Bandcamp Artists: Discover, Support, Share – Volume 34 0 438

Bandcamp Artists: Discover, Support, Share – Volume 34 0 439

Everyone has been emailing and asking – when is the Bandcamp feature returning? Well – how about right now! After consistent enquires we are back with the beloved feature!

For this outing we have some in your face punk from Melbourne, psych-pop from Sacramento, basement rock out of Cincinnati, post-punk from Oakland, Vancouver power pop and psychedelic instrumentals all the way from Sydney. A warm welcome back for TFN Bandcamp Artists feature and the drill is still the same: Discover, Support, & Share!

Monster Movie
Berkshire, England

Christian Savill and Sean Hewson have been in bands together since the late ’80s with Slowdive being the one you probably know the best. Monster Movie is their more current group (although a Slowdive reunion is coming) as Keep The Voices Distant is Monster Movie’s fifth album and their first record since 2010’s Everyone Is a Ghost. This one has potential and it is at Gravefaces’ Bandcamp!

Monster Movie Bandcamp

marbled-eye Marbled Eye
Oakland, California

We have totally been sitting on Marbled Eye. In fact, I liked it so much I quickly bought the cassette at Melters page HERE. Luckily, you can still pick up their raw post punk collection of 5 tracks digitally as well. The EP is really musically tight as this band has similar tones of Preoccupations and some early Interpol. Concise directly delivered vocals with a smidge of recklessness and a whole lot of purpose.

Marbled Eye Bandcamp

The Courtneys
Vancouver, Canada

The Flying Nun label should be enough to grab your attention for The Courtneys. The power pop trio, recently released their sophomore album, The Courtneys II, which is full of early ’90s sounds that will remind you of Teenage Fanclub, Pavement, and The Clean. This is one of those bands you will get instantly hooked right from the first track “Silver Velvet” and want to turn up the volume immediately. Good passionate songwriting and playing offers a slightly fuzzy and fun album from beginning to end.

The Courtneys Bandcamp

sinking-suns Sinking Suns
Madison, Wisconsin

Sinking Suns hit you with a post-punk/noise-rock from the beginning with a blend of blues, garage, surf and punk. The band definitely has a harder edge to them with a consistent grinding guitar which really grabbed my attention. The controlled chaos of the record will keep you both unsteady and enthralled. A perfect balance of muscle and finesse that works. Their full length hit last year so we will see where 2017 takes them.

Sinking Suns Bandcamp

comacozer Comacozer
Sydney, Australia

How about heavy tripped out psychedelic instrumentals, that will make you feel like you’re sitting on a pyramid looking into an open sky with a kaleidoscope of unknown patterns, the deeper you get the more lost you will become. How about that band description! Well, check out this 5 song over 40-minute mind melter from Australia.

Comacozer Bandcamp

Sacramento, California

Here is a psych-pop group that we know TFN followers will be completely sold on. You can hear their eagerness on their debut Diving Bells with the fading echoed vocals, slightly reverbed guitar and plenty of little moments that will make you want to hit replay. Most of Vasas songs hit the 2-minute sweet spot and quickly slow build into sprawling arrangements out of nowhere. Diving Bells is an excellent debut and we see this band earning more exposure very soon.

Vasas Bandcamp

Dead Coast
London, England

If you have not checked out London psych rockers Dead Coast debut LP Shambolic then this feature will act as a two for one. The band has a new single, “The Silt,” which highlights their surf backbone and fuzzed out vocals that you can not only pick up digitally but on a stellar 7″ from the excellent Greenway Records label HERE. This song grooves all the way till the end and if you like what you hear you must work backwards and pick up last year’s Shambolic.

Dead Coast Bandcamp

Cincinnati, Ohio

Chris Wales, aka Hamlet, gives you plenty of straightforward indie rock from the basement. With the help of Jason Short on drums and Mike Fair’s guitar work, Hamlet has just released the engaging 7 track The Low Points of the High Points. Hamlet has the sound of a Tobin Sprout style with the leanings toward the solo song structure of Bonnie Prince Billy.

Hamlet Bandcamp

Melbourne, Australia

Get ready America! In The Red Records just announced the release of Electric Glitter Boogie, the debut LP from Melbourne garage rock boogie trio Power. Originally released via seminal Aussie punk/garage label Cool Death in 2015, In The Red’s reissue of Electric Glitter Boogie, out March 24, 2017, is the first time the Australian trio’s album will see release outside of their home country. It is a scorcher and sounds like the fresh catch of the day. Hide your kids, Power is going to knock down your door soon!

Power Bandcamp

Bloomington, Indiana

Hoops hits TFN modern soft power pop nerve as their sound has the smooth mellow groove of EZTV, Real Estate or Ultimate Painting. The Indiana four-piece debut album, Routines, is not out until May 5th via Fat Possum but their Bandcamp single already has us anticipating a great listen. Hoops earlier recordings were made on four-track tape machines in living rooms and basements but Routines marks the band’s first sessions in an actual studio. Don’t expect them to lose their style because I think it has only giving them more creative space – and that is a good thing!

Hoops 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!
Fire Note Staff
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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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