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New York
Bombay Rickey is a band based in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn, with an eclectic mix of influences. Self-described as "the soundtrack to a Bollywood noir film from the 1960s, or perhaps to a spaghetti western that never existed," they bring together jazz, funk, rock, and a plethora of world music sounds for an exciting blend that's all their own. We visited the band at home for an intimate living room performance, in the middle of one of the most serene neighborhoods in Brooklyn.
This Portland, Oregon-based group is a bright, spirited collective with 6 or more voices joining in, rallying around the lyrics of bandleader Tim Perry. With a positive vibe and uplifting themes, they operate under the admirable notion of using music to change the world. With their own language and an infectiously positive outlook paired with infectiously catchy songs, Ages And Ages just might have a shot at achieving their goal while creating some brilliant music along the way.
Dish + Drink takes a look at some of the best restaurants explored in 2014.
TEEN last visited the studio in 2012 for a stripped-down session, right around the release of their debut album. Now, with a leaner, tighter blend of synths, live and programmed instruments, and killer vocal harmonies, Teeny Lieberson and crew are back to share their latest jams. We've been into them from the first listen, but now, with the full live band experience at this session, their growing acclaim is on full display.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people whether they would be able to forgo unnecessary shopping for a whole year and buy only the necessities. People share whether or not they believe they would be up to the challenge and what might stand in their way.
NYC-based El Jezel have been together for over a decade, combining elements of glimmering, wistful shoegaze and charging, melodic post-rock. The blend of male and female vocals, along with their ability to waver between various genres mid-song, keeps their music unpredictable and refreshing. For our BTR Hear & There Christmas Special, in front of a brightly decorated Brooklyn home, they brave the cold winter weather to perform (as a duo) an acoustic version of their holiday tune, “Working On Christmas.”
Monika Heidemann, formerly of Brooklyn pop band Xylos, has set out on her own with a bass guitar and an array of production instruments to bring her own gorgeously-penned songs to life. With minimal instrumentation, her clear vocals cut through with a certain determination, demonstrating a skillful depth that begs a closer listen.
BTR caught up with the power duo to chat about vampires.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people about their holiday fiascos. From tree malfunctions to travel delays and gift issues, people share their stories and fails from past holidays.
Big Rock. Big Roll. Big Sound. From the land of Springsteen (one of the patron saints of Serious Business), The Everymen roll hard… and 9 members deep, to boot. E Street Band comparisons are no coincidence (soulful rock with raspy vocals and huge sax make it, perhaps, hard to avoid), but it really must just be something in that Jersey water (can someone look into that, by the way?). Hard touring, hard partying, and hard rockin' with a heart of gold, The Everymen cut to the core with every note. Here, on a long-awaited ode to Serious Business On BTR, they crammed into our beloved and well-worn SoHo studio to blast out the jams. And make sure to watch this one to the end for a special Travis-centric treat.
Monomyth is a psych-pop foursome from Halifax, Nova Scotia. To borrow from their official bio, since they put it so perfectly, they play "janglophile pop with a smirking sense of humour, stadium-sized hooks, and starry-eyed harmonies from the barbershop of broken dreams," with inspiration from the likes of Sloan, Big Star, Television, and My Bloody Valentine peppered amongst their three lead singers. During CMJ 2014, they stopped by Saltlands Studio in DUMBO, Brooklyn, to play some songs and share tales of their highly inspired creative process and the challenges of a rivalry with a similarly-named band.
White Reaper is a badass rock 'n roll/garage-pop band from Louisville, Kentucky. You really don't need to hear much more than that to know that you'll love them from the first fuzzy chord. They stopped by in the middle of a CMJ blitz for this session sat Saltlands in DUMBO, Brooklyn.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser talks with people about self esteem. People share where they believe self esteem comes from and what they do personally to build their own self esteem.
Big Ups is a Brooklyn post-hardcore band drawing from the Minutemen/Black Flag bloodline, busy touring and making great music. Here we present another full song performance from their recent session with Travis.
Flowers is the London-based trio of Sam, Rachel, and Jordan. Formed in 2012 and booked for a tour supporting The Pains Of Being Pure at Heart before playing their first gig, they've been making brilliant first impressions all along the way with their charmingly fuzzy pop. From solid, minimalist structures to sonic mayhem and captivating vocals, they band has a way of captivating audiences. They stopped by Let Em In Music in Gowanus, Brooklyn, while in town for CMJ for this special session, recorded by engineer Nadim Issa.
Flashlights are a punk band from Orlando, Florida. Like many groups, what began as a solo acoustic project in 2007 (in this case, for singer/guitarist Terry Caudill) eventually grew to include members of the local punk scene. With songs about such classic topics as dead end jobs and lousy living conditions, heartbreaks and hangovers, the band owes more to the indie rock arm of punk music (Superchunk, Archers of Loaf, Sebadoh, Neutral Milk Hotel, etc.) than the harsher, poppier stuff of their fore-bearers. During CMJ 2014, the band stopped by Let ‘Em In Music in Gowanus, Brooklyn, for this special session, engineered by Nadim Issa.
No longer requiring a physical card or certificate, e-gift cards allow a purchaser to email their gift directly to its recipient. This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people whether or not they think e-gift cards are a good gift and whether they plan to give any themselves.
Nikki Yanofsky is a young Canadian jazz/soul singer. Just 20 years old, she's already been performing in the public eye for eight years, garnering awards and appearances at international festivals and world class venues. We caught up with Nikki at Caroline Music’s office space for this intimate acoustic performance.
Cy Dune is the pen name and "mythological rebel persona" of Seth Olinsky, songwriter of bizarro folk punks Akron/Family. His extensive history of experimental sonic expressionism has taken him to countless corners of the music world, and this incarnation of his work manages to pull many of those pieces together. A largely improvised project, Cy Dune blends live performance of guitar and vocal and instrumental loops. For this special session, recorded at Greenpoint's Spaceman Sound, Seth performs and shares some insight into the genesis of this unique project.
ideo2lip] Tei Shi, aka songwriter Valerie Teicher, was born in Argentina and spent time in Bogota, Vancouver, and Boston before laying roots in New York. Musically, Tei Shi comes from a place somewhere between shoegaze and dance music, with swirling layers of airy vocals floating on electronic loops and production. On her first release, dark, mellow melodies ruled, but newer material sees Tei Shi pushing things in a more assertive, bass-and-beat heavy direction.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people whether their Thanksgiving is more "family fun" or "family feud." People share what their holiday is usually like, and why it may fall into one category or the other.
Two Inch Astronaut is a trio from Colesville, Maryland, that exudes the classic post-punk guitar vibes that the kids love -- those kids being us, obviously. Here, we present an extra video from their recent session, featuring the full performance of their song, “Cigarettes, Boys, And Movies.”
Winstons is the new, Brooklyn-based/Virginia-conceived duo of Lou Nutting (guitar, vocals) and Ben Brock Wilkes (drums, vocals). Formed less than a year ago, this garage-soul band has already stormed some of the best stages in town with their furious blues-tinged rock ‘n roll, and they brought their high energy performance to Spaceman Sound in Greenpoint for this session.
Gemma Ray is a British musician, singer, composer, and producer. Currently living in Berlin, her style is described as pop-noir, and draws heavily on indie folk and blues. On a recent visit to New York, she stopped by Lowlands Bar, a charming bar tucked away in the Gowanus neighborhood of Brooklyn, for an intimate performance of her song "You Changed Me."
Following a 13-year stint as a member of beloved New York band The Walkmen, Peter Matthew Bauer is now on his own (with, perhaps, a little help from his friends). His debut solo album, Liberation!, was largely conceived on a trip across Europe and delivers a driving, dense sonic package that may feel a little familiar to fans of his previous band. He stopped by to share some songs and talk a bit about the project with special guest host Travis Harrison in this, the final episode of BTR Live Studio recorded at the SoHo location of Serious Business.
BTR watched the new HBO doc ‘Banksy Does New York’, and you should too.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people whether their Thanksgiving is more "family fun" or "family feud." People share what their holiday is usually like, and why it may fall into one category or the other.
Streets Of Laredo, the New Zealand-originating family band fast on their way to becoming a household name in Brooklyn, makes the sort of joyous acoustic racket rarely seen in rock clubs these days. Drawing on 70s folk-rock (a la Bob Dylan and Paul Simon), and using horns, guitars, and lots of sing-a-longs, the bright-eyed optimism that brought the group to a new city in a new country is evident in their music.
Raindeer is a psychedelic synth-pop band from Baltimore, Maryland. True to their Baltimore, aka Charm City, roots, they're a little quirky and very… well, charming in their pop goodness. Originally the solo project of Charlie Hughes, the band has a colorful, acid-tinged aesthetic that's fitting for their sonic tendencies, which push things towards Britpop and garage realms while keeping it weird.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people whether they would be able to forgo unnecessary shopping for a whole year and buy only the necessities. People share whether or not they believe they would be up to the challenge and what might stand in their way.
Sean Rowe has an unforgettable voice. Deep and resonant, his singing perfectly expresses his naturalist roots and stirring songwriting. Drawing on the folk and blues traditions, Rowe taps into something timeless, whether performing solo or with a group. Here, he performs at a friend's apartment in Brooklyn, in the most casual and intimate of living room settings, joined by friends and fellow musicians.
Johnny Lewis has a fascinating musical career history: he's already done electronic production for The Larva Ink, Lizzo, and Bokonon, and he's even been on the festival circuit, opening for national acts such as The Flaming Lips and EOTO. But he gave that up to move to NYC, where his love of acoustic music led to the writing of his first solo record. His production background certainly helped to make this stand out among the slew of folk and alt-Americana records out there, as the songs are expertly crafted and layered in a way that most debuts aren't. Johnny brought his full live band to the studio to share the music and talk a bit about this musical journey.
Gemma Ray is a British musician, singer, composer, and producer. Currently living in Berlin, her style is described as pop-noir, and draws heavily on indie folk and blues. On a recent visit to New York, she stopped by Lowlands Bar, a charming bar tucked away in the Gowanus neighborhood of Brooklyn, for an intimate performance of her song "The Right Thing Did Me Wrong."
Sunflower Bean is a New York-based trio of young psychedelic rockers. Comprised of Julia Cumming (vox/bass), Nick Kivlen (vox/guitar), and Jacob Faber (drums), they're quickly making a name for themselves as a band to watch -- especially at this year's CMJ Music Marathon. Riffy, groovy, and heavy, they've got the right blend of lo-fi Sabbath vibes to keep the party going.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser speaks with people about what it’s like for baby boomers and millennials to work together. People share their thoughts on what it’s like to work with someone from a different generation
Pinegrove are a young group originally from Montclair, New Jersey, but now calling Brooklyn home while touring the national DIY circuit to share their eclectic sound. With inspiration from the post-rock, alt-country, and progressive rock worlds, their music, written by singer/guitarist Evan Hall, is heartfelt, quirky, and catchy. The foursome stopped by the studio before kicking off a summer tour to share some songs and chat about the band.
Tei Shi, aka songwriter Valerie Teicher, was born in Argentina and spent time in Bogota, Vancouver, and Boston before laying roots in New York. Musically, Tei Shi comes from a place somewhere between shoegaze and dance music, with swirling layers of airy vocals floating on electronic loops and production. On her first release, dark, mellow melodies ruled, but newer material sees Tei Shi pushing things in a more assertive, bass-and-beat heavy direction.
Two Inch Astronaut is a trio from Colesville, Maryland, that exudes the classic post-punk guitar vibes that the kids love -- those kids being us, obviously. They dropped by to tear through some tunes and chat with Maia and special guest co-host, Travis.
The November Project is a fitness movement that was started in Boston, Massachusetts, as a way to encourage all people to get active and support others in their quest for a healthy lifestyle. The movement has spread across North America and focuses on accountability, positive reinforcement and giving back to the community. One branch of the group offers free fitness classes in exchange for hugging every person in the class. This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people if they would be willing to hug a group of strangers for a free fitness class.
Dub Thompson, the California-based project driven by Matt Pulos and Evan Laffer, has had a little help from friends in fueling their need to get weird. Foxygen's Jonathan Rado helped move things along while the duo stayed with him in Bloomington, Indiana, for a summer, and that band's crackly pop sensibility -- and perhaps the free-flowing, blissed-out Midwestern summer vibes -- seem to have found their way into the tunes.
Overlord is a bit of a Brooklyn institution. Longstanding torchbearers of the borough's pop/indie rock tradition, the running joke about how their name sounds like that of a metal band is starting to wear a little thin. They've certainly developed their own reputation and are too good to exist as the punchline of their own joke. Originally more of a solo project for songwriter George Pasles, they've existed as a full band -- with Sarah Brockett (of Palomar), Tris McCall (of My Teenage Stride), and Matt Houser (of The Human Hearts) -- for long enough now to prove that they do, in fact, rule. Here, they sit down with both Maia Macdonald and Travis Harrison for a fun chat.
Bombay Rickey is a band based in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn, with an eclectic mix of influences. Self-described as "the soundtrack to a Bollywood noir film from the 1960s, or perhaps to a spaghetti western that never existed," they bring together jazz, funk, rock, and a plethora of world music sounds for an exciting blend that's all their own. We visited the band at home for an intimate living room performance, in the middle of one of the most serene neighborhoods in Brooklyn.
Roz And The Rice Cakes is a trio of good-natured, fun-loving kids residing in Providence, New Hampshire. Musically, there are some jazzy smarts going on, but the general direction is a little more experimental pop -- perhaps even punky at times. We're not really sure how they ended up doing the cool thing they do, but we sure do like it, and we're not the only ones, as they've got an extensive list of A-list bands they've shared stages with.
A recent blog post on Forever Ashley suggests that it is never okay to share your feelings if you have a crush on a married man. This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people if they believe it’s okay to be honest about the crush and under what circumstances it may become a problem.
Joanna Gruesome is an irresistible noise pop five-piece from Cardiff, UK. During the 2013 CMJ Music Marathon, the band took some time from their packed show schedule -- where they seemed to make fans of nearly everyone who saw them -- to drop by for this session. Full of catchy pop melodies, full-on walls of shoegaze noise, teen angst, and punk drum beats, they exude energy from every pore, both in the studio and onstage. Lead singer Alanna has a ferocious power that comes out in playful, sweet whispers and dark, abrasive screams that match the intensity of the fuzzed-out guitars. It only makes (too much?) sense that the band met in an anger management group and didn't even get along at first -- how else could you explain such perfect musical chemistry?
Sun Club is a Baltimore band that formed in 2012, blending their main influences of The Beach Boys and Animal Collective (though we hear other influences in there as well) into a sunny, frenetic, poppy good time. We get the sense that these guys are really fun and like to party. You should probably party with them, or at least go check them out on tour. Here they play some tunes and discuss the history of the band.
BTR checks out the fall foliage in the New York area.
The Israeli New Yorker with his own take on faith and music.
Playing the music of and speaking to Israeli jazz guitarist Yotam Silberstein.
Greys is a garage punk band from Toronto and blasting out ferociously efficient jams is, to put it simply, what they do. While on tour with their pals The Dirty Nil, Greys lead singer Shehzaad was feeling a little under the weather, so tour mates Dave and Luke filled in on vocals for a couple songs at this session (though he came through to rock it on the featured song, “Brain Dead.”)
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser talks with people about intuition. People share stories of times they did or did not trust their instincts and how the situation worked out.
Gramercy Arms is a New York-based collective of revolving musicians and artists, masterminded by main songwriter/producer Dave Derby (Dambuilders/Lloyd Cole) along with Rainy Orteca, Sean Eden and Kevin March. For this intimate BTR Hear & There session, we found the band performing in the lovely back room of Hi-Fi, a revered musician-friendly bar in the East Village.
Future Of What is the Brooklyn-based pop trio of Blair Gimma, Sam Axelrod, and Max Kotelchuck. Blair's distinct voice, low-key and beautiful in its simplicity, may be familiar from her previous solo/guitar-based project (also called Blair). Like much of our favorite pop music, there are some strong nostalgic vibes kicking around in the subject matter of these songs, and when you pair that with tastefully minimal, sharp production, it’s a winning combination. The band stopped by to share some songs, talk about the recording process (including their muse), and to investigate the case of Maia's missing Casio keyboard.
New Myths is a NYC-based trio comprised of Rosie Slater (drums and vocals), Marina Ross (bass and vocals), and Brit Boras (guitar and lead vocals). Even with their conventional rock set up (drums/bass/guitar) they use clever vocal arrangements and effects to build catchy, danceable grooves behind their badass riffs. Formed in 2012, the band's reputation has been growing quickly for such a young group, and is sure to keep going with the release of their debut full length.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people whether they have a backup partner lined up in the event that their current relationship ends. People share whether or not they have, or have ever had, a backup relationship and why.
When Landlady visited the studio recently, they did something bands don’t normally do at these sessions -- they made our crew a part of their performance. It was a unique moment that was partially featured in the full episode from their session. Here, now, we present the full song, “Above My Ground,” as Adam Schatz takes the cameras from our crew mid-song and invites them to participate.
The Henry Millers is a New York-based band fronted by the duo of John MacCallum and Katie Schecter. Longtime friends before they became musical collaborators, MacCallum and Schecter have a unique chemistry fueling their synth-driven pop music. The band stopped by the studio to share some tunes and talk a bit about the project.
Chaz Mannenheim demonstrates the exciting, yet uncontrollable, power of his newest technological discovery!
Johnny Lewis has a fascinating musical career history: he's already done electronic production for The Larva Ink, Lizzo, and Bokonon, and he's even been on the festival circuit, opening for national acts such as The Flaming Lips and EOTO. But he gave that up to move to NYC, where his love of acoustic music led to the writing of his first solo record. His production background certainly helped to make this stand out among the slew of folk and alt-Americana records out there, as the songs are expertly crafted and layered in a way that most debuts aren't. Johnny brought his full live band to the studio to share the music and talk a bit about this musical journey.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people if they believe Major League Baseball games should be shorter. People share their opinions on the lengths of the game and why or why not they support limiting game time.
Boyfriend is a badass female rapper from New Orleans by way of Nashville. Her rhymes may come off as raunchy at first, but maybe she’s just trying to tell you something you’re not ready to hear. Full of sex-positive anthems and a strong dose of theatrical comedy, her jams are hard and her attitude strong. She stopped by on a recent tour to perform some tunes and talk a bit about how she writes.
Asian Dub Foundation has been stirring things up for almost 20 years now. The London-based group began as a group of friends, inspired by their parents' diverse music collections to create their own music, full of Indian and African touches, fused with modern influences from various punk, dance, and rap genres, all coated with fast, socially-conscious lyrics. Two of the current featured members of the group, Aktav8r and Nathan Flutebox Lee, dropped by to share a special performance, and to chat a bit about the band.
The Wytches are a trio based in Brighton, UK, with a heavy, grungy, surf-punk sound. Raw and vibrant, their live shows are known for great performances, and their new record showcases an accurate analog capture of their style. During the band’s summer tour of the U.S., we caught up with them at their label (Partisan Records) for an intimate acoustic performance of the single, "Wire Frame Mattress."
Spirit System is a band from Winston Salem, North Carolina, who call their music "etheralia/darkwave/gaze." Helmed by Eric Gilstrap (also of Clouder) and Laurie Ruroden, along with drummer Gary Guthrie and (for this session) Gilstrap's Clouder bandmate Max Goransson, the band takes this hybrid genre seriously, with deep bass and reverb everywhere. Spirit System is definitely tapping into something deep and dark, pulling it to the surface in song form.
White Hinterland is Casey Dienel. In the wake of her previous, production-heavy album, she retreated to the basement of her family’s house in Scituate, Massachusetts, to build a studio and learn the ins-and-outs of self-recording in order to craft a new, piano-and-voice-reliant body of work. In Dienel’s own words, the “themes of this record… are personal agency, strength, growth, and determination.” It’s raw and beautiful, and she stopped by to share some of these songs and talk about her work with Maia.
There are a couple of things we love about San Diego foursome The Donkeys: 1) Their music, of course, and 2) Their enthusiasm for travel. If you happen to follow their Instagram account, you'll be treated to playful portraits of the signs welcoming this easygoing, distinctly West Coast band to the various states as they make their way back and forth across the country. This habit fits the band's easygoing, sunny vibe well, and hints at their own nostalgic nod to the American rock 'n roll heritage.
Bailiff are a no-nonsense bluesy indie rock trio from Chicago featuring the classic rock formula of drums, bass, guitar, and killer riffs which they push the next level. The result is super solid pop, drawing on the likes of Led Zeppelin, Radiohead, the Beatles, and Dylan -- and not just the rock bits, there are hints of everything from Indian raga to Native American chant planted in these grooves. Here, the band plays some songs and chats with Maia.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks whether looks matter when it comes to work and life in general. People discuss which aspects of life looks may or may not be important for and whether they, themselves, have ever been judged on their looks.
Begun as a collaboration between former Vivian/Dum Dum Girl Frankie Rose and Drew Citron (a former member of Frankie’s band and NYC act Avan Lava), Beverly has taken on new life in the form of a live band (now fronted by Drew, without Frankie) and is quickly amassing fans. Lush pop harmonies and satisfyingly noisy guitars fill the space of their shoegaze pop songs in just the right way.
Challenger is the project of NYC producer/composer/songwriter John Ross, featuring a full band for live performances. Drawing on the synth and loop-heavy sounds of 80s new wave, the songs are dense and full of pop hooks. Here, the group plays some songs, then chats with Maia.
Jack & Eliza grew up in NYC as childhood friends. At 15, Eliza won the International John Lennon Songwriting award. Now, with both in college in their hometown, they're musical collaborators, performing as a duo all around the city. Their simplistic approach -- two guitars, two voices -- brings their talents to the forefront, as their vocals work together to weave together pristine narratives. Inspired by the sunny, psychedelic pop of bands like The Beach Boys and The Mamas & The Papas, these two are riding a similar sunny, blissful wave. We caught up with them at Coco, a restaurant in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, for an intimate acoustic performance of their single, "Secrets."
Kobeyaki offers an interesting and delicious perspective on Japanese cuisine.
TEEN last visited the studio in 2012 for a stripped-down session, right around the release of their debut album. Now, with a leaner, tighter blend of synths, live and programmed instruments, and killer vocal harmonies, Teeny Lieberson and crew are back to share their latest jams. We've been into them from the first listen, but now, with the full live band experience at this session, their growing acclaim is on full display.
After an apparently massive breach in online security, hundreds of nude photos, including those of several celebrities, were leaked online. This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people if, since the leak, they are more careful about the photos they keep on their phones.
Tancred is the solo project of Jess Abbott, member of the Minneapolis band Now, Now. Born in California before growing up in New England, her current home in the Midwest may be a slightly unnatural fit for someone more accustomed to the coasts, but her direct, confessional music has certainly found a home with her fans, as demonstrated by a dedicated internet fan base built up around her YouTube and Tumblr presence. Initially an acoustic project, Tancred has developed into a full band sound on the latest record, and Jess took the music on the road for a brief tour in December 2013, which also brought her to our studio.
Pinegrove are a young group originally from Montclair, New Jersey, but now calling Brooklyn home while touring the national DIY circuit to share their eclectic sound. With inspiration from the post-rock, alt-country, and progressive rock worlds, their music, written by singer/guitarist Evan Hall, is heartfelt, quirky, and catchy. The foursome stopped by the studio before kicking off a summer tour to share some songs and chat about the band.
This Brooklyn foursome has been around just long enough to prove that they mean it, and the work is paying off as more and more praise deservedly heads their way. Driving, catchy guitar-pop is their game, bringing to mind some of their NYC forebearers (The Strokes, first and foremost), as they ride the line between lo-fi and intentionally fuzzy. The guys stopped by to share some tunes and chat with Maia about their music.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people how they can tell whether they are settling in a relationship or at work. People share what signifies settling to them and offer suggestions on how to avoid it.
Round 2 of Exploding In Sound Records’ takeover of Serious Business on BTR continues with the most excellent Baked! Transmitting spacey, chilled-out vibes through the atmosphere, there’s a nostalgic timelessness about these tunes that can evoke the likes of the Beatles without sounding retro. There are even tasty heavy bits dropped in just at the right moments, pulling things from pop to psych, but overall it’s catchy and groovy, and we love it.
White Hinterland is Casey Dienel. In the wake of her previous, production-heavy album, she retreated to the basement of her family’s house in Scituate, Massachusetts, to build a studio and learn the ins-and-outs of self-recording in order to craft a new, piano-and-voice-reliant body of work. In Dienel’s own words, the “themes of this record… are personal agency, strength, growth, and determination.” It’s raw and beautiful, and she stopped by to share some of these songs and talk about her work with Maia.
BTR covers the final leg of Summer Streets in Manhattan.
Wild Moccasins is an indie pop band from Houston, Texas. Their infectious, exuberant jams are as colorful as the confetti and balloon drops that fans have come to enjoy at their live shows. A tight-knit crew of music nerds who found each other at concerts and record shops, they've grown together through songwriting and performance, and that connection is apparent in their records and live shows as they leave it all onstage.
Trending Week – Anti-LGBTQ hate crimes appear to decrease from last year.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people whether they “pay-it-forward” because they want to or because they feel guilted into it.
In the current sea of guitar-heavy northeast indie rockers, Boston’s Pile has a different approach from the average post-punk thrashers -- perhaps taking a cue from the Pixies and often slowing the pace down to give their melodies some room to breathe. Don’t let that make you think they’re any less powerful, though, as they can and do unleash some head-spinning serious riffage and growling vocal fury when they feel the need to. Another hard-touring band in the Exploding In Sound Records world, they’re already a household name around these parts, and leaving a trail of happy music fans everywhere they go.
BTR checks out the opening day of the US Open in NYC.
SPEAK is the Austin-based art rock quartet of Troupe Gammage, Joey Delahoussaye, Nick Hurt, and Jake Stewart. Their music tends towards the dramatic side of electronic synthpop, in the form of darkly epic dancefloor jams topped with falsetto vocals, all while hints of their influences (reportedly Peter Gabriel, Blur, and Kanye West, which sounds pretty accurate) shine through.
Here for you, viewer, is a whirlwind review of Chaz Mannenheim's most outrageous and powerful moments, taken from his wartime radio broadcasts and all leading to his fateful transportation to our modern age.
Vancouver-based Gold & Youth write songs with a hazy, breezy, nostalgic air to them. Equally adept at crafting jams for West Coast summer drives as they are at soundtracking a midnight adventure in the city, their blend of electronics and other instrumentation lays just the right bed for their haunting vocal melodies. Fans of 80s synth-pop should take note: though there's not much retro about this, nods to the likes of Depeche Mode and Roxy Music are definitely there, bringing electronic sounds to life in the most organic ways.
Mannequin Pussy is a dirty, nasty, excellent garage punk duo-turned-trio of childhood friends. Not only does this episode include fiery performances of the band's songs, but you've got the added bonus of Travis revealing the terrifying truth behind natural flavoring. You won't want to miss this one.
Unicycle Loves You is a Brooklyn trio who "write loud, noisy pop songs from hell." While they don't actually come across as being all that evil, they do have a way of making some terrifyingly great loud sounds. Evolving from jangly power pop to post-new wave to garage-psych, the band's latest work finds them further mutating their raw pop songs with walls of sound. The band stopped by to play some tunes and chat with Maia about their recording process.
Alyson Greenfield is a Brooklyn-based songwriter and performer. Riding the lines between piano pop, electronica, and hip-hop through her use of synthesizers, drums, organs, and beatboxers, Greenfield takes chances (such as her unique album of hip-hop covers) and, if her many festival appearances and critical praise are any indicator,they're working for her. She is also the Founder/Director of the Tinderbox Music Festival, an annual Brooklyn-based event focused on female musicians and empowering young women through the arts. We visited the backyard of her apartment building for an intimate performance, featuring beatboxing by her collaborator Shane Maux.
Playing the music of and speaking to New York-based urban Caribbean sensation Rony Nikke.
Miniature Tigers is an indie pop band that originated way back in the MySpace days in Phoenix, Arizona, but currently resides in the musical utopia of Brooklyn, New York. With several critically-acclaimed albums under their belt, they've amassed a solid fan base by touring extensively, spreading their pristine, catchy tunes far and wide. Singer and guitarist Charlie Brand has set out to craft relatable, passionate songs that listeners can connect with and, so far, that certainly seems to be working. The guys stopped by to play some tunes from their latest album and chat with Maia about their music.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people whether they think advising others to do what they love is realistic advice. People share their thoughts on the advice and whether or not they are happy in their own current situations.
Baltimore trio Multicult (aka Nick Skrobisz, Jake Cregger, and Rebecca Burchette) bring a super minimalist, yet effective, approach to their music. They’ve got the post-punk aggression and no-BS thing down, pummeling ahead through every song like a three-headed monster of bass, drums, and guitar, with every instrument weaving in and out around the song, occasionally coming together for big, hooky choruses that cut through their fuzzy production aesthetic. The band stopped by to melt some faces in the studio and chat with Travis about how they write and record their songs.
Revolution In The Elbow of Ragnar Agnarsson Furniture Painter is an indie rock musical, written by Icelandic songwriter Ívar Páll Jónsson. Opening at the Minetta Lane Theatre in NYC, this surreal and philosophical story does indeed take place in the elbow of one Ragnar Agnarsson. Here, Jónsson and a few of his talented ensemble of musical collaborators join us in the studio to share stripped down renditions of the excellent music from the play, and to share a bit of the story behind the production.
Sally Seltmann is a singer/songwriter/producer from Sydney, Australia, with a rich musical history. Notably, she co-wrote Feist’s hit song, "1234," and previously performed under the name New Buffalo, where she collaborated with the likes of Beth Orton and Dirty Three's Jim White, releasing records on Arts & Crafts (who she is still working with). Since dropping that moniker, she formed Seeker Lover Keeper, a trio with Holly Throsby and Sarah Blasko, and set up the "Alphabet Botanical" side project as an opportunity to write and record with other artists. Sally stopped by to play some songs from her latest record and to chat with Maia.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people whether or not they ever hide their spending habits. People share what purchases they hide the most and who they hide their spending from.
With a name like Robot Death Kites, it makes total sense that they’re loud, noisy, silly, dress-wearing punks from Brooklyn who take off their clothes for interviews. Basically, Travis’ dream guests for the show. Enjoy!
High Waisted is a young NYC-based surf rock band. Already notorious for the wild, feel-good party vibe of their live shows, they were being called a "Buzz Band To Watch" by NME before almost anybody had heard their music. Conveniently enough, the music is catchy, fun, reverb-drenched, and poppy thanks to lead singer and guitarist Jessica Louise Dye and her three bandmate dudes. Here, they shred through some of their sunny tunes and give Maia the story behind the (altered) experience of recording their first release.
Chaz Mannenheim sits down to give a vivid account of his experiences, both rural and urban, as a young man in the early 20th Century. Find out how the Newsman Of Yesteryear first became a newsman at all!
While San Francisco may, these days, be better known for more jangly and psych-inspired taste, Happy Fangs is a SF-based band making uncharacteristically badass rock ‘n roll. And it’s refreshing to get a kick in the ass from something with a little more rock power. Originally a duo -- with such a cute, “met sharing a practice space,” story -- it quickly became clear that Rebecca Gone Bad and Mr. Cobra needed a live drummer who could match their fierceness to take the band where it needed to go. Appropriately, their search for “a woman who plays drums as hard as Dave Grohl” led them to Jess G., and she’s more than capable of living up to the expectation. Musically, there’s a lot of pop in their hard rock (or perhaps it’s the other way around) and their theatrical-tinged performance has more than a little bite.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, movie theater attendance is down 20 percent this summer. BTR Pulse’s Sarah Fraser asks people whether or not they see movies in the theater, what they like about the experience, and whether they think there is a way to encourage higher attendance.
Robot Princess is an indie rock band from New York City. Their music -- often reflected in the candy-colored aesthetic of their artwork -- is filled with big hooks, melodies, and backing vocals to sing along with, thanks to Beau Alessi’s fresh take on pop songwriting. There are elements of quirky 90s pop-punk and alternative here (we’re thinking Atom and His Package or some Weezer hits) all contributing to the pure fun factor of the band.
New York City’s Cloud Becomes Your Hand is great at making unexpected musical moves. Utilizing the unconventionally rockin’ and experimental sounds of a malletKat and violin in tandem with jumpy, glitchy, bizarre movements, tempos, and tones, their songs feel unique, occupying that under-populated field of avant-rock that a wider audience can actually enjoy listening to. The band stopped by to share some of their musical madness, and to chat about the project’s history.
Smorgasburg takes over Brooklyn, New York each weekend.
BTR catches up with Yeasayer’s Anand Wilder to talk about the biggest collaborative rock opera in indie-rock history.
You Bred Raptors? have a lot working in their favor to make them stand out from most other bands. What’s so special? This Astoria, Queens trio (check #1: not from Brooklyn) plays instrumental music (check #2), wears an array of bizarre masks when they perform (check #3), and has made a name for themselves by holding down a coveted spot in the NYC subways with the Music Under New York Program (check #4). Oh, and their instrumentation is an 8 string bass, cello, drums, and glockenspiels (checks #5--8). The result of all these unique traits is beautiful, strange, and challenging music that makes people stop, look, and listen long enough to get hooked on their prehistoric pop grooves (oh yeah, and check #9: their name is from Jurassic Park).
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people what one word they would, given the opportunity, like to remove from the common vocabulary and why.
As soon as a Flagland song starts, there’s a panicked, anxious energy that bubbles up -- probably related to the lineage of the music. The 90s influence is alive and well here in the trio of Kerry Kallberg, Dan Francia, and Nick Dooley, from thrashing Nirvana-isms to poppy Weezer-ish melodies. They stopped by to tear it up in the studio and have some chit chat with Travis.
Begun as a collaboration between former Vivian/Dum Dum Girl Frankie Rose and Drew Citron (a former member of Frankie’s band and NYC act Avan Lava), Beverly has taken on new life in the form of a live band (now fronted by Drew, without Frankie) and is quickly amassing fans. Lush pop harmonies and satisfyingly noisy guitars fill the space of their shoegaze pop songs in just the right way.
You should already be very familiar with Brooklyn’s own Ava Luna. A few years back, when they first began their ascent on the local scene, some likened them to “Beck fronting the Jackson 5.” Since then, they’ve grown incredibly, developing their own sound (and quite a social media presence) as they’ve turned out weirder, funkier jams at each turn. Lately they’ve been sending out more of a no wave/Talking Heads vibe, and it seems to be resonating extremely well with fans and critics, ourselves included. We hit their album release party for Electric Balloon at Silent Barn in Bushwick, Brooklyn, to capture the frenetic energy of their song, “Daydream.”
The New York, NY-based Craigslist metal-ish band who finds their aggression from within.
Monika Heidemann, formerly of Brooklyn pop band Xylos, has set out on her own with a bass guitar and an array of production instruments to bring her own gorgeously-penned songs to life. With minimal instrumentation, her clear vocals cut through with a certain determination, demonstrating a skillful depth that begs a closer listen.
Rising in popularity this year, social media prenups are designed to protect the parties involved from embarrassing or unflattering social media posts either during the marriage or in the case of a break up. Often a clause in a larger prenuptial agreement, depending on the financial status of the couple, a violation can result in a hefty fine for the offending party. This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people if they would consider signing such an agreement.
Bluffing doesn't mess around. Established in Brooklyn in March 2012 with the singular mission of crafting concise hits under two minutes, they're set to make their pop and punk heroes proud. Check them out here, but pay close attention or risk missing something awesome: the songs are over almost as soon as they start!
The Stargazer Lilies are a shoegaze-inspired band based out of northeastern Pennsylvania. Some may recognize John Cep and Kim Field from their previous NYC-based project, Soundpool, which was known for a dancier sound. They’ve now left that clubby vibe behind in favor of their current more cosmically-derived, minimalistic and primal noisy rock sound, with heavier live drums, incredible walls of guitar textures and riffs, and ethereal vocals.
From sashimi-filled tacos to kimchi-topped hot dogs, NYC has no shortage of surprise culinary fusions.
There’s a character in the New York music scene who we at BTRtv affectionately refer to as Doctor Schatz. His actual name is Adam, and he’s the force at the center of this whirlwind of a band, Landlady. He also happens to play with a diverse range of other acts -- from Man Man and Zongo Junction to Father Figures and more -- where you might find him wrestling a saxophone, making obscenely interesting electronic sounds, or, in this case, singing and fronting a great indie rock band. In the case of Landlady, the compositions are complex yet catchy, and the lyrics crafted in such a way that they seem to be aiming for hopeful, Flaming Lips-style psychedelic sing-a-longs. There’s an intense brightness emanating from this Adam Schatz character in everything he does, and these songs are a direct expression of that. Don’t be surprised if he (via this project or another one) becomes a household name in music in the coming years.
What have you done at work that should have gotten you fired? This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people to share their tales of dirty little workplace secrets and close calls.
LVL UP seem to be at the center of a growing storm of kickass Northeast-based bands. Part of the extended Exploding In Sound Records family and apparently making friends wherever they tour, there’s no shortage of positive vibes here. Oh, and their music happens to sound like fuzzy teenage anthems blasting out of a garage -- the perfect soundtrack to the basement party of your suburban fantasies.
Boyfriend is a badass female rapper from New Orleans by way of Nashville. Her rhymes may come off as raunchy at first, but maybe she’s just trying to tell you something you’re not ready to hear. Full of sex-positive anthems and a strong dose of theatrical comedy, her jams are hard and her attitude strong. She stopped by on a recent tour to perform some tunes and talk a bit about how she writes.
After finding himself overwhelmed by the influence of the modern era, Chaz Mannenheim, Newsman of Yesteryear, uses every tool at his disposal to regain the style, look, and sound of his 1940s self.
This Portland, Oregon-based group is a bright, spirited collective with 6 or more voices joining in, rallying around the lyrics of bandleader Tim Perry. With a positive vibe and uplifting themes, they operate under the admirable notion of using music to change the world. With their own language and an infectiously positive outlook paired with infectiously catchy songs, Ages And Ages just might have a shot at achieving their goal while creating some brilliant music along the way.
With FIFA’s World Cup in full swing it’s hard to deny that soccer seems to be everywhere at the moment. This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people if they’re watching the games, whether they think soccer is rising in popularity in the U.S., and whether it has any chance of ever surpassing more traditionally “American” sports such as baseball, football, basketball, or hockey.
Field Mouse is a Brooklyn-based shoegaze/pop-inspired band who we last saw on BTR Live Studio. Here, they return to the studio with a new lineup and songs from Hold Still Life, their upcoming debut LP for Top Shelf Records. Driven by the core duo of Rachel Browne and Andrew Futral, the band is known for washes of noisy guitars and the sweet sweet vocals that make every song feel like a dreamy hit.
Teen Girl Scientist Monthly seem to have a permanent wink and smile, from their cheeky nerd-chic band name to their catchy, jangly, sci-fi-tinged pop-punk tunes. They keep the energy up and seem to alway be having fun while making music as satisfying as any favorite 90s alt/punk band and as cool and clever as the latest indie darlings.
The Brooklyn-based solo musician and author who's finally taking music off the back burner.
Future Death is an Austin-based band with an amazing mix of swirling, chaotic post-punk and noise that few bands can pull off. Launched in 2012 by Alton Jenkins and Bill Kenny, and now with bassist Jeremy Humphries and finally vocalist Angie Kang added to the mix, the project has evolved substantially in its short history. Pay attention or these jams may blast past you so quick you won't know what you missed.
With FIFA’s World Cup in full swing it’s hard to deny that soccer seems to be everywhere at the moment. This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people if they’re watching the games, whether they think soccer is rising in popularity in the U.S., and whether it has any chance of ever surpassing more traditionally “American” sports such as baseball, football, basketball, or hockey.
Slavve is the duo of guitarist/vocalist Chuka Chukuma and drummer Marcos Marchesani, formerly of Weird Wives and Surfer Blood. The duo has played together in various projects since growing up in West Palm Beach, Florida, but recently relocated to Brooklyn. With Slavve, their philosophy is to make everything bigger and louder and, trust us, they had no problem doing just that in the studio. With hardcore undertones to their post-punk howl, they make uniquely cathartic music. Here, they play some tunes and talk to Travis about growing up and playing music together since their childhood in Florida.
TOY are an internationally-touring rock 'n roll band currently based in London. One of the current darlings of the legendary Heavenly Recordings roster, their noise-drenched, psychedelic, shoegaze sound makes the perfect soundtrack to summer shenanigans. Thanks to the help of their friends The Horrors, this 4-year-old band got a fast start touring the world and taking on crucial, and well-deserved, critical praise.
This Brooklyn band (normally a quintet but performing here as a duo) works in the realm of anthemic, folk-inspired rock n' roll. At times, there's a Dylanesque quality that takes a turn towards Springsteen territory for the choruses, while other times the band heads more for something in the realm of Radiohead, walking the fine line between ambient textures and epic pop. Grab a bouquet on the way in and a drink at the bar, and enjoy another take on Elaphant's music in the intimate setting of Sycamore, a flower shop and bar in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn.
NYC-based songwriter/composer PT Walkley did his time in the bar and club scene developing his rich, melodic indie rock songcraft. These days, PT makes records under his name but live shows are rare, since his time is largely taken up scoring films, writing songs for tv and commercials, and voicing characters for a hit Nickelodeon show. Armed with an ace band and his latest batch of personal, expertly-crafted pop songs, he stopped by the studio to play some tunes and chat with Maia.
Google recently made headlines after announcing that they are planning to put their driverless cars to the test in California and lawmakers in the UK are already beginning to address a future that includes cars without human drivers. With driver error being one of the most common reasons for collisions in the United States, cars that drive themselves may soon be a welcome transportation alternative. This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people if they would ever ride in a driverless car.
Split Single is a rock band fronted by Jason Narducy (Superchunk, the Bob Mould Band, Telekinesis, Verbow). Joined on record by Britt Daniel (Spoon) and Jon Wurster (Superchunk, The Mountain Goats), along with a rotating crew of similarly talented friends for live shows, Narducy has put together something worthy of much more attention than most projects with so many parentheses in their bio, if you catch our drift. The band dropped by to treat us to some of the killer tunes and have silly chat time with Travis, including discussion of Narducy’s cameo-filled comedic video, “The Sexiest Elbows in Rock Music” (look out for Dave Grohl, Fred Armisen, and Margaret Cho, to name a few).
Aloud are, as they put it, "a nationally touring four piece rock n' roll band with lots of hooks, lots of harmonies, lots of guitars, and lots of heart." Begun nearly a decade ago by the dual frontpersons of Henry Beguiristain (lead vocals/guitars) and Jen de la Osa (lead vocals/guitars) in Boston, the band has grown considerably with the addition of Frank Hegyi (drums/percussion) and Charles Murphy (bass/backing vocal) for maximum rock power. Their catchy tunes and busy tour schedule come through in the way they play their hearts out with every note. They stopped by, as a trio for this session, to share some music and chat with Maia.
Fifty different Brooklyn venues host the likes of Nite Jewel and Beirut at this year's Northside Festival.
In Manhattan's Flatiron District, Aleo is a frontrunner in service and Italian food.
Alice Boman has the kind of voice that creeps up on you, which may sound dramatic, but so does her music, so it fits. Beautiful, haunting, and with an impossible warmth, this Swedish songwriter has a hazy aura that's completely mesmerizing. On her recent US tour, she stopped by to introduce us to her songs and chat with Maia.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people to share the moment that defined their personal entrance into adulthood.
Hive Bent is the Baltimore, Maryand, duo of Kyle and Steph. The result of experimenting with a number of projects together, they've clicked into something that works incredibly well, blasting post-hardcore noise rock anthems with heavy grooves and acrobatic riffs at your face. After being recommended by some like-minded recent guests of Serious Business on BTR, we were more than happy to have them stop by.
Paper Castles, a Burlington, Vermont, staple, began as a trio headed up by songwriter Paddy Reagan in 2009. A few years and lineup shifts later, he's joined by John Rogone, Brennan Mangan, and Wren Kitz to fill out the sound on his "sad songs about nothing." Sure, it's melancholy and soft, but more importantly, the music is extremely well-crafted and catchy. The band, along with their bedbug-sniffing dog, stopped by the studio to share some tunes and chat with Maia.
The Brooklyn-via-Australia blues punk talks cross-continental lovers and her laissez-faire approach to backing bands.
This Brooklyn band (normally a quintet but performing here as a duo) works in the realm of anthemic, folk-inspired rock n' roll. At times, there's a Dylanesque quality that takes a turn towards Springsteen territory for the choruses, while other times the band heads more for something in the realm of Radiohead, walking the fine line between ambient textures and epic pop. Grab a bouquet on the way in and a drink at the bar, and enjoy another take on Elaphant's music in the intimate setting of Sycamore, a flower shop and bar in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn.
Playing the music of and speaking to Aussie-born solo artist Freya Wilcox.
Hailing from New Orleans, The Revivalists are a funky, soulful experience of a rock n' roll band. Horns and pedal steel paired with a love for the warmth of vintage sounds set them apart from your average guitar band and make for a unique blend of musical genres. The band took a moment out of their busy schedule on the road to share some songs and chat with Maia.
With all the software and apps out there for improving photos these days, it may be hard to imagine sharing one without tweaking it at least a little, but do edited photos represent the real you? This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people if they enhance or edit their photos before putting them online and how far is too far when it comes to altering physical appearance in photos.
Come to Papatzul in SoHo for the authentic Mexican food, stay for the original margaritas.
The Teen Age have come up with their own genre that's totally appropriate and tells you almost all there is to know about their sound: doo wop garage. There's a loose and fuzzy, fun punk vibe with an undercurrent of classic touches from another time when songs were made to sing along to. Here, the young Brooklyn band talks to Travis and plays some tunes.
We Are Scientists first appeared on the scene about a decade ago, touring internationally and becoming massively popular on the strength of their hit-packed debut album. Now, well into their career and still making memorable, danceable songs, they're touring in support of their latest batch of tunes, and they stopped by to share those and chat with Maia.
Chaz Mannenheim explores New York City for the first time since his arrival in the modern era.
Dub Thompson, the California-based project driven by Matt Pulos and Evan Laffer, has had a little help from friends in fueling their need to get weird. Foxygen's Jonathan Rado helped move things along while the duo stayed with him in Bloomington, Indiana, for a summer, and that band's crackly pop sensibility -- and perhaps the free-flowing, blissed-out Midwestern summer vibes -- seem to have found their way into the tunes.
It's graduation and commencement season again -- the time of year when speakers, both well-known and less so, deliver speeches to students as they prepare to move on in their lives and pursuits. Sometimes the advice offered is great, while other times... not so much. BTR Pulse's Sarah Fraser speaks with people about what makes an effective graduation speech and then hands them the mic to deliver their own words of wisdom to the class of 2014.
Big Ups are back, making their second appearance on Serious Business on BTR, and things have been going well for them since they last sat down with Travis. We can see why, as the Brooklyn post-hardcore band is busy touring and making great music, drawn from the Minutemen/Black Flag bloodline. They've made tons of fans and friends in their short career and, here, they talk to Travis about their lives on the road and play some excellent new tunes.
Slothrust, a Brooklyn by way of Boston band, is a rock trio aiming for the gut, spearheaded by the deep, forceful vocals of songwriter Leah Wellbaum, who grew the band from a previous solo effort. Blasting from subtle, smooth Pavement-isms to full on thrashing happy punk is sort of their thing, and they do it oh so well. Though the band is comprised of musicians with jazz and blues backgrounds, they don't get hung up on that, opting for the approach of making catchy, memorable rock songs by any means possible.
Can the blossoming residential rental industry ever hope to self-regulate?
The New Paltz, NY-based shoegaze/grunge band who is okay with missing South By.
NYC’s Walking Shapes is a band with the rare ability to create songs that are at once totally original while also bringing to mind familiar melodies, so you’ll swear you've heard them before. That feeling that you must know this one... it has to be a radio hit by Kings Of Leon, or Flaming Lips, or The Strokes, or Fleetwood Mac... no, but it's cut from the same perfectly-executed musical fabric. There's a sweet blend of decades of guitar-based rock and pop music here as the soundtrack to a band finding its way and building their own legacy. The guys stopped by after a whirlwind of tour, record release, and 24 NYC shows in 24 hours to share some music and talk a bit about the inspiration for their album.
The 9/11 Memorial Museum recently opened near the site of the World Trade Center and the events that took place there on September 11, 2001. Included as part of the museum, a gift shop also opened, selling various merchandise connected to the museum as well as the NYPD, FDNY, and other organizations associated with the tragedy. Some people, including family members of the victims, have expressed disappointment over this monetization, so this week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people what they think of the gift shop.
Beech Creeps is a hot new Brooklyn/Queens band featuring Mark Shue, Zach Lehrhoff, and Luke Fasano. With a fine pedigree as former members of Ex Models, Knyfe Hyts, Pterodactyl, and Yeasayer, this trio is set to slam their jammy, lo-fi, noisy surf jingles way deep into earholes everywhere.
Carsick Cars are a rock trio from Beijing. Singing mostly in English and taking a broad interpretation of noise rock, their songs are exceptionally catchy and melodic, and the Sonic Youth (who they've toured with) influence is definitely hard at work -- pleasantly so. They've been at the forefront of the Chinese indie music movement for almost a decade, though lineup changes have left Zhang Shouwang as the sole founding/consistent member of the band even as the group’s popularity and work with other artists and projects has continued to grow their reputation worldwide.
The glory of summer in New York isn’t rooftop parties, boating on the Hudson, or Yankees games...
Picastro is a decade-strong Toronto-based project, built around the songwriting of Liz Hysen. Through lineup changes, the band has maintained a soft, sleepy tone in its sparse and experimental indie rock. Unconventional folk, noise, and rock elements all find their way into the songs on record, while here, Liz performs solo, stripping them down to their barest core to expose the simple, beautiful nature of her music.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser talks to people about whether online reviews of businesses should be allowed anonymity.
Exploding In Sound is a Brooklyn-based music blog and label, specializing in the often-guitar-heavy, 90s-leaning rock sound that we love so much at Serious Business On BTR. They cut no corners whatsoever on their promise of "delivering good rock music since 2008." We've had a number of EIS-connected bands in for sessions in the past, so we thought we'd make our love real and invited them to do a little takeover for a few weeks! Palehound, the third and final in our EISxSBonBTR series, is a band from Yonkers, New York. Yes, Yonkers, not Brooklyn. Got it? Originally the solo project of Ellen Kempner (vocals and guitar), the current quartet came together in the Fall of 2013 and proceeded to launch into a whirlwind of nonstop touring and recording. There's a distinct 90s alternative rock sound here (somewhere along the Helium-Pavement spectrum) akin to the like-minded Krill and Speedy Ortiz, but don't get hung up on that. This group of beyond-the-boroughs New Yorkers are super charming and making great music for today that you should check out.
This Portland, Oregon-based group is a bright, spirited collective with 6 or more voices joining in, rallying around the lyrics of bandleader Tim Perry. With a positive vibe and uplifting themes, they operate under the admirable notion of using music to change the world. With their own language and an infectiously positive outlook paired with infectiously catchy songs, Ages And Ages just might have a shot at achieving their goal while creating some brilliant music along the way.
Rori Gordon is the owner and proprietor of Billy Dean’s Showtime Cafe, a gentleman’s club on Long Island located in North Bellmore, New York. She speaks with BTRtv’s Sarah Fraser about her uniqueness as a female club owner, as well as the stigmas and misconceptions associated with her trade.
Brooklyn-based Shilpa Ray left the Happy Hookers at home and brought her harmonium to the studio for a solo set, which included two tracks from her new EP. Just off a tour supporting Nick Cave, who also released Shilpa's EP via his label, her songs feature a familiar howl and darkness while tackling the issues and concern of the modern world.
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser speaks to people about how they’re celebrating Mother’s Day and how they’ve celebrated it in the past, including failed gift attempts. People also share special messages to their own mothers.
Exploding In Sound is a Brooklyn-based music blog and label, specializing in the often-guitar-heavy, 90s-leaning rock sound that we love so much at Serious Business On BTR. They cut no corners whatsoever on their promise of "delivering good rock music since 2008." We've had a number of EIS-connected bands in for sessions in the past, so we thought we'd make our love real and invited them to do a little takeover for the next few weeks! For the second installment of the series we welcomed Krill, the Massachusetts-based band who just about everybody and their mother has told us that we ABSOLUTELY NEED TO BOOK. You know what? They were right. This fierce, charming, hooky trio crank out the jams in the most delicious of ways. Check it out and get into the Krill action!
Thus Owls is a transatlantic band centered around husband and wife duo Erika and Simon Angell. Originally an outlet for Erika's songs in her home country of Sweden, meeting and falling in love with Simon's music on tour ultimately led to the pair being married and living together in Montreal. Musically, their style is an experimental collage of genres, from rock to folk and pop, building lush, epic melodies with a nostalgic, almost psychedelic feel. Erika's connection to her grandmother -- largely tied to growing up in the same house she once lived in -- inspired the stories, artwork, and songs on the band's latest record.
The Dough Rollers are an early blues-inspired rock quartet, begun by Jack Byrne and Malcolm Ford in 2008 (now joined by Kyle Olson and Josh Barocas). This hard-touring band has played with Bob Dylan, John Mellencamp, and Queens of the Stone Age, and released a 7" via Jack White's Third Man Records. They rolled through our studio to share some tunes and chat with Maia.
Exploding In Sound is a Brooklyn-based music blog and label, specializing in the often-guitar-heavy, 90s-leaning rock sound that we love so much at Serious Business On BTR. They cut no corners whatsoever on their promise of "delivering good rock music since 2008." We've had a number of EIS-connected bands in for sessions in the past, so we thought we'd make our love real and invited them to do a little takeover for the next few weeks! For part 1 of the EISxSBonBTR Takeover, we've got Kal Marks. This Boston based band crushes with drawling melody and swelling, hooky choruses. Tales of perversion, depravity, and beautiful chaos (you know, life stuff) wrapped in crusty slowjams. The band stopped by to melt our faces and have some silly chit-chat with Travis.
Melaena Cadiz is a Brooklyn-based songwriter originally from Kalamazoo, Michigan, who plays a dreamy sort of Americana/folk. We last caught Melaena solo at her home in Brooklyn for an episode of BTR Hear & There whilst in the midst of a year-long collaborative monthly song project, but this time around she brought her full band to the studio to share some of the songs from her upcoming record.
The 50th anniversary of the World's Fair highlights one of New York's strangest and most characteristic landmarks.
Oh My Goodness is the duo of multi-instrumentalists and producers Therese Workman and Tyler Wood, originally from Maine and now based in Brooklyn, New York. Their dizzying amalgam of experimental hip hop, pop, and funk may be hard to categorize, but it's luckily real easy to get into. Don't mistake this for sample-heavy, chopped up beats: this duo is the real deal, mixing it up and playing live, delivering looping vibes and spitfire lyrics right in your face. They stopped by to school us on how it all happens, and to chat with Maia about who, what, and why OMG is.
Crobot is a big, dirty, groovy rock band from Pottsville, Pennsylvania. These guys have clearly studied the works of classic rock and metal's heaviest hitters, as they pump out riff after riff of absolutely solid tunes. The band stopped by to share some music and sit down for a chat with Maia.
On March 15, 2014, BTR threw a free, unofficial day party during the SXSW Music Festival in Austin, Texas. Held at The Liberty -- a great East Side watering hole with a huge outdoor area, including a bar and the East Side King food truck -- we hosted a fun-filled day with music from Clouder, The So So Glos, Gringo Star, Diane Coffee, Milagres, Zorch, and Marijuana Deathsquads. Our friends at Southern Tier Brewing Company provided complimentary beers for our guests. Minneapolis noise band Marijuana Deathsquads is the ever-evolving, experimental project lead by Ryan Olson, Isaac Gale (whose videos for Bon Iver, Polica, P.O.S., and On An On you may have seen), and Stefon Alexander (P.O.S), and supported by multiple drummers and other performers contributing synths, vocals, and miscellaneous sounds to the sonic chaos. They’ve quickly become a BTR favorite (you may have caught their incredible session for Serious Business on BTR), so of course we had to have them headline our day party! Here, we get down in the dirt and on the stage with the band as they tear through their single, “Ewok Sadness.”
These days, parents have more outlets for showing off pictures of their kids beyond the wallet-sized class photos of yesteryear. This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people how much say children should have in how they are featured on their parents' social media accounts.
Vulture Shit says that what they make is "Music for people who live in basements, by people who live in basements." Their drums + bass (but no guitar) sound feels like punk rock in its purest form, pressure cooked inside a computer and spit back out with extra sludge. Here, they play some music in the studio and chat with Travis about their unexpected URL and desire for their own 1-800 number.
Grow: How to Take Your Do It Yourself Project and Passion to the Next Level and Quit Your Job is a book written by Eleanor Whitney. With plenty of experience in the DIY realm herself, as well as with helping others to execute their own DIY projects, Whitney outlines with authority a number of steps that can be key in building a project from the ground up and developing it into a thriving endeavor. She sat down for BreakThruTV to discuss her book, going over it chapter by chapter.
The NYC-based boogaloo band who is leading the booty-shakin’ revival movement.
[blip]video2[/blip] This week on BTR Pulse, we ask whether tipping should be abolished. People share their opinions on tipping, raising the minimum wage, and whether they would still tip even if it was no longer necessary.
Travis gets his donk slonked by Slonk Donkerson (who are actually, like, really good), learns a bit about the band's hometown, and even manages to tell his classic Steve Buscemi story. Sometime during the session, the Brooklyn rock trio also happened to play some sweet tunes. We can't decide if we want to compare them to a hair metal band or R.E.M., but neither one is really at all appropriate -- while also totally appropriate, somehow -- so just go ahead and check it out for yourself. Don't let us tell you how to live your life.
Grow: How to Take Your Do It Yourself Project and Passion to the Next Level and Quit Your Job is a book written by Eleanor Whitney. With plenty of experience in the DIY realm herself, as well as with helping others to execute their own DIY projects, Whitney outlines with authority a number of steps that can be key in building a project from the ground up and developing it into a thriving endeavor. She sat down for BreakThruTV to discuss her book, going over it chapter by chapter.
​What's the right thing to do with a gift from your significant other after you break up? This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser hits the streets to ask people what they do with gifts that were given to them by their exes, the last gift they got rid of, and things they received from exes but held on to.
The Fleshtones were formed in 1976 in Whitestone, New York, and have been active for the nearly four decades since. They were there for the rise of punk and the New York rock 'n roll music of the late 1970s and early 1980s, and were the first band to be booked or to play at iconic venues such as Irving Plaza, Danceteria, Maxwell's, and the 9:30 Club. With a cult following and reputation as an unforgettable live act, their colorful history continues to grow to this day, as they give every show 100%. Founding members Keith Streng and Peter Zaremba stopped by for a special acoustic performance and chat with Travis.
Designed to warn people that potentially sensitive or graphic material may follow, trigger warnings are being used more frequently than in past years. Especially popular at certain colleges and universities, some students have gone as far as demanding trigger warnings when topics are covered that may make them uncomfortable. This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser talks to people about trigger warnings and if they believe they are a good idea.
Spirit Kid is the Boston-based project of jangle-pop-loving songwriter Emeen Zarookian. Their latest album is out today (if you happen to be reading this on the day the session and video premiere) and was produced after a successful Pledgemusic campaign which also benefitted the Boston Children's Hospital. Check out the session for sweet melodies, hot sax, drummer talk, and a cameo from BTR cameraman and pow wow!/Quiet Loudly drummer, Sal Garro!
Lean In, an organization founded by Sheryl Sandberg to encourage the empowerment of women, has partnered with the Girl Scouts of America and over a dozen other partners in a campaign to “ban ‘bossy.’” The campaign suggests that assertive young girls are labeled as “bossy,” while boys with the same qualities are considered leaders, and that the negative title makes females less interested in leadership roles. #banbossy, which is now trending across social media, has the support of many celebrities and media outlets, but has been criticized by others as a failure to teach children, specifically girls, how to ignore hurtful name calling. This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people in New York what they think of the campaign.
Great Western Plain is a trio of dudes from Maine, playing gnarly rock music. Continuing the tradition of Portland-based bands (though drummer Tony would be quick to point out that he lives a couple hours north of Maine's biggest city, we're sticking with it) making the trek down for shows and a beer-and-chat session with Travis for Serious Business On BTR, the guys stopped by to play some of their more recent jams, now with more krauty, no-wave goodness slathered on top of their punk jams.
The members of Los Angeles-based band Incan Abraham have been friends since kindergarten. It's that childhood bond that fuels much of the imagery, sounds, and aesthetic of the band, from their bouncy, sun-kissed psych pop songs of dreamy adventures to their nostalgic album art. They stopped by to share some tunes from their upcoming release on White Iris Records.
Grow: How to Take Your Do It Yourself Project and Passion to the Next Level and Quit Your Job is a book written by Eleanor Whitney. With plenty of experience in the DIY realm herself, as well as with helping others to execute their own DIY projects, Whitney outlines with authority a number of steps that can be key in building a project from the ground up and developing it into a thriving endeavor. She sat down for BreakThruTV to discuss her book, going over it chapter by chapter.
This week in Austin, Texas, thousands of musicians and fans are at the South By Southwest Music Festival. A huge event featuring showcases, unofficial parties, and countless opportunities to hear new music, we've got a team down there working on special episodes of BTR Live Studio and throwing a huge, free, day party on Saturday, March 15 at The Liberty (details here - http://breakthruradio.tumblr.com/post/77843659959/btrsxsw2014).
This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people to share their job interview horror stories. She wants to know about what went wrong, how people recovered when the interviews went awry, and also shares a story of her own.
This week in Austin, Texas, thousands of musicians and fans are at the South By Southwest Music Festival. A huge event featuring showcases, unofficial parties, and countless opportunities to hear new music, we've got a team down there working on special episodes of BTR Live Studio and throwing a huge, free, day party on Saturday, March 15 at The Liberty (details here - http://breakthruradio.tumblr.com/post/77843659959/btrsxsw2014).
This week in Austin, Texas, thousands of musicians and fans are at the South By Southwest Music Festival. A huge event featuring showcases, unofficial parties, and countless opportunities to hear new music, we've got a team down there working on special episodes of BTR Live Studio and throwing a huge, free, day party on Saturday, March 15 at The Liberty (details here - http://breakthruradio.tumblr.com/post/77843659959/btrsxsw2014).
Gardens & Villa are a band from Santa Barbara, California. Members Adam Rasmussen, Chris Lynch, Dusty Ineman, Levi Hayden and Shane McKillop craft lush, beat-driven music full of creative pop harmonies and featuring unique instrumentation -- with prominent synths, tastefully effect-laden bass, and memorable lead melodies played on flute. With these quirks, Gardens & Villa seem to have tapped into something special, producing some of the catchiest, most danceable pop music that we've heard in a while.
Amid a yearlong downward media spiral, Alec Baldwin recently spoke out in an op-ed piece for New York Magazine, addressing accusations of his alleged homophobia, his history with New York paparazzi, and his now happy, adult life, among other topics. He ended by sharing that he is done with public life and, with that, also perhaps done with New York. This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people what they thought of Baldwin's piece and how they feel about his potentially leaving New York.
Sharkmuffin has the kind of name that demands attention. Ferocious and deadly as a shark, while sweet like a muffin could be the implied meaning -- and since this Brooklyn garage-pop band is comprised of three badass ladies, it definitely works. We're leaning a bit more on the shark side of things here, because Tarra Thiessen, Natalie Kirch, and Janet LaBelle definitely mean business. With song matter leaning towards the dark and heavy side (incest, mythical bestiality, and homicidal heroin using fembots) and music that tears 70s rock riffs through 90s alt-rock noise, all under the guise of garage rock, maybe the name is there to remind us that there's still something sweet behind all of that mayhem. Or maybe all we should take from it is what the band says themselves, "Sharkmuffin doesn't really give a fuck, they just want to have a good time."
Glasvegas is a Scottish indie rock band from Glasgow consisting of James Allan (vocals), Rab Allan (lead guitar), Paul Donoghue (bass guitar) and Jonna Löfgren (drums). Characterized by rolling drum beats, washes of delayed guitars, and strong, narrative-driven vocals, the band has a huge following and a history of critical and commercial success. Here, the band performs in stripped-down duo form, but manages to maintain the epic pop power that their performances are known for.
February 2014 Made Us Believe! Made Us Cry! Made Us Angry! Made Us Wonder! WHAT Is Going On In Kiev? WHY Did Philip Seymour Hoffman Leave Us So Soon? WHO Cares About The Olympics? These Questions Will Be Thought Through And Answered With The Comic Adroitness Of One Of Those Fake Arrows Through The Head! Watch & Believe Chaz Mannenheim’s MONTH IN REVIEW: February 2014!!!
The New York-based sad pop group that is the result of what happens when you start a band with your heroes.
Tropic of Pisces is the new project from Brooklyn-based Oberhofer guitarist Mathew Scheiner. The project's debut is a home-recorded album, which was mixed by Mathew's Grammy winning engineer/producer/father, Elliot Scheiner (Beck, The Flaming Lips, Fleetwood Mac, etc). Musically, Tropic of Pisces crafts exquisite pop music that manages to use pieces of funk, electro-pop, indie rock, and more.
It's Obsolete Week at BTR, so we've been focusing on things that are no longer useful or will be phased out due to technological advancements. BTR Pulse’s Sarah Fraser hits the streets to ask people what they think will soon be obsolete.
GIMME TINNITUS is a Brooklyn-based music/MP3 blog run by a dedicated music enthusiast by the name of Bob Reich. We love his constant curation of killer shows, sick playlists, and undying advocacy for spending your hard-earned cash to support the bands he loves. He tends to go for the loud, abrasive, unconventional, and downright obscure-as-hell music that we can't get enough of on Serious Business On BTR. For the fourth and final installment of the four-part GIMME TINNITUS X SB On BTR Takeover, we're featuring Exocomet. Exocomet is a deliberately mysterious band. This Brooklyn-based two-man-machine of a post-punk experimental band has earned the right to keep the details murky, playing fast and precise, with layers of ambient sonic chaos for their krauty no wave dreamscapes to float around on. There’s a sort of familiar, ominous vibe to their music, but, more importantly, there’s persistent forward propulsion that’s highly addicting.
Doug Gillard is well known as a member of Guided By Voices, Nada Surf, Lifeguards, Bambi Kino, Death Of Samantha, Cobra Verde, Gem, and more. The Ohio-bred, New York-based singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist is currently celebrating his third solo album of solid, memorable jams. Previously seen on Serious Business On BTR, Doug is back in our studio (with Serious Biz mastermind Travis Harrison behind the kit this time around) for BTR Live Studio.
Algebra Blessett is a contemporary R&B singer who was raised in Atlanta, Georgia. In school she sang in a gospel choir as a way to stay after school with her friends, and eventually found herself performing as a background singer for artists including Monica and Bilal, as well as touring with Anthony Hamilton and collaborating with India.Arie while also developing her own music. Now, with her first release in a few years, she sat down with BTR’s Ms. Drama to talk about change, making music, the Recovery process, and how she got to where she is now.
The Long Beach, NY-basd solo project holding a mirror up to ourselves in the eyes of a bear.
MiWi La Lupa grew up and started playing music in Buffalo, New York, before finding his way to New York City to pursue his dreams. Once in the city, he racked up an impressive list of collaborators, from El-P and David Byrne to Femi Kuti and Charlie Hunter. Over time, his voice and songwriting style developed and grew strong, resulting in his signature frank, honest delivery and style. With the help of a number of talented friends, MiWi crafted his latest album by uniting a diverse range of sounds, styles, and influences with the common thread of his own vision.
Who needs the (subscribed) reader? An internet punditry manifesto through the lens of music review revisionism.
CVS Caremark, the largest drugstore chain in the country by sales, recently announced they plan to discontinue sale of tobacco products by October. BTR Pulse’s Sarah Fraser asks people what they think of the decision.
GIMME TINNITUS is a Brooklyn-based music/MP3 blog run by a dedicated music enthusiast by the name of Bob Reich. We love his constant curation of killer shows, sick playlists, and undying advocacy for spending your hard-earned cash to support the bands he loves. He tends to go for the loud, abrasive, unconventional, and downright obscure-as-hell music that we can't get enough of on Serious Business On BTR. For the third installment of the four-part GIMME TINNITUS X SB On BTR Takeover, we're featuring FINS. FINS is a Connecticut trio whose urgent, heavy, throaty rock pummels earholes in the best way possible. They’ve got the post-punk pulse down, and can thrash with the best of them. We’re starting to think that between CT and MA, New England is having a serious rock renaissance, with bands like FINS, Ovlov, Speedy Ortiz, Grass Is Green, etc. mining similar 90s-esque grunge territory and delivering seriously tasty doses of noise.
Benjamin Verdoes makes his second stop by BTR Live Studio -- previously seen as half of the buzzing duo, Iska Dhaaf -- this time performing solo, demonstrating his unorthodox approach to songwriting. Already well known in Seattle and beyond, largely due to his work with the band Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band, Verdoes is quickly building a reputation with this, the first work under his own name.
Brett Saxon is a Brooklyn-based songwriter. Wielding an acoustic guitar and a tight backing band, Brett sings his way through tales of longing, loneliness, and social politics. His is a particularly moody take on the folk and country traditions, pulled into the modern day bars of Brooklyn. Here, Brett steps out from behind the bar at Mission Dolores, where he works in Gowanus, Brooklyn, for an intimate performance with his band.
Blood Warrior is Greg Jamie (of o'death) and Joey Weiss (of Supermonster). Friends for most of their lives, they launched this project as a way to start playing music together after a decade of not doing so. As a band, Blood Warrior is based in Portland, Maine, though Long Island, New York, plays a large part in their story. The music is haunting and gorgeous, as much about the space as the sound, with sparse acoustic guitars and bare drum beats laying the foundation for the chanting and howling confessions of a shipwrecked soul. There's an intense softness to Blood Warrior's music that manages to evoke catchy, memorable melodies and the band shared some of these as they work towards the release of their next album.
On this week's episode of BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people if it's possible to be dumped in a nice way. Along the way, she shares a text from a former suitor and gets peoples' opinions on whether it qualifies as a nice way to dump someone.
GIMME TINNITUS is a Brooklyn-based music/MP3 blog run by a dedicated music enthusiast by the name of Bob Reich. We love his constant curation of killer shows, sick playlists, and undying advocacy for spending your hard-earned cash to support the bands he loves. He tends to go for the loud, abrasive, unconventional, and downright obscure-as-hell music that we can't get enough of on Serious Business On BTR. For the second installment of the four-part GIMME TINNITUS X SB On BTR Takeover, we're featuring Clean Girls. Clean Girls are a heavy band. They'll tell you that much themselves. But, more than that, they're intense -- thrashing, relentless, undulating waves of sound from every angle, with throaty screams slathered on top of all the punk noise. Here, they drop some face-melting music on the studio, and reveal the dirty origin of their band name.
Gregory and the Hawk is the solo project of Meredith Godreau from New York. Known for her touching lyrics and vocal talents, she conceived the band name in 2003 to set herself apart from other female singer-songwriters. The trick seemed to work, as she's developed a loyal following of fans -- thanks in no small part to her hard touring work ethic and the internet -- and continues to grow as an artist, calling on talented musicians to lend their skills to the project's recordings. Here, she stops by the studio for a solo performance of songs from her next album, which can currently be heard in demo form online.
Brett Saxon is a Brooklyn-based songwriter. Wielding an acoustic guitar and a tight backing band, Brett sings his way through tales of longing, loneliness, and social politics. His is a particularly moody take on the folk and country traditions, pulled into the modern day bars of Brooklyn. Here, Brett steps out from behind the bar at Mission Dolores, where he works in Gowanus, Brooklyn, for an intimate performance with his band.
Find out what’s on top of Brooklyn’s hometown psyche-heroes.
Secret Someones is the fresh NYC-based project from singer-songwriters Bess Rogers, Lelia Broussard, Hannah Winkler, & drummer/multi-instrumentalist Zach Jones. Though they give a lot of credit to their love for fuzzy pop rock masters Weezer, the band's music is so catchy that we might even say it's got more pop potential than even their heroes.
A recent survey commissioned by ChristanMingle.com and JDate.com and reported on by the Daily Mail, revealed that about 70% of singles who meet for the first time are unable to tell whether they are on a date or simply “hanging out.” BTR Pulse's Sara Fraser spoke to people at Grand Central Terminal about whether they could define the difference between a date and hanging out.
Governor Cuomo’s administration outlines a preliminary medical-marijuana system, but certain lawmakers call for something different.
GIMME TINNITUS is a Brooklyn-based music/MP3 blog run by a dedicated music enthusiast by the name of Bob Reich. We love his constant curation of killer shows, sick playlists, and undying advocacy for spending your hard-earned cash to support the bands he loves. He tends to go for the loud, abrasive, unconventional, and downright obscure-as-hell music that we can't get enough of on Serious Business On BTR. For the first installment of the four-part GIMME TINNITUS X SB On BTR Takeover, we're featuring bbigpigg. bbigpigg are a squeal-blasting, face-melting, fat-bottomed groovin' noise rock band from Brooklyn. Gimme Tinnitus noticed that their Facebook interests seem to reveal a little something about the band and their tunes. Submitted for your consideration: “biological organization. anthropomorphism. survival strategies. transference. Merleau-Ponty. BBQs. homicidal cartoon monkeys. candy empires. self-defense weaponry. kitty-cats.” Yup, that does make a lot of sense.
Karikatura is a band based in New York City pumping out lively, body-shaking music that blends gypsy, latin, hip-hop, indie rock, afrobeat, and reggae styles into one huge, organic sonic party. Based on strong rhythms and topped with socially conscious-lyrics, bright horns, and an abundance of joy, the band, which was born on the road -- conceived in South India and ultimately realized in NYC -- can sound at home anywhere in the world.
January 2014 Thrilled and CHILLED All Who Participated! A Polar Vortex Swept Us Up Like Brides On A Wedding Night! Chris Christie Put The Hoagie Down Just Long Enough To Get Into Trouble! Justin Bieber Surprised Nobody By Drag Racing, Drinking, Getting Arrested, And Looking As Ridiculous As He Is! HEAR Me Discuss These Issues With Local NYC WitMasters! Grab Some Cocoa And Cuddle Up With CHAZ MANNENHEIM, NEWSMAN OF YESTERYEAR!
Melt Shop in Manhattan serves artisanal grilled cheese, beer, and milk shakes.
PEP is a project built on the retro-pop love of Karys Rhea, who you may recognize from the band Starlight Girls. For this project, Karys drew heavily on 1950s girl-group melodies and, with the help of a full band, brings those ditties of teenage love to life. Take a listen and you'll quickly hear just how infectious the upbeat vibe of PEP can be!
A great debate took place on Twitter when Chicago chef Grant Achatz criticized a couple for bringing their eight month old infant to his triple-Michelin-starred restaurant. The online dialogue unveiled an array of opinions about whether or not young children should be allowed in fine dining establishments. For childless fine diners, a screaming child can upset a costly experience, but for parents, such a ban could deprive children of a valuable lesson in etiquette. BTR Pulse's Sarah Fraser spoke with people on the streets about whether children should or should not be banned from fine dining establishments. She also spoke with former restaurateur Michael Vuick, who once banned children from his establishment, McDain’s in Monroeville, Pennsylvania
Ava Luna is a household name among certain circles in Brooklyn. Travis hits the nail on the head here, addressing the band's masterful use of space in their funky, catchy, damn sweet tunes as a testament to their success in the DIY scene and beyond. They've boiled their formula down to something pretty much perfect, crafting weird, complex, and totally awesome arty pop music that lands somewhere between Dirty Projectors and Prince. If you're not already down with Ava Luna, get caught up; if you already love them, you're welcome. Get caught up with some of their tunes and a revealing chat with Travis.
Tancred is the solo project of Jess Abbott, member of the Minneapolis band Now, Now. Born in California before growing up in New England, her current home in the Midwest may be a slightly unnatural fit for someone more accustomed to the coasts, but her direct, confessional music has certainly found a home with her fans, as demonstrated by a dedicated internet fan base built up around her YouTube and Tumblr presence. Initially an acoustic project, Tancred has developed into a full band sound on the latest record, and Jess took the music on the road for a brief tour in December 2013, which also brought her to our studio.
Seanna Sharpe made a splash when she took her aerial act high above the East River of New York City, performing suspended from the Williamsburg Bridge in 2011. Now she’s director of Urban Aerial NYC, a company of aerial artists who perform regularly in New York. Additionally, she’s founded Katana Flight School, an educational program teaching at-risk youth and underprivileged children aerial dance and acrobatics. Here, she discusses both organizations, as well as her own experiences as an aerialist.
The New York City-based powerpop band whose love you just can’t stop.
Hugh Cornwell is a bit of a legend. As the original guitarist, singer, and primary songwriter in UK hit-making band The Stranglers, he has more than enough credibility, not to mention a hell of a catalog of widely-known tunes under his belt. Just as The Stranglers grew from a howling punk band to a more refined pop unit, Cornwell's solo work takes advantage of all this experience and development as an artist, blasting forth a more mature, but still gnarly, perspective.
Travel the world, but nowhere can beat or meet New York style pizza.
Awards season is upon us. The Golden Globes have come and gone, the various guilds are busy honoring their own, the critics associations have spoken, and the Academy Award nominations have been announced. Yet, despite the multitude of occasions, many nominees still have seemingly little of interest to say. This week on BTR Pulse, Sarah Fraser asks people what they think of acceptance speeches at awards shows and what they would say if they ever won an award themselves.
For the past few years, Tyler Jackson of Portland, Maine, has been turning out fuzzy pop gems -- leaning towards psych rock at times, riff-heavy indie rock at others -- under the name Foam Castles (previously seen performing solo in an episode of BTR Hear & There). The project began, like many, as a home recording project that eventually featured an amorphous lineup of musician friends before solidifying into a full-fledged band. These days, the band is a tight foursome pop hit-making machine including some of the most accomplished veterans of the local Portland scene (Jaw Gems, Brenda, Endless Jags, and others among their notable projects). The guys dropped by the studio to share some tunes both old and new and to chat with Travis, providing some insight into where they find inspiration for their music.
The Can't Tells are a trio of scrappy late twenty-somethings from Brooklyn -- specifically (and alphabetically) Mike DiSanto, Blaze McKenzie, and Jonathan Smith. In 2006, the self-described music geeks came together in Boston, bonding over a shared love of especially-weird microphones (they must love the Ear Trumpet Labs Edwina microphones used in our sessions!). With a sound that careens from pleasant pop to explosive noise -- often turning in an instant and catching the listener by surprise -- they're carving out a niche that seems to be right at the intersection of their influences of Elvis Costello and Mission of Burma, without mimicking either.
The indie pop starlet on the theraputic effects of having an alter ego aside from your day job.
Genghis Hans is the cleverly named Brooklyn-based pop duo of guitarist/singer Hansdale Hsu and producer Stryker Matthews. Hints of tropicalia and chillwave drop in and out of their songs, all of which feature a kind of shimmery, mellow vibe that make a worthy soundtrack for life. We caught up with the band as they played at The Warehouse, on the border of Brooklyn and Queens.
For your next burger and beer, try Stout NYC located in the heart of Manhattan.
From “sad” one week to “proud” the next, Chris Christie must fix Bridgegate before he can fix New Jersey.
Yes, Australian indie pop band The Griswolds ARE named after the cinematic family we all know and love from the National Lampoon's Vacation films. These self-described chameleons of pop reportedly found each other just the way a band should -- by working out a sound-defining riff that became their first single. In the few years since that fortuitous collaboration, the band has toured extensively and in good company (Passion Pit, Django Django, San Cisco), and now the States is starting to catch on as their catchy melodies and huge choruses hit our shores.
Anthonie Tonnon is a songwriter and performer based in Auckland, New Zealand, who performs both solo and with a four piece band. Formerly known as the frontman for the pop band Tono And The Finance Company, his solo work has been quickly gathering steam with a busy schedule touring and opening for internationally-renowned acts. Tonnon's work melds the dramatic, the dreamlike, and the surreal into tuneful tales filled with everyday characters. While on a US tour, he joined BTR Hear & There on the border of Bushwick, Brooklyn, and Ridgewood, Queens, for a very intimate performance of his song "Sugar In The Petrol Tank."
The Yonkers, NY-based band that’s navigating their way through pre-adulthood.
Coastgaard may not quite be a surf-rock band, but the band definitely has that beachy vibe. Growing from the ashes of the band Sons Of Sons and honing a style inspired by the likes of The Beach Boys, David Bowie, and The Ventures, as much as alt rock from Pavement, The Pixies, and Neutral Milk Hotel, the Brooklyn-based five-piece have managed to find a take on super-catchy pop that feels both familiar and new. Here, they play some tunes and share the story of the whiskey-fueled inspiration for their Scandinavian-leaning moniker.
Soon after taking office at the beginning of the year, New York’s new mayor, Bill de Blasio, announced he would be seeking to ban the horse-drawn carriages known for carrying tourists around Central Park. BTR Pulse’s Sarah Fraser spoke with people in New York about the possible end of what some consider an institution and others consider animal rights abuse.
How to stay safe while driving, biking, or walking around NYC.
Brooklyn trio Low Fat Getting High has a simple formula: whether it's a show, a recording, or live in the studio, the music starts loud, fast, and heavy and doesn't let up for a second. Appropriately, they describe what they do as "post-noise-grunge-core-shredding" and the pure energy they generate hits that satisfying Nirvana level of intensity. They stopped by the studio to discuss their sound and some of their more interesting live show experiences.
Jay Arner is a musician from Vancouver. While he may have played all the instruments on his latest album, live, the project is very much a group effort. Either way, the point is that Jay Arner -- the person or the band -- makes some extremely well-crafted, well-informed, subdued pop music.
Weekend began as a notoriously noisy shoegaze band in San Francisco, but a recent move to Brooklyn marked a shift in both their location and their sound. Shedding some of the wall of noise without sacrificing any of their anxious rhythms or ominous creeping bass, they've grown into a band whose dark tales come through with a new clarity on their upcoming release, Jinx.
As we leave behind 2012 and begin 2013, we ask people in New York City about any new year’s resolutions they may be considering and whether they think making resolutions actually helps people to make their desired changes.

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