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Speedy Ortiz is one of those bands that I can get obsessed over.  I came across a review of their current release “Major Arcana,” and decided to give it a listen. Major arcana refers to the 22 card suit of trump cards within a Tarot Deck.
Sadie Dupuis is the lyricist, vocalist, and guitar player.  I read that she was in pursuit of a masters degree in poetry. Mike falcone plays drums. Darl Ferm plays bass. Matt Robidoux plays guitar, and is classically trained. Their combined effort results in a masterpiece. They perfectly combine the nerdy appeal of Weezer, the heavy and soft essence of smashing pumpkins, with a touch of the Pixies.
Sadie’s lyrics are a joy to decipher. Exquisitely written and sung. This album bears repeated listenings. I recommend sitting with the provided lyric sheet and reading along as the music progresses. (This is my preferred way of listening to a new album.)
My thoughts on a few of the tracks:
Pioneer Spine – A strong opener. Sadie mentions turning a key in the song. I wonder if this is a reference to the key she constantly wears around her neck.
Tiger Tank – This song thunders heavily, like classic thrash metal. It gives way to clean arpeggiated guitars. She laughs at “lump schmatics,” and mentions limping. There are more than a few references to leg problems and disease. Is this some sickness that Sadie has experienced?
Hitch – Vocal melodies are repeated through the guitar, this is one of Speedy’s very effective signature moves. This song mentions a horse that has bad legs, but works hard nonetheless.
No Below – This is my favorite song on the album. Another beautiful catchy melody can be found here. One of the most magical moments on this album, the melody is sung through the lyrics,” how I once said, I was better off just being dead.” Sadie mentions a broken knee.
Speedy Ortiz came to Austin on 8/2/13.  Fans were given the chance to catch two amazing shows. They played at local record shop and treasure End of An Ear in the afternoon. Speedy gave such an amazing performance, so intimate, quiet and loud. They played a long set that included most of the album, truly magical. I was fortunate enough to chat with all the members of the band and they signed my lyric sheet with their names and a drawing (pictured above), thanks guys!
Later that night, Speedy Ortiz played the inside stage of Mohawk later. The performance was larger, noisier, and awesome.
What an amazing album, go out, by this album, enjoy it, and then catch a live show!
Album Rating 5/5
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bandswatchingbands:

Speedy Ortiz is one of those bands that I can get obsessed over.  I came across a review of their current release “Major Arcana,” and decided to give it a listen. Major arcana refers to the 22 card suit of trump cards within a Tarot Deck.

Sadie Dupuis is the lyricist, vocalist, and guitar player.  I read that she was in pursuit of a masters degree in poetry. Mike falcone plays drums. Darl Ferm plays bass. Matt Robidoux plays guitar, and is classically trained. Their combined effort results in a masterpiece. They perfectly combine the nerdy appeal of Weezer, the heavy and soft essence of smashing pumpkins, with a touch of the Pixies.

Sadie’s lyrics are a joy to decipher. Exquisitely written and sung. This album bears repeated listenings. I recommend sitting with the provided lyric sheet and reading along as the music progresses. (This is my preferred way of listening to a new album.)

My thoughts on a few of the tracks:

Pioneer Spine – A strong opener. Sadie mentions turning a key in the song. I wonder if this is a reference to the key she constantly wears around her neck.

Tiger Tank – This song thunders heavily, like classic thrash metal. It gives way to clean arpeggiated guitars. She laughs at “lump schmatics,” and mentions limping. There are more than a few references to leg problems and disease. Is this some sickness that Sadie has experienced?

Hitch – Vocal melodies are repeated through the guitar, this is one of Speedy’s very effective signature moves. This song mentions a horse that has bad legs, but works hard nonetheless.

No Below – This is my favorite song on the album. Another beautiful catchy melody can be found here. One of the most magical moments on this album, the melody is sung through the lyrics,” how I once said, I was better off just being dead.” Sadie mentions a broken knee.

Speedy Ortiz came to Austin on 8/2/13.  Fans were given the chance to catch two amazing shows. They played at local record shop and treasure End of An Ear in the afternoon. Speedy gave such an amazing performance, so intimate, quiet and loud. They played a long set that included most of the album, truly magical. I was fortunate enough to chat with all the members of the band and they signed my lyric sheet with their names and a drawing (pictured above), thanks guys!

Later that night, Speedy Ortiz played the inside stage of Mohawk later. The performance was larger, noisier, and awesome.

What an amazing album, go out, by this album, enjoy it, and then catch a live show!

Album Rating 5/5

bandswatchingbands:

Foreign Mothers – July 26th 2013 Show Review


by Michael Espinosa

Foreign Mothers are my current local favorite. I’ve seen them on a few occasions and they impress me every time. So what type of music is this? If I had to categorize them I would say they fit into the Post-punk aesthetic. Post punk was popular in the late 70’s and was known for being more experimental and artsy. Drums functioned as accents to the vocals and instruments instead of carrying a straight beat. There are elements of funk in the bass lines. Similar acts may include Television (who will be at FunfunfunFest 2013), Devo, Talking Heads, and Kleenex.

So are Foreign Mothers artsy? Yes they are! That’s a beautiful thing too. They are artsy people making beautiful artsy music. They have chosen to produce their own art instead of consuming the culture around them. They have chosen to participate, say something, and take an active role in a music scene.

So I went to Beerland on July 26th 2013 to catch a performance. Beerland is an intimate concert venue that caters to local up and coming bands. They don’t have a great selection of beer but I believe their name refers to a place to be while drinking any type of beer, not the usual IPAs , stouts and craft beers that I am fond of. Besides, good beers cost shit loads more when you are out, so I usually drink lone star and PBR to keep costs down.

All the bands that were on the bill were good (Dead Space, Plutonium Farmers, Beth Israel), but I was their specifically for Foreign Mothers. Kana is the vocalist and guitar player, Stephanie plays bass, and Phil pounds the drums.

The band usually starts with the song “Roll Call,” their recent releases first cut. The bass is heavy, slightly distorted, and thick. The drums are intricate and hypnotically rhythmic. Kana’s guitar playing is perfectly sparse. She can be heavy at times, angrily punching out strategically placed power chords over the danceable foundation laid out by her band mates, or she can impressively layer sweet melodic guitar lines. Her vocals are clear, strong, and intoxicatingly feminine. She sings and talks in subtle melodies and shouts with great enthusiasm. Foreign Mothers are talented song writers and great performers.

A lot of live bands seem to hide their performances behind sheer volume and noise. The FM are the complete opposite. You can hear everything, almost as clearly as their recorded album “Duh.” You can hear Kana’s lyrics and ever guitar line.

Towards the end of the performance one of Kana’s guitar strings broke. Fuck, that’s a shitty thing to happen, especially if you don’t have your own spare guitar, which she did not. So she borrowed someone else’s guitar. “Kind of small huh?” she said. And this was cool to witness; she had to adjust her playing and songs to this unfamiliar instrument. Her fingers fumbled a long a little bit as she tried to coax her music from this “foreign” guitar. Interesting things happen when people are pushed out of their comfort zones. The whole set was great; Foreign Mothers killed it. The crowd was good too, lot’s of people in attendance.

Throughout the show I noticed a copy of FM’s latest record kind of hidden close to the exit. It was as if someone was thinking of stealing it but chickened out and just left it. Or maybe someone bought it and forgot it. So the evil part of me thought, “ I can just walk out with this.” And as things were I don’t think anyone would have said anything or even noticed me. Then I came to my senses. I would have felt so guilty, stealing from the band that I came to support. What a shitty thing for a shitty person to do. So I went up to Kana who was tearing down at the moment, and slurred through an explanation of my dilemma. She was cool about it and we had a nice conversation. I bought the record for 12 bucks even though I don’t have a record player. I used to have one and I loved buying albums but it got so cumbersome. So “Duh” is the only album I currently own, and it’s awesome.

So should you listen to Foreign Mothers and catch their next show? Yes you should! There next show is AUGUST 15th (thursday) 2013 @ Cheer Up Charlie’s for Raw Paw's SAVE THEM ALL! A Breast Cancer Benefit.

Contact band here: https://www.facebook.com/foreignmothers

Buy album and stream music here http://foreignmothers.bandcamp.com/album/duh-2

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