What I Heard This Morning/Week: Gypsyblood, Making Friendz, Coca-Cola 3

I blame life, because I always do when I fall so far behind. In fact, I’ll just apologize now for the future of Letters From A Tapehead, as work, family and overall exhaustion will always factor considerably with the frequency of updates and reviews. Just know that I have a lot to get through and that I’m working on it—slowly, but surely.

In the meantime, this is the good/interesting shit I caught onto this week:

Gypsyblood“My R.K.O. Is M.I.A.” (via Consequence Of Sound)

There is a very distinct Jesus And Mary Chain/Magnetic Fields haze that drapes the otherwise pop-driven output of Gypsyblood, their new album Cold in the Guestway having just released today (4.12). Some might say that Yuck is also capitalizing on 90s revivalism and attempting to evolve lo-fi, (sort of retrofitted Guided By Voices and Dinosaur Jr., with maybe even some Sonic Youth for dissonance sake), but I would focus on “progression.” If indie rock and the less accessible side of pop music is going to cling to melodic distortion, it’s good that songs like this are coming about.

All information on Cold In The Guestway is courtesy of the ever-awesome and accommodating Terrorbird Media:

Gypsyblood Debut Album Cold In The Guestway Out April 12 On Sargent House

Full Album Streams Available Now

Tour Dates With Maps & Atlases Announced

Stream: Cold In The Guestway via AOL Spinner & Absolute Punk

Download “In Our Blood” via Epitonic

Download “My R.K.O. Is M.I.A.” via Consequence Of Sound

The Chicago Reader recently sat down with Adam and Kyle from Gypsyblood to discuss their “accidental retro” sound. Read the fantastic interview here.

Gypsyblood formed in 2009 when longtime friends and former bandmates Adam James and vocalist/drummer/bassist Kyle Victor healed the somewhat fresh wounds of their previous band's breakup (initiated by Victor storming off stage after the last song and hitchhiking home.) The pair later made up and James invited Victor to hear demos of new songs he was working on. Gypsyblood was born shortly thereafter and the pair quickly wrote an impressive amount of songs together within two months.

In the end the pair recorded around 30 tracks working on their own in the dead of Chicago winter in an old building designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. The songs were captured on equipment normally used for film audio recording. Faint sounds of the band's bustling neighborhood outside can be heard at times throughout. There's a distinctly haunted, living presence to both the recording and the songwriting of Cold In the Guestway that cannot be replicated in a sterile studio environment.

Many musicians and other lucky few who have heard Gypsyblood have succinctly remarked, "my new favorite band." 
Dave Davison of Maps & Atlases and the solo project Cast Spells, who brought the band to the attention of Sargent House, remembers the first time he heard Gypsyblood. “One evening I was walking to get dinner when I was called into a parked car containing Chris Alvarez, Kyle Victor and Adam James. They were listening to the first mixes of the Gypsyblood album
Cold In The Guestway and upon hearing the songs, I immediately wanted a copy for myself. When I finally got sent a copy a week later I was hooked! I first met Kyle and Adam while they were playing in the band Karma With a K. Gypsyblood offers a more refined, but equally raw version of the music that I've come to enjoy from Adam and Kyle and their live performance is every bit as entertaining and even sometimes scary as it ever was. Whether in a small gallery or outdoor festival stage, the way that Adam is able to utilize and incorporate space into his performance is part of what makes him truly fantastic frontman.”

Gypsyblood's songs tend to start dissent among listeners trying to describe exactly of what their songs are reminiscent. Some common references include a strange amalgam of Pavement's early hazy-pop singles, The Jesus and The Mary Chain and early Guided By Voices. Put simply, it's a noisy, soft-focus approach to classic pop.

"Everything revolves around that feeling of restless old souls, a timeless aspect to the music," explains vocalist/guitarist Adam James. "We've all been on this planet -- whether we were in a past life, or whatever. We've all been singing these same notes for decades and now it's finally getting out to people's ears. It's something that comes from deep down within. It's unique to anyone who understands it."


04.15 – Buffalo, NY @ The Ninth Ward *

04.17 – Hamden, CT @ The Space *

04.19 – New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom *
04.20 – Philadelphia, PA @ First Unitarian Church of Philadelphia*
04.21 – Washington, DC @ Rock N Roll Hotel *

04.22 – Harrisonburg, VA @ Clementine Café *
04.29 – Chicago, IL @ Liars Club (CD RELEASE SHOW)

* with Maps & Atlases

Sargent House



Making Friendz - "Situation" (via Brooklyn Vegan)

Making Friendz is bratty as fuck.  Some may not be so readily accepting of the bouncy, pep rally snot delivered by singer Tami Hart like she's the unwanted teenage lovechild of Leather Tuscadero and Toni Basil, but it's tough not to appreciate.  At least, it's fun.

All information below is also courtesy of Terrorbird Media, and there's a lot of it.

Making Friendz, aka MEN's Tami Hart, Announces Social Life Full Length Out June 21st on Last Bummer Records

Brooklyn Vegan Premieres Upbeat, Anthemic Single "Situation"

DOWNLOAD: "Situation" mp3 (via Brooklyn Vegan)

“Brooklyn's Making Friendz is, frankly, awesome.” – LA Weekly

Nearly ten years after her two solo records, New York Times “Artist to Watch” Tami Hart is back with the debut album from the latest of her many projects, Making Friendz.
Social Life, her much anticipated return, is a sweet, sweaty mixture of lo-fi punk and glossy pop, R&B and disco, rooted in a spirit of collaboration with fellow artists and friends. But make no mistake, Making Friendz is Tami Hart. Brooklyn Vegan premiered the lead single, the dirty yet dancy and super upbeat jam "Situation."

Hart, formerly signed to Mr. Lady Records, recorded two full-length albums by the time she was 21. By 22, Hart consciously moved away from the “folkie” image her critics had constructed and began her foray into noisepunk. She played guitar and sang in Gangway (bandmates included members who would ultimately become No Age) and played with Coachwhips, Abe Vigoda, K.I.T., eventually touring with Mika Miko. In 2005, Hart moved to New York City and started a two-piece garage band, Winning Looks, for which Kathleen Hanna (Bikini Kill) recorded and pressed a limited 7”. Most recently, Hart has been playing bass for JD Samson’s latest band, MEN.

But by the time the Winning Looks 7” was released, Hart had already begun writing songs and finding collaborators to work with on Making Friendz. Inspired by listening to tracks by the likes of Timbaland, Justin Timberlake, and Missy Elliott, Hart began experimenting with dance music, while still keeping her innate punk point of view. After recording demos of what would eventually become
Social Life, Making Friendz signed with Brooklyn record label Last Bummer Records, and will be releasing the album June 21st, 2011.

Click Here for JD Samson Video!

Click Here for SIA Video!


Making Friendz -
Social Life
Out June 21st on CD, LP, Digital via Last Bummer Records

Making Friendz Press Page
Making Friendz Facebook
Last Bummer Records Official Site
Terrorbird Official Site


Coca-Cola 3 - "Go Around"

Prepare for confusion.

I received an email a couple days ago from Tobias Lund of Flacon Recordings which, as best as I can tell, is a cassette devoted label.  Lund directed me to Coca-Cola 3, who have two cassette releases out on the Flacon label called Seal and Moby, (which is pretty fucking cool).  The music?  Not sure this would qualify as "music." Experimental?  Absolutely.  Noise?  Even better.  The band's opposition to melody borders on fascinating and CC3's lack of accessibility is only enhanced by their album art, which seems influenced by Nagel, Swatch Watch patterns and 80s florescent cheese.

They have a song called "Go Around" that might suffice in conveying what this group, (if it's even a group), is all about.

You can download the full Seal and Moby records at the label along with other release.

Letters From A Tapehead


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