Sunday, September 5, 2010

Rush – Moving Pictures

(note: I wrote this PRE seeing Rush Thursday.)
Here is the deal. I am going to see Rush this upcoming Thursday. I'm freaking out. I haven't seen them since 2004. They were awesome then. But they were on tour for the “Vapor Trails” album. Which doesn't suck. But yo, this is fucking “Moving Pictures.” And idk if its true or not, but i heard that they are playing this album IN ITS ENTIRETY on their present tour. That along with a lot of their hits from over the years. So yes, safe to say, I'm very excited. This album is a hit machine pretty much. The first 4 songs are fucking CLASSIC. “Tom Sawyer” is one of the quintessential Rush songs. I think most people would agree to that. And its what starts off this album. I don't honestly know if this is the best Rush album. It was the third in a string of awesome records. The other two being “Hemispheres” and “Permanent Waves.” Between those 3 albums are a shit ton of amazing material. So i usually sort of hold them as my trinity of great Rush albums. haha. I try not to pick. Yes I know. You are thinking,”What about 2112?” Yes, that album is great. Its just, well, that's a different Rush. haha. I know that sounds weird, but the 3 albums I mentioned are just a different Rush. Different from 2112 era. Like i said, its hard. I love all the shit they have done since Peart started playing drums for them. So yeah, that's a few records before they got to this point on a musical level. I love the band. I'm stoked. And this album and its songs rock. The end. Go listen to Rush, k?
Download The Album Here
Buy It If You Like It

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Codeine – The White Birch

When i was younger. I heard about slowcore and sadcore. Two genres of music that seemed fairly interchangeable. The music is exactly the same but the differentiation comes from the lyrics and what they are about. Either emotional and “sad” or more open ended. So really, interpretation of a band’s music plays alot into what you would consider them. Any how, the first band I started listening to that had been described as either of these genres was Red House Painters. I liked them so much that I looked into more bands. I got into Low and Idaho. And i think that was the end of my searching out slowcore/sadcore bands. So flash forward to years later. I start listening to Rodan and every band that is associated with them. Through my interest in Rodan, and later June of 44, i came upon Codeine. A slowcore/sadcore band i had heard of, but never heard. This is my shit. I mean, completely different from Red House Painters. More along the lines of Low. Like a Chicago style slowcore band, but from New York. The songs are slow. and they do tend to have a sad feel both musically and lyrically. But this band is really heavy at times. Leading the way with huge sounding distorted basslines. I mean, even beautiful with how it adds a ethereal quality. How i missed out on this album for so long is really beyond me. It sounds like something I would like. I think most people that listen to it could tell you that. “The White Birch” is actually revered as one of the defining albums in Slowcore and Sadcore. So definitely give it a listen. A good album to know.
Download The Album Here
Buy it if you like it!

Monday, August 9, 2010


because i suck at html and have no clue how to do it on here. (if anyone knows please let me know)
just songs that i love and am really into at the moment.
theres a very real chance it will be updated more than this blog because its WAY easier. haha.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Tenebre – Self Titled EP

I realize I haven't written anything for this blog in a while. In a minute as the youths say. I'm sorry. Shit still sucks in my life. And sadly, I'm still listening to ALOT of the same stuff I've already written about. But listen I LOVE Tenebre. I wrote about their full length a long time ago. The band just does it for me. This is their latest release. Its great. You can listen to it here FOR FREE! You can also buy the album from that site in record and digital form. DO IT!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Aloha – Sugar

This album takes me back to a time when I was first sort of thrust into all the indie underground stuff. Granted, in middle school i got into the hardcore that was going on in Syracuse and through that found about about other hardcore bands. High school brought more post hardcore DC type stuff into what i was listening to. I also got more into 90’s alternative rock stuff. But after high school was when I started to really get into indie rock and what had been and was going on to my oblivious mind. Aloha was one of the many bands I found in that time that opened me up to different ideas musically. Aloha set the standard for the sort of jazz/post rock influenced indie rock band. They weren't Tortoise. There is enough of a pop sensibility to their songs that there is the chance for a crossover to someone that is not hip to post rock or anything like that. The vocals play just as important of a role as the vibraphone does. Which is often not the case with post rock bands. Considering a large portion of them are instrumental. This record start to finish is set up to sort of just move all together. Seamless transitions between songs make it seem like it is one long song.  And to view it like that, would be a bit much. I mean, there is ALOT going on with this record. There are all sorts of ideas. Whether they be lyrical, musical or whatever else. Sometimes, I have to admit, that it can become a bit much if you don't know what you are getting into. Thick layers of all sorts of sounds. Keyboards, Percussion, Sounds, Vibraphone, Guitar, Bass, Drums, Etc. Sometimes it seems like the songs come to the brink of falling apart into some sort of noisy collapse. But they find their way back every time. I’m not trying to scare anyone away. This record is fucking great. It has some amazing moments. Some beautiful musical movements. Some outrageous drumming. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again, a drummer really makes a band in a lot of ways.  At least for certain kinds of music. The album is always interesting. Mathy. Ambient. Technical. Music at its best in a lot of ways. I don't know if this is really Aloha’s best album. I just know its the one I’ve listened to the most over time and have grown most attached to. Songs like “They See Rocks”, “Let Your Head Hang Low”, “Balling Phase”, “Protest Song” and “We Get Down” seal it for me. Okay, I just named like, half the album. haha. I don't care. That just shows how awesome this record is. If you are into post rock influenced indie rock, or indie rock influenced post rock, listen. Experimental music? listen. I think even my hippie coworker could dig this record. haha.
Download The Album Here
Buy It If You Like It

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Cap’n Jazz – Burritos, Inspiration Point, Fork Balloon Sports, Cards in the Spokes, Automatic Biographies, Kites, Kung Fu, Trophies, Banana Peels We've Slipped on and Egg Shells We've Tippy Toed Over

The term emo has been thrown around so much. And it means different things to everyone. If I mention emo to my mallcore coworkers at P&C, I’m sure they would think of some MTV2 band i could give two fucks about. Its very sad. Me? Well, I’m informed. At least to the level that I know it can mean a bunch of different things. haha. Cap’n Jazz was the frontrunner in the Chicago emo (and later indie) sound. Musically taking cues from a lot of the emocore acts from DC like Embrace (maybe more so Fugazi. though I consider them post hardcore, not emo) and Rites of spring while adding their own ideas to make the music they put out completely original. Cap’n Jazz were all a bunch of young turks when they started the band. Barely teenagers. And while a lot of the present day emo is young whiney bands, they NEVER came off that way. Even with singer Tim Kinsella’s voice cracking as he sung and screamed, their lyrics were never typical of where the genre has gone. The band is really more likable to post hardcore, but that is what emo was originally. At this facet of it anyway. haha. Weird how something can change so much. This is the only full length Cap’ Jazz ever put out. They were on some different comps, 7’s and splits. But truly, these are the best songs they have. And they broke up pretty much right after this came out. All their songs, except for the song “Naive”, were later rereleased on the compilation CD “Analphabetapolothology.” That is where me and pretty everyone else that wasn't back around going to shows in 93-94 first heard the band. And these 12 songs were featured on the first CD. This album is otherwise known as “Schmap'n Schmazz.” Which realistically is a easier album title, but personally not as fun. haha. This recommendation comes sort of as a precursor to their show I’m going to see next month. Reuniting after like 15 years. Besides being there own beast of a band, the list of bands that the members of this band started afterword is unbelievable. Check the tag on this post to see all the bands that were formed by the ex members. All gold in my opinion. Just like this album. Seriously, start to finish. Great, youthful, passionate, energetic post hardcore. I cant imagine you haven't heard them. Or at least heard of them.
Download The Album Here
If you like it, buy “Analphabetapolothology” on CD or soon on Double LP.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Frodus – And We Washed Our Weapons In The Sea

This album is in heavy rotation on my real world music listening device presently. I just love it. I love Frodus in general. The majority of their catalog is all over the place. I mean, this is the band that the genre “spazzcore” came to represent. Or more so, the band that pioneered the genre. So right, doesn't that sound like something i would gravitate towards? haha. You know me all too well reader who i don't even know. I can admit that the majority of Frodus’ catalog does not sound like this album. And that's okay. They were a typical good band that changed with each release. This album falls into the screamy post hardcore genre. At least for me. As it has become typical for me, i like this album for its moments of beauty and the gut busting rock. The first time I ever heard of Frodus was in the Lovitt Transmissions DVD. I bought it for Engine Down and Sleepytime Trio. But there are a whole lot of other great bands shown on the DVD. and Frodus is one of them. I don't exactly know how i figured out what song it was, but the first song the band is shown playing on that DVD is like, the heaviest fucking thing ever. And i will admit made me download everything they ever put out. haha. I listened to all of their albums and figured out that the part I was so blown away by was from a early version of the song “The Awesome Machine”, which is off this album. Being that hearing/seeing that was sort of the spark that got me into the band in the first place, I can say that i centered more on this album than other releases. (btw, here is the link to that part from the DVD. the first part that is played is the song I'm talking about. SO HEAVY) This album is beautiful. Its heavy. Intense. It has what i look for in music. Start to finish there is not a moment that is off. Atmosphere is such a critical part to its power. Sadly, I think this album’s biggest claim to fame is that Thrice covered the song “The Earth Isn't Humming” for their one album. I don't know the name of the album. I honestly don't care. No care about that band. And I’m sure there are Thrice fans that feel the same about Frodus. But yeah, fuck those people. haha. All that aside, that song is fucking awesome. Probably why I’m like, hey, don't cover that shit! haha. “6/99” is probably my favorite song off this album at the moment. Like most my recent posts, that has to do with the loss I have recently been dealt with my fiancé throwing me out of her and my future son’s life. Its been very hard. The closest I can put how i feel is when my best friends sister died. She was like my sister. And I still cry when I think of her loss. I heard that Shelby Cinca, singer and guitarist of Frodus, wrote this song after two close friends of his died. That's how i feel, and that's probably why i identify with this song so much. But I don't really want to make this entry about me. (Though I will say, all music is important based off of the listeners interpretation and experience through it.) This album is such a great release for the band. It really is a swan song. It really is their best album. I know fans of their early work will fight me. But its just overall a more accomplished release then their past works. Washington, DC post hardcore at its best!
Download The Album Here
Buy It If You Like it!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Sed Non Satiata – Self Titled LP

I randomly found this the other day. I had heard a tune from it a long while ago and knew that the band was coming out with it. But that was pretty much it. Hadn't heard anything about it. And idk, one night when I was really depressed, just randomly found it. And it was so awesome. Cause immediately, I went from being unbelievably sad and depressed to being crazy happy. Like, shouting. haha. Now, why is that? Well, I love Sed Non Satiata. Along with Daïtro, they are one of my favorite bands of the skramz/real screamo genre. They have this way of just being so heavy and and intense, and having musical movements that are just flat out beautiful. They and Daïtro are friends, have put out a split together, and i feel like drive one another to keep putting out awesome music. Last year, Daïtro came out with “Y.” And it is a absolutely awesome album. I have to admit that after it came out I did remember thinking to myself “Your move Sed Non Satiata.” hahaha. The last album they had released was their split with Daïtro. And their side of that record was really great. Their self titled record finds them expanding on their musical style. The LP’s opening song “Les Colonnes De Soie” is fucking amazing. And is probably one of the bands best. The album in general is really great. As has been my complaint with the band in the past, I just wish the album had more songs. But its hard with the French screamo. The stuff borders on post rock often. So long instrumental songs are often common place. This album’s 5 songs still equal the same amount of time you would expect from a band putting out a normal 11 song album. So yeah, I have to get over my bullshit and remember, quality NOT quantity. haha. The quality of this album is tops. And in a lot of ways, well worth the wait. Sed Non Satiata can write a fucking song! haha. I hope this isn't the last time we hear from Sed Non Satiata. Like I have said, they are one of my favorite bands. I can only hope that they and Daïtro tour the states together in support of their respective albums. That would be sweet! Please enjoy this record. Its quite good. :-D
Download The Album Here
Seek it out and buy it if you like it!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Majority Rule

Majority Rule is a all time favorite band of mine. It all started senior year of high school. They opened up one of the punk shows that happened at the Westcott Community Center every Friday Night. They actually opened for Syracuse locals Just Passed. And i had friends in that band. I remember watching Majority Rule with them, and thinking “why is this band OPENING this show?” only to have my friend from Just Passed lean over and say to his band mate “I cant believe this band is opening for us!” haha. I was hooked and from that point on, tried to see them every time they played town. They were one of the tightest live bands i had seen. And they were playing some of the heaviest, highest energy, screamy whatever music I had heard. To call Majority Rule hardcore is a disservice in my honest opinion. There are moments on their albums that are absolutely beautiful. There are moments that are unbelievably heavy. They have got everything. That is what the band was known for. Majority Rule’s sound can be traced back to the VA screamo sound. But they added variants to that sound like atmospherics, time changes and other musical ideas that made them completely unique. To this day, they are one of the LOUDEST bands I’ve ever seen. A three piece and yet they sounded as loud as a five piece metal band with full stacks. haha. No clue how they did it. Majority Rule was the band I heard that got me away from your typical hardcore bullshit. They got me to listen to different screamy types of music that, in my opinion, are even more passionate and intelligent then any of that straight, fast, typical bullshit. This recommendation is sort of all over the place. Its so hard to write about this band. They are just so musically important to me. I hope that when I have kids some day that this is what I grow up listening to around them. haha. Is that weird? haha. I really wish this band did not break up. I KNOW I am not alone in that dream. Their shows were some of the best times of my life. Its very rare that you have a band playing songs this heavy, without some dumbass starting a mosh pit. But it never happened. And I loved that. I loved people singing along. Clapping. It was right up there with Syracuse locals Bad Cops for best show atmosphere. Majority Rule and Nakatomi Plaza at the Westcott still ranks up there as one of the best shows I’ve ever been at. I’ve lost my point. Sorry, this is worship. I don't care. This band was amazing. They deserve every sort of accolade. Every talk up. They deserve it all. I really wish they had put out a full length. I really wish they put out a CD or album of old shit from splits and EP’s. But those will remain dreams. I’m so glad this band existed. A short story to end this blog. My birthday is coming up this month. Years ago, I had a birthday coming up and saw that Majority Rule was playing a show in I believe Rochester, NY the day before. I was going to treat myself and go. I ended up emailing them and telling them. And i told them my favorite song of theirs was “I Need No More” off of their 7 inch. And i asked if they could play it for me. Turned out, they were playing here in Syracuse on my birthday. I hadn't heard of the show for whatever reason. But Majority Rule agreed to play it! I couldn't believe it. Well the worst thing happened. My ride and everything got fucked up, and i didn't get to go. i was really depressed. And the worst for me personally was that they actually played the song and gave a birthday shout out to me. EXCELLENT! I've never got over missing that. But like, that just gives you a idea as to what great guys Majority Rule were on top of everything else. They would go out of their way for some random person they don't know, just because that person loves their band. I pray for a reunion every time i listen to them. One of the most important bands of my life. Which may be surprising to most people.
Self Titled 7 inch
Interviews With David Frost
Split with Pg. 99 (Just the Majrule portion. Sorry)
Emergency Numbers
there are other splits and things out there, but these are essential. I would also say try to find the song “Now Breathe.” That song fucking destroys.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

The Rentals – Return Of The Rentals

I met Matt Sharp years ago. He played a solo show in my town. And i was just so taken aback to meet him. Matt Sharp was the original bass player of Weezer. And though I have ZERO interest in that band now, their first two albums are unstoppable. I have always given a lot of that to Matt Sharp. Seeing as after his exit from the band they put out nothing that came close to those two albums. Those two albums were so important to me as a youth. And I think when i met him I freaked him about a bit. haha. Besides being one of the minds behind two of the most important albums of my youth, Matt Sharp started a side project while in Weezer that while always awesome, has become personally important to me in the last month. The Rentals existed for years in some form or another before the release of this, their first album. And when this album hit, i remember it’s single “Friends of P” being very popular on the MTV. The band had a NEW new wave sound going for themselves. Alternative wave? And where Matt had often taken a higher, falsetto singing style in Weezer, the higher registers are taken over by dual female vocals. The songs on this album are often times really heavy. Not just from a musical standpoint, but from a lyrical standpoint. I never really noticed it before recently. I’d listened to this album god knows how many times, always loved it. But now there is this whole new layer. A lot of the songs deal with lost love, the idea of not being happy, not finding what you are looking for in life. I mean, this shit hits home for me right now. haha. But i like that the band is musically upbeat to the point that for years, i didn't see the deeper, maybe sadder, side to a lot of the songs. How can you be depressed when there are moogs about? haha. My favorite song off this album has always been “My Summer Girl.” Recently, the song has taken a sad personal turn for me. But I’m just glad to hear such awesome songs about things that I am experiencing now. And they are written in a way, that makes me sad but makes me realize, you can take something life changing and make something really great out of it. Its going to take me awhile to be able to do that. But I have albums like this one help me through that time. And to also help me realize, LOTS of people have gone and are going through the same thing I am right now. Thank you Matt Sharp. I love you.
Download The Album Here
Buy It If You Like It!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Mock Orange – Nines & Sixes

Recently the love of my life broke up with me. It was sudden, unexpected and uncalled for. I’ve been having one of the hardest times in my life since. I’ve been looking for escape in any form that I can find it. And since I don't do drugs or drink, that pretty much equals: friends, music, and artistic expression. My friends are few and far between. Usually very busy with their own lives. For whatever reason, my own artistic expression is severely limited. The last time a girl I loved broke my heart, I wrote a whole album about it. Now, I cant even seem to finish a song. So that leaves me with the music I love. Some things I listen to, no matter how much I love them, aren’t able to cut through my state of depression. But I have found that there are two albums that have been able to put me in a good state of mind. Along with Suis La Lune’s EP “Heir”, “Nines & Sixes” by Mock Orange works. And it works quite well. This is a band that I sadly cant stand now. I think this album, and its follow up “The Record Play”, is the reason behind that. Mock Orange was such an amazing band. There is pretty much NO basis for direct comparison to ANY other bands that existed. In a lot of reviews they get compared to Sunny Day Real Estate. But I’m sorry I just don't hear it. I’ve read reviews that mention them like they were just another mid 90’s emo rip off band that didn't do anything new for the genre. THATS FUCKING BULLSHIT! Not a single review of this album, or its follow up, talk anything about the beauty or the technical proficiency Mock Orange used to exert. “Nines & Sixes” is the bands first full length album. And I know that for me and a lot of people, its a milestone. The band used to play a form of emo that, while influenced by bands like Sunny Day Real Estate, was completely original. The term math rock gets thrown around a lot. But i really feel like Mock Orange was sort of a godfather of where parts of that genre have gone. Off kilter time changes, weird time accents, absolutely awesome drum lines. And all the while having a great understanding that you can do all of that, and still write a catchy song. The thing that i think i am mostly drawn to about this record right now in my life, is the lyrics. I used to always listen to this album because of the awe inspiring song structures. But now, I’m finding songs that have meaning and say things that I feel. I like that. And i think that me finding it in something I already have a great connection to really makes me happy. I can listen to this album start to finish numerous times, and it never gets old for me. I’ve been listening to it a lot lately. Cause like I said, there are few things that make me happy in the world now. This album is one of them. I will cherish it forever. Even though I don't like the band anymore. haha. If you haven't listened to this album before, and like mid 90’s emo bands, do yourself a favor and check it out. Its energetic. Its different. Its important to me.
Buy it if you like it

Here's video of the boys playing "Window Shopping" off of Nines & Sixes live.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Honorable Mentions of 2009

Well hello there! As I stated in my last "real" blog post, i would be doing a follow up to my best of 2009 post. This post will contain albums that i didn't listen to enough or just plain forgot to cover in the “Best of 2009” post. As I also mentioned, I’m not going to do full write ups of the the albums. Just album and link. Maybe ill put genre tags for good measure. Enjoy shit i should've written about already! haha.
Them Crooked Vultures – Self Titled
stoner rock/metal, neo-classic rock, alternative rock
Download The Album Here
Bygones – By-
instrumental math rock, experimental, noise
Download The Album Here
Narrows – New Distances
metalcore, math metal
Download The Album Here
Saxon Shore – It Doesn't Matter
instrumental post rock
Download The Album Here
Dinosaur Jr. – Farm
Alternative Rock, Indie Rock
Download The Album Here
Toe – For Long Tomorrow
post rock, instrumental rock, indie rock
Download The Album Here
Polar Bear Club – Chasing Hamburg
post hardcore, emo, indie rock, alternative rock
Download The Album Here
Victor Villarreal – Alive
Indie Rock, Acoustic, Singer/Songwriter
Download The Album Here
Kalpana – Teeth On The Wheel
Post rock, Indie rock, Space rock
Kalpana - Teeth on the Wheel
Download The Album Here
Converge – Axe To Fall
math metal, metalcore
Download The Album Here
Maserati – Passages
Post Rock, Instrumental Rock, Experimental Rock
Download The Album Here
El Grupo Nuevo de Omar Rodriguez Lopez – Cryptomnesia
Experimental Rock, Neo-Progressive Rock, Alternative Rock
Download The Album Here
Do Make Say Think – Other Truths
Post Rock, Indie Rock, Alternative Rock
Download The Album Here
Built To Spill – There Is No Enemy
Indie Rock, Alternative Rock
Download The Album Here
Young Widows – Split Series
Post Hardcore, Noise Rock, Alternative Rock
Download Them Here
As always, if you enjoy the music you've heard, please seek it out and buy it! I cant stress this enough!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

My “Best Of” 2009

so let me just begin this post by saying that I have never done anything this ambitious in ANY of my previous posts. The idea of reviewing a bunch of albums in one post still seems kind of unbelievable to me. I don't know how its going to work out. Some of this might surprise you. Just a few quick notes. These are not going to be arranged by date of release, personal importance to me or anything else. I’m just going to write about what comes to my mind, when it comes to my mind. And I’m going to try to keep the write ups MUCH shorter than usual. Its also probably guaranteed that I will forget some important releases. I apologize in advance for that. here we go…


Coalesce – OX
The first album I’m going to tackle, and one that I was very excited about when it came out, is Coalesce’s “Ox”. This album was their return to the scene, as it were, after they released the really good Salt And Passage 7inch in 2007 and that was it until this album’s release. What I love about this album is that, despite a few minor tweaks and adages to their sound, this is the Coalesce of old. Often bands get old and they sell out. And that doesn't always refer to major label kind of talks. They sell out their sound and what fans expect to hear them play. Coalesce doesn't disappoint. The math metal/core/whatever is still hard and heavy. All over the place. Sean Ingram’s voice is as brutal as ever. This was the type of release that when we fans heard it, we were so excited. Because the quality of the output is stupendous. If you are into bands like Botch, Converge, Dillinger Escape Plan, etc., why the fuck haven't you heard this album yet? Why don't you own and love this album? Get on top of that quick, okay?
Download The Album Here
The Mercury Program – Chez Viking
The Mercury Program had been gone for a VERY long time. How long? Well, the last release they were a part of was 2003’s “Confines Of Heat” Split with Maserati and their last release was “A Data Learn The Language”in 2002. So yeah, i wasn't shitting you. All through out that time there were constant rumors of the band’s demise. I myself didn't know what was going on. But the main reason that there wasn’t any recorded output from the band was because their past label’s had all crumbled and they didn't have a label. This album was actually recorded for quite awhile, and Lovitt records was nice enough to step up and release it. THANK YOU! The Mercury Program are undeniably influenced by the Tortoise post rock sound, but they have their own sound. Often, heavier with more complex drumming and delayed guitar parts reminiscent of The Edge from Joshua Tree era U2. Its great that after all this time the album still sounds fresh. I’m really hoping this is the beginning of a lot of future releases by the band on their new label.
Download The Album Here
Zombi – Spirit Animal
I love horror movies. I don't really think that the average reader of this blog, that doesn't know me, would know that. The majority of horror movies I like are not the new crap that is coming out, but the older stuff. So what does anything of this have to do with the band Zombi? Back in the 70’s & 80’s there was a band called Goblin. Goblin played a style of music that you could described as horror prog. They did the music to such horror gems at Dawn of the Dead, Suspiria, and many others. Zombi is directly influenced by Goblin and sound like the next logical step in that type of music. They also sound like they are greatly influenced by Rush and Peter Gaberial era Genesis. Especially on this record. The band is a duo. And its rad that they can create music of this caliber with only two musicians contributing ideas. The live make up of the band features a keyboardist and a drummer, who also happens to play keyboards live. If you like any of the artists i mentioned in this article, definitely check out Zombi. Horror Prog bro, horror prog.
Download The Album Here
Baroness – Blue Album
Baroness is a new band for me. I know, I know. I’m behind the times. I heard their “Red Album” for the first time this summer. I listened to Baroness enough through out the summer that I was anticipating the release of this album. Baroness plays a awesome style of psychedelic rock influenced metal. I don't really know this kind of music, because i don't listen to much metal and things of that nature. All i can say is, when i hear something i like, i like it. While this record doesn't beat their Red Album, the bottom line is, there is some really awesome music contained on this record. The drummer of Baroness is outrageous. He has a way of playing parts that are different and adventurous without seeming out of place. The drums on “The Sweetest Curse” (the second song on the record. the first being “Bullhead’s Pslam” which is more of a intro/opener) are a key example of how he is able to write something off kilter and different and still give that song the drive and push to have it rock the fuck out. The album just rocks all together. Fans of Torche, Mastodon, etc. should be down with this. But they probably already know about them. Also, their album artwork is rad and looks like old Ice Age era magic the gathering cards. haha.
Download The Album Here
Castevet – Summer Fences
The first time I became aware of Castevet was when I came upon their “I Know What A Lion Is” EP/Demo last winter. Right around the time I found their EP, I heard about them releasing a future full length. Summer Fences is that full length. I was/am really excited on the band.  They play indie rock/post hardcore in the vain of the Kinsella brothers musical legacy. You know what i mean. Bands like, Cap’n Jazz, American Football, Owls, Ghosts and Vodka, etc. Not to mention the numerous other bands that have been influenced by those Chicago music royalty. Castevet is a bit different than say a Algernon Cadwallader though. Because there is definitely more of a hardcore influence to their music style. The singing is gruff and often time brutal. But the contrast works very well. The music is often really beautiful and pretty sounding, and that counteracts the hard singing. The 3 songs that appeared on their EP are on this album along with 5 other great songs. I cant say enough good things about this band. Anyone into the Chicago sound of indie rock needs to hear these guys!
Download The Album Here
Mission Of Burma - The Sound The Speed The Light
I don't have any tattoos. But I’ve had two ideas for tattoos in mind for years, and someday i hope to get at least one of them. One of them is a Mission of Burma tattoo based off of the artwork of their “Signals, Calls and Marches” EP. In other words, they are a VERY important band to me. I think in general, they are a very important band for the history of music. The band disbanded in the early 80’s and reunited in the early 00’s. Nearly 20 years later. And honestly, Mission Of Burma still destroy fucking everyone. They successfully picked right up where they left off musically in the 80’s when they reunited. Jagged guitar, intricate drumming, strong moving basslines, and intelligent lyrics that the band has come to be known for. They’ve put out two albums before this release since reuniting. And while this album is not as strong as those releases, its a really great album and continues where the band has been going since they’ve reformed. Anyone into post punk should already know about them. But if you don't know, you better ask someone! haha. Believe, you’ll love this!
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Tortoise - Beacons of Ancestorship
The year seemed to spawn a lot of albums by bands that hadn't really released anything in awhile. Tortoise is another example in this line. Tortoise continues doing what they do on this album. There’s moments of jazz like jam outs. There is the more electronically based numbers. This is where the band has come to lie musically. And that's no problem. Tortoise are essentially, in my mind at least, the defining band in the Chicago post rock music. And i think the choices that they have made in where to go musically have definitely effected the genre. I just feel like that style and bands who have come after them owe so much to the band. This record is totally understandable to a seasoned listener. But i would suggest anyone just now getting into their work to start further back so you can see where they came from. But who knows, i think this album is definitely good and wouldn't be surprised of having first time listeners of the band falling in love with them.
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Native – Wrestling Moves
Native - Wrestling Moves
Native is a post hardcore band that has definite math rock influences. To put it simply, they remind me of if the more aggressive moments of At The Drive-In grew up listening to Tera Melos. And with a singer that often times reminds me of my good friend Vic Lazar of Patrons Of Sweet/Knife Crazy fame. I first became aware of them when I listened to their “We Delete; Erase” EP sometime last year. Shit was golden to me. I can honestly admit that I had no clue when they planned on releasing a full length. I was following Sargent House Records on Twitter for awhile (had to unfollow them. i got very sick of all of the “talking up” they did for their releases/bands) and knew they were planning one. But honestly, i guess it slipped my mind. I stumbled upon this one day and was stoked. They don't disappoint. I’ve heard Native recommended for fans of Minus The Bear and These Arms Are Snakes. I don't really hear that at all. I like my description of what the band sounds like. People into the present state of math rock should dig this band pretty hard.
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Mouse On The Keys – An Anxious Object
I did a sort of brief overview of this band earlier this year. It was the release of this full length that was the driving force behind the article. Mouse on the Keys is an amazingly talented band hailing from Japan. They play a unique style of jazz fusion or nu jazz that has its roots in everything from prog, to funk, to straight up classic jazz. Amazingly talented duo consisting of a pianist and a drummer. And what a fucking drummer this guy is! Listen to the song "Spectres De Mouse.” It destroyed my life the first time I heard the drumline. A lot of times the shit I’ll hear on drums today is inherently ripping off Zach Hill or Damon Che so its great to hear a drummer doing something different.  I can not say enough good things about Mouse On The Keys. This album is their first full length and it immediately followed their “Sezession” EP that came out in 2007. All of this is just unbelievable to me. This band is amazing and I hope keeps churning out awesome music for years and years to come. I also hope they get their asses to the US stat! haha.
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Polvo – In Prism
Polvo will end the full lengths released by bands who haven't released anything in a long time. haha. Cause realistically, this is sort of the biggest deal. Not taking away from any of the previous releases I’ve talked about. But here’s the deal. Polvo broke up. They were no longer a band. Then they do a few reunion shows, and next thing you know, they are talking about recording a new album. Mind you, their last release was in 1997. So yeah, we are talking awhile between the two releases. The record is pretty good. I'm not going to rave or anything like that. In some ways i feel like the band has mellowed out. And that's to be expected. None of us are who we were 10 years ago. But idk, i always expect my bands to stay the same. Overall, there seems to be a lot of straight forward stuff on this album. Its not a bad record. But im a dick and was expecting stuff like “exploded drawings”. so fuck me. haha. just listen for yourself. Its not a bad album.
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Daïtro – Y (possibly my album of the year)
You can read my write up about this album here.
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Knot Feeder – Light Flares
You can read my write up about this album here.
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Algernon Cadwallader - Fun
Algernon Cadwallader is a Kinsella band. I’m convinced of it. haha. Their singer is probably the closest thing you will find to a Cap’n Jazz era Tim Kinsella. And the music the band plays sounds like all of the Kinsella bands rolled together. Upbeat and noodlely. I love the band. This is the rerelease of their “Hot Green” EP with some extra songs. For fans of everything kinsella and villarreal.
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Coalesce – OX EP
This was a continuation of what Coalesce released on “OX”. The best part of it is that this EP feels like its own thing. It doesn't feel like just left over material from the album. The same sort of awesomeness that is found on the full length can be found here. I bought this the week it came out. And that says something for my broke ass. haha. If you have “OX” you should really have this EP as a companion piece if anything. It just really great.
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Suis La Lune/Osceola – Split 7inch
Now i will be completely honest. I didn't have interest in this album because of Osceola. The band isn't bad. But I can honestly admit that this is the first time i ever heard of them and the first time I listened to the band. Once again, that doesn't make them bad at all. But you need to know that, Suis La Lune is my thing. I love that band. “Heir” was probably one of my most played album’s in 2008/2009. And for them, this split continues with their beautiful screamy emo stylings. I cant wait for these guys to put out another full length. “Quiet, Pull The Strings!” is great and all, but they have grown so much since then. Skramz/Real emo fans take note. This 7inch slays overall.
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Local & Friend’s Bands
Oak & Bone – 7inch
Oak & Bone have recently sort of blown up. Ex-members of Moth Leads The Empire and Lazy Shell start a band. Band plays together and gets really rad playing a Young Widows meets stoner metal meets Nirvana Bleach era sound. Band gets tight as shit, plays a bunch, and ends up getting signed to Hex records. This is the 7inch they released for Hex Records. This band is one of the best things Syracuse has going for it right now. I don't listen to heavy music, i always say that. But Oak & Bone are heavy as shit and i wouldn't have it any other way.
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Zona Mexicana – EP
Zona Mexicana is a amazing band hailing from SUNY Purchase. The band’s claim to fame is that they are ex-Ra Ra Riot. And sadly, that's the worse band of their member’s combined ex’s to reference Zona to. Zona Mexicana plays math rock that is influenced by Tera Melos and that California sound that is sweeping the nation. But there is also a lot taken from screamo bands of the mid 90’s. There are dual screaming/yelling vocals over some increasingly crazy music. The band pulls this all off live in a amazing show. This EP was their first recorded release, and i hope the band continues to put out more great music.
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Lemuria - Ozzy
Lemuria is a pop punk/alternative rock band from Buffalo, NY. My old band played with them years ago. And since then, they have really blown up. Overall, I’m happy for them. They are good people who write good songs. This 7inch sees the band continuing musically where they left off with their highly regarded last album “Get Better.” The difference is, these songs are a little bit longer. But the same spunk and songwriting skill are present. 2009 saw a major line up change for the band which leaves me worried, but I’m keeping my ears open to whatever they put out in the future.
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Urchins Of The Night – Reentry
Urchins Of The Night are Syracuse royalty hailing from Brooklyn and New Jersery. The first time I heard of this band they were described to me in a way that would later infuriate me. “We The People minus Chuck.” Realistically, this is the easiest way to talk about who is in the band, but not how they sound. After they posted tracks on Myspace I realized how totally off that statement is. Urchins of the Night play a form of punk rock that, to me, seems highly influenced by late 80’s bands like Embrace and Hüsker Dü. I’m sure my description is nowhere near what they are going for but when I heard them for the first time that's what came to my mind. The band IS NOT just We The People minus Chuck. The band is really great at playing their own style of music really well. Get into it!
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Cicada – EP
This album was long awaited for me and a lot of other people in the Syracuse music scene. Cicada is just the bee’s knees for me. They’re a metal band who have been compared to bands like Crowbar, Neurosis, and Isis. But to me, they remind me a lot of Baroness. Their dueling guitar leads are what seal the deal for me. This 5 song EP feels more like a full length with how it plays. The songs feel epic, they can change at the drop of a hat and are heavy as shit. I just think these guys are some of the greatest dudes around Syracuse playing some of the most awesome music. If you like any of those bands I mentioned, you should listen to this band.
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Night Owls – EP
Night Owls is a Syracuse, NY band that consists of lots of ex and current members of bands that are known and loved in the area. One of my only issues with them comes from people comparing them to Drive Like Jehu. I find this kind of deceptive. But that's not the band's doing. Night Owls plays music torn being post hardcore and punk rock. This EP contains the band’s demo and 3 songs recorded at a later date. My only other issue with this release is that they just used remixes of the demo recordings instead of rerecording them with their new bassist at the time. No biggie really. Idk. Like Hot Snakes? Like the more straight forward Fugazi material?  You will probably love Night Owls.
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Rejouissance – Moss On Monuments
Rejouissance is the brain child of Syracuse/Brooklyn musician Jim Heffernan. He’s been in a lot of great bands over the years and Rejouissance is sort of his solo project. The music has changed a lot since that first spray painted CDR. “Moss On Monuments” contains what has become their trademark combination of acoustic meets post hardcore. Thin Lizzy-esc dual guitar lines and all. With Jim enlisting his friends to help play his songs, there have been numerous incarnations of the live Rejouissance band over the years. It is really hard to review this record since I now play in the band and busted my ass to learn every song off this record. But when you get down to it, there are great songs on here by a great songwriter.
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The Red Robot – Memory
The Red Robot were the hottest thing to come out of Northern California. At least as far as I knew. Okay, okay. I didn't really know much, if anything, about that scene until I heard these Redding heavyweights. These guys played music in the vain of Fugazi, At The Drive-in, Drive Like Jehu, etc. The band played together for quite a long time and in that time garnered quite the loyal local following. Memory is the bands last album and their swan song if you will. It finds them continuing where they left off on their Self Titled album and has a feeling of a last record. It makes me really sad that The Red Robot called it quits. I wanted them to tour the states and be huge. They were a passionate group of guys who played really great music.
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All Of Them Witches – Where’s The Song?
You can read my write up about this album here.
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Dasha – Damned If We Do
You can read my write up about this album here.
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Tailings – Self Titled
Tailings 2
You can read my write up about this album here.
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Eyes Averted – Self Titled EP
You can read my write up about this album here.
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As always, if you enjoy the music you’ve heard, please seek it out and buy it! I cant stress this enough!
Look forward to a follow up “2009 Honorable Mentions” blog, that will strictly be downloads without write ups of albums that didn't make the cut for whatever reason. Also, my deepest apologies for this being so late.