Seafair

Album Review: Seafair – The Querencia

SeafairCleveland’s Seafair is about to turn some heads this year.

I know I have talked about a lot of Cleveland acts on my site, but this is the first time I have spoken on a band that is this incredibly multi-genred.

Seafair has been doing their thing since 2012 and is comprised of six amazing musicians whose roots  dip into an impressive and diverse dynamic of musical styles including everything from classical to punk rock.  The Querencia is the band’s debut release and is dropping next month.

Lead vocalist Chayla Hope has a voice that demands to be heard by anyone willing to open their ears.  Its deeper, powerful style is more Juliana Hatfield over Adele/Lorde (from what I have heard via mainstream radio, honestly I can’t stand either of those two).  Seriously, it is a bit fierce and a whole ton of passionate.

SeafairSide note: Having been good pals with Seafair’s drummer Ryan Kelly for at least 10 years now, there was no way I was not going to talk about this new band.  On another side note, I used to work with Andrea Bleding Elson’s husband at an EB Games back in the day.  Small world…

A classical intro to the album set me back for a moment as I became enthralled in the peaceful composure that morphed into “Vultures”.  I am not going to lie, I was not terribly impressed with this track and although Chayla Hope had a forceful and beautiful singing voice, the track itself did nothing for me.

“DIM”, however, was the complete opposite.  I adored this track on so many levels.  From the string playing to the infectious drumming of Sir Kelly, everything about this track was likable.  Perhaps it was the Björk-like melodies and singing towards the end that grasped me.  I almost hate myself for admitting I did not like the prior track, but then again, I am one one of millions of opinions out there.  This track though was a solid jam and everyone needs to check it out.

“Inferno” followed with a bellowing Hope singing her heart out.  This was one of the tracks I could image sounds so much better live on a hot summer night.

Hearing the “The Score” was like hearing an orchestrated indie rock track like none other.  This song built up so nicely and once the guitar playing picked up at the peak of the track, I was quietly rocking out here to it.  It was like one of those songs that is a story that builds with excitement.  My only quarrel with this track, is I wish the story lasted a little longer.

I am fairly certain “Ohio” was written about me and my return back to my favorite state in the world.  I am also positive that is not the case at all, but I’m ok with thinking that.  Honestly, this track about love growing distant was amazing to listen to.  I loved the breakdown at the end that changed things up.  This was one of the best tracks on the album in my opinion.

“Discovery” was another fantastic track.  I am sure this may be misconstrued in a sense, but this track was like listening to Foxy Shazam with a female singer.  Hope’s range on this track was just all over the place and perfect throughout.  I also got a kick out of the back up vocals that interjected throughout.  The more and more I listened to it, the more I loved it.

Quick props need to be given to the Ween-like guitar solo in “Not A Cure”.  The track overall was intense to listen to and it just erupted at the end.

Seafair to me is festival music, you know, the kind is best heard live during warm summer nights.  I know they were trying to play Bonnaroo but sadly did not win a voting competition.  That’s the voters loss, I think this band would kill it at the ‘Roo.  Regardless, they will play shows and they will turn heads.  I know it.

The Querencia is a beautifully put together album that is not over produced and spans over so many genres that I feel it will be difficult for anyone to not enjoy some part of it.  The album really grasps your attention throughout and treats it to a fine listen.

I was not expecting Seafair to sound the way they did, and that’s ok.  Surprises in music are one of my favorite things in life and I really hope others experience that feeling too.

Still Here…

Hey everyone,

Just wanted to let you all know that I am still around.  I would like nothing more than to post things on my site for you all to check out but have some changes in ordinary life I must attend to:

  • I reenrolled in school and am now studying hard almost every night.  I anticipate to graduate in July 2016.
  • I landed a new role at the paying gig in an area I have been wanting to get into for years now.
  • Most importantly, my pre-wife and I are expecting a baby boy in June.  We have been scurrying around trying to get things ready the the arrival of our first-born.

I promise I will try and post things here when I have some quiet time, but I know that is not going to be nearly as easy as it was a couple months ago.

To the bands and labels that continue to send me material to check out, keep them coming please.  I promise to share when I can.

Until then, I need to get back to my 7-page paper.  It is not too terrible, I have Ninja Gun acting as my soundtrack right now…

Enjoy the day.

Song Premiere: Borders – Holiday

I’m very stoked to be able to premiere a track by a band called Borders for you all to enjoy.

Featuring Dustin Andrews, formerly of Of Us Giants, this alt rock band has put out one hell of a single and I was asked to showcase it on my site.  After I listened to it, I could not wait to share it.

Check it out:

Borders

Download Link: Borders – “Holiday”

Last year around this time, I was talking up Of Us Giants and was more or less shocked when the band called it quits before they even got to tour.  Things happen for a reason I suppose.

Borders pretty much carries the torch that was prematurely dropped by Of Us Giants.  I am looking forward to hearing their full-length titled Wandering Youth that should drop in May.

 

Darius Koski Solo Debut To Drop April 7th

Hey Swingin’ Utters fans,  Darius Koski is about to debut his solo album.  Before you start throwing down assumptions that the guy is going acoustic just to to make a quick buck, please see what he had to say about the whole solo route:

“I’ve been wanting to have an outlet for it for so long—for longer than I’ve been with the Swingin’ Utters, basically. And I just hadn’t done anything with it. I didn’t really know how I was going to release it, I hadn’t done much live, I have problems remembering lyrics… So I’ve been putting it off for so many years, but it’s finally coming together, and I’m thrilled about it. I’m totally going to go for it.”

Now that you’ve read that, how about you take a listen to one of this new songs:

You’re weren’t expecting that much twang were you?  I know I was not, but I will tell you this, I love it.

Dropping on April 7th, Sisu, is in a genre really of its own with a plethora (yes I said plethora) instrument playing including guitar, piano, banjo, accordion, violin, glockenspiel, vibraphone, melodica, ukulele, and percussion.  This is not just some solo album.  This is years of built up creativity by Koski finally being released property.

I know I am stoked to hear this.

Pre-orders are up at Fat Wreck as of today.  Hurry up and get you some.

Check It Out: Unsung Episode #1: Jason Molina and Songs: Ohia’s Didn’t It Rain

jmpress_2015aI owe my pal Kyle for turning me into a huge Jason Molina fan.

Yesterday, WXPN aired a hour-long special on the late and great Jason Molina.

 

The moment I learned of this, I stopped what I was doing to tell him.  Now I am sharing this with you.

Last night, WXPN in Philadelphia aired the first of Folkadelphia’s Unsung specials of which Jason Molina and Songs: Ohia were the focus. The hour-long feature centered around a watershed moment in Molina’s career, specifically the time leading up to Didn’t It Rain, it’s creation, and the transition to Magnolia Electric Co. Host Fred Kittel guides us through the time period and explores Molina’s impact on a larger scale. The episode includes conversations with important partners in the creation of Didn’t It Rain as well as a compilation of Songs: Ohia covers by local Philadelphia bands. Stream the full episode, covers, etc via the links below.

STREAM FULL SHOW VIA SOUNDCLOUD
https://soundcloud.com/secretlycanadian/folkadelphia-songs-ohia-xpn/

SONGS: OHIA WXPN FOLKADELPHIA COVERS
https://soundcloud.com/secretlycanadian/sets/folkadelphia-songs-ohia-covers/s-ThSEr

Listen to Unsung Episode #1: Jason Molina and Songs: Ohia’s Didn’t It Rain. Make sure you have some spare time on your hands as you are going to get sucked into this.  It is a very interesting look into Molina and his time in Philadelphia while recording and those influenced by it.

Now comes the cool part…  Some of those folk who were influenced by the late and great Molina have contributed to a very appropriate compilation.

Stream and download the entire Songs: Ohia Folkadelphia Covers Compilation, which features RestorationsPsalmships (ft. Mike “Slo-Mo” Brenner), The Weaks (ft. Frances Quinlan from Hop Along), Teen MenLaura Baird, and Adeline Hotel performing Jason Molina’s music.

Enjoy.  I know I did.  Especially that Restorations cover…