Posts Tagged ‘New York’

Hannah Cohen will release her third album “Welcome Home” on 26th April via Bella Union Records.

“It was the beginning of September and NYC was in the midst of a big heat wave.” Cohen says of the track. “I was staying with my partner at the time and had locked myself in the bathroom to work on this song. It was very early in the morning, the air conditioner was buzzing away. At the time we were searching for our first apartment together, and had seen about 27 apartments in person. All were gross or out of our price range. It was definitely a catalyst for wanting to move out of the city – and it all came rushing at me. I really needed a change. Locked in a boiling hot bathroom, playing my nylon-string guitar, I realized that this is it… my life is crazy, it’s time to make a big move.”

Hannah Cohen has arrived home. From the title of her new album to the depth and beauty of the music, the Woodstock, NY-based singer-songwriter’s third album, “Welcome Home”, displays a new level of confidence and comfort with the many creative tools at her disposal. Cohen’s remarkably evocative voice is surrounded by dreamy, swooning incantations, from the rippling ‘This Is Your Life’ and the slow-burning, forthright statement of ‘All I Want,’ to the soul swagger of ‘Get in Line’ and dramatic vocal leaps of ‘Wasting My Time.’

With Welcome Home, “I don’t feel I have to cover up anything, or not be able to share,” Cohen says. “There’s less to interpret, I’m more visible. And as to reflecting on the past when things didn’t go well, I’ve left that behind. It was all worth it, to make my way to this point.”

Produced by Cohen’s partner Sam Owens, the producer/writer who performs as Sam Evian, the artist began developing the material that became Welcome Home in 2017. Taking her time with the songs, she wrapped herself in the fulfilling quiet of a new home, and a new creative partnership that supported finding a clarity in her writing and vocals. Many of the songs were written on an old, nylon-string guitar painted with Hawaiian scenes of beaches and palm trees (which can be heard on ‘This Is Your Life’), that, no matter the final arrangement, gives the songs a lighter touch, a warming glow that suffuses the whole album. Listeners may find echoes of folk and R&B, radiating with vocal-powered pop production, electronic accents, and bursts of pulsing guitar/bass/drums energy. Irresistible echoes of soul enchanters such as Carrie Cleveland (an early touchstone for Cohen and Evian), Marvin Gaye, Bill Withers and their friend and sometime collaborator Nick Hakim blend with the reflective shadings of singer/writer forebears such as Carole King and Harry Nilsson.

Welcome Home is almost brutally honest in its self-examination, as Cohen couches home truths in velvet-lush settings. As she explains, “A lot of the album is about checking in with reality and taking the wheel, being honest with myself and my intentions. Being transparent as much as possible. They’re about exploring why I’m here. And the songs question love – if it’s real or something else, finding love that’s healthy, mature and supportive.”

All of Cohen’s new material was crafted in Brooklyn except ‘Big House,’ which was written in an isolated stone farmhouse in upstate New York where they sometimes recorded, preserving the intimacy at the core of Welcome Home. The album was mostly tracked with a live rhythm section: bassist Brian Betancourt (from Evian’s live band) and drummer Vishal Nayak (Nick Hakim). Says Cohen, “We wanted to capture the essence of the song, quickly, and not toil over details for two years.”

That straightforward immediacy marked an important change in Cohen’s relationship with her music and the recording process. After growing up around professional musicians, she moved to New York from the Bay Area at 17, an intrepid adventurer who was drawn to New York’s singer-songwriter world. “New York became my world and my community, and formed me as a person, though I have never felt settled here until the last two years.” Her first two albums, Child Bride and Pleasure Boy, document the sound of a young artist finding her feet on a stage populated by established performers, a very public evolution toward the lived-in experience and command of Welcome Home. The desire to live on her own terms has recently led her to the less-crowded vistas of Woodstock, NY, a no-less iconic musical destination.

‘Old Bruiser’ documents that feeling of escape, specifically a west coast road trip (“Made it back to the city by daylight and we turned to each other as if to ask why /did we make something special just to go and leave it all behind?”). ‘Build Me Up’ also reflects Cohen’s desire to move: “Living in the city has such extreme effects on your body, your nervous system, the constant grind, living on top of people and never really having any true personal space. I am naturally a very sensitive person, I feel a lot of energy and people are really intense in NYC. I have been inspired by that energy but after fifteen years it became exhausting trying to keep up with the grind and hustle. I wanted a change of scenery and a new pace. It was hard to let go after putting so much time and work into building my life and community, and in a way I went from one extreme to another. But I felt I needed to make a big move to break free from all the noise. Welcome Home chronicles my last year in New York City before moving on. Onward and upwards.”

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releases April 26, 2019
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Foxygen are back with a new album called “Seeing Other People”. It is due out April 26th via Jagjaguwar Records, and its lead single “Livin’ a Lie” has been released today. The track comes with a music video directed by previous collaborator Alessandra Lichtenfeld. It was filmed in Calabasas and the band’s hometown of Westlake Village, California in the wake of the Woolsey wildfires.

Foxygen – “Livin’ A Lie,” taken from ’Seeing Other People,’ out April 26th, 2019 on Jagjaguwar Records.

Seeing Other People was produced by Foxygen, engineered and mixed by Shawn Everett, and features superstar drummer Jim Keltner. It follows 2017’s Hang. “I remember a quote from [Jonathan] Rado sticking with the press a few years ago about how we’d lived every rock’n’roll cliche in, about, one year,” Foxygen’s Sam France said in a statement. “Well, here’s the album about it. Another movie. I don’t know what’s next. But here’s a snapshot of it all.”

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The duo’s new single arrives with a music video filmed in California in the wake of the Woolsey fires

releases April 26, 2019

Daily Dose: The Felice Brothers, "Special Announcement"

New York folk-rockers The Felice Brothers recently announced their first album in three years, “Undress”, arriving May 3rd through Yep Roc Records. They’re back with another song “Special Announcement,” the third single from the record, It follows previously released singles “Poor Blind Birds” and “Undress.” Listen to “Special Announcement” below.

The song, which directly and cleverly targets financial corruption, is quick to acknowledge the absurdity of our modern politics and the role money plays in them with the lyric “I’m saving up my money to be president.” Songwriter Ian Felice imagines a world without financial interests, without the “Stock Exchange” and the “Federal Reserve.” His plans include more than a few shake-ups: “I can promise you this: Charlie Parker on the $10 bill.” Felice sings this satire over energetic keys and cheerful chords, but don’t let the song’s upbeat nature fool you—it’s an expressed exasperation with the crookedness at play in American politics.

“This song should feel like you’re reading the Financial Times in a motel at the edge of reality,” Felice says. “You feel very frustrated by the corrupting power of money in politics, and a piano’s cloud-like chords are hovering over a terrace.”

Undress is the band’s seventh album, following 2016’s Life in the Dark. For this record, the band deviated slightly from more personal lyrics and turned their focus to writing about modern mayhems, of which, as we know, there are many.

“Many of the songs on the new album are motivated by a shift from private to public concerns,” Felice says. “It isn’t hard to find worthwhile things to write about these days, there are a lot of storms blooming on the horizon and a lot of chaos that permeates our lives. The hard part is finding simple and direct ways to address them.”

From the new album – Undress

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We are super excited to announce a brand new band to the world and the City Slang roster! They’re called WIVES, they’re from Queens, NYC and they’re undoubtedly going to be your new favourite band. ⁣ ⁣ First single ‘Waving Past Nirvana’ is available on 7″ vinyl will drop on May 24th.

The quartet are the latest fit in a long lineage of New York’s gritty, melodic-tinged punk-hook-driven, grungy dark-wave that’s tethered to daily anxiety without resorting to cynicism. Both the noisy dissonance of Sonic Youth and the clever, cerebral sneering of The Fall simmer as touchstones within the band’s music.⁣ ⁣

New single ‘Waving Past Nirvana’ is OUT NOW

When Laura Stevenson released her 2011 album Sit, Resist, she was a little out in front of what quickly became a flood of first-rate indie-rock from women, including Sharon Van Etten, Lucius, Big Thief’s Adrienne Lenker, Mitski, Waxahatchee, Lucy Dacus and many more. Unfortunately for Stevenson, she was ahead of the leading edge just enough that the subsequent wave of acclaim didn’t sweep her up the way it did many of her peers. Thankfully, despite the fact that she’s not nearly as well known as she should be, Stevenson continues to make music that can stop your heart.

In that regard, her latest is arguably Stevenson’s most adept album. The Big Freeze trades the raucous guitars and bold hooks of her earlier work for subtler musical textures on songs that open into more expansive interior worlds. She relies more on her voice, which has both warmth and clarity in proportions that vary with the volume of she utilizes. She sings just above a murmur on opener “Lay Back. Arms Out” and lets the natural sweetness of her voice bubble up in the catchy melody of “Dermatillomania,” the most up-tempo song on the album. Up-tempo, yes, but not upbeat: the title of the song is another name for excoriation disorder, which is the compulsion to pick at one’s own skin to the point of causing physical harm. Stevenson wrote about her own experiences with dermatillomania in February for Talkhouse, and the subject hovers in the background of many of the songs on The Big Freeze.

The album as a whole sorts through a host of complicated feelings about family, the thin line between inter- and co-dependence, and trying, if just for a minute, to silence fear, shame and doubts and feel OK as oneself. Stevenson lays out a portrait of dysfunction on “Hum,” glimmers of guitar framing her precise, quiet vocals as she builds tension with such stealth that it comes as a surprise to find you’ve been holding your breath. “Hawks” is a wistful waltz-time evocation of a happier period, while the next song, “Big Deep,” feels like its emotional counterpoint as Stevenson describes a particularly fraught moment. She harmonizes with herself on both, accompanied by barely-there guitar, the low moan of a cello (on the former) and deep, distant piano (on the latter).

Laura lets the natural sweetness of her voice bubble up in the catchy melody of “Dermatillomania,” the most up-tempo song on her new album The Big Freeze. Up-tempo, yes, but not upbeat: the title of the song is another name for excoriation disorder, which is the compulsion to pick at one’s own skin to the point of causing physical harm. Stevenson wrote about her own experiences with dermatillomania in February and the subject hovers in the background of many of the songs on The Big Freeze.

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Album closer “Perfect” feels like Stevenson has reached an equilibrium of sorts, balancing past with present, and emotional turmoil with a brittle sense of acceptance. There’s tenacity there, too: “I’ll be alright by myself tonight,” she sings in the first and last lines of the song, a folky number with acoustic guitar and multi-tracked vocal harmonies. It’s clear that she means it, and even if being genuinely alright takes more time, more effort, more emotional energy than she ever would have wanted, it’s equally clear that she is determined to make it true.

If you told us even as recently as six weeks ago that we’d be working on a Redux version of Black Sabbath’sVolume 4 and, before the end of March, artists including The Obsessed, Whores, Zakk Wylde, and Matt Pike would have all committed to be part of the project, we would’ve probably answered, “Wow.”

And if you’d then said, “Oh yeah, you’ll also assemble a Best of Black Sabbath companion LP featuring Earthless, Elephant Tree, Year of the Cobra, and tons of other great artists including a whole crop of brand-new Magnetic Eye roster bands, who by the way you’ll find time to sign during all the madness of your Vol. 4 Kickstarter,” we’d have most likely said, “piss off.” And yet, here we are, and all of the above has come to pass.

We are indeed reduxing Volume 4 and offering up a Best of Sabbath companion record, we do have some of the greatest heavy artists in the world committed to be part of this project, and we did somehow find time to sign three new bands during all of this, each of whom we’ll have a new record coming from later this year, and all of whom we’re inviting to be part of the project.

Brothers of Destruction

The Lemon Twigs album “Brothers of Destruction”, is a six-track EP of previously unreleased material.

Released 22nd September, Brothers of Destruction was written and recorded by the D’Addario brothers – Brian (20) and Michael (18) – on their 8-track at home in New York during 2015, not long after recording their debut album, Do Hollywood.  The half dozen songs, most of which already feature in The Lemon Twigs’ searing live shows, will be made available digitally and as a 12” vinyl.

“In the beginning of 2015 we had songs left over from the Do Hollywood sessions, so we decided to record them at home in New York on our 8-track.  Many of you will recognize some of the songs from our live shows.  They’ve changed a lot over the past year, but these are the original versions.  We consider the EP the last chapter of the Do Hollywood era of our group. So enjoy!”

Laura Stevenson’s last album, 2015’s Cocksure, found the singer beefing up her stripped-down sound with big guitars. A follow-up called The Big Freeze comes out at the end of March, and it heralds a return to Stevenson’s more finely detailed, wrenchingly intimate songwriting. The title refers to an eventual freezing of the universe which makes sense, given that she recorded it in the dead of winter — as well as to the ways relationships strain against emotional and physical distance. In first listen is the song “Living Room, NY,” she longs for a connection to the small details of everyday life with a long-distance partner, singing, “I want to see you stare at ceilings until you fall back to sleep.”

Recorded in her childhood home during the dead of winter, The Big Freeze represents a pivotal step for New York songwriter Laura Stevenson. Despite her pedigree in the punk and indie rock scenes, and the occasional inclusion of a backing band (like the sprightly, C86-inspired pop track “Dermatillomania”), for the first time on record Stevenson’s voice and guitar are in clear and highlighted focus. It is a natural aesthetic choice for the musician, who has often toured as a solo act and who pulls influence from the great American songbook, and a choice that plays to the core strength and organic beauty of her writing. And though it is easily the darkest and most emotionally-devastating album of Stevenson’s career, it is also without a doubt her most powerful.

Stevenson builds on her own private worlds with choruses of multi-tracked voices, swarms of cellos, French horns and violins; orchestration that blooms and swells throughout each intimate performance. Exploring thematic ideas of distance and misconnection; worlds pulling apart, aching loneliness, and attempts to drive out hibernating dormant demons.

In the opening track Stevenson’s voice insists the listener “lay back with arms out, all-in, unfeeling,” to allow themselves to sink into a flood of instrumental sound that thrums between dissonance and resolution. From waves crashing in an abandoned waterpark on the haunting “Value Inn”, to the last leaves trembling before winter sets in on “Rattle At Will”, a creeping sense of isolation and anxious beauty surrounds every song. And yet there is also warmth, and hope. The album’s third track “Living Room, NY” tells of an intercontinental love and longing which seems to have the strength to thrive despite even the most trying and impossible of circumstances. Across ten tracks, the listener will travel through the cold night, following after a small but powerful flame burning from the other side.

Charly Bliss are back with their sophomore album Young Enough. Produced by Joe Chiccarelli (U2, Beck, Alanis, The Strokes, The Killers, My Morning Jacket, Cage The Elephant), the album finds the band exploring both the darker and poppier side of their sound while expanding on what made their debut Guppy a critically acclaimed smash.

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Releases May 10th, 2019

Charly Bliss is Eva Hendricks, Sam Hendricks, Spencer Fox and Dan Shure

Vampire Weekend at Lollapalooza music festival photographed by Koury Angelo in Chicago, IL, USA on 04 August, 2018 for Rolling Stone.

“In some ways [our first three albums were] like kind of one massive period of obsessing, making music, touring, all those things,” Vampire Weekend frontman Ezra Koenig has said. “I think now for the first time in a long time I kinda feel like, a little bit more relaxed. Like, ‘Yeah, we’ll definitely make a fourth album.'” Details are still scant, but the indie rock foursome’s leader revealed that he wants their fourth album to “feel like a new era.” He also said that discarded songs from the Modern Vampires sessions are among the tracks being considered for the as-yet-untitled project.

The NYC outfit recently returned with the joyous new track to launch their upcoming album, ‘Father Of The Bride‘. Ezra Koenig and co. have also announced a lengthy US tour, along with a summer date in Dublin. Now, the group have shared the colourful new visuals for their comeback tune.

The ‘Harmony Hall’ video sees Vampire Weekend cooking up pancakes as a snake lurks around their vibrant kitchen. Later, we see the guys perform in a candlelit room, backed by a dazzling Catherine wheel firework.

Harmony Hall/2021 available everywhere now