Earl Greyhound from L to R: Ricc Sheridan, Matt Whyte and Kamara Thomas
It’s been a while since I’ve stumbled upon a band that caught my attention as sharply as has Earl Greyhound. This Brooklyn-based power trio released their debut EP in 2004 via the NYC-based Some Records, going on to release their first album, Soft Targets, on the same label in 2006, shortly after having lost their original drummer, Christopher Bear to his new project Grizzly Bear. Ricc Sheridan replaced Bear, joining original members Matt Whyte (vocals, guitar) and Kamara Thomas (bass, keys, and vocals) to release their sophomore LP Suspicious Packageon their own label, Hawk Race Records, in 2010 and an EP entitled Ancient Futures followed later that year. December 18th of 2012 saw the release of their most recent EP, Besides Seasides, their first new music in two years. It also includes four previously unreleased tracks originally recorded in 2003.
Funded by a 2012 Kickstarter.comcampaign, their debut album highlights the collaborative songwriting skills and, as they call it, “sonic exploration” employed by the band’s members Brian Ronzendal and Bryan Daste. Both performed in Rozendal’s namesake band Rozendal, and Daste also performs in Portland’s Scotland Barr & The Slow Drags, with both bands having a distinctly slower and twangier drawl than does Small Souls.Continue reading →
Meat stock has long been a stable of the human diet. It is a constant in the kitchens of peasants and top chefs alike, acting in a thousands-of-years-old partnership with these culinary explorers as a nutritious, flavorful base for soups, sauces, and braising liquids. Continue reading →
Chicago-raised siblings Elliot & Natalie Bergman align their musical talents to create their up-and-coming duo, Wild Belle. Elliot & Natalie were raised in what they describe as a musical household, where he cultivated an ensemble of instruments in his proficiency quiver (including, but not limited to: saxophone, electric mbira, and electric sawblade gamelan). Continue reading →
For their 9th studio album, self-labeled musical “avant-garde populists” The Bad Plus members Reid Anderson, Ethan Iverson, and David King escaped their Minnesota homeland to record Made Possible inside a remote, upstate New York recording studio. What they produced within that project is a nine-track work (eight originals, one tribute) of genre-jumping musical mastery. Continue reading →
At age 70, an average person might find themselves settling into a life of leisure, card games, and RV touring. If you’re Paul Simon, on the other hand, you maintain legendary music star status with a creative push that boasts the same edge with which 1986’s Graceland was carved. Continue reading →
Pull out your hookah, fire up the incense, and grab a bottle of Metaxa to drink in your dimly-lit bedroom as you prepare for your first listen of Dead Can Dance’s first album in 16 years, Anastasis. Anastasis refuses to pigeonhole into a single label, save the accusation of being a bit rhythmically glacial. It opens with “Children Of The Sun,” a song with Brendan Perry on monastic vocals, proclaiming “We are ancients, as ancient as the sun.” This line sets tonal stage for the rest of the album; eight tracks wrapped up into west Indian steel drum, gamelan gong, and middle eastern strings, and floating somewhere in the Mediterranean between Greece, Turkey, and North Africa. Lisa Gerrard’s voice has only grown into more of its siren quality, as she wails in “Agape” like an introspective femme fatale. “Opium” rolls in Moroccan Sufi 6/8 rhythm at the charge of horns and melting strings, and “Anabasis” features the Hang, a gorgeous instrument that’s a blend of gong and steel drum. Conclusion: playing Anastasis at your next dinner party is probably not a good idea, but it’s the perfect soundtrack to a night of adventures in worldly exoticism.
Amid the flurry of controversy surrounding Amanda Palmer’s alleged misuse of the nearly $1.2 million that she raised via Kickstarter.com to produce Theater Is Evil, it seems that many have forgotten to discuss whether or not the album is actually good. Continue reading →