MONDAY: THE LONELY WILD | YOUNG BUFFALO

It’s difficult to write about death in a way that isn’t morose or dispiriting. The subject, long turned over by artists of all kinds, is inherently sad. But on Chasing White Light (eOne Music/Fast Plastic), The Lonely Wild reflects on death in a way that is both accepting and uplifting. The album, which follows the Los Angeles group’s 2013 effort The Sun As It Comes, was born last year as frontman Andrew Carroll was faced with the death of his wife’s grandmother. “When that happens to people you know and love, you often pause and reflect on people you’ve known who’ve passed away,” he notes. “And then the topic started coming out in songs naturally.” [...] The Lonely Wild’s touring experience also impacted the album. Over the past few years, the group, which formed in 2010, has performed with Damien Rice, Apache Relay, The Lone Bellow, Lord Huron, Laura Marling, Phosphorescent, Dwight Yoakam and Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, and at festivals like South by Southwest, First City Festival, Echo Park Rising, Cask and Drum Festival and Jubilee. The band has sold out nearly a dozen shows in their hometown of Los Angeles, and expanded their live show to feel as dynamic and exciting as possible. On Chasing White Light, the musicians wanted to bring that sense of exhilaration to the recording. “There’s a sense of urgency to this record that we didn’t have on previous records,” Andrew says. “It’s much more immediate. Some of that comes from the theme, but a lot comes from playing shows a lot. We turned into a louder band.” In the end, Chasing White Light comes to some sort of acceptance. You will die, but that doesn’t have to be mournful or disheartening. It encourages you to stay in the moment and follow your own bliss, rather than live for some future promise of an afterlife. It’s a musical journey that leaves you uplifted and encouraged, even as it considers one of life’s darkest subjects. “This album doesn’t dwell on the despair of it all,” Andrew confirms. “It’s about looking at death for what it is – something we all go through at some point. It’s that great mystery and no one really knows what happens. You’re never going to know until you get there. And you have to come to terms with that. Through writing these songs I’ve come to accept it and not totally fear it. And I hope our fans can too.”

Sounds like: Lord Huron, Desert Noises, Hey Marseilles

There's nothing typical about the Oxford, Mississippi-based rock act Young Buffalo or the story behind their debut album, House. Although the group's songwriters Ben Yarbrough and Jim Barrett didn't begin playing under the Young Buffalo moniker until 2009, they started writing music together as teenagers and never ceased evolving. [Bandcamp] Although House is teeming with infectious melodies and upbeat instrumentation, Yarbrough's lyrics were inspired by real life heartbreak. "A lot of my writing went back to how I felt when a high school sweetheart broke up with me and I went through a depression for a little while so the lyrical tone isn't super happy," he admits. Alternately a song like 'No Idea' is about stepping outside of your comfort zone and leaving your hometown to follow your dreams. Even as the heart-on-sleeve story telling in evident, the content on House is still ambiguous enough for listeners to draw their own meanings and interpretations to the songs. In keeping with the ongoing theme, the album may contain some dark subject matter but it's always presented in a way that's inherently relatable and heartfelt. Riding that line between straight ahead pop music and tastefully weird indie rock. There’s a timeless nature to House that sees it referencing the past while still remaining irrevocably relevant today. “When we’re writing we always want it to be something that we would want to listen to in the car or put in at a party.” Barrett explains. “We’re really honest with ourselves when it comes to what we create and that’s ultimately what keeps us interested to keep pushing forward,” he summarizes. With the good fortune of these five gentlemen being birthed in such a fantastically diverse city, both artistically and culturally, we are just thankful they decided to follow their musical hearts and form Young Buffalo. They are no doubt on their way to establishing themselves as one indie rock's brightest hopes.

Sounds like: Fort Lean, Races, Royal Canoe

TUESDAY: STI-LO REEL’S Martial Law Album Release Party

Pledge Empire MC Sti-Lo Reel chiseled his place with his face paced new single, “Indelible.” Produced by Nicademus and featuring Kidd Cane, the Minneapolis spitter returns to remind everyone that he is “that guy” when it comes to impassioned bars over a brash blend of synths and horns. Along with an fiercely formidable hook,” Indelible” serves as the latest single off of his upcoming new project “Martial Law,” which is sure to finally solidify his place as one of the hottest MCs in the Twin Cities. [Breaks x Lakes]

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WEDNESDAY: THE LOVE BELOW: All R&B Dance Night
‘Frank Ocean Boys Don’t Cry Album Anticipation Party’

Come down for the final The Love Below R&B dance night of 2015 in The Entry with local DJs TIIIIIIIIIIP, DJ Keezy, Sophia Eris (of GRRRL PRTY), Alibaster Jones, and Mica May Grimm. Many Frank Ocean tracks will be played to "prepare for his possibly nevercoming album, 'Boys Don't Cry'"', as well as lots of other quality R&B all night long. 

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FRIDAY: NE-HI | CAR SEAT HEADREST

Born out of the backyards and basements of Chicago’s DIY music scene, NE-HI’s nostalgic-rock brings you back to a time that may have never existed. It may be the past. It may be the future. But, it is certainly a place where you feel younger, better looking, and you dance until you are soaked in sweat. A place where you know the best bands before your older brother and all the cool kids at school. The quartet’s guitar-driven songwriting and distinct harmonies produce a sound that is both raw and relaxed, rough and humble. Formed to score a friend’s film in the summer of 2013, the foursome—made up of Alex Otake, James Weir, Jason Balla and Mikey Wells—recognized the electricity between it’s four members and chose to continue making music. Since then, the foursome has toured the Midwest and East Coast, building a reputation as a promising young American band.

Sounds like: The Ghost Ease, Adult Dude, Palehound

Will Toledo (last name pseudonymous) has been making music as Car Seat Headrest for over five years now, so calling this one a “Band To Watch” is probably a bit of a stretch. Toledo’s done a well enough job of his own cultivating a very devoted fanbase through a long series of strong Bandcamp releases. But the designation feels appropriate in some way, because this feature comes on the heels of a big announcement, one that will probably come as a welcome surprise to those who have been following the project since its early days: Car Seat Headrest is joining the esteemed roster of Matador Records, and will release two records in the next few months that will serve as both a reintroduction and a continuation of Toledo’s journey so far. [...] Listening through to the entire Car Seat Headrest output in chronological order is like watching someone grow up, mainly because that’s exactly what it is. There’s awkward growing pains, off-putting discursions, ambitious interconnected concept albums, albums that are barely held together by Scotch tape; EPs-in-name-only that stretch over an hour, B-side collections labeled as “generally just awful shit,” complete with notes about the conception of every song. His entire Bandcamp page is prefaced with a warning: “DO NOT LINK THE NUMBERED ALBUMS BECAUSE THEY’RE NOT VERY GOOD,” it shouts, urging people not to share the earliest work but still keeping it up for posterity and the diehards. “Not very good” isn’t exactly true — you can see the spark even from the earliest songs, but it’s understandable why one would be a little overwhelmed. [...] On “Something Soon,” one of the first re-recorded tracks to be shared from the upcoming release, he lays out the necessity and urgency of his songwriting: “I was referring to the present in past tense/ It was the only way that I could survive it/ I want to close my head in the car door/ I want to sing this song like I’m dying.” Toledo uses his music as a way to cope, a way to contextualize current emotions into something digestible. And he hopes that translates to the listener, as a way to feel some sense of catharsis and relief. It works. “Something Soon” is weighed down by the pressure of expectation — from society, from your family, from yourself. It’s a song about desire, about needing a connection so badly so you don’t get lost within yourself. “Heavy boots on my throat/ I need, I need something soon.” With a move up to the big leagues, more pressure is bound to come. But Toledo seems ready to handle it: Car Seat Headrest is becoming less of a bedroom affair, and more of the punk project it always was at heart. [Stereogum]

Sounds like: Coma Cinema, Teen Suicide, Adult Mom

SATURDAY: MY PARENTS BASSMENT "Friendsgiving Dance Party"

Come Saturday, it's time to shake off that Turkey weight with another edition of My Parents Bassment. It's Friendsgiving, so bring all your friends and get ready to shake your tailfeathers. Groovy dance beats for the night provided by DJLOW and Mike The Martyr, and live art all night by local artist Yekaterina Krilova. On top of that, there will be gifts and giveaways all night! Get ready for some fun.

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SUNDAY: together PANGEA

together PANGEA do rock ‘n’ roll as it was meant to be – raw, unpredictable, and probably dangerous, but also blazing with intelligence, emotion, and edgy experimentation. The Los Angeles-based trio made their bones as purveyors of post-millennial punk, but with their third full-length release – and Harvest Records debut Badillac, they pay their debt to the supersonic 90s rock that first inspired them. The band has not sacrificed a spurt of precious energy, instead integrating nuance and dynamic momentum to songs like “No Way Out” and the undeniably badass title track. The volcanic riffs and massive melodies are matched by an equally provocative lyrical stance, with songs like “Sick Shit” and the album-closing “Where The Night Ends” casting an acerbic eye over the wreckage of the party they helped start – it’s 3am and the drunken fun has given way to sexual panic, anxiety and self-doubt. Slightly stoned but by no means slack, Badillac reveals together PANGEA to be both confident and surprisingly committed, their audacious ambition already impossible to contain.[...] Keegan first started writing and recording in his Santa Clarita bedroom, his teenage tapes eventually coming to full flower with the aid of bassist Danny Bengston and drummer Erik Jimenez. Known then simply as Pangea, the band played countless beer blasts in and around CalArts, their boozy mayhem and breakneck pop hooks quickly earning them frenzied crowds throughout the Southern California DIY scene and beyond.

Sounds like: Tijuana Panthers, Shannon and The Clams, King Tuff


Blog by Gina Reis