As the bio for Violent Mae states, the duo of Becky Kessler and Floyd Kellogg “never intended to be a band. Becky asked Floyd to record and produce her first solo album, and as soon as they hit the studio, chemistry and dynamics between the two sparked the evolution of an artistic partnership.” Their meeting must have been kismet given that their collaboration resulted in a solid debut, the self-titled album Violent Mae, a shout-out from Paste as a Connecticut band to know and an award for best new band in the Connecticut music scene from CTNow.com.
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Fiona Bevan‘s debut album, Talk to Strangers, releases in the UK on 28 April via Navigator Records and is sure to appeal to fans of artists as diverse as Björk, Joanna Newsom and Lianne La Havas. “The Machine” is the record’s first single. “‘The Machine’ came from being angry and frustrated about the state of the world and from my feelings of powerlessness to do anything about it,” Bevan says. “Within the song, there’s a shift – that’s about breaking out and finding how you can have power in your own life, in everything you do.”
You could say that Graham Colton has pursued a career plan less taken: Starting out early on with chart-topping success, tour dates with the likes of Counting Crows and Dave Matthews Band, and prime late-night TV performances, Colton left a major-label existence behind to follow a different path with his more recent work, relying on his own creative instincts and a Kickstarter campaign to realize them. As Colton describes the career trajectory that led him to his new self-released album Lonely Ones, “When I started to think about this new record, it had a lot to do with overcoming fear of working outside my comfort zone and what was expected. I had a great run being on the label and had some amazing experiences, but I knew moving forward I had to take a new step and rediscover the feeling I had when I first started writing and creating music.”
Sisters Of… is a St Joseph, Missouri-based experi-metal and post-rock project founded by multi-instrumentalist Aaron Coker—who’s previously played in bands such as Appleseed Cast, and Reggie & The Full Effect. The band’s debut EP, Follow Me As a Ghost, traverses the field of primarily instrumental compositions, taking deep dives into dense vortexes, and drifting on the ethereal currents of more orchestrally inclined arrangements.
Tagged as a “Bay Area psych pop supergroup”, Agony Aunts live up to that description with the richly melodic concoctions of their upcoming full-length, Big Cinnamon. Built on the foundation of the Corner Laughers lineup, with guest contributions from members of the Orange Peels and the Loud Family, among others, Big Cinnamon piles on layers and layers of swirling, shining harmonics. The result is an album chock full of compositions that are sunny and fun, but shaded with enough poignance to linger around a little while.