Tweens “Be Mean” is a perfect mix of bratty and sweet

Tweens

Cincinatti’s Tweens got a sweet break when Shake It Records owner Jim Blaze recommended them to Kim Deal of The Breeders as an opening act, and their perfect bratty garage pop sound influenced by Bay Area punks ended up keeping them around for the whole tour. Bridget Battle has a clarity in both her voice and lyrics that makes their music so easy to listen to, and the rough garage production is a nice yin to her Juliana Hatfield-crossed-with-The-Donnas like vocals’ yang. This spring they will be touring with Waxahatchee and Murder City Devils, but I’m most pumped to check them out at SXSW. Listen to “Be Mean” below, love the last little push of awesomeness at the end.

Feb. 03 MOTR Pub – Cincinnati, OH*
Feb. 07 Union Transfer – Philadelphia, PA^
Feb. 08 Webster Hall New York, NY^
Feb. 09 The Fillmore – Silver Spring, MD^
Mar. 06 The End – Freakin’ Weekend V Nashville, TN
Mar. 07 Savannah Stopover – Savannah, GA
Mar. 10 LogOn Cafe – Beaumont, TX
Mar. 12-15 SXSW – Austin, TX
Mar. 17 Low Key Arts – Hot Springs, AR
Mar. 29-Jun. 1 Nelsonville Music Festival – Nelsonville, OH

* w/ Waxahatchee
^ w/ Murder City Devils

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Bisco Inferno a.k.a one of the cooler photos I’ve taken

Disco Biscuits at the Ogden

Disco Biscuits at the Ogden

I mistakenly brought my 50mm instead of my wide angle lens, was kicking myself and realized that I really was only getting one shot out of the night, so it better be a good one. Luckily, I was in the best seat in the house in the balcony’s front row, so I got the pleasure of lasers both above and below me. The white spotlights came down just at the right moment, and the print will be available for purchase soon on my website (I’ll update this post). Great weekend, great music, great friends, thanks, Disco Biscuits.

Hangar-51

Hangar-55

Hangar-58

My Westword review of the Ogden show:
http://blogs.westword.com/backbeat/2014/01/review_the-disco-biscuits_ogden-theatre_denver_january-24-2014.php

My Westword review for the 1st Bank show:
http://blogs.westword.com/backbeat/2014/01/review_disco-biscuits_1stbank-center_january-25-2014.php

Woods new single “Leaves Like Glass” has a Bob Dylan feel

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As New York’s psych folk rock act Woods‘ sound constantly evolves, it bears to note that it always evolves for the better. The new single “Leaves Like Glass” from their upcoming album With Light and with Love has a perfect, sunshine-y, jangly spring sound that will be perfectly timed with its April 15th release date. Dylan-esque vocal inflections mix with beautiful organ chords and tambourine to create a perfect pop gem that is at once joyful as well as melancholy and bittersweet; the music builds gracefully before reaching a blissful crescendo.

Bands to check out at SXSW p.1

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Since I am a detailed person and a bit of a nut, I enjoy listening to every single band that is being showcased at SXSW before I attend (if you’d like a link to the detailed spreadsheet, follow the blog and I will put up a post when it’s ready close to three weeks prior with calendar). I’ve picked out the best for those that just don’t have the time for this daunting task, and will continue to through the festival, got my flights and vrbo booked, just need new ankle boots. These are my favorite groups out of Group 2 (with Group 1 to come because I accidentally did it backwards).

The Apache Relay- Nashville- Americana folk rock with mano and harp and Edward Sharpeish melodies and singalongs

Black Pistol Fire- Austin- TX rock/garage/blues goodness

Bobby Jealousy- Austin- big, bright happy pop

Brass Bed- Lafayette- reverbed out indie rock

Bully- Nashville- Juliana Hatfield-esque indie rock

Crying Nut- S. Korea- loud, crashing melodic pop punk done right

The Growl- Perth, Australia- sexy garage rock

Hurray for the RiffRaff- New Orleans- gorgeous female vocals, zydeco folk

La Femme- France- plain hot stuff

The Parrots- Spain- garage rock

Quiet Company- Austin- upbeat indie pop

Rey Pila- Mexico City- Scissor Sisters-like disco pop

September Girls- Dublin- grungy but pretty garage pop

So So Glos- Brooklyn- power pop twangy guitar goods

Spires- Brooklyn- jangly psych pop

Streets of Laredo- Brooklyn- fast paced folk rock

Troker- Mexico- funk with some killer organ and horns

Stream the fantastic new Morgan Delt album today

morgandeltcover

The wait til January 28th has been long for those anticipating Morgan Delt‘s self titled full length album, and we are fortunate to finally get to hear it today streaming over at Hype Machine! Delt became an underground hero when his tape Psychic Death Hole made the rounds of Los Angeles and beyond. Using tape manipulation skills, he creates such a warped sound that sounds like Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band played underwater. So unique and really makes him stand apart from the plethora of psychedelic acts out there now. Listen today, I’ve had “Obstacle Eyes” on repeat for a month:

http://hypem.com/premiere/morgan%20delt

Ten bands that jam to check out this year

20140120-225704.jpg pho to by Russ Simon

First off, highly suggest Wings Over the Rockies museum at Lowry Air Base in Denver. Cool stuff, sweet retired military men telling you stories, and some really fun lighting to shoot.

I compiled a list of “jam bands to watch out for in 2014” for the Westword, and it was my best performing article yet. I figured many people were tired of listening to the same old stuff. Do not be deterred by the words jam bands, these are just straight up funky, rocking bands that get a little loose. Their music feel alive:

http://blogs.westword.com/backbeat/2014/01/ten_jam_bands_to_watch_in_2014.php

Westword article I wrote about the stigma of jam bands

jamband

After writing a band an apology for calling them a jam band in a recent article, (they said they didn’t care what I called them as long as people were listening phew!), I started to get annoyed that the term “jam band” had become such an offensive insult. I wrote an opinion piece for the Westword which quickly accumulated comments from jam band haters saying we stink, and because jam bands suck. There were also some fantastic, valid arguments, some prefer the song craftsmanship of singer/songwriters over extended jams, others don’t like the fusion of genres. But the majority had the knee jerk reaction I spoke of in the intro. Here’s a link to the Westword article, the comments are pretty funny:

http://blogs.westword.com/backbeat/2014/01/jam-band_stigma.php

If you go to the Westword’s main page, they put it front and center next to an article about where to buy weed in Denver: http://www.westword.com/

The Minneapolis City Pages music blog Gimme Noise liked it so much they published it as well. There too, jam bands are hated on:

http://blogs.citypages.com/gimmenoise/2014/01/why_do_jam_bands_have_such_a_stigma.php

The vitriol, it’s so amusing.