Genre Archives: Alternative/Indie Rock

Rainbow Kitten Surprise

“Melodically guitar-driven rock ‘n’ roll that one simply can’t look away from” – Huffington Post

FOR FANS OF: Kurt Vile, The Lonely Biscuits, Local Natives, Foals, Portugal. The Man

RAINBOW KITTEN SURPRISE

Rainbow Kitten Surprise and all five of its members hail from the mountains of Boone, North Carolina. With chilling harmonies, dynamic instrumentation, and introspective lyrics, their distinct sound takes influence from artists like Modest Mouse and Kings of Leon.
RKS was formed in early 2013 when the first two members, Sam Melo and Darrick “Bozzy” Keller, began writing and composing music together in their dorm. What started as just two college students with acoustic guitars would soon turn into a full-fledged band. The addition of Ethan Goodpaster on lead guitar, Charlie Holt on bass, and Jess Haney on drums brought the group full circle.
After riveting performances at CMJ and Savannah Stopover, their fan base has grown from the small college town of Boone to all over the world. In 2015, their hit “Devil Like Me”, was included on Spotify’s Viral 50 Chart peaking at #16 in the U.S. and #6 in Canada. Building on the success of releases Seven + Mary [2013] and RKS [2015], the group closed out 2016 with a streak of 14 sold out U.S. shows from Athens, GA to Boston, MA.
Rainbow Kitten Surprise will be touring extensively and working on new music in 2017.
w/ Special Guest ELLIOT ROOT

SHEER MAG

A tear in the firmament.
Beyond the noxious haze of our national nightmare – as structures of social justice and global progress topple in our midst – there lies a faint but undeniable glow in the distance.
What is it?
Like so many before us we are drawn to the beacon.  But only by the bootstraps of our indignation do we go so boldly into the dark to find it.
And so Sheer Mag has let the sparks fly since their outset, with an axe to grind against all that clouds the way.  A caustic war cry, seething in solidarity with all those that suffer the brunt of ignorance and injustice in an imbalanced system.
Both brazen and discrete, loud yet precise, familiar but never quite like this – SHEER MAG crept up from Philadelphia cloaked in bold insignia to channel our social and political moment with grit and groove.  Cautious but full of purpose.
What is it?
By making a music both painfully urgent and spiritually timeworn, SHEER MAG speak to a modern pain: to a people that too feel their flame on the verge of being extinguished, yet choose to burn a bit brighter in spite of that threat.

With their debut LP, the cloak has been lifted.  It is time to reclaim something that has been taken from us.  Here the band rolls up their sleeves, takes to the streets, and demands recompense for a tradition of inequity that’s poisoned our world. However, it is in our ability to love – our primal human right to give and receive love – that the damage of such toxicity is newly explored.
Love is a choice we make.  We ought not obscure, neglect, or deny that choice. Through the tumult and the pain, the camaraderie and the cause, the band continues to burn a path into that great beyond.
But where are we headed?
On NEED TO FEEL YOUR LOVE, they makes their first full-length declaration of light seen just beyond our darkness.  Spoken plainly, without shame:
It is love.
This – is SHEER MAG.

Conor Oberst

CONOR OBERST

Conor Oberst joined his first band at the age of 13 and has been releasing music since 1993. Over the next two plus decades, he’s released cassette-only recordings, split 7-inches, and a dozen albums of uncommon insight, detail, and political awareness with his band Bright Eyes,  under his own name, as a member of Desaparecidos, as leader of the The Mystic Valley Band, and with the Monsters of Folk supergroup.

 

In Fall of 2015, and after more than a decade of living in New York City, Oberst returned to his hometown of Omaha, Nebraska, somewhat unexpectedly. Like John Lennon so famously said: “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” After canceling a tour with Desaparecidos due to serious health issues, Oberst returned home to recuperate. The musician was unexpectedly back home at loose ends and faced with some long, cold, claustrophobic winter nights, with nothing really to do. Such conditions were the same as those that contributed to the very early songs he penned in his boyhood bedroom. This resulted in the anxious poetry, heightened self-awareness, and revealing confessionals that catalogued his doubts, demons, and nightmares.

 

“It wasn’t premeditated at all. I don’t know if you know what Omaha is like in the winter, but it’s just paralyzing. You’re stranded in the house. Every night I was staying up late, making a point to play the new piano I had just bought and watching the snow fall outside the house. Everybody would be asleep and I would just go into this one room, make a fire, and play all night. In November I had a whole pick-up truck full of firewood delivered and I thought, ‘I’m never going to run out of it.’ Before I knew I had gone through half of the firewood and I had five songs. By February I had burned through it all, and I had 15 songs. I had just spent the whole winter making fires and playing music.”

 

Making and playing music has always been a healing balm for the sometimes troubled musician. And this time it especially seemed important. It was if he was writing himself back to sanity. Back to understanding what is really important and has meaning for him. And in the same kind of immediacy with which the songs were written, Oberst realized he needed to record them right away, in order to capture the kind of raw intensity and rough magic behind them. When Oberst wrote and recorded the songs, with just voice, piano, guitar and harmonica – he intended to ultimately record them with a full band. In the midst of putting together that band – upstate New York’s The Felice Brothers plus the legendary drummer Jim Keltner (Neil Young, Jackson Browne, George Harrison, Bob Dylan, John Lennon, and many more) – the passionate responses Oberst was getting to those first solo recordings, from friends and colleagues, encouraged him to release the songs as-is, in their original sparse form, released in October 2016 as Ruminations. Pitchfork called it “a record like none other in Oberst’s catalog, stunning for how utterly alone he sounds,” and the UK’s Sunday Times called it, “The rawest album yet from the forever troubled one-time voice of a generation.  Political and very, very personal,” saying Oberst is “one of the best songwriters around.”

 

Meanwhile, Oberst simultaneously moved ahead with his plans to record with the band, heading to the famed Shangri-la Studios in Malibu to record Salutations – co-produced with Keltner and engineered by long-time musical compadre Andy LeMaster. Guest contributions come courtesy of Jim James, Blake Mills, Maria Taylor, M Ward, Gillian Welch, Gus Seyffert, Pearl Charles, Nathaniel Walcott, and Jonathan Wilson.

 

Salutations includes full band versions of the ten songs from Ruminations, plus seven additional songs, some from an additional session at Five Star Studios in Echo Park in fall 2016. Oberst says of the Salutations sessions: “Jim (Keltner) was really the captain of the ship and the spiritual leader of the project. We leaned heavy on his fifty-plus years of musical insight to get us to where we needed to be. He brought such depth and dignity to the proceedings that made everyone else involved rise to the occasion. It was a true stroke of luck that he got involved when he did.”

 

w/ Special Guest MIWI LA LUPA

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