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Band/Artist Profile Classic Album Review

New Music Alert: Mamalarky

Warning, warning, the music you are about to hear may cause ambient waves of tranquility and soothe the inner tension in your soul. 

It’s time for another album review. This week we have a self-titled album by Mamalarky, a new band from Austin, Texas. Quite honestly, I listened to the first track on the album and already knew that this was going to be a hit. For a little bit of comparison, Mamalarky sounds like a sister band to Crumb. A concert with the two of them would be mind-blowing and would probably send my mind to another planet. On their website, Mamarky describes themselves as “down to water your houseplants while you’re out of town and plot an elaborate revenge on your high school bully. Mamalarky is a campfire song for American Idol rejects and a somber soundtrack for the months leading up to your next breakup. They are exactly what you’d expect in an increasingly sentient robot’s dream journal.” Honestly, I couldn’t have put it better myself. 

My favorite songs from the album include “You Make Me Smile,” “Schism Trek,” “Drugstore Model,” and “Don’t Laugh at Me.” The thing I love about listening to their music is that the vibe does not change with the tempo of the music. While some songs may be much slower than others, it still holds the exact same energy as the fast paced songs, making listening to the album all the way through much easier. Mamalarky’s music is reminiscent of a walk on the beach at night or sitting on a porch while listening to a gentle rain. It’s tender, soothing, and ambient, and makes for a great addition to any playlist. 

Hope you guys enjoy the music
-The DJ Formerly Known as “Chippypants”

Categories
Band/Artist Profile

Great Bands From the Land Down Under

Recently I have been getting into Australian music. I couldn’t tell you how or why, but I just have. And the one thing that I have noticed is that no matter what band it is, it usually has a distinct Australian sound to it that just makes it stand apart from American music. It’s bouncy and almost tropical sounding, with a hint of fear from the local wildlife. So without further ado, I would like to present my favorite bands from the other side of the world. 

Tash Sultana
This is a one person band from Melbourne, Australia. Tash’s story is the classic tale of a DIY bedroom studio singer/songwriter gone pro. Their music is truly unique and makes you feel as if you were travelling to another world in a dream. My favorite songs by them are “Jungle”, “Big Smoke”, and “Talk it Out.” 

Bootleg Rascal 
This band formed in Sydney all the way back in 2013. I would classify this as a mix of hip-hop and indie. This is one of those bands where the vocals just perfectly fit the beat. The lead singer’s voice just the right mixture of passionate and raspy and he belts out psychedelic rock- esque lyrics. My favorite songs are “Overflow”, “Drop the Gun”, and “Prosperity”. 

Sticky Fingers 
So, fun fact, the band Sticky Fingers is actually friends with Bootleg Rascal and has a song named after them. Even more of a fun fact, it’s by far my favorite song by them. Their music sounds like if Tash Sultana got into psychedelic rock. Other great songs by Sticky Fingers include “How to Fly” and “These Girls”. 

Mako Road
This is definitely my favorite on the list. With their bouncy guitar riffs and excellent rhythm, Mako Road is the perfect representation of “Australian Music.” My favorite songs from this band include, but are not limited to, “The Green Superintendent,” “Teenage Lucy,” “All We Need,” and “The Sun Comes Up.” 

Tame Impala 
Have you guys heard of this band? They’re super underground and like so indie. You probably haven’t heard of them to be honest it’s pretty alternative music. Sorry, I had to include them if we were talking about Australian Bands. Irony aside, Kevin Parker is still an incredibly talented musician.  

Hope you guys enjoy the music, 
-DJ Chippypants 

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Playlists

Songs to Astral Project To

Ok so obviously I understand that listening to these songs is not going to cause you to astral project. In fact, I’m not even 100% sure if I’m fully convinced of the idea. For those of you that don’t know, astral projection is a term used to describe an out of body experience, assuming that the soul is able to detach itself from the body. This would imply the immortal separate existence of the soul, but that’s a conversation for another day. I have personally never had this experience. Although, if I did, I feel like this is what I would be playing as I looked down from my projection. 

“Jungle”- Tash Sultana 
I feel like I would just have to start off the astral projection with this song. It starts off with a little bit of light, bouncy, guitar but progressively adds more and more layers as the song goes on, coinciding perfectly with the feeling of your soul floating up into space. 

“Changes”- A$AP Rocky 
Changes is the first in a long list of beautiful A$AP songs that I could make. This song is off of Rocky’s most recent album, “Testing,” and shows how truly diverse his music is able to be. The background harmonies are like no other, and there is an undeniable storyline that follows the flow of the song. 

“Still”- JJ
Switching over to SoundCloud for a bit, we hear one of the best uses of the ‘Still D.R.E.” sample to date. From start to finish, this whole song is just beautiful. The introduction includes a series of distorted, off-beat harmonies, which eventually flow into the iconic piano sound of “Still D.R.E.” 

“4 Morant”- Doja Cat 
This is one of Doja Cat’s earliest songs and my favorite on this list. The lyrics are actually pretty sad, but it honestly adds to the astral projection experience. Because, just like Doja Cat, we have to go through hard times to grow. And this song is the perfect thing to emulate that idea. The ending of the song is the best part and it is best listened to at loud volumes. 

“Same Ol’ Mistakes”- Rihanna
This is a Rihanna cover of “New Person, Same Old Mistakes” by Tame Impala. But to be quite honest, her voice just fits the song better. The song deals with change, overcoming self-doubt, and dealing with criticism from others in spite of who you want to be. And if that isn’t the perfect song to end an astral projection to, then I don’t know what is. 

Again,not saying that these are songs that will cause astral projection, but that I think it would just elevate the experience if they were played. 

Hope you guys enjoy the music, 
-DJ Chippypants 

Categories
Short Stories

Album Art of Bikini Bottom

Do you like album art? I know I do. Some of the best albums were characterized by their album art. Take Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon” for example. Any Pink Floyd poser can easily identify the iconic light refraction through the pyramid, probably more than they actually know what the album sounds like. A lot of fame can be attributed to an eye-catching cover. But nothing is more eye-catching than the Instagram account @albumsofbikinnibottom.

The creative genius who runs this account takes album covers and reimagines them as if they were created in the SpongeBob universe. They cover all the greatest hits, from Van Halen to Weezer. For example, take the Nirvana album “Nevermind.” Instead of the classic image of a baby swimming after a dollar, we have a picture of Patrick under the sea happily reaching for a dollar in Bikini Bottom currency attached to a fishing hook. (Side note, did you know that babies can naturally swim before they learn how to walk? Crazy, right?)

Other honorable mentions include What I’ve Become by Ashes Remain and A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out by Panic! at the Disco. For the Ashes Remain album a Faceless Man in a chair is replaced by SpongeBob sitting in his armchair when dancing anemones comes on the television and the Panic! at the Disco cover includes all of the main characters sitting around a table in a manner that reminds me of the last supper.

However, my favorite album replacement has got to be Blind Melon. The creator of this masterpiece replaced the dancing child with the meme of squidward with the bloodshot eyes and all of his arms outstretched in a frenzy. It’s almost better than the original. 

For more silly album replacements, I highly suggest you check out the Instagram for yourself @albumsofbikinibottom. You won’t be disappointed. 

Hope you guys enjoy, 
-DJ Chippypants 

Categories
New Album Review

Album Review: Party Favors

You may or may not be aware by now, but possibly one of the best things to come out of this god-awful year is about to drop down to us from the heavens. With a beautiful mix of eccentric guitar riffs and resonating lyrics, “Party Favors” by Sir Chloe has quickly made its spot at the top of my list of albums this year. But who is Sir Chloe, and how have they made such quick success before dropping even a single album? 

Sir Chloe is far from a one man show, but it owes its fame to the vocalist and lead guitarist, Dana Foote, who formed the band with her brother and two friends as her senior year thesis at Bennington College. They released their debut single, Animal, in February of 2019. Since then they have been working meticulously on a debut album, periodically releasing a few singles here and there.

We had the pleasure of getting the album a few days early, and after a thorough listen I can wholeheartedly say that this is my new favorite album of 2020. The list starts off with Squaring Up, a song that emulates the feeling of trying not to fall for someone who you know is bad for you. Another favorite of mine is Untie You, which comes fourth on the album. However, my favorite song by far is Sedona. The song is placed perfectly on the album and is an incredible mix of a light indie background instrumental with heavier rock lyrics.

“Party Favors” is a project that has been in the works for a long time now, but the time and effort have produced something that sounds complete, and hopefully it will get the recognition it deserves. 

Hope you guys enjoy the music, 
-DJ Chippypants 

Categories
Music Education

Women in Jazz

Ya like jazz? Yes? Well who comes to mind when you think about the smooth tones that characterized the 40s and 50s? Is it Louis Armstrong? Or maybe Frank Sinatra and Louis Prima. While all of these men were incredible singers, more often than not they outshined a whole group of female jazz artists that were just as good, if not better.

One of my favorite artists, Billie Holiday, dominated the charts back in the day. She rose to fame in a time following the Great Depression, with a new flavor of music that became known as “swing.” With songs like I’ll Be Seeing You and Easy Living she quickly made a name for herself. Her music also incorporated a strong element of the civil rights movement, with Strange Fruit serving as an emotional depiction of the effects of racism.

Another notable singer from the time was Ella Fitzgerald, who popularized scat singing through songs such as Dream a Little Dream of Me and A-Tisket, A-Tasket. Perhaps one of the biggest women in music at the time, she was also popular on the big screen, with a role in Pete Kelley’s Blues and making guest appearances on TV shows such as The Frank Sinatra and The Ed Sullivan Show.

One last artist I’d like to point out is Dinah Shore. Her melodic voice fits perfectly with the instrumental background and perfectly characterizes the aged feeling that comes from listening to this genre of music.

Each song by these artists tells a story. Some tell stories of injustice, some of hardships, and some of love. But these stories are what helped women gain a foothold in the music industry and will forever be timeless on any jazz playlist. 

Hope you guys enjoy the music, 

-DJ chippypants

Categories
Classic Album Review

Album Review: Heaven on the Rocks by Ladada

Recently a promoter sent WKNC (and I don’t use this term lightly) a boatload of vinyl records. However, our initial excitement quickly turned into confusion. Not one of these albums had been released within the past year. Furthermore, they were all from incredibly small bands. Almost nobody we asked was familiar with them, and if they were, it was a hazy memory hidden somewhere behind newer, more contemporary music. This is pretty unusual because nobody ever sends in vinyl records. They’re just too expensive to produce. But if they were going to do so, you would think it would be from a bigger band. We don’t even have a record player. And so, the vinyls sat on our shelf, resting, building up potential energy like a bowling ball preparing to roll down an alley. But little did I know that my ears would be bowling pins, hit by a strike of indie rock. Finally, one day when I was walking out of the studio, I decided to grab one of the vinyls, just to see if it was any good. I didn’t get a chance to listen to it until later that night. As I sat on my balcony, by chance I decided to play Float Away from the album. The song’s introductory harmonies first graced my ears as a cool fall breeze swept over my body. I sat down and in disbelief listened to the song get better and better as it went on. The harmonies eventually built up to a frenzy of drums and guitar riffs with echoed vocals that could not have fit the song more perfectly. I quickly listened to the rest of the album and found that “Heaven on the Rocks” is a great mix of garage punk and spacey, indie rock. With only 4,000 “Spotify Monthly Listeners,” it’s surprising that Ladada is still this small. However, you can hear the hard work put into “Heaven on the Rocks” and hopefully this band will start to get some of the recognition that they deserve. 

Hope you guys enjoy the music,
-DJ Chippypants <3

Categories
Playlists

Chip’s Picks to Get You into the ~Fall Mood~

It’s that time again, folks. Grab your scarf and sweater, get cozy around a fire, and get ready for the fall vibes to roll on in. In my opinion, fall is probably the most universally shared vibes throughout any time of the year. Everyone has their own memories associated with the different seasons. For me, winter is just the worst, spring is a time of rebirth and a finish line for the school year, and summer is always characterized by the summer camp I work at. However, when you ask anyone what comes to mind when they think of these times of year, I’m sure they are bound to have different answers. But if you were to look into the mind of a majority of people when they think about fall, you would see the state fair, football games, flannel clothing, falling leaves, campfires, and Halloween. This time of the year has the most universally shared ideas of what it should be like. And since it has such a common theme, then there must be a set of certain songs that are undoubtedly associated with this season. So finally, I would like to present to you, in no particular order, my list of songs that remind me of walking through the woods on a chilly October day while wearing flannel as my boots crunch the fallen leaves and the smell of a fire graces my senses. 

  • Touch of Grey- The Grateful Dead 
  • Ripple- The Grateful Dead
  • Brokedown Palace- The Grateful Dead 
  • Home- Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros 
  • La Belle Fleur Sauvage- Lord Huron
  • Fool for Love- Lord Huron
  • Lullaby- Lord Huron
  • Teach Your Children- Crosby, Stills, and Nash
  • Uncle John’s Band- The Grateful Dead
  • It’s Getting Better- Cass Elliot
  • Cigarette Daydreams- Cage the Elephant
  • While You Wait for the Others- Grizzly Bear
  • Yet Again- Grizzly Bear
  • Amie- Pure Prairie League
  • I Need a Life- Born Ruffians 
  • City Looks Pretty- Courtney Barnett 
  • No, But Remember?- Brightside
  • Harvest Moon- Neil Young
  • Go Easy- Mac DeMarco
  • Gypsy- Fleetwood Mac
  • Rocky Mountain High- John Denver
  • Ventura Highway- America
  • Long Distance- The Districts
  • Ooh La La- Faces
  • Peace Train- Cat Stevens

Ok sorry that list was kind of long, hope you guys enjoy it, 
– DJ chippypants <3

Categories
Band/Artist Profile

Artist Spotlight: Cheap Time

Cheap Time Album Cover

Hey guys, I wanted to put a little bit of a spotlight on a band that I don’t believe many people have heard, although they more than deserve the recognition. Cheap Time, a punk garage rock band that started all the way back in 2006, is most likely not around anymore. In fact, they haven’t released anything since they were featured in the 2014 video game “Sunset Overdrive.” However, their music is timeless. With songs such as “Ginger Snap” and “Too Late,” it almost feels like you’re a teenager in some dry, dingy garage listening to your buddy’s band as they’re just getting started. Even though their music was made in the late 2000s, Cheap Time has a sound that belongs to the late 80s and early 90s, when garage punk first started picking up speed. 

I would have to say that my favorite album of theirs is, without a doubt, the self-titled “Cheap Time.” With short, fast paced songs like Back to School, Glitter and Gold, and Permanent Damage, the album fits right in in any playlist. However, Exit Smiles is a close second. Made in 2013, it is their last full album, not counting the work they did with Sunset Overdrive. The two best songs from here are 8:05 and Same Surprise. While “Exit Smiles” bears a sound that shows the growth of the band over its seven-year exhibition, it still holds that same teen angst, garage band feel that makes Cheap Time’s music so unique. Their ability to create a mental image with such ease is why I still listen to them today, and why I think you will too. 

Hope you guys enjoy the music, 

-chippypants 

Categories
New Album Review

Album Review: A Day in a Yellow Beat

Oh do I have a special treat for you. As I rolled out of bed this morning, I could have expected nothing more than what has dropped into my Apple “New Music Mix” from the heavens above today. Yellow Days, the artist who released such songs as A Little While and Your Hand Holding Mine, has released a new album titled “A Day in a Yellow Beat.” First of all, let’s start out with the album art. It is incredible. Right in the middle is a classic style seen by this artist, in which he places a picture of him and a guitar with a blurred out face. But looking around you can see he has added an array of instruments situated in a field of hummingbirds and geese. Starting out with the intro, we have a cut from an interview between a talk show host and a musician discussing how young musicians struggle to enjoy successful longevity while blocked by the control of their producers. The whole conversation is underscored by a harmony of instruments which transitions perfectly into the second song, titled Be Free. Counting the intro and a few interludes, the whole album has a riveting 23 songs, but I’d say the best are Be Free, Getting Closer, Come Groove, ! (feat. Bishop Nehru), The Curse (feat. Mac Demarco), and Love is Everywhere. A Day in a Yellow Beat mixes Yellow Day’s unique style and voice with a newer fusion of upbeat, psychedelic funk. This album is meaningful and sounds pretty, but it’s also the kind of music that you could blast in the car with friends. A Day in a Yellow Beat marks a unleashed creative style for Yellow Days, and I am excited to see where it takes us next. 

Hope you guys enjoy the album, see you next week. 
-Chippypants