Miracle Fortress Shares Two Unreleased Tracks for mp3 Download Announces European Tour Dates

Miracle Fortress Shares Two Unreleased Tracks for mp3 Download Announces European Tour Dates

“[‘Miscalculations’ is]…a euphoric mystic awakening.”- Filter

“Part experimental-ambient and part 80s pop, ‘Was I the Wave?’ is all massive synth-scapes littered with electro beats, and Van Pelt’s dreamy wail towering above.” – NYLON

Download Brand New Tracks “Gestures” + “Possession”

Download the Pantha du Prince Remix of “Raw Spectacle

Montreal-based musician and producer Miracle Fortress (aka Graham Van Pelt) has offered two unreleased tracks, “Gestures” and “Possession” for free mp3 download here. After wrapping up a successful North American tour with electro-pop duo Junior Boys (check out photos from BrooklynVegan), the band will embark on a European tour starting tomorrow behind their sophomore album, Was I The Wave? on Secret City Records (Diamond Rings, Plants and Animals).

Was I The Wave? noted by CMJ as “an evolution in the overall sound of the project” is the follow up to Van Pelt’s Polaris- Prize nominated debut, Five Roses, that received critical acclaim from SPIN, Paper, XLR8R and KEXP among others. Van Pelt comments in regards to the three year lapse between the two admitting, “The truth is that I did work on a great deal of material from 2008 to 2010 that never managed to find a home on any proper release. Some of it was intended for an ill-fated and ultimately discarded album…but some other material remains that I’d still like people to hear.” You can read more about his self-editing process at his recent interview with Filter Magazine.

Van Pelt will release a third single later this summer and will return to the states later this year. If you missed Miracle Fortress this time around, watch an amazing live performance they did of “Everything Works” for Montreal-based web-series Rock Ton.

Was I The Wave? Track Listing

1. Awe
2. Tracers
3. Raw Spectacle (+ Diamond Rings Remix)
4. Wave
5. Spectre
6. Everything Works
7. Before
8. Miscalculations
9. Immanent Domain
10. Until

Miracle Fortress European Tour Dates

07/01/11 – Gatineau, QC @ Parc Jacques Cartier
07/07/11 – Quebec City, QC @ Le Cercle (Festival d’Ete de QC)
08/06/11 – Montreal QC @ Festival Mode et Design
08/12/11 – Toronto, ON @ Lower Ossington Theatre (Summerworks)
08/27/11 – Sherbrooke, QC @ Boquebiere
09/03/11 – Rouyn-Noranda, QC @ L’Agora des Arts
09/06/11 – Amsterdam, NL @ Paradiso
09/10/11 – Fribourg CH @ Fri-Son
09/13/11 – London UK @ Madame Jojo’s (White Heat) w/ Brasstronaut
09/14/11 – Paris, FR @ Fleche d’Or (Inrocks Lab)
09/17/11 – Tilburg, NL @ Incubate Festival

Is Tropical – Native To album review

Is Tropical, an electronic/rock trio from London released their debut album “Native To” on June 14th, with French record label Kitsune. The album is full of throbbing electro pop tracks and silly one-word titles such as “Oranges”, “Cloud”, and “What” among others. Is Tropical has made a bit of a name for themselves via the Internet with tons of video views for the explosive music video for “The Greeks” and for their live performances in which they play with their faces coved in some way.

The album starts out with “South Pacific”, one of the album’s singles.  The song, like most on the album, sounds a bit dragged along.  It’s one thing to have a long chorus but when that chorus is only a few repeated sentences and the rest of the song has little to no lyrical content, the song feels flat to say the least.

Pretty much every song on Native To carries on this trend of sounding like a catchy pre-chorus and chorus in a loop.

The other single released from Native To is “The Greeks”. The video for The Greeks has scored them a good amount of buzz on the Internet for the seemingly innocent children having a water and Nerf gunfight until it gets a little more real with awesome special effects.

The video for The Greeks is pretty much what you can expect out of this album, Music that isn’t really made to be listened to, but more to be used as a background for visuals. Bands like this need to realize that while a punchy song is good, the listener truly connects to lyrics. Listening to the album without music videos is just a numbing experience.

The boys of Is Tropical are showing a great example of where too many genres continues to go, excellent production skills, a few “catchy” ideas, but overuse of repetition and lack of lyrical content.

Other Lives – Tamer Animals album review

Hailing from Stillwater, Oklahoma, Other Lives’ “Tamer Animals” is the band’s second installment, and they continue to push the boundaries of what it means to be a truly unique voice. If only every band was this determined to create new sounds this successful in weaving together disparate refrains. With the pure creativity bursting from “Tamer Animals”, Other Lives shows lesser artists what it means to assert one’s own musical voice.

Each band member plays multiple instruments, ranging from violin to organ to small percussions, including antlers with bells attached. This broad scope allows for a variety of textured sounds. Other Lives relies largely on the indie habits of bands like Animal Collective or Grizzly Bear, in which a hodgepodge of instruments and tones are improbably gathered into one simultaneously systematic and wildly unpredictable song.

They do it as well as anyone. Other Lives’ layering rarely feels excessive, there’s no sense of self-indulgence. Rather, it’s the subtle humming beneath the gong-like sounds on Desert or the swelling string sounds on “For 12.” that makes Other Lives such a joy to listen to. Each listen promises new discovery on this acoustic archaeological dig.

The main vocals are coarse and unassuming, the back-ups have a church choir feel. Indeed, there’s something spiritually cleansing about this music. Other Lives is at its best when it allows its vocals to match the focus and breadth of its other instrumentation. On some songs, the impossible power of their simplest whispers and coos are drowned out beneath their other musical talents. Perhaps that’s the one downside to excelling in every section of ones own orchestra.
Other Lives welds a masterpiece on “Tamer Animal.” Their songs on this album were inspired by the dust bowl region, and visions of swirling landscapes and magical forests overwhelm the listener.

Rival Sons – Pressure and Time album review

Rival Sons released their newest album titled Pressure and Time on Earache Records. This sophomore effort hit the shelves on June 20, 2011 and has gained the band a reputation for contemporary hard rock done right. Vocalist Jay Buchanan with Scott Holiday on guitar, Robin Everhart playing bass, and drummer Michael Miley have created a short (merely half an hour) record that delivers a strong impression. With their heavy classic rock influence, Rival Sons’ bluesy sound can be compared to a not bad imitation of Led Zeppelin or The Doors. This southern Californian band came together with major swagger in the summer of 2008.

Pressure and Time opens with “All Over the Road” which features raucous guitar licks that feel like a rip straight from a 70’s rock jam. Third on the record is the title track “Pressure and Time.” It is full of crashing drums and fuzzed out guitars.

The album really starts going by the sixth track called “Burn Down Los Angeles.” And who wouldn’t want to burn that mother down? The song is built around a catchy riot inciting chorus and verses commiserating the lives of citizens of the city who are not making it big. Track nine, “White Noise,” has such a vintage appeal that it’s almost a bit strange to hear Buchanan sing “when my cell phone ring.”

Finally the last track “Face of Light” is the most stripped down on the album. The lyrics include depressing highlights “look at my eyes, don’t even know who I am.” It sounds like a sweet little rock ballad until the very end when it revs back up into high gear to send the record out properly.

Throughout the month of July, Rival Sons will be touring with Judas Priest and Queensryche in the UK and will also be making a few festival appearances as well.

Liam Finn – FOMO album review

Liam Finn hasn’t quite achieved the respect or fame that he might deserve, though something tells me that might not bother him as much as other artists. He is the son of one of the best pop singers of all time (Neil Finn of Crowded House) but more importantly, he is a sturdy songwriter and studio perfectionist. Finn hails from New Zealand, has toured internationally for his first solo album, I’ll Be Lightning, and has just unleashed upon us his second shiny LP entitled FOMO.

It’s fitting indeed that “FOMO” stands for “fear of missing out,” if not seemingly egomaniacal as a title, FOMO isn’t something you can afford to miss out on. Liam Finn is, if anything, the bearded nemesis of egomania. He breathlessly spews ingenuity on FOMO, for every track, striking gold, oil, silver, cheesecake, whatever resource you consider valuable. He yells out “ARE YOU WORTH THE TROUBLE?” on “The Struggle” and weeps and groans like a feisty James Mercer (Broken Bells, The Shins) on the more gentle “Don’t Even Know Your Name.”

While it is clear Liam Finn is not some untalented clone of his father, it certainly doesn’t hurt that he has music in his blood. Liam is also the nephew of Tim Finn, a member of Split Enz and temporarily member of Crowded House. Liam’s genetic musicality and link to Crowded House is highly apparent on one track, the luminous “Cold Feet,” a wonderful analog throwback to bare bones pop with a few electronic zings thrown in for good measure. Finn has evolved from his previous one-man act to a full-fledged touring band in 2011 that even includes his younger brother Leroy.

“Roll Of The Eye” is a triple must-hear, a striking example of Finns songwriting prowess. In short, FOMO is the shaking beating-drum heart of Liam Finn, each musical effort a calculated yet beautiful affair full of echoing pop/rock melodies that grow on you until the album is over and you are left wanting more. My suggestion to you, listen to it again, and again.

SHINE 2009 – Realism album review

The summer always welcomes sounds that produce a feeling of euphoria; beautiful, luscious chord progressions, simple, yet groovy drum samples and a calming, tranquil vocal delivery, are the usual ingredients to summer soundtracks. This is the case with SHINE 2009. Combining the downtempo vibes of groups such as, Thievery Corporation, or Zero 7, with danceable beats that nod nostalgically at ’90s techno, SHINE 2009 delivers an album that is absolutely enjoyable.

Realism begins with “Graduation,” a track that oozes with poppy percussion, soothing vocals and staccato piano hits. The chord progressions are infectious, allowing Sami Suova’s voice to just float over everything. “Public Exposure” sounds exactly like any major dance club hit of the ’90s. Reverberated loops and piano hits are supported by wavy synths; the song does not have any significant changes, acting as nothing more than a simple dance track.

“One” stands out because of its Thievery Corporation-like sound. The wah-wah guitars at the beginning of the song, open up a realm full of xylophone hits, tambourines and synths. Following “One,” is the even cooler “Realism.” “Realism” just grows; airy, free-flowing synths provide a bridge for Suova’s straight-laced vocals. “New Rules” is the track that stands out; both the drum beat, and the bass melody remind me of P.M. Dawn’s “Set Adrift on Memory Bliss,” as it just grooves. It is definitely the album’s butt-shaker track.

“World” continues with the group’s familiar ’90’s sound, with its syncopated piano hits and head-moving drum beat. “Modern Times” ends the album with bouncy synths, groovy bass and body-moving drums.

SHINE 2009’s Sami Suova and Mikko Pykari accurately bring back the 1990’s dance sound that made everyone move. The group is obviously very comfortable with creating a sound that is heavily influenced by the ’90’s, which can help, or harm them. Yes, they do the music absolute justice, but in not really experimenting with their sound, they do not really stand out as much as they possibly could. Regardless, the tracks are great to listen to, and are perfect for a night of dancing, or a day of complete laziness. If you grow nostalgic for the that ’90s definitive dance-groove sound, and are looking for nothing more than minimal, body-shaking tracks, SHINE 2009’s Realism is the album for you.

The Grownup Noise This Time With Feeling Announcing National Summer Tour Dates! Download: “The Artist Type” MP3

The Grownup Noise This Time With Feeling Announcing National Summer Tour Dates! Download: “The Artist Type” MP3

“….blends sleepy melodies with guitarist-vocalist Paul Hansen’s intelligent croon… “
– AV CLUB

“ …so genuine in its simple emotion that you can’t help but embrace it.”
– Boston Weekly Dig

“They’re a band that revels in the beauty of a simple melody delivered with minimal enhancement for maximum emotional effect…”
– Tucson Weekly

Four years and five national tours since the release of their last album, The Grownup Noise’s latest record, This Time With Feeling, has definitely proven itself to be worth the wait. Carefully blending elements of pop, folk and rock, the band bridges the gap between indie and Americana. The record was mixed in North Carolina by studio master Scott Solter (Spoon, Okkervil River). Fusing tranquil lyrics and harmonies with an assortment of orchestrated flourishes including cellos, pianos and accordions, all five members of The Grownup Noise are multi-instrumentalists.

The album opens with “Strawmen,” a lush arrangement that evokes feelings of peace and clarity. The playful “Six Foot Solemn Oath” immediately launches into a duet lead by intertwining piano and strings. “Carnival” lifts the tempo with a powerful folk-rock hook and lyrics that tell the tale of a magical love. Sorrowful lead single “The Artist Type” boasts an irresistible melody, expertly uniting gentle string arrangements and booming piano.

Check out “The Artist Type

The Grownup Noise will kick off a national summer tour in support of This Time With Feeling. Described by the Portland Press Herald as combining “smart lyrics with keen vocals” and adding that “its songs are doses of melodic sunshine,” the Boston-based quintet offer a kinetic, emotional warmth. Catch them live in your city!

The Grownup Noise Tour Dates

7/31: Brooklyn, NY @ Rockshop
8/3: Philadelphia, PA @ Danger Danger Gallery
8/4: Washington, DC @ Velvet Lounge
8/5: Columbus, OH @ Kafe Kerouac
8/6: Louisville, KY @ Uncle Slayton’s
8/7: Dayton, OH @ South Park Tavern
8/8: Chicago, IL @ Schubas
8/9: Nashville, TN @ Five Spot
8/11: Denver, CO @ Hi-Dive
8/16: Santa Cruz, CA – Daytime show
8/18: San Francisco, CA @ Hemlock Tavern
8/19: Sacramento, CA @ Distillery
8/23: Portland, OR @ Solar Panel Company – Daytime show
8/23: Portland, OR @ Knife Shop
8/24: Seattle, WA @ Hi-Dive

Jeremy Messersmith Adds West Coast Tour Dates, Releases Video from The Graveyard Tour

Jeremy Messersmith Adds West Coast Tour Dates, Releases Video from The Graveyard Tour

“[Jeremy Messersmith’s] hyper-literate, hyper-melodic tunes just keep getting better.” – NBC New York

“Messersmith’s voice is an airy, whispery kind of instrument, his singing is as clear as a piece of cut
crystal.” – NPR

“His songs seem to remind us that for every bit of rottenness that is out there… there are so many more flashes of incredible beauty. – Daytrotter

Watch Jeremy and his band perform at a graveyard on YouTube

Minnesota-based songwriter Jeremy Messersmith & his band are pleased to announce another string of summer tour dates, this time making their way to the West coast. Messersmith and his band just wrapped up an NPR Tiny Desk Concert and are continuing on The Graveyard Tour, following an amazing set of East coast dates where they visited and performed at graveyards in each city. Click on the image above to watch live footage from tour as they perform “Toussaint Grey, First in Life and Death.” Also, find out why Messersmith is dubbed the “Dungeon Master” in his cover story for The Nerd Issue of Vita.mn.

Messersmith’s newest album and final installment of a trilogy, The Reluctant Graveyard, was featured as one of NPR’s Best Albums of 2010. Known for his innovative approach to art and his cross platform creativity, his papercraft animation Tatooine video (where he sums up the Star Wars Trilogy in two minutes), received outstanding praise and was one of PBS’ top picks for “The Music Video Makes a Comeback” feature. Messersmith offers fans the ability to pay what they wish on his Bandcamp site and regularly updates his own website with new content every Wednesday. Stay updated on Messersmith’s interesting musings, news, and videos here and be sure to check him out with a full band on the road.

Jeremy Messersmith On Tour

7/12 – Des Moines, IA – Vaudeville Mews
7/13 – Omaha, NE – Slowdown
7/14 – Lincoln, NE – House Show
7/15 – Denver, CO – Walnut Room
7/17- Phoenix, AZ – Rhythm Room
7/18 – San Diego, CA – The Soda Bar
7/19 – Los Angeles, CA – The Satellite
7/20 – San Francisco, CA – Hotel Utah Saloon
7/21 – Davis, CA – Sophia’s Thai Kitchen
7/22 – Portland, OR – Mississippi Studios
7/24 – Seattle, WA – High Dive

THE PARAMEDIC to Headline AMP Magazine’s ‘The Devil In Me’ CD Release Tour with Crown The Empire & Call It Karma

THE PARAMEDIC to Headline AMP Magazine’s ‘The Devil In Me’ CD Release Tour with Crown The Empire & Call It Karma

Dayton, OH metalcore experience THE PARAMEDIC and AMP Magazine are pleased to announce the upcoming The Devil In Me CD Release Tour! Several tour dates have been confirmed, and more are soon to be announced. The tour is scheduled to start on August 5th in Kettering, OH and will end in Barrington, IL on August 21st. See below for all confirmed tour dates, and for updates and additional announcements, please check facebook.com/theparamedicband.

“We are beyond excited to announce our CD release tour,” states vocalist Mike Luciano. “It will be a pleasure playing our new CD in full every night for our fans. We have been very busy recording music videos and writing new music and this will be a welcomed breath of fresh air. Don’t be shy, make sure to come say hi to us. We love talking with our fans. Rock ‘n’ Roll BABY!”

TOUR DATES:
8/5 Kettering, OH @ The Attic
8/6 Indianapolis IN @ The Hoosier Dome
8/7 Covington, KY @ Mad Hatter
8/8 Nashville TN @ TBA
8/9 Columbia SC @ New Brookland Tavern
8/10 Spartanburg SC @ TBA
8/11 Richmond VA @ TBA
8/12 Waretown, NJ @ Station 36
8/13 Allentown PA @ TBA
8/14 Binghamton, NY @ Jarvis Street
8/15 Rockville Center NY @ The Vibe Lounge
8/16 Stroudsburg, PA @ Sherman Theater
8/17 Jermyn PA @ Eleanor Rigby’s
8/18 Cleveland OH @ TBA
8/19 Mt Clemens MI @ The Hayloft
8/20 Kokomo, IN @ National Guard Armory
8/21 Barrington, IL @ Rock Room

THE PARAMEDIC recently released a new cover of Lil Wayne’s ‘6 Foot 7 Foot’ on their official YouTube page. Head to the page to listen to the track now: http://www.youtube.com/user/ParamedicRock. The band also just wrapped shooting a new music video for their track ‘The Sixth Seal’, directed and edited by Graham Fielder. The video will be unveiled in the coming weeks, so stay tuned for updates.

THE PARAMEDIC’s free EP, The Devil In Me, is available now! The EP was self-produced by the band at their personal studio in Dayton, OH. With a revolutionary new sound, THE PARAMEDIC is ready to obliterate the airwaves, your stereos, and your ears with The Devil In Me. The band is currently looking for a label to call home.

Tracklisting:
1. The Sixth Seal
2. A Vessel Of Times Past
3. The Devil In Me
4. From The Throne