Tag: Slumberland Records

Earlier this month, I wrote about Corey Cunningham and although he’s best known for being a member of critically acclaimed bands like Magic Bullets and Terry Malts, as well as Smokescreens and Mike Krol’s backing band, his latest musical project, Business of Dreams can trace its origins to when Cunningham took leave from his long-running musical partnerships when his father died. Returning back home to Tennessee to grieve and to confront his past, Cunningham wrote music that would eventually comprise Business of Dreams’ critically applauded, eponymous, full-length debut back in 2017.

Building upon a growing profile, Cunningham along with a live backing band opened for Rogue Wave, and played a number of local shows with the likes of Frankie Rose, Real Estate and others. But for the sake of this post, you really need to know this: Business of Dreams’ sophomore effort, Ripe For Anarchy is slated for a February 1, 2019 release through Slumberland Records, and the album finds Cunningham honing his songwriting both sonically and thematically, with the material touching upon regret, existence and perseverance.”The album is about living in the moment, shedding neurosis, and the desire to discard the general societal malaise we’ve been roped into,” Cunningham says in press notes.

Ripe For Anarchy‘s first single was a shimmering guitar pop track “Keep The Blues Away.” Centered around ethereal and plaintive vocals, shimmering and arpeggiated synths, staccato drum machine-like drumming, shimmering guitar lines fed through delay and effect pedals and a soaring hook, the single sounds as though it could have been released during 4AD Records heyday — and while indebted to the sounds of the past, the track is bolstered by an urgent sincerity that comes from lived-in experience. “N.R.E.A.M.,” Ripe for Anarchy‘s second and latest single is a jangling guitar pop track that sounds inspired by New Zealand guitar pop, complete with an infectious hook, arpeggiated keys, a sinuous bass line and an underlying mischievous (and somewhat cynical) air. “This song was my attempt to write something fun for the album. Of course it had to be the one song focusing on negativity but I think a dose of cynicism is quite healthy these days,” Corey Cunningham explains in press notes. “Humanity isn’t exactly passing its classes lately so I decided to poke a little fun at the more coarse side of our nature. It’s my version of “Ring-a-round The Rosies.” Ashes, ashes we all fall down! Wee!”

Business of Dreams are currently on a late January tour, and the tour includes a January 25, 2019 stop at Alphaville. Check out the rest of the tour dates below.

 

Tour Dates:
Jan 25 Brooklyn, NY – Alphaville *
Jan 26 Philadelphia, PA – Super Wimpy HQ *
Jan 27 Baltimore, MD – Joe Squared *
Jan 29 Indianapolis, IN – State Street Pub
Jan 30 Detroit, MI – Outer Limits
May 2 Paris, FR – Mains D’Oeuvres
May 5 Berlin, DE – Internet Explorer

* – with Corduroy

Perhaps best known for being a member of critically acclaimed bands Magic Bullets and Terry Malts, as well as Smokescreens and Mike Krol‘s backing band, Corey Cunningham’s latest project Business of Dreams can trace its origins to when Cunningham took leave for his long-running musical partnerships when his father died. Returning back home to Tennessee to grieve and confront his past, Cunningham wrote music that would eventually comprise Business of Dreams’ critically applauded, eponymous full-length debut back in 2017.

Building upon a growing profile, Cunningham with a live backing band opened for Rogue Wave, and played a number of local shows with the likes of Frankie Rose, Real Estate and others. Business of Dream’s sophomore effort, Ripe For Anarchy is slated for a February 1, 2019 release through Slumberland Records, and the album finds Cunningham honing his songwriting both sonically and thematically, with the material touching upon regret, existence and perseverance.”The album is about living in the moment, shedding neurosis, and the desire to discard the general societal malaise we’ve been roped into,” Cunningham says in press notes.

Ripe For Anarchy‘s first single is the shimmering guitar pop track “Keep The Blues Away.” Centered around ethereal and plaintive vocals, shimmering and arpeggiated synths, staccato drum machine-like drumming, shimmering guitar lines fed through delay and effect pedals and a soaring hook, the single sounds as though it could have been released during 4AD Records heyday — and while indebted to the sounds of the past, the track is bolstered by an urgent sincerity that comes from lived-in experience.

 

 

Comprised of Nye Todd, Adam Todd, Anna Cory and Niall McCamely, the Edinburgh, Scotland, UK-based indie pop act The Spook School derive their name from the famous Glasgow School of influential artists and designers that began to coalesce in the 1870s and flourished between 1890 to roughly 1910 or so. And within the The Glasgow School there were several groups responsible for creating the distinctive Glasgow Style — The Four (also known as The Spook School), which featured painter and glass artist Margaret MacDonald, acclaimed architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh (McDonald’s husband), MacDonald’s sister Frances Macdonald and Herbert MacNair — all of who made strides in the definition of Art Nouveau; the Glasgow Girls; and the Glasgow Boys. As for their modern counterparts, the members of the Glasgow-based indie pop act have developed a reputation for songs that lyrically explore gender, sexuality and queer issues while thematically focusing on gender fluidity and the lack of the gender binary.

The Spook School’s latest single “Someone to Spend Christmas With” is an incisive and anthemic, ambivalent Christmas song that features a rousing hook, soaring synths, shimmering guitar chords and propulsive drumming — and while sounding as though it simultaneously draws from 60s pop and 80s New Wave, as the band’s Anna Corey explains in press notes, “This is a song about figuring out how you want to conduct your own relationships when it feels like the world is full of conflicting advice about the ‘best’ way to do it, whether that be monogamy, polyamory, or something else entirely. The refrain relates to the ideal of having one important person in your life with whom you’ll always spend your special occasions.”

Along with the release of their new Christmastime single, the Scottish quartet announced an early 2018 North American tour, opening for Diet Cig that will include a March 1, 2018 stop at Brooklyn’s newest music venue Elsewhere. Interestingly, the tour will also coincide with the release of the band’s highly-anticipated third full-length effort Could It Be Different? on January 26, 2018 through Slumberland Records here in the States and Alcopop! Records in the UK. In the meantime, check out the tour dates below.

NORTH AMERICAN TOUR 2018

01/29 Buffalo, NY @ Mohawk Place # ^
01/30 Toronto, ON @ The Garrison # ^
01/31 Detroit, MI @ Marble Bar # ^
02/01 Chicago, IL @ Bottom Lounge # &
02/02 Madison, WI @ University of Wisconsin # &
02/03 Minneapolis, MN @ University of Minnesota # &
02/05 Lawrence, KS @ White Schoolhouse #
02/06 Omaha, NE @ Reverb Lounge & #
02/07 Denver, CO @ Lost Lake Lounge #
02/08 Salt Lake City, UT @ Kilby Court #
02/09 Boise, ID @ Neurolux # &
02/10 Vancouver, BC @ The Cobalt # &
02/11 Seattle, WA @ Chop Suey #
02/12 Portland, OR @ Aladdin Theater #
02/14 San Francisco, CA @ Rickshaw Stop #
02/15 Santa Cruz, CA @ The Catalyst # &
02/16 Los Angeles, CA @ Lodge Room #
02/17 San Diego, CA @ You Are Going To Hate This Fest 3 #
02/19 Tucson, AZ @ Club Congress # &
02/21 Austin, TX @ Sidewinder # &
02/22 Dallas, TX @ Three Links # &
02/23 New Orleans, LA @ Hi Ho Lounge # &
02/24 Atlanta, GA @ The Masquerade # &
02/25 Asheville, NC @ The Mothlight # &
02/26 Charlotte, NC @ Neighborhood Theatre # &
02/27 Carrboro, NC @ Cat’s Cradle # &
02/28 Washington, DC @ Rock & Roll Hotel # &
03/01 Brooklyn, NY @ Elsewhere # &
03/02 Boston, MA @ Brighton Music Hall # &
03/03 Philadelphia, PA @ First Unitarian Church # &

# = w/ Diet Cig
^ = w/ Lala Lala
& = w/ Great Grandpa

Founded by Captured Tracks’ label head and founder Mike Sniper, Omnian Music Group is a label group, whose goal is to further develop and strengthen its pre-existing imprints (Body Double Records, Fantasy Memory Records and Squirrel Thing Recordings) and partnerships (with New Zealand’s Flying Nun Records) of Captured Tracks, while seeking out innovative labels, who would benefit from the larger Omnian Music Group structure to partner with, and creating new and distinct labels. Since its formation, Omnian has also partnered with Australia’s Dot Dash Records, New York’s Sing Sing Records, and created three new labels — Sinderlyn, 2MR Records, a dance music label founded by Italians Do It Better’s Mike Simonetta and Captured Tracks’ Sniper, and Manufactured Recordings, a label that specializes in re-issues across a wide variety of genres.

Now, if you had been frequenting this site earlier this month, you might recall that Manufactured Recordings developed a well-regarded Shoegaze Archive Series that focused on under-appreciated and/or overlooked shoegaze and noise rock bands — and as part of that of that series, they would be releasing re-issues of three largely overlooked early 90s shoegazers Alison’s Halo’s 1998 release Eyedazzler, a compilation of singles that the band wrote between 1992 and 1996; KG’s Come Closer, We’re Cool, a compilation featuring early tracks, unreleased material and material from a shelved Slumberland Records effort; and lastly, Bethany Curve’s mid 1990s debut, Mee-Eaux.

Adding to their growing catalog of re-issues, Manufactured Recordings will be releasing a compilation focusing on the late 70s, New York-based New Wave/post punk act Come On featuring re-issues of 1978’s “Don’t Walk On The Kitchen Floor”/”A Kitchen In The Clouds,” 1980’s “Housewives Play Tennis”/”Howard After 6,” unreleased studio recordings and live material recorded in the late 70s.  The band, which was comprised of a rather ragtag group of artists, musicians and scenesters including George Elliott (guitar), Ralf Mann (bass), illustrator Page Wood (drums), Elena Glasberg (guitar) and Jamie Kaufman (vocals) had a unique and egalitarian stage look featuring white button down shirts and black shirts, and played what they had dubbed “nervous rock,” full of angular and jagged guitar and bass chords, rapid-fire, four on the floor drumming, dark and wryly ironic — and unsurprisingly as you’ll hear on “Don’t Walk On The Kitchen Floor,” Come On’s sound manages to closely resemble Talking Heads ’77 and More Songs About Buildings and Food-era Talking Heads.

In light of both Talking Heads’ massive influence and popularity, Come On’s sound may not seem all that revolutionary, nor does it help that the band was only together for an incredibly short period of time; but what the band’s output does manage to do is to create a fuller, more interesting picture of what was going on in the Downtown scene o the late 70s while reminding the listener that although bands and artists like Talking Heads, Ramones, New York Dolls, Television, Patti SmithBlondie and a lengthy list of others who rose to be iconic, there were countless near misses.

 

 

 

 

 

Founded by Captured Tracks‘ label head and founder Mike Sniper, Omnian Music Group is a label group, whose goal is to further develop and strengthen its pre-existing imprints (Body Double Records, Fantasy Memory Records and Squirrel Thing Recordings) and partnerships (with New Zealand’s Flying Nun Records) of Captured Tracks, while seeking out innovative labels, who would benefit from the larger Omnian Music Group structure to partner with, and creating new and distinct labels. Since its formation, Omnian has also partnered with Australia’s Dot Dash Records, New York’s Sing Sing Records, and created three new labels — Sinderlyn, 2MR Records, a dance music label founded by Italians Do It Better‘s Mike Simonetta and Captured Tracks’ Sniper, and Manufactured Recordings, a label that specializes in re-issues across a wide variety of genres.

Manufactured Recordings has developed a Shoegaze Archive Series, a re-issue series that focuses on under-appreciated and/or overlooked shoegaze and noise rock bands. On May 19, 2017 the re-issue arm of Omnian Music Group will be releasing re-issues of three largely overlooked shoegazer rock bands of the 90s — Alison’s Halo’s 1998 release Eyedazzler, a compilation of singles that the band wrote between 1992 and 1996; KG’s Come Closer, We’re Cool, a compilation featuring early tracks, unreleased material and material from a shelved Slumberland Records effort; and lastly, Bethany Curve’s mid 1990s debut, Mee-Eaux.

Originally formed by the husband and wife duo Catherine Cooper (vocals, guitar) and Adam Cooper (guitar) along with Lynn Anderson (bass), the Tempe, AZ-based shoegazer trio Alison’s Halo derived their name from the name that had given their drum machine — Alison. As The Big Takeover‘s Jack Rabid noted “Alison’s Halo trafficked in spectacular, effects-laden, ethereal guitar majesties, but were distinguished by Catherine’s lovely vocals as their six-string melanges.” And as a result, the band found themselves opening for internationally known acts including Ultra Vivid Scene, Curve, The Verve, The Boo Radleys, Bailter Space, and Stereophonics, and played at several music festivals including SXSW and CMJ. As a trio, the band recorded two demo cassettes Slug and Halo, but before the recording sessions for their debut single “Dozen,” the band recruited Thomas Lanser (drums), expanding the band to a quartet; however, before the release of 1998’s debut effort, Eyedazzler 1992-1996, a compilation of singles written and recorded between 1992 and 1996 the band went through several lineup changes. After the band’s breakup in the late 90s, the members of the band went on to other creative pursuits — for several years the duo of Catherine Cooper and Adam Cooper spent several years writing and recording Burt Bacharach-inspired pop under a number of names, and Adam Cooper has also released a solo album of ambient music. In 2009, the Coopers resurrected Alison’s Halo and released several digital compilations of old material through their website, including three live albums and the The Jetpacks for Julian demos EP, and “Dozen,” the band’s debut single was included in 2016’s Still in a Dream: A Story of Shoegaze 1988-1995 box set compilation. They also released a digital 7 inch “Some Heaven”/”The Hardest Part” from the Eyedazzler demos.

Naturally, it shouldn’t be surprising that “Dozen” is the first single off the Eyedazzler re-issue and the single should immediately bring memories of 120 Minutes-era MTV as the rousingly anthemic yet dreamy song features Catherine Cooper’s ethereal vocals floating over shimmering power chords and a propulsive rhythm section consisting of thundering drumming and a gently throbbing bass line. Interestingly, while clearly sounding of its time, being reminiscent of A Storm in Heaven and A Northern Soul-era The Verve and My Bloody Valentine, the band’s sound also nods at contemporaries like Overlake and others.

 

Deriving their name from street sign, near the cliffs of Monterrey Bay, the Santa Cruz, CA-based space rock/shogeazer trio Bethany Curve — comprised of Richard Millang (vocals, guitar), Nathan Guevara (guitar) and David Mac Wha (drums) — are part of a second, somewhat more American-leaning wave of shoegaze and noise rock, forming in 1994, around the same time time that a number of the British shoegazer pioneers including Slowdive, My Bloody Valentine, Lush and others had split up. The band has developed a reputation for crating dark, moody space rock-leaning shoegaze full of shimmering guitar chords led through tons of delay pedal and throbbing, tweeter and woofer rocking bass — or as they’ve dubbed their approach “Atmosphere | Arrangement | Sound | Layering | Noise,” which they’ve used on the band’s four full-length releases, 1994’s Mee-Eaux, 1996’s Skies Crossed a Sky, 1998’s Gold and 2001’s You Brought Us Here and their 2013 EP Flaxen. Along with that, the band released a cover of Cocteau Twins‘ “Ivo,” which appeared on Dewdrop Records’ 2002 compilation Half Gifts: A Tribute To The Cocteau Twins. And much like Alison’s Halo’s “Dozen,” “Mey Voy,” Mee-Eaux‘s final track was also featured on 2016’s Still In A Dream: A Story Of Shoegaze 1988-1995 box set compilation.

For Manufactured Recordings reissue of Mee-Eaux, the first single is the slow-burning, brooding and cosmic instrumental “Out of the Curve” which features a dreamy and shimmering guitar melody paired with propulsive drumming and droning vocals — and while being atmospheric and ethereal, the song possesses a forceful, enveloping character.

 

Initially started as a bedroom-based solo recording project of the Mulhouse, France-born, Strasbourg, France-based multi-instrumentalist Remy Bux in 1988, the project involved Bux’s early experimentation with a two-track recorder, a rigged synthesizer and a great deal of ingenuity. Eventually purchasing a four-track recorder, Bux took writing and recording much more seriously. And after a 1991 relocation to Strasbourg, where he studied musicology, Bux recorded the KG debut 7 inch featuring a full band at Downtown Studio in 1993. The same lineup followed that up with a 1996 single co-released by Lo-Fi Records and Orgasm Records — and their Manufactured Recordings re-issue, Come Closer, We’re Cool is a compilation of their early singles, and tracks from a shelved Slumberland Records full-length effort. Interestingly their output has been compared to Isn’t Anything-era My Bloody Valentine and Psychocandy-era The Jesus and Mary Chain but with the immediacy and minimalism of punk, and as you’ll hear on “Love Me Forever,” an anthemic track that features a quiet, loud, quiet structure in which strummed acoustic guitar is paired with blistering power chords. And while clearly nodding at The Jesus and Mary Chain, the song also reminds me of early Blur.

Initially featuring Eli Hansen, who has been a member of Cozy, Boys Club and Retainers (vocals, guitar); John Eggerman, who has been a member of Cozy, Private interests and Mystery Date (bass); James Blackfield, who has been a number of France Camp and Nice Purse (drums)  Minneapolis, MN-based indie rock band Real Numbers developed a reputation for a DIY simplicity with the release of two 12 inch EPs through Three Dimensional Records, a single through Florida’s Dying and cassettes released through Forged Artifacts and No Problem. Wanting a much more layered sound, the band recruited Ian Nygaard, who’s been a member of Nice Purse and Howler (guitar) to further flesh out the band’s sound for the recording sessions that resulted in the band’s long-awaited full-length debut Wordless Wonder, an effort that renowned indie label Slumberland Records will be releasing on October 14, 2016.

Wordless Wonder‘s latest single “New Boy” consists of a much more layered, Wall of Sound like production, which is a departure from the live band-leaning sound of their previous releases. “We wanted something different than previous releases which had a very ‘live’ production,” the band’s Eli Hansen explains in press notes. This was largely accomplished by doubling most rhythm tracks, stacking lead tracks and on a few songs, the addition of a 12-string acoustic guitar, which has reportedly become Hansen’s new favorite instrument.  And you’ll hear that new approach on the jangling and anthemic “New Boy,” a single that nods at 60s garage rock and The Smiths as the song swoons with an urgent and plaintive Romanticism.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Over the past few years renowned indie labels Slumberland Records and Fortuna POP! Records have collaborated on a number of releases — as Slumberland Records has released the work of Fortuna POP! artists across North America; and Fortuna POP! releasing the work of Slumberland Records’ artists elsewhere. And August 26, the two labels continue their fruitful collaboration with the release of the Continental Drift compilation, which features 8 songs from four of this year’s most buzz worthy indie rock/pop acts across both North America and Europe — and naturally, both labels believe the bands on the compilation are set to be breakout stars.

Comprised of members of Literature, Little Big League and Pet Milk, the members of Philadelphia, PA-based act Mercury Girls have received quite a bit of buzz with the release of “Arianna” for a jangling post-punk sound, complete with a soaring and anthemic hook and a gorgeous harmonies; and while, their latest single “Holly,” which is featured on the Continental Drift compilation will further cement their burgeoning reputation for shimmering and jangling post-punk that sounds deeply indebted to The Smiths — while also possibly reminding some listeners of the likes of Veronica Falls and several others.

The members of Mercury Girls will be hitting the road throughout October and November with Balance and Composure and Foxing and it includes a November stop at Warsaw. Check out tour dates below.

Tour Dates:
 
(All dates w/ Balance & Composure and Foxing)

 

Thu-Oct-13 – Richmond, VA – – Broadberry
Fri-Oct-14 – Chapel Hill, NC – Cat’s Cradle
Sat-Oct-15 – Atlanta, GA – Masquerade – Hell
Sun-Oct-16 – Jacksonville, FL – 1904 Music Hall
Tue-Oct-18 – Lake Park, FL – Kelsey Theatre
Wed-Oct-19 – Orlando, FL – The Social
Fri-Oct-21 – Houston, TX – White Oak Music Hall
Sat-Oct-22 – Austin, TX – Mohawk
Sun-Oct-23 – Dallas, TX – Club Dada (So What?! Music Festival)
Tue-Oct-25 – Phoenix, AZ – The Nile
Thu-Oct-27 – San Diego, CA – Observatory North Park
Fri-Oct-28 – Los Angeles, CA – Regent
Sat-Oct-29 – Santa Cruz, CA – The Catalyst Atrium
Sun-Oct-30 – San Francisco, CA – Great American Music Hall
Tue-Nov-01 – Portland, OR – Hawthorne Theatre
Wed-Nov-02 – Seattle, WA – Crocodile
Fri-Nov-04 – Salt Lake City, UT – Complex
Sat-Nov-05 – Denver, CO – Marquis
Sun-Nov-06 – Lawrence, KS – Granada
Thu-Nov-10 – Cleveland, OH – Beachland Ballroom
Fri-Nov-11 – Detroit, MI – St. Andrews
Sat-Nov-12 – Toronto, ON – Opera House
Mon-Nov-14 – Boston, MA – Royale
Tue-Nov-15 – Portland, ME – Port City Music Hall
Wed-Nov-16 – New Haven, CT – College Street Music Hall
Thu-Nov-17 – Brooklyn, NY – Warsaw
Fri-Nov-18 – Philadelphia, PA – Union Transfer
Sat-Nov-19 – Baltimore, MD – Baltimore Soundstage