Review: “Wild EP” by The Analog Affair

Wild EP by The Analog Affair (9/10): I first became exposed to The Analog Affair when band member Evan contacted me about doing an interview with him for his side project Light the Air (the interview can be found here: https://musicalmagnificence.wordpress.com/2012/11/02/light-the-air-interview/). After exposing myself to Evan’s style, he suggested that I check out his band called The Analog Affair. The Analog Affair is a combined effort of Evan and Cody (I also did a review of their previous album here: https://musicalmagnificence.wordpress.com/2012/12/26/review-good-vibes-ep-by-the-analog-affair/). The last album, Good Vibes EP, of theirs that I reviewed was a folksy one. Listening to Wild EP is like listening to an entirely new band; Wild EP is  infused with electropop, indie pop, and indietronica mostly.

Wild EP

Now I typically cringe when a band tries to exit its genre because often it becomes apparent that the band is a one trick pony. The Analog Affair, however, pulls off the genre switch with ease. Every track on the album makes you want to move; be it dancing, working out, or even just writing an album review. So check it out, Evan and Cody have major talent that will assure they make it far in the business.

 

You can find The Analog Affair on:

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Review: Just Like Shadows by Anders L.A.

Just Like Shadows by Anders L.A. (9/10): Anders is a 21 year old singer-songwriter who is based in Copenhagen, Denmark who released his first album in 2009. Now with a fresh album released May 17, 2013, Anders is breaking onto the scene with a calming sound.

Just Like Shadows

Just Like Shadows gets its name from a Bruce Springsteen song. Fittingly, Anders counts Springsteen among his influences, along with Neil Young, George Harrison, and Dire Straits.

Anders L.A.

What I love about this release from Anders L.A. is that the sound is very minimalistic, yet the lyrics are thought-provoking. Some of my favorite lyrics on the album come off the song ‘Truth,’ “The lie may hurt but the truth it kills.” The album as a whole is wonderful when you just need to crack open a beer and unwind; it’s difficult to restrain yourself from tapping your foot to the beat. Believe it or not, my favorite instrument on the album is the tambourine; every time it comes in, I find my head bobbing up and down.

One interesting thing about the album is that the track ‘Stages’ is fully a capella. Normally, I hate a capella, but Anders L.A. pulls it off very nicely here. Overall, this is an excellent album that nearly puts itself on the level of Amos Lee and other acoustic albums of recent years (but falls just short) and is definitely worth a download.

You can find Anders L.A. on:

Bandcamp

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Itunes

Review: One Mile An Hour by One Mile An Hour

One Mile An Hour by One Mile An Hour (9.5/10):Headed by Jeff Kightly’s hauntingly beautiful vocals, One Mile An Hour is an incredibly impressive debut album. The self-produced album sets forth an ethereal tone that draws the listener deeper into the carefully crafted lyrics. At some points on the album, I am reminded of Simon and Garfunkel (particularly on “Sunken Ships”), Ray Lamontagne (as on “Trouble’s Roots”) and even of Bon Iver. But do not be fooled, these guys do not fall into the trap of trying to copy the success of others; there is a uniqueness about this album that sets it apart from others.

One Mile An Hour

Normally, I try to say what my favorite songs on the album are so that you readers can check those out first, but I really can’t choose a favorite for this album. The only song that really doesn’t tickle my fancy is “Nine Eight” if only for the fact that I’m not a fan of instrumental songs and this one is about 9 hours long (that may be a bit of an exaggeration, it’s only 10 minutes long). Overall, I think that the album is masterfully crafted and could be at the top of the folk charts. I hope that these guys get the credit that they deserve for this album that is easily within my favorites that I’ve discovered this year. 

You can find One Mile An Hour on:

Bandcamp

Amazon

Itunes

Their Website

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Review: Pop’s Garage by Jack Mattingly and Whiskey Fever

Pop’s Garage by Jack Mattingly and Whiskey Fever (8.5/10):

Pop’s Garage

According to drummer Andy Brown, “Jack is a relatively young singer-songwriter who plays and sounds like an older more seasoned artist.  Maybe it is because he grew up listening to a lot of Johnny Cash, Earl Scruggs, Tom Petty, Hank Williams, etc.  As he got older his musical tastes and influences expanded.  He was and is still quite the Weezer fan.”

The band as a whole has a pretty interesting sound overall, but what appeals to me the most is the clever lyrics that are often pretty humorous.
The 5 song album as a whole is a nice effort put forth, but “Homeboyz” and “Postal” are really standouts that make me think this band could do very well if only a few more people gave them a listen. “Homeboyz” has comical lyrics that force you to crack a smile no matter what mood you’re in. “Postal” is a tune that really draws you in; as you listen to the song, the lyrics really strike you in a cool way.
You can find Jack Mattingly and Whiskey Fever on:

Review: Youngest Days by Beady

Youngest Days by Beady (9/10):

Youngest Days

Formed in 2010 in Louisville, Beady is a promising new folk band incorporating an energetic and often uplifting musical style. In 2012, they released their first label-backed album, Youngest Days. Drawing heavily on the folk and alt-country scene, Beady is part of the new-found popular appreciation for folk and country music at times resembling a toned-down version Trampled by Turtles and other times like a raucous incarnation of Bright Eyes.

Beginning with the heartwarming and calming track, “Train Man”, the album never gives up the upbeat tone even when the lyrics tell a very different story. “April Showers” reminds me of the Bright Eyes song, “First Day of My Life,” in the way that it is a touching love song using metaphor to proclaim affection (though it is admittedly much faster paced).

My favorite song on the album is “Hickory Desk.” The simple beauty of the song is captivating and you just want to hold a loved one under your arm. I could definitely see this song becoming popular if only more people could hear it.

Overall, the album is a commendable and polished effort from a (currently) undiscovered band. You’ll be tapping your fingers along with this one and having a good time. I would definitely say that this is a good purchase for any folk fan.

Find Beady on:

Their website

Bandcamp

Amazon

Review: Everyone Everywhere by Everyone Everywhere

Everyone Everywhere

Everyone Everywhere by Everyone Everywhere (8/10): These Philadelphia rockers really know how to put together an album. They’ve got a sort of angsty sound on the album without seeming whiny.

The whole album has a high energy feel that makes you want to rock out but lyrics that make you want to sit on your bed and think about your life. My favorite track is definitely Fervor and Indifference in the Bicameral Brain because of the awesome variety within the song (I hear a bit of banjo in there). There are some points on the album where you get a bit tired of the sound, but for the most part, it’s an enjoyable listen and definitely worth the price ($1).