OnlineRock Blog

27 September 2011

Free Music Friday - September 23, 2011

Free Music Friday

Once again, we've put together a really wild, varying and dynamic set of free music downloads to help you get through the very last day of the workweek. Ranging from straight up sing-along pop to rock-backed folk to a song created solely through synth to melodic alternative rock, there's something sure to please your ears in the set below. And just as with every Free Music Friday, all the downloads are secure and free, so you can listen, share and if you feel so enamored, buy the rest of the album. We want to support the artists, after all. So cheers! And get to listening.


1. The Rest - "Always On My Mind" / "Last Day"
(free from Bandcamp)

This week I've found the "Always On My Mind" / "Last Day" single from The Rest. The music has the reverb and drone of the Ravenonettes or My Bloody Valentine and the vocals remind me a bit of Pablo Honey-era Tom Yorke. The music is richly layered (upon a third listen now I'm still picking apart the different layers in both songs). A good, dense single and excellent introduction to their forthcoming album Seesaw, which will be out next February.

-Contributed by Free Music Expert Andrew McNair

2. Caroline Smith and the Good Night Sleeps - "Calliope"
(click to stream or right click to save as)

Bonus OLR points for making me want to jump into your album cover.

If you like Conor Oberst, Mason Jennings, or Leslie Feist, you should give this one a listen. "Calliope" is a folk gem sung by a woman with a compelling and controlled, quivering alto timbre. There is enough movement and background rock to culminate in the perfect experience of heartfelt emotion and crescendoing build up of guitar and drums. The song is off Little Wind, the band's sophomore album just out September 20th from United Interests. Their sound is rooted in indie rock but not without the whimsy folk that seems to come so naturally to Caroline Smith. Find out more about this Minneapolis-based group from

3. Sonoio - "Can You Hear Me?"
(click to stream or right click to save as)

Starting out with a grinding electronic beat like a motor running, and filled to the brim with poignant electronic pop rhythms interspersed with high-pitched lyrics, there's definitely a rave tune in these catchy beats. You're going to want to take this song out to party. Jolly good then. Sonoio, a solo artist recording who uses a single, custom-made synthesizer as his tool of the trade, will be embarking on a tour with Ladytron this month, so find out how to catch them where you are from

Fun fact: All of the songs on this artists's records are based on the meaning of his moniker Sonoio, which comes from
the Italian phrase “sono io,” meaning, “it is I.”

(Bonus: If you enter your e-mail you can download the first four songs from the album Red. Plus watch the music video for "Enough," which is actually quite good.)

3. The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus - "Reap"
(link to secure download)

Alternative rock act The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus is back and touring this fall to promote their third album, Am I The Enemy. If you're one of the two million people who've bought an album from them already, you know their amped-up, hard-hitting yet melodic fighting style, and this song "Reap" doesn't disappoint. The album is out now, but if you haven't heard it yet, download this teaser song first. Frontman Ronnie Winter says of the song, "I think it's one of the best, because it pretty much spawned the entire sound for the new record." Get more info, order the album or sing along with lyrics to "Reap" from

4. Correatown - "Turn On Turn Up"
(click to stream or right click to save as)

We featured Correatown's song "Isomer" as a teaser to the band's sophomore album Pleiades, and we're more than happy to see them again now, this time after the album's already dropped. While "Isomer" is a melodic soundscape of dreamy surrealism, "Turn On Turn Up" takes a much more uplifting and pop-driven direction. The soft vocals of Angela Correa float along perfectly on top of grinding guitars and hints of little bells, and the refrain of "Electric" is all-too-fitting. It's a great song and made me wonder what the rest of the album is like. To satisfy my raging curiosity, I listened to it and was pleasantly swept away by the light and dreamy yet catchy and compelling qualities all the way through. If you're wondering, too, you can stream the entire album for free from Spinner or buy it from Bandcamp.

5. The Sweet Ones - "Kids at the Bottom"
(click to stream or right click to save as)

Bonus OLR points for cat.

Starting out strong with a sweet little line of harmonica backed by happy drums and a background guitar, this song doesn't try to be deep or subtle. It's a straight up, simple pop anthem driven by a chorus of male voices chant-singing together, lamenting about the dirty state of their city. It's fun and catchy, and you might sing along while drunk. The song is off their album Big Mistakes, which you can buy from

(Bonus: You can also download another single by The Sweet Ones, "Carburetor," and watch the gruesome video for it.)

6. Hamlet Wonderbark - Danish Shakespeare Songs
(download full album free from Bandcamp)

If I can end the set with something really wild, outrageous or different, baby, you know I will! This time, I am chuckling inside my britches about this diamond of a find. We all know our homie Shakespeare wrote plays and love poems, but in case you weren't aware, the bard also wrote songs. During the "lost" years of 1585 and 1592, some biographers think he wandered around Denmark before finally settling in Straford-upon-Avon at the age of 28. The history lesson leads to this: some good-natured bloke named Ken Kleinfield has a field day recreating the lost Shakespeare songs under the moniker Hamlet Wonderbark. And the songs are actually catchy, hook-laden, guitar-riffing little pop gems that aren't half bad. So if you're a Shakespearean nerd, too, get to exploring! And Ken Kleinfield has a bunch of other projects going on, which you can find at

Are you giggling your socks off yet?
I hope so,
Nancy Woo


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