Storm Conductor is set for release on 4/20. This is the third offering from Youth in a Roman Field. The mastermind behind this project is singer/violinist Claire Wellin with contributions coming from Tiffany Topol, Scott Stangland, Jamie Mohamdein, Cassidy Stirtz, and Katrina Lenk. Some of the tracks have the ability to whisk you away to the hills of rolling green in Ireland like a bar of Irish Spring, making it surprising that Youth in a Roman Field hail from New York.
The album opens up as if an orchestra was warming up before the curtains are drawn. As the melody becomes apparent it’s both adventurous and somewhat melancholic. A gentle operatic influenced woman’s voice calls out beautifully with a few overdubbed layers of alternate pitches that provide great harmony and thicken the sound into full spectrum stereo. “Your hand in mine”, is a short and sweet way to bring a listener in.
Sounding like a veteran jazz singer, Claire’s voice is most definitely the focal point, doing things most instruments just can’t. While there is a lack of a full on drum kit there isn’t a shortage of percussive additives. I’m not talking samples, I’m talking hand claps, unconventional tribal-like drums, and I even swore I heard a finger cymbal. The strings definitely posses a Celtic quality, yet sometimes can be morbidly curious.
The album’s title track “Storm Conductor” pulls away from the direction of the majority of the album. Vocals, strings, unconventional percussion, yes. The overall mood begins with a sick kind of twist. Similar to the way that Stephen King utilizes happy retro songs during a murder scene. There is something in the way she sings “It was an accident” that makes you second guess the innocent.
Finishing out the album is, “When the city goes quiet,” an acapella song with a gentle choir of group backing vocals. Youth in a Roman Field is the kind of music you want to submerge and wrap yourself in. Gentle with the occasional eyebrow lifting quirk.
April 23 | Los Angeles, CA | Hotel Cafe
April 24 | San Francisco, CA | Hotel Utah
April 25 | San Francisco, CA | SoFar Sounds
April 26 | Prineville, OR | House Concert | Email for Details
May 1 | Seattle, WA | Tim’s Tavern | Tickets @ Door
May 3 | Bismarck, ND | Laughing Sun Brewing | Free
May 5 | Minneapolis, MN | Music @ The Upsidedown House Series
May 7 | Des Moines, IA | Vaudeville Mews | Tickets @ Door
May 8 | Fairfield, IA | Cafe Paradiso
May 9 | Madison, WI | The Wisconsin Room Presents
May 10 | LaCrosse, WI | The Root Note | Free
May 13 | Milwaukee, WI | The Jazz Estate | Tickets @ Door
May 15 | Chicago, IL | Martyr’s*
May 16 | Chicago, IL | The Green Mill Cocktail Hour | Free
May 17 | South Bend, IN | House Concert @ The Bramble | Donation @ Door
May 18 | Lansing, MI | House Concert | Donation @ Door
May 22 | New Haven, CT | Cafe Nine
May 28 | Winston-Salem, NC | The Wherehouse Art Hotel
May 29 | Charlotte, NC | The Evening Muse
May 30 | Athens, GA | The World Famous
June 1 | New Orleans, LA | The Foundation Room @ The House of Blues | Free
June 6 | Nashville, TN | The Back Corner | Tickets @ Door
June 7 | Bluffton, OH | The Town Hall Concert Series
June 25 | NY, NY | Mercury Lounge*| with Behaviorist
Following the 4/20 release of Storm Conductor, you may be able to catch a glimpse of their live show as they head out on the road in support. You can find pre-order and purchase details through the bands’ website or by following them on Facebook.
Lights & Bridges is a relatively new project from musician Tom Rossi, a fluent multi-instrumentalist who plays Ghanaian hand drums and African kora. Rossi serves as a therapeutic musician who has dedicated years in performing for patients in hospice care. His love for therapeutic music began after recovering for surgery for six months. He enrolled in the IM School Healing Arts in Manhattan and learned the art of healing through music over the course of six years.
The EP is a mixture of beautiful guitar songs that calm your spirit. Rossi uses his talents to further calm people during the most difficult time in their lives, death. Lights and Bridges has four songs in total. The song “Tears of Gold” from the album is a song full of melodies that relax you while lifting your spirit at the same time. “Superball”, the first song from the EP, was written with the thought of the rise and fall of everything. “Outside The Wall” is a song that is about the desperate need to fulfill everything in your life. Lemons, a personal favorite is a song about life giving you lemons and having to take those lemons and squeeze them. The EP is a set of compelling tracks that leave you relaxed and feeling motivated.
Keep up with Lights & Bridges here.
Fresh off the presses, Jaunt‘s new 5-track EP Cue is ready for your waiting ears. Launched on Friday the 13th, there’s nothing spooky about this release, though it does play with dissonance and ambient sounds to bring you into a whole different soundscape than what you might be used to. While first track “Machined” feels like a slight machine interaction – small noises that lend themselves to its overall 70s-inspired feel -,second track “Best Case” continues at a slow tempo, the occasional guitar riff lending itself to a far more groovy sound.
“Intimate Sunset” exists in a soundscape similar to what the title infers. Beachy vibes almost drop from the speakers, and we’re already feeling like we’re on a much needed vacation. “Faster Interactions” is chill, groovy and psychedelic. With the use of a keyboard organ, soft high pitched vocals, and a variety of electronic sounds “Faster Interactions” stays true to its name. The video for “Faster Interactions” also really displays the band’s creativity with a psychedelic feel of fast paced iridescent lights and unexpected visuals.
Of “Faster Interactions” Jaunt says:
“Faster Interactions” is probably our zaniest track to date! It was one of the first written for Cue, but also took the longest to complete. We quickly knew that it would be a single, and playing it repeatedly live has helped us finesse it’s nuances. Caitlin and Eliza really helped bring a new energy and dynamic, ultimately making the song more joyous. We’re also trying very hard to bring back the sound of cheap keyboard orchestra hits in pop music.
They round out the magic with “Cued”, a slower track with more of a vibey, enchanting sound to it all. It’s the perfect bookend to what we have just experienced, and we’re enthralled enough to hear more.
Keep up with Jaunt here.
Gin Wigmore’s highly anticipated fourth studio album Ivory is finally here. A collection of twelve songs from the catalog of her best music, Wigmore uses her strong command of emotive melodies and pop anthems to create the perfect sound for Ivory. One of the songs from the album is titled “Girl Gang”. and is all about girl power. The song empowers women to have a stronger voice when it comes to love, opinions, and being stronger. With the track follows a video titled “#GIRLGANG”, with a music video that is a tribute to women of all ages, highlighting their unique feminine power.
The album sets a standard for itself with the opening of its title track “Hollow Fate” which is an incredibly beautiful and complex treat for the ears. Wigmore’s vocals are unique and powerful on each track she is on. The entire album is a piece of artwork that is progressively different from what Gin Wigmore has done before.
Ivory is available now. Keep up with Gin Wigmore here.
The cool thing about writing for a music magazine is that you get a first look at new music. I recently had the opportunity of listening to Anton Barbeau‘s latest album Natural Causes, which will be released April 13th on Beehive. My favorite track is iconically titled “Summer of Gold.” About a minute in, all I could think about was open road and as I write this I just hit the lyric “Steal a car, hit the road.” “Summer of Gold” takes you back to old America— a simpler time of road trips, convertibles, and cheap motels. The album has a range of fifteen tracks, starting with “(preamble)” and ending with “(ultimate outro).”
One thing to be noted of this album is Anton’s voice as he has a great vocal range. While “Summer of Gold” is my personal favorite, it’s tracks like “It’s The Coffee that Makes The Man Go Mad” and “Magic Sandwiches” that remain equally quirky and unique. The creativity on this album is also seen in the not two, but four intros/outros. “(Preambiguation)” and “(penultimate outro)” are interesting breaks that seamlessly make the album come together.
The Berlin based artist himself has a few words on Natural Causes:
My previous record, Magic Act, was my first on LP. It’s also an album I see in either an alpha or omega role, an introduction for new fans and a sparkly reminder to those that have tried to follow me for a while. Surviving the 2016 election AND turning 50, I’m treating Natural Causes like it’s my second album. The songs I remade are there for personal reasons, enough said. Magazine Street happened to be the first track on my first ever CD, so everything’s come a bit full-circle, as it were.
Stay tuned for the album release on April 13th and keep up with Anton Barbeau here.
Honey and Salt just released their self titled LP. The grunge/rock/punk band has a variety of ten tracks on the LP starting with “A Nihilist Takes Up Knitting” and ending with “Cascade.”
The band is described as sociopolitical or as I like to call it “music with a purpose.” Honey and Salt has good reason though. Wade Allen, on main vocals, is a philosophy teacher which definitely influences the bands lyrics. On “A Nihilist Takes Up Knitting” Wade pleads “Right or wrong is not subjective.” “Blame game” is an anthem of “who and what is blame?”
My favorite, though, is “Bowling Green Memorial.” “Bowling Green Memorial” rounds out at a whooping eight minutes and nine seconds. What most impressive though, is that the majority of that is a drum/guitar solo that will take you be surprise. Just when you think the solo is over, Honey and Salt will bring you back into the music. Honey and Salt is definitely worth the listen. The LP is more than just an album—it is truly one big box of sociopolitical prompts, wrapped carefully and neatly to give to any listener so that they can ask themselves “How and why are we here now?”
Keep up with Honey and Salt here.