Four Tet at National Sawdust (March 20, 2018)

By Anthony Bauer, April 13th 2018

(cropped version – scroll down to see full size)

On the eve of a major snowstorm in late March, Four Tet brought the heat to a sold out crowd in Brooklyn at National Sawdust.  Four Tet is the project of Kieran Hebden, currently out on the road in support of his newest album New Energy (released in 2017 via Text Records). This most recent run of shows not only brought an intimate setting for Hebden, but it also saw one of the most awe-inspiring touring rigs I’ve seen in a long, long time.

This small run of shows was not only an intimate venue tour but also a tour with a fully immersive 360º sound that was synched up to a matching light show. The massive immersive sound rig consisted of at least an eight-speaker array above the crowd pointing down (with at least one subwoofer), two massive speakers to the left and right of the stage (facing in towards Hebden) as well as speakers on stands in the corners of the venue pointing in towards center stage which fully engulfed the crowd in sound.

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The Thermals and Summer Cannibals at Bowery Ballroom (April 24, 2016)

By Will Oliver, August 30th 2016 — with 1 comment

1_The Thermals_Bowery Ballroom

It doesn’t take much to convince me to see Portland punk rockers The Thermals live. I’ve been following the group ever since I discovered their great 2006 album The Body, the Blood, the Machine, which celebrated it’s 10th anniversary this year. With their new album We Disappear coming out this March via Saddle Creek, the band have been on tour in support of the new album, but also in celebration of The Body, the Blood, the Machine, what is still most certainly their finest work to date.
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Preview: Shopping at Palisades This Saturday Night

By Will Oliver, November 18th 2015


One of the many highlights of CMJ this October was British trio Shopping. The group effortlessly run through songs that dabble in dance-rock with a punk-minded spirit that is just irresistible in every which way. I ended up catching them two times over the busy marathon week, and honestly wish I could’ve caught them some more. They played tracks from their recently released album Why Choose, out now via Fat Cat Records, as well as their equally great debut album Consumer Complaints.

They’ll be back again this Saturday night for a show at Palisades in Brooklyn, where they will play alongside headliners Priests as well as fellow opener, Arm Candy. Tickets ($12) for the show are still on sale, and it’s bound to be one of the most exciting shows you attend on Saturday, if not all weekend.
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[mp3]: Chastity Belt – “Time To Go Home”

By Will Oliver, January 22nd 2015

Chasity Belt

Seattle all-female quartet Chastity Belt are the latest signing to Seattle label Hardly Art, who will release their sophomore record Time To Go Home on March 24.

The group received some attention in 2013 for the release of their debut album No Regrets, but they seemed pegged to really break through with Time To Go Home. Take their fantastic new single “Time To Go Home,” an unstoppable jam full of chugging guitars, shifting tempos, and mesmerizing vocals. It’s an instant classic, the type of song that reminds you why we go out of our way to love music so much in the first place.

Stream “Time To Go Home” below (and grab your free download at the soundcloud page) and pre-order the album right here.
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I Am Love – Pillar Of Salt

By Will Oliver, December 2nd 2014

I Am Love

Hailing from Philadelphia, I Am Love began the project of singer-songwriter Joshua Christopher. The band has seen its fair share of changes since Christopher started the group, and now consists of Will Whitmire and Kris Jackson.

“We make music to inspire people to be their highest selves, to know that they too can create,” says Christopher, who plays an autoharp to, “show people that you can use anything to make songs, it’s about expression in it’s purest form.”

The group will release their new self-titled album on January 20, 2015. Based on fantastic lead single “Pillar Of Salt,” it will a bright spot during those cold January days.

Beginning with a slow build up featuring dreary vocals from Christopher(Justin Vernon-esque) , the track spreads its wings slowly, but hits its stride with a grand dose of horns that give it a theatrical kick. It has elements of folk rock but also something much larger is at work. It makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside, but also inspires. Read the rest of this entry »

Diarrhea Planet – Spooners

By Will Oliver, September 4th 2014

Diarrhea Planet

Diarrhea Planet are one of the best rock and roll live shows you can see right now. Seriously, if you haven’t seen them live, you’re missing out. They’re loud, full of energy, and let it all hang out. See photos of their performance at Governors Ball this year right here.

This firey spirit lives on in “Spooners”, a new song that the band released as a part of the 2014 Adult Swim Singles Series. It’s a total guitar overload, with plenty of riffage and smart hooks that will melt your face. These guys just do rock music all kinds of right.

Download “Spooners” below.
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Speedy Ortiz – Bigger Party

By Will Oliver, August 25th 2014

Speedy Ortiz - Bigger Party

Speedy Ortiz have built buzz the right way, slowly but surely picking up a little bit of steam

Last month they released a new song called “Bigger Party” as a free download as a part of the annual Adult Swim Singles Series. It’s a more polished take of the 90s slacker-rock sound that the band have made into their own, with a pretty clever and hilarious chorus.

Grab your free download below.
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[music video]: Harriet – Ten Steps

By Will Oliver, July 24th 2014

Harriet - Ten Steps

L.A. outfit Harriet have a new album on the way that is awesomely titled It’s Totally Cool I Wouldn’t Even Worry About It. They already shared the video for first single “Burbank”, and they’ve since followed that up with a video for new single “Ten Steps.”

The video has to be one of the best of the year to date. It features all kinds of choreographed dancing and some brilliant cinematography that begs other bands to step up their music video game up. Oh, it also helps that the song is killer good. It explores a very dance-funk area that just keeps grooving along with some perfectly placed vocals from Alex Casnoff. It’s super smooth and easy on the ears.

Enjoy the video below. I’ve also shared a mp3 of the song, which was made available on their soundcloud page.
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S – Vampires

By Will Oliver, July 20th 2014


S, the long-time project of Jenn Ghetto (formerly of Carissa’s Wierd), has recently signed to Hardly Art, who will release her new album Cool Choices on September 23. The album was produced by Death Cab For Cutie’s Chris Walla at his Hall of Justice studios in Seattle, and features a live band for the first time on one of her albums.

Here’s what Ghetto had to say about the album in a press release that she herself penned:

At the start of 2012, in the middle of a break-up, I started writing this record. As with the others, the songs all started in my bedroom, but I convinced my metal drummer friend Zach McNulty to help me flesh them out (you guys, he uses a lot of restraint), along with my longtime friends Betsy Olson (bass) and Carrie Murphy (guitar) because I knew they were talented, I liked being around them, and they both had cars

Below, you can grab a free download of the album’s first single “Vampires.” It’s a light and airy track full of guitars that sound like they could have came off those early Barsuk released Death Cab for Cutie records.

[mp3]: S – Vampires

Monday Morning Matinee

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