It’s been about 8 months since I gave you guys a taste of Cameras when I offered up ‘Polarise’ from their self-titled EP, but last week they finally released their first album, In Your Room, and I’ve had it locked on ‘repeat’ all day. I simply can’t get enough of Eleanor Dunlop’s beautiful, mystically dreamy voice and the way she can take the lyrics and swirl & spin them into her own shimmering, gossamer instrument. I dare you to decypher what she is singing on the first go-round, but once you figure it out you will melt…
I traded my heart
For a new one
I stole I stole I stole
Away away away…
If you know me at all, you know I’m a sucker for exactly this type of lush, layered, shoegazey Pop, but I’ve been jonesing for this record from the moment I first heard ‘Polarise’, and these guys really delivered! I strongly advise a trip to the iTunes Store to pick this one up and then head over to facebook and ‘Like’ Cameras.
A few weeks ago the crew at Damn Ugly Photography took the ‘L’ Train out to Williamsburg for an impromptu cover shoot with Chiara Angelicola…Bird Call to the rest of you. She needed a photo for her jazzy new single and I’ve been dying to shoot her for a while, so was certainly willing to help out. That single…The Ballad Of New York…came out this week and I’m giving you guys an exclusive first listen here. Her smokey & souful vocal, backed up by the cascading piano and the oh-so-sad wail of the saxophone give me goosebumps every time I play this song. She co-produced ‘Ballad’ with Noah Hoffeld, and it will be featured on the new album she’s recording now. Unlike most Songs of the Day, I’m only attaching the mp3 player and not the usual full-download link (you folks on iPads will likely have to fire up the old desktop computer to listen), ‘cuz after all, Chiara is 100% indie and needs to make a few bucks every once and a while…if I go giving everything away for free she’ll be stuck eating pork ‘n beans, so please, head on over to her website (where you can also pick up her two earlier EP’s, “The Animals Know” & “Other Creatures”) or iTunes and show her some love ($) by downloading there!
Damn Ugly Photography has been around for just over two years now, but the main reason it exists at all…the Song of the Day List…started way back in 2004 as a way for me to waste some time by emailing out whatever new music I happened to find to a small list of my friends. That small list grew over time until I hit over 1,000 people and my ISP’s spam filter kicked in, making it no longer possible for me to send the mass email out to the blind list. So in February of 2009 I got this place going and decided to include more and more photo-related posts. I mean, I did call it Damn Ugly Photography, right?!!
Anyway…I was reminded of the early days of The List when I drove into the city yesterday while listening to a playlist of some of my favorite pre-blog stuff from obscure Indie bands that I was typically hearing for the first time. These are songs that I still count among the favorite music I have sitting in my iTunes folder. And as some of you probably know, over the years I’ve actually gotten pretty close with a number of the artists and record labels and we’re lucky enough to have new music fall off the back of the truck well in advance of the actual release dates. Jets Overhead, Say Hi, Kate Tucker, Audrye Sessions, Johanna & the Dusty Floor, School of Seven Bells, Nadia Ackerman and many, many more have all sent leaks from the studio for us to enjoy, and just today, Ryan Karazija sent me some new cuts from his latest project, Tabula Rasa, that I’ll be getting some of it up very soon.
So today I’m gonna give y’all a nostalgic look back of some of that music…without my usual flowery comments…as a little history lesson on how far The List has come. Trust me, this will make one Hell of a great Indie playlist!
It’s Tuesday and in the music biz that means it’s New Release Day and Johanna & the Dusty Floor are dropping a little five-song jewel with The Forest EP, her latest collection of heartfelt, beautifully crafted stories set to the sparest piano, shuffling percussion and subtle electronic beats. Backed by the beautiful harmonies of Dani Elliott and Anthea White, Johanna’s dark vocal on ‘Love Is A Breakable Thing’ creates a foreboding mood that sent a chill up my spine the first time I heard it and haunts me still. And tonight Johanna and the band are having an EP release party at Rockwood Music Hall, one of the best places to see and hear live music in the city. The show is at 7:00PM and I strongly urge any true Friends of The List to get your asses downtown for a bit of live music! If you can’t make it, let’s show some love and head on over to iTunes and pick up the EP…it’s only five bucks! You can follow Johanna and the Dusty Floor on their MySpace and Facebook pages.