Today’s pick is off the self-titled album released 3 days ago by a Mississippi quintet signed to FatCat records, Dead Gaze. Right off the bat this song starts off sounding like a mix of the “Settle Down” by Zwan & some keyboard notes from somewhere in the soundtrack of Planes, Trains & Automobiles…two works of art which I love dearly. Dead Gaze is a happy surprise for me. Their lyrics, their sound, their power are all rooted in band that exudes camaraderie in the live shows they’ve performed. I’m also a big sucker for over-compressed production. Though they’ve been compared to neo-hippie bands in the past, the Dead Gaze is much more structured and focused than most bands spawned out of psychadelia. This is an emotional album full of highs and lows from a group that could easily be considered a contender in the new tribes of lo-fi grunge bands.
“I Found The Ending” by Dead Gaze
album Dead Gaze
Hey Guys…no comic until later on tonight…I’ve been getting the book ready to be printed for Charlotte Comic-con. I’ll post Wednesday’s strip by midnight though. Until then, I leave you with the Limited Edition Cover printed for the first round of books. Enjoy:
Today’s pick is one of the tamer tracks on this album. It’s a song filled with hollow tones and romantically reverbed drums. It’s as if the instruments were taken directly out of the better part of an 80s soundtrack right when the main denim-jacketed protagonist experiences a life-affirmation. The lyrics are in proper Gauntlet Hair format, “filling the arena” so to speak in an attempt to “out-reverb” the instruments. Not a bad combination in the slightest, the “large-venue” sound of this song and it’s 80′s feel seem to bring back memories of movies that never existed…a pseudo-nostalgia if you will. Check out their new album, “Stills” to be released in the states on July 16th.
“Showing” by Gauntlet Hair
album Gauntlet Hair
Oh wondrous day of days!! Today’s artwork is from Joe Flanders, the talented driving force behind the story and artwork of Ninja And Pirate fame. ( www.ninjaandpirate.com )
You can follow him @ninjaandpirate on Twitter
or check out his AMAZING artwork on his Deviant Art Page HERE.
Yes….the world is a much better place with a guy like Joe Flanders around. He’s a great guy and I am happy to call him a friend…Plus he likes Rush and yes, today’s recommended pick is the 7-part 20 minute song taking up the entirety of side one on the vinyl.
Curtis Mayfield is one of the most interesting artists to come out of the 60s and 70s music scene. An early pioneer in the civil rights movement, his intelligent songs and politically charged messages were easy listens. With horns, percussive piano, and even funky-riffed violins, this song encompasses everything I love about the R&B & soul music during this era. It’s a song of oppression and the realization that the means to overcome are already within.
“No Thing On Me (Cocaine Song)” by Curtis Mayfield
Before leaving for vacation, I had completed two separate guest art pieces for two very talented artists, Jeff Crowther & Dave Mercier. I have been a huge fan of both of their comics since I started doing this just over 2 years ago. By pure coincidence, they both decided to post the pieces I did for them today. You can find the artwork at the links below.
Jeff Crowther runs Yeti 4 Hire(yeti4hire.com) and the guest art can be found HERE
Dave Mercier runs Merc Works (mercworks.net) and the guest art can be found HERE
In researching a band, one of the things you want to do during your fifth or sixth listen is to try to imagine their influences. The subtlety of this art is normally a challenging feat, validated only by meandering through interview articles or liner notes. Not so with today’s pick. This 5 minute song pulls directly from the classic rock greats with pride. Right away you can sense the guitar-like ghosts of “Dead Flowers” by the Stones effortlessly leading into the Velvet Underground-tinged sound of Sam France’s vocals. By the 3 minute mark, you’re already knee deep in the use of “Shine A Light” – era organs. What’s most surprising about this duo is the extremely casual approach they have to including the widest array of instruments. Foxygen is a “discovery band” and you’ll find something new behind the scenes with every listen.
“No Destruction” by Foxygen
album We Are The 21st Century Ambassadors Of Peace And Magic
Rooted in Ohio, this quartet is back for their third studio album. Though considered mostly an indie-band, the Cloud Nothings resemble the sound of most punk bands coming out post-Screeching Weasel & the Riverdales era. Today’s pick, “Fall In” is staggered through in the most successful way possible. It’s broken chorus is littered with unexpected drum cues and an off time signature that must have required an insane amount of planning. Despite the haphazardness of the song, it completely works and is one of my favorite tracks on this entire album. I fully recommend the Cloud Nothings. Their new album, “Body Music” should be coming out this year, so keep an eye out..
“Fall In” by Cloud Nothings
album Attack On Memory
Just in case you didn’t get the reference Here it is. Obviously it’s todays pick. Humpty was the alter ego of Shock G and his look and mannerisms are absolutely modeled (at least a little bit) after Sammy Davis Jr…Peace & Humptiness Forever…
“The Humpty Dance” by Digital Underground
album Sex Packets