Friday, March 30, 2012

10 Indy Bands That Quit After Releasing One Album

It's tough being in a band in Indianapolis. As soon as a band creates a lot of buzz for themselves and finally releases their debut album, it's not much longer that the band decides to end it all and either form a different band or disappear into obscurity. I'm not sure why this cycle is so common, but here is a list in alphabetical order of 10 Indianapolis bands that have called it quits after releasing their debut album.

1) Archer Avenue

This alt-rock band originally from Muncie existed from 2002-2004 and released "I Was An Astronaut" before their lead singer, Richard Edwards left and formed the very successful band, Margot & The Nuclear So and Sos.

2) 40 Watts

This alt-rock indie band lasted from 1997-2002 and only played a total of 3-4 shows in their 5 year span and managed to release their only album, "Palenque". This band was lead by Mike Menke and after their break up, Todd Embree and Charlie Thompson joined another local band, Permacrush.

3) Jorma and The Movie Bare

This Indie-pop band, lead by Jorma Whittaker of Marmoset, only lasted from 2008-2011 and released 'Lollipop Gold' before disbanding.

4) Lunar Event 

This electronic band, originally comprised of Derek Osgood and Gwynneth Reitz, lasted from 1999-2006 and only put out one full length album, "This Transparency". Derek Osgood later helped form Red Light Driver and has recently revived Lunar Event for solo single releases.

5) Majhas

This brutal metal act comprising of Dave Lawson, John Zeps, Tommy Roosa, John Micheal Gioe, and Tony Reitz put out one album, "Stepping Into Character" before splitting and stepping into other bands including Yuki, Action Strasse, King Deuce, and Kidd Comet.

6) Neon Love Life

Indy's finest all-girl rock band, Neon Love Life comprised of Lindsay Manfredi, Sharon Rickson, Ashley Plummer, and Tasha Blackman and existed from 2009-2012. They put out 'Tuesday Night' and were starting to record a followup before disbanding.

7) Pop Lolita

Pop Lolita existed from 2000-2003 and released 'Smokerings and Halos' before dissolving. The band comprised of Mike Contreras, Jonathan Harmon, Mike Theodore, Andrew Mahoney, Amber Lynch, and Dave Megyesi. The Brit-pop inspired band reunited from 2010-2011 for a handful of shows. Contreras and Harmon joined Red Light Driver, and Theodore joined Sky Hunter.

8) The Shivers

The Shivers lasted from 2001-2005 and released one mod-pop inspired album 'Move All You Wanna' before fading away into obscurity. The band was lead by Roy Griffith and included Mike Contreras and Chad Wells on the album.

9) Slothpop

This angelic indie-pop band, fronted by the talented Kristin Newborn, lasted from 2010-2012. They are the most recent Indianapolis-based band to call it quits after releasing their self-titled album.

10) The Slurs

One of Indy's most exciting punk bands, The Slurs blasted audiences in the early to mid 2000s and put out one album 'The Problem With Rock and Roll' before breaking up. The band included Justin Allen, Jim 'Kooch' Kuczkowski, Kris Messer, Nick Pryor, and Brad Wallace. Some members would move on and join other bands including The Gitmos, Those Young Lions, and Vodka DeMilo.


These are not the only bands that broke up after releasing an album, but they were the only artists mentioned on my facebook when I inquired about finding Indy bands for this blog post. What causes a band to release just one album and then call it quits? Nobody really knows but this is starting to become a trend around the local Indy music scene. 

- Mike C.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

5 Music Collaborations That Are Being Planned

There seems to be a lot of music collaborations being talked about these days and some of these sound like they would be good ideas while some seem like big effing jokes. 

Here is a list of 5 music collaborations that are happening in no particular order.

1) Snoop Dogg is making a reggae album with Diplo.

Snoop Dogg and Diplo.
"It's all reggae and he's singing and he's doing a fucking awesome job and I never knew it, but he had his heart in every song." - Diplo

2) Roger Daltrey of The Who and Paul Weller will collaborate.

Paul Weller and Roger Daltrey.
"Paul Weller's been talking about an idea that he's been working on, which I'd love him to do. I've been very bad at finding material and he's got this idea and he's always said to me 'Why don't you sing more?' and I always say 'Find me some material'. So we'll see if we can come up with something." - Roger Daltrey

3) Wayne Coyne of the Flaming Lips and Ke$ha.

Wayne Coyne.

"I'm talking with Ke$ha about doing some tracks on her new record. We knew that she was a fan. She's a lot of fun and crazy and open to ideas and she's creative. She's all these things that you don't know." - Wayne Coyne

4) Johnny Depp & Marilyn Manson collaborate a cover song.

Johnny Depp and Marilyn Manson.
“(We wanted to do) a cover of a song which we thought was ironic for each other… He played drums and lead guitar, and I played guitar and sang.” - Marilyn Manson on covering 'You're So Vain'

5) Insane Clown Posse, Jack White, and Mozart.

Insane Clown Posse and Jack White.
“The music collaboration you’ve all been waiting for. 230 years in the making.” - no one

What do you think of these collaborations? Will they be incredible and awesome? Are music artists these days reaching too far? or do they have great senses of humor? Are they just trolling us? Is it a slow music news day? What music collaborations would you like to see happen?

- Mike C.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

I'm going to see Of Montreal in Chicago Tonight

I'm going to Chicago tonight to see Of Montreal perform at the Metro along with Loney Dear, and Kishi Bashi. This should be a wild show. I haven't had a chance to review their new album, 'Paralytic Stalks' yet, but I've heard it and the band proves to be consistently great.

Here are some Of Montreal vids for your listening pleasure:

- Mike C.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

5 Buzzworthy Female Rappers

I do not claim to know a lot about hip hop but I have enjoyed many hip hop artists over the years including NWA, Public Enemy, Beastie Boys, Digable Planets, Danger Mouse, MF Doom, Slick Rick, Boogie Down Productions, A Tribe Called Quest, Eric B & Rakim, and dozens more. What I lack in my knowledge of hip hop are some great up and coming female MCs. I have included some vids of under the radar artists that may or may not blow up on the charts of hip hop fame. What I have not included on this list are already established female artists like Missy Elliott, M.I.A., Queen Latifah, Nicki Minaj, and even Kreayshawn. I consider those girls already made. There's just something empowering about a female that can rap and the beats are often more experimental than their male counterparts. Also, the up and coming pack of female rappers are smashing the race barrier and include black, white, hispanic, and asian representation. 

Here's a list of 5 Buzzworthy Female Rappers in no particular order (All music is NSFW):

1) Azealia Banks

2) Iggy Azalea

3) Beach

4) K. Flay

5) Christina Ur Barbie

Special Bonus Female Rap Battle with Yumi Doll v Kc Lyn:

What do you think of the next wave of female rappers? Are they taking it to the next level? Is this just a gimmick? Is this sexy as f*ck? Would you like your girlfriend/wife to rap? Would you rap battle your MC girlfriend/wife in place of foreplay? Would listening to a bunch of female hip hop make you gay or straight? Was that last question a really stupid question? Which of these female rappers sound like they will be huge in the coming year? Did I leave out an up and coming female rapper that you know about? Let me know! 

- Mike C.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Album Review: Paul Weller - Sonik Kicks

It's always great to hear that a new Paul Weller album is being released and his latest 'Sonik Kicks', progresses to an incredible musical height from his 35 years of song writing and recording his own brand of modernist music. The album feels like it's culminated from his entire solo musical output, yet sounds very current and relevant to the music world in general. There are generous nods to electronic synths, funky beats, classy rock guitar riffage, dub reggae, 60s inspired mod garage psych, and northern soul all with Weller's distinct British vocal styling. Guest musicians on the album include Noel Gallagher and Graham Coxon.

"Green" starts off with some tremolo electronics accentuated with phased up guitar leads and driving beats with Weller singing sparingly. "The Attic" springs into a two minute rave up with strings & guitar hooks. "Kling I Klang" picks up another notch in rocking intensity and could easily have been an obscure Jam single with it's punk back beat. The album starts to mix songs together at this point with an instrumental string section meets guitar delays and feedback in "Sleep Of The Serene". "By The Waters" slows things down to an intimate level and introduces Weller on acoustic guitar with a tasteful orchestra backing his signature voice. 

"That Dangerous Age" lifts the album back up into freakbeat with echoes of Small Faces style backing vocals and Weller belting out some tasteful soul vocals. "Study In Blue" opens with a harmonica, piano, strings and glides into a revved up version of dub reggae with hammond organ embellishments and wide delays with his wife matching his melodic vocals that invokes a jazzy, space-age lounge style of singing. "Dragonfly" starts with a driving rhythm section and continues to push ahead while interspersed with guitar pitch shifts. "When Your Garden's Overgrown" is a mid tempo funky groover with plenty of tremolo guitar and a large vocal chorus.

"Around The Lake" wraps back around into an up tempo 60s inspired mod spy theme with farfisa keyboards, while "Drifters" blasts into a 6/8 time signature of rocking Spanish guitar riffs and East Indian psych inspired vocal melodies. "Paper Chase" chugs along with one chord rhythm drones of guitars and synths mixed with East Indian inspired strings. "Be Happy Children" ends the album with Weller's version of Motown soul with an angelic string section, synths, piano, and his wife's backing vocals appearing again along side his David Ruffin-like vocal approach. 

'Sonik Kicks' is an epic sounding album and after repeat listens, I find myself favoring different songs each time. Paul Weller appeared on last month's cover issue of MOJO Magazine which includes an interview and a CD compilation of various artists hand picked by Weller himself. Since the debut of this album last Week, 'Sonik Kicks' has reached #1 in the UK charts. I already know it's reached #1 in my list of top albums of 2012 and it's going to be hard to knock this one off the top.

Here's the video for "That Dangerous Age":

- Mike C.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Crap Blogger Asks Magnetic Fields' Stephin Merritt Inane Questions

Ask me crap questions, get crap answers.
In a recent interview for LA Weekly, blogger Dan Weiss had a chance to ask Stephin Merritt, songwriter and vocalist for indie band The Magnetic Fields, some questions and ended up getting awkward pauses and "duh" answers. I guess it's well known that Merritt can be difficult in most interviews, but reading some of the questions asked in this particular interview made me believe that I would answer back in a similar fashion. Apparently, a lot of other music bloggers only picked up on Merritt accusing Adele's fans of being racist.

You can decide for yourself by visiting the source interview here:

In the meantime, I've been enjoying the latest Magnetic Fields album 'Love At The Bottom Of The Sea' and should have a review posted up soon.

- Mike C.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Dead Milkmen cover Fugazi’s ‘Waiting Room’

It's good to see the punk jokesters, The Dead Milkmen still performing shows and playing to huge crowds. Recently, at a Washington, D.C. gig at the U Street Bar, the Dead Milkmen covered 'Waiting Room' by D.C.'s very own Fugazi. Thanks to Slicing Up Eyeballs for bringing this footage.

- Mike C.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Album Review: Nite Jewel - One Second Of Love

If you are a fan of Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti, then you will dig Nite Jewel. Ramona Gonzalez, the lead singer of Nite Jewel, is also married to Cole M. Greif-Neill, a member of the Graffiti that helped with the production of both LA based lo-fi r&b pop acts. Listening to the latest album 'One Second Of Love' by Nite Jewel echoes some great mellow, yet funky jams that sound like they would place well in a futuristic version of a retro 80s night club and what is described by Ramona as "Liquid Cool". All the musical elements are represented here in recorded format. One minute you think you're hearing drum machine driven jams with minimalist keyboards, then the songs shift into surprising electric and acoustic guitar riffs layered throughout.

The opening song, "This Story", starts right off the bat with Ramona singing "I'm a broken record, you have heard this before" in an almost taunting and sudden introduction that is supported by a mellow electronic down beat. The title song of the album, "One Second Of Love", picks up with a dance club beat and catchy 80s-esque chorused vocals and similar era keyboard mixing. "She's Always Watching You" is my favorite song off the album with it's slow jam groovy vibe and Ramona's 80s r&b vocal approach that reminds me of elements of Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam and Hall & Oates. "Mind & Eyes" has a nice lo-fi r&b approach that is relaxed yet vocally compelling. "In The Dark" continues with a slow, yet almost bossa nova groove with Ramona's smooth vocal approach. 

"Memory, Man" picks up a few notches and goes upbeat with accentuating keyboard goodness with Ramona singing, "I've seen this dance before". "Unearthly Delights" showcases a different minimalist non-beat approach with sparse acoustic guitar and lightly touched keyboards that sound haunting. "No I Don't" brings back a sexy down tempo beat with oscillating keyboards and synths supporting Ramona's echo drenched voice. "Autograph" sums up the total album with it's Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam inspired 80s r&b repackaged through hipster lenses, and is easily my second favorite song off the album. The last song, "Clive" drifts into total ambient Ramona vocals and minimalist keyboard washes. 

Nite Jewel's latest album "One Second Of Love" deserves much more love than one measly second. It deserves at least 50 minutes of music appreciation and will be filed under "make out music". I'm also sold on the fact that the album is being put out by Secretly Canadian, a great label from my home state of Indiana. I'm happy that they get to put out the album and also hope that they can get Nite Jewel to make some appearances in Indianapolis and Bloomington this year. 

Nite Jewel - "One Second Of Love" Video

- Mike C.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

New Music Genre: SeaPunk

 Shan Beaste and Albert Redwine.
I'm a few months or so behind on this but a new music genre has been creeping up from the depths of the buzzosphere. It's called 'Seapunk' and it has washed ashore to the forefront of the dance sub-culture of Chicago and drifting to the coasts. Something smells fishy about an aquatic based music genre coming from Chicago, but who am I to nit-pick such minor details. So, what the hell is seapunk, you ask? Well according to this article:

"[seapunk] refers in part to a style of electronic music that incorporates bits of 90s house and techno, the past 15 years or so of pop and R&B, and the latest in southern trap rap—all overlaid with a twinkly, narcotic energy that recalls new-age music and chopped-and-screwed hip-hop mix tapes in roughly equal measure."

That's how the music is described, but if you want to go all the way to the bottom of the ocean with your seapunk devotion, then dye your hair blue or turquoise, wear shells on your leather jackets, or perhaps some dangling seaweed earrings. The fashion possibilities are endless. Maybe live on a house boat or get an octopus for a pet. I've always wanted an octopus. They are very intelligent creatures. Perhaps, a seapunk could train an octopus to DJ seapunk music. That would effectively win the crown of the ultimate seapunk. 

Here are some seapunk music vids:

Seapunk meets witch house:

What do you think about this latest trendy music genre? Have you already dyed your hair blue? Is Katy Perry a seapunk? Will girls and guys with dolphin tramp stamps be the sexiest alts? Will the seapunk genre stand the test of time? or will seapunk be given cement shoes and thrown overboard by over critical bloggers? Will sushi become the official snack as seapunk takes hold of impressionable alt-teens and open minded college students? or should we just wait for the waves of seapunk to subside and usher in Space Goth?

- Mike C.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Perfume Sign Global Deal With Universal

It was revealed recently that Perfume, the greatest J-pop sensation, has signed a global deal with Universal Music Group. It comes as a relief that Universal doesn't plan on watering down Perfume's music or lyrics for Western music fan consumption and wants to market them to the dance club community as they are. 

Here is the link to the whole story:

I have been a Perfume fan for a couple of years after stumbling onto their videos on youtube and always thought their high energy music blew away most of the so-called pop dance artists in the US and UK coming out this past decade. 

Here are some of my favorite videos of Perfume to check out to prepare yourself for the J-Pop invasion set to happen in 2012 and beyond:

Perfume - "One Room Disco"

Perfume - "Chocolate Disco"

Perfume - "Twinkle Snow Powdery Snow"

Perfume - "Love The World"

I can't wait until Perfume's music will be available domestically. Hopefully, more American and UK electronic/dance artists take notes and draw some influence from these gals. 

- Mike C.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Album Review: The Plimsouls - Beach Town Confidential

Who would have thought that someday in the 21st century that we would get a new Plimsouls album? 'Beach Town Confidential' was recorded live at the Golden Bear in 1983 and recently discovered hidden away on 24-track tapes in Peter Case's basement. This forgotten show has six songs that were never studio recorded in the Plimsouls career and has finally seen the light of day along with other scorching renditions of their classic hits including "A Million Miles Away". 

This live album completely rocks and I feel as if I'm there in the crowd witnessing a musical mania right before my eyes and ears. From the power-pop chorus effected "Shaky City" to a cover of 60s mod band, The Creation's "Making Time", the Plimsouls start off the show on fire. "Zero Hour" could completely rival The Replacements at the time while "Hobo" shows the band's surf instrumental side. "Who's Gonna Break The Ice?" hops along with psych-tinged guitar riffs and classic power-pop vocals, and blazes into full-blown 60s garage pop sounds with "Fall On You". 

"Oldest Story In The World" is a nice breather ballad in the middle of the set that features a Peter Case harmonica solo, and "Magic Touch" picks up a notch of bluesy power-pop. The biggest known song, "A Million Miles Away" sounds more explosive and thicker in tone on this recording and actually sounds better than the studio version after a comparison on my iTunes playlist. "Jump Jive And Harmonize" and "Jumpin' In The Night" are self proclaimed "dance songs" with mod-pop shuffles. 

"Now" is a great power-pop love anthem that should have seen better success on early 80s radio, while the driving tunes "How Long Will It Take?" and "In This Town" echo the greatness of Case's previous band, The Nerves. The last two songs are cover versions of the Everly Brothers' "Price of Love" and Willie Dixon's "You Can't Judge A Book". This live album showcases a band at their peak and most energetic. You feel as if you are in the audience and perhaps have a walk on part in the movie, Valley Girl, where the Plimsouls are featured at a live club.

Here's what it must have been like at a Plimsouls show as I imagine it in the early 80s:

- Mike C.