Bandcamp Artists: Discover, Support, Share – Volume 32 0 465

Bandcamp Artists: Discover, Support, Share – Volume 32 0 466

I don’t think you can deny that this edition of our Bandcamp feature brings the summer heat. We have a new project from Black Joe Lewis, dark surf blues from Dublin, heavy drum-bass from Brazil, bedroom pop from Brooklyn, folk-rock out of Michigan and good classic twang from Baltimore. As always – Discover, Support & Share!

silhouette-era The Silhouette Era
San Francisco, California

The Silhouette Era practically defines Northern California’s own brand of surf pop. Although I know what you are thinking, The Silhouette Era do not bring the sun but capture the cool mornings and the endless grey sky over the ocean. This track shows promise and should lead to more smooth tracks from the group. The band celebrated the single’s release back in May and currently can be seen playing live in San Francisco.

The Silhouette Era Bandcamp

night-school Night School
Oakland, California

Night School was formed through a friendship bond over sharing oranges at the park. They began working on songs in the vein of 60’s bands such as The Crystals, The Shirelles and The Shangri-las with heavy distortion and reverb on guitars. Night School have already shared the stage with acts such as Best Coast, Whirr and Creepoid in 2015. Their debut full-length, Blush, just came out this month and finds the band hitting the stage over the summer. I think if you like bands like La Luz and Dum Dum Girls then Night School will be up your alley.

Night School Bandcamp

snakes Snakes
Baltimore, Maryland

Snakes is made up of a trio of friends from Baltimore, Maryland. The group’s self-titled debut, was written, recorded, and performed DIY by the band at their home which gives their raw alt country its grit. It has this cool spaghetti western vibe that sounds like Ennio Morricone working with Sixteen Horsepower for a new Tarantino movie. Yeah – Snakes have that kind of groove and it is addicting.

Snakes Bandcamp

black-temple-shrines Black Temple Shrines
Dublin, Ireland

Hailing from the shores of Dublin, Ireland, this band mixes soul with dark surf blues and spit out something all their own. There is a good chance Black Temple Shrines made a deal with the devil with their surfboards in hand. Available from Greenway Records on glorious 10″ vinyl and limited to 150 copies for sale, this record could easily become a collector’s item. Enjoy the heat and grind with songs like “Freakout,” “Death Rattle,” and “My Baby’s Dead.” You won’t be disappointed!

Black Temple Shrines Bandcamp

joe-jacksons The Joe Jacksons
Austin, TX

Holy crap Texas! The Joe Jacksons are a rock ‘n’ roll collaboration between Black Joe Lewis and Weary Boys Mario Matteoli. Right now they only have this single with each person on lead but let’s hope this recording spawns a LP. The Joe Jacksons are just honest to goodness fun with raw talent that leaves everything on the stage and you rushing up to the front wanting more! You should also scamper over and snag their first 7″ which is limited to 300 copies.

The Joe Jacksons Bandcamp

elroy-meltzer Elroy Meltzer

Elroy Meltzer recently recorded a daytrotter session and since forming last October has played over 100 shows to date. That should give you some idea that band is building some hype which gets even bigger with the release of their debut album Hang A Tale. The group has supported Sonny & the Sunsets, the David Mayfield Parade, Paleface and Alex Bleeker & the Freaks with their engaging folk-rock approach.

Elroy Meltzer Bandcamp

New York, New York

Sometimes you just need to raise your fist in the air and embrace the big rock sound. New York’s The Killing Floor is one of those bands that gives off visceral vocal power with its melodies to get you to the party. The band has been drawing comparisons to acts like Queens of The Stone Age and Muse with their new Tongue Tied EP that is due out August 19 via Outright Rock Records. You can check out their single today.

The Killing Floor Bandcamp

giant-gutter-from-outer-space Giant Gutter From Outer Space
Curitiba, Brazil

I love when bands reach out and hit us with something this heavy all the way from Brazil! Giant Gutter From Outer Space bring 40 minutes of terrorizing and mesmerizing bass-and-drum compositions that will shake your speakers. From the name of the record, Black Bile, to the longer compositions GGFOS won’t be for everyone with their instrumental slaying but it really turns out to be a fantastic put on and play record. Completely different!

Giant Gutter From Outer Space Bandcamp

hockey-dad Hockey Dad
Windang, Australia

Seems like lately, TFN has been a sucker for everything Australia. Windang’s Hockey Dad is no different with their debut album Boronia set to release on August 12th via Kanine Records. The band consists of duo Zach Stephenson (guitars/vocals) and Billy Fleming (drums) which have been best friends since age 4. This connection drives the good times telling tales of beaches and babes with a youthful energy of surf and pop that gets catchier every time you hear it.

Hockey Dad Bandcamp

bellows Bellows
Brooklyn, New York

Bellows is the bedroom-recording project of songwriter and producer Oliver Kalb. One listen to the soft indie jangle output of Bellows and I think you will be hooked. If you are familiar with Bellows earlier work, you should know that the solo recording experiment has now turned into a large-scale rock band. Bellows’ upcoming third album, Fist & Palm, experiments with aggressive sequenced drums and electronic sounds, mixed in with ear turning pop. Fist & Palm will be released on September 30th via one of our new favorite labels – Double Double Whammy.

Bellows Bandcamp

-Feature by Christopher Anthony and Thomas Wilde

Fire Note Staff

Fire Note Staff

Online Music Magazine: Independent Music Reviews, Vinyl Spotlights, Music News, Videos, 7-inch record features + more!
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Bill Mallonee & The Big Sky Ramblers: Forest Full Of Wolves [Album Review] 1 892

Bill Mallonee & The Big Sky Ramblers
Forest Full of Wolves
Self-Released [2018]

Fire Note Says: Bill Mallonee is one of those best-kept secrets you really want to share with the rest of the music loving world.

Album Review: No one is ever going to call singer/songwriter Bill Mallonee an under-achiever. His latest release, a 10 song full-length effort, Forest Full of Wolves is his 78th album by his own count. Mallonee spent the 1990s fronting the Athens, GA-band Vigilantes of Love, shuffling from one label to the next, driving a van from coast-to-coast playing every alternative rock/Americana friendly venue who would let them. Hometown friend, Peter Buck (R.E.M.) co-produced one of the band’s early more-acoustic albums, the Killing Floor. The band’s 1999 album, released on three different labels of the course of 18 months, Audible Sigh was produced by Nashville’s favorite side-man Buddy Miller, and includes a guest vocal by Emmylou Harris, as well as some of Mallonee’s best loved songs. Paste Magazine has named him one of the 100 greatest living songwriters.

A rough count, say there were 10 songs per release (usually there were more), puts Mallonee’s songwriting output at nearly 8000, and those are the one’s he’s recorded. Now basic logic would suggest that they can’t all be good, and surely not all of them are memorable, but Mallonee’s work, his actual raison d’’etre, has proven especially consistent over the decades, and in the 2010’s he’s delivered a solid album’s worth of tunes each year, with a noticeable uptick in production values starting with 2011’s The Power & The Glory. Last year’s excellent The Rags of Absence was a case in point, with Mallonee especially attentive to his lead guitar parts.

Forest Full of Wolves continues to chronicle the challenges to working class people and even songwriters, as if Mallonee is creating his own musical version of John Steinbeck’s “Grapes of Wrath” for what he calls this “new dark age.” “Greed and fear (have) gained the upper hand,” he sings in “Changing of the Guard,” so he’s “grabbed a guitar & a notebook or two… became a phantom with some conjuring ‘neath the moon.”

Musically, Wolves takes the energy of Rags to the next level, with bigger, noiser guitar tones. Mallonee captures a Neil Young jamming with Crazy Horse in the garage vibe throughout, which is likely a lot harder to pull off since Mallonee’s playing all the instruments. Mid-tempo alternative country rock at it’s most earnest and relevant, and against all odds, Mallonee manages to offer a word of hope. “In the New Dark Age” he sings, borrowing the title from a different song that he recording on 2014’s The Winnowing, “the best thing you can do is fall in love.” Of course, “Love Is Always Risky Currency,” but it’s the best chance any of us have of surviving in this “Forest Full of Wolves.”

Like many artists scrambling to make art in the challenging digital marketplace and survive financially Mallonee has struggled to reach out and connect with Americana fans, break ground with new audiences, even though he’s stayed off the road in recent years. As a fan who first heard the singer songwriter live in the early 90’s, and many times over the years, Bill Mallonee is one of those best-kept secrets you really want to share with the rest of the music loving world. It’s artists who wear their passion on their sleeves, who keep pouring out their hearts in songs, that make the music that matters. (One reason to order the hard CD copy of this one, is the cover art produced by another singer songwriter, Chris Taylor, from San Antonio, TX.).

Key Tracks: “In the New Dark Age” / “Voodoo Ink” / “Trimmed & Burning”

Artists With Similar Fire: Neil Young / Bob Dylan / John Prine

Bill Mallonee Website
Bill Mallonee Facebook

– Reviewed by Brian Q. Newcomb

Fire Note Staff

Fire Note Staff

Online Music Magazine: Independent Music Reviews, Vinyl Spotlights, Music News, Videos, 7-inch record features + more!
Fire Note Staff

Stars: There Is No Love In Fluorescent Light [Album Review] 0 443

There Is No Love In Fluorescent Light
Last Gang Records [2017]


Who: Veteran indie pop band from Canada.

Sound: Indie pop with a heart and a head.

TFN Final Take: Stars is like a well-worn glove that is comfortable, reliable, but lacking in surprise or unpredictability. There is nothing wrong with that; they are still great at what they do. And what they do is construct a song, engage you, and give you space to reflect on what you’re hearing. My standout track is “Alone,” which has a chorus that stuck with me. The song takes its time to unfold and then slowly recedes into silence. “Real Thing” is another good one that throws an off-speed pitch for a chorus. Per usual, established fans will find a lot to like in the latest album and new fans will hopefully take advantage of Stars’ great catalog.

Stars Website
Stars Facebook
Last Gang Records

– Reviewed by Matthew Heiner

Fire Note Staff

Fire Note Staff

Online Music Magazine: Independent Music Reviews, Vinyl Spotlights, Music News, Videos, 7-inch record features + more!
Fire Note Staff

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