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Posts tagged "Radio K"

Track of the Day: CFCF

Posted on 10/30/2013

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CFCF - "Jump Out of the Train"

By: Jerod Greenisen

CFCF is the moniker of Michael Silver who has had a few projects since the last CFCF release in 2009. “Jump Out Of The Train” is available for download below and is the premiere for the full-length Outside. Cleverly crafted and released just one month after his Music For Objects EP, CFCF’s new album is much to be anticipated. Active Child is also featured on this track. 

"Jump Out Of The Train" -

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Track of the Day: Boardwalk

Posted on 10/29/2013

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Boardwalk - "High Water"

By Jerod Greenisen

Boardwalk is the collaboration between Mike Edge and Amber Quintero. The two made the album in response to an impromptu road trip they had gone on just before. The video below captures the altered state they felt after the trip. Download “High Water” as well. 

"High Water" -

 

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Track of the Day: Lissie

Posted on 10/28/2013

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Lissie - "The Habit"

“I gotta keep my identity and focus on what I can do,” goes the chorus of “Shameless,” the first single from Lissie’s new album, Back to Forever. “I don’t want to be famous, if I got to be shameless” she sings with equal parts strength and insecurity.

"The Habit"

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Weekly Release Spotlight: Yuppies

Posted on 10/28/2013

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Yuppies

Yuppies

Dull-Tools

By: Abbie Gobeli & Jerod Greenisen 

"Easy Nights" -

Yuppies have just arrived with the release of this self-titled debut, but their sound comes across as if they have been somewhere for far too long. Yuppies is one of the few albums that seems to be just as unpredictable as it is enjoyable and reckless. Alright, alright we’re going for a ride... whether you like it or not” sings lead vocalist and guitarist Jack Begely. It has only been two tracks and we’re off with Omaha natives, Yuppies. 

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Click the Polaroid to see Yuppies in Studio K

Founding members Jack Begley, Kevin Donahue and Noah Sterba came together in 2007 with mutual ambitions to perform live and overcome their teenage boredom.  After touring many Midwestern basements, they added bassist Jeff Sedrel to the line-up in 2010. They have recently signed to Parquet Courts’ Dull Tools record company, and this maybe the start of something great for Yuppies. Although they come across sounding already like seasoned veterans, which they are considering their relentless basement touring, Yuppies won’t get too serious.

You’re never kept feeling too safe as Yuppies love to create crashing guitar riffs only to be discarded seconds later for a soapbox rant and lo-fi rumble. Moving quickly Yuppies will jerk you around to appreciate their general abuse of a guitar’s limitations. “Worms” gets this feeling across right away, positioning Begely absentmindedly punching his way through a verse and then leaving him nearly wailing his last bit. “Easy Nights” is chaotic mess that is layered with Begley’s deep, monotonous voice which adds a simple storytelling element to the frantic environment that erupts in each track.

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“I Don’t Know” has the listener asking ‘where are we going’ more times than anyone cares to ask. This track resembles the best part of Yuppies; the breakneck speed at which we are taken through hairpin turns and post-punk noise fervors.   

Check out Yuppies live in Studio K this past week for video and more tracks from their debut album. 

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Track of the Day: Buffalo Sleeper

Posted on 10/25/2013

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Buffalo Sleeper - "Greenway"

By: Jerod Greenisen

Buffalo Sleeper is a four piece band from Minneapolis, MN. The band started in 2012 and claims influences from post-punk to mid century pop. Buffalo Sleeper was in for an in-studio not too long ago; click the Polaroid and check that out. The song "Greenway" is available for download below.   

"Greenway" -

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Track of the Day: Heavenly Beat

Posted on 10/24/2013

Heavenly Beat - "Complete"

By: Jerod Greenisen

“PROMINENCE” is the 2nd full length in as many years from John Pena. Using Primitive Radio God’s “Standing Outside A Broken Telephone Booth With Money In My Hand” as a sonic touch point John built a new album from the ground up utilizing chopped/sampled drum breaks and, for the first time, some non laptop based keyed instruments(piano, mellotron) along with H.B. main stays classical guitar and steel drums. - Captured Tracks

"Complete" -

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Track of the Day: Touche Amore

Posted on 10/23/2013

Touche Amore - "Harbor"

By: Jerod Greenisen

Another exciting release off of Deathwish this year. This is Touche Amore's third album, but they've taken some time since their second to tinker their sound. Instrumentally, they have found a new respect for restraint and affinity for the heavier side. However, frontman Jeremy Bohlm's aesthetic is not one to call for any genera debates. Download "Harbor" below. 

"Harbor" -

 

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Track of the Day: Megan Bonnell

Posted on 10/22/2013

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Megan Bonnell - "Hunt and Chase"

By: Jerod Greenisen

Megan Bonnell's debut release is one born out of grappling with dualisms. The song "Hunt and Chase" is a fine example of how Bonnell conveys this liminality. She does so by using her grounded, rustic, voice enveloped by the ethereal and surreal sound-- much in the same way dreams weave together the known world with the fantastic.

"Hunt and Chase" -

 

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Track of the Day: Blouse

Posted on 10/21/2013

Blouse - "Arrested"

By: Jerod Greenisen

Blouse have taken an interesting approach to their new album, Imperium. This track holds more organic substance than anything off of their well received self titled debut from 2011. Choosing to trade in their synthesizers and beat machines for cellos, violins, and other instruments that “don’t plug into a wall” the Portland natives have found a way to sound earthier while still in deep space. Check out “Arrested” available for download below, and the video from their concert featuring the new album. 

"Arrested" -

 
 

 

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Weekly Release Spotlight: Lizzo

Posted on 10/21/2013

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Lizzo

Lizzobangers

Totally Gross National Product

By: Sam Sacks

"Batches and Cookies" -

Over the years, the Twin Cities area has proved itself to be the hub of the most dynamic progressive hip-hop and rap scene. Its eclectic music culture is what originally attracted Houston native, Lizzo, to relocate here. After receiving much positive attention from her collaboration in Lizzo and The Larva Ink, an electro funk duo, followed by her enlistment in female dominated rap trio, The Chalice, Lizzo quickly climbed the ranks of the alternative rap circuit. Inspired by the beats of Doomtree’s mastermind producer, Lazerbeak, Lizzo began working with him on Lizzobangers


Lizzobangers demands an attentive listen; the only thing more complex than the instrumentation on this album maybe Lizzo’s stream of pop-culture references throughout. Following her through a wide range in tempo and seriousness amongst the thirteen tracks is thoroughly enjoyable.  “W.E.R.K. Pt. II” is fast-paced and powerfully worded, showing off the speedy rapping prowess of Lizzo. Alternatively, the track “Go” is a much slower piece with an eerily beautiful chord progression, showcasing Lizzo’s soulful singing voice. That song could be Lazerbeak’s signature as it was layered ever so carefully, similar to the sound of a few Doomtree related records of past. 

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The single from Lizzobangers, “Batches & Cookies”, is perfectly catchy, having a minimal drum kit beat and repetitive whistling pattern to back up Lizzo. One of the most amazing parts about this song is the first verse. Not only does Lizzo parade her untouchable flow, but she also begins the verse very low in her register and climbs higher and higher in pitch until her voice squeaks at the last word. Additionally, music video for this track is fantastic; I have found myself watching it on repeat. It features Twin Cities hotspots lovingly as Lizzo and Sophia Eris (The Chalice) butter up locals at Glamdoll Donuts and prance around at a pride rally at the State Capitol.

 

 

The track, “Faded” starts powerfully after a hazy thirty-second intro with the familiar horn sounds of Lazerbeak, sounding similar to Doomtree’s, P.O.S. The range of instrumental sounds also appears on, “Be Still”, with a jazzy flute and bongos. With the creative beats from Lazerbeak, Lizzo was able to extract some very creative lyrics from the depths of her mind: “Takin’ a chill pill before I whip my sword out like Uma in Kill Bill” she raps in the track, “Be Still”. Another pop-culture reference from a movie appears in the track, “T-Baby” as Lizzo spits, “In retrospect, remember when the time when I was derelict, more like derelicte I made homeless chiq,” referring to the 2001 comedy, Zoolander. Aside from the clever pop-culture bits in her lyrics, Lizzo does a powerful job of showing the listener the real pieces of her life. On the captivating and emotional track, “Hot Dish”, Lizzo raps, “I lost my pops, man I wish he was alive, I can’t let go of the past, he never heard me rap, so I carry his spirit on my back in Minneap”, proving that she has no fears when it comes to lyrical content.

Encompassing pretty much everything it takes to be a successful musician, this definitely won’t be the last of Lizzo. Her “it factor” will surely take her very far, especially as she flourishes in the vibrant Twin Cities hip hop scene. Lizzo’s first album is an indicator of this, as it draws from the R&B and gospels sounds of her past while also being extremely innovative, making way for the future of her sound. Aside from her addition to the new female hip-hop group project, " href="http://www.grrrlprty.com/">GRRRL PRTY, she has recently been touring with " href="http://harmarsuperstar.com/">Har Mar Superstar. Check her out at her CD Release Show at the Triple Rock Social Club in December. 

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Track of the Day: The Preatures

Posted on 10/17/2013

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The Preatures - "Is This How You Feel"

Right off of the The Preatures' new album is this wonderfully catchy track, "Is This How You Feel?". This song invokes the best of 70s era Stevie Nicks and that alternative country steel twang. Check out the music video below, and download the track for free!

"Is This How You Feel" -

 

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Track of the Day: The Crookes

Posted on 10/16/2013

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The Crookes - "Afterglow"

By: Jerod Greenisen

English rockers The Crookes bring it to you straight. Their latest album is reminiscent of an earlier more honest time during rock 'n' roll. Squalling riffs and easy melodies will get you moving. Check out The Crooks' song "Afterglow" available for download below.

"Afterglow" -

 

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Track of the Day: Augustines

Posted on 10/15/2013

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Augustines - "Cruel City"

By Jerod Greenisen

"Cruel City" is the first single from Augustines, formally We Are Augustines, look for their album in January. This track bears the catchy hooks of the Seattle indie-rock scene along with a weighted Brooklyn tone, which makes sense considering the band just recently relocated. Download it for free below. 

"Cruel City" -

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Weekly Release Spotlight: Gambles

Posted on 10/14/2013

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Gambles

Trust

Self-released

By Abbie Gobeli

"Angel" -

Layers of instrumentation, electronics, and vast amounts of production is a current trend that increasingly coats the voice and lyricism. Sometimes you need musical simplicity to resonate with the troubles that burden your soul. Yearning vocals and an acoustic guitar is all that Matthew Daniel Siskin needed to begin writing songs as Gambles in August 2012 to let unsaid thoughts of the past few years surface. Siskin recently released his debut effort Trust via his Secretly Canadian imprint, GMBLS.

“Was it a dip in the ocean or a dive from your life? (I’d still like to know)” Gambles has secrets he wants to share but you need to be the decoder. His tumblr Gmbls.com features a messy dada collage of cryptic texts reflecting his lyricism style. Each track is shaped to be ambiguous in its language allowing you to fill in the blanks with your own stories.


Siskin’s voice seems weary but persistently strong as it crackles slowly releasing a heavy sadness. “Angel” seems to be the exception to the gloomy folk that saturates the record and seems to be a celebration of a close one. Variances of loss are explored throughout: “So I Cry Out” tries to make sense of lost time and “Safe Side” sends regards to the search for an identity and its consequences

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Gambles will be in Minneapolis at the 7th Street Entry  with Those Darlins and live in-studio on Radio K at approximately at 5 pm CST on October 25th.

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Track of the Day: Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin

Posted on 10/14/2013

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Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin - "Nightwater Girlfriend"

By Jerod Greenisen

Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin are a quirky bunch from Missouri who lay down some incredibly catchy hooks. Spin magazine dubbed them the band “that could succeed The Shins as the band that changed your life”. So give ‘em a shot, and download the track below.

"Nightwater Girlfriend" -

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Track of the Day: The Chambermaids

Posted on 10/11/2013

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The Chambermaids - "Electric Sky"

By: Jerod Greenisen

Local music! The Chambermaids just played a great LP release show at The Turf Club lastnight, listen to it in full here. Stay tuned to Radio K for more from The Chambermaids who were just in Studio K, we'll have video and tracks from their session with us.  

"Electric Sky" -

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Track of the Day: Empra

Posted on 10/10/2013

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Empra - "Strange Condition"

Check out "Strange Condition" by Empra. These Aussie rockers  just got done with an extensive tour, and are now making even bigger plans.  Dowload "Strange Conditions" and be sure to watch their amazing music video out that features some Balinese shadow-puppetry. 

"Strange Condion" -

 

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Radio K Premiere: Twinsmith

Posted on 10/9/2013

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Twinsmith

"Honestly"

Saddle Creek

"Honestly" is the first studio track featuring the band in its permanent form, with Bill Sharp on bass and Oliver Morgan on drums. 

Just a few months removed from their eponymous debut album, Twinsmith is back with Honestly, the band’s new 7” (available on tour and out November 19th on Saddle Creek). Though Jordan Smith (vocals/guitar) and Matt Regner (guitar/keys) have been playing together since 2007, only recently did they form Twinsmith. "Honestly" is the first studio track featuring the band in its permanent form, with Bill Sharp on bass and Oliver Morgan on drums. 

Recorded and produced by Matt Carroll and J.J. Idt at Omaha’s Little Machine Studio, “Honestly” – with its fuzzed-out guitars reminiscent of Blue Album-era Weezer – shows off the evolution of a band still in its infancy. The 7’’ also re-releases two tracks off their debut album, with “1' 30”" and “Big Deal” both showing a range of influences on the band’s recent emergence. Omaha's Twinsmith is finding their new sound both geographically and sonically situated between the clever complexity of New York bands like The Walkmen and The Strokes and the shimmery West Coast ease characterized by the recent surf-pop revival. They will be doing a fall tour in support of the new 7’’ starting Oct. 25th.

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Twinsmith Tour Dates

Thu-Oct-24, Omaha, NE, O'Leavers

Fri-Oct-25, Northfield, MN, The Cave

Sat-Oct-26, Minneapolis, MN, Cause

Sun-Oct-27, Cedar Falls, IA, The Hub

Mon-Oct-28, Fairfield, IA, Beauty Shop

Tue-Oct-29, Columbia, MO, Blue Fugue

Wed-Oct-30, St. Louis, MO, Foam

Fri-Nov-01, Hot Springs, AR, Maxine's

Sat-Nov-02, Austin, TX, Hotel Vegas

Sun-Nov-03, Tulsa, OK, Soundpony

Tue-Nov-05, Kansas City, MO, Record Bar

Wed-Nov-06, Lincoln, NE, Vega

Tags: Twinsmith Saddle Creek radio k honestly premiere

Track of the Day: Hunters

Posted on 10/9/2013

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Hunters - "Seizure"

by: Jerod Greenisen

Hunters have had a few interesting blips recently. Most recently they have included a music video featuring synchronized swimmers for the song "Seizure", available for download. When it comes to a band that will curb stomp you with a smile, one can be only so pleased.  

"Seizure" -

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Track of the Day: Heaven's Gate

Posted on 10/8/2013

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Heaven's Gate - "Drone"

by: Jerod Greenisen

This is a new track from those behind Sweet Bulbs; now with a few more member addtions they are called Heaven's Gate. They bring you their self-described genera of "powergaze". Check out "Drone" available for free download below. 

"Drone" -

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Track of the Day: The Darcys

Posted on 10/7/2013

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The Darcys - "The River"

By: Jerod Greenisen

Toronto art-rockers, The Darcys, are just killing it on this new single. Check out "The River" available for download below. This is their third album and final installment in the conceptual trilogy. Recently they have released a number of short films to accompany their songs; you can watch one of them below. 

"The River"

 

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Weekly Release Spotlight: Frankie Rose

Posted on 10/7/2013

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Frankie Rose

Herein Wild

Fat Possum 

By: Ryan Glenn

Frankie Rose is back and building on their strong foundation of synth heavy dream-pop, the  crew takes us in a whole different direction.

"Into Blue" -

Photo credits: Ebru Yildez

Frankie Rose bursts onto the scene last year with their amazing release, Interstellar, and continues on their cosmic travels with this years Herein Wild.  Although the variables have been tweaked a bit, the formula is still basically the same.  By building on their strong foundation of synth heavy dream-pop, the Frankie Rose crew takes us in a whole different direction.

 

While Interstellar was steeped heavily in synth filled dream-pop, Herein Wild adds a bit more of an organic element to the sound of Frankie Rose.  Gone are the joyous and upbeat sounds of “Interstellar” and “Daylight Sky”.  It may be the harshest change between the two albums, but it certainly doesn’t take away from the strengths of Herein Wild.  Frankie Rose is often related to the cosmic plain (perhaps perpetuated by naming an album Interstellar) and while their debut was all about the fun of whipping through space at whiz-bang progress, the sophomore effort reminds us how lonely and desolate it can be while doing so.  Most invoking of this tone is the track “Cliffs as High”, a stark and quiet single in comparison to anything else released by the band.  It gives an idea of what Frankie Rose could do without the dream-pop formula they used so well.  The string arrangement is a nice addition to the familiar sounds. The track also feels like the first song group leader Frankie worked totally on her own.  It is mostly Frankie on her own with a minimalistic accompaniment.  The song calls upon influences of Bjork, and could be looked at as a further progression of where they are going as a group.  

 

For fans of Interstellar there is still plenty of enjoyment to be had here listening to the new collection of songs.  Don’t be worried about the change in pace on the record, it is still a wonderfully crafted album that takes away the sense of exploration and opts to instead take a moment for self-reflection.  As with “Cliffs as High” the record often feels like Frankie alone drifting listlessly.  Also this time around instead of singing of blazing across the interstellar highway, the travel is a little slower to take some time for reflection.  As on “Sorrow” Frankie brings up plenty of things that would be considered full of sorrow.  However, instead of facings these things head on with action, Frankie asks “Why? Don’t ask me why.”  It is not an uncaring or callous answer, rather a blunt statement of what could be wrong.  There is a lot of sorrow everywhere, yet we rarely know why.  While Interstellar was the innocence of birth, youth, and exploration, Herein Wild is the realization of adulthood and the all encompassing lifestyle and questions that come along with that.  It is certainly a grown up and darker record, but by no means it is worth skipping out of fear of growing up. 

 

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Track of the Day: The Cloak Ox

Posted on 10/4/2013

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The Cloak Ox - "Pigeon Lung"

Local music on Radio K! Check out one of our favorites, The Cloak Ox, they are in the business of creating real moments in this life. If you overlook them, that’s on you. "Pigeon Lung" is available for free download below. Make Radio K happen by donating today!

"Pigeon Lung" -

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Track of the Day: Love Inks

Posted on 10/3/2013

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Love Inks - "Outta Sight"

Love Inks are kickin' it with a new album. Check out the track "Outta Sight" available for free download below. You won't be disappointed with the production quality on this synth-pop trio's new effort. Don't forget, there is a video below; you could watch it. Radio K only happens because you make it happen, become a member today!

"Outta Sight" -

 

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Track of the Day: Little Daylight

Posted on 10/2/2013

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Little Daylight  "Glitter & Gold"

Brooklyn based trio, Little Daylight, are one of the many better acts of this year. Check out "Glitter and Gold" a glimmering, sparkling, track off of their new album. This track has also been remixed by Charli XCX, Twin iDol, Kulkid, and Pacific Air. Download for free below, and check out that music video.

 

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Track of the Day: Tim Kasher

Posted on 10/1/2013

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Tim Kasher - "Truly Freaking Out"

Tim Kasher is truly freaking out, really though, look at him; he's covered in mud (we hope that's mud). Don't believe us, download the track for free below. Also! It's Power Surge people! Become a member today

"Truly Freaking Out" -

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Weekly Release Spotlight: King Krule

Posted on 9/30/2013

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King Krule

6 Feet Beneath the Moon

XL / True Panther

By: Samantha Sacks

"Border Line" -

I first saw King Krule perform at Pitchfork Music Festival in 2012. He was playing on the Blue Stage as people began trickling into the shaded area. At this point, he was just beginning to receive much recognition for his blues-meets-soul sound and an impressively deep voice. He was barely 17 years old, but Archy Marshall’s performance had lured in many only after a few songs. Many might have been lured in, I know I was, by his exceptional ability to communicate confounding emotional maturity. Earlier that year I remember returning to his November self-titled EP over and over again.

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6 Feet Beneath the Moon is Marshall’s first studio LP, and it’s apparent the young musician is no amateur. The album is extremely versatile, as it encompasses aspects of blues, jazz, rap, hip-hop, along with electronic elements, seamlessly throughout. King Krule is also doing more of what lured us to him the first place. King Krule was most noteworthy for his take on blues and soul, but this album definitely suggests that there’s a lot more to his craft. In tracks like, “Neptune Estate,” hip-hop drumbeats become prominent as Archy does a melodic rap. Not unlike some of the more popular hip-hop and rap albums of late an ensemble of horns are featured giving this track that jazz edge that he became so well known for. 6 Feet Below the Moon seems to be an expansion, a reach for something better, and close to something greater.

 

The album begins with the track, “Easy Easy” which is more reminiscent of his first EP and earlier work. The track is simple yet powerful as it opens with just Marshall’s voice and a repeating bass line. With lyrics like, “Cause if you going through hell, we just keep going,” it only becomes clearer how emotional the song is.

 

“Has This Hit?” is a more jazz-influenced track with eerie melodies and echo-y guitar effects. Reverbed vocals come in and out making the eerie mood more prominent, yet ethereal. Electronic elements become more prevalent in the track “Foreign 2”. Synths and fast drumbeats make this track a lot more fast paced before it fades out. 

 

The eeriness continues through the album in the form of layered, effected vocals and melodies that, at times, seem slightly conflicting. One could even describe it as darkwave. The songs also seem to alternate in speed; slower, more eerie bits are followed by fast-paced rhythms, horns, and angrier lyrics. The album shares its extreme moments openly and without restraint much like a teenager going through mood swings. However, it is the finesse by which the listener is brought through motif after motif, that makes 6 Feet Beneath the Moon more a coming of age- less of a tantrum. The last track, “Bathed In Grey,” fades in as it concludes the darker mood of the album. The jazzy piano compliments the high-hat of the hip-hop drumbeat. The track slowly fades out as the jazzy piano melody continues into the expanse. 

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Tags: radio k kuom weekly release spotlight king krule 6 feet beneath the moon kuom university of Minnesota review free download

Track of the Day: Psapp

Posted on 9/30/2013

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Psapp - "Everything Belongs to the Sun"

by Jerod Greenisen

Psapp are back from a four year hiatus with a beastly new single. Check out "Everything Belongs to the Sun" available for download below. This track was written by the lead singer's daughter and features an innocence found only where the wild things are. 

"Everything Belongs to the Sun" -

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Track of the Day: Blue Ruin

Posted on 9/27/2013

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Blue Ruin - "Strung Out"

Blue Ruin featuring frontman and Radio K alumn, Zack McCormick- kicking off Radio K's Power Surge. Keep local bands like Blue Ruin coming into Studio K with a small donation! Also, we're always here for you- download "Strung Out" for free below. 

"Strung Out" -

 

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Track of the Day: Grooms

Posted on 9/25/2013

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Grooms - "I Think We're Alone Now"

Earlier in the summer, in an article on SPIN, it was revealed that Grooms founder Travis Johnson suffers from a sensitive case of OCD called scrupulosity. After years of medication, Johnson has chosen a different route and “I Think We’re Alone Now” seems to be the reward of the struggle. Download it now, for free, below.

"I Think We're Alone Now" -

 

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Track of the Day: Those Darlins

Posted on 9/25/2013

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Those Darlins - "In The Wilderness"

Check out this new track from Those Darlins! With some new tricks up their sleeve making us wonder what exactly they are up to. "In the Wilderness" features some snotty winces and some brattitude. It's available for free download below.

"In the Wilderness" -

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Track of the Day: Crystal Stilts

Posted on 9/24/2013

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Cyrstal Stilts - "Star Crawl"

Brooklyn based postpunkers Crystal Stilts just released their album Nature Noir on sacred bones. Fuzzy and somewhat disoriented this track is loaded and features a welcome string addition. Check out “Star Crawl” for download below, and be sure to watch the ‘mvsk video’ below.

"Star Crawl" -

 

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Weekly Release Spotlight: Holograms

Posted on 9/23/2013

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Holograms

forever

Captured Tracks

By: Abbie Gobeli

"Flesh and Bone" -

“Energy, honesty, heart, and spirit” is what comprises “Forever” according to Holograms. “Forever,” their second releases emerged after a tumultuous year and half consisting of touring, losing their jobs, losing some sanity, and returning to their home in Sweden.  Andreas Lagerstrom, and Anton Strandberg have fallen on tough times include large debt but they were determined to work hard to make their new record happen.

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“A Sacred State” introduces you to the increasing intensity that builds throughout the record.  The duo wanted to capture the feeling of playing in a church to grip a larger sound.  The single, “Flesh and Bone” quickly follows tying in with the wrath that is depicting in the cover art, courtesy of French painter, William Bouguereau’s “Dante and Virgil in Hell (1850)”.

 

Other mythical stories are incorporated in the track, “Attestupa” which means “a place to strike down your kin.”  It is a Norweigan myth where an elder of a family will jump off of a cliff if they are unable to support themselves due to sickness or old age.  They do this because they don’t want to burden their family to take care of them.

Despite the dark themes that permeate “Forever”, Holograms attacks the darkness by finding a light at the end of the tunnel with tracks including, “Meditations”. Holograms will be performing in Minneapolis on December 11th at the 7th Street Ent

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CLICK TO PURCHASE

Tracklist

  1. A Sacred State

  2. Flesh and Bone

  3. Meditations

  4. Attestupa

  5. Luminous

  6. Rush

  7. Wolves

  8. Laughter Breaks the Silece

  9. A Blaze on the Hillside 

  10. Lay Us Down

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Track of the Day: Ruby Pins Chameleon

Posted on 9/23/2013

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"Chameleon" -

Ruby Pins - "Chameleon"

"No day is a good day to die" sings Lillian Marling on "Chameleon". The Track of the Day is from Ruby Pins' self titled album inspired by the loss of the singer's boyfriend to cancer. She has also decribed Ruby Pins as great music for a haunted fun-house. This track if available for download below. 

 

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Track of the Day: The Blind Shake

Posted on 9/20/2013

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The Blind Shake - "Anaerobic"

Minnesota locals share the track "Anaerobic".They were just on Off The Record and really shoke up our studio. Check it out!

"Anaerobic" -

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Track of the Day: Johnathan Rice

Posted on 9/19/2013

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"Nowhere At the Speed of Light" -

Johnathan Rice - "Nowhere At the Speed of Light"

Third album from this singer-songwriter. Check out this beautiful track off of Good Graces from SQE records. It would be a sin not to mention the awesome talent that went into collaborating with Rice on Good Graces; The Watson Twins, Jason Doeset, Jenny Lewis, Z Berg, Dawes bassist Wiley Gebler!

 

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Track of the Day: Aisha Burns

Posted on 9/18/2013

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Aisha Burns - "Destroyer"

Destroyer is a gorgeously crafted track from Aisha Burns' new record Life in the Midwater. Destroyer provides a snapshot of the rough stuff, but with a delicate sensitivity and wisdom beyond her years.

"Destroyer" -

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Track of the Day: Hookworms

Posted on 9/17/2013

"In Our Time" -

Hookworms - "In Our Time"

Get ready for some low, down and heavy jams. Today's track is from Hookworms who recently released their album, Pearl Mystics. Lead singer Matt Johnson explains that "In Our Time" is about the end of his last relationship and the hill he would bike up everyday with the added emotional weight. "In Our Time" is available for free download below. 

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Track of the Day: Forest Fire

Posted on 9/16/2013

"Alone With The Wires" -

Forest Fire - "Alone With The Wires"

"Alone With The Wires" from Forest Fire's upcoming album, Screens, has premiered on Stereogum. According to writer Claire Lobenfeld, the track "maintains the same hot and cold vibes of “Waiting In The Night” except here, the synths are what give the song its chill."

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Weekly Release Spotlight: Volcano Choir

Posted on 9/16/2013

"Comrade" -

Volcano Choir

Repave

Jagjaguwar

By Jared Hemming

 

The most powerful element of Repave is it’s turbulence, lack of repetitive order, and surprising swells.

With Volcano Choir’s second album, Repave, songwriter and vocalist Justin Vernon accomplishes the rare feat of quality rising above quantity.  No short order considering that, from the time the creative force behind Bon Iver splashed across endless blogs with For Emma, Forever Ago in 2008, the barrage of content that’s arrived since includes: a second album (and Grammy award) for Bon Iver, collaborations with Kanye West, Anaïs Mitchell, Gayngs, The Shouting Matches, The Eau Claire Memorial Jazz I Ensemble, a hilarious erotic series, and, of course, Volcano Choir’s debut: Unmap.

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For this sophomore effort as Volcano Choir, Vernon once again calls pals (and fellow Wisconsinites) Collections of Colonies of Bees for another round. This time to record a soulful batch of tunes soaked in Vernon’s rich baritone. Though artists in similar alt-folk/indie rock molds may have attempted something more bona fide to the genera; Volcano Choir have clearly avoided some acoustic-guitar swells, strained vocals, and winding legatos that have defined other artists this year. Instead, they opt for varied and expansive sound-scapes and occasional surprises to include both acoustic and jarring electric guitars, swirls and blips of synthesizer and electric piano, an ocean-bottom bass and deep waves of splashing, powerful percussion. The most powerful element of Repave is it’s turbulence, lack of repetitive order, and surprising swells. 

Though at times clarity can be difficult to discern from complicated lyricism and the spontaneity of composition, Repave positions Vernon on the horizon of a mature voyage still propelled by urgency and mystery. Take, for example, in “Acetate,” when he sings “you found me on the beach, I was resting there for weeks/I will never cauterize, I will never fortify/I wonder if I’ve recovered now.” Recording double-tracked vocals, Vernon sings these words as though he is in an argument with himself, having just realized a pain and hoping he’s finally awoken from it.

 

Aside from “Acetate,” highlights from Repave include the album-opener “Tiderays,” the glossy, synth-tinged “Comrades,” and the brooding, reflective “Byegone,” in which Vernon looks back on a lively youth as a professional musician on the road. Told through stunning imagery and a tone that attempts to find definition somewhere within the confusing distortion that reminiscence and nostalgia provide. When he cries “hold keys to a Cuban flight you won’t ever ride/…Set sail!,” Vernon can’t decide if he feels removed from his life, defined in the public eye, or if he chooses to embrace the success he’s had. Either way, the rewards from Vernon’s unrelenting productivity extend into Repave; where the awe of nature and the inner conflict of introspection can complement each other to make something beautiful.

Volcano Choir will be playing in Minneapolis on Friday, October 18th, at the First Avenue Mainroom.

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Tags: weekly release spotlight radio k kuom university of minnesota free download streaming volcano choir repave review Jared Hemming

Track of the Day: Persian Leaps

Posted on 9/13/2013

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"Silent Treatment" -

Persian Leaps - "Silent Treatment"

Off the Record had Persian Leaps in Studio K last week and it was pretty awesome. Persian Leaps are a noise pop band with a sound that will get you and your dad going. Check out the track "Silent Treatment" available for free download below.

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Track of the Day: Meursault

Posted on 9/12/2013

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"Crank Resolutions" -

Meursault - "Crank Resolutions"

Throwback Thursdays! Meursault is a Scottish electric folk band that released the album All the Creatures Will Make Merry back in 2010. The track "Crank Resolutions" is a deeply tortured cut off that record featuring some of the most melodic pitter-pattering rhythms and electronic instrumentation and a gnarled fuzz of guitar. It's available for free download and be sure to check out the live performance from BBC Radio.

 

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Track of the Day: Destruction Unit

Posted on 9/11/2013

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"The World On Drugs" -

Destruction Unit - "The World on Drugs"

Destruction Unit are a band from Arizona. Destruction Unit play loud rock music. Destruction Unit have recorded a long playing record. Destruction Unit think you should buy it. It is morphine boogie for the 21st century noise addict. A spiritual odyssey of sadomasochistic self-loathing with songs about love and freedom.

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Track of the Day: Ski Lodge

Posted on 9/10/2013

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Ski Lodge - "Just To Be Like You"

The one exception is the lead single "Just To Be Like You," which was recorded with the full band in Upstate New York using producer Kevin McMahon (Walkmen, Real Estate). Prefix Mag called the track "sugary sweet pop," while Pitchfork warned its readers not to "be deceived by the energetic, hopscotching riff" before lauding the single's dark depths. The song and its accompanying video of cult imagery are an exploration of contrast that fits in perfectly with both the album and Ski Lodge as a whole: deeply affecting and unmistakably danceable.

"Just To Be Like You" -

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Track of the Day: Ariel Pink & Jorge Elbrecht

Posted on 9/9/2013

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Ariel Pink and Jorge Elbrecht - "Hang on to Life"

Ariel Pink's new inspiration is dogs. Check out the video below for the song "Hold on to Life" which is a collaboration with Jorge Elbrecht of Violens/Lansing Dreiden. This song is also available for free download and is streaming below, but be sure not to play this too loud at the dog-run; Pink has some interesting metaphors on this one. 

"Hold on to Life" -

 

 

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Track of the Day: Step Rockets

Posted on 9/6/2013

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Step Rockets - "Kisser"

Step Rockets are Off The Record's most recent local spotlight. Stay tuned to Radio K for video from their In-Studio. Step Rockets is an indie rock band exploring psychedelia, modern hooks, and worldly grooves. Check out their track "Kisser" for free download below. 

"Kisser" -

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Track of the Day: Jon Hopkins (FT Purity Ring)

Posted on 9/5/2013

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"Breath This Air" (FT Purity Ring)

Jon Hopkins - "Breath This Air" (FT Purity Ring)

Jon Hopkins just released an amazing album this summer, and now we have a remix with one of our favorites- Purity Ring. Lofty, yet sharp, whipping, and spontaneous instrumentation joined with Megan James' (Purity Ring) innocent and whimsical charm; "Breathe This Air" is a much appreciated addition to the year. This track is streaming below. Check out more from Purity Ring & Jon Hopkins collaborative relationship below as well.

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Track of the Day: Jonathan Rado

Posted on 9/4/2013

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"Faces" -

Jonathan Rado - "Faces"

Jonathan Rado is a songwriter, a staid performer, an evangelical producer – the 23-year-old California native’s solo project, fashioned on brief sabbatical from his main project, Foxygen, is a deliciously self-conscious piece of esoteric apocrypha. Like character games, or symphonies of nonsense imitation-language, his records are cathartic, designed only to liberate the body and break the awkwardness of obsessive, existential silence. 

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Track of the Day: Maya Jane Coles (ft. Tricky)

Posted on 9/3/2013

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"Wait For You" (Ft. Tricky) -

Maya Jane Coles - "Wait For You" (feat. Tricky)

Coles has been producing since the age of 15, and has won several awards the past few years to show for it. She has also gained some real notoriety amongst her peers, other UK DJs like Tricky have all given her mad props. You can listen to Maya Jane Coles' track "Wait For You" (feat. Tricky), off of her debut album, right below. 

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Track of the Day: Porcelain Raft

Posted on 9/2/2013

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"Cluster" -

Porcelain Rift - "Cluster"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

"In a way, growing up in Italy, then living for 12 years in London, and now two and a half years in New York, made me realize that I have some dear friends I rarely see," explains Remiddi. "I was touring almost non-stop for eight months and I started having these imaginary conversations in my head with people I wanted to communicate with, but for one reason or another it couldn't happen. This is where the album title came from: the idea of a signal that says the line is off." - Mauro Remiddi. He will be stopping by Minneapolis to play a show at the Triple Rock on Sept. 19th. 

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Weekly Release Spotlight: Washed Out

Posted on 9/2/2013

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"The Great Escape" -

Washed Out

Paracosm

Sub Pop

Written By: Alex Simpson


While many have moved on to the latest and greatest chill-wave imitators, Greene has underwent much maturation (for the better), and his latest full-length Paracosm is evidence of that.  

Fame came almost instantly for electronic producer Ernest Greene (Washed Out).  His lo-fi debut Life of Leisure earned him a record deal with Sub Pop and regular play at hipster retail chains across the planet, not to mention "Feel It All Around" was featured in the opening credits of the quirky hit series Portlandia. But in the last four years, while many have moved on to the latest and greatest chill-wave imatators, Green has underwent much maturation (for the better), and his latest full length Paracosm is evidence of that.

One of the biggest surprises on Washed Out's sprawling sophomore full-length is the use of more live instrumentation.  Paracosm flaunts over four dozen instruments, more than you'll hear on the last two Washed Out records combined.  You may not be able to pick them out individually, but some of the dreamiest tones on the record come from old keyboards such as the Mellotron and Optigan. It's certainly worth mentioning that Greene and producer Ben Allen (Animal Collective, Deerhunter, M.I.A.) managed to make these obscurities work with harps, bird noises, country samples, and many other interesting choices. 

Additionaly, Greene continues to blur his words on this record, and it's still working in his favor.  In most instances, the listener demands the right to sing along, but Greene's lack of enunciation allows his vocal to float over the top of beats like some obscure synthesizer.  It also allows the listener to "feel" his songs rather than dissect their parts or overall meaning. That implied "feeling" might be the only thing that is intrisically chill-wave, or at least for Greene it is- as we see his sound mature.

 

Paracosm is full of highlights -- "It All Feels Right", "Don't Give Up" and "Great Escape" are all fine examples. However Paracosm seems to be more of a whole work rather than a collection of singles. One should consider giving the whole record many complete spins.  The lack of a smash single makes Paracosm a more cohesive, rewarding listening experience.  Greene also keeps the listener within his little world, or paracosm.  By making use of natural sound- like birds chirping and wind- in "Entrance" and "Falling Back" and the crowd noise in "It All Feels Right" and "Don't Give Up" adds to the album's overall awareness of setting.

In regards to past Washed Out albums:  just because you can't feel it all around doesn't mean you can't feel it.  Paracosm is far from Life of Leisure or even Within and Without, but it's the difference that makes it interesting and fun to listen to. It's the reflection of a matured musician who is very comfortable in his place, and that always makes for a strong album.   

Washed Out will be visiting Minneapolis, September 12th to play a show at the First Avenue Mainroom you can buy tickets here; more tour dates available below. Check out "Great Escape" streaming and available for free download at the top of this review. 

Tour Dates


  September 2, 2013 
Club 9one9, Victoria BC
  September 3, 2013 
Fortune Sound Club, Vancouver Canada
  September 5, 2013 
W.O.W. Hall, Eugene OR
  September 6, 2013 
Mississippi Studios, Portland OR
  September 8, 2013 
Cesar Chavez Park, Sacramento CA
Launch Music Festival!
  September 10, 2013 
Fox Theater (CO), Boulder CO
  September 12, 2013 
First Avenue, Minneapolis MN
  September 13, 2013 
Metro, Chicago IL
  September 15, 2013 
Opera House (ON), Toronto Ontario
  September 16, 2013 
Corona Theatre, Montreal Canada
  September 18, 2013 
Terminal Five, New York City NY
  September 19, 2013 
Union Transfer, Philadelphia PA
  September 20, 2013 
Wilbur Theater, Boston MA
  September 21, 2013 
Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia MD
Virgin Mobile Freefest
All Ages!
  September 23, 2013 
Cats Cradle, Carrboro NC
  September 24, 2013 
Georgia Theatre, Athens GA

Track List

  1. Enterance

  2. It All Feels Right

  3. Don’t Give Up

  4. Weightless

  5. All I Know

  6. Great Escape

  7. Paracosm

  8. Falling Back

  9. All Over Now

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click album to purchase

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Track of the Day: Dessa

Posted on 8/30/2013

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Dessa - "Call Off Your Ghost"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

"Call Off Your Ghost" is a brand new track from Dessa's solo release. Studio K hosted Dessa last Friday when she came in to show OTR this new album, Parts of Speech. Click the polaroid below to checkout live performances, tracks for download, and more from Studio K. Also a cut off Parts of Speech is available for streaming and download. 

"Call Off Your Ghost" (Live in Studio K) -

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Track of the Day: Dodos

Posted on 8/28/2013

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Dodos - "Confidence"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

When it came time for The Dodos to begin writing their fifth LP, Carrier, singer/guitarist Meric Long wanted to start over. The uncertainty of the band's trajectory as well as the passing of guitarist Chris Reimer brought about a reassessment of things within the band, and in particular Long's songwriting. In need of a different vantage point, Long began writing words before music for the first time, enveloping himself in silence rather than sound. When it came time to set these lyrics to music, Long started writing with only his electric guitar in hand -- another first. "Confidence" is available for stream and download below.

"Confidence" -

 

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Track of the Day: Iska Dhaaf

Posted on 8/28/2013

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Iska Dhaaf - "All the Kids"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

The band's name translates from Somali to English roughly as, 'let it go'. Post-punk/dream-punk duo has a new single out that is generating some buzz already, despite only being released  one month ago. "All the Kids" is a track that is reminiscent of those days of youth and the lingering toils of accepting one's age. Download it for free below. 

"All the Kids" -

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Track of the Day: Julia Holter

Posted on 8/27/2013

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Juilia Holter - "In The Green Wild"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

"In The Green Wild" is a superb cut off of Julia Holter's debut, Loud City Song. Interestingly, this album has an overarching narrative that juxtaposes 'civilized' society with the untamed green and natural world. See for yourself in the video below. "In The Green Wild" is also available for streaming and download below.

 

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Track of the Day: Her Royal Harness

Posted on 8/26/2013

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"Colour Me" -

Her Royal Harness - "Colour Me"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

Sometimes productivity does happen as a result of wasting time on chat rooms. The back-story to Her Royal Harness was just that, an arguement over music on chat. Check out this track "Colour Me" available for stream and download below. 

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Weekly Release Spotlight: Weekend

Posted on 8/26/2013

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"It's Alright" -

Weekend

Jinx

Slumberland 

Written by: Jerod Greenisen

Weekend’s sophomore LP is a dream come true. That is to say that one dreams of a well crafted pastiche of the past three decades of rock music. For anyone else, Jinx is a fantastic record that synergizes post-punk harmonies and near classic 90’s noise-rock with contemporary chillwave-esq vocals and shoegaze filters. Although Jinx an atmosphere that is seasonally familiar it still feels rather cold, distant, and submerged.

“It’s Alright” features, to the best that the album can provide, the alleviating airy guitar harmonies that are ever so pleasantly reminiscent of 80’s romantics. While “Mirror” starts the album off by gesturing, very deliberately, at the aura of chillwave. “Mirror” can be very exemplary of the whole record when, after a short while, the rhythms are dialed to industrial clashes and Shaun Durkan’s echo-y strained vocals slink in and balance this cut’s natural seeming static and feedback heavy  layers. Most characteristic of the album’s composition would be the heavy drum clashes and expansive vocals on “July” and “Oubliette”.


 

Jinx not only invites the listener on a journey about growing up, homage, and ambition; but it also inspires that person to let go and fantasize about potential. Weekend captures the latter in fine form. Jinx pleads with the uncertainty and unfamiliarity of dreams by contextualizing premonitions with familiar masks.


Weekend will be coming to Minneapolis in early September, and swinging by Studio K for a live In-Studio on September 7th around 4pm CST. Stay tuned to Radio K for more coverage, tracks, and video from Weekend. 

Weekend - 2013 Tour Dates

 

9/4 Brillobox Pittsburgh, PA
9/5 The Loving Touch Ferndale, MI
9/6 The Cactus Club Milwaukee, WI*
9/7 7th St. Entry Minneapolis, MN*
9/9 Hi Dive Denver, CO*
9/14 The Void (San Diego Music Thing) San Diego, CA
9/18 Red 7 Austin, TX*
9/19 Replay Lounge Lawrence, KS*
9/20 Empty Bottle Chicago, IL*
9/21 Off Broadway St. Louis, MO
9/22 Beachland Tavern Cleveland, OH
9/24 Double Happiness Columbus, OH
9/25 The High Watt Nashville, TN
9/26 529 Atlanta, GA
9/27 Strange Matter Richmond, VA
9/28 Local 506 Chapel Hill, NC
10/19 The Ottobar (Unregistered Nurse Fest) Baltimore, MD*
10/20 Johnny Brenda's Philadelphia, PA*
10/23 Church Boston, MA*
10/24 Il Motore Montreal, QC*
10/25 The Garrison Toronto, ON*
10/26 Bug Jar Rochester, NY

* = co-headlining with Disappears

Weekend – Jinx (2013) Album Tracklist:

1. Mirror
2. July
3. Oubliete
4. Celebration, FL
5. Sirens
6. Adelaide
7. It’s Alright
8. Rosaries
9. Scream Queen
10. Just Drive

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Track of the Day: Hunting Club

Posted on 8/23/2013

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Hunting Club - "Double Vision"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

Off The Record has a catch and release policy when it comes to local bands. The good thing is the OTR girls release them to you!  Check out "Double Vison", a track fresh off of Mosaic by Hunting Club. Also check out some more tracks for free download by checking out their in-studio

"Double Vision" -

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Track of the Day: Eilidh Hadden

Posted on 8/22/2013

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Eilidh Hadden - "Close to Home"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

Scottish pop songstress Eilidh Hadden recently released this track that delivers powerful punching beats steeped with flowing vocals. This song is incredibly addictive and you'll have a terrible time attempting to get Hadden's "ah-oh" out of your head. "Close to Home" is streaming and available for download below, check it out!

"Close to Home" -

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Track of the Day: Blood Relatives

Posted on 8/21/2013

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Blood Relatives - "Dead Hip"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

Radio K has another wonderful band from Scotland under the scope. Blood Relatives are Anna, Callum, Alan and Nick. Check out the first song from their upcoming debut; "Dead Hip". They also have a cute little music video to share. 

"Dead Hip" -

 

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Track of the Day: Solar Year

Posted on 8/20/2013

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Solar Year - "Seeing the Same"

David Ertel and Ben Borden are the production duo, Solar Year. They made some big splashes last summer with their debut album Waverly. Quite literally really, they premiered the album underwater in a swimming pool, furthermore - for anyone who misses Sea-punk- they featured Grimes on  the track "Brotherhood". Solar Year has remastered Waverly, which is now available on Ceremony Records

"Seeing the Same" -

 

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Weekly Release Spotlight: DIANA

Posted on 8/19/2013

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"Perpetual Surrender" -

DIANA

Perpetual Surrender

Jagjaguwar

Written by: Abbie Gobeli

Canada has unleashed a mad fury of great electronic records recently from natives Austra, Doldrums, and Crystal Castles. Toronto quartet Diana with their prior experience amongst the Canadian music scene will no doubt join the ranks of these fine artists with their stellar debut album, Perpetual Surrender released via Jagjaguwar on August 20th.

Blissful hooks coat the permeable dance-pop walls set up from the beginning track, “Foreign Installation.” Carmen Elle’s silken vocals round out the body of Perpetual Surrender enunciating each track including “New House” with emotional impact of anticipation and chances which fades in a cascade of vocals and white noise.

 

Jazzy ruptures of saxaphone infiltrate the succulent soundscape crafted by members Kieran Adams, Joesph Shabason, and Paul Mathew who all participated in jazz studies at the University of Toronto.  Adding brass instrumentation is becoming a trend in music as of late but Diana knows how to properly blends jazz and dream pop synth to enhance their musical structure. “Born Again” is sufficient evidence for this mixture.


Diana is currently touring with Austra and will be stopping through on September 1st at the Triple Rock Social Club.

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Track of the Day: Kitten Forever

Posted on 8/16/2013

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Kitten Forever - "Double Disco"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

Local favorites, Kitten Forever, are rocking that 90's Riot Grrrl fierceness of "Double Disco". Check out the video of the OTR In-Studio! You can also download this track for free and steam right now! 

"Double Disco" -

 

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Track of the Day: Yuck

Posted on 8/15/2013

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Yuck - "Rebirth"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

From Fat Possum Records: "YUCK!  Eeew, I was like, "that is soo gross". Anybutt. I was like whatever. Butt then I saw the tour and it made me feel kinda tingly.  It's like totally awesome!!!  Like those girls are so cool and like that guy looks weird but then yer like omg he is like so hot. So the show was incredible but then I thought about my Dad cuz he liked killed somebody or himself. Dad always said he loved my step mom but he was never nice to her. Where am I? Since I was a teenager I always used to take out out the dogs and he always encouraged that and once we found a bunny and the next day I had a carrot and we saved it. Our german shepherd was so smart. I live by myself. My landlord said I don't have to pay rent this month but I was trying to write some good news to my therapist and I actually paid my landlord in full. But it's all thanks to the new YUCK album!"

"Rebirth" -

 

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Track of the Day: Deer Tick

Posted on 8/14/2013

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Deer Tick - "The Dream's In the Ditch"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

After an exhausting tour all across North America Ian O'Neil, realized that "The Dream's In the Ditch" was the perfect song for the moment. Having shelved it for another project he decided that the sunshine and cheeriness of the music captured the optimism that is more than necessisary while on tour. This track is available for streaming and download below. Check out Deer Tick at the Fine Line Oct. 15th, and fall in love with John McCauley in "The Rock" video, below.

"The Dream's In the Ditch" -

 

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Track of the Day: Pop 1280

Posted on 8/13/2013

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Pop. 1280 - "Human Probe"

New track off of Pop. 1280's second album. It's sweaty, it's grimey, it's dirty, and it's a hit. Streaming and for download below. Also, for an additional taste of that NYC grit check out the video below, charmingly recorded in one of the many forsaken basements with the members of Pop. 1280.

"Human Probe" -

 

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Track of the Day: Grant Hart

Posted on 8/12/2013

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Grant Hart - "Letting Me Out"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

Sprawled across 20 songs, The Argument is a concept album with former Hüsker Dü member Grant Hart theorizing John Milton’s Paradise Lost.

"Letting Me Out" -

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Weekly Release Spotlight: Ebony Bones

Posted on 8/12/2013

"Neu World Blues" -

Ebony Bones

Behold A Pale Horse

1987

Written by: Griffin Fillipitch

Many themes run throughout Behold, a Pale Horse, but accessibility might be the most unifying one. Thomas is innovative and even fearless at times, but she does not fear pop. If anything, pop should fear her- as she exploits it with predatory precision.

Behold, a Pale Horse is the second studio album from Ebony Bones, the stage name of British singer-songwriter-producer Ebony Thomas. It takes its name from a quote in the Book of Revelation. That's the book where things go bananas, and not in a fun Gwen Stefani/Laffy Taffy sort of way.

 

Given this source material, the ominous charge of the introductory title track is not a huge surprise. Strings from the Mumbai Symphony Orchestra warble in a minor key while drums thunder underneath. There is a surprisingly beautiful transition when this track blends seamlessly into the next one, “I See I Say,” which samples the string progression from the previous song and throws down a mean distorted vocal vamp. It's hear where one starts to see where Ebony Bones’ influences may lie; with the likes of M.I.A’s Kala or later Santigold. 

 

But that doesn't last too long. M.I.A. comparisons may come in handy, since Thomas does have British citizenship and a knack for biting hooks (she also uses a ton of acronyms), but relying on these relationships are not totally apt. She is more interested in the juncture of art-pop and punk than house and hip-hop.

Still, each of those genres gets at least a moment on Behold, a Pale Horse. It's dark and heavy feeling all the way through, but varied in its darkness and weight. “Bread & Circus” blends the intro's strings (one of several motifs on the album) with an airy, lively funk guitar line. The next song, “Morphine For the Masses,” takes the same strings and turns them into an unapologetic trap beat.

 

Ms. Bones is not afraid of experimentation, but she's not afraid of anthems either. Covering The Smiths with “What Difference Does It Make” reaches arena-rock heights with the New London Children's Choir, which is immediately followed by an industrial drum ‘n’ bass beat with Sleigh Bells like guitar on “Neu World Blues.”  Additionally, the piano outro on “I.N.V.I.N.C.I.B.L.E” is so catchy and self-serious, it's a surprise that Rihanna didn't snatch it for her own. “While the People S.L.E.E.P” is a dance/punk amalgamation that could and should be a huge crossover hit (and maybe one of the best songs of the year).

 

 
 

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Track of the Day: Huge Rat Attacks

Posted on 8/9/2013

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Huge Rat Attacks - "Wheel"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

Huge Rat Attacks album "Organic Babies" has just dropped. The entire album is now streaming on their bandcamp and can be purchased there, on iTunes, Amazon.com, eMusic, you'll also receive a physical print of the artwork. Check out Off the Record for more local music. Huge Rat Attacks just did an In-Studio, stay tuned for video.

"Wheel Live on Radio K" -

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Track of the Day: Tree Blood

Posted on 8/9/2013

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Tree Blood - "90s Rocker Girl"

Local band Tree Blood, also known as what makes trees grow and die in Minneapolis, have released a new single. Tree Blood new song "90s Rocker Girl" is available for free download below, and you can also check out the band when they were in Studio K. 

"90s Rocker Girl"

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Track of the Day: Joseph Childress

Posted on 8/8/2013

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Joseph Childress - "Dance With Me"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

Dead-beat wanderer turned lo-fi folk artist Joseph Childress follows in some pretty deep footsteps. Listing the likes of Jackson C. Frank and Jason Molina as predecessors, Childress is setting himself up as the next in line to assume the mantle of bluesy, desperate folk. 

"Dance With Me" -

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Track of the Day: Gambles

Posted on 8/7/2013

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Gambles - "Trust"

If you would like to learn more about Gambles, please check out their website. No really, we really want you to look at this. 

"Trust" -

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Track of the Day: Washed Out

Posted on 8/6/2013

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Washed Out - "Don't Give Up"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

The music recorded by Ernest Greene as Washed Out has been nothing if not dreamy, and on his second full-length, Paracosm, he takes the dreamlike, otherworldly atmospheres of his music a huge leap further. Paracosm refers to the phenomena when people create detailed imaginary worlds, and it could be that Greene wants you to be a part of his on this album. Check out "Don't Give Up" below.

"Don't Give Up" -

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Weekly Release Spotlight: Hunx & His Punx

Posted on 8/5/2013

"Kill Elaine" -

Hunx & His Punx

Street Punk

Hardly Art

Written by: Griffin Fillipitch

"Everyone loves me at the beauty shop," Hunx sings on Street Punk the third and latest effort from him and His Punx. He's probably right. Last year he went solo on "Hairdresser Blues," an album full of unhurried grooves and sugar sweet choruses that leaned more toward '60s girl-group pop than garage rock (he is always balancing somewhere between the two).

The guitars were still scratchy, but the heart beating behind them was incredibly sentimental. It was playful and sad, an effortlessly versatile album. It could easily find a home at any salon, however fancy the shampoo, however soft the towels.

 

So it was nice to hear him touch on the beauty shop for a moment on "Born Blonde," but don't let it fool you. Whatever blues he had, he has since left behind. He has regained the brazen demeanor of his earlier days and has thrown in a level of anger that he's never quite reached before. He is loud and pissed, but happy about it in a way that is not possible when you're all alone. His Punx are back and they make their presence felt.

 

Ten of the twelve tracks come and go in less than two minutes. The Punx are in and out in less than twenty. But that's more than enough time for Street Punk to leave a mark. It is speedy, unrestrained, ramshackle rock of the highest order. Hunx wails over furious guitars that sound like they want to, but cannot, drown him out. His best screams come when he's blasting out half-finished credos like, "Everyone's a pussy / Fuck you dude" and "Fabulous, fabulous, fabulous / Oh my God!"

On tracks like "You Think You're Tough" and "Mud in Your Eyes," Shannon Shaw (of Shannon and the Clams) provides the most melodic performances on the album. She has a lower and steadier voice than Hunx, and they play nicely off of each other. Still these tracks thrash pretty mercilessly.

 

That never really changes. The only break from thrashing is the near-four minute closer, "It's Not Easy," but even that is a messy dirge with caustic squeals from Hunx and two simultaneous guitar solos at the end. Street Punk is a pretty relentless album in terms of volume and edge. Still, it's hard to think of it as ‘punk,’ simply because it's too much fun. Just as it was on "Hairdresser Blues" when Hunx couldn't achieve pure sadness, here he can't achieve pure anger. There's something about him that is just inescapably fun. So that's what you've got here: an album that is super fun and mad at you for thinking so.

 

Street Punk Tracklist:


01. Bad Skin
02. Everyone's A Pussy (Fuck You Dude)
03. You Think You're Tough
04. Born Blonde
05. I'm Coming Back
06. Mud In Your Eyes
07. Street Punk
08. Don't Call Me Fabulous
09. Rat Bag
10. Egg Raid On Mojo
11. Kill Elaine
12. It's Not Easy

Hunx & His Punx -- 2013 Tour Dates


07.07.13 - Los Angeles, CA - Off Sunset Street Festival
08.08.13 - Brooklyn, NY - 285 Kent %*
08.09.13 - Philadelphia, PA - PhilaMoca % #
08.10.13 - Washington, DC - Comet Ping Pong % #
08.11.13 - Baltimore, MD - Ottobar % #
08.12.13 - Belmont, NC - Haunted Mill + Mini Golf %
08.13.13 - Jacksonville, FL - Jack Rabbits #
08.14.13 - Orlando, FL - The Social #
08.15.13 - Birmingham, AL - The Bottletree #
08.16.13 - Atlanta, GA - Drunken Unicorn #
08.17.13 - Nashville, TN - Exit/In # ^
08.19.13 - Milwaukee, WI - Cactus Club #
08.20.13 - Chicago, IL - Subterranean #
08.21.12 - Detroit, MI - Magic Stick Lounge #
08.22.13 - Toronto, ON - Hard Luck Bar #
08.23.13 - Boston, MA - Brighton Music Hall #

% - w/ Chain & the Gang
* - w/ Juan Waters
# - w/ Hunters
^ - w/ Diarrhea Planet, The So So Glos

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Track of the Day: Soft Metals

Posted on 8/5/2013

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Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals - "Lenses"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth inovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

- See more at: http://www.radiok.org/blogs/new/archive/2013/8/11/trac"

Soft Metals have just announced their upcoming LP Lenses. Taking bits of influences from early -'70s synth innovators Chris Carter and Klaus Schulze, Ian Hicks and Patricia Hall have taken the direction of this record to the dancefloor. You can download the first single, "Lenses," below.

"Lenses" -

SOFTMETALS-SuzyPolingShoot2013-7-720x539.jpg

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Track of the Day: Dornik

Posted on 7/29/2013

Dornik - "Something About You"

U.K. electronic producer Dornik releases his debut single cia PMR records. "Something About You" relinquishes a smooth wave of hopeful insecurity. Dornik vocals are vintage gold, something straight out of the finest R&B classic editions. Recalling Frank Ocean's success just a little bit ago, we can't wait to hear more from Dornik. Listen here

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Track of the Day: Strange

Posted on 7/26/2013

Strange - "Kathy Bates"

"Kathy Bates" -

 

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Track of the Day: Grumbling Fur

Posted on 7/25/2013

Grumbling Fur - "Protogenesis"

Daniel O'Sullivan and Alexander Tucker are long time friends and collaborators. Both artists are veterans of the UK experimental underground: O’Sullivan as a member of Guapo, Ulver, and Aethenor (with Stephen O’Malley), and Tucker with imbogodom and as an eclectic (read: Yeti) solo artist. On their newest album as Grumbling Fur, Glynnaestra, they have crafted an avant-pop album assembled as one would a collage. This structural foundation is built up via an eclectic array of instruments, both acoustic and modified, to pulsating electronic sounds. 

"Protogenesis" -

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Track of the Day: Ebony Bones

Posted on 7/24/2013

Ebony Bones - "Mystery Babylon Balloon"

Singer, songwriter, producer and boundary-breaking artist Ebony Bones—whose stage name was coined by punk rock icon Rat Scabies, drummer of The Damned— developed a love for music at an early age. Spending time in her father’s music stall in Brixton Market, her musical education began with artists like Brian Eno and Quincy Jones, and her influences grew to include everyone from Siouxie Soux and The Slits to Fela Kuti and Public Enemy. Armed with her own mature and captivating sound and a strong DIY ethic, Ebony will release her sophomore album, Behold, A Pale Horse, on August 5th.

"Mystery Babylon Balloon" -

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Track of the Day: David Lynch

Posted on 7/23/2013

David Lynch - "Star Dream Girl"

Legendary multimedia artist David Lynch returns this summer with the follow-up to Crazy Clown Time, his acclaimed 2011 solo debut. The new album sees Lynch returning to primary songwriting and performance duties, writing 11 out of the album’s 12 tracks. Also included in the lineup is Lynch’s signature take on the Bob Dylan folk classic “The Ballad of Hollis Brown,” and a bonus track contribution featuring acclaimed Swedish musician Lykke Li. The Big Dream was recorded over several months at Lynch’s own Asymmetrical Studio with engineer Dean Hurley, who also contributes production and instrumentation to the album.

"Star Dream Girl" -

 

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Weekly Release Spotlight: Deafheaven

Posted on 7/22/2013

 

Deafheaven

Sunbather

Deathwish

Written by: Nathan Gerdes

We’ve heard it all before “the perfect summer album,” “sounds like a great day at the beach!”  The Black Metal genre has not typically produced anything of the like– until now. Summer music is often described as “light,” “breezy,” and “fun,” however more akin to a summer that humans can relate to; Deafheaven’s new album Sunbather is heavy, sprawling, and emotional. While Black Metal may focus on cold, ugliness, and evil, Sunbather invokes feelings of warmth, beauty, and joy. With Sunbather, Deafheaven shows the world that even Black Metal has room for dynamics as opposite as fire and ice.


"Sunbather" -

Sunbather takes influence from a variety of genres, from the abrasive playing style of Black Metal, to the hidden hooks of Shoegaze, and the dynamics and pure visceral ecstacy of Post-Rock. The common thread between all its various influences is the importance of atmosphere. Tremolo-picked Black Metal guitar leads run through Shoegaze effects, and quiet, slower sections break the monotony of blastbeats. For listeners unable to see the appeal of screamed vocals in metal music, this album may find success at increasing tolerance. While not an instrumental album by any means, Sunbather takes a shared cue from both Black Metal and Shoegaze and uses vocals not as a focal point, but as another layer of musical texture. Seamlessly transitioning through four epic compositions (each stands at over 9 minutes long) separated by three less-structured interludes, this album does not ask you to pick and choose your favorite songs or riffs, but instead invites you to let its warm, cathartic atmosphere wash over you as you listen.


Despite the relatively fluid nature of its structure, Sunbather has plenty of musical moments that stick out. The lead track “Dreamhouse” opens with guitar melodies that qualify as true earworms, and the outro to the last track, “The Pecan Tree” stands as one of the heaviest parts of the record, despite eschewing the blast beats and fast tempos that hallmark the album’s most metal moments. Similarly, the most affecting moments of the album are when songwriters George Clarke and Kerry McCoy combine their diverse influences in unexpected ways – See the screaming in the background of the melodic, drumless break partway through “Vertigo,” or the double-kick drumming that inserts itself into a down-tempo, Shoegaze-y section of “The Pecan Tree.” Sunbather is at its best when it tosses the unexpected at a spaced-out listener.


Vocalist George Clarke says Sunbather’s album cover is meant to evoke the sensation of staring into the sun with your eyes closed, and that the name “Sunbather” was chosen for its sense of idealism and humanity. This feeling is not only accurate, but also extends far beyond the cover. Warm and inviting, relaxed and unhurried, contemplative yet joyous, with Sunbather, Deafheaven’s latest release is rewriting the rules for both Black Metal and “the perfect summer album.”


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Weekly Release Spotlight: Austra

Posted on 7/22/2013

“What We Done?”, the opening track ripples in minimally allowing the reverberant vocals to be distilled in their honesty and personalization that Stelmanis sets forth.  Olympia then erupts into a clash of percussive dance beats that become the driving force through each track.  Instead of letting the heaviness of the lyrics or pleas in “Forgive Me” saturate the record with sadness, electronica and classical beautifully blend together into a playful demeanor.  The tonal quality of the vocalists seep flawlessly between the light and dark emotions evoked.

Most of the record is intoxicated with dance pulsations until “You Changed My Life” exhales as an emotional relief.  It halts to a minimalist make up of trickling piano keys and a confession that is soon forgotten amongst attacking drums and burlesque instrumental that simmers throughout the end of the record to leave a lasting impression.

"Painful Like" is a great track off this record and is available for free download below. Click the Polaroid to check out Austra in Studio K. Also, Austra will be stopping through Minneapolis on September 1st at the Triple Rock Social Club.

"Painful Like" -

Austra

Olympia

Domino Records

Written by: Abbie Gobeli

Toronto sextet, Austra struck deep chords in their 2010 debut album, Feel It Break and have finally unleashed their darkness in this second full-length. Lead vocalist Katie Stelmanis reveals that Olympia is her first confessional record addressing the beginnings and endings of relationships along with her friends’ struggles. Olympia is a slow-rising dance tide that elevates you above  the mucked up life situations that surface lyrically.

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Track of the Day: The Dough Rollers

Posted on 7/22/2013

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The Dough Rollers - "The Sailing Song"

Third Man Records, with Jack White at the helm, powers forward with its mission entiled The Blue Series. Here we have The Dough Rollers with a new and much more powerful sound. Malcolm Ford (vox, guitar) and Jack Byrne (guitar) are now joined by Josh Barocas and Kyle Olson on bass and drums, respectively. The track "The Sailing Song" is a wobbly drunken power trip that never looses sight of the shore. Stream available below.

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Track of the Day: Rabbit Holes

Posted on 7/19/2013

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Rabbit Holes - "I Ain't Coming Back Tonight"

Rabbit Holes were just in Studio K for Off The Record- stay glued to radiok.org for video from that! Right now Rabbit Holes is the Track of the Day for Friday with a track for free download below. Check out their Bandcamp for more, and tune in to OTR today at 3pm for more local music!

"I Ain't Coming Back Tonight" -

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Tags: Radio K Track of the Day Rabbit Holes I Ain't Coming Back Tonight KUOM free download University of Minnesota OTR

Track of the Day: Until the Ribbon Breaks

Posted on 7/18/2013

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Until The Ribbon Breaks - "Pressure"

"Pressure" is the single from UK artist Until The Ribbon Breaks. It has us so excited for the full length, which has no release date just yet. Pete Lawrie Winfield is the mind behind UTRB, who has previously collaborated with Killer Mike and El-P for the track "Job Well Done" on the album Run The Jewels. Check out NPR for an interview about his grind while recording "Pressure". Also, Winfield was a former film student and has produced a wonderful video below. 

"Pressure" -

 

 

Tags: Radio K Track of the Day Until the Ribbon Breaks Pressure KUOM free download University of Minnesota

Track of the Day: TRAAMS

Posted on 7/17/2013

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TRAAMS - "Low"

Monday featured a track from Sam Mehran of Outer Limits Recordings, and today we're bringing you a track from the other half of the story. TRAAMS is fronted by MJ (Hookworms) and former Test Icicles (c/o Lightspeed Champion, Mehran, and Attwell) member Rory Atwell. "Low" is of their new EP which is available now on cassette and for digital download. Attwell nails this cassette ready sound with dramatic guitar breaks and grundgey wails. "Low" is available for free download, also check out them out on Fat Cat Records.

"Low" -

Tags: Radio K Track of the Day TRAAMS low KUOM free download University of Minnesota

Track of the Day: Emika

Posted on 7/16/2013

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Emika - "She Beats"

DVA is Emika's sophomore album which was described by Ninja Tune Records as a return to her roots. For those who were spinning her self-titled debut in 2011 a different sound might be aparent, but not entirely. As a student of classical music, Emika's first album was far from her upbringing. However DVA combines the best of the first album with some fantastic classical instrumentation. Check out "She beats" and "Searching" below.

"She Beats" -

 

Tags: Radio K Track of the Day Emika She Beats KUOM free download University of Minnesota

Weekly Release Spotlight: Bass Drum of Death

Posted on 7/15/2013

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"Crawling After You" -

Radio K favorites like FIDLAR, Thee Oh Sees and Ty Segall have helped to establish (but not entrench) this code in the past year. Each abandons it when necessary, but certain similarities between them and other garage punk acts cannot be denied. Listening to John Barrett, under the name Bass Drum of Death, map the landscape of his particular garage on his new self-titled LP is instantly gratifying when he adheres and continuously gratifying when he abandons.

It's a funny thing when a band self-titles an album that is not their first. GB City came out two years ago and the music that Barrett has churned up since the debut is apparently more deserving of his band's namesake. It's probably unwise to ascribe symbolic weight to the title of an album that sounds as  reckless and off the cuff as Bass Drum of Death, but here we are.


Recklessness is important to garage punk and the album is reckless in the ways we've come to expect from the genre's best. Tracks like “Crawling After You” and “I Wanna Be Forgotten” are blistering and overly noisy. Barrett's unrestrained wails reach impressive heights on “Fines Lines.” One of the songs is called “Bad Reputation,” either an homage to Joan Jett or a disregard for the song of same name (maybe a little of both).

Bass Drum of Death

Bass Drum of Death

Innovative Leisure

Written by: Griffin Fillipitch

There is a pretty stringent, sometimes contradictory code of conduct for anyone making a garage punk album. It needs to have guitar lines that are flimsy and determined at the same time. It needs a sneer from a lead singer that sounds pissed and indifferent at the same time. It needs sonics that are fuzzy and piercing at the same time. It needs to be fast. The rhymes should be easy.

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There is a different kind of recklessness here too, though. It comes from the variety of speeds that Barrett can operate at, and the ease with which he slips in and out of them. His brand of garage rock is most notable for being willing to go a little slower. Almost half of the songs on the album last around four minutes, an unheard of figure for bands with similar sounds. “Such a Bore” is loose enough to accelerate to a sprint after two minutes of jaunt, and then slow back down again.


Most of the songs are unhurried in this way, but they never give way to sonic sludge, and they never get boring. A feeling abounds in the album that anything can happen. Anything doesn't happen. Bluesy riffs drift in and out, tempos change, but everything hits super hard. It's a straightforward record that keeps its options open.  

Tags: Radio K KUOM University of Minnesota Weekly Release Spotlight Bass Drum of Death review free download Bass Drum of Death

Track of the Day: Some Pulp

Posted on 7/12/2013
 

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Some Pulp - "Devolver"

  Some Pulp have just released their self-titled debut exclusivly on cassette tape. However, you can get a track for free right here. the garage-rockers had this to say to Citypages "Devolver, It's a workout. As much as we like the single, "Devolver" breaks away from the rest of the cassette with a Romantics/new wavy sorta thing. Check out their album on Bandcamp.

"Devolver" -

 
 

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Tags: Radio K Track of the Day Some Pulp Devolver KUOM

Track of the Day: You Me & Us

Posted on 7/11/2013
 

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You Me & Us - "Sink or Swim"

"Sink or Swim" is fresh of the self-released record from You Me & Us. You'll love this cute and fuzzy shoegaze band out of Palm Springs, California. Just over ten minutes long, their new album Stay Inside is easily one of the best little slices of music this summer. Stream the whole album on Bandcamp.

"Swim or Sink" -

 

 Video from Violitionist.com

Tags: Radio K Track of the Day You Me & Us Sink or Swim KUOM

Track of the Day: Montag

Posted on 7/10/2013
 

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Montag - "New Found Land"

Newest edition to Montag's PHASES project. This is the 5th of 12 singles, slotted to premiere one per month. Violin, bouncy sinths, 80s organs, and escapist themes are all making magic on this track. Be sure to check it out below. Montag's music video is also below. There is also a wonderful  audio documentary about the recording process on Soundcloud.

"New Found Land" -

 

 

Tags: Radio K Track of the Day Montag New Found Land KUOM

Track of the Day: Jacuzzi Boys

Posted on 7/9/2013
 

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Jacuzzi Boys - "Double Vision"

Jacuzzi Boys are taking it easy on this track. Admitting to Rolling Stone, "It was the right night to record 'Double Vision,'" says vocalist Gabriel Alcala "We left the liquor store with all the ingredients to make tequila sunrises." Sit back, enjoy the summer, and take one from Jacuzzi Boys. More from Jacuzzi Boys on Bandcamp. Check out the "Automatic Jail" music video below.

"Double Vision" -

 

 

Tags: Radio K Track of the Day Jacuzzi Boys Double Vision

Track of the Day: Big Deal

Posted on 7/8/2013
 

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Big Deal - "In Your Car"

 "In Your Car" is the first we've heard from Big Deal since their 2011 debut Lights Out. Their new album, June Gloom, has seen the addition of a rythm section to boost their sound. This grunge-pop is available for free download below. Read more at Mute Records.

"In Your Car" -

 

Tags: Radio K Track of the Day Big Deal In Your Car KUOM

Track of the Day: The Shakin' Babies

Posted on 7/5/2013

The Shakin' Babies - "Easy Meal"

a0285533684_2.jpg The Shakin' Babies, Minneapolis locals, were just in Studio K for Off the Record. Get a taste of their new album, Stoked Casual, right here at Radio K!

Get more.

 

"Easy Meal" -

Tags: radio k kuom track of the day the shakin' babies easy meal

Track of the Day: Deafheaven

Posted on 7/4/2013

Deafheaven - "Dream House"

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"Dream House" is what college radio should sound like; the occasional nine minute black metal jam. Deafheaven is getting some rave reviews for their most recent album Sunbather, and Radio K has a track for free download.

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"Dream House" -

Tags: radio k kuom track of the day deafheaven dream house

Track of the Day: PAPA

Posted on 7/3/2013

July 3rd, 2013

PAPA - "Put Me to Work"

Darren Weiss, drummer of Girls, is doing his own thing too! Check out PAPA, as he fronts vocals and drums with long time best friend Danny Presant.  Put Me to Work by PAPA is straight up, fast paced, and reminscent of Born to Run. Get ready for some highly emotional rock that will get your heart pumping like a first date.

Read More

"Put Me To Work" -

Tags: radio k track of the day PAPA put me to work

Track of the Day: Volcano Choir

Posted on 7/1/2013

July 2nd, 2013

Volcano Choir - "Byegone"

It has been four years since we have heard anything from Volcano Chior, and we are very pleased to say that they are dormant no longer. Justin Vernon and others have sharpened their sound and have really put together a fantastic album, check out "Byegone" - Radio K's Track of the Day.

Read More

"Byegone" -

Tags: Track of the day volcano choir byegone radio k

Weekly Release Spotlight: Boards of Canada

Posted on 7/1/2013

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Boards of Canada
Tomorrow's Harvest

[Warp]

            There's a little 5-second horn flourish at the very beginning of "Gemini," the opening track on Tomorrow's Harvest, Boards of Canada's first release in seven years. It sounds like the musical tag that would accompany the logo of a film studio, after the previews and before the movie actually starts. The words "Castle Rock Entertainment" or "Paramount Pictures" may flash before your eyes when you hear it. You might picture a kid fishing in the night sky or a lion roaring or a creepy little girl pounding on a drum.

            Honestly, the horn intro on "Gemini" is dinky enough to sound more like the intro to a video you'd watch in a high-school science class, but you get the idea. There is a cinematic air about Tomorrow's Harvest that is impossible to shake. And if this album is the score to a hypothetical movie, it's a movie about some future horror. There are very few moments in the album that aren't imbued with a sense of impending doom. It's a patient, engrossing, richly textured album equally interested in its overall effect as the emotion stirred at any particular moment.

            In a recent interview, Michael Sandison said that Tomorrow's Harvest had a "deliberate VHS video-nasty element" running throughout it. He's clearly aware of the soundtrack-like quality of the album's scope and movement. It has been compared to John Carpenter's original soundtracks and the duo has acknowledged a loose lineage between the two, though the more direct influences (Fabio Frizzi, John Harrison, Mark Isham) are less recognizable names.

            The seven years that have passed since the last Boards of Canada release has given them the opportunity to hone in on the ominous drone that only occasionally defined their sound in the past. A current of dark synths is the album's defining feature. But the rhythms are more edgy and vital than the "drone" label might entail. It is their task to split and bend the walls of tone which otherwise move slowly. The percussion takes this task seriously.

            When more active melodies do emerge, like on "Nothing Is Real" and "Cold Earth," they are moments of respite from an otherwise sparse, harsh soundscape. Electronic music can be so fused with pop and ruled by hooks that hit hard and topple all over each other, an album this studied and challenging is a moment of respite itself. It's a breath of fresh (sinister, baleful, glacially slow) air. 

Written by Griffen Fillipitch, Radio K volunteer

"Reach for the Dead" -

Tags: Weekly Release Spotlight Boards of Canada Tomorrow's Harvest Radio K

Track of the Day: Jay Arner

Posted on 7/1/2013

July 1st, 2013

Jay Arner - "Don't Remind Me"

Multi-instrumentalist with a variety of experience from indie pop to electronica, Jay has finally decided to take on a solo effort and Radio K is happy he did. Check out this track of the day with a downloadable mp3. 

"Don't Remind Me" -

Tags: Track of the day Jay Arner Don't Remind Me Radio K

Track of the Day: Hausu

Posted on 6/27/2013

June 27th, 2013

Hausu - "Chrysanthemum"

Many have described Hausu's sound as a great pastiche of rock music, varrying from the Sonic Youth to Smashing Pumpkins, there's something in listening to Hausu that can be for everyone.

"Chrysanthemum" -

Tags: track of the day hausu radio k kuom chrysanthemum

Track of the Day: Friends in America

Posted on 6/26/2013

June 26th, 2013

Friends in America - "Quietly Quietly"

Friends in America are based in Glasgow but the band is from all over the place, which is perhaps the best way to describe the music itself. There are self-releasing their album What it is to Be on June 26th : http://www.soundcloud.com/friendsinamerica

"Quietly Quietly" -

Tags: radio k track of the day friends in america quietly quietly kuom

Track of the Day: Prides

Posted on 6/25/2013

"Out of the Blue" -

June 25th, 2013

Prides - "Out of the Blue"

Check out this track! No really, you should check it out- it's awesome. Featuring former members of Midnight Lion, Prides has debuted their latest single from the music hub of Glasgow.

Tags: Track of the day Prides Out of the Blue Radio K

Weekly Release Spotlight: King Tuff

Posted on 6/24/2013

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King Tuff
Was Dead

[Burger]

 

Kyle Thomas aka King Tuff is royalty in the kingdom of fuzz rock who graciously lavishes all of his adoring subjects with catchy hooks and whirling guitar solos.  King Tuff’s 2008 LP Was Dead has been reissued and is well worth rediscovering.  Was Dead captured the attention of Sub Pop and led to his popular self-titled release last May.  Writing songs since the ripe age of 10 and dredging up music cred with a handful of bands; Thomas resurrected the moniker King Tuff to debut Was Dead on Colonel Records in 2008. Now, the record has taken on a life of its own and come back to remind us of where his royal highness began his garage pop journey.

Opening with “Dancing On You,” King Tuff unleashes a contagious lo-fi vintage pop with his unique whiny vocals that  makes one think of Johnny Depp in John Waters’ musical Cry-Baby. The only exception is that King Tuff wouldn’t shed a tear like Depp’s character; he would instead release “Sun Medallion” with it’s summery psychedelic flow of guitar improvisations. As one journeys further through this record, you are introduced to a variety of personalities including “Ruthie Ruthie” and “Kind of Guy.” These personalities guide you through their personal narratives with a light-hearted flare; no heartache or sad endings here.

King Tuff promises you a careless, fun summer vibe to enable you to dance through the worst part-time job. Click the polaroid and check out King Tuff in Studio K with us!

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Written by Abbie Gobeli, Radio K volunteer.

"Sun Medallion" -

Tags: radio k weekly release spotlight king tuff was dead

Track of the Day: Dungeonesse

Posted on 6/24/2013

June 24th, 2013

Dungeonesse - "Drive You Crazy"

Fresh off the Secretly Canadian label, Dungeonesse is a collaboration between The Art Department's John Ehrens and Jenn Wasner of Wye Oak. This tracks whirling synth and rapid fire drum machine makes for an excellent take on modern R&B. It’s Monday’s track of the day, and it’s a free download.

"Drive You Crazy" -

Tags: Radio K Track of the Day Dungeonesse Drive You Crazy

Track of the Day: OAKS

Posted on 6/21/2013

June 21th, 2013

OAKS - "All Mine"

OAKS are a husband and wife rocker duo locally rocking out here in the Twin Cities. They recently released their EP, Field Beat and this is the first track off their new release. 

"All Mine" -

Tags: Radio K Track of the Day OAKS All Mine

Track of the Day: Bass Drum of Death

Posted on 6/20/2013

June 20th, 2013

Bass Drum of Death - "Shattered Me"

Yo, they're called Bass Drum... of Death. Just check them out- K approved awesome. Don't forget to download at the link below. 

"Shattered Me" -

Tags: track of the day bass drum of death shattered me Radio K

Track of the Day: The Pastels

Posted on 6/19/2013

June 19th, 2013

The Pastels - "Check My Heart"

More like check your ears, can you believe what you're hearing?! The Pastels are back and the legendary indie rockers want to share this cute little track with you.  

"Check my heart"

Tags: track of the day The Pastels Check My Heart Radio K

Track of the Day: Austra

Posted on 6/18/2013

June 18th, 2013

Austra - "Home"

After their fantastic 2011 debut, Austra is back with another album called Olympia. Radio K thinks it's great- you will too- so we're dropping this track "Home" for a free download to get you started. 

"Home" -

Tags: Track of the day Austra Home Radio K

Weekly Release Spotlight: Hollow Boys

Posted on 6/17/2013

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Hollow Boys
It's True

[Modern Radio]

Despite the strange weather 2013 has gifted us with, the outdoors seem to be picking up on some semblance of what one would call "summer": the temperatures are warming, the flowers are finally blooming, and the unborn calves are ripe for sacrifice. There are those that may react to this by heading to the beach and blasting their favorite and fuzziest of punk rock jams, while still others may wish to observe from indoors as they realphabetize the somber pop albums that constitute their vinyl collection (as the Smiths never truly go out of season). For those of us conflicted as to which of these paths to take, Hollow Boys have just what you need: a fresh batch of hard-hitting punk tunes with lyrics that hit even harder and aim directly for your heartstrings.
 
Lead track "Hater" well demonstrates the Hollow Boys' aesthetic, which they have coined as "Gloom Pop", with its initial warm guitar strums soon being joined by the chorus's cold, blunt statement of, "I hate you and I don't care if it makes me cruel." Said statement escorts the listener into a series of focused and dour pop tunes that clock in at a little over two minutes on average. No part of this serving size is put to waste, however, as each track incorporates healthy doses of reverb, feedback, harmonies, and brutally honest lyrics. It's True also does justice to the band's fantastic live presence, and at its heaviest of moments one can easily envision frontman and guitarist Ali Jaafar (of SMMNR and Heaven on Howitzers), bassist Liz Elton (of Kitten Forever), and drummer Monica Coleslaw intensely beating the most sound possible out of their respective instruments.
 
It's True is a thrilling listen, grabbing your attention immediately and refusing to let go. Some tracks have sections that demand to be shouted along with, such as the "I could never love her like I love you" chorus of "She" or the repeated inquiry of "How are you getting home tonight?" on "Test Patterns". Other tracks, such as "Slow Century", "Untrue", and my personal favorite, "Alone", simply request that you listen intently and soak up these gloomy vibes. The titular track serving as the album's conclusion flaunts these and every other essential element of the album, closing in a furious, feedback-soaked mantra of the title itself; and when it fades out and you realize just how quickly the experience went by, it's true that you'll be wanting more. It's True will hopefully be nothing less than a breakthrough album for the group, as I'm confident that it's the perfect soundtrack for fun in the sun, the beach, the car, the shade, and even at those summer calf sacrifices.
 

Written by Ross Koeberl, Radio K volunteer

 

 

"Hater" -

Tags: Weekly Release Spotlight It's True Hollow Boys Radio K

Track of the Day: Coma Cinema

Posted on 6/17/2013

June 16th, 2013

Coma Cinema- "White Trash VHS"

The forth album from Coma Cinema features this track "White Trash VHS". Its an indie pop track that will get you day dreaming about holding hands, fuzzy flaws on recordings, and your date's double-wide trailer. 

"White Trash VHS" -

Tags: Track of the Day Coma Cinema White Trash VHS Radio K

Track of the Day 6-14-13: Real Numbers

Posted on 6/14/2013

June 14th, 2013

Real Numbers - "Only Two Can Play"

Jingle jangly rock pop for your Friday listening pleaseure. Only two might be able to play, but anyone can download at the link right below. 

"Only Two Can Play" -

Tags: Radio K Track of the Day Real Numbers Only Two Can Play

Track of the Day: Grapell

Posted on 6/13/2013

June 13th, 2013

Grapell - "White Fox in the Snow"

Check out this track! Chill waves for the hot summer days, enjoy!

"White Fox in the Snow" -

Tags: Radio K Track of the Day Dropell White Fox in the Snow

Track of the Day 6-12-13: Rose Windows

Posted on 6/12/2013

June 12th, 2013

Rose Windows - "Wartime Lovers"

Rose Windows' debut album The Sun Dogs, is a grand statement of Rock history. Pulling from classic rock to gospel and brit-folk, "Wartime Lovers" is one of those songs that can really make you appreciate the vast digital world we live in. Dowload below!

"Wartime Lovers" -

Tags: Track of the Day Rose Windows Wartime Lovers Radio K

Track of the Day 6-11-13: pacificUV

Posted on 6/11/2013

June 11th, 2013

pacificUV - "Russians"

Guarenteed to ensure your car moves 5 mph faster. Get this track from pacificUV straight off their new record After the Dream You Are Awake and enjoy the Euro-club snare clashes and dacefloor beats. 

"Russians" -

Tags: Radio K Track of the Day pacificUV Russians

Weekly Release Spotlight: Shannon and the Clams

Posted on 6/10/2013

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Shannon and the Clams
Dreams in the Rat House

[Hardly Art]

Wolly Bully! This album is some good clean fun in the sun, surfs up, let's rock 'n' roll! That's Shannon and the Clams for you. This second album truly is a good time and much more condensed than Time Life's "Oldies But Goodies" CD collection.  Let alone enduring Bowzer's antics for the sake of a boost to a summer iTunes. Reeling in that oldies doo-wop is exactly what many of us have yearned for, for years. Remember the first time you put the Beach Boys on at a party?
 
"Yea man, this is some of my dad's vinyl. He's got all the underground hits."
 
"Your dad is so cool!"
 
Dreams in the Rat House goes a little deeper than their honest affinity for oldies like on "Hey Willy". Tracks like "Rat House" and "Bed Rock" spice it up with rockabilly flair and rapid punk ramps. One could listen to this album and find themselves very entertained, start to finish, by Shannon and the Clams' composition- think of a grab-bag of 45s from a garage sale. "I Know" is a fine example, with its psychedelic rock build up paired with Nashville's iconic country-girl vocal swooning. However, if one were to really give this album a close listen they'd find what many of the Oldies But Goodies were missing. The lyricism of "Unlearn" jerk the heart strings like much of Patsy Cline's best, and also carry the guttural groans and energy of Horton Heat psychobilly jams. 
 
Be sure to give Dreams from the Rat House a couple of spins, and let it really unravel. You'll be glad you did, and so will your summer! At its best points this album is the perfect inspiration for all the Kokomo day-dreams of hours spent in the summer sun with sand between toes and beach balls in the air. This album may have a funny way of connecting people through reminiscence, after all these were the same day-dreams that even your dad had one day, way back.
 
Shannon and the Clams open for Mikal Cronin with Is/Is at 7th Street Entry, June 10th, at 7:30pm. Father's Day is June 16th! 

Written by Jerod Greenisen, Radio K Digital Media Producer.

"Rat House" -

Tags: Radio K Weekly Release Spotlight Shannon and the Clams Dreams in the Rat House

Track of the Day: Torres

Posted on 6/10/2013

June 10th, 2013

Torres - "Honey"

Through clenched teeth and emotionally gripping vocals, Mackenzie Scott delivers her debut as Torres on her self-released album. Steel guitar, folky strife, and grumbling over a fresh cup of joe is the perfect way to start of any Monday. 

"Honey" -

Tags: Track of the Day Torres Honey Radio K

Track of the Day: Proofreader

Posted on 6/7/2013

June 7th, 2013

Proofreader - "Play Dead on the Internet"

Off of their debut album, Zero Squared, Play Dead on the Internet is a fusion of indie-pop and R&B. With hard beats and soothing lyrics, Proofreader is really dialed in on this track.


"Play Dead on the Internet" -

Tags: track of the day Proofreader Play Dead on the Internet Radio K

Track of the Day 6-6-13: Braids

Posted on 6/6/2013

June 6th, 2013

 Braids - "Amends"

Amends is off Braids 12” In Kind which will be released on June 11. This Canadian trio was just selected by Spin as one of the 5 Best New Artists for the month of June.

"Amends"

Tags: Track of the day Braids Amends Radio k

Track of the Day 6-05-13: TEEN

Posted on 6/5/2013

June 5th, 2013

TEEN - "Paradise"

Paradise is the second single off TEEN's newest EP, Carolina, which was released in late May. The Brooklyn pop quartet will be bringing their newest works with them when they play the Triple Rock Social Club on June 8th.
 

"Paradise"

Tags: Track of the Day TEEN Paradise Radio K

Track of the Day 6-04-13: Still Corners

Posted on 6/4/2013

June 4th, 2013

The Tablets - "Tablet"

This is The Tablets debut LP. Brining a garage-pop sound from the 60s and mixing in some 80s new wave, Tablet has the essence of two great generations for todays sound.
 

"Tablet"

Tags: Radio K Track of the Day The Tablets Tablet

Weekly Release Spotlight: Not Without Work and Rest by Last Good Tooth

Posted on 6/3/2013



Last Good Tooth
Not Without Work and Rest

[Team Love]

 

Fairs, festivals, block parties, and caravans of crust-punks are making their way into our lives in the Midwest. The Last Good Tooth sounds much like what one would hear at the  State Fair, Grand Ol’  Days, or on a train car bound for the expanse of the American  homeland. Not  Without Work and Rest, is  honestly some good old Americana that fits perfectly with the arrival of the warmer months which are  not themselves without the hours spent grinding through sweaty crowds, pavement radiance, and wafting aromas of  sweet corn and hot-dogs in our best attempts at American leisure.

“I am American, raise that red, white and blue” sings Penn Sultan on the track  “Problems Leave Out of Mouths” in which he acknowledges the connotation that others might not be convinced that  Last Good Tooth is anything extraordinary or exceptional. However this is what fuels him to sing and pluck his instrument with fervor and passion. In a very endearing way this record comes across rather humble; that the idea behind the music is more important than the music itself. That Last Good Tooth is more about the  inspiration  and the source of passion than about crafting the next big thing.

However, those of Last Good Tooth cannot hide that they are talented musicians. Each song introduces an enticing guitar melody that leads to an aged sounding voice of Sultan- who effortlessly but wearily carries the momentum into strings and rhythms that pull the listener into a romantic daydream of  rural summers and tales of scoundrels on the trail. Last Good Tooth does a fantastic job invoking the imagery  many are familiar of, but have yet to find energy within. Listening to Not Without Work and Rest  will get anyone daydreaming about the upcoming seasonal traditions but more importantly it’s the  soundtrack one’s own backyard. To speak the truth, everything is a bit more exciting with a soundtrack

Written by Jerod Greenisen, Radio K volunteer.

"Could You Read"

Tags: Weekly Release Spotlight Not Without Work and Rest The Last Good Tooth Radio K

Track of the Day 6-03-13: Jon Hopkins

Posted on 6/3/2013

June 3rd, 2013

Jon Hopkins - "Open Eye Signal"

Jon Hopkins is bringing his electronic sound across the pond with the release of his latest album, Immunity.  Open Eye Signal is 7 plus minutes of intense beats and tempo changes that you can move to.
 

"Open Eye Signal"

Tags: Track of the day Jon Hopkins Open Eye Signal Radio k

Weekly Release Spotlight: Mikal Cronin

Posted on 5/20/2013

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Mikal Cronin
MCII

[Merge]

Mikal Cronin is a man of contradictions. Lyrically, his songs will bounce between the desire for closure and the insecurity of his motives, or the pleasure of solitude but the fear of loneliness and isolation.  Musically, he spent the majority of 2012 playing bass for the Ty Segall Band, laying down a wall of fuzz for festival goers and simultaneously scaring the living hell out of talk show crowds (their Dave Letterman performance is especially chaotic/incredible). However, Cronin also shows a deep affinity for pop music, going so far as to record ukulele covers of the Proclaimers and Sixpence None the Richer. But despite his highly diverse and scattered musical pedigree, Cronin’s newest record is a terrific showcase of his talents as a songwriter and musical arranger, and is easily one of the most cohesive records to come out of the West Coast garage rock scene in recent years.

The most striking element of this record is how universal Cronin’s lyrical themes are, despite their highly personal nature. He gives the listener a full scope into his troubles and desires, but at no point does it feel alienating or difficult. His life may be on display with this record, but his problems are easily relatable. His music provides the perfect backdrop for his confessional lyricism, blending elements of 1970s power pop, ‘90s grunge, and West Coast garage rock, but with a keen understanding of arranging and layering. Cronin shows distinct confidence and mastery with instrumentation, giving each track the perfect amount of tension and release.

Recently, Adult Swim included one of Cronin’s tracks, “Better Man”, on their newest garage rock compilation, Garage Swim, a collection of unreleased garage rock tracks from bands like Bass Drum of Death, Thee Oh Sees, and King Tuff. Cronin’s inclusion is intriguing. Although the garage scene he’s affiliated with heavily influences his music, his songs have more in common with Blue Album-era Weezer than they do Black Lips or Ty Segall. Those who are expecting another entry into the West Coast garage rock canon with Mikal Cronin’s new album may want to look elsewhere. Sure, this album can get heavy, but that’s not the point. MCII relies more on the power of Cronin’s arranging than it does his fuzz pedal, and listeners will be more inclined to sing their hearts out than bang their head to this record. With MCII, Cronin turns his contradictions into choruses and has made one of the standout records of 2013.

Written by Andy Engstrom, Radio K volunteer

 

 

"Weight" -

Tags: Radio K Weekly Release Spotlight Mikal Cronin MCII

Track of the Day 5-20-13: Rainbow Arabia

Posted on 5/20/2013

May 20th, 2013

Rainbow Arabia - "He Is Sorcerer"

Rainbow Arabia is from Los Angeles and bringing with them a funky mix of global pop and psychedelic beats. “He Is Sorcerer” is off their newest release, Fm Sushi, which is their second full-length album.

"He Is Sorcerer" -

Tags: Track of the day Rainbow Arabia He Is Sorcerer radio k

Track of the Day 5-16-13: Mikal Cronin

Posted on 5/16/2013

May 16th, 2013

Mikal Cronin - "Weight"

Mikal Cronin’s sophomore album, MCII, dropped on May 7th. Playing all the instruments on the track, Cronin lets listeners in on how he feels about growing up in the 21st century

Tags: Mikal Cronin Weight track of the day radio k

Track of the Day 5-15-13: Big Black Delta

Posted on 5/15/2013

May 15th, 2013

Big Black Delta - "Into the Night"

“Into the Night” is off the band's new self-titled album, which is available now. It brings back the sounds of the early 90's and mixing the synthpop sound of Jonathan Bates.

Tags: Big Black Delta Into the Night track of the day radio k

Track of the Day 5-14-13: Small Black

Posted on 5/14/2013

May 14th, 2013

Small Black - "No Stranger"

"No Stranger" comes off of Limits of Desire, Small Black's follow up to 2010's New Chain. Starting subtly and slowly ramping with stronger synths, the song becomes anthemic. Limits of Desire was dropped on May 14th via Jagjaguwar.

Tags: Small Black No Stranger track of the day radio k

Track of the Day 5-13-13: No Joy

Posted on 5/13/2013

May 13th, 2013

No Joy - "Lunar Phobia"

No Joy are officially back, and anyone who was at The Whole at Coffman Memorial Union on Friday night became well aware of this fact as they opened for METZ, making for a raucous evening of feedback-laden fuzzbox worship. 2010's Ghost Blonde left the shoegazing community wanting more, and 2013 finally saw the release of its follow-up Wait to Pleasure, which was released in April. Turn it up.

"Lunar Phobia" -

Tags: No Joy Lunar Phobia track of the day radio k

Track of the Day 5-9-13: Villagers

Posted on 5/9/2013

May 9th, 2013

Villagers - "The Waves"

Villagers are a project of Ireland's Conor O'Brien. The Waves is a perfect example of the type of tune which sounds relatively simple but a close listen reveals that there is much going on below the surface, which is all revealed during its hectic climax. The album Awayland was released on April 9th.

"The Waves" -

Tags: Villagers Nothing Arrived track of the day radio k

Weekly Release Spotlight: The Knife

Posted on 4/15/2013

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The Knife
Shaking the Habitual

[Mute]

“Let's talk about gender, baby,” Karin Dreijer Andersson sings in the last seconds of “Full of Fire.” That nine-minute lead single was the first we heard from The Knife's follow-up to 2006's Silent Shout, and it was startling. The song lies somewhere between acid and industrial techno, a bleak soundscape even for them. As the song aurally deteriorates, she concludes with “let's talk about you and me.” That statement hints at the conversational and transformative nature of the ninety-six minute triple LP. Shaking the Habitual is baffling in execution, aggressively challenging and immensely rewarding.

Perhaps the most shocking element of Shaking the Habitual is the heavy, minimalistic drone compositions that comprise a full third of the album. The haunting “A Cherry on Top” is the most tuneful of the bunch. Its melody is similar in sentiment to their 2003 single “Heartbeats” and even Animal Collective's ambient “Bees,” albeit it tossed through an urban dystopia several times. Grittier yet is the twenty-minute “Old Dreams Waiting to be Realized,” which closes off the first disc. It's dense material one might expect of contemporary avant-garde musicians such as Kevin Drumm, Machinefabreik, or Yellow Swans. Seven years ago, The Knife were traveling steadily toward the ultimate kinetic precision of minimal techno. 2013 sees them exploring the other extreme.

Of course, dancefloor material dominates, and it is equally intimidating. “Networking” is a sublime microhouse track made threatening in its use of chopped, sputtering vocal samples. A strong handful of songs, notably “Without You My Life Would Be Boring” and “Raging Lung” sound more like The Knife of old, with their calypso-themed drum machines punching out threatening polyrhythms. Percussively, much of it would fit into a Ricardo Villalobos or Shackleton set. In this context, the tracks serve as funky corridors within this multifaceted hall-of-mirrors album.

“You have the most beautiful way of putting one foot in front of the other,” Karin sings to a pitch-shifted version of herself on “Stay Out Here,” a highlight which takes up the entirety of side E. And when the song builds to a frantic chant, she may as well be singing to herself. The enigmatic electropop duo have waited seven years to follow-up their landmark Silent Shout. During that time, their influence has been seen in artists such as The Weeknd, Burial, Grimes, Crystal Castles, and the entire witch house scene. Shaking the Habitual does just what its title says: it shakes the listener from their sleep and pulls the rug out from beneath their expectations.

Shaking the Habitual is bound to be divisive. One website published a glowing review paired with a zero-out-of-five score. Harsh and aggressive, its beauty will be off-putting to many. But I have a feeling that The Knife seek passionate reactions over passive enjoyment, and to this end they have succeeded with grimy colors.

Reviewed by Dylan Hester, Radio K volunteer / Channel K co-host.

Tags: The Knife Shaking The Habitual track of the day radio k

September 21st: Radio K Day in Minneapolis

Posted on 9/14/2012

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Radio K’s past century has been full of Morse Code, The School of the Air, weather reports, and recently, the coolest, newest, best music around. We’ve already started celebrating our new centenarian status, but our coming of age bash is about to get even bigger, and a lot more official, on Radio K Day, September 21st. 

You read right, K friends: “Radio K Day.” Mayor R.T. Rybak and the City of Minneapolis has granted Radio K its very own day. 

How are we going to make it awesome? By starting out our morning, and yours, by having a V.I.P. as our guest DJ on Rock and Roll Over. The guy who made the really legal, really official proclamation happen, Mayor R.T. Rybak, will be joining our regular morning hosts on September 21st, so tune in to hear his official proclamation. 

How are you going to make it awesome?  By joining us in wearing your favorite Radio K tee shirt on September 21st.

Radio K Day can only really begin right here on Radio K and it can only really happen if you celebrate it with us.

View the full proclamation (.pdf)

Tags: radio k day september 21st minneapolis

Weekly Release Spotlight: Fergus & Geronimo

Posted on 8/27/2012

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Fergus & Geronimo
Funky Was the State of Affairs

[Hardly Art]

Garage rockers Jason Kelly and Andrew Savage of Fergus & Geronimo, who hail from Denton Texas and now reside in Brooklyn, have recently dropped their sophomore LP Funky Was the State of Affairs on the Seattle based label Hardly Art. Funky is a conceptual album with running commentary from slacker aliens on the conditions of planet Earth. The album is made up of a collection of short, witty tracks that dive into weird-o intergalactic social commentary bordering on the line of satire, only adding to the band’s originality.

By way of high-energy post-punk jams, comic lyrics and spoken-word skits, Fergus & Geronimo piece together a dystopian sci-fi future. Throughout the album, the duo experiments with genre-hopping -- roaming through indie rock, psych, jazz and synth-pop. A few of the most prominent tracks include “Roman Tick” with its quirky wordplay, “Off the Map” which features a rad bassline, and the dancy number “Marky Move.”

The quirky energy, inventive nature and catchy-as-hell songs are never boring. The concept of the work requires little interpretation, yet succeeds in stimulating ever-entertaining conspiracy theories. Funky Was the State of Affairs is a trip you don’t want to miss, folks.

Written by Zoë Peterson, Radio K volunteer.

Tags: fergus & geronimo fergus and geronimo funky was the state of affairs weekly release spotlight radio k

Weekly Release Spotlight: The Daredevil Christopher Wright

Posted on 7/9/2012

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The Daredevil Christopher Wright
The Nature of Things

[File Under: Music]

In the track "Andrew The Wanderer" - The Daredevil Christopher Wright speak of "The Great big
depression - Machines have won the war/" Machines may have won the war, but these three midwest
born folkies are proving that humans still have so much more to offer than technological perfection.
Their organic and simplistic approach to music is worthy of attention, especially in the age of lush
digital sounds. Even though the group recorded with Daytrotter founder Patrick Stolley and had access
to a full studio, they still decided to focus on creating dense pieces of music solely within their playing
range so they can perform the songs live.

Instead of lavishly laying down beds over beds of background music, the group focused on using the
instruments only to accent each story rather than create an aural landscape. The result leads to an open
ended approach for listeners, inviting you to come along for the journey amongst confident melodies
and subtle yet poignant percussion. As you interact with each song, it's hard to not imagine yourself
running slow motion through the sunsoaked forests somewhere between Eau Clair and Minneapolis.
For as many in the Eau Clair music scene, Minneapolis is a close second as their musical home. The
space between speaks to an area that cares deeply for the heartfelt pieces of art - and "The Nature of
Things" shows that the group's artistic attention is focused on the elements that make up truly great
songs. Whimsical and light enough to hum along with, yet with each passing glance the tunes turn
into deeper and deeper pools of wisdom of what it truly means to be alive in the 21st century. Past the
gadgets, past the social media factories at work - "The Nature of Things" reminds us of a simpler time
amongst a chaotic and stimulus inflated world. They've nailed the sweet approach to songwriting on
previous releases, but this latest album makes a bold statement as to why they'll stay around for much
longer than the average human lifespan.

Much as their contemporaries Fleet Foxes, the harmonizing on their sophomore effort "The Nature
of Things" showcases the intrinsic beauty of the human voice. As energizing as it is calming, the
power of their vocals far exceeds any machine's interaction. Following their 2011 EP "The Long
Suffering Song," The Daredevil Christopher Wright focuses on the simplicity of acoustic sounds, while
performing elegant complex arrangements for seemingly simple songs. With each listen, the thick
sounds presented distill down to the three men composing each song, leading you through this carefully
orchestrated playground of perception. Focus on tracks "Blood Brother," "Andrew The Wanderer," I &
Thou," and "The Animal of Choice" which also appeared on their last EP release.

Written by Caleigh Souhan, Radio K volunteer.

 

Tags: weekly release spotlight the daredevil christopher wright radio k

Weekly Release Spotlight: King Tuff

Posted on 6/18/2012

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King Tuff
King Tuff

[Sub Pop

After receiving nothing but good reviews from punk blogs around the globe for his 2008 debut, Was Dead, King Tuff is back bigger and badder with his self-titled second release on Sub Pop. It comes chock full of suitably titled rock and roll, sass-pop, garage-psych gems.

The album takes off with the aptly named opening track, “Anthem.” The howling guitar is, simply put, pure rock and roll.  You can’t help but raise your fist, tap your foot, and yell along with King (Kyle Thomas) as he sings of love songs that “rot in your head.” The album takes a swift turn into a little dancey-pop tune “Alone & Stoned,” full of sing-along choruses and a punchy snare beat that makes you want to “take a walk on the moon” along with King Tuff and all of his headphone wearing friends.  And before that dance bug has a chance to wiggle itself out of you, “Keep On Movin’ ” comes by to save the day with a hip-shaking ‘50s bass line and King Tuff’s sassy attitude. The album finally takes softer, more sincere turn with “Unusual World.” The synths mixed with the 50s-esque drum beat that seems to inhabit this entire record, transports you to an interstellar (unusual) world where saddle shoes, moon dust, and movie monsters co-exist. Before your mind is left to wander too far, the album’s single, “Bad Thing” bursts into catchy guitar riffs and a chorus that would even make loveliest cookie-making grandmother scream “I’m a baaaaaaaaaaaaaaad thing!” from her knitting chair. The bluesy, grimy tale of a crew of  creepers preying on a woman in “Loser’s Wall” is by far the darkest track on the album and, frankly leaves you feeling a bit used and abused (in a good way). After a few more rockers and foot stompers telling you to “break the rules” and an ode to our favorite celebrities claiming, “they’re foolish and beautiful / they’re the stupid superstars,” King Tuff croons about the “Swamp of Love” in true rock ballad fashion. The album closes with another dangerous dance inducing beat sing-along, “Hit & Run.”

TL;DR

King Tuff will make you dance until your booty hurts, and will make your neighbors hate you (or love you) for never taking it off of your record player.

Written by Chase Mathey, Radio K volunteer

Tags: king tuff weekly release spotlight radio k

New Releases - June 12th, 2012

Posted on 6/12/2012

Every Tuesday we'll keep you updated with new album releases you need to know about.

  • Dent May: Do Things [Paw Tracks]
  • Eternal Tapestry: Dawn in 2 Dimensions [Thrill Jockey]
  • Future of the Left: The Plot Against Common Sense [Xtra Mile]
  • Grace Potter & the Nocturnals: The Lion The Beast The Beat [Hollywood Records]
  • Guided By Voices: Class Clown Spots a UFO [Guided By Voices Inc.]
  • Hot Chip: In Our Heads [Domino]
  • Jukebox the Ghost: Safe Travels [Yep Roc]
  • Metric: Synthetica [Mom + Pop]
  • Mice Parade: Live: England vs. France [FatCat]
  • Rush: Clockwork Angels [Roadrunner]
  • SpaceGhostPurrp: Chronicles of SpaceGhostPurrp [4AD]
  • The Tallest Man on Earth: There's No Leaving Now [Dead Oceans]

 Find these releases at fine independent retailers in your area.

Tags: new releases music radio k

Weekly Release Spotlight: Exitmusic

Posted on 6/11/2012

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Exitmusic
Passage

[Secretly Canadian]

Charging out of the musical hub of Brooklyn, NY, Aleksa Palladino and Devon Church form Exitmusic.  The duo emanates a sound resembling a smoky, ominous Beach House with distinctive atmospheric sonority similar to Sigur Rós.  Exitmusic released their debut album Passage on Secretly Canadian.  The album also features tracks from their previous EP release From Silence, including “The Modern Age.”

“Passage,” the first track, lures you in on the dream-like voyage with its cool, calming vocals and slow thumping piano and kick drum. Pallodino’s shaky vibrato then suddenly detonates accompanied by windy currents of drums and static as Pallodino’s vocals entangle the uproar, “Just don’t let them chase you.” The album transitions into “The Night,” which is as audibly dark as its name.  It is an aching cry that is tragically beautiful with its hopeful vocalizations and twinkling child’s piano keys. It clamors against the dark waves that are emitted throughout all of Passage.  Exitmusic approaches “White Noise” with daring experimentation driven by a thumping drum beat and fuzzy guitars. Pallodino‘s wails reverberate to the point where it sparks out of an overloaded speaker that hazily fades in and out. “The Wanting” is a soothing piece that entrances you like an echoing siren.  Slowly, you can’t help but to drown in this swelling, sonorous ocean.
 
Exitmusic’s Passage draws you in with hauntingly beautiful vocals that fluctuate in volume and dynamic vibrato. Their brooding undercurrent will undoubtedly hook you with its slow swells but will on occasion drop you into feverish chaos that you didn’t see coming.

Written by Abbie Gobeli, Radio K volunteer.

Tags: exitmusic passage radio k weekly release spotlight

Programming Change: Retiring "Go Low" and "By Any Means"

Posted on 6/4/2012

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Effective after this week, Radio K will retire two of its acclaimed specialty shows, the R&B show "Go Low" which aired Thursday nights from 8-10pm and the new-millennium hip-hop show "By Any Means" which aired Wednesday nights from 8-10pm. DJ Howard Womack will be transferring from the University of Minnesota to a recording arts university in Florida.

"As many of you already know, this week will be the last week that I'll be doing "By Any Means", "Go Low", or anything on Radio K.  I'm transferring to Full Sail University down in Winter Park, FL this summer to start working on a bachelor's degree in Recording Arts.  My plan is to become a studio engineer in the music industry.  Thus, the decision to end my shows this week was a mutual one between myself and the directors/managers at Radio K." - Howard Womack, host of "Go Low" and "By Any Means".

Radio K will air traditional variety programming during these time slots. Expect the creation of multiple new specialty shows within the coming months.

Tags: go low by any means radio k

Weekly Release Spotlight: Lower Dens

Posted on 6/4/2012

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Lower Dens
Nootropics

[Ribbon Music]

Indie rock is a tough world in which to exist in 2012. Too many of its players take a slightly overdriven guitar, plunk out some major chords in common time, and call it a day once they've gotten a predictable haircut to match the music.

Lower Dens have decidedly placed themselves outside of this realm. First of all, they've done their homework. Driving rhythms with a polite hustle underpin many of the tracks present here, a clear nod to the drumming style present in Germany's Krautrock movement of the late 60's and 70's. I could count all the drums fills present on Nootropics on one hand.  Layers appear over the rhythm, bury it, but never stop it from chugging along. Those layers are frequently composed of organic sounds pulled from what seems to be a myriad of guitar effects pedals and obscure synthesizer settings. Such tones make it clear that much time was spent in the recording studio, also evidenced by the unique textures created by multiple vocal overdubs singing in different tambres to create an occasionally otherworldy vocal presence.

Surrealism seems to be a key theme to this album. It's apparent from the cover artwork that it's intended for a late night. What first struck me was its slight similarity to the cover art for David Lynch's psychotic 2006 film Inland Empire. While it doesn't have the "freak out" moments in that film which actually did give me nightmares for a few evenings, it would be totally appropriate to occupy the sonic space of the film where the characters wander around mysterious grimey urban areas at odd hours. There's an incredible uneasiness present when they want it to be, such as on the album's closer, "In the End is the Beginning".

The album is mellow, sure, and if you don't pay attention you might pass it off as another indie dream-pop release. I ask that you keep those ears alert and attentive while absorbing Nootropics as its detailed and rich production will reveal a ghostly sensibility to the album that may be lost on the casual listener but if noticed will make the album an entirely more enjoyable experience. It must be hidden in the reverb.

Tom Steffes is Radio K's Digital Media Producer.

Tags: lower dens nootropics radio k weekly release spotlight

Weekly Release Spotlight: Beach House

Posted on 5/29/2012

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Beach House
Bloom

[Sub Pop]

Bloom is the fourth LP from the indie dream pop duo Beach House, and the first release since their 2010 breakthrough album Teen Dream.  Since forming in Baltimore, Maryland in 2004 Beach House has continued to gain following and has gone from opening for big name acts like Vampire Weekend and Animal Collective to becoming one of the most popular indie bands of date and headlining their own sold out shows.    

In a Pitchfork interview, Alex Scally stated, “I hate it when bands change between records…that’s not how we work.” The same drum machine beat throughout the song, Scally’s simple yet melodic riffs, Victoria Legrand’s hauntingly beautiful vocals, and the appropriate tone humming in the background has been Beach House’s style since day one and Bloom isn’t looking to change that.  This album manages to succeed where many bands fail, in that it keeps the same sound that made people love the band in the first place while somehow managing to sound completely new and interesting.  

“Myth” opens Bloom the same way that “Zebra” opened Teen Dream.  An inviting oscillating melody starts and the drum machine kicks in to build up Legrand’s vocals.  Melodies build on melodies and some slide guitar gets introduced and it all culminates into an enticing trance for the rest of the song.  “Wild” introduces a rare hook into the band’s lyrical index when Legrand softly shouts the words “Go on pretending”.  The lyrically loaded track “New Year” proves just how deep this album goes with its captivating melodies and phrases like, “All I wanted comes in colors”.  Also as a special treat there is a hidden track about six minutes after the last track, “Irene”, ends.

Beach House is a great band to try out for those who are fans of or are looking to get into dream pop, and Bloom is a great place to start.  The songs are beautiful and border the line of catchy without being generic.  Each track is very listenable and the lyrics and layered melodies will ensure that listeners continue to hear something new even after multiple plays.

Written by A.J. Kellogg, Radio K volunteer

 

 


 

 

It's safe to say that Beach House's fourth album Bloom has been one of the most anticipated albums of 2012 so far. They've been gaining steam at a steady pace over the course of their previous three LPs, with Teen Dream finding positions on many "Best of 2010" lists. Bloom feels like Teen Dream's dark side. It feels like what Teen Dream turns in to at night when nobody is watching. The two openers, "Myth" and "Wild", are unquestionably the group's most sinister numbers thus far, but they have a sexy side about them too that was hinted at on previous Beach House releases but finally comes to fruition here.

What's made Beach House so consistently satisfying is that they stick to their distinctive formula and revel in it. It's comforting to put on a few tracks of Bloom and be greeted by their signature archaic and crackling drum beats lured from the exact same synth-organ they were using 5 or 6 years ago. An iconic reverb-laden Fender guitar tone and choir of Victoria Legrands is all that is necessary to fill out the material and make it unmistakably Beach House. New on Bloom however is an emphasis on pulsing low frequencies that make this collection of tunes feel heavier than previous releases. It feels less lazy and more urgent. The group do slip in to their more casual mood during a few choice moments, such as the ascending chorus to "The Hours" with its almost sassy attitude. It almost seems like what some call a "hairbrush song", one that girls sing in front of the mirror with their hairbrush. Victoria Legrand sounds as if she's practically mocking you for not singing along, or giving you a knowing smirk if you cave in and join her.

The group's name seemed so appropriate on early releases which sounded like the sun just beginning to rise over a rickety wooden shack surrounded by sand. Waves gently lap up on a discarded Stratocaster and a Roland Rhythm 77 analog rhythm machine to coax sunbleached melodies out of them. On Bloom the sun has set long ago allowing the stars to shine down on the now sand-encrusted gear to seduce these haunting melodies up towards the heavens.

Written by Tom Steffes, Digital Media Producer

Tags: beach house bloom weekly release spotlight radio k

St. Vincent and Shearwater @ the First Avenue Mainroom

Posted on 5/21/2012

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St. Vincent and Shearwater @ the First Avenue Mainroom
May 12th, 2012 

Final examinations made their long-awaited exit and summer was officially inaugurated on May 12th, 2012 with Shearwater and St. Vincent to help celebrate at First Avenue.  

Shearwater opened with dark falsettos ringing in, “You As You Were” complemented by a thriving syncopated beat. Shearwater gloriously roars its outstanding stage presence and communication within the group that draws you in to pay closer attention. Lead singer and songwriter, Johnathan Meiburg crouches down to tune his guitar fixedly listening.   Slowly, a smile unravels across his face while Shearwater’s members exchange wild-eyed glances while slightly upturning their lips like they’re about to erupt in laughter like they have some sort of inside joke. You know these guys are enjoying what they do according to Meiburg,  “It’s an honor for us to play here at First Avenue.”

Multi-colored lights and flickering strobes cloak Annie Clark of St. Vincent as she enters with the highly charged “Marrow,” known for its sharp beats and bassy undercurrent. Clark articulated her movements in addition to her music as she glided across the stage in a twitchy, robotic, but strangely graceful manner. Towards the end of the night, she treaded along the edge of the stage, swinging her microphone, then nodded at one of the staff.  All of the sudden, she jumped on his shoulders blaring “Krokodil,” a track from St. Vincent’s Record Store Day release. Annie Clark held on to my friend and I for balance at one point and then to our surprise, she stage dove into the crowd and hands reached up to carry her throughout the mainroom’s sea of fans.

Written by Abbie Gobeli, Radio K volunteer

Tags: st. vincent shearwater radio k review first avenue music

Weekly Release Spotlight: Breton

Posted on 5/21/2012

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Breton
Other People's Problems

[FatCat]

If someone told you that English electro-pop gloom rockers Breton (named after the French father of Surrealism André Breton, not to be confused with the delicious crackers) were just now getting around to releasing their full length debut LP, you might be surprised. Since releasing their first EP in 2010, the London-based group has been steady at work. Now a full 5-piece band, Breton put all those pieces in motion and more on Other People’s Problems, out on Fat Cat Records. With assistance in the form of outsourced-then-chopped-and-rearranged piano and strings by German composer and fellow label mate Hauschka, Breton has served up 11 tracks full of sonic depth, intermittent intentional noise, and awkward dancing potential.

The record launches listeners into the interesting style of the band on the song “Pacemaker,” wherein beneath a deliberate pause lasting almost 15 seconds fades in the Frankenstein’d strings and low-key dance beat that populate much of the record. Breton frontman Roman Rappak’s layered vocals and distorted lyrics make the strings sound creepier than they might otherwise, with tracks like “Oxides” and “Edward the Confessor” carrying on this audio imitation of the cloudy skies in London, the video for the latter doing so quite literally.

The stand-out songs on the record have to be “Governing Correctly” and “Ghost Note,” both of which make use of multiple layers to bring out a blend of British alt dance rock like Bloc Party and the smooth style of a Mystery Jets mellow number. The low bass line on “Governing Correctly” works well with the toe-tapping digital drumbeat, and the bouncy vocals nearly disguise the melodrama in the lyrics. “Ghost Note” brings a more synth-style, combined with muffled vocals, a Daft Punk-esque sustain breakdown and the ever-so-slight hint of a triangle in the background.  

For people who have always wanted a bit more Crystal Method in their Editors, the experience that is Breton’s debut record will not disappoint. There is something for everyone on Other People’s Problems, and with each new listen you may pick up nuances that were missed the first time around. It’s the LP that keeps on giving, and that sounds like a pretty good problem to have. 

Written by Noel Clark, Radio K and Culture Queue volunteer

Tags: breton other people's lives weekly release spotlight radio k kuom

Meshuggah @ the First Avenue Mainroom

Posted on 5/20/2012

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Meshuggah @ the First Avenue Mainroom
May 13th, 2012 

Last Sunday, Swedish metal band Meshuggah took the stage at First Avenue in a brutal display of what has brought them to be one of the more respected acts in metal today. Joining them on tour was Poland's technical death metal standard-bearers Decapitated and Georgia band Baroness. Rarely must one distinguish between America's Georgia and Europe's Georgia, but with two other European acts, it makes sense to emphasise that Baroness hails from Savannah.

Unfortunately, my mental autopilot got the best of me, and I failed to realize that the show started a couple hours before I thought it did. Because of this, I didn't get to see Decapitated or Baroness - a sincere disappointment - but I got to see about an hour of the headliner's performance, which very much met the expectations of the band's reputation.

From the very beginning, you can tell why the band is considered to be one of the forefathers of the genre Djent. Djent is a really cool name for a genre because it is derived from the onomatopoeic description of the high-gain, palm-muted guitar tones that Meshuggah is known for. On display were thundering bass lines, commanding guitar lines, and double-bass rhythms that can only be described as dozens of bags of popcorn popping in perfect rhythmic unison.

The show evoked a feeling that is a commendable aspect of lots of metal and many other forms of music. Meshuggah shirks pleasant-sounding melodies in favor of a loud, abrasive sound, but in this disharmony, there is sort of an elegant craftsmanship. The rhythms they play really resonate with the listener. This effect usually manifests itself with toe-tapping, but in this instance, it's headbanging. The metal fan can't help but at least bob his or her head to the music, and that says a lot about the band's skill to take an otherwise ugly-sounding style of music and make it fairly sophisticated. The shear technical precision of the musicians, the varied time signatures, and the one-of-a-kind syncopation they use connects with the metal fan on a subconscious, visceral level, where the heart of great music pumps like double bass drums on stage.

While Meshuggah has a great style and great songs, they suffer, I believe, from what I like to call the AC/DC syndrome, meaning that all of their songs sound more-or-less like one song, but it's a GREAT song. This is a criticism I often have with various metal acts, especially those which prefer the technical side of the genre. For a band, however, that chooses to ignore traditional melodies and hooks, this aspect may not be much of a detriment. The technical prowess that the band has and the way they evoke (sometimes aggressive) physical reactions in the listeners points to their staying-power as a titan of metal.

Written by Ross Crandall, Radio K volunteer

Tags: meshuggah review first avenue radio k

Black Keys and Arctic Monkeys @ the Target Center

Posted on 5/17/2012

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Black Keys and Arctic Monkeys @ The Target Center
May 15th, 2012 

It was a night of showmanship last night at the Target Center. The Arcitc Monkeys opened for headliner, The Black Keys, and wouldn’t let a soul sit down – not that they wanted to. In fact, just as my mom tried to take a seat, frontman Alex Turner introduced “Don’t Sit Down ‘Cause I’ve Moved Your Chair”. That seemed to be the theme throughout the night, as Turner and the Monkeys’ incredible stage presence – complete with spins, dives, and knee-slides – preceded a remarkable show from The Black Keys. It’s easy to forget that the Keys have such a vast repertoire, but we were swiftly reminded as they gracefully swan-dove in and out of their first five releases, occasionally surfacing to play some hits from their most recent albums, Brothers and El Camino. As they closed their set with “Lonely Boy”, I was speechlessly glad to be able to see and participate in a 15,000-person semi-choreographed dance taken straight from the music video for the song. After a teasingly long absence, singer and guitarist Dan Auerbach, and drummer Pat Carney returned to the stage to finish with three tracks, ending in a guitar-shredding, extended rendition of “I Got Mine” off of their 2008 album, Attack & Release. I believe I speak for the entire arena when I say I left with a strong feeling of satisfaction at their performance. Bravo, boys.

Written by Alex Dziura, Radio K Communications Manager

Tags: black keys arctic monkeys review show radio k kuom

New Releases - May 15th, 2012

Posted on 5/16/2012

Every Tuesday we'll keep you updated with new album releases you need to know about.

  • Beach House - Bloom [Sub Pop]
  • Best Coast - The Only Place [Mexican Summer]
  • The Cribs - In the Belly of the Brazen Bull [Wichita]
  • Garbage - Not Your Kind of People [Stunvolume]
  • Hot Water Music - Exister [Rise]
  • Violens - TRUE [Slumberland]
  • White Fence - Family Perfume Vol. 2 [Woodsist]

Tags: new releases music radio k

Grouplove @ The Varsity

Posted on 5/16/2012

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Grouplove and Reptar @ The Varsity Theater
May 16th, 2012 

Tuesday night's Grouplove show at the Varsity was an indicator of a band rapidly gaining steam. Their last appearance here, also at the Varsity, was only 8 months ago and had, as frontman Christian Zucconi remarked during the show, "probably 100 people" at it. Their debut full-length, Never Trust a Happy Song, had only been released a month earlier. The track "Tongue Tied" went to be featured in an iPod commercial and gained heavy rotation on various radio stations. The group was more than happy to let other members take the spotlight at various points during the set, playing the raucous "Spun" sung by guitarist Andrew Wessen (who was playing a 10-string ukelele), and "Chloe" sung by bassist Sean Gadd. The set closed with "Slow" which saw the band flex their upgraded budget that has come along with their increased popularity, utilizing colorful glowing microphone stands for each member and pulsing strobe lights. It was no surprise that the encore featured the aforementioned song that many came to see, "Tongue Tied", which sparked a substantial response from this new fanbase. It was during this encore that Zucconi hastily splashed his mug with some dark blue facepaint before appropriately launching in to what has become the group's signature song, "Colours". After now having seen them twice I can say with confidence that there aren't many bands around that display the enthusiasm and infectious positive energy that Grouplove are overflowing with. Catch them next time you can, but beware, I predict it'll be at a larger venue with a steeper price because they show no signs of slowing down.

Written by Tom Steffes, Radio K Volunteer

Tags: grouplove reptar the varsity varsity theater radio k show review

Neon Indian @ the First Avenue Mainroom

Posted on 5/10/2012

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Neon Indian @ First Avenue Mainroom
May 4th, 2012 

It’s a muggy, Minneapolis night at First Avenue and before Neon Indian takes the stage, Austin, TX duo Silent Diane opens with an electrocuting, space-age sound that blanketed the crowd with a heavy layer of synth. Up next: Lemonade, a band too sweet for my taste. Lemonade is comprised of three guys with poppy drums, bubbly synth chords, and bright vocals whining out lyrics such as “Put your cool hands on me,” which made me reminisce about my middle school days when kids listened to bands like Simple Plan.  Alas, the opener storm passed and Neon Indian graced the stage with an astronomical presence highlighted by fog machines and psychedelic colored visuals projected in the main room.  Everyone in the audience danced along with frontman, Alan Palomo as he performed electronically charged songs such as, “Fallout,” “Polish Girl,” and “Deadbeat Summer.”  The audience became pretty rowdy as people crowd surfed towards the stage.  My friend and I had the misfortune of getting hit in the head by these surfers multiple times.  But the throbbing headaches were worth Alan asking us if we were all right and giving us a nod saying, “These last few songs are for you.”

Written by Abbie Gobeli, Radio K volunteer

Tags: neon indian first avenue review radio k

New Releases - May 8th, 2012

Posted on 5/8/2012

Every Tuesday we'll keep you updated with new album releases you need to know about.

  • My Bloody Valentine - Loveless, Isn't Anything, EPs 1988-1991 (Reissues) - [Sony] (5-7-12)
  • Here We Go Magic - A Different Ship [Secretly Canadian]
  • Led Er Est - The Diver [Sacred Bones]
  • J Mascis - Heavy Blanket [Ouxed Battery]
  • M83 - Reunion EP [Mute]
  • Moon Duo - Mazes Remixed [Sacred Bones]
  • OFF! - OFF! [Vice]
  • S. Carey - Hoyas [Jajaguwar]
  • Silversun Pickups - Neck of the Woods [Dangerbird]

Tags: new releases music radio k new music

Radio K Sits Down with President Kaler

Posted on 5/7/2012

President Kaler talked us through his Top 7s on Rock & Roll Over this morning.

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Top 7:  Things you’ve learned being president of a Big Ten university

  • I miss teaching
  • How to milk a cow
  • Believe it or not, my favorite colors actually ARE Maroon and Gold 
  • Radio K is the best radio station in the world
  • Bucky Badger is beyond ugly
  • We must keep a lid on tuition and a lid on student debt so that all of the state's top students can learn here, grow here and keep this state prosperous.
  • That I have the greatest job in the world

Top 7:  Songs to listen to with the windows rolled down

  • "Born in the USA" by Bruce Springsteen 
  • "Luckenbach Texas" by Waylon Jennings
  • "Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain" by Willie Nelson
  • "Proud Mary" by Creedence Clearwater Revival
  • "Fancy" by Reba McEntire
  • "California Girls" by Beach Boys (or any other Beach Boys song)
  • "Hotel California" by Eagles

Tags: kaler radio k culture queue rock and roll over

Weekly Release Spotlight: Spiritualized

Posted on 5/7/2012

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Spiritualized
Sweet Heart Sweet Light

[Fat Possum]

Jason Pierce, principal member of Spiritualized returns after a four-year hiatus with Sweet Heart Sweet Light recently released on Fat Possum Records.  Spiritualized was born in 1990 in the United Kingdom after Pierce split from his former band, Spacemen 3.  Over the past twenty years, Spiritualized has evolved with an ever-changing membership; Pierce being the only constant member. Spiritualized is usually characterized as having a predominate space-rock sound as heard in significant albums such Lazer Guided Melodies (1992), Ladies and Gentlemen, We are Floating in Space (1997), and Let it Come Down (2001). Their sixth full-length album, Sweet Heart Sweet Light takes a step back from Spiritualized’s space-aged days, landing them on a earthier, raw sound. 

Spiritualized has formulated a tradition where he initiates his albums off with a small overture. He begins Sweet Heart Sweet Light with the simply titled, “Huh?”. You may scratch your head at such a curious title leaving your mind to wander through a fairy-tale swell of violins, synthesized twinkles, and faint whistles to ease your ears. Then, an unexpected swarm of accentuated musical layers reverberate through your speakers with a heavy guitar strumming explosion sprinkled with Pierce’s jagged edged voice similar to that of Liam Gallagher of Oasis of the lengthy, nine minute “Hey Jane.”  The album slows down to “Get What You Deserve” echoing a white-noise static that filters through a slow swelling string orchestra.  The track seems to drag on with its mellow drive and repetitive lyrics for a while. But then you’re in for a surprise when all of the sudden, the ending blasts you awake with its rapid additions of rattles and drum beats haphazardly falling through each incoming arc and trough of string orchestration.  The pinnacle song, “I Am What I Am” grabs you by the shirt collar with its clattering tambourines and rolling piano rumbling underneath.  Back-up singers vocalize in gospel fashion to amp up the attitude behind the song title’s statement.

Spiritualized took a great risk turning away from their infamous space rock synth but came out successful taking you on a journey littered with detailed melodic tiers accentuated with a gentle swelling string orchestra, white noise buzz, and gospel vocalizations.  Spiritualized’s sixth album, Sweet Heart Sweet Light is currently out on Fat Possum Records.

Tags: weekly release spotlight radio k spiritualized sweet heart sweet light fat possum

New Releases - May 1st, 2012

Posted on 5/1/2012

Every Tuesday we'll keep you updated with new album releases you need to know about.

  • Ty Segall and White Fence - Hair [Drag City] (4-30-12)
  • Ariel Pink & R. Stevie Moore - Ku Klux Glam [Stroll On] (4-30-12)
  • JK Flesh - Posthuman [3by3] (4-30-12)
  • The Brian Jonestown Massacre - Aufheben [a' Records]
  • Bright Eyes - Fevers and Mirrors (Reissue) [Saddle Creek]
  • Bright Eyes - There Is No Beginning to the Story EP (Reissue) [Saddle Creek]
  • Father John Misty - Fear Fun [Sub Pop]
  • Light Asylum - In Tension [Mexican Summer]
  • Lower Dens - Nootropics [Ribbon Music]
  • The Lumineers - The Lumineers [Dualtone]
  • Santigold - Master of My Make Believe [Downtown/Atlantic]
  • Sea of Bees - Orangefarben [Team Love]
  • Spinto Band - Shy Pursui [Spintonic]
  • Woods & Amps for Christ - Spilt LP [Shrimper]

Tags: new releases albums music radio k

Weekly Release Spotlight: THEEsatisfaction

Posted on 4/30/2012

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THEEsatisfaction
awE naturalE

[Sub Pop]

THEESatisfaction seem to have a pretty good handle on what it takes to make the grade at Radio K.  The Seattle based hip-hop duo, consisting of Stasia Irons and Catherine Harris-White, offer up a sound on awE naturalE that is hypnotic, diverse and expository; with lyrics that speak to anyone who happens upon the group’s debut release on Sub Pop.  The Seattle musicians consider their music an ‘extension of themselves,’ releasing songs that pose questions while addressing topics that range from “needs” to “sweat.”  As the divas that comprise THEESatisfaction prepare for list of shows in May, awE naturalE finds itself the focus of this week’s Weekly Release Spotlight. 

THEESatisfaction’s debut full-length release draws inspiration from numerous genres of music, fostering a sound unlike any you’ll hear on radio today.  Few vocalists compare with these two; “Cat,” a singer who provides a mellow stream sound through which “Stas” maneuvers, dropping lyrics that cut straight to the point.  The tracks on awE naturalE are constructed with mathematical precision, weaving harmonies with beats twice looped to create a sound that is mysterious and driven.  It’s a Seattle sound, one that moves; similar at times to the drone of a sitar. Tracks from awE natural seem to pass unnoticed, until a new beat with a new message signifies what’s up.  The songs on awE natural demonstrate THEESatisfaction’s keen sense of structure in music.  As artists, Cat and Stas stray from typical song writing techniques, using technology to create vibe that lures one to further explore their sound.

It’s difficult to categorize the THEESatisfaction, and the sound of awE naturalE, due to the pair’s unique approach to making music.  The upbeat tempo and variety of environments you’ll encounter while listening to awE naturalE are pleasing to both the ear and the psyche.  Whether THEESatisfaction is performing on the road, or creating a new sound in their living room, Radio K looks forward hearing more from Cat and Stas in the future. We also hope you enjoy this week’s Weekly Release Spotlight artist as much as we have!  

Written by Todd Crotty, Radio K volunteer and Rock & Roll Over host

With their mellow funk beat revival sound, Stasia Irons and Catherine Harris-White emerge onto the scene as THEESatisfaction. Based in Seattle, WA, the incredibly dynamic duo are not afraid to give listeners a deep, distinct dose of their Pacific Northwest style on their debut LP, awE naturalE out on Sub Pop Records. They know you like it, and they know you are going to dance whether you want to or not. 

The record is full of atmospheric sounds. On the song “Earthseed” we get a melancholic piano pounding out an unsettlingly catchy melody to the slightly scattered drumbeat. The last 30 seconds of the track spit creepily politicized lyrics that match the tone of the song perfectly, with the kicker, “THEESatisfaction could give a UHHH about a fascist.” Then, as if you just woke from a bad dream to find yourself at a classy salon-style party, we arrive at “QueenS”, the first single from awE naturalE. The beat is almost like a calming alarm clock, followed by the words, “leave your face at the door, turn off your swag, check your bag, from you limbs to your Timbs, get down… but whatever you do, don’t funk with my groove.” The smartly-named “Enchantruss” sounds like the background music to a haunted rollercoaster ride. The looping, chant-like vocal back beat is accompanied by mentions of Orson Welles, time-travelling nightmares, Archie Bunker and Black Jesus. If you took the best Erykah Badu and Common records and melted the vinyl down, what you would be left with when it cooled is this collection of 13 tracks.

On the whole, THEESatisfaction drops the needle on an energetic yet smooth ride through a debut record that shows great promise and demonstrates skill and passion. Stas and Cat fill the peaks and the grooves on awE naturalE with their sultry voices, honest emotion and clever style. 

Written by Noel Clark, Radio K and Culture Queue volunteer

Tags: theesatisfaction au naturale radio k weekly release spotlight

New Releases - April 24th, 2012

Posted on 4/24/2012

Every Tuesday we'll keep you updated with new album releases you need to know about.

  • Actress - R.I.P. [Honest Jon's]
  • The Dandy Warhols - This Machine [The End]
  • Jack White - Blunderbuss [Third Man/Columbia]
  • Suckers - Candy Salad [Frenchkiss]
  • Toro y Moi - June 2009 [Carpark]

Tags: new releases albums music radio k

Weekly Release Spotlight: Xiu Xiu

Posted on 4/23/2012

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Xiu Xiu
Always

[Polyvinyl/Bella Union]

 

 

Tags: xiu xiu always radio k weekly release spotlight

Weekly Release Spotlight: Bear In Heaven

Posted on 4/18/2012

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Bear In Heaven
I Love You, It's Cool

[Hometapes]

Space haters: beware. I Love You, It’s Cool had me headed toward a blissful black hole oblivion. If you could describe the three full-length releases from the 2/3 Georgian (home of The Big Chicken) turned Brooklyn-based trio in terms of dinner courses, their first LP Red Bloom of the Boom (2007) would be the bread and butter, Beast Rest Forth Mouth (2009) the hors d’oeuvres, and their latest, the syrupy dessert that leaves you wanting more. That’s your queue to pick up the needle on your record player and replay the discography over again, starting with dessert. 

I Love You, It’s Cool, out on Hometapes, begins gravitating toward that blissful black hole oblivion I mentioned and really draws the listener in with the second track, “Reflection of You.” Imagine yourself as Alice in Wonderland falling in that darned tree after chasing that darned bunny, but instead you descend twinkling and repeatedly singing, “Dance with me,” with John Maus. Walking through the hollowed universe, you are then greeted by Corey Heart in darkness, and sunglasses. Upon first listen, you’ll understand, but after two or three more listens, the similarities you first observed disappear almost completely. “Sinful Nature,” is up next, my favorite song on the ten track album attributed to the catchy riffs, or perhaps the wave-like sound making a visible impression on my dancing techniques. There’s that black hole again. “Cool Light” may leave you hanging and your grooving will suffer, but all is well again once “Kiss Me Crazy” begins. Jon Philpot (awesome last name, by the way, even more so as a tea drinker himself), who first formed the group as a solo artist, shines his vocals best in this number. “World of Freakout” has an incredible buildup mid-song keeping your ear follicles on the edge of their eardrum and leads into “Warm Heart.” Oddly noticeable, the synths made me want to march for an electronic instrument army with reverb megaphone in hand. Second to last, “Space Remains” seems to hail from the dada movement with layers beyond layers almost sounding too overwhelming for taste, but the title leaves room for interpretation. Closing the album with six minute track “Sweetness & Sickness,” an almost haunting echo feels as if it were circling you as your body leaves the other end of the black hole, fittingly. 

Tracks from I Love You, It’s Cool may come off too spacey or psychedelic as individual songs for some, so I suggest listening from beginning to end, and surely an adventure is to be had in that world of ‘space’ you used to describe its sound. As a whole, the album felt more mind stimulating and sound-rich than any other album I’ve heard in 2012 thus far. The album is out now on Hometapes. 

Written by Leah Garaas, Radio K volunteer

Tags: bear in heaven i love you it's cool radio k weekly release spotlight

New Releases - April 17th, 2012

Posted on 4/18/2012

Every Tuesday we'll keep you updated with new album releases you need to know about.

  • Moonface - With Sinaii: Heartbreaking Bravery [Jagjaguwar]
  • Maps & Atlases - Beware and Be Grateful [Barsuk]
  • Battles - Gross Dlop Remix [Warp]

Tags: new releases albums music radio k

Adds - April 9th, 2012

Posted on 4/12/2012

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Zammuto                                                                              Xiu Xiu
Zammuto                                                                              Always
[Temporary Residence]                                                     [Polyvinyl/Bella Union]

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Screaming Females                                                          Sarah Jaffe
Ugly                                                                                     The Body Wins
[Don Giovanni]                                                                   [Kirtland]

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M. Ward                                                                               Moonface
A Wasteland Companion                                                Heartbreaking Bravery
[Merge]                                                                                [Jagjaguwar]

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Is/Is                                                                                        Dr. John
III                                                                                            Locked Down
                                                                                               [Nonesuch]

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Devin
Romancing
[Frenchkiss]

 

Tags: new releases music radio k kuom

New Releases - April 10th, 2012

Posted on 4/10/2012

Every Tuesday we'll keep you updated with new album releases you need to know about.

  • M. Ward - A Wasteland Companion [Merge]
  • Trampled by Turtles - Stars and Satellites [Banjodad]
  • Black Dice - Mr. Impossible [Ribbon]
  • Kishi Bashi - 151a [Joyful Noice]
  • Choir of Young Believers - Rhine Gold [Ghostly International]
  • Zambri - House of Baasa [Kanine]

Tags: new releases albums music radio k