Here’s part two of my latest “band roundup”, with ambient/electronic L.A.-based Red Tide, Yim Yames’ (My Morning Jacket) label, Removador Records, some heartbreak and yearning with Satellite Crush, seductive melodies of Straylings, rootsy and soulful New Yorkers, The Morning Pages, and introspective singer-songwriter (he’s performed in metal and hardcore bands??), Walter Shreifels.
These guys have a nice sound – a mix of spacey electronic ambiance and forward-propelled garage rock, with serenely floating vocals. L.A.-based Red Tide have just been performing together since last year, releasing their debut EP which you can download free of charge at Bandcamp. Teddy Cafaro and Spencer Mandel had formed Providence-based Potential Pillows in 2005, and longtime friend Giuliano Pizzulo was recording them. After bringing in his roommate Andrew Clinco to add drums, they discovered that they all sounded quite good together, and a new band was formed. They have several shows linked up in April and May around the Los Angeles area.
Removador Records is an indie label founded by Yim Yames of My Morning Jacket. Besides representing his own band and solo projects, they also have put out recordings by dark and sultry songstress Cortney Tidwell, MMJ alumni Johnny Quaid’s folk/alt-country project The Ravenna Colt, psychedelic and string-laced quintet Follow The Train, and Mont De Sundua.
Removador’s official statement: “The Removador Recordings and Solutions web venture will offer consumers a rich new way of web-based living; specializing in music purchase, production, and facilitation, as well as problem solving, sports, rehab, recreation, vacation planning, vaccinations, ghosts, and social networking. Coming this fall, Removador will also debut our much talked about new 3-D printer technology, enabling consumers to purchase food and auto parts online, and simply print them out in the comfort of their own home with our new carbon and silicone based 3-D printer. Removador Recordings and Solutions- some of the coldest music you ain’t never heard!”
Songs of yearning and heartbreak, nothing too new there, but Satellite Crush (named for long-distance relationship) have a cozy, loving sound, very Cure-like at times (especially on, say, “Lovesick Soul”), and what’s not to love about that? Maybe, like comfort food, there’s such a thing as “comfort music”. Their debut EP was released autumn of last year, and they have two (free) shows coming up next month in CA – Universal City and Long Beach.
Originally from “Bahrain and England”, Straylings (Dana Zeera, Oliver Drake, Rudyard Burley, and Patrick Durkan) came together in 2007, and released their debut EP last year (which you can download for free on their MySpace page). I was first attracted to Dana’s vocals, which are seductively bluesy, with haunting and mysterious chiming guitar accompaniment. They’re currently working on their first album.
The Morning Pages
Rootsy, soulful, honky-tonk. That’s what I scribbled down upon first hearing The Morning Pages. Are these guys really based in Brooklyn? Kinda hard to believe, as they definitely have a down-home Southern sound. They seriously kick it out with honky-tonk piano, jamming lead guitar, a touch of ’60s soul’ organ, and a thumping heartbeat of a rhythm section – with a few heartwarming country and folk-flavored ballads. Great harmonies, too. Really like these guys. There’s Grant Maxwell (lead vocals/rhythm guitar), Matt Stoulil (bass guitar), Ben Arons (drums/harmony vocals), Kendra MacDevitt (harmony vocals/fiddle/percussion), Rick Fox (keyboards/accordion), and Chris Hills (lead guitar).
Their first EP, released in 2007, was The Company You Keep. Their debut album Rising Rain is due out on May 11 on Zealous Records, produced by Russell Simins (The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion). Special guests include sister-duo The Pierces on harmonies, Simins on percussion, Alec Higgins (Alberta Cross) on piano, and Gillian Rivers (Nicole Atkins) on fiddle.
They have a few New York shows coming up in April and May – check their MySpace for more info. For now, listen below to “My Name Is Lion” from their forthcoming album.
Scrambling to get this up (the last person inevitably suffers, sorry about that) but Walter Shreifels (Gorilla Biscuits, Quicksand, Rival Schools) is an interesting singer-songwriter, and I was impressed and intrigued with the two tracks currently up on his MySpace page – “Shootout” and “Society Suckers” (an Agnostic Front cover).
Though it seems everything’s through
to others it seems it’s alright
a smile though heart may be torn
pretend that it isn’t past mending
we’re at the last words, so forlorn
just a novel with an unhappy ending.
That’s all I needed to hear, really. And what’s more, it has someone shooting chickens at the end. Sold.
His new album (and first solo effort), An Open Letter To The Scene, is due out on May 4, supposedly with a more “stripped-down, mostly acoustic sound”. Thanks, I’m there. By the way, there’s also a new Rival Schools album due out soon.