Thursday, July 31, 2014

[Thursday Track Back] "Baby, Now That I've Found You" by Alison Krauss

This song is bit of an oldie, on two levels: Alison Krauss covered The Foundations' 1967 debut single... but back in 1995.

Why you should listen: A cover's highest achievement is to make the lister appreciate a familiar song in a whole new way. This version, which is slower, quieter, and more tender than the brassy original, does exactly that. Whereas the Foundations exerted a certain confidence, Krauss' spin communicates an almost weariness of the realization that "I need you so, baby even though you don't need me."

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Music App: White Tiles 4

A few weeks ago a co-worker introduced me to a maddening little iOS app called White Tiles 4. The game, which is free, is comprised of 23 variations on the concept of not touching the white tiles (think white and black piano keys).

So for example, in the classic mode, you have to play 50 black tiles as fast as you can without missing any or hitting the white tiles. In the process, it plays a little piano tune. The arcade mode gives you a scroll of tiles that speeds up until you inevitably hit a white tile, swear, and throw your phone on the couch cushion beside you. Theoretically.

If you're into simple, nerve-wracking games and dig the instant satisfaction of playing "Für Elise" without actually knowing how to play the piano, then White Tiles 4 is a good bet.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

[Thursday Track Back] "Long Distance Love" by Sabina

To be honest, when I first heard "Long Distance Love," I thought the singer was a dude with a high-pitched voice. I was wrong. It was Italian-born electronica artist Sabina.

Why you should listen: Sabina doesn't really commit to singing or talking on this track. She's got a languid delivery that I initially hated, but as is the case for me, not infrequently, it grew on me. "Long Distance Love" has a particular flavor of quirk (read: retro Euro-artsy whatever) that should land it on the soundtrack of whatever Zach Braff is working on these days. There are also French lyrics because OF course there are. Bonus round: Check out "Toujours" off the album of the same name.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

[Thursday Track Back] "Move" by House Ghost

Since moving to Louisville, Ky, I've found more than a few things to love. One of them happens to be the song "Move" by local band House Ghost.

Why you should listen: If you're like me and appreciate general smart ass-ery, you'll dig this song whose chorus says: "I really like you, no the girl behind you. So please move." The down shift right before makes you think some kind of indie rock sap is about to gunk up your gears. In fact, you'd be as surprised as the first girl in the song to find out that's not at all the case.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Q&A with Emmy Wildwood

Photo: Shervin Lainez

Emmy Wildwood is having a busy summer. The Brooklyn-based artist released her new EP Mean Love at the end of June, and what's more, she did it on Tiger Blanket Records, a label (and boutique– more on that later) that she owns and operates. 

If you're into synthy slink and Cyndi Lauper, you'll probably dig Wildwood. She chatted via email with The Musically Inclined about the EP, building a community, and what exactly she means by "ghost pop."

How'd you get into music?

My father was a musician and he taught me my first three guitar chords when I asked to learn at 10 years old. I wrote my first song with those three chords.

Tell me about the EP.

The EP was a series of songs I had written over the last few years, through a decade-long relationship's break-up. I knew I wanted to make an EP of the most significant songs, so I called upon my friends Zach Jones and Greg Mayo to help me realize that dream.

"Mean Love" is definitely a standout, how did the song come together?

"Mean Love" was a term I came up with that is a play on words. It references those relationships where couples fight passionately and love passionately, to the point of dysfunction at times. I think everyone knows something about that. I came up with the term and knew it needed to be a song.

A lot of artists have their hands full just focusing on their careers, but you've also got your own label. Why start Tiger Blanket Records? 

I started the label to bring a community together. That's still the purpose of the label. You do well as a musician, brand, and company when you do "good" within your community. Those are the building blocks and core values of this company. We hope in shopping the boutique, folks will find out about the bands on label and vice versa. Also dressing up is a huge part of performing. I wanted to create a place where bands and fans alike could come to play dress up.

I'm always interested in the descriptors musicians chose– tell me about "ghost pop."

Ghost pop is something my boyfriend came up with. It's a term for pop that feels eerie, creepy or even sad– pop that has darkness to it. I said it one time in an interview with New Now Next and it stuck. :)

Photo: Shervin Lainez

I read you're based in NYC. What's something you wish you'd known before moving there?

That it was going to be really tough. It never gets easy! Ever. It takes time, energy, and persistence. Everyday. Never giving up. Always thinking about your next move. But there's nothing to prepare you for it. If you love what you do, it's natural to keep fighting for the things you want.

What's next for you?

Tiger Blanket Records will be releasing its first piece of clothing specific to the brand! I'm really excited about that. Also thrilled to announce my new project PAGEANT at the end of the summer. More details on this 60's girl group meets garage rock outfit to come!