Archive for the ‘Downloads’ Category

Review: Aviary Ghost – Memory is a Hallway

Aviary Ghost - Memory is a HallwayAviary Ghost
Memory is a Hallway
Self-released, 2008
Aviary Ghost – “Somewhere Else” | download

There are times that self-releasing an album can be the best option for a band, especially given the many instances of hot-air blowing by music industry personnel — and it’s not just major labels that have been known to play the game in miscreant ways. Sometimes, though, artists just don’t want to deal with the hassle of marketing their release, preferring to just put the music out for public consumption.


Spotlight: Team Genius

Team Genius / Courtesy of Fanatic PromotionAh, gentle-but-active pop music — Team Genius, who released the Hooray EP on Feb. 26, are the perpetrators of some fairly simple music, but that doesn’t mean they don’t create something addicting, too. Of course, this much is likely obvious: Much music, historically, has been simplistic, and some of it has been successful. Big surprise. Still, Team Genius provides an interesting perspective on the matter, with their irreverent indie pop taking on a variety of historical styles without much concern for public opinion. That’s where the band’s strength is, I’d argue, but given I have heard relatively little of their music, I can’t honestly make a quality assertion in one direction or another. At any rate, they’re worth writing about if just for the chance to include their over-the-top, quirky photograph. It’s a bit creepy, really.

Team Genius – “Sing Song” | download

Team Genius – “I’m Just An Idiot” | download

Released This Week: The OaKs – Songs for Waiting

The OaKs - <i>Songs for Waiting</i> The OaKs
Songs for Waiting
March 4, 2008

The OaKs, previously the subject of a spotlight, self-released Songs for Waiting Tuesday. Opening track, “The Two Calls (of Dietrich Bonhoeffer)” — posted below for download and streaming — isn’t rough, and it’s certainly not too soft. The historical narrative, written by one of two founding members, Ryan Costello, is, at the very least, interesting. The arrangements involved in this new release are well planned, providing a listening experience that’s bound to impress.

The OaKs / Photo by Steven Taylor, Courtesy of Fanatic Promotion

The OaKs – “The Two Calls (of Dietrich Bonhoeffer)” | download

The OaKs – “The Heart is a Lonely Hunter” | download

Spotlight: Colin Stetson | Frantic jazz evocative, but dangerous to public

Colin Stetson / Courtesy of Fanatic Promotion
New History Warfare, Vol. 1 Releases March 4 on Aagoo Records

Let’s get one thing straight: it’s not everyday one runs into music like this — nor should it be. Colin Stetson performs a frantic, solitary-instrument jazz on the bass clarinet and bass saxaphone, and while it’s certainly not bad, it ventures far into the realm of experiment: This may be a good thing for you and I, but if the common man were to hear things like this on a regular basis, a backlash not unlike reactions to Frankenstein’s Monster might be unleashed. Still, the two tracks posted below, “Letter to HST” and “Groundswell” are interesting, evocative, and all those other adjectives you look for in music. Be warned, though: It’s not your grandpa’s jazz.

Colin Stetson — “Letter to HST” | download

Colin Stetson — “Groundswell” | download

Review: A Faulty Chromosome — As An Ex-Anorexic’s Six Sicks Exit, …

A Faulty ChromosomeReleased Feb. 19, 2008; self-released.

A Faulty Chromosome, previously the subject of a Feb. 19 spotlight, is an unruly shoegaze group; while they do pull from a variety of influences — and it’s evident, it’s not just some blurb on the band’s MySpace — they create music that sounds as if it’s all essentially the same song, repeated ad infinitum. It’s not a bad song, though, just a bit on the repetitive side.

A Faulty Chromosome — “Jackie O” | download


Spotlight: MEN

MEN / Courtesy of Girlie ActionJD Samson and Johanna Fateman of Le Tigre fame are making music under another name: MEN. Funny, I thought only one was a man. All bad joking aside, MEN produce a distinctive, fun electronic sound. “Make It Reverse” and “Shake Off,” both posted below for listening and download, are fun, addictive tunes that safely balance a modern perspective (or is it post-modern?) and a 1980s throwback feel (you know, in the vein of electroclash.) MEN are currently touring North America with Hey, Willpower.

MEN — “Make It Reverse” | download

MEN — “Shake Off” |download

MEN on MySpace

Spotlight: Apillow | Ambience, minimalism make mark in small-run release

Apillow / via MySpaceLet’s get one thing straight: I like ambient, I like shoegaze, and boy, do I like post-rock. That said, you may have found many of the posts here to be of such a nature. What can I say? At any rate, today’s spotlight focuses on Apillow, a band with elements of all three styles I just expressed an affinity toward. Patrick Lacharité, of Below the Sea, is the sole producer of this quiet, uninvasive minimalism created in the fall of 2007. Leaves Winter Alone, released in October 2007 on thisquietarmy records, is limited to 200 initial CD-R copies by the label, so clearly, this isn’t out there to make a quick buck. Apillow embodies that appealing independence that too often goes missing from music generally: Even notoriously independent artists worry about making money from their music. For better or worse, Lacharité seems untainted, providing a fair bit of clarity to the world through soothing ambience.

Apillow — “The Dark” | download

Purchase Leaves Winter Alone
Apillow on MySpace

Review: Palmer’s Medic – In a House, Surrounded

Palmer’s MedicPalmer’s Medic, an electronic recording project of a certain Seth David-Andrew Hubbard from southern Utah — Cedar City, Utah, to be precise about things — produces young, fresh music vaguely encapsulatable under genre titles of ambient house, trance, trip hop — terms of that nature. Ambiguous, isn’t it? But that’s the beauty of electronic music, I suppose. At any rate, from the get-go, In a House, Surrounded is an adventurous album: It doesn’t much fit under most specific categorizations (though some would argue that about all music, I am not one of those), which is a bit of a refresher from what’s come to be expected. Of course, most specific genres and descriptions are applied post hoc, so it may be a bit early to consider things of such a nature.

Palmer’s Medic — “M-900″ | download