Tag Archives: rock

The Format – Dog Problems [VIDEO]

Narrative: A forlorn hand gets his heart broken and searches for love.

Performance: None.  Well, the hand sings.  And plays trumpet.

Song: The title track of The Format’s second and last album, “Dog Problems,” is a masterpiece of orchestral indie pop that could just as easily be part of a musical as it could the soundtrack to a Zach Braff film.

Why You Should Watch It: It’s simple, cute, and smartly done on what was probably a non-existent budget.  It doesn’t look great, but it doesn’t have to.  It nails a homemade look that Spike Jonze or early Gondry would be proud of.  The visual gags come in rapid succession, some commenting on the song, others illustrating it

They followed up this by dressing their hands and knocking out a sock puppet video:

The band called it quits soon after “Dog Problems” was released in 2008, but fans of the sprawling sound can find plenty to love in singer/songwriter Nate Ruess’ follow-up project fun. (who just released a new single on their Facebook).

Chris Cullari | Beat-Play Ambassador Los Angeles |@Chris_Cullari | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC |

Advertisements

Graffiti6 Live at House of Blues in San Diego, CA [PHOTOS]

Graffiti6 Live at House of Blues in San Diego, CA

Graffiti6– “Annie You Save Me (Dr. Rosen Rosen Remix)” Available for free download through graffiti6.com

Click the pic for more Graffiti6 concert shots!

Check Graffiti6 out!!!

Photography By: Shane Suski |Ambassador of Photography | San Diego, CA| @shanewithmwl | Beat-Play and Music Without Labels, LLC

Strive Roots Opens for War – Downtown San Diego

This Friday, Sept, 23rd, the incredibly talented band Strive Roots is opening up for classic funk band War. If you’ve never heard of Strive Roots, let this video recorded by MusicWithoutLabels at last year’s THC Music Fest, give you your first taste. Eli (lead guitar) does something with the guitar I’ve never seen ANYONE ever do. I still can’t figure out how he does it. Check it out:

With tunes like that, and one of my favorites, Communicate:along with a whole slur of new material, this show is going to be ridiculous! If you’re in Southern Cali, and you like to dance and jam the f*k out, you’re definitely going to want to catch this. Tickets are on sale here, or you can email Eli directly at eli@striveroots.com, and maybe he’ll hook you up!

Strive Roots also plays tonight at the Roxy Theatre in Hollywood at 11:30 pm. If you don’t happen to be in town, you can check out all that Strive Roots has to offer at striveroots.com or on Facebook. This band is seriously going to blow up soon, unquestioned. Don’t miss em!

Written by: Dante Cullari

Frogs Gone Fishin’ Live at The Gothic Theater, Englewood, CO [Photos] [Video] [Free Download]

Frogs Gone Fishin’ Live at The Gothic Theater, Englewood, CO

Jimmy Iles Beat-Play Frogs Gone Fishin'

Click The Pic for More Concert Shots!!!!

Check Out Frogs Gone Fishin’!!!!

Photography By: Jimmy Iles | Director of Artist Relations | @JimmyMWL | Beat-Play & Music Without Labels, LLC

These Electric Lives – “We Called It Off” [VIDEO]

These Electric Lives

 

Described as making music that bridges the gap between electro-pop/new wave and supercharged indie-rock, These Electric Lives play their own brand of “melodic dance rock”. TEL’s exciting and energetic live show consistently delivers uplifting and danceable anthems fueled by an intensity of honest emotion and the powerful soaring voice of lead singer Mark Stanfield.

 

These Electric Lives

The Toronto, Canada based quartet began working with Juno-nominated producer João Carvalho (João Carvalho Mastering) releasing their critically acclaimed, self-titled debut EP in 2007. The underground hit “We Should Be Believing” charted regularly on college and internet radio stations around the globe. These Electric Lives’ infectious and catchy songs have become increasingly popular with DJ’s and producers in Canada, the US, and Europe, prompting the release of a TEL remix album in 2008.

In September 2010, TEL released a new EP entitled “We See Light…” and are currently back in the studio working on new material, including a dance track collaboration with New Zealand producer Yuhei Kubo, to be released on Bonerizing Records (Sweden) this spring. Fresh off their Indie Week Canada win, These Electric Lives are also gearing up for their first international tour in May which will include dates in Dublin and Belfast, headlining Indie Week Ireland and showcasing at Liverpool Sound City.

 

By: Elizabeth Stene | Beat-Play Ambassador South Africa | @LizMWL | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC

 

Ape Tit Live at Cervantes’ Other Side, Denver, CO [Photos]

Ape Tit Live at Cervantes’ Other Side, Denver, CO

Jimmy Iles Beat-Play Ape Tit

Click The Pic for More Concert Shots!!!!

Check Out Ape Tit!!!!

Ape Tit is currently in the studio working on getting their fans some kick ass music to groove too. I myself have seen the guys live twice and I can’t wait to get my hands on some of their deep grooves and phat beats! For now here is a little taste of what you can expect from Ape Tit!

The Audio and Visual Quality is not the best but I promise you when they get their first quality track laid down, I will be posting it without a doubt for you all to check out!!!

Photography By: Jimmy Iles | Director of Artist Relations | @JimmyMWL | Beat-Play & Music Without Labels, LLC

Lovedrug – “Dinosaur” [VIDEO]

Narrative: A group of trouble making girls are followed through the woods by a monster.

Performance: None.

Song: One of two singles released this year by the indie stalwarts (Together since ’01.  Stalwarts, right?), it blends singer Michael Shepard’s distinctive delivery and evocative lyrics with a danceable, clap-along rhythm.

Why You Should Watch It:  What I love most is the video’s clever play on the low-budget trope of animal costumes.  The whole thing plays jusssst this side of fantasy and we can believe that the Yeti that appears is meant to be “real” in the world of the piece.  The twist at the end reveals that it is not, just a Jesse Eisenberg look alike who wanted to be part of the action.  Singer Shepard was originally a film student, and his eye for visual storytelling is on display from beginning to end.  Attention was clearly paid to composition and light – especially evidenced by the gorgeous shot of the girls running and shooting off fireworks at 2:58.  Now if only they’d dealt with THAT low-budget cliche, Lovedrug might’ve had a minor low classic here.

Chris Cullari | Beat-Play Ambassador Los Angeles |@Chris_Cullari | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC |

New Faces Nite at The Basement in Nashville, TN with Emily Davis, Jeffrey James, Stephanie Nilles and more! [SHOW/NEW MUSIC]

I’ve been going to a lot of shows recently.  I’ve been to five venues in the last four days; one festival and four concerts.  Am I tired?  No.  Am I sick of music?  No.  Am I nuts?  Well, that has yet to be proved or disproved, so we’ll leave that question out of the mix for now.  What you should know is that on most Tuesday nights, The Basement in Nashville has New Faces Nite, a free show with great bands.   In case you missed it, that’s a FREE show with GREAT bands.

This week was another example of a stellar New Faces Nite at The Basement.  First up was Emily Davis, an acoustic folk rock artist from El Paso, TX.  With the tough job of opening the night, Emily used her strong vocals and “darkly optimistic” lyrics to warm up the crowd.  Second of the night was a new local rock artist named Jeffrey James.  Jeffrey and his backing band called The Professional Children took the stage and released a blend of blues and soulful rock from his latest EP called Goin’ Back Down.  The album was produced by Nashville veteran Lex Lipstiz, who said, “Jeffrey James has one of those classic soul voices.  With his bigger than life stage presence and commanding vocal delivery, he definitely sells you on every word… I think it’s only a matter of time before he’s a huge star.”  Well, I think that’s about one of the biggest compliments you can get from a producer, so if you like rock with a little country, blues, and soul thrown in the mix, check out Jeffrey James.  These artists had good music and played well, but I would like to highlight the crowd favorite of the night.

Photo by Kellie Coughlin.

Stephanie Nilles is not your typical jazz-infused punk folk artist.  If you want to listen to something fresh, but are tired of all the Ingrid Michaelson, Grizzly Bear, and Feist indie band imitations, her music is sure to wake you up.  New Faces Nite at The Basement was my first time hearing Stephanie Nilles, and it’s been awhile since I’ve heard an artist be so creatively bold with their music on stage.  She has taken her training as a classical pianist and developed an amazing jazz and blues style filled with her own unique embellishments for each song.  Rolling Stone has even said, “she’s like ‘Ella Fitzgerald on speed beating the shit out of Regina Spektor.’  Whoa!  There’s a review that won’t go in one ear and out the other.  Even if you have your own personal preferred style of music, I think that her music is powerful enough that you can appreciate it at the least, especially if you’re a musician.  Check out the song “For a High Life Commercial” by Stephanie Nilles.

Photo by Leonard Lopp.

She’s different, but brilliant in a twisted sense that maybe she writes from thoughts that you have had, but didn’t exactly want to communicate because of what people would think about you.  I think this is a huge part of Stephanie’s music.  She also has the musical talent to back up anything she sings in that dirty Regina Spektor tone of hers.  These also aren’t your typically structured songs either, with syllables that land when they want and fully diminished seventh chords that appear in thoughtlessly considered, appropriate places.  Stephanie communicates what she wants when she wants to, and it’s thoroughly entertaining every time.  Check out another one of her songs called “Cool Aid Stand.”

If you’ve been having as much fun listening to Stephanie Nilles as I have, check out more of her music at www.stephanienilles.com.  The other bands that played that night (that I didn’t get to see) were Boom Forest, I Believe in Hotpants, and Haley Dreis.  I’ll be on the look out to cover some of these artists at a later date.  Until then, keep supporting independent music!

By Steve Harpine | Nashville Ambassador | @Steve_MWL | Beat-Play & Music Without Labels, LLC

Transit – “Long Lost Friends” [VIDEO]

Narrative: None.

Performance: In front of friends at a recording studio.

Song: The reason I’m posting this.  “Long Lost Friends” is the single from their upcoming album Listen and Forgive, a release that just might be the next big thing.

Why You Should Watch It: There are days I wish I was back on the East Coast, basking my bones in the chill of fall and spending most of my time wandering around clubs and basements in search of my next music fix, and there are days where I have to stop myself from packing up and moving.  The day I first heard this track was one of the latter.  Hailing from Boston, Transit has been peddling their hardcore influenced grown-up pop-punk for a few years now and I’ve been a casual fan ever since I heard the bar-burner “Please Head North” on their split with Man Overboard in 2009.

Still, through two more LPs and a two track EP, they never telegraphed this kind of maturation in sound.  Where they once favored pure fire and grit, they ‘ve focused and tightened their emotion and energy into mathy guitars and round, thick production.  It’s so crisp, so clean, so…American Football.  With hooks.  And catchy melodies.  Like The Early November meets American Football.  You don’t know American Footabll?  Come, child:

I dare you to get that riff out of your head.  Just kidding, you can’t.  You can only listen to every other track they’ve ever released and wish they’d recorded more.  They released one EP and one LP, both self-titled and both worthy of their own individual posts.

Oh, back on topic, Transit covered that song!

Also, because they’ve got giant balls, they covered “Born In the USA”.

Did The Boss’ sense of melody and scale take hold of their young minds?  Did they get locked in a room with “Never Meant” and the Goo Goo Dolls’ discography on repeat?  We may never know the truth, but the album drops Oct. 4th and features a guest appearance from Patrick Stump of Fall Out Boy.  If it packs the same punch as the single from end to end, I think I’ll have my soundtrack to fall 2011, and a whole lotta kids are gonna have a new favorite record.

Chris Cullari | Beat-Play Ambassador Los Angeles |@Chris_Cullari | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC |

Guster’s Caught Up in The Game’s latest “Pot Of Gold” [MUSIC]

gusterAll hip-hop beats come from great samples that are guaranteed to instantly stick into the heads of millions of listeners. That’s exactly what New York independent rock group Guster provided in their 1997 hit single “Rocketship”. It was one unforgettable guitar riff that caught the attention of star hip-hop artist The Game to be used on a track featuring Chris Brown off his latest album release The  R.E.D. Album. Now they obviously didn’t create the new Game song but they were a contributor of it so they will be receiving royalties from all sales. But they are giving to charity… which is lovely.

This is why we love our independent community! They know how and when to do the right thing. The band will be donating a portion of the money they earn from The Game’s track “Pot Of Gold” to the Crittenton Women’s Union. The band actually made a few comments regarding the new use of their creation in this written interview. When asked specifically about this track they responded:

I think we feel some flattery and some confusion.  The Game’s album just came out a week ago and the video for “Pot of Gold” already has over six million views.  Do we feel exploited? Well, we’ve been in this business a long time and it’s not our first time watching “Rocketship” get plucked from us for the glory of others.

With an incredible debut chart ranking of #1 on the Billboard 200, Guster will have a great shot at some high-level exposure, hitting the ears of youtube viewers 6.64 million times. Unfortunately the band feels differently on this matter, as drummer Brian Rosenworcel stated,

Mostly we’re flattered to have been sampled in a hit song. I don’t think it’ll send droves of people out to discover our ‘Goldfly’ album…

You’ll notice, that there is no version of this Guster song to be heard within this post, and I’m hear to tell you that you won’t find one either. That’s pretty sad, considering they have another version of their song out for everyone to enjoy without ever knowing where it came from. I mentioned something to the individual who was running their campaign, so if something comes up on Youtube like suggested, you all will be the first to hear it!

Written By: Mark Gregory Valente | @MarkwithMWL | Music Without Labels & Beat-Play, LLC