Beacon Stream Full EP And New Track

Beacon have released “Safety’s Off,” the glittering, beat-driven second single off their forthcoming For Now EP, out Tuesday, October 2nd, on Ghostly International. FADER describes the track as “massagingly minimal R&B” and have made it available for download here.

The Brooklyn-based duo are also excited to take their hypnotic, electronic-laced beats to select markets this fall, joined by El Ten Eleven and Ghostly labelmate Michna. New Yorkers can also catch Beacon this Saturday when they open for School of Seven Bells at Maxwell’s.

Check out their first single “Feeling’s Gone” here, as well as the Shibuya remix by rising British artist Fort Romeau.

In anticipation of their EP release next week, Stereogum is streaming For Now, noting the band is “tightening their approach, incorporating a heavier thud into their genre-hopping mentality while polishing Thomas Mullarney’s vocals for maximum impact.” Take a listen here and sink into their textured, seductive sound.

For Now is the second EP by Brooklyn duo Beacon, five songs that continue the band’s exploration of the dark spaces under the surface of human relationships. As with the band’s debut EP No BodyFor Now is a record that conceals a great deal of depth beneath a melodic veneer—again, there’s a stark contrast between Thomas Mullarney’s honeyed vocals and the words he’s singing, although this time the mood is perhaps less sinister and more reflective. And again, themes of fractured love are prominent, particularly the distinction between love and lust, and what happens when the former falls away, leaving only the latter to fester: as Mullarney sings on third track “Pulse”, “It’s a long walk from lust to love… And if I get caught, it’s not my fault.”

Musically, this is perhaps the best realization yet of Beacon’s synthesis of R&B-inflected melody with ’90s electronica influenced production. The sound design is immaculate, employing minimal, bass-heavy templates embellished with judicious melodic flourishes. “Feeling’s Gone,” for instance, starts with a distinctly rave-y synth line, but one that sounds somehow muted and diminished, like the faint memory of a night long past—a feeling that echoes the song’s lyrics, which relate the temptation of trying to rekindle a love that’s gone. Elsewhere, the gentle synth arpeggios of “Safety’s Off” recall The Knife’s “Silent Shout,” while the hip hop beats of “Pulse” and “Into the Night” acknowledge the band’s R&B influences. And underpinning it all is the bass—a constant presence that’s brooding, dark and atmospheric throughout.

Not so much the party and the after party as the party and the aftermath, the abiding impression left by For Now is of that strange, empty time of night when the party’s over and everyone’s gone home… but you can’t sleep, so you sit and stare into the dark and wait for the dawn to come.

ANDRE WILLIAMS UNVEILS HIS NEW VIDEO “BLAME IT ON OBAMA”

 Andre Williams began a very prolific and creative phase of his life when he finally got off booze and drugs. His intake of various substances was excessive, unrelenting, and dated back to at least the 1960s, when he was working extensively with Ike Turner. Reflecting on his very first drug-and-alcohol-free studio session in 2009, Andre says, “It was traumatic. It was like someone shot me out in space and I woke up on Pluto!”
Andre Williams’ new album Life was recorded this past winter in Detroit, the city where his musical career first began in the 1950s. Andre’s new songs are his latest experiments and explorations outside of the garage-soul bag that he’s often associated with. Produced by Matthew Smith, the album’s sonic palette recalls the work of Norman Whitfield’s Motown productions, ’70s Rolling Stones, Can, Bill Withers, Serge Gainsbourg, as well as Andre’s own doo-wop and funk history.
Life finds Andre in a pretty upbeat mood, whether he’s singing about people being rude and impatient (“But’n”), or laying down a political commentary (“Blame it on Obama”), reciting a children’s bedtime story (“Ty the Fly”), singing a simple love song (“Stuck in the Middle”, “It’s Only You That I Love”), or conjuring a nocturnal fetish-s*x-groove (“Heels”).
The album also includes his own definitive rocking version of the standard he wrote and produced for the Five Du-Tones in 1963, “Shake a Tail Feather.” It’s a reminder that Andre Williams is one of the original guys who invented rock n’ roll.
Andre Williams’ “Blame It On Obama” single will be released digitally on Sep. 11th and his new studio album Life will be released October 2nd through Alive Naturalsound Records in the following formats: CD, Digital and Black Vinyl, as well as Purple Vinyl (limited to 100) exclusive to mailorders.
LIFE TRACK LIST:
1. Stuck In The Middle
2. But’n
3. Don’t Kick My Dog
4. Blame It On Obama
5. Heels
6. Beep Beep Beep
7. It’s Only You That I Love
8. Money Ain’t Got No Loyalty
9. Shake A Tail Feather

10. Ty The Fly

[photo credit: Robert Matheu / www.robertmatheu.com]
FOR MORE INFO ON ALIVE RECORDS:
http://www.alive-totalenergy.com

Nico Rivers – To The Bone (CD)

 

There is little more to Birds in Trees (or the solid ground) than Nico’s vocals and guitar work. There is a tremendous amount of work placed into this seemingly-simple track; Rivers’ rich narrative provides this track with some serious legs. To The Bone continues to gain momentum with the EP’s second track, Molotovs & Medicine. The inclusion of a harmonica to Rivers’ repertoire adds a further intensity to the EP; this song of lost love and spite can be appreciated by anyone that has had any sort of problems with a former significant lover.

The track is even stronger owing to Rivers’ shattering of time signature convention. This cut (and the balance of the To The Bone EP) showcases that Rivers follows the beat of his own drummer. Your Heart Was Just the Start demarcates the beginning of the EP’s second half. This song provides listeners with the energy that they need to complete this title. The song is of note because of the interplay between the instrumental and the vocal sides of things. Your Heart… makes strong use of the open spaces that exist. Rivers is able to make an alluring effort that will stick with listeners long after the track ceases. The final two tracks on the EP – Birds in Trees and Demons Croon for the Mississippi Moon – are bonus inclusions. The latter composition acts as the perfect closing for the disc; Demons Croon takes up the different standards presented on the EP and combines them into one stellar track.

Give the To The Bone EP ample attention, and check out Rivers’ website for more information concerning upcoming tour dates and further releases coming down the pipeline.

Top Tracks:  Your Heart Was Just the Start, Demons Croon for the Mississippi Moon

Rating: 8.0/10

Nico Rivers – To The Bone (CD) / 2012 Self / 7 Tracks / http://www.nicorivers.com

These Curious Thoughts – What Is It, And How Did It Get In There EP (CD)

 

Daughter of Morpheus is arranged beautifully, with These Curious Thoughts threating a ropy line through the track. The same dry humor that brought such great fame to Weezer is present here, while there is a fun feel that never goes away. This honest and earnest effort allows These Curious Thoughts the ability to shine, as the band is unafraid to adopt diametrically opposed styles.

A track on the What Is It… EP may take up the standards of five or six different genres; Daughter of Morpheus wears this protean and scintillating approach to sound proudly. John Wayne starts off with a haunting guitar line. The vocals begin soon after and spin off the track in an absurd and thought-provoking way. These Curious Thoughts are able to succeed in the EP format as they lay out themselves fully in the five tracks that comprise this work. Where many acts use only the harmonies achieved by vocals, I feel that the lyrics presented here allow for the album to be replayed often. Lost In Confusion is an epic track; weighing in slightly over the five-minute mark, it allows These Curious Thoughts to take on the art form perfected by acts like Queen or Boston.

Even with this epic drapery, These Curious Thoughts find ample conceptual space to tool around in punk, Kansas or Styx-fueled rock, and touch upon “Losing My Religion”-era R.E.M.. There are only five tracks on the What Is It… EP, but These Curious Thoughts lay it all out on the line. I cannot wait to hear what the band can do on a full-length release.

Top Tracks: Lead Balloon, Daughter of Morpheus

Rating: 8.6/10

These Curious Thoughts – What Is It, And How Did It Get In There EP (CD) / 2012 Self / 5 Tracks / http://www.thesecuriousthoughts.com/

Rosemary’s Garden – Royal Flush (CD)

 

O.N.E. opens up Royal Flush, and the track will immediately find its home with any listeners that find themselves digging alternative or traditional rock styles. Hints of Jet, AC/DC, and Cornershop can all be heard during this introductory salvo. The Jack strips things down, allowing the act to craft a blend of blues, surf, and psychedelic rock. This track opens with an extended instrumental introduction, ensuring that the vocals are highlighted when they kick in.

Royal Flush is a success based on each of the 10 tracks contained within, but I feel as if the production of the album is integral for its unqualified success. Stop This Beating of My Heart is a perfect example of this, allowing each element – vocals, piano, guitars – to succeed alone and as a whole. Completely Beyond Me is a perfect late-album track. The song allows Rosemary’s Garden to come forth with a new set of influences; listeners will be able to pull out bits of Nirvana, Mudhoney, and even the Meat Puppets before the track ends. Cmon Cmon closes Royal Flush; the act is able to let listeners down gently while still probing bold new avenues.

Royal Flush is an album that stays strong through the entirely of its runtime; Rosemary’s Garden is able to make their eclectic and unique rock style work, no matter what constellation of influences they may utilize. Make it a point to check out Rosemary’s Garden whenever they stop in a city around yours, and check out their Twitter or main website for more information about the band and any new efforts that they may release.

Top Tracks: Stop This Beating of My Heart, Queen of the Harpies

Rating: 8.7/10

Rosemary’s Garden – Royal Flush (CD) / 2012 Self / 10 Tracks / http://twitter.com/rosemarysgarden / http://www.rosemarysgardenmusic.com/

Miles Jones – The Jones Act (Part III)

 

Miles Jones has created in The Jones Act (Part III) an album that showcases an eclectic and impressive effort. Catch Me in the Rye will immediately draw listeners in through the challenging time signatures employed by the backing instrumentation. Jones’ vocals gradually gain momentum until the chorus. Hints of Kid Cudi and Consequence can be heard during this trippy effort. All; Lies is one of the hottest tracks on this album; listeners will be immediately hit by the twinkling eighties-influenced instrumentation. The tight flow achieved by Jones on this track make this cut immediately ready for urban and even pop radio rotation. Jones’ overall sound builds off of the complex cyphers laid down by rappers like Nas and Talib Kweli and goes off into an entirely new realm. Maybe Tomorrow adds to the eclectic sound through smart use of smoky instrumentation and just enough echo. The track ends at the three and a half minute mark, but Jones is able to keep fans firmly focused in until the last beat. Fresh is a vital track as it combines a number of the disparate elements that had been presented at one point or another on the album; I feel this track captures in just a few minutes the nuance and deft skill inserted throughout the entirety of the album.

No matter whether Jones goes in hard, decides to put out smooth jams, or comes out with a completely new take on rap, The Jones Act (Part III) is a success. Make sure to check out his website for more information and updates about any new efforts or time spent in the studio.  Give The Jones Act (Part III) a spin when it drops down in October.

Top Tracks: Maybe Tomorrow, Sweet Lies

Rating: 8.3/10

Miles Jones – The Jones Act (Part III) / 2012 Self / http://www.runawayjones.com/blog/ / http://www.facebook.com/milesjonesmusic

Mouthful of Daisy – Twice Renewed (CD)

 

Girl in Need of a Lullaby is a darkly emotive track that is reminscient of the work of a Paramore or a Coheed and Cambria. Mouthful of Daisy is able to insert a chugging instrumentation to the tracks of Twice Renewed. Lost Love gives the drums and guitars time to sparkle. When the vocals kick in, Mouthful of Daisy builds an enveloping track that will keep listeners sitting on the edges of their seats. The raw spirit of the vocals match perfectly the bold guitar riffs and splashy drums that are a hallmark of this track.

Surf Song is a sea change from the rest of Twice Renewed, and this tempestuous track takes on equal parts Foo Fighters, Death Cab for Cutie, and even The Appleseed Cast. The band continues to shift and expand their sound through Surf Song; their Protean nature gives the widest possible swath of listeners something that they can appreciate. Planet Fluff is the penultimate track on Twice Renewed, but represents just as much of a must-listen as Girl in Need of a Lullaby or Lost Love. The track adopts a number of bits and pieces from disparate genres (trip-hop, indie-rock and even love ballads can be heard here), giving the title an additional momentum that sticks with the listeners through the end of Taken Away.

Twice Renewed is a disc that is solid throughout; listeners should find the time that they need to sit and listen to its entirety. Mouthful of Daisy come forth in a very mature fashion, and I wonder where exactly the band will go in the years to come.

Top Tracks: Masterpiece to Perfection, Girl in Need of a Lullaby

Rating: 8.6/10

Mouthful of Daisy – Twice Renewed (CD) / 2012 Self / 10 Tracks / http://www.mouthfulofdaisy.com/

Roxie Randle – Little Victory (CD)

 

You Don’t Know A Thing About Love is a solid introduction to Roxie Randle’s inimitable style. This introductory track takes equal parts pop, singer-songwriter, and country genres and ties them into a cohesive entity. Heading up this track is Randle’s vocals, which set the stage for the rest of the album. Few artists would be able to create such an emotionally-charged presence with their vocals, but Randle is able to show herself with each subsequent track.

Goin’ Nowhere ratchets up the tempo while relying on the complex interplay between each of the instrumental elements. Listeners will be singing along to the chorus of Goin’ Nowhere soon after their first listen. Learning to Fly is a vitally important track, as it showcases a more poppy and fancy-free sound to Randle. The variety of contexts in which listeners can enjoy Randle is considerable; while one can listen to the surface of the tracks and be utterly hooked, the eclectic arrangements and deep thoughts broached here further extend the disc’s replay value.

You Were Wrong is the final track on this EP, allowing Randle to slow things down. Little more is needed in this track between Randle’s vocals and a guitar. The two elements are able to push their counterpart ever higher. Randle presents hit after hit on Little Victory; I simply cannot wait to hear what she will release in the years to come. Take a look at her website and check out any tour dates or news about this exciting new artist.

Top Tracks: You Don’t Know A Thing About Love, Learning To Fly

Rating: 8.3/10

Roxie Randle – Little Victory (CD) / 2012 Self / 5 Tracks / http://www.roxierandle.com

Chris Riffle – Another Dream (CD)

 

 

Chris Riffle’s music on Another Dream showcases a performer that is mature while still evolving. The album begins with All That We Hold, a coy track that will immediately have listeners take attention. I feel that the progression that is presented here is tremendously affecting, to the degree that the track will stick with listeners long after this effort (and album) finishes. And I Love Him has a smoldering, sultry feel that is further bolstered through hip percussion and a swirling instrumental wall. While You Run is a rare occurrence in contemporary music; Riffle pushes the track to the end of five minutes and keeps listeners absolutely clamoring for more. After setting up the blueprint for the track, Riffle is able to twist and tweak things to allow for a substantially different beast than had began the work. Kiss On The Creek is the penultimate track on Another Dream, and it is valuable in that it shows a decidedly different facet to Riffle’s persona. This track allows the instrumentation to have a highlighted role and creates a different dynamic than is heard anywhere else on this disc.

Another Dream is a dreamy, slower tempoed track. The track speaks equally well to a wide array of listeners; hints of Paul Simon and Sheryl Crow can be here. The interaction of the instrumental and vocal sides of Riffle makes for a track that holds up to repeated listens. Make it a point to purchase Another Dream directly from Riffle and to check out any tour stops that he may be making.  Check him out today.

Top Tracks: All That We Hold, Kiss On The Cheek

Rating: 8.0/10

Chris Riffle – Another Dream (CD) / 2012 Self / 6 Tracks / http://www.chrisriffle.com

The Iconic K-Way Opens First Store in U.S.

nown as the world’s signature anorak, the iconic K-Way has officially hit the U.S. with the launch of its first state-side store in the heart of Soho, New York City. The brand’s stand alone store opened its doors last week at 424 West Broadway (between Spring Street and Prince) with 1,300 square feet and a clean, simple aesthetic to resemble its flagship store in Torino, Italy.  Three pronged stripes line the side wall mirroring the brand’s belts and signature navy, orange and yellow color code seen throughout the collection.  Near the back, two clear chairs hang from the ceiling exuding a modern vibe in the retail space while symbolizing the limitless possibilities to come for the brand’s positive fate ahead in America.

 

Best known for lightweight outerwear, K-Way’s premium rainwear doubles as both a rain jacket and as a padded windbreaker offering a traditional yet functional style for every walk-in customer. The store is fully stocked with “K-Way Klassics” including their signature nylon men’s Claude and women’s Claudette jackets available in solid colors, textures, and reversible fabrics, which fold into their own handy pouches making life easy for jetsetters on the go. The colors array in a palette of hues including yellow, navy, red, white, grey, royal blue, black, amber, pink, and magenta to name a few with an additional heathered grey and navy shade plus an argil option to confuse your decision making even more. One of K-Way’s latest developments is the Claude Cotton Reversible jacket, which offers a nylon ribstop waterproof exterior with a cozy fleece interior to ensure the perfect combo piece to brave winter’s worst. The Soho store doesn’t stop at “K-Way Klassics”; it offers the full K-Way line of various jacket silhouettes, as well as an assortment of unisex pants, hats, and a collection for kids (prices ranging $45-$1,000).

 

Developed in the 60’s, the K-Way brand was introduced to the U.S. a few years ago, and has kept true to original styles while twisting it up with new fabrics and mechanisms to protect against the weather and grow parallel with trend. Through the years, the brand has ingeniously collaborated with Colette of Paris, Corso Como, Neiman Marcus, APC,and New Balance to unveil fashion forward versions of their signature Claude jacket and has most recently joined forces with style icon, Marc Jacobs.  In addition to escalating the brand through its recently launched store in the U.S., K-Way plans to evolve its innovative collaborations with fresh designers to maintain alignment with prestigious clients and continue its presence in the high-end market; K-Way will also be creating custom runs of well known artists and exclusive products that will only be showcased in the U.S. store. For more information, please visit www.k-way.ca.