masterminds of such hits as "Devotion and Desire", "The Walking Wounded" and many many more. Since their inception in 2000 Bayside has been knowing for putting their hearts on their sleeves and always making music THEY want to make. This inspirational group has set the standard for making your way in the music industry without giving up who you really are. That is very apparent in their newest release "Killing Time" which will be released February 22 of this year on Wind Up Records. Many members of our good ol' cult were a little scared when Bayside switched records labels for the first time in seven years thinking their sound would change and they would not like the new record, but to be honest hasn't their sound changed a good amount from record to record anyway? I, my friends was not scared. I knew what ever Bayside put out would be solid because they are passionate about what they do and that is what makes a good record.
     So the first track on the record is "Already Gone" and it is an example of some classic Bayside. This song is intense. It is hard for bands to make a song that can be "in your face" at a medium tempo but these guys have never had a problem with that. The bass drum keeping a consistent 8th note pulse is really what kicks the song for me. I love it when a band can just pound the lower end into your ear. The same goes with bass guitar, the distortion mixed with the slick line really make this song BUMP! That's right, this Punk Rock track is bumpin! The riff is so class, the tone of the guitar has that signature Jack O'Shea feel and is really pleasing to the ears. Overall if you wanted to hear something you would expect from these guys, this is the song for you.
     The second track "Sick, Sick, Sick" sports the chorus of gods, this song was produced on Mt. Olympus most likely. The song starts of with a down beat from the snare drum and opens right up with the melody of the song. As these years have passed Anthony has definitely grown as a lyricist and that is truly present on this track. The lyrics are less "emo" than past records and I am fine with that. I love the old records just as much as this one but it's nice that the lyricism is broader and makes you think more. With past records I have gotten the point right away, and I really connected to them emotionally, but it is also awesome to think long and deep about what they have to say on this record. My cat Buddy just came into the room, daw!
     On to the fifth track of the record "Sinking and Swimming on Long Island" which is my favorite of the record as of now. This track starts out with a really cool beat from drummer Chris Guglielmo. Chris is one of those drummers that thinks simplicity is cool, and it's not because he can't play complicated stuff it's because he's awesome, ya dig? This song is connecting with me on deep level, ah such a good sign for the potential of this record. Being someone who has big hopes and aspirations just like the guys of Bayside I can really connect with the idea of working so hard to get nothing in return, which is how a lot of things in this world have come to be. The lyrics "The harder you work, the harder you fall. You wake up one day with nothing at all." are really hitting the spot right now. This song is an anthem for the average American trying to make their life what they want and sometimes it doesn't work out the way you want it so you damn it all to hell (heh) and try again and again.
     Overall I would definitely give this record a good 19 million listens like I have today. It has been on constant repeat all day and I have not gotten bored of it one bit, nor have I ever gotten bored with any Bayside record to date. This band is meant for confused teens like myself, which I am sure all of the members went through at some point as well. Why not listen to a band who is singing about your everyday struggles of the inner-self? There is NO reason not to. CULT.


Thursday, February 10, 2011

Annuals :: Count The Rings

     Annuals has been one of my favorite bands for years. They were the first "Indie" group I really got into and made me really appreciate the genre. I always try to keep up with bands that started me off liking a certain type of music, I always like to know where they have gone and how they have improved or sometimes started to suck. Annuals is one of those bands that no matter what they do, how weird and expirimental they get, you will always like what they are putting out.

      It is truly original music and I regret not realizing they have put out an EP and a full length since their 2008 release "Such Fun" but it's hard to keep up with a band when they are the type to switch record labels twice in two years and release sapartic digital only EP's without much press. It is safe to say that Annuals is a definite DIY band. They have always portrayed the distaste of an outside voice trying to push its veiws and opinions into their music so it's not surprising that they are very into recording and releasing muisc themselves, and I bet their labels like it to, it is very cheap.

     Bands of this generation are always being compared to bands of the past. Just today I read an article about Emmure being this generation's Limp Bizkit. It makes sense that these comparisons are being made due to the fact that albums from 20 to 30 years ago are still selling better than anything that isn't being played on your mnstrm radio station in your standard suburbia. So obviously kids are listening to the oldies to get their inspiration on to create music of their own. In my opinion Annuals is the next Pink Floyd, I know thats dangerous to say with all the butt hurt "There will never be another band like Pink Floyd" fans out there but hey, get over it. I might just be an over opinionated hipster but just give my few points a shot before you judge:
Picture of hipster band with nature background, long untammed hair, and facial hair.

Picture of hipster band with nature background, long untammed hair, and facial hair.

Both bands have released a great amount of music during their run as a band.

Annuals Discography:
Lay Down Dry (2005)
Git' Got EP (2006)
Be He Me (2006)
Big Zues (2007)
Frelen Mas (2007)
Wet Zoo (2008)
Such Fun (2008)
Sweet Sister (2010)
Count The Rings (2010)

Pink Floyd Discography:
The Piper at the Gates of Dawn (1967)
A Saucerful of Secrets (1968)
Soundtrack from the Film More (1969)
Ummagumma (1969)
Atom Heart Mother (1970)
Meddle (1971)
Obscurred by Clouds (1972)
The Dark Side of the Moon (1973)
Wish You Were Here (1975)
Animals (1977)
The Wall (1979)
The Final Cut (1983)
A Momentary Lapse of Reason (1987)
The Division Bell (1994)

So Annuals clocks in at 9 and has been a band for 8 years, Pink Floyd chimes in with 14 and was a band for 31 years. I think Annuals will not only acheive the amount of music put our but surpass it, which will create more and more progression making their music evolve as the years go on, just as Pink Floyd's did.
I didn't say anything about their music that would make you think the two bands are similar, I want you to listen and comment on why you disagree or agree with the comparison.

 Now onto the music. Annuals' "Count The Rings" is a compilation of long time favorites, and has been b-sides, it is streaming at Souterrain Transmissions' website. The first single that was released off of the album "Eyes In The Darkness" is perfect in my eyes. It's got classic wavy and bright synthasizor like you're used to when listening to this group. The vocals have always been so spot on for me, I feel like Adam's voice is perfect for Annuals and really brings all of the instrumentation into a good focal point. The same can be said for the vocals on the single too (which can be downloaded here for free).

     The drums are layered and complex with a lot of different rhythms and sounds going on at once. Which if you know much about Annuals past work you should know that is a given. This song features a lot of hand played percussion. There is a clap loop playing through the majority of the song along with the integration of hand drums and finally the build into the drum kit. Building small to big has always been the way to write a great song and it is working for these guys as well.

     As the song goes on and builds even more the dual drum set starts to come in giving the song small nuances here and there making it very pleasing. The drums never over power the song but instead they give it the ability to sound layered and dense but still simple and easy to listen to. Percussion has always played a great deal of importance in Annuals and as a percussionist I appreciate it a lot. Now a days I feel like it has become acceptable to have a mediocre drummer that can play just enough to get by. No way, I say! I have always been into drummers who either through the outlet of techicality or innovation have gone above and beyond. Drummers like Tommy Igoe, Steve Jordan, Max Roach, Bill Stewart, and many more. I would say the four members of Annuals that record percussion deserve a spot on my list as well, because what they are doing is really interesting stuff.

     In conclusion Annuals are a really awesome band that need to be listened to and appreciated, so if you haven't been doing that; get on it. They are innovative, smart, and most of all they have a cutie synth player. Anna Spence where you at guurll? Anyhow, listen to Annuals. Thanks.

Annuals - "Eyes In the Darkness"


Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Sick Animation :: Sex, Drugs and Rock n' LOL

Sick Animation, a.k.a Marc M. does not just produce hilarious catchy tunes but is also the creator of short films, and great comics. This project is really something else, the spectrum of genres is as broad as the topics on this album. There are hints of metal, rock, punk, pop, you name it and its on here along with some really random topic. You can kind of tell that this guy is a grade A weirdo and sits at home playing WoW all day, but I never said that's a bad thing. To each his own. This music is profane as hell, I would definitely say it is not o.k. to check out at school or at work, but if you do check it out and your 5 year old daughter is at the computer with you, don't say I didn't warn you.




Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Native :: Wrestling Moves

You know when you hear something and you're like "Damn I really wish I would have thought of this first!"? That is exactly how I feel about Native. Native is a post rock meets math rock combo that is really pleasing on my ears. I have studied music for eight years now and am a big fan of anything that isn't written in 4/4 and has some progressive influence. I am a nerd pretty much, this is nerd music, this is love. Native's "Wrestling Moves" clearly shows that these guys listened to a lot of Anthony Green when they were growing up and maybe still do (AG is my homeboy). The tone of the guitar is very similar to Circa Survive and comparable to Explosions In The Sky. The drums are sweet, as a drummer I admire the simplicity inside complication. The time changes and syncopated hits are handled with ease and enough nuance to make it very cool. I admire all of these songs, truly awesome stuff. You can buy Native's "Wrestling Moves" over at their Band camp. Did I mention this band is from Indiana? Wazzgoood! 


Sunday, February 6, 2011

Theophilus London :: Strange Love

Theophilus has a new EP titled "Lovers Holiday" available on iTunes Feb. 8th. The opening track, "Why Even Try" is available for free at his website now. Definately check that out. The second song on the EP, "Strange Love" is full of ambient chimes and samples. I can tell that this EP is going to be something different from him. Give it a listen.

Theophilus London - "Strange Love"


Friday, February 4, 2011

[Video] Brown Brogues :: Treet U Beta

Brown Brogues is a garage/punk band from Manchester. This duo released this video a few weeks ago, and apparently it's spreading like wildfire. "Treet U Beta" is the second track off of their new self-titled 7", available for pre-order at Suffering Jukebox's website. Killer song..hilarious video. Also, they will be at SXSW this year, so look out for them.


I Was A Fountain :: Vitamins/Black Soap

After an exchange of emails and some questioning on my end, Mark White aka IWAF finally released two more tracks today as promised. Well worth the wait, I might add.

My ears were instantly brought back to his first release in November, and I'm glad to hear his sound hasn't strayed too far off the path. The perfect blend of sampling and live acoustic recording make these two a must listen, and easily some of the best new music I've heard this year. But I can only say so much, so listen for yourself. 

[mp3] I Was A Fountain - "Vitamins"
[mp3] I Was A Fountain - "Black Soap"



Thursday, February 3, 2011

Four Visions :: Guises In Film

Two more great tracks from a favorite of mine, Daniel Abary, who works under the moniker Four Visions. Guises In Film is a two song EP he wrote with his inspiration coming from two classic indie films, 'Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind' and 'The Science of Sleep'. 

"Happy" is a vocal track written by Abary dubbed over John Brion's "Row", while "My Mind is Breaking" is an original track with vocal samples from 'The Science of Sleep'. The later starts off slow, so give it a chance. These are two gems you don't want to pass up. Check out his bandcamp for free goodies and other works. 

[mp3]Four Visions - "Happy"
[mp3]Four Visions - "My Mind is Breaking"

Right Away, Great Captain, anyone?


Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Bleeding Knees Club :: Have Fun

I came across Bleeding Knees Club a few days ago, and I haven't stopped listening to them since. "Have Fun" is the first song that I heard from the Australian catchy pop duo. It will have you remembering past summers, and anticipating summers to come. It's the last track off of their five track EP "Virginity" available for purchase on their bandcamp. They started in March 2010, and have only played a handfull of shows, but I found out that they will be playing with Wavves in early March, in Australia at a few shows, so check that out.

Bleeding Knees Club - "Have Fun"

-Shane; the newest member of the SOMETHING.civil team

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Force Publique :: Fortified

Force Publique released a fresh track today as a part of a thing they're doing where they release free material on the first of the month.  "Fortified" lives up to the hype of last months track "Still Falls Apart" and then adds something new. Think a more punk Crystal Castles. Love it. I can't wait for next month. 

[mp3]Force Publique - "Fortified"


Toro y Moi :: Still Sound (Knight Stalker Remix)

Very cool remix from Knight Stalker found its way to my inbox last night. Give them a listen, and support.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Silver Sound Explosion :: Sidekick

Some chilled out beach pop to start the week off. Silver Sound Explosion's washed out reverb instantly has me drawing connections to two of my very favorites, Slow Loris and Beach Fossils. A very good track. Stream some more tracks over at their Soundcloud, and keep up with them on Facebook

[mp3]Silver Sound Explosion - "Sidekick"

Sunday, January 30, 2011

[Video] Toro y Moi :: Still Sound

Super cool video for Toro y Moi's single "Still Sound". Underneath the Pine is due out February 22. Mark those calendars.


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Keep Shelly in Athens :: Running out of You (Solar Bears Remix)

A fresh new mix from Alaska's wonder-duo Solar Bears. This time mixing KSiA's always cool "Running out of You". A very minimal track, but still a great listen. 
Don't forget to pick up Solar Bear's She Was Coloured In here.

Keep Shelly in Athens - "Running out of You (Solar Bears Remix)"

Here's the video for the original, in case you're interested.

Keep Shelly in Athens // Running Out of You from Wooden Lens on Vimeo.