Tuesday 22 Jul
CD reviews

Manmade Objects - Monuments

No one wants to be forgotten; everyone wants some sort of legacy, a mark they leave behind as they exit this life for whatever lies beyond.

And for as long as there has been death, there have been monuments — whether austere or understated, abstract or concrete, prominent or tucked away in private — erected by the ones they loved to assure that remembrance, at least for a time.
07/15/2014 | Comments 0

Admirals - Amidst the Blue

Sometimes it helps to not be very good.

Some of the best albums and artists were born out of happy accidents owed to varying degrees of early suckage — the perfect note or chord for a song found by missing the one you are aiming for, failed mimicry of an idol bearing something entirely new and great instead.

07/09/2014 | Comments 0

Kierston White - Don't Write Love Songs

The Tequila Songbirds have become just as beloved as about any group around these parts. And how could they not?

Featuring a revolving cast of the Sooner State’s most badass female performers, it’s a power hour of some of the best songwriting coming out of central Oklahoma. Sure, they might not technically be family, but they are clearly a band of sisters all the same, bonded by the same brand of whiskey running through their veins.

07/01/2014 | Comments 0

Depth & Current - Dysrhythmia

"Overproduced" is a term thrown around all too indiscreetly nowadays, usually applied when the thing that sticks out about a song or album is how it sounds rather than how it is constructed. Yet some of the most compelling albums ever crafted embodied a certain aesthetic that was just as skillfully and meticulously put together as any Bob Dylan or Miles Davis record — which is to say production is as crucial to our enjoyment of music as much as anything else; it's also the most overlooked.
06/24/2014 | Comments 0

Weak Knees - “IceBevo”

Indie rock has been in a good place as of late. Not caring about being cool is the new cool, and a couple of dudes on guitar, bass and drums can make catchy, earworm songs without being armed to the gills with computer software and vintage synthesizers.
06/17/2014 | Comments 0

VOTD: Two Christmases!

Download two local holiday compilations! And watch an awesome in-studio video!

By Matt Carney December 5th, 2011

Remember last year when Fowler Volkswagen sponsored the totally free “Checking It Twice: The 2010 Nice People Holiday Companion” and gave out a ton of free copies of it, both digital and vinyl?

Well, this year, Norman’s Blackwatch Studios decided they wanted in on the action, so now we’ve got “A Blackwatch Christmas” (which Fowler is sponsoring) andThe 2011 Nice People Holiday Compilation” to soundtrack the annual festivities.

And in a move that surprised no one, they both feature Chrome Pony.

Both albums are currently available as free digital downloads below. There are 1,000 copies of the Blackwatch record (also free!) that will be available starting today at Fowler Volkswagen of Norman and several other locations throughout the OKC metro. Also, you can score the Nice People companion in cassette tape form in Norman in the coming weeks.

As far as the actual content and quality of the music on these, it’s definitely several steps above novelty, but still just as fun as any Christmas recording I’ve ever heard. On the Blackwatch compilation, several of the artists — especially Sam Crain and Ben Kilgore — stretch outside their comfort zones into cheesy pop or erratic indie-jams. There’s even a hilarious Beastie Boys-inspired thing, “Chris Cringle,” from something called Hector Camancho.

With Nice People, the goofiness comes in the zig-zaggy melodies and moods that alternate between true-to-the-band (Lizard Police’s “Xmas Song,” Depth & Current’s “Lonely Special Day”) and genuinely charming (Luna Moth’s “Winter Light,” The Wurly Birds’ “Way Up North” and Kite Flying Robot’s “On Your Merry Way”).

Watch Nathan Poppe’s expertly edited “Making of a Blackwatch Christmas 2011 Holiday Album,” which I helped shoot some footage for.

I can testify that it was as much fun hanging around inside the studio as it looked:

  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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