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Archie Powell & The Exports
Has bemused cynicism and ennui ever been so fun? Archie Powell & the Exports have made a career of grafting prismatic power pop and sardonic, dark looks at the world outside into guileless songs with hooks galore. Archie Powell makes it look simple; he is incapable of writing an un-danceable tune, whether he turns a jaundiced eye on the culture of self-medication orwhipping up a 3 minute heist story. Great Ideas in Action is the band’s third release of deceptively sophisticated songs. Blink and its killer catchy rock, blink twice and its social commentary that is sad, biting, funny but ultimately incredibly honest. Powell’s writing could easily come from someone twice his age but it never feels studied – his humanity just shines through and demolishes any doubts about where he stands.
It’s not hard to find stories in the news about the thousands of debt-ridden young people who are getting out of college and finding that there is nothing out there for them. While Archie claims he was an art student and knew what he was getting into, he’s written a pretty great protest song for his peers in “Job Fair”, singing “Hey baby, please can you cut some slack? You know I’ll settle up tomorrow if you got my back, I’ve been running out of luck cuz it’s about who you know, and all my resumes are fake and I don’t know where to go.” Some of the subjects of Powell’s songs are swimming in elicit pills – he gives bald depictions but from an obviously empathetic viewpoint.
Self-described “music school misfits,” Christopher Williams and Jennie Lawless have come to find their place in the vibrant world of alternative synth pop. The duo brings a tediously diverse musical background to the table – they are both classically trained and flitted from musical world to musical world in their teens and early 20s (from jazz to DIY folk to opera to alt-country). Having an arsenal of musical styles at their fingertips, Williams and Lawless met in 2012 and the rest is history. They finally started making music they cared about.
Warehouse Eyes happened organically. The two began exploring their talents in ways they never had before (Jennie began to approach her voice in a whole new fashion once she began songwriting and Christopher committed himself to exploring synthesizers and sound design) and shortly after, the duo began playing out. The group originally played simple piano pop songs and covers of their friends’ songs, but wanted to dig deeper into the songwriting process and add more layers and complexity to their music. They added guitar, bass, and drums to the ensemble and shortly after, released their first EP Carvings in 2014.
While Carvings garnered lots of attention from the press being deemed an “airy, ethereal beauty” (Prefix Magazine) and getting airplay across the country, Prisms is a launching point for the group. The group shifts out of the realm of primarily ballads and into a diverse assortment of dreamy, yet well-arranged songs—and love is the inspiration behind it all. As they examined the new collection of songs, Williams and Lawless came to notice the pattern that every song used love to talk about something else.
“Love was the light; the prisms are the songs that allow us to talk about other, less expressible things.” – Jennie Lawless
Williams and Lawless remain the core duo and songwriters, Prisms presents Warehouse Eyes as a five-piece creative collective with Matt Vannelli (guitar), Kevin Scott (bass), and Alex Young (drums) all lending their talents to thicken up the complexities in harmonies and arrangement. Each musician was added to the mix not only for their high-caliber musical chops, but because of their artistry and ability to bring their individual creative input to the table.
“Controller’s angular dance rock has us yearning for that faraway time when people actually lost their cool and danced to rock n’ roll.” – MTV Buzzworthy
CONTROLLER is an NYC-based five-piece that deals in melodic, high energy dance rock.
The band’s output and intense performances, which have been compared to Bloc Party and the Killers by way of Black Sabbath, mixes screaming guitars, authoritative post punk grooves and sticky hooks that get fans on their feet and singing along.
The band is touring and prepping an EP for an early 2015 release.
Patrick McGrath is a NYC songwriter whose music is rooted in the melodic storytelling of the quirky, darker side of life. Patrick has performed at various venues in the northeast, US with a wide array of musicians and bands which included opening for Mike Doughty, They Might Be Giants and sharing the stage with Pete Seeger.
In 2006, Patrick released his first EP entitled, “Wet Nurse To A Dirty Bag,” which was recorded at The Space on the lower east side of Manhattan with producer/engineer Guy Benny (1 track mixed by John Siket).
In the Summer of 2010, after a few-year hiatus, Patrick teamed up with producer and session guitarist Eric “Roscoe” Ambel (Steve Earle, Joan Jett) to record at Cowboy Technical Services in Brooklyn, New York. The EP entitled, “When Black Is Blue,” features Roscoe on lead guitar, and Randy Schrager (Scissor Sisters, Jesse Malin) on drums.
In 2011, Patrick toured extensively, as well as began a collaboration with ex Benzos guitarist, Brian Joyce. McGrath and Joyce have been writing and performing as the band, Blue Coin. In January of 2012, Blue Coin recorded their first EP with producer, Allen Farmelo (Cinematic Orchestra, Mikael Jorgensen) in NYC. The EP, (the killing spree ep), was released in June 2012. With the addition of Steve Bryant (Cru Jones) on drums, Blue Coin has started production on their followup EP, to be released in 2015.
In the Summer of 2013, Patrick recorded a 5 song EP with producer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, Christopher Thorn of Blind Melon. Along with Thorn on guitar & lap steel, Dave Krusen (Pearl Jam) played drums. The EP is called “Hoon,” and was released on January 7, 2014.
On March 3, 2015, “Heavy Pebbles” was released. It was recorded during the tail-end of 2014 at GaluminumFoil Productions in Brooklyn, NY with producer, engineer, guitarist, Jeff Berner. The 6-song EP showcases Berner on lead guitar, Randy Schrager on drums, Donny Dykowsky on bass, John Weingarten on keys, Michelle Casillas on vocals, and Brian Joyce on guitar.
You are cordially invited to take a peek into the carnival mind and curious heart of Patrick McGrath as he puts his unique, signature stamp on the NYC music scene and beyond.
These songs are a collection of memories and instances. Of love. Of loss. Of learning. These songs are an extension of ourselves – much in the same way as our arms and legs. These songs created us more than we created them. We are The Millenium, and we are humbled that you are on our silly little social media site listening.
Down North masterfully mixes underground rock and party-fueling soul, regularly lifting up audiences that have been craving new soul sounds from the city that gave the world Wheedle’s Groove and Jimi Hendrix.
Down North’s upcoming new line-up debut will still feature the bold and sensual talents of lead vocalist/dancer Anthony “RenaGade” Briscoe, whose North Carolina-bred approach to making fans swoon has no equal in the Pacific NW. Raised on Michael Jackson and Sam Cooke, Anthony is as stylish and emotional as Prince in his vocal expressions. Co-leader Brandon Storms is an extremely versatile bassist-guitarist who writes much of the music and taps into his love for everything from Hendrix to James Jamerson in making tunes both infectious and substantial.
The recent additions of Drum Off! award-winning and crowd-amping player Conrad Real (drummer for Ayron Jones and The Way and Society’s Child as well) and the psychedelic-jazz trills of guitarist Nick Quiller make the band an unusual and extremely welcome addition to the regional music scene. Depending on whim (and the size of the stage!), Down North expands to a seven piece, integrating horns and other players to help deliver their dazzling grooves.
They’ll probably also transcend to higher level of acclaim very soon; early single “Danger” was played on MTV’s The Real World even before this killer line-up was settled on. Newer meatier cuts like “So What,” “Your World,” “Running,” and “Heartbreaker/Revolution” (which features the Black Rock psyche-outs of guest legendary axeman Jabrille) reveal the band moving in even edgier, sweatier musical realms.
“We want to be an opening beacon for this scene that’s happening now and not getting enough notice,” Anthony says. He loves to hang out all over Seattle, but the other night was blown away when he met two gals on Cap Hill “who had lived all their lives here and never heard of Marmalade.” He wants to open up the party to rock fans “who want to dance again!” and to those who have been craving fresh, warm, loving soul in the midst of a chilly indie scene. “The people that play in this band are excellent at what they do and we’re all here to play music for people who want to move and connect.”
Down North is part of the zeitgeist not only of bands mining a deeper, better played history, but also one that taps into the 90s music scene when anything was possible. “I grew up pretty sheltered,” Brandon admits, growing up in a small Washington town near the Canadian border, “and had my life turned around by feasting on albums like ‘Check Your Head’ — the fusion of all those beautiful sounds going on at that time.” Serious about his playing (like Anthony, they were raised in the church and really learned how to practice and perform music), he moved to Seattle, and enrolled in the Shoreline recording program. He joined some musicians which became the formative version Down North, and their first gig was opening for Alien Crime Syndicate before a crowd of 500 people. “I was playing in a soul band before I even listened to soul!” he says (and has truly grown into the role).
Cold Blood Club
old Blood Club is the band you want to play your end-of-the-world rooftop party as an asteroid burns through the atmosphere. The seven-member Manhattan troupe is apocalyptic in their revelry, fun as hell without being light. Having a blast is treated earnestly and with gravitas (sounds oxymoronic, yes, but it’ll make sense once you’ve seen them). Think of them as aggressive new wave or heavy noir pop, their sound a nocturnal affair. Shimmering synths, surging rhythms, hard-hitting percussion, shredded guitars, an evocative violin, and dueling male-female vocals compel you to dance without concern for whatever might travail you. Theirs is a world where hangovers be damned, so join them in the decadence they unfurl.
intro. verse. pre-chorus. chorus. verse. pre-chorus. chorus. bridge/break. double-chorus. out.
Familiar context, charged by electrified obscurities –
To make you dance, nod your noggin, and be caught off-guard by tingly sonic treats.
Backing tracks are passé. Autotune & Vocalign are not part of our arsenal. Blank Paper does it all live, and wants you to come witness it 🙂