Week in Pop: Anwar Sadat, FF, Lukas Creswell-Rost, Terrace, Zoners

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As we are forced to contend with pumpkin spiced everything all of a sudden, Impose’s Week in Pop brings you a crew of the newest ground-breakers with first a quick run through of some of the week’s top stories: First we heard that the fourth unreleased Velvet Underground album has emerged; FKA twigs battled racist twitter trolls; Mark Kozelek apologized to The War on Drugs; Best Coast-Bethany & Snacks the cat on Peta; Aphex Twin talked conspiracy theorist hype; Thom Yorke’s new album Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes; Roger Waters made it clear that he has nothing to do with his former band’s upcoming The Endless River album;  Lars Ulrich’s impressed fascination with U2’s distro model; and we mourn the loss of Hyperdub’s Stephen Samuel “Spaceape” Gordon.

Moving our attention over to the present and future, we are proud to present world exclusives from Anwar Sadat, AfterParty, FF, Lukas Creswell-Rost, Terrace, Zoners, Empty Palace, The Glass Child, Baseball Gregg, and more, co-curated by Diamond District‘s Oddisee, Uptown XO, yU — in no particular order.


anwar sadat week in pop 3

Louisville, KY’s Anwar Sadat have been building some of the burliest, aggressive, hardcore grinding releases with Sophomore Lounge releases like their debut album, Gold, the Mutilation cassette, and today premiere the title track from their forthcoming Obedience EP, available December 2 from Sick Room Records. The executed-audio catharsis of bassist, vocalist, Shane Wesley chews and spews lyrics like cat o’ nine tails lashes, while Clay Farris shows no mercy on guitars that reverberate off every rhythmic punch from percussionist, William Carpenter — with the synthesizer touch from recent addition, Hank Paradis.

On the debut of “Obedience”, Anwar Sadat condenses and reduces the cultures of conformity into a clanging metallic powder keg of clamor and rancor. The Louisville band starts an uprise against the uniform adherence and acceptance of mass unrest by the apathetic attitudes set forth by systems of media, governance, and all the over-hyped polemic bait that seeks no substance outside of infotainment. Shane makes a facetious growl while dissecting obedient behaviors, and thumbing the sheep mentality of the status quo with the help of Clay’s war hammering chord machines, reinforced by Williams saber rattling drums. Anwar Sadat vents the frustrations of helplessness and hopelessness at a time in our world where compliance is mandatory, resistance is futile: spinning the concept of “Obedience” on its head that makes a motion for a sensible sort of civil disobedience. Shane joins for a following interview about the new EP, notes from Louisville, and more; following this premiere.

Obedience has a real entropic motif of all kinds of second law of thermodynamics happening. From the EP and title track, the opening road-rager, “Rotted Out”, the militant martial law enforcement of “Security”, and police state scenario of “Control”. What inspired this round of songs, and how did you all compose and create this kind of diligent dissonance?

Shane Wesley: It was just an overwhelming feeling of disgust for the world around us, and the inability to really do much about it. Like, just waking up and being bombarded with horrible shit on every news outlet, then working a shit job and coming home feeling absolutely drained and helpless to do anything. I mean, not much has changed; but I think these songs reflect that anger — of just being like, ‘how did shit get so fucking dumb?’

The music itself was just as exhausting to come up with. I think we were bored with consonance, so a large part of it was just trying to make the guitar sound like ‘sheets of metal,’ or some kind of abstract image that could describe a sound, as a vantage to approach a new direction. We listened to a lot of Ministry and Skinny Puppy, so I think that might’ve helped.

What were the recording sessions like? We imagine quite a racket, involving engineers and producers ducking and covering beneath the safety of the mixing boards for safety.

Shane: It was actually pretty chill. We tracked the EP in a few days with Will Allard — I don’t even think all of us were in the same room for very long. We each just kinda knocked out our individual parts, and I stuck around to nit-pick at the details. Months later we ended up mixing with Kevin Ratterman and knocked that out in a day. So, yeah, it was a small crew and really laid back.

We get the hint that there is a big, mean, Anwar Sadat full-length patiently waiting in the wings after the December 2 release of Obedience from Sick Room Records. What can you tell us about what’s next for Anwar Sadat?

Shane: Well, Hank just recently joined as our synth/auxiliary dude, and we’ve been writing a bunch of songs with him. He brings a lot to the table and its really challenged us to keep forging ahead and remain undaunted in our writing process. The idea is to start tracking a new full-length by January or February. We’re really excited about what we have so far.

anwar sadat week in pop 2

With the state of the world rocking between utter chaos, mutually asserted destruction, and the domination of global police state take overs; what is the Anwar Sadat answer to the madness, and where can we find a sense of somewhat stability from within the muck of these international meltdown-muddles?

Shane: I mean, I wish we had an answer to give. It’s shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that the world is a cold, fucked up place — so I guess you just kinda have to find stability where you can. Life is essentially pointless, so you have to create your own purpose and derive some kind of meaning from it. Also, just try and show compassion as much as you can — it’s not going to solve any huge problems, but it makes life a lot less miserable to know that not everyone is some reptilian shithead, waiting to fuck you over.

Latest report from Louisville, Kentucky? State of the scenes?

Shane: Louisville is pretty cool right now. Cropped Out just happened, which has become a sort of holiday for all the freaks and weirdos in the region, to come experience a ton of amazing music. Sun Ra Arkestra headlined this year, along with Protomartyr and a bunch of other cool shit — it’s always really diverse and just excellent all around. Then, we have Outskirts Fest happening on October 10th; this’ll be its first year. Outskirts puts a spotlight on female musicians and celebrates their role in Louisville’s constantly mutating punk/rock scene, and will try and reach out to aspiring young female musicians through workshops and a bunch of other cool shit. So yeah, Louisville is kinda making me proud.

Louisville bands and artists that need to get their day in court, or at least in the music journals of the world?

Shane: Exacta Cube is doing some cool shit right now — kinda Autechre/Pan Sonic sound going on. They just released a tape that you can purchase on their bandcamp. Our dudes in White Reaper and Tropical Trash are always awesome. Crain and Circle X are two now-defunct Louisville bands that had a huge influence on me, and deserve a much wider audience.

Holiday plans post-Obedience release for Anwar Sadat?

Shane: I work in retail, so: avoid people as much as possible.

Anwar Sadat’s Obedience EP will be available December 2 from Sick Room Records.


Lukas Creswell-Rost, photographed by Bruno Derksen.
Lukas Creswell-Rost, photographed by Bruno Derksen.

Leeds by Berlin artist Lukas Creswell-Rost released his new album Go Dream on Plain Sailing Records, presenting the following album stream, and music video debut for “Time Waster”. In a series of songs that walk through the winter solace spaces, and singer-songwriting places; Lukas takes inspirations from random pop culture phenomenons as springboards for song sketches.

The video debut of Lukas Creswell-Rost’s “Time Waster” from Bruno Derksen and Henrike Meyer drives late in the night where paused, precious, and personal moments are absorbed by the darkness, the red ember glow of a cigarette, the illuminated headlamps from the endless journey, to the dawn’s breaking light. The video’s pacing is in no hurry, matching Lukas’ guitars, snarky and sardonic lyrics of hurling a soft drink into the convertible belonging to the song’s subject. And as it concludes with an asleep-at-the-wheel style of sentiment, the parting wishes and warning comes with a serving of passive aggressive humor that comes in the form of the left field closing line; “so please drive at speed, I’d like to be there when you get pulled over.”

On Go Dream, The album opens up with the cinematic intro of “Foreign Movies”, recalling the 10cc 70s album rock, to the first class fraternities of the elite and odd on songs like “Ten Dollar Cocktails”, “Patient Pilot” that are loosely based on the anger management issue of Yngwie Malmsteen. The moments of the day are counted and strummed out on “Time Waster”, taking on more matters of minutiae on the detailing of the minuscule of “Smallest Things”, taking back the evening on “Own Night Out”, to the quiet, and calm card game sadness of, “Go Fish”. The cult of Seinfeld character George Costanza is factored into the ill-fated follies from the one hundred and fifty sixth episode of the same name — “Summer of George” — where the edge of expectations slowly marches into a fading sunset of the warm holiday season. This vacation vein continues on “Week of Warmth” that tells part of the tragic Badfinger story from the perspective of their crooked manager taking the money to sunny escapes, where Lukas combines his talent for creating atmospheres, restrained electronic applications, and some choice samples of saxophone. The title track “Go Dream” keeps the clutch shifting down lonely autobahns with beeping synth loops that draws insight from the drive of dreams; closing up shop with the sleepy sad string plunks of “Stolen Thunder”. Go Dream is the commandment to seek new unique visions in an assembly of arrangements and styles, that Lukas Creswell-Rost talked with us about, following this album stream.

With the move from Leeds to Berlin, how do you felt the Go Dream was able to be enriched by songs inspired by the tragic Badfinger story (from the swindling manager’s perspective at that), Seinfeld Costanza-isms like “Summer of George”, Yngwie Malmsteen, etc due to the solace of 2012 to 2013 winter?

Since I moved here about six years ago I think I’ve gently developed a keener eye for using more specific ideas in a song. About things I actually do, like watch Seinfeld. Using a bit of a Seinfeld quote or the Badfinger story were nice ways to crowbar some known references into the mix. I guess both accounts have a feeling of lost potential to them, which also fitted nicely with the idea of the album. And it’s nice to put a face to the words. The Yngwie Malmsteen story of him totally going air-rage, ballistic rock-star at another passenger is half preposterous, and half totally funny. Again, its nice to put a face to the ideas, and if that’s the enraged face of Yngwie Malmsteen, then all the better.

How do you think your own time in The Pattern Theory really informed where you are today with your music?

A hell of a lot! Making music with the guys in The Pattern Theory was really the best musical education I could have wished for, which was slightly ironic since we met at a music college. From messing around with odd time signatures or trying to play four instruments at once, or just trying to zone in on one particular idea. Although we were instrumental, I think I’ve retained a lot of the same approach with textures or sound choices with the songs in my solo project. We had a brief patch where we wanted to add vocals, so some songs on my album go back to things we worked out as The Pattern Theory. For example, ‘Patient Pilot’ was arranged by us three when we used to play it live so it was nice to have Carl play his original part from back then.

lukas creswell rost week in pop 3

I know that you still work with drummer James Yates, but can you describe for us your own methods for drafting these songs and then working them out with Laura Gladwell, Snake Davis, E.L. Heath, Oliver Du Toit, Carl Schilde, etc? What is that creative development work from the solo artist to the full realization with the aid of a full ensemble?

Pretty much all my songs begin from finding a guitar part I like, then from there it’s figuring out other melodies to go with that. I’m quite attached to a melody like that. It has to be the right one before taking it any further. Since I played pretty much all of the instruments on the album it gave me lots of freedom to go nuts with ideas, but it also meant that things took me flipping ages. The main exception to that being the drums of course, which were masterfully played by James. Without his drums it would have been a totally different album. The songs needed that rhythmical backbone in place in order to progress one way or the other. His playing is so characterful and familiar to me that they always seem to fit my ideas. Plus he has Rototoms! Anyway, I think the extra elements from other people were really necessary to stop it being too “me”. With the soprano sax on ‘Week of Warmth’ from Snake Davis, I was a bit worried I was running into the recent-ish saxophone re-appropriation trend, but a solo is a solo, and that certainly is a solo! And the female vocals from Laura are really important to include another perspective on the songs. Add it all together piece by piece and… bang! You’ve got an album on your hands.

Every song has this lonely road quality of melancholia, from the video for “Time Waster” to the album, and feel of much of the album; what is it about those roads between towns, countries, and the solo rider that intrigues you so much?

Well the “voice” of the album is me in quite a misanthropic mood really. It’s nice to have a space like that to use by putting yourself at the bottom position. There’s more to explore there. It comes across as melancholic perhaps, although I don’t think the lyrics are particularly lonesome when taken away from the music. However, come to think of it, the creation of the record did require me to spend huge amounts of time alone so maybe your idea of the ‘solo rider’ makes sense.

With the video I took a trip to Sweden with two filmmaker friends, Bruno Derksen and Henrike Meyer. We went by ferry and car, and filmed our road-trip. The atmosphere there was quite spooky at night at the woods and lakes, and there was certainly a feeling of being isolated when we traveled. That sense of movement really works along with the songs I think… the feeling of going somewhere. They really made some beautiful and videos out of of that trip.

And like the title Go Dream, is the symbolic object of the road sort of the conduit that takes you to the meeting of a goal or dream?

Well yes the title has that double meaning thing of daring to dream, and being shat on for doing so. Ambition, success and failure and all that. I guess some of it does tie in with feelings of being a musician in this here musical game, trying to get yourself heard. The album cover image does give a nod to that same idea of travel and aloneness in the album and videos.

I love how sparse your songs can be, and then all of a sudden roar with a plugged in bravado, met with your own descriptive deliveries.

Thanks! Well as you mentioned earlier about the melancholic quality, I quite like trying to offset that at times with some over the top-ness. I find it a lot of fun to create these kinds of arrangements with big instruments playing distracting parts. An element of unexpectedness. It’s great to try and walk the taste line and not be in one place or the other. A lot of that came from listening to more garish music. Like, I had a phase where I bought all the 80s Genesis albums and just listened to them solidly, thankfully I seem to have gotten away from that for now.

lukas creswell rost week in pop 1

What else are you working on, working with etc?

I just finished a pretty extensive Canadian tour playing with the excellent singer Emaline Delapaix, so now I’m really looking forwards to more recording time. It’s been quite a while since I finished a new song so there’s plenty in me raring to get working on new material. Saying that though, I’m gently working out new elements for my live show, with added people, to steer it more into the feel of the album. Try to keep it developing.

Berlin or Leeds artists that we are totally missing out on that the whole world needs to hear?

Well my connection to the current Leeds music scene is pretty tenuous these days. I enjoyed seeing Juffage and Vessels who are Leeds based, but were on tour here. As for Berlin, I’m ashamedly out of step as well. I really don’t feel part of any scene here, although everybody connected to the album has their own musical projects going on which are all really great — there’s the new album from Friedrich Liechtenstein which which Carl co-produced. Arnold who mastered the album has a top piano based project under the name Kasar, and Laura Gladwell is also here writing top songs. Perhaps it’s time to get to more local gigs now that I’ve finished the album.

Lukas Creswell-Rost’s Go Dream album is available now from Plain Sailing Records.


afterparty week in pop 1

Stockholm Sweden’s ​Andreas Szego, otherwise known as AfterParty introduced himself to us with the limitless-continuous club hopping single,”Jungle Dreams” over a year back and now prepares his Synthesizer Night Hits Vol.1 with the premiere of the “Apocalyptica” single and video that entertains the casual, comedic calamity version of the world’s demise. His recent single “Retro” featured vocals from Fever Ray’s Karin Dreijer Andersson that collapses the space between 1984 and 2014, and now with the advent of “Apocalyptica”; Andreas pulls out all the stops for one of his biggest productions (musically, and visually for that matter) to date. AfterParty embraces the most absurd of ancient foretold cataclysms where the world loses it’s calm but somehow manages to carry on in an ongoing ever-after event that has no end.

On “Apocalyptica”, we see Andreas going for a nature hike amongst the squirrels, birds, fog, trees, and mountains, where an ancient mask brings about a transformation of all surroundings. From here, Other warriors of the nature apocalypse emerge with their own masks flailing sticks in semi-choreographed orders. The track itself is programmed in a sun spinning orbit where earth is met by an armageddon endgame, where synths and kinetic drum machine kicks march toward a new exodus. And just as Szego ties the music into the threads of time tweaked territories, the video tunes itself to a relationship between a planet having a break up with it’s inhabiting guests. Andreas sums up the apocalyptic dance and new chances in the lyrics, “I wish we could stay for ever but we’re not welcome any more,” where the chorus and verses invite an inclusive exit from the transitional plains for a new life, a new enlightenment, on a new planet, or perhaps a new star where the real after party is hitting the reset switch yourself to begin a brand new start. Immediately following the debut of “Apocalyptica”, we welcome back Andreas with our latest long-distance discussion:

What nocturnal events and synth sensations informed your upcoming Synthesizer Night Hits Vol.1 EP?

As I have felt lonely and sad from time to time in my life, I have always found comfort in the darkness and the calm of the night. This is the time when I get in contact with my subconscious. The songs were mostly written at this time of hours. Therefore I think my EP works best at night hours, maybe around 21.00 [9pm] and forward.

What sorts of end of the world apocalypse scenarios informed, “Apocalyptica”? I know there is a Finnish metal band of the same name, and Mel Gibson made a film with the similar title, Apocalypto about the fall of the Mayans. Any of these contribute to the song?

The song means different of things in different layers. There is for me a romanticized picture of the apocalypse, where everything has fallen into pieces and you just drive off, on a dirty road into the sunset and your finally free. A place where all obligations a gone. Perhaps a total collapse of civilization.

Another picture is on a more personal level. I have a tendency to always think the worst possible scenario ever, to calm me down. For me the apocalypse in this case is a defuse of what it really means. The apocalypse can symbolize pretty much anything and doesn’t really have to be connected to the end of the world.

There is no connection between the Finnish metal band or Mel Gibson’s vulgar movie.

How have your new batch of songs built off the “Jungle Dreams” of your previous single, and what sorts of electro evolutions have you experienced with your own creative developments and breakthroughs?

I really like music and trying new and old stuff. I think there’s notable characteristics from my old songs that you will hear in the new ones, but there are some new things I have been testing. One thing is to use a vocal effect for the choirs and lead voice. I really like the idea that the singing voice can represent different kinds of genders and age.

I also like to test new and old synthesizers, but one thing I adore more and more is to find the imperfection in sounds and rhythms. I don’t like clear electronic perfect music.

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What can you tell us about the possibility of Synthesizer Night Hits Vol.2, and what we can expect next from AfterParty?

I have a lot of new material I’m working on right now. I really would like to get in contact with a good label and continue my work. And for Night Hits Vol 2, I hope that the EP would affect people as I got affected by Syntheziser Hits Vol.2 back in the 1988. A goal is to reach more of an imperfection in the beats and synthesizer sounds but still remain a great ambiance and feeling.

Reports on the state of the indie Sweden scenes?

I think that the Swedish indie scene is great for the moment, there are a lot of upcoming cool creative bands!

Any Swedish artists that you feel need more press and ears listening?

There is a lot of cool bands on the Swedish indie scenes. I am a father of a one and a half year son, and I’m also 37 years old so I don’t really know what the hottest is right now. But I have some names I like, Sea Lion, Fever Ray, Seinabo Sey, First aid kit, Bam Spacey, Jens Lekman, Club8…

Listen to more from AfterParty via Soundcloud.


Lord[s] of Seattle; the power of FF, and their upcoming album for Couple Skate.
Lord[s] of Seattle; the power of FF, and their upcoming album for Couple Skate.
Counting down the calendar days until October 21 when FF will release their hotly anticipated (and already talked much about amongst their Seattle peers over the course of the past year) album, Lord, from the honorable Couple Skate imprint; we are proud to present our recent conversation with the Northwest trio of Claire Nelson, Harley Thompson, and Michael Abeyta. With the new alternative / no alternative of “Caught in a Dream” playing in our offices, living rooms, phones, stereos, anything, anywhere; their recent reigning single, “Past Year” has given us something to look forward to for years to come while passing the time and distances from the yesterdays, yester-weeks, yester-months, and yester-years. FF here exudes all those feelings one receives upon sentimentally bound reflections that give rise to mix emotions, while their vocal harmonies find the blend of the perfect company as the catchy string chords bend to the whim of every great feeling you hope that tomorrow might bring. Find out what “Past Year” will mean to you, before enjoying our interview with Claire, Harley, and Michael, following the jump.

Tell us about the moment where FF was born as a group between the three of you.

Harley: I got an idea for this song and knew it wasn’t gonna work with the sloppy garage band Mike and I were in at the time, so I asked if he’d be down to play drums for a new band if I taught Claire the bass. Think this all went down at the SODO Krispy Kreme.

Michael: I am not certain but i think that song was Dusted. The three of us seriously started practicing non stop right from the beginning, pretty much everyday. Looking back it was a bit on the crazy side but it was nice feeling all the hard work pay off.

Seattle maintains to be the Pacific Northwest epicenter of everything amazing from the alternate sectors. What is the relationship between you all and this city, and how do you feel Seattle has informed your music?

Claire: I’ve always been inspired by the music history of this city…but I think the past has influenced us only indirectly. There’s no conscious effort to pay homage to the region.

Harley: Seeing Naomi Punk and Half Gift at Cairo when we first moved up from Olympia was a cool moment where it seemed like something pretty real and new was happening in Seattle. Was definitely encouraged by that show and the support we got from that scene.

Michael: I was born and raised here in Seattle and everyday I feel more disconnected from the city. I give it 10 years before the Amazoids completely take over.

FF impose week in pop 2

We’re very excited about your upcoming album, Lord, and were wondering what the recording/writing/conceptualizing process was like for you three?

Harley: The songs that make up the record just came out without any conceptualization. Originally we were gonna just do a 7” with the four tracks, but ended up being really unhappy with how the recordings sounded so we took a couple month break. By the time we came back to re-record we had another four we wanted to put out so we did them all together. There’s a pretty deep shift that develops over the course of the record as a result, happy we were able to capture that.

What kind of god-like self-authoritarian, deification-indoctrinations, inclinations, etc, brought about the name Lord for the upcoming album?

Harley: Whatever you’re making sacrifices for better be something you’re comfortable worshiping.

Couple Skate is a wonderful imprint, like neighboring labels like Help Yourself, Beating a Dead Horse, Hardly Art, etc. What is your relationship to the various other local groups, signed and unsigned in the Seattle, or general Washington State vicinities?

Claire: We all go to see shows. So Pitted, Weed and Naomi Punk are some of my favorite regional bands. I’m lucky enough to have become friends with people in tight bands through playing music. Also gotta give mad love to Andrew and Ian at Couple Skate for the magic that they work. So grateful they wanted to be a part of this record.

Harley: Have a lot of love for Naomi Punk, crucially supportive and such talented dudes. So Pitted are close friends, they just got done recording an LP that’s gonna do some cool things. Weed are deep friends, lot of history tied to the record. Sacha from Posse/BADH is a good bud we get veggie burgers together once a week.

Michael: Most of the people involved with those labels/bands I met throughout the years just from playing shows. The scene is small. So Pitted is by far my closest relationship. Every member of that band I am intimate with in some way. I used to play shows with Travis from Naomi Punk at the downtown ymca when we were teens and he was drumming in a band called Last Slice Of Butter, they were pretty sick.

Recent singles like “Caught in a Dream” and “Past Year” are keeping us believing in the power and realness of earnest real rock and roll ready for any venue, any stage, and built from the honest places of dives, garages, rec rooms, backyards, and so forth. What is the FF method for creating and constructing songs?

Claire: Harley would come up with an initial song idea and we would work on it at our apartment together. Sometimes we would go to the space and work on songs and vocal melodies. Michael and Harley would bang out some ideas together on their own, too. We practiced a lot to prep for shows and recording.

Post-Lord release plans for FF?

Harley: Keep making records.

FF’s album Lord will be available October 21 from Couple Skate Records.


zoners week in pop 4

From Atlanta, Georgia; Matt McCalvin of Gringo Star, Mermaids, and Dinos Boys has been rampaging with friends about the ATL with his new band, Zoners, who debut their dizzying video for “X2 Vision”. Found off their 7” split with fellow friendly locals Onchi, and to be featured on the upcoming album, Chill ‘Em All for their own Destroy Music imprint; McCalvin and friends cause a ruckus in the following visual episode that rages about like the most one of the insane gatherings imaginable; where a spirited anarchy breaks out as if all the authority figures just left town.

On the premiere of Zoners’ “X2 Vision” video from Dasher’s Kelly Stroup and Max Siciliano, a tube television is smashed up as the band throws a yard party with their friends. Fun with air-soft guns, early Halloween masks, fireworks, flags, sparklers, skateboards sends out seizure inducing visions of what looks like a three month Fourth of July bender amongst an excited group of friends. Zoners take their ‘Kill Your Television’ type of rage, and drop you into a zone of seeing double, where you can only begin to wonder what their neighbors are making of the rapid thrashing guitar histrionics, amongst mixing Budweisers and crossbows. In a video made to match the relentless energy of the band, Zoners present a primer of everything you should not do at home, or at friends houses, keeping super charged frenetic pace pumping. “X2 Vision” itself was recorded with the rage of a live Zoners performance while the video presents the wildest, privy, and impromptu performance piece that feels like the craziest backyard/frontyard/house party right before the cops break it up. Joining us after the premiere is Zoners own Matt McCalvin, breaking down all the latest from the ATL.

What is the latest from the always buzzing ATL scene?

It’s always multiplying—there are are so many different types of bands. Atlanta has a rich history in all genres of music, and we get really spoiled with all the good shows. Our friend Damon [Hare] of Triple D’s Productions always brings the good bands to town with the yearly Mess Around fest—I’ve been to nearly everyone. Always crazy and chaotic! We’re also playing with Paul Collins of The Nerves and The Beat soon. Atlanta is never boring you can always find something to do. You’ll usually find us at table 1 at Elmyr. Oh, and I saw OutKast this past Sunday, which was really amazing and awesome to experience.

How did Zoners first start out, and how did the band name stick?

Zoners kind of began as a pet project of mine. I wrote a handful of songs, and started recording demos at my house/studio on an old Tascam 8-track in the fall of 2012. I took like a year long break from music and spent time soaking in some new sounds and influences. The name actually came from our friend Adrian—it was named for a house owned by Jesse of Gentleman Jesse and His Men. I kept seeing the name and, oddly enough, it had never been used, though I later found out there’s a reggae band that uses ‘The Zoners Band.’ I felt it fit the style of music and ethos, so to speak, of the band. We’ve weathered a few lineup changes since the start, but that’s par for the course for being in a band.

Jamming in the van with Zoners, from left; Chad LeBlanc, Phillip Jaggar, Matt McCalvin, Ryan Davis and Wes Duvall.
Jamming in the van with Zoners, from left; Chad LeBlanc, Phillip Jaggar, Matt McCalvin, Ryan Davis and Wes Duvall.

How did the chaotic, board busting, television smashing, pyrotechnic Kelly Stroup video for “X2 Vision” all come about? What was the filming process like, and how did “X2 Vision” come to be in terms of both sound and vision?

I actually came up with the idea. I’m a huge fan of Harmony Korine and wanted to create a homage to his style a la Gummo. Kinda like a twisted version of the Sandlot kids but with a Dada-esque acid twist to it. Kelly [from the band Dasher] filmed it with a crew of 5 people. We did it all on Memorial Day at my house—we grilled out, and I went and bought fireworks, the old TV, some BB guns, masks, slingshots, and I asked everyone to bring bikes and skateboards. I even made a big batch for fake blood, though at some point it pretty much just turned into choco sludge. Thankfully [our guitar player] Chad volunteered to have it dumped on his head. We lit off fireworks and the cops rolled by but totally didn’t care and told us to clean up when we were done. We wound up playing a mini show afterward in my living room as pictured at the end of the video. It was a huge drunken celebration—everyone got super drunk and partied all afternoon. It was awesome.

Give us some of your favorite stories from your recent appearance at Andy Animal’s Meltasia Fest.

All I did was sweat! It was a huge Atlanta party from the first day. I got to see all my friends from out of state, The Barreracudas killed it! Milton was zoomin’ around on a amini bike the entire time. I’m pretty sure everyone on Saturday was on mushrooms. Quintron blew my mind. I had to take a break and, oddly enough, drank bloody marys at 4 a.m. in the woods. By the time Sunday rolled around, I felt absolutely lizard-brained, and for the record, next time I will be sleeping in the woods and not in a field in the open sunlight! It was actually decent weather after the sun went down. It’s definitely happening next year—it’s a new fest, so it’ll only get better. Andy always does a killer job booking bands. I think everyone was hungover for like a week.

What can you tell us about the upcoming Brain Delay EP?

It’s gonna be a four-song EP, featuring “X2Vision.” It will be released via cassette, and will also be digitally downloadable. I’m recording it at my house/studio Sofa City. It’s our second release [following the “X2Vision” / “Take It Back” 7-inch], and we’re planning an LP for next year.

Chug-a-lugging and shot-gunning brews with ZONERS. From left, Ian McDonald, Beena Miller, Ray Charles, Daphne Bragg, Phillip Jaggar, Dustin Auwerter, Tony Kozera, Mike Morgan, Aaron King and Chad LeBlanc.
Chug-a-lugging and shot-gunning brews with ZONERS. From left, Ian McDonald, Beena Miller, Ray Charles, Daphne Bragg, Phillip Jaggar, Dustin Auwerter, Tony Kozera, Mike Morgan, Aaron King and Chad LeBlanc.

What sorts of delays of mental activity impacted the recording?

Me being lazy and very busy! Ha…mostly busy. I own a studio and record bands, as well, and I have a few other music projects I’ve been working on up in Nashville. I’m an extreme stickler for recordings and they have to be perfect because they’re gonna represent you and ya gotta get it right! My recording skills get better everyday—I think! — so I pull a Phil Spector and make everyone record over and over again. A few are sticking, so we have something to work with.

Other ATL groups that you want to give shout outs to that no one knows about yet?

Yes! Some of these may already be familiar, but yeah—Predator, Slugga, Dasher, Coathangers, Wymyns Prysyn, Spoilers, Weary Heads, GHB, Turf War and GG King.


Breaking exclusives from Vancouver's Terrace. From left, Simon Lock, Kalani Polson & Alex Cooper.
Breaking exclusives from Vancouver’s Terrace. From left, Simon Lock, Kalani Polson & Alex Cooper.

Please welcome the return of Terrace, Vancouver’s electric texture team made up of Simon Lock, Kalani Polson and Alex Cooper, who have graced us with various heart flying releases and recordings in the past are preparing their second album, We Fall Together for Winter 2015 from their TechnoFunk Records imprint. Premiering the first listen to this forthcoming full-length is an ode to the French Riviera with the aptly titled, “Côte d’Azur”. In a step that further defines the Terrace methode of arrangement and engagement; the new single hovers adeptly between the blue bodies of the sky and deep seas.

On the new track, “Côte d’Azur”; Terrace flies deep into the blue skies and blue moods of late night conversations that discuss opinions, perspectives, dreams, attitudes, and altitudes that soar eight miles high. The Vancouver three make what is their most lush single to date, where the line between projected dreams, day to day life, work weeks, and subsequent weekends all fall in to each other like fools rushing into romantic situations and trysts that are made of something ineffable, and larger than the two individuals sharing that moment. But not only all this, the “what did we fall into” chorus from Simon takes the line of questioning to the Mediterranean many moods of Balearic beamed dance. True to Lock’s pilot passion for the turbulence and tumbles from the friendly and wild skies — “Côte d’Azur” takes flight from sounds fit for desert oases, amazon arenas, and dense, deciduous depths of the tropics.

And because we always have a blast when talking to Terrace’s frontman and TechnoFunk Records operator; we give you the man, the myth, the pilot — Simon Lock, in our latest interview session.

Describe for us the composition of the suave cool of, “Côte d’Azur”.

Firstly, it’s nice to see you again. You are looking match fit and ready to tackle this interview (our interviews usually require stamina and vigor). Well, the song, much like the album, is a step towards where our sound should be. The album was written with a huge focus on escapism and a deep desire to live life to the fullest. And all of this takes place during the perfect summer of indulgence in the South of France. It’s a song about wonder, appreciation and revelation. The track itself is heavily inspired by the pop sounds of France and all things ‘warm sounding,’ such as, Tahiti 80, early Phoenix and even Daft Punk to some extent and I really feel we paid homage to these legends.

What sorts of trust falls inspired, We Fall Together?

The album title comes from a line from Cote D’azur “We fall together, that’s what we do”. Basically what this is saying is that, “I am yours, we are connected, and if you feel something, I will feel it too”. It seemed fitting because this record is about realizing where you are and that sometimes what you already have is more than enough, but you just can’t see it. This statement contrasts with the escapism theme. Or does it? Does escapism mean you have to leave where you are? Or can you escape within yourself? Sounds existential doesn’t it? Well, maybe it is. Holy moly, I sound either deep or silly. I’ll let you pick.

terrace week in pop 2

What was different about you with this progression of your ever expanding electro productions?

This effort started far more electronic than the what became the final product. And I like that. In the process of recording there was a 66.6666% line up change (that means only me standing). And in the aftermath of the line up change brought two incredible and visionary members, talented drummer Kalani Polson and multi-intstrumentalist Alex Cooper. At hour eleven they added in parts to the record that helped add layers to the overall sound. It wasn’t until the record went to mixing, and our man, and mixing engineer, Dean Maher transformed what we laid down into the new form of the band. At that point the sound of the record took shape and we were mad for it. Everyone in the world is incorporating electronic music into their sound. And that’s cool. But we felt that we need to go the other way and scale it down. More live instruments, more “real feel” to the sound. Why have a synth, when you can play the arpeggiation on a guitar? We love electronic music, but the sound that we aim for is one that steps away from all the idiosyncratic genres of what is going on currently and to be influenced by the best of the entire spectrum of pop music in the last 30 years, all genres included. Apart from hair metal of course. I don’t want to sound “too big for the boots” here, but if you follow exactly what the current hype is, doesn’t that make you a follower? Never been much for that meself. Unless I’m scuba diving, you usually need to follow someone that is “in the know” in that instance. Talk about ADD, hey have you seen my bike? It’s nice.

State of Vancouver indie happenings you have been enjoying as of late?

Man, I tell you, we need to get out more. We’ve been so focused on making this record as good as it can be and that it has resulted in many late nights in the studio or rehearsing, therefore, forego many great local shows. But our local indie faves have to be:
1) Red Vienna – Jahmeel has got to be one the most interesting lyricists I’ve ever had the privilege to know. Such attitude and mystique. This post punk band is destined for great things.
2) Fine Times – Another incredible local band that we love. They have a cool way of playing serious undertones against melodic sounds that make even the most serious themes seem enjoyable.

terrace week in pop 3

Newest sounds you have been digging from the summer, and sounds that are transition you and the band and the TechnoFunk family into winter?

We love, and in no order, Minks, Chris Malinchak, Duke Dumont, The War on Drugs, the new Interpol album is pretty special, Jackwob, Peace (these guys are killer), Paul Oakenfold (never gets old for us), and Deep Dish. Our drummer, Kalani is big into jazz, as he was trained in jazz drumming by the legend Elvin Jones, so we have been chilling late night to some great mellow jazz. We always seem to be listening to loads of reggae and classic dancehall in the summertime. That’s not new, but every summer it feels like it’s the only sound that suits when it is 30 degrees outside. Toots and Maytals in my personal favorite.

Latest favorite flights, and the links between musical inspiration and the exhilaration of flying the friendly skies that always translates into your music?

I’ve been to Hawaii a lot lately it seems. It’s not so much a big cultural difference, as it’s almost like being in Phoenix, but it has a beach. That’s right next to Costco. However, the surroundings of these islands speak a magnificent beauty that can only be felt when witnessed first hand. If this influences the sound of the music I’m not sure. Except, I gotta say, that the Moana Surfrider Hotel in Honolulu captured me. I could spend days, weeks, in this hotel. And I don’t particularly like hotels. But the opulence and history of this place, when combined with the sounds and the heat, are truly mesmerizing. I really can’t explain further. Care to join me for a drink there? First one is one me old chap. Oh, and both “Moana” and “Surfrider” are names of songs on the new record. Ok, well I better get to bed. Off to Montreal in the morning. Night Night…. Been a pleasure as always Sjimon.

Terrace’s new album We Fall Together will be available Winter 2015 from TechnoFunk Records.


empty palace week in pop 1

LA rockers Empty Palace bring back the epic super-70s rock ballad with the premiere of “Unknown Unknown”, off their upcoming album debut, Serpent Between the Stars expected in 2015. Combing all the tricks designed by the prog rock masters of album based rock, and everything learned from the glam rock arrangements of arrogant airs of the highest degree; Empty Palace return to the modern palaces of rock gods, and guitar kings and occupy the vacant sitting throne.
Guitars light the way on “Unknown Unknown”, where introductory shreds bring the ballad of a band emerging from the ether and out of the wreckage salvaged from the fantasies of r n’ r lore. Like a great long playing groove rider, the band makes use of book ending passages and verses with galloping and plodding rhythm riffs that entangle enough weirdness between swaths of synths, organ underlining, and piano pointed annotations. Following the debut listen to “Unknown Unknown”, the LA band joined us for a lively discussion.

“Give us the story on how you all cooked up this masked-identity rocker, “Unknown Unknown”, via the epic form of 70s album rock, with Italo prog/glam pop styles fashioning.

Wow, you got an Italian vibe from “Unknown Unknown”? Usually we try to keep our inner Ennio Morricone on a leash, but occasionally he escapes, and weirds up our otherwise neat and tidy rocker-type songs. “Unknown Unknown” was definitely baked with extra prog and extra glitter. We’ve always loved Marc Bolan, Slade and the Sweet- we saw an opportunity to bring in the glitter vibe and vocal harmonizing and I think all of us are pleased with the results. The song itself ponders the inner mysteries of the self and the conundrum of personal isolation vs. “couples” vs. the Great Unifying Oneness. No one can know anyone, and Oneness is a mystery that can seem very elusive. “Unknown Unknown” is a fart joke.

How did you all first begin Empty Palace, and what sorts of abandoned palatial dwelling inspired the band’s name?

We’ve all played in bands together before, but this iteration is the one that has stuck. Empty Palace started with some demos our singer made. We are musicians of similar grit, and we sometimes make playing seem like hard work when we’re not careful. That’s our challenge now- to keep “playing”, and grind a little less on each other. We all go way back, and have to be mindful that we’re not being overly familiar when the goin’ gets rough at the practice space. Everyone first picked up an instrument to “play” it, and we always sound better when we are letting the kid ride up front. Or better yet, he can steer the ship.

There is a trope of a palace, attached to the word “palace” itself, that jumps immediately into your brain when the word is read or spoken. Coleridge’s Kubla Khan comes to mind. This palace is a vague, foreign place. It is a symbol of great opulence and abundance. But having material abundance is meaningless without the rest. An Empty Palace. There is a lot of hugely successful music/art/film that ignores ‘the rest’. Empty Palace is the Emperor’s new clothes meets Spinal Tap. Bemulleted King Midas eating his sparkly golden Gibson. A bolt of lightening-fast arpeggios striking at what is (or isn’t) behind the outer trappings of “success.” I could go on.

Give us the story on what the process of recording The Serpent Between The Stars has been like.

The singer of Lords, Chris Owens, answered a Craigslist ad for a room for rent. Our room. Once we got the rent from him, he let us raid his extensive mic closet and gear arsenal, and we put it to hard use for about 9 months. We cowrote a couple of tracks with a really talented producer, Jeremy Hatcher, who also mixed the record in a few whirlwind, Adderall-fueled weeks. We used a sexy tape machine our guitar player Thomas had, and what you hear is the result. Somewhere in there our singer Patrick spent endless hours in Moog land recording various bleeps and bloops; it all just seems like a blur of oscillators and spaceships now.

Some of your favorite lost 70s records, LPs, singles that everyone needs to hear?

We like to do our brains a favor and listen to whole records when we can. Your daddy did.

We played Budgie’s If I were Brittania I’d Waive the Rules over and over on a psychedelic drug fueled weekend romp once. I’d recommend anyone do the same.
Uriah Heep Look at Yourself originally had a mirrored front cover. That’s a sad casualty of the iTunes/Spotify digital interweb power matrix.
The Move Message from the Country
Andromeda Beginnings
The last 2 Black Sabbath records before Ozzy left, Never Say Die, and Technical Ecstasy. They are part staggering drunk musical WTF’s, part staggering genius.

A Raincoat’s “It came in the Night”
Gary Glitter “When I’m On” (there are several versions- get the one off of his greatest hits album. It slays.)
Aphrodite’s Child “The Four Horsemen”
Arthur Brown’s cover of “The Green Manalishi”
Cuddly Toys “Madman”

Bonus round:
Youtube: Elvis Presley “Polk Salad Annie Las Vegas 1970”

You think you know the King, but maybe you’ve missed some choice bits. All of those bits are on this video.

Current DIY artists that you all feel everyone needs to hear?

One of our most favorite bands, Moon Honey just moved to Los Angeles from Louisiana. They will kill your face, after they melt it off. Do not miss this band if you see they have a show coming up. Their record, Hand-Painted Dream Photographs can be peeled like a moody, cosmic artichoke.

We’ve played with L.A.’s own Prettiest Eyes a few times, and their frenetic energy and hooks are undeniable. What a live show!

2015 prospects for Empty Palace, 2015 projections for Empty Palace?

The record comes out in January. Videos, traveling, touring and more artsy stuff too. More than anything it would be a superb and welcome honor to collaborate with the right film makers and score music for art movies next year. Bigger and better shows are in the works as well. We want it all. Yes please!


the glass child week in pop 1

Euro indie pop star Charlotte Eriksson of The Glass Child (and her own indie label Broken Glass Records) premieres “Who Am I”, ahead of the October 21 slated release of I Must Be Gone And Live, Or Stay And Die. Through various EPs and a published meta-fiction titled, Empty Roads and Broken Bottles; in search for The Great Perhaps; Eriksson subscribes to the old adage that a rolling stone gathers no moss, while heightening the stakes to the utmost creative/crucial state of urgency.

On “Who Am I”, Charlotte traverses through the journals and crumbled letters that show trails of the past with an empowered resolve. The notes and understated guitar chords get caught in a cyclone of various feelings that jog down familiar paths with a head hoisted high for the lesser known avenues yet to be traveled. The poetics pass the choir girl hotels, and beatnik lounges for something realer, with an assertion of self that finds Eriksson composing increasingly ambitious works. Through a long distance cable, Charlotte shared the following thoughts on the song, “Who Am I” and her upcoming album:

When I was 17 I left everything I had and knew to dedicate my life to my music. Ever since then I’ve been wandering wherever the road have lead me, trying to find my way. I wanted to build a life for myself that I was proud of, that got me excited about the simple pleasure of being alive. The name The Glass Child came to symbolize the two contrasts of wanting to be seen and heard, but still protect myself from bad opinions, missing people or simply letting anyone get too close. I feel safe behind the name. It’s been a hard but beautiful journey, that came to be about so much more than just music. This is not just a project or a career, it’s the way I’ve built my life. I’ve always had this strange feeling of being on a mission towards something bigger, and I think my new album captures exactly where I am on my journey right now. The title, I Must Be Gone and Live, or Stay and Die, stands for how you have to keep moving if you simply want to get somewhere. Even if it’s hard, even if every muscles aches and even if you don’t know where you’re going — you just have to keep moving. The simple thing would be to go home, settle down into a quiet and safe living. But I think I’m here for something else, and that’s what the album and my new single “Who Am I” stands for. My quest. It will not always be easy, but it will always be beautiful.

The Glass Child’s album, I Must Be Gone And Live, Or Stay And Die will be available October 21 via Broken Glass Records.


the galaxy electric week in pop 1

Introducing, Eugene, Oregon audio-experimenters The Galaxy Electric sent us a slice of down home harmonics, with the song “Temporal”. The group is the brainchild of husband and wife, Jacqueline and Augustus Caruso, joined by friends Susan Lucia on drums, with Grayson Fiske taking care of the electrified vibraphones. With their song, “Temporal”, it hums like something from an unspecified time or place, owing to the practices of fellow outside artists and the types of old world artistry that provided hymns for esoteric edicts and scriptures, left out of the canon. Jacqueline described the making of the song from the following press release telegram:

This song means a lot to us because it was a true collaboration between all four of us. Also – we recorded it illegally. It was a magical night. We broke into a recital hall at a school of music in Oregon and set up a mobile recording rig. We had no idea if it was going to work or not — but instead came out better than we could have expected. We always record live all together in one room, but this really took that to another level.


baseball gregg week in pop 5

Italy by Stockton’s Baseball Gregg released their self-titled cassette this past Saturday for Cassette Store Day, and fresh off their recent introductory feature in the pages of Impose they now give us a sneak listen to their labor of love. Sam Regan

The Baseball Gregg EP was made by Luca and me at the end of my stint in Luca’s hometown in Italy. Written solely for the purpose of having something to record, this EP could be seen as a souvenir made by and for two people in an attempt to document a year-long friendship. The end result just happened to be pleasing enough that we decided to share it with everyone else.

Baseball Gregg’s self-titled tape is available now from Harlot BK and Italo imprint, La Barberia Records. A bond built between Sam Regan and Luca Dipierro while Sam studied abroad, the result is a tape made for the legions of lo-fi lovers and beyond. “Ice Cold & Moly” begins the adventure with a song worthy of remaining on constant rewind, stop, play, stop, rewind, stop, play, and repeat. For those that haven’t seen our debut of the “Mathdance” video, the mathematical madness and endless energy of constant sunsets and sunrises prevails throughout the song. The motion and emotion pours down the twangy guitar of “Syrup”, the complete, total, and utter time warp of, “West Virginia”, a cover of Tonetta’s “I’ll Remain As I Am”, to the echo-hazed utterances that swim down the styx river channel closer, “Tunnel Vision”. Sure October is upon us, and we have but less than a month of major league post-season playoffs — Gregg gives you a past time for the off season.

Cherry Glazerr gave us the A-side to their upcoming &” Had Ten Dollaz / Nurse Ratched, available October 28 from Suicide Squeeze. Like the hype of “White’s Not My Color This Evening”, the LA trio here makes an even bigger splash for the world of fine fashions, and cool-couture with as this song was commissioned by designer Hedi Slimane of Saint Laurent to pair nicely with on the runway for the Paris fall fashion week 2014.

The new Philly group GRIP formed earlier this summer, a trio made up of Dan on bass, Alex on vocals/guitar, with Pat on drums. Their new EP presents the new group trying out soundscapes of samples and instrumentals like “Shell”, to the prickly, shambles and satin of, “Porcupine”. Recorded by fellow Philly denizen, Matt Schickling of Strawman; it presents the sounds of heavier things to come from this Philly group.

Having recently premiered his remix of Brandy & Monica’s “That Boy is Mine” here in Impose; Pišta Kráľovič, aka FVLCRVM remixed Beni’s “Protect” with some bright synth maximalism. From Bratislava with love, the Slovakian producer applies his special school of synthesis to the neo-Tokyo sound school of futuristic delights.

With Alex G’s DSU album from Orchid Tapes at the top of our ‘Best Of’ charts, and deep in our hearts; check out the video for “Hollow” that is every bit as intimate, every bit as minimalist and haunting as you would hope the visual counter-part would be.

With a recent co-curation spot in a previous Week in Pop from this past summer; Empathy Test releases another powerful wonder with the monumental title number, off the forthcoming Stars & Letters Records EP, Throwing Stones, available December 9. Following up where February’s Losing Touch left off, Isaac Howlett’s voice rings out from the electronic pop etchings from Adam Relf as good times of reckless nights and wayward passions are portrayed through the pond-pebbling skipping of clandestine romanticism and whispered murmurs untold. Empathy Test unfolds the singularity conundrum, to find that there are complexities between the human/machine paradox conundrum than were previously assesed by the digital overlords.

Mirah invites friends like Greg Saunier (Deerhoof), Mary Timony, Emily Wells and Jherek Bischoff to the party of her album Changing Light, and we have the beat-thumping rendering of “Turned The Heat Off” (The Blow Mix), that blends vocals and beats into two-stepped breaths.

With post-punk lgends The Pop Group enjoying a series of re-issues, the upcoming rarities Cabinet of Curiosities will be released October 20, coinciding with the re-issue of 1980 album We Are Time. Get ready to relive the pop-punk era with memorable (not to mention impressionable) hits like, “She Is Beyond Good And Evil”, as Mark Stewart and the gang set out on a UK tour beginning in Edinburgh October 20 ending in London on October 26.

Lucius will re-release Wildewoman Deluxe Edition on October 14 on digital and November 25 on CD and wax from Mom + Pop, and we got the acoustic guitar strummed sentiments on their cover of My Morning Jacket’s “Wonderful”.

Kathleen Malay and Jason Kudo are Ora Iso who just signed to Ba Da Bing Records, offering a listen to the track of their namesake from the upcoming album, BATHCAT available October 14. On this title cut, Ora Iso provides the variants of noise, that spins modes of fear and fright upside down through a wash of harmonic discord.

Dale Earnhardt Jr Jr shared some iconographic electro-autotuned lamentation blues on the new cool like “James Dean” track. This comes with news of a their fall tour kicking off October 17 in Seattle, an appearance at LA’s Regent Theatre, and closing it all out with a few shows in Josh Epstein and Daniel Zott’s hometown Detroit at Crofoot Ballroom on November 22, and 23.

Cool Ghouls dropped the new head-swimming jangler, “And It Grows”, keep the San Francisco sweet psych vibes swimming free off their upcoming album, Swirling Fire Burning Through The Rye, available November 11 from Empty Cellar Records. On an LP recorded by Sonny and the Sunsets-Smith, mixed and mastered by Mikey Young; the Ghouls haunt the material world with a sound that continues to shine brighter with every song, as bright as every star that glows in favor upon the DIY denizens of the sleepy Bay.

Also from Couple Skate, and available October 28 — Mega Bog lends their own take on new American ambient jazz strokes coupled with European folk sound affinities with “Aurora 99”, from the forthcoming, Gone Banana album. Erin Birgy summons up all the magic that seems to be in abundance throughout the Seattle communities, working in patterns that are both restrained in their expansive artist expression while whisper like the wind’s most intimate, and best kept secrets.

Take a look at the Dominic Palermo video for Nothing’s acoustic rendering of “B&E”, as they their EP Downward Years To Come sees re-release via A389. The Philly group’s strums are set to compiled footage of break-ins, and all the things and freaky folks that go bump in the closed-circuit surveillance caught darkness.

G, a project from Jimmy Giannopoulos project (known for work with LOLAWOLF, Reputante, M o t h e r, etc), dropped the track “Outer Space” with Genevieve sharing some vocals atop a Ferris wheel, and wandering throughout the State Fair in Shreveport, Louisiana attractions in the Mia Lidofsky video. Or as G puts it: “”The serene isolation that can be felt in a crowded and often chaotic world.” The single is available now through Innit Recordings, with their EP that was recorded in Jimmy’s Brooklyn apartment available next year.

Just the other week, we were talking about The Yetis’ break out single a-side, “Little Surfer Girl”, and we just the held over, summery west coast vibes on the b-side, “Warm California”; coming at us all the way from Allentown, Pennsylvania. Produced by Bryan Pugh and Kyle “Slick” Johnson, these abominable four snowmen have come up with the 7″ panacea to keep the sun burning bright through the fall and winter overcast to last all year long. Power pop vibes rule, with the kind of energy sad bastard Beach bum Boys wish they exude. Maybe the realest Cali sound comes from Allentown after all, who knew, right?

From Salt Lake City, uber-pop duo Oh, Be Clever is Brittney Shields and Scott Layton who take the ghost trends of maximalist production toward the personal terrains of the physical shields that guard the heart on their single, “My Chest”. Heart beats and radio-ready righteousness strikes with emotion and outward expressions of inner held truths. Like the fine shrines made by previous aesthetes, OBC carries along the Top 40 franchises of tomorrow.

“Come Unwound” in the beautiful slow rising beauty from LA’s Anna Bullbrook and Marc Sallis; known together as The Bulls. A rising act with other bands and projects, sources close to the band tell us that they recently played their first gig at The Satellite and continue to unwind their intimate invitational pop of what chamber music from the beautiful future might sound like.

Holy Youth sent us spiralling down the wormhole rock of, “Black Holes”, as the Montevallo, Alabama band readies their album, Self-Titled for release October 14 from Happenin’ Records. The nasal delivery and head twirling guitar loops drop you into the empy chasms of bottomless portal chambers that exist deep within the brain’s maze.

Suzi Analogue & Swarvy get real wavy and mind twisting on, “Guarantee”, spinning like a sunflower off, Love Affairz Vol. 1,available now from Never Normal Records. The combined production effort between the two artists synergizes something that is out of mind and out of this world…we guarantee it.

Touring the world from now through March 1, 2015; Omar from Antemasque lent us some of the b/w live tour video footage set to their single, “In the Lurch”.

UK producer Bernholz saw the recent release of his album, How Things Are Made via CD and limited edition ‘auto-destructive plaster block’ version, courtesy of the label collective Anti-Ghost Moon Ray. On “The Modernist”, modernism is mused through reflections that are backed by restrained rising rhythms of dance designs for the thinking person.

With Bear in Heaven’s EU tour dates running from now through October 17, take a listen to the new, bumping pulse applied to “Autumn”, courtesy of Matthew Dear’s remix.

treasure island music fest 2014
With the harvest season moving into effect, the 2014 Treasure Island Music Festival descends upon the San Francisco Bay October 18-19. Providing a weekend holiday in the midst of autumn, this year’s lineup counts appearances from OutKast, Ratking, Massive Attack, Painted Palms, Tobacco, Washed Out, Bleached, and The Growlers, who just released their new album Chinese Fountain on Everloving Records, and feature the limited time stream here. The Costa Mesa bunch bring their beach goth American pop-gothic songs to the October 19 day of performances (alongside appearances from folks like The New Pornographers, White Denim, and more) that haunt like crosswinds of hazy learned wisdom and anecdotal songwriting by the ring-leading frontman himself — Brooks Nielsen. Tickets are available here, and you can preview Chinese Fountan now.


diamond district week in pop 1

DC’s Diamond District are made up of Oddisee, Uptown XO, and yU (also of The 1978ers with producer Slimkat) who co-curate this edition of Impose’s Week in Pop with an individually selected assortment of personal picks. Preparing to release their follow-up to 2009’s In the Ruff, with March On Washington, available October 14 from Mello Music Group; we give you the Jay Brown directed video for “First Step” that takes you on an up-close and personal tour of DC courtesy of the DMV’s most storied supergroup.


oddisee week in pop 1

Sinkane, Mean Love LP

Love this album from a fellow Sudanese artist. Great fusion of genres & cultures on this record.

Dunc, Cycles LP

I love a good instrumental album & this Prince George’s County, Maryland native delivers just that.

Nick Hakim, Where Will We Go, Parts 1 & 2

Nick Hakim is probably my favorite up and coming artist at the moment. Another native of DC. I love everything he does.


yu week in pop 1

Kev Brown & Hassaan Mackey, “Dope / Hassaan Be Rappin”

The feel is so dope, looks like they’re having fun. Hassaan could always rhyme but the visual brought it to life.

Eric Roberson, “The Cycle (feat. Pharoahe Monch)”

The drums on this joint were done by my man Slimkat and Aaron Harding played the keys and other sounds. Add to it, Pharoahe Monch sounds like he is just zoning out on this joint. Plus, it’s always dope when soul joints are rockin over drum breaks — gritty drums and still soulful and smooth.

7evenThirty, “The Problem”

Man this is just like a little movie — like a short film. Right on time topically with Ferguson.

Joey Bada$$, “Christ Conscious”

Aint nothing like it, that shit is tight.


uptown xo week in pop 1

Rick Ross, “Elvis Presley BLVD” (ft. Project Pat)

Og mako. You guessed it, the delivery in this song is crazy! My philosophy is that forms of execution evolve… As far as cadence, this is an introduction to a new style…

Kendrick Lamar, “i”

I love myself.

Travi$ Scott, “Don’t Play” (ft. Big Sean and The 1975)

The beat and video is crazy!!! A must see!

Diamond District’s upcoming album March on Washington will be available October 14 from Mello Music Group, pre-order available via iTunes.

Follow Oddisee, yU, & Uptown XO on Twitter.