Norwegian songwriter Susanne Sundfor exists at the intersection of two worlds (as cleverly depicted in the video for her single “The White Foxes”) — the ancient, natural world of forests and ruins, and the modern, manufactured world of technology, all covered in snow. This is true both thematically, as her songs are often lyrically cold and dark with subtle overtones of brilliant warmth, as well as sonically, blending lush piano elements with the more mechanical, almost industrial elements of pop music. Susanne stopped by to play some solo tunes and talk about the therapy of making art and how her own style developed.
Courtney Barnett lives in Melbourne, plays guitar, and writes songs. As vague as that sounds, it’s the absolute truth. She even releases her records via her own label, Milk! Records. What we’re not telling you is that there’s something very special about her songwriting — something almost nostalgic and definitely timeless, akin to the folk and psych of the 60s. Once you hear her songs, you’ll want to keep her your own little secret, too.
Wolf People — a British band signed to North American label Jagjaguwar — comes from the imagination of singer and guitarist Jack Sharp, who crafts fantastical story songs from bits of history and his own imagination. Named for the children’s book, Little Jacko and the Wolf People, and taking the shape of bluesy, retro rock drawing on 60’s folk and 70’s classic rock, the band uses powerful hooks and complex, drifting melodies to produces psychedelic results. On their first ever North American tour, the band stopped by to play some tunes and talk about their recent releases.
Los Angeles-based together PANGEA began with lead singer-songwriter William Keegan’s teenage 4-track recordings. Over the years, with the addition of Danny Bengston on bass, Erik Jimenez on drums and, later, Cory Hanson on lead guitar, the band grew their garage pop beast from West Coast DIY shows to iconic LA venues and national tours. With previous releases on Lost Sound Tapes and Burger Records, the group’s debut full length is set to premiere this January via Harvest Records. The band stopped by to rock out and chat about their recent 7,” how switching labels has caused delays in releases, and fans with notable ass tattoos.
Charlene Kaye is a New York-based songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. Growing up in Hawaii, Kaye developed a background in classical music that creeps into her glam-inflected, high-energy style, with Kaye shredding on guitar and singing her heart out over a tight double-drum and keyboard foundation. Extensive touring, festivals showcases, and praise from major entertainment and news sources all point to big things.
Twin Peaks is a Chicago-based band comprised of Cadien, Clay, Connor, and Jack — four young dudes blasting out fuzzy rock ‘n roll. Catchy hooks, a pile of effects, and blasts of attitude have brought a whole lot of attention to this foursome, based on their demos and hard-touring. After trying to hang it up and go to school, the guys realized they were destined (or doomed?) to rock, and headed right back into their own world of honest garage rock.
Baoku Moses is a Nigerian-born, Cincinnati-based artist specializing in African cultural performance and an Afro-beat musician, singer, songwriter, bandleader, and composer. As the leader of Baoku & The Image Afro-Beat Band, his exhilarating take on the genre is heavily inspired by the legendary Fela Kuti and is used to preach, teach, entertain and educate about the issues facing all of humanity.
Zula are a young Brooklyn band with a West African name and tunes built around the songwriting of cousins Henry and Nate Terepka. Exploring psychedelic sounds with a heavy dose of delay, their songs are pleasingly disjointed, experimental pop jams that makes clever use of groove and melody — not to mention a lot of really weird sounds. What it all adds up to is a deliciously unpredictable blend of jazz, rock, pop, electronica, and ambient bits and pieces, strung together through whatever weird magic these guys possess.