Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Record Review: La Chansons - King and Queen of the Dance Floor

For Flagpole:

La Chansons
The King and Queen of the Dance Floor


Atlanta's La Chansons never meant The King and Queen of the Dance Floor to be anything more than fun, and it isn't. Husband-and-wife duo Greg and Carson Keller released their sophomore album Jan. 26 via local label Stickfigure Recordings; it's 10 songs of frivolous, synth-driven dance pop that break no ground compositionally and showcase often awkward and occasionally even embarrassing first-person lyrics...[Read more]

Friday, March 26, 2010

Live Review: Cymbals Eat Guitars, Bear In Heaven @ The Earl, 3/11/10

For Stomp and Stammer's Tales From The Moshpit:

Cymbals Eat Guitars, Bear In Heaven @ The Earl 3/11/10

At first, I thought Joseph D'Agostino might be crying. The Cymbals Eat Guitars frontman is recently famous for his profuse sweating, but during the New Jersey band's second song, the first drop of water running down his cheek seemed to drip sorrowfully from the corner of his eye. By the end of the next number, though, it became clear that it wasn't so much misery he exuded as it was sheer force of will – perspiration from concentration and leaving it all on the stage. Nothing to grieve about there...[Read more]

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Record Review: The Besnard Lakes - The Besnard Lakes Are The Roaring Night

For Tiny Mix Tapes:

The Besnard Lakes
The Besnard Lakes Are The Roaring Night


It’s an epic quest — one with teeth bared, vocal cords strained, and eyelids drooped. One with seven-minute opuses, blown-out walls of sound, and evenly harmonized boy-girl vocals, where stage lights appear behind eyelids even with the doors closed and headphones on.

And it’s a quest through time and compositional prowess as much as through the night about which The Besnard Lakes opine so vehemently. Perhaps a little less stratospheric than their sophomore (and breakthrough) release The Besnard Lakes Are The Dark Horse, ...Are The Roaring Night brings the Montreal group’s potential down to earth, expanding what were sweeping, almost classical compositions into gut-wrenching, prog-y panoramas. A lot of the same cerebral, chamber-music-meets-guitar-wash elements are still there; they’re just a bit beefier this time....[Read more]

Friday, March 5, 2010

Q&A with Cymbals Eat Guitars' Joseph D'Agostino

For Atlanta Music Guide:

Q&A with Cymbals Eat Guitars' Joseph D'Agostino; Playing The EARL March 11

What do you do when your debut record gets more attention than you ever thought it would? When it’s the blogosphere that drives your success, and your nascent band suddenly has the weight of the critical community behind it? You go on tour!

March 11, Cymbals Eat Guitars will stop at The EARL on the sixth date of their first national headlining run. They’ll be performing selections from Why There Are Mountains, the much-lauded, muscular LP the band released this past September via Sister’s Den Records. Supported by recent indie luminaries Bear In Heaven and Freelance Whales, it stands to be a night to remember. Atlanta Music Guide talked with frontman Joseph D’Agostino about the snowball of success and what it’s like to live with your ears burning.

I really enjoyed your record. Can you talk to me about what it’s been like on your end? It got the mythical Pitchfork Best New Music tag, and people have been noticing it in a pretty big way.

We didn’t have an audience or a career or anything that you might consider serious before we received that review. Really, receiving the Best New Music and the amount of play that we were starting to get from WOXY radio in Cincinnati, those were the two big things that sort of helped elevate our band to the point where we had to be viable — like we had to be a good live act, because we hadn’t been playing any shows before March of 2008, really. At the same time, there’s definitely a disconnect between internet hype and actually attending shows and things. But I get the feeling that we are enjoying a pretty unique situation, because it also seems that the spread of our record has been very much a word of mouth kind of thing, rather than one huge crush, and then suddenly we’re just ubiquitous...[Read more]

Record Review: The Young Sinclairs - The Songs of the Young Sinclairs

For Flagpole:

The Young Sinclairs
The Songs of the Young Sinclairs


Gathered together from highlights of their CD-R and tape releases as well as featuring tidbits of new material, The Songs of the Young Sinclairs is the Roanoke, VA quintet’s long-awaited and first proper LP. After producing it in their enigmatically named studio, The Mystic Fortress, The Young Sinclairs joined up with Kindercore to release the 18-song vinyl-only collection that will street Mar. 30. The record, for better or worse, explores every facet of that blended, baroque, ‘60s-and-‘70s rock soundscape made famous by bands like The Byrds, The Zombies and Peter, Paul and Mary...[Read more]

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Record Review: Wolf People - Tidings

Another for Tiny Mix Tapes:

Wolf People


One of my favorite things about tape — be it cassette or reel-to-reel — has always been the way the players seem to suggest faces. The spindles look like eyes, and when they turn, they recall the expressions of crazy cartoon characters.

Maybe that’s just me.

But UK’s Wolf People certainly make no secret of their love for tape and the insanity it can communicate — the cover of their debut album Tidings shows miniatures of all manner of analog recording devices. Fans can even cut out replicas of them from Wolf People website to reproduce on their own. Accordingly, the quartet has riddled the album throughout with audible tape hiss that punctuates its mythic, winding course...[Read more]

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

CL Feature: Bear In Heaven comes to fruition outside the South

Hey! It's my first music feature for Atlanta's Creative Loafing!

Bear In Heaven comes to fruition outside the South
The Brooklyn band experiences a homecoming of sorts in Atlanta

When the four members who would eventually form Bear in Heaven individually left the Southeast for Brooklyn nearly a decade ago, not one of them did it for music.

"I moved up here in 2001 for no real reason other than it wasn't Atlanta where I grew up," says bassist Adam Wills. "I'd never been outside of Marietta, Ga., really." One by one, his future bandmates – who had all been in other musical projects in Atlanta or Savannah – coincidentally relocated with the intention of putting music on the backburner...[Read more]

Bear In Heaven will be at The Earl March 11 with Cymbals Eat Guitars and Freelance Whales. Can't wait!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Record Review: Mathis Hunter - Soft Opening

An album by one of my favorite Atlanta musicians and Aurora baristas! Mathis will celebrate his album's release this Friday, March 5 at the Earl with Noot d' Noot and The Selmanaires.

For Atlanta Music Guide:

Mathis Hunter
Soft Opening

Shakedown Records

Mathis Hunter, longtime mainstay of the Atlanta music community, former member of The Selmanaires and one of the founders of psych-funk collective Noot d’Noot, puts forth his first solo effort with Soft Opening. The LP spans 10 tracks and makes good on all of Hunter’s already demonstrated predispositions: creative percussion, saxophone, psychedelic soundscapes and haunting guitar melodies. It’s a masterful continuation of the train of thought that makes up his career, not a departure from it...[Read more]