Don’t Leave Darja Alone With Her Latest Track

A rich voice, deep in velvet but dripping in femininity, Darja is making her mark on the music scene with her latest release.

Alone was released late October, on the 25th, and draws an image of fast, dirty romance. Closed shutters, and stolen kisses in shadowed corners. It’s gritty to keep you warm in the winter, but definitely the kind of thing your mom told you to stay away from.

I won’t tell if you don’t.

Hot off of the heels of Fallen just a few months earlier, the single envelopes Darja’s female prowess and splashes her name across Austin, and more.

Born in Belgrade, Serbia, Darja came to the US for college and studied jazz piano performance, and Lord, did she learn to perform. She’s now drawing forward a colossal fan base and they’re rising up.  Holding eye contact across the bar and hands under the table, they’re waiting with bated breath to see what comes next.

Check out Alone below.

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Liz Cooper & The Stampede Roll Through Emo’s With a Psychedelic Storm

Nashville-based Liz Cooper & The Stampede twist timeless folk-rock into a swirling, psychedelic foray of unconventionalism with their debut album, Windows and Flowers. Recorded at Welcome to 1979 in Nashville with co-production from TJ Elias, Window Flowers is the culmination of a yearlong dedication in which Cooper pushed herself to spend every single day creating in at least one medium and saying “yes” to everything she was asked to do.

Of the recording, Cooper reflects, “Our first time working with an outside producer and our first time in a proper recording studio was when we recorded Window Flowers. TJ Elias’ mad scientist ideas, an abundance of hot dogs, and lack of sunlight pushed us outside of our comfort zones to work more cohesively as a unit than we ever had before.” Joined in the studio by bassist Grant Prettyman and special guests Leah Blevins, Will Brown, Steve Dawson, Emily Kohavi, Michael and Ben Ford and Gianni Gibso, the new album follows Cooper’s earlier self-released EPs—Monsters (2014) and Live at the Silent Planet (2016). Alongside Cooper, “The Stampede” consists of Prettyman and drummer Ryan Usher.

Already known in Nashville for their electric live shows, Liz Cooper & The Stampede experienced their first breakthrough in 2016 with the release of their Audiotree Live session, which has attracted over 220,000 views on YouTube, and over 1,000,000 streams on Spotify. Additionally, the band placed as one of NPR Music’s runners-up during their 2016 Tiny Desk Contest.

In celebration of the release, the band has joined Phosphorescent on tour this fall. These shows follow the band’s busiest touring year to-date, which featured performances with Houndmouth, Lord Huron, Deer Tick, Rayland Baxter, Ron Gallo and Blitzen Trapper. See the band’s website for full tour details.

Liz Cooper and The Stampede at Emo’s

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Photos by: Anie Walsh @aniewalshphotography

The Day Dawes Took Over Stubbs – Photo Recap

American folk rock band, Dawes, took over Stubb’s early this month – balls of energy and fiery passion filled the stage.

From Los Angeles, Dawes are fast becoming experts in this field. They’ve been in this game for coming on nine years, and have the experience to hype up a room – experience they used in Austin.

Having recently released their sixth album, Passwords, this past June, the foursome will be on tour through ’til February. Details here.

 

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Photographer: Anie Walsh

The Wait Is Over – The Banisters Are Back With Another Single

The Banisters are back, and my God they were worth the wait.

Spirit charging, electricity sparking, and energy igniting. The Austin-built band bring life to a cavorting wildfire during their playful new single Desert House.

Impatient heat drives this ultra-catchy track, accompanied by a nostalgic beachside twang that catapults you to teen reminiscences of summers gone by. Memories good or bad, Desert House’s peppy rascality refuses to end without leaving you smirking.

Under the surface, the track breathes sore urgency and desperation, yet the distorted guitar strums and boisterous Americana vocals stifle it with mischief.

With punk, blues, and psych-rock influences to thank for their sound, the potent blend conceives a sing-a-long track with too many air guitar solo opportunities to resist. It’s a song that’s best served live, alongside good beer and even better company.

Like Mississippi Queen, Desert House is just another delicious slice of what’s yet to come on their very first full-length album released later this month, with Gasoline Boots and The Matters lending a hand for its release party at Mohawk on November 29th.

Desert House is available to listen to on Soundcloud and Spotify now.

 

David Messier’s Time Bomb Goes Off at One-2-One

The multi-talented, Austin based artist David Messier celebrated the release of his sophomore album, Time Bomb, Saturday night by performing the album in its entirety at One-2-One Bar in south Austin. A Trustee of the Recording Academy, Messier, is an esteemed music industry leader, accomplished producer, entrepreneur, singer and songwriter. Austin Chronicle has hailed Messier as an “expanse of talent and ideas” and KUTX said, “Messier is a hurricane force of music.” With all of his successful moments, he likes to live by the ethos that life is always happening in front of you, and doesn’t often look back. So, when it came time to write the album, he uncharacteristically and quite unexpectedly, captured his most reflective moments. Time Bomb is one of Messier’s most honest introspective creations to date and provides sharp and witty commentary through his upbeat, good-natured bravado.

“I don’t have much of a rearview mirror. I didn’t realize it at the time, but this is the most self-reflective record I’ve made.” — David Messier

He will be supporting his new record with performances around central Texas in listening rooms near you. Be sure to follow him here, and watch for his upcoming performances here.

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Photos by: J. Alan Love @jalanlovephotography

Giulia Millanta Calls Out to The Familiar Spirits of Loss With Latest Video

The subject of loss is one that Italian singer-songwriter Giulia Millanta has eloquently articulated in various fashions through her music. Whether it be the loss of a loved-one, innocence or sanity, the theme is prevalent throughout the entirety of her sixth album, Conversation With a Ghost. Her latest video from the album, “Coney Island“, finds the singer in mourning and calling out to those familiar spirits of loss. However, the stripped-down, multi-layered song leaves the subject open to different interpretations.

“The song is about losing someone…or something,” states Millanta. “It’s about reminiscing and mourning. It’s the end of a summer, or the end of a relationship, or saying goodbye to someone.”

Dusty tones of melancholy and blurry shadows linger over the reflective singer. Tranquil bossa nova notes fill the sparse background and lament her sorrow as Millanta stares into the distance searching for what she’s lost.

“Coney Island” explores the concept of loss in a broad and empathetic manner. Is it a place, a person, a memory or a feeling? Whatever it may be, loss is something we all have to endure and Millanta sympathetically stirs those yearning emotions with “Coney Island”.

You can witness Giulia Millanta conversing with all her ghosts this Saturday at One-2-One Bar. For more info click here.

 

 

Larry g(EE) Went ‘Round and ‘Round to Create His Latest EP

Larry gEE has truly come into his own with his latest EP. The acclaimed singer-songwriter has navigating the Dallas music scene for nearly a decade as part of Odis, The Texas Gentleman and eventually a solo artist. He’s earned two Dallas Observer Music Awards while also conquering personal and professional challenges that all threatened to derail his career. He’s grown beyond those setbacks and has used the challenges as fuel to propel himself, personally and professionally, forward and Larry’s resilience is evident in the strength of his latest project.

Fans may know Larry best for his fun-loving, party-ready soul-funk anthems. However, his new EP, Love Things, is a far departure from anything he’s done previously–and that’s exactly what Larry intended.

This is the kind of music I want to make,” he says. Larry’s artistic and personal journey led him to this new sound: vulnerable, soul-baring electro-pop with rich shades of R&B.

The cathartic lines of Love Things were crafted to remedy the wounds of past relationships and provide perspective over the joys and heartaches he’s endured throughout his career.

With this new EP, I wanted to be transparent and talk about some things I wanted to get off my chest,” he admits.

Ironically, Larry found closure with the album’s first single, “Central Valley”. The introspective, electro R&B ballad featuring Sam Lao was penned as Larry’s self-care therapy following his divorce from his wife. The tender tone feels slightly somber, but the singer’s message is one of inspiration. Anyone who’s dealt with a devastating breakup and came out the other side a better person can easily relate.

All my life I’ve been so crazy / Never something I could hide
Living my life without you lately / Never been so satisfied

Larry picks up the pace and drops the bass with the album’s second single “RNR”, a funky, upbeat dance joint with LEV that you can’t help but swing with. The duo effortlessly bridge nostalgia with new-age by weaving modern, electro dance pop and classic 90’s R&B to detail the ups and downs of a previous relationship that was doomed from the jump. And through it all, Larry finds the world still going ‘round and ‘round.

His new sound is a melting of pop, soul and R&B that touches on love, his battle with depression and topics that he has yet to cover in previous songs. “These songs are a new direction; a way for me to just be me.” It’s Larry gEE like we’ve never seen him before–and he’s just getting started.

Larry will be celebrating the release of Love Things on Nov. 9 at Scout at The Statler with special musical guests Ronnie Heart, and DJ Blake Ward. Click here to RSVP

Photos by: Karlo X. Ramos

Pale Waves Expose Their Noisy Minds at Scoot Inn

Since releasing their debut single, “There’s A Honey”, almost a year ago, Pale Waves have created significant buzz with their glistening dark-pop sound. Their debut full-length, My Mind Makes Noises, released in September, is distinct and unique…and has sent their rabid fan base in an absolute frenzy. Leaning into the legendary 1980s and 1990s artists that inspired them, like Madonna, Garbage and Prince, frontwoman Heather Baron-Gracie and drummer Ciara Doran have managed to create a debut album that bridges the perfection of vintage pop with the aesthetics of modern summer bops. This combination has created a special buzz around the band, sending 8 of their last 10 singles to more than 1 million digital streams (the remaining 2 are closing in fast), with over 48 million global streams collected on all platforms.

Pale Waves is currently touring North America through December and made a stop by Austin’s Historic Scoot Inn on Oct. 26th. Check out a few highlights from the show and then head over to the band’s website for additional info and tour dates.

Pale Waves at Scoot Inn

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Photos by: Melodi Ramirez @melodi.jpg

Pabst Blue Ribbon Sound Society Celebrates Austin’s Art Community at Mohawk

The Pabst Blue Ribbon Sound Society kicked off their five-city tour in August built to amplify the creative voices of New America. The national tour features 20 major and emerging artists across music and art to celebrate creative freedom and pioneering artist growth in local communities. The Sound Society exists to foster a community that brings like-minded voices together through music. So far, the tour has visited Denver, Portland, Atlanta and Austin and will conclude on Nov. 9th at The Regent Theater in Los Angeles.

Last Saturday, The Pabst Blue Ribbon Sound Society celebrated Austin’s art community with a benefit for the Austin Music Foundation at Mohawk with performances by Benjamin Booker, Bully and Tele Novella and art by Sophie Roach. Check out a few of the show highlights below and visit pabstblueribbon.com/soundsociety/ for additional info.

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Photos by: J. Alan Love

Fifth Annual Black Fret Ball Set for Friday Dec. 7

Austin nonprofit Black Fret has announced the date for the fifth annual Black Fret Ball, taking place Friday, Dec. 7, 2018 at ACL Live at The Moody Theatre. Doors for the event are at 6 p.m. and the show will begin at 7 p.m. This crowning event of the year, where all 20 nominees will be awarded a Black Fret grant, will include performances by many of the 2018 Black Fret Nominees. This year’s nominees include A Giant Dog, Billy King and the Bad Bad Bad, Dave Scher, Donovan Keith, Greyhounds, Israel Nash, Jaimee Harris, Jane Ellen Bryant, Jeff Plankenhorn, Kalu and the Electric Joint, Los Coast, Megafauna, Otis the Destroyer, Palo Duro, Rebecca Loebe, Shy Beast, The Texas KGB, Tomar and the FCs, Trouble in The Streets and Wood & Wire. Anyone wishing to attend the Black Fret Ball may become a member of Black Fret by signing up at http://www.blackfret.org/join. All Black Fret memberships provide entry for the member and a guest to all upcoming Black Fret events as well. For more info on Black Fret, please go to http://www.blackfret.org.

“It is a huge milestone for Black Fret to award over a million dollars in grants to Austin musicians in just five years of giving,” said Black Fret Founder Colin Kendrick. “It’s a testament to the passion Austinites feel for their music.”

2018 Black Fret Nominee Shy Beast
2018 Black Fret Nominee Shy Beast

 

Black Fret is a public charity headquartered in Austin whose mission is to empower musicians to create and perform great new music. The organization is an innovative evolution of the age-old symphony patronage model that is focused on supporting popular local music. To date, Black Fret has awarded $830,000 in grant dollars to local Austin artists and will award another $250,000 the night of the 2018 Black Fret Ball. Black Fret grant recipients unlock their grant dollars by writing, recording and performing new music and by providing community services to other area nonprofits. To date, Black Fret grants have resulted in 646 U.S. tour dates, 328 songs written, 329 songs recorded, 151 charitable performances, 137 songs and videos released and 88 international tour dates.

This year’s Black Fret Ball will be sponsored by Deloitte, Dell and NY Life, with additional sponsors to be announced. Individual and corporate sponsor packages are still available for the event. Please contact matt@blackfret.org for information.

“To stand on stage at ACL Live at the Moody Theater and award a quarter million dollars in grants to our amazing class of nominees is a true honor,” said Black Fret Co-founder Matt Ott. “Sharing that stage as emcee not only with the artists but also with the Black Fret members, Advisory Board members, partners, sponsors and volunteers who will help award these grants is proof that our great city is building a true community to support our local music.”

For additional information visit http://www.blackfret.org.