Posts Tagged ‘New Orleans’

On her earlier albums, Alynda Segarra (aka Hurray For the Riff Raff) explored the troubadour wanderings and raffish sounds of Americana. On the 29 year old’s visionary new work,  The Navigator she brings it all back home, re-connecting to her buried Puerto Rican roots. In the process, Segarra struck an original mix of roiling bomba rhythms and catchy New York rock. Drawing inspiration from Ziggy Stardust  , she conceived ‘The Navigator’ as a sci-fi tinged concept album, tracing the life of a character named Navita Milagros Negron through a metaphysical world. The lyrics present the story as a play, with allusions to the Latin political group of the ’70s, The Young Lords and verse from Puerto Rican poet Pedro Pietri. Segarra’s catchy songs connect the dots in the long lineage of Latin influences on popular music, from the street-corner harmonies of doo-wop to the romantic hits of the Brill Building to the Latin-rock of acts from Mink DeVille to The Ghetto Brothers. A song like “Living In The City”  sounds like something Lou Reed could have cut in the early ’70s, delivered with righteous fervor by Segarra’s resonant vibrato. Themes of gentrification and cultural appropriation anchor the story. Properly staged, ‘The Navigator’ could become a rock opera for our time.



Nirvana’s brief stint with superstardom began with the release of their groundbreaking, smash hit album “Nevermind” in September 1991. For two-and-a-half years the group dominated rock radio, with many calling Kurt Cobain the voice of his generation (though the man himself was not particularly fond of this designation). Nirvana only made one stop in New Orleans during that time—a December 3rd, 1993 concert at the UNO Lakefront Arena—but fortunately there’s a decent audience recording of the show floating around online.

All but the night’s first two songs can be heard on the recording, which provides a fascinating taste of the band’s live sound. The band’s raw style came through quite nicely on their albums, but apparently it was even more pronounced in concert.

Nirvana in New Orleans. December 3rd, 1993
Setlist Radio Friendly Unit Shifter*, Drain You*, Breed, Serve The Servants, Come As You Are, Smells Like Teen Spirit, Sliver, Dumb, In Bloom, About A Girl, Lithium, Pennyroyal Tea, School, Polly, Frances Farmer Will Have Her Revenge On Seattle, Milk It, Rape Me, Territorial Pissings, Jesus Wants Me For A Sunbeam, The Man Who Sold The World, All Apologies, Scentless Apprentice, Heart-Shaped Box, Blew

*Not included on recording

Arguably the most overtly political act on the folk-rock scene right now, we suspected this new album from Alynda Lee Segarra and co would be a bit of a call to arms. Indeed, it is, and it delivers. “The Navigator” is the sixth full-length studio album by Hurray for the Riff Raff, released by ATO Records last March 2017. The album was produced by Paul Butler, a member of the band The Bees. This powerful album has musical diversity, consistent quality and gripping songwriting all while feeling effortless,

“The question of identity is touched upon throughout the songs here (national, political, gender), but in terms of musical identity, Hurray for the Riff Raff know exactly who they are.



New Orleans newcomer Benjamin Booker’s debut lives and breathes the Deep South, from the Chuck Berry references (most effective on opener ‘Violent Shiver’) to the slower, more hushed tones of ‘I Thought I Heard You Screaming’, 

Benjamin Booker makes music that sounds like someone threw a match into a box of fireworks: bright, furious, explosive garage rock that’s liable to set a house on fire. Fighting out of New Orleans, the 24 year-old has already played Letterman and Conan and been tapped to open for Jack White on his latest string of dates all absent a debut album, which finally was released on August 19th via ATO Records. Roiling with bloozy guitar licks, soaring Hammond organs, and Booker’s moonstruck vocals — dude’s a howler, yet his scuffed up croon is equally compelling on smoky ballad “Slow Coming” — the self-titled release may end up a contender for rock record of the year. Crank “Violent Shiver” at your next house party. It’ll liven the place up, if not burn it down altogether.

News: Benjamin Booker signs to ATO, releases a track, plays Letterman



The Deslondes.

The Deslondes‘ take on country relies on a gritty, grimy mix of early rock ‘n’ roll and lo-fi , so it’s appropriate that the New Orleans band’s new single would go full-on swamp music.“Muddy Water,” which debuts today with a new video directed by Joshua Shoemaker, is the first glimpse of their sophomore record, “Hurry Home”.

Written and sung by Riley Downing, “Muddy Water” doesn’t actually fit the band’s newly rock-leaning form. The opening track of the 13-song album, it’s a languid, simmering acoustic ballad colored by nostalgia and the stifling humidity of a Louisiana summer.‘Muddy Water’ is just a few memories written from kids’ perspectives about growing up outside of a small town on an old farm, running around with my brothers, cousins and friends,” says Downing.

The video, shot along the Mississippi River, has a surreal Stand By Me vibe, centering around a group of young boys who play dead ringers for the members of the Deslondes. They ride their bikes and carouse around a campfire as the shots jump back and forth to the grown-up band sitting around a kitchen table.

Hurry Home, produced by Adrija Tokic (Alabama Shakes), is the follow-up to their 2014 self-titled debut and is out June 23rd on New West Records. The Deslondes head out on tour June 6th

From the new album ‘Hurry Home’ available June 23rd


Recorded live at the Superdome in New Orleans for Farm Aid 7 in September of 1994, this is classic grunge-era Neil Young and Crazy Horse. Though the set list consists of only 5 tunes, the show’s running time is nearly an hour as Neil and the band give epic performances of all-time favorites like “Down By The River”, and Dylan’s “All Along The Watchtower”, as well as newer arrivals like “Country Home” (from 1990’s Ragged Glory) and “Change Your Mind” (from 1994’s Sleeps With Angels). An essential Neil live set available now in unprecedented sound quality.LP and coloured vinyl.

Neil Young and Crazy Horse perform “Down By the River” live at the Farm Aid concert in New Orleans, Louisiana on September 18th, 1994. Farm Aid was started by Willie Nelson, Neil Young and John Mellencamp in 1985 to keep family farmers on the land and has worked since then to make sure everyone has access to good food from family farmers. Dave Matthews joined Farm Aid’s board of directors in 2001

photo by Connor Reever

Motel Radio have just released their latest track off of their forthcoming EP, Desert Surf FilmsFrom New Orleans, the band is made up of Ian Wellman on guitar and vocals, Winston Triolo on guitar and vocals, Eric Lloyd on drums and vocals, Andrew Pancamo on bass and vocals, and David Hart on keys and vocals. The band emerged from a songwriting collar between Ian and Winston, who were college roommates. Their latest song is called “Palmilla,” and we have it for you to listen to first here.

“Palmilla” has a laid back, beachy vibe. The guitar is smooth and hypnotic. The harmonies in the vocals are soothing and relaxing. The instrumentals blend seamlessly with one another, as to the vocals. The sound is mellow and captivates your attention from start to finish. With a track like this, it’s easy to see why the band was names “Best Emerging Artist” at the Big Easy Awards in New Orleans in 2016


We’ve become very taken with this track Palmilla, the third song released off Motel Radio’s forthcoming new EP Desert Surf Films, which will be released on August 12th, via Roll Call Records.

It is a lovely, breezy slice of rolling Americana with a  tinge of surfy, psych rock woven seamlessly throughout.

It follows the equally lovely Gimme Your Love and any fans of Jackson Browne


The Revivalists

A groove-oriented jam band that prizes tunes over solos. For Fans of: My Morning Jacket, Galactic, Alabama Shakes

You Should Pay Attention: The New Orleans-based septet’s third full length Men Amongst Mountains bowed at Number Two on the Billboard Alternative Albums Chart last year and found traction on Spotify, where they have amassed over 2 million streams. They’ve also become a popular fixture of the summer festival circuit, thanks to a dynamic live show and singer David Shaw’s soulful howl.

They Say: “We were always careful about playing too many shows in New Orleans,” says singer Shaw. “Even from the get-go, we never really wanted to be one of those bands that played that weekly gig — it just didn’t seem like who we were. It was definitely a great place to incubate us and kept us out of the spotlight long enough for us to develop in the ways we needed to develop. And then once we were ready for that, it was the right time. You know how they say, when you really want something the universe conspires to help you make that a reality? I feel that was really happening.”


Hear for Yourself: The sweet, wistful “Wish I Knew You” encapsulates the band’s varied strengths with brittle stabs of funk guitar, dub-influenced keys and colorful splashes of brass.


WOOZY – ” Painted White “

Posted: October 15, 2015 in MUSIC
Tags: , ,


The latest single from New Orleans trio “Woozy” is hashtagged “emotional” on Soundcloud, and whether they mean it as a joke or not, the song’s redlining mash of cymbal sibilance and clipped vocal chorus comes across like the Japandroids anthem we didn’t realize we were missing, while washes of finger-picked guitar and a marching snare drum in the bridge deliver on the idea that you don’t have to be noisy to be a sad punk.

Woozy’s full length debut “Blistered”. Out October 16th on Community Records/EIS.


The legendary New Orleans‘ psych-folk artist Damien Youth, who has a recording history that dates back to the eighties, and is frequently (and deservedly) compared to Donovan, Robyn Hitchcock and Paul Roland. Youth’s output has slowed to a trickle these days, making releases like the “The Woodlock Demos” all the more precious. No idea whether these two tracks are a teaser for something else that he’s working on, but they’re lovely acoustic gems, which sound complete in their fragile, unadorned states. “Quest to Succumb” in particular, burns with a quiet intensity, which will get right under your skin.

A mysterious cassette-only artist who began putting out material on tape in the late ’80s, although some of it started to appear on CD in the late ’90s. His music is haunting acoustic rock with a sense of whimsy akin to Robyn Hitchcock or Donovan. It’s solid, melodic stuff that would most likely appeal to Hitchcock fans, despite the sparse production. His Bride of the Asylum CD of 1998 put some of his work into slightly larger circulation, in better fidelity.