The Jimmy C (update!)

April 19, 2012

Well, I already wrote about this Australian musician back in January (you can read about it here), and recently had the fortune of interviewing him for the upcoming issue of German music magazine¬† CRKO (where you’ll find this blog in a column format from now on), and not only is he a talented multi-instrumentalist but such a sweet, down-to-earth kinda guy I’m making an extra effort to promote him (arrogant rockstar wannabees take note!) With about 30 new songs written and recorded – you wanna talk ‘prolific’? – there’s a 5-track rough-mix sample available on his Bandcamp starting today.

Being a big fan of his previous album Glamour & Fame (if you’re looking for great-sounding 60s styled pop make sure you check it out) I was pleasantly surprised to see his songwriting and arranging skills having matured, and as a fellow musician it was great to see him move away from genre and instead focusing on songs – style be damned. In it’s rough format this is still a great collection of tracks and it’s obvious Jamie has found his voice. Now all we can do is sit back and just enjoy the fruits of his labor. The songs are free to download so what are you waiting for?

Sample track:

Bandcamp: http://thejimmyc.bandcamp.com/
Website: http://www.thejimmyc.com/

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The Guitars

March 8, 2012

Wow! For a great slice of Motown-meets-60s-Bubblegum check out The Guitars debut release High Action! Perfectly produced, this Ohio quartet offers up seven songs of amazing soul-pop-bubblegum that takes you back at least 40 years in music history. With brilliant musicianship, some serious songwriting talent and a really gifted vocalist, these guys are sure to make some waves in the future.

Four releases so far, including tons of free downloads (including a X-Mas EP where they cover The Sonics)! The EP is also available as a vinyl 10″ so make sure you check them out!

Sample track:

Bandcamp: http://theguitars.bandcamp.com/
Website: http://www.wearetheguitars.com/

Donald Seward

January 25, 2012

Some great instrumental soul/funk jams are served up by French Canadian Donald Seward and his backing band on their debut offering Studio “B” Funk EP, released on Les Disques Pluton in 2010. Drenched in roots they got the sound down pat with a great rythm section, nice action on the hammond and horn section – with some occasional jazz flute too boot!

Three songs in total (four if you download) of great classic funk served up with fitting 70’s style production. If you’re into classic 70’s TV themes a’la Streets of San Fransisco or cult blaxploitation like Shaft make sure you check this out! Bio is in French I’m afraid so I couldn’t really make much out of it.

Sample track:

Bandcamp: http://donaldseward.bandcamp.com/
Website: http://lesdisquespluton.com/

The Black Mill Tapes Vol.3

January 23, 2012

Library music meets early synth retro with Pye Corner Audio‘s The Black Mill Tapes series, compiling what they claim are a collection of obscure cassette and 1/4″ reel tape recordings from an unknown artist recorded sometime in the 80’s. Compiled by The Head Technician (true identity apparently withheld), the third installment offers up twelve tracks of early transcendent electronica faintly reminiscent of late 70’s Kraftwerk.

We’re talking heavy Moog sounds with fairly primitive rythms, but it really works and oddly enough brought back a lot of memories from the golden days of video horror, as the songs really reminds me of soundtracks from Carpenter and even the Italo splatterfests by Lucio Fulci. Free downloads are available, so check ’em out!

Sample track:

Bandcamp: http://pyecorneraudio.bandcamp.com/
Website: http://pyecorneraudio.wordpress.com/

Casablanca Carambol Company

January 11, 2012

I’m usually not that keen on modern rockabilly because it has a tendency to be way overproduced, lacking that necessary “dirt” that was pretty common on those indie label releases back in the fifties, or just lacking the nerve of the original artists. Nothing wrong with retro, but an anemic delivery just doesn’t cut it when it comes to wild music. Belgian combo Casablanca Carambol Company manages to steer clear of that on their 2010 album Moonlight, offering up some really good originals faithful to the sound.

Bringing to mind the classic two first albums by Gene Vincent with a slight Bobby Fuller influence, these guys serves up eleven great rockabilly tracks with nice production true to the roots and some pretty nice guitar work. Available on CD as well!

Sample track:

Bandcamp: http://carambolcompany.bandcamp.com/
Website: http://www.myspace.com/cccrockabilly

Two Syllables Volume Six

January 11, 2012

Here’s a nice lil’ freebie from UK label First Word RecordsTwo Syllables Six released in time for X-Mas 2011! Compiling eleven tracks (twelve if you download) taken from the past year’s releases with some exclusives and previews added, you’ll get a nice cross-selection of modern soul, R&B and funk and great-sounding Dub.

A nicely varied compilation, the music’s got a healthy dose of roots mixed in and I gotta admit, when it comes to modern dancefloor music, this is the kinda delivery I prefer. Check it out!

Sample track:

Bandcamp: http://shop.firstwordrecords.com/album/two-syllables-volume-six
Website: http://www.firstwordrecords.com/

The Cry

January 4, 2012

Well, if we ignore there’s a Swedish garage outfit with the same name that’s been active for 20+ years, Portland quartet The Cry is a fairly new band made up of pretty young guys delivering perfectly executed Power Pop. I gotta admit I was initially freaked out hearing these guys on account of their eerily similar sound to that other great Portland pop outfit The Exploding Hearts (especially considering their heartbreakingly tragic end in 2003), but these guys make it no secret they’re an influence and they manage to pull it off incredibly good!

Twelve tracks are served up on their self-titled debut album and it pretty much sounds like a greatest hits compilation from a veteran band with twenty years under the belt (and these guys are in their teens!). We’re talking massive song writing talent mixing up the classic sounds of 70’s Power Pop with nice 50’s harmonies, completely drenched in hooks – fodder for some heavy radio rotation, I kid you not. Keep a lookout in March when the vinyl version is released in Japan (on S-P Records) and Europe (by Taken By Surprise Records).

Sample track:

Bandcamp: http://thecry1.bandcamp.com/
Website: http://www.thecrypdx.com/