What I Purchased on Bandcamp Day (July 3rd)

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Yesterday, July 3rd, was “Bandcamp Friday” whereby all fees related to Bandcamp’s cut of purchases are waived so that the artists get their full share.

While I have participated in all of these “Bandcamp Fridays” thus far, and have bought plenty of music during those events each time, for whatever reason I decided to take the time this go around to do a little write up on each of my personal purchases as well as gifts that I not only gave but received too.

As an aside, I’m also using this as a bit of a feeler going forward in terms of changing up my writing format in order to make it a bit more streamlined and easier to manage. Truth be told, I just don’t really have it in me as much to do full-blown articles and reviews so something like you’ll read below might become more commonplace. Maybe. Either way, check out all of these artists: Continue reading

What A Concept!

You know what I like? I like concept albums. I like when an album is truly a sum of its parts, without one track outshining any other as merely a “single” that is meant to sell you on the rest. I mean, okay, there are exceptions to the rule; I’ll fully admit that I originally bought Aqua’s “Aquarium” because of “Barbie Girl” and Savage Garden’s self-titled debut for “I Want You” (after seeing them perform it during Nickelodeon’s Kid Choice Awards), but I eventually discovered that those albums were straight up bangers with every single track (to me). No, really!

Regardless, albums without a cohesive story or theme tend to be like a salad bar; you take what you want and leave the rest. Which is perfectly fine, as I really do enjoy plenty of albums like that, but to me there’s truly something to be said for an album which is an all around “experience” from beginning to end. Especially in these days of streaming music where it does seem like, for the most part, “whole” albums take a bit of a backseat to being merely a collection of random songs or just releasing singles instead. Some like croutons, some don’t, y’know? Continue reading

A Tale of Two Neocities

twoneocitiesI was born in the mid-1980’s, and therefore I spent most of my early years in the 1990’s, so there’s always been this weird sense of belonging to the “proto-millennials” as I can still vividly remember a time before the internet and when computer technology became ever so commonplace. As some examples, I went from using a standalone Apple II in elementary school to using an internet-ready iMac by high school. I used payphones to call collect and was then amazed when I first saw a portable phone. I experienced the last glory days of arcades, and their downfall, as 2D graphics on home consoles using cartridges gave way to 3D powerhouses which harnessed the potential of CD based media. There was truly a sense of living in a time of great progress and promise back then, when sweeping changes in technology brought with it such an optimistic outlook for the future ahead.

Twirl,” by Alpha Chrome Yayo, is an album which not only encapsulates those feelings but gives off an aura not unlike one might imagine from a genie in a lamp; potent magic which was somehow bottled has now been unleashed. While Alpha Chrome Yayo wrote some wonderful linear notes about the album, and what all it meant to him, I nonetheless felt compelled to write some of my own… Continue reading

“Grangeweird” by Alpha Chrome Yayo and Danny Madigan

a4206924274_10“Grangeweird” is like ducking into a pub to get out of the rain, warming yourself up next to a fire with drink in hand, only to end up being enthralled by two bards within telling tall tales of local legends and suburban superstitions.

While Alpha Chrome Yayo and Danny Madigan are both amazing artists on their own, there’s just something truly magical about their musical chemistry which happens whenever they brew up a tune together. And what an eldritch concoction of hygge this one is indeed!

“Malediction Boulevard EP” by Alpha Chrome Yayo

a4169269915_16If the prior releases by Alpha Chrome Yayo were mostly meant to conjure up images of brightly lit neon-soaked streets and general feel-good nostalgic moments, than their “Malediction Boulevard EP” is the aptly titled stroll down a dark path on the wrong side of the tracks. Here there be monsters, yes, but don’t fret; with a mighty ax in tow, you can defeat any foe. Luckily, and despite the darker tone, ACY nonetheless continues their trend with gnarly guitar work alongside some spectacularly spooky synths.