TOMO NAKAYAMA – FOG ON THE LENS is climbing the Top 200 radio charts now!!

Tomo Nakayama is a name worth remembering. (Worth pronouncing too, it’s actually exactly how it looks if you sound it out carefully, don’t worry, you can do it!) He used to be the leader of a bigger band, Grand Hallway, in Seattle. They played really beautiful orchestral chamber pop, and this (his first solo album) has a lot in common with the older stuff, maybe a little more orchestral and a little less pop, still beautiful and deep and evocative and sad. Perfect stuff for this season. Also, the other person most involved in this record besides Tomo is Yuuki Matthews, a guy who has played with Sufjan and Pedro the Lion and also his main gig is as a member of The Shins! ALSO, Tomo recently released this video about this crazy thing he did on his official album release date in November: he played FOURTEEN FREE SHOWS IN ONE DAY!! Yes. That IS amazing. I went to his Seattle show last week, his triumphal return show after a tour of Japan, and bumped into David Bazan and Damien Jurado. Seattle knows what is up with this dude, and so does CMJ! He’s spent two weeks on the Top 200 so far, this last week reaching its peak so far at #123! YEAH!! It’s all up from here on this guy.

TOMO NAKAYAMA

FOG ON THE LENS

Porchlight Records

Tomo Nakayama is a multi-instrumentalist, singer, and songwriter from Seattle, Washington. His music has been praised by NPR, The New York Times, and KEXP, and he has toured throughout the US and Japan and at fests such as SXSW, CMJ, Sasquatch, and Bumbershoot. Fog On The Lens is his first solo album, made after nearly a decade fronting beloved Seattle chamber-pop band Grand Hallway, and composing for and acting in Lynn Shelton‘s Sundance Grand Jury-nominated film “Touchy Feely“.

Fog On The Lens was written and recorded during a residency at Town Hall Seattle. Literally handed the keys to the historic building for three months, Tomo utilized the 92-year-old Roman-revival style hall as his own personal recording studio. Recording alone at odd hours of the night, Tomo used a single microphone plugged directly into his laptop to capture the natural acoustics of the various rooms of Town Hall. Emphasis was placed on first takes and keeping the performances as raw and unedited as possible. In essence and in spirit, Fog On The Lens is a bedroom album created in a cathedral-sized room.

To mix the record, Tomo enlisted the help of producer/multi-instrumentalist Yuuki Matthews (of The Shins and Teardrops). Yuuki displayed an immediate and intuitive understanding of Tomo’s vision, mixing onto analog 4-track cassette tape and overdubbing his own wildly imaginative array of analog synthesizers and homemade keyboard sounds which heighten the album’s evocative, dream-like atmosphere.

Fog On The Lens finds Tomo pursuing a rawer, more playfully spontaneous and intimate sound than the dense, fully orchestrated sound of Grand Hallway. It combines elements of the acoustic and electronic, analog and digital, lo-fi and hi-fi, the urban and the pastoral. The past and future collide in a colorful, hazy collage. It bears the influence of Tomo’s favorite musicians like Arthur Russell, Bjork, Paul Simon, Cass McCombs, The Velvet Underground, and Ryuichi Sakamoto, yet exists in a world entirely of its own. Fog On The Lens is a quietly confident step forward from a restless soul, unafraid to follow his muse, wherever it leads him.

Fog On The Lens sees a simultaneous release in the US on Porchlight Records and in Japan on & Records.

RIYL: Bon Iver, Paul Simon, Elliott Smith, Yo La Tengo, Kurt Vile, Damien Jurado, Jherek Bischoff

Start With: 2, 4, 6, 8     FCC CLEAN


Contact me for a download link if you’re a radio rep!

http://tomomusic.bandcamp.com

http://tomonakayama.com

http://facebook.com/tomonakayamamusic

http://twitter.com/tomonakayama

 

SAMA DAMS – COMFORT IN DOUBT is charting at Top 200 Radio Now!!

Portland’s Sama Dams is the best. I met them earlier this year in Seattle when they opened a show my buddy Corey’s band Oh! Pears were playing, and man am I glad I did. Their music reminds me a lot of Dirty Projectors, or Xiu Xiu, or OK Computer-era Radiohead. Glitchy, experimental-y pop with vox heavily influenced by R&B. The band is named after the lead singer, Sam Adams, with the space moved over one letter to make it a band name because the band’s not just him, but now it’s pronounced to rhyme with “Alabama Clams”. Sama Dams. Try it. You’re gonna love it. Now it’s time to get this spinning!! A bunch of you are on board this train already and know how great this band is. Radio 1190 (aka KVCU, in Boulder) had a sweet session with them recently when they passed through on tour, which you can check out right here. (S/O to James!!); they also had a good time stopping in to Radio Boise and also doing a Daytrotter Session on the tour they just finished up! In fact, enough of you are already loving it that it made its debut on CMJ’s Top 200 last week, at #191! Woo!! That one will still be a big priority for me in early 2015, as well (since this week is the last CMJ charting week of 2014, aah!), so I’m glad to know it’s off to such a solid start already!!

SAMA DAMS

COMFORT IN DOUBT

Self-Released

Comfort in Doubt, the second full-length from Portland, OR avant-garde three-piece Sama Dams (pronunciation key: “Sam-uh-Dams”, or pronounced to rhyme with “Alabama Clams”), sings with the keen cry of innocence lost. With the first track “My Ears Are Ringing,” an impossibly catchy and sparse masterpiece of glitch R&B, the listener embarks on a journey through darkness akin to the trip audiences took with Radiohead’s OK Computer. Striking the fine balance between edgy experimentation and caramel sweet pop, this uncompromising trio drives into the desert with only an unerring musical compass to guide them.

The band is straightforward about the challenges surrounding their sophomore effort. “We were very busy between constant touring schedules and juggling personal lives, which resulted in a lull for writing new material,” says drummer Chris Hermsen. And yet, the time scarcity that is a stumbling block for many bands on their second album may have opened the door to creativity from an unforeseen source: Lisa Adams, organist, vocalist, and partner to frontman Sam Adams.

While Lisa had been collaborating musically with Adams since they moved to Portland in 2010, the new album marks her first foray into songwriting.  After recording and touring the band’s first album No Vengeance, she stepped away from a full-time career teaching music to devote more energy to the band. The shift was undoubtedly fruitful for the band—the cutting cynicism of her ingeniously hooky “Dirty Work” belies her inexperience, and the sweetly soaring melody of songs like “Maggie” provide a counterpoint to Sam’s angular style.

Whether introducing a song or selling tee shirts after the show, the band shows a good natured and Midwestern charm that rarely accompanies the kind of moody, boundary-pushing rock that Sama Dams makes. Hailing from Indiana, Ohio, and Iowa, the band has been at the forefront of a movement in Portland’s music scene away from twee chamber pop and toward something more expressive. What is striking in their music and in their performance is that nothing is added for effect; there is the sense of an exploratory process that is occurring before our eyes and around our ears. And nothing is more exciting than discovery.

 RIYL: Xiu Xiu, Radiohead, Dirty Projectors, St. Vincent, Nicholas Krgovich/No Kids

Start With: 1, 2, 6     FCC CLEAN EXCEPT FOR THE VERY STRICT: 1 (“Damned”), 2 (“Ass”)


Contact me for a download link if you’re a radio rep!

https://www.facebook.com/samadamsmusic

http://twitter.com/sama_dams

http://samadams.bandcamp.com

http://sama-dams.com/

 

TIE THESE HANDS has a new single: “WEEKENDS”!

Remember Tie These Hands, from the album I sent you last summer (2013), or the digital single I worked earlier this spring (Feb 2014)? (if you’re at a radio station but weren’t around last summer, you probably actually still got a copy of the CD, I was able to send so many—maybe take a look around!)

They’re doing this thing now where instead of releasing a full album, they’re just putting out one single at a time, really spending a serious amount of time and care on each song and also putting out a video along with each one. That way there isn’t a year+ wait between albums so there’s no excuse to forget about them! So, there’s no full-length coming to follow this up, so don’t wait on that. And also it doesn’t exist in hard copy form, so don’t look for one (although if you’re DESPERATE for a hard copy and absolutely won’t accept a download, but you do play singles and would be fairly certain to play this one, let me know and we can probably arrange something for the band to help you out) – but the download comes in both mp3 and lossless WAV formats, and there’s also a second track included, an alternate acoustic version of the first single, “Trampoline”. Grab it now, watch the video, send it out to yr djs or add it to your digital rotations—I don’t expect you to chart it, because I know with a digital single that’s pretty unrealistic, but I DO want you to play it and let me know what you think, because it is great!!

TIE THESE HANDS

“WEEKENDS” Single

Self-Released

After spending five weeks on the CMJ Top 200 (and one at #14 Most Added) with their August 2013 album Come On, Lincoln, Nebraska’s Tie These Hands are back at it with the 11/4/14 release of “Weekends”. “Weekends” is being released as a single with a simultaneous video premiere. After recording and releasing albums traditionally since 2002, the band is heading in a new direction with their future releases: the next Tie These Hands album, which begins with February 2014 single “Trampoline” and continues with this month’s “Weekends”, will be recorded and released as individual new singles, complete with videos. After years of recording at the iconic Nebraska studios Presto and ARC, often with the help of engineer AJ Mogis, the band has embraced the DIY ethic. Full control of the creative process, from recording to release, allows Tie These Hands to get fresh, new music to fans much quicker than the traditional release model. “Weekends” can be streamed or purchased on iTunes, Spotify, Bandcamp, and anywhere digital music is available. This downloadable track is packaged along with an acoustic version of the band’s earlier 2014 single, “Trampoline”.

**This is NOT a CMJ charting campaign, but digital singles like this will be coming in regular intervals for the foreseeable future: please feel free to download and spin as they’re released, in lieu of a new full-length Tie These Hands album!**

 

RIYL: Death Cab For Cutie, Weakerthans, Say Hi, Built To Spill, The Good Life     FCC CLEAN


Contact me for a download link if you’re a radio rep!

http://tiethesehands.com/

http://tiethesehands.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/TieTheseHands

http://youtu.be/sayUzQ5pM08 (video of track)

 
 

 

ANIMAL HOURS – DO OVER is taking over Top 200 Radio Now!!

I actually met San Francisco’s ANIMAL HOURS through Static People, but besides sharing a hometown, these two bands could not be more different. I’d describe this one as Americana-inflected dream pop, with songs so catchy you’ll be SURE you’ve heard them before and then you’ll never be able to forget them. Check out this video for one of my favorite tracks, “Yellow Roses”, to see what I mean. This album tied for #20 Most Added on 10/14, and it’s poised to take off from there!!

ANIMAL HOURS

DO OVER

Self-Released

Animal Hours makes dreamy indie-pop songs draped in lush harmonies, wrapped in a blanket of Americana. A collective of San Francisco Bay Area writers and artists, Animal Hours is the conception of singer-songwriter Orion Letizi with collaborators Heather Anderson (Blue Rabbit), Adrianne Serna and Paul Goldowitz.

Produced by Grammy-winning, multi-platinum producer Jason Carmer (Kimya Dawson, Third Eye Blind, Run DMC), Animal Hours’ debut album Do Over is a collection of nine songs about losing everything we were to find exactly what we need. It explores the American melancholy found in back seat ballads, hotel bars and Sunday mornings. The album also features guest performances by legendary pedal steel player Greg Leisz, Arion Salazar (bassist for Third Eye Blind), founding Camper Van Beethoven member Victor Krummenacher, Brooklyn piano virtuoso Dane Terry, singer-songwriter Chuck Prophet and noted San Francisco string and horn ensemble, the Magik*Magik Orchestra (best known for their work with John Vanderslice).

Songs by Animal Hours writers have been showcased in numerous film, television and commercial spots, including MTV’s Jackass, the ABC Family show Jane By Design, national campaigns for IKEA, Kellog’s and more.

Nicholas Schneider of influential San Francisco Bay Area blog The Bay Bridged calls Do Over “darkly enticing pop music with hints of folk and Americana skirting around the edges… [Music] you listen to with the lights off, just you and the contemplative melody, wholly embracing that sadly-sweet darkness and letting the music lead you through it.”

RIYL: Band of Horses, Fleet Foxes, Wilco, The Band

Start With: 2, 8, 1, 3     FCC CLEAN


Contact me for a download link if you’re a radio rep!

 

http://animalhours.com/

https://facebook.com/animalhoursmusic

http://twitter.com/animalhours

http://soundcloud.com/animalhours

http://youtube.com/user/animalhours

plus.google.com/+Animalhours

http://animalhours.tumblr.com/

 

BRENDA XU – FOR THE WINTER is Adding at Top 200 Radio Now!!!

My newest add for this week is BRENDA XU!! This gorgeous ambient-folk artist from Seattle came to me through my good friend (and Band Mom artist) Shenandoah Davis. Her music is delicate, sparse, and lovely, and reminds me (and a lot of you already as well, based on the feedback I’m hearing) of Daughter. Her last name is pronounced “shoo.” She’s taking a tour down the West Coast next month (dates listed below, to be expanded soon). Make sure you listen to this album ASAP, and then fit it onto your adds chart this week!!

BRENDA XU

FOR THE WINTER

Self-Released

The five years since Brenda Xu (pronounced “shoo”) released her debut full-length album, A Little Illusion, have been filled with considerable change, all of which is apparent in her new record For The Winter.  After receiving numerous accolades for the debut, including a nomination for “Best Acoustic Artist” in the San Diego Music Awards, Xu relocated to Seattle and took an indefinite hiatus from performing, focusing on navigating her way through a new city and finding her place in the Seattle music scene.

Slowly, the pieces fell into place: she became friends with Seattle-based producer Don Farwell and began forming a band to support her new songs. The years between Xu’s debut and For The Winter are immediately apparent. Not only has her ability as a lyricist grown far beyond her years, but sonically, the album is a noted departure from her past singer-songwriter career, and instead treads the delicate line between washed-out ambient tones and carefully crafted acoustic arrangements.

For The Winter will transport any listener through a range of seasons and emotions, while reminding us that for every season’s waxings and wanings, they all share one commonality: that they will eventually come again.  Summer will continue to be followed by autumn, and winter by spring.  As for Brenda Xu, she’s leaving an unusually long winter behind and turning the leaf into her second spring.

RIYL: Daughter, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Cat Power, Aimee Mann, PJ Harvey, Vienna Teng, Bon Iver

Start With: 6, 7, 2, 3     FCC CLEAN


BRENDA XU TOUR DATES:

9/18 – Seattle, WA – Fremont Abbey (album release show)

10/4 – Portland, OR – The Waypost

10/5 – Cottage Grove, OR – Axe & Fiddle

10/7 – Sacramento, CA – The Torch Club

10/8 – Roseville, CA – Beatniks Books

10/9 – San Francisco, CA – 50 Mason Social House

10/10 – Atascadero, CA – Last Stage West

10/11 – Santa Cruz, CA – The Abbey

10/12 – Altadena, CA – Coffee Gallery Backstage

10/16 – San Diego, CA – Lestat’s

10/17 – Los Angeles, CA – Room 5

10/18 – Fullerton, CA – The Night Owl

10/19 – Paso Robles, CA – Sculpterra Winery, Paso Robles

10/20 – San Luis Obispo – Bon Temps Creole Cafe

10/22 – Santa Rosa, CA – Cellars of Sonoma

Contact me for a download link if you’re a radio rep!

www.brendaxu.com

www.facebook.com/brendaxumusic

www.twitter.com/brendaxumusic

www.brendaxu.bandcamp.com

STATIC PEOPLE is at Top 200 Radio Now!!!

Static People is a San Francisco band with a badass ladysinger named Dmitra and a riot grrl aesthetic. They go from tough and rock-heavy on one track to poppy, almost dancey on the next. This album really covers a pretty wide range of sounds for its short track list, so I’d HIGHLY recommend, if you start out not finding a track you like right away, just skipping to the next! My personal favorites for radio by a pretty wide margin are tracks 2 and 4, but they made videos for tracks 1 and 6, so you make the call on that one. Whatever your favorite track turns out to be though, one thing’s for sure: this band rules. Odds are very high your station got a hard copy of this one (except for you trendsetters who actually prefer downloads!), and many of you are already spinning it: we hit the Top 20 adds chart on CMJ this past week (8/12) at #16 Most Added! Yeaaah!!

STATIC PEOPLE

RARE CREATURES

Mass Ants Music

Static People posits a parallel universe where punk and pop are conjoined twins, then splits them with a buzzsaw guitar. The result is an atomic burst of refined madness that is as precise as it is lysergic, feral on the edges and underscored by the warm hum of a radioactive heart.

Singer and keyboardist Dmitra Smith began singing at age 8 in her native Seattle, enduring torture from a high-strung girl’s choir director who punched his stomach while screaming the word “SUPPORT” at small children. She credits him for her 3 octave range. She relocated to San Francisco in 1992 to join marimba-driven rock project Fuzz Factor with guitarist Joe Gore (PJ Harvey, Tom Waits, Tracy Chapman). She is also the singer for Seattle based alt/punk band Ex’s With Benefits with Green River drummer Alex Vincent, and for Black futurist Siouxsie and the Banshees tribute Voodoo Dolly.

Joining Smith are her Ex’s With Benefits guitarist Pascal Faivre from Pontarlier, France (the capital of absinthe), her Voodoo Dolly bass player Shawn Miller (who honed his chops while working on his psychology degree and playing in the seminal pop-punk band Cara de Nada in Santa Cruz), and drummer Kevin Carnes (an in-demand studio ace, whose credits include both analog and digital drum work for Soulstice, Consolidated and George Clinton/P-Funk). The daunting task of tying their varied influences and styles together into a cohesive unit falls to producer Jason Carmer (Dirty Ghosts, Kimya Dawson, Camper Van Beethoven, Run DMC, The Donnas).

 

RIYL: Metric, Bikini Kill, Epoxies, Siouxsie Sioux, Vaselines

Start With: 2, 4, 1, 6    FCC CLEAN

Contact me for a download link if you’re a radio rep!

http://www.staticpeople.com/
http://www.facebook.com/staticpeople
http://twitter.com/staticpeople
http://staticpeople.bandcamp.com/

 

 

SCARVES – EMPTY HOUSES is at Top 200 Radio Now!!

Believe it or not, The Band Mom now has THREE ALBUMS I’m working all at once for a few weeks here. I know, I’m shocked too! It’s a boom town up in here!! This week, the big new addition to last us till September is SCARVES. They’re so good! About half of you radio kids should have gotten a hard copy; if you didn’t, please don’t take it personally but do check in with me for a download right away! It’s talky, literate, mathy indie pop from beautiful Seattle. Combine the speak-singing narratives of mewithoutYou and the complex guitars of Joan of Arc and you’re starting to get an idea. Now add in the goofy fun of Art Brut and throw that into a music video about nachos. And then start spinning the crap out of it!!! We just missed the Top 20 Adds chart this week, like literally if ONE more station had added it we would have made the chart, but it’s super encouraging to know we were so close anyway – psyched so many of you are already playing these guys, and the time is NOW for everybody else to get on board!!

SCARVES

EMPTY HOUSES

Self-Released

Current and former members of Natalie Portman’s Shaved Head, Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band, and Silicon Girls have come together to form Seattle’s newest mini-supergroup, Scarves. Bandleader Niko Stathakopoulous juggles his other life as a creative writing major at Western Washington University with fronting a band that wants to put all your teenage dreams into words.

“Like a mathier and mildly emo-tinged Built to Spill, Scarves interweave interestingly constructed, clean and sparkly guitars and emotionally up-front lyricism.” – The Stranger

The band recorded Empty Houses at Soundhouse, the Seattle studio run by Jack Endino (Nirvana, Mudhoney, Soundgarden). Dylan Wall (Captured Tracks’ Craft Spells) produced the record, which was then mixed by Ed Brooks (Death Cab for Cutie, REM, Decemberists). Together, these 8 tracks make up “an apt summation of the epic, hyperemotional messiness that comes with youth…it’s indicative of those sleepless high-school nights and moments of serenity among the hijinks; of a teenage world in which everything is like the Smashing Pumpkins’ “1979” video”. – Seattle Weekly

 

RIYL: Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band, Art Brut, Joan of Arc, mewithoutYou

Start With: 4, 5, 7    FCC CLEAN

Contact me for a download link if you’re a radio rep!

http://scarvesmusic.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/scarvestheband

https://soundcloud.com/scarves_music

scarvesmusic@gmail.com

YOU ME & APOLLO – SWEET HONEY is tearing up Top 200 Radio NOW!

You’re not gonna want to sleep on You Me & Apollo. This Colorado band is the next St. Paul & the Broken Bones. RIYL Alabama Shakes with a little Dr. Dog sprinkled in. Or how about Sam Cooke meets the Lumineers?! I tried to go see them play during SXSW but I couldn’t even get in, the line was around the block. No kidding. Do yourself a favor and get on this quick—odds are REAL high you got a hard copy of this, since I basically sent one to everyone I’ve spoken to even once in the last year (except those select few of you trendsetters who prefer downloads)…so I guess that also says if you’re at a radio station who didn’t get a copy of this record (and you don’t like downloads), it’d probably be worth reaching out to say hi and let me know you’re alive! But in that case you could also contact me for a download link, if you’re a radio rep. This music is awesome. See for yourself. And spin this record!!

The band is going on tour in July and August, and I’d love to set you up with them when they’re in your town – you can keep up with their (frequently updated) tour dates on their website here!

This album went for Top 200 Adds on 5/20, and just made its chart debut this past week (CMJ NMR issue #1348), at #184! That’s only the beginning of course, let’s see how much further we can push it from there!

YOU ME & APOLLO

SWEET HONEY

AA Duel Monopoly

You Me & Apollo’s third release, Sweet Honey, opens on a note of worldliness that might seem precocious coming from a 24-year-old. But band founder and songwriter Brent Cowles’s experience belies his tender age. He started playing in bands when he was 14, got married at 18, divorced at 20, and has filled the intervening years with a non-stop regimen of national touring and recording. So when he sings “I learned my lesson young,” on the characteristically raucous “Open Doors,” it’s safe to say he comes by it honestly.

“Cowles is a scrawny, wiry 23-year-old with frizzy hair and a shy countenance, but behind the mic he sounds like a haggard, middle-aged man with struggle and strife in his rear-view mirror.” -Ricardo Baca, The Denver Post

Since the band’s well-received 2011 debut, Cards With Cheats, the unmistakable stamp of Sam Cooke and Otis Redding-style soul has made You Me & Apollo something of a friendly anomaly among the foot-stomping roots-folk renaissance that launched the careers of their Denver colleagues The Lumineers, Nathaniel Rateliff, and Gregory Alan Isakov. Sweet Honey is an ambitious attempt to reconcile these two strains of influence in the service of a restlessly contemporary sound that would fit alongside Brett Dennen, Neil Young, and Ennio Morricone on any playlist. A rich goulash of instrumental flourishes accompanies the well-traveled vocals: sinister trumpet melodies, jaunty Wurlitzers, and harmonies that suggest choirboys with jugs of moonshine smuggled under their robes.

Sweet Honey, the long-awaited follow-up to a self-titled EP released early in 2013, was produced and engineered by Jeff Powell (Bob Dylan, Lucinda Williams, Big Star, and Sharon Jones) at the legendary Ardent Studios in Memphis, TN, where Cowles enlisted the help of long-time You Me & Apollo touring bandmates Tyler Kellogg (drums), Jonathan Alonzo (guitar), Morgan Travis (guitar), and Dave Cole (bass). To help cover the recording costs, the band created a homemade community funding campaign that raised over $20,000. To capture the energy and excitement of a well-constructed live show, honed over the course of 200 shows in a calendar year with bands like Dr. Dog, Devotchka, ZZ Ward and Young the Giant, the record was tracked almost entirely live.

Cowles may have learned his lesson young, but it hasn’t impeded his dogged pursuit of new tricks.

Following Sweet Honey‘s May 9th release, Cowles and his bandmates will embark on an extensive series of tours, appearing at clubs and festivals across the United States. 

RIYL: St. Paul & The Broken Bones, Alabama Shakes, Dr. Dog

Start With: 7, 1, 3, 10    FCC 6

Contact me for a download link if you’re a radio rep!

http://www.youmeandapollo.com

http://www.facebook.com/youmeandapollo

http://www.twitter.com/youmeandapollo

http://www.instagram.com/youmeandapollo

 

 

MELAENA CADIZ – DEEP BELOW HEAVEN is going for Top 200 Adds NOW!!

Melaena Cadiz (pronunciation key: muh-LAY-nuh ca-DEEZ) is the REAL DEAL. Many of you might remember this gorgeous siren from the record of hers I worked in 2010, Rattle The Windows. It did great on CMJ and ALSO, that album hit NUMBER ONE on Earshot’s Folk/Roots/Blues chart!! Can we do even better with this one?!

The world is already on board: NPR premiered her lovely video for “Needles River” (track 8) a couple of weeks ago. She’s got a Daytrotter Session coming up, Folkadelphia is squarely on board, and I bet you’re next!! This album is coming to radio exclusively as a download, so don’t wait for a hard copy – grab it right now!! (If you’re a radio rep it should be waiting there in your station’s email, but if you can’t find it, feel free to contact me!)

This whole album is genuinely gold from start to finish, so I had a really hard time picking out recommended tracks. Luckily Melaena had her singles pretty firmly in mind, so that’s what I listed as my “start with” tracks, but honestly you could pretty much just press play at any point on this album and come away with stunning success. Try it!!

Also: Melaena’s about to embark on a very cool tour with her very cool photographer husband, Mikael Kennedy. He’s also got a photo book that shares a title with Melaena’s album (also he directed that “Needles River” video): tour dates below, let me know if you’d like to come out – I’d love to set you up!

MELAENA CADIZ

DEEP BELOW HEAVEN

Wild Kindness Records

The Michigan-bred, Brooklyn-based artist has been bringing small portraits plucked from the American landscape, using the language of folk, pop, and country to bring them to beautiful, breathing life.

On her latest album, Deep Below Heaven, the songs have a literary quality to them, a notion embraced in the LP’s title, which comes from a short story written by writer/playwright/actor Sam Shepard.

“Part of the story involves a man in a motorcycle accident,” Cadiz says. “As he falls from his Kawasaki, he has the sense of ‘being deep below heaven. The distance. The wetness of flesh. Metal ripping. People helplessly apart.’ To me, it evoked the idea of us humans swarming the earth with all our love and sadness, our desires and defeats.”

The young singer-songwriter used this jumping off point to create 10 songs that are filled with finely wrought characters that are striving for a better place in the world or, at the very least, a way to quiet the deep ache within their bones. There’s the young person heading for the West Coast to “find what I’ve been looking for” in “Home Town,” the jilted lover looking for answers in “Swinging Low,” and the friends, driving home late one night, and singing Leonard Cohen songs to each other in “Neon Drag.”

As detailed as the lyrics are, that same level of attention is paid to the music within. Produced by Alex Foote, Cadiz and her backing band prove agile in the ways of shuffling bootstompers (“Keep It”), contemplative porch swinging (“Home Town”), and melting into the smoke hanging above a neon-lit bar (“Dreams”). Let’s not forget Cadiz’s voice, which can, within the space of one song, coo you into quietude and rattle your bones with its volume and power. It’s an incredible instrument that she has remarkable control over.

Like a great book, this is an album to get completely lost in, to put on your stereo and not come up for air until the last notes fade away. And it offers up ample detail to explore with each successive listen. Settle into your favorite chair with a cup of tea or stiff drink in hand and let Melaena Cadiz transport you to her world of rich characters and richer musicianship.

 
 

RIYL: Neko Case, Alela Diane, Julie Doiron, Emmylou Harris, Bill Callahan, Marissa Nadler, Dana Falconberry, Matt Bauer

Start With: 2, 8, 3    FCC CLEAN


DEEP BELOW HEAVEN TOUR DATES:

5/28—New York, NY—Westerlind Showroom

6/4—Nashville, TN—Stone Fox

6/5—Florence, AL—Billy Reid

6/13—Los Angeles, CA—Alchemy Works

6/14—Venice Beach, CA—1638 Abbot Kinney

6/16—Oakland, CA—E.M. General Interest Small Bookstore

6/19—Portland, OR—SnowPeak

6/20—Seattle, WA—TBD

6/27—Rock Island, IL—Daytrotter session

7/1—Pittsburgh, PA—House show

Contact me for a download link if you’re a radio rep!

http://melaenacadiz.tumblr.com/

https://www.facebook.com/melaena.cadiz

https://twitter.com/MelaenaCadiz

http://melaenacadiz.bandcamp.com/

http://wildkindness.com/melaenacadiz

THE BAND MOM at SXSW 2014!!

GUYS! This is my 8th SXSW. In a row! 8 years of bands and tired feet and bands and friends and bands and booze and no sleep and bands and tacos and bands!! If you’re in Texas, I definitely want to see you here. Here are the easiest places to catch me – at the sets of Band Mom bands, past and present! Come see them and let’s hug!!

 

BAND MOM ARTISTS @ SXSW 2014:

 

ROBBY HECHT:

Weds 3.12 – South By Soup Fest Benefit (free show) – Guero’s (1412 S Congress Ave) – 450-510

Sat 3.15 – Folk Alliance Party – Threadgill’s (301 West Riverside) – 12:30-12:55pm

 

TENNIS PRO: Premiering their FILM (of which they are the stars!), BIG IN JAPAN (directed by John Jeffcoat):

Tues 3.11 – Stateside Theatre (719 Congress Ave) – 6:30
Thurs 3.13 – Alamo Ritz 1 (320 E 6th St) – 9:30

 

CUMULUS:

Thurs 3.13 – Pop Press International showcase – UP Collective (2326 E Cesar Chavez St) – 3:15
Fri 3.14 – Super Great Fun House Show After Party For Jack Wilson’s 30th Birthday Party Show
    earlier show is @ Flipnotics Coffee (1601 Barton Springs Rd) – then Cumulus w/SHENANDOAH DAVIS – 12am
Sat 3.15 – The Local Pub & Patio (2610 Guadalupe) – 11pm

 

TEREU TEREU:

Thurs 3.13 – DC Against The World – The New Movement (616 Lavaca Street) – 4:30-5:05

 

GOOD FIELD:

Tues 3.11 – Headhunters Patio (official show) (719 Congress Ave) – 11:30pm
Weds 3.12 – Pop Press International showcase – UP Collective (2326 E Cesar Chavez St) – 3:30

 

ELIZA RICKMAN:

Weds 3.12 – Ice Cream Dreamz – Frock On Vintage (3016 Guadalupe Street, Ste. A101) – 6:20

 

ZOE BOEKBINDER:

Weds 3.12 – Ice Cream Dreamz – Frock On Vintage (3016 Guadalupe Street, Ste. A101) – 8:00

 

MAL BLUM:

Fri 3.14 – Girls Rock Austin Unofficial SXSW Day Party – Cherrywood Coffee House (1401 E. 38 1/2 St) – 8:25

 

PHEW!!! SEE YOU THERE!!!! 

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