So below are a few albums that were released on November 4th that was largely ignored. I finally had the time to put them all in for a spin:
roguemotel.com ♥ myspace.com
Rogue Motel are an indie rock band from Portland, Oregon. I've been noticing lately that there seems to be a ton of bands coming from the upper west coast (mostly between the Seattle and Portland), and they all seem to be pretty good.
Anyway, to start off, this is one of my overdue review, but to be fair, there was a lot of confusion about the actual release date. I try and schedule reviews to go up just prior or around the release date, so it's kind of important to me anyway to make it timely. Unfortunately, they moved the release date to election day... see note above.
I think the band might have been named after living in a cheap motel while recording their album, far away from their home, in Kentucky. The result is this moody but intense album called Daylight Breaking.
The title, I think came from their best song (in my opinion) called "Hurry Up": "Early morning but the sun's not up yet, I came to look for something to ease my head". This is a pretty upbeat song with a simple, but memorable and catchy, chord.
I also really dig, "Smoke and Vines", particularly the line:
Maybe I'm reading too much into it, but the lyrics has a rebellious feel to it and that the band will continue doing what they're doing.
you want to change me, get in line
You can currently get the album digitally via amazon or the itunes (I've been having a lot of crashes relating to itunes, so I hate them).
futurecloudsandradar.com ♥ myspace.com
I wanted to mention these guys for my Christmas 2008 for their song "Christmas Day 1923", but obviously a lot of songs were left out this year. Well, I reckon there's always next year.
To talk about them, you'll have to go back to the late 90s when they were known as a the power pop band called Cotton Mather. They had a string of albums before rising to fame when Noel Gallagher asked the band to tour with Oasis.
Perhaps he was tired of the power pop thing, but singer Robert Harrison went on to form Future Clouds & Radar, a more art rock/orchestral/psychedelia, much in the vein of, say the Beatles' Sgt Pepper.
Listening to their second album, Peoria, released on Election Day, it feels very sixties. Check out their perfectly 60s pop song, "Old Edmund Ruffin". Doesn't it sound like something John Lennon might sing on ?
I generally enjoy all the songs with trumpets ("Eighteen Months", "Mortal 926"), but not so much the crazy synthy chaos sounds (the middle of "The Mortal"). Thankfully it's just one song that I didn't really get along with.
If you've ever liked later-The Flaming Lips or psychedelic Beatles, you really need to give Future Clouds a try. Get your own cloud 9 at the usual locations (amazon, emusic, etc).
Finally we have Music for a Saturday Evening by BSTC, also released on Election Day. We don't normally get soul albums in house, but when we do, they certain stand out among all the indie-rock stuff we get.
Like the 60s-inspired music of Future Clouds and Radar, the BSTC (short for BlackStone Theatre Collective) is drowned in 70s disco, soul and jazz. They seem to be very proud to represent their deep roots in these genre of music.
The band/collective is mostly producer Andy C. and multi-instrumentalist, Tunji, with singer Keanna Johnson. I think Johnson only sings on a few songs, but she seems to be the face of the band.
I personally thought the two stand-out tracks for me are "B.S.T.C." and "Jazz in Outerspace". Both instrumental songs offers some outstanding beats and groove. Since I wanted to represent Johnson's vocals in the song, I thought the excellent hip-pop song "Get It" should be used.
Fans of soul music, Buena Vista Social Club, or Jason Miles, should really take note of BSTC.
Can't get enough of their music? Check out that widget thing, it will play a few other songs from them.
You can get Music for a Saturday Evening from various places, usually amazon or emusic.