Portland’s Blitzen Trapper have been self-releasing music on their Lidkercow Ltd label since 2003, but it wasn’t until their third full-length, this year’s Wild Mountain Nation, that their madcap, literate, rootsy indie-Americana psychedelics caught on with bloggers and scribes, landing the group a Sub Pop contract. It’s always interesting to catch a band in transitio… More »
New York synth-pop duo Misha manage to add enough surprisingly askew moments — chipmunk Bollywood, lo-fi Beatles-esque acoustics — to their woozy, Erasure-on-Bacharach (on Sarah Records) hooks, that even stretches of gurgling electro-drums and homegrown sneaker-gazing possess intriguing, human detail. Adding to the intimacy, multi-instrumental collaborators Ashley Yao and John Chao grew up knowing each… More »
From their SST-referencing name and gracefully sloppy Ramones-meets-Kicking Giant sound to guitarist Randy Randall and singing drummer Dean Spunt’s decision to release five limited edition vinyl-only EP’s on five different labels as their introductory course, No Age seems to get everything right.
Weirdo Rippers, a favorite around here, is a superb selection of… More »
Just because folks (and Mountain Goats) are buzzing about your band doesn’t mean you can blow off work. Bowerbirds are suddenly everywhere, and each member of the North Carolina trio holds a paying job. Frontman Phil Moore freelances web design with partner Beth Tacular, a multi-instrumental visual artist who paints and draws on various surface… More »
New York quartet Professor Murder make post-punk dance-funk ‘n’ dub piled with synths, chanty vocals, scattershot Liars percussion and more cowbells than your average dairy farm. Since 2004, the band’s released two EP’s (including 2006’s ‘Gum-approved five-song Professor Murder Rides the Subway) and mellotronically destroyed at CMJ. You know, Professor Murder may very well ride… More »
When I spoke with main Man Man Ryan Kattner, a.k.a. Honus Honus, his troupe of Philadelphia noisemakers was in a fittingly loud van en route to a headlining show at the BackBooth in Orlando — Pong, squeaks, chickens, sound loops, Middle Eastern radio, and various strands of skronk spiraled in the background during our conversation. More »
Larry Herweg plays drums in Pelican, the instrumental Chicago-to-Los Angeles quartet who recently released its third full-length City of Echoes.
The new collection has a different feel than 2005’s The Fire In Our Throats Will Beckon The Thaw, as if being grouped as MFA-toting “heady metal” by the NY Times in 2005 inspired… More »
I caught up with Sam Champion just before they headed down to Bonnaroo. The Brooklyn quartet may initially get your attention for sharing a name with the area’s sunniest weatherman (or, maybe, possessing some of the area’s best hair … much like that weatherman, actually), but before long the angular start/stop Pavement implosions and southerly… More »
It took a bit of persistence tracking down Galen Polivka… not his fault. The Hold Steady bassist is generally easy to spot (as you’ll read below), but his band’s been on what seems like an endless world tour: They’re heading into Texas as you read this, hit Germany by the end of the month, continue… More »
A couple of weeks ago I ran into Raymond Raposa, a.k.a. Castanets, at Spuyten Duyvil, a beer and wine bar in Brooklyn. Always on the lookout for musicians with day jobs, I asked him a bit about his work history over some dark stouts, and found out he’d been a bona fide surf instructor before… More »
Deerhunter’s been buzzing loudly since the release of their sophomore album Cryptograms earlier this year. The Fluorescent Grey EP helped maintain the chatter some, but it’s the Atlanta quintet’s live presence — dresses, blood, and blowjobs, but also old-fashioned chops, volume, energy, and charisma — that’s solidified/ultimately justified the next-big-thing status. The rise to NY… More »
When I wrote a review of Golden Apples Of The Sun, the 2004 scene-sealing compilation ably curated by Devendra Banhart, Jana Hunter’s mysterious, lonesome “Farm, Ca” legitimately haunted me — after repeat listens, it was my favorite song of the bunch. The brief a.m. transmission also appeared on her 2005 debut full length, Blank Unstaring… More »
Help Wanted: Before beginning this week’s column I’d like to ask what sort of people and jobs you’re looking to see covered in Quit Your Day Job. Are music-industry types a bore? The weirder the job the better? Does a boring 9-5 become interesting when the musician’s well known? I could go one for a… More »
For one happy decade Travis Morrison fronted unpindownable D.C. stage-crashers The Dismemberment Plan. After the quartet bowed out with a finale at the 9:30 Club in 2003, Morrison moved onto a solo career, releasing Travistan in 2004 and touring extensively with a backup band as Travis Morrison and the Hellfighters who, incidentally, are releasing a… More »
Adam Pierce is about to release his seventh Mice Parade record, the self-titled follow-up to 2004’s Obrigado Saudade. The collection’s a sleepy, eclectic batch of sunny post-rock with a ’90s, pre-Pinback atmosphere and, trust me, Pedro The Lion feel (especially on the verses of “The Last Ten Homes”). While recording these nine songs and prepping… More »
Dungen is described regularly as the studio project of Gustav Ejstes, which makes the “band” sound like some one-man Swedish psych troupe that only transforms into a quartet for live situations, or when more hands are needed. Ejstes is the face and goldilocks of the crew as well as the central composer and Mascis-style multi-instrumentalist,… More »
To these ears Excepter can more or less do no wrong: Conjuring Suicide, Cabaret Voltaire, and some anonymous beat-box pranksters swirling stoned through a blender, their deconstructed, echoey, stylish synth ‘n’ beat field scapes add up to one of my favorite all-time New York oeuvres.
I usually spot 1/4 of the band, Da… More »
Anyone who skimmed yesterday’s Premature Evaluation — which came pretty close to that other “e” word — oughtta know how Stereogum feels about the National. The quintet’s fourth full-length album Boxer, a sumptuous trek into a surrealistic Cheeverian realm (count the times money and darkness come up), is perhaps their best to date. To these… More »
Stereogum favorites, The Postmarks, are a sad ‘n’ sunny Miami indie-pop trio consisting of Ivy/Concretes-style vocalist Tim Yehezkely (yeah, a girl) and lush, soundscaping multi-instrumentalists Christopher Moll and Jon Wilkins. Yehezkely’s listed first because she’s the focus, both on record and via the band’s nostalgic, Sirkian album art, which makes perfect sense with their cinematic… More »
This past Sunday I ran into Panthers in the Austin airport — we hopped out of our respective shuttles at the same time. Full disclosure: My 2003 Pitchfork review of their sweaty, oversexed Let’s Get Serious EP, released by Dim Mak, put me in conversation with members of the band, which led to my writing… More »