BTR Live Studio
The New Tarot is a young Brooklyn-based band featuring the Walker sisters -- Monika (vocals/guitar) and Karen (vocals/keyboard) -- at the center of its wild world. Shapeshifting between 90s-style alt-rock to indie psych to metal-pop (or something like that, in keeping with the TNT abbreviation of their band name), the sisters keep your ears guessing as to what they’re going to do next. There’s a fantastical side to their songs and imagery that made for a memorable session when they dropped by Serious Business Music in DUMBO for this live taste of their music. Featured song: "Tell Me You Like Me" // Listen to the audio podcast for more music and interview The New Tarot’s EP, Stella, is available now. Follow The New Tarot on Facebook and Twitter.
Starlight Girls is a Brooklyn band of self-proclaimed “genre-undefining hyper weirdos” with a flair for theatrics. Drawing on psychedelic rock, indie pop, surf, and more to craft their own strange and beautiful sounds, the band stopped by Serious Business Music in DUMBO to play some tunes and talk a bit about the process behind their debut album. Featured song: "So Far" // Listen to the audio podcast for more music and interview. Starlight Girls’ debut LP, Fantasm, is available now. Follow Starlight Girls on Facebook and Twitter.
Fern Mayo is a Brooklyn-based trio of 90s-style skronky, fuzzy, poppy punk-loving indie rock devotees currently leaving their mark on the local scene. Singer Katie Capri’s vocal style is forceful and feels cathartic, as if every line is exorcising some sort of demon, matched by writhing grooves and explosive, anthemic choruses. The band stopped by Serious Business Music in DUMBO to share some songs and chat with Maia about the band.
Miranda Lee Richards is a San Francisco-based musician whose roots lie in the folk and Americana worlds. Though her story includes some heavy hitters in rock -- for instance, being taught guitar by a member of Metallica and playing in the infamously volatile indie band Brian Jonestown Massacre -- Richards’ work is grounded, beautiful, and dreamy with a mystical edge. She stopped by Serious Business Music in DUMBO, Brooklyn, along with Sammy Smith on vocals, to share a stripped-down, acoustic take on her songs in an intimate environment, and to offer some background on her musical history.
Gramma’s Boyfriend is the latest project fronted by the Twin Cities’ own Haley Bonar. A household name in certain musical circles for her years of output under her own name, this time around she’s joined by Jeremy Ylvisaker (Cloak Ox, Andrew Bird), Mark Erickson (Cloak Ox), Luke Anderson (Rogue Valley), and Jacob Hanson (Actual Wolf, Haley Bonar, All Tomorrow’s Petty). The band play fun, raucous rock music -- think somewhere between B-52s and Dead Kennedys -- with an infectious danceability and catchiness sure to leave the room sweaty, happy, and exhausted. During the 2015 CMJ Music Marathon, they tore it up at our showcase then came by the studio to rock out some more and chat with Maia about the project.
DeQn Sue’s music is difficult to define. The Los Angeles-born singer, whose stage name is an ode to both her father’s character on the TV show S.W.A.T. and her mother’s first name, is currently at least partially based in Alabama. Drawing on just about any genre of pop music you could name, DeQn Sue twists from soul to rock to funk to dance music, all capped off with an unforgettably charming vibe that’s quirky without being schticky.
Sweet Spirit began as a sort of side project for Austin’s Sabrina Ellis. Launched as a more country and soul-inspired singer-songwriter outlet to balance the wild, punk side of her musical life in the band A Giant Dog, the project quickly changed course, as her AGD bandmate Andrew Cashen joined, and the duo recruited more players to fill out their new songs. Now, a full on wild party of sound onstage -- not to mention, buzzy as hell thanks to praise from Austin heroes Spoon -- Sweet Spirit is dominating their local scene and getting attention nationwide. They reigned the chaos in just enough to rock out for this session at Serious Business Music in DUMBO in the midst of a stop in town for the annual CMJ Music Marathon.
Raya Brass Band is a Brooklyn-based five-piece with a reputation for starting a party everywhere they (and their horns) go. Drawing on Balkan music, New Orleans brass, punk rock, out jazz, and other international inspirations, the band crafts a whirlwind of high energy, body-moving tunes. They stopped by Serious Business Music in DUMBO to give us a taste of the magic and talks about some of the inspiration behind their music.
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.