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by Brice Ezell

15 Jun 2015


“It’s all rock n roll”, Empty Flowers say of their genre of music on their Facebook page. One spin of “Comb Over”, a track from their upcoming record Four, and all you’ll be able to say for yourself is, “No kidding.” With a brooding, palpable energy, “Comb Over” is evidence enough that rock music runs deep in Empty Flowers’s musical DNA.

The group’s rock cred is made even more apparent by the collaborations it did on the remix record The Air You Found, released last year, which features interpretations of the tracks from its previous LP, Five. The remixes were done a a who’s-who of hard rock and metal players, including members of Gorguts, ISIS, and Khanate, among others.

by Brice Ezell

15 Jun 2015


Photo: Jim Arbogast Photography

In a review of Galactic‘s gig at the Belly Up Tavern in Solana Beach, California earlier this year, PopMatters’ Greg M. Schwartz calls the group “one of New Orleans’ best sonic flavors.” Although these road-worn instrumentalists have more than aptly proven their musical chops over the course of their 20 years together as a band, they are certainly capable of reining in the solos and focusing on songs. “Into the Deep”, which features Macy Gray‘s powerful pipes at the front of the mix, is a fine example of Galactic’s songcraft, and it bodes well for the rest of the forthcoming Into the Deep LP. Soulful and groovy without ever being overly flashy, “Into the Deep” is a snippet of Galactic at their most enthusiastic.

by Brice Ezell

15 Jun 2015


Photo: Nick Fay

Just after summer 2015 comes to a close, Minneapolis, Minnesota songwriter John Mark Nelson will drop his new record, I’m Not Afraid. PopMatters is proud to premiere the LP’s lead single, “Dream Last Night”, which is buoyed by a nice chord progression played through an electric guitar tone reminiscent of the snappy tones of Dire Straits picker Mark Knopfler.

by Adrien Begrand

15 Jun 2015


Combining funk, soul, reggae, folk, and indie, singer-songwriter Topher Mohr evokes summertime in the big city: vibrant, bustling but relaxed, multicultural, and sunny. A past collaborator with Mayer Hawthorne and Wu-Tang affiliate Brooklyn Zu, Mohr’s second album Phlowers plunders those vintage sounds and creates a genial little hybrid for himself, quixotic and warm, yet grounded as well, his flights of fancy countered by moments of realism.

by Adrien Begrand

15 Jun 2015


Photo: Kat Alyst

Formed in 2013, Austin band Wonderbitch has created a fascinating little hybrid for themselves, blending the sleek jazz rock of Steely Dan, the effervescent indie pop of Phoenix, along with a big, wonderfully garish helping of ‘80s R&B. All those ingredients are on full display on “Johanna”, a bright, sunny selection from their forthcoming self-titled EP, on which jazz, prog, and pop commingle like late ‘80s Genesis and Toto, but also with the contemporary appeal of present-day stars Haim.

//Mixed media
//Blogs

In Motion: On the Emptiness of Progress

// Moving Pixels

"Nils Pihl calls it, "Newtonian engagement", that is, when "an engaged player will remain engaged until acted upon by an outside force". That's "progress".

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