Monday, March 14, 2011

Jeff's Trippin' Out

        Since 2005, a two-man group from Providence called Jeffs Trippin Out claims to be “Independently Rockin Rhode Island.” The band consists of Jeff, the band’s front man, and Jim who plays guitar and occasionally sings back up vocals. Recently, a new member has joined the band, Youssef, who also plays guitar. The band frequents Providence venues like Jerky's Bar and AS220. They also played at Boston’s own Hempfest in 2010. Catering to the Psychedelic Rock genre, with Ska and Blues influences, the group focuses on a freestyle approach and has a habit of changing their pace mid-song, along with the general tone of the lyrics. 

Friday, March 4, 2011

Space Versus Speed - Space Versus Speed

On his fourth album in the three years since leaving Rustic Overtones, legendary Portland, Maine keyboardist/multi-instrumentalist and As Fast As founding member Spencer Albee continues to switch things up and cover new ground with his newest solo effort, “Space Versus Speed.” After 2008′s grandiose genre-defying “Destroy the Plastique Man,” early 2009′s alt-pop return-to-roots “AFA For Effort,” and late 2009′s stripped-down acoustic masterpiece “Candy Cake and Ice Cream,” Albee greets the new decade by fully embracing the electro-pop sound and aesthetic that has dominated the airwaves over the past few years. Certain As Fast As songs such as “Homewrecker” in 2008 and “Crazy 4 You” in 2009 might have hinted at this sound, but the difference between the sound and scope of this album and School Spirit Mafia’s “Candy Cake and Ice Cream” is nearly as vast as that between the latter album and the material he released with As Fast As. 

Monday, December 6, 2010

Black Licorice: The Musings of Alex Ross

It’s been well documented for several years now that the vinyl record is coming back into style as a viable format for music. After all, in a world of downloads where albums are sliced and diced and sold song by song, all music costs the same and is therefore created equal, and everything exists in cyberspace, it’s only natural that music lovers would take refuge in the idea that they still have an actual artifact whereby they can foster a greater sense of connection to the sounds that bubble forth from their speakers. The art on the dust jacket is huge, a masterpiece unto itself, and when that beautiful and glossy black licorice disc is placed gingerly on the turntable and the tone arm is slowly lowered, making contact with a snap crackle and pop, there is a sense of ritual. There’s also no real skipping of tracks, so albums must be listened to all the way through, as cohesive works of art. Yes, it is high time that vinyl had a renaissance.

The Ricecakes Feel Like Human-EP

The Ricecakes, native to Providence, RI, consist of Roz Raskin (vocals and “mostly keyboard”), Casey Belisle (“mostly drums”) and Justin Foster (“mostly bass”).  They are signed by Moose Proof Records, which also hails from Providence. The band was voted Providence’s Best Local Act of 2010 by the Providence Phoenix and performs regularly throughout the East Coast. The Rice Cakes released Feel Like Human in September of 2010 on 10-inch vinyl with MP3 downloads. The album was entirely created by the band members as well, from the album artwork to the actual studio in which they recorded themselves.