Growing up in rural Wisconsin must have made Nika Roza Danilova think her name isn’t quite unique enough, ‘cuz when she’s on stage she would prefer if you call her Zola Jesus. I stumbled across her new EP, Stridulum, the other day and being a fan of all things Goth, was immediately taken by her Siouxsie Sioux-like vocals and the sparse, haunting, industrial backing track. She’s getting lotsa notice overseas…in fact, she’s opening for Fever Ray all over Great Britain before she heads out on her own European tour in September…then back State-side where she’s criss-crossing the country, including a gig in NYC at the wonderfully creepy (and just a bit Goth!) United Palace Theater October 2nd! This is some really cool shit and I think you all should head over to MySpace and make friends!
I’m breaking one of my own rules today by taking a request. Francesco Ferorelli (whom I’m pretty sure I met when he was two years old!) has been holding my feet to the fire for years wondering why I never feature any of his bands on The List, but the simple fact is that most of the stuff he’s sent to me over the years has made my ears bleed before I even get to the chorus, so when he gave me the latest EP he put out featuring Jana Hunter, I was pleasantly surprised at what I heard. The spare, meandering guitar intro takes almost two minutes to get to her vocal, but when it does, the haunting Siouxsie Sioux-like quality of this song becomes evident…but then, I always liked the Banshees better when they wandered off on an arty tangent. And let’s not kid ourselves, with a title like ‘Two Cocks Waving Wildly at Each Other Across a Vast, Open Space, a Dark, Icy Tundra’, I think Ms. Hunter is firmly in the art-rock camp. She has toured with Tara Jane O’Neil, Rasputina, Deer Tick, Marissa Nadler and perhaps most notably, Devendra Banhart, who she also has also recorded with. Check out her MySpace page and then why not head over to Heart Break Beat Records and give a listen to some of Francesco’s other bands.