A bill of NYC indie pillars at Glasslands on 12.23: Backwords, Shilpa Ray, Dragons of Zynth and Economy Punk (ex Xray Eyeballs)

It would be interesting to know how many people move in and out of NYC every year - hundreds of thousands we guess? This is a city that fuels all sorts of dreams only to crush them the minute you stop believing. In its scene, where new bands are born and not so old ones die on an hourly basis, the artists that manage to stick around for longer than a few years become the true pillar of the musical community. The same can be said for a venue that consistently promotes quality local acts like Glasslands. As you know, the Williamsburg spot will be closing its doors at the end of 2014, and, looking at its last few weeks of calendar, we couldn't help but notice the Tuesday 12.23 bill, which features four quality local artists that we covered abundantly for years and that have earned the title of "NYC scene pillars." We are referring to psych folk collective Backwords (in the picture, playing Glasslands a few years ago), maudit rock songwriter Shilpa Ray, Economy Punk (ex Xray Eyeballs') and Dragons of Zynth, an indie soul act that has been around at least since we started this blog (that was 2005) and that occasionally comes back when you least expect it. Definitely a good opportunity to say goodbye to this legendary but short lived venue, and meet some familiar faces.


A Deli premiere: Backwords unveil single 'Gloria' from upcoming LP 'Nest'

Backwords belong to that thin layer of Brooklyn bands that can be defined as "lifers" - which is a perfect word for a career in music, since there are always times when it feels like a life sentence to shit earnings. The band, active since 2008, has reportedly played over 300 shows in the US on as many as 55 different stages in NYC alone, and received a fair amount of coverage in this blog. We are premiering here their preview single "Gloria" (streaming below), from upcoming LP 'Nest,' which reveals a more mature sound, as if their friendly psych folk had exchanged some friendliness for power and some lightheartedness for depth. Recorded in the dead of summer, with minimal overdubs, in a large open warehouse space in Sunset Park, Brooklyn "Nest" is an album of growth, openness, and change, from a band that knows the Brooklyn indie scene like few others. 'Nest' will be out on September 16, the release party is scheduled for 09.20 at Baby's All Right.


Arbitration Rock Festival 08.04, with Gunfight!, Bad Credit No Credit + more

Tomorrow, come support some local history through the Greater Ridgewood Historical Society at the Onderdonk House with a selection of some of the city’s finest indie rock bands, food and booze at the Arbitration Rock Festival. Bands include Not Blood Paint, PassKontrol, Bad Credit No Credit (pictured), Backwords, GunFight! (streaming) and more. Also, as summer’s starting to wind down (it’s already August?!), you might want to come for the opportunity to bask in the sun! More info here.


Backwords plays The Rock Shop and Union Hall in May

I think it's possible that Backwords recorded their latest EP while serving burgers at a barbeque. Their latest EP, 'By the Neck,' captures a particular moment of sunshine in their campfire-ready anthems where the beers are still cold and the sun is still warm, and this is all thanks to how intimate and close-knit this bunch of friends is.
Even when the group misses a note or two (as happens on occasion), it's all in the family. This is music for anyone to sing along to. Let's just see you try and stop your foot from moving to acoustic guitar charmers like 'Break My Spine' and 'Hey Kid!' (streaming below). See them when they play The Rock Shop on May 10 or at Union Hall on May 19. - Backwords submitted their music for review here. - Mike Levine (@Goldnuggets)


Backwords releases "By The Neck" tonight (03.26) at Glasslands

Backwords is like the beginning of spring, a cool breeze blowing as blossoms that had been lying dormant finally begin to poke their heads above ground. Smooth and airy, with a small amount of grit, this band manages to be both catchy and buzzy without being overwhelmingly poppy or shoegazy (a difficult line to walk). Think The Microphones with a splash of Best Coast. And, like the beginning of spring, backwords is back. Fresh off sxsw, the band delivers their new CD "By the Neck" at an album release party at Glasslands on Monday, March 26th. If you miss that, there are both Manhattan and Brooklyn shows in the future, so it looks like they'll be sticking around for a while. Hopefully the same can be said for spring. - allison levin