Vol. IX 2013
YEASAYER BRITISH INDIA
WHERE ARE THEY NOW?
LOCAL NATIVES THE WEEKND
WWW.NEWSOUNDMAGAZINE.COM SASKWATCH • STATE RADIO • CHANCE WATERS •JUNIP • CRYSTAL FIGHTERS • CHASE AND STATUS
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Letter From The Editor
ASHLEY GOLL Dear Readers, Thereâ€™s a rush or pleasure that people experience when listening to something new; something immediately likeable but different from the norm. Heartbeats race as basses drop, bodies sway to addictive guitar melodies, feet tap to pounding drums. The magazine youâ€™re holding is dedicated to recreating that experience for its readers, over and over again. New Sound Magazine is the start of something innovative. Something that is fresh, contemporary, and powerful. Were looking to become an authoritative voice in the music industry. We are doing so by scouring the music scene for fresh talent with the potential to make it big. Regardless of your person preference in music, we are bound to have everything from pop to rock to hip hop to electronic, and all variations in between. Our editions introduce local long island artists, New York City artists, alongside budding musicians from around he world, presented to you in interviews, album reviews, and our take on their live performances. New Sound is reaching out to every gifted new artist and seeing every concert possible in order to let you get inside the heads of the next generation of music. New Sound magazine is truly a cutting edge music publication, and on behalf of the entire staff, were pumped to keep sharing our editions with you. We want to help you find that new band which is going to give you inexorable pleasure. Weâ€™re ready to help you find the new sound!
PUBLISHER/CEO: PAUL CORACE EXECUTIVE EDITOR: JOE D’AMBROSI MANAGING EDITOR: ASHLEY GOLL SENIOR ART DIRECTOR: LOUIS H QUACH GRAPHIC DESIGNERS: WIN-KYE CHEONG MELISSA FEARON NICOLE MANZO SENIOR VIDEO EDITOR:
mission statement “New Sound Magazine spotlights both young, talented artists that have the potential to become the next big name in the music industry, and the truly brilliant bands which already have. We’re finding the voice you’ll fall in love with, the song you’ll play over and over, the concert you won’t want to miss.”
SCOTT GLICKMAN VIDEO EDITORS: NICK HERMS MEDIA CORRESPONDENT: ASHLEY GOLL CONTRIBUTING WRITERS: KATARINA BARONE JESSICA BERNATT BRIGID DESMOND MOLLY DESMOND ASHLEY GOLL CHRISTINA GOLL MICHAELA KREMER KEVIN SPERANDEO PHOTOGRAPHERS: MORGAN HARRISON HANNAH SINGLETON COVER ARTWORK: CONTACT: 631-757-3187
Album Reviews 6 8 10 12 16
Local Natives The Weeknd Ballyhoo! State Radio Sticky Fingers
Features 20 24 28 30 34
Saskwatch FIDLAR Chance waters Yeasayer British India
Check It Out 36 38 40 42 44
Chase and Status Crystal Fighters Rubble Bucket Sister Sparrow and The Dirty Birds Junip
Where are they now? 48 Phil Collins
Local Natives BY CHRISTINA GOLL
ummingbird picks up where Local Natives’ previous effort, the acclaimed Gorilla Manor, left off. It follows a formula that worked before, and continues to work, retaining the group’s sublime, lofty harmonies. What has changed over the course of three years however, are the lyrics. Hummingbird is an album that turns inward, exploring more introverted territory than its predecessor. Emotions are front and center on opening track “You & I,” in which lead vocalist Kelcey Ayer asks “Where did your love grow cold?” Before the listener is given a chance to process this candid question, Ayer proceeds to the next line, realizing “The closer I get / the farther I have to go / to places we don’t know.” The Sisyphean futility of Ayer’s lyrics is a gloomy indicator of what is to come on Hummingbird, as it delves deeper into an emotional abyss, buoyed only by lush instrumentation and cathartic harmonies. “Heavy Feet” is one of the most upbeat tracks on Hummingbird, featuring drums, guitar, and even clapping. However, listening beyond this optimistic melody reveals the inner grief that subtly dominates each song on the record. The chorus is composed of “After everything, after everything / Left in the sun, shivering / After everything,” with each repetition of “after” being protracted, reflecting the feeling of forsakenness encapsulated in the lyrics. Despite this, “Heavy Feet” is a song of cleansing. Ayer’s angst is released to the heavens through the harmonies, ridding him, at least for a moment, of the emotions that previously haunted him. Fourth track, “Black Spot,” begins with frenetic piano, soon accompanied by Ayer’s voice, sounding more distraught than before. His voice
enters and leaves the song, but the piano remains; an unsettling foundation resembling his anxious mental state. Soaring harmonies enter the song after the three minute mark, overpowering the piano, in a conquest of sound aided by electric guitar. Ayer’s mental demons have been banished for now. “Breakers” is welcome at this point in the album, both for its familiarity and its fluidity. Between its grandiose harmonies and crashing cymbals, lyrics expressing fatalistic fears return, commandeering the chorus. “Breathing out / Hoping to breathe in / I know nothing’s wrong, but I’m not convinced,” cries Ayer, succumbing again to an overwhelming tide of emotion. “Black Balloons” starts out with an infectious rhythm, intensifying after the chorus and expanding into something electric. But it is when the guitar is stripped down and lightly strummed, that it can be most appreciated. Ayer’s voice is left alone to utter a lone line before the build-up begins, restoring the rhythm to the deliciously ebullient guitar riff of before.I fell in love with this album! You must listen to it; the music they make has a way of sinking into your soul and becoming one with you. Designed By Melissa Fearon
BY CHRISTINA GOLL
t’s difficult to believe over two years have passed since Abel Tesfaye made his first on-record appearance as The Weeknd. The 23-year-old R&B upstart has had a dramatic rise from internet oddity to, as he states on the title track here, “Seeing the whole world in just twelve months.” That’s not bad for a guy just breaking into his twenties. In 2011, Tesfaye self-released three mixtapes, the first of which, House of Balloons, was a lyrically depraved document of the pitfalls of his life in Toronto. Skirting the lines between depression, selfloathing and misogyny, the project reached near-cult status in large part due to Tesfaye’s vocal performance that almost immediately garnered Michael Jackson comparisons. The hype surrounding his original mix tapes led to all three being packaged by Universal as Trilogy. Looking back, quite a bit has changed since his original offering: countless artists are biting his style, R&B in general has hit a new stride with Frank Ocean and Miguel as household names, and well-known artists are experimenting with atypical producers and beats. Lyrically, Tesfaye remains destructive, angry and utterly fascinating, still waxing poetic about a lonely, intoxicated party life. However, The Weeknd has begun conveying his emotional devastation without resorting to direct, graphic declarations. “Initiation” describes a terrifying scene of drugs and sex but saves its most salacious parts for the listener’s imagination, and “The Fall” (“I ain’t scared of the fall/ I’ve felt the ground before,” Tesfaye sings on the hook) is desperate without being disgusting. As much as an artist who has put out three full albums in less than a year can possibly mature, Tesfaye’s growth as a lyricist has begun to match his production expertise and wildly talented vocal skills. You must listen to these two tracks. They are my favorites. “Same Old Song” - “You never thought that I would ever go this far,” Tesfaye sneers in the face of someone who doubted him. A well-crafted comedown. “The Fall” - A distant but startlingly personal confession of the Weeknd’s fear of returning to an ordinary life after Designed by a meteoric rise. Win-Kye Cheong
BY ASHLEY GOLL
he album opens up with “Evil Penguin” which features a classical like piano introduction that is picked up by a well balanced mixture of power chords and upbeat strums to produce that punk rock/reggae sound that the band is known for and continues onto the next song “Last Night”. I feel as if the next three songs: “Diamonds”, “Say I’m Wrong” and “Walk Away” are associated and were specifically put in that order to tell a story about relationships. The song “Diamonds” is about finding that one person who you can’t stand to be away from and is everything you’ve ever wanted. The beginning talks about how some envision the person of their dreams to be absolutely perfect in every way. In reality we have to take the good with the bad and that the perfect person is just an ordinary as you or me or as lead singer Howi puts it, “a diamond in disguise”.
The single “Say I’m Wrong” is about having feelings for somebody who doesn’t feel the same way and is summed up by the chorus, “If standing up for this is wrong then I don’t want to be right.” Finally “Walk Away” is about realizing when the love is gone NEWSOUNDMAGAZINE.COM
from a hopeless relationship and it’s time to let go of everything and go separate ways. Things speed up with “Sandcastles” but then slow back down with the acoustic/electric track “If You Gotta Go”. “Meat Head” caught my attention within the opening seconds and quickly became my favorite track due to its energy and its splendid bass line. “Bootleggers” is a track that contains powerful lyrics about overcoming all the negativity faced in the entertainment business and using it to get to the top. The easy going tempo continues on to the next track “Antisocial” but is then picked up quickly by “The Get Away” which includes a first-class drum fill that you didn’t see coming and a well placed breakdown that reminds fans of how hard Ballyhoo! can throw down. The album is wrapped up with the final track “Ricochet” and features a similar piano style that was seen in the opening track. This track is an ideal conclusion to a wonderful album as it slows things down to leave listeners with a positive message that delivers a sense of security to those who are down on their luck. The message of ”Ricochet” is that things don’t always go as planned and sometimes life gets hard
but as long as you have your health and you stay focused you’ll be ok and eventually you’ll bounce back to the top. One thing that is easily noticeable about this album is how much Ballyhoo! has matured musically compared to previous releases. How displays an excellent use of guitar techniques throughout the album as almost every song features a guitar solo, progression or breakdown. Mista J has always provided the band with killer bass lines but he out did himself this time with some of his lines. Scott focuses more on the keys as his primary instrument on this album rather than his DJ equipment and although he does a great job on the keys I feel like there should have been more involvement with DJ effects. This band is known for being a party band and previous albums have featured typical party songs that contain lyrics involving sex, drugs or rock n’ roll. There is nothing wrong with having songs about partying but generally they contain no emotion. Daydreams features 12 songs that all have powerful lyrics and is the first Ballyhoo! Album to not have a song about partying and shows how much the band has matured not only musically but lyrically as well. These meaningful lyrics not only allow fans to listen to the music but to also feel the music. Designed by Melissa Fearon
ALBU REVI M EW
STATE RADIO BY K ATA R I N A BA RO N E
P HOTO S BY DREW GURIAN
ince their 2002 debut, Flag of the Shiners, State Radio have evolved as a band. Along with constantly picking-up and dropping new drummers, the group has realigned their sounds with all different genres. Their debut felt them experimenting with a raw, rock sound, while they eventually became a reggae-rock group. From there they turned away and took on an indie pop sound. Finally, we have their second full album release, Year of the Crow. This album perfectly blends elements of each genre of State Radio’s past into their own indie fusion sound with an unpredictable track list and extremely talented members. Whereas their first full length LP, Us Against the Crown, lacked in slow, monotonous, dragged-out jams, Year of the Crow cleans up its act and beats frantic drum beats and screaming vocals into our heads. Never the less, we still find ourselves grooving peacefully to the angelic anthems. Each song is played with full emotion and impassioned musicianship. Year of the Crow is just a group of three men spilling their hearts out into a superb album.
Almost every song on Year of the Crow is related somehow to politics. Yet somehow, not one song is about the same subject. Reoccurring themes of governmental issues and laughable bureaucratic jokes fall in and out of the spotlight of Year of the Crow. Far from being seen as political activists, State Radio’s politically “charged” lines never really shift the mood or the feeling of the music, they just add some gleeful and ironic moments to the listener. The first track, Guantanamo, is a prime example of this.“Jefferson roll over, tell old Stalin the news, They got ‘em locked up in castroland”and lines like“War president is a criminal”show disagreement towards the government, but these lines are not really the focus of the track. Lyrics like these show up constantly throughout Year of the Crow and are fleetingly small pleasures, but, as I’ve said before, they are not the focus of the album. So, let’s move on. Year of the Crow takes a dive into raw, powerful rock. While obviously not as badass as heavy metal, or as musically skilled as band like Zeppelin and Rage Against the Machine,
the pounding tracks succeed anyway. Gang of Thieves is excellently performed, with an intense, rasping screaming chorus and a bumping drum beat. While on the subject of screaming, the ear-splitting yelps at the end of Guantanamo will chill the listener to the core. The screams are nothing but raw emotion thrown out into our ears. It’s either frightfully beautiful, or gracefully chaotic. Either way, it is an interesting listen. CIA, on the other hand, is a tradition verse-chorus-verse-chorus-bridgechorus rock track. A harmonic bridge helps the track come along, while the obviously political track is less of a hateful sign against the government and more of the life of a CIA agent. The hard rock side of Year of the Crow is creatively paired most often with the reggae elements. Barn Storming, on of the album’s strongest tracks, is the story of a boy going off to fight overseas, but not without receiving a special present from a pretty girl. The lyrics are so entertaining they completely overshadow the psychedelically strange feedback sounds playing throughout the song. The horns are a nice addition to the song, giving it a more Designed by home-style, old-fashioned feel. Win-Kye Cheong
MISSION STATEMENT “New Sound Magazine spotlights both young, talented artists that have the potential to become the next big name in the music industry, and the truly brilliant bands which already have. We’re finding the voice you’ll fall in love with, the song you’ll play over and over, the concert you won’t want to miss.”
Info@NewSoundMagazine.us (631) 757-3187
Sticky Fingers BY: A S H L E Y G O L L
PHOTO COURTESY OF STICKY FINGERS
PHOTO COURTESY OF STICKY FINGERS
or a band to survive on the touring circuit these days, they need to make sure that their music is easy to dance to. Luckily, the Fingers have that down with their reggae and dub grooves, which are the essence of their appeal. Add to that a serious rock attitude and the band is a power to be reckoned with. Their debut album is incredibly well put together, which is perhaps surprising, considering the personalities and craziness surrounding the band.
band received from another act, and it sums up their reckless yet pure rock’n’roll attitude. As long as they don’t implode, Sticky Fingers could well become the best up and coming local band on the scene.
Sticky Fingers are a band’s band and fortunately none of them are overplaying or trying to hog the limelight. On the beautifully produced Freddy Crabs, the playing is subtle and reflects a band who knows how to play to their weaknesses. Included in the album artwork is a great letter of complaint that the
deservedly landed number 61 in the Hottest 100. It's one of those great songs that crosses genres, styles, and boundaries, and is enjoyed by fans of many different types of music – which is also a large part of the band's overall appeal.Caress Your Soul is a fine album. Well played, lads.
With an ever-growing reputation as a seriously hard-working touring band, and a couple of singles getting heavy radio rotation (including the ubiquitous title track), Sticky Fingers have had a pretty massive year, and the quality of this album The singles, Caress Your Soul and Clouds is proof of all their hard work paying off. The And Cream, are enticing enough and a perfect appeal of their live show is evident in the danceable introduction to the album. How To Fly’s a radio nature of a lot of their songs, rooted in reggae favorite and one of the record’s best moments, with rhythms with plenty of rock and psych influences Dylan Frost honing in on some great lyrics and peppered throughout, and in the 'gang' mentality phrasing. The band’s Newtown indie background the band seem to possess – a powerful force for gets a look in on Australia Street and they touch a “work hard, play hard” band like Sticky Fingers. upon partying and local trivia without clubbing th Of course, most people will know Sticky Fingers e listener over the head with how cool they all are. for the excellent single 'Caress Your Soul'; it having
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BY MICHAEL A KREMER
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think everyone can agree that Australia is the coolest thing ever. I mean it’s no argument that all of us want to go there and possibly live the rest of our lives there. I feel like with this said, we tend to forget about the emerging Australia music scene. What else is everyone obsessed with right now? Retro 50’s big band music? I’m talking to you hipsters! If you are looking for the hippest of the hip new bands to listen to Saskwatch should be on the top of your list.
his nine-piece, lady fronted, R&B/Soul band from Melbourne, Australia is an up and coming band with all the musical charm of decades past. Their upbeat and catchy songs are complimented with an electric horn section and pulled together with a super tight rhythm section. Their beautiful and talented lead singer, Nkechi Anele’s voice is smooth and luscious and absolutely the perfect centerpiece for this old-school style music. The band released their first album entitled, Leave it all Behind, in 2012. They received a lot of attention for the single off of this album called, Your Love, both in Australia and across Europe. The album art is fantasticly funky, including vintage photographs of the 50’s and 60’s era, of people “shaking it”, to completely embody the bands style and sound. Saskwatch’s new single, I Get Lonley, is a dancy new addition to the bands repertoire, and makes me super excited to see what’s next for this up-and-coming band. They have been touring only in Australia for the most part, but there has been some talk of an upcoming European tour. Unlucky for us Americans, but It could be just the excuse your looking for to book that Australia trip you have been talking about for years. They did make it to the world’s biggest music festival, Glastonbury, which really pushed them to a new level. As well as preforming with musical legends like, Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings and Earth, Wind and Fire. Saskwatch is the perfect thing to brighten your mood during this frozen tundra winter we’re having. You can help but shake your thang (yes, thang) until you are transported you to the beach-front dance party you have been wishing for. Plus, all of your friends will think you are super hip and on the cutting edge of the world music scene when you add them to your party playlist. Check out these guys and be ahead of the game for the guaranteed to be breakout artists of Summer 2014. Designed By Win-Kye Cheong
BY K ATA R I N A BARONE
photos courtesy of FIDLAR
s the four young men in FIDLAR discuss the origin story of their brash, beery, and dangerously catchy garage-rock band, lead singer Zac Carper remembers talking about how, one way or the other, they were absolutely going to have the word “fuck” in their name. The FIDLAR moniker reflects their roots in Los Angeles skate culture (it’s a popular acronym meaning “Fuck It Dog, Life’s A Risk”) as well as the philosophy behind live-in-themoment, crash-and-burn ragers like “Cheap Beer” and “Wake Bake Skate” But Carper’s original idea-- taken from a bloodied t-shirt-- would’ve fit just as well: Fuck the Clock. Gloriously,these guys don’t have a handle on an honest day’s work just yet. When they started in 2009, seeing FIDLAR meant showing up to a house party and eventually having this exchange with one of them. Zac Carper, The bands guitarist and singer (well, one of ‘em) would hand you a red cup , throw an arm around your neck and probably end up blurting out how fucked up he was. Their set list would read more like a grocery list of party supplies than a list of songs: “Cocaine. Cheap Beer. Chinese weed. Four Loko.” After a few years of being a band Zac still plugs in his pedals attached to a skate deck (“Pedal board”, get it?) and says “Hi We’re FIDLAR: F-I-D-L-A-R. It means ‘Fuck It Dog, Life’s a Risk”. Seeing a FIDLAR set consists of drinking and dancing with people that are twice as drunk as you are while the band rips through songs about what they know best: The girl doesn’t call, my ex is a whore, I lost my phone, my car is a piece of shit, my friends are pieces of shit, I do too many drugs, I’m really awkward, I love Del Taco. FIDLAR is Zac Carper, Elvis Kuehn, Brandon Schwartzel, and Max Kuehn. Elvis and Zac met at Kingsize Soundlabs in LA and recorded a ton of demos with the band before playing a live show. Their first show was on a FMLY bike ride at a skatepark in Culver City. Three years later the band has played with Black Lips, OFF!, Japanther and toured with The Hives. They’ve released two EP’s and just got back from touring Europe Anyone who has seen the group before wouldn’t be surprised that more and more of the area’s youth are attracted to its fiery anthems about skating, various intoxicants and Del Taco, as they uninhibitedly capture the reality of late-teen years. What’s surprising is just how fast that popularity has arrived, given the band’s self-titled debut was only released in January and FIDLAR had previously filled rooms not even half the size of the Designed By Observatory. Win-Kye Cheong
Hip-Hop/Indie/Pop/Vegan BY BRIGID DESMOND
hance Waters is an 26 yr old record producer/ indie hip hop artist hailing from Sydney, Australia. In 2009 he independently released his debut album Inkstains. Celebrated for his songs Young & Dumb and Maybe Tomorrow, both of which received significant Australian national radio play . Waters has toured in support of many of Australia’s biggest hip-hop acts featuring “The Herd” and “Bliss N Eso” .In 2009 Myspace gave odes to Waters gaining popularity and honored with him a front page feature. Waters was also a Featured Artist on Triple J Unearthed - A national youth broadcaster campaign to seek out and promote talented unsigned Australian artists. In 2011 Waters released acoustic versions of songs from Inkstains. The EP’s single Build It Up featured folk band artist Charlie Mayfair. Using the momentum achieved from his acoustic album Waters set out on what would probably be the first acoustic Australian acoustic hip hop tour in Australia. At the end of 2011 Waters released the Approaching Infinity mix tape. Which included a remix of Gotye’s claim to fame single “Somebody That I Used To Know” which saw chart success on European radio. In August 2012 Chance Waters announced he was releasing his new album Infinity. In November 2012 Waters was nominated for the Unearthed J Award and released his sophomore record Infinity which also signified his first top 100 album,. Young & Dumb would later go on to place at #45 in the Triple J Hottest 100. You can check Chance out on Myspace, Twitter and Youtube to name a few. His Facebook page reveals his more passionate side providing insight to his political beliefs. Its not difficult to find that Chance has a strong conviction to animal welfare and that of unsigned artist both of which he contributes ample amount of time and energy and sets him apart from superficial hip hop jargon. Chance Waters has committed himself to perform in multiple music festivals, Rip it up, The Big Pineapple Festival and Sydney Big Day Out being just a few of them. Designed by Melissa Fearon
BY M O L LY D E S M O N D
easayer is an American psychedelic pop band from Brooklyn, New York. The band was formed in 2006 and consists Chris Keating, Ira Wold Tuton, Anand Wilder, and Cale Parks. They self describe their sound as “Middle Eastern psych-snap-gospel.” Their influences include Bollywood, 70s tracks, Mapfumo records, and Celtic music. Yeasayer first came to attention after appearing in the SXSW festival in 2007. They were an instant hit, thanks in part to their use of psychedelic visuals while preforming. Shortly after, the released their first single, a double A-side with the tracks “Sunrise” and “2080.” Both appeared on their debut album, “All Hour Cymbols” which was released in October 2007. The LP was packed with moments of pan-ethnic spiritualism filtered through walls of echo and layers of gossamer synth. In February 2010, the band released their second album, “Odd Blood.” This album featured more pop influences than their previous work did and was self produced. The band experimented with different types of instruments and recording machines. The idea was to marry sonic experimentation with pop structures and create a cohesive merging of genres. They explored a variety of themes such as boxing, addiction, paranoia, and several love songs. It was well received critically with high placements on several best album lists including Time, Spin, and Under the Radar. Yeasayer toured extensively for this album. They preformed all over the world at several music festivals including Coachella,
the Dutch Pinkpop, and Latitude Festival in England. In April 2011 they released an almost sequel to “Odd Blood” titled “End Blood.” The band described is as “ideas that didn’t fit on Odd Blood.” “Fragrant World,” Yeasayers third album dropped in August 2012. They leaked the song “Henrietta” directly to 200 random fans by mailing them physical CDs. The rest of the album was leaked via an online scavenger hunt. They gave fans clues where each song and an accompanying visual directed by Yoshi Sodeoka could be found. Yeasayer preformed their single “Longevity” on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon to further promote the album and reach a new audience. Unlike their last album, they shied away from pop influences. The rhythms are a bit more abstract this time around. Yeasayer went on the Fragrant World Tour later that year. They partnered with Casey Reas and The Creative Project to develop interactive set made of mirrored-prism like structures. Their consistent creativity with their shows keeps fans intrigued and coming back for more. Yeasayer almost posses an air of mystery. On November 12, the band released a live album titled “Good Evening Washington DC, Live at 9:30 Club.” It was recorded while on their Fragrant World Tour in 2012 while in Washington DC. This past summer in June, Yeasayer announced on their Facebook page that they had started working on their fourth album. It should be interesting to see how the grow from their past albums and what type of genres they experiment with this time. Designed by Win-Kye Cheong
BY ASHLEY GOLL
ritish India has resisted the lure of signing with a record label for SEVEN years. This band has four members and is from Melbourne. British India signed a long-term recording and publishing deal with Liberation and Mushroom! Band members; Declan (Vocals,guitar) Nic Wilson (guitar), Will Drummond(bass), and Matt O’Gorman(drums) have done everything independently since the release of their debut album in 2007. Their first album released as a signed band is titled “Controller” It is a very matured sound and very assuring as a whole. The bands energetic garage rock tends to linger on tracks Another Christmas in the Trenches and Twice Inna Lifetime. These sounds are undeniably much more radiofriendly with their singles.
“In many ways this feels like our second album because NEWSOUNDMAGAZINE.COM
everything on the previous albums was made in such a blur of partying and drinking,” Declan Melia of British India says. “With this one we really took stock and worked out what the band wants and what it needs.”
reaction as what it has,” admits Melia. “It’s a strange one for us. It’s in B-minor and it’s sad and long. It’s not what you expect from a winning single.”
This isn’t surprising considering Controller, British India’s fourth studio album, took three years to come to fruition, with the band losing their distributor and studio space when their former label Shock Records went into administration. Rip It Up finds out how British India rose above their adversity to create what may be their most accomplished work yet.
The way the world sees music in this day and age is different from what people saw back then. A couple decades ago people would go to shows to see the band or artist performing live in a very casual setting. In today’s music industry everything is very extreme and in your face. The reasoning for this is that people wanted more excitement rather than just playing on stage; they wanted a roar! Something to look at rather than just the performers. Many crazy effects have been used to the music industry’s advantage.
“Things were looking pretty dark,” Melia admits. “I had horrible writer’s block to make things worse, which was something I’d never experienced before.” British India approached this potentially fatal situation methodically. “It was a problem and then that problem became a challenge. So far we’ve been pretty good with challenges. We were also pretty lucky, courting Liberation to get them on board, even though it took over 12 months, making it feel like the longest, most drawn out signing process in the history of the world.”
Designed by Melissa Fearon
Once they had snared Liberation things immediately kicked back into action. “Once we were signed the floodgates opened as far as writing goes. We made I Can Make You Love Me, which really set the bar for writing and gave us direction for the album. The rest was just trying to pull ourselves out of a tough situation. We were well aware that if we didn’t step up it would be goodbye British India.” I Can Make You Love Me is definitely a point of difference to the fodder that filled British India’s past three albums, marking a more poignant and emotional imprint. “We didn’t expect I Can Make You Love Me to have as strong of a
BY ASHLEY GOLL
f you were looking for an artist who embodies the rise in dance music’s commercial fortunes, you could do worse than alight on Chase and Status. Saul Milton and Will Kennard began their career a decade ago, releasing a dub step-infused take on what would once have been called nu-school breaks. Theirs was not commercial music, and their ambitions were humble: to get their records played on Kiss FM’s specialist shows and to sign to a label called Renegade Hardware. In fairness, Renegade Hardware is hugely respected in drum’n’bass circles, but you only have to look at the rest of its roster – Konflict, Loxy & Ink, Spor, Raiden – to see this wasn’t exactly a lunge for householdname ubiquity. Designed by Melissa Fearon
BY ASHLEY GOLL
rystal Fighters have spent much of the past two years on the road, with countless headline shows from Europe to Australia, Russia to Japan and beyond. The summer of 2011 saw the band perform at over 40 festivals, from late night raves at Bestival (UK) and Benicassim (Spain) to bewitching crowds at Montreux Jazz (Switzerland) and Moseley Folk Festival (UK). Last fall, having previously supported Foals, the band sold out their Shepherdâ€š Bush Empire headline show in London. Since coming together in 2007, Crystal Fighters have earned ecstatic acclaim for their unprecedented fusion of experimental electronic, punk rock beats and the organic folk instruments of the Basque region of Spain. The band name Crystal Fighters came from an opera composed by enigmatic Basque singer Laure Stockley grandfather in the latter years of insanity, which Sebastian, Graham & Gilbert, the core of the band, describe as a bizarre poetical opera about Basque music, Basque mythology and his experiences in the Basque country when he was growing up and the world around him. Profoundly inspired by the opera and the dark, melodic sounds of traditional Spanish folk music, the group soon began melding unique Basque instruments like txalaparta, Dan Bolin, and txistu with booming baselines and euphoric electronic fun Crystal Fighters were born. Designed by Melissa Fearon
BY: KATARINA BARONE
Speakeasy today premieres the title track. Recorded in Brooklyn with Tom Biller, who co-produced with the band, “Save Charlie” follows last year’s EP “Oversaturated,” which was the follow-up to their 2011 LP “Omega La La.” That album, their third, was the band’s breakthrough, thanks to all that touring, as well as the catchy song
and imaginative video “Came Out of a Lady,” which helped bring the band to a wider audience. The song “Save Charlie” follows the Rubblebucket template, which is to say, no template at all. It’s an eclectic jumble of sounds and styles, piling horns atop a scratchy funk guitar line and a booming danceable beat buoying up Traver’s breathy voice. DESIGNED BY
PHOTO COURTESY OF SHERVIN LAINEZ
t’s not that Rubblebucket disappeared over the past year or so, though the Brooklyn band did ease back slightly on its tendency to tour hard — but only so singer Kalmia Traver and bandleader/ trumpeter Alex Toth could write new music. Those efforts are about to bear fruit: Rubblebucket releases a new EP, “Save Charlie,” in September, and
P h oto Cour tesy of Sis ter Sparrow and The Dir ty B i rds
BY ASHLEY GOLL
ister Sparrow & the Dirty Birds is an eight-piece powerhouse that puts a modern spin on classic soul. The band is led by Arleigh Kincheloe (Sister Sparrow), whose astoundingly powerful voice and sly demeanor make for a spellbinding presence onstage. She is backed by the mighty force of The Dirty Birds, a flock of seven men who masterfully lay down thundering grooves and soaring melodies. While each of the Birds is capable of lighting up the stage with jawdropping displays of musicianship, it’s clear they’re focused on delivering the band’s infectious music as a single entity. Simply put, the band’s live show is explosive! 2012 was a breakout year for the eight piece soul/rock outfit Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds. The band closed out the year with two nights of opening for Gov’t Mule, which included a night at the famed Beacon Theatre in New York. They played more than 150 shows in 35 states for the second year in a row, and their high-energy show is in high demand after scorching sets at festivals as Bonnaroo, Mountain Jam’s main stage, the Voodoo Experience, and the Clearwater Jazz Holiday, where they opened for The Avett Brothers.
UP COM IN G SH OWS
Designed by Win-Kye Cheong
December 31st January 30th January 31st February 1st
The Space @ Westbury The Sellersville Theater Brooklyn Bowl Live at The Baby Grand
JUNIP BY ASHLEY GOLL
osé González is describing the entire process writing, recording, life – that went into the creation of Junip, the upcoming, self-titled album from the band he fronts alongside drummer Elias Araya and keyboardist Tobias Winterkorn, due for release on April 23rd by Mute. “All the ups and downs were very ‘Junip,’” he adds, “so titling it with our name seemed appropriately iconic. It’s truly a band album.” The distinction is important in Junip’s case, whose evolution has been a long, strange trip, indeed. The group actually formed in 1998 in Gothenburg, Sweden, but Junip didn’t actually release its acclaimed first album, Fields, until 2010. That delay stemmed largely from the success of González as a solo
artist. The renowned singer-songwriter found international acceptance with his individual albums, 2003’s Veneer and 2007’s In Our Nature, which went on to sell over a million albums worldwide; audiences were captivated by the stark combination of González’s uniquely haunting voice and sinuous acoustic guitar on hits like “Crosses” and “Down The Line,” and distinctive interpretations of covers like The Knife’s “Heartbeats.” They were startled and beguiled, then, by hearing González in Junip’s band context, and one with such a propulsive, experimental bent: sprawling away from the stark folk aesthetic of González’s solo efforts. Designed by Win-Kye Cheong
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Competition Toyota Cares About Supporting The Community We Live And Work In
COMPETITION TOYOTA/SCION 910 Middle Country Rd., Middle Island, NY CompetitionToyota.com 1-855-202-9596
U pc o m i n g Albums JANUARY 13TH 2014
Black Knights Medieval Chamber
Bruce Springsteen High Hopes
East India Youth Total Strife Forever
Dubb Never Content (Mixtape) (Deluxe Edition)
James Vincent McMorrow Post Tropical
Lucinda Williams Lucinda Williams [Reissue]
Rosanne Cash The River & The Thread
Broken Bells After the Disco
Kid Cudi Satellite Flight: The Journey To Mother Moon [EP]
Mark Lanegan Has God Seen My Shadow? An Anthology 1989-2011
Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings Give the People What They Want
Supersuckers Get the Hell
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Music Videos LIVE Performances Artist/Band Demos Professional Recording Services World-Class Platinum Music Productions Specializing In All Aspects of Production From Pre-Production to Post-Production Two Studio Locations in Deer Park, NY Please Contact:
Joe Dâ€™Ambrosi ( 6 31 ) 37 9 - 74 4 8
Collins BY ASHLEY GOLL
orn in London in 1975, Phil Collins became one of the most successful musicians in the world during the 1980s after having replaced Peter Gabriel as the face of Genesis in 1975. Between 1984 and 1990 he released 13 U.S. Top Ten hits, including “In the Air Tonight,” “You Can’t Hurry Love” and “I Don’t Care Anymore”. From an early age, Phil showed a preference for the stage and music. His love for the drums began at the age of 5, when he was given a toy drum kit. By the age of 12, Collins had a real set of drums and played every chance he could get. When he was 13 Collins, a talented actor, was offered the chance to play the role of the Artful Dodger in the London production of Oliver! To take on the part, Collins left the Chiswick Grammar School with his parents blessing, and enrolled in the Barbara Speake Stage School.
More significantly, Collins teamed with a few fellow students to form his first band, The Real Thing. Other opportunities followed, but his first big break came in 1970 when he answered a newspaper advertisement from a Surrey band named Genesis that needed a drummer and backup vocalist. These days, Collins, a father of five, is more a family man than a musician. In March 2011, he made the transition official when Collins, who battled a series of health issues including a spinal problem that forced him to stop playing the drums, announced he was retiring from music. “I really don’t belong in that world,” stated Collins, who chose instead to help raise his two young sons with his third wife, Orianne. That same year, Genesis was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Designed By Win-Kye Cheong
WHERE ARE THEY NOW?
UPCOMING SHOWS F R I D AY , D E C E M B E R 2 7 TH Angel Dust // Gramercy Theater Sean Tyas // Slake Marvin Berry & The New Sound // The Acheron Rhino House Band // Sidewalk Cafe Rachel Stern // The Path CafĂŠ Ballyhoo! // Brooklyn Bowl
S A T U R D AY , D E C E M B E R 2 8 TH Hardwell // Pacha NYC The Fab Faux // City Winery Cathy Kreger // Buoy One The Shiners // Bowery Electric Punch Brothers // The Bowery Ballroom
Photo Courtesy of Dirty Sugar Photography
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