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November 2013
Wooden Shjips
"Back to Land
"
mp3

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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nashville

Boom Forest explores all different faces of electronica and folk on "Post Knight Errant"

Post Knight Errant, the latest from ex-Wisconsinite John Paul Roney's Boom Forest project, explores a range of folk and electronica influences, deftly using the natural ebb and flow of that exploration to cover the entire spectrum of emotional experience. There's a current of tenderness running through the album, but it proves to be tonally versatile and adapts to the highs and lows from song to song and within a single track. It's a polished effort, and you ought to give the video a watch below and then go check out the entire album. -Austin Phy

Boom Forest "33" (We Are All One & Holy Ghost) from Elder on Vimeo.


It's the mid-2000s again and I love it: Ghostfinger, How I Became the Bomb, and Lone Official at the Exit/In tonight

I think the cancellation of Nashville (the show, not the city itself) got a lot of people thinking about where Nashville (the city itself, not the show) is, has been, and is going. We're not gonna get too think-piecey on you here, but recent events like that have proven that time may in fact be a circle. There's no prime time TV dedicated to our lovely city, sounds from The Features and Character are still electrifying the ground around the Beast from their show last night, and if you get yourself down to the Exit/In tonight, you can catch yourself yet another piece of bona fide Old Nashville vibiness with Ghostfinger, How I Became the Bomb, and Lone Official.

We're leaning pretty heavy on the throwback jokes here, but make no mistake—these are all bands that, despite various periods of silence and an unfortunate spot on the It City sidelines considering their role in building up that rep, were here before here was a place to be and they've all stuck it out. So go for the nostalgia. Or go to show respect to the old guard. Or go because it's a stacked bill of genuinely great local bands. Whatever your motive is, you can't go wrong. -Austin Phy


Deli Premiere: Notelle has confidence to spare on "No One Else Alive"

Sometimes you hear a song and know right away that it's going to follow you around for a while. "No One Else Alive" is the unshakably catchy new track from the unshakably talented Notelle, and it's got just the right kind of hook to dig itself in deep. The sound on display is big, in a perplexingly minimal way. "Anthemic" is an easy descriptor that comes to mind, but there's a measure of restraint in the actual execution that keeps the whole affair from becoming too bombastic. It's radio pop perfection, and you can catch the ear worm down in the stream below. -Austin Phy

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Nightblonde has the cure for what ails you on "I Belong Your Arms"

Mid-May might not seem like the ideal time for moody new wave pieces, but clearly there's something in the air. Less than a week after Hit TV raised the bar for electronic throwback, Nightblonde has released the shimmery pop nugget "I Belong in Your Arms" in advance of the full-length Numbers due out in early June. Check out the song below, dig hard on the purple-black aesthetic the band is sporting, and watch out for that mighty fancy vinyl release due out with Numbers. -Austin Phy

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Makeup and Vanity Set achieves neon electro perfection on "HIT TV"

Makeup and Vanity Set has been around for a long damned time. He may not be the only guy doing the 80's electro revivalism thing, but you can bet he's been around a lot longer than even the most famous names in that field. From the glitchy chiptune dance of his earliest works to the deliciously schlocky dance that came later, and even the ridiculously dedicated locals-tribute dance in between, we've seen a lot of faces from a guy known for wearing a ski mask at his performances. The entire weight of that history can be felt on HIT TV, a collection of songs composed for a bloodstained purple-and-red online series of the same name. The ambition of the project lands with both feet solidly on the ground, and it seriously stands up there with the best neon dreamwave you're likely to hear.

Even if you don't happen to have the Miami strip right outside your door, any nighttime drive with the windowns down will do just fine. -Austin Phy


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