insomniac folklore - sleep in your car

'sleep in your car' is a live recording of travelling portland, oregon based folk/punk band insomniac folklore playing in stroudsburg, pennsylvania. it was recorded for a record label called funn folk sounds that is a fellow traveler with MFOA...the man behind funn folk sounds records all the DIY bands that come through his town on cassette, releases some and archives them all. like MFOA, his inspirations include harry smith and alan lomax. this particular release documents an energetic performance. insomniac folklore is a driving guitars and drums three piece characterized by dead-pan calvin-johnson-esque male vocals harmonized with sweeter female singing. the clipping, one mic cassette tape recording is perfect for the band's sound and the label's mission.



name your price for it here. also, i encourage you to check out all the other releases on funn folk sounds.


salvaticus - hidden mana (cd and cassette release)

i have written about appalachian black metal outfit salvaticus and their debut album 'hidden mana' before...it's a stormy epic of brutal, intricate, atmospheric mountain black metal. now it is out on cd on lost apparitions records and cassette on the nocturnal reign label.



get it: cassette, cd, or digital.

nate henricks - neon for no one

nate henricks is a bedroom recording enthusiast (15 albums worth of enthusiasm) from lawrence, kansas, and i am happy he got in touch with me, because these home recording vigilantes who just can't stop are really the people after the heart of the modern folk music of america. nate's latest album 'neon for no one' is a fuzzy, catchy ramble through a country-side of deconstructed power-pop, tight tunes that erupt into inscrutable noise just when you thought you had a hook to hang on to. or they start damaged and drop you in on a tight verse with dreamy, reverb soaked vocal melodies. i like it a lot.



grab it from digitally right here or as a cassette on the crash symbols label.

orphan jane - the mansion song

'the mansion song' is a macabre tale and somewhat menacing song from the eponymous debut of new york situated gypsy/caberet folk four piece orphan jane. the tune jaunts along tightly with an old world feel of mandolins, furiously pumping accordions and old-timey torch singer vocals. This song is solidly in the gypsy/caberet sound, but some of the other songs on the album are eccentric takes on other folk and blues forms. the musicianship on this recording is meticulous.



listen to the whole slab right here.

tbor and the tokin' two - an original tribute to daniel johnston

one of my very best friends blake 'tbor' cramer and i recently collaborated from across coasts on this brief, very lofi, three song tribute to daniel johnston. it's a tribute, but the songs aren't daniel johnston covers, they are original songs tbor wrote inspired by his work.



this is another practice record, the official digital record label of the modern folk music of america.

sam moss - live on WFMU, may 10th, 2014

folk singer and multi-instrumentalist sam moss is one of my favorite of the burgeoning new crop of musicians mining the american folk tradition. sam's playing is crisp, bright and classically influenced in addition to its roots credentials, and the new addition of his tremulous, silvery voice is welcome in a field that often side-steps singing. this recent live performance from jeffrey davison's shrunken planet show on WFMU is a great intro in sam's sound.



you can download this excellent set for free from the wonderful free music archive. check out more from sam moss, including his newest album 'no kingdom' right here.

kramies - the folklore sessions

i have made quite a few posts about dutch singer/songwriter kramies, but that's because he is pretty good at what he does. i am posting about him again to let ya'll know about a new offering he is letting go for free, called 'the folklore sessions', a brief collection of songs from two of his releases on hidden shoal recordings re-imagined in stripped-down acoustic form, with no production aside from the piano accompaniment of one of the dudes from the TV show ghost hunters (huh?). kramies' bittersweet, meditative tunes sound great this way.



get it for free right here.

precise - ladies love mixtapes the EP

precise is a hard working chicago emcee (among other things...he is a motivational speaker, actor, and blogger as well) who is dedicated to representing all of the positive aspects of hip hop culture. 'ladies love mixtapes the EP', is, as the title suggests, dedicated to the ladies. the EP was 'created to give female rap fans an alternative to the male-dominated, misogynistic content in the mainstream media', which is a goal that the album lives up to, even in its lustier moments (the email i got warned 'this is adult hip hop, play this at night'). with the classic production, rhyming and numerous skits on this album, precise brings a good time for everyone.



get it right here.

killhamster - something else

the latest release from electronic music artist killhamster is some what of a departure from his form. 'rbm' features the organic tones of layers of electric guitars, some sourced from years old demos and home-made tapes, alongside pounding, pulsing, electronic drums and other tones...call it instrumental industrial electro-prog metal i guess. the coolest thing about 'rbm' is that killhamster has released a companion album of remixes, a sort of negative copy if you will, called 'mbr', which places the songs more solidly in his traditional techno (EDM? i fully cop to my ignorance of this genre) style. sample the tune 'something else' off of 'rbm' below.



listen to the full versions of 'rbm' and 'mbr' right here.

billy mack collector - it's okay to carrot

'it's ok to carrot' the latest of many albums by prolific pennsylvania strange folkster billy mack collector might, in fact does, hold the record on MFOA for most song titles that end with an exclamation mark. elaine benes would hate it but i'm ok with it. the instrumentation on this album is highly variable, but hews to a tattered-quilt folk punk patchwork (mostly but not completely instruments you could take hitchhiking with you). the lyrics range from humorous to whistful, dealing with folk punk problems, like unreliable friends, riding on buses, finding cheap healthy foods, possibly in dumpsters, and moving to the woods, with or without anarchists.



name your price for it (and many more, with a lot of variety in the sounds...from sheet music programmed midi tones to rock 'n' roll) right here.

jon alkalay - GPS song and hardly ever rains

jon alkalay is an electronic/dance music producer, born in brazil, living in austin. his tunes are four on the floor electropop dance numbers sure to get people moving. sample them below. the GPS song could perhaps serve a dual purpose as road trip anthem.




find out more about john alkalay here. listen to more tunes here.

origami sun - more songs about insects and fruit

origami sun is the stage name of folk singer/songwriter andhi o'neill of port chester, new york. his newest album, 'more songs about insects and fruit' lives up to its title but also delivers song after song of charming eccentric, catchy folk pop that has a unique blend of timeless sounds and originality. i like this selection quite a bit, and apparently it was mostly written during a period of unemployment, which i definitely sympathize with, that's when i write a lot of songs and in fact i was unemployed when i started this website.



get the digital album and check out the back catalog here.

my rival

i recorded a cover today of one of my favorite songs ever, 'my rival' from alex chilton's album 'like flies on sherbert'. it turned out to be exactly two minutes long. maybe listen to this cover, but definitely listen to that album.



thanks for listening. on the marginal chance you want to check out more of my tunes, find them here and here. this recording is part of the upcoming 'small star', a covers project by the modern folk, available on practice records soon.

avi jacob - so hard to reach you

boston's avi jacob is a young folk rocker and singer songwriter whose latest album 'so hard to reach you' is out on whitehaus family records (which has a also recently released a side project of MFOA favorite frank hurricane). the album has moments of quiet reflection and moments of voice straining, drum banging heart-on-the-sleeve americana type rocking. occasional female vocals and heavier, spacier jams spice things up a bit.



grab the digital album here, or get a physical copy here. observe below a video for the tune 'fool hearted man'.

rose and ben - before i held your hand

rose and ben are a singing and songwriting duo out of texas. their tunes are highly polished and slick sounding, led by rose's big southern voice. the music is in the contemporary country mold. 'before i held your hand' is a sweet love song that rolls down on a twinkling stream of country strings, mandolins and fiddles jigging along to a shuffling snare that pops into a swelling chorus.



listen to more of rose and ben's album right here.

leo liebeskind - lovechild

20 year old new york troubadour leo liebeskind's album love child sounds like the music of a considerably older man, who might have been tossed about a bit by the storms of life. road folk, singing, songwriting and protest rabble-rousing with a sharp modern edge. production ranges from man and guitar to a light folk rock arrangement.



name your price for it and some older demos here.

freezy - it's all love

connecticut MC freezy is back with a ode to all that is hip-hop rapped with a quick and precise technicality, laid over a sparse, contemplative beat by wickstarr. check it out.



get more freezy here, here and here.