Recent FMA Blog Posts
This is a feed of featured blog posts from FMA users. Blog on, bloggers!
herr_professor on 01/26/2010 at 02:59PM
Bit Shifter is probably the most well known of the lot, as one of the festivals organizers and as member of the 8bitpeoples he has played shows all over the world. The Blip set catches him at the height of his powers, with pulse channel singalongs, punk cover stage takeovers, you will find that Bit Shifter tends to own whatever stage he walks on.
TCTD is currently showcasing its best of 2009 nominees, in preparation for this weekend's awards gala in New York City. Join us here next week as we get back into it with some choice cuts from the chip music scene. See ya then!
pushbinlou on 01/25/2010 at 10:20PM
First new find for me for 2010! It was not too long into the New Year when I stumbled upon this great new album by Pierlo. Except for the fact that he is from Rome there is not a whole lot of info on this rather mysterious character. Nonetheless, "Saturday Night Sleeper" is a solid and very interesting release. It is kind of hard to pin down what genre Pierlo is shooting for so I'll just say electronica and let you come to your own conclusions.
If this release peaks your interest you might want to head over and check out the Upitup label which is the super cool netlabel that put out this album from Pierlo as well as tracks and full length releases from a ton of other artists. Take a listen to the cut "cliverpool" and enjoy!
katya-oddio on 01/25/2010 at 06:16PM
From their official website:
Gepel is a trio founded in 2006. The music is characterized by its original way of playing different popular music languages from Latin America with the traditional jazz sound texture.
Regarding this release, Gepel writes:
Moducue is the first album from Gepel ('Moducue', meaning "Thanks" in Lucumí, a Yoruba dialect). All compositions performed in the album are original and each one of them is dedicated to a singular popular music language.
andrewcsmith on 01/25/2010 at 05:46PM
As a little preview of Peg Simone's upcoming release, "Secrets From The Storm," we've got a live recording from her previous performance at ISSUE. First of all, there's the haunting drone/narrative pieces "Boilermakers" and its sequel "O Holy Night."
Simone also plays guitar in what might nearly be called ISSUE's unofficial house band (the favorite band of founder Suzanne Fiol), Jonathan Kane's February. So, as if these first two extended narratives were not enough, Kane joins her for the final track: their extended version of "When The Levee Breaks," (1927/Levee).
That same night, we had the strange sounds of Chicago-based sound artist J.R. Robinson--they sound a little bit like if you played a field recording of the jungle backward and added some guitar tracks. M.V. Carbon and Zach Layton finish out the mix, with lush pads that quickly turn angry.
jason on 01/25/2010 at 01:23PM
Vancouver-based Peppermill Records is not your typical record label. First off, they're a net-label...of course that's not such a rare thing these days, but they specialize in using the net as a means to create uniquely curated worldwide collaborative projects.
Peppermill's first release, the 30 Days project, brought thirty talented artists from all over the world together to create one song a day, starting back in December 2005. It was a "sort of chain-collaboration where one finished at midnight and passed it on to the next to continue the set", says the Peppermill website, which also acknowledges that this idea was adapted from the democratic, collectively-run Soulseek Records (yes, that Soulseek). Seems like a perfect starting point for a cc netlabel -- exemplary of the idea-sharing ethos that inspires the movement.
Peppermill's site offers links to some fascinating co-conspirators in the net-audio world. The wizard behind Peppermill, PK, recently tipped me off to the lalala4e label out of Mexico and holy smokes!
Peppermill Records itself has gone on to release 15 fantastic albums -- one of them extending the 30 Days idea into 52 Weeks, divided into four seasons. They've also ran into some interesting issues at the intersection of free music and fair use, which are really deserving of their own article (you can read about one of those projects here).
katya-oddio on 01/24/2010 at 11:45AM
Steadman, formerly known as the Dharmas, is a melodic Brit-pop, alternative pop, rock outfit who can be compared to acts like Oasis, Garbage, Radiohead, and Suede.
The album REVIVE, now on the Free Music Archive, was originally released by Elektra, but rights were returned to the band. After big label hassles, the group was able to dissolve contracts and release their work independently on vocalist and songwriter Simon Steadman's label, Freeloader Recordings.
On hearing this album and catching Steadman live, Sir Paul McCartney raved about the band, writing the following:
The band STEADMAN have the SONGS, THE MUSICIANSHIP, THE ENERGY and the ENTHUSIASM to BLOW THE TOP OFF any CLUB of ARENA, and if given a listen, have that RARE quality --
the ABILITY TO DELIVER!
I LIKE THIS BAND!!
Enjoy the entire record REVIVE on the FMA.
macedonia on 01/23/2010 at 12:18PM
I've been absent from posting since my year-end mix, so this will mark my first for 2010. And if there's any group that people should consider getting to know this year, I will suggest one name more than any other: Phantogram.
Josh Carter and Sarah Barthel are a pair of upstate New York kids (Saratoga Springs, to be exact) who made good in 2009, releasing their debut album Eyelid Movies on BBE Music. Equal parts shoegaze, electronic, hip-hop, rock, and pop, it was a bit of a departure for the label, but a risk that proved impossible to ignore. It quickly became my favorite album of 2009 and judging from the customer reviews in iTunes and Amazon, they are amazing live. In fact, people have said that Phantogram (as the opening act) was better than the band they actually paid to see. TEN TIMES OUT OF TEN. I fully agree with an iTunes customer suggesting that "this is what music will sound like in 2010."
mwalker on 01/22/2010 at 10:15AM
Refreshed from a set of November dates opening for the Jesus Lizard, Noveller graced ISSUE Project last Thursday with her first show of the New Year – the labors of which are shared below. Noveller serves as the solo vehicle for Brooklyn-based sound artist, visual artist, and filmmaker Sarah Lipstate, who has worked with a diverse array of musicians: playing in Cold Cave and Parts & Labor, performing in the ensembles of twin towers of Downtown guitar music Glenn Branca and Rhys Chatham, and collaborating with Carlos Giffoni (whose No Fun Productions label put out her fantastic Red Rainbows album last year).
As Noveller, Ms. Lipstate sends beautifully constructed sheaths of complex colors drifting and swirling around elegant, crystalline loops of sparsely-picked guitar. In the performance of "Redgrave" (to be found on an upcoming 7” on FTAM), muted washes of shimmering chords float back and forth in slowed motions, framed by narrow streams of translucent sound that glide through the upper realms of the gloriously serene landscape, quivering with warm energy. A cleanly picked three-note guitar figure quietly emerges, oscillating in a steady but unhurried rhythm before vanishing back into the glowing haze. "Bleached Beach" (from a forthcoming album on Important Records) and "Under the Color Cave" (from the recent split LP with Aidan Baker) are equally gorgeous, but I’ll allow you the pleasure of exploring the details without further prattle from me.
lavenders on 01/21/2010 at 11:00PM
Golden Hits is a newly minted sound family formed by dublab drone dreamers Ben Knight (the Tyde), frosty (Adventure Time), Jimmy Tamborello (Dntel), Katie Byron (LA Building Club) and Nanny Cantaloupe (Brainsucking Peanunanners). Together they create spontaneous soundscapes to elevate ears in unique environments.
Please enjoy this ethereal mix of washed-out drones and glistening tinkles from Golden Hits' upcoming release Cassedits. You can hear more Golden Hits on their blog: http://goldenhits.tumblr.com
JoeMc on 01/21/2010 at 02:15PM
Not too many people would argue with the contention that jazz transformed American music. Before it, there was parlor music, the brass band, and sentimental balladry; afterwards, its brash energy and rawness spawned R&B, swing, rock 'n' roll, and so on. Key to this transformation was the jazz band's stripped-down approach to the blues, led by an instrument that has become so closely identified with the music that its very image can represent it: the saxophone. In a relatively short period of time, the sax became the quintessential jazz instrument, raised to prominence by such skilled practitioners as Ben Webster, Coleman Hawkins, Charlie Parker, and Lester Young.
But there was a time, before jazz, when the saxophone was considered little more than a honking novelty horn useful for circuses and comedy acts. It took the work of an unusual little group of saxophone afficionados called the Six Brown Brothers to raise the saxophone up from its comedic origins to a place of respect in the musical community. Listen below to hear one of their records, and read on for their story.