Archive for acoustic

Halloween, Alaska are back in action with Champagne Downtown

Posted in Audio with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on Wednesday, April 8, 2009 by Ryan Buege


As Sound Verite’ reminds us, Halloween, Alaska pretty much disappeared from the scene not too long after the release of their breakthrough album Too Tall Too Hide in 2005. Well, turns out they just took a break from playing shows so that they work on their new album, and it looks like the time away has paid off. Their third full-length album, Champgne Downtown, will be formally released at First Avenue in Downtown Minneapolis on Friday, April 10th at the band’s show with other local favorites Chris Koza and Aby Wolf.

Vocalist James Diers, drummer Dave King (Bad Plus, Happy Apple), and bassist Matt Friesen, and are now joined by guitarist Jacob Hanson, allowing Diers to make the move to keyboards. On the MP3 that SV posts, “The Hollywood Sign”, the band proves to have made the right decision; the lush ambient textures magnify slowly before a dreamy breakdown smacks you upside the head with the literary aid of Diers, and the following come down is just as soothing as it was ascending. Halloween, Aslaska has also posted several songs from the album streaming on their website, and a few things are clear; the band’s avant-poppy sensibilities can still be just as jarring and entrancing as ever, and the songs are even more meticulously constructed to convey some very intense and an intentional emotions and POVs. Just a preliminary guess, but I have some feelings that this one is going to grow on me quite a bit by the end of the year.

MP3: Halloween, Alaska, “The Hollywood Sign” (from Champagne Downtown, available now)
LISTEN: Halloween, Alaska, “Hot Pink” (from Champagne Downtown, available now)
LISTEN: Halloween, Alaska, “In Order” (from Champagne Downtown, available now)
LISTEN: Halloween, Alaska, “Gone With The Wind” (from Champagne Downtown, available now)

In addition to the Champgne Downtown Release Show at First Avenue on Friday, keep reading for all of the band’s upcoming tour dates that have been announced… Continue reading

One For the Team deliver sweet sounds with new Build a Garden EP

Posted in Audio with tags , , , , , on Friday, April 3, 2009 by Ryan Buege

One for the Team just released their new Build A Garden EP on Tuesday via Minneapolis’s consistently solid Afternoon Records indie imprint. Though it’s only an EP, it’s a beautiful package that can properly introduce new listeners to the sweet melodious indie pop that is quickly making this local band a household name around the country. After receiving nods from SPIN and MTV’s Real World this year, it’s hard to not pay attention to the intoxicating and irresistible songs that One for the Team consistently creates. Sonically on Build a Garden, their lively apartment recordings sound remarkably clean and exude a melalcholic, carefree, modern-yet-classic atmosphere not unlike artists such as The Broken West, Mates of State, and Peter Bjorn and John. Even as a mixed collection of 4 brand new songs and 4 rerecorded tracks, Build A Garden still has a natural cohesiveness that makes it feel like an album, and because of that I think it deserves a purchase. Plus, I don’t know exactly what they’re talking about, but the “unique items” they plan to ship with physical copies make this an alluring purchase for anyone who wants more than just the mp3s.

MP3: One for the Team, “Best Supporting Actress” (from Build a Garden, available now)
LISTEN: One for the Team, “Questions & Panthers” (from Build a Garden, available now)
LISTEN: One for the Team, “Build a Garden” (from Build a Garden, available now)

Video: Northern Outpost Ep. 4, featuring the Windmills

Posted in Video with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on Monday, February 16, 2009 by Ryan Buege

Our favorite local web tv show, Northern Outpost, has just aired their fourth episode, and this week they’re at the Owl Recording Studio with Minneapolis-based acoustic crooners Windmills. As we said before, the quality of this fully independent, local music show is pretty impressive, and it’s greater proof of the extremely awesome, organic, and supportive scene that exists in the Twin Cities. On this week’s episode, Windmills compare playing in a band in Boston and Minneapolis, talk about the quality of the local music scene, and play some of their upbeat, relaxing, spacey electro folk rock in the Owl Studio. Visit Northern Outpost on NorthernOutpost.net to stay up-to-date on future shows, and watch Episode 4 below!

New Audio: Fleet Foxes – “False Knight on the Road”

Posted in Downloads with tags , , , , , , on Tuesday, February 3, 2009 by Erik Burg

It’s nice to hear a new single from one of my favorite bands that isn’t from the Dark Was The Night compilation. This time around it’s Fleet Foxes with a cover of Steeleye Span’s 1976 track “False Knight on the Road.” Fleet Foxes version comes on the B-side of their newest release, the U.K. only Mykonos 7″.

Fleet Foxes frontman Robin Pecknold at the Pitchfork Music Festival 2008

Fleet Foxes frontman Robin Pecknold at the Pitchfork Music Festival 2008

The track certainly doesn’t make head-way into new aspects of Fleet Foxes releases, or show off any talent that wasn’t already flaunted on their two 2008 releases. It’s not all bad though, seeing as their formula turned out one of the better albums of 2008 that is still managing to captivate new listeners. “False Knight on the Road” is a fine track that would have blended seamlessly into their self-titled album, making it a great edition to the Fleet Foxes catalogue, yet it remains nothing ground breaking for the group. Grab the track below. enjoy!

mp3: Fleet Foxes – “False Knight on the Road” (Steeleye Span cover)

Dig Deeper:  Myspace Official Page Wiki

Live Audio: Conor Oberst, M. Ward, Jim James

Posted in Downloads with tags , , , , , , , on Friday, January 30, 2009 by Erik Burg

Just like the Pavement concert I linked to here a little while ago, Aquarium Drunkard delivers again with some bootleg live cuts. This time from the Pantages Theater in 2004. You kind of know what to expect from these guys, but the magic they create together is great, I’d definitely recommend checking these tracks out.

Download the whole show HERE.

jim-james-m-ward-oberst