Album Review: Cherry Glazerr – Stuffed & Ready

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Artist: Cherry Glazerr

Album: Stuffed & Ready

Genre: Indie Rock/Alternative Rock/Indie Pop

Rating: 7/10

Clementine Creevy is pretty much the sole member of “Cherry Glazerr,” a band that formed in Los Angeles, California back in 2013, and the rotating lineup has allowed the band to reinvent themselves with each listen. Starting off as a lo-fi “Indie Rock” project, and then moving into a “Garage Rock” direction filled with youthful fervor, “Cherry Glazerr” has always emphasized instrumentation, knowing the importance of musicianship, and that strong focus on instrumentation has never been more apparent than on the band’s fourth album Stuffed & Ready. The production is polished and the instrumentation is immaculate trading in the raucous delivery of their previous work for lush layers of jangly “Dream Pop” reminiscent guitars that go from gentle and dreamy to loud and distortingly ear-splitting very often throughout the album. Lead singer and guitarist Clementine Creevy’s subtle vocals may not always match the intensity of the instrumentation, but her introspective lyricism that often focuses inward is intriguing and admirable. The lyrical content delves into themes such as uneasiness, uncertainty, and these themes are at times delivered in a self-deprecative tone. “My isolation is simple and stupid as me,” sings Creevy on the unsparingly honest track “Isolation.” The theme of solitude is often explored, and it’s faced head-on on the track “Self Explained,” where Creevy details the unfair pressure she puts on her self to go out and Socialize simply because she’s afraid of being alone. “I don’t want people to know how much time I spend alone” sings Creevy, and that brutal honesty and the sound of embarrassment in her voice leads to a heartbreaking listen. The track “Daddi” features a desperate need for guidance, and the lyrics are quite discomforting at times, but these songs are never self-deprecating or brutally melancholy for shock value. You can hear it in her voice that she’s taking herself to therapy by realizing and tackling the negatives to overcome them in an attempt to find her own personal liberty, and though the lush instrumentation can distract you from the words that are being said, it’s definitely worth it to delve into the lyrics, because they completely add new context to the songs when reading them. Compared to other artists within the genre who may deliver this style better, this album can seem inessential, but there’s no denying that this album is emotionally effective, and that maturity is captivating.

Written By: Steven Sandoval 

Date:02/05/19

 

Album Review: Le Butcherettes – bi/MENTAL

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Artist: Le Butcherettes

Album: bi/MENTAL

Genre: Alternative Rock/Post-Punk/Garage Rock/Art Rock

Rating: 8/10

Some musicians are just completely captivating, whether it be on record, or during a confrontational live show, some musicians just demand your attention. Teresa Suárez Cosío A.K.A. Terri Gender Bender is without a doubt one of those enthralling musicians. The Denver, Colorado born artist started playing guitar and writing songs at a very young age when her and her family moved to Mexico. She has embarked on countless music endeavors since she was fully established in the music business, everything from her “Bosnian Rainbows” project with frequent collaborator Omar Rodríguez-López, to her star-studded supergroup “Crystal Fairy,” you can bet she puts her blood, sweat, and tears into everything she does, but her main project, the one that has her full heart is “Le Butcherettes.” Starting out as a “Garage Rock” duo that drew a lot of influence from feminism, “Le Butcherettes” have had a rotating lineup throughout the years, which has lead the project to vastly shapeshift on each album. Their 2011 debut Sin Sin Sin was a minimalist howl that spoke on gender politics, their following album Cry Is For The Flies was a lot darker and sinister in nature without losing it’s thought provoking and immensely poetic lyricism, and the band’s third album A Raw Youth contained synth-heavy Glam with a grandiose presentation. One thing has remained among these style changes though, and that’s sole member Terri Gender Bender’s personality and distinct style. Her artistic style of deep cutting and sometimes zany vocals, raw and grungy guitar riffs, and her signature organ that sounds like a circus from Hell are all what makes her style so incredibly unique and intriguing, and on her new album with a new live band bi/MENTAL features all of these things and then some. Everything that has made the band so musically compelling is perfectly incorporated into the mix, but the melodic and lush delivery with an underlying sense of melancholy but strong self-aware ethos are all balanced out perfectly on this album, making this the band’s best work to date. bi/MENTAL is largely ambitious with artistic instrumentation filled with Proggy synths, “Post-Punk” ridden guitars, groovy basslines, and some of the best sounding drum work there has ever been on a “Le Butcherettes” record, but of course, the main thing that sticks out and immediately grabs the listeners attention is Terri Gender Bender’s impactful vocals and meaningful lyrics. There are recurring themes of mental illness and bipolar disorder on these songs, and how these things can be hereditary and run through a family’s bloodline. These subjects are poetically delivered and the myriad of changing emotions conveyed on these songs reflect the theme of bipolar disorder. One song can be about self-empowerment and conjuring up the courage to rid yourself of a toxic relationship like the track “strong/ENOUGH,” but then the emotion can completely change like on the track “in/THE END” where Terri sings “In the end we’re faithless. We’re just in search for guidance” speaking on the frantic and confused human condition. The ever-changing sentiments on these songs beautifully represent the mindset of most humans who can’t help but get lost in introspective thought, and Terri fearlessly delivers these themes, forcing you to hang on to every word that is said. Some of these tracks are largely collaborative. Jello Biafra of “Dead Kennedys” provides a spoken word outro on the opening track “spider/WAVES,” artist and activist Alice Bag provides vocals on the sinister sounding “mother/HOLDS,” and all of these songs are cleanly produced by Jerry Harrison of “Talking Heads” and “The Modern Lovers,” but as effective as these features are, none of them overshadow Terri Gender Bender. They probably couldn’t if they tried, because her artistry is completely captivating and it’s very evident that she is an important figure in modern “Rock.” There’s no doubt that she’ll continue to push the boundaries and provoke thought, and that is the kind of ambition we need in the music world today.

Written By: Steven Sandoval

Date: 02/04/19

Skating Polly Share New Music Video for “Free Will At Ease”

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Oklahoma trio “Skating Polly” released a fantastic album titled The Make It All Show earlier this year, a promising album that showed us that the band may very well be on their way to becoming a leading force in “Alternative Rock.” Today the band have shared a new music video for their track “Free Will At Ease.” You can watch the video below:

Ty Segall Announces New Covers Album “Fudge Sandwich”

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Does Ty Segall ever sleep? How does he have the time to make this much music? Well, whatever magical powers the guy has to remain this prolific, i’m sure glad he has them, because he usually makes quality music. Following his collaboration album with “White Fence,” which followed his incredible album Freedom’s Goblin, Ty Segall will release yet another album, but this time it is a cover album titled Fudge Sandwich, and it will be released on October 26th. Segall has shared a track off the upcoming album which is a cover of “Spencer Davis Group’s” “I’m a Man.” You can listen to the track as well as view the album’s tracklist below:

 

Fudge Sandwich Tracklist:

  1. Low Rider (War)
  2. I’m A Man (Spencer Davis Group)
  3. Isolation (John Lennon)
  4. Hit it And Quit it (Funkadelic)
  5. Class War (The Dils)
  6. The Loner (Neil Young)
  7. Pretty Miss Titty (Gong)
  8. Archangel Thunderbird (Amon Düül II)
  9. Rotten To The Core (Rudimentary Peni)
  10. St. Stephen (Grateful Dead)
  11. Slowboat (Sparks)

Thom Yorke Shares New Track From His Upcoming “Suspiria” Soundtrack

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If you’re a Horror fan, then chances are you’re eagerly anticipating the new “Suspiria” remake, and if you’re a fan of Thom Yorke, then chances are you’re eagerly anticipating the film score he composed for the film. If you just so happen to be a fan of both, well, I don’t need to explain how much of a treat it is to see both worlds intertwine. Now, to satisfy our hunger with a little appetizer, Thom Yorke has shared a track off the upcoming soundtrack titled “Suspirium.” The soundtrack will be released on October 26th, and the film will be released on November 2nd. You can listen to “Suspirium” below:

 

Album Review: Mitski – Be the Cowboy

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Artist: Mitski

Album: Be the Cowboy

Genre: Indie Rock/Alternative Rock

Rating: 9/10

It’s no secret that much of Mitski’s music is melancholy and tear-jerkingly sad, but the incredibly talented New York based musician does not want your pity. Singing with incredible passion, it’s hard not to assume that all of her music is autobiographical, but before going into her music one must understand that she is creating scenarios and maybe fictional characters, singing from the perspective of someone who has to go through these situations that are often dark and tap into a melancholy state of mind. That isn’t to say there isn’t truth behind these songs. Her last album Puberty 2 was an experience of immense fervor and music that frequently shifted from raw guitar-oriented “Rock” to bare “Indie Folk,” and lyrically it was hard to differentiate what was autobiographical from what was fiction, but you know what? That’s one of the many reasons why she is a beautiful songwriter. Her new album Be the Cowboy could have been another Puberty 2, and yes much of the melancholy vibes from that album drive this new album as well, but this time around the delivery and combination of infectious instrumentation and passionate vocals are near perfection. With lyrical themes that dwell in the more obsessive or co-dependent nature of being in a relationship or experiencing a breakup, this music can resonate with everyone, because we’ve all had to deal with the realization that romance isn’t all sunshine and kisses like the movies and love songs will have you believe, but instead of sounding bitter, Mitski uses this realization to meditate and to raise awareness on how unhealthy it is to lose your identity in someone else. However she is in by no means being preachy. She like many of us succumbs to the common unhealthy traits of our love hungry hearts. Traits like blaming the other person for a failed relationship like on the track “Why didn’t you stop me?” being afraid to let go of a previous lover even when you’re in a new relationship like on the track “Old Friend,” and the feeling of wanting to project an image of success and happiness to an ex, only to realize that the fact that you’re doing all of that just to prove independence to this person shows that they’re still very much on your mind like the track “Lonesome Love.” She is very much aware of our many flaws, and if this album has a central theme it would be realization. Many of us want to be remembered and can’t deal with the fact that we’re insignificant when it comes to the bigger picture of this world, she realizes that on the track “Remember My Name.” Many of us seek importance and flattery someone else can give us, she realizes this on the track “A Pearl,” and as much as this album focuses on our unhealthy traits, Mitski manages to prevent this album from being a real downer. The upbeat and light melodies of many of the instrumentation contrasts the lyrical content quite well. It’s almost as if she’s accepting of the fact that we are all co-dependent beings. It’s almost as if she’s celebrating these flaws. Finding beauty in this unhappiness, because she doesn’t have the answers. She’s merely projecting these feelings that can resonate with us all, and the loneliness anthem “Nobody” with it’s upbeat Disco-driven style is the album’s most shining moment that encourages us all to learn to live with ourselves and be comfortable with the fact that there are going to be a lot of situations where we’re going to be alone, and that’s okay. Mitski may seem like she’s on a mission to encourage us all to rid ourselves of our many toxic characteristics, but she’s simply spotlighting her own experiences of love, loss, and loneliness to tell a story or to therapize herself, and the music is all so relatable that it can help many get through tough times, it can even save a life. Mitski has proven herself to be one of the most important songwriters today.

Written By: Steven Sandoval

Date: 08/19/18

Mitski Releases New Song “Nobody”

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Mitski won’t drop her new album Be The Cowboy until August 17th, but she has shared another new track off the album titled “Nobody,” and it’s a moody track that speaks on loneliness and solitude, but at the same time it’s an encouragement to dance your loneliness away. You can listen to the track as well as watch the music video below:

Interpol Announce New Album “Marauder”

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Everyone’s favorite Post-Punk revivalists “Interpol” will release a new album titled Marauder on August 24th. This is the band’s first release since their 2014 album El Pintor. The band have also released a new track off the album titled “The Rover.” In a recent press conference held in Mexico City, frontman Paul Banks described that the album is “A facet of myself. That’s the guy that fucks up friendships and does crazy shit. He taught me a lot, but it’s representative of a persona that’s best left in song. In a way, this album is like giving him a name and putting him to bed.” You can listen to “The Rover” and watch the press conference below:

Album Review: Skating Polly – The Make It All Show

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Artist: Skating Polly 

Album: The Make It All Show

Genre: Alternative Rock

Rating: 7.5/10

 “Skating Polly” are a band from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The founding members are step-siblings Kelli Mayo and Peyton Bighorse, and they have been making Grungy and raw “Alternative Rock” since the beginning of this decade. Both beginning at a very young age, the two utilized their parents’ instruments to practice and practice, and it’s impressive how the two have perfected their multi-instrumentalist abilities, as well as their ability to write songs. It’s evident that the band have gotten better and better over the years releasing four full-length albums, each one better than the last. Their sound draws from 90’s “Alternative Rock,” “Grunge,” and even some “Riot grrrl” with their ferocious vocal delivery that echoes bands such as “Bikini Kill” or “Babes In Toyland.” Their new and fifth album The Make It All Show isn’t a drastic departure from their previous work, but the band went for a more melodic approach this time around, and with the addition of their brother Kurtis Mayo, the band are now a trio, and the result is a cleaner and fuller sound. The first few tracks on The Make It All Show are smooth guitar-driven fun rockin’ enough for those who love Rock but also poppy enough to win over those who love a good chorus, but the album doesn’t truly bite until the fourth track “Queen for a Day (feat. Exene Cervenka.)” This track starts off like the band are schooling us in “Sleater-Kinney” 101, but the explosive chorus that erupts displays the magic of “Pop” and “Rock” contrast. This album however is not all light. When these songs get heavy, THEY ARE FACE MELTING HEAVY with howling tumultuous vocals provided by Kelli Mayo who takes on the majority of the lead vocals. Tracks like “They’re Cheap (I’m Free),” “Camelot,” and “This Vacation” are grungy, dark, and absolutely passionate with pure unadulterated emotion. The lyrical content consists of the band’s reaction to their personal lives, getting away from their teen years and becoming young adults, and even though they are still youthful it’s perfectly clear being immersed in the music business at an early aged has matured them. With that raw emotion day one fans love them for, and with new “Pop” sensibilities, the band are displaying where they come from and where they are headed, and I couldn’t be more intrigued.

 

Written By: Steven Sandoval 

Date: 05/05/18

Album Review: Ganser – Odd Talk

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Artist: Ganser

Album: Odd Talk

Genre: Post-Punk/Noise Rock/Indie Rock

Rating: 7/10

 Chicago’s own four-piece Post-Punk/Noise Rock band “Ganser” have been making music as far back as 2015, releasing a myriad of singles and one stellar EP. Now with the aid of indie label “No Trend Records” the band have finally released their debut album Odd Talk. “No Trend Records” is fitting considering that the band doesn’t exactly make the kind of music that’s hip with most millennials, (you’re not going to hear any Trap hi-hats on this thing) but the band creates bone-crushing “Indie Rock” that will definitely resonate with those who still enjoy cutting edge Rock music, dismissing the ridiculous claim that “rock is dead.” Odd Talk is a short but hard-hitting crash course in the endless possibilities of Rock music. The band incorporates elements of “Post-Punk,” “Grunge,” and “Noise” and they do this while sounding accessible enough to keep casual music listeners from straying away. The vocals provided by both members Nadia Garofalo and Alicia Gaines ground the otherworldly wall of noise the instrumentation contains, and instead of burying the vocals into the mix like most artists in the realm of “Noise Rock” tend to do, the vocals are very noticeable and quite polished, and at the same time they are humble, not putting more importance on the vocals, which shows the listener that everyone in the band is equal. There is no star member, and they all work together as a unit. This is a pretty solid release, however the fact that this is the band’s debut is noticeable. Some tracks are a little rocky here and there and there’s much room for improvement, but I think the band have the chops to truly utilize their talent as a whole to perfect their songwriting abilities.

Written By: Steven Sandoval 

Date: 04/25/18