dead professional - hard hard hard

there isn't much more i can say about the signature sound of virginia's dead professional that i haven't said already, having covered them a few times on here before.

the much awaited debut EP, 'hard hard hard', is finally here, and it's five quick songs that draw on the best kind of classicism that rock'n'roll and power pop have to offer, with surprises here and there that expand on the sound you expect from dead professional that reward repeated spins. just get one! it 'delivers'.

get it here.

ben collier - reels, rags and relics

ben collier is a pennsylvania farm hand who enjoys recording classic american style dancing tunes and folk laments in his off hours. all of the music on the rustic set presented on 'reels, rags and relics' was recorded on reel-to-reel tape or cassette and performed almost entirely by ben.

listening to it, i can imagine folks 200 years ago dancing on wooden or dirt barn floors, barefoot or in hobnailed boots, arm in arm with new loves, drunk on moonshine, all up and down some half dreamed, sightly psychedelic appalachian america. ben has a real touch for making some high quality, lo-fidelity folk tunes.

i highly recommend grabbing it for free right here.

mammoth indigo - wonder (video)

virginia indie rock/pop band mammoth indigo is back with a video for the contemplative ballad-type tune 'wonder' from their self titled debut album. the video is a live performance with a cool concept...the band performs the song while walking down a peaceful neighborhood street. the video has a great ending with a little footage of the band playing 'the saints go marching in' with someone who i guess is one of their dads, which i found to be charming as hell.

pick up mammoth indigo's album as a download, CD, or a variety of vinyl options (including flashy 'bone white') here.

t.e. yates - that you knew (video)

british troubadour t.e. yates just released his debut EP, called 'posessed', on debt records. he is promoting that release with this romantic video for the anthemic lead single 'that you knew', a rocking folk pop song about new found love that is propelled forward by yate's disarming voice, driving drums and strumming mandolins.

name your price for the EP right here.

unqualified nurse - medicine music

UK bedroom/lofi/noise artist unqualified nurse's debut EP 'medicine music' delivers four songs in five unrelenting, distortion drenched, shit-fi, heavy five minutes.

seems to be just a person, a guitar, and glaciers of fuzz and anger. listen to it a few times, as it says on the bandcamp page, LOUD.

get it free here.

soapbox soliloquy - clothed in cost

the music of soapbox soliloquy is proving hard for me to pin down this morning. the sounds contained on the latest EP, 'clothed in cost', are certainly psychedelic, with elements of trip-hop, a genre that doesn't make its way on to MFOA all that often.

it might be dream-pop, some of the dreams it evokes are unsettling, and some are languid and ethereal. heavily effected acoustic guitars, fluid beats, distant vocals, lysergic lead guitars, and layers of atmospheric noises and sonic weather...i say give this one a try.

name your price for it here.

fish, flesh, field and henry dollar - tanacetum vulgare

'tanacetum vulgare' is the latest album by czech roots rock band fish, flesh, field and henry dollar (FFF&H$).

the lyrics are in czech, so i don't know what the songs are about, but musically, FFF&H$ are an energetic rock band that blends elements of punk, surf and roots with a euro-folk flair brought about by the presence of violins.

'tanacetum vulgare' is available in a limited edition of 30 CDs from resonating wood recordings out of poland.

marcus eads - sherburne county instrumentals

marcus eads' 'sherburne county instrumentals' is a collection of bucolic, rustic sounding guitar soli music that evokes the rural places the compositions are named after. it's no surprise, really, that marcus eads is from minnesota, which seems to be producing a large number of guitar soli performers at the moment.

marcus was recently featured on the 'looking west' guitar mixtape on the wonderful dying for bad music,  and has plans to release a split cassette with william csorba, who i featured here last week.

name your price for it here.

all those ships - we won't rest

i posted awhile back about all those ships' song by song album release process, where the artist chooses the line-up for his next LP based on the online response to each song (check out the previous tunes, 'tiny little storm clouds' and 'stuck in your head' here). the next in the series is 'we won't rest', a nice little self harmonizing bedroom indie-pop gem.

check out the songs here. check out a full description of all those ships' album selection process here.

free kittens and bread - puppet

free kittens and bread, from austin texas is an energetic band drawing influences from a wide variety of styles. classic punk can be heard in the 'whoa-oh-oh-oh' choruses and at times 'snotty' vocal delivery, but the instrumentation ranges from stripped down folksiness to big horns-and-toms indie-pop bombast.

the thread that unites the songs is catchy hooks, emotional lyrics, comfortable, homespun production and big harmonies that draw listeners in. 'puppet' is the latest of their many releases.

name your price for it here.

william csorba - the bear creek child cemetery

william csorba of houston, texas is another of many purveyors of finger-picked solo acoustic guitar (and banjo in this case), but the offerings to be found on his most recent album 'the bear creek child cemetery' are of the more intergalactic variety, though their roots lie in country blues and bluegrass styles.

psychedelic twangs and spaced out moments can be found in abundance within the interestingly titled guitar soli rambles, slips, slides and drones. also, you gotta love the exuma-esque artist portrait found on his bandcamp.

get it here.

JproD - the invite part 1 (minute til midnight)

i have featured the progressive, r&b and soul inflected hip hop of JproD (jep roadie) on MFOA a few times before.

he's back with another spaced-out track featuring forward thinking production and his signature unhurried flow. this track is the lead single from his upcoming album, 'regal'.

'regal' is out on november 25th.

the creak - silky works the night shift (video)

the creak, a progressive roots-folk band from san fransisco, is in the process of recording their new EP one song at a time.

the first tune, 'silky works the night shift', showcases their laid back approach, progressive instrumental flourishes, and smooth, layered harmonies, along with a whimsical video.

check out more tunes by the creak here, and look for the new EP out soon.

buck gooter - the MFOA interview with billy, preview track 'fun in the sun' from new LP

buck gooter is an increasingly well known duo of industrial noise-blues madness from rural virginia, and an MFOA favorite. i have had the pleasure of sharing bills with them in our shared native land and experiencing their visceral live presence a number of times as well as listening to their stark, abrasive and confrontational recordings. in my opinion, this is one of the few bands in existence that can truly claim to be 'punk', despite the fact that their music doesn't traditionally fit that bill. perhaps this ringing endorsement from henry rollins is evidence enough. the goot are MFOA fellow travelers par excellence because they keep doing what they do no matter what, they are road warriors and DIY legends, and they have helped release music by and support many other acts along the way, including an LP by the excellent psych/prog organ rock band MOUNDS and a comedy tape by the international man of mystery frank hurricane. the boys are about to release a new LP, 'the spiders eyes', as a joint effort by feeding tube records and sophomore lounge records, and i thought i would take this opportunity to ask billy a few questions about their approach and philosophy. as you read the interview, check out this blistering track, 'fun in the sun' from the new record, which i think is about global warming.

MFOA: buck gooter has been extremely prolific over the past ten plus years, not to mention extensive touring, various solo releases and side projects by billy and terry, and releasing works by other artists, all with a hard DIY ethic. what thoughts and motivations keep buck gooter going?

BB: what motivates me and keeps this band going is an inability to figure out something else to do that's as satisfying. i'm just on that tip, can't really figure anything else out that i like to do. when i look back on life before being involved with music, i was always headed towards music. i'm not sure what is after music for me. it's currently beyond my conception. SO doing the work is just part of being in the music and as far as i can tell music is life.

MFOA: buck gooter has made records in proper studios as well as many home-recorded efforts. do you find one process or the other to be more inspiring/satisfying? what was the recording process like for "the spider's eyes"?

BB: budget constraints have determined where an album would be recorded. i feel like we've done good work in both home and pro studios. we always go into a recording session with the songs completely fleshed out and rehearsed deeply so typically it's just a matter of capturing something we've tuned up in a different space, once and for all. recordings are funny like that, they are the definitive version of the song to (most) audiences but not so much for the band, maybe. over time, as songs are no longer played, they become the "definitive" versions. i guess that's better than nothing.

For 'the spider's eyes' we recorded with the incredible don zientara at inner ear studio. awesome. he is the best and really believes in our band. he knows us and treats us right. we spent more time mixing and fixing things than we normally do but still spent significantly less time than most bands do on these matters. it's just the way we work and kind of the only way it's possible given budget and psychic constraints on the group. the album was recorded in the same sequence as on the record and mixed accordingly so for me it's funny to listen to and note how bizarre the last few songs are. towards the end of mixing don and I started getting into a weird space and adding some effects and strange stuff to the mix that we normally don't mess with too much. another funny moment was when terry's amp died a little bit in the middle of 'eat my isolation' and we didn't realize his amp had lost some oomph until about  a month later during practice! HA! but you can hear it cut out on the recording and it cracks me up every time.

MFOA: we share a hometown in harrisonburg, VA (harrisonturd, as you often call it). how has growing up there and performing extensively in the local underground music scene informed your music and approach to performing, recording and touring?

BB: harrisonburg is a pretty caustic environment for music. It's turning into blacksburg, little by little, aka very university-centric to the point where there's just nothing but that collegiate culture. sterile. there's little pockets of resistance here but it's hard when there's just no money in anything anymore and everything costs too damn much, real estate especially. there used to be more of a 'scene' in town that's dwindled considerably but we were never part of that very much anyway. so we've always done our own thing, started out throwing our own shows in town then realized that was a pretty fruitless endeavor so we ventured out on the road more and more, finding better places to play and also attracting friends to town and hosting better shows here as time progressed. harrisonburg has given us very little so it forced us / influenced us more towards doing everything our way as the only way and not looking for too much help here locally. harrisonburg's harshness helped us broaden our scope.

as a sidebar i don't mean to short change all the cool people that have helped to make this town cooler and also included us in their events, etc. i'm speaking from a place of extreme frustration after the closing of the only adventurous venue in this town [MFOA: yes...a sad event to be sure] (and possibly in the entire western portion of the state of virginia). I also see the overall trend and big picture as being one of artistic de-prioritization in town and it blows.

MFOA: while not traditionally 'punk' in terms of your sound, I have always found buck gooter to be one of the most spiritually 'punk' bands I have ever experienced, live or on record. what drives the sustained angry and antagonistic energy that is expressed so well on buck gooter records and in live performances? i have an idea, the world is a fucked up place to be in. but i would like to know your thoughts for this interview, because you express it so well, in a way that has caught many people's attention.

BB: first off, thanks for considering us 'spiritually punk', which i consider a high compliment [MFOA: as it was intended!]. if i had to identify i'd identify as punk. to me 'punk' is more about the free space, as one luminary said. the free expression. not chained to a style or a pretense, just an artistic reaction forged with whatever tools can be wielded. folk art. the underground. the deep mind. an expression of a feral consciousness and an acceptance of that. words are divisive and mean different things to different people but i think 'punk' has held up pretty well for describing the 'fuck it all' trip. the world IS a fucked up place. for us it isn't a game, this is how we feel and this is what we do. i believe it to be a pretty pure expression and i try and follow that primal, raw impulse with the music as much as possible. 

MFOA: buck gooter clearly has a signature sound, that is consistent across your discography as well as unique. what artists, in any medium, inspire your approach?

BB: as we get older as a band we seem more self-influenced and self referential. 'the spider's eyes' album is named after a song with that title which is pulled from the lyrics to the song which is about listening to the beat of that song before it was a song and killing a spider. mise en abyme. looking further inward. the cover art could be construed as a 'spider eye' and there is a spider with eyes in the "eye"...

we'll write tunes and be like 'let's do it like we did on that one song' and then it sounds nothing like that one song. i know some of TT's riffs are his knock off versions of various songs of his that end up being completely different riffs. some of my lyrical forays come from band experiences or influences the band has had on my life. It's all knotted up. maybe I'm speaking too much here...


awesome! also, check out this bitchin' video for another tune from 'the spider's eyes'

pre-order 'the spider's eyes' from sophomore lounge records or feeding tube records.

dead professional - hold back

as the november 18th release date for the debut EP 'hard hard hard' approaches, john harouff AKA dead professional has tossed out another creased-and-ironed bedroom pop gem that somehow combines syrupy southern charm with drain-pipe tight english coolness to whet your appetite for it. this number, which features a soulful call-and-response chorus, is as catchy and memorable as usual, but ends with a cascading guitar solo that is practically psychedelic in the buttoned down world of dead professional opens a window onto more of john's skills as a guitar player and arranger.

pre-order 'hard hard hard' here.

d.b. rouse - d.b. rouse's flophouse in the sky

d.b. rouse of austin, texas is a veteran troubadour (he even wrote a book about traveling around playing on sidewalks, called 'busker'). on his latest album 'd.b. rouse's flophouse in the sky', he seems to be making a metaphor about finally coming to rest.

the tunes within are wry, harmony laden americana, flavors of classic country with moments of old-time jug band and ragtime flair that would not be out of place if you heard it in passing coming out of a boxcar door.

name your price for the album right here.


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