Sunday, March 23, 2008

Orange Alert's Music Minute

"We are a fuzz-pop band from Chicago". Fuzz-pop, I wasn't sure what to except, I mean I have heard the term before, but what exactly is fuzz-pop? Well, in the case of the Fake Fictions, this means gritty, near surf rock guitars, aggressive drums, and lo-fi recording. However, what truly makes this band band something special is the interplay of the vocals of Nick and Sarah.

On April 18th, Comptroller Records will release Krakatoa, Fake Fictions latest album.

Listen to: (Don't Drink the) Office Coffee (mp3)

To say a band has a sound all their is own to almost say nothing at all, but in the case of the newest addition to the Hometapes family, Stars Like Fleas, this is mostly true. Their music rests somewhere in the space between country music, atmospherics, the haze of Grizzly Bear. These Brooklyn boys really blend it all together nicely, and on their third studio album The Ken Burns Effect, Stars Like Fleas will really surprise a lot of people.

Listen to: I Was Only Dancing (mp3)

From the swampy depths of the Floridian Everglades, raised by an Amish Menonite Family comes Bluegrass Blues Punk Tour de Force Konrad Wert a.k.a. POSSESSED BY PAUL JAMES. Bearing that name in honour of his father and grandfather and armed with nothing but fiddle, banjo, guitar and a battered suitcase Possessed by Paul James sings, growls and hollers songs of love and loss and exorcises his demons live on stage - and now also on VOODOO RHYTHM RECORDS’ brand spanking new release COLD & BLIND. Having established himself as a local hero in Austin, Texas Wert did not waste time and quickly converted European audiences into disciples of his unique and infectious blend of fire and brimstone hollering and subtle Old Time Love Ballads. In spite of being a man of the earth and playing “good ‘ol time” instruments POSSESSED BY PAUL JAMES is not mimicking the past. To the contrary, his raw and desperate sound is the ideal soundtrack for uncertain times where questions outweigh the answers - a shot of untarnished wild human emotion to soothe our aching souls.

This is an intense blend of blood, sweat, and bluegrass!
Listen to: Love's Disease (mp3)

If you think this cover art insane you should listen to the first track of Awesome Color's second album, Electric Aborigines (out April 29th on Ecstatic Peace). The layers of sound relentlessly build to the point of near chaos, while the calming vocals of Derek Stanton float above the rhythmic and inviting noise. The way this trio attacks music is brutal, but it is a fair and needed dissection of the traditional. Awesome Derek, Awesome Allison, and Awesome Michael will be on tour this summer in Europe and may even have a few dates with the awesome Dinosaur Jr. To sum it all up in one word... Awesome!

Listen to: Eyes of Light (mp3)

Eric Avery was the original bassist an obscure band called Jane's Addiction. On April 8th he will release his debut solo effort, Help Wanted (Dangerbird Records), but it does seem like Eric wants the type of "help" most doctors are prescribing.

"Take him newborn from a shell/teach him how to buy and sell/ kill with a pill all of the dreams he lights/ his dark room by each night" from "Beside the Fire"

This album has one central focus lyrically, the evils of prescription medication. The album art follows suit while equating drugs to alien ship dumping blue and white liquid on the masses.
Musically, Eric combines traditional rock with every popular electronics. The true adventure lies in his stories of illness, dependency and destruction. The answers can be found at 866-929-4918.

Listen to: All Remote and No Control (mp3)

The Peel Back: Cibo Matto "Viva! La Woman" (Warner Bros., 1996)
The translation of the Italian phrase Cibo Matto is 'Crazy Food', and the debut full-length album Viva! La Women was filled with food. This album was released the year I graduate high school, and that summer I spent sometime a writing camp at Denison University. It was an incredible time spent learning and sharing with other writers. There were kids from all over the country, and all over the map creatively as well. My roommates name was Brian, and he was wildly original in every way (at least in my eyes), and I was drawn to his style and music collection. Sounds I had never heard before would soar through his stereo daily, and I took notes and tried not to sleep. On a day trip into the big city (Columbus, OH) we stumbled upon a tiny music store that carried used cds. We scoured the racks and stacks and walked away with Cibo Matto in hand.

This album combines food with hip-hop and electronic music to create something fun and addictive.

Apple/Beef Jerky/Sugar Water/White Pepper Ice Cream/Birthday Cake (mp3)/Know Your Chicken (mp3)/Theme/The Candy Man/Le Pain Perdu/Artichoke/Jive

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