Barons of Hiddenhausen, is a mysterious and hidden secret, with it’s origins in Vienna. Although the project sounds like a full-fledged band, the mastermind behind the project is one person: Moritz Kofler. Kofler is no stranger to the genre – after he recorded “World Withdrawal,” he collaborated with Digital Noise Academy in L.A., a project by Ken Andrews (Failure, Beck, A.P.C. NIN), Jordon Zadorozny (Blinker The Star, Courtney Love, Melissa Auf Der Maur) and others. That experience shows in this record.
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It’s been a while since rock music has sounded the way Stars In Stereo plays it. The group approaches its songs with a firm grasp on gritty rock instincts as well as a innate understanding of clean pop sensibilities. The main attribute of Stars In Stereo, the band’s recently released self-titled album, is that its particular style is difficult to pin down. It’s not totally heavy and not totally soft, but more a combination of the two than some strange middle-ground.
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Rabbit & The Hare is proof that good things can happen on Craigslist. The band formed after singer/songwriter Neill MacCallum posted an ad in NYC’s section of the website in search of a “female multi-instrumentalist.” Marisa Duchowny, a person that happens to fit both of those requirements, also happened to read and respond to that post. Just like that, with the strange power of the internet, a duo was born. Marisa became the Rabbit, Neill the Hare.
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Embarrassingly enough, when asked to write a review of Bob Wiseman‘s latest solo release, “Some Wise Guy”, I had no idea who he was. So before agreeing to something I couldn’t stick to with any degree of precision or integrity, I listened to the record. It’s at this point that I became pretty intimidated to write this review. Wiseman’s music is decidedly educated and avant… however…after listening again and again I realized it’s not the kind of art pop that talks down to you, rather the type that invites you into the party. Once you get the joke too, you’re on the inside and it’s smooth sailing from there.
I usually give a song 45 seconds to a minute. If it doesn’t hit me, I hit next. If it does, I click to see what else I can listen to. In Greenleaf’s case, their song “Jack Staff” hit me instantaneously and didn’t let go. As I clicked on their release, Nest of Vipers, I could tell after three tracks that I needed to listen to the whole album. I don’t know about you but something I simply can’t resist is the blend of bad ass with catchy. It’s like if you got to be the popular kid and the Breakfast Club bad ass at the same time. Greenleaf is that blend. Indie rock in bed with hard rock ; dirty grunge mixed with sharp punkish attitude ; infectious melodies on top of crunchy guitars and creatively catchy riffs. Tastefully distorted bass that’s anything but stuck-up sounding. Straight ahead vocals that weave over and under the mixes from song to song.
I find myself being rude but can’t help it.
He’s come back from the kitchen with more wine and my thumbs move as quickly as one bottle down will allow, hurriedly taking note of the conversation highlights. There are many. Philosophical musings bounce around like a coked out game of pong in my brain, intermingling with political discussion, movie quotes and the awesomeness of wine. I get enough shorthand into my phone to feel satisfied and gladly take another glass. It’s probably been upwards of three hours, noted only by the kink in my back from the wooden folding chair.
by Tyler Hayes
Never once have I uttered the words “Funky fresh,” but with Wooster‘s album, If All The Dew Were Diamonds, it’s the only phrase that comes to mind, immediately describing the music. The album is definitely a genre bender and a great example of a band accurately throwing in hints of multiple styles, while never over saturating a particular taste.
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