Alt Rock

COSMS Releases EP "Arteria"

A while back yonder, we brought you some sweet preliminary sounds from Austin post-rock duo COSMS then-upcoming EP. That EP has done gone and come out, and we've got the whole thing for you here today! Arteria expands on the sound from pre-release, Asian-influenced instrumental track "Pagoda" with five total tracks of contemporary two-musician post-rock experimentation.

It's a little weird to us who remember when Godspeed! You Black Emperor, Explosions in the Sky and the other post-rock of the 2000s was a wholly new sound, as now the genre is in a very different place. Most "indie" fans have moved to a pretty heavily psych-rock, indie-folk, synthy pop zone, and the massive underculture (does that even exist anymore?) attention has shifted away from genres like post-rock (you could include a lot of other genres like doom metal in there too). Personally, I think that's a great thing for bands like COSMS, because it allows them space to do whatever they want, to work on subtle changes and enhancements to their genre and to really get the sound they want down on record. The result is lovely gems like Arteria, with its Shanghai-meets-American post-rock sound, and its ultra pared-down two musician format that allows for each piece of their songs to be prominent, allowing the listener to really see how each part contributes to the whole.

That's an approach that is quite nice in post-rock, especially when you think back to those 20+ piece tracks that Godspeed used to drop. As awesome as those were, they were going for something very different, something rougher and louder and more urgent, almost desperately so. That was great for the time, but that COSMS has found a space to do something very different, and very lovely, in post-rock that's shows that the genre has much still to offer.

In all these are some fresh-layered tracks with delightful complexity in the song structure from but two musicians, and you won't find tighter instrumental music coming out of Austin. Listen to all of Arteria below y'all.

   

Xiu Xiu Supports Timber Timbre at The Fillmore - 5/15

Xiu Xiu may be getting a little too big for the britches of The Deli Magazine San Francisco, but we'd like to give them a shout anyway. It is important for us to continue to highlight this local music duo because they are an emerging experimental art rock powerhouse who will probably never get the mainstream or even indie media coverage they deserve due to their highly off kilter and at times, grotesque art and music style.

This Friday (May 15th), Xiu Xiu will be supporting the soulful Canadian rock band, Timber Timbre at The Fillmore in San Francisco. Timber Timbre sounds like a nice blend of The Black Angels and The Black Keys. They sound good and they sound cool (like James Dean cool), so experiencing their live show after Xiu Xiu's out of the box performance will allow you to let your hair down and dance and shuffle around a bit. Don't miss this show!

   

The Dead Bees

Music is all about the song, and The Dead Bees live by them. Playing genre-blurring, old fashioned rock n’ roll, they would be home on just about any stage. Delicate harmony, laid back rhythm section, stripped down electric guitars and bare-bones melody, they don’t overdo anything because they don’t need to. Somewhere between the Killers and Joel Plaskett is where these Ottawa-dwelling boys live. Their song Cannonball from their second album “2” is the perfect soundtrack to a weekend at the cottage, or skipping work and just hitting the road. Between the folk-lectric guitar lines, and the lovely light chorus line, it’ll get you to forget about your woes and just sing along. With 2 records under their belt, they’re well on their way to finishing a third, to be named and then released, hopefully in that order, at some point in 2015.-Cody Wright

   

"A Smiling Parabola of Excitement": An Interview with Jonah Furman of Krill

Boston Calling returns for yet another impressive festival this May and of course, the lineup is brilliant. Along with continuing the trend of attracting incredible big-name talent--this spring’s headliners include: Beck, My Morning Jacket, Tenacious D, and Pixies--Boston Calling has also booked two powerful local opening acts in The Ballroom Thieves and Krill. Recently, I had a chance to exchange a few emails with Jonah Furman, lead vocalist and bass player for Krill. Though the group is known as a “Boston band”, Furman and crew are actually all originally from the suburbs of Chicago. Currently, Furman is the only member who resides in Boston (drummer Ian Becker and guitarist Aaron Ratoff moved to NYC in 2014). Despite the distance, Furman says it hasn’t been difficult to keep the band going.  “It's not tough to practice when you play shows every ten days or so!”, writes Furman. “It’s kind of weird doing a LDR [long distance relationship] band, [but] I don't plan to move to NYC anytime soon.” 

Click here to read an abridged version of the conversation. If you're too busy scrolling through pictures of food and cats on Instagram and want a synopsis: highlights include being offered to play Boston Calling, dealing with unexpected success, and the debilitating effects of consumerism on the world.

Main page photo credit: Ethan Long

   

Tigerman WOAH Usher in Boston Calling Block Party Season

Earlier this week, Boston Calling announced the expansion of its summer Block Party series. In addition to the weekly Thursday evening events at Dewey Square (across from South Station), a monthly party has been added back in Downtown Crossing, the original site of the gatherings. All events will continue to feature cheap drinks (sponsored by Shock Top and Wicked Wines) and music courtesy of Boston-area musicians. The Downtown Crossing Block Party kicks-off tonight featuring Tigerman WOAH, with all subsequent events held on the first Wednesday of each month. The Dewey Square Party will launch May 14, with a performance by The Almighty Buck.

For more info about the Block Parties (and to see future performance schedules), check out the Block Party Facebook page.
-Dan McMahon (@dmcmhn)