How is it going, Dig Nation? Hope everyone had a nice week and a fun Record Store Day. Any good pick ups? Let's keep the music rolling with a new Weekly Roundup.
This past week, I finished up the interviews associated with my latest NYC music podcast by sharing the great conversation I had with David Bronson. I also wrote a review of the debut EP from Belle Mare, which I like a lot, plus listed some cool shows that were happening in NYC. As far as other cultural things go, I enjoyed the film I saw at Nitehawk Cinema here in Brooklyn (really great place if you haven't been) about Nick Drake in the first installment of their "Music Driven" movie series. I have a post coming up with more on that this week. I also discovered a very cool website called The Talk House, in which musicians write reviews of other musicians. It's definitely worth a read.
I'm probably going to make the Roundup more of a "playlist" with less commentary than usual this week since I'm pressed for time. But I do want to say my favorite new discovery this week has been Modern Merchant. This band has an interesting sound, it seems accessible but it also has a strong musicality to it and depth that makes it far from simple. It nods at a variety of genres without easily falling into any one, though "indie rock" might work best as a general description. Because of all this and because of the strong vocals, I get a little of a Grizzly Bear vibe, but give them a shot on their own merit. Their debut EP is For the Fields. It's good. It's been out a few weeks, but the release show is Saturday at Rockwood Music Hall. Check out the track "Like Minded."
Other new NYC artists to me that I liked and want to share with you include:
Pressed And, whose "Creed Unlove" is the lead single from the forthcoming Stone Candles album (6/4). It's electronic but also uses live instruments in a cool way. I also think any band with roots in both Brooklyn & Chapel Hill (two places I've lived) is exciting.
The garage/punk/psych of Japanther and their song "Stolen Flowers." It's gritty but melodic and it comes from the amazingly named LP Eat Like Lisa Act Like Bart (5/21). You can see these guys this weekend at the Crossing Brooklyn Ferry festival, too.
Bramzwig, the young rapper who dropped a new single "How to Make it in America" this week. This production draws heavily on a rock and roll style and his words are vivid and thought-provoking. Based on the Soundcloud description, he's hoping to encourage dialogue about social issues. Not a bad goal.
Catching up with some previously featured, NYC-based artists:
Isle of Rhodes will be releasing a new EP on Tuesday. To get you excited, check out the lead single "Shoulders." Starting with very light instrumentation and an almost chanted vocal, it becomes more and more powerful as it progresses. That is both musically and lyrically. This one addresses some deep issues and will make you think about it what it means to live and what it means to truly care about someone else.
One of the buzziest bands out of Brooklyn lately it seems is Parquet Courts. They will also play the Crossing Brooklyn Ferry festival this week (and a ton more shows this spring and summer everywhere, check out their site for all the dates) and there's a pretty cool documentary about them that just came out on Noisey. It's called "Light Up Gold Road Trip" and you can watch it here.
A few shows in NYC this week:
- White Prism release party at Glasslands 4/23.
- Black Light Dinner Party, Monogold, and Hockey at Piano's 4/24
- Shanna Sharp release party at Rockwood Music Hall 4/25
- Cal Folger Day at Pete's Candy Store 4/27
And the latest from previously featured, non-NYC bands:
Boy + Kite's newest single from We Can Go Anywhere We Want EP "Right Above Me" is available to listen to. Lots of cool guitar on this one.
That track really captures a 90s alternative/indie sensibility and if you want something a little more 80s, how about this new 7" from Suburban Living? "Always Eyes" has an excellent, evocative tone.