Ear to the Ground Presents…. 2013 Part I

So, we mentioned at the beginning of yesterday’s Shuffle that we have gone through almost an entire 1/4 of 2013 without naming a Band of the Week, Band of the Month or Featured Artist.  It’s funny because, it was circumstances beyond our control which initially created this situation, but as with much of what we do, it seemed to be the right thing to do.



You may be aware, that once we feature a band/artist, we kind of add them to our family in a way.  We have Twitter Lists and Facebook Lists that we have created and that we follow regularly.


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One of the things I wanted to avoid was naming someone a Featured Artist and then barely featuring them. It has happened, though not intentionally.  So, as March winds down, I thought I would look back at the first part of this year.

Ear to the Ground Presents…. after the jump


Old Friends, New Music:

Thus far in 2013, we’ve had the chance to review three new records from three old friends who we already considered part of the Ear to the Ground Family.

Gypsy West  Back in January, we reviewed the 3rd EP in the Accomplices trilogy which was subtitled No Barcodes.  Check out our review here.

http://bandcamp.com/EmbeddedPlayer/v=2/album=386233350/size=venti/bgcol=FFFFFF/linkcol=4285BB/




Tim Lee 3  In February, we did what was one of the first reviews/previews of the highly anticipated new record from Knoxville based Tim Lee 3, called Devil’s Rope. Here is our review.  Did you know that Tim Lee was part of the legendary 80s band, The Windbreakers who recorded with Mitch Easter and collaborated with Richard Barone among others?

  

The End Men  So it’s offical, we have now tagged The End Men more than any other term, band or artist.  So, it’s logical that when we set out to review their incredible new record Play With Your Toys, we did it a four part series of posts.  For your convenience, here is a link that includes all of the record breaking posts that were tagged “The End Men”

http://bandcamp.com/EmbeddedPlayer/v=2/album=998121910/size=venti/bgcol=FFFFFF/linkcol=4285BB/


Calicocat  Nashville-based Calicocat called it quits, but before they did they released another, final great release.  Mighty Superfluous has been in heavy rotation on our playlist this month, and along with their other releases, leaves behind a great legacy of music.  We wish the band members well as they pursue a number of different projects.

http://bandcamp.com/EmbeddedPlayer/v=2/album=2087387736/size=venti/bgcol=FFFFFF/linkcol=4285BB/


New Friends:

We continue to meet new people, and tonight we are going to add three artists/bands/whatever to the Ear to the Ground musical family.  They came to us in different ways and play vastly different styles of music, but that is exactly how we like it. All three of these artists have appeared thus far in Shuffles, although not as often as we would like.  We have it in our heads to review all three of their newest released which made there way to us, but it’s time to present them formally, and we’ll keep working on those official reviews.  Unofficially, all three of these albums are worth buying and all three of these artists are worth getting to know….

Mark Robinson/Mark Robinson Band  


Although Nashville is better known for commercial Country Music and more recently for our indie-rock transplants like Jack White and The Black Keys, the city has a long history of outstanding blues men and women.  Many of the great players spent/spend their days backing some of  the mainstream Country music being produced in Music Row studios, and then gathered in dark, smoky bars to play the music that they really loved – The Blues.  By now, the Nashville Blues scene is pretty well established and is attracting great players from all over.  Mark Robinson moved to Nashville from Bloomington, Indiana a few years ago, and he just recently released his second solo record, Have Axe, Will Groove which features track after track of great sounding modern blues music.  The album features some local players and singers who are well-known enough for even this non-Blues affectionado to know.   


Marla Mase

As I mentioned, our three new featured artists this time, cover a pretty wide range of musical styles and influence.  New York artist Marla Mase covers a a lot of territory on her own, and in fact, really creates her own particular space on the musical spectrum.  Mase is a performance artist in the truest sense of that term, but rest assured, her album Speak – which was released in 2011 and just recently given the deluxe treatment is great music.  We’ve featured a couple of her songs in our Morning Shuffles, and the album is full of a number of challenging and great sounding music.  The Deluxe edition of her album includes a fantastic Dub mix of the title track by the legendary Bill Laswell.  Back in September Mase was invited to perform in China as part of UN Global Peace Day.  


Susan James 

California Singer-Songwriter Susan James reached out to us on Facebook.  She just recently released her latest album called Driving Toward the Sun which is a stunning gorgeous collection of folksy, rootsy music that has California written all over it.  Working with producer Ryan Ulyate who has worked with Tom Petty, Jeff Lynne and George Harrison, the album features ex-Lone Justice drummer Don Heffington and guitarist Neal Casal who has worked with Ryan Adams among others.  We’ve already featured a couple of songs in Shuffles and are really in love with this record.   


We are happy to feature these artists, and to add them to the bands and artists we follow.   In the last couple of weeks and in the weeks to come, more great music is making it’s way to our ears and we will continue to bring you as much of it as we can.  Look for new music from our old friends Killing Kuddles and Taco Land plus the highly anticipated new album from 2012 Band of the Year Skeletons in the Piano which is due out soon on Magnetic Eye records.  

In the meantime, please check out this special Playlist featuring all of the bands featured in this post….

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Ear to the Ground Presents: The Final Band of the Month Poll for 2012

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 We are experimenting with a new format for the Band of the Month poll.  Please rate each band on a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being your least favorite and 10 being your most favorite.  We will compile all of those results and either have a mish-mash of meaningless data or our final Band of the Month for this year….  UPDATE:  I changed the setting that made each a required item.  Now just vote for which ever artists you want. 

Voting ends at one minute to midnight on Friday November 30, 2012.  Any votes received after that time will not count.  As always, more important than who wins is that you, loyal Reader takes the opportunity to check out all of our Featured Artists for the Month.

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Ear to the Ground Presents: Featured Artists for November/December (19 and 20 of 20)


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 After a days delay – here are the final two Featured Artists for November/December 2012.  We will give you the whole list and post the Band of the Month voting information soon.

19.  Vulture Kult (Website, Facebook, Bandcamp) – “ROCK N’ ROLL FOR THE MODERN AGE”

City: Saskatoon

Members: Hans- vocals/guitar  Bradley-drums/vocals

Latest Release:










Video: 




20.  Walking for Pennies (Website, Facebook, Twitter) – “folk-americana/pop with bluegrass and motown influences”

City: New York, New York

Members:  Andy Jobe, Neeley Bridges

Latest Release:


 

 Video:

 

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Ear to the Ground Presents: Featured Artists for November/December (17 and 18 of 20)

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We are up to the penultimate Featured Artists post for 2012.  We have two more which we will post tomorrow, and then the Voting for our final Band of the Month of the year.  Stay tuned.

 
 17.  The Ugly Club (Website, Facebook, Twitter) – “Fearlessly honest and unwaveringly persistent…” 

Location:  NYC/NJ

Members:  Ryan Egan Taylor Mandel  Rick Sue-Poi  Ryan McNulty  Joey Stasio  & you.


Latest Release:

http://cdn.topspin.net/javascripts/topspin_core.js?aId=21359&timestamp=1352826235http://cdn.topspin.net/api/v2/store/individual_offer/154906

A Video:

18.  Velveteens (Website, Facebook, Twitter) – “We like velvet leopard print, girl bands, beach goths, and hip-hop beats”
 Location: Venus/Tri-State(NY, NJ, CT)

Members:  Anna Wolk: violin, synth, vocals  Catherine Wolk: cello, ukulele, vocals  Claire Lorenzo: guitar, ukulele, trumpet, vocals  Devon Fontaine: drums
Latest Release:

Ear to the Ground Presents: Featured Artists for November/December (15 and 16 of 20)

15. Thumpers (Website, Facebook, Twitter) – “CO-ED ALT. POP”

City: London

Members: M. Pepperell & John Hamson Jr.

Latest Release:  

Download Thumpers song, Sound of Screams at Stereogum. Eagerly awaiting the debut album.

Video: 




16.  Turbo Fruits (Website, Facebook, Twitter) – “a rock n roll band and one that could likely take your state rock & roll champion to the mat in less time than it takes to cue up a record.”

City:  Nashville

Members: Jonas Stein  Dave Tits  Matt Hearn  Kingsley Brock



Latest Release:


Butter


Video:



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Ear to the Ground Presents: Featured Artists for November/December (13 and 14 of 20)




13.  Rumi (ReverbNation, Facebook, Twitter) –  Music and Creation”

Location: Switzerland

Member:  Rumi

Latest Release:

http://www.reverbnation.com/widget_code/html_widget/artist_383932?widget_id=50&posted_by=fan_1758528&pwc%5Bdesign%5D=default&pwc%5Bbackground_color%5D=%23333333&pwc%5Bincluded_songs%5D=1&pwc%5Bphoto%5D=1%2C0&pwc%5Bsize%5D=fit

Video:




14. Sugar and the Hi-Lows (Website, Facebook, TwitterNew Music, Old Sound”

City: Nashville

Members:  Amy Stroup and Trent Dabbs

Latest Release:



Video:






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Ear to the Ground Presents: Featured Artists for November/December (11 and 12 of 20)

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11. The Peculiar Pretzelmen (Website, Facebook, Twitter) “Too Noisy Too weird Two Man Voodoo Mayhem Band”

City:  Los Angeles

Members:  Incroyable, Deacon

 Latest Release (I think): 



A video: 




12.  Shelly Colvin (Website, Facebook, Twitter) – Mixing a relaxed, seventies country rock vibe with sweeping, breathy vocals that fall somewhere between Emmylou Harris, Linda Ronstadt and Hope Sandoval (Mazzy Star)”

City: Nashville

Member: Shelly Colvin

Latest Release:


 

A Video:

Shelly with Thad Cockrell

  

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