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November 2013
Wooden Shjips
"Back to Land
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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.


This is a preview of the new Deli charts - we are working on finalizing them by the end of 2013.


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New Track: "Got Your Back" - Worshyper

Here's a sexy new track from electro-R&B/soul crew Worshyper, who's "Got Your Back." It's off their full-length album Keeps, which was released towards the end of last year via AMDISCS, but will finally be put on vinyl. They'll be celebrating the availability of the hard copies tomorrow night at Bourbon & Branch.

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May 2014
Pattern is Movment
"Pattern is Movment
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mp3

One of the first questions demanded by Pattern is Movement’s recent self-titled album is “why the hell is this the self-titled album?” Such a thing is typically reserved for a group’s freshman effort, and not only is this the band’s fifth album, but they’ve been putting out music since 2004. It’s unorthodox, to say the least. But upon listening to the record, the second since they broke down to a minimalist two-person outfit in 2008, it becomes rather clear; the self-titled is meant to define a band’s sound and create their baseline, and Chris Ward and Andrew Thiboldeaux consider themselves to only just now have reached that point. This is their way of finally defining themselves as a band, and it sounds wild and fantastic.

 

To summarize, the most recent development of the band’s sound is a difficult task, since it’s really a great deal more than the sum of its genres and musical elements. It’s definitively indie, but with elements of ambient, folk, experimental math rock and even soul, all blended into its DNA, with just a hint of European sensibility. It’s almost impossible to not draw a comparison to the band Beirut and not just because of how eerily similar the two vocalists sound. Pattern is Movement captures the same sense of almost exuberant melancholy, and even manages to surpass it.

 

It’s difficult to hear that the band is a two-man outfit without being at least a bit incredulous. The very idea that this group is limited in manpower in any way whatsoever is almost unbelievable; if anything, their most recent album sounds like the culmination of an Arcade Fire-esque indie rock orchestra, with a huge variety of instrumentals weaving in and out of one another seamlessly. Piano, accordion, bass, and a varity of string instruments all make appearances (all played by the singular Andrew Thiboldeaux) draped over Ward’s substantial percussion.

 

And it’s just as seamless that the band manages to blend highbrow orchestral folk with more accessible elements of indie shoegaze and math rock, creating a sense of real artistic unpredictability, while maintaining a consistent and enjoyable sound - not surprising from a band who once backed Annie Clark, a.k.a. St. Vincent. Pattern is Movement finds the line of balance between weird and familiar, and positively jumps rope with it. The band accomplishes the rare task of managing to sound lofty without ever coming across as pretentious. And special praise needs to be given to Thiboldeaux’s aforementioned vocals; they’re simply haunting. The crooning, Sigur Ros-esque lyrics are the center piece of the album, acting as the anchor for the bands increasingly outlandish instrumentals.

 

The result is heady, weird and even sexy (but in a confusing, subtle way), but at all times cool. Its soothing and enticing, and at times a bit morose. Pattern is Movement has a way of blending a sense of depth and an accessible tone for an album that begs repeat listens.

New Creepoid EP Available for Streaming & Purchase

Ugh...this rainfall is pretty damn ridiculous today. What are we Seattle?! Luckily, I've been spending the day hiding out inside and catching up on things that I've missed while on vacation. Record Store Day was one of them, and it makes perfect sense that Creepoid's new EP Wet (Graveface Records) is my soundtrack for this soggy, dreary day of a mess. You can still stream the whole record over at Alt Press.

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St. James & The Apostles Close Out Month-long Residency at Ortlieb's April 30

The trio of St. James & The Apostles close out their month-long Wednesday night residency at Ortlieb’s this evening. The group takes an all-out blood, sweat, and tears approach to each performance, playing an inspired gritty blend of soulful blues-rock with psychedelic accents. The mix of smooth grooves, propelling organ, raunchy guitar licks and earnest, pulled-from-the-gut vocals are a concoction that seems to catch fire on stage. Ortlieb’s, 847 N. Third St., 8:30pm, Free, 21+ (Photo by Jason Elberson) - Michael Colavita

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New Many Arms Album Available for Streaming & Purchase

Punk-jazz outfit Many Arms just dropped their new album Suspended Definition via John Zorn's Tzadik Records. It's their second release with the independent label. You can stream the mind-blending work in its entirety over at Brooklyn Vegan. Added to the lineup of Nick Millevoi on guitar, Ricardo Lagomasino on drums, and John DeBlase on bass, you'll find saxophonist Colin Fischer (of Caribou).

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