Orchestral

Rogozo's dual album is a sonic journey worth taking, performance set for 08.02

Boston's Rogozo has a brand new double record out titled Nine Lives/Eight Lives and boy does it offer an escape from life's asphyxiating routine. The ambiance in the opening track "Nine Lives" alone is enough to relax the brain's neurons and secrete euphoria. The listener can be lost in the suppleness of the string instruments and keys that open the song and lead toward an intriguing marching drum build-up. The song then cascades the mind into a lake of majestic vocal chants, blinding drum fills, and flourishing guitars. The record continues its art-rock flexing to flash stylish guitar solos and Queen-like enthusiasm in its performance. "Animals" in particular is a cross between the most prominent rock forms of the '70s: punk, glam, and psych merge for a riveting experience. "The Psychic" fast-forwards to the '80s for an electro-tune that displays a furious pace, a smooth bassline, and charming vocal harmonies. "Red City" has a lush piano riff that contrasts with the song's aggressive tone. Rogozo has crafted a sonic journey that is deserving of praise, in its execution as much as in its creativity. The Thunder Road Music Club will be hosting Rogozo on Aug 2nd for a performance sure to be a good time. With so many tracks to choose from, we have to go with the pop-punk tinged "Dream" streaming for you below. - Rene Cobar

Pearla's New Single, "Daydream" and Upcoming EP Release

Daydream is an appropriate title for Brooklyn-based Pearla's first single from her upcoming debut LP Quilting & OtherActivities. Behind the band moniker, singer/songwriter Nicole Rodriguez reveals her most intimate thoughts through beautifully arranged emotional lullabies laden with metaphors and lush melodies. Recurring themes include love, evocative personal memories, the search for ways to escape darkness, whose emotional power gets boosted by her enchanting voice and a sparse but vivid production. Combining elements of folk, pop and psychedelia with a playful yet sober approach to songwriting, "Daydream" carries a wistful sort of confidence and a poetic power that's rare to find. 

In other Pearla-related news, the artist will be headlining Rough Trade on August 28th, celebrating the debut album release on Egghunt Records (Lucy Dacus, Camp Howard, Gold Connections). To hear the full EP, you'll have to wait until the September 6th release. - Susan Moon

Fresh Buzz: Ghost Funk Orchestra Releases Single, "Skin I'm In"

The output of NYC-based Ghost Funk Orchestra is becoming increasingly more sophisticated, and the group is also playing more frequently this year, which is always a good sign. Their most recent LP release, A Song For Paul (a band member's grandfather) is a complex matter propelled by a 10-piece band comprising horns, woodwinds, strings, keys, a tambourine, on top of the expected drums/bass/guitar. Their latest single "Skin I'm In" is an excersize of restrained psychedelia at times reminiscent of unforgettable British band Broadcast.

Featuring effected vocals that span layers of groovy orchestral textures, the single seemlessly blends elements from ganres as disparate as funk, noise rock and Eastern music. This is one of the coolest track we stumbled upon this year; you can check out Ghost Funk Orchestra at Elsewhere on July 30th at 8 PM. - Susan Moon

Kleptokrat release new EP, play Rose Gold on 7/9

Combining elements of pop, jazz, soul and heavy rock into an appealing progressive mix, Brooklyn's Kleptokrat is a band intent in expanding the parameters of alternative rock. Their newly released sophomore EP “Momentarily, to Grace” boasts five impeccably recorded, genre-twisting tracks. Soulful horns and sweet, jazzy female lead vocals establish the mood on opening song “The Great Leap Forward.” Over the track's four minutes, precise, angular structures give way to floating ambient interludes that merge together with beguiling charm. “Jumping Ship” applies those light and airy vocals to a lyrically dense story of relationships coming undone, punctuated by heavy bass, sax and drums. “Kleptocito” further adds touches of latin rhythms to what becomes an over five minute instrumental tour-de-force. Final cuts “The View at Bethlehem” and “Body in the Room” bring back those engaging, honeyed vocals over alternately dreamy-to-frenzied compositions. The band kicks off their summer tour at Rose Gold on 7/9, followed by a stop in Philly on 7/11. Full tour dates can be found here. - Dave Cromwell

Makeunder shares new single "In Between My Dead-End Jobs"

Photo credit: Ginger Fierstein

Oakland's Makeunder (aka Hamilton Ulmer) just released another single off forthcoming album Pale Cicada and it's a force of soul and funk, Prince-esq vocals and gyrating horns and baselines. There's so much going on in track "In Between My Dead-End Jobs" that you've got to give it a couple listens. The full album comes out June 28 on Good Eye Records and it's a fun experience of songs that are full of passion and positivity, despite messages full of struggles and loss. - Michelle Kicherer, Associate Editor

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