Yep Roc is one of my favorite labels – an eclectic bland of Americana, folk and pop artists who get promoted with care. It’s not your typical stable, and those who toil behind the scenes must love working there.
So when Yep Roc throws down a sale like this one, I pay attention. Now through August 1st, you can get over 80 CD’s for just $5 each and more than 20 LP’s for only $10 while supplies last.
Artists include Nick Lowe, Marah, John Doe, The Sadies, Todd Snider, The Baseball Project, Ian Hunter, Loudon Wainwright III, Paul Weller, Robbie Fulks, The Apples In Stereo, The Fleshtones…come on, do I really have to list everyone?
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Yes, they come with covers...
Marah’s career profile is like a rollercoaster.
Here is a band that has held the brass ring in their hand not once, but twice, yet it slipped from their grasp and clattered to the ground. After Kids in Philly and Angels of Destruction, the band seemed primed to finally achieve the popular success that the hardcore fans have predicted. Both times, the band splintered and collapsed, and not amicably.
Now a year after the under-the-radar (and aptly named) Life Is A Problem, new songs are dribbling out. Could the phoenix rise again?
I would never bet against Dave Bielanko.
Click here for the latest Marah news and music.
Went to see The Beehive Queen tonight, as part of the Rochester International Jazz Festival (yeah, I know…) and she was amazing. Had the crowd in the palm of her hand the whole time; got a standing ovation during the last song.
And that was just the early show. I’ll have a link to the live review later this week, but here’s a link to 83 song clips that will blow your mind.
Also on the horizon as part of the Jazz Fest – The Bottle Rockets on Thursday (yeah, I know – also not jazz!). Later this month, Zappa Plays Zappa; next month Crowded House, John Hiatt and maybe even a road trip to see a double bill of Squeeze with Cheap Trick. Already saw Marah once last week and might catch another show.
Todd Barry, Doug Stanhope and Marc Maron are all coming to the hinterlands – those three are very high on my list of the best comics around. There’s a Bill Hicks movie on the way, too.
And I’m looking at the Detroit calendar (thanks Suebedoo) to see how I can maximize another pilgrimage to see the hottest band on Earth, The Hell Drivers. Speaking of which, it looks like it’s going to be one hell of a summer.
Life is good.
These are interesting times.
I’m off soon to see the 2010 version of Marah, a band that’s changed rhythm sections, labels and musical direction so often that you’d swear they were trying to shake a tail. It will be the second time seeing Dave Bielanko without brother Serge, his musical co-conspirator, a role seemingly now played by multi-instrumentalist Christine Smith.
When they blew through town last year they were just getting started in their new incarnation and suffering through the shakes and rumbles that a new unit can often do when they’re windblown. Of the musician’s honing Dave’s vision, only bass player Johnny Pisano seemed focused and energized…but now he’s gone. Smith was hampered and drummer Martin Lynds looked lost, which he probably was given the nature of rambling set lists and malfunctioning equipment.
But now a full year more of woodshedding is in the books and the new release Life Is A Problem is due to be released in a couple of weeks. It’s a loose, muddled, dissonant and atmospheric record that might first bring a puzzled expression to your face, but let it worm its way in during a second and third listen. (I’ll post a link to my review as soon as the magazine posts it online).
Marah has always made great records and usually exceeded expectations live. It will be interesting to see how they bring some of these songs to life from the stage. I wrote last year that I didn’t know where they were headed, but I was ready to follow along and check it out when they did.
I guess now is the time.
Visit the Marah website and hear MP3s here.
Filed under Music, Reviews