The Neuro Farm: Ghosts

neurofarmghosts

The Neuro Farm is a four piece indie rock band based in Washington DC. Their second and latest release, Ghosts, is a seven song circuit through spacey darkness and attentive revelry. Their sound is layered beautifully with soaring violin and vocal harmonies and an intense, driving rhythm section. This is a group who understands that music is magic, and communicates it well. Simultaneously grounding and expanding, the feel of the record resonates deep within that place where we are “one purpose…one mind.”

For fans of The Smashing Pumpkins, Chelsea Wolfe, Florence + The Machine.

Listen and download here: https://theneurofarm.bandcamp.com/

Follow and find a list of The Neuro Farm’s upcoming shows here: https://www.facebook.com/theneurofarm

~WP

The Neuro Farm: Ghosts

Ryan Gibson: Self Titled

Ryan GibsonRyan Gibson released Ryan Gibson on January 15, 2018.

Ryan Gibson is an eloquent, somber exposition. The intricate guitar work beautifully laces melancholy melodies and cynical lyrics, with a rhythm section that subtly drives and underlines. Songs paint dark vignettes of bitterness and city streets, affected by a reverence for mystery and solitude. The lyrics sometimes contrast the pretty melodies that contain them with their unabashed spite, boldly calling out the state of a world that is cruel and often shallow. But even here there are glimmers of hope and innocence. It is the work of an artist with the depth and resiliency to “transcend hell,” and still have the playfulness to sail the sewer in a paper boat.

The beauty of this album is in its subtlety. Harmonies that bring great depth are sometimes barely audible, where simplicity of sound is an illusory device. Each songs is meticulously crafted; each part is envisioned, played, and layered with the precision made possible by being the work’s sole creative source. This is an album one could listen many times and still continue to uncover nuances.

 

Listen and Buy Here: https://ryangibson.bandcamp.com/album/ryan-gibson

 

-WP

Ryan Gibson: Self Titled

To The Moon: Travel Music

screen-shot-2017-02-10-at-5-43-37-pm

To The Moon is a three piece instrumental band from Baltimore, MD. Travel Music of 2017 will be their second release, and first with the current lineup. The album opens with space and mystery, building to a forward sound driven by the drums and bass. The minimalist sound lends to an atmosphere for clarity; each player is heard unmistakably, and contributes something invaluable to the sound. The songs are curious and experimental, adventurous and bold.

There is something on the edge of heaviness in songs like “Blood Orange,” and in the title track. These march at a steady, driving pace, determined to get some mission accomplished- possibly incognito. Some tracks could be in scenes of a modern day spy or action movie where the characters are definitely wearing sunglasses. Travel Music is goofy at times and very straightforward. But the guitar effects and edgy bass lines contain subtle dark undertones throughout, hinting at something thrilling and dangerous that is just beneath the surface. “Aliceanna” layers that with guitar and bass harmonies, and a screaming guitar solo that is so right.

Listen here: http://tothemoonband.com/

-W.P.

To The Moon: Travel Music

Lilac Daze: Sedated

LDSedated

Lilac Daze is a pop-punk/post-grunge indie garage rock band from Frederick, MD. They have released three records since 2013, toured all over the east coast, and still, arguably, have not received the credit they deserve in their own hometown. Sedated, their latest six song EP has been played through my speakers more times than I can remember since its release in July 2014. That was around the time I had just begun to venture into the Frederick scene, moving just a short distance away from everything familiar near DC, knowing nothing about what I was in for.

The city of Frederick, friendly and welcoming at first, had gradually revealed itself to be the center of its own universe; one that is split down the middle into folk and heavy metal music, with room for little more than a few Weezeresque polished garage rock bands in between. I have been lucky enough to hear a hand full of great rock bands here with real originality and creativity, but they are hard to find. I would bet that there are lots more, practicing in basements and bedrooms just waiting for the right opportunity to be heard. Within the folk and metal genres there are ones worth hearing, but they will almost certainly have that opportunity since the scene caters to that. (End rant).

I had heard Matt’s other project, Cosmic Halitosis, play live on occasion, and even once shared a bill. Though I will admit I was put off by the name, I was instantly a fan of his catchy songwriting and lively, playful style. So I was not surprised to fall deeply in like with Lilac Daze. Sedated starts out strong with Frederick Rock City, the heartfelt, melodic song that sticks in my head sometimes for weeks at a time with the lines:

“I used to think all humans were inherently good
every time i’m wrong someone proves me right
what’s the riddle to this?
I think i’m too serious”

I will have to call this one my favorite, though the rest of the album certainly backs up the good first impression. These songs are all heavy and melodic, and abrasive in all the right ways. They have a fun and bouncy energy that makes for a great live show. There is something childlike about the lyrics– philosophical, disillusioned but innocent, and strikingly honest. This music has heart and passion. It’s the kind of music that gets real enough to physically lift you out of a bad situation through its words and conveyed emotions. The guitar and bass parts are straightforward and stark, and the tone is satisfyingly crunchy. The drums are solid, and seem to lead the whole operation. The band’s aesthetic is consistent and charming. They have all the makings of a band that will go far, and I hope they do.

by Wanda Perkins

Lilac Daze: Sedated

Caustic Casanova: Breaks

breaks cover

Caustic Casanova released Breaks September 25th, 2015

Breaks is an album that has the sound of a timeless classic. Its heavy, rhythmically driven sound pays tribute to earlier doom metal and blues rock bands like Black Sabbath and Pentagram, but still comes across as authentic and original. The occasional spacey, atmospheric guitar sounds balance the cutting guitar and bass unison riffs, and the drums and bass are played together with the kind of precision that comes from years of musical dialogue. It is a well rounded sound, abrasive in all the right ways.

Listening to Breaks paints pictures of an epic adventure, fighting fire breathing dragons and carrying swords across dark mountains. The vocals are mixed back, sounding like cries through a dungeon wall. The three main characters take turns in the lead, each one vital to the sound. I have to say as a bit of a minimalist, I appreciate that there is nothing extra here. Every note and every beat is necessary, even with a bit of effected guitar. It is a bold statement in the face of the DC scene, which can become so cerebral and saturated with sounds of indie and dream pop that it loses a bit of the visceral, primal energy that is essential to good rock music. Caustic Casanova brings that energy in droves with the slow-heavy  Breaks, and they do it right.

You can listen and download the album via Retro Futurist here:  https://retrofuturist.bandcamp.com/album/caustic-casanova-breaks.

Catch their next show at Guido’s in Frederick, MD on November 28th, and look for more upcoming show dates here:  https://causticcasanova.bandcamp.com/album/breaks

by Wanda Perkins

 

Caustic Casanova: Breaks

Owl Like Creature: You’ll Find a Home

image

An Album Review

Owl Like Creature released You’ll Find a Home June 14, 2015.

You’ll Find a Home is thirteen dreams of the nighttime forest captured in a jar. Stringed instrument weave intricate scenes of leaf-like patterns, and conversations between birds in treetops. The melodies are winding trails. These songs are elegantly crafted by rhythmic acoustic guitar and expressive vocals that sometimes change from male to female, painting a lovely air of mystery.

Subtly beautiful, You’ll Find a Home has the tone of a sweet sad lullaby. The writing is tasteful, mellow and complex, and leaves plenty of musical breathing space. It reaches into some dark places, but keeps the sense of honesty and wonder. Bright and playful intricacies are scattered throughout in songs like “Broke the 6,” and “Uplift,” and You’ll Find a Home covers a good range of emotional territory.

There is something enchanting about this record, and it’s the kind you might notice something new about each time you listen. You can stream or download the album here:

https://owllikecreature.bandcamp.com

soundcloud.com/owllikecreature

By Wanda Perkins

Continue reading “Owl Like Creature: You’ll Find a Home”

Owl Like Creature: You’ll Find a Home

Proxy States: Demo

image

A Music Review

By Wanda Perkins

Proxy States’ Demo echoes the sounds of early alternative rock, with psychobilly guitar tones and a bouncy rhythm section. There is a fun energy in these tracks, contrasting lyrics that are sometimes dark and cynical. The songs are well structured, straightforward, and easy to follow.

The full range of influences is most apparent in the song “Frank,” starting out with a country blues feel, walking bass line and catchy vocal harmonies, then breaking down into a mellow groove. The whole thing infused with Keith Moon-like drum fills, keeping the energy high. The songs alternate between upbeat rockabilly punk, and dreamy alternative and classic rock feels. A song like “Change Your Mind” could easily become a drunken singalong, played to the right crowd.

The recordings have a live sound feel to them, and I would imagine this would be a really fun band to see live. You can listen to Proxy States Demo and find out about their upcoming shows around DC and VA here:

proxystates.com

Proxy States: Demo