March 2010 Archives

Sonos - Sonosings

| No Comments
Sonos - Sonosings (Verve Forecast) [upcoming shows] [audio]

Sonosings consists of a dozen reinterpretations of pop, motown, and indie rock songs that have been completely transformed into a cappella. Or pop cappella. Fans of Fox's Glee should be fighting to buy this album. Whether they're covering The Jackson 5, Björk or Radiohead, it's always fresh and original. The simple beauty of a voice and seamless melding of multiple voices is what keeps a cappella alive (albeit underground or hiding on b-sides), and Sonos shows us how this genre can be mesmerizing.

Sourpatch - Crushin'

| No Comments
Sourpatch - Crushin' (Happy Happy Birthday to Me) [upcoming shows] [audio]

This female-fronted, instrument-swapping quartet from the musical not-so-hotbed of San Jose is perfect for the HHBTM label (and early 90's K Records acts); trebly indie pop performed without pretension, built on simple guitar solos and brief songs about unrequited love. It's over and done in under 30 minutes and the vocals are barely audible in the mix. The good news is the lyrics are inside the cd jacket, but the bad news is no loupe was included. Eventually the lyrics will start to seep in.

Title Tracks - It Was Easy

| No Comments
Title Tracks - It Was Easy (Ernest Jenning Record Co.) [upcoming shows] [audio]

For anyone who missed Q and Not U, they were an outstanding, experimental, dancey, punk band. For anyone who missed Georgie James, it was a great duo specializing in catchy post-punk pop rock. The common denominator was John Davis: guitarist, drummer, singer, songwriter. As Title Tracks, he's a one man band. The straightforward rock songs may draw Ted Leo comparisons, while songs like "Black Bubblegum", "No, Girl" (featuring Tracyanne Campbell of Camera Obscura), and "At Fifteen" show Mr. Davis treading new grounds of bubblegum and melancholia.
Allison Weiss - Allison Weiss Was Right All Along (100% Records) [upcoming shows] [audio]

Allison Weiss hasn't yet graduated from college, but she may as well have degrees in entrepreneurship, management, communications, composition, and indiepopfolkrock. And an A for the thematic unit on "feel-ings" (TM my sister Laura). As Weiss herself puts it, "Her songs sound like your saddest memories sung to the tune of your happiest." It's like your bubblegum fell on the floor, but you don't notice the grit so much because you're concentrating on the sweetness. Weiss' fans funded this album via; I think they got their money's worth.
Jawbox - For Your Own Special Sweetheart: Remastered (Desoto) [upcoming shows] [audio]

1994 started a mid-'90s trend of punk bands switching to major labels to make great punk albums. One of those bands was Jawbox, whose For Your Own Special Sweetheart hit the airwaves with a thud. A thud that left jaws hanging in exuberant disbelief throughout the punk and alt-rock crowds, but didn't come any closer to the mainstream than 120 Minutes. This is an often overlooked gem, and the remastered & extended re-release puts every instrument out front, sonically showcasing how this album is so essential.

The Down and Outs - Cacophony

| No Comments
The Down and Outs - Cacophony (JOA Records) [upcoming shows] [audio]

There's a recent resurgence of Providence pop punk bands, music influenced by labels like Fat Wreck Chords and the bands Descendents and All—fast with fist pumping shout-along choruses. The tracks "All Because of You" and "Bridges and Breakdowns" add some ska and there's a surprise hyper-speed cover of a Paula Abdul song and a comical PSA. The catchiness of the choruses carries the pop end of things and with four songs under ninety seconds, they also have the punk end covered.
Juliana Hatfield - Peace & Love (Ye Olde Records) [upcoming shows] [audio]

At this point in her career, Juliana Hatfield doesn't need gimmicks. Her long-established brand of alternative rock is universally known, and varies only in its degree of rockitude and easy-listenability. Juliana's rocked out to the extreme on albums like Total System Failure and Made In China, but it's been some time since she's presented us with such a collection of stripped down, acoustic, heartfelt songs. Peace & Love puts aside the distortion pedal and fancy production techniques to reach a candid girl-with-guitar makes home-recording feeling.

Monthly Archives


Powered by Movable Type 5.02

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from March 2010 listed from newest to oldest.

February 2010 is the previous archive.

April 2010 is the next archive.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.