Time for another one of these. Way past time, in fact. Here’s a handful of folks who ‘jumped out at me’ from a pile of email in January and February. Hopefully I can catch up with this delightful onslaught so I can get to March’s mailings before the summer. Though if anyone is coming through the Northeast on tour, I’ll try to be more timely than that. In part one of two – contemporary classical pianist Dustin O’Halloran, the quirky and cool duo of Boston’s Amanda Palmer and Jason Webley, giving birth to Evelyn Evelyn, quirky (yes, I like quirky) singer-songwriter Julia Nunes, cool and buzz-worthy Boston/Georgia/Maine-based Laminated Cat, a pretty and folky L.A. band called Mevansa, and folk/psych peeps from Providence RI, Moga.
After you’ve had a night of brain-blasting hardcore and punk music, and need something beautiful to chill out to, have a listen to classical pianist Dustin O’Halloran. His music is contemplative and wistful, romantic and flowing, without being sappy. Very nice. He lived for a while in Los Angeles and contributed music for several films, including Marie Antoinette, Stranger Than Fiction, and An American Affair. While in L.A., he met Sara Lov, and together they formed Devics, which features Dustin’s majestic piano and Sara’s mesmerizing vocals (along with other guest musicians). Since 2001 they’ve been based in Italy, contributing music for films like Giuseppe Bertolucci’s L’amore Probabilmente and performing for European audiences. Their latest release is The Stars At Saint Andrea, and you can listen to samples of and purchase all their recordings at Amazon.com. | Dustin O’Halloran: MySpace | Official site | Twitter | Devics: MySpace |
Evelyn Evelyn is the new arrival of Boston’s beloved chanteuse Amanda Palmer (Dresden Dolls) and accordionist, guitarist, songwriter, and wandering minstrel Jason Webley. Each brilliant unto themselves, together… well, it’s scary as a carnival sideshow. As in scary good. There’s Evelyn Neville on piano, vocals, and ukulele – and Evelyn Neville on accordion, guitar and vocals. As stated on their press release, “Rather than being limited by their unique physical condition, the Evelyn sisters prove that two heads are indeed better than one.”
And I just had a wicked ‘blast from the past’, as their wonderfully freaky and disturbing album artwork is courtesy of none other than Boston’s Supreme Goth Goddess (though she’s now based in NY), Cynthia von Buhler. I last saw Countess von Buhler back in the days of Castle von Buhler Records and the Boston bands Sirensong and Splashdown (whom she recorded and managed and did freaky and disturbing artwork for), and her own indescribable Women of Sodem. Since then, she’s had a wildly impressive career as an artist, illustrator and author, and it’s very cool to see her involved with this.
The story of Evelyn Evelyn doesn’t stop there, however. The album will be accompanied by a full US and European tour and – later this year – a graphic novel about the twins’ inspiring life, illustrated by Cynthia von Buhler and published by Dark Horse Press. Clearly I’ll have to do a follow-up on this one.
First attracting attention from her YouTube videos, Julia Nunes quickly won over hearts and minds with her charming pop songs, accompanying herself on guitar, melodica, and her trademark ukulele. She performs her own compositions in addition to covers by artists such as Say Anything, Spoon, The Beatles, The Beach Boys, and Destiny’s Child. Since 2007, she’s released two full-length albums, Left Right Wrong and I Wrote These, and most recently, an EP I Think You Know (on Rude Butler Records).
She’ll soon be in the Northeast performing, starting with a NYC show on April 23 and coming to the Middle East Downstairs in Cambridge on May 2 (it’s an all-ages show).
I was first introduced to Laminated Cat by seeing them mentioned as a “favorite band” on several other bands’ pages. Figured I’d best check them out. Good call. A delicious, crashing, psychedelic musical cacophony [just now listening to “Kill ‘Em Shorty” – I thought (mistakenly) that I accidentally had several songs playing at once.]. They’re playing the Middle East Downstairs on April 23 with The Apples In Stereo and Generationals, and if I didn’t already have a prior commitment I’d be at this show. For a full list of dates, see their Facebook page. Their most recent release is Umbrella Weather (on (Garden Gate Records).
Mevansa (pronounced Muh-Von-Za) are the sweet sounds of indie-folk trio “Jake, Sara and Goose”. They’re currently finishing up on their debut album, Give Me The Glass for release sometime this Spring. Based on the two songs they have up for now, “Hopeless Relations” and “Dirt Roads”, I’d say we’re in for a treat. Ah great, there’s a third track on their newly unveiled official site, which includes some quite beautiful strings. Just lovely.
Here’s an “unofficial video” for another song of theirs, “Kids”:
Garnering comparisons to Fleet Foxes and Bon Iver, as well as Brian Eno and the Flaming Lips, Providence-based Moga have been performing together under various guises since 2007, but currently consists of Greg Mallozzi (guitar), Alex Pendergrass (keyboards), Max Fisher (drums), and Oliver Williams (guitar, lead vocals). Songs like “Red Box” and “Dogon” have a fun spacy tropical island thing going on, while “Wakey Wakey”, oh yes indeed, most definitely has a Brian Eno solo vibe (= awesome). Their 7-track debut EP was released last December, and they have two Rhode Island shows coming up next month – The 201 in Providence on April 9, and something called a “URI Hemp Fest” in Kingstown on April 24. Ah, University of Rhode Island Hemp Festival? Now, there’s one worth checking out.
Band Roundup part two coming up shortly…share this: