onlinemagazine

ARKELLS: MORNING REPORT
July 19, 2016 12:29 pm

Canadian rock band Arkells is representing Canucks everywhere exceptionally with their most recent songs Private School, Making Due and A Little Rainfrom their upcoming album Morning Report.

If you have’t heard this rock group, here’s a little background. Max Kerman, Mike DeAngelis, Nick Dika, Tim Oxford and Anthony Carone all met at McMaster University where they attended college. They named the band Arkells after Arkell Street which is where they all lived and honed their music craft together.

Since the band started in 2006 they have gone to climb the rock ladder, touring with bands such as Tokyo Police Club, The Postelles, X Ambassadors and Lights. Aside from the note-worthy bands they have toured with, they have independently earned their high rank status on the charts. Most recently, garnering awards such as the Juno Award for Group of the Year and Rock Album of the Year in 2015.

Below you can check out their most recent music video for “Private School” which features past artists they have worked with such as Lights, Dave Monks from Tokyo Police Club and Steve Jocz (from Sum 41..throwback!) who was also the director of the video.

Morning Report is due to drop on August 5th so, before you run over to the movie theater to see Suicide Squad, hop onto i-Tunes and download the album here.

HUXLEE: ALTERNATIVE POP FOLK MAGIC
June 23, 2016 5:13 pm

Caitlin Notey is a LA native, 23 and the lead singer of alternative/folk band Huxlee. She describes Huxlee’s sound saying, “If Alabama Shakes, Bonnie Raitt and Fiona Apple had a little sister with an undying love of N*SYNC.” Yes, the description is accurate and Huxlee’s sound sends shivers down the spine.

Huxlee consists of Caitlin and her five best friends: Carey Singer (guitar), Mac Sinise (drumers), Nick Chuba (programming/banjo), Joe Scolari (bass) and AJ Novak (percussion). The band met while pursuing USC’s Popular Music program. Caitlin says her band, “Masterfully interprets my jumbled artistic impulses and help to create an expanded and fuller sound than what I could ever imagine.”

They released their first EP Bloom in 2013 containing hits Olivia, Crooked Tree, Isn’t/Anything and more. In July of 2015 they released their second EP Teammate. This EP, just as the last, does not disappoint. Aftertaste, 22,Teammate and If I Don’t Get on TV are a compilation of gritty, pop folk magic!

It’s safe to say they are going to be around for awhile and will only be getting bigger and bigger. For tour dates and to hear their most recent EP, click here.

THE NEW HOME FOR GAME MUSIC ENTHUSIASTS
June 14, 2016 12:23 am

Do you listen to soundtracks? Are John Williams and Marty O’Donnell your idols? Do you have epic scores constantly forming in your head? ThinkSpace Education is starting three different video game audio Masters programs that you can do from the comfort of your own bed.

These programs will be starting in September and so if you want in, better start looking into it. This will be the first ever Masters Degree(s) based in video game music and sound design. A number of people who teach are those who have worked on various famous scores, for example: Assassin’s Creed, Dragon Age, Bioshock 2 and Mass Effect. These are some of the biggest names in the industry and they would be your tutors and mentors. Pretty amazing right? Well, it gets better. 

Your job as a student would involve testing games, creating scores and sounds for those games while familiarizing yourself with a vast amount of software and hardware, most of which is used by professionals every day. The games you work on are not only trials created for virtual classroom learning, but are also part of the formation of a commercial game. That means some of your own work, or the work of your fellow students at this school, may be present in some of the games you and your friends play in the future. 

I could go on about the possibilities. ThinkSpace’s site is filled with so much stuff I have no shortage of topics to discuss about music and the games they accompany. But to wrap up, they have three specific areas to dive into. The first is in music and audio, a focus on how the music and audio interacts and portrays the game. The second is in composing, taking musical genius to the max with scores that grab the player and can even be interactive and ever changing. The third is sound design; every gunshot, animal growl and transforming robot has a unique sound, and you would be the one creating it.

If I was more involved or passionate about sound design and score developing, I would’ve applied when I first learned of it days ago. I’m not trying to sell you on this place or anything, it just seems like an awesome opportunity to expand your knowledge on something so simultaneously creative and technical. If this sounds like you, ThinkSpace is the perfect place.

SPEAK AND BE HEARD: THE FINEST SYNTHPOP
June 3, 2016 2:14 pm

SPEAK is a synthpop group from Austin, Texas. Combining ear pleasing vocals with catchy synthesizer backdrops, Speak breaks out of the mold typical to the genre. None of their recent songs sound forced; in fact they jam in ways that I was unprepared for.

Composed of Troupe Gammage on keys and lead vocals, Nick Hurt on guitar, Joey Delahoussaye on bass, and Jake Stewart on drums, the band has been putting out material for over five years now. They have a comfort with one another that comes with ease translated in their music. These smooth dance tunes will help even the most awkward of us find our groove.

Their latest song is “Gates,” which hopefully might be a lead single off a forthcoming album. Ridiculously catchy, between the synthesizer and Gammage’s vocals, I am hooked. True to the new wave style of Austin, in the music video everybody looks slightly lost, or out of place. Maybe it’s the thick rimmed glasses and the awkward carrying of the magic metal box. Regardless, the more I listen to this song, the more I like and appreciate Speak. I found myself coming back again and again to “Gates,” even humming it first thing in the morning after I woke up.

Gammage truly has a fantastic set of pipes, not only making dope music with Speak but also performing voice work for many and multiple video games. Even though each member of the band is talented beyond reason, it is Gammage that I find ties the whole shtick together.

Improving and tweaking their sound much over the course of their last few projects, their latest album Pedals, which came out mid ’14, is a good place to start if you’re not hip. Their lead single off Pedals is “Peaks”; sick drums over elegant harmonies. The beat will immediately get your head a bobbin’, if you have a pulse.

“Heavy Metal Way” may be my favorite track on the project. It brings a more rock-friendly feel with the drum-line intro that sets the rest up perfectly. Again, Gammage’s vocals are truly inspiring. He reminds me of a young Adam Levine the way he seamlessly switches between low scratchy growls and pristine falsetto.

Much of Speak’s appeal to me while listening through their discography is how they don’t lean on the category of ‘synthpop’ as a clutch, but instead uses it to fuel the basis of who they are. They incorporate gnarly guitar solos and blistering drum beats to round out a healthier end result. Some of their instrumentals take on a post-rock sense of depth and longing. Nothing resembling pedantic, Speaks excels at surprising the listener track after track.

I am sincerely looking forward to the next tape from the lads of Austin. With a ton of new music already infecting the airwaves of Summer 2016, I think Speak has a bonafide chance to really be heard.

ANDREW COMBS: SONGS FROM THE SOUTHERN SOUL
May 25, 2016 12:16 pm

I was anti-country and folk for most of my life, but after a year of working at Longhorn Steakhouse, those country tunes start to grow on you. My heart still leans towards rock and electronic musicians, as it has for most of my life’s music intake, but country music (when it is good) has a place in my heart.

Andrew Combs is one of these amazingly talented country boys that makes me want to dive deeper into the sounds of the southern soul. His song “Long Gone Lately” was actually one of the songs that was on a constant repeat over those Longhorn speakers, a crafty tactic that accomplished its probable goal of making me enjoy country music. 

Combs was born in Dallas, TX but spent many years in Nashville, TN (and still resides there), so to say he has a musical background in country music is a real understatement. He has been breathing the country life since he was born. He loves songs that speak from the soul and you can hear that through his own music. He has this uncanny ability to make music that speaks to the heart. 

With his newest album All These Dreams, he explores his own music career, what it means to him and where it could take him. The album has a wonderful amount of diversity in sound and style. With darker and deeper spiritual tones in “Month of Bad Habits” and more chipper and thoughtful pieces like “Strange Bird,” Andrew is taking a lot of good risks in his style and it’s paying off. But it is more than just his sound that is unique. His lyrics and messages are quite deep and meaningful which both add a wonderful amount of flavor to his music.

If you aren’t into country, his music will reel you in with a lot of power, establishing the relationship between his experience and that of his listeners while staying true to his country roots. Taylor Swift will no longer suffice as the only country musician you enjoy. You need to try the real stuff. Give his stuff a serious listen through, let your inner cowboy or cowgirl be immersed in his fantastic sound.

LANY: THE MAKEOUT TOUR ENCHANTS WEBSTER HALL
May 24, 2016 5:20 pm

Friday night we got rowdy with LANY at Webster Hall and watched them work their magic. Fans ranging from late teens to 30-somethings covered every inch of the Marlin Room as they awaited the California trio to come on stage. Odessa was the opening act who not only looked like some sort of ethereal goddess but whose voice was so beautiful it made you feel that her music is probably what’s on replay in heaven. (Seriously though). Her effortless folky charm was just right for setting the tone of the night.

LANY took the stage shortly after and gave their heart and soul to the crowd for the hour. Opening with their newest hit “Where The Hell Are My Friends,” the room roared. Next to me I heard an older woman gush to her friend over lead singer Paul Klein, “I can’t even believe he’s real. He’s so perfect.” Home girl is right. Paul, Les Priest (keyboard/guitar/vocals) and Jake Goss (drummer) are not just there as prime eye candy. It’s a real experience to watch them perform. A pure honest energy comes on stage with these boys, not to mention the true nature of their friendship, their vocals and their music. They performed all of their greatest songs including “Made In Hollywood,” “ILYSB,” “You Are Fire” and ended the night with an energetic encore performance of “Hot Lights.”

If you are a LANY fan, getting tickets to a show in your city should probably be added to your to do list right now! If you haven’t listened to them, check out their albums Make Out and I Loved You. For tour dates and more information about the band click here.

LANY: WE LOVE THEM SO BAD
March 7, 2016 2:40 pm

Wednesday night I was one of the lucky many that got to see LANY perform. They opened for Troye Sivan and the crowd went crazy. Most people were pretty well-versed in LANY and Sivan’s music- a note I made during the audience accompaniment. And if you hadn’t heard of them you before, well that’s what we here at ATYPICALSOUNDS are for! Constantly contributing to the ever growing “need-to-listen” playlist you have saved on your Spotify/Soundcloud/etc.

There were so many factors that made this show awesome; Jake Goss’s impeccable drumming, Les Priest’s heartfelt keyboard playing and harmonious back up vocals, Paul Klein’s sultry voice combined with his James Dean look and Jim Morrison spirit that radiated off the stage. It’d be a gamble to try to resist the “Damn, this is really good” reflex.

Thursday morning, I caught up with LANY over an entertaining and hilarious brunch in the East Village.

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How did the band come together?

PK: Jake kind of had a pretty great reputation in Nashville as an incredible studio musician drummer and he had been out on the road with a lot of people in Nashville. And when I lived in Nashville I was pretty intimidated by all the success everyone else was having and I wasn’t. So, I never ever thought to approach Jake and be like, ‘Hey… should we play some music together?’ Because it just felt like a way different caliber. But we became friends (they met at the YMCA) and he lived in a house with four other guys (one of them being Les) so there were five guys in that house and it was fun to go over there and hangout. Or just run around Nashville, go get dinner and whatever. So, I think for the longest time it was just about being friends. It still is just about being friends but one day I found the balls to ask him if I could be in a band.

And what did you say?

JG: Oh, a thousand percent, yes.

What inspired the album? And the album title?

PK: Most of those songs were written and were on like previous releases. Basically, we started growing as a band and realized that, wow, we have like ten different releases on our Spotify and its kind of confusing. For a long time we were just putting out a song at a time. So, we decided to compile everything that we have into two EP’s. One was already existing called I Loved You and then the new EP which is called Make Out. It was a bunch of songs we had already written and recorded and released. We added one track called “Kiss” that serves as almost a hidden track. And we did a version of “ILYSB” stripped down. I just remember somebody saying to me, ‘You guys make make-out music.’  I thought that was the best thing ever. We had a few ideas for this but we settled on Make Out.

What has the been the biggest challenge for you guys as a band?

PK:  Just a lot to do. We are very hands on. So as things continue to take off and grow there’s more responsibility and there’s more things to do. We make all of our own graphics, we make all of our own music, write our songs, mix them, produce them. We do our best to write all the treatments for our music videos. We don’t outsource anything.

Are you going to continue to work out of a bedroom/home studio?

PK:  We moved to a little house out in Malibu for the time being to work on this record. We were living in a one bedroom apartment just the three of us. Obviously there’s no room for real drums or anything like that. So we got into a little house and Jake’s drums have been in the kitchen for about four months. We are expanding but just recently we did try to go to a little studio and it just didn’t work. We just have our system. We have the way we know how to make music.

lany3What is a hobby outside of music that rejuvenates your creativity and music?

JG: Movies. We love going to the movies together. We’re really inspired by that. We talk a lot about the movie ‘Secret Life of Walter Mitty’ just because, visually, the cinematography and the soundtrack are beautiful. Just really inspiring. I love going to the movies and taking away from movies.

Anything else?

PK: I like taking showers.

JG: I like to exercise and sometimes I get to run on the beach when we’re out in Malibu. That kind of stuff.

How did you end up doing shows with Troye Sivan?

PK: We are on the same management team but I don’t know when that happened. He came to our first show in Hollywood. He was there and we’ve just always stayed in touch. He even came to our apartment one afternoon and wrote a song with us. We love him so much. All of these shows with him have really been incredible.

How did you end up with Polydor Records?

PK: Polydor, it’s funny because when we put our first two songs on the internet, we did that in April 2014, within six days we got a first email from a record company and it was Polydor. However, they weren’t in the picture until later. There was a time when we were really trying to decide between a few different labels and at the very last second they came in and it just felt like the right fit. We flew over to London and we met this guy named Ferdy who runs everything over at Polydor. It just felt like where we should be. We love our entire team, they work incredibly hard for us. We’re super thankful.

Do you have any preshow rituals?

PK: We just say a little prayer before we go out. Team huddle.

Les, last night I saw after the very last song you closed your eyes and it seemed like you were kind of just meditating.

LP: I was probably just soaking in Paul’s awesome vocals.

JG: Yeah, it’s a heavy moment where he’s singing there at the end by himself.

LP: That’s cool because I didn’t even realize that. I was just feeling it I guess.

Can you each tell me three facts about yourselves that you feel the world should know?

PK: 1) I have a hard time going to sleep. 2) I love very sugary, girly coffee drinks. (Laughs) 3) Just got my third tattoo four days ago. It’s my handwriting. It says thanks in cursive—THX! We actually all got our own version of thanks. To remember to always be thankful and never become jaded and burnt out. You know what I mean? Just always approaching things with gratitude.

LP: 1) I’m left handed. 2) I’m from Missouri 3) I have five tattoos. Boom.

JG: 1) When I was born my name was Scott. So now it’s Jake. My parents changed their minds when I was 6 months old and decided to change it to Jake. 2) I’ve been married just over a month. 3) I did a marimba solo at church my senior year of high school and my fly was unzipped…and they had two screens. Whaddup.

lanyWhat would each of you say your spirit animal is and why?

PK: Can you define spirit animal?

What animal do you feel really resonates with your soul?

PK: Yeah! Maybe a black panther. Because they’re kind of rare I feel and they look great. I love that black fur.

LP: I’m going to go with the wolf just because you always think of the lone wolf, you know, kind of solitary. That’s kind of me.

JG: Oh gosh. Uh…um…I’m going to go with….this is tough man. I’m trying to think of an animal that is just tender and cozy. (Everyone laughs) I had a dog like that. A German shepherd. Her name was Amber, which, was hilarious. I’ll go with a German shepherd.

What is one of the funniest things that has happened to LANY thus far?

PK: Well Jake is really funny. So anything he does is really funny but… *pause for giggles* He did trip on stage a couple shows ago. I saw it and I acted like it wasn’t happening and I think we forgot to address it until like two days later.

JG: Yeah like right center stage I was the first one who was walking out. Tripped over a hard cord and just almost fell.

Did the crowd notice?

JG: Oh yeah. But I had my ears in and I didn’t look at anyone for the first thirty seconds. Because if I would have turned around Paul would have been dying and then I would have tripped into the crowd because I would have been crying laughing.

PK: Another story is, from still very early on I think we had played honestly less than 20 shows and we had this opportunity to play The Mayan in L.A. with a band called Milky Chance. It was sold out and they were going to let us open up for them and you know there were fourteen hundred people in that room, I mean we were stoked. But something happened with the sound board during sound check so we didn’t get a sound check. I think someone spilled ice on the main board. Milky Chance is German so their in-ear monitor guy is running sound for us like way behind us. So he’s running sound for a room and he can’t even – he can’t speak English. Nothing was working. It was hilarious. It was basically me singing a vocal solo for thirty minutes while Jake also had a drum solo. It was the worst night ever but now it’s funny. It was probably the most hilarious show we’ve ever played.

JG: On our first tour, you know some bands go out and they have crazy road stories because they’re just young and doing dumb stuff. It was our first tour together and I remember we were at a hotel and I think we turned into the wrong lot for a different hotel. And instead of going out into the road Paul was like, ‘Guys, let’s go over this curb.’ He was like ‘come on we got to make some memories!’ So, we drove over a curb ’cause we’re hard.

What’s up next for you guys? What’s your dream for LANY?

PK: We’re going on a.. *His eyes intently focus on a delicious plate of eggs* I’m going to go ahead and order that too. Scambled eggs and bacon. *He points to the salad portion of the plate* but I don’t need any of that green stuff. *Chuckles. Paul gets back to the interview* Sorry about that intermission.

We are going to do our first headline tour which is exciting. For the last year we’ve just been out supporting people. Which is awesome. We’ve loved it. It’s gotten us in front of a lot of really cool and different people. But yeah, we’re going on our first headline run in May and it’s exciting because things are selling out. LA sold out in three minutes which is nuts. I just think we have the best fans in the world. We used to go on tour and I would be like man, Halsey has the craziest fans ever! And look at Troy’s fans and they really do but a lot of them have become ours as well. I think that’s really been past down to us. We’ve always dreamt really big. I mean I say that I didn’t know if anyone would listen to us in the beginning but deep down in my heart I was hoping that we would one day sell out arenas. You know? So I think we really want to be a household name and we’re not interested in being indie or artsy or too cool for school. We want to make music that feels really, really good and resonates with a lot of people while staying true to our artistic convictions.

It’s safe to say that LANY is going nowhere but up and will be around for awhile. Make sure to check their site HERE to find out when they’re coming to a city near you. If you haven’t heard them yet, do your ears and soul a serious favor and check out their E.P’s Make Out and I Loved You below.   

GOODBYE HEART: RESTLESS NIGHTS
March 2, 2016 10:52 pm

Seattle is home to the space needle, kick ass scenery, hipsters (c’mon we all know it’s true) and the up-and-coming dream pop duo Goodbye Heart. Friends Sam Ford and Nila K Leigh started their musical journey in New York City and decided to mix their musical tastes together. Using electronic percussion, synthy upbeats and velvety vocals they created their E.P Restless Nights in 2014.

Sam and Nila have said that their influences range from “The Cure to Johnny Jewel to Nas” and they describe themselves as, “Drawing inspiration from lush, textural movie soundtracks and their native New York City hip-hop roots.” Their EP tracks include “Just Kids,” “Don’t Slow Down,” “Seconal,” “Wish” and “How to Make Friends in a New Town.” Each track will simultaneously trap you in a surreal indie film that you stumbled upon and force a jam sesh in your car. To hear Goodbye Heart’s E.P check them out on sound cloud here.

JULIA HOLTER: HAVE YOU IN MY WILDERNESS
January 25, 2016 9:45 am

Julia Holter could easily have been on stage at Woodstock back in 1969. Her tunes possess an awesome 60’s-70’s flair that I can’t get enough of with a heavy pour of today’s indie. Her most recent album Have You In My Wilderness is spectacular. This record contains lyrical magic such as “Feel You”, “Sea Calls Me Home” and “Silhouette”.

 

Check out her website for a listen and tour dates here!

 

 

 

MUSIC IS YOUR BRAIN’S FRIEND
January 19, 2016 1:00 am

A lot of us tend to use music to help us get through the day. Whether its cleaning or travelling, a bit of music makes the whole experience a bit more enjoyable. This can also be said for when we are using it to get creative juices flowing, or even while working out. But how effective is music for us in those scenarios?

According to a study published by Oxford University Press, noise isn’t always bad for the creative mind. But when it comes to focusing on a task, loud music is not your friend, go for moderate noise level. Moderate noise levels make processing information harder therefore allow your creative psyche to become abstract, this in turn leads to higher levels of creativity. We become more creative the lower the level of music is.

High noise levels cause us to be more distracted. The more stimulus our brain receives the more overwhelmed it becomes, making it harder to process information efficiently. The excess stimulus our brain gets makes concentrating very hard.

Even better than low noise levels is ambient noise, or “natural” sounds (waves at the beach, wind and rainc, etc.) this is the best to get the creative juices flowing. Bottom line, a soft background noise is what will help you concentrate the most. If you are working on writing or reading, try instrumental music. Studies liken writing or reading with music non-instrumental music to trying to have a conversation while someone talks over you. Both become an excess of information.

Here are some links to help you out:

For simple ambient white noise.

For some lovely rain sounds ( I also use this to help me sleep a lot.)

Classical Music anyone? Try Pandora’s Baroque station!

One of my personal favorite bands that doesn’t use lyrics and has an ambient sound is City of the Sun! Check out their music here.

Listening to music while exercising is a bit different. Music drowns out our brains cries of fatigue, it tells your brain to shut up and your body to keep moving! According to an article by Scientific American; “As our body realizes we’re tired wants to stop exercising, it sends signals to the brain to stop for a break. Listening to music competes for our brain’s attention, and can help us override those signals of fatigue.” If this doesn’t make you love music more than you did before, listen to this; listening to music during exercise also helps us to use our energy more efficiently.

Check out these charts to see how different types of music can help you get the most out of your workout. Happy Trails!

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