Archive for the ‘Events’ Category

“Secret Identities” CD release tonight; Impact broadcast online

The “Secret Identities: Lansing Cover Lansing” CD release is tonight! Be sure to get there early as Tommy Plural is going to be starting right around 9pm. Mac’s Bar. $7 cover. Be there.

Our interview from last night on The Basement is online to listen to at our Press page. The Press page link is found in the upper right hand corner of the homepage.

Secret Identities: Lansing Covers Lansing to be released Friday

This Friday the first compilation (and co-release with Good Time Gang records) from Lansingmusic.TV, entitled “Secret Identities: Lansing Covers Lansing” will be released. You can stream all of the tracks at the bandcamp page.

The release show will be this Friday Jan. 6 at Mac’s Bar in Lansing at 9pm. It’s an all-Lansing lineup with Frank and Earnest, Small Houses, American Gothic, Cavalcade and Tommy McCord (of the Plurals) playing solo. It’s going to be a great night of Lansing music so come on out! RSVP to the show here.

Lansing Noise published a story on the compilation, which can be read here. Thanks so much to Anne Erickson for the write-up.

Sean will be going on 88.9 The Impact “The Basement” this Thursday from 8pm-9:15pm to talk about the compilation. Local music writer for the Lansing City Pulse, Rich Tupica, as well as GTG records co-founder and compilation participant, via The Plurals, the Break Ups and Drinking Mercury, Tommy McCord will also be in attendance to talk about the compilation. Following our stint, Lansing hardcore band American Gothic, who covered the Fix’s “Signal”, will also be on to talk for the latter half of the show.

LMTV Album of the Year

So, it’s been another year of great Lansing music, as well as music from all around the state. As an FYI, this year we will be including other non-Lansing, but mid-Michigan, nominees for the Album of the Year award.

Let’s go through some of the best albums released in 2011 by some of Michigan’s best artists and bands.

Chris Bathgate “Salt Year” (Quite Scientific records)

Released in April, “Salt Year” is a great slice of Michigan indie folk. From my review, “Brimming with the same bottled up, lyrically driven but musically dynamic ethos as other Michigan bands Frontier Ruckus and Nathan K., Bathgate’s approach to folk music is a breath of fresh air. He concentrates on the musical side of his songs as much as the lyrical side. On the opener “Eliza (hue)”, he sings “Was it sacred? Did you scream out?” as pianos drip and coalesce into a emotional landscape filled with warbling strings and steady drums. The flourishes of electric guitar are nice to hear as well.”

Good Weather for Airstrikes “To have our hearts emptied, to be left as we came” (self-released)

I absolutely love this album. I love the lyrics, via singer/guitarist James Raddick, which are all-together confident and passionate yet sad and melancholy. I love the post-rock instrumentation. It’s not necessarily the most innovative approach to post-rock but what they play, they play well and with great energy and enthusiasm. From my review in Central Michigan Life (which you can read here): “What I really love about this record are the lyrics written and sung by Radick. He’s honest and heartfelt. He puts real emotion into his voice. On “25 years tomorrow” Radick sings “But maybe this is what’s best for all of us/To have our hearts emptied, to be left as we came” with the most heart wrenching emotion and sincerity you can’t help but sing along. It’s honesty to its core.”

Small Houses “North” (Good Time Gang records)

“North” by Small Houses (aka Jeremy Quentin) is a quiet and beautiful record. The best pure folk record to come out in 2011 by far. From my review: “Less is more with “North”. A song like “Late July” with its subdued vocal by Quentin, quiet acoustic guitar melody, ringing piano chords and lap steel guitar, has more than a few musical elements but holistically they act as one quiet, emotionally subdued piece.

I’ll end my list of the “Best of the Rest” there but certainly there were a lot of other great records that came out in 2011 by bands like Josh David and the Dream Jeans (“Can you believe we landed on the moon?”), Jake Simmons and the Little Ghosts’ (“self-titled”), Joe Hertler and the Rainbow Seekers (“On Being”), Honah Lee (from New Jersey but their album “Life Won’t Let Me” was released on GTG Records this year).

….and the 2011 Lansingmusic.TV album of the Year is: The Plurals “The Plurals today, The Plurals tomorrow: A Futurospective” (Good Time Gang Records)

I first saw The Plurals play in June of 2010 at Basement 414. It was loud, chaotic, noisy and funny all at the same time. After hearing their second album “Whatevers Forever”, I instantly loved their pop hooks and distorted,  crunchy guitars melding together to create a humble Midwestern noise-pop fusion indebted to Husker Du and The Replacements but augmented by the boy-girl vocal take via drummer Hattie Danby, Tommy McCord (guitar/vocals) and Nicholas Richard (bass/vocals). I knew this band was something special.

When their third album, “Futurospective: The Plurals Today, The Plurals Tomorrow”, was released in May I knew the pop hooks and noisy guitars would still be there. Upon my first few listens, I was torn as to how to think about the album. On one hand, it felt like they were all comfortable with their respective songwriting roles in the band (Hattie singing the quieter songs, Tommy taking leads on the rocking songs and Nich screaming his lungs out on the noisy, short tracks) and it felt like the same old, same old. But after Ryan Horky reviewed the album for Revue mid-Michigan, saying how the album was what The Plurals had been ready to make for years and how it was the record that perfectly translated their live show, I knew he was right.

Horky’s review was the turning point for me. “La la la” is the perfect introduction. It’s fast, Ramones-esque and all consumed by poppiness and hooks. “Crush” continues this pattern. The guitar riff is instantly catchy; you’ll be humming along for days. The noisy guitar tones serve a purpose, helping to conceptualize the lyrics about the mixed feelings of having a secret crush on someone. The best Lansing song of 2011 is “Free Burd” with its quiet and introspective intro (McCord sings “All I can think about is that your guitar is not here for me to play”) then the thoughts burst into song as, later, McCord belts out for a good 10 seconds. This definitely impressed me and it’s a great moment on the record overall. My favorite moment on the record, though, is the second verse section. I love the intensity and energy brought to it. It’s unrivaled and incredible. Richard adds his raspy, gruff response vocal of “I’ll keep you warm” as McCord warmly and assuredly sings “After the storm”.

The album’s closer “Happy Songs” is a wild and adventurous song, to say the least. At first, it might sound like a standard, rough pop-punk song. McCord and Danby’s backup vocals add to the poppiness and the guitars are rough and edgy. Once you get toward the end, though, it changes drastically. Richard goes on a stream-of-consciousness rant, saying “I’m going to go off my prepared notes for this song” and “trying to convey the human spirit, trying to make you understand. Be clever and witty and fun and all at the same time but poignant” he says honestly. As this diatribe is going on, McCord’s guitar is let loose with feedback as Danby keeps the beat. This epic section ends with Richard screaming “I want a freaking pepsi so bad I could die!”. I love that. It’s one of my favorite lyrics ever.

There you have it. The LMTV album of the year. I really enjoyed this year in Michigan music and am definitely looking forward to 2012. See you then.

Sean Bradley


Scotty Bell’s top 5 of 2011

Scotty Bell, talent booker for Lansing punk rock label Bermuda Mohawk Productions, gives us his top 5 national records of 2011.

5: Off! –First Four EP’s.

Track you must hear: “fuck people”.

4: Bomb the Music Industry – “Vacation”.

If you’ve ever written this band off before, this is not the record to continue doing so.

3: Touche Amore  - Parting the Sea Between Brightness and Me

The intensity of this record and urgency that Touche Amore puts back into hardcore is unparalleled. Made me a believer again.

2:  Waka Flocka Flame -Flockaveli

Did this come out in 2011 or 2010?.. I dont even care.. because “Hard in da Paint” has gotten me through more slow days and situations where I needed motivation than any other song out there. (For the record, Scotty, this came out in 2010)

1:  Young Jeezy’s “Thug Motivation 103: Hustlerz Ambition”

The most important TRAPSTAR in the game delivers against with the hardest beats and realest rhymes.

The Record Lounge’s top records of 2011

Heather Frarey, owner of East Lansing record shop The Record Lounge, was kind enough to provide us with her lists of favorite local and national records of 2011.


1. Frontier Ruckus- Dead Malls and Nightfalls: This was just a great follow up to the 2008 release The Orion Songbook. From the music that just blows you away with the arrangements as well as the stellar song writing. In this short span of time they have went from a great local Michigan folk band to a worldwide success in the Americana/Folk genre. (This album was re-released on vinyl in 2011 by Lower Peninsula Records)

2. Joe Hertler and The Rainbow Seekers- On Being: This came out later this year and Joe really showed what a great song writer he is.
This music is indie at its best and I expect them to really blow up in 2012.

3. Gifts or Creatures- Pilot House: Husband and wife Brandon and Bethany Foote along with the likes of Seth Bernard and Trevor Hobbs and many other contributors really blew me away with this awesome folk cd. The production as well as all the different instruments that was used in this just shows that attention to detail results in a great cd!!

Here are her national picks for 2011:

Top 10 lp’s 2011

10. Toro Y Moi- Underneath The Pines : One of chillwaves best artists. This lp has great upbeat tracks that almost sound as if they were taken from some of the best pop songs of the 70′s. Great lp to put on, on that great summer day!

9. Battles- Gloss Drop: From the members Helmut, lynx and Don Caballero, brings their 2nd lp that blend great experimental rock w/ some math rock and New Wave thrown in. Fantastic lp!!

8. Fleet Foxes- Helplessness Blues: These guys kept their blend of Folk/Americana rolling with this album. Although the first lp was better all around this does not disappoint.

7. Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks- Mirror Traffic : Singer / Songwriter of the band Pavement brings us yet another indie / alt album that is great and this was also co-produced with Beck.

6. Kasabian- Velociraptor: 1st Full length since 2006′s Empire( also had an ep in 2009) This lp brought them back in a major way, in the UK but failed to chart here in the States.reat mix of Brit-pop/synth and new wave.

5. Tame Impala- Inner Speaker:Australian psych/chillwave band who’s awesome lp got me through the long slow summer!!

4. The Horrors- Skying: UK band who takes 80′s/90′s goth, garage and shoegaze to another level!! These guys are huge in the UK and are just starting to break through here in the States. For fans of The Kills, Vaccines, Editors, also Joy Division and Bauhaus.

3. Black Keys- El Camino: This follow-up to 2010′s Brothers lp keep their brand of lo-fi garage with catchy hooks alive well into 2012.

2. Mastodon- The Hunter: Prog-Metal Gods bring it with this tribute to guitarist Brent Hinds brother who died unexpectedly while hunting. I never really listened to this band until this lp and have since made them one of my faves.

1. Tom Waits- Bad As Me: This was Waits 17th lp and the first that consisted of completely new material since ” Real Gone” in 2004.
This lp really brought a great gritty , bluesy vibe and showcased his unique vocal style.

Secret Identities: Lansing Covers Lansing CD Release Show

The Secret Identities CD will be released on Friday January 6, 2012 at Mac’s Bar at 9pm with an exclusive release show.

Admission is $7. CDs will be $8.

Each band that performs will play their respective cover during their sets.

Bands scheduled to perform include:

Frank and Earnest (playing Mystic Shake’s “Woman Like That”)

Cavalcade (playing Small Brown Bike’s “The Cold”)

American Gothic (playing The Fix’s “Signal”)

Small Houses (playing Jen Sygit’s “Marshall St.”)

Tommy “Plural” McCord of The Plurals (playing Flatfoot’s “The Crawl”)

Secret Identities: Lansing Covers Lansing

Lansingmusic.TV will soon be releasing its first compilation in tandem with our friends at Good Time Gang Records. It’s called Secret Identities: Lansing Covers Lansing. It features The Plurals, The Break Ups, Drinking Mercury, Fields of Industry, Cavalcade and more. I’m working on a release show for the CD. The CD’s Facebook page is here. Please stay up to date on the compilation via the website, Facebook and our Twitter page. Stay Tuned!

Midwest Fest 2011 Countdown: The Shoutaways, Newday Dreamers and Morseville Bridge

Finally…the week of Midwest Fest has arrived! Get your tickets here. We finish up our countdown with The Shoutaways, Newday Dreamers and Morseville Bridge.

The Shoutaways

Photo courtesy of The Shoutaways Facebook page

Midland’s The Shoutaways are making their first appearance at Midwest Fest. With an indie swagger and a ’60s bubblegum pop swing, their songs, like “Deep” are infectious. They’ve played shows all across the state this summer. You can find songs like “Deep” on their self-titled EP available here.

Newday Dreamers

Photo courtesy of the Newday Dreamers Facebook page

Mt. Pleasant’s Newday Dreamers have unique sound, which combines a powerpop energy with blues, jazz and swing. I recently got the chance to see them perform at Rubble’s and it really enjoyed what I heard. This three piece are also young, having graduated high school earlier this year as well. Look for them to wow you at Midwest West.

Morseville Bridge

Photo courtesy of the Morseville Bridge Facebook page

This one man band from Flint is making his first appearance at Midwest Fest. His lo-fi recordings and his indie/punk live shows should be a great and unique experience for Midwest Fest goers. He also incorporates folk elements into his tunes. Check him out at Midwest Fest.

Midwest Fest 2011 Countdown: Yoke and Ghost Heart

Midwest Fest is less than a week away! Get your tickets and have a great time. We’re profiling Yoke and Ghost Heart this time.



Courtesy of the Yoke Facebook Page

Midland’s Yoke (aka Andrew Tamlyn) produces ambient, “chillwave” music but the difference between Yoke and all the others is that he uses a guitar and a few effects boxes and processors and not a multitude of synths. I saw him perform with Wavvy Hands at Rubble’s a while back and I liked that he uses his instrument in a unique way. Making his first appearance at Midwest Fest, his ambient drones and laid back “surf” guitar waves should not be missed.

Ghost Heart

Courtesy of the Ghost Heart Facebook page


Friction Records’ four piece Ghost Heart, from Grand Rapids, are making their first Midwest Fest appearance. Songs like “No Canticle” from their album “The Tunnel” are tribal and pulsating on the drums and guitars. Feedback drones as vocal harmonies intersect the instrumentation. You can hear more from them and their album “The Tunnel” on Wednesday, Sept. 28.

Midwest Fest 2011 Countdown: Bloomill and Ratboy

Short and quick Midwest Fest 2011 previews today (lack of time is the culprit). Bloomill and Ratboy get the Fest-ing treatment here.

Courtesy of the Bloomill Facebook page

Detroit quartet Bloomill have a spontaneous attitude about their music. Sometimes they jam and other times they rock hard but they have a unique chemistry. They put on a great live show, which you can see at Midwest Fest 2011.

Courtesy of the Ratboy Facebook Page

Notre Dame, IN’s Ratboy are newcomers to Midwest Fest. This minimalist two piece consists of vocals and guitar (and, according to their facebook page, “everything else” too). Their blend of summertime folk pop will leave you wanting more.

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