Latimer House – “Birdcage Walk / Until Then”

latimer house

The Fall is always my favorite time to discover new music. Perhaps it has something to do with the relaxing feel of the cooler weather, but it seems to get me excited for new music and new bands. Recently I have been falling for the indie pop sounds of Latimer House. The group have just released a phenomenal 7-inch single for “Birdcage Walk,” with the b-side “Until Then,” which you can purchase on translucent  red vinyl. 

Upon first listen to “Birdcage Walk,” I was already head over heels. Singer Joe Cook’s Prague accent is very prominent, which is a nice departure from the norm. They remind me of a foreign Bishop Allen, which I adore. The guitar hooks are vibrant and memorable and the mandolin makes a perfect add-on in the song. Getting into the b-side “Until Then,” Latimer House provides a bit of a different approach, with punchy guitars and a few sing-talk lines. Making its way into the track is a slight horn section, that gives the song an extra ‘oomph,’ so to speak. The song’s sonically alluring tones are definitely an added bonus.

Latimer House have recently released their new record, All the Rage, via their own label Honk Records. Be sure to check out the Summery / Strokes-esque track “Splash!,” as well when you head over. Chiming guitars and heavenly harmonies. What more can you ask for? It is well worth the listen!Check out Latimer House “Birdcage Walk,” HERE.

Check out Latimer House “Until Then,” HERE.
 
Grab the latest record, All the Rage, via Bandcamp

Introducing: Rival Empire

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Recently I have discovered a stellar group hailing from Chicago, IL by the name of Rival Empire.  Creating a synth-pop meets indie rock meets electro dance sound all of their own, the group takes a page from such bands as Cut Copy, The Killers and Friendly Fires, with a dab of Duran Duran to boot. Rival Empire have recently released their video for “Reagan’s Rancho Del Cielo” which had me immediately hooked and ready to dive into the recent self-titled full length.

On Rival Empire, the record features 13 electrifying tracks that subtly blend genres, to create a dance party on its own terms. The record opener “Cameo Crush,” stopped me dead in my tracks. The vibrancy of guitars and synths that blend are surrounded by singer Steve Rivera’s smooth and prominent vocals. Songs like “Casio Crush,” which bursts with modern sounds and 80’s nostalgia respectively, helps set the tone for the record.

An immediate stand out song and favorite proves to be “Calling Me,” which takes the record to a whole new level. The dreamy vocal combinations with slight harmonies are heavenly and is laced with melodic hooks. Songs like “Good Love,” “Tidal Wave,” and “Open Fire,” add a deeper, darker element to the album, while  “Reagan’s Rancho Del Cielo,” and “High Fashion,” take you on wild musical journey. “Call the Adapter,” and  “Paybacks a B___h” adds a funkier element into the album, making a nice transition in to blending genres. Something that Rival Empire does flawlessly. “Calling Me (Orchestral Remix)” closes out the record, making Rival Empire, an album to remember for 2014.

Grab the album on BANDCAMP

Check out the video for “Reagan’s Rancho Del Cielo” HERE.

Album Review – Voxmirage

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Voxmirage is the group you have been looking for. Recently releasing their debut album on July 15, the duo are about to take the world by storm. The self-titled record is filled with 13 glorious tracks that recall new wave influences such as Tears for Fears and Depeche Mode. Made up of members Mike Streng (Vocals, guitars, bass and keyboards), and Aaron Nicholes (Drums, Keyboards, programming, backing vocals and bass), they create quite a unique and brilliant sound. The record is also stunningly mixed and produced by Ken Stingfellow of  The Posies and R.E.M. respectively., and mastered at the legendary Abbey Road Studios in London.

Kicking off the record is a short, sweet, and synth filled song that is simply titled “Intro.” This piece immediately sets the tone for the record. “All I Want Is You,” combines lush harmonies and dark sounds alongside a swirling bed of synthesizers and guitars. Streng’s vocals start to standout immediately, which carries throughout the entire record. His voice is very powerful, and evokes great emotion on the set on of songs.

“I Can’t Take It Anymore Than This,” continues the greatness of the record, with honest and heartfelt lyrics. Streng’s vocals are soft yet pierce your very soul. Streng’s vocals are dreamy and haunting all at once. Taking the record down a notch is “Hold On,” which showcases the softer and gentler side of the band. Laced with synthesized strings, the vocals chime in to launch a whole new musical aspect of the record. “Never Go Away,” shares a bit of a 90’s retro feel, in a flattering way. The vibrant and danceable aspect of the track is brought to life with lovely twee-like harmonies and punchy acoustic guitars.

“She’s Going Away,” brings a darker synth sound into the album, with a bit of welcomed industrial flare. The tracks on this record quickly prove that Voxmirage are not only skilled, but can bend and combine genres without flaw. “Want Me Too,” and “Just a Fool,” the latter featuring backing vocals by Ken Stringfellow, displays the group’s softer and subdued side on the record. Again the harmonies grace these tracks, which made them an immediate favorite for me. “Just for Tonight,” adds a whole new element into the record with engaging vocals, and an array of instruments welcoming even the slightest trumpet. “On I Go With You,” brings out another beautiful side of this record, as Streng’s vocals are heavenly.

 Bringing back the dance aspect of the record with a punch is “Favorite Son.” Flooded with enchanting synths, this piece will surely get you onto the dance floor and it clearly showcases the group’s knack for writing a great pop-esque song. Up next is “Go Insane,” which is Voxmirage’s take on Lindsey Buckingham’s classic song, which somehow manages to upstage the original with their incredible rendition. It brings all of their musical talents into the spotlight. Closing out the record is “I Know What Scares You.” The piece brings together various different elements we found throughout the record, bringing everything to fruition.

Voxmirage’s Voxmirage is a brilliant debut album that will certainly launch the duo into the spotlight. With heavy hitting and memorable tracks, each piece on the record somehow manages to outdo the other. Hopefully we hear a lot more of Voxmirage in the future. This is only the beginning….and the beginning is great.

 

Things Are About to Get Eerie: Broken Quote Releases “Ghost Crowd”

 BrokenQuote
Born and raised in Houston, Texas, the multi-instrumentalist and producer, David Schrier, known as Broken Quote, has had a penchant for creating music ever since he was a child.  He would write song lyrics in his head and connect them to the contours and textures his active mind would present–well before ever learning any theory,scales or even touching a key. This is evident on his stunning track, “Ghost Crowd,” off his most recent EP, Foreshadowing Sunlight.
Citing a musical inspiration list that includes Eyedea, Bjork, Beck, Radiohead,John Cage and Parliament Funkadelic among many others,that varied outlook bleeds into his music, an amalgam of styles and genres that is constantly evolving, changing and growing; he is a literal one man band who improvises aspects of his live sets making a one-of-a-kind experience not to be missed. While labeling Broken Quotes’ sound is nearly impossible,there’s a strong link between elements found in Electro Rock, Trip Hop, Acid Jazz and Ambient Funk. Check out your new favorite track “Ghost Crowd,” below.
BROKEN QUOTE: “Ghost Crowd

Peter Calandra Releases Stunning Record, “Inner Circle”

peter calandra

 You may not know the name Peter Calandra, but chances are you’ve heard his music. The New York City-based composer and keyboard player has scored 40 films, written over 2000 compositions for television broadcast, including 37 theme packages, and performed as a musician in the Broadway productions of Les Miserables, Miss Saigon, The Phantom Of The Opera, The Lion King, and Little Shop Of Horrors. Parallel to this, Calandra has released three albums of imaginative and lyrical instrumental music encompassing jazz, contemporary jazz, classical, and refined pop. His fourth solo album, Inner Circle, showcases pianist/composer/arranger Peter Calandra’s talents across a wide swath of music styles, always with his trademark sensitivity, abundant technique, and spot-on attention to detail. Working with an outstanding assortment of guest players on acoustic bass, violin, viola, cello, oboe, flute, piccolo, fretless electric bass, and vocals, Calandra explores myriad sonic landscapes, easily navigating from jazz to fusion to pop to classical with uncommon grace, ease, and a rich sense of melodic accessibility without sacrificing depth of emotion.
 
Below you can listen to and post Peter Calandra’s “Clyde and the Pearl.”

A is for Atom Releases the Stunning “Song for You”

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A is for Atom is the brainchild of Mike Cykoski. Recently releasing his latest EP, Song for You, the Brooklyn transplant creates a phenomenal record that will catch your attention immediately. For those who are fans of bands such as The National and The Flaming Lips, A is for Atom creates a sound that is truly unique and certainly pleases the ears.

Cykoski is strongly inspired by songcraft and the art of composing. He enrolled in the prestigious NYU music technology master’s degree program, later taking courses at the world renowned Julliard, and expanding his horizons by completing certificates for Harvest Works and Dubspot, further exploring his interest in electronic music.

It was there at NYU that Mike met his producer Julian Cassia in a film scoring class. Julian was quite taken with Cykoski’s compositions and had a great appreciation for his writing style as well as his international aesthetic perspective. Described as having “tastefully ethnic flourishes and, at times, some sturdy Brit-pop hooks,” the project began when Mike finished his master’s thesis and landed a steady job, making him both optimistic and introspective.

On his recent release, Song For You, he provides an outward expression, with songs that prove to be lively and upbeat.

A standout piece from the EP is the title track, “Song for You,” which Cykoski refers to as a ‘break up theme,’ stemming from his divorce. His haunting vocals swirl throughout the track which resonates throughout. His talent for combining emotional driven lyrics with stunning composition, shines through with “Song for You,” as well as every track on the EP. Check out the single below!

A is for Atom “Song for You”
https://soundcloud.com/aisforatom/02-a-is-for-atom-a-song-for-you-song-for-you-ep?in=aisforatom/sets/song-for-you-ep