Tag Archives: indie music

Get it or forget it – King Washington, Sara Petite, The Wild Now

We are really excited about this edition of Get it or Forget it.  We get to review new material from a rising Los Angeles band, a new album from an old favorite, and introduce you to a new band that we think is going to be huge.  All three albums are also being released on the same date, May 19.  So grab your coffee and sit back as we review these three albums for you.

Artist NameKing Washington

Album NamePotential

Label:  The End Records

Genre:  Indie Rock

Track Listing:  1.  My Reflection; 2.  Superman; 3.  Interval; 4.  Evelyn; 5.  Love be Gone; 6.  Hey Boy; 7.  Nowhere’s Hard to Find; 8.  I Wouldn’t Laugh About It; 9.  The Other side; 10.  Be Where you Belong; 11. The Great Disguise; 12.  Interlude; 13.  New Meaning; 14.  Climb out the Valley

Publicist:  The End Records PR

Review:  From the first notes of “My Reflection,” King Washington reminds us why they have been designated as one of the best live acts by LA Weekly.  The vocal harmonies hit you right off, with a driving beat that propels you into musical nirvana and force your feet to get up and dance.  King Washington forges its own sound from the influences of the masters, like the Beatles, CSN and the Talking Heads.  Their music is uniquely California while still being universal.  The second track, “Superman,” is their latest single, and we think it was a wise choice.  They have also released music videos for those first two tracks, which we previously shared in our Monday Mashup series.  This is definitely an album you want to listen to from start to finish.  Best songs include “My Reflection,” “Superman,” “Love be Gone,” “Hey Boy” (which sounds a lot like CSN), “Nowhere’s Hard to Find,” “The Other Side,” and “Be Where you Belong,” while “The Great Disguise” also shows great promise as a future single.

Recommendation:  We think that the album title is very apropos for this band.  They have always had ‘potential,’ and this album just shows the accomplishment of that potential.  We strongly recommend that you Get It as soon as it goes on sale on May 19.  You might want to pre-order it now to ensure you don’t miss out.

Artist NameSara Petite

Album NameRoad Less Traveled

Label:  Self-released

Genre:   Country/Americana

Track Listing:  1.  Road Less Traveled; 2.  It was Just a Kiss; 3.  Blackbird; 4.  Getting Over You; 5.  You Don’t Care at All; 6.  Patchwork Quilt; 7.  Good 2 B Me; 8.  Sweet Pea Blues; 9.  Monkey on my Back; 10.  I Will Rise; 11.  Sweet Pea Patch; 12.  Road Less Traveled Reprise 

Publicist:  KG Music Press

Review:  Back in 2010, we feared that we had heard the last of Sara Petite after she released her third album.  She had just graduated from college and was headed down the corporate path.  But fate intervened with the death of her partner, and music provided the only path for her to deal with this.  We are happy to see her return to her musical roots, and she has compiled an extensive musical library since then to convince her that she has a career in music.  Road Less Traveled is her fifth studio album, and it firmly sets Petite within the musical elite of country music.  She is obviously greatly influenced by classic country, which permeates the album from start to finish.  Her lyrics cut deep as she uses her music to talk about life, including brutally honest songs about love and heartache.  Her pure voice provides the perfect conduit for these songs to grab hold of the listener and implant her truth deep within.  Best tracks include “Blackbird,” “Getting Over You” (her first single), “You Don’t Care at All,” “Good 2 B Me” (with its Tom Petty feel), “Sweet Pea Blues,” and “I Will Rise.”

Recommendation:  We are happy to recommend this album, which is surely one of the best country albums of 2017.  The Academy should stand up and take notice that Sara Petite is back, stronger than ever.  You should definitely Get It as soon as it is available.

Artist NameThe Wild Now

Album NameAfterglow

Label:  Self-released

Genre:  Indie Rock

Track Listing:  1.  Afterglow; 2.  Run for Your Life; 3.  Spinning; 4.  Troubled Paradise; 5.  Tongue Tied

Publicist:  Noisy Ghost PR

Review:  Composed of Taylor Baker and Drew Walker, this Austin-based duo create music that is upbeat, real and life-changing.  The musical background creates the perfect foundation for the rising vocals of Baker, which create an atmosphere of audio perfection.  The lyrics are thought-provoking and the total package is worthy of a much broader market.  These guys are better than the majority of what you hear on commercial radio today, and deserve their chance to spread their music to the world.  “Afterglow” is a rousing number that kicks the EP off to a glorious start, and foreshadows the taste of things to come.  All five tracks could easily reach the top of the pop charts, and we strongly encourage Programming Directors to add The Wild Now to their regular rotation.

Recommendation:  Definitely Get It as soon as it is available.  We strongly encourage you to follow these guys on all social media platforms and hop on board now.  They are definitely going places.

 

Get it or forget it – Pi Jacobs, The Dream Eaters, HotKid

One of the advantages to being unemployed is the chance to review lots more new music than I could while working full-time.  Luckily, I have received more than 200 requests for reviews in the past few weeks, and I now have time to sort through them to bring you more great artists.  Here are three of our new favorites.  Thanks to them for reaching out.

Artist NamePi Jacobs

Album NameA Little Blue

Label:  Travianna Records

Genre:  Acoustic folk/roots

Track Listing:  1.  Dance Clean; 2.  All Love; 3.  Good Things; 4.  Faking It; 5.   Weed and Wine; 6.  The Moment; 7.  She Don’t Love you That Way; 8.  Half Way Done; 9.  We Always Come Home; 10.  Dead Man; 11.  Purple State; 12.  When my Father is Gone 

Publicist:  From the Top Communications

Review:  Pi Jacobs has been an LA staple for quite a few years, but even her biggest fans will be thrilled at the differences in her current project, A Little Blue.    We have always said that a true musician is one whose acoustic music is as good as their full band.  In Jacobs’ case, it is definitely true.  Her pure voice comes shining through with the simple acoustic background, revealing an artist that truly has something to say.  It is obvious that she has poured her heart and soul into this project, which shows in every track.  From the upbeat and fun first track, “Dance Clean,” to the soulful ballad “All Love,” and continuing throughout the album, Jacobs raises our spirits and makes us thing about what is most important to us.  If you love the multi-faceted music she has previously produced, then you will love this stripped down album, which allows her intriguing lyrics to come to the forefront of each song.  We especially love her first single, “Good Things,” which reminds us that regardless of what is happening to us, we have much to be to be thankful for, as well as “The Moment,” with its down home rhythms and soulful feel.

Recommendation:  We are proud to recommend A Little Blue, and urge you to Get It as soon as you can.  Request her single, “Good Things” at your favorite radio station today.

Artist NameThe Dream Eaters

Album NameWe are a Curse

Label:  Song Dynasty

Genre:  Dream pop

Track Listing:  1.  Dead on the Inside; 2.  Neanderthals; 3.  Dots; 4.  Astral Asshole; 5.  Sugar Coma; 6.  So Heavy; 7.  Almost Afraid; 8.  Plastic Priestess; 9.  We are a Curse; 10.  Brazil Song 

Publicist:  Behind the Curtains Media

Review:   Composed of Jake Zavracky and Elizabeth LeBaron, The Dream Eaters’ latest release is a tantalizing audio morsel that will make you tingle all over.  The haunting voice of LeBaron over the multi-layers of musical texture provided by Zavracky create a sound that is dreamy and surreal.  Considering Zavracky’s background of musical placements in such hit shows as NCIS, JAG, The Sopranos and Shameless, as well as Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, this winning combination is sure to become even more powerful as they mature their sound.  Best tracks include “Neanderthals” (which we feel is the strongest song on the album), “Dots,” “Sugar Coma” (with its perfect harmonies), “So Heavy,” and “Plastic Priestess.”

Recommendation:  If you like dreamy pop music, with a healthy dose of thoughtful lyrics and otherworldly harmonies, then this is definitely the album for you.  We think you should definitely Get It and prepare yourself for audio heaven.

Artist NameHotKid

Album NameLate Night Mornings

Label:  Fortune Stellar Records

Genre:  Indie Rock

Track Listing:  1.  Need a Friend; 2.  Late Night Mornings; 3.  Here4U; 4.  Little Mess; 5.  Caught in the Light; 6.  Jealous; 7.  Wasting Time; 8.  Walls; 9.  What we Wanted; 10.  This Time 

Publicist:  None

Review:  This is the first full length album from the band, and it provides enough juicy music to let the listener know that they intend to be a force on the indie music scene.  The amazing vocals and guitar work of Shiloh Harrison rise above the solid bass and drums provided by Peter McIntosh and Robbie Butcher to create electrifying rock music that provide a soundtrack for your day.  From the first notes of “Need a Friend” to the last notes of “This Time,” it is evident that this band came to rock your world.  Every track has that indie feel that is special and different, capturing your heartbeat and working its lyrics into your mind.  They are impossible to forget and worthy of your attention.  Strongest tracks include “Need a Friend,” the title track, “Here4U,” “Caught in the Light” (their first single and the most popular song from their SoundCloud streaming), and “Wasting Time.”

Recommendation:  If you love music that moves you with a steady beat, a great vocal and incredible guitar, then this is the album you’ve been looking for.  We strongly recommend you pre-order it so that when it is released on May 5 you’ll be the first in line to own this impressive rock album.

 

Get it or forget it: Monster Movie, Pale People, Jennifer Vazquez

Welcome to another edition of Get it or Forget it.  Still volunteering this week at the International Wildlife Film Festival, but taking some time this morning to review three more indie releases.  Please let us know what you think about them.

Artist NameMonster Movie

Album NameKeep the Voices Distant

Label:  Graveface Records

Genre:  Dream Pop/Indie Rock

Track Listing:  1.  Trapped; 2.  Going Backwards; 3.  In the Pines; 4.  No More; 5.  Keep the Voices Distant; 6.  Shouldn’t Stray from the Shadows; 7.  In the Ground; 8.  Don’t you Want to Love us; 9.  Into the Light; 10.  Dead in the Water 

Publicist:  Noisy Ghost PR

Review:  It is a rare talent to make music that can seamlessly fill in the background of life, but Monster Movie definitely has that ability.  Their music provides the perfect soundtrack to daily living, as it flows around the listener, filling in the holes and cushioning the environment.  This band was meant to write cinematic musical scores, and we believe that they will be most successful in that endeavor  Every song on the album is beautiful and majestic, but we love the title track, their first single “Shouldn’t Stray from the Shadows,” “In the Ground,” “Don’t You Want to Love Us,” and “Into the Light.”

Recommendation:  This album was just released on March 31, and we highly recommend you rush out and Get it.  You’ll thank me later 🙂

Artist NamePale People

Album NamePortraits

Label:  Self-released

Genre:  You tell me

Track Listing:  1.  Mitchell; 2.  Debra; 3.  Jason; 4.  Annabelle; 5.  Carol; 6.  Josephine; 7.  Steven; 8.  Lee; 9.  David; 10.  Joyce 

Publicist:  None

Review:  We attended the CD release show on April 14 and were wholly unprepared for this band.  The music is extraordinary, but the vocals remind us of a cross between Crash Test Dummies and Sam Kinison.  With a heavy dose of piano rock, this three-piece band from Missoula, Montana deliver music that is unique in its approach and its style.  These 10 songs deliver “portraits” of people that have influenced the lives of the Pale People, with subjects ranging from robots from space and parental disapproval to the colonization of Mars and child stars, while the music ranges from harmonic to discordant.  They are impossible to forget.  Lead singer and pianist Mack Gilcrest is uniquely perfect for this musical endeavor, which combines a myriad of auditory material to form the perfect reflection of the current state of affairs on planet Earth.  Best cuts include “Mitchell,” “Jason,” “Annabelle,” “Steven” (a stirring attack on religious intolerance), and “David.”

Recommendation:  This album should be in your music library for the simple reason that it is unlike anything you have ever heard before.   Support indie music and grab this one.

Artist NameJennifer Vazquez

Album NameRediscovering Me

Label:  Self-released

Genre:  Singer-songwriter Pop/Country

Track Listing:  1.  After All; 2.  I Should Have Told You; 3.  Isn’t Mine; 4.  Rocked; 5.  Let you Back in; 6.  Worst Enemy; 7.  Let’s go Wild; 8.  The Radio in You; 9.  Rediscovering Me; 10.  New Deck of Cards; 11.  Austin Sky; 12.  So Perfectly; 13.  I Believe; 14.  Gold 

Publicist:  None

Review:  With a voice that is reminiscent of Mary Chapin Carpenter and a musical delivery that is akin to Bonnie Raitt, Jennifer Vazquez is a special kind of indie musician.  Born and raised in the Bronx, Vazquez brings that fierce independence to music that is more than a little influenced by her current hometown of Nashville, Tennessee.  She is a treasure that is yet to be fully discovered by the music industry, but who has the chops to be a successful radio artist.  She kicks off her latest album Rediscovering Me with the moving ballad “After All,” and then proceeds to blow her listeners away with track after track that deserve serious radio play.  Her songs are wonderful individually, but they are each a part of a greater story that encompasses the entire album.  This is an album that needs to be played again and again, and each time the listener will garner another snippet that they might have missed the first time around.  The album is a true work of art, and easily one of the finest albums released in 2017, regardless of genre.

Recommendation:  We stand strongly behind Vazquez’s latest effort, Rediscovering Me, and are proud to award it our highest recommendation – Get it like your life depends on it, because it does.  The album is set to be released on May 11, and we highly recommend you preorder it from all the usual sources, as well as from her website at www.jennifervazquez.com.

 

 

 

 

Get it or forget it: Gigi Rich, Hush Machine, Jimmy Urine

Can’t believe it’s April and still snowing, although it was perfect this morning for our River Nature Walk as part of the International Wildlife Film Festival.  Good to know that we’ve got some great indie music to warm us up and get us ready for a music-filled summer.  Check out our reviews of these three great artists!

Artist NameGigi Rich

Album NameAll in my Head

Label:  None

Genre:  Pop/Soul

Track Listing:  1.  Mr. Bossman; 2.  Stupid; 3.  Some Kind of Crazy; 4.  Still Want You; 5.  All in my Head 

Publicist:  None

Review:  We have always had a soft spot for pop & soul performers, and are proud to welcome Gigi Rich and her debut EP to that list.  From the first glance at the cover art, you realize what a beautiful lady she is, but from her first notes, you realize that beauty is shining forth from the inside out.  Her EP hits the ground running with the lead track, “Mr. Bossman,” and goes nowhere but up from there.  This five-song EP is simply too short and leaves the listener wanting much much more.   All five songs are outstanding, and we really love her music video for the third track, “Same Kind of Crazy,” which we shared in yesterday’s Monday Mashup article.  If you love power ballads, we think “Still Want You” will become your go-to jam.

Recommendation:  OMG, this lady can sing.  We can’t wait to see what the future holds for Ms. Rich.  In the meantime, we highly recommend her debut EP All in my Head, and urge you to Get It ASAP.

Roger de La Fresnaye (French, 1885 – 1925 ), The Watering Can (Emblems: The Garden), 1913, oil on canvas, Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Mellon 2014.18.26

Artist NameHush Machine

Album NameHush Machine

Label:  Jigsaw Records

Genre:  Indie Rock

Track Listing:  1.  Batter Up; 2.  Congress Hotel; 3.  Diner; 4.  Realize (Hands on the Wheel); 5.  So we can Dance; 6.  Sorry; 7.  Try Forever; 8.  U Best 

Publicist:  Noisy Ghost PR

Review:  Hush Machine is the alter ego of pop guitarist Sam Boatright, only 21 years old but light years ahead of his peers.    Although written four years ago, they are just being released to the world via his debut self-titled album, which is finally being released on April 21, 2017.   The music is reminiscent of an upbeat Plain White T’s song, and lifts the listener’s spirits as only good positive music can.  The upbeatness continues throughout the album, as more and more of his influences are revealed, like Oingo Boingo and Tears for Fears.  Boatright does not have the best voice, but he more than makes up for it with the sheer brilliance of his musical compositions.  Best tracks on the disk are “Batter Up,” “Diner,” “So we can Dance,” and “Try Forever.”

Recommendation:  If you’re all about the vocals, then this is not the album for you.  But if you can look beyond its vocal shortcomings, then Hush Machine provides quality musical entertainment.  We are proud to recommend that you Get it when it comes out on Friday.

Artist NameJimmy Urine

Album NameThe Secret Cinematic Sounds of Jimmy Urine

Label:  The End Records

Genre:  Electro-punk

Track Listing:  1.  Fighting with the Melody; 2.  I Want to be Human; 3.  Phase; 4.  Final Level; 5.  End Boss; 6.  All Together Friends Forever; 7.  Patty Hearst; 8.  Not for Me; 9.  Aching Addicted Affection Again; 10.  Salome; 11.  Beethoven Symph 7 Alleg Mvt 2; 12.  Available on Betamax; 13.  Lento Romantico Erotic Incubo; 14.  Based on a True Story 

Publicist:  The End Records PR

Review:  Some of you may be familiar with the music of Jimmy Urine’s band Mindless Self Indulgence, but unless you play a lot of video games, you may not have heard this side of his creativity.  It’s obvious upon even a casual listen why his music is popular for movie soundtracks, television and video games.  In fact, some of his music will be included in the soundtrack for the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 movie to be released this summer.  Best tracks include “Fighting with the Melody,” “I Want to be Human,” “Phase,” “Patty Hearst,” and “Salome.”

Recommendation:  This album is set for release on April 28, and we recommend you pre-order it now.  It is a great album that provides a stirring soundtrack for your everyday living, and we highly recommend that you Get it.

 

Britroyal encourages us to ‘Change’ with their latest single

Just when you thought the British Invasion was over, along comes an indie group on a mission.  Composed of twin brothers Kais and Mazin Oliver, BritRoyal is taking the US and the world by storm.

They first came to light when they recorded their first EP with renowned Grammy-winning producer Mikal Blue (Colbie Cailat, Jason Reeves, FiveforFighting, Jason Mraz, OneRepublic, Carrie Underwood) and J.R Richards (Dishwalla), both of who shared in the songwriting.  That EP opened the doors for them to tour across the Continent and exposed their music to the masses.

In late 2015, they partnered with PledgeMusic to raise funds for their first full length album, London, which was released in February 2016.  The album has spawned several singles, including “Tears,” which was just featured on BBC, as well as “Count on Me” and “Love’s Burning Out,” which have been featured in Macy’s stores across the US.

“Change (Dream Mix)” is the latest offering from the album to be released as a single, and it is one of the most powerful songs we have had the privilege of reviewing.

The chorus tells us “It’s never too late to change your life,” while the song tells us in terms easily relatable, that we have the power to rise above our otherwise routine life and be something better.  The song is reminiscent of those provided by other great British bands like Spandau Ballet’s “True” and Tears for Fears’ “Everybody Wants to Rule the World.”  The simple piano accompaniment is the perfect backdrop, allowing the listener to focus on the words, which easily reach deep within and take root in the heart of the receiver.

The song is instantly memorable and the catchy chorus will run in your mind and become a mantra for social awareness and change.  BritRoyal practices what they preach, and are an active participant in the fight against cancer through the Cancer Research Campaign.

To find out more about this amazing group, check out their website, follow them on Twitter and Instagram, and subscribe to their YouTube, SoundCloud and Spotify channels.  You can purchase London on iTunes.

Monday Mashup 2017: Vol 11

Sorry about the past two weeks, but we have been hit with computer problems on our desktop, losing the CPU fan and, of course, the part is out of stock everywhere.  We have been forced to go back to our trusty lap top computer for the foreseeable future.

Consequently, we are offering a rare Wednesday edition of our Monday Mashup because we just couldn’t wait until next Monday to share indie news and these amazing videos with you.

REDHEAD EXPRESS SIGN LABEL DEAL

We are proud to announce that one of our favorite indie bands,  Redhead Express, have signed a record deal with a major indie label.  The band recently shone during their time at CRS in Nashville, and as a result, not only will they be signed to the label, but will also be the stars of a reality show based on the label.  We send our love and best wishes to these four amazing sisters, and wish them well in the future.  We will continue to update you here about their successes.

THE WILD NOW RELEASE VIDEO AND PERFORM AT SXSW

Noisy Ghost PR client The Wild Now just finished performing at SXSW and released a music video for their song “Run for Your Life,” ahead of the release of their new EP Afterglow, which is set for May 19.  We will be reviewing their new EP shortly, but in the meantime, enjoy this amazing video.

CHELSEA WILLIAMS RELEASES NEW ACOUSTIC VIDEO

Blue Élan Records artist Chelsea Williams has released another acoustic music video in support of her EP Little Halo – Demo Sessions.  Check out her incredible vocals and enjoy the simplicity of her song “Boomerang.”

my education releases dreamy video for ‘Class A’

Need some soothing background music?  Check out the new video by my education for their single “Class A” off their recently released album Schiphol.  This eight minute video should provide the perfect background for reflection, meditation or just chilling.

Have a wonderful first week of Spring and we’ll be back soon with more indie news, reviews and videos.  Please let us know what you think of this series and all of the rest of the content on Indie Voice Blog.  We love hearing from you.

Get it or forget it: Derek Davis, Of Verona, Findlay

Welcome back to our review series, Get it or Forget it.  We’ve gotten quite a few new submissions since 2016 closed out, and we have been listening to them in preparation for the return of this series.  Grab a cup of coffee, sit back and learn about these three great artists and their latest offerings.

Artist NameDerek Davis

Album Name Revolutionary Soul

Label:  Apocalypse Records

Genre:  Classic Rock

Track Listing:  1.  Revolutionary Soul; 2.  Rapture; 3.  Valerie; 4.  Think About It; 5.  Love and Abuse; 6.  Nobody Knows you When You’re Down & Out; 7.  Vicious Heart; 8.  Woman’s Gotta Have It; 9.  King of Fools; 10.  Picture of Love; 11.  Stop!  Wait a Minute; 12.  All the Roads 

Publicist:  Doug Deutsch Publicity Services

Review:  If Janis Joplin and James Brown had a child who grew up playing the music of Grand Funk Railroad, the result would be a fitting description of the musical style of Derek Davis.  Formerly the lead vocalist of Babylon A.D. , Davis combines the best elements of Joplin, Brown, Jim Morrison and GFR to create his own musical genre, which hits you right out of the box on the title track.  He especially shows off his abilities on covers of Amy Winehouse’s “Valerie,” Jimmy Cox’s “Nobody Knows you When You’re Down & Out,” and Bobby Womack’s “Woman’s Gotta Have It, all of which he makes his own with his dynamic interpretations.  Of the rest of the self-penned songs, “Rapture,” “Think About It,” and “Love and Abuse” continue to showcase his rock side, while “Vicious Heart,” “King of Fools” and “Stop! Wait a Minute” highlight the R&B and soul side of his repertoire.  He wraps it all up with the heartfelt “All the Roads,” which is the perfect icing on this magnificent cake.

Recommendation:  This album releases next Tuesday, but we highly recommend you Get it  by any means possible.  This one will rock your world for years to come!

Artist NameOf Verona

Album NameGlass Beach

Label:  None

Genre:  Alternative Pop

Track Listing:  1.  Kids on the Street; 2.  Can you Hear Me; 3.  Under a Purple Sky; 4.  Glass Beach (interlude); 5.  Fleurs de la Lune; 6.  Bright Precious Things; 7.  Wish you Were Here; 8.  Miracles 

Publicist:  De Novo Music Management

Review:  We have followed the career of Mandi Perkins, lead singer of oV, as the band is affectionately known by is fans, for many years.  Their first album, The White Apple, released in July 2012, and its key single, “Dark in my Imagination,” has been streamed more than one million times, while other songs have received placements on such television shows as Grimm, Grey’s Anatomy, Pretty Little Liars, Vampire Diaries, The Originals, Teen Wolf, and Stalker.  Their new album takes off from there, and should propel this dynamic duo even further into the musical stratosphere.   The first two tracks, “Kids on the Street,” and “Can you Hear Me” are already receiving massive attention while being constantly streamed on such sites as Spotify and SoundCloud.  There are no bad songs on this second masterpiece,  and their cover of Pink Floyd’s “Wish you Were Here” is especially poignant, not only capturing the true meaning of the song, but giving it that special oV treatment.

Recommendation:  If you love music that comes from the heart, and is true to itself, then we highly recommend you rush out and Get It.  This album, which was released on February 24,  is perfect for repeated listens and can form the soundtrack for your daily living.  Be one of the first to grab it and share it with your friends.

Artist Name: Findlay

Album Name:  Forgotten Pleasures

Label:  The End Records/Mint Records-BMG

Genre:  Electronica/Garage Pop

Track Listing:  1.  Electric Bones; 2.  Waste my Time; 3.  Stuck in Your Shadow; 4.  Greasy Love; 5.  Monomania; 6.  Junk Food; 7.  Off and On; 8.  Wild & Unwise; 9.  Forgotten Pleasures; 10.  Stoned and Alone; 11.  We are Never the Last; 12.  St. Elmo’s Fire; 13.  Sunday Morning in the Afternoon 

Publicist:  The End Records PR

Review:  Manchester, England born Findlay is an artist that has been around the industry and back again.  Signed to a major label at the tender age of 17, she found the arrangement stifled her creativeness.  Consequently, she created her own label, Mint Records, which is distributed by BMG in the UK and Europe and by The End Records in the United States.  She has had success in the European music festival scene, while writing and putting together the 13 songs on her debut indie album.  She’s inspired by such diverse creative muses as David Lynch and Michael Gondry’s Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.  Working with such great producers as her accompanist Jules Apollinaire, as well as Jake Gosling, Samy Osta and Flood, she has assembled an album that takes you on a musical journey across time and space.  The best tracks include “Electric Bones,” “Waste my Time,” “Monomania,” “Stoned and Alone,” “Sunday in the Afternoon,” and “St. Elmo’s Fire,” on which she collaborated with Carl Barat of the Libertines.  In addition, her song “Off & On” was used by BMW on a recent international campaign.

Recommendation:  If your musical tastes include artists like Bjork, Beck, Tame Impala and The Velvet Underground, then this is definitely the album for you.  It will be released on March 3, and we recommend you go out and Get it.

 

Getting to know the 2016 LA Music Critic Award winners – Allison Iraheta

Over the past few years, we have had the chance to see quite a few of our indie music friends take the national stage on American Idol and The Voice, including Brooke White, Tony Lucca, Katrina Parker, and Justin Hopkins, to name a few.  However, this is the first time that we have become friends with an artist who has gone indie after appearing on one of those shows.  Thanks to Patrick O’Heffernan for introducing us.

We had a delightful time interviewing Allison Iraheta, who appeared on season 8 of American Idol and was originally signed to Jive Records.  Many of her greatest achievements, though, have been accomplished after she became an indie artist.  Iraheta was the winner of the Best Pop/Rock Female Artist for the first half of 2016, primarily on the strength of her band’s single, “Desire (Lo Que Vale La Pena).”  Iraheta and Halo Circus also finished second in the Fan Favorite category.

IVB:  How long have you been performing?

AI:  Since I was six years old when I got my first gig at an opening for a department store.  I sang a ranchera song.  I was also a big fan of Selena, but unlike her, I grew up in South Central Los Angeles, and primarily spoke Spanish, being the child of Salvadorian parents.  We were surrounded by a true cultural mix of music.  I loved the emotion behind rancheras music, which in turn became the inspiration for our current music.  I recently turned 24.

IVB:   Who are your influences?

AI:  My first big influence was Linda Ronstadt, especially her album “Canciones de mi Padre.”  My dad also turned me on to Paul Williams.  Other artists that inspired me included Amy Winehouse, Roy Orbison, Brenda Lee, PJ Harvey, and Radiohead  This definitely led to our music being very diverse.  We didn’t have to be stuck with one sound but were able to show a myriad of colors.

IVB:   What made you decide to DIY?

AI:  I didn’t really have much of a choice.  As you know, I was signed to Jive Records just as the old music business began to fall apart.  There were lots of job upheavals and a change in the rules, affecting the whole industry.  I was actually dropped by Jive in the middle of my tour and found out about it via Twitter.  I was only 18, but decided to finish out the tour.  It was in shock, having gone from nothing to successful and then back again.  Once I got back from tour, I didn’t know where I was musically, and felt lost, not sure what to do anymore.  I did a few demos to make money and was very close to giving up on the industry.  I felt betrayed and injured and was not yet aware of the DIY side of the industry.  However, I don’t hold any resentments and am still friends with some of those same industry people.

I met Matthew (Hager) when I was doing a demo for a song he was pitching to Carrie Underwood.  We started writing together and I returned to my roots to find inspiration.  Everything we were doing sounded like it needed to be done by a band, which led to the formation of Halo Circus in 2013.  The support we have received is what has propelled us to where we are now, and new opportunities are happening all the time.  Everyone in the band is a veteran musician.  Matthew was a No. 1 Billboard multi-platinum producer who crossed multiple genres working with the likes of Duran Duran, Scott Weiland, Mindi Abair, and Mandy Moore.  Brian Stead was and is a relentless guitar aficionado who evokes energy and charisma.  In addition to being an accomplished Cantonese and orchestral drummer, Veronica Bellino worked with Jeff Beck and DMC of Run DMC before leaving Halo Circus.  She was replaced by Stead’s friend, Matteo Eyia.  

Magic happens in this band.  It happened when we were writing, when we were recording, and when we were failing.  The only thing that mattered was keeping it honest and getting it right, whatever that meant. We may be inconvenient, but we continue to attract believers.

IVB:  Do you want to go back to being a mainstream artist?

AI:  There is a balance to moving on from the previous level of exposure to the creative freedom we have now.  We believe we can return to that level, but on our own terms.  We are doing it through the back channel and believe that is a better way for us to return.  We love what is happening in the indie scene.

Last February, we shocked the music industry when we announced in Billboard Magazine that we would be embarking on the first fully crowd-sourced American tour ever to be attempted on such a large scale.  With the help of our fans and Road Nation, the program that allowed this format, we reached full funding just nine weeks later, and confirmed a tour of 30 cities.

IVB:  What are your future plans? 

AI:  We are definitely going back on tour in the not too distant future.  We would love to revisit some of the places where we played on our last tour.  We have some new stuff on the horizon and are so proud of those who have supported us from the beginning.  There will be surprises and thank you’s and fun stuff for everyone.

IVB:   Any good stories from touring/recording/performing?

AI.  During the tour we were scheduled to play a show in Orlando during Hurricane Matthew.  We played the show despite the weather.  When we got to the venue under very gray clouds, there were about 30 of our fans waiting for us with signs proclaiming “End of the World” show.  We lost our AirBnB reservation for the night due to the storm, and had no place to stay after the show.  Consequently, we started heading out of Orlando, but couldn’t find anyplace open that had gas or water.  We did finally find some gas, and just kept driving until we found a hotel where we could stay.  It was a scary time and we saw cars driving on the wrong side of the road, trying to get away from the storm.

IVB:  What is the significance of the rabbit?

AI:  It represented humans for me during the writing of our first album Bunny.  I seemed to notice them everywhere.  The totem for bunny meant prey, with their fluffy tails for hawks to see, but they are also very cute, adorable and fast.  I came to the conclusion that the prettier you are, the more different you are, the more likely you are to become prey.

IVB:  What social media do you use?

AI:  I have a Facebook page with a link to the band’s website.  I also use Twitter and Instagram, and of course we have a channel on YouTube, all of which our fans can subscribe to or follow.

Monday Mashup 2017: Vol 5

Wow – five weeks into 2017, and indie artists are really making noise.  Milck, an artist we introduced you to back on September 21, 2015, is truly blowing up!!!  In the past seven days, her official music video for “Quiet” has gone from just over 142,000 views to more than 400,000.  She has been featured in Billboard, Allure, ET Online, Twitter and Facebook, and made several appearances on national TV, including her appearance on Full Frontal with Samantha Bee.  The YouTube video of that appearance has already drawn more than 75,000 views in less than three days.  We are so proud of you Connie Lim aka Milck.  Thank you for having the courage to bring your message of hope in a time of increased insanity.  We are proud to support you!!!  We are also proud of her PR effort, spearheaded by the Big Kahuna herself – Go Laura and Red Boot PR as you champion another worthy indie cause!!!!

KEATON SIMONS JOINS WITH BACKBONE POSSE

LA Music Critic Icon Keaton Simons has been busy, but not in the typical way.  Always a firm believer in collaboration, Simons has lent his talents to the Backbone Posse on their new music video for “Supawaz Gaz,” which also features the talents of Slimkid3 and Adam Vadel.  Please be warned this video is NSFW or young kids.  Enjoy.

GRAMMY NOMINEE PERFORMS AT THE TROUBADOUR

Indie artist Janiva Magness, nominated for Best Blues Album for Love Wins Again, is having a birthday today.  She recently performed before a packed house at the world famous Troubadour in Los Angeles, and posted several videos of her live performance.  Please enjoy this one and make sure to send her best wishes.

NEW MUSIC VIDEO

We are proud to spotlight this incredible new indie video.  Watch for us to review her new release soon.  Please give it up for Emily Zuzik from Los Angeles with the amazing release of “Alone,” which has garnered more than 25,000 views in the past four days.  We think this one is a definite keeper!!!

We look forward to chatting with you again next month.  Have a great week!

Monday mashup 2017, vol 4

OMG what a weekend.  Were you as impressed with the million woman march as I was?  So many indie artists participated in the marches across the globe, but none of them had the impact of one young woman from Los Angeles.  Connie Lim, aka MilCk, has written an anthem that has become the voice of the Women’s March.  Her music video, which was released just one week ago, already has almost 142,000 views.  Check it out and see why this song has struck such a chord with people across the globe.  #ICANTKEEPQUIET.

NAMM ONCE AGAIN A SUCCESS

If you’re like me, then your Facebook was blowing up all weekend.  So many friends performing at NAMM, running into old friends at NAMM, running into new friends at NAMM, and witnessing those wonderful NAMM moments.  My long-time friend Tim Moyer, who helps schedule, host and maintain the nightly musical entertainment at the Marriott and Hilton Hotels during NAMM posted a video by a friend that captured one of those moments.  Check it out. Thanks to Marcy Kraft for the video.  Thanks to Rolling Stone for spreading the word.

THE SHOW PONIES CELEBRATE THEIR NEW CD

Tonight’s the night when The Show Ponies and special guest Freddy & Francine celebrate the release of the new album by the Ponies, How it All Goes Down.   Tonight’s show is at the world-famous Troubadour in West Hollywood.  If you are in LA, we highly advise you to get down there and enjoy the show.  Here’s the link for tickets.

SHANNON HURLEY ANNOUNCES NEW KICKSTARTER

Los Angeles Indie Music Queen Shannon Hurley announced this week that she has launched a Kickstarter campaign to help fund her fifth studio album.  She celebrated the moment by releasing a video of an acoustic version of her song “Number One,” which will be the first single released.  Check out the video and support indie music by contributing to the campaign.

Have a great week and we’ll catch you next Monday.  If you have anything coming up that you want to promote, please let us know.