OnlineRock Blog

30 June 2011

San Cisco just graduated high school, making music

By Nancy Woo

Okay. So there's this new catchy indie-pop band from Australia called San Cisco (I'm wondering if they're hiding Fran somewhere in their fresh, bright-eyed pockets) and for a group of just-graduated-high-school lads, they've put together a pretty good song called "Golden Revolver," which just sings of happy days ahead and the zest of youth. If you're an old, embittered soul, however, I might stay away because if you read on, their life just sounds downright peachy and I wouldn't want you to be offended by their carefree music-making in sunny Australia.

Watch the video here:

Who's not feeling a little younger and more optimistic already?

You can also download the track by clicking this link.

A little about San Cisco:

San Cisco are the latest indie act to emerge from Fremantle in sunny Western Australia. On the weekends they go skateboarding, play Nintendo 64 and make a bit of indie pop on the side. Scarlett bangs the drums, Nick plays bass and Jordi & Josh are the guys that play the guitars, write the songs and sing them.

San Cisco have spent the past year or so graduating high school, performing at festivals (including Big Day Out and Laneway) and playing round town pretty much every weekend. But don’t let their youth fool you. They have also produced their debut EP called Golden Revolver, which has just hit stores and already found a home on Triple J and community radio around Australia. Confident with stage presence and strong with vocals San Cisco continue to impress with their brand of upbeat summer pop.

Produced by Matthew Chequer (Little Birdy) & Steven Schram (Little Red, Cat Empire, Little Birday), the EP is an eclectic mix of indie pop with folk undertones, slashes of synth and influences ranging from Bright Eyes to Vampire Weekend.

Find them on Myspace:

28 June 2011

Free Download - Pepper Rabbit remixes "Gold Skull"

By Nancy Woo

What happens when you cross a rabbit and a tiger?

The answer is: something quite delightful, actually. For example, psych-pop duo Pepper Rabbit's remix of the song "Gold Skull," originally by indie-pop group Miniature Tigers (who have a song on the Easy A soundtrack), is a perfectly melded little mutant song baby that will have you happy and relaxed.

Sometimes crossing two different breeds goes horribly awry, but I can safely tell you that while the original song is not half bad, the remix of "Gold Skull" is something else entirely. And the best part is you can download it for free.

Pepper Rabbit: Duo Xander Singh and Luc Laurent.

The catchy pop infusion of electronic effects lifts "Gold Skull" up into the realms of complete happy happy joy joy after Pepper Rabbit works their magic on it. They add layers and textures that turn the song into a sitting-by-an-open-window, letting the breeze lick at you, fantastic floating fairies kind of feeling. It is oh-so-delightful, charming, upbeat but swaying in rhythm, with enough room amid the reverbed vocals and revved-up synth for bare moments of clapping drumsticks and enough momentum forward that at 2:37 this is a song to be played over and over again.

In order to listen, you must download the three song EP by Pepper Rabbit called Rose Mary Stretch. You can download the EP here, and read more about them if you wish.

And if you do find yourself partial to Pepper Rabbit's spacey electro sound, they will have a full-length album out August 9th called Red Velvet Snow Ball off Kanine Records. For more information,

Miniature Tigers will have their second album FORTRESS out July 27th. Check it here.

Now, IF you have listened to the Pepper Rabbit remix, you can now watch the original "Gold Skull" video here:

Thanks, and enjoy.

27 June 2011

SLEEPING IN THE AVIARY LIVE ON DAYTROTTER New album this fall on Science of Sound Records



New album this fall on Science of Sound Records

Yesterday Sleeping in the Aviary's live session with Daytrotter was featured

Recorded at the Daytrotter studio in Rock Island, IL, their four-song session took about two hours to record. As usual with the great site of Daytrotter, their live recording process captures the artist as they are and nothing else.

Sleeping in the Aviary agrees that, “these songs are them as they are on that particular day, on that particular tour – dirty and alive" (Sean Moeller,

The aviary is not even close to the only place where the airy and pop-smart Minneapolis band Sleeping In The Aviary takes us on its latest record, "Great Vacation!" We are thrust into what seems like a combination dream world of Jacques Cousteau, Neil Armstrong and the Grizzly Man, where there's an unswerving attraction to following the heart wherever the heart wants to set course for....

...There's an unabashed quality of exploding hearts and uncontrollable urges that runs through each Sleeping In The Aviary song. The feeling of seeing and thinking about love is almost enough because if the main characters involved actually caught it - somewhere outside the realm of these fantasy worlds - we're not certain that they'd know what to do with it. It could be a really tricky situation.

These are the early experiences with understanding the debilitating nature of this beastly sensation that takes a good many men and women to their graves. - Sean Moeller,

Songs recorded live for the Daytrotter session: "Blacked Out Fun" (Great Vacation!) "You Don't Have To Drive" (Great Vacation!) "Weightlessly In Love" (Great Vacation!) "The Tallest Tree In The World" (new)

17 June 2011

Song Of The Week for June 17, 2011 - OnlineRock

by Andrew McNair

I'll cop to it. I like Madonna. Not the Madonna of present day, of course. And, to be fair, not even the Madonna of any time in the past 20 years. The Madonna I like is the Madonna of the first four albums (Madonna, Like a Virgin, True Blue and Like a Prayer). Go ahead: go to Wikipedia and check out their track lists. You'll find pop gem after pop gem.

June 30th marks the 25th anniversary of her third album, True Blue, and Paper Bag Records has assembled a team of its best artists (like The Rural Alberta Advantage, Young Galaxy, PS I Love You and You Say Party, to name a few) to cover the album in its entirety. And they're giving it away for free on their website.

So whether you like Madonna or whether you like quality Canadian indie music, you should give this a listen:

14 June 2011

Song of the Week starts.... now

By Nancy Woo

Okay avid sound biters, OnlineRock has another sound byte trick up his or her sleeve (we're not quite sure what we are yet) that we are very excited to share with you. From now own, our regular podcast provider Andrew McNair will be giving us his favorite song pick out of all the new music out every week. From his trolling of music soundboards and label release sites, we have to present to you (drumroll and curtains drawn, please) the Song of the Week!

The Song of the Week may be a particularly outstanding masterpiece from some already best loved band, a new little gem from someone yet undiscovered or simply something that is especially unique, original or different. There will be no limit to genres or styles.

The Song of the Week will be released every Friday (we know, today is Tuesday, we're working out the kinks while we get this thing a-rollin').

So for our first Song of the Week, here is Andrew's pick for last week, Friday June 10th:

Song title: "The Other Shoe"
Artist: Fucked Up
From the album: David Comes to Life

Here's what Andrew says: You think you might have made your mind up about hardcore music, but Fucked Up's new album David Comes to Life will have you checking your assumptions at the door. DCTL is a four-act, 78 minute rock opera about love, loss, labor and bombs in Thatcher-era England. "The Other Shoe" is the clear stand-out track of the album, marrying Damian Abraham's throat-ripping vocals with the the catchy, heavy melody coming from Mike Haliechuk and the rest of Fucked Up.

You can download it and three other songs from the band's website, or the entire album is available for streaming at NPR.

Have a song you think should be song of the week? E-mail with "Song of the Week" in the subject line.

P.S. Did anyone else listen to the song, think the term "rock opera" and conjure up images of Jason Segel and his Dracula puppet? No, just me?

Sebadoh, Deluxe Edition re-release of Bakesale

By Nancy Woo

Dinosaur Jr., the highly influential alternative rock band birthed in 1982, though thought extinct for a few years between 1997 and 2005, have not only continued their far-reaching stomping through a wilderness of progressive musicianship, (mending deep wounds between band members) but have spawned at least two other mentionable side projects in the meantime.

For fans, the rift between guitarist J Mascis and guitarist Lou Barlow may have been a blessing in disguise (especially since they patched things up and reunited in a creative embrace that has since produced a critically acclaimed new Dinosaur Jr. album Beyond), for after tensions arose between him and Mascis, Barlow formed a band of his own called Sebadoh, which needless to say, did not flounder. Known for their lo-fi technique, nearby vocals and melodic grunge sound, Sebadoh produced albums for a decade. But greedy listeners might still think that's not enough.

This brings me to the question, who's hungry for some more Sebadoh goodness?

If you raised your hand, you may be interested to know that SubPop is re-releasing some of Sebadoh's tastier treats, plus more goodies you never knew you never knew. Today, my dear grunge ghoulies, Sebadoh's fifth and, some say, best full-length album Bakesale will be out as a re-released and re-mastered Deluxe Edition, featuring the original fifteen tracks plus a second disc with a whole yummy mess of B-sides, EP tracks, acoustic versions and rarities.

Seventeen years after the world's first contact with Bakesale, it has stood the test of time and is back for both old fans and new alike. Fall in love with the album for the first time, or reignite your old flame all over again. It's powerful, raw, dreamlike and angry all at different movements in time, a crunchy and wailing guitar, stylistic distortion, close-up vocals and an altogether rocking time for any garage, with just the right amount of reflection and tenderness. I, personally, am always listening while nonchalantly reclining on my mind's green tattered couch with cigarette butts stinking up the oil-greased pavement around me.

Mascis also embarked on solo projects, and since we're sharing our love of Dinosaur Jr., it should be noted that J Mascis recently released a brand new solo album Several Shades of Why, his first full album of solo material in a quarter century. And it is unmistakably Mascis, with that endearingly growling croon, spun this time over a sweeter-than-Dinosaur acoustic background.

Whether you have a preference for one songwriter over the other, one thing is for sure, and that's that the lo-fi, gritty rock movement of the 90s would have been nowhere without both musicians, Barlow and Mascis, and both bands, Dinosaur Jr. and Sebadoh.

For more information about Sebadoh's Deluxe Edition Bakesale, go here.

To see more J. Mascis, visit his website, which has a video sketched in the artistic stylings of labelmate Chad VanGalen.

And please excuse me as my gush leaks all over the place

08 June 2011

Ruby Electric Album Release

Monday July 11th sees the release of “Ruby Electric” - Philip Sayce's latest album on Provogue Records. The album showcases previously unreleased studio and live tracks and includes the single Let The Love In” featuring a duet with Melissa Etheridge. Listen below.

Ruby Electric is a unique album that features a collection of songs divided into two different volumes. All the songs were recorded with some of Sayce’s favourite musicians and friends. The album is currently #2 in Amazon UK’s official Blues pre-sale chart.

Volume 1, recorded at Sunset Sound and Lion’s Share, Hollywood, was produced by Dave Cobb and mixed by Mark Rains. The songs were recorded live in the studio through a collection of vintage equipment and musical instruments, utilizing Cobb’s signature recording and production techniques.

Volume 2, recorded on tour in France, Germany, and Holland in 2010, was mixed by the legendary recording engineer Eddie Kramer (Jimi Hendrix, Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin) in April 2011.

“I'd been looking for the right circumstances to release all of these songs,” says Sayce. “The studio tracks on Volume 1 remained unavailable internationally. We remixed and re-mastered the tracks, picked some alternate takes, and included a live version of Daydream Tonight (the latter originally appeared on Sayce’s 2010 album Innerevolution). As soon as we paired the songs up with the recent live recordings from last year’s European tour, the album became Ruby Electric.

Ruby Electric features Kenny Aronoff (drums), Joel Gottschalk (bass), Fritz Lewak (drums), and Fred Mandel (piano, organ), and as previously mentioned, Melissa Etheridge signs a duet with Sayce on the first single Let The Love In. The album was produced and recorded by Eddie Kramer, Dave Cobb, and Mark Rains.

07 June 2011

Ladybug Transistor releases new album

By Nancy Woo

Ladybug Transistor, one Brooklyn-based facet of The Elephant Six Collective (an independent record label that spawned such indie classics as the Olivia Tremor Control and Neutral Milk Hotel), releases their seventh studio album Clutching Stems today!

What you need to know is this: You can stream the entire album until the end of the day TODAY from Paste Magazine. I just did. This album is like a twinkling little star full of yumminess. It's soft, but floaty, nicely put together with soothing vocals and indie-pop movement throughout, various instrumentation and interesting sounds uplifting the songs in different directions.

You can also buy the album from Merge Records or at your local record store.

06 June 2011

The Fiery Furnaces' Eleanor Friedberger announces solo work

By Nancy Woo

Since 2000, The Fiery Furnaces, a New York-based brother and sister duo, have been confusing and astounding listeners with a bold array of conceptual albums full of electronic experimentation and dynamic, energetic sounds that seem to intentionally thrust the listener into a tornado of frenetic anticipation.

Oftentimes, the music involves strange Nintendo-like sounds, screeches and groans, impending sounds of doom, pounding distortion, angry organs or other nerve-wracking artistic techniques, then will abruptly change tempo, rhythm or instrumentation, moving into melodious piano sequences or calmer vocals. It is keeping-you-on-the-edge-of-your-seat experimentation that some might unkindly and ignorantly compare to nails on chalkboard, but these are nails that seem to be scratching deeply beneath the surface at... something. Whether we know what that is or not, The Fiery Furnaces keep us wondering what will come next, and we appreciate them for that. And they beat the pants off Animal Collective. Hands down.

Just listen to this one song and notice your senses on high alert for danger. Also note the hypnotic effects of the visuals (video not associated with the band). Careful, don't slip entirely away...

The next surprise in store from half of The Fiery Furnaces will be a debut album by their vocalist, Eleanor Friedberger. Her first solo album, Last Summer, will be out on Merge Records July 12th, 2011.

Departing from the otherworldly style of the Furnaces, Eleanor’s upcoming album is a little lovelier and more accessible for casual listeners, allowing her the free rein to indulge in the more pop-inspired style of choruses from the Furnaces. The first single, "My Mistakes," combines the homegrown alto of Friedberger with a fast-paced guitar riff, background synth and brass outro. It's the kind of song you want playing with the top down as you speed around fast turns just as day begins to break. Eleanor, a multi-instrumentalist, promises to deliver just as dynamic a solo album as the collaboration with her brother, in her own, possibly more down-to-earth way.

The idea to create a solo album came about after she and her brother recorded a compilation of cover songs from their previous nine albums, each one stoking their own creative interpretations. With this freedom cropped up the idea to record songs she wrote in her spare time. This album, their press release says, is more like an artist "kicking off her shoes and settling into a big comfy chair with an acoustic guitar, a glass of scotch, and a four-track."

But don't worry! This does NOT mean the Fiery Furnaces have been extinguished. Put down your matches (not everyone can play with fire like the Furnaces) and just listen to the first single, "My Mistakes."

Or visit Eleanor's cheeky and endlessly amusing website here. The tagline? Last Summer... improves on silence... this summer. Also this summer, Eleanor will be touring to promote the album. Dates to be announced.

05 June 2011

Glenn Hughes launches weekly rock radio show

If you like Deep Purple, Trapeze and Black Country Communion, it's probably because they all have one thing in common: Glenn Hughes.

Current frontman of Black Country Communion and hard rock icon Glenn Hughes will be launching a weekly radio show tonight that will most likely be a wild roller coaster ride of famous rock stories intermixed with his playlist of favorite rock songs. From influential tracks that shaped him as an artist to his favorite tunes of today, expect to hear behind-the-scenes tales and radio-friendly songs by bands like Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, David Bowie, Deep Purple and the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

Tune in tonight and every Sunday at 6 p.m. on Planet Rock.

Related news: Black Country Communion's second album "2" will be released June 13th, and the band will be touring shortly after. Click here for more info.

01 June 2011

RIP Gil Scott-Heron

Gil Scott-Heron, iconic spoken word poet, author, funk and soul artist and deemed by some "the godfather of rap" and the "black Bob Dylan," passed away last Friday, May 27 at the age of 62.

"The revolution will not give you sex appeal, the revolution will not make you five pounds thinner, the revolution will not be televised."

Gil Scott-Heron is most well known for his late 60s and early 70s political activism in the form of spoken word poetry and soul/funk collaborations with musician Brian Jackson. He also wrote a crime/mystery novel called The Vulture. He will be sorely missed as a great icon of the times.

Read this NY Times article as a brief tribute to a great artist's life, or simply listen to his most famous rhythmic poem, "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised" here:

Share your thoughts on Scott-Heron's influence.