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Scissors “Let’s Go”

The Scissors recently released the first video from their latest album, You Can Make It Dangerous. The track is called “Let’s Go”, and the video is great.

You can catch Scissors at Subterranean on April 24th.

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Live Review: Harlem Record Release Party 4/1 @ Mohawk

There has been so much hype about Harlem, the three piece rock band, out of Austin, TX, originally from Arizona.  XMU has been playing them consistently.  They are even hosting for a week on XMU, playing their music among other artists they like and have inspired them.  Maybe I set my expectations too high.

Don’t get me wrong, the same poppy, fifties influenced, music that I have loved on the radio is still in the forefront.  However, I think for a record release party, there should be a less sloppy and carefree approach.   After the second song, one of the band, who shall remain nameless, proclaimed, “I am sorry, I can’t believe you all paid f***ing money to come hear this s**t!”  I wanted him to be wrong and for them to continue on a smoother path, yet it wasn’t meant to be.  I think there is something to be said for not having a plan and improvisation and having fun, but I didn’t get it; I mean if you’re The Who, that’s one thing, but I wanted to see what they could do.  My cohort with me compared them to Pere Ubu, but I could only see some Haircut 100 and that was simply for the clothes…

Harlem’s songs are simple, poppy, catchy and really easy to love.  And the band members switching instruments during the show is impressive and makes them unique.  But, I can only give them an A for Effort this time around.  I will definitely see them again and I still really like the band, just wish it had blown me away.

--Ellen Green

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Show review - Freezepop at Cafe 939 - 3/27

freezpop

Freezepop has made a name for themselves by proving that pop song structures applied to infectious dance rhythms and video game inspired synth melodies produces phenomenal music. And the crowd at their sold-out matinee show on Saturday, March 27th at Café 939 is proof that the system is working splendidly well.

Café 939, a small performance space at Berklee, supplied a great atmosphere for the rare all-ages show. The high-ceilinged, open space housed the band’s background screens which flashed pop-art logos and minimalist graphics throughout the show. Even before the band began to play, members Liz Enthusiasm, Robert John “Bananas” Foster, The Other Sean T. and Christmas Disco Marie Sagan joked and bantered with the audience. The band is known for their close connection to fans and even responded to an audience member who called out, “Freezepop rules!” that that should be the name of their new album.

The show itself was nothing short of spectacular. Freezepop brings an effortless energy to all of their songs: The music is loud and intense without ever losing the wry innocence and playfulness characteristic of the band’s sound and personalities. The 14 song set featured fan favorites like “Plastic Stars,” “Frontload,” and the indomitable dance opus “Less Talk More Rokk,” as well as new songs like “Magnetic” and “Lose That Boy” from their forthcoming untitled album.

Liz’s vocals were strong throughout, switching effortlessly from soft soprano melodies that faded into synth effects (notably in “Lose That Boy” and the mischievous nursery rhyme tone of “Stakeout”) to the more forceful crescendos needed for “Frontload” and “Lady Spider,” darker vocals evocative of the crooning malaise of Depeche Mode. The instrumentals were near perfection with Robert John “Bananas” Foster’s keytar playing functioning as that impeccable balance between showcasing his musical prowess and genuinely enjoying the experience of playing the music. Sean T’s guitar was spot on, especially in the rock-heavy “Brainpower” and “Get Ready to Rokk” where the solos evoked the F-Zero series’ race soundtracks. Christmas Disco Marie’s work on vocoder and synth, which she used to provide trance-esque distortion to Liz’s vocals, is a testament to her skills and seamless integration into the band.

Freezepop’s music is always a playful montage of sound, evoking video game music, infectious dance songs, 80s synth-rock and pop songs to create a sonic mélange that’s as appealing to the indie crowd as it is to electronica fans. Freezepop is set to tour the Northeast in April, so check their website for dates.

--Meghan Guidry

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Javelin tours with Yeasayer (wearing leopard skin tights)

Quirky experimental Brooklyn group Javelin are about to spread their good vibrations beyond New York’s borders as they kicked off a nationwide tour last week at the Alfred University. The duo of George Langford Tom Van Buskirk cites acts as wide-ranging as Kraftwork to Smokey Robinson as influences and this eclectic nature is easy to spot, using everything from 8 bit blips, muted drums and spray painted boom boxes to create a collage of sounds. Teamed up with indie it-boys Yeasayer for their April tour, the group seem set to spread their unique brand of tropical pop as well as their unique fashion sense, since the band are known to perform wearing nothing but leopard skin tights. - Dean Van Nguyen

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The Deli’s April CD of the Month: People Songs - Power Animal

When I first reviewed Female Wrestler by Power Animal (a.k.a. Keith Hampson) in December 2009, I remember thinking where are those amazing tunes with the ridiculously long names that were on his MySpace. I actually felt bad that more people might not get to hear them. Well, I’m happy to see/hear that those tracks have re-emerged on Power Animal’s official debut full length People Songs released on Waaga Records, an offshoot of indie label Lefse (Neon Indian, Tape Deck Mountain). These bedroom recordings have returned more polished, but certainly have not lost any of their experimental pop goodness that makes People Songs its own unique animal among the herds of lo-fi artists grazing on the landscape of the indie music scene. The album puts you in a dream-like state where there are plenty of moments that you find yourself happily grooving out to the strangest mixtures of polyrhythmic beats and harmonies mixed with samples, handclaps, xylophones, banjoes and anything else that might make noise. The highlight of the album for me is (take a breath) “Dear My Body, I'm Not That Body. Dear Keith Hampson I’m Not Your Name. You Are A Shaky Boat With A Curse Upon It, But I Need You To Get To The Other Side Of The Lake.”, but with other favorites like “Money/Pocket”, “All I Can Hear Are The Bees”, “Birds Have Worries Too!”, “Copernicus”, “Sometimes” - actually just hit Play Repeat All and enjoy. Fun drugs definitely recommended while listening. myspace.com/poweranimalpa - Q.D. Tran

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