DJ dingo susi - dingo

i covered the cold, dark lofi pop jam 'keep cool things' by german recordist DJ dingo susi awhile ago, and i was happy when i received the full album 'dingo', available on cassette from fall break records, in the mail yesterday.

the tape opens with 'keep cool things' and the bedroom goth-pop hits keep coming. buzzsaw guitars, droning keys, dance-able drum beats and forlorn vocals instantly recall joy division and the cure's earlier work. recommended.

get it here, cassette or digital.

insomnia cafe - insomnia cafe vol. 2: karen johnson

insomnia cafe is the recording name of prolific olympia, washington DIY musician jared estes, who i have covered a few times. 'insomnia cafe vol. 2: karen johnson' begins with a frank zappa inspired blast of heavy psychedelic conspiracy-funk called 'do you even care?', and gets weirder from that point.

the songs to follow stay trippy and heavy, maintaining the feeling of a lofi-garage-rock over-nite sensation. highly recommended!

get it here from tongue & groove records.

mike todd - euphrates

mike todd's 'euphrates' is the kind of song i really enjoy featuring on MFOA. mike, unlike the average  MFOA contributor, has not used digital/social media to craft an online artistic identity through which to promote his work. but i let him know how to get a track to me to feature, and it was worth it. if you read my updated 'about' section, you'd know this is fine with me, just some of your music, streaming, and little real message is all i need. anyway...

'euphrates' is a topical song, beautifully written and performed, that tells to story of humanity's gradual forsaking of our mother (the earth) from the time we started farming and building cities in the fertile crescent to the horrible warfare and rapacious resource extraction practices that happen there today. it's a poetic, moving song, and mike has a good voice and solid fingerstyle folk guitar skills. i'm glad this one made it through.

there are a few more songs on his youtube channel. this contribution is refreshing to me, and represents another facet of what this site is truly about.

rocheleau/bussière/couture - rbc

rocheleau/bussière/couture is an improvisational noise trio from quebec. their new album 'rbc' seems to be a set of variations on the theme of their collaboration itself, some of which is conducted from a distance.

each song title is a variation on 'rbc' ('run! bleed! create!', 'roof burning catastrophe'), which adds to the thematic cohesion of the album. the music is a combination of harsh electronic noise, found sounds, radio samples and other signals, all recorded in a free improvised manner.

get it here for free from pan y rosas discos.

anielle reid - morality (video)

anielle reid is a singer/songwriter and banjoist who uses her considerable banjo skills to craft a folk/pop sound that incorporates more world music flavors, as opposed to oft heard stomps, strums and shuffling snares that have become so familiar in that genre. this builds on the sound of her former duo red winter, which had some great tunes with a similar approach. i featured a song from her solo debut 'ain't like 'em' here before. today, i've got the video for the jam 'morality' from that same record.

i'm gonna throw in this red winter video too:

get 'ain't like 'emhere.

native harrow - ghost

'ghost' is the debut long player from folk duo native harrow. the album contains spectral folk pop atmospherics created by dreamy lead guitar melodies, stretched rhythms, and reverby vocals.

there is quality songwriting to be found in the warm, soft-focus landscape of this album's production. one of the best examples is the moving, biography-like story-song 'kirah', which i was feeling pretty hard, right down to the back-up vocals on it's chorus. childhood memories of the power-women songwriters of the late 80's early 90's sufficiently brought back.

the album just dropped yesterday! get it here.

killing kuddles - sinking ship

killing kuddles is a three piece punk band from atlanta, georgia. i love the economy of sound and the raw energy that can be achieved by a rhythmically tight rock'n'roll power trio.

killing kuddles have fast, flailing pop-punk hooks, snotty vocals and lofi-recording techniques (some of my favorite stuff) on their latest album 'sinking ship' available from all looks no hooks records.

get it here.

elmo karjalainen - the free guitar album

finnish guitarist elmo karjalainen shreds the guitar, and on his new album 'the free guitar album', he offers you a heap of thunderingly heavy, lightning fast instrumental prog-metal jams.

definitely for fans of yngwie malmsteen or steve vai type action, elmo could give any of those wizards a run for their money in some sort of supernatural guitar competition judged by demons. all types of guitar theatrics are present...sweep picking, tap solos, crazy effects. check out a preview track below.

get the album for free here.

john mancini band - easy chair

'easy chair' is the lead single from the upcoming EP 'medicine show' by the john mancini band. it's a moody americana track about hard times and hard traveling, with that possibly unreachable place of rest as a light at the end of the tunnel.

sinuous acoustic guitar licks and ominous mandolin trickles fill out the minimal, snare driven americana production.

'medicine show' will be available here soon.

isaak salomon - weekend in the world

'weekend in the world' is the lead single from the upcoming 'the evening EP' by canadian singer/songwriter isaak saloman. it's a laid back, romantic song about those good times when everything feels right with the world.

this atmosphere is reinforced by the lush twin chimes of a telecaster and a pedal steel over brushed snares and wurlitzer.

'the evening EP' will be available in july.

taryn la fauci - all of me (video)

taryn la fauci is australian singer/songwriter. here is the video for the lead single from her debut EP 'unveil', which you can grab here.

it's a heartfelt, swelling alternative pop ballad with an emotional video to match. taryn's clear, ethereal voice is the center of the song.

get the album here.

diamond wolf - your time has come

seattle, washington duo diamond wolf make contemporary folk/pop with sense of drama and harmony. their new album 'your time will come' was recorded among a 'forest of mics' (i like that description) and has a strummy, stompy vitality and reverby warmth to it.

while the instrumentation is generally acoustic, a lot of these songs have a rock-type swagger about them.

get it here.

andrea schiavelli - souls on fire

andrea schiavelli is a musician and bedroom recording artist based in new york city. his latest release 'souls on fire' is a collection of demos, but as i find so often listening to music for MFOA, the demo is the record. 'souls on fire' is a varied collection, featuring a kaleidoscope of approaches to bedroom music making...there are moments of wry folk, psychedelicisms, 80's synths, and goth-pop nuances.

andrea has a feel for weird but deeply listenable home-made pop. this is the kind of lofi work that combines a stately neatness and attention to detail with the tape fuzz. i recommend this one highly. check out some preview tracks below. i am glad that one of them is 'falling off ship', a dark synth-pop jam that demanded me to hit rewind.

you can get this and a lot of other great releases on cassette from OSR tapes, but you have to do it the old fashioned way. get a catalog here.

hilrant - retrospectre

hilrant is the tape-name of british mutlitracker paul tilley. like many of us home recording obsessives, he has been at it for years, producing a massive back catalog documenting his journeys down every kind of musical path. 'retrospectre' is a sampler of all this action, available now on CD from the olympia, washington DIY label tongue & groove (on which some of my music will soon be appearing).

hilrant's music has a wide breadth, including homespun brit-pop, atmospheric synth soundscapes, placid folky psychedelia, and lots of other zones. 'retrospectre' is the life of a DIY home recordist flashing before your ears, in all it's experimental glory. kind of what this site was made for.

download it here, or grab the CD from tongue & groove.

david ivan neil - the bradner numbers EP

i've featured bedroom (in this case, chicken shack) recordist david ivan neil before, and i was excited to hear more. he also recently sent me a very interesting lathe-cut plastic record with a some tunes from his last album, which my cheap turntable had a few issues playing due to it's small size.

the lathe-cut plastic record

his new work, 'the bradner numbers EP' retains the oustider aesthetic of his previous release 'new country home', but the songs, while recorded starkly with a guitar and voices, a touch of toy piano (very daniel johnston) and some cold sounding reverb, are more upbeat and rocking. the lyrics are strange and disorienting and are combined with some wild lalas and ohohs at times, adding to the outsider effect. i believe this EP was literally recorded outside. i recommend downloading this and also trying to track down one of those lathe-cut records.

get it here.

sleeping orchard - s/t

sleeping orchard is guitar/drums two-piece band from london. i generally love guitar/drums duos, but it is a challenging arrangement to pull off. on their self titled album, sleeping orchard does it pretty well with minimal additional production, just a little bit of synth and bass here and there.

there are moments of tight, rhythmic jamming and moments of laid-back country lope in the rootsy rock of this album.

name your price for this and several others here.

maria torenson - the mountain (video)

maria torenson is a singer/songwriter from norway. her lushly produced, heartfelt ballad 'the mountain' is accompanied by by upbeat modern folk rock production that supports her rich voice well. it's also accompanied by a video that has polar bears in it, i love bears!

stream it here.

you can find a few more tracks on the soundcloud.

erik nilsson - on and onward

'on and onward' is the single from composer erik nilsson's hidden shoal recordings debut, 'hearing things'.

the song is an instrumental composition that combines the approaches of electronica and classical composition to bring listeners into it's emotional space.

get it here.

the velopheliacs - live at the shipyard

the velopheliacs are duo that flesh out the songwriting of singer syd everatt with the lead guitar work of dylan wright. their latest release, 'live at the shipyard', takes a fiery live performance and makes it available as a name your price album.

the guitar playing goes from jazzy/prog rock figures to psychedelic drones. you would be wrong to pigeonhole this under the folk genre (sonically that is), due to the dark, progressive style of the melodies and leads.

get it here.

adam hill - old paint

adam hill is a musician and composer from squamish, british columbia. though he works in many different genres, he sent me his shot at traditional styled folk music, 'old paint'. it's an album that slaps and thrums with old-time energy. adam has added a few unique touches as well, such using a cello for the lines that might usually be played on a fiddle in this type of music, giving some the songs a very ominous tone that to my ear is fitting for these haunting mountain tunes. there is a deft hand put to some old reels as well, such as the lovingly worn standard 'soldier's joy', which is done here in a great version with a slight nod to the classical.

i have to note that on the bandcamp page, credit was given to the canadian government for providing some funds to help make the album. see, in civilized countries, the government subsidizes artists, breaking off a little slice of the money they use to develop new ways to kill and subjugate people and pay themselves large salaries and give large conglomerates all their taxes back to help promote the arts. australia does it too. i noticed the same type of acknowledgement on the back cover of the badass new courtney barnett LP.

i guess i'm done ranting about that...check out 'old paint'.

there is a tune on here called 'bentonville blues' that takes wal-mart to task over its labor relations policies. get the album here.

oki's wagon - a curious dose

'a curious dose' is the debut album from dublin, ireland based band oki's wagon. they make upbeat, driving folk/rock music with a traditional irish leaning.

it's mostly acoustic, but the speed and intensity with which it is played and sung lends a punk edge, perhaps taking a page from their countrymen, the mighty pogues.

get it here.

whim - songs for the funeral guest EP

whim is the stage name of portland, oregon singer/songwriter sarah dimuzio. on her new EP 'songs for the funeral guest', she displays her talents of confessional balladry in a stylish folk-pop setting, backing up her picking and strumming with light drums, piano, some strings, tambourine, bass, and i believe the unique banjo-lele type thing pictured on the album cover.

the title of 'songs for the funeral guest' refers to a film called 'the funeral guest', in which they appear. learn more about that here.

get it here.

fizzy soup - the big bad wolf (video)

'the big bad wolf' is the debut single from spanish synth-pop band fizzy soup. it's a moody, dark tune with absolutely huge choruses underpinned by grinding synthbass and wailing organs and guitars. the vocal is carried by a male-female harmony that adds to the tension in the song's softer lulls. check out the well made and spooky video below.

stream it on bandcamp here.

if you download the track, you also get the bonus 'secret' digital b-side.

joey pizza slice - you're right on time

joey pizza slice (AKA son of salami AKA citizen slice, and so on) is a lofi recording artist solidly on top of that game. this tune, 'you're right on time', demonstrates his touch with pop/rock songwriting and a tascam 4-track and is available on the excellent album 'OSR#33' from OSR tapes, which you can figure out how to order through analog methods here.

the recording style and artistic ambition of JPS runs a lot deeper than that. his latest recordings are done on modified portable tape recorders, old dictaphones basically, from which he has removed the erase head to allow for a type of primitive multitracking, that due to the fact that the existing signals can not be heard when recording new audio, requires adding a rhythmic discipline to the act of recording itself.

when i watched the following video detailing the method, my mind was blown when i thought about the ways in which this technique eliminates the boundary between what we think of as different actions...playing and recording music. JPS turns those into a singular process, and the results are weird, intimate, fragile, catchy and rare.

you can listen to a bunch of these erase head removed songs on joey's soundcloud. you can also buy the original master cassettes, which are pricey, but no other physical copies exist. a few of my favorites below:

highly recommended. he also has a 'made to order' CD label called beautiful music CDs.

eli winter - eli winter plays super happy fun land, june 4th, 2015

eli winter is a young adept in the school of american primitive solo acoustic guitar performance. he shared with me a video of a live set of his which includes a number of solid original tunes as well as covers from the old and new of the american primitive pantheon (fahey, basho, rose, bachman) that more than demonstrate his skills.

that's all the internet presence i've got for eli, but i wouldn't be surprised if there was more in the future.

laura joy - between our words

laura joy is a singer/songwriter from chicago, and she is a veteran of the small venue scene there. her latest EP, 'between our worlds', is a heartfelt selection of upbeat, handcrafted folk/pop tunes, backed up by a minimal but very tight band.

the EP provides a showcase for laura's singing, guitar playing, and poetic lyricism.

get it on CD or download here.

tiny rhymes - arrows

'arrows' is the latest track from buffalo, new york based chamber folk band tiny rhymes.

the song has a melancholy romanticism about it. cello, violin and vocal harmony swell around the framework of guitar and glockenspiel, adding flesh to the bones of a folk song.

listen to more here.

kill west - out to the stars

'out to the stars' is the preview track from the soon to be released debut full length album 'smoke beach' from beunos aires psych rockers kill west, out on cassette june 11th from ongakubaka records.

the song is a hazed out jammer, with a distant, disaffected but pretty vocal melody buried under a mountain of guitars moving forward on a plodding, unstoppable groove. the song burns out but does not fade away in an explosion of heavy wah pedal action. i'm looking forward to hearing the rest of the album, which, like the other releases from OR, i pre-ordered.

get it on limited cassette or digital right here. pre-ordered cassettes ship out around june 11th. if you need more right now, you can check out their EP here.

hysm? - turning trickster

'turning trickster' by italian band hysm? consists of two songs: the title track, an hour and twenty minutes long, a distorted recording of a native america trickster legend (i think) with droning free-noise rock over, under and around it, and 'i don't love nobody', a minute and twenty seconds long, a fuzzy sample of a bluesy, unaccompanied vocal and bird songs panned to a strange effect.

it's pretty good. i'm not completely sure if hysm? is a band, a label, or both (probably both). there is a release by noise/folk experimentalists big drum in the sky religion on their bandcamp, among other artists.

get it here.

e'clat - all stars

georgia rapper e'clat and montreal producer will proulx together make skrwe productions. i covered their last effort, 'it's ok to dream', which i thought was good, but they've improved every part of their game on the new e'clat jam 'all stars'.

production, hooks and rhymes all loom large. funky, loud, slamming beats, smooth singing and frantic rapping.

get it here.

union specific - howlin room

union specific is a down home band of roots-rockers from austin, texas. throughout the playing time of their newest album 'howlin room', they stomp, chug and croon in harmony on booze-drenched americana ballads.

shredding takes place on the usual alt-country arsenal, pedal steel, mandolin, banjo and twangy tele all get their playing time. i like the message and melody of 'oops ma (we taught the boy)'

name your price for it here.

cagey house - sometimes always never

i have to give cagey house some credit for describing their (his? i think this a one man band) album 'sometimes always never' in the most cryptic way i have seen lately:

'mellow free. this, while at summer playground. pattern cycle, grasping voices. waver, ascension, bell, string.'

to be fair, after hitting play i think that is as good a description as any. 'sometimes always never' seems to me to be at its heart a jazz album, but it has minimalist inspiration and contains elements of musique concrete. some of the tracks seem to be built on a foundation of jazz drumming, coupled with loose, fractured bits of electric piano melody, organ drones, and sometimes chanting. repeated sounds create a trance like atmosphere at times.

field recordings, conversations and street sounds can be heard in the background. some elements are subject to electronic manipulation. some tracks don't have the drums, all droning organs and chiming bells. maybe after reading the nonsense i just wrote, you understand why i think the artist's description is probably better.

get it for free here.

m. mucci - secret midnights

i was pleasantly surprised recently to receive an email indicating that arachnidisc records was planning to re-release an archive of two out of print albums by canadian solo guitarist m. mucci on one long-playing cassette called 'secret midnights'. i have covered m. mucci before and i am sold on his exceptionally mellow, patiently performed, atmospheric take on the amorphous genre that falls under the umbrella of 'american primitive'.

tape comes in a velveteen bag

the songs on each side of 'secret midnights' are performed on electric guitar, the notes are soft and round and drenched in reverb...the songs, melodies and musical ideas fade in and out of one another. this one is recommended for both active and passive listening.

get it here on comes in a velveteen bag!

sarah eide - borderland

'borderland' is the debut extended player from chicago singer/songwriter and pianist sarah eide. she has a classical background, and it shows in the intricacy of her piano riffs, which also possess a rock'n'roll hustle. this release is standing out for me among the pack of singer/songwriter type things in that sarah's ability to lead her band through vibrant musical passages from behind the keyboard is obvious.

her lyrics are intricate too, they get wordy to the point of breathlessness in some faster paced moments, and are deeply personal, speaking to the struggle of existence on the...borderland between youth and adulthood. these songs remind me of the classic piano driven pop/rock/AOR of the 70's.

get it here, download or CD.

cath and phil tyler - the song-crowned king

UK based folk duo cath and phil tyler play old time style folk songs that blend the english and american rustic ballad traditions. they accompany their clear, mountain-high harmonies with banjo, guitar and fiddle.

the songs on their newest release 'the song-crowned king' are sparse and airy and have an ancient mystery hanging about them.

get it here.

vidaguerilla - blues pa cabras acratas

i think the title of spanish band vidaguerilla's new album translates to 'blues for anarchist goats'. the music is great...raw, lofi punk/blues, with what i'm guessing is a political edge to the lyrics.

'blues pa cabras acratas' is not available digitally, the band members decided to say fuck it to the internet, but you can stream it. to get a physical copy, you can email them.

email the band at listen to some older recordings on bandcamp.

REW - to come unglued (video)

REW is ryan e. webber, electronic musician with a new album due out soon on hidden shoal recordings. his music is pretty wild, one of my favorites of the many hidden shoal releases i've covered. it is at once wide and narrow, transcending genre while being very self contained in terms of the way it was created.

elements of pure pop, world music, psych, techno, and electronica blend to create something that is good to listen to but defies your attempts to categorize it...which is something i love. this video is very psychedelic as well.

check out another tune 'the lights in the sands of kapumpkale', below:

get the album here in july.

suburban birds - s/t EP

suburban birds of salt lake city deal in a laid back, spaced out brand of psychedelic indie rock that makes me wonder how easy it is to get weed in the capital of the mormon empire...

on their self titled debut EP, the suburban birds also add a little bit of funk to this trippy mix, with a very tight rhythm section anchoring the swirl of guitars and keyboards, and vocals that can range from high urgency to lysergic wonder. 

get it here.

jep roadie - here i am

i have feature MC and producer jep roadie (formerly stylized as JproD) a few times here, and here he is again with the most upbeat so far far of his soulful hip-hop jams, 'here i am'.

an ode to friendship (or love, or family bonds) strong enough to pull you out of the fire, the song slams along to a catchy piano loop, good for playing out of your car at a high volume, feeling it. a reminder that it's love that makes the horrible things in life bearable.

listen to more here.

rosie tucker - lowlight

rosie tucker is an indie folk singer/songwriter based in los angeles. her debut album, 'lowlight', is collection of personal, confessional style folk songs that can go from whimsical to bitter.

the recording style is stark, highlighting rosie's raw, emotional voice, poetic lyrics, and thoughtful chord progressions. these parts add up to solid songwriting. the minimalism is only punctuated by occasional self harmonies and hand percussion, which are nice touches. i particularly like 'fix'er upper', which has a pleasant early simon and garfunkel vibe.

get the album here.

ethan james hagen - dos suenos and red & blue

ethan james hagen is an american expatriot musician and recording artist in mexico. his music is an interesting blend of electronic elements, singer/songwriter type tunes, and a dose of new age finger picking.

the mood is mellow throughout. check out a few songs below.

listen to more here.


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