newmusic

I SEE STARS: TREE HOUSES
July 1, 2016 11:31 am

Metalcore, electronicore and post-hardcore had a baby. Its name is I See Stars and was born in 2005. Michigan natives Devin Oliver (vocalist), Brent Allen (guitarist), Andrew Oliver (vocalist), Jeffrey Valentine (bass guitarist) and Dakota Sammons (drums) all comprise the electronicore band and have been blazing the trail for this genre.

In 2006, they released their E.P Green Light Go before signing with Sumerian Records in 2008. They made the Billboard 200 list with their first full length album 3- D in 2009 in collaboration with producers Paul Wisner and Cameron Mizzell. Two years later they released The End of the World Party, thus beginning the integration of electronic music into their screamo-esque music.

They went mainstream after appearing on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!”, being featured on Substream Magazine and Alternative Press and touring with Black Veil Brides. A year later in 2012, they released Digital Renegade with the addition of Danny Worshop (Asking Alexandria) and Cassadee Pope (ex-Hey Monday). New Demons, released in 2013, incorporated more electronic and trap elements and made it to number 28 on the Billboard 200. In 2015 they released a pair of remix albums reinterpreting past albums and reimagined favorites as acoustic/orchestral songs with a combination of covers of Daughter, Disclosure and Hozier. Some bands have that special drive, passion and charisma, I See Stars is one of them.

TreeHouse is their newest album just released on June 17th. If you have’t got a listen in yet, click here! In addition to their new release, I See Stars is on the roster for Warper Tour 2016. Click here to find tour dates near you!

GO LOCO FOR HEYROCCO
June 8, 2016 5:36 pm

Do you ever just need a shot of some straight-up rock? Something new that fills your need for strong guitar, fast drums and a slick bass? Heyrocco comes from South Carolina with tons of energy and gumption. With songs like “Yeah and “Elsewhere,” they will fill your cup to the brim with attitude. Nathan (Nate) Merli leads with vocals and guitar, Christopher Cool struts the bass and Tanner (Taco) Cooper keeps it together with the drums. Their new EP Waiting On Cool is a breath of fresh air that brings the listener to rock that sounds straight from 1990.

Heyrocco is ATYPICALSOUNDS’ Artist of the Month and in honor of that we got an awesome interview with Taco:

Can you tell me a little about the band?

I met Nate in 6th grade, he was playing guitar and we would play together and go skateboarding, your average bad boy stuff for 6th graders. We met Cool in high school and played blues with him and a girl named Sarah, but we parted ways with her and started up Heyrocco.

How was it different playing in Europe compared to the States?

Its weird, one of the biggest differences was the hospitality from the venues. We’d show up and have an apartment or room for us, [they’d] feed us and [offer] free drinks. They really just tried to make us feel welcome, it was really cool even though we were pretty small.

What is your secret formula for creating music?

Keeping in constant inspiration. If we sit around in the house too long it shows in our music. [When] we are on tour or visiting a place, meeting new people or anything exciting, that is the fuel for our music. We also do the fresh ears, trying to cleanse the palate with ATL Trap music and really hardcore hip-hop.

What is the song that best represents your band?

(Chuckles) That would be a different answer from everyone. I’ll check with them and let you know. I would say “Slice of Life.” It started with trust and it is about trust. I think it represents us and what we’re going to be doing.

*Christopher Cool’s: “Perfect World

*Nathan Merli’s: “It hasn’t been written yet.”

Was there anything that inspired Waiting On Cool specifically?

It wasn’t a person or band. It was an area. We spent two months out in Venice Beach recording a lot of music. It was mostly being in that area and listening to West Coast music, whether it be hip-hop or grunge. That is what really influenced the EP.

You guys have a very specific style, do you try and keep it that way? Or are you open to different stuff?

We just write a lot of songs, there are a lot of outliers on the albums, but there are way more weird ones that we keep in the garage. It gets pretty crazy and weird. We like to try to release a lot of different music, we like bands that have a large variety. I don’t like picking up an album where every track is pretty much the same four chords.

Would you ever consider making a B-Sides Album?

Oh yeah! It’s going to happen for sure. It’s just a matter of time.

Has Heyrocco’s growing fame affected how you write or the band in general?

Overall, it has given us confidence in our writing. With that support we can write new stuff without real hesitation.

13263672_1131803193508394_6257844899282959215_nWhat are you listening to now?

A lot of 2Pac and Miles Davis. Oh, and this band called Rehab, they have this hilarious song called the “Bartender Song.”

Do you see the band moving into different styles in the future?

There’s no way to say exactly. We are going to start recording LP two next month, and are super excited about that. Maybe not a new sound, but new instruments and new arrangements of music. The next one won’t be your standard album, it’s gonna be a lot more experimental.

A lot of focus on tones, I think that the next album will represent the band and what it will be from there on out.

Any new instruments that you’re excited for?

I got Conga drums! They are great, and adding them to any song just makes it funkier, which is awesome.

What are some albums or bands that are essential for rock enthusiasts?

Slanted and Enchanted by Pavement, and Jimi Hendrix, all of his work. If you haven’t listened to his stuff, you need to right now.

As a band, is there anything that you want your fans to walk away with?

Out of everything, we want them to walk away with positive inspiration.

 

Now I need to brush up on my Hendrix, but we were grateful for his time…Heyrocco just got home from a 16-hour drive from Chicago.

After finishing up a European Tour last year, Heyrocco are working on some shows but focusing mostly on recording and hanging out at the beach. Waiting on Cool is a fantastic blend of quick and powerful anthems and slow, thoughtful pieces. I particularly love the slower songs like “Slice of Life.” They have a certain depth that is really hard to achieve for most bands but for Heyrocco, it comes with ease.
Check out their new EP and look out for their new LP hopefully coming out later this year. Listen to it on their site, and check out their other amazing songs like “Mom Jeans” and “Melt” and you’ll have new music to rock out to for the month.

AQUASONIC AND THEIR BEAUTIFULLY CREEPY MUSIC
12:17 pm

I’ll say it right now, this band is pretty amazing. I don’t care how weird or eerie their music sounds, they are super creative and deserve recognition. Also, I know that a lot of videos say “use headphones or loud speakers to feel the full effect.” Don’t ignore it this time, DO IT! Honestly you won’t get much out of this if you don’t, and it’s well worth it.

Between Music is the music company/group based in Denmark that produces this underwater concert called AquaSonic. The act itself has been in the works since 2006 with a huge number of people working on a band that plays entirely underwater. With custom instruments made (a lot of them), discovering new ways to sing underwater (inside an air bubble held in one’s mouth), ways to record the music underwater….the list goes on and I’m seriously impressed they can get it all functioning at once to be honest. Between Music has been researching for years how to create a magical way of playing music underwater. Check out their history section to see the enormous amount of work that has been put into their underwater concert.

Their debut concert was actually a little over a week ago, May 27th in Rotterdam, Holland. They caught the attention of various media groups like NowThis and the BBC. As of now, they don’t have any upcoming tour dates that I could find so if you want to see them, it might be a while unfortunately.

AquaSonic is actually the first of a four part series that Between Music is producing. The quadrology is called Human Evolution, and without question water is the first step of (hu)man’s life, an interesting concept to say the least and well represented by AquaSonic in my opinion.

If all else fails, any horror movie with an underwater theme could talk to AquaSonic for a hypnotic and haunting soundtrack. If Saw 8 ever happened, their only path to take would be a shattered submarine, with accompaniment. Love it or hate it, either way, you can’t deny the powerful waves of sound that come from AquaSonic, a truly impressive work of art.

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JMSN IS HOT, HEAVY AND GOING TO MELT YOUR FACE OFF
May 26, 2016 11:55 am

If hip-hop culture is led by a pack of ego-fed materialists, Christian Bershaj aka JMSN is the anti-‘swag’. His uniform is a well-worn t-shirt and unkempt, shoulder-length hair. You can’t get more nonchalant than that. Yet JMSN (pronounced “Jameson”) is the mastermind behind a visceral, self-produced brand of R&B that dabbles in the darker shades of emotion.  It’s caught the attention of some of hip-hop’s biggest movers and shakers over the course of the last few years–and his latest record, It Is, serves up fresh-squeezed 90s R&B via raucous gospel choruses, bluesy church organ, and rich leaded bass. Tunes like “Power” and “Cruel Intentions / Good ol’ Case of the Blues” might just put JMSN on the map.

JMSN is the next unassuming underdog (underdawg?) in the quality-not-quantity debate. On the surface you have raw talent- a croon that’s equal parts The Weeknd (check out “Alone“) and Justin Timberlake (dig “Girl I Used to Know“). One might argue that he sounds like the two single-most sought-after musicians on the planet right now–not a bad business proposition. JMSN is a self-made machine, a true adherent to DIY ethics, a must if his long-term credibility hinges on the loyalty of indie crossover spinsters. JMSN handles each creative aspect by himself; singing, recording, mixing and producing. He even turned down a major label bid by short-lived conglomerate Universal Motown following the demise of earlier creative outlets Love Arcade and Christian TV. A true hip-hope renegade, he’s collaborated with a handful of notable names in the current collective conscious; Freddie Gibbs (“Street Sweeper“), Ab-Soul (“You’re Gone“), Ta-ku (“Love Again“), and although, like me, you may have been completely oblivious to JMSN’s existence prior to this week, he contributed the backing vocals on “Bitch Don’t Kill My Vibe” by Kendrick Lamar. You know, small fries.

If JMSN’s not on your radar yet the time is nigh to dive in. His music’s very accessible, and I say this with duality: you can find his music from just about any major source (Spotify, YouTube, SoundCloud, etc.), and his music is no-bullshit R&B about relationships going awry in the modern world. Nothing pretentious, although a few of his music videos do get a little bit weird. JMSN keeps a tight touring schedule–if you’d like catch him live now is your chance–artists that are churning out tunes this high of a clip tend to either spudder out or get scooped up by a major label and spend their time locked up in the recording studio (you know, like Ke$ha).

KACY HILL: THE ETHEREAL TRIPHOP QUEEN
April 29, 2016 11:04 am

Kacy Hill, Phoenix, Arizona native is starting to climb the charts one funky octave at a time. Prior to her current music career, the ethereal meets trip hop singer started modeling at 16 after being discovered by a wedding photographer. This led her to pursue modeling full time after high school and move to L.A.

However, the universe had other plans. After being introduced to Jaylien Wesley (songwriter and producer), Hill and Jaylien got together and did a magical collaboration. One of the songs that they brewed up, “Experience,” caught the likes of Kanye West after he was given a copy. Hill was touring around with West as a backup dancer at the time during his 2013-2014 Yeezus Tour and soon after she signed with his record label G.O.O.DMusic.

Wasting no time, the singer/songwriter is now touring around the U.S, Canada and Europe. She just released her E.P Bloo this past October. Containing a roster of hits such as Foreign Fields and “Arms Length”. To find out more about Kacy Hill and her tour dates click here!

PALMAS: INTO THE VALLEY
February 22, 2016 11:39 pm

Friday night I went over to Union Pool to interview Palmas and see their show. I was first greeted by Matt Young (guitarist) and Kurt Cain (vocalist), and both greeted me with immense smiles and vibrant energy. Soon after, Pat Degan (drummer) and Eric Camarota (guitarist) joined passing jokes at each other as they approached. Within a minute of meeting Pat, he exclaims, “I just took the roughest shot of tequila of my life.” Lastly, came Adam Cantiello (guitarist) savagely stuffing his face with elote. Kurt jokingly yells at him, “There’s a lady present, geez, no shame.” OH, by the way, if you were wondering what elote is, it’s corn with mayonnaise and chili powder aka one of the best foods in the world….. but I digress.

Standing in a circle outside underneath a heat lamp, beers in hand, we begin the interview below.

How did you decide on the band name?

Kurt: So we chose the name Palmas… it’s hard to answer this because at the time we had a different name and we were changing our name and we were looking for something a little bit more representative of us, a little bit more summery feeling. Palmas means palms in Spanish. We also wanted to be a little bit mysterious. We didn’t want it to be a name where everyone would know what it meant right off the bat. I like certain band names that are a little bit elusive. It felt right for the music that we were playing it has a little exotic vibe—something not of the Philadelphia area where we’re from.

How did the band form?

Matt: We’ve all known each other for a very long time. We’ve all been in bands when we were younger and we all kind of knew of each other. Adam and I had just been talking for a while about being in a band and Eric and I were talking about working together in some capacity.

Kurt: We were all tired of making shitty music. So we wanted to make a good band.

Matt: I lived in California for a little bit when this kinda started happening and I moved back and we were like “hey, let’s do it, let’s start a band.” Adam knew Pat, I knew Kurt. Not to sound cliché but it really started out of the friendship of we all just really enjoy playing music let’s get together and play.

Pat (talking to Matt): I think you nailed that one.

I notice that Matt lives in Brooklyn but it says the band is from Philly– how do you guys make that work being from two different cities?

Matt:  Adam actually lives in California right now. Generally, I take the bus to Philly every weekend right now and I know it sounds kind of crazy but it works out. Adam was in Philadelphia up until five months ago. We’ve made it work. We send demos back and forth. We send Adam our ideas that we work on together and he gets to put in his input. He sends us ideas from where he’s at and work on his ideas.

 Kurt: Yeah you know it’s 2016. (pauses) Vote for Bernie.

Matt: Yeah we just use the internet to make it work, you know? We also just found ourselves in a fortunate situation before he moved that we had a lot of songs already written so it wasn’t like we were desperate for new material. He flies back to play with us.

*I turn to ask Adam if he ever plans to move back to Philly or New York and why he left to begin with. The boys heckle him and laugh saying, “Can we get this on the record?” “How long do you plan on this sham?”*

Adam: My day job brought me out there and my lady and I moved. I think that there’s a possibility that I can be back on the East Coast at some point.

Kurt: Or we all move to the West Coast.

Who are you guys listening to right now? Who are you inspired by musically?  

Kurt: Right now we’re listening to this band called Harumi.

Adam: It’s like 60’s psychedelic and kind of started the whole psych thing. Stumbled upon this band and we’ve been obsessed with it lately.

Matt: Kurt also got us all into The Zombies and they’re one of my favorite bands recently. We got this really amazing opportunity to meet them and interview them and it was like this whole thing. Now that we’re recording I keep finding myself saying well what would they do?

Kurt: I mean, obviously we love the Beach Boys. I mean every time we listen to something that they do it’s like we find something new. I think you can definitely hear that in some of the stuff we put out and some of the stuff we’re going to put out.

Matt: I mean, the Beach Boys they were just one of the original pioneers of experimenting in the studio, you know? They started out as like a bubble gum pop band and then they started doing different stuff and I think we’re super influenced by both aspects out of that—when they were a pop band and when they were experimental and started adding new sounds. I think we would really love to find a mix of that. Pop songs but with intricate arrangements, you know?

Anyone else?

Kurt: Nancy Sinatra definitely.

Matt: Also more modern bands. We all love The Growlers. They’re one of our favorite bands. La Luz is another one. And then also this may be an unconventional answer but we’re super influenced by Quentin Tarantino movies and his soundtracks. In some of his newer movies he has a lot of hip hop and R&B type stuff but in a lot of his movies it’s western meets surf. That’s kind of what we would love to accomplish.

Kurt: (jokingly) If you say Quentin Tarantino enough he’ll call us up.

palmas2

What made you come up with the album title To The Valley?

Adam: When we first started this band we were always bouncing ideas around. Band names, song names, and I feel like the things that come the most naturally are when we’re not stressing out over things kind of fits really well. To The Valley has a line in one of our songs that’s on the E.P Better Guy. I think it was just one of those things where it was tossed around and it seemed to fit and we all liked it. You know to have five guys agree on one thing right off the bat is (laughs) kind of monumental.

Kurt: At the time Adam was moving to California and it was kind of like… to the valley.

Adam: I live in Long Beach. You know, represent Snoop Dog, LBC.

Do you have a favorite song on the album?

Matt: “Take My Hand” is definitely my favorite song.

Pat: “Take My Hand”

Adam: “Better Guy” or “I Want To Know.”

Kurt: “I Want To Know.”

What is your music making process?  

Matt:  I think there’s two ways that this happens. The first way is that either Adam, myself or Eric come up with a riff and then from there the song builds. Kurt has a lot of ideas on where to take it. Or the second option where Kurt as a singer comes in and is like I have this idea for a song and I’m thinking it should be this style and then we go from there.

Kurt: It comes from a riff most of the time.

Matt: Yeah, most of the time it’s like we were screwing around at home on guitar and I came up with this little part. What can we take from this little part to make a full song? I think we find in our process when we’re trying to write a song. I’m going to quote Eric here, Eric is just always like, “You know, when we try to force a song it doesn’t get written.” Or it gets written and we don’t like it. The ones that work for us are the ones that…it just comes out of nowhere. It just happens. Kurt will just start and singing and okay that’s it. You know?

palmas3Who is the main writer?

Matt: When it comes to the riff parts like I said it’s either Eric, Adam or myself and then Kurt takes that and really kind of sculpts the idea. It’s like we’re the colors and he’s like the paint brush.

Pat: And I’m Bob Ross.

Everyone dies with laughter.

Matt: And Pat throws down the beat. You know, it just works.

Pat: And it’s awesome.

What has been the biggest challenge for your band?

Matt: Recently, it would be Adam moving to California. I think we just want to continue to improve ourselves. We’ve been a band just about a year now and for some reason people are liking us. But that was easy to do because we started from blank there was nothing to compare to what we had previously done. Now it’s we’ve got to be better. We’re challenging ourselves.

Kurt: Also, I think what’s difficult is once you enter the industry, you know, all we want to do is write songs and put out music. We would put out music tomorrow if we could. But once you’re in the game it’s like you have to wait on different things and now we have direction from people and so it’s tough knowing which road. There’s a million roads you could take and it’s like what road do we take? I think that’s been our biggest challenge right now. We’re looking for the right people to guide us.

Matt: Also, Palmas, us as musicians it’s the five of us but Palmas as a team is like ten people now. It’s a lot of behind the scenes people wanting—their best intentions but sometimes the opinion isn’t the same. It’s all just trying to figure out how to work together. That’s been an adjustment for us.

Kurt: It’s new for us you know having management. But honestly, every step we’ve taken has been a step forward thus far so we just want to continue doing that.

Pat: There’s good work ethic. We have good work ethics.

Kurt: We push each other too.

Adam: And we make the most of my time here. We really pack the weekends and the time is spent rehearsing, writing or playing shows or doing interviews. You know, as much as we possibly can.

Kurt: The ultimate goal would be a full length record with a producer that we would just dream of working with. Which, right now as a young band you just don’t have the budget to do that. So our dream would be to have that budget and have the means to make the record of our dreams.

Palmas albumIf you were stuck on an island and only had one record to listen to what would it be?

Matt: Blue Hawaii– Elvis

Adam: The Beatles- Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

Pat: Doors Greatest Hits

Kurt: Beach Boys- Pet Sounds but I might go with Beach Boys Greatest Hits. I mean, you’re stuck on an island…you want to listen to that kind of music you know?

Eric: Creedence Clear Water Revival’s Greatest Hits

Matt: Can I change mine to NOW THAT’S WHAT I CALL MUSIC 3?!

After the interview, we went inside so they could prepare for their show. In love with their personalities and passion, I was curious to hear their music and watch them perform. Once the show began I was in a trance, unable to stop swaying my body and moving my feet. Palmas was brilliant. These guys could have toured around with The Beatles or The Beach Boys if they wanted to. Their sound was perfect and their moves were mesmerizingly in sync. I heard a girl in the crowd say, “Oh wow. This is kind of like doo-wop” And she was right. These boys, born in the millennial generation, are bringing a taste of fresh nostalgia for a time we only dream about…a time that happens to mesh perfectly with the modern indie music world.

Needless to say, Palmas is just fucking awesome. I left the show feeling inspired and grateful for the chance to have met this hilarious, driven, inspired and original band. Obviously, any band that likes corn with mayonnaise and aggressive tequila shots is a win win in my book. Their new E.P Into The Valley is available now! I guarantee it will make you want to go out, get a vinyl record player and lay by the beach.

THE SOULFUL FLOW OF FRAZEY FORD
November 25, 2015 8:49 am

In all sincerity, sometimes I just want to listen to a song and sway in the middle of an open field. There are very few open fields in New York City, so improvisation and make-believe might be necessary for this exercise, but as long as that root feeling is there, you need to satiate it correctly. Finding the perfect music to unwind to in peace is as delicate as doing one of those sailboats in a bottle things that everyone’s grandpa has at least three of for some reason. So let Frazey Ford be the captain of the SS Field Sway. You will not be disappointed.

Ford’s smooth and soulful voice rides through each track effortlessly. On “Done,” her single from her most recent release Indian Ocean, the heartfelt lyrics about her finally giving up on a terrible relationship can resonate with everyone. The straightforwardness of a line like “you spend all of your time trying to place your blame, and I’m done” gets straight to the heart of the issue. And when I’m field swaying, I want my emotions to be out there in the open.

Indian Ocean is filled with songs of great weightlessness, showcasing Ford’s gift to let the moment adjust to her pace, instead of chasing after anything. Natural Law is an interesting example of her adept tempo control. The verse has a steady progression in melody, along with horns being introduced, but it rises and falls gracefully throughout. Nothing blares, or overstays its welcome. Each layer is chosen to have its own moment in perfect fashion.

So the next time you need a field of earnest and carefree vibes, let Frazey Ford take you away. You’ll be in the warm, gentle hands of a wonderful songstress. I mean this metaphorically, of course, I have no idea what her actual hands feel like. Enjoy!