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National Site

Perch Patchwork

Maps & Atlases’ debut album will be called Perch Patchwork and will be released by Barsuk Records on June 29, 2010. Here is the tracklisting:

Will/The Charm/Living Decorations/Solid Ground/Is/Israeli Caves/Banished Be Cavalier/Carrying The Wet Wood/Pigeon/If This Is/Was/Perch Patchwork

Band is currently touring with bands like Drink Up Buttercup and Frightened Rabbit. Their next Chicago show will be on May 8th at Metro with Frightened Rabbit. Here is a sneak peak at the album and the song “Solid Ground”.



Scissors “Let’s Go”

The Scissors recently released the first video from their latest album, You Can Make It Dangerous. The track is called “Let’s Go”, and the video is great.

You can catch Scissors at Subterranean on April 24th.


Live Review: Harlem Record Release Party 4/1 @ Mohawk

There has been so much hype about Harlem, the three piece rock band, out of Austin, TX, originally from Arizona.  XMU has been playing them consistently.  They are even hosting for a week on XMU, playing their music among other artists they like and have inspired them.  Maybe I set my expectations too high.

Don’t get me wrong, the same poppy, fifties influenced, music that I have loved on the radio is still in the forefront.  However, I think for a record release party, there should be a less sloppy and carefree approach.   After the second song, one of the band, who shall remain nameless, proclaimed, “I am sorry, I can’t believe you all paid f***ing money to come hear this s**t!”  I wanted him to be wrong and for them to continue on a smoother path, yet it wasn’t meant to be.  I think there is something to be said for not having a plan and improvisation and having fun, but I didn’t get it; I mean if you’re The Who, that’s one thing, but I wanted to see what they could do.  My cohort with me compared them to Pere Ubu, but I could only see some Haircut 100 and that was simply for the clothes…

Harlem’s songs are simple, poppy, catchy and really easy to love.  And the band members switching instruments during the show is impressive and makes them unique.  But, I can only give them an A for Effort this time around.  I will definitely see them again and I still really like the band, just wish it had blown me away.

--Ellen Green


Show review - Freezepop at Cafe 939 - 3/27


Freezepop has made a name for themselves by proving that pop song structures applied to infectious dance rhythms and video game inspired synth melodies produces phenomenal music. And the crowd at their sold-out matinee show on Saturday, March 27th at Café 939 is proof that the system is working splendidly well.

Café 939, a small performance space at Berklee, supplied a great atmosphere for the rare all-ages show. The high-ceilinged, open space housed the band’s background screens which flashed pop-art logos and minimalist graphics throughout the show. Even before the band began to play, members Liz Enthusiasm, Robert John “Bananas” Foster, The Other Sean T. and Christmas Disco Marie Sagan joked and bantered with the audience. The band is known for their close connection to fans and even responded to an audience member who called out, “Freezepop rules!” that that should be the name of their new album.

The show itself was nothing short of spectacular. Freezepop brings an effortless energy to all of their songs: The music is loud and intense without ever losing the wry innocence and playfulness characteristic of the band’s sound and personalities. The 14 song set featured fan favorites like “Plastic Stars,” “Frontload,” and the indomitable dance opus “Less Talk More Rokk,” as well as new songs like “Magnetic” and “Lose That Boy” from their forthcoming untitled album.

Liz’s vocals were strong throughout, switching effortlessly from soft soprano melodies that faded into synth effects (notably in “Lose That Boy” and the mischievous nursery rhyme tone of “Stakeout”) to the more forceful crescendos needed for “Frontload” and “Lady Spider,” darker vocals evocative of the crooning malaise of Depeche Mode. The instrumentals were near perfection with Robert John “Bananas” Foster’s keytar playing functioning as that impeccable balance between showcasing his musical prowess and genuinely enjoying the experience of playing the music. Sean T’s guitar was spot on, especially in the rock-heavy “Brainpower” and “Get Ready to Rokk” where the solos evoked the F-Zero series’ race soundtracks. Christmas Disco Marie’s work on vocoder and synth, which she used to provide trance-esque distortion to Liz’s vocals, is a testament to her skills and seamless integration into the band.

Freezepop’s music is always a playful montage of sound, evoking video game music, infectious dance songs, 80s synth-rock and pop songs to create a sonic mélange that’s as appealing to the indie crowd as it is to electronica fans. Freezepop is set to tour the Northeast in April, so check their website for dates.

--Meghan Guidry


Javelin tours with Yeasayer (wearing leopard skin tights)

Quirky experimental Brooklyn group Javelin are about to spread their good vibrations beyond New York’s borders as they kicked off a nationwide tour last week at the Alfred University. The duo of George Langford Tom Van Buskirk cites acts as wide-ranging as Kraftwork to Smokey Robinson as influences and this eclectic nature is easy to spot, using everything from 8 bit blips, muted drums and spray painted boom boxes to create a collage of sounds. Teamed up with indie it-boys Yeasayer for their April tour, the group seem set to spread their unique brand of tropical pop as well as their unique fashion sense, since the band are known to perform wearing nothing but leopard skin tights. - Dean Van Nguyen


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