Martha Zed’s debut – Cat Song

Posted: September 21, 2022 by Kat Meow in Alternative, Indie, Martha Zed, Rock

First off, let’s start with the fact that Martha Zed is an absolutely bangin’ grunge rock name.  It’s earnest but still has that rock and roll purr, much like “Cat Song,” Zed’s debut tune.  This track is ice cream and hot fudge alt-rock, a classic slacker rhythm with cutie pie vocals.  The wailing guitar at the end is the cherry on top.  This song is dedicated to the greatest love story ever told – a human and their sweetie baby murder floof.  It’s all love, and this love is one you’ll want to gobble up over and over.  Check it out.

Martha Zed BandcampMartha Zed InstagramMartha Zed Website

Danish duo Moon Panda have brought their bonus-only track “Submarine” to streaming.  This woozy trip-hop tune was previously only available as a bonus track on Moon Panda’s celebrated March debut, What on Earth.  The vocals hiss a whispery singing of the fates, and then the melody hits that beautiful coasting-through-existence motif that comes on so well for this genre.  Maddy Myers’ tone transforms lyrics about riding the city streets into something spacious and otherworldly.  

Moon Panda just played stateside at the emerging Same Same But Different Festival in Southern California.  Here’s hoping they catch on with more USian music fans, those of us who like to lay back in darkened lounges with sounds that make the spirit glide through the plane. Great tune for those who like Zero 7 or Massive Attack.

Moon Panda InstagramMoon Panda BandcampMoon Panda Website

T F D – Total Fucking Darkness

Posted: September 14, 2022 by Kat Meow in Electronic, Pop, Total Fucking Darkness

You could say hello to the world, or you could say “BLEEP BLOOP ASSHOLES IT’S TOTAL FUCKING DARKNESS.”  The TFD’s self-titled debut single is 80s synthpop brimming with delicious irony.  It sneers with dark sarcasm and yet earnestly hopeful lyrics… when you get past the calls for death… for things that should die (like fascism).  This is quite a broad mission statement, but the track is tight. Well, Total Fucking Darkness, you’ve gotten my attention.  Lights out!

TFD BandcampTFD SoundcloudTFD Instagram

It’s Sunday night.  The rest of New York Shiddy is curling up to watch either football, House of the Dragon, or for more creative potatoes, both at once.  But underneath the scaffolding, amidst perpetually dirty streets and fresh graffiti tags, the family was gathering.  The almighty Fishbone were coming to the conclusion of their small “Fly in the Buttermilk” tour, a familiar term for old Fishbone heads.  Flies in the buttermilk are out of bounds.  They defy limitations and expectations.  As the band says on their Facebook, to be a fly in the buttermilk is “a badge of honor as a band of color in a stereotypical music genre.  Too black for white radio, too rock for black radio.”   It takes guts to be the odd ones out, no matter how radical nor earnest nor unbounded, which draws radical earnest unbounded fans.  Fishbone brought along pop punk outfit Action/Adventure, a band of fellow flies out of Chicago making music only white suburban kids are supposed to make (if you answer to the machine).  Together they made some beautiful noise down at the independent bastion Le Poisson Rouge.

Action/Adventure started the night off with some really solid tunes.  While pop punk isn’t my flavor of tea necessarily, this fivesome rocked pretty good.  Their drummer can put out some beastly clamor.  They sound like they’d be at home on alt-rock radio.  For all of my memories of fakery from pop punk bands two decades ago, these guys had none – they were, frankly, adorable, and mock the ye olde concept of poser-ism in their music and their own brand of hot sauce, Poser Poison.  Even though these guys are clearly playing a genre they love, but aren’t “supposed” to love, they vocally stood firm in their convictions that people can do whatever the hell they want regardless of the continents in their blood.  That’s as punk as it gets.  

Then came Fishbone.  What is there to say about your sixth Fishbone show?  “Sunless Saturday,” “Everyday Sunshine,” “Ma and Pa,” “Servitude,” the classics roll off the tongue.  There were old punks who were-there-when, some from the Chili Peppers tour era, which impressed Angelo and Norwood.  There was new blood too.  I spotted a couple kids in their twenties, and even one youngin’ out well past his bedtime, finding his joy in the morass of whirling bodies.  Go get ‘em, kid.  

Of course there was a pit.  A Fishbone pit is a high impact high velocity hug-a-thon for the seasoned rock kid.  One older pro in a pork pie hat started the surf, and before I knew it, I was holding up Angelo’s thigh while he sweat-dripped Sunshine on our faces.  I took a pit edge position, playing defense for a photographer and trying to keep sturdy against the onslaught.  Of course there were moments the pit took me off my feet, but there was no fear, because this Fishbone pit felt less like elbows and shoulders and more like jumping the waves at the beach.  I must have wrapped my arms around dozens of fellow meatbags, and they around me.  A sea of flies, wing in wing.

It was gorgeous and I am exhausted.  Here are some other thoughts, in no particular order:

  • More women than I have noticed before
  • Sweat
  • HORNS ON HORNS ON HORNS ON HORNS ON HORNS
  • Dr. Madd Vibe laying down poetry
  • Norwood in tie-dye still looking good
  • Happy Birthday Norwood with special guests 
  • Dirty Walt’s very dirty microphone
  • Chris Dowd being a ham 
  • A series of almost comically larger and larger saxophones 
  • Angelo Moore’s delicious asscrack
  • I hope Angelo saw my Thumpasaurus shirt because that would be a mind-blower lineup
  • John Steward keeping rhythms tight
  • Mark Phillips with the shred
  • I don’t know who I took that picture with but I love you too
  • The bartender was cool as hell
  • Family of strangers
  • Fishbone being now and forever red hot

Fishbone Instagram  ★  FishboneLive.org

Action/Adventure Instagram  ★  Action/Adventure Bandcamp

A Summer Among Sparks

Posted: September 7, 2022 by Kat Meow in Experimental, Los Angeles, Pop, Sparks
Gorgeous

Sparks!  Sparks, the ever-morphing pop duo of Ron and Russell Mael, has seen enormous resurgence.  I am of that resurgence.  The Edgar Wright documentary The Sparks Brothers is a relatable primer for these obscure titans, and a well done doc in its own right thanks to its combination of warm storytelling and slightly warped animations.  It was meant to invite in curious millennial music kids like myself who have been hearing Sparks on the periphery of our attention for years.  From the jump you can see why they are icons.  It’s like they’ve always been there, but the nostalgia machine hasn’t been feeding them back to us like they have been Bowie and Freddy.  Perhaps it’s because you couldn’t sell Sparks as nostalgia if you tried.  They aren’t of an era because they are of all eras.  I also think images of Ron Mael’s unnerving yet seductive face unlocked a core memory for me, like big sis had MTV on while I was playing Legos and it branded his mustache onto my unconscious.

But I really found Sparks through FFS, their 2015 collaboration with Franz Ferdinand.  I had maybe a couple weeks to vaguely research them before they played a packed house at Terminal 5, excited by what little I managed to learn.  The show was unreal.  I mean these old-ass dudes were full of pure energy.  And Ron’s face!  I remember his intense concentration looking like fury, until he stepped up from his keyboard and finally delivered some tall and skinny dance work of his own.  I fell in love, but I kept putting them off – their catalog was too daunting to start, and time moved on.  

Fortunately The Sparks Brothers acts as a guide to different eras in their sound, while also highlighting key songs that best exemplify different eras of their music.  So I went further on the journey this summer with the film’s guidance.  So far, I can boast repeated listens to Kimono My House, Introducing Sparks, No1 in Heaven, Terminal Jive, Angst in My Pants, Gratuitous Sax & Senseless Violins, Lil’ Beethoven, and Exotic Creatures of the Deep.  I also returned to FFS.  Here are some songs that exemplify what I love about Sparks that didn’t get the Edgar Wright treatment in the film.

Equator (Kimono My House – 1974) – The struggle of a protagonist whose lover said she’d meet him at the equator.  It’s desperate and at times exhausting.  Russell keeps his bluesy falsetto so far up in the stratosphere it becomes breathless.  Each repetition gets more panicked, and the backing femme vocals sound like they’re mocking him.  Poor sap.  Unbelievable piano rock.

Goofing Off (Introducing Sparks – 1977) – Fuck being in fashion.  Sparks put out an ode to the wonders of the weekend in a rock and roll klezmer tune.  Klezmer.  Twenty-plus years before Gogol Bordello made it cool. After a blistering guitar solo, the song comes to a triumphant close.  Are they even Jewish?  Who cares.  

My Other Voice (No.1 In Heaven – 1979) – This song could mean anything.  Maybe it’s Ron referring to Russell in a loving tribute to the power Russell gives his lyrics.  Or maybe it could be a metaphor for someone’s emergent new self: “you’re so independent but that’s gonna change real soon/with my other voice I can destroy this room.”  Either way, the simple beat and heavenly synth atmosphere make this one a triumph of the Giorgio Moroder era of Sparks.

Young Girls (Terminal Jive – 1980) – This one messed me up, because on the first listen it was a really sweet bubblegum song with gentle vocals, until the lyrics set in, and dear god.  Yeah, it’s just like that Oingo Boingo song.  But whereas Danny Elfman merely liked offending people, Ron was often performing a social criticism.  He traveled in the same scenes as all the other 70s rockers – many of whom were shacked up with children – was anyone else in the machinery of pop questioning it?

Instant Weight Loss (Angst In My Pants – 1982) – I hear this as a great-uncle to Cut Copy’s first album, Bright Like Neon Love.  The drums have this delicious skip in its rhythm, this kind of double-tap *howdoyado* that gives it a little hip along with its breezy keys.  In typical form, the lyrics tell of a man who is willing to pull some wild Christian Bale weight loss/gain antics over a woman.  

Serving Face

Nicotina (Angst In My Pants – 1982) – A dramatic post-punk opera song about a sentient cigarette meeting her horrifying fate.  ‘Nuff said.

I Thought I Told You To Wait In The Car (Gratuitous Sax & Senseless Violins – 1994) – The inner monologue of a simp being barked at by his desire. Russell’s fay spoken-word shines against the dark 90s techno as he reflects on being someone’s dirty little secret. What old-Hollywood power player inspired this?

Suburban Homeboy (Lil’ Beethoven – 2002) – Ron and Russ have never once in their life given a fuck.  This sprightly pop track is anything but “homeboy” as it comes from the perspective of every upper-class WASP that ever wore a du-rag.  Omnomnom, archetype schadenfreude.

I’ve Never Been High (Exotic Creatures of the Deep – 2008) – Sparks is illustrated as a band that didn’t spend their yesteryears nose-deep in powder.  But rather than being haughty, this tune is wistful, even regretful, of never having been damaged enough to publicly circle the toilet because of addiction.  It ends with a wry poke at how it might have garnered them more public attention: “then I’ll be something, then I’ll be something/look there’s a camera, smile and say cheese.”  After all, self-destruction sells records and builds legacies.  Isn’t that screwed up?

Police Encounters (FFS – 2015) – Written as FFS alongside Franz Ferdinand, this one is just fun fun fun.  But the references to elder cultural figures feels so out of place.  Albie and Pinter plays?  Feeling like P.T. Barnum?  It occurs to me that this song might be a period piece, with a character regretting leaving Harlem because he’s being pursued by cops.  It makes me think Ron’s voice stepped into the mind of someone brown or black who ventured too far south of 125th street while trying to get a little culture.  You can marinate over the setting and the protagonist’s thirst for dangerous women while the “bomp bomp diggy diggy” becomes your inner rhythm.

Iconic
Manic Moondays

Berlin composer Rettward von Doernberg has an impressively long list of accomplishments on his website.  I listened to this dude’s EP at first wondering why the tracks were like thirteen seconds long.  It sounded like all the panorama of a Disney scene without any Disney obnoxiousness.  Rettward’s tones are tinkling and pretty and easily conjure a flowery cottage with sprightly animals and not a hint of sarcasm.  I’m like, “This is sweet.  But what am I missing?”  And then the “duh” moment happened. This EP is his score to a short animated film called Manic Moondays!  And I was listening to it moment by curious moment. This little toon was animated by Martin Schiffter and made the rounds at festivals and on TV. 

Nighttime. Dogs emerge to howl at a changing moon.  Gravitational hijinks ensue.  The sparse animation is sweet minimalist sci-fi, aided by von Doernberg’s scoring.  It got some honest chuckles.  Show it to young-ins who want to know why the moon looks different every night.  Check the notes on his page if you’re interested in the technical side of how scores are adapted for different forms of viewing.

rettward.com

Where the fuck is it?  I’m toiling around the streets, knowing I am vaguely close because of the shift in quality of graffiti.  A guy as equally confused as I am is spying the environs on this corner of Wyckoff and Weirfeld, looking for a music venue.  He spots it first.  The name Trans-Pecos is outlined in some kind of black tape on a facade of cheap wired government glass NYC uses to build public buildings, causing this little gem to stay hidden from passers-by.  But inside, this venue’s booth-lined dance floor glistens with refracted starlight and neon. Tonight, I am again following the paths of Logan Kane and Nicole McCabe further into jazz, along with sound artist Claire Dickson, and punk/jazz outfit CGI Jesus.  

The show eases in with a sophistication.  Brooklyn-based Claire Dickson uses her vocals and a keyboard setup to layer her sound.  There may have been different songs, but the layperson couldn’t tell because her set was continuous and uninterrupted by applause.  From there, she selects a sparse palate of tones, bells, and ethereal vocals and lets them waver and warp naturally, aided by gentle nudges from her toolkit.  She conveys this existential kind of thing that fills up the room.  There’s a mindful smallness you feel when listening to tones like this, like listening to silence at night.  What do you call that, tinnitus of the sublime?  It takes away all of the petty pressures of being human.  And I think, I pay my therapist $20 a week to relax my mind when I could do it at a $12 show.  If you have ever spent a night in bed with Tangerine Dream, it’s worth spending an evening at the venue to wash your face with these kinds of waves. I never have before.

I started chatting up Confused Guy from earlier, spreading the gospel of music I love.  He was tempted to clap for Dickson, but it would have interrupted the tone and he wanted to be respectful.  Still, he seems floored.  He’s the type that sees what’s playing and goes out mostly blind, a sense of adventure that I can appreciate, having flown solo at most shows as of late.  Suddenly his tone shifts.  He’s needy, looking for a party, but I am not a party.  I become uncomfortable, firstly because I had thought I might end the night with a new show-hopping bud, and secondly because I am reminded of what I have read about jazz scenes and chemical self-destruction.  There’s that mortality that permeates the topic of jazz.  He’s gone before CGI Jesus, and I wonder if he enjoyed the music beyond what was necessary to score.  It feels grim.

Next was Dolphin Hyperspace, the LA-based duo being joined by drummer Daniel Rossi.  They started with fat whomper “Buster Boy,” setting the pace for the set.  The audience was awash in bouncing bodies, including mine.  Kane bounces, his red-capped head bopping in full bass face euphoria.  McCabe had the bounce too, though she was limited by proximity of her horn to the mic, and I wonder what she would do if she could clip one on somehow.  But she was still enough that I could check out her dope tats when I wasn’t looking at her fingers gliding on the sax. I see the way they watch each other and take turns ripping it as the drummer whips out sick *kssssh kssssh* beats.  At one point (I think it was Lizard Sisterz?) the combination of electronics and instruments sound like Fingathing with new ingredients, and I am in heaven.  “You fucking murdered me,” I shout, because my mania is on 11 and I don’t know how to make more words than that.  With a cavewoman’s cadence I ask “that was jazz?”  “Well, hyperjazz.” McCabe answers, vaguely undecided.  It’s too late to change. The word ricochets off the walls of my mind, lighting it up like a pinball machine.  hyperjazz .  

Google yields little but this word is so coooool

The final act was CGI Jesus, a group led by bassist and composer Kevin Eichenberger.  Their bandcamp suggests a combination of “trash jazz” and “chamber punk,” which are also new favorite word combinations that I have never encountered before.  There were drums, guitar, and trumpet on deck for the night, although I couldn’t tell you who was “in” the band and who was “with” the band.  Jazz doesn’t seem to have these kinds of clear demarcations, which makes me wonder if seeing shows and all of these different individual instrumentalists is kind of like trying all the flavor/topping/sprinkle combinations at Rita’s Italian Ices.  You’ll never really get through ‘em all.  CGI Jesus leaves me with a prog aftertaste, but they had so many different types of sounds and emotions going on.  Sometimes you’re grooving, sometimes it’s angsty, sometimes it’s discordant, and sometimes it’s yearning.  Sometimes it was mournful, like when Eichenberger dedicated a tune to trumpeter jaimie branch, who recently departed – she was my age and build – untimely.  There’s that shadow again.  This was probably her community.

In hindsight it was all emotional whiplash, but that’s what makes it experimental.  You don’t get on a rollercoaster for a smooth ride. 

On the way out, the venue is playing a cover of King Crimson’s Schizoid Man.  I have seen them live twice, once with John Paul Jones of Led Zeppelin on the bill, too.  How much jazz have I heard in their music, unaware?  Or in Jones’s?  It’s funny, my notion of jazz used to be so plain, singular.  But you have to go beyond the portal to really see what’s up.  There is nothing really plain about it.

Claire Dickson BandcampClaire Dickson Website

Dolphin Hyperspace BandcampDolphin Hyperspace Instagram

CGI Jesus BandcampCGI Jesus Instagram

Laser Cars EP Cover

If you’re one of the person who follows this blog, you know my obsession with rising stars Thumpasaurus is practically diagnosable.  So in following the individual careers of its members, I learned that Los Angeles-based bassist Logan Kane is a scene unto himself.  The dude is prolific, having put out projects with Thump bandmate Henry Solomon, with saxophonist and partner Nicole McCabe, and with his own idol David Binney, and a stable of other collaborators.  He’s got octets and nonets, and probably one day, an orchestra of robots playing instruments fused to his neurons.  This young human, still in the springtime of his career, seems to have carved out a devoted niche for his own experimental sound, and he churns it out with a proliferant speed like he’s competing with King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard.  Kane’s latest EP, Laser Cars, is five tracks of high density sound that he describes as “a fun summer record [that] ultimately… turned out pretty dark.”  

Dark didn’t seem like the word to use here, or at least, not when I first listened to Laser Cars.  Then again, I have been struggling to figure out how to put words on Kane’s music.  See, I don’t know much about jazz, and Kane’s mastery is experimental jazz.  I like to think I understand musical genres and I can explain them accurately, but truth be told, my knowledge leaves a lot of gaps.  And jazz is probably the biggest gap.  So, going into Logan Kane’s musical history has been a challenge because, truth be told, I don’t know what the actual fuck I’m talking about.  Jazz as a genre is like this heralded niche that only the few and mighty can belong to, and if you don’t “get” it, you don’t get it.  And if you don’t play an instrument, or have any real music education beyond a few books and documentaries, you really don’t get it.  So I am approaching this inaccessible thing like a puzzle to be solved, and to be honest, I’m a little… intimidated.

I mean, his music has a lot going on.  It’s challenging!  When he’s composing these songs, notes are packed up into timespace so densely that there is hardly space to breathe, in organizations that seem random but still form wildly swinging melodies.  Take some of the offerings on Kane’s 2021 offering, Planet Mirrors.  Tracks “Numbers,” “Try So Hard,” and “Frustrated” are full of so much sound, they can feel difficult to parse.  Tracks “Sing Thing” and “AHH Causin a Ruckus” are further colored by the agile windwork of Nicole McCabe’s alto sax.  This is music at maximum entropy and it demands mindful attention.  My natural state when listening to music is to float away.  How do I appreciate this the right way?

Planet Mirrors cover

“Laser Cars” goes from 0-60 in a heartbeat.  Here, Kane sounds like an algorithm programmed to make music after being fed the last fifty years of high-speed video game midis.  Atop it is a pop-autotune vocal and lamenting driving oneself crazy.  What the fuck am I listening to?  It’s like the elements of the song veer into wild directions every 15-20 seconds.  So I paid close attention and realized that as the song goes on, it starts to even out into some kind of clarity.  Suddenly it occurs to me that this song makes a lot of sense.  Anxiety attack, is that you?  The high-speed plucks, shifting rhythms, bursts of instrumentation… yeah, I think I’ve had that panic attack at least once.  The lyrics seem to corroborate a fear of running out of time.  He’s sorting himself out, reminiscent of Planet Mirrors dispirited bopper “How Am I Alive.”  Mortality seems to hang over Kane (and jazz on the whole, having recently read about bass icon Jaco Pastorius and his untimely death at 35). Is this the darkness Kane was referring to?

The EP’s second track, “Blur Obscured,” is a rhythmic dance incantation that ends with some of Logan’s most expert plucking.  If “Laser Cars” was about getting on the road, “Blur Obscured” is the left lane with cruise control, no traffic, and the streets outlined in neon.  The shit I like most from Kane’s body of work is what makes me move without conscious thought, and there’s some real gems in the catalog – Planet Mirrors self-titled track moves my head around, as does 4:30am goth-industrial nightmare “WORMY” (With McCabe as Dolphin Hyperspace).  But “Blur Obscured” really leans into being a dance song with Kane’s otherworldly elements, and at moments it really feels like Cornelius meets Röyksopp, and I am living for it.  This is easily my favorite track.

Via Logan Kane’s Bandcamp. Are those… Pokemon cards?!

From here the EP takes off into VGM territory.  I could swear that Logan took his cues from 90s era video games.  Then again, it could just be that his computer-produced jazz is poking me in the nostalgia.  “Box of Facts” specifically has a tone that reminds me of the soundtrack for Taz-Mania on the SEGA Genesis, a game that did some really profound things with sound in its day and that I never really appreciated until listening to this tune.  Why, oh why, is this music dusting off the cobwebs in my hippocampus?  Have I been somehow listening to jazz music all along in my years of love for game music?  Best part is, dude hits us at the end with a vaguely political haiku.  I counted those syllables.  That was fun, like an easter egg only an English teacher could catch.

In listening to Laser Cars over and over, I started to realize the experience of listening to jazz is different from listening to other music.  I can’t walk around my house singing the songs on Laser Cars the way I have been singing songs by Sparks.  But I can have a really unique emotional experience by sitting in my feelings in jazz, even if the feeling is odd or uncomfortable, because maybe the goal is to make me feel oddness or discomfort.  And that at various times, the sounds can wander into and out of shoulder-shimmying groove or evoke experiences and arcane connections.  But I also think all music can do that.  

Hey, wait. Did I just figure out how to appreciate jazz?

Logan Kane and Nicole McCabe came through New York this week, playing a cozy cocktail bar on the edge of Bushwick, so I stopped in for my first-ever visit to a jazz club.  I tucked myself into a corner with an obscured view and listened.  The two were joined by drummer Tim Angulo and pianist Lex Corten, and a horde of young jazz acolytes watching with concentration.  Surrounding the scene were smatterings of casuals in for a no-cover drink, people alternating between quiet conversation or dancing the seated-shoulder-shimmy when the rhythms hit right.  Suddenly a drama arose as Kane, on his upright bass, fingered out an intense solo.  I couldn’t see him, but I could see eyes glued to him.  Conversations had lulled to near quiet.  The crowd was intensely focused on Kane’s deep vibrations.  Finally, the solo peaks and the tension releases.  The kids erupt in shouts and applause as the rest of the players come back in and take back the music.  For a moment in time, the jazz musician was able to make a room of people sit and take notice.  And I realize, yeah. I can get into this.

Logan Kane’s Bandcamp ★ Logan Kane’s Linktree ★ Logan Kane’s Instagram

Photo Credit: David Abbott

Based out of Atlanta, Georgia, Collective Soul is a quintet that has been weaving huge threads in the fabric of rock music for nearly thirty years.  Fronted by Ed Roland, they seem to have found their longevity in the cohesion of their current roster.  “I mean, this is the band for the rest of my life. This is it, man,” Says Roland, in the band’s bio. The band’s eleventh album, Vibrating, is hotly anticipated after the chart success of its predecessor, Blood.

But when I think of Collective Soul, I think of their grunge rock classic “Shine,” a tune that always gets a volume boost whenever I hear that telltale riff and Ed Roland’s punctuated “yeah.”  Alt-rock anthem “The World I Know” wraps you up tightly every day on mainstream rock radio.  Underplayed classics “December” and “Heavy” remain retro treats whenever they pop up on the dial.  But I didn’t follow them after the 90s because I broke up with rock and went into other musical directions, so I missed everything from 2000’s Blender all the way through their smash success See What You Started By Continuing.  So it’s a treat to come back down to earth with fresh ears and listen to some mainstream rock.

Vibrating starts with “Cut The Cord,” which is a speedy guitar number that has me wondering if this is a welcome wagon for new listeners like me, coming in from our radio memories.  And it’s a warm welcome, indeed.  Ed Roland’s voice is crisp as ever.  He’s got this crystalline vibration that is so uniquely his own.  It is like ice on the wound permeating through Vibrating’s lyrical themes of love, reflection, and a desire for healing.  The pace continues into “Reason” and I can suddenly imagine how dope Jesse Triplett’s guitar must sound like in a large setting, and I could kick myself for having missed them at the Paramount in Long Island earlier this month.

Vibrating Cover

Vibrating’s songs are tender but still have a little bit of that heavy edge to remind you where they come from.  Standout tracks like “Take” and “Undone” are sweet and full of that hopeful tone that make Collective Soul songs stand out from the rest of the noise.  “Rule #1” is flavor bomb on the deep end of the strings.  Then there’s “All Our Pieces,” where Collective Soul starts settling into more of an Americana type sound.  I think there’s a little something for the soft rock and the grunge rock fans to share on each track.  

Collective Soul fans have been anticipating this release for three years and I think they’ll realize that it was worth it.  It’s great to see a band with this many iconic songs still growing into themselves and uncovering new territory.  But I think a casual rock listener like me would find a treat in Vibrating just as well.

Collective Soul Official WebsiteCollectiveSoulTV Youtube

STORRY – Intimate Abuse video

Posted: August 3, 2022 by Kat Meow in Pop, R&B, Storry, Toronto
Storry

In another “near miss,” I almost made the mistake of sleeping on STORRY. Hailing from Toronto, this self-produced songstress and JUNO award nominee putting out eclectic R&B and pop. “Intimate Abuse” is her latest offering, celebrating real love thriving in the shadow of abuse. STORRY’s voice simmers with impassioned thriving. She is a soul child picking apples from the tree planted long ago by Mary J. Blige.

Front and center is resilience learned from being coerced into the sex industry. It’s a bravely unpopular position to take. It is an uphill battle against big-moneyed interest that has been successfully marketing itself as empowering rather than endangering. “Even well-meaning family members would tell me not to share my experiences,” she writes, “because there’s a lot of shame and victim-blaming when it comes to abuse and the sex industry.” STORRY’s biggest asset is her willingness to tell her story – despite a world that silences people like her. Brava.

Check out the video for “Intimate Abuse” below, and a dozen more on her YouTube.

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