Dawn Canon on USB Music Distribution

November 3, 2009

Credit: Dawn Canon

Credit: Dawn Canon

Are your CD sales sluggish? Are you down with digital distribution channels like iTunes, but you want to complement it with something a bit more creative — actually putting something in the hands of your fans? If so, Pittsburgh band Dawn Canon might have an option: USB music distribution. Read more

Jay T Vonada Quartet: Jammin’

August 3, 2009

Jay T. Vonada Quartet - Jammin'

Artist Name: Jay T. Vonada Quartet
Album Title: Jammin’
Release Date: 2008
Genre: Jazz
Location: Pennsylvania
Label: Self-released
Band Members:
Jay T. Vonada (trombone), Adam Kurland (keyboards), Jacob Hibel (bass), John Sullivan (drums)
Website: http://www.myspace.com/jjazzbone

Jammin’ By Jay T. Vonada Quartet is one classy jazz collection. Vonada wrote and arranged all eight of these compositions, and also lays down mean trombone on it. But most important of all, it’s a whole lot of fun. Read more

Michael Miller: I Made You Up

April 19, 2009

Michael Miller: I Made You Up

Artist Name: Michael Miller
Album Title: I Made You Up
Release Date: June 16, 2009
Genre: Rock
Location: California
Label: Self-released
Band Members: Michael Miller (guitar, vocals)
Website: www.MichaelMillerCrusade.com

Michael Miller’s music is pretty, and sometimes slightly melancholy. I Made You Up is made up of ten moody songs, which are colored with Eric Heywood’s prominent pedal steel work, even though country is the last label you’d slap on this collection. Instead, tracks like “Carolina Skyline” give it more of a life-out-in-the-country feel. Read more

Woodpecker – f-hole

March 12, 2009

Woodpecker - f-hole

Artist Name: Woodpecker!
Album Title: f-hole
Release Date: 2008
Genre: Americana
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Label: Self-released
Band Members: Jordan Anderson: banjo, vocals; Al Huang: mandolin, vocals; Josh Steinbauer guitar, vocals; Andy Zue: cello; Michelle Vu: fiddle, upright; Bill Mayo: percussion
Website: http://www.woodpeckermusic.com

At first, it’s difficult to reconcile Woodpecker!’s traditional sound with its distinctly modern lyrical approach. If you didn’t listen all that closely to the words, you might take f-hole to be just another Americana CD, with plenty of requisite mandolin, banjo, and other acoustically stringed things. But “8 Miles & 2.5 Inches” begins with the line, “Thank God for Eminem,” which may be the first and last time a bluegrass song ever name-dropped that famous white rapper. Furthermore, the song goes on to praise Eminem’s music and also stick up – so to speak — for small penises. Once again, in case you didn’t already notice, this is not your father’s roots music. Read more

Heidi Siegell: Us Lonely People

March 2, 2009

Heidi Siegell - Us Lonely People

Artist Name: Heidi Siegell
Album Title: Us Lonely People
Release Date: 2008
Genre: Pop
Location: New York
Label: Self-Released
Band Members: Heidi Siegell: vocals, piano, trombone, and programmed virtual harp, er-hu, strings, brass, etc.; Rolando Gori: piano, guitar, pads and programmed virtual bass, drums, percussion, etc.; Mustafa Ahmad: percussion on “She Smiles” and “When Will Springtime Come, Maggie?”; Dana Lyn: fiddle on “Katy”’ Orlando Rodriguez Powers: “all male vocals” on “Us Lonely People”; Michael Siegell: saxophone on “She Smiles” and “Fear”
Website: http://www.musa212.com/hi_d/home.htm

Heidi Siegell draws comparisons to artists like Tori Amos and Kate Bush. But these names come to mind more for Siegell’s confrontational approach, rather than her musical style. It’s been famously said that there’s nothing to fear but fear itself, and that emotion is faced head-on with the aptly titled track, “Fear”. With this particular one, Siegell takes on fear as though it were a living, breathing being. The song also sports a wailing saxophone solo from Michael Siegell. Michael Siegell’s saxophone also appears on another track called “She Smiles.” Read more

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

Veiled – Within

November 24, 2008

Artist Name: Veiled
Album Title: Within
Release Date: 2007
Genre: Rock
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Label: 844 Records
Band Members: Chris Freeman: bass; Charlie Kim: vocals, keyboards, guitar; Ali Nikou: guitar, keyboards; Greg Panciera: guitar, keyboards, programming; Blair Shotts: drums, percussion, programming, keyboards
Website: www.VeiledMusic.com

This group Veiled certainly veils any easy description of its music. There are moments when surf rock seems to fit it, but then a track like “Killing Fields” comes along with its Middle Eastern feel and totally blows up that whole theory. But no matter what label you slap on contents within Within, it’s impossible to get away from the fact that Veiled is a guitar rock band. And a good one, at that. Read more

Next Page »