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Band new and promising: Magana plays FIKA on 01.06

Ever wish all songwriters were actually songRIDERS - i.e. they focused on taking us for a ride, rather than just... writing songs? This neologism works well for Brooklyn's Magana, the indie pop/alt folk project of Jeni Magana, who released her haunting and slightly eccentric debut, four track EP 'Golden Tongue' this past October 2016. In it, Jeni takes us on rides of the mental variety, and since we are brainy New Yorkers, we are feeling right at home. Two songs stand out to our ears: ballad "The World doesn't Know," with its elegant melodies, trembling guitar and sophisticated chord progression, is dream folk perfection; its lyrics, through Magana's heartfelt vocals, find the ideal form of control a lover can have over the loved one: an imaginary one. "Get it right," as moody and only slightly faster, also deals with thought process and relationships, focusing instead on how the right words, but only the right ones, can change minds. (Incidentally, that's a lesson we all need to learn if we want to win the next elections). We stream both tracks below. Magana will be performing live at Manhattan's FIKA on January 6th.

We added this song to The Deli's playlist of Best mellow songs by emerging NYC artists - check it out!

Record of the Month: Tyrin - 'Things You'd Rather Imagine Now'

19 year-old Tyrin makes raps with a defiant millenial mindset, refusing to stick to one style, but with talent well beyond his years. On his debut project, Things You'd Rather Imagine Now, the Brooklyn emcee goes back-and-forth between monotone mumble-rapping and emotion-laden singing. Each track on the LP also has a distinct musical influence in its production but is always sparse, which suits Tyrin well. The variation in production, such as the shift from sad and synthy "Afterglo" to bold and brassy "Clean Yourself Up," keeps things fresh sonically, and also gives him the space to keep switching up his deliveries. Lyrically, he provides disaffeccted humor like the hook for "Synergy," "white girls think they black like Hillary," and genuine thought-spilling on tracks like "Cassandra." Tyrin refuses to define himself or be defined, like most millelials, instead trying out everything to see what works and what doesn't. This kind of experimenting is expected for someone of Tyrin's age, but what isn't is how sucessful each of these experiments are. At 19, Tyrin seems to be able to do it all. You can catch him at Shea Stadium on 12/28, and stream our favorite track from the record 'Clean Yourself Up'. — Henry Solotaroff-Webber


Band on the rise: The Candles ends tour with Norah Jones, plays Mercury on 01.21

Although Josh Lattanzi played for and toured with artist with pop inclinations like Albert Hammond Jr., the Lemonheads and Ben Kweller, his musical heart beats for wise and evocative Americana, and The Candles is the project where this passion is indulged. The band's third album, entitled 'Matter + Spirit" was released earlier in November 2016 and is receiving such good responses that it propelled the band on our Top 10 of NYC artists with buzz (you'll find it towards the top of this same page). Supporting Norah Jones on a US and European tour also helped. The NYC singer songwriter also appeared as a guest vocalist on single 'Move Along,' streaming below. Don't miss their first show home after the tour at Mercury Lounge on January 21.

Maggie Rogers takes things to the next level with trilogy of videos and tour

After being blessed by Pharrell Williams' seal of approval, which got a lot of eyes on her and ears on her track 'Alaska,' NYC's songwriter Maggie Rogers is trying to capitalize on the attention by unveiling a trilogy of videos featuring that single and two new songs. The second one of the series, 'Dog Years' (streaming below), resumes the atmospheric, electronic-pop-soul sound of 'Alaska', including the subtle African music influences. Maggie has also announced three legs of a winter/early spring tour that will take her - between January and April 2017 - from the east coast to Europe to the west coast and back, with a final date at NYC's Bowery Ballroom on April 11. We are sure the third video will drop just before the tour begins, in early January.

Dr. Something Writes the Folky Prescriptions We Need

Atmospheric in every sense of the word, Dr. Something's minimalist chamber folk pop takes on strange artistic sensibilities with aural novelty mixed with a slight cat-crazy Tumblr aesthetic. Clarinet, keys and accordian are the gold, silver and bronze winners of her instrumental outfit. Yet it's the eclectically toned pitch of Miss Dr. Something herself, Alison Dennis, that elevates its sapid qualities.

Since Dennis is well versed in all things musically weird (previously coming from the strange Dr. Something & the Pipin’ Hot Love Engines and Coney Island Cartel), the ways in which Dr. Something satiates this oft empty hole left in the market make sense. Her self described "sad bastard piano pop" could very well inspire some bummer feelings if you're in the headspace for such, but it's tracks like the indelilble "Imperfect Skull" off of 2015's Tomorrow's Just Fiction, to the hauntingly fun filled "Here Comes Count Dracula" from October of this year, that make it hard to be sad.

Having a sound unlike that of run-of-the-mill folk pop, Dr. Something holds high regard in local odd sounds, making music integral to keeping Portland weird.


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