Stand up against the struggle , Time to make a few changes.
These are the lines that are repeated throughout the song. For Justin Griffin a.k.a Grades of Absolute Truth, the message is important as the music. The aggressive sound is more Nine Inch Nails than say, Bone Thugs and Harmony. A new video debuted just a couple of hours ago and is now available via YouTube. An interview with this groovy alternative rock artist will be out soon. So watch out for that one. For now enjoy this wonderful song. And drop him a line when you can!
Songs: I am nothing/Oceans are none/Drifter now/Down/Black out/Melancholy/Self Medicated.
What you can expect from every Under the Wired releases is the electricity that flows through each song. There is the freshness yet the nostalgic not to the great bands of the 80s. I like to imagine them as a band that continue to carry the torch of great music without sacrificing their credibility to the evil of mainstream pop.
Everything Haunts Me is the new EP, which is their second, and contains 7 tracks. I am nothing has a mellow style with chilled beats. The fullness of the music is done by layering. Under the Wire is comprised of two people: Tom Lugo and Jason Ellis. I am nothing reminds me of old This Mortal Coil. Remember the 4AD project headed by Ivo Watts-Russell in the 80s? I am not sure if UTW have embraced the 4AD credo but I can sense a bit of that in this EP.
Oceans are None is explosively beautiful. I haven’t heard something like this in ages. The only artists that come to mind are Peter Gabriel and early Sarah McLachlan. The beats are seductive. The vocals are really awesome. Like the first EP, the tunes from Everything Haunts Me showcase a distinct guitar style that shows its loyalty to the dream pop genre.
Either it’s The Cure or Fiction Factory, Drifter now nods on these bands. Two thumbs up to the keyboards. And since I am not a lyrics guy I paid more attention to the sound effects than the stories behind the songs. But if you want to know what they are all about then I will tell you. They deal with either unrequited love, despair, loneliness, inner conflict-the stuff of Gothic rock. For some reason, Under the Wire makes depressing themes sound like Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
There’s Down-a kind of suspense and moody tune in the vein of Siouxsie and the Banshees. Blackout behind jangles with Bauhaus inspired chords and distorted drums. Melancholy has an ethereal style that reminds me of early Dead Can Dance and at times it’s Joy Division. Self medicated closes the EP and I think it is the most cinematic track in this EP.
Under the Wire continues to challenge the status quo of music, as these
two musicians write and record tunes that you can never -and will never-hear again in alternative rock.
A(nother) Failed Attempt at Closure by Drip Lines touches on the realm of symbology, in an aesthetic and psychological level.
Everything we do can be symbolic. For instance, pouring yourself a cup of tea while listening to Gregorian chants before sunrise can be a symbol of welcoming spirituality in your work. Or having that moment of silence is symbolic of purifying your sphere so that creativity can enter. So is undressing. Which is the center of this video by Electronic indie pop band Drip Lines. It has an interesting background:
Jake O’Neal a.k.a. Drip Lines
The video, originally silent, was created by Megan St. Clair as part of her BFA thesis at the University of Colorado Boulder in May 2014. The description read: if an act of undressing a new lover creates a beginning, does the act of dressing an obsolete lover create closure?
The piece inspired Drip Lines to compose a work of the same title which ultimately led to the concept and creation of his debut EP “Evolution of a Love”. As an artistic experiment, the two pieces were later combined.
So what do I think about the music? I like it. It’s in the style of bands I listened to when I was exploring alternative music in the 90s. I love the atmospheric style. The layered vocals and space guitar style work well. The drums sound as if they were recorded on a tape and played back. Actually everything sounds like they’ve been played back and recorded underwater. How did Jake O’Neal did this?
This is a kind of song I would listen to if I want to stay in my bedroom the whole day and read. Oh yeas there are moments when being in a bubble can be total bliss. The artwork for Evolution of Love is also fantastic. The psychedelic flowers remind me of the early days of the hippie counter-culture and all people want to do is believe in love and be a fruitarian. I think O’Neal has embraced a bit of these qualities, though I must say he is very much in the ‘now.’
Radiolab: Here’s a treat to the fans of ‘not radio’ or anti pop. Dreamless by Radiolab has been released!Comprising of 12 tracks, this indie duo of Dane Di Piero and Meghan Redding continue to challenge the notion of intelligent
alternative music. I think they really push the boundaries with their experimentation and use of odd scales. I can’t resist the temptation of turning the volume up when I listen to Dreamless and watch out for heads turning.
With the ear-catching quirky sounds of Who You Are, Distances and Predictions you’d think you are listening to a band from the 80s. Not until halfway you realize the sound effects are too hi-tech for the era and the concept, too futuristic. Everything about Dreamless defies categorization. It is an album that says’ I am somewhat like that, but not really.”
It is hard to explain but you have to listen to the entire album to know why this is so. Calming, unsettling and generally cinematic, Radiolab have expanded their repertoire to include chill-out beats, lounge as well as Cocteau Twins style of singing. This is heard predominantly in the seventh track Post-modern Blues. And I think it is one of their stand out songs in Dreamless. The instrumental parts are extended with layers of sounds. Intricate and sophisticated.
There are many guest vocalists in Dreamless. You hear male and female vocals alternately. But I think with music such as this, the lyrical content becomes secondary, as the various sounds became the focus of attention. I realize that the album gains depth as I listen again and again. It makes me ponder as to why this or that arrangement sound s this way. The judgement behind the melodies and instruments and also the singing styles.
But it is not for me to decide where you should look for the juicy bits. You have to make the journey yourself, and also don’t forget to say hello to the artists behind Radiolab.
For those losing sleep, this is your remedy. And expect to be mesmerized.