June 24, 2011

Red Tail Ring//Talk About Suffering/Going To Cairo/The Road Is My Skyway

Friday Shout/Chant: Local Music Friday
What's up with Local Music Fridays?

Dear old friend and general mountain-of-a-man Michael Beauchamp's new(est) band Red Tail Ring (you may remember their introduction here) recently released a two-disc set of songs, Middlewest Chant (mostly originals) and Mountain Shout (hardcore trad). You probably just realized that I was looking for an excuse to actually pair the word "hardcore" with "trad." Ok, you're right.

I'm really enjoying both discs for different reasons.

The highlights of Mountain Shout are the incredible arrangements, dark takes on the classics and insanely amazing feats of performance by both Michael and his partner in crime, Laurel Premo. Speaking of excellent driving music (see: yesterday), "Talk About Suffering/Going to Cairo" is the absolute perfect jam for that moment when you break out of traffic and start speeding at a rate that your mother would probably...ahem...not care to hear about on this blog. There's an outlaw feeling to the songs on Mountain Shout and, despite the concrete futuristic dystopia-ness of the the southbound 405, I can almost imagine that I am a gold prospector, out to seek my fortune...or at very least, part of a maniacal Bonnie and Clyde-type duo, on my way to rob a bank.

Middlewest Chant has some beautiful original tunes. The ones I find most resonance with are the solem, slow ones. "Skyway" is a classic Beauchamp tune, one that reminds me of more innocent times with my old friend and songwriting partner. It's sad and poetic and resigned and it makes your heart ache in a way that only he can.

Go pick both these up here.

Talk About Suffering/Going To Cairo.mp3

The Road Is My Skyway.mp3

Well, I am what I am.
Are you surprised?

June 23, 2011


Wow. Between now and last we spoke, I rode some roller coasters and turned 28. Well, that wasn’t all…but those are the highlights.

I’ve also become something of a road warrior, making the 45-mile-per-way quest from Costa Mesa to Los Angeles each day for work. Intense commute times are particularly fertile ground for album obsession and that is exactly what has happened here.

I heard this song while listening to KCRW (another maintaining-sanity-whilst-driving mainstay). At first, I didn’t think much of it. The awkward lyrics were kind of a turn off…but then, a few hours passed and I found that I still had it in my head. I looked it up and found that it was by a band called Midlake from an album called The Trials of Van Occupanther.

The sounds and structures of the songs on this collection conjure a pleasant mash of a few bands I never exactly got hooked on (Fleetwood Mac, Jethro Tull, Jackson Browne) and then re-contextualizes in a way that I love. Of course, all with a dash of Radiohead. Radiohead: the spice of life?

I really hope you love this as much as me. But if you don't, that's ok.


The village used to be all one really needs.
Now, it's filled with hundreds and hundreds of chemicals
That mostly surround you--you wish to flee
But it's not like you so listen to me, listen to me.

June 10, 2011

Anni Rossi//Land Majestic

A Jam Majestic and Untamed: Local Music Friday
What's up with Local Music Fridays?

Guys, I am just going to stop making promises about post frequency/quantity/etc. We both know I can't keep them. With the moving and the wedding planning and the new (sort of demanding) job, I'm like a deadbeat dad with a million shitty excuses. Not cool. So from now on, you'll hear from me when you hear from me. The only thing I can completely guarantee is that the jams will stay totally real and top notch. Quality, not quantity, amiright?

I've hung out with Anni Rossi a handful of entertaining times. We are strictly the kind of acquaintances who make plans to hang out when we see each other without following through on them. Honestly though, sometimes these are totally awesome relationships, I think. It's always good to run into these folks at shows/on the street/whatever and of course you do legitimately want to hang out, but you get busy, they get busy, you move across the country...you know how it goes.

Regardless, Anni is rad and her music is, as evidenced by the track below, also rad. This recording is super rich. The tones of all the string instruments are impeccable. The arrangement, especially with respect to the use of rhythm, manages to be interesting, original and catchy all at once. Not an easy feat. Have I mentioned that the lyrics are kind of heartbreaking (in case you missed them)? Have we all not been there?

Buy Heavy Meadow, the album from whence this came, here.

Land Majestic.mp3

And we jumped into
The Grand Canyon in winter,
Throwing glitter.