Week in Pop: EATQS, Janelle, Joe Gorgeous, MOSAICS

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Benji Lewis, Hudson Bell, jj mazz, Save the Clocktower, ft. guest selections from A.R.Kane.

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Sjimon Gompers | April 8, 2016

The rise of Ethereal and The Queer Show (oka EATQS), & their new album for Noumenal Loom; photographed by Jamie Jones.

Here to deliver a sense of wonder in these weird times, Impose’s Week in Pop remains committed to providing you with all the latest breaking media from aesthetes of great interest. With a big week to present, we first give you a rundown of some of the week’s biggest buzz with news that Drake dropped “Pop Style” ft. Kanye West & Jay Z (credited as The Throne) & “One Dance” ft. Wizkid & Kyla; Beyoncé rejected the “Formation” critics; Ramona Gonzalez, oka Nite Jewel returns with words of her forthcoming album Liquid Cool available June 10 via her Gloriette imprint, & dropped “Boo Hoo”; Janet Jackson postoned her world tour to start a family; Open Mike Eagle & Paul White dropped the video for “Check 2 Check” off Mello Music LP Hella Personal Film Festival, tour in the works; Animal Collective dropped “Gnip Gnop” & “Hounds of Bairro”, & Deakin, aka Josh Dibb dropped the long overdue Sleep Cycle album; Apple applied for a patent on tech that censors audio playback; Kali Uchis dropped the Kaytranada produced cut “Only Girl” ft. Vince Staples & the Internet’s Steve Lacy; Tegan and Sara dropped “U-Turn”; Studio’s Dan Lissvik readies his debut solo album Midnight available June 10 from Smalltown Supersound, Kevin Gates’ imprint Bread Winners’ Association presents the BWA Emoji; Carly Rae Jepsen dropped the video for “Boy Problems” ft. Tavi Gevinson, dropped “N”; Yep Roc to re-release the Studio One catalog, beginning with The Wailing Wailers available May 27; Snoop Dogg & Wiz Khalifa announced the joint headlining “The High Road Summer Tour”; M83 drops “Go!” off just released Mute album Junk; Maxwell dropped “Lake by the Ocean” off the upcoming summer slated BlackSUMMERS’night album; DJ Shadow announced the new album The Mountain Will Fall available June 24 via Mass Appeal, drops “The Mountain Will Fall”; PJ Harvey dropped “The Orange Monkey”; Radiohead pulls rarities from the various music streaming sites; Guns N’ Roses announced North American tour; Azealia Banks versus Sarah Palin; Swans announced final album The Glowing Man available June 17 via Young God/Mute; the Suge Knight legal saga continues to get more convoluted; shared title track excerpt; YG & Nipsey Hussle’s “FDT” video shoot shut down by the cops; lots of Outside Lands buzz; Yo! Sissy Festival 2016 is happening in Berlin July 29 & 30; N.W.A. to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame by Kendrick Lamar, sans performance; Tearest’s Yasmine Kittles filed criminal charges against former publicist Heathcliff Berru; Kesha’s war continues after her rape claims were dismissed by New York supreme court justice Shirley Kornreich; Bruce Springsteen cancelled his Greensboro, North Carolina show over their LGBT-unfriendly HB2 law; the great Merle Haggard passed away on his seventy-ninth birthday; the loss of Bowie’s drummer Dennis Davis; Morrissey is not stoked on the Warner Bros launched Smiths Twitter account.

Listening & looking diligently ahead, it is our pleasure and privilege to bring you a series of exclusives and insights from Ethereal and the Queer Show, Hudson Bell, Janelle, jj mazz, Joe Gorgeous, MOSAICS, Save The Clocktower, Ara Koufax, Atlantic Thrills, Benji Lewis, Ultrviolence, featuring guest selections from none other than the legendary A.R.Kane, and more—in no particular order.

Ethereal and the Queer Show

The new sophisticated directions from Ethereal and the Queer Show; photographed by Jade Busan.

The new sophisticated directions from Ethereal and the Queer Show; photographed by Jade Busan.

Dallas by Denton, Texas’s Ethereal and The Queer Show, oka EATQS, have been dropping synth releases for over the past half decade, working in meditative mediums where mystic sensationalism meets a kind of transcendental sensuality. The duo of Juliana Dieterich & Dan Hill ready their most ambitious work yet, with the latest batch of electro enchantment Fairy Super Crystal Blue available April 19 from Noumenal Loom. Continuing to tell the tales from the self-penned pages of their own fairy-tale chapters; EATQS present the world premiere of “InS☉meday Forevr” that provides a warm listen to the duo’s statement of creed and infinite longings.

“InS☉meday Forevr” functions in sparse ways that allows every synth note, effect, and electronically treated vocal from Juliana to have both room, space & air to properly breathe. The result creates something of an out of body experience, as EATQS beckons to the listener to join the duo for a meeting being held behind the curtains of clouds up in the great big vast sky. Juliana and Dan together manifest through fairyland like lyrics (as if emerging from a dream and to the awakened surface) and productions that transports the listener gracefully toward celestial places and sophisticated, secret palaces of balances and a purity unknown to perhaps mortal minds. From here recitations of beliefs from love & magic make for an experience with that sits between the material world and imaginative entrancement of a metaphysical realm hosted by the duo. Dan Hill from Ethereal and the Queer Show joined us for a conversation in our interview that is featured immediately after the following debut listen to “InS☉meday Forevr”.

Describe for us the ephemeral & enchanted inspirations behind the chosen moniker for you two.

I had a dream where the name was told to me. Juli and I were sat down and shown, with flashes of images, a story of ethereal and the queer show, no joke. IRL, over time the meaning has traversed several adaptations and is ultimately open to interpretation. Androgyny, divinity, aliens, angels, perversity, death, sex, taboo tendencies, pataphysics, no rules, no genre.

EATQ's Juliana Dieterich; photographed by Jade Busan.

EATQ’s Juliana Dieterich; photographed by Jade Busan.

We want to know all about what sorts of magic and mayhem went into the making of your Noumenal Loom album, Fairy Super Crystal Blue.

The album was written and recorded at our home using a menagerie of borrowed equipment from the local music community, giving us a small window to record vocals. There was much ebb and flow in the process of making Fairy Super Crystal Blue, being it only Juli and I, the entirety and us both being scorpios, all emotions were present in the construct. Zeal would bleed into emotional exploration, then into exhaustion, and in turn would meld into a humble rebirth of artistic stance.

Can you two also tell us what inspired the name?

The name is a style of circle contact lenses used to enlarge and change the color of the eyes. Also, it accurately represents the character and feel we were aiming for. EATQS hearts fairies too.

'Fairy Super Crystal Blue' album cover created by the prolific multidisciplinary artist Keith Rankin.

‘Fairy Super Crystal Blue’ album cover created by the prolific multidisciplinary artist Keith Rankin.

Describe the sorts of head-spaces and ethereal zones you two were in during the making of tracks like “InS☉meday Forevr” & “Frℯshly x Frℯak♡”.

“InS☉meday Forevr” hints at a world beyond this one where karma is fulfilled and a unification of souls takes place, whatever you want to call that, y’know. “Frℯshly x Frℯak♡” is an exploration of kawaii feels. These songs to us, are about escape, and a plunge into a world of sensory pleasures. 😉

What’s good right now in the Dallas scenes these days?

No longer live in Dallas but play occasionally. We are close enough though, staying in Denton, a music college town. But, Dallas Ambient Music Nights are doing amazing things, House of Tinnitus brings techno to Denton. Also,the monthly rave, known as PDA keeps us high. We’ve jumped around quite a bit the last few years, Dallas, Portland, even spent some time in the country for a year living on a ranch.

Undercover & under-wraps with EATQS; press photo courtesy of the artists.

Undercover & under-wraps with EATQS; press photo courtesy of the artists.

Other mediums of art, music, film, literature, etc that you two are in love with right now?

albums like Yukihiro Takahashi’s Neuromantic, Pyrolator’s Wunderland, were inspirations. from Sade to 1080p too many musicians to mention. Authors like Gibson and Murakami, films by Kurosawa, Trier, and Noe, net art, an array of subcultures. Dark and light, nature, Peter Pan, bugs, pictures of tardigrades, underwater life

Spring & summer plan for EATQS?

Collaborate with local and national artists, perform, go camping, seriously, music videos, smile emoticon.

Ethereal and The Queer Show’s new album Fairy Super Crystal Blue will be available April 19 from Noumenal Loom.

Joe Gorgeous

Introducing Joe Gorgeous; photographed by Joey Gorman's friend, Noah Hall.

Introducing Joe Gorgeous; photographed by Joey Gorman’s friend, Noah Hall.

You are most likely already familiar with Fort Worth, Texas artist Joey Gorman’s band The Longshots, but you might not be introduced to his offshoot Joe Gorgeous, of whom premiere their music video for “How Bruce Lee Died” directed by TOURNAMENT. Featuring a crack-shot team of Markus Midkiff (Kopecky) on production & lead guitar, with the rhythm section of Noah Hall on drums and Matthew Gibbons on bass; Joe Gorgeous is Gorman & the gang stepping out into a nu-glam light where together they make a proto-punk sound out of aesthetic that idolizes classic Hollywood glitz & glamor. Extolling the similar Longshots virtues of the self-prescribed “shred ’til dead” ethos; J. Gorgeous takes the classic peacocking-rock model and applies all of it’s attributes and strengths to the contemporary pop form.

The video for “How Bruce Lee Died” sees our hero Joey Gorman going up against a big off-screen opponent. Also playing the announcer, the Joe Gorgeous team bring about a cinematic sense of showtime that exhibits a sense of struggle in that main event fight to the top of the charts. The lyrics reach for that luscious life while singing of aspirations that rise from a volition greater than the occupational fiduciary order of ditch digging. The TOURNAMENT video harkens after the vintage Scorsese style seen in Raging Bull, where our protagonist Joe is up against great odds in the faces of a fantasized success and all the bumps and bruises encountered along the way. With a classic sense of 70s arrangements and roaring rhythm guitar hooks, Joe Gorgeous shines a light on glam rock’s relevance and legacy in 2016 providing a taste of great things soon to follow. Join us after the debut of the video for “How Bruce Lee Died” for an entertaining interview with Joe Gorgeous’s one and only Joey Gorman.

From your work with The Longshots to Joe Gorgeous….how did this solo side come about?

Long story short:

I love rock and roll. A lot. Like with all of my life. And I gotta lotta rock to give.

Short story long:

This is the definition of soul fruition, aka having a blast! This isn’t a side project or some residual angst overflowing from any negative experience from the past. This is just…me combining the rock n roll I wanna hear with the poetry I wanna feel.

Truth be told…rock & roll is all I know how to do.

I don’t have a bank account, I don’t own a car, I don’t keep straight jobs…nor am I interested—I have yet to find any reason to suffer only to remain par.

Joe Gorgeous official jacket, made by Joey Gorman; photographed by Noah Hall.

Joe Gorgeous official jacket, made by Joey Gorman; photographed by Noah Hall.

I’m here to dig up the ugly truths, Joe Gorgeous ha ha. Its a force, an army, a story…a story narrated heavily by the score.

In the vain of how Alice Cooper is not a dude…its a band.

The raw power that is Iggy Pop’s songwriting…with and without the Stooges.

The VU Lou Reed up to the David Bowie produced Lou Reed. The continuing assimilation of rock & roll means a lot to me…witnessing and being a part of a punk rock generation that is actually using vulnerability and self discovery alongside the rest of the counter culture’s meta arsenal…well damnit, its exciting.

Long story summed up:

Born to shred ’til dead.

How is your creative process different when you’re writing solo versus for The Longshots?

This thing is a whole different dance, baby. Its too rough to explain it through the “context lens” of opposing former writing styles I may have exercised. In addition to the obvious product being pushed so to speak….the growth of this creative process is also something the audience deserves to digest via imagination.

A uh…magician never reveals…who his dope dealer is.

Joe Gorgeous's own Joey Gorman; photographed by Noah Hall.

Joe Gorgeous’s own Joey Gorman; photographed by Noah Hall.

Tell us about what for you inspired the somewhat personal leaning song “How Bruce Lee Died” and the boxing match themed b/w video?

Straight up—a few years ago I was lucky enough to fall in L.U.V. with the girl of my dreams…and then I essentially woke up. She is smarter, and straight up cooler than me and I loved it. But like most of us learn upon taking the role of a human being. Life gets heavy and it will again…and again.

I spent a few months in India before starting the Longshots way back in 2011. In the Ashram I stayed in I found the philosophy books of Jiddu Krishnamurti, and the videos of his interactions with the incredibly sharp mind of his great friend Aldous Huxley…but what really blew my mind with beauty was his relationship with Bruce Lee. Towards the end of his life Bruce Lee confided in the teachings of Krishnamurti…Alan Watts…etc…while recovering from spine problems.

Then somehow the internet introduces the conspiracies of how Bruce Lee died, yada yada…the rest is a jumbled collage of history. Google it though, its all pretty fascinating.

Fort Worth's Joey Gorman of Joe Gorgeous & The Longshots; photographed by Noah Hall.

Fort Worth’s Joey Gorman of Joe Gorgeous & The Longshots; photographed by Noah Hall.

Inspiration for the video:

Movies like Alex Cox’s Repo Man and performances by Brando in Sayonara and The Fugitive Kind gave so much inspiration towards the projects’ reveal the ugly truth mission statement. Studying movies and the underbelly of Hollywood really shaped the whole project in the beginning.

As far as the Video’s heavy inspiration & details on why we chose Scorsese’s Raging Bull I’m going to pass the Mic over to an affiliate from TOURNAMENT:

TOURNAMENT:

First of all. Raging Bull is one of the best films ever made. I’m not sure but I think Jakob determined the treatment of this video based on it being the last film he had seen.

TOURNAMENT is not really an art collective. It is a syndicate of homeless despots, who, given the opportunity, showcase their perversions without recourse. The director of this video, Jakob, was unfortunately unable to comment due his recent incarceration. For more info visit www.bytournament.com.

What is good right now in Forth Worth, TX?

Y’all can get a first hand answer yourselves…

Immediately seek out these Fort Worth bands:

Jake Paleschic, Son of Stan, Siberian Traps, War Party, Clear Acid, The Cush

Joe Gorgeous live, photographed by Siberian Traps' Seth Reeves.

Joe Gorgeous live, photographed by Siberian Traps’ Seth Reeves.

Summer and spring master-schemes?

Record, tour, record, tour, smoke weed, record, tour, L.A. for a good bit in July…shred ’til dead. Rinse & repeat.

Like Joe Gorgeous on Facebook & hear more via Soundcloud.

jj mazz

Luca Mazzieri, aka jj mazz; press photo courtesy of the artist.

Luca Mazzieri, aka jj mazz; press photo courtesy of the artist.

Luca Mazzieri is jj mazz, from the Apennine Mountains of Italy who debuts his self-made video for the motorik synth romp, “Asshole”. Found off his forthcoming first album MoFo available in May via his cassette label La Barberia Records (Be Forest, Brothers in Law and Baseball Gregg) that he runs with Giovanni Papalato; Luca balances his time playing guitar with the band A Classic Education while nurturing a solo outfit of home-woven sounds. The result are rumbling chords, peppy percussion, synths, and dreamy vocals that burrow their way into the consciousness and stay for an entire season or two.

The video for “Asshole” combines images of the artist juxtaposed with images of eels, and fish featured from an aquarium. From here locales of Italian hillsides and the trademark skull mask of jj mazz appears in the surreal stream of images. The song “Asshole” moves the insult title along Euro freeways that are driven by guitar rhythms and a drum that keeps the BPMs and RPMs steadily ticking away on a magical voyage. Don’t get mad at us if after the video has ended you find yourself repeating the refrain of “just an asshole” to yourself while strolling & strutting leisurely down the road. Immediately following the video and single premiere for “Asshole”, read our interview with jj mazz’s Luca Mazzieri.

Tell us about your work with A Classic Education, toward focusing on your solo work as jj mazz.

Ace is a five pieces band so I used to be more focused on my guitar’s line trying to feel what Jonathan wanted to “say” and giving my touch.

jj mazz is me by myself and….I have to play all the instruments [laughs]

But I think, at the end, it’s not so different because both bands are rock & roll…like same attitude I mean and attitude is the only think that matter.

Describe for us what sorts of focuses and feelings impacted your debut album, MoFo, and I’m also interested in hearing about the founding of La Barberia cassette label that you and Giovanni started.

Mofo is a collection of 7 broken-neck love songs.

Is my new way of living. My old demons…faced in a lovely place!

I try to put in jj mazz all the stuff I love: Johnny Jewel, Dirty Beaches and Vincent Gallo.

I think Apennine Mountains help me a lot to find a way and I think I got it.

La Barberia Records started in 2011 in the Barber Shop (Barberia in Italian..) of Giovanni’s father, Rodolfoand we started with some really diy secret gigs: Giovanni and I are really music lovers and collector so start pressing cassettes was very natural…. Be Forest, Brothers in Law, Baseball Gregg and the local folk singer hero Setti…. all play in the barber shop and are on cassette for La Barberia… Really proud!
Now we press even CD and vinyl but jj mazz will be on cassette.

Luca Mazzieri, aka jj mazz; photographed courtesy of the artist.

Luca Mazzieri, aka jj mazz; photographed courtesy of the artist.

Who and who may have inspired the song, “Asshole”, and tell us about the making of the aquatic juxtapositions of the video.

I’d like to say is for myself, just to remind me always to stay true….. but it fits well for a couple of guys i know….

I made all the video with my iPhone…

I found this abandoned pool during a walk and everything started… the skeleton (is my alter ego)… the fishes…feeling dumb underwater….

We say shit floats so an aquatic situation got its symbolic address.

Describe to us what life is like in the Apennine Mountains of Italy.

It’s a kind of life I’m starting to love. Playing a lot with Ace I was always on the run and I think I was a good party-man. Now I spend my free time walking around with my girlfriend. We have a lot of small lakes, rivers and woods…my evening in spring and summer are in the garden with a good wine, smoking cigars, playing guitar with my three cats.

I can’t see a lot of shows and I miss it but I feel fine.

Summer plans for jj mazz?

jj mazz live will be a trio (bass drums and guitar) and I have 25 minutes of show. I’m really in love with DIY situations so house concerts, dive bar or opening act in small festival could be my cup of tea.

There is this beautiful venue on the beach in Marina di Ravenna called Hana bi… should be magic so….Chris, can you hear me?

The jj mazz album MoFo will be available in May via his cassette label La Barberia Records.

Janelle

Live at The Pharmacy with Janelle's Ryan Bott; photographed by Samantha Castrale.

Live at The Pharmacy with Janelle’s Ryan Bott; photographed by Samantha Castrale.

You might already know the Philly band Janelle from their cassette output via the tape label Suicide Bong, and now they are ready to debut their first full-length album for FDH / Rockstar Records with Fault Lines arriving April 22 on digital and pressed on vinyl in June. Comprised of bassist Chris Huber, vocalist/synth commander/computer handler Ryan Bott, and fellow vocalist/percussionist/slide guitar expert Marcus Epler return with the video for Janelle’s “Hate” where masked charades help to express the allegory for the faces that we all where throughout each and every day.

Filmed and edited by the band, Janelle compiled footage of themselves and friends sporting masks in between shots of the trio in performance from a fun night hosted by Marcus at his home digs. From the plain white Michael Myers look (a la Halloween) to various designs, colors, and decorum; Janelle expresses the transference of projections like taking on the masks and moods of those in our every day surroundings. From the tense verses of introversion, unsettled uncertainty, and the murmuring pangs of all around apprehension, Janelle’s chorus of “I’ll be all alone, you’ll be all in your head, can’t be all alone, can’t be all in your head” exhibits that these all-consuming experiences can never just be limited to the respective mental space alone. Like the changing of masks that appear like magic on the obfuscated faces of the “Hate” video’s party revelers, Janelle shows an example of how our own manifestation and projections of feelings and emotions impact others around us. It’s a listen that either a good or bad mood are both infectious to others, here seen and heard like a counter-culture cult of masked oddballs. Join us after the debut viewing of “Hate” for our interview with Janelle’s own Chris Huber, Marcus Epler, and Ryan Bott.

Take us to the very beginnings of Janelle.

Marcus: Janelle started when Chris and I had two failed bands so we decided to start one with just the two of us.. but then at the same time I was doing a music project with my neighbor (Ryan) called Ashle. Ryan came over once to jam and it worked really well—looped slide guitar, drums and bass playing over it…with Ryan’s synth/sample madness. He and I already started singing together in Ashle…so it just sort of feel into place. Then Chris moved down the street. Now this was convenient!

What & who inspired the name?

It’s a joke band name in response to another band’s joke name…and also none of us have ever dated a Janelle.

From your various Suicide Bong tapes to your upcoming album for FDH—take us for a ride on the road that lead to the making of Fault Lines.

After our first tape, we bought a $700 van and started playing more shows, all the while writing most of what became the JNL tape. Fault Lines came out an unexpected creative burst at the end of that song writing process. We ended up with two albums worth of material, with this newest batch flowing the best and becoming our favorite. Our Final
SynthGaze Form. Many hours and vocal takes in the basement while watching Ryan move Ableton blocks. We’ve known Eric [Hansen] from FDH for a while and he offered to put out this batch on vinyl. He’s really cool to work with and we jumped at the chance.

Janelle's Chris Huber; photographed by Samantha Castrale.

Janelle’s Chris Huber; photographed by Samantha Castrale.

Tell us about the aggression and deep seeded sentiments that informed the song “Hate”?

Marcus: Hate is mostly about the annoyance of people around me who feed into being completely angry and miserable in their lives, and try to pass this on to people like me who don’t want anything to do with this. This is unhealthy and not necessary.

How then did the frightening video come about for “Hate”?

Ryan: The video for Hate started from this idea I had about wearing masks…all the different masks we wear throughout the day and the way they affect other people around us. How the masks are informed or shaped by everything around us; social media, TV, news, other people. Then I was thinking about the physical act of taking the mask off and
putting them on someone else and how that’s all we’re doing all day long, changing masks, transferring our emotions…good and bad. The actual making of the video was a night hanging at Marcus’s. We shot it and edited ourselves. Our friends came over and helped us paint the different masks and play parts in the video. Because we’re total creepcore, we had to make the video be dark and unnerving.

Janelle's percussionist/vocalist/guitarist Marcus Epler; photographed by Samantha Castrale.

Janelle’s percussionist/vocalist/guitarist Marcus Epler; photographed by Samantha Castrale.

What are you all listening to obsessively right now?

Ryan: Dem French Friez Boys, Ruby Buff.

Chris: Unknown Relatives, Giraffes? Giraffes!

Marcus: Radioactivity, The Hecks.

Latest notes from the Philly scenes & underground circuits?

Chris: Sheer Mag is killing it right now. The guests had one of the best cassettes from last summer “red scare 15”. QQQ is a veritable one man army of live electronic madness making any basement a horde of ghoulish grinning and nodding heads. “Unknown relatives” are an amazing band we played with out of Austin, tx. Philly overall has an overwhelming scene for house shows…awesome shows every night, sleep at work.

Closing thoughts or insights you all care to share?

Ryan: Stay Beautiful, keep posi.

Chris:Thanks for supporting the scene; awesome people make things
awesome.

Marcus: Sup dawg.

Janelle’s album Fault Lines will be available on digital April 22 and on vinyl in June via FDH / Rockstar Records.

MOSAICS

Emerging from the artistic lines & shapes with MOSAICS; press photo courtesy of the band.

Emerging from the artistic lines & shapes with MOSAICS; press photo courtesy of the band.

Following up last year’s Of Colors with some lineup changes; San Francisco’s MOSAICS’ Tyler Hill, Devon Kelts, & Maryam Sadeghian are readying the upcoming Year of Valor EP for release May 20, premiering the title cut with us today. Living in a city beset by the struggle between the tech market class and the creative hand to mouth hordes that still remain with a twinkle still in their eyes—MOSAICS present these clashes, struggles, journeys, and more on Year of Valor that seeks greater values in sound, art, & substance. From here you can hear how the electronic advents of technology are met with the group’s acoustic aspects that blend organic soils of earth into the complex composites of new media component circuitry.

Featuring vocals lead by new singer Maryam Sadeghian, MOSAICS’ arrangements works like an array of softly stirring instrumental shapes turning in clockwise motions like mechanical pinwheels casting off electric dandelion wind-bound seeds and sentiments. Acoustic folk strings progressions right before the subtle electronic percussion, synths, samples, effects, and arrangements enter the frame as Maryam sings; “rhythm runs along the lines of gravity, it never stops and it keeps on pulling me, I pull my head down it keeps on pushing it, the day is gone and I never stop of wondering, the world spins and it clouds my clarity, I cannot deny I’m a victim of vanity…” Glitch globs of drums melt like melted tar resin slowly dripping across a viscuous, rhythm inflected sea of strings and understated synths. MOSAICS joined up with us for a discussion after the following debut of their EP title track, “Year of Valor”.

Describe for us how MOSAICS is guided by the group’s classically trained background.

Although we come from a classical background, it is seldom utilized in the composition of our music. We simply trust our ears to get the best results. Outside of understanding of analyzing a piece’s structure, theory is never used. The best thing we got from our education was self-discipline and a strong work ethic.

Interested in hearing all of your creative approaches to song composition, and those processes have evolved from say Of Color to Year of Valor.

With Year of Valor we simplified our approach to songwriting, arrangement and production. Our intent was to make the music easier on the ears hoping listeners would walk away humming melodies. We took what we thought worked best from our prior record and sought to improve upon it. Though the creation of Of Colors was an important creative milestone, we felt it was overly complexity and ineffectual in expressing it’s message. We believe this record is a step in the right direction of our continuing artistic evolution.

San Francisco's MOSAICS; press photo courtesy of the band.

San Francisco’s MOSAICS; press photo courtesy of the band.

Can the three of you also tell us about what sorts of valor, & year of experiences were instrumental in having an influence on both the making of the album & the title track?

At first, it was difficult to find our voice in San Fransisco. As artists in the undisputed tech capital of the world, we felt like outsiders looking in, unable to connect with our environment. The resulting isolation served as a point of inspiration for our expression. Instead of shunning the dominant start-up culture, we began to embrace it, ultimately seeing music as our start-up.

When we started writing the record, MOSAICS was at a crossroads. Having just released an LP that wasn’t as well received as we hoped, we knew that we would have to make a great change in our process and composite to get the sound we desired. By a series of serendipitous events we discovered a vocalist who was both passionate about the sound and able to find her voice within it.

This record represents the first expression of our new musical chemistry. As three individual musicians from different musical, cultural and ideological backgrounds we took a gamble in assuming that together we could elevate the quality of our sound thus the courage or valor.

The song’s lyrics were inspired by struggles with identity. They’re meant to express the difficulty of asserting one’s place during adulthood and the loss of innocence that often comes with it. The original title of the piece was “25”, paying homage to a world view a twenty five year old individual might have.

What do the three of you enjoy about SF and the Bay Area right now?

We enjoy being in a city full of talented, passionate individuals! We continue to appreciate our quality of life and the city’s intense energy.

Shout outs to Bay Are people?

We want to give a shout out to local band Ray Gun and Hotel Utah’s Brendan Gezzel for running the open mic every Monday giving musicians of all walks an open-minded and welcoming platform for expressing their art, [and] a special thanks to Elena Kulikova for her artistic vision and photography.

MOSAICS’ self-released EP Year of Valor will be available May 20.

Save The Clocktower

Chicago's Save The Clocktower; photographed by Kyle LaMere.

Chicago’s Save The Clocktower; photographed by Kyle LaMere.

Today Chicago’s Save the Clocktower release Taboo, presenting us with the world premiere of the title track lyrical music video from Mike Blong. Hear the contributions from lifetime friends Greg Newton (who has a background in working with electronic sounds from his Boulder, Colorado college days), Sean Paras (who studied film & psychoanalysis at University of Illinois), and Jimmy Shenk (who studied eclecticism and more at University of Wisconsin in Madison) gathered together to create a crisp and calming song that extends towards those feelings that words themselves cannot fully describe. Dreams of today and tomorrow play about in the band’s sound of electronically enabled joys with lyrics that play about the video’s fog touche views of mountainous climbs and peaks.

Save The Clocktower’s Mike Blong video for “Taboo” entertains what additions and effects can alter and enhance the largely stationed view of mountains, hills, and a low-laying fog. Watch as the natural images becomes altered in time to the synth effects and the song’s unfolding dream-like narrative that depicts the thrills and chase of a lover’s sport. As the song carries on about it’s way, the scenery changes and alters itself in swirling ways that will play optical tricks on the mind while taking in the super-smooth rhythm & romantic blues that band delivers full of heart and affectionate care. Join as after the following debut view for “Taboo” for our discussion with Save the Clocktower’s own Greg Newton.

I’m sure you all are tired of talking about it, but describe how the iconic line from Back to the Future inspired your chosen moniker.

Ha, no worries. We were all just partying at a friend’s house and the movie was on. I think when the clocktower part happened, Jimmy, our keyboardist, made the comment that it’d be a great band name. He and Sean, our guitarist/singer, started recording three track demos under the moniker during breaks from college. The name has stuck ever since.

What sorts of unspeakable and unthinkable things inspired the song “Taboo”?

We like to leave that up to your own imagination, but the things people are actually thinking and doing when they’re alone is an under explored topic. The lyrics are definitely more personal and thought provoking then some of our past work. Take a deep dive and figure out who you really are and what really makes you happy.

Back in time & before sun break with Save The Clocktower; photographed by Kyle LaMere.

Back in time & before sun break with Save The Clocktower; photographed by Kyle LaMere.

Thoughts on the Mike Blong video translation of the track?

Mike did such a great job! Mike is like the fifth band member. He’s been on tour with us and does so much to help us with graphic work. We knew he was the guy for the job. The video is both high elegant and dreamy, which is what we aim for in our music.

Insights about making the EP of the same name?

We didn’t put a ton of thought into it. It just felt right and it’s just a great word that happens to be a great title for an EP. It’s also our favorite track on the EP.

Creative process notes, preferred rituals, etc?

We always write things one layer or instrument at a time in the studio. “Taboo” was a bit different because we started playing it live in it’s early stages and tweaked it as we found new ideas from jamming. The original idea for the song was probably laid down about 2-3 years ago and it evolved over time.

Other happenings in the Save The Clocktower camp?

We’re working on more new material to release in the near future. We’re also very excited to be playing the Taste of Randolph in Chicago June 18!

Save The Clocktower’s new EP Taboo is available now via Bandcamp.

Hudson Bell

Spending some time with Hudson Bell; photographed by Lenny Gonzalez.

Spending some time with Hudson Bell; photographed by Lenny Gonzalez.

Hudson Bell’s upcoming April 22 album Yerba Buena was born out of the artist providing walking tours of his residing city of San Francisco, and while working on a history book. A title that alludes to iconic city’s original name and the island of the same name that now connects to the human engineered Treasure Island; Bell allowed his beloved surroundings to serve as a backdrop for lyrical streams from the subconscious & an all out passion for lo-fi analog recorded warmth. Presenting the world premiere of the Chris Cranford directed video for “Box of Bones”, collective articles and fragments of memories are brought around the city by the Bay in song and a cardboard treasure chest that contains an 8-track of this very song.

Popping the 8-track in the player, and awaking to greet the day; Hudson Bell is seen in bed resting his head on a skateboard fora pillow telling the story of memories and nostalgia petrified in stone and kept in a “Box of Bones”. The metaphor for bones is described as the beams & frames of support for the self-structure that is illustrated by Bell in a song that rips timeless VOX-blasted riffs in a self-conscious rock number that measures the tethered tissue between recollected memory materials and the passage of time that is mortality. And though the nature of the song could be misconstrued as being fixated on morbid mental attitudes, the mood is more toward the merriment found in measuring modern recollections and relics in the current day. Even the existential-hollering questions of whether or not anyone else is out there are met with a message to save and grab the reins of your own life. A subtext and side effect might result in audio heads feeling compelled to purchase a vintage 8-track player and start their own collection of classics. Hudson Bell also caught up with us for a discussion round featured right after the following video debut for “Box of Bones”.

Describe how writing a book on the history of San Francisco would lead to recording the album Yerba Buena.

When we recorded the initial tracks for the record, I’d just started guiding walking tours all over San Francisco, and in the evenings was researching and writing a history book. I was reading a lot about pre-gold rush San Francisco, going back to when it was a backwater Mexican hamlet known as Yerba Buena. The name just kind of hovered, and with mention of today’s Yerba Buena Island in one of the songs, it all fit as the island sits between where the three of us were located at the time.

Any favorite anecdotes you’d like to share from the recording process?

The core of the album was recorded quickly, over one weekend. This doesn’t really factor into “Box of Bones,” but in that spirit a lot of my subconscious lyrics were left on.

Tell us too about translating the song “Box of Bones” for a full SF adventure video, working with videographer Chris Cranford.

Chris Cranford was in town for a photo show, we had one day, and it was raining. The idea was to walk around my neighborhood and nearby where Yerba Buena was, mixing that SF element of urban with botanical, but we didn’t want any obvious landmarks. There is a music-related location in there that will most likely go unnoticed.

Talking with Hudson Bell; photographed by Lenny Gonzalez.

Talking with Hudson Bell; photographed by Lenny Gonzalez.

How do you personally find how the Bay Area influences you creatively?

I like walking around a corner and seeing water out there. Balances me out. Streets straight up and over hills baffle visitors, but it’s because the surveyor had no idea a gold rush was about to happen. Limitations allow for interesting results sometimes.

Other local acts and artists the world needs to hear and know about?

Check out Swiftumz. I was just jammin’ Everybody Loves Chris the other day.

Next big moves for Hudson Bell?

Playing shows is currently a puzzle, trying to piece together who can and cannot play, but there has been talk of a possible tour. I’m already thinking about the next recording project, but with a lot of other life stuff to work out, it’s pointless to talk about that right now. If you visit San Francisco, look me up. I’ll take you on a tour.

Hudson Bell’s self-released album Yerba Buena will be available April 22.

Ultrviolence

Emerging from out of the darkness—it's Ultrviolence; photographed by Brad Scott.

Emerging from out of the darkness—it’s Ultrviolence; photographed by Brad Scott.

Calgary trio Ultrviolence continues their storm of guitars and brooding vocals with their forthcoming Black Sea EP available May 13 from Northern Light Records, providing a listen to the tempestuous, “Better Learn How To Swim.” Nate J, Ali Abbas, & Kirk Power produced and recorded the new EP with Jason Corbett at Jacknife Sound and recorded at the former Greenhouse Studios Vancouver Canada; the three devote themselves to creating sea waves the size of giants through a combination of chords and dour moods.

The result of “Better Learn How To Swim” is something that ultimately grabs you in for the undertow. Ultrviolence take hold of the listener like a natural phenomeon, the tidal tower of water that you either are engulfed by or are gingerly riding on the top of it’s crest like an ASL surf champion. This is the paradox at work in the world of Ultrviolence, where natural elements of unhinged energy are either harnessed or become an adversial opponent. We talked with Ultrviolence in an interview session featured right after the jump.

Describe for us the ocean-ward inspirations behind your new Black Sea EP, and what is it about bodies of water in general that are interesting to you all?

Sure, the title is inspired by Henry Miller’s ‘Black Spring.’ In a way, we all are bodies of water, billions of humans, and it’s amazing just how lost and isolating it is for some of us.

Tell us what the making of the new EP was like for the three of you.

Honestly, it was a transcending experience. The EP was recorded by Jason Corbett with Jacknife Sound in beautiful Vancouver. Jason took us to Greenhouse Studios to record with engineer Pherbie in the historic studio. We played everyday for about 10-12hrs a day, for about a week. All in all, it was an amazing experience of chemistry, know-how, and live pounding rock & roll.

What sorts of urgent swimming knowledge informed the brooding “Better Learn How To Swim”?
We would say that it’s a reflection of the urgency or reality and life, and the acceptance of it before it’s too late. The title is a loose homage to Propagandhi’s, ‘How To Clean Everything’

Other cool things, art, artists, and more happening these days in Calgary?
Chron Goblin, Negative Earth, Windigo, and looking forward to the Calgary Underground Film Festival.

Summer and spring plans for Ultrviolence?

Our new record, the Black Sea EP, is being released Friday, May 13th at The Emerald in Vancouver, with our friends and the wonderful band, Girlfriends And Boyfriends. The record is going to be released under the Vancouver label, Northern Light Records, and we have a lot of unconfirmed plans for the summer as well. See you around!

Atlantic Thrills

Presenting Atlantic Thrills; press photograph courtesy of the band.

Presenting Atlantic Thrills; press photograph courtesy of the band.

Currently on the road, we give you the video for “Bed Bugs” from Providence, Rhode Island’s Atlantic Thrills, directed by the band’s own Eric Aguiar, starring Dan Tanner, Mark Ferrara, and Rafay Rashid. Found off last year’s cassette Vices, Aguiar, Tanner, & Josh Towers bring about a raucous dive bar approved scuzz soundtrack to enjoy while watching the misadventures of oversized bugs.

“Bed Bugs” is a song that is already designed to be enjoyed with the best of friends with lots of good cheer. And living up to this idea is the video that features a group of rowdy big bugs gathering together in a van for beer swilling good times. The events involve fireworks, graffiti, and all kind of debaucherous behavior that she not be tried at home, or anywhere. Right after the following video, be sure to read our interview with Atlantic Thrills.

Let us into the secrets and stories behind the making of your album Vices.

We tracked everything ourselves in the creepy basement of Eric’s house in Providence. “Almost Anything” and “So Long” are both songs we’ve been playing out for a long time—just had never gotten around to recording them. Most the other songs were written specifically for the album. Everything was recorded live and vocals got overdubbed after…on some tracks like “Hold It Down” we added organ and percussion. But for the most part we try to capture everything live and raw.

Describe the making of the bugged out video for “Bed Bugs” from Eric Aguiar.

We wanted the “Bed Bugs” to be like delinquent teens running around causing trouble. We got a bunch of 40s, blunts, spray paint and fireworks and called up some friends. Pretty much did exactly what we were doing around 15-16 years old. Eric filmed and directed while Dan, Rafay and Mark got drunk, stoned, shot off fireworks and did stupid shit while wearing bug masks. It was a lot of fun till Rafay stumbled off a 30 ft wall and got rushed to the ICU. Broke most his ribs, collar bone, etc. but luckily no surgery or permanent damage. Was definitely a night we won’t forget.

What are you all super stoked about right now?

We’re really psyched for this tour in April. We have our original drummer, Mark Ferrara, who we started Atlantic Thrills with joining us on the road. We also have our homie Rafay Rashid (from Ravi Shavi) playing guitar. Coincidentally it’s everyone that was involved in the “Bed Bugs” video.

What else are you all working on right now?

Aside from working on new Atlantic Thrills material we’ve been collaborating and writing with Rafay. Possibly a side project…we’ll see where it goes.

What good life advice can you give your listeners and fans?

If your going to run around with bug masks, drinking 40s and smoking blunts – stay away from high ledges.

Catch Atlantic Thrills on the following dates:

April
08 Beaumont, TX – Texas Rose Saloon
09 Austin, TX – Hotel Vegas
10 Austin, TX – Beerland
11 Little Rock, AR – Norm’s Lounge
12 Memphis, TN – Buccaneer
13 Nashville, TN- Betty’s
14 Cincinnati, OH – Junkers Tavern
15 Chicago, IL – Cole’s Bar
16 Cleveland, OH – Now That’s Class
17 Pittsburgh, PA – Rock Room
18 Brooklyn, NY – Good Room
21 Providence, RI – Dusk

Atlantic Thrills’ Vices is available now via Almost Ready Records.

Ara Koufax

Melbourne, Australia's Ara Koufax; photographed by Nevena Spirovska.

Melbourne, Australia’s Ara Koufax; photographed by Nevena Spirovska.

Ara Koufax have made a name for themselves from the eclectic Melbourne, Australia scenes via releases via their imprint Downtime, Cutters Records, and an appearance on the Cut Copy compilation Oceans Apart. This week saw AK release their Kissy Fits / Infrared Single single via Cascine singles imprint CSCN, where deluxe dance pop suites are the order of the now.

“Kissy Fits” runs a rhythmic track that thunders according to the rapid BPM momentum that courses through sequenced patterns of prestige. Focused missions turn into the ambient spas of “Infrared” where the secret sustains and lives of light beams are teased in keyboard progressions of a pensive nature. Ara Koufax are bringing back the IDM aspects of pop intellect into the compendium of post-EDM aesthetics and more. Sam Gill was ever so kind as to share with us the following reflections on the new single set:

“Kissy Fits” came from an experiment in restraint. The idea was to write something stripped back and tough, without layering too heavily or re-writing to death. To me, it sounds like Norwegian Nu-Disco with bloody gums. Anyway, the track felt like a keeper after a few solid hours, and complete once we found the vocal sample – which is a cheeky nod to my Scouse roots.

Benji Lewis

Presenting Benji Lewis; photographed by Nick Manuell.

Presenting Benji Lewis; photographed by Nick Manuell.

Introducing Benji Lewis who presents his new breakout Hearts & Halos EP full of passions that stem from the heart and hover between the here and now and the celestial sky heights. The Australian tunesmith stitches his heart into every aspect of synth sequencing, and electronic arrangment where every note looks to find some sort reconciliation or bond that is communicated through ESP-type channels of sensory reception/transmission.

The EP opens with “Reach You Where You Are” that imagines a kind of ESP systems where feelings extend from one person to another without the advent of fancy cell phones or data plans. Lingering questions of “Why” are exhibited in rhythm & blues that inquires to assuage the nagging inclinations in the aftermath of a breakup, busting out the big lonesome blues-buster “Never Leave You Lonely”, right before leaving you with the polarity shift/earth-turning disparities of “Night & Day”. All throughout the EP, Lewis attempts to marry together concepts and tropes that are far apart that works to create his own context of connections through audio design.


Benji Lewis was ever so kind as to provid us with the following preface/companion piece for his new Hearts & Halos EP:

I was sitting in my apartment in Brunswick, Melbourne one night at my digital piano. I began playing some chords and singing whatever came out. I recorded the demo of this, “Reach You Where You Are” on my phone and brought it into the studio to workshop with Jan Skubiszewski. We worked on “Reach You Where You Are” and “Night & Day together”. Both these songs were very close to me, all about the love I have for my Mum and all the feelings, thoughts & memories that came with loosing her to cancer.

With “Night & Day” it’s about those final conversations and memories that you can remember every word shared and surroundings at the time. It’s about believing in one of the strongest and most unconditional love between two people, going through the feelings of loosing that person, but knowing that they and their love will be with you forever & that you will see them again, one day. Holding the memories close, keeping them in your heart.

I then went onto working with Michael Paynter & Michael Delorenzis of MSquared Productions. We spoke a lot about a relationship that ended before it even got the chance to start, really. The song ‘Why’ is about the lead of something really great beginning to happen between two people but then one pulling out and leaving the other not knowing why.

“Never Leave You Lonely” is coming from those feelings and experiences of “Why” and having a better understanding for someone you now have feelings for. That they could have possibly been hurt too, and had trust broken in the past. Really just wanting them to give you a chance and to believe that you won’t do that to them because you know how it feels, you’ve been there too.

Listen to more from Benji Lewis via Soundcloud.


Yuzima just released the new single “Atheist” from the upcoming final insta-album that tackles matters of beliefs, cares, and theological investments. The NYC artist that operates with a noisy and sometimes eccentric take on pop culture subjects (“Tracy Chapman”) and the surrounding society at large continues to find more succinct manners of scuzz pop impressionism. On “Atheist”, Yuzima invites you to dance with the demons, angels, activists, evangelists, and more while wrestling questions of deities and doctrines peddled by merchants of hope. Look out for Yuzima’s third insta-album coming soon.

Pop music’s new icon Morly has released Something More Holy available today from Cascine featuring some of the most gorgeous emotive pop textures. From the opening track “If Only Chords” to the title cut; the rising artist follows up her EP debut In Defense Of My Muse, her work on “Maestrom” for the ever shifting mercurial motions heard on “Plucky”, & “By The Polo Pond”. Morly shows sign of a composer combining trad textures that are carefully woven into her contemporary vision for vocal and production craft.

Richard Hunter-Rivera returns with more Island Boy adventures with the single “Dun on Life” that features solo musings for spring endeavors. Abiding by the self-produced approach that many solo artists have been cutting their teeth on as of late, the bedroom pop claustrophobia takes on a synth & drum-machine agoraphobic lo-fi kick with a sound that is something of an anthem for enjoying the great indoors. Together the electric-glow comforts heard on IB’s “Dun on Life” reflect our preferences and pursuits of personal safety zones found in the humble nests of our respective residential spaces.

Last year we helped introduce the world to rising artist Emanuela Drei and her pop persona GIUNGLA who translates experiences, situations, feelings, and understanding that are illustrated like the complex nature & designs at play like a sentimental landscape contrasts of jungle gyms & desert mirages. “Sand” paints this and much more where the sea shore atmosphere underscores Drei’s quest for realness, and we share the heaviness at the end with the confrontational refrain of “you were never real, never real…” Listen for this and more from the upcoming debut GIUNGLA EP Camo available May 20 from Factory Flaws.

Behold the new barrel-clanging beat on the single “Insignificunts” from BARLI, available now via The Blue Rider (the same stable that hosts a roster that includes of Jagwar Ma, Kilo Kish, DD Dumbo, etc). “Insignificunts” dusts off the excess insignificant leftovers to bring in the biggest boss percussion sequences that only get larger, and more bad-ass in might as the track progresses.

Introducing Parisian pop artist Shorebilly who shares the affectionate-electronic etched single, “We care about You Boy.”. The cares are expressed through brush strokes of keys that are painted on a digitally enhanced canvas of emotive-guided key progressions.

Arizona psych-seeking wanderers The Myrrors have been readying their album Entranced Earth for release May 27 via Brooklyn’s Beyond Beyond is Beyond Records, sharing the eastward droning cut “No Clear Light”. Spiritual/vision quest journeys from here begin with a variety of instruments from strings to brass to make for an otherworldly adventure to be experienced and enjoyed.

Meet East LA’s Stars At Night, made up of Irene Quiles, Elizabeth Banuelos, Seleste Diaz and Joana Rubio who are readying an array of new material for 2016. On their new single “Searching”, the quartet puts a new riot grrl spin on 70s crunching anthems that help LA maintain it’s title as DIY-rock town USA.

From video game programmer Jake Clover & video director Max Henry; you are invited to experience the virtual reality realms of fascination on the single for “Brainwash”, off Suuns’ new album Hold Still available April 15 from Secretly Canadian. Observe how the fuzzy electro rocker becomes transformed into a digitally, wild roller coaster for the senses.

The NYC crew DITC Studios prepares to release their forthcoming compilation featuring originals from Fat Joe, Diamond D, A.G., O.C., Lord Finesse, Buckwild and Showbiz, alongside DJ Premier, Pharoahe Monch, David Bars, and more. Get a following preview listen to the double disc here and now.

From his forthcoming self-released EP available May 12, hear Dom Zilla’s single “The Shallows” that moves a series of production tricks that create a kind of smoke on the water effect that ripples while Dom spills his heart. Keep an ear out for more available soon.

Behold Reuben Hollebon’s new clockwork crafted single “Faces” mixed by Bjork collaborator Damian Taylor, featured off the forthcoming album Terminal Nostalgia available May 20 from Bright Antenna Records. Cinematic fusions of thundering phenomenons springs to form on this track worthy of being fitted into the most elaborate of movie soundtrack mixes.

Ali Beletic’s upcoming Legends of These Lands Left To Live will be available June 17 from Lightning Records, and we bring you the dusty trail blues with the sparse strumming song “Band Of Outsiders” produced by Seth from Akron/Family and Cy Dune. Ali deals in cinematic string twang that connects to the outcasts and outlaws that traverse perpendicular and sometimes parallel paths with the commoners making their commutes along the sleepless, weary, and worrisome interstate straits.

Enter the noir continuum of mortality & immortality on the video for “Death Or Fame” featured off Prism Tats’ self-titled album available April 15 from ANTI.

For those late to the BIRTHH party, we bring you your listen to the beloved album Born in the Woods, available now from WWNBB. Songs of passion, love, & loss permeate a very personal record of pop vocal brilliance lead under Alice Bisi’s direction, compositions, lyrics, and delivery that provides a view into the prolific DIY Italo pop communities. “Prelude for the Loveless” expresses a sentiment of love for those that feel the absence, with summer hearts that sting and splash with that summer swimming pool aroma of “Chlorine”, to the powerful “Queen of Failureland”. BIRTHH brings about the life and drama from all of the involved chords and cuts that comprise the adventure of Born in the Woods, from echoing funereal melodies and harmonies on “Interlude for the Lifeless”, awakening the various receptor portals of “Senses”, right as “Wraith” leads you to the closing section of amorous vignettes about abandoned hearts & bonds illustrated in songs like “Interlude for the Hopeless”, closing on a sweet love note left “For the Heartless”. For those who have just been dumped or have exited a big relationship; this BIRTHH record is everything you have desired and maybe even more.

In more WNBB collective news, we introduce you to Soda Fountain Rag, the project of Italy’s own Ragnhild Iveranna Hogstad Jordahl who makes jangly twee pop of songs that illustrate pop jams penned in sincere fashions. Consider the opener “Lovesong for the geek” that exhibits all natureal states of nervousness and butterflies that flutters forth on tambourine shaking opportunies like the heavenly harmonies of “Oh Oh” that leave catch chords ringing and resonating in your dome long after they have vanished from the sound-sphere.

Our hero Jackie Venson is about to set your free from your nine to five blues, as we watch the great JV cast off the trappings of the office environment and all the urgent, time sensitive inquiries and connective bonds of burden, and riding high off into the sunset with a smile and her guitar in the video for “Always Free”.

Producer Jason McGuiness is prepping a 7″ with The High Science Project / Keyon Harrold available May 6 from Analog Burners, sharing some instrumental brass and nu-jazzy textures to meditate on empirical notions to with “Empyrean Tones”. Famed trumpeter Keyon Harrold lays down some wild waves of expressionist horns while the rhythm section thumps to Brandon Eugene Owens’ bass, Te’Amir Sweeney’s percussion, and some atmospheric whirling organ keys courtesy of Duante St. Louis.

Watch the amorous video from Emma Kanter and Anna Wise herself for Wise’s The Feminine: Act 1 available April 27 via Stem. The games of personal possessions both precious, and passionate play out here like a bit of boudoir pop to be savored for afternoon delight and evening clandestine trysts of the most sensual order.

Hear the new Icarus Moth produced single”While You Still Can” found off Wolkoff’s upcoming album Without Shame available April 15. Joanie W. here provides electronic-tones of encouragement for her listeners to take action and control of their life at that very moment without a beat of hesitation or pause.

Deadwinter dropped the cathartic screamer “Oak”, a new b-side off their Destinations EP that delivers more scuzz and blood curdling crunch & chaos. Bringing a bit of winter angst to your springtime sun.

Texas vision seekers Pageantry recently released their new album Influence available now from Southern Heaven Records, and we give you the following listen. Following up their Friends of the Year EP, the group provides more sentimental scenes to jog the nostalgic glances and thoughts experienced and observed in rewind. The feels arrive in the form of the nostalgic traces of “Girl Breath” that illuminate the memories of your first crush ever, bringing the fashion-gazing shenanigans of “Teenage Crive Wave”. More fuzzy upbeat moments bop along with the lush single “Love To Lie”, the dramatic tension and treatise of “Giving Up”, before closing the curtain with a parting pop benediction of warning & “Caution”.

Prepare yourself for some ambient noise adventures from holymachines’ new album Image Version from Average Negative. Hear the places where noise and droning found sound samples explode into turbines of face twisting exhilaration.

Trip further into the deep, molasses pit slow-pitched sink found on a listen to Bunki’s Turn EP available April 8 from squareglass.

Finland’s Femme En Fourrure (otherwise in English known as “woman in fur”) made up of Sandra Tervonen and Juuso Malin dropped the a-side from their forthcoming Seer/Eaten available April 15 from FEF Corp. From here Euro synths and electronically addled vocals make for an electrically blended mix of synthesized sensations.

In case you missed it, catch Malory’s remix of et aliae’s D∆WN collaboration “Sober” that pushes the lucid state into other sorts of new rhythmically charged fields of feelings.

Minneapolis group The Person & The People shared the warm sun glow of “Hot Summer Nights” to turn up the excitement and euphoria on a spring evening off their third album Dark and Low available April 22 from Land Ski Records.

Adult Jazz dropped the Sam Travis directed CGI video for the new single, “Eggshell” taken off the forthcoming Earrings Off! available May 20 from Tri Angle. From here those nu-schools of jazz are meshed with the even newer adult arenas of vivid pop.

Only You Remain, the debut album from Great American Canyon Band sees wide release today from Six Degrees Records and we bring you the following inspiration listen. The opening title track is the ultimate love song to ever make anyone ever feel like they are truly the only person in the world, the cosmic collisions on “Crash”, to the deep dreaming homecoming of “Come Home”, the passionate transcending deliverance heard on “Broken Glass”, right before lifting you up even further with “Never Fade Away”. “Undertow” entertains haunted prom waltzes, “Chances” revisits old hurts through howling echoes, with “Rise” ascending slowly from the ground, to the bonded reiterations of “We Are Lovers”, closing with howling wind cadence of Kris’s vocal call that resonates as if being reflected from the surrounding ledges, mountain and cliffs. The Baltimore band as succeeded here in creating the ultimate American record that will pick up all moping spirits to a level that takes in the awe of everything through sonic-organic arrangements.

Introducing Hamilton, Ontario Basement Revolver that are making some of the greatest pop music you’re going to hear all week. The single is the brutal “Johnny” the band’s big single off their upcoming EP debut available in July. Few songs can really encapsulate all the overwhelming feelings and confusions that arises over any set of complications with a significant other, as the unsure alliances and pain is expressed in ways that doesn’t even pretend to fake having a good time. In lead singer Chrisy Hurn’s own words:

“Johnny” is my attempt to rationalize difficulties with my past partner and all the heartache and angst that comes from having a really bad time.

Sweden’s The Land Below is the creative brain trust of Erik Lindestad, formerly of duo Wild at Heart (Kitsuné, Hybris) sharing the shining synth saturation of “If You Want Love”. From here questions and motives of desires and needs traverse across a swift, bubbling of keys and feelings that percolate throughout the entire mix.

London’s Holy ’57 dude Alex Mankoo has been working on the upcoming O EP, sharing the bouncing beat and vibes of “Venice, CA”. The thrills of a day spent at the festive locale of the song’s namesake unveils before your senses like a daydream that slips into that special spring break spent with besties in the beach-side sun of shining beams of light that ripple in their reflection off the sea and sands of the shore.

MED just dropped the fourth edition of the BangYaHead series that keeps you up to date with all the upcoming and coming cuts coming out of Oxnard, and you can feast your ears on MED’s Bombay produced track “Caddy Music” ft. Blu & Elzhi. Together the crew take you on a ride past the sporting green, with a sunny day stroll past the trophy case of accomplishments and conscious hearted narratives.

SF’s Talkie just released their anticipated double album Songs From Hablas We Thought Would Sound Cool Acoustic The Album and we bring you the Disneyland carnivorous moments of amusement with the BobbyD&Boyclothes video for “Sueñatron”. This is for everyone who hs ever wanted to attend one of those slow boat rides with a big leg of whatever-your-choice meat.

SATE brought the conquering power of “Know My Name” that features the artist making a name for herself while schooling those not in the know on her own notoriety. In her own words on the single:

“Know My Name” is an anthem of fighting words. When you’ve had enough of people pushing you around or telling you who they think you are, this song is the pre-fight mantra that gets you pumped and ready to fight for your self-worth.

Brooklyn’s Ziemba sent along word of her upcoming new album Hope Is Never for Lo & Behold available June 24, sharing the choral harmonies of “It Curls Itself”. René Kladzyk recorded her fluttering clusters of magic charmed vocal overdubs at Black Dirt Studio (mixed by Jason Meagher, mastered by Patrick Klem) where coiling and spinning scales of sound soar like living creatures from the great natural wild.

A.R.Kane’s Week in Pop

A.R.Kane live at MIDI Festival in Hyères, France; photo courtesy of the band.

A.R.Kane live at MIDI Festival in Hyères, France; photo courtesy of the band.

The legendary A.R. Kane are returning for Primavera Festival and the 2016 touring season and we are honored and thrilled to present Rudy Tambala’s following exclusive Week in Pop guest selections:

Spring is come. Not quite warm, but bright enough and those long English evenings landed. Autumn to Spring I don’t listen to much new stuff, I go back and listen, back to warm memories, history, search and collect. Preppin’ Ableton tracks to back the band for live… hip hop, funk and slower grooves are on my mind. African riddim. Sub bass. Feedback guitars. Bliss. YouTube is like some thousand mile long space station library of music discovered in some 70s sci-fi classic book, by written by some cat with 3 or 4 names, left for us by some alien species, to help us evolve, and not kill each other. Love one and other. Or die out. Endless listening, till we suddenly all tune in, when 4 billion heads are rocking to the same tune. Then the aliens return and they’re really into music too. That’d be cool.

Pete Rock, Lost & Found: Hip Hop Underground Soul Classics

The album was never released till 8 or 10 years later, but was seriously bootlegged. It’s actually InI (as in Rastfarian I and I), New York dreads/rappers—these tracks should have been huge—have this on repeat this week, gonna steal those beats for my next project. Sorry.

Slowdive, “Souvlaki Space Station”

I cracked up when I heard this for the first time this week—I just caught the last couple minutes and thought it was an A.R. Kane song that I’d forgotten. Listened over and really like it. It’s better than Kane. Skin up geeza!

The Veldt, “It Breaks My Heart” (Stratosphere Mix)

This is so beautiful–these guys are so much better than almost anyone that wears the Dreampop label. A totally unique take on soul music, like Al Green through an LSD haze. Put it on a loop, it eases the pain, soothes the heart. They just put out a new EP, I did a little production on, so go get it. Also, why ain’t these guys headlining the AfroPunk Festival this year? Eh, why?

Ummagma, “The Road to Lees”

OK, well I am biased because I’m collaborating with these guys, but I include the video for this track because I heard it for the first time today. It is really different from most of what I’ve heard from Ummagma, with a kind of jazz vibe, a guy on vocal duty, and more electronic art improv too. This should be on the next Sasha Involver album. Lovely.

A.R.Kane in performance; press photo courtesy of the band.

A.R.Kane in performance; press photo courtesy of the band.

Jagwar Ma, “The Throw”

These cats hit me up last week so I checked them out and loved this bit of baggie Dreampop—made me feel like getting mashed.

James Brown, “The Payback”

White DNA gets the fuck outta the room when this plays. Sampled to death, overplayed, but never overrated. The tune and the sentiment makes me wanna kick ass, in a funky way. Ain’t sure about that biopic tho…

A.R.Kane performing in Hyères, France; photo courtesy of the band.

A.R.Kane performing in Hyères, France; photo courtesy of the band.

Joni Mitchell, “California”

Right, splicing the DNA. I was given a mix of Joni by a school friend when I was 15. I thought it was ok. I heard it again when I was 18, hanging with some college cats, getting high, and it went BANG! I have loved Joni ever since. I been sampling bits of this classic week for a live loop, and the loop is so hypnotic, that voice. Oh my word, Joni is God.

A Tribe Called Quest, “Find A Way”

This one is for Dawg–World 12. What a fucking shame. Still, I am copying that dubhop groove… why you wanna go and do that?

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