Saturday, December 31, 2016

Nate Noworyta - Buffalo, NY



Nate Noworyta is a Buffalo-based singer/songwriter who has been writing and producing music under the name "Darth Nater" since 2014. Nate just released a third full-length album, Junior, which features a considerable departure from his previous songwriting style.

Junior, largely influenced by the Mountain Goats, set out to craft a series lyrically dense story-songs filled with detailed imagery and characters. Musically, it is rooted in indie rock and folk, pulling from artists like Say Anything, Sufjan Stevens, American Football and the Smiths.

Junior explores themes of adolescence, escape and disillusionment through the construction of various characters and stories. A song about surviving the Y2K apocalypse is followed by the tale of a young girl who goes to space camp to cope with her parents' divorce. A song about two lovers losing all their money in Vegas is followed by a story about a wiener dog named Athena who tries desperately to escape her backyard. The songs are all held together by a firm grasp of storytelling and poetic imagery, along with emotional depth and a healthy dose of dry humor.

The album is self-recorded and produced. All parts were written and performed by Nate as well.

Here's the Bandcamp release link for Junior:
www.darthnater.bandcamp.com/album/junior

It's also available on iTunes:
https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/junior/id1187220380

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Kasador - Kingston, ON




Kasador (Will Hunter, Boris Baker, Nick Babcock, Cam Wyatt and Angus Fay) have been around the Canadian music scene since 2014 and have been out on the road fairly consistently. Their energetic stage presence and chorus oriented songs have worked to get them on bills with Canadian greats such as; Arkells, Wintersleep, Current Swell, Walk Off The Earth, July Talk, Lights, Darcy’s, Brave Shores and U.S.S.

Kasador’s debut EP was recorded at The Tragically Hip’s studio, The Bathouse, in Bath Ontario with Engineer/Producer Nyles Spencer (Half Moon Run, The Tragically Hip, Arkells, The Trews), was mixed by Juno award winning engineer Dan Brodbeck (The Cranberries, Ivory Hours) and mastered by Noah Mitz (Arkells, The Constantines, Broken Social Scene).

This past summer, Kasador has started to gain wider recognition with radio play of their first single ‘Neighbourhood’ on CBC Radio 1, The Edge (Toronto,ONT), The Drive (Kingston,ONT) and numerous college stations. They also made the leap that many Canadian bands fear: playing in the USA. Going down to Brooklyn New York for a Canada day party, Kasador was the supporting act for Wintersleep and Whitehorse. Connecting with promoters and fans, Kasador’s first step down south was a success and they plan to return to the states this January for a more extensive tour. Their summer ended with a tour through Quebec with Foreign Diplomats (Montreal/Indica Records) and two Ontario dates (Kingston and Toronto), finishing with a sold out show at Sneaky Dee’s (Toronto).




Jan 12 – Ottawa, ON – Live on Elgin
Jan 13 – Hamilton, ON – Stonewalls
Jan 14 – Waterloo, ON – Maxwell’s

*Jan 19 – Buffalo, NY – Tralf Music Hall

Jan 20 – Watertown, NY – The Flashback Lounge

Jan 21 – Burlington, VT – Radio Bean
Jan 22 – Brooklyn, NY – Gold Sounds
Jan 26 – Kingston, ON – The Brooklyn
Jan 27 – Toronto, ON – Adelaide Hall
Jan 28 – Burlington, ON – The Dickens
Feb 2 – Brooklyn, NY – The Well
Feb 3 – New York, NY – Pianos

Here are some links to Kasador’s socials -
Website: www.kasadorband.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/ kasadorband
Twitter: https://twitter.com/kasadorband
Instagram: @kasadorband

Friday, December 9, 2016

Blair Clark - Madison, WI


Blair Clark - Madison, WI

"The good mother the drunk old man the family the pets the doubters and believers. I sing songs from my broken heart and my broken head" from Blair's bandcamp page.


3 songs. 7 minutes. 27 seconds. Garage Pop Punk Rock. Park it in your head. Play it in your soul. Get Off!
releases December 15, 2016

Guitars, Bass, Drums, and Vocals - Blair Clark.
All songs written by Blair Clark.

Get Off! review by Joe Tell.
Get Off The Wheel Kid is a cool rock song. The tune has a unique sound with a underground/garage band feel. The background vocals along with the lead guitar lines are a nice touch and add alot to the soundscape.
Come Back To Me is driven by a heavy guitar. The rhythm is slow and packed with plenty of overdrive giving the song an alternative sound.
16 Times reminded of the best of early 80's new wave. Blair's vocals sound like Leonard Cohen with a rhythm track supplied by The Cramps.
Get Off! is sure to get a rise out of any alternative/punk rock fan.
 


This should be shaken not stirred. Weep, wail, and cry. Shame.
released November 17, 2016
Guitars, Bass, Drums, Vocals - Blair Clark
All songs written by Blair Clark

Before I start this review I want to thank Blair for supporting my blog and sending me his music to review. Blair is a unique and prolific songwriter who plays all the instruments on his original recordings. I must congratulate him for reaching his goal of 10 EP's by the end of this year. Congrats, Blair! I really enjoy listening to Blair's passionate music, he is deserving of positive attention by the music industry.
Shame reminded me of a song from the 50's. I can picture a crowded sock hop swinging and swaying to the slow sexy groove of Shame. Blair's vocal style is full of heartfelt yearning and emotion.
Cry uses musical tension to create a uptempo, dynamic song. Cry conveys feelings of a sad and longing urgency. Cry is a great example of Blair's unique songwriting style.
Broken Heart is the perfect title for a song that is overflowing with sincere sadness and obvious heartache.
Hopeless Holiday's tempo is uplifting and full of great guitar playing. The lyrical content defies the quick tempo reflecting on some truly sad subject matter.
Shame is one of Blair's best efforts to date. If you are not familiar with Blair's music I highly recommend you click on one of the links and check it out.
https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/shame



Hello , Blair Clark released an EP on October 20th called The State I'm In. Bad cops, bad fathers, divorce, all kinds of struggle for all kinds of people. The State I'm In. Blair Clark is a songwriter currently without a home, on his way to California.

The State I'm In review by Joe Tell.
The first track, Cinch, has an alternative sound, reminiscent of the early 90's rock. Blair's vocals sound heartfelt and soulful as always.
The title track, The State I'm In, is a short song with some unique vocal sounds. Blair sings some high falsetto along with his acoustic guitar.
The lyrics for Dirty Cop seem to be a commentary about the daily police shootings that plague our current state of affairs seemingly every day. The lead guitar line that plays throughout the song is tasteful and sounds cool.
Life Is But A Dream sounds like a country song with a new wave edge.
https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/the-state-im-in



Hello , I'm Blair Clark my current EP is called Is Love and Fuss Trouble and Cuss. Is Love Coming Back kinda reminds me of Burt Bacharach, not the music or the words just the feel. I'm certain if he would punch me if he heard this. I'm a songwriter currently without a home, on my way to California in Oct. My last band was an americana band called the Sills. I walked away from that band last year and now I'm recording EPs. This is my 7th EP this year, the goal is 10 by December.
Thanks for listening - Blair Clark

Love and Fuss Trouble and Cuss review by Joe Tell.
First off, the title of Blair's latest release, Love and Trouble Trouble and Cuss is just a great title.
Is Love Coming Back has a rather sad and melancholy feel. The lyrics tell the story of lonely feelings and the void that is created by a love that has gone away.
Long Way Around somehow manages to sound even sadder than the last track. The slow tempo and the vocals convey a feeling of a love gone awry. Any song that makes you feel something inside is a great song and this song certainly has that quality.
Fair Carnival has a much happier go-lucky sound, reminding me of the good times a weekend visit to an amusement park promises.
CooCoo is about the effects a love affair sometimes has on a person, seemingly driving them crazy.
Call It Love is a stripped down acoustic guitar/vocal song that has Blair's vocals moving up and down in a lonesome timbre. Once again Blair's vocal delivery conveys the feelings of a love affair that has gone awry and the lonely longing that takes over.
https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/love-and-fuss-and-trouble-and-cuss



Do No Good is a sadness EP. It concerns the everyday sadness and special event sadness, last years tour difficulties. I added Shop! cause it just seemed to fit in, wrote for underculture years ago. The song Do No Good is my fav. The cheesy keyboard makes me smile. Enjoy.

Hello , I'm Blair Clark and I have a EP called Do No Good. It is a darkish low. It's moody. A fine August listen. It will move you around. I'm a songwriter in Madison, my last band was an americana band called the Sills. I walked away from that band last year and now I'm recording EPs. This is my 6th EP this year, the goal is 10 by December. Hope you enjoy, thanks - Blair

Do No Good review by Joe Tell.
The title song Do No Good has a minimalistic music track which allows Blair's vocals to convey a feeling of sad regret.
The Road To Denver has a retro sound reminiscent of original 50's rock and roll. Blair's unique vocals add a new wave edge to punctuate the rock track.
Growing Up In Reverse features one of Blair's most ambitious musical tracks. The staccato rhythm is held together by a moving bass track and Blair's way cool vocal stylings.
Shop! seems to be a commentary on the materialistic based society we live in. The lyrics convey the message that shopping has become more important than taking care of real life issues.
Sad Days is a melancholy track that conveys the feeling of a all consuming sadness that seems to permeate our lives at times.
https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/do-no-good



Blair Clark has released a EP called Look Out!. This should be parked in your garage. It is rock and roll at its lowest. This is Blair Clark's 5th EP this year, the goal is 10 by December.
Hope you enjoy, thanks for listening - Blair.  

Look Out! review by Joe Tell.
Blair Clark's new EP Look Out! starts out off with a bang! The title track, Look Out! is a uptempo punk rocker that is sure get your blood pumping. All the impressive performances are done by Blair himself. The guitar solos are exciting and the chorus jumps out of the mix proving that Blair knows how to craft a great sounding rock and roll song.
If You Loved Me continues in the same vein as Look Out! The multi-talented Blair kicks out another great jam that stops and starts with urgent rock energy.
Walking Alone sounds like the songs from Blair's previous EP Take Me Like You Found Me. Blair's vocals convey a lonely longing that is compelling and hard to ignore.
Blair delivers another lo-fi masterpiece with Can't Go On Without You. The sound is reminiscent of early Talking Heads.
Heartbeats is a uptempo garage rocker that sounds like it's going to fall apart any second. By the time the beat is established the song abruptly ends.
Blair Clark soundcloud page https://soundcloud.com/blair-clark-804478008

 

Blair Clark is a low crooner and a late bloomer. He is a singer songwriter from Madison WI. In 2009 he formed the punk rock band underculture. Two years later he started the band The Sills. The music fused bluegrass and folk with punk rock and rockabilly. They put out two cd's and then Blair walked away in 2015. He is currently recording from his apartment on a smallish 8trk on a 10 EP run. He writes songs from his broken heart and broken head. The music is lean. His June release Take Me Like You Found Me is pop candy. In May he released Demolicious it is delicious lo-fi. You can check out all of his EPs at https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/ The Sills can also be found on bandcamp.

Take Me Like You Found Me review by Joe Tell.
Take Me Like You Found Me is a authentic lo-fi experience the likes of which haven't been heard of since the late 60's. The throwback sound brings to mind all of the coolest bands who were influential in the development of punk and alternative rock. The song has a uplifting tempo which may very well inspire much dancing when played live. Blair's vocals are sweet and soulful, using accents and fluttering tremelo to create a unique singing style.
Come Away With Me would fit right in at any rock and roll dance party. A crowded dance hall full of swaying bodies comes to mind when I listen to this song. A guitar plays in the background and fills in all of the open spaces in the melody perfectly. The vocals convey the feeling of smoldering urgency.
See Saw is a melancholy, yet very melodic, rock and roll song which immediately drew me in. The song has a laid back feel yet still manages to sound strong with it's outstanding lead guitar hooks. Blair Clark's sad vocal tones convey the mood and set the tone for the song. See Saw is my newest, favorite song and the best song on Take Me Like You Found Me.
Silver Bells has the feel of late 50's rock and roll rave up. The descending guitar chords help create the mood with a fantastic, jingly jangly Fender sound. Pull out your old leather and slick your hair back before you listen is highly recommended. Bum a cigarette off your buddy to complete the picture.
Ithaca closes out Take Me Like You Found Me is style. Blair's influences can be heard on this track. Traces of Lou Reed, David Bowie and Iggy Pop can be heard in Blair's heartfelt vocal delivery.
https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/take-me-like-you-found-me



Everybody has a sexy side. This is mine. https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/demolicious
Demolicious released May 19, 2016
Vocals, Guitars, Bass, Drums, and Drum Machine -Blair Clark
Words and Music by Blair Clark



Songs for the Sills. When I walked away from the Sills, we had a songs that were never recorded. These are a few. https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/no-sills-no-sale
No Sills No Sale released April 21, 2016
Guitars, Bass, Drums, Xylophone and Vocals - Blair Clark
Recorded at Home on tiny 8 track recorder


Ring A Bell released February 15, 2016 https://blairclarkbc.bandcamp.com/album/ring-a-bell
Credits: Blair Clark - guitar, vocals
Leah Brooke - vocals
Todd Phipps - keyboard
Pete Olig - bass
Ken Koeppler - drums
Words and music by Blair Clark, all rights reserved
Recorded and mixed by Ken Koeppler
The Sound Garden studio


Blair Clark twitter https://twitter.com/keepbailing



Thank You Blair!



Saturday, December 3, 2016

Band 101 - Number 3


Welcome to today's version of Band 101.
Band 101 deals with the trials and tribulations of being in a working cover band.

This episode deals with a much overlooked topic that most guitarists' and bassists' may have to deal with once they decide to plug into a amplifier or PA system to join a full band. If you haven't mastered this technique at home you really should before you decide to plug in and join a full band.
I'm writing about something I have had to deal with in my playing, unwanted string noise. To be more precise, I'm referring to being able to mute out any unwanted strings while playing chords on the guitar.
Any bassist learns this technique very quickly because most bass lines use many single notes as opposed to full chords. If you play bass and decide to play the guitar you already realize the importance of muting unwanted strings. Let's use one of the most basic chords as a example, the F chord as seen below.


As you can see the top 2 strings, the E and the A string have a X above them, this means that they should not be played or muted, when playing a F chord in this position. Playing these strings results in unwanted string noise and a chord that is no longer musically recognizable as any chord much less a F chord. If you play a F chord with the unmuted E and A strings at a band practice you may notice that you will get a wondering look from at least 1 other member in your band.
This look can be interpreted as "What chord are you playing?!" or "Where is that bad sound coming from?"... You might get a wondering look from your singer because they're trying to sing in key.
Playing the unwanted strings will cause the vocals to sound off key, this will also affect the overall sound of the entire band. If your bassist or another guitarist looks at you they are probably trying to figure out if they are playing the wrong note or you are...?
Playing unwanted strings will kill the good vibe of any great sounding song or band rehearsal in a heartbeat. An educated listener in the band who cares enough will question where the bad noises came from after the song ends. Trying to figure out when, where and why the noise came from can become tedious and frustrating. This will probably lead to alot of wasted time at practice.
If you are plugged into a amplifier you may be able to get away with unwanted string noise at band practice, as long as no one else notices. But once you are plugged in and going through the PA system at a gig these unwanted string noises will be heard by everyone in the crowd as well as, at least 1 of your fellow band members and this is not a good thing. You must be able to hear what you are playing, recognize the bad sounds and immediately edit them out of your playing if you plan on playing live. It's best to master this at home before you decide to plug in and join a band. Continuing to play unwanted strings is just plain bad guitar playing and nobody enjoys bad guitar playing. Playing any instrument with proper technique makes a band sound better and you will find yourself learning new songs quicker and easier.
There are several easy fixes for the problem of playing unwanted strings.
The absolute best solution is to play only the notes or strings of the guitar chord you're trying to play.
As an example when you play a D chord you just want to play the last 4 strings. The D, G, B and E strings should only be played. Playing only those strings results in a true and great sounding D chord that everyone will enjoy hearing.



It's worth taking time to practice just playing the strings of whatever chord you're trying to play.
Just like any other technique it may take a little time to master but the end result is being able to play with better technique.
There is another easy solution, just drape your thumb, very lightly, over the top of the guitar neck. Lightly rest your thumb over the top of the E the string in order to eliminate it from ringing out, this will effectively mute it. You have to pay attention and listen close when you do this because you don't want to press down with your thumb, this will cause the unwanted string to ring out.
This may also take a little time to master but remember practicing any new technique will make you a better guitarist in the long run.
Here's another chord I will use as an example. The D5 chord, notice that the E, B and top E strings are muted.




You can mute the top E string with your thumb and you can play the notes on the 7th fret by barring them with your 3rd finger.
Playing full bar chords or even partial bar chords is a very useful and essential guitar technique, especially when playing rock guitar.
You can mute the B and E strings with your 3rd finger by lightly draping your finger on top of them. Again, don't press down or the strings may ring out.
If you play a D5 chord with your pinky on the G string you can rest your pinky lightly over the B and E strings to mute them.
Another really useful trick is to move your 1st finger up ever so slightly as to mute the E string while still fretting the D note in the chord.
You have to be able to look and listen to what you're playing in order to master this very simple technique.
Once your 1st finger is in the proper position the E string will be muted out.
Here is another useful solution, if you know the notes on the guitar fretboard, like any good guitarist or bassist should, you can also transpose or play chords in different positions to eliminate unwanted string noise. 
You may also find it much easier to play chords in different positions on the neck, this really comes in handy when you are trying to sing and play at the same time. 
Some people call this position playing but that's another technique I can get into in the future. 
In order to eliminate the possibility of playing the E string altogether you can also play a D5 in the example below. 
This position falls on the 10th fret. You have to be sure not to play the G,B and E strings in this position. You can rest your 1st finger over them or whatever finger you use to play the notes on the 12th fret. 






Please email any inquiries to jtellfotos@yahoo.com and until next time, remember practice makes perfect.