Posts Tagged ‘Minneapolis’

When Poliça’s Channy Leaneagh fell off her roof while clearing ice in early 2018, she smashed her L1 vertebrae and battered her spine, leaving her in a brace with limited mobility for months. Yet Poliça’s fourth album, “When We Stay Alive”, is not about one debilitating accident. It’s about the redemptive power of rewriting your story in order to heal, and reclaiming your identity as a result.

While recovering, Leaneagh’s doctor told her to focus not only on physical healing, but to meditate on the mental act of healing as well – working to erase the anger, regrets, and fear she felt about her fall. To do so, he suggested she rewrite the story she told herself about what happened on February 28th. Left alone with her thoughts and her back fully braced, Leaneagh would visualize herself slipping and falling not onto cement, but instead onto a cloud, landing safely before breaking into a sprint over snow melting to reveal tall blades of green grass. As she felt the positive effects of this mental exercise, she set about doing the same for other injuries and pains that she gripped onto from her past.

Prior to Leaneagh’s accident, she had been setting music aside as she raised her children and worked to make ends meet as a nursing assistant. Now in the still silence of healing, she found that a multitude of feelings were becoming very loud. Leaneagh realized her self-identity had become attached to her experiences of physical and mental trauma, and she began to consider what it would be like to live without the past as a burden. “I felt there were many things I could look at and say, ‘This happened to me but I’m okay now. It’s not happening anymore and I got the care I needed for it. Now it’s time to rewrite the story I tell about myself and to myself,’”

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Released January 31st, 2020

The trio hails from Minneapolis, a city already well known for its connection to noise rock. They stand alongside other Gilead Media bands Couch Slut and Kowloon Walled City as a select group of artists masterfully harnessing overdriven, rhythmic, and noisy riffs.

Threading the needle between the Euro-freakouts of Girl Band and the bleak fatalism of Daughters, Buildings is notably a very not-black-metal band signed to a very black-metal label. On their second release for Gilead Media, the trio builds upon the Jesus Lizard aggression of 2017’s You Are Not One of Us while also venturing into a handful of other heavy-rock influences—including metal on the headbangable second track, “Sit With It.” Comprised of nearly doom-paced guitar and heavy-hitting percussion, “Sit” is…well, pretty bleakly fatalist (“What does this world have left for me?”) and pretty freaked out the sense of doom, like any track on Negative Sound, is fully their own.

Buildings is:
Brian Lake: Guitar and Vocals
Mike Baillie: Bass Guitar
Travis Kuhlman: Drums and percussion

Official music video for “Sit With It” from the Buildings album “Negative Sound”. Out November 22nd, 2019 on Gilead Media (US) and Antena Krzyku (EU).

Sass live up to their name, but they use sarcasm and cheekiness as a deflection tactic against a looming darkness. The songs on their debut album, “Chew Toy”, are about heavy shit, and Stephanie Murck never undersells the very serious topics she’s singing about. But the gnarled and fuzzy towers of attitude that Sass build up around that are stunning — frustrated bursts of pure release.

released May 31st, 2019

Kid Dakota is the musical moniker of Darren Jackson. Formed in 1999, Darren is a multi-instrumentalist, composer, engineer, teacher, and producer. He owns and operates Shortman Studio in Northeast Minneapolis. In addition to creating and recording music, he is currently a Ph.D. student in ASPECT (Alliance for Social, Political, Ethical, and Cultural Thought) at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. His areas of research are early twentieth-century avant-garde film, film theory, and philosophy.

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Darren Jackson – vocals, guitars, keyboards
Ian Prince – drums

released April 1, 2019
Music and lyrics by Darren Jackson.

An indie rock band from the land of lakes , led by Kerry Alexander who when she wants to write a song, turns on the radio. That’s because Alexander, the lead singer and songwriter of the Minneapolis band Bad Bad Hats, is interested in pop tropes – how to play around with them, why they work the way they do.

After alternating between acoustic offerings and revved-up, garage-leaning rock on their debut, the band settles into a comfortable mid-tempo groove on the new LP, with richly-produced synth-pop sound.

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Band Members
Kerry Alexander,
Connor Davison,
Chris Hoge,

The Minneapolis Uranium Club have been steadily cranking out nervous, wiry, weirdly hooky punk rock for the past few years. And next month, they’ll follow up their 2017 album All Of Them Naturals with a new one called The Cosmo Cleaners. The band actually sold test pressings of the album on their European tour last year, but now the rest of us will get to hear it. And they’ve now shared “Man Is The Loneliest Animal,” a five-minute sprawl of a song, epic for DIY punk, that starts out as a languidly jittery Unwound-esque meditation and then turns into a freaked-out sprint. It sounds a bit like what might’ve happened if the Modern Lovers had come up in the Bandcamp-hardcore era.
Smile cautiously as the Uranium Club welcomes you into their stinky apartment. You’ve been here before, right? Oh, that must have been some one else. Do you have a brother or sister? One of the members mumbles some deceptively eloquent bullshit as he hands you a drink. His lips are dark red and chapped; he looks really bad. But the drink is wet, and those stairs had been tall. Sit down, lean back, sip it. It rolls around your tongue, hides between your teeth, a perfectly TV-worthy combination of pleasure and mischief.  It’s supposed to go into your ears! How crazy is that? Such a sensation of taste, transmogrified for the realm of sound? Is it Sprite, or is it… music? Careful, engaging, and dare-I-say theatrical vocals over hyper bass-and-drums while other boingy-boingy instruments puke all over it, all over the whole show. That’s called synesthesia. Gentle lectures, dangerous storytime, eerie fast-and-slow nightmare riffs, and a taut, bound-and-gagged rhythm section. Boingily-boingily, that’s phantasmagoria. That’s the Uranium Club’s latest album, “The Cosmo Cleaners.” So swish around some mouthwash and plug in your AirPods, kid, it’s time to drop that needle!
Releases March 15th, 2019

Kid Dakota is the musical moniker of Darren Jackson. He started performing as “Kid Dakota and the Tumbleweeds” in 1998 while living in Providence, Rhode Island. The name was chosen in homage to his home state of South Dakota and also as a parody of Kid Rock. In the summer of 1999, Darren recorded the five songs that would appear on the So Pretty ep with long-time friend and producer, Alex Oana at City Cabin (formerly Blackberry Way). Darren moved to Minneapolis, Minnesota that winter and self-released the “So Pretty” (Kid Dakota album)” An ep in the spring of 2000. The ep caught the attention of Alan Sparhawk, singer and guitarist for the seminal slow-core band, Low (band)and he offered to release the ep on his label,

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Darren Jackson – vocals, guitar, keyboards
Mathew Kazama – drums
Brent Paschke – guitar
Adam Levy – guitar

The latest album from this Minneapolis trio adds pop polish to its folk-tinged sound. “[Lead singer] Kerry [Alexander] and I were kind of thinking, ‘Yeah, we’ll pretty much just do the same thing again,” multi-instrumentalist Chris Hoge said. “But [producer] Brett Bullion really pushed us to make something different.”

Pop sensibilities mingle with garage rock on Lightning Round, the newest release from the Minnesota-based band Bad Bad Hats. Listen to “Nothing Gets Me High,” where front-woman Kerry Alexander somehow turns empty love into something you want to dance and thrash to. Or listen to “Girl,” where Alexander tells an all-too-familiar story. “You smell like smoke and look like satin,” she sings. In fact, a theme of doubt permeates the collection as much as catchy hooks do, as the group smartly melds lost emotion into upbeat tracks.

Lightning Round is the second studio album by Bad Bad Hats. It will be released August 3rd, 2018 on Afternoon Records.

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When Kerry Alexander wants to write a song, she turns on the radio. That’s because Alexander, the lead singer and songwriter of the Minneapolis band Bad Bad Hats, is interested in pop tropes – how to play around with them, why they work the way they do.

Take “Nothing Gets Me High,” the power-pop centerpiece of her band’s new album, Lightning Round. Alexander wrote it after listening to Tove Lo’s 2014 hit “Habits (Stay High)” and figuring how to invert the song’s premise. “I was thinking about how there are so many songs about love and drugs as a metaphor,” she says, before spelling out her uniquely personal premise for the song: “And I was like, ‘I want to write a song like that, but I have never actually been high. I have never done drugs.”

Another new song, “1-800,” came from listening to Drake’s “Hotline Bling” and wondering why more songs didn’t play around with toll-free numbers. “I like that phrase, using 1-800 as a metaphor for how you get nothing but junk in your life,” she says, “Or that you feel like people look at you like a 1-800 call, like, ‘No one picks me up. They all let me go.’”

On Lightning Round, the Minnesota quartet refine and polish the blend of indie-pop, folk, and rock that they introduced on their 2015 debut, Psychic Reader, an album that won positive reviews and high-profile opening gigs for Third Eye Blind and Margaret Glaspy.

Bad Bad Hats is:
Kerry Alexander,
Connor Davison,
Chris Hoge

Image may contain: one or more people, people playing musical instruments, people on stage, night and guitar

Kid Dakota is the musical moniker of Darren Jackson. Formed in 1999, Kid Dakota to date have released two albums on LOW’s Chairkicker’s UnionSo Pretty (2002), and The West is the Future (2004) – and three albums on Graveface Records – A Winner’s Shadow (2008), Listen to the Crows As They Take Flight (2011), and Denervation (2018).
Some albums were meant to be heard on vinyl. So Pretty is one of those albums, and that’s why we’re reissuing it as a 2LP on 180g of black vinyl. Originally released in 2002 on LOW’s record label, this reissue will include two previously unreleased tracks (Down to Get ’Em and Blackout) from the “So Pretty” sessions in the summer of 1999.

Darren is a multi-instrumentalist, composer, engineer, teacher, and producer. He owns and operates Shortman Studio in Northeast Minneapolis. In addition to creating and recording music, he is currently a Ph.D. student in ASPECT (Alliance for Social, Political, Ethical, and Cultural Thought) at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. His areas of research are early twentieth-century avant-garde film, film theory, and philosophy.

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Band Members
Darren Jackson,
Justin Korhonen

Releases June 29th, 2018

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Driftwood Pyre hail from Minneapolis in the US and were, in part, born from the ashes of First Communion Afterparty, the former band of mainman Liam Watkins. Whilst the band name may have changed and new members recruited, Driftwood Pyre have retained the same hazy take on garage/psych, but possibly a tad more ‘mainstream’ (and please don’t take that as a criticism!). The album gets off to a cracking start with ‘Man On A Wire’ and its garagey vibe and ringing guitar….it’s The Velvet Underground if they played straight rawk’n’roll. This is a great album, artfully mixing garage and psych without sounding the least bit contrived. The songwriting is intelligent and meaningful and overall it is an album that takes the listener on a journey from modern day back to the sixties via the eighties.

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