Earlier this spring, Bloomington label Flannelgraph Records released the debut EP from Chicago musician and Crown Point, IN native Via Vegrandis. I reviewed the EP for Indiana music archive/blog Musical Family Tree. Since the EP’s release, I’ve been itching for more. Fortunately, my wait didn’t last long. Today, Flannelgraph dropped Via Vegrandis’ synth-heavy reworking of the Amy Grant classic “Baby Baby.” According to Twitter, the Grant cover is part of a forthcoming compilation. Let’s hope this means more Amy Grant goodness in the near future. Listen to the single below, and grab your copy of the debut EP from Bandcamp. I decided to include the original music video in all of its indisputable glory below, because why not?
Written by Rob Peoni
Today marks the arrival of one of my most anticipated local releases of the year: She Does Is Magic’s debut LP My Height in Heels. The project is led by Bloomington’s Chad Serhal. The album is Serhal’s second release of 2012, following his solo effort Golden. Listening to My Height in Heels, you get the sense that what Serhal enjoys most about She Does Is Magic are those moments when it really feels like a band. Those opportunities to get lost within and expound upon a solitary guitar riff that simply are not possible as a solo artist.
Every other of the eight songs found on My Height in Heels is an instrumental. But these tangents never distract or bog the release down. Serving instead to propel the work forward, the tracks function as the sonic equivalent of transition sentences – closing one thought and introducing another seamlessly.
Songs about girls are staggered between the instrumental interludes. Which, at the end of the day is what most good rock bands should be writing about. The opposite sex is a subject that fascinates Serhal. A subject, if we may read into the band’s name, he finds magical. It’s a healthy obsession. One that allows him to lucidly recall subtle details of lovers past, and recognize the shadow a relationship can cast upon a former favorite record.
I initially found myself irked by SDIM’s decision to recycle three of the tracks from the band’s self-titled EP, released digitally last year, but soon realized those emotions were selfish. All of the tracks on the EP were worthy of wax and shine brilliantly here – polished, remastered and in the case of opening track “Means Nothing,” stripped down and revamped.
My Height in Heels is a straightforward rock release that should give Hoosiers a sense of pride. Listen to the album in its entirety below. A release party will be held this Thursday at The Melody Inn where SDIM will be joined by Hotfox and The Broderick. Grab your copy of My Height in Heels in person or order it on CD or vinyl today from Flannelgraph Records.
Written by Rob Peoni
A day is but 24 hours. 24 hours to be stressed, happy, sad, comedic, relaxed or anything else you may be feeling. Moods, and what bring about them, are what we base our living on. In the grand scheme of things, the slice of pie that we spend talking about how we feel and what crossroad brought us to this very moment in time is bigger than most of the rest. And it only works because we all can relate…because the interconnectivity between us has, and always will be, the triumphant greatness of the human spirit.
These Monday night thoughts stem from my first few spins of Mother, a new EP from Indiana based New Terrors. The solo project of Burke Sullivan, the album is hard to peg into a distinctive electronic genre. From the moment the heavy synths drop on lead track “Teething Troubles”, the albums intrinsic feelings begin to bloom. This is not an in your face album, but rather a highly meditative vibe best enjoyed with headphones on and eyes closed. “Seagulls”, the second track on the album, has a comforting warmth ala many of the chillwave acts such as Teen Daze or Washed Out’s debut LP from last summer.
As the record moves on, an uneasiness associated with the vast expanse of ambient atmosphere present throughout takes over. This is especially prevalent on personal favorite “Snakeskin” in which the grandeur of the entire whole seems never ending. It’s as if I’m at the edge of the world starring out into nothing, but everything, at the same time.
In an interview with Indiana University’s WIUX radio, Brandon discusses how the album came about as a process of discovery, including the title Mother. “The title was the last decision of the whole process. I was going to make it self-titled, but I felt like that would be a cop-out, and I thought there was enough depth to the songs and the artwork that it deserved a title. I realized there was a lot of bird imagery, from words like “eggs”, “flying”, “dove”, and so forth in the lyrics to song titles like “Seagulls” and “Feather Fingers”, to the cover art with that eagle mask. Once again, it wasn’t really planned that way. But I looked at those themes, and I thought of how birds seem like very communal animals, and you always have the mother making the nest and coming back and forth to take care of the little ones, and the way the babies think the first thing they see is their parent or caregiver (at least that’s what I’ve always heard). So in that context, I thought “Mother” would be a nice way to convey a feeling of comfort and safety amidst the uncertainty and chaos happening outside the nest.”
The album is available for streaming as well as purchase for $5 via Bandcamp. The release party for the album will be this Saturday 4-28-12 at the Indy Alliance Church in Indianapolis. Tickets are $5 at the door.
Written by Greg Dahman