Artist Debuts

Smashing Satellites

Smashing Satellites are a Canadian electro-rock project featuring the former lead guitarist and vocalist Salvatore Costa of rock band My Darkest Days. They’ve recently introduced their debut single “Hounds,” the opening track of their first EP release, A-Side (SonicAluzion). Founded by Costa, who has been described as having one of the most powerful and unique vocal timbres in music, “Hounds” combines ‘80s style funky drums, synths and pure fun.

Barry Rothbart

Screen Shot 2014-11-23 at 8.02.54 PMBicoastal comedian Barry Rothbart is capping off a busy couple of years with his debut album, Streets of Fire. After being named one of Variety’s “10 Comics to Watch in 2013,” he also appeared alongside Leonardo DiCaprio in Martin Scorsese’s Wolf of Wall Street later that year. Rothbart made his late night television debut on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, followed by appearances on Conan, The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson and Adam Devine’s House Party. On his release from ASpecialThing Records, Rothbart smoothly delivers the funny as he ponders the weird confidence of little kids, points out that all advice sounds exactly the same, wishes Liam Neeson was his dad and recounts his adventures in making a fool of himself at the Burger King drive-thru. His loose, improvisational crowd work is a rarity on any comedy album and establishes him as a unique new voice in the genre. Be sure to keep your ears open for the delightfully bizarre bonus track.

Blood Stain Child

Screen Shot 2014-11-23 at 8.05.46 PMImagine some prismatic, sci-fi future world filled with Japanese schoolgirls astride rainbow space dragons soaring above laser-cycles racing through neon lit space cities. Or vast alien star fields full of hover-ships, jetting between planets while multiple limbed robots battle strange tentacled space creatures. Now imagine the soundtrack to such a fantastical future, and you’d probably end up with something like Blood Stain Child. A long running Japanese outfit whose sound has evolved into what they describe as “Trance-metal,” which is essentially a dizzyingly psychedelic strain of over-the-top cyber-electro-metal J-Pop. It’s most definitely metal, but the metallic moments are often outweighed by swirling synths, vocoder-effected vocals, house-y Euro-trance grooves and ultra-emo electronic J-Poppy fluff. It’s a sound that should definitely appeal to the legions of fans currently flipping their lids over current J-pop metal sensations Babymetal! This definitely traffics in some of the same sounds, but Blood Stain Child’s Epsilon is more sweeping and grandiose, more epic and majestic and way more poppy. Their sound is an impossible (and impossibly fun) hybrid of anime power metal, Final Fantasy styled epicry and gloriously (unabashedly cheesy) Japanese pop. Songs veer wildly, exuding downtuned death metal riffery to glimmering, wide-eyed electro-pop and furiously pounding blasts to cotton candy concoctions of programmed beats and soaring heartfelt vox. One Pandora staffer commented after listening: “I feel like I just destroyed an asteroid in my flying robot,” which pretty much says it all!

New Music

The New Basement Tapes – Lost On The River: The New Basement Tapes

Screen Shot 2014-11-23 at 8.09.59 PMThe New Basement Tapes is a collection of musicians formed by music producer T-Bone Burnett that include Elvis Costello, Marcus Mumford (Mumford & Sons), Jim James (My Morning Jacket), Rhiannon Giddens (Carolina Chocolate Drops) and Taylor Goldsmith (Dawes). Burnett booked a studio for two weeks and invited the new band to transform a collection of taped lyrics written (and forgotten) by Bob Dylan during his Basement Tapes period in the late 1960s. Set to this new collaborative music, Dylan’s old etchings swirl into the newly released album, Lost On The River: The New Basement Tapes. Listen for a special appearance from Johnny Depp, who played guitar on the track “Kansas City.”

Hunter Siegel – New School Renegade / Time To Blackout

Screen Shot 2014-11-23 at 8.13.06 PMHouse music icon Todd Terry has done it all. He’s released #1 tracks, is a Grammy-nominated artist and has remixed everyone from The Rolling Stones to Bjork. Here, Terry pairs with up-and-coming Canadian producer Hunter Siegel for “Time to Blackout.” It’s a deeply funky affair with a Prodigy-inspired breakbeat-driven breakdown and a dotted-eighth note bassline that echoes “Gecko” by Oliver Heldens. “Time To Blackout” is a unique blend of old and new for your dancing shoes.

Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways

The 20-year-old rock titans have turned out one of their most experimental and ambitious recordings to date with the release of their eighth studio album, Sonic Highway. Accompanied by an HBO documentary, it features eight tracks – each recorded in a different U.S. city to celebrate the region’s musical heritage. Dave Grohl and company receive assistance from artists like Zac Brown on the Nashville recorded “Congregation” and the Preservation Hall Jazz Band on the New Orleans recorded “In The Clear.”

Genre Station

Midwest Hip Hop

East Coast, West Coast and the South are most synonymous with Hip Hop but the Midwest has developed into a hotbed that rivals the popularity. We’ll take you back to the beginnings in the early ‘90s to superstars of today. With hip-hop roots concentrated in Chicago, Detroit, Cleveland, St. Louis, Minneapolis, Kansas City and even Omaha; you ‘ll hear rappers and MCs like Kanye West, Common, Machine Gun Kelly, Tech N9ne and Atmosphere.

Musicologist

I dig all things ‘60s: garage punk, obscure psych, Stax and Motown soul stompers. My first CD purchases were REM’s Out of Time and Boyz II Men’s Cooleyhighharmony. I still own both! I’m pretty much immersed in music – hitting up local record shops, catching live shows at crusty dives, and DJing around town at various venues and bars.

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