I hear your band threw away their samplers and bought guitars.

Her Space Holiday
Sleepy Tigers / Mush / BUY

Following an artist’s career can sometimes be boring and unfortunately predictable. There are few artists who make a conscious effort to completely change artistic perspective regularly, and even fewer who completely change the mode in which they emote their message. Marc Bianchi (AKA Her Space Holiday) would have you believe he is not one of those forward thinking artists, but don’t be fooled. From his days as a mainstay on the California Hardcore scene (with bands such as Mohinder and Indian Summer) to his days as label head (for the now defunct Audio Information Phenomena), HSH has rarely been able to contain his love for change. Nothing (besides everything) has changed on his latest offering, the 4 track Sleepy Tigers EP, which is a great sneak peek into his upcoming full-length due out this fall entitled XOXO Panda And The New Revival Kid (both will be available through Mush Records).

While some of the vibes might seem slightly familiar, HSH ditches any hint of electronica, embraces the guitar and focuses hard on folky songwriting and lyrics. Clocking in at just under 15 minutes, these 4 tracks are more playful than anything he’s done before (standout lyrics include “Here we are, face to face / I guess now is the time and the place / To let you know i got a thing for you / Apparently, your boyfriend does too / And on that note, i’ll bid you both adieu.”), but the underlying tones and wry lyrics are just as melancholy and introspective as core fans come to expect.

So while we unfortunately still have to wait a couple months to sink our teeth into a new full length release, we can rest easy in the fact that HSH is changing dramatically, but somehow remaining more familiar than ever.

Raise Up The Tent (And The Roof) For Tea Leaf Green

Each and every time a live band puts out a studio album, it is a totally different adventure. Why? Because somehow, some way, there is that need to consolidate all of that incredible live energy into recorded music so that the listener can feel like they’re at a live show just by pushing play. Raise Up The Tent, the fifth offering from San Francisco’s Tea Leaf Green, is here to prove why they’re in it to win it.

The album, released on July 22nd via Surfdog Records, is produced by David Lowery (who’s also worked with Cracker and the Counting Crows) and combines the old school sounds of Bob Dylan and The Grateful Dead with modern indie rockers My Morning Jacket and The Raconteurs. The stages of Bonnaroo and Rothbury have already felt their wrath, and probably will in the future. Forget about their star-studded collabos, because when you’ve appeared in support of names like the Dave Matthews Band, Phish-ee Trey Anastasio, and Deadster Bob Weir, who needs to throw any names around, right?

The best part follows folks, for the next few months at least. Tea Leaf Green has dates scheduled into November, with an ’09 date too! Now riddle us this: a fantastic live band takes a break to turn performance energy into recorded energy, then recycles it back into L-I-V-E material. Sounds pretty awesome, considering the track record.

Check out “Red Ribbons” below and tour dates after the jump!

MP3: Tea Leaf Green – Red Ribbons


MBAR Sweats It Out At The Cake Shop

Although Miles stood at the microphone, drenched in sweat in the basement of Cake Shop (because it was hotter than the blazing mid day sun at Siren Festival), it didn’t deter the undivided attention of his audience. Playing one of 9 shows before he heads on tour with TV on the Radio, Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson made it well worth the wet heat.

Even though we’re not past jokes about his 10 syllable name, (yes, I counted them on my fingers) we loved every minute of MBAR’s jangly and pleasingly gargled alt-folk rock set. After a short “coffee shop” performance from Kyp Malone (of TV on the Radio), MBAR took the stage moving the audience to dance — and sweat along with him.

But the sticky atmosphere was quickly forgotten when Miles dropped to his knees “with his ass in the air, and his face in the ground” and rocked a guitar-led jam. The crowd pleasers still seem to be the first three songs from his self titled full length, which was evident from the crowd’s reaction when Miles wiped his hands on his jeans and sat down at the piano to play “The Debtor”.

Singing the sad songs with a smile on his face led the intrigued crowd to enjoy the show as much as he did – it was as if we were soaked from a cool shower rather than the sticky temperature; all of us forgetting that we were watching the show in an oven.

That said, don’t miss his next show at South Street Seaport, August 8th , NY, NY. Weatherforecast: TBD.

Pictures after the jump!

MP3 : Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson – Buriedfed


Let’s Takka Takka A Migration

Takka Takka
Migration / Ernest Jenning / BUY

When last we heard from Takka Takka, the Brooklyn-based art-rock quintet, they were setting the world o’ blog ablaze with We Feel Safer At Night, their pensive, restrained evocation of a civilization drifting askew. They earned comparisons to Lou Reed and made fans of indie sensations Clap Your Hands, Say Yeah, who awarded them the opening slot on their tour.

With Migration, released this Tuesday to joyful appreciation, the Takka team treads new territory. Drawing from the Balinese heritage of singer/guitarist Gabe Levine, the band creates songs steeped in rippling, rumative guitar patterns. Right off the Goa Lawah bat, the incantatory “Monkey Forest Road” slips you into a waking dream that doesn’t dissipate until the final chants of closer “You And Universe”. In between, tracks like “Silence” and “Everybody Say” integrate high sprinkling synths as Levine softly sings of death and
the ebb and flow of bodies.

You can check out “Everybody Say” below, or for a limited time stream the whole album here!

MP3: Takka Takka – Everybody Say

Before They Were Famous…They Weren’t (But the Music Still Rocked)

The 90s certainly did prove to be an interesting time in music.  Please allow me to paint a vivid picture for your enjoyment: 1998.  New York State Fair, Syracuse, NY (Upstate).  Sitting in the grandstand, awaiting a blockbuster performance from the highly regarded Britney Spears and 98 Degrees (Yes, I even stayed the whole time…I DON’T want to talk about it), and with the whole family in tact, I was about as stoked to see this show as, well, someone watching paint dry on a Friday night.  My dad politely asks the guy in front of us, who’s sitting with his wife and daughter, why he’s reaching for his earplugs.  With the simple response “You’ll see,” my heart drops.  The lights go dim.   The next thing I know, my ear canals are filled with the most hair raising, ear drum bursting shriek you could ever imagine, magnified about 30,000 times.  Ah yes, now I see why he brought those ear plugs, even though I will never hear in the same way ever again.  Let that be a lesson people: the 90s were crazy.

Early grunge/punk preceded boybands, teeny-boppers, and pop princesses, which then gave way to the pop-punk era best described by one band: Blink 182.  But as we all know, everybody has to start somewhere-and where better than a nice, friendly, before-they-were-famous collection, all in one place! (in the true spirit of an infomercial!)

Since Blink is the current topic, let’s start there-how about their 1993 demo Buddha?  Pretty good stuff, from before they even added the “182” to their name!  Then there’s Papa Roach’s 1994 EP titled Potatoes For Christmas, and Green Day’s Kerplunk!, a reissue of their 1992 release that has since gone platinum that includes an early version of “Welcome to Paradise.”  Not to outdo the others, and not to be modest, but lest we forget current idols Coldplay and Death Cab For Cutie??  That’s right folks, and we’re talking the good stuff-Chris Martin and co.’s three song EP Brothers&Sisters, that laid the groundwork for Parachutes, and Death Cab’s pre-Atlantic stuff via Barsuk Records.

Now, sit down, and catch your breath.  Are you ready?  Early stuff from classic acts Bob Marley, Elton John, Gladys Knight & The Pips, Jimmy Page, the New York Dolls, Ray Charles, Ted Nugent, The Donnas, The Ramones, and Steely Dan-before-they-were-Steely-Dan–Walter Becker and Donald Fagen.  What a mouthful!  You can’t even listen to any of it without hearing their pre-fame influences, and the artists in their truly raw forms.

I guess 1998 wasn’t so bad after all, having listened to this stuff.  But just out of curiousity, I wonder how much hearing aids cost these days…