Stephan Nance Surprises with “A Troubled Piece of Fruit”

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Stephan Nance is an extremely unique breath of fresh air. Only 10 seconds into his debut release, A Troubled Piece of Fruit, you will find yourself immediately hooked. One of Oregon’s greatest kept secrets, Nance blends the perfect element of charming pianos and a voice that can truly stand on it’s own. Stephan could very well be the lovechild of Jukebox the Ghost and The Decemberists, which is truly a compliment.

Opening the album is the intriguing piece “I Am Not a Stranger Here,” where a jaunty piano perfectly meet melodies combined with Nance’s quirky yet sugary pop voice. The listener will already believe that they are in for something special…and they are. “Cuddlefish,” proves to be a cute love song with the ocean as it’s playground, using different fish as imagery as he pulls in his catch.

The album takes a melancholic turn as the track “Spring,” enters into the picture. The heartbreaking song is gorgeously done and will pull on your heartstrings immediately. As soft strings enter into the piece one can really feel the emotion in Nance’s voice. The love song journeys through time as “Fall” is the next masterpiece on the record. Not as gloomy as the prior, the subject matter is deep as it is full of regrets and a pass that he wishes he can do over. This song speaks to masses as we all have done things we wish we could change in life.

Firecracker,” picks the pace back up with a prominent guitar which borders on the blues. Nance’s bright piano and harmonious voice enters with a burst of energy, and ends up being a fun play on words throughout. “Made in Vermont,” chimes in with a lovely horn section, as Nance’s voice proves to be beyond infectious in this song.

Paid By Weight,” starts off heavy and continues throughout, as each note of the piano is felt within, every thump of the drum’s foot pedal sends a shiver down your spine, and every pronunciation of each word lingers on Nance’s tongue. Up next is the catchy tune titled “Immunodeficiency,” which will have you pressing the repeat button more often than not. “The Song I Didn’t Write,” has the quality of a seasoned songwriter, which is very prominent throughout the entire record. One would find it hard to believe that this is Stephan’s first release. Each track is carefully crafted and meticulously thought out, and it shines throughout.

One-Way Sea,” is a fun tune that is reminiscent of Jamie Cullum, without the jazz, which is beyond ideal if you ask me. Nance’s voice knows it’s limits and he uses it wisely, as it flawlessly fits the piece. “Resurrection,” is a personal favorite on the album, as the choppiness of pianos and guitar, and even vocals at time, are contagious. His vocals standout more so in this track that any other, as he seems to have a bit of fun with them. Thisimpressive piece proves to be a show stopper, as does the following “Japanese Garden/Jardin Japonais,” The song tells an interesting tale about what appears to be a dream of Japan, with an amazing twist, as Nance starts to sing in French! The surprise is exquisite as it appears more than once in this outstanding track and is guaranteed to send chills in your veins.

Closing out the album is the viral sensation, “Song for Losers,” which is the most adorable geeky song that you will ever hear. The track will have you dancing around your room, brush-microphone in hand. This can be the national anthem of geeks everywhere, and it will make them stand up and be proud. This is the perfect end to the record, which I wish would never end.

Stephan Nance is destined to go far with a Trouble Piece of Fruit, as it is a brilliant introduction to this astounding singer and songwriter. Keep an ear out for Stephan Nance. It will be a name that will be making waves very soon, if it hasn’t already by the time that you read this. I urge you to check out this record, as it will change everything that you know about modern music; and that’s a good thing.

R.I.Y.L. : Jukebox the Ghost, The Decemberists

Listen: Stephan Nance Bandcamp

The National Are Heading Everywhere on Their Upcoming Tour. This is No Joke.


If you like, well, love indie rock darlings, The National, then you will have no shortage of seeing them this spring and summer. This band is literally slated to drop everywhere possible, on what looks like the longest tour known to man. Touring in support of their newest release High Violet (4AD), which hits stores in the U.S. on May 10th, it’s already a proven success.

The word from The National’s label is that these aren’t even ALL of the dates the band is slated to play. There are in fact more to be announced, especially for later in the year. How do they do it? We’ll never know, but hell we’re glad that they are. They’ll be playing with everyone from Rufus Wainwright to Pavement.

Check the dates below to see when you can catch the guys rolling into your town. Also be sure to jump on tickets as fast as you can. We’re sure these will be selling out fast.

The National Tour Dates:
05-05 London, England – Electric Ballroom $
05-06 London, England – Royal Albert Hall $
05-07 Paris, France – Le Zenith *
05-08 Berlin, Germany – Huxley’s Neue Welt $
05-09 Berlin, Germany – Astra $
05-21 Los Angeles, CA – The Wiltern #
05-22 Los Angeles, CA – The Wiltern #
05-23 San Diego, CA – Spreckels Theatre #
05-26 Oakland, CA – Fox Theatre
05-27 Oakland, CA – Fox Theatre #
05-29 Quincy, WA – Sasquatch Festival
06-02 Boston, MA – House of Blues %
06-03 Boston, MA – House of Blues %
06-04 Philadelphia, PA – Electric Factory %
06-05 Philadelphia, PA – Electric Factory %
06-06 Washington, DC – DAR Constitution Hall %
06-08 Toronto, Ontario – Massey Hall %
06-09 Toronto, Ontario – Massey Hall %
06-11-13 Manchester, TN – Bonnaroo
06-16 New York, NY – Radio City Music Hall %
06-18 Buffalo, NY Albright-Knox Gallery @
06-26 Pilton, England – Glastonbury Festival
07-01-04 Roskilde, Denmark – Roskilde Festival
07-06 Amsterdam, The Netherlands – Paradiso
07-08 Hamburg, Germany – Stadtpark !~
07-09 Brighton, England – Corn Exchange
07-12-13 Lyon, France – Les Nuits de Fourviere
07-14 Munich, Germany – Rathausplatz
07-16 Southwold, England – Latitude Festival
07-17-18 Lisbon, Portugal – Super Bock Super Rock
07-27 Brooklyn, NY – Prospect Park ^
07-31 Montreal, Quebec – Osheaga Festival
08-02 Columbus, OH – LC Pavilion %
08-03 Royal Oak, MI – Royal Oak Theatre %
08-04 Milwaukee, WI – Riverside Theatre %
08-05-06 Minneapolis, MN – First Avenue %
08-06-08 Chicago, IL – Lollapalooza
08-11 Oslo, Norway – Oya Festival
08-13 Gothenburg, Sweden – Way Out West Festival
08-14 Haldern, Germany – Haldern Pop Festival
08-15 St. Malo, France – Le Route du Rock
08-18 Vienna, Austria – Arena
08-21 Hasselt-Kiewit, Belgium – Pukkelpop Festival
08-22 Biddinghuizen, The Netherlands – Lowlands Festival
09-03-05 Stradbally, Ireland – Electric Picnic
09-10 Vancouver, British Columbia – Malkin Bowl +
09-11 Redmond, WA – Marymoor Amphitheater >

$ with Buke and Gass
* with Pavement
# with Ramona Falls
% with the Antlers
^ with Beach House
@ with Rufus Wainwright
! with Midlake
~ with the Middle East
+ with the Walkmen
> with Okkervil River

Listen to and download “Blood Bath Ohio,” from the new record!

The National “Blood Buzz Ohio” by modernmysteryblog

Rufus Wainwright Announces New Album

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It’s been nearly three years since Canadian piano pop Godfather, Rufus Wainwright, put out his last record Release the Stars. Now, Wainwright is back in full form and prepared to put out his sixth studio album titled All Days Are Nights: Songs for Lulu. Though not much has leaked from the album, we do know there will be twelve new tracks in store for us. Wainwright has also released the cover art for the record, which is the closeup of someone’s eye. Perhaps his own. One thing we know for sure is that this album will blow you out of the water. His records always due. Lulu is out in the U.S. on April 20th.

Merry Mixmas, Part 2.

The Strokes Christmas

I guess its the Holidays that have my head in a fog, but somehow there were a few Christmas songs that I forgot to add to the list this weekend. One of them being a current favorite, ‘Seasons Greetings,’ by Robbers on High Street.

Speaking of Robbers on High Street, we here at Modern Mystery have some Holiday surprises up our sleeves for the next couple of weeks. Not to give anything away, but it includes bands such as Robbers on High Street,  Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin, Phantom Planet, Sloan, Miniature Tigers, Of Montreal, and more…….

Its pretty awesome if I may say so myself, and you will just have to wait and see what some of these bands had to share with us.

Merry Mixmas Part 2

Robbers on High Street- Seasons Greetings
Belle and Sebastian- O Little Town of Bethleham
Feist- Lo, How a Rose E’re Blooming
Great Lake Swimmers- Song for the Angels
Blitzen Trapper- Christmas is Coming Soon
*The Hives with Cyndi Lauper- Christmas Duel
Low- Just Like Christmas
Long Winters- Sometimes You Have to Work on Christmas
Pedro the Lion- God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen
Polyphonic Spree-Merry Christmas (War is Over)
Rufus Wainwright-Spotlight on Christmas
Of Montreal- Christmas Isn’t Safe for Animals
Marbles- Gift for You
Fabulous Bird with Bill Doss- Its Christmas Time Again
Summer Hymns- Santa Couldn’t Fit You Under My Tree
The Sixth Great Lake- Always After Christmas Boring
Elf Power- The Winter is Coming
Jet- Back Door Santa
Belle and Sebastian- Santa Claus

Sufjan Stevens- That Was the Worst Christmas Ever!
* The Hives and Cyndi Lauper doing a duet? I know. Its just as weird as it sounds. They seem like a pretty unlikely duo.  Ironically for Christmas when I was about 4, I had gotten my first cassette tape. It was of Cyndi Lauper’s ‘True Colors’ album. I still have it. I had to be the most hip kid in Kindergarten.