Sunday, March 29, 2009

Bird Watching In America EP Release

So I come on here and Matt is taking shit over. Well, Daddy's home. I haven't posted anything in a while, true, and I haven't even been to a show in a while, but that doesn't mean I haven't been keeping busy in the meantime.

This past week some friends of mine and I have been busting our asses to get some of my recordings together for everyone. So excuse my self promotion, but here are some of my songs.

We're selling these for $5, and if you're interested you can either ask me in person or send me a message on my myspace. If you just want the songs, you can head over to the Shack Attack Records website and download the tracks for free. By no means did I get this together on my own; my friends Josh Kirby and Spencer Alexander did a great job with the recording and the artwork, respectively. Also featured on this EP is Melissa Ahern on piano and vocals and Colin Mainella on trumpet. So please, feel free to spread that download link around and listen to some new music being made right here on campus... i'm awkward ;(

We Are Catamaran: 3P Revue

Callum Plews is a music production major here at SUNY Purchase!! and is also the throbbing brain-cock behind We Are Catamaran, a loose collective-type group of musicians. Well, the other day, dear Callum gave me a couple of rolled cigarettes and a sneak preview of We Are Catamaran's upcoming album, which will be entitled Baby Anne Is In The Fireplace Part One. We Are Catamaran seems to be Callum's pet project, as the performers on each track vary, with Callum as the only constant element. One of the performers featured on this album is Emma Tringali, who, once upon a time, was a SUNY Purchase!! student herself, but has since dropped out to focus on her own musical ambitions. Another dropout (lol) on this album is the utterly fantastic keyboard Wizard Albert Goold. Albert and the total asshole loser drummer Nicholas Shapiro play on "First Fire," which originated as a recording made in their shared dorm room before Callum came in and mic'd everything up. The few songs I heard from the aforementioned/unreleased album/EP/3P, sounded pretty good, though there were a few moments when the production was just too swampy to really discern what was going on. I mean, I LOVE reverb. We all LOVE it. But you can't just put it on everything. For the most part however, the production is pretty well done, at least on the instruments. The shutter drums on "Second Fire" sound vaguely reminiscient of Radiohead's "Videotape," and the whole song just starts off like a disney musical; and then Emma and Miles Roxas come in, and, don't get me wrong, they have great voices, but the sound is overproduced, in my opinion, and something is lost in the layering of effects and whatnot. At times there is a lot happening, and it's all sort of midrange stuff, which makes it hard to concentrate on the swirling shit going around. Overall, however, I definitely see a lot of potential; and the music isn't cliched or played out, it is, at least, strange. So that's good. Also, any musicians looking for a producer, I would reccomend seeking out Callum, or his production outfit, DLR Studios.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

SUNY Purchase!! Honorable Mentions

Last week, I put up my top 5 bands list, and this week, Nick "No-Nonsense" Corbo, put up his. Now that we have had time to digest and sort through your overwhelming feedback, we are both ready to present our "Hon. Men." list; in my case, right now, and with Nick, who f-ing knows, right? But sorry to keep you waiting, germs- let the games begin!

Battle Ave Tea Club is a great bizarro-pop group that makes a really nice Canadian indie  type of music. Influenced by Frog Eyes among others, the lead singer has a fairly idiosyncratic voice, but if you can get past that (and you should be able to), there is lot to like about this Purchase band.

Landlords are a very weird/shitty/dead kind of band. As a three-piece industrial noise outfit, this isn't yr typical Rihanna by any means. They're more sweet 'n sour (like Plain White Tees) and they can be 'lil ruff at times ;) Most of their songs just consist of a fuxx bass farting out long ominous notes to a death march drum beat while feedback screeches in from the guitar amp. It's very thick and swampy. It's sticky like mucous, and makes you feel weird about yourself. <3
I've seen a couple of Tamarin shows lately, and, truth be told, they've all been pretty great. I saw them the other week headlining a show at Whitsons, and then a couple days later, performing songs by The Band, for the Greatest Show Ever, sponsored by the one and only Sam Schachter. Tamarin has a couple members of The Shakes in it, but is more country than those guys. They did a great version of a number of The Bands songs, and rly captrd the spirit of the whole thing.

Hump-Day Nite @ the Co-Op

Spring Break: It's over guys. We're in school again. Shows. Shows. Showsss.
Last nite was the first official show of the second part of the second semester. To honor the occasion, SUNY PURCHASE MUSICIAN!! Cameron Wisch booked a fantastttttic show at the Co-Op, our campus' dear little xcoffeexshopx. I was tardy, as always, and caught only two of the bands- but WHO"S COUNTING??? LUL. Anyways, the first band I saw was Images, which was a cool shoegazey, new wavey, beach wavey kind of band. The "lead singer" had a crazy 12-string guitar and a couple really great pedals. It was droney in the sense that there was a lot of repetition at times, but the music was also very dynamic and organic. Images is really interesting because, as a three-piece, every member of the group is so vital to the sound. This also gives a lot of space for the individual instruments to make a pronounced contribution to the group. It was really cool how the polyrhythmic drumming put a different inflection on all the instruments. The songs had a tropical feel, yet were also sorta structureless. The performance was fascinating because the band had rigged up a projector that vroadcast right onto the band and it was so cool no doubt.

After Images ended their set, Cameron's math rock monster, Zona Mexicana, STEPED UP 2 DA PLAYTE. And boy did they knock it out of the park. I've been going to Zona shows for a while now, and I still just get more into it. Personally, it took a long time to figure them out because I've never really listened to ne "calculatorr rrock," so I had a hard time understanding, LET ALONE, dancing to, their shows. But now I've sort of got it figured out, and it's pretty exhilirating. Zona is another great three-piece, and it's great x3 because they're all really fantastic at their (respective) instruments. The music is so connotative of all sorts of really epic things; it's great music to pore over because it's all so meticulously composed and arranged.
I was tired after that so I let myself off easy, and treated my poor body to a series of delicious decisions at the Hub. NO REGRRETS/DIY MUSIC CONCERT AT THE STOOD TONITE/IT'S NOT THAT DIY

Monday, March 23, 2009


So a few days ago Matt posted a list of his 5 favorite bands at SUNY PURCHASE!!!! I was home feeling very lazy and unmotivated so I haven't put my list together until right now, and by doing so I've realized that our lists really overlap on many points, so it's best to look at both of them as a whole. This list is based purely on my tastes, there are still plenty of really awesome bands on campus that we'll feature later.

This is a little sneaky; Matt didn't mention these guys because their singer is away and they won't be playing shows for a while, but as far as I'm concerned, they could run off pure momentum for up to at least next semester. I remember the first time I saw Aaron Maine play some solo songs at an open mic at The Stood and it made me so happy to hear everyone singing along to all the songs. I was pretty hooked at that point but it was nothing compared to when I saw Aaron play with the addition of the Reilly brothers on drums and bass. This three piece has definitely fixed its place as my favorite band on campus and my life seems emptier knowing they wont be playing shows in the near future. Check out their MYSPACE to hear songs from a new upcoming album.

Lots of my favorite campus music is in the form of our quiet singer/songwriters. Being in the music department I get to see and hear some really great songs before they hit the stage and I'm very thankful for that. One singer in particular is Kyle Gilbride, who plays in a quiet, almost atmospheric style that can take up a whole room in emotion and feeling. By the time Kyle stops playing (which is sometimes painfully close to when he starts) its like everyone has been hit by this big wave of sound that comes in such a small, simple package. I definitely implore anyone reading this to listen to see Kyle play at their first chance, or to at least listen to some songs on his MYSPACE. I'm pretty sure Kyle is also coming out with an album soon.

Melissa is a good friend of mine who spent last semester in the music department. She writes beautiful songs that mix styles of quiet, acoustic snapshots with classic jazz standards. Her live show definitely holds the same sort of atmospheric properties of Kyle's, often adding a tasteful upright bass or jazz style drums. Definitely check out her MYSPACE and keep an eye out for any new recordings.

Adam's an awesome guy and he makes awesome music. He once covered one of my songs live and since then I can always hear him singing when I play it and it makes me so happy. Just before spring break Adam released with his new full-length, Let's Kick Fire. I haven't heard any tracks from it yet but I'm sure its all great. Not only should you ask Adam for one of his new CDs but you should ALSO go see him perform THIS THURSDAY, March 26th, at the Stood with Choral Pleasure and Jesse Cooper Levy.  Check out some songs on Adam's MYSPACE.

Olken has by far undergone the biggest transformation since the beginning of this year.  This group started early this year with a singer/guitarist and an accordion player frequenting the Stood open mics.  Since then they have seen the addition of electric cello, bass and drums, creating a much fuller, more complete sound.  I think these guys have a sound that combines early Murder By Death with The Arcade Fire.  Like everyone else on this list, I'm pretty sure Olken is working on a CD right now, but until then, be sure to check out their MYSPACE.

So there's my top five, honorable mentions will be up soon!

Friday, March 20, 2009

SUNY Purchase!! Top 5 Bands!!

Well, me and Nick are on spring break right now, and have been feeling pretty lazy 'bout blogging ya know? We decided that during this week-long hiatus from school we would take time to reflect and pontificate upon our experience with muzack thus far this year. We now emerge from the first few days of meditation and ponderance and offer up a list; a list that has names; and these names are BANDS, ladies and gentlemen. So now, without further ado, my (Matt Palmer's) list of the top five SUNY Purchase!! bands!!

1. The Shakes- a fantastic organ-driven rockabilly punk band with two panty soaking singers that croon and swoon and play awesome Sam Cooke covers.

2. Screwed Again- a clean cut bunch of 'prep-city rockers' that really know how to shake, and even roll! a little bit. Srsly tho, a really great nu-wave band that creates sing-a-long anthems out of the mny injustices of the MTA.

3. Twin Sister- a really very pretty band that combines chimey gutairs with the beautiful voice of a beautiful, blue-haired angel. There are other instruments (assuredly), but I've only got eyes/earz for you... O TRUE BLUE!!

4. Vince Vonnegut- a very interesting artist who, through his many delay pedals, drum machines, and rolling papers, creates expansive sonic landscapes with only his voice and his wazzle-twads.

5. Nick Corbo- singer songwriter, sweetheart, sincere student, honest citizen, passionate lover, righteous writer, hallowed heart-tamer, dragoon warrior, fire mage, LVL 70 Gnome on the Aleddriss server (PM him), and faithful LARPER.

Nick Corbo: EP Release on SA Records from James Madejski on Vimeo.

P.S. Other list cumming tomorrow!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Terra FREE

All good things must come to an end right? How about the pretty annoying things?

I'm sorry to say that my quest for a meat free month has come to an end.  I made it two weeks and all I have to show for it our these weird pictures of what I ate.  It all ended with some pretty bad meals, I'll let you see for yourself.

1. Got this beauty at the dining hall a few weeks ago.  I had actually been eating at the dining hall a few days in a row and though it was hard to turn down those beautiful chicken cordon bleu bagels, I restrained myself and it wasn't all that bad without meat.  This meal actually wasn't as bad as it looks, it's essentially a flour tortilla with corn, beans and some sort of green rice.  The bottom third is comprised of some really overcooked corn and something I think was called "California Casserole," I honestly couldn't tell you what that tastes like because I couldn't get myself to eat it.  The sludge in the top right third is actually a mound of delicious scalloped potatoes.  There's Pepsi in that cup and I had a piece of cheesecake for desert.  All in all, not too colorful, but not too bad.
Overall Grade: B

2. This one, however, was really the soy tofu bar that broke the camels back.  It's pasta from Terra Ve with broccoli and tofu.  It wouldn't have been that bad had it not been drowned in soy sauce.  One thing I've noticed with Terra Ve is that they often assume that anyone that eats there would much rather prefer an ocean of soy sauce to some meat.  It was pretty bad, I just drank my water and didn't bother with my tiny chic pea salad.  I was determined to call it quits.
Overall Grade: F    

3.  By dinner I had made up my mind.  This turkey sandwich wasn't even that great but in it I could taste all the meats the future had in store for me and it was fantastic.  Since then it's been all burritos and turkey burgers for me.  I honestly feel a lot better, I was definitely not getting enough protein and by the end of this experiment my body was pretty pissed off.  Well, more soy chips for Carla I guess.
Overall Grade: Failure                                                                                                          

Well it was good while it lasted (it was ok), but if you feel so inclined, follow my vegetarian adventure HERE.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Space Ghost Cowboys at Whitson's Grand Ballroom

It's been a very long time since Space Ghost Cowboys last played a show, but it'll be even longer until they play their next one. About three weeks ago, lead singer and guitarist Aaron Maine played his last SUNY PURCHASE!!! show this semester before hightailin' it on down to somewhere mysterious in the deep Southwest. Nick and I have been putting off this post for weeks because we both feel a need to do justice to this great band; to memorialize them as they so rightly deserve. SGC is a three-piece for the most part, with Ian Reilly on bass guitar, Jack Edward on drums, and, of course, the aforementioned Aaron Maines doing it all whoop whoop oh ya oh ya all right boo ya.

But, yes. As a freshman coming to SUNY Purchase this year I spent a lot of time trying to figure out the Stood and the Co-Op and all these things. I saw Aaron at a couple of open mics and thought it was cool that everyone knew the words to everything and everyone sang along. It wasn't until halfway through last semester until I finally saw him with his band. Though Aaron can do it all whoop whoop etc. I will always prefer his material with the band as opposed to his solo stuff. Don't get me wrong, it's fantastic and well-written and everything (it's the sort of stuff Nick creams himself over) but it's not anywhere near as dynamic as SGC's material. While the band is very tight, they do have enuff rock 'n roll sensibility to let it all hang out sometimes, and really indulge themselves, and the audience, in those sort of moments that have incredible emotional weight to them.

One show stands out particularly in my mind. I'm not sure exactly when, but it was probably in December, and I saw them close a bill in Whitson's Memorial Hall at the Stood. It was stuffy in Whitsons and I remember seeing Aaron cooling down by pouring vodka on his head and then taking a big swig from the plastic handle. He tossed it to drummer, they turned on a strobe light and it got INSANE. The show ended in a swamp of feedback, with the drum set trashed, the lead singer stumbling around the floor, eventually collapsing in a metal trash can that had previously been used for percussion, and the bassist obediently plugging along, giving the only sort of context he could to the debaucherous situation. It was utterly fantastic.

But at SGC's last show, the ambience was equally chaotic, if not a little more unified. A lot of people turned out for the show, and most everyone sang along to all the words, or at least pretended to try. By the time they played "Wolf" to close, the crowd was in a tizzy and I had soiled myself and cried my eyes out, but not neccesarily in that order.
It's not the same without 'em. I'll tell ya.

Space Ghost Cowboys:

More solo-y stufff:

School Project

We actually have some nice photos from this one, check them out HERE.
 Shark's Roar, Cameron Wisch, and Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt also played that night.  We'll be covering the rest of the show soon but you can check out more photos from that night HERE.

Monday, March 9, 2009

SUNY Purchase <3s you Deerhunter

Nowadays around campus, there's been a lot of talk about the annual Culture Shock festival that's held here at SUNY PURCHASE!! in April or something. People say a lot of things about General Events Coordinator Jeff Levin, but no one can say that he's not a sophomore living in a Big Haus suite. Hey, he even got my favorite band Deerhunter for the show! Should be great!

PSYCH! He got the Dearhunter instead. But everyone already knows this because if you read this blog then you go to Purchase, and if you go to Purchase you know about Culture Shock (sucking), and if you know about Culture Shock you're "in the know," and if you're "in the know" then you read this blog. So it's all a big circle jerk ya know?

On that masturbatory note, get yr boners ready, cuz here's the AWESOMEAWESOMEAWESOME live video of my Deerhunter playing their hour-long set at Noise Pop '09 in sunny San Fran. Recorded in a quality that is entirely unlike the majority of YouTube live videos (AKA GOOD SHIT) this is a LITERAL GODSEND FROM GOD (AKA IAN CURTIS). It even has four brand new trax! OMG how did i evr get so luckyyyyy?!?!?!

Also: Check out the Deerhunter blog.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Blogotheque Favorites

Mentioning BLOGOTHEQUE in my last post got me thinking about how I haven't visited the site in a while now.  I really love what these guys do and the kind of music they feature.  I usually prefer the video audio to the artist's actual recordings.  Playing a Take Away Show is one of those goals I might be content with dying after I reached.  I stumbled across this one this afternoon and I thought I'd feature it because it inspired me.  Maybe we can make this a routine thing, I'll do the work fishing out the best videos and you sit back and enjoy them.

Johnny Flynn - Box

Johnny Flynn - The Box // A Take Away Show from La Blogotheque on Vimeo.

Pattern Is Movement @ The Stood

Monster Machismo from Oneonta, NY opened up the show with some of the most technical music I've seen in a while. Every member of the group was constantly moving and performing multiple rhythms at once. Their singer/guitarist mixed complicated tapping rhythms and chord patterns with off-beat vocals and crowd sing-alongs like his head and his arms were from two different, constantly counting bodies. They played songs that were not only technical and impressive, but catchy and fun and fast paced. I heard that these guys were only in high school, which makes me hate them a little.

Following Monster Machismo was SUNY PURCHASE!!! favorite, Zona Mexicana. I'm not sure if I need to go into great detail about Zona, I think they might play more shows on campus than any other purchase band. However, I think that this was my favorite performance of theirs to date. Check these guys out this Friday night at the Stood for THE GREATEST SHOW EVER, where they'll be playing At The Drive-In songs with various other cover groups including Saves The Day, Nirvana, The Velvet Underground, Enya, and The Band. Check the event page for more info. While you're there ask these guys for a new CD of their real music.

Next up were Capillary Action, an ever changing, ever evolving progressive group that I saw once in my home town. I feel like this band is more of a living outlet for singer/guitar player Jonathan Pfeffer's compositions because he's been the only constant member since I last saw them. I think I preferred their first performance, before they developed this sort of jazz/samba/lounge/rim clicks on the snare drum sort of style. Their current line-up features a nylon string guitar, a trombone player with a ponytail, a girl playing accordion, a boomy stand-up bass and lots of auxiliary percussion. However, now that I'm listening to the songs on their myspace, many of them are much heavier and electronic. Maybe these guys change so much that you can't classify them, I say check them out for yourself.

I was about to head home and go to sleep when Pattern Is Movement set up and began to play. By the time I heard their first song I had decided to stay. I think this band has a really new, unique sound, which is something you hear less and less of. A two piece, Andrew Thiboldeaux plays an assortment of keyboards including a rhodes electric piano and sings in a full voice, almost broadway sort of style while Chris Ward literally beats the shit out of the drums, delivering some of the most well-rounded, full, complete and thundering drum sounds I've ever heard, it was great. We all stood in a very welcoming, friendly atmosphere while the band developed a sort of tonal atmosphere that really filled the room with each song, complete with drum blasts that you just couldn't get away from. Check out their myspace for lots of great stuff, including a documentation of the bands love for top 40 covers, and get this, not only a Daytrotter Session but also TWO BLOGOTHEQUE Take Away Show videos, which is really really awesome. All in all, a really great show.

I didn't take any photos so watch these videos!!

Monster Machismo:

Zona Mexicana:

Pattern Is Movement: