We continue our 2013 Year in Review via shuffle with another great mix of music. Today, I thought I would focus on the various ways that new music comes to my attention. Why? Because inquiring minds want to know even if they do not know that they want to know.
Today 3 of the artists featured came to me from a particular music promoter who has a great track record in terms of the music he sends my way.
6 artists came to me directly or indirectly from the awesome Popatunes. Of those, at least 1 was from a Popatunes compilation, at least 2 were from Couch by Couchwest, 2 were found via artists who were directly recommended by Popa, and 1 was a direct recommendation from the man himself.
2 artists approached me directly at some point.
1 was long ago a Twitter follow.
and I met one at an unofficial Americana Fest event this past September.
Can you match the artist to the categories above?
"Scream" by Marla Mase
"Sinners, You Better Get Ready" by Black Jake and the Carnies
"Chili" by Dog Without Warning
"Pine Box Hell" by The Imperial Rooster
"Driving Toward the Sun" by Susan James
"Better Than" by The Coal Men
"Vices" by The Quick and the Dead
"Languishing in Lower Chakras" by The Gabriel Construct
"R U Thinking What I'm Thinking" by The Great American Novel
"Silence" by Beijing
"Long Pig" by Skeletons in the Piano (from Please Don't Die)
"The Sun Will Set" by Beijing (from Night)
"Mental Trapeze" by The End Men (from Play With Your Toys)
"Exit Me" by The Imperial Rooster (from Cluckaphony)
"Out of Time" (Blur cover) by Mr. Kind and Tektite (from Mr. Kind and...*)
*the title of the Mr. Kind album actually has the ampersand, but that symbol messes with the formatting on Blogger so...)
Marla Mase is freaking awesome. Her album Speak was released in 2012, but a Deluxe version was reissued in 2013 making eligible for inclusion in this Shuffle. Plus it's my shuffle so whatever I say is eligible is eligible. (I'll try not to let that power go to my head) (Oh who am I kidding... it's gone)
Reason number 724 why I love using the "shuffle" function: Black Jake and the Carnies, "Chili" by Dog Without Warning, and The Imperial Rooster back to back to back.
Susan James had X drummer D.J. Bonebrake emcee the album release party for her previous album. This gives here a million cool points in my book. Driving Toward the Sun is a great album of amazing California-style mellow folk - think Joni Mitchell and Kate Wolf if it's helpful to have a reference point.
The Coal Men: It's still inconceivable to me that it took 4 albums for me to catch hold of this band. Thanks to the blogger Too Much Country for the introduction.
The Quick and the Dead is the new band from ex- Cosmonauts - Joe Mansman. I was pleasantly surprised and heartened by the sound of this band.
The Gabriel Construct is a project I was so happy to have the opportunity to feature. It is a complex, progressive, and evocative interior journey. At times sparse, at times discordant it is an amazing musical achievement. It is music unlike most you are likely to hear (on this blog or anywhere else).
I've written quite a bit recently about :( the latest album from The Great American Novel. The album was recorded at Mama Coco's Funky Kitchen - a definite hot bed of amazing music. Side note: for some reason Amazon was okay with :( as an album title, but seemed to not like The Danbury Lies title '?'.
Representing Connecticut in today's mix is a great hard rock band called beijing whose strong and consistent album Night is one of my faves from the year.
Skeletons in the Piano were the 2012 Ear to the Ground Band of the Year. They sealed the deal with their truly amazing Please Don't Die album which was released by Magnetic Eye Records. Recommended for fans of awesome music. They are from Saratoga Springs, New York. I'm just a guy from Nashville so I don't know much about Saratoga Springs except there must be a ton of great musicians there and at least half of them are in SITP. Seriously, how many people are in this band? :-)
The End Men. Boom! Brownies on the house!
Mr. Kind is the newish band from Brian Bergeron. This year they teamed up with other indie artists to record a series of covers of classic indie tracks. Here they team with Extraterrestrial Hip-Hop artist Tektite to cover a song made famous by 90s British band Blur.