Posts Tagged ‘North Carolina’

Meg Baird and Mary Lattimore’s collective work as solo artists, band members, and collaborators—could fill a small record collection. Despite this productivity, these two long-time friends have never recorded an entire album focused exclusively on their unique talents. “Ghost Forests” mysteriously, thrillingly fills that void.

Independently, Baird and Lattimore have each cultivated highly individual and idiosyncratic tools of expression. Baird’s timeless and soaring voice, guitar, and drums have underpinned pastoral and folk rock explorations as a soloist and in band settings with Espers and Heron Oblivion. Lattimore’s albums of enigmatic, spectral experimental harp sounds move and unfold like films and nature itself. The list of artists that have called upon their voices, talents, and visions to enrich their own work is expansive—a virtual pocket encyclopedia of contemporary indie and experimental musicians.

Over the course of “Ghost Forests”’ six collaborative compositions we hear deeply sympathetic conversations between the two artists. With access to a deep pool of shared influences, these two friends assembled a collection of sounds conjured from harp, guitar (both acoustic and electric), synths, the human voice, and a shared poetic language. Baird and Lattimore’s subjects range from the sound of light on water, seismic geopolitical anxiety, the smog-exploded sunsets of Don Dudley’s paintings, and vertigo from their respective relocations to San Francisco and Los Angeles from their once-shared home in Philadelphia.

The synthesis of their vision welcomes listeners who might have been familiar with only one of the performer’s solo oeuvres. It also speaks to long-time fans both artists who have long wondered what this dream collaboration might yield.

Steve Gunn has long known Baird and Lattimore and worked with both on his own albums. He says “Meg Baird and Mary Lattimore are two musicians that I greatly admire. ‘Ghost Forests’ is an ace meld of their abilities; Meg’s guitar and voice, and Mary’s harp lead each other (and us) into further regions of the strata. With each song you can hear this remarkable kinship. I’m thankful for this soundtrack.”

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“Ghost Forests”’ musical conversations are intimate, fluid, effortless and spontaneous. They’re filled with the euphoria of creation and, at times, they articulate hard truths and tangled emotions with an ease only trusted friends can manage. The songs alternate between extended ethereal instrumental excursions, gauzy and dreamy pop, blown-out “Bull of the Woods” heavy haze, and modern reimaginations of epic traditional balladry—all while touching on the strange and otherworldly places between these stations.

With “Ghost Forests” Baird and Lattimore have given us all a timeless gift that generously rewards immersion and deep investigation. It is our collective good fortune as listeners that we are able to eavesdrop on their conversation through these songs. It is also a wonder to hear two unique artists interact to such beautifully original ends.

Releases November 9th, 2018

Recorded January 2018 in Los Angeles, CA.

“Ghost Forests” is the first full collaborative album from Meg Baird and Mary Lattimore. It was recorded in January 2018 in Los Angeles with Thom Monaghan. It will be packaged within a jewel case including artwork by Jeff Root and a 4 panel insert. It was mastered by Patrick Klem. “Ghost Forests” will be released on November 9th, 2018.

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Bluegrass/Americana duo Mandolin Orange perform “Golden Embers” Live at the Schaefer Center for the Performing Arts in Boone, North Carolina

Watch the performance of “Golden Embers” by the North Carolina duo Mandolin Orange, from their forthcoming album Tides of a Teardrop, due out February 1st on Yep Roc Records.

Andrew Marlin says, “Golden Embers” is a song I wrote to my Dad about my Mom’s passing. I love how the arrangement begins very stripped down to hit home the intimacy of the subject and then explodes with weight as the band comes in later.”

Band Members
Andrew Marlin & Emily Frantz

Sarah Shook sings from the perspective of a problem child of the highest caliber: impulsive, unapologetic, and impassioned. The songs she sings and the music she makes with her band the Disarmers on their latest record Years is the kind of stuff that defies a calendar. Could be 1962, could be 1974; that it’s 2018 only makes these songs sound more ageless. Sarah Shook & The Disarmers are a country band with a sneer, a bite, and no apologies. Shook’s original songs take on the usual country spin on shitty relationships, bad decisions, and excessive alcohol consumption for damn good reasons. I’d certainly accompany each listen with a bottle of whiskey too, cos these are great drunken tunes about life’s ups and downs.

from the Bloodshot Records album YEARS

This limited-edition deluxe Hiss Golden Messenger 4-LP box set includes remastered reissues of Bad Debt, Poor Moon, and Haw plus Virgo Fool, a bonus album of Hiss rarities available physically only with this collection.

Individually numbered in a one-time pressing of 2,200, the four-album set is housed in a beautiful cloth-wrapped slipcase with three-color foil detailing and includes an exclusive foldout poster. Each LP is pressed on black vinyl (with full download) and includes a two-sided insert with liner notes and full lyrics, all housed in a heavyweight jacket with a debossed cover.

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Released on November 2nd, Hiss Golden Messenger will release Devotion: Songs About Rivers and Spirits and Children, a limited-edition deluxe box set which includes remastered reissues of the classic Hiss albums Bad Debt, Poor Moon, and Haw as well as Virgo Fool, a rarities compilation that will only be available physically as part of this collection. Both the 4-CD and 4-LP sets are housed in a cloth-wrapped, foil-stamped slipcase and feature original iconographic artwork by Sam Smith, an exclusive foldout poster, full lyrics, and new liner notes by New Yorker writer Amanda Petrusich and MOJO editor John Mulvey. The vinyl set also includes a digital download of all tracks.

The 4-LP / 4-CD box set Devotion, Songs About Rivers and Spirits and Children is out November 2nd, 2018 on Merge Records.

If you crave something a little saltier than surf bands La Luz or Bombón, North Carolina’s dearly departed Daddy Issues might be what you’re looking for: a modern girl gang of Shangri-Las in wetsuits rather than leather jackets, walking on the sand after staying out all night. This band’s sound is overall drier and janglier than La Luz’s wet atmospherics, but they share a talent for sultry guitar leads and floaty girl group harmonies, as on seductive come-hither tune “Wild Thing.” Bonus: On earlier EP Double Loser, the band sings about falling in love with a slimy sea creature that only comes out at night, bringing in some ’60s B-movie imagery to match their ’60s-inspired sound. The song is coquettishly entitled “Sex on the Beach.” “It’s difficult not to love this North Carolina based quartet’s surfy pop rock. Like Chastity Belt’s ‘Cool Slut‘, the track says, “Hey! Girls can have sex too!”. “This is simply a perfect, shining moment of girl group surf pop. There’s something here reminiscent of The Vaselines.

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Released November 3, 2015

Lo Davy: Guitar & Vox
Lindsey Sprague: Lead Guitar & Backup Vox
Madeline Putney: Bass
Joshua Johnson: Drums

In the four years since Ex Hex released their debut, lamenting over the lack of a follow-up has become something of an indie rock pastime. The good news is that Mary Timony, Betsy Wright, and Laura Harris finally do appear to be hard at work on one, but as it turns out, we may not have needed the whole gang to satiate the craving for more. Wright, having teamed up with drummer Laura King, has gifted us with Bat Fangs, a record that is far more than just an interim Ex Hex release holdover—it’s a total beast unto itself. Riff-saturated, loud, and fearless, the album flies by (get it?), over before you want it to be, an unpretentious blast of old-school bar rock.

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NC/DC superghouls Bat Fangs pick up where Roky & the Aliens blasted off– cranking acid-soaked 80s hard rock for the living and the dead. Making heady heavy music for third eyes and stiff upper lips, Betsy Wright (Ex Hex) shreds ‘n’ howls over Laura King’s (Flesh Wounds / Speed Stick) deep-thunder drums. 

When Beat the Champ came out, a wrestler named Sasha Banks tweeted at me: “Where’s my song, @mountain_goats?” As a territories guy I had to learn her story. I said I’d finish the song by the end of the tour; it took a little longer than that.

Last night Sasha Banks wrestled for the Money in the Bank title, and while she didn’t take it home this time, I’ve learned enough about where she came from and how she got to where she is now to say with confidence: the sky is the limit for you. Your walk is just beginning and the day will come when all your setbacks look like steps on a ladder.

Jon Wurster and I recorded this song at Chris Stamey’s place last week — that’s Chris on bass; I last worked with Chris on the Moon Colony Bloodbath DP. Thanks to Chris for making this happen and to the Boss, Sasha Banks herself, for inspiring us all – to learn about you and to write this song was a real honor for me.

Dedicated of course to Sasha and to everybody who’s even had a hint of what it looks like when your dreams start pushing their elbows through the gauze into the real world of blood & sweat & bone.

The MGs always take care of their fans, they don’t have to do a ot of the things they do and they always do it with quality writing and craftsmanship.
Released June 18th, 2018
John Darnielle – Guitar, keys, vocals
Jon Wurster – Drums and Percussion
Chris Stamey – Bass

In creating this album, we somewhat recreated ourselves, settling into a fresh method of collaboration in which each of us contributed equally and openly to the creative process. The result is a newly synergetic vision we’re proud and excited to share.

When I heard the burbling synth at the top of River Whyless‘ new album, Kindness, A Rebel, I knew I was in for something different from this Asheville-birthed quartet. Their 2016 folky world-beat album We All The Light was a favorite of mine, but this album has more drive, it’s more cohesive and lyrically more thematic; the album’s title is a hintDrummer Alex McWalters, one of four songwriters in the band, says, “We’ve reached a point where we just understand that the songs are more important than the egos.”

That opening song is called “All of My Friends,” and it’s a good example of how River Whyless is changing. Singer and violinist Halli Anderson wrote the song and quite liked it, but the album’s producer Paul Butler didn’t. And since this album was to be a group effort instead of relying on the individual strengths of these four songwriters, she initially let the song go. But a few days later, that burbling sound resonated from the synthesizer and the song was reborn. Singer and guitarist Ryan O’Keeffe said, “It was the first time I felt like we captured a song in the moment of creation. Lyrics were changing in the moment. Melodies were changing in the moment. Singers were changing. It was really difficult and emotionally intense but so gratifying when we were done.”

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Released June 8th, 2018

River Whyless announced their new album, Kindness, A Rebel – due out June 8th . This is the follow-up to the band’s 2016 breakout success We All The Light.

Produced & mixed by Paul Butler (St. Paul & the Broken Bones, Michael Kiwanuka), Kindness, A Rebel is some of River Whyless‘ most dynamic and heartfelt material yet. The album goes beyond the divide of our current political & societal state, as the band tries to understand what things are happening in our world, why, and how they can help to make it better. This band is an amalgamation of folk and pop and beyond. Brilliant harmonies and words. An abundance of talent from this Asheville band,

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The Band:

Ryan O’Keefe: vocals, guitar
Halli Anderson: vocals, violin
Alex McWalters: drum set
Daniel Shearin: vocals, bass, harmonium

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River Whyless have released a beautiful new track titled “Motel 6”, taken from their forthcoming new album Kindness, A Rebel. Penned by the band’s Ryan O’Keefe, “Motel 6” was inspired by their experience of being a band on the road over the last decade and a sudden moment of realization.

“We were driving home from a tough supporting tour, we were broke, which wasn’t uncommon. Halli had just moved to Oregon and we’d dropped her at a Motel 6 to spend the night before her morning flight. Watching her check into the motel as we pulled away felt like an ending. It was as if I removed a pair of tunnel vision goggles and could see the world and my life for the first time since we started this band. I felt incredibly small, fragile, irresponsible, foolish, at a loss for what to do next and very alone. The reality of what we had been trying to do for a decade came crashing down in an almost laughable way. We didn’t talk about it and I don’t know if anyone felt the same way but, at that moment, I changed. The funny thing is that a month later we had the most successful tour we’ve ever had.” — Ryan O’Keefe, River Whyless

Kindness, A Rebel will be available everywhere on June 8th Available as opaque white LP, CD, and digital download. All physical orders include an exclusive KAR flag enamel pin, as well as an immediate download of all three singles released so far.