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National Site

Best of NYC #13 + Weekly Feature #212a: The Woes

Formed in 2002, The Woes have been delivering their brand of dust-belt folk music to an every-growing NYC audience. At times the group can resemble a chaotic collective, but the discerning fan can pick out the regulars, including Jesse Lauter, Cicero Jones and lead singer/songwriter Osei Essed. In Essed, the Woes have the catalyst for what few bands can boast: genuine, visceral attitude. His voice delivers the deep sound of Tom Waits with the spiritual, gothic Americana sound of David Eugene Edwards. Their new CD is entitled “Heaven Knows” and they are currently touring behind it. Essed took the time to answer questions from the road. - Read Ben Krieger's interview with the band here.


Secret Handshakes

When I was in high school, yes it was a while ago, Q101’s local 101 was can’t miss radio. I would record (on to tape) every episode and insert these great Chicago bands into the mixtapes I would love to make for everyone. The song from Tub Ring that made many of my mixes was their cover of The Carpenters’ “Close To You” which appeared on their 1993 album Music From The Bathroom. It is still my favorite cover of that song to this day.

Well, Tub Ring is back with their first release in three years, Secret Handshakes. The album will be released on August 31st by The End Records, and it features fourteen new and energy packed tracks. The group recorded the 14-tracks on Secret Handshakes at Chicago's Electrical Audio and at keyboardist Rob Kleiner's own Studio Edison, with Kleiner doing double duty as producer.

Tub Ring will headline a special record release show on Saturday, August 28 at Subterranean.


Making Time Radio w/Dave P on XPN

Looks like XPN is getting a little Botox work done on their programming with the launch of Making Time Radio tomorrow night hosted by your favorite Philly DJ to get rad to, Dave P. He’ll be hitting the airwaves every last Friday of the month from 11pm - 1am with all his favorite electronica, dance, indie and alternative rock tracks (well, probably the ones approved by XPN). BTW: WTF Making Time w/ Surfer Blood and The Drums on Sept. 10 and LCD Soundsystem on Sept 24! (Whoops - looks like the busy guy is already running into scheduling issues.) - H.M. Kauffman



Sunnyside Sizzles on Debut EP - Free Download!


The debut EP by brand new Portland power trio Sunnyside has successfully ransacked the laundry piles in my late-'90s emo dorm room. They flitter in the kind of emotive rock 'n' roll that gave heightened awareness to a genre that would later be defiled by that dirty three-letter word, but where Sunnyside excels is in ensuring that their rapid-fire regimen trumps the valleys of that bumpy terrain.

They're so new they don't even really have band photos. So new no one I've talked to yet has even heard of them in passing. So new it's not even apparent whether or not they'll stay together long enough for anyone to hear them. But they should. Awash in pretty keys, three-chord choruses, peppy drums and powerfully affecting lyrics, the band would probably have been right at home in the booming indie rock eruption of the late half of the last century. As it stands, we're lucky to have them now, however long that will last.

Download the band's debut EP here and see for yourself. "Maybe I Will" is making me want to move out of my house to live inside my head again.

- Ryan J. Prado


Katie Eck @ The Rutledge, 7/27/10

There was quite the crowd gathered at the Rutledge last night to hear an early performance by Katie Eck. In appearance, and sound, Eck very successfully played the part of a soulful diva. She was accompanied by a 5 piece band that looked like they had just gotten done playing for the Queen of Soul herself—(Aretha Franklin, dummies)—along with 3 background vocalists, and a set of pipes that could’ve blown the roof off of the place if it hadn’t been for her impressive control and tasteful melodic choices. Eck’s voice was reminiscent of Kimberly Locke and Joss Stone with her power and vibrato, but stylistically, she was more Alicia Keys, Ray Charles, or—I hate to use the same comparison for any wailing, female soul singer, but—Aretha Franklin. (The first song erupted into a finale finish of “Hit The Road Jack” that was Ray Charles-worthy. ‘Nuff said).
Katie’s original songs were more melody-driven and R’n’B/soulful, while the covers that she chose seemed to aggressively stride along the gospel side. The song that was (probably) called, “I Can See Heaven,” had a delivery and feel that was comparable to “If I Ain’t Got You,” by Alicia Keys, or even a Cece Winans approach. (And how ironic is it that Cece Winans’ daughter was standing nearby during that song?!) You couldn’t help but get the impression that Katie has had a lot of experience performing in church, most likely in front of huge crowds, given her notable stage presence, and the spiritual nature of many of her songs. This is something that makes her stand out, however, because there doesn’t seem to be many Nashville female Christian artists who mix their live performances with more stylistically mainstream, “non-Christian,” artists. (PAGANS). That isn’t a good or a bad thing—it’s just interesting.
Katie Eck’s songs are good enough to get the toes tapping of even the most irreverent, morally questionable show-goers; she cunningly tricks her audience members into enjoying her songs (because they’re good), thus making the subject matter merely an afterthought. You can decide for yourself by going to her website, where you can download some free songs from her EP. Check her out next time you get a chance.—Erin Manning


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