Released: November 2014
This month, we have a very unique album for you. Doon Womp is a compilation of songs from Opusoid, AKA Age A, AKA A.J. Leone, whose track "ground's core" has received a lot of buzz from our Feedbands listeners. We hesitate to even attempt to assign Opusoid a genre. Even A.J. himself struggles, saying the best word to describe his sound would be "playful."
Combining Afro-Latin influences, jazz improvisations, live percussion loops, and completely organic sounds, Opusoid creates a genuinely interesting and inimitable overall sound. By relying on the natural rhythms of live performance, the artist is able to weave together compositions that take you on a ride, never staying in one place for long.
You'll hear brassy horns, clapping hands, electric guitar fuzz, heavy bass lines, a whole slew of various percussion from beatboxing to bongos, and even some dubstep wub-wub. All we can say is you'll have to hear it for yourself, so hang on tight—this one-of-a-kind listening experience is about to blow your mind.
Listen to a sample from their album
Released: October 2014
Despite their name, the Acid House is most definitely not an acid house band. More like indie rock bordering on folk. This Brooklyn-based band has the same sort of electric guitar melodies, up-tempo rhythms, and hi-hat heavy drumming that's indicative of Oasis. The similarity is particularly keen in the opening of their song "That Feeling" which rings of "Champagne Supernova."
They're a guitar-driven group, fully utilizing a combination of strumming and picking. The finger work adds an element of the Tallest Man on Earth. The vocals, however, are very much not. No, the Acid House strikes an interesting balance between Liam Gallagher's slight twang and the sort of raucous, rousing, "everybody now!" half-shouts you tend to expect from, say, the Sex Pistols.
All in all, the Acid House is fun and easy, just a tad groovy—think: late afternoon running through a sunny field of long grass. Think: Instagram filters in the '90s. Think: a touch of that Coca-Cola commercial from 1971. It's impossible to not sway your head along.
Released: September 2014
As a self-described "neo-psychedelic sex-punk for the teenage soul" band, May McDonough & Co. is a little bit doo-wop, a little bit rock'n'roll, and they seem to know that their sound defies genre just enough keep you slightly confused but completely along for the ride. With titles like "Little Hemingways" and "Kristen Wiig" off their new albumbullyboywithaglasseye, this Los Angeles group dangles their modern pop culture references alongside 60s-inspired jams with a wink and smirk. May's jazzy voice is like Shirley Manson meets Jessica Rabbit, and it echoes around bass-heavy melodies and good ol' fashioned rock guitar with a sultry ease. Yet there's a wryness to the lyrics that gives May a dangerous edge, but it's so smooth that you just might forget.
However, let's not forget the psychedelia amidst the neo-sex-punk-ness. Odd samples and guitar warbles plus some unusual and creative percussion definitely add some Jefferson Airplane vibes to this trio's sound. Accompanied by May's words almost drawled in a Kurt Cobain-like way, the result is the slow, winding sort of psychadelia that keeps you rolling down the rabbit hole, perhaps blissfully unaware.
Released: August 2014
As summer comes to an end, we're bringing you some good ol' fashioned Americana from Nashville/LA duo Smooth Hound Smith.
Simply by being a male-and-female folk duo, they call to mind the White Stripes, the Civil Wars, and Damien Rice and Lisa Hannigan (that last one particularly because both duos cover Nina Simone's "Be My Husband") but their music has many other unique influences.
Their track "Body Talkin'" has a samba vibe in the same way that Jack Johnson's "Belle" does. "Blue Dress" and "30 Days" are foot-stomping, bluegrass-influenced tunes with fast finger-picking and syncopated percussions. "Steal Your Crown" is as rhythm and blues as all get-out, while "Young and Golden" could be the outro for the next major indie flick.
Overall, there's a humble simplicity to this album, with the only musical accompaniment in some songs being a guitar and clapping hands or a kick drum and tambourine. It's down to earth in exactly the way roots music is supposed to be. It's comfortable and easy to listen to, but by no means boring; it's upbeat but soulful, time-worn but polished, and basically a good time for all.
Released: July 2014
Hold on to your hats because this month we're pulling out the stops and cranking the amps up to 11 to bring you some funky hard rock that's hot enough to light your Fourth of July fireworks. Kings of Spade are a raw and grungy mix of alt. rock and soul, with amazing electric guitar riffs and powerful bluesy vocals that channel Janis Joplin. Good luck trying to keep your feet on the floor; these kings pack a powerful punch that will get you shamelessly foot-stomping. Every track is so high-energy we wonder how they manage to play a full set without passing out.
Their choruses are catchy and upbeat, their verses are poetic and creative, and their bridges emphasize the group's penchant for bending genres. Expect some subtle Bollywood rhythms and Jawaiian beats—after all, these rockers hail from Honolulu, and they seem to embody Hawaii's modern music history with their versatility. They have no problem going from headbanging hard rock to bluesy psychadelia to fun dance-pop. Any way you slice it, Kings of Spade is here to give you a rollicking good time, and like their Feedbands chart-topping single says, "ain't gonna tame this child.
Released: June 2014
This month, we are so excited to bring you the truly amazing Mammoth Indigo. These Virginia natives have struck much more than chords with us, and we hope they will for you too. In fact, it seems they already have, judging by the fact that both of their Feedbands tracks, "No Mothers" and "Rapture," have been holding steady at the top of our charts for many weeks now.
This alternative/indie/post-rock band has a tempered roughness that does not come easily. Much like other post-rock groups such as the Appleseed Cast, Minus the Bear, and Colour Revolt, Mammoth Indigo has no trouble going from melodic guitar and soft folky vocals to pounding drums and lyrics like war chants. Many of their songs feel as though they could erupt into screams at any moment, but don't. In parts, they have the solemn sing-song rhythm of some Modest Mouse tracks; in others, the intense percussion and epic guitar riffs of Brand New or Manchester Orchestra.
Frontman and former solo artist Cody Bowers has a voice like frontman-turned-solo-artist Ryan O'Neal aka Sleeping at Last: breathy and gentle but powerful and raw; it suits his lyrics perfectly. He writes pure poetry, telling a story with every song. His lyrics mirror his music in that they can transition from simple to guttural in the span of a song: "No Mothers" begins with a common enough image accompanying just a guitar, but by its ending, it's all pounding drums, electric guitar, and layered chants. Overall, there's some dreamy indie verses, some big soaring choruses, and high production value, making for one very impressive band.
Released: May 2014
If our May release doesn’t make you want to road trip to the coast, you’re listening wrong. (Or perhaps not listening at all; they’ve got a track called “Pretty on the West Coast,” and it doesn’t get much more obvious than that.) San Francisco band Be Calm Honcho has everything you need for a day at the beach: reggae grooves, mind-blowing guitar riffs, and beats that are impossible not to bop along to.
The unique vocals call to mind the old-school combination of belting and whispering; there’s rawness and grit, but with some soft spots. Lyrics about love–lost and won–find their place among odes to California, words of encouragement, and pure poetry. There’s unexpected spoken word, odd yet lovely, with new age-y lyrics in an intro-to-“My Boyfriend’s Back” kind of voice. It all comes together in a mix perfect for sunbathing in the late afternoon and gently rolling into slow dancing and bonfire building.
With a sound that’s part Best Coast, part Edie Brickell, Be Calm Honcho makes for the perfect soundtrack for your summer, whether you’re hitting the road, dancing in the surf, or soaking up the sun. This funky, groovy group has a true jam-band vibe, but with such talented control that they’re capable of bouncing seamlessly from sock-hop to punk rock to waltz, and we are all too obliged to come along for the ride.
Released: April 2014
This month's record is the first album from San Jose duo Brother Grand, whose sound defies genre, but is perhaps most aptly called "something akin to blues." Their music is driven by the combination of an upright bass and vocals (guitar, keyboard, and banjo all work hard as well, with tambourine, floor tom, and cymbal lending a hand), which are masterfully manipulated and pushed to their fullest extent with a certain unconventional grit. The result is all at once sorrowful and uplifting; it's nothing if not visceral.
Brother Grand has a jam-band element to their winding style, and they may go off on bow-hair-breaking tangents, but they remarkably never lose the beat. Moreover, they always come back to it. Each track takes you on a journey with many paths, and there are tempo changes so drastic (yet seamless) that many tracks seem composed of several songs. The album as a whole is truly a tribute to each man's musicianship.
This album is also particularly unique because it's a live recording. Now, there are plenty of sub-par live recordings out there or simply bands who don't sound best live, but let's be clear: Brother Grand is definitively not one of those bands. Their music almost needs the audio "space" afforded by live recordings. They fill a room (or several rooms, as when they played for us in the Feedbands office last November) with powerful and haunting sound-all the more impressive considering the group consists of two people. Brother Grand's music already has an old-school roughness that would make it suitable for vinyl, but the live aspect just drives the point home: some music is just too large, too dynamic, too (dare we say) grand to be contained in a digital format.
Released: March 2014
In putting an end (hopefully) to this brutal and bizarre winter, Feedbands is giving you something crazily fun and upbeat to launch you into spring. Our band for March is none other than the Non-Commissioned Officers whose hit single "Ahead of the Wave" rose to the top of the Feedbands charts so quickly that we thought there might have been a technological glitch in our system. Luckily it was simply the track's surf-rock vibe and catchy refrain causing its sudden stardom.
The innovating writing, indie pop-rock sound, and high production value continue throughout the rest of the Non-Coms' album with some obvious Beach Boys and Billie Joel influences. The Nashville group, formed by two brothers for the purpose of scoring an independent film, is committed to created rich music that showcases its members' musical know-how. The band's style of mixing modern ambient with classic pop could land them among the many indie groups blooming out of liberal arts college campuses, but the Non-Coms' acumen and willingness to play with their genre while paying tribute to what came before is what sets them among the greats.
Listen to a few samples from their album
Released: February 2014
Oakland native Lynx is already an accomplished musician in her own right, with two albums, collaborations with artists like Matisyahu and Beats Antique, and performances all over the world including music festivals Austin City Limits and Coachella, plus a recent music video under her belt. But she hasn't released a vinyl record... until now. This talented multi-instrumentalist combines elements of many diverse genres with gorgeous results in her album Light Up Your Lantern. As a self-described creator of "folktronica," Lynx mates mandolins with electric keyboards and tambourines with synth beats for a sound that's entirely original.
In this album, you'll find Irish jigs, electronic harmonies, and flugelhorn accompaniment, nearly all in rhythmic, slow tempos and minor keys. There's a weight to Lynx's music that's partially experimental rock/trip hop, but it also calls to mind old spirituals and even some new age. In this way, Lynx has a sound that's universal and timeless, spanning decades, genres, and continents. Her lyrics are rooted in nature, with many songs focusing on the recurring themes of sea and sky, and her haunting vocals meld seamlessly with the instrumental tracks to take you on a musical journey of self-reflection. With rich, dynamic tones and crisp, clean production, Lynx has provided us with album that's perfect for vinyl, and we couldn't be happier to release her music in a new medium and share it around the world.
Released: January 2014
Our January 2014 release is a quartet of Cincinnati indie rockers named The Sweep. This album has a distinctly early 90s vibe: grungy electric guitar-driven and percussion-heavy a la Weezer or Collective Soul (and we don't mean "Run" kind of Collective Soul). But it also contains some great harmonies, string melodies, and male and female vocals.
A few tracks have some nouveau punk-rock riffs. Other songs are simple and mellow. Certain influences seem to draw from more recent indie rock groups like Death Cab, Early November's The Mother, the Mechanic, and the Path. Still a couple others use electronic synth beats like the Flaming Lips. In short, you're probably going to have flashbacks of every band tee you have in your closet.
What really stands out about this album is the songwriting. If you listen carefully to the lyrics, you will find insightful prose pouring out of every verse. Taken as a whole, it's varied album that is just as likely to take you into the darkness as it is going to show you the light and it's guaranteed to give you a lot to think about if you spend time with it. Forewarning though: you're definitely going to have a few of these tracks stuck in your head.
Listen to a few samples from their album
Released: November 2013
This month's band has a big band sound that comes from being, well, a big band. With 12 members-playing five horns, three guitars, two percussion sets, a bass, and a piano-they're definitely the largest group we've come across so far, and they're proving that 12 heads are better than one. While that many instruments could quickly become chaotic and overwhelming, these guys are smart with their compositions. They work very much like a jazz band, balancing solos and weaving unique bridges between swelling crescendos.
But that might be complicating things. When it comes right down to it, these guys about fun. Their music is movin' and shakin' with all the power of a Macy's parade marching band. Sure, they've got inventive syncopated rhythm, and yeah they've got expertly crafted harmonies, but this album swings together with a certain boyish wantonness. Good luck resisting the urge to bob you head and tap your feet, Feedfans-we're pretty sure it's impossible to crank up this record and not dance.
Released: October 2013
Trick-or-treat, Feedfans! Amycanbe has a fittingly haunting sound brought to us all the way from Italy (though the lyrics are in English). Their music is part trip hop, part singer-songwriter, and all-around gorgeous, albeit hard to describe. They drift from ambient and chill-out to postrock and dream pop, dabbling in everything in between, but they tie it all together with textured, ethereal vocals. Right off the bat, you'll notice the singer's unique and breathy voice over the music's deep, rich tones. This combination creates a sonic landscape that's both strikingly interesting and warmly romantic.
You'll also notice pretty much every instrument in a typical orchestra. Every member of the group can and does play multiple instruments, which, with some looping, is how they've managed to create an album than features piano-driven ballads and acoustic guitar folk tunes woven with synth beats, strings, winds, and electric guitar riffs. But fear not, it's not nearly as overwhelming as it sounds. In fact, this album is really very peaceful, very cozy. It has a certain indie vibe that will bring a sense of Garden State nostalgia to some of our subscribers. (Don't deny it; you love that soundtrack.)
Amycanbe sounds like so many great groups-they're inspired by Massive Attack and the xx. They remind us of Explosions in the Sky and Metric. We're sure that you, dear listeners, will come up with countless others. Each track has something different to offer, something new to hear, allowing the full album to provide an engaging listening experience.
Listen to a few samples from their album
Released: September 2013
This month, Feedbands is going international! The Parlez hails all the way from Ireland, and we're bringing their post-punk pop-rock sound right to you.
This band, consisting of two brothers, cites as their influences other great British Isle bands like Oasis, Blur, Joy Division, the Smiths, as well as contemporary American rockers MGMT. And these influences are clear. With acoustic guitar tunes, electric guitar riffs, and 90s-like chords (plus the occasional horn section bridge), their music sounds comfortingly familiar without being tired, easy to listen to without being "easy listening." And maybe it's just the accent, but the vocals have a Lennon-esque quality to them, and that, combined with classic guitar and tambourine, provides the same feel-good nostalgia as Rubber Soul.
The brothers also croon relatable lyrics of heartbreak and social awkwardness with the right amount of edge. With lines like "she's gone and left me with an exit wound" and "I'm on the outside of an in-joke," they hit on universal feelings and situations in a creative way. Their songs range from contemplative loneliness to aggressive hopefulness, pleasant apathy to downright angst. But there's a subtlety in their brand of rock-spoken word, recorded sounds, and tempo changes make for an album that's unique without beating you over the head. Innovative bridges utilize a range of orchestra instruments, and there are some downright lovely moments of elegance courtesy of piano solos. Such delightful diversity makes this Emerald Isle album one to raise your glass to. Slainte!
Released: August 2013
Grab your swim trunks because The Wild Ones is an awesome surf rock girl group that we found at the corner of doo-wop street and punk rock alley. With classic chord patterns, twangy electric guitar, and fast cymbal-heavy drums (plus the obligatory rolling solo a la "Wipe Out") this album will have you shimmying, twisting and shouting right in your living room while the authentic surf rock sounds makes it perfect for summer pool parties that go all night.
In some ways this band is reminiscent of the girl groups of the 60s: each track has got the backing "yeah yeah"s, "wah-oo"s, and/or "doo woo-oo"s you'd expect from the Angels, the Crystals, or the chicks from Little Shop of Horrors. They have the lackadaisical vocals now re-popularized by Best Coast, She and Him, and Lana Del Rey, but these ladies are much more "Bad Reputation" than "Born to Die". The're rockabilly in the female form.
Make no mistake, these girls are bad ass. Unlike the Shangri-las who fell for the leader of the pack, this group is more likely to don leather jackets and hop on motorcycles themselves. On the surface, their sound is Jan & Dean, but their attitude is Joan Jett. Beneath their winged eyeliner and bubblegum beats are garage rock songs about nasty habits, day drinking, and partying in Tijuana. They're sure to get your summer bash going, but the real question is whether they'll survive till morning.
Listen to a few samples from their album
Released: July 2013
The Coo Coo Birds hail from San Francisco and are self-defined as "a species of Rock n' Roll animal, discovered in 2012 A.D., characterized by savage and loud behaviors know to incite frenzy." Make no mistake; they're the people your parents warned you about. Their album is full of garage-band drums and old-school guitar riffs - like Johnny Be Good old-school. They've got the sock-hop pop of the 50s, the psychedelics of the 60s, and the cool funk of the 70s, all in one totally contemporary package.
The Coo Coo Birds bring back elements from the musical days of yore in a modern way, but they retain the same "lock up your daughters" vibe as the Ramones, Sex Pistols, and early Beatles.
The really special thing about this album is that it was recorded on two inch tape. Feedbands specifically wanted to find you an album this month that was cut from a purely analog master, and when we heard this band did their debut album on 2" tape, our ears perked up. So this one goes out to all the analog purists.
This first album is a great summertime soundtrack with the rolling drums of old surfer flicks; fuzzy, funky guitar jams; and energetic vocals crooning English and Spanish lyrics of sex, drugs, and rock 'n roll. Get stoked.
Released: June 2013
The Vliets is an incredibly talented psychedelic synth-rock group that's something like gritty Radiohead with a Beatles-in-their-India-days influence, and we do not use those names lightly. Their album seamlessly combines 60s chord progressions, 80s space-sounds, classic jazz elements, and their own post-modern styles in a way that is nothing short of amazing. Could these guys be the next Radiohead?
The group's sound, despite being accuratsychedelic synthrock, is fluid and cohesive. The band members are so in-synch that it's difficult to isolate any particular component that stands apart. The group smartly highlights individual sounds via well timed bridges that make for particularly awesome listening -and oh how sweet it sounds on vinyl.
We could not be more excited to share this group with you, and we have no problem hinging our company's entire reputation on this one single album. It's that special.
Listen to a few samples from their album
Note: The above video was taken from an iPhone at a recent Feedbands show. The album you will receive on vinyl has been professionally recorded.
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Listen to a few samples from their album
Released: May 2013
Unknown Relatives formed in Austin in a haze of David Bowie and cheap beer before up and selling their furniture, buying a van, and hitting the road for two back-to-back nationwide tours.
Their second album is rife with upbeat rhythms, grungy guitar riffs, ethereal vocals, and just the right amount of distortion, making for perfect summertime-coastal-road trip-montage music.
It's the psychedelic surf rock of the Haight in the 60s meets the visceral grit of your teenage years spent lying on the bedroom floor listening to Weezer.