Bird of the World b/w I May Never Know
I've basically tried to push Bill Fox on anyone that's been earshot for the past couple of years. Bill Fox writes and records perfect lo-fi power-pop/folk songs. He played in the Ohio power-pop band "The Mice" who I also highly, highly recommend. These songs are pretty simply arranged (guitar, bass, tambourine, double tracked vox) but they still feel full and lush. His harmonies are always on point. I usually have one of his songs stuck in my head at least once a day. Especially recommended for anyone going through their requisite GBV phase.
Another artist I've been pretty evangelical about lately. Connie Converse was a singer-songwriter who made a handful of private recordings in the 1950s. In 1974, she wrote goodbye letters to her friends and family explaining how she was starting a new life somewhere else, and drove off in her volkswagon beetle and was never heard from again. With a casual listen, it's easy to write these songs off as simple folks songs. But listening closer, you are swallowed into the worlds she constructs. Her lyrics are sophisticated, sharp and witty and her melodies and hauntingly catchy, truly ahead of her time. Start with "Talkin' Like You" and the deeply haunting "One By One."
There's a great radio documentary about her that also contains one of my favorite of her songs "Sorrow is My Name."
A couple weeks ago, I played a show with a songwriter named Emi Knight. She played beautiful folk/pop songs on guitar and banjo. I got a CD of her current band "Strawberry Runners," which has some really great pop songs in full-band form. Their 2nd song "Yo Grrl" is the absolute hit. The song starts out innocently enough, with some warm accordion and fuzzy guitar. But after a brief bridge/solo, the guitars dive into feedback and the 2nd verse kicks in with a tambourine and Steve Miller Band-esq bassline and it seriously has to be one of the most jubilant and catchy musical moments I've ever heard.
One of the coolest bands in the world. Les Rallizes Dénudés were (are?) a Japanese psych-rock band. I don't think they ever recorded officially, leaving only live recordings that veer to the edge of sheer white noise. They are kind of the missing link between The Velvet Underground and the Jesus and Mary Chain. Shoegaze before there was shoegaze. This is a video of them hanging out, being the coolest band in the world.
Thanks for checking back in! It's good to see you all. Come back next week to see Warren's list. He's the Warren Franklin behind Warren Franklin and the Founding Fathers.