The Shake Ups – Breathing the Flood

December 29, 2008

Artist Name: The Shake Ups
Album Title: Breathing the Flood
Release Date: 2008
Genre: Rock
Location: San Diego, CA
Label: Gelatinous Productions
Band Members: Patrick O’Connor – lead and backing vocals, electric and acoustic guitars, percussion; Eve Gross – lead and backing vocals, keyboards, glockenspiel; Albert Lu – bass guitar, percussion; Kathie O’Connor – drums and percussion.
Website: www.TheShakeUps.net

Perhaps nobody loves power-pop music more than me. So when The Shake Ups mention influences like The Shins, The New Pornographers, and The Apples In Stereo, my appetite is immediately whetted. Nearly any combination of choppy guitars and sing-able melodies will turn my head in that favorite sound’s general direction. Unfortunately, Breathing the Flood is not exactly what a diehard power-pop aficionado usually bargains for. Instead, this CD has all the right elements; but somehow these weren’t mixed together correctly. Read more

Wendy Darling – Half-Told Bedtime Stories

December 15, 2008

Artist Name: Wendy Darling
Album Title: Half-Told Bedtime Stories
Release Date: 2008
Genre: Folk-Rock
Location: San Diego, CA
Label: Easta Green Music
Band Members: Vocals – Cori Rush; Guitar/back-up Vocals – Nate Heller; Bass – Jon Freeman; Drums – Hector Verdugo
Website: WendyDarlingBand.com

Wendy Darling is named after the female protagonist in Peter Pan. You know, the girl that didn’t want to grow up. But this San Diego band, fronted by Cori Rush’s authoritative vocals, is clearly comprised of worldly-wise grownups. Read more

Revolution, I Love You – Noise. Pop. Deathray.

December 8, 2008

Artist Name: Revolution, I Love You
Album Title: Noise. Pop. Deathray.
Release Date: 2008
Genre: Rock
Location: Delaware
Label: Self-released
Band Members: Jason Reynolds and Rob Lindgren
Website: www.RevolutionILoveYou.com

Jason Reynolds and Rob Lindgren, a duo called Revolution, I Love You, refer to their music as “equal parts drum machines and Fender jangle, fuzz bass and piano.” And dang, if they’re not absolutely right! This music may be relatively indescribable, but that doesn’t mean it’s not also mighty fine. Noise. Pop. Deathray. is comprised of only six tracks, yet each one is entirely different from the rest. Revolution, I Love You’s overall affect might just restore your faith in rock & roll. Read more

The Roseline – Lust for Luster

December 1, 2008

Artist Name: The Roseline
Album Title: Lust for Luster
Release Date: 2008
Genre: Alt.country
Location: Lawrence, Kansas
Label: Self-released
Band Members: Colin Haliburton, vocals and guitar; Ehren Starks, keyboards; Jenny Davidson, bass; Jeff Jackson, guitar and pedal steel; and James Storms Piller, drums.
Website: http://www.myspace.com/colinpepper

The band The Jayhawks was from Minnesota, while the University of Kansas mascot is a Jayhawk. But The Roseline unites these disparate points of separation by combining Jayhawks-inspired music with geographic Kansas roots. The Roseline’s Lust for Luster can be loosely categorized alt.country music, primarily because of Jeff Jackson’s inspired pedal steel work, which gives even the group’s rocking-ist moments a sincere touch of twang. Read more