Up first is Palomino Falls, a noise project from the mind of Montreal's Aaron McConomy. While I adore electronic music and music with noise elements, I never really developed an interest in the whole noise/drone genre, that is until now. Palomino Falls uses live sounds and loops to bring everything together in real time. The near complete exclusion of computers is refreshing in that there's an organic, intuitive interaction with the music. Give it a listen. This is some good stuff.
Stay with me folks. There's a lot of this weird, wild stuff to come. Hopefully, this will build up into a prettty big thing.
Jeff Higgins is the founder of Groove Sandwich. When he's not doing this, he's doing this.
Well, it's not a NEW new album. It's a collection of works from 2010. If you like it enough to have for yourself, go ahead and download it. You can even name your own price!
Jeff Higgins is the founder of Groove Sandwich and he's not entirely clear on the meaning of the word "new".
The sparse piano on “Movement One” reminded me of the forbidding moods on David Bowie’s amazing release “Outside”. By the time I got the the 3rd movement, I was already imagining a live performance and some psychedelic visuals to the material. “On the Run” by Pink Floyd came to mind when listening to the chaotic but colourful piece. “Movement Four” delivers broken up communications and unique use of samples much like the well-reviewed buzz act Oneohtrix Point Never. “Movement Six” is reminiscent of Trent Reznor’s soundtrack work, with it’s more linear beat and consistency. “Movement Seven” closes the release with some ominous bells (aren’t bells ALWAYS ominous?), and a general atmosphere of warning. A calm wake-up call, perhaps. The chord choices at the end are sublime, and give the release’s closing a strange calm. This is a good release for any fans of ambient or experimental electronic music.
Make sure to check out Independent Music Promotions. They do some fine work there.
When I first read about Berlin duo Rooftop Runners and their combined influenced of indie rock and dubstep, I was prepared for the worst. Truth be told, I fucking hate dubstep. All of the wub wub wub just grates on my every nerve. But I can honestly tell you that I was pleasantly surprised by We Are Here. It shows songwriting and production discipline unheard of in a new act.
The first three tracks of this four song EP are pretty solid. There are enough electronic elements added in to give everything a very unique feel yet there isn’t so much that the sound comes across as cold. There’s no denying that this music is fun, original and vibrant. And the wub wub wub that I mentioned? Well, it’s present here but I find that it’s well suited to the songs that Rooftop Runners have written. I’m inclined to think that they wrote thoughtful, sincere music first and added the wubs later to enhance what they’d done. Well played.
The EP really shines when you get to the fourth track, “Streets”. I can say with zero exaggeration that it’s one of the best songs I’ve ever heard. I’ve already listened to it a hundred times and I’m still not tired of it. The vocals are superb. The production is dark and moody. The guitar lines are a work of subtle genius. If there’s to be a new golden age of music, Rooftop Runners will be a part of it.
Jeff Higgins is the founder of Groove Sandwich. If he can figure out Ableton Live, he'll have conquered the world.
Today is the day where I’m finally able to sink my teeth into The Death and Resurrection of Krautrock: AUM. It’s a tour de force of instrumental rock that’s sure to satisfy some serious hard rock fans. Its huge structures, minimalist leanings and huge guitar tones stand taller than the Sears Tower. But is it any good? You bet your ass, it’s good.
Seven That Spells may not be a stereotypical prog rock band, but you’d never know it while listening The Death and Resurrection. The howling textures laid over surging guitar lines and aggressive drums evoke all manner of imagery of everything from medieval combat to interplanetary conquest. As one sinks further and further into the album, it’s easy to forget the repetitive nature of the composition and sink into blissful daydreams. This is truly music to get lost in.
Quite honestly, I don’t have much to complain about. It initially took me a little while to understand where Seven That Spells was going with this, but once I did, I completely fell in love with The Death and Resurrection. While it may not be an instantly accessible work, it’s powerful nonetheless. I’d highly recommend listening to this beast in its entirety before forming any opinions. Anything less would be doing yourself a disservice.
Jeff Higgins is the founder of Groove Sandwich. The Death and Resurrection of Krautrock: AUM will be heavily featured in his car stereo from now on.
Profit Prophet is an electroacoustic piece in seven movements that is built off of the notion that global economics is more of a cult than a science. We both celebrate and fear the diety known as The Economy. Some of us experience its blessings while other feel its wrath.
So if you'll go here, you can stream Profit Prophet for free and if you like it, you can download it for the low price of $5 (US). I'm also looking for someone to review this bad boy, so please feel free to rip this EP to pieces.
Jeff Higgins is the founder of Groove Sandwich. Jeff Higgins, the musician, is the founder of Jeff Higgins, the blogger, who is the founder of Jeff Higgins, the musician. There's some Inception shit for ya.
This album came to me courtesy of our good friend, Nick, over at Prog-Sphere.com. Stations of the Ghost is a swirling space rock trip that revives the atmospheres from the good old Pink Floyd days. Texturally and melodically, it is ambitious to say the very least but did Earthling Society bite off more than they can chew? We’ll see.
Compositionally, I think there were a lot of fantastic choices made. It’s very refreshing to hear somebody finally playing a major key and playing it well. Not only that, but they’ve done a great job of mixing things up track to track, but each song manages to develop very nicely along the way. There also seems to be a lot of attention given to making sure that each song has a strong melody and not just a bunch of neat chords. So far, these cats get a 9 out of 10.
On a production level, things are well done but only to a certain point. The vocal effects are a nice touch but on occasion the buckets and buckets of reverb tend to rob the singer’s voice of its definition. When the individual notes in a melody have a hard time punching through, the melody itself loses some of its impact. I wouldn’t consider this to be a major issue on Stations of the Ghost, but I feel that it’s something that should be reconsidered on future releases.
In the end, this is a pretty spiffy album. It reminds me of a lot of the tunes that my dad and I listened to on the classic rock radio station when I was a kid. Earthling Society have managed to update the vibe enough to make it their own but at no point do they betray their roots. This one is certainly worth your time.
Jeff Higgins is the founder of Groove Sandwich and this has been a welcome break from Bush's Sixteen Stone which has been in Jeff's CD player for two weeks.
If I may be brutally honest for a moment, I’d just like to say that the whole folk/folk rock/indie folk/indie folk rock business that’s been a brewin’ for the last ten years or so doesn’t appeal to me in any way. The notion of some douchebag pouring his heart out over the three chords he knows on his acoustic guitar is the kind of thing that inspires generous amounts of eye rolling for me. So you can imagine my hesitation in reviewing a self-described folk album. We’re going to file this one under “Sometimes Jeff is Wrong”.
The instant I put my headphones on, it’s as if the album said “Why don’t you just shut up for a minute and listen to what I have to say?” And so I listened. Andrea Caccese, the man behind Song for the Sleepwalkers, is far more than the singer-songwriter that he lets on. He’s a master at crafting otherworldly textures and each song adds a dynamic new element to the album. Reactions moves from folk to electronica to classical and it does so without the slightest bit of effort. One might think that incorporating so many disparate genres would make for a mish-mash of an album. How wrong you’d be.
My only complaint is that there isn’t enough to go around. Every song here is a little on the short side, which isn’t necessarily bad, but I think if Caccese took a little more time with these tracks, he could expand them out and take them from “great” to “timeless”. Even considering that, each moment of this album is more enjoyable that the last.
Jeff Higgins is the founder of Groove Sandwich and he's chasing a funky tune right now.
I'm the most opinionated person to ever work in the health insurance field. The good news is that I can write too.