Recently, it seems like a lot of groups have been coming out of Virginia. While I am having trouble figuring out if it is a scene in a traditional sense or if a bunch of talented people happen to currently be in Virginia, it is sort of irrelevant. One of the standout bands is Facepaint, who are from Blacksburg. Their most recent, if not their first, release is straightforwardly titled Facepaint E.P., which is charmingly unassuming. The E.P. is really enjoyable in its entirety, and it’s free which is a plus. Their sound is rather hard to describe, but it is somewhere between Rare Grooves, Television and The Replacements in a surprisingly gentle way. “Sleepover” starts out with a riff that wouldn’t be out of place in a Ventures song. This riff is the foundation of the tune, and all of the other parts either compliment or stem off of it. The vocals, which remind me a lot of Tom Verlaine, make the song really interesting. As I said earlier, it’s difficult to articulate what exactly is special about Facepaint, but maybe that makes them all the more enticing.
We’ve been really busy lately, and unfortunately haven’t had time to write. While we will be writing in the near future, we feel kind of bad about the lack of recent posts. As a result of this, we introduce Archipelago, which is essentially just a bunch of songs that we really enjoy, but for some reason or another haven’t gotten to write a full post about. Enjoy.
Suicide Machine – Elliott Smith
There is something very alluring when a group of musicians insist on being called a “Pop Band”. While at this point the term “Pop” is almost ambiguous to the point where can mean anything, Mondrian claim to be the “only Parisian POP band”. Saying that this is bold would be an understatement, and it was be a shame if they weren’t able to back it up. Fortunately, Mondrain are actually quite awesome. Pop is a really fitting term for their sound because while they seem to have many influences, all of the groups that they resemble were palatable to the masses. They sound like a cross between The Byrds and Hot Chip. Their newest single, “Pop Shop” is extremely simple, but the simplicity enables it to become a sort of pop bliss. The track begins with simple drums, and then a delightful, full sounding electronic organ comes in. A few other synths enter, but the most charming part of the song is the vocals. They are light sounding, but also unpolished in a wholehearted way. During the chorus there are harmonies that remind me a lot of The Byrds. While I doubt that Mondrain are the only parisian pop band, they certainly appear to be one of the best.
When a friend approaches me saying something to the effect of, “Check out this song I wrote!”, I’m often apprehensive. While it seems like my apprehension is reasonable, I am often very surprised by how talented my friends can be. Denson Shore, a group which is the brainchild of Michael Kim, was one of these pleasant surprises. Both as a guitarist and vocalist, Michael has a really sound sense of melody. “Bayburn Wash” is the project’s newest track, which I personally really enjoy. The first fifty seconds of the song are, for lack of a better description, a dreamy jam that doesn’t feature a single word, and when the vocals come in, it only intensifies the atmospheric energy that the song emits.