I used to make my parents proud. I was the glue that kept my friends together, Now they don’t talk and we don’t go out. I used to know the name of every person I kissed. Now I made this bed and I can’t fall asleep in it.
To celebrate one year of bringing sweet tuneage to your earholes, we’ve created a fun compilation of some of our favorites covered this year, including all of the bands we’ve gotten to know a little better through interviews and giveaways. (A special shout-out to them for being so wonderful to our page!) This first year has been a great start for us, and here’s hoping we have many more.
The compilation can be downloaded at http://facebook.com/foryourauralenjoyment (make sure to like the page while you’re there). We’ve made it so you can download single tracks (in case you’ve been downloading some of these bands yourself) or a .zip file of the whole she-bang. We’ll have it up for a week, so make sure to jump on it.
Thanks for listening and supporting us and remember, this page has and always will be For Your Aural Enjoyment.
You gotta check this band out. No matter what kind of music you like, i feel like most people will enjoy this. Also, note the sweet Coheed and Cambria keywork tattoo on the frontman’s forearm. Obviously has a good music taste! Go buy their debut album “Satori”. Its totally worth it. 13 awesome songs for $9.99! Catch them on tour with Say Anything this summer!!!
Interview with Zachary Carothers of Portugal. the Man
Enjoy our exclusive interview with Zachary Carothers, of the amazing Portugal. The Man.
FYAE: How did you come to the decision to work with Danger Mouse on producing Evil Friends? How was the environment during recording and do you feel the end result is different than with past producers?
ZC: Obviously, it was a no-brainer. Craig, the head of Atlantic set up a meeting with John and Brian while we were self producing what we thought was our new album. We ended up scratching all but two songs from that session in order to start fresh on the collaboration. Working with Brian was amazing. As an artist himself, he had a unique perspective into band dynamics and had great advice on keeping your integrity while trying to write accessible music. We learned so much during the process. By far the most positive recordings we’ve ever done.
FYAE: What albums/songs have you been listening to as of late? Any upcoming albums you’re particularly looking forward to?
ZC: For some reason I’ve been on a big hip hop and metal kick lately. I think I’ve been strung out and anxious over the record release. Aggressive music helps me with that. Mostly Kanye and Slayer. Ha. I’ve always been into music that breaks new ground. Hip hop over the last few years has just been incredible. So obviously the new Wu-Tang, Kanye, Drake, and Black Sabbath. Very excited about a new album from La Roux. Love her.
FYAE: When you look back at the progression over the albums, what do you think is different and has changed? Would you go back to those roots, or continue on the current path of sound?
ZC: We’re always looking to evolve. I’m proud of the things we’ve done, but we’ve already done them. We’ll always reference old songs and keep true to our sound, but we will always be changing. Over the years, we’ve become better at writing songs. So many people thought we were experimental and progressive at the beginning, but the truth is, we had no idea what we were doing. Jamming parts and riffs together with no fluid transitions or continuity. We’re just getting better at smoothing everything out. John’s song writing is getting better everyday.
FYAE: There have been comments from both Noah & and yourself, about the similarities between Evil Friends, the recording process, and Pink Floyd, specifically Dark Side of the Moon. Can you elaborate on this further? Is Evil Friends a story within a story?
ZC: Every album we make has themes. As often as we make them, each record is a snapshot at our lives at that moment. Dark Side of the Moon inspired us more in mood and recurring themes more than it did sonically for this album. Pink Floyd has always had an amazing way of repeating riffs and progressions in different songs and in different ways. Really makes you always want to listen to the whole album in a row rather than shuffle through your favorites.
FYAE: How is the dynamic now that Kyle O’Quin [former Gatsbys American Dream/current Kay Kay and His Weathered Underground] has joined the band? Obviously, Kyle comes from some great bands, so what has he brought with him in terms of the music progression?
ZC: We’ve known Kyle a long time. He knows music and theory more than any of my close friends. His knowledge of that has helped John with song writing so much lately, but the lack of that knowledge is what made the songs so special from the beginning. Music to us is about breaking the rules. Kyle has a hard time with that.. But we’re figuring out a good balance. He is very talented.
FYAE: This is the first time in what seems like forever an album hasn’t been released on a yearly basis, was there specifically a reason behind this, or was it more a matter of timing?
ZC: It really was a matter of timing. You can imagine that Danger Mouse is a pretty busy guy. As are we. He was recording the U2 album at the same time, and we were constantly flying out for one off shows. We want to put out an album a year, but we won’t let the songs suffer for it. If its not done, we’ll work til it is.
FYAE: Imagine your perfect tour. Who would you tour with and why? Now flip that, and if you didn’t have to play and could just be in the audience, would this line-up change at all?
ZC: I’d love to play with Beck and Bjork. Both have been so progressive and cool since I first started really digging deep into my own music. It would be weird as hell. And a hell of a show.
FYAE: Who are the musicians you looked up to the most growing up and why? What album would you say had the biggest impact on your childhood? What album makes a difference in your current day to day?
ZC: I would have to say Nirvana and their album, Nevermind. Although I fell in love with rock and roll at an early age, this was all my own. Not something my parents or an older cousin showed me, all mine. It meant everything to me and is solely responsible for me picking up a guitar. Their albums still help me to this day. I can get lost in it, or find my way. It’s a beautiful thing.
Evil Friends comes out on Atlantic Records, Tuesday, June 4th.
I have been impatiently waiting for months to get my hands on this album, and it’s available for streaming a week early, which is super exciting. In case you’re unaware of The Features, they’re an indie-rock outfit based out of Nashville, TN and they’re basically the bee’s knees. They’ve released several albums, which are all amazingly catchy and definitely worth a listen or two. (Or two million, in my case.) Here’s a link to stream the new record:
And if you like what you hear, definitely check out some of their older stuff. It’s available on their bandcamp page, and some of it for free on noisetrade. I highly, highly, highly, highly, HIGHLY recommend these guys.
A musical project of Christopher Crosci from the band, The Appleseed Cast, Old Canes is an interesting sound, which could be closely described as reminiscent of Neutral Milk Hotel; while bringing something fresh and original to the table.
Of the music that has been produced and released, it was recorded using a rotating mixture of musicians available at the time, professed as a ‘musical collective’, creating a unique sound that stays enjoyable.
Check out this live performance of one of my favorite Old Cane songs, Sweet, from the album Feral Harmonic, released in 2009.
SLOTHPOP is an ethereal avant-garde pop/indie band from Indy (see what I did there? xD) who has sadly disbanded, but that hasn’t stopped me from obsessing mercilessly over their self-titled album. The vocals and lyrics are amazing, the instrumentation is phenomenal—each song seems to take you on a completely different journey, and yet the album is cohesive and comfortable. Slothpop is available for download on their bandcamp site. Their lead vocalist, Kristen, is working on another project titled KO—go check it out. I’m waiting anxiously for that album to drop as well!
I found out about Levi Weaver the same way that I’m assuming a lot of people did—seeing him open for Imogen Heap back in ‘06. I’ve been a fan of this Nashville-based singer/songwriter ever since. His sound is alt.country/folk rock, and his voice is stellarly stellar. He also is a huge proponent for independent artists and has written a really interesting blog series about the finances of independent artists. (There’s a minimal amount of math, which is helpful for people like me, who shudder at the sight of numbers.)
I could really talk about how amazing Levi is all day.
Noisetrade is offering a 11-song sampler of his catalog today for free, and I’ll throw a link to his bandcamp and blog below. If you like him, I suggest signing up for his email, as he often hooks you up. Noisetrade Sampler: http://noisetrade.com/leviweaver/noisetrade-sampler
The Rose West is an amazing example of progressive rock, driven by telling a story through music. This New York band draws a narrative in a way that should make fans of Coheed very proud.
Weaving a story through each song dripping with jazzy guitars, bluesy vocals, tinges of classic rock, infused with modern prog rock ideals. This is a band that has started to make a name for themselves, starting with taking Brooklyn by storm.
The debut album, When the Road Darkens, shares a link with bands like Coheed and 3, as it was recorded and produced at the historic APPLEHEAD RECORDING & PRODUCTION.
Here you go, the interview with the awesome Mr. Josh Eppard, aka Weerd Science. We got the opportunity to ask some serious questions. Enjoy!
For Your Aural Enjoyment: You’ll be releasing Red Light Juliet through bandcamp on May 21st. The last Weerd Science album, Sick Kids, came out in May of 2011. Between those times, you rejoined Coheed as drummer, gotten engaged, etc. So my question is, has the mind set changed in the songwriting process during that time frame and into present day? Is there a different approach to writing lyrics for Weerd Science now, as opposed to then?
Weerd Science: Not Really No. The writing for Weerd Science was always what was inspiring me or motivating me at that moment. I guess I’ve always been drawn to darker things in my writing, and that certainly hasn’t changed. Being in a good place mentally and physically now actually allows me to articulate some of the darkest parts of my past with a clearer mind. I feel like I maybe wouldn’t of, or couldn’t of, dug in so to speak when I was in the middle of some of these things. Chalk that up to another positive thing from not doing heroin all day! Yay!!!!
FYAE: You’ve been traveling and touring extensively with Coheed, when you are on the road, are you writing lyrics in a book, or is that something you wait until you get home to do?
WS: Again the writing happens when it hits me. That can be all day every day or not for 3 weeks. It’s always different. To answer the question though: No there is no specific time to write or not write.
FYAE: How is the songwriting process different with Weerd Science, a hip-hop project, and your other projects, which are more rock-based? Walk me through the process of a Weerd Science song…
WS: (You’re gonna kill me) It’s always different! Every record I’ve made with Weerd Science has been such a unique experience. The process with Friends And Nervous Breakdowns was different than Sick Kids and “Red Light Juliet” is different from both. The one constant is that there is me and I am writing the lyrics. I am turning beats into songs. The process for “Red Light” was different in that it was Ernie Falconer (DJ Dirty Ern) and Chris Bittner (CJB) who really spearheaded this EP. Ernie is always up my ass about “We gotta do music!!!” “We gotta record come on!!!” So finally I said we should do it and those guys sent me a bunch of beats and we did it! That was pretty much the process. If they sent me something that was dope, I knew I better write a song to it before they give it to some wack ass rapper.
FYAE: For those that follow you on twitter [@weerd_science], you are regularly interacting with fans, sharing pictures of family and pets, and also reviewing movies, but the burning question is: when are you going to start a movie review blog?
WS: Bloghz u have 2 youz korrect spellin. Me no like.
FYAE:Has there been any talk of collaboration between [Claudio Sanchez’s side project] The Prize Fighter Inferno and Weerd Science? And if you had the opportunity to collaborate with any musician, living or dead, who would it be? Why?
WS: Yes. There has been some talk. We’ll see. I sure would like that. Out of any musician dead or alive? Jeez I would have to say John Bonham. I would thank him for all the times I ripped him off and pick his brain for hours. Then I would call Chris Bittner and we would record him playing and never need awesome drum samples again. Or I’d collaborate with Chris Brown. He’s a genius. I’m just kidding. In this magical world where I get to work with any musician dead or alive I am thinking I could get away with murder. And I would murder him. Not because he hit Rihanna either. It’d be because of his laugh in that song Look At Me Now.
FYAE: You’ve also had the chance to do a lot of interesting collaborations and work with some amazing people over the years. Is there any one collaboration that sticks out for you as being particularly meaningful or fun?
WS:I’ve collaborated with a lot of people over the years and my favorite would be Chris Bittner. We don’t always see eye to eye but Chris is other worldly. He’s brilliant. He’s usually right when we don’t agree though.
FYAE: Tell me about some of the music you’ve been listening to lately. What’s burning up your playlist? What new releases in music are you excited for?
WS: A lot of stuff. The new Ill Bill LP is just stupid good. He’s amazing. Anything Vinnie Paz does is getting played. Swollen Members is dope as well. I’ve been on a Fleetwood Mac kick of late. A great band from Albany, Stellar Young, is one of my new favorites. Them and my lil’ brother Jack’s band Cosmonaut.
FYAE: You’ve had the chance to tour with a ton of different groups. What would be your dream lineup to play with? What would be your dream lineup as a fan?
WS: My dream Line up to play with would be: Cosmonaut: 6:00-6:40 Stellar Young: 7:00-7:40 (Every other night they switch spots so one doesn’t think I’m favoring the other) 3: 8:00-8:50 Circa Survive: 9:15-10:15 Coheed: 10:40-11:40 Led Zeppelin: 12:00-2:00
As a fan it would be - 40oz To Freedom (A Sublime Tribute Band), opening for Sublime! I would wanna see that!
FYAE: The projects you’re currently doing [Coheed & Weerd Science] are independent, meaning under no contracts to a particular record label. How do you feel about being an “indie” artist, now more than ever?
WS: Well being an independent artist today for a band like Coheed is something I am immensely proud of. I had nothing to do with that decision but being in a band that carved out their own thing and can do it at this level without the major label machine means a lot to me. As for Weerd Science it is completely different. Of course we are indie. I don’t sell enough records for any label to want me.
FYAE: Is it more convenient not having a label? What are the pros and cons?
WS: It all is so specific. An experience for this band might be great with a label while this other band might not being indie. It depends on what your goals are and what you want to accomplish. I hate to say it but….its always different!
FYAE: What’s the best advice you can give to up and coming musicians? Where to start, how to market themselves and the music they create?
WS: Just be out there doing it. It’s tough and yes a lot of luck comes into play but, you got to be out there doing it. Make your own luck! Play everywhere and anywhere.
Thaddeus Lowe's album “Rose Garden in the Gospel of Now” is a beautiful, acoustic-based experimental/chillwave album that should come with a complimentary glass of red wine and a sunset on the beach. Every track on this album is solid, soothingly beautiful, and amazingly layered for a fun listening experience. If you’re into Bon Iver or City and Colour, or mellow non-political Radiohead, you’ll love this album. He’s offering it for free download, so check it out.
The amazing guys in The Rose West have agreed to run a giveaway. There will be 15 prizes/winners in total.
The contest begins today (Saturday) 5/11/13 and will end 5/19/13 (Sunday) at 11am est, and the winner chosen at 12pm.
The prizes are:
- 10 digital download codes for “When The Road Darkens” from bandcamp, which allows the winner to download a copy of the album in any format.
- 4 copies of “When the Road Darkens” on CD, complete with artwork and liner notes.
- 1 grand prize, a copy of “When the Road Darkens” on CD, signed by the band, a signed poster and a The Rose West t-shirt (sizes XS-XL)
The way the contest works, and to be entered, you must:
1. Like The Rose West facebook page.
2. Like For Your Aural Enjoyment on facebook.
3. Share the write up of the band, which is pinned to the top of this page.
(you must use the ‘share’ option on the pinned post. I’ve noticed some shares are not counting, due to privacy settings. Please, if you have your settings super tight, send a message to the page to be entered.)
Everyone who shares the post will then be entered and picked at random, using a web generated chooser.
The 1st 10 picked will win the digital codes, followed by 4 physical copies, and then the grand prize.
There Is No Mountain is a new project from the Portland-based duo that brought you the americana-pop group The Ascetic Junkies. Their first single “Owl Hymn” is a bit more indie without losing their bluegrass/folksy roots, and catchy to boot. They’re offering it free for download on their bandcamp.
Alright guys, here’s that awesome interview I did with Mark Lombardo, the lead singer of the amazing indie dream-pop band,Titanics. Enjoy!
1. How did the band get started? - The band originally started as a side project of our lead singer, Mark Lombardo. Although the project was acoustic/folk based - it led to a more dreamy and rich sound that became the band as we know it today. After Lombardo recorded a bunch of dreamy keyboard based demos at 4am in his shed/beer brewery in upstate NY - he recruited Derek Rogers on guitar to complete the sound for the live show.
2. What drew you to create music, or become a musician in general? - Music feels real right from the start, it doesn’t take an understanding or logic - it feels good. It is the quickest way to go to another place. I wanted to be the captain of that.
3. What artists have been particularly influential in the music-making process? - I listen to a lot of Youth Lagoon, Broken Social Scene and Dirty Vegas. I like rich and visual music - more recently I’ve been digging aesthetic beats and chill out stuff.
4. Many musicians become inspired by a variety of aspects. Have you been influenced by different genres or art, such as books/movies? Do you draw inspiration from these methods, and as well, Incorporate them into your music? - I am very influenced by short fiction and anything relating to strange meta-physics and cosmic stories. I read a lot of Herman Hesse. Things of ‘unreal’ or ‘impossible’ nature have always affected and influenced me. I think we as humans underestimate our powers very much. Everything is perception - my music is very influenced in the theme of hope and wonder and wander.
I am also obsessed with The Twilight Zone.
5. If you could pick any three artists - any genre, actors/authors/musicians to have one meal with, who would you choose? - Jim Morrison of The Doors, Ernest Hemingway, and a great white shark.
6. If you could listen to only one album for the rest of your life, what would it be? - Kings of Convenience- Declaration of Dependence
7. Have you ever been so moved by a song, that you cried? If so, what was it? - any song sung by an attractive lead singer who is already married or something
(Switching gears here)
8. What is your favorite food on tour? Least favorite? - Organic Peanut Butter is my personal favorite to eat when I am not rolling in money. I am not a picky eater by any standard- I really think falafel is simply horrible.
9. Who are some favorite musicians that you’ve either toured with, or have seen live? - We have a show in Albany with a band from Connecticut called Mercies. All a bunch of really cool guys and phenomenal musicians. Love playing with them: always a holy evening.
10. Name a band or artist(s) you would tour if with if the opportunity presented itself. - Beach House, Phantogram or Youth Lagoon.
11. Where do you see the band going? Where do you want to be in 1 year? 3 years? - a few more months of local shows then : touring, touring, touring, rafting out to Cuba, touring, touring, touring.
I’m always in search of new indie/dream pop/chillwave music to listen to. I’m addicted to it, there is just something about synthy pop that warms me to the core.
So, with that, I was recently contacted by the Albany based band,Titanics. I wasn’t familiar with them prior, but I’m hooked now. As it turns out, they were just what I wanted in a band. They recently put out their debut album, Soft Treasure.
My recommendation, check out this album. When asked what I thought about the album by the vocalist, I replied “my only true issue, is that it had to end”.
In the coming days, I’ll be posting an interview with the band members, but until then, enjoy.
For Your Aural Enjoyment Presents: The Very Best of 2012 (In No Particular Order)
Born Blonde - What the Desert Taught
2:54 - 2:54
Coheed and Cambria - The Afterman: Ascension
Circa Survive - Violent Waves
Athletics - Who You Are is Not Enough
Vuvuzela - The Hollow Choir
Josh Benash - The Dismal; The Beautiful
Stellar Young - Everything At Once
Hotel of The Laughing Tree - Mammoth Skin Pt. 1
By The Sea - By The Sea
mewithoutYou - Ten Stories
Bats - The Sleep of Reason
I the Mighty - Karma Never Sleeps
Shapes & Colors - Hold Your Breath
Calexico - Algiers
Between the Buried and Me - The Parallax II: Future Sequence
The Gaslight Anthem - Handwritten
Yeasayer - Fragrant World
Night Verses - Out of the Sky
T.R.A.M. - Lingua Franca
Fun. - Some Nights
SIOS - Halcyon Failure
Godspeed You! Black Emperor - ‘Allejujah! Don’t Bend! Ascend!
Thaddeus Lowe - Rose Garden In the Gospel of Now
Bad Books - II
Take One Car - It’s Going To Be A Nice Day
Grey Sky Symphony - Cloud Factory
Ticktockman - Calling out the Hounds
Endevor - 296 Above Parallels
Trioscapes - Separate Realities
Miles of Machines - To The Quiet Winds
To Give You the Stars - 2492
Conor Oberst - One of my Kind
Say Anything - Anarchy, My Dear
Much like Ticktockman, Kay Kay and His Weathered Underground is another band that came from the hiatus of Gatsbys American Dream.
The music draws from a very wide range of genres, with a sound unlike any other. Kyle O’Quin and Kirk Huffman of Gatsbys set out to make a mark on music, and they have. With styles ranging from jazz, pop, and indie rock.
Kay Kay and His Weathered Underground has 3 official members, but have been know to perform with up to 11 people on stage, with instruments ranging from tuba, violin, even trumpets.
Calexico is an Arizona based band, that draws many different influences. The best was I can describe them is: tex-mex/indie rock/country.
Inspired by the music of Latin America, such as mariaichi, infused with rock, this band has a unique sound, that’s mild and soothing, and never to disappoint. They have a new album coming out tomorrow!!!
I the Mighty, one of my favorite alternative rock bands in existence, recently signed to Equal Vision records, and put out an amazing EP, Karma Never Sleeps, and are currently at work on a full length.
One of the best things about this band, is the originality, and the dedication they have. They care about the fans, they care about putting out quality music.
You can get the first EP, Hearts and Spades for free @ bandcamp
I was given the opportunity to listen to this album, when the artist was gracious enough to send me a download of the album.
I thoroughly enjoyed this music. It’s indie pop, and the descriptions you read from others are accurate, it’s like a mix of Death Cab for Cutie meets Owl City.
The lyrics are great, the music is genuine, and although I hate auto tune….it’s used in this album, but in the subtlest of ways, and it’s not even close to being overused, as it’s become so “mainstream”.