Monday, August 17, 2015

Staycation Roundup with Little Dickman Records, The Deafening Colors, and The Roadside Graves

NJ's Roadside Graves are back with a new single and an album due on 9/4 with Don Giovanni Records.

Three Things I Should Have Mentioned By Now

Two weeks off from work can turn you pretty lazy pretty quickly. It's almost like, without the specter of work-stuff hanging over my head, I'm less motivated to do anything. That's vacation for you, I guess. I've been posting less than I'd like, though; so I figured I'd mention a few things all at once. Easy for me, and you can have them all in one place.

Little Dickman Records, Summer Bummer Compilation, 2015

Full disclosure: I've come to think of our friends at Little Dickman Records as kind of CoolDad Music's extended family. We've worked together on a few things like our holiday benefit and the Sundown at the Carousel shows (Next one 8/28! Don't miss it!). They're great friends of mine, and I'd do just about anything to help them out.

That said, we initially connected over a mutual love of local music and a shared desire to promote the amazing music scene in Asbury Park. Little Dickman's latest effort in that space is a compilation album that comes in just as summer is beginning its swan song.

The label's second compilation, Summer Bummer, contains 16 tracks from some of the best that Asbury Park has to offer. The set includes new singles from Smalltalk, Corrina, Corrina, Hot Blood, The Battery Electric, Sharkmuffin, Black Flamingos. Dentist contribute "Fruit and Cake," a live set staple and the second track from their self-titled debut. The rest of the set includes psych rock (gods, The Off White, Psychiatric Metaphors), punk / glam (TV Tramps, AciD), garage rock (Ba Babes), blues rock (Amy Malkoff and The Moonshines), and some dark and brooding lonesome highway sounds (Dan Waszay). The elusive Wolfcock even makes an appearance.

The artwork for Summer Bummer was done by Battery Electric bassist / Hot Blood guitarist, Alex Rosen.

Here's the full tracklist:

"June/July," Smalltalk
"She Wanna," Acid
"Mondays," Sharkmuffin
"New Future," gods
"Holiday In Heaven," The Battery Electric
"Seventeen," Ba Babes
"Fruit and Cake," Dentist
"Shark Repellant," Black Flamingos
"Graveyard Drums," The Off White
"High Doses," Psychiatric Metaphors
"Numb Nation," Amy Malkoff and the Moonshines
"River," Dan Waszay
"I Don’t Care," TV Tramps
"Pratfall," Corrina, Corrina
"Chemical Solution," Hot Blood
"Wicked1," Wolfcock

All proceeds from Summer Bummer go to benefit Help Not Handcuffs, an organization lobbying for reform in our drug laws and a shift away from the War on Drugs to helping those suffering from addiction.

CDs are available now from Little Dickman's online store and retail outlets like Arcade Radio, Holdfast Asbury Park, and Jack's Music Shoppe. You can download the comp from Little Dickman's Bandcamp page.

The Deafening Colors, Carousel Season, 2015

Are you kidding me? An Atlantic City duo produces an album called Carousel Season that's full of images of the Jersey Shore, and I'm just mentioning it now? I'm really slacking lately. Summer's not over yet, though. And this is an album that can get you through some of those upcoming dark winter months as you wait for the warm weather to return.

The Deafening Colors are John Paul Arthur and Cris Slotoroff. Carousel Season is their sonic and lyrical homage to the Jersey Shore. Like Hey Anna's Run Koko or Coastgaard's self-titled 2013 EP, Carousel Season comes to you from those idyllic summers of the past -- the ones you remember whether you actually experienced them or not.

Reverb, delay, rumbling drums, and surf-inspired guitars on tracks like "Parkway South" and "Mary-Anne." Dream pop -- swirling, noisy, and shoegazy on "Waiting for the Axe" or lackadaisical and lazy on "Past Time." The retro sounds and "sha la las" of the title track. Images of sunscreen melting in eyes, skee ball, and Atlantic City throughout the record. Carousel Season is warm, romantic, and pining. It's a record that you can pipe through your headphones as you lounge under an umbrella on the beach or one that you can listen to -- in front of the fireplace, snow falling outside -- whenever you want to go back there.

You can grab Carousel Season over at The Deafening Colors' Bandcamp page.

The Roadside Graves, "Gospel Radio," 2015

Back when I started CoolDad Music in 2012, I created a Twitter account and started following indie rock bands and New Jersey bands. One of the first bands I followed was The Roadside Graves. I wasn't all that familiar with them at the time, but I saw that they were from New Jersey, checked out their music, and liked what I heard. Then, they kind of went quiet for a while.

Family and geography presented some obstacles to being a band, and the Graves went on kind of a hiatus. Well, they're back. The band's next LP Acne / Ears is slated for release on September 4th from our friends at Don Giovanni Records. Two weeks ago, The Roadside Graves released single "Gospel Radio" from that record; and I, honestly, can't get enough of it.

The song strays a bit from Roadside Graves' typical folk / Americana. More synths, a kind of cathartic ending / outro. And it hits me somewhere. It hits me -- like The Hold Steady, like Patrick Stickles, like Bruce Springsteen -- in that space of being a kid shaped by my Catholic upbringing. It hits me in that space of sitting in a pew next to my parents, thinking about whatever the drone of the organ pushed into my brain. It hits me in that space of not being at all religious but still finding... ...something... those sense memories from church that come back to me every once in a while at odd times.

OK. Heading to the beach. Talk soon.

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