Alternative Rock

New album: Love Supreme || Tuesday / Dinsdag

Love Supreme is what happens when four forty year olds in an existential crisis get together every Tuesday to share some laughs, food and fondness for 80s/90s punk rock and indie. Tuesday / Dinsdag (Dinsdag is Dutch for Tuesday) is recommended listening for people who dig Mission of Burma, Bob Mould, Replacements, and Dinosaur Jr – basically the majority of artists featured by Michael Azzerad in his classic book Our Band Could Be Your Life. Sounds Haarlem (a Dutch record store) will release the record on white vinyl in September. Until then, you can stream the record on Bandcamp. And while you’re there, make sure to also check their 2019 record Poetry For The Youth. There are worse, much worse ways to spend your Tuesday evenings, I promise.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp || Sounds Haarlem

New single: Star Circus || Just Like in a Movie

Star Circus is a five-piece from London that makes music that sounds like 70’s hard rock and 80’s power pop at the same time. With new (dgital) single Just Like In a Movie their founder Dave Winkler (Annabella’s Bow Wow-Wow, Ryan Hamilton, Love & Bullets, Renegade Playboys) wrote a hit, There’s not only the characteristic screeching guitars and harmonic vocals, but also Sophie Aurelia Young’s piano playing and a great guest sax solo by Liza Bec (a jazzy intermezzo after 2:35, very nice), making it far above average.

“Everything will be alright // Just like in a movie”

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

Gimme 5! Marc Ribler (Little Steven & The Disciples Of Soul) Shares 5 Records That Influenced His Upcoming Record The Whole World Awaits You

With ‘Gimme 5!’ we take a peek into the collections of artists we admire. The premise is simple: artists WE like share 5 records THEY love.

I started reading Twilight Of The Gods this week, a book in which Steven Hyden explores the past, present and future of classic rock. Early in the book, Hyden calls classic rock a finite resource: “One day, it will disappear. Bands break up. Albums go unplayed and are eventually forgotten. Legends die.” Hyden has a point of course. Time does not stand still, albums are losing out to playlists, fewer and fewer bands sell out stadiums and it’s unlikely that current and future rock bands will come anywhere close to the lasting cultural impact of the classic bands from the ’60s and ’70s. But is that necessarily a bad thing? They’ve been saying that punk is dead since the late seventies, but to agree with that statement you essentially admit that you haven’t been paying attention. Ultimately,  there will always be musicians that will carry the torch of guitar music into familiar and unfamiliar territory. Which brings us to this week’s Gimme 5! which features an artist whose music celebrates the power of classic rock and soul.

Marc Ribler is a musician and producer who in recent years has been Steven Van Zandt’s right hand man in The Disciples Of Soul. Ribler also shared the stage with many Hall-Of-famers including Carole King, Elvis Costello, Bruce Springsteen, Darlene Love, and Paul McCartney. On July 9th, Ribler will release a new solo record called The Whole World Awaits You (pre-order here). Busy as Ribler is with producing, performing and writing songs and jingles for others, it is a record that’s been long in the making – some of the songs were written as early as 2005. Little Steven became excited after hearing some of the early mixes and offered to co-produce the record and release it on his label Wicked Cool Records. Based on the early singles, it’s easy to see why: Shattered and Who Could Ask For More (watch the video here) are excellent throwbacks to the heyday of rock and soul, and both songs were picked as ‘coolest song in the world’ at the Underground Garage radio station. Not only that, these songs make my speakers sound better than ever – this is some well produced, mixed and mastered music. Below Marc Ribler shares five classic albums that he drew influence from in writing the songs for The Whole World Awaits You. Enjoy reading and listening!  [post continues below]

New album: Nevasca || Горки (Slides)

There was a time when you could pinpoint a specific style of music to a specific time and place. Nowadays, we live in a world that is so globalized that musical influences spread just as easily as a virus. So perhaps, I shouldn’t be surprised to hear Nevasca, a band from Northeastern Russia (St.  Petersburg), sound like an  authentic mid-to-late nineties emo band from the US midwest. Clearly, Nevasca have been living on a steady diet of Christie Front Drive, Mineral, American Football and Jimmy Eat World, and to be honest, there are worse proteins to use as building blocks of your own sound. The lyrics look like insane math equations to me, but I am really enjoying the music thus far. Definitely worth checking out.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New EP: Empty Head || Empty Head

Last month, Belgian alternative rock band Empty Head caught our attention with an awesome animated video directed by punk ‘n’ roll artist King Rat (Gilles Deschamps) for their single Cosmic Rave. That’s one of the all equally good four tracks on their self-produced and self-titled debut EP, released today. The music of the five long-time friends is inspired by the (anti-)heroes from the 90’s and their “Under The Influence” playlist features bands like All Them Witches, Viagra Boys, Idles, and Triggerfinger. So you know what you can do expect. These are powerful songs with tempo changes, raging guitar riffs, haunting melodies, and dark, philosophical lyrics. Watch and listen below.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New album: Astro Chicken || Different Town

New Yorkers Barney Miller and his good friend John Laprade are both singer / songwriter / multi-instrumentalist and as Astro Chicken they released their new album Different Town this week, digitally and on vinyl LP via DETOX Recordings. They deserve a podium just for their optimistic song Good Times Are Coming. Barney explains: “As Beatle George said, ‘All Things Must Pass’. It’s a sentiment that helped get me though the past year. It’s gotten me through personal issues. Family, work. Almost anything. The fact is that whatever bad is happening in your life or in the world, it will not last.” You can see this record as a settlement with the dark year we all just lived through. Fortunately: “Nothing lasts forever, but love comes close.” And: “I still got you, and I’m still here too.” So many beautiful lyrics and strong songs on this poppy, accessible rock album. As long as this kind of good music is being made, there is hope.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New EP: Licking Rainbows || burp.

You know, there is an incredible amount of new music coming out all the time. And if something is really great, we actually want it in our collection. That is also the idea of this blog: sharing the records that are “wantlist worthy” and linking to where you can buy them. Normally we only write about “available” releases, but sometimes there are exceptions to that rule, simply because the songs are too cool to hide in a hard-to-find corner on the internet. A good example of this is burp., the debut EP by Swiss power trio Licking Rainbows (Livio Arcuri on bass / vocals), Kilian Zompa on guitar, and Tim Poggi on drums). These first 4 original tracks – the result of a year of creation, dedication and collaboration – are influenced by the 60’s sound of The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and Cream, to which is added a bit of modern energy. The band told me that a physical release is unfortunately not planned. So this is one you can’t buy but really should listen to; watch the video below for standout tune I Don’t Lie or check out the full EP on YouTube or Spotify.

New EP: Minus Hero || Songs About Leaving

Minus Hero are from Italy (w/ members Nofu, Twister, Bravo, Nappies, Daire, Think About), but they sound like an obscure ’90s US bands in the vein of Superchunk, Archers Of Loaf and Knapsack. Their new 10″ EP is part of the Blue Feelings collection of Flamingo Records. It’s called Songs About Leaving and the four songs on it deal with “melancholy, disappointment and alienation.” The record is far from a dread though. Minus Hero sounds inspired and heartfelt on the EP. It’s perfect music for a grey day.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

New album: Danny Carney Chainsaw Symphony || Blizzard of ’82

I was unaware of Blizzard of ’82 until a recent Instagram endorsement by Stateline Records pointed in its direction. It’s the solo debut of Danny Carney, who used to play in Roll The Tanks, but now operates under the moniker Danny Carney Chainsaw Symphony. Hard not to be intrigued by that name, and the same applies to his music. Press play on opening track Maraschino University and you’ll discover that this is not your average record. That song stays under 3 minutes, but it is layered and catchy despite its lack of a clear chorus. It even has a intense sax solo. And that’s just the first song. The second song (VCR) does have a clear chorus that is massive  and absolutely pop oriented, but the song also have the feel of a punkrock tune. Track 3 Glomar Blues somehow moves into ’80s hardrock territory, not unlike the direction A.F.I. took  mid-career. I could go on, but the surprises keep coming and I am not sure if I have the words to explain the sound of Danny Carney Chainsaw Symphony – nor do I want to spoil the record. It’s definitely indie rock, but it very much is its own thing. It’s diverse and eclectic but not incoherent. It’s loaded with hooks. It’s an exiting record to dive into and explore in full. Basically, I have no idea what Danny Carney is up to, but it works and I want more.

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp || Danny Carney Chainsaw Symphony

New album: The Spaghetti Stains || Essential Ingredients

Last year, The Spaghetti Stains won a Level Up Grant from Triple J Unearthed. That money went into recording their self-released debut Essential Ingredients. The band members (Pantjiti, Emmah and Rose) grew up in GunaiKurnai Country (Gippsland), which (I Googled) is a gorgeous little region on the south-eastern coast of Australia. It’s easy to see a direct relation between that location and the sound of the band. Let’s call it surfy altrock, with straight up bangers alternating slower moody tracks. On their best tracks (No Wuckin’ Fay, Toast To The Coast, Caveman Diet), The Spaghetti Stains approach the level of acts like The Beths, Alex Lahey and Best Coast, and I have a sense The Spaghetti Stains are only going to get better. They have good taste as well, as illustrated in this entertaining 7 hour playlist of their musical influences on Spotify .

Add to wantlist: Bandcamp

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