concert shenanigans: ESCORT

reppin: brooklyn, usa // escort records // 2006 - present

sounds like: being up all night and having a story to tell at each place you land at

escort | 6.12.17 | the empty bottle, chicago | @thefaakehipster

escort | 6.12.17 | the empty bottle, chicago | @thefaakehipster

last album drop: animal nature (oct 2015)

featuring: adeline // dan // eugene

escort | 6.12.17 | the empty bottle, chicago | @thefaakehipster

escort | 6.12.17 | the empty bottle, chicago | @thefaakehipster

Got your dancing shoes on? Okay, good. These funky dance warriors have been killing it for over 10 years now and at first sight of them live, your feet will move. They have no choice to even if your brain says no. A delicious blend of funk, pop, soul and just good ol’ beats, Escort is a plate of dancy good times that don’t stop. Back in the early 2000s, Dan and Eugene were rocking out to some house samples when they decided to start making some records with the spirit of those samples. While certainly floating in that “disco” territory, there is a fresh, new vibe with them that destroys any “old feels.” There sound is current while throwing a variety of slow and upbeat jams in your face. Popping them in your ears, gives you an immediate sense of confidence and feeling that you want to dance like nobody's watching...and trust me because I have been caught doing it.

escort | 6.12.17 | the empty bottle, chicago | @thefaakehipster

escort | 6.12.17 | the empty bottle, chicago | @thefaakehipster

Let’s scoot back in time just a few days as they took the Empty Bottle stage on a hot ass Monday night. It did not stop the humans from piling in as well. Their presence was immediately felt as the bass line kicked in, the sequenced dancing ensued and it was just a straight up party from there. For a little over an hour, the heat continued to build, the sweat poured off everyone, but no one seemed to care. Arms flailing about and smiles all around as they moved from track to track. When a band can grab an audience like that, you can see the look in everyone’s eyes and the connection is felt. While Escort does not land in the category of new music, they are a go to in any sort of “i just want to dance” situation. Real humans playing real instruments that make you want to get groovy.

suggested listening experience: any and all dance parties // any and all after parties // walking down the sidewalk like no one's watching

listens: cocaine blues // body talk // actor out of work // animal nature // if you say so // barbarians // starlight

escort // fb // spotify // sc // twitter // ig

new music: SALT CATHEDRAL

reppin: brooklyn, usa via columbia // unsigned

sounds like: being on an outdoor dance floor in the middle of the rainforest

salt cathedral | photo cred: villagevoice.com

salt cathedral | photo cred: villagevoice.com

latest album drop: “big waves / small waves” debut album out in 2017

featuring: juli (hooli) // nico

salt cathedral | photo cred: newyorklatinculture.com

salt cathedral | photo cred: newyorklatinculture.com

Where did these two come from? I mean, I know they are posted up in NYC, but they shot out of a cannon last year and are very much set to make that “boom” noise this year. Before we get into their completely revamped sound, we must go back to 2014 (probably earlier, my sources are thin) to set the story up. Once a rock outfit they were called Il Abanico with a very in your face guitar pop sound. Whatever caused the change of heart, I do not know; but they made a name switch and introduced more of a dancey vibe with synths and keyboards. Originally from Columbia, these two put the weird in music and are not apologizing for it. Their last EP was out in 2014, “Oom Vet,” was exactly that weirdness we all need in our ears. Crazy samples mixed with that soothing voice of Juli wrapped in between slower, groovier beats. Fast forward to now...you better believe they are getting weirder, groovier and….weirder. The good weird, duh.

I'll admit it, just about every "with it" publication that I can think of has already written about these two...and for good reason because they are quite tasty. They have over 250 shows under their belt and will be heading to a few festivals this summer. From what I gathered with the latest tunes, picture yourself in a Jamaican Dance Hall with a slew of different collaborators from Assassin to Lee Scratch Perry to Matisyahu. The pop gets your feet moving and then you are all the sudden taken into this tropical sort of vibe, and yes, Juli’s vocals are still soothing as fuck. I sadly left SXSW before they performed but was told by a birdie they killed it with the performance, energy and lights...the full package if you will. I think it is time to sink your teeth into this duo because something tells me they have just scratched the surface of weird...and I like weird.

salt cathedral | photo cred: saltcathedralmusic.com

salt cathedral | photo cred: saltcathedralmusic.com

suggested listening experience: anything on the dance floor // strolling through the street on a summer day // beach hanging

new music: WILDLIFE CONTROL

reppin: brooklyn, usa // san francisco, usa // 2011 - present

sounds like: an escape to your favorite place (seriously, not just one place for all, your personal happy place).

wildlife control | photo cred: thedeletebin.com

wildlife control | photo cred: thedeletebin.com

last album drop: particles ep (april 2016)

featuring: neil sauh // sumul sauh

That euphoric sound; the blend of the distorted instruments and the complimentary vocals that brings a song to that sot where you feel free...and can let go. Even more, these guys are more than just music. Wildlife Control got their start a short time ago in 2011 and immediately made some noise with their first track, “analog or digital.” The music video went viral and these dudes were officially on the map. That catapulted their status, gained some following out east as they turned it into some light touring across the country. Their self titled album was released in July of 2012...and that is where their unique sound began to take notice. The crafted beats with just enough pop landed them some very positive reviews. Personally, I love the deep and low bass. While getting noticed is one thing, separating from yourself from the rest is special. That is what began to take shape as we fast forward to now.

wildlife control | photo cred: thedelimagazine.com

wildlife control | photo cred: thedelimagazine.com

While there were only a few singles released over the coming years, it was clear that these two were at work trying to create something different. Say hello to one the better 3 song EPs you’ll come across as of recent. Every intro is carefully crafted, the speed of their joints really meshes well with their lyrics and vocals. You can pick up slight sounds of keyboards and other shenanigans that really do a great job of filling out riffs and the song as a whole. It is so obvious how beautifully they evolved from a more poppy sound to their own musical heartbeat. I swear, each time I listen to a track like “subtract” i escape into my place and just start rocking out wherever I am...luckily I don’t sweat like you would at a show. So, this album is composed of three movements, if you will, illusion, subtract and creature. To complement the tracks, they released a 12 minute film (see below), also entitled particles, set to Hyper-lapse videos from users around the world. And god damn, it is out of this world stuff when you match music with video. Looking forward to that next LP gentleman.

suggested listening experience: waking your ass up after a night out on the town // watching the particles video (see above) // whenever you are when the sun is setting 

listens: illusion // subtract // creature // different // analog or digital // spin // darkness

wc // spotify // fb // sc // twitter 

concert shenanigans: SAVOIR ADORE

reppin: brooklyn, usa // nettwerk music group // 2009 - present

sounds like: smelling a fresh bouquet of flowers while floating on clouds...they give you that weightless mental state

savoir adore | photo cred: slapthebass.com

savoir adore | photo cred: slapthebass.com

latest album drop: the love that remains (aug 2016)

featuring: paul hammer // lauren zettler // alex foote // ben marshall // andrew pertes

savoir adore | beat kitchen, chicago | 10.15.16 | @thefaakehipster

savoir adore | beat kitchen, chicago | 10.15.16 | @thefaakehipster

There aren’t many bands out there that just make you smile song after song. Not just the euphoria sounds that get you giggly as you sway back and forth, but how the lyrics mesh and bring even more meaning to the moment. Last night I had the pleasure of seeing these cats at the intimate Beat Kitchen and I am quite bummed that I never got my ass to see them before. Before I get into the crazy rush these guys give you a short yarn of the history here. Paul Hammer has music running through his veins as he is the son of producer, Jan, and became a multi-instrument machine. At NYU (you are def smarter than me dude), he met Deidre Muro and got off an running with fun experiments. First, they wrote and recorded and EP in one weekend (hope you both showered). They soon discovered how delicious their vocals sounded overlapping one another and soon enough a three piece backup band was on the road with them. Deidre moved on in 2014 and Lauren Zettler filled the role.

 Talk about timing...cubs game ends in historic fashion and I get to scoot over at the start of the set. We use recordings vs. live to really understand the quality of bands, and these kids blow you away at the venue. What is a mixture of indie and electro-pop, their upbeat songs never have a bleak moment. I love how the guitars stay simple and play off the keyboards. It meshes with those luscious vocals oh so well. Their latest release, the love that remains, lifts your spirits, gets you dancing a bit and is overall a solid play, front to back. And that is what really matters...whether you throw this group in your earbuds or go see them live, you are going to be so pleased from start to finish.

 

suggested listening experience: gettin close and cuddly // warming yourself up for a night on the town // when you need to get shit done

listens: giants // dreamers // savages // paradise gold // mountains (love won’t burn my heart) // lovers wake // other worlds

sa // spotify // fb // twitter // sc // ig

savoir adore | photo cred: onestowatch.com

savoir adore | photo cred: onestowatch.com

new music: JEREMY & THE HARLEQUINS

reppin: brooklyn, usa // yep roc records

sounds like: tight jeans, chuck taylors, a white t, leather jackets, aviators and a lot of attitude

latest album drop: into the night (2016)

featuring: jeremy fury (vocals) // craig bonich (axe) // Patrick Meyer (axe) // stevie fury (drums) // bobby ever (bass)

jeremy & the harlequins | photo cred: modern-vinyl.com

jeremy & the harlequins | photo cred: modern-vinyl.com

These little known, yet fast rising cats, pack a hell of a punch into their authentic sound that is 50s and 60s rock n’ roll. I had the pleasure of meeting these guys in Brooklyn and am quite stoked that I came across them. I immediately could tell that these savvy veterans of the music scene were ready to take their sound to the next level. Having already done a good amount of touring and putting a song on a feature film’s soundtrack, I’d say they are off and running. While music from that era is not as complex as the tunes we come across today, the simplicity of their sound and vocals actually has a wide range. They’ll make you smile one minute with remnants of the Beach Boys, while coming back and getting scratchy in a track like, “into the night.” Whatever you come across, you’ll find yourself either humming, tapping your foot to the beat or singing along immediately.

There is plenty out there in the “recreation” department, those who want to bring us nostalgic sound at its finest. In fact, a lot of it out there is carefully formula driven and in my opinion too soft for its own good because all they care about is getting on the radio. Most of the time there tends to be no identity or attitude, but there is something about a modern approach mixed with the rock n’ roll past these guys out out there. I don’t think there are many that beat J&TH at the vintage, super pure sound behind Jeremy Fury’s scratchy vocals. To top it off, they look the part and it is so fitting that are from NYC. I’m telling you all, while you won’t hear about these guys in the mainstream quite yet, they have created plenty of noise in the music community and it will only get better from here. Keep bringing us the rock n’ roll gentleman.

suggested listening experience: those fall nights, seems like the perfect backdrop music // your next road trip // shooting some pool or throwing some darts

listens: into the night (see below) // no one cares // trip into the light // cam girl // rhythm don’t lie

j&th // fb // twitter // sc // ig // spotfiy

WET

reppin: born in north massachusetts, residing in brooklyn, ny - columbia records

sounds like: a bubble bath...not the walmart crap, the stuff you get from anthropologie

latest album drop: don’t you (january, 2016)

featuring: kelly zutrau, joe valle, marty sulkow

Wet | parparv.com

Wet | parparv.com

The first few months of this blog will feature a few groups who have graduated from undiscovered, but I like to break the rules. Those bands must be shared with the world and Wet (not Moist...although I’m sure that band name is up for grabs) is one of them. It did not take long for them to find success as they grew to 7 members then quickly shrunk back to the original 3 where they have found their groove. Kelly has some luscious talk pipes on her, while Joe and Marty contribute a wide range of rock, pop, electronica and R&B noise. While you may have come across the group through a remix, it is time to hear them for what they are.

I’m a big lyrics guy. What makes this band so good is the fact you don’t need to know these lyrics to get into them both live and in the headphones. There is a ton of attention to detail given how slow the songs move, which makes for a pleasant and ear-pleasing experience. I’ve been reading that everything musically is derived from those vocals Kelly has. Her soft voice pairs best with soft drum pads, muted guitars (see verses and chorus in “weak”) and sometimes, just nothing. When the sound does get amped up, mostly towards the conclusion of the song, it really brings their structure together with emphasis on the beauty they bring.  

suggested listening experience: While taking a bubble bath...duh // evening stroll through your neighborhood // a hungover friday morning on the way to work

listens: you’re the best // weak // deadwater // dreams

wet // fb // twitter // insta // sc

 

SMALL BLACK

reppin: brooklyn, ny

sounds like: if california and the 80s had a long lasting love affair that resulted in their love child

last album drop: best blues (october, 2015)

featuring: ryan heyner // josh kolenik // juan pieczanski // jeff curtin

I freakin love this band….they give me a sense of it being summertime (yes, even when it’s fucking 6 below) with their slowly built intros, distorted sounds, 80s sync pop and soft vocals. I did catch a quote stating that they are indeed 1980’s obsessed, but simply love the early sounds from those keyboards. They use something called lo-fi and loop based recordings that gives them that unique blend. But this is not some new sound they suddenly found. Born in 2009, they have stuck true to their style, but have only become crisper and more melodic as time went on. After a full length in 2010, they really found themselves in 2013’s "Limit of Desire" and most recent album “Best Blues").

Start with their lead track off Best Blues, "Perfect Strangers" and you’ll hear those crazy distorted sounds behind Josh Hayden Kolenik’s vocals. No Stranger is their most popular track as it should be. Go to your nearest beach (or pool for you inland folks) and try not to smile as Ryan, Josh, Juan and Jeff take you back in time. These dudes truly are the kings of summer bands...I can see them rocking out at every festival as they very well should

Small Black | August 2015 | www.sounditout.com

Small Black | August 2015 | www.sounditout.com

suggested listening experience: festivals, festivals, festivals....play them before going to every festival // aerobics class // grilling out on a weeknight

listens: personal best // no strangers // no one wants it to happen to you // boys life

small black // fb // twitter