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November 2013
Wooden Shjips
"Back to Land
"
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Hailing from San Francisco, psychedelic group Wooden Shjips, has just released their newest album Back to Land. The album brings together a sound crafted from inspirations that range from psychedelic music to classic rock.

The album is an entire trip in itself.  One can hear hints of 80s music, classic rock, and modern garage rock styles in the record, but they always resolve back to their classic psychedelic sound. With tracks like “In The Roses,” which brings a very spacey, low volume vocals, and a lo-fi sound that is not too cheesy or under produced. to “Ghouls,” which is a much faster, much more psychedelic rock sounding song that takes influences from classic rock guitar chords, while still utilizing classic psychedelic synthesizers.

Most songs on the album carry a jam-band sound, without becoming too abstract or getting too carried away. And in some cases, the music is so vast in genre diversity, one is surprised at the resulting sound, such as in the track, “These Shadows”, which starts off with an extremely catchy intro guitar riff and carries a vague David Bowie meets Velvet Underground sound.

“Back to Land” is a great piece of work that utilizes the potential of each member of Wooden Shjips effectively and thoroughly.

Most importantly, “Back to Land” is an experimentation of how far the psychedelic genre can stretch while still successfully staying true to its roots.


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Quilt -- 11/9 Glasslands Gallery CD Release

Boston-based psychadelia trio Quilt celebrated their self-titled record release Wednesday night, at the aesthetically appropriate Glasslands Gallery in Brooklyn.  Upward spirals of utopian-esque vocals clothed with jangly guitar riffs filled the somber brick building for an hour that has been lost in the space-time continuum. Released on Mexican Summer Records, Quilt, is the awakened love-child of Shane Butler, Anna Rochinski, John Andrews and, now former member, Taylor Mcvay, who was their drummer pre-release and wrote most of the new material.

After the rolling kaleidoscope of Cowboys In The Void and the droned-out, vocal-heavy Young Gold, Andrews pounded the audience into Commodity Spectre, off of their 7’’ release, Agents of Play.

Quilt’s visual hallucination-inducing sound is no surprise given their background as visual art students at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. Their namesake gives way to the textured two and three part harmonies, stimulated by lucid tambourine and synth waves that illuminate the band’s strong euphoric vibrations. Their album is available as of Nov. 7th on vinyl and, appropriately, cassette tape.

--Maria Jean Sullivan


Exclusive Download: Erick Serna and The Killing Floor -- Hey Sweet Thing

Earlier this week, we reviewed Erick Serna and The Killing Floor's album, The Grip. Today, we're offering a free download of the track Hey Sweet Thing. The heavy blues-drenched track is all heart and soul. A song about a burning desire, Serna's vocals and foot-stomping guitar riffs nail the intensity of his passion and leave us wanting to listen to more.


Erick Serna and The Killing Floor -- Hey Sweet Thing

--The Deli Staff


Projektfest '11 -- Saturday 11/12 @ Middle East Down.

On Saturday, Nov. 12, in conjunction with Projekt Records, the Middle East Downstairs will be host to the first darkwave/steampunk/cabaret music festival in the Boston area. PROJEKTFEST '11 will feature three national headliners from the Projekt Records label - WEEP (featuring Doc Hammer of "The Venture Brothers" fame); Black Tape for a Blue Girl (pictured above, the brainchild of Projekt Records founder Sam Rosenthal), and Voltaire (who has a massive cult following in the world of sci-fi conventions, comic book fandom, and is known for "The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy").

Supporting local Boston acts will be: DJ Matthew Griffin, Sugar Snow (listen below), and Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling (Their music video Episode 1: Arrival was recently projected at The Deli's CMJ showcase in NYC). There will also be vendors of clothing, art, jewelry, etc.

Tickets are $20 adv/$25 door. 18+, 7pm.


--Chrissy Prisco


Erick Serna and The Killing Floor -- The Grip

It’s tempting, upon first impression, to write off the fiery grit of Erick Serna’s blues guitar stylings as simply another page from a dog-eared book, but there is something about The Grip, the debut effort from Serna (The Dear Hunter) and his super-tight backing band, The Killing Floor, that makes doing so impossible.

Blues rock and blues guitar are a lot like beer: the core ingredients have remained relatively static for ages. That’s because someone got that shit right the first time.

The Grip is, at points, reminiscent of classic Led Zeppelin; pentatonic pyrotechnics and swamped-out riffs abound. With a big assist from The Killing Floor, Serna proves to be more than up to the task of demonstrating what it is we all love so much about blues guitar to begin with. His slide-heavy and whiskey drenched sound is like a brutishly powerful sports car negotiating a serpentine mountain roadway: it seems as though every nudge of the pedal, every tilt of the wheel, will send car and driver careening off a cliff to certain fiery doom, but god damn it if that isn’t half the fun. The suggestion of impending calamity is a powerful force indeed, and one which Serna wields with aplomb on The Grip. His playing is as unhinged and immediate as a late night encounter with a dangerous lunatic—perilous, but well worth the price of admission for the thrill factor alone.

It is worth noting that Serna contributes vocals, guitar, bass and keys on The Grip, with Cliff Sarcona (As Tall As Lions), the only player on the record who isn’t a former member of the musician carousel that is The Dear Hunter—with seven ex-members in six years of life, adding raucous drums on three tracks. Sammy Dent (drums, percussion) and Josh Rheault (vocal harmonies), both former TDH bandmates of Serna’s, perform on the record as well, and both shine when called upon.

But the main focus of The Grip, the part which draws the ear, is Serna’s guitar work and dirty, gravel-strewn vocals. Recorded in Rheault’s family barn-come-recording studio, the album sounds like the back country into which it was born: raw and rowdy, bursting with tradition and pride.

The Grip goes from a brief intro right into the title track; a driving and deftly maneuvered blues guitar obstacle course, which certainly hints at the large preponderance of The Dear Hunter alums on the record. It’s indicative of what‘s to come, to a certain degree. Serna manages to recite the well-worn riffs that form the foundations of The Grip with enough individuality to prevent them from sounding canned or cliched. His virtuosity is beyond question, and he manages to avoid sounding like rehashed classic rock or venturing onto the suddenly well trodden folk revival path. Indeed, nothing on The Grip sounds anything other than contemporary, to the record’s great credit.

Closing with the ballad-ish Dear McKenzie, Serna displays a somewhat softer side, and in doing so, provides the thread which truly ties together the record. He succeeds in weaving his frenetic guitar style into the framework of the song without compromising its integrity as a ballad. A proper microcosm of the entire album. The Grip provides nothing new, nor does it come off as too derivative. Just genuine. That’s a virtue, in this case. It is clear Serna understands a fundamental truth about blues guitar: much like beer, they got it right the first time.

--Andrew Jeromski

Editor's Note: Stay tuned to the deli later this week, when we will offer an EXCLUSIVE download premiere of the track "Hey Sweet Thing," by Erick Serna and The Killing Floor.


Interview with the deli's Artist of the Month: Bear In You

deli: How did the band start?

Bear In You: A jam and game of Tony Hawk in Phil’s addition. Then two hot months of nonstop writing and recording. Then we played some songs. Then we didn’t play for two years. Then we got together and wrote and recorded a 12-song album of new originals.

deli: Where did the band name, Bear In You, come from?

Bear In You: We came up with it (obviously). There are two meanings-- the first is to implore listeners to get in touch with the carnal nature that comes with being human/animal. The second is an innuendo-- we (Clark, Phil, Avery) are bears, and we are INSIDE OF YOU.

Click here to read the rest of the Q&A with Bear In You.


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