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OKG Newsletter


Topic: Riley Jantzen
RileyJantzen

NMF: Riley Jantzen / Locust Avenue / Travis Linville / White Denim

Two acoustic sets, rock'n'roll and O-prog

I deeply enjoyed Riley Jantzen's previous project Mayola, so I was thrilled when I lucked into seeing him at Opolis indoor. I had planned on seeing him at Brewhouse the next day, but more Riley Jantzen is never bad. He played some vaguely country-tinged tunes that could have easily included clapping and stomping, and assured us they weren't the same song he'd be playing with his band The Spirits. Old Mayola tunes also got some love, and the crowd responded emphatically to those. Jantzen's excellent voice and superb songwriting skills make any project he's in worth checking out.

Through a bit of confusion, I ended up seeing Locust Avenue on the Opolis outdoor stage when I was trying to see The Burning Hotels. Their straightforward rock'n'roll had a ton of crowd support, and the band was really, really getting into it. They know their stuff, and it showed even as they were putting up with grit flying in their face from the wind that picked up.

Back inside, Travis Linville's finger-picked country tunes were quite impressive. Linville plays with a confidence that comes of having been doing this a long, long time; the outward swagger has evaporated, but the assured musicianship makes his prowess as clear as if he were sticking out his chest and strutting. The whole set just felt right, as if both Linville and the audience were in their element. His set was definitely a highlight of the festival for me.

Stepping back out the door, Austin's White Denim set up their indie-fied Dragonforce for an uber-enthusiastic crowd. Seriously, White Denim has chops, and their set was one big guitarfest. Even the bassist was playing complicated, intense bass lines. This whole O-prog movement is picking up steam, y'all. White Denim's delirious prog songs definitely fall in the category. It was a wonder to behold, and the crowd hollered for more; the band pointed out that they would be back two times in the next six weeks to wow them again. This almost satiated the calls for one more song.

by Stephen Carradini 05.05.2011 3 years ago
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RileyJantzen

NMF: Riley Jantzen and the Spirits / John Calvin and the Cavalry / Montu

Train-whistle rock, pop/rock/folk and electronic jam grooves

My second dose of Riley Jantzen came at the Brewhouse, with him fronting his new band, Riley Jantzen and the Spirits. They play what I call train-whistle rock'n'roll: twangless country rock that crunches pretty hard, but not in the modern rock sort of way. Whatever you want to call it, Riley Jantzen and the Spirits are incredibly good at it. I got shivers twice during their set, and it's rare for me to feel goosebumps once during a good show. It helps that Jantzen's voice molds perfectly into whatever genre he wishes, and that his songwriting sensibilities are razor-sharp. His supporting cast is also a critical element; the bassist get props for being especially vital. I can't recommend this band highly enough to you; if you take nothing from NMF but Riley Jantzen, you're gonna be doing alright.

My second go-round with John Calvin came at Michelangelo's, where John Calvin and the Cavalry played their final show as an entity. Members may be leaving him for far-off places, but they didn't show any signs of distraction in their locked-in, 90-minute set of rock, pop, blues and folk.

John Calvin is most fun performer in Oklahoma to photograph, because his guitar faces are just absolutely incredible. He can make guitar faces because about half of the fun of a Cavalry set is listening to Calvin totally wail on his acoustic guitar, which he turns into an electric with a combination of pedals. He let no opportunity go un-soloed in this set, too. Calvin has come a long way since his first shows, and his current versions of his oldest songs show it. "Song to Make the Stars Fall," one of his oldest songs, sounds completely transformed, from a nice pop tune to a tour-de-force. It's a shame that the Cavalry is splitting up, because they certainly know how to turn a tune inside out.

The set felt a couple tunes too long, but when you're headlining a stage at NMF and it's your last show, you pretty much have permission to throw in the kitchen sink. It was a blast, and the band looked like it was having as much fun as the audience.

Montu's electonic jams brought the audience out to Jagermeister stage. I stopped in to check out the sound, and I thoroughly enjoyed the few tunes I caught. They will be headlining Groovefest next weekend, so if you haven't witnessed their clubby, electronic, party grooves, it will be a good opportunity to see them. Melodies and rhythm galore.

by Stephen Carradini 05.05.2011 3 years ago
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Enid’s Black Canyon release debut album on Bandcamp

‘Battlefield Darlins’ features OKC singer Sherree Chamberlain

Anybody in Oklahoma City with their ears in even remote proximity to the ground have been hearing boot-stomping and hand-clapping the last few months.

The alt-country/folk-rock sounds are coming this way from Enid songwriter Jake Morisse, who starred in Okie videographer/photographer Nathan Poppe’s debut film, “Black Canyon’s Crossroads for the Restless.” After a bit of tinkering with the band’s sound, lineup and direction, Morisse recorded and released the debut on Bandcamp, which features Enid instrumental whiz and former Mayola frontman Riley Jantzen and Normanite Tyler Hopkins.

But most notable is Sherree Chamberlain’s contribution to the record; a graceful, soul-singing depiction of the female in the album’s Civil War-era romance. Expect a review in the Aug. 3 edition of the Oklahoma Gazette. But for now, you should definitely head over to the band’s Bandcamp page and download the album. Below is the trailer to the aforementioned film which —in the interest of full disclosure— I helped make. Enjoy.


by Matt Carney 07.22.2011 3 years ago
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OKSee in 2011: 40 honorable-mention albums

Let’s look back at the year in music: part 4.

My OKSee predecessor, Stephen Carradini, and I received hundreds of physical copies submitted to our little cubicle in the back of the Gazette offices this year, in addition to the hundreds of digital solicitations from PR companies, in addition to the occasional, much-appreciated, personal hand-changing of musical media, be that CD, vinyl or yes, even cassette tape.

It’s a ton of music to listen to, but we were up to the task. The sonic wheat’s now sorted from the chaff, and not in any particular order. So peruse our list for those quality albums you may have missed, recall a few you’ve forgotten and hopefully even find a new artist to love in the process. Let’s get started.

1. Fucked Up — “David Comes to Life”





2. The Pains of Being Pure at Heart — “Belong”


3. Matt the Electrician — “Accidental Thief”


4. Horse Thief — “Grow Deep, Grow Wild”


5. Kurt Vile — “Smoke Ring for My Halo”


6. Beetyman — “The Underdog”


7. Youth Lagoon — “The Year of Hibernation”




8. Neon Indian — “Era Extraña”


9. The Drums — “Portamento”


10. Wilco — “The Whole Love”


11. Laura Marling — “A Creature I Don’t Know”




12. Yuck — “Yuck”


13. Icona Pop — “Nights Like This EP”


14. Ryan Lawson and the Hack & Saw Nation — “Hack and Saw Nation”


15. Riley Jantzen — “Feathers”


16. The Workweek — “Promises, Promises”


17. Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks — “Mirror Traffic”




18. Small Sur — “Tones”


19. Wye Oak — “Civilian”


20. The Roots — “undun”


21. Crown Imperial — “Crown Imperial”


22. The Damn Quails — “Down the Hatch”


23. Zach Winters — “They Were Longing for a Better Country”


24. Twin Sister — “In Heaven”


25. St. Vincent — “Strange Mercy”


26. The Weeknd — “House of Balloons”



27. Kanye West & Jay-Z — “Watch the Throne”




28. Washed Out — “Within and Without”


29. Givers — “In Light”


30. tUnE-yArDs — “w h o k i l l”


31. Manchester Orchestra — “Simple Math”


32. Josh Sallee — “Return to Sender”


33. Kite Flying Robot — “Solid Gold”


34. Death Cab for Cutie — “Codes and Keys”


35. Chris Bathgate — “Salt Year”


36. Smith Westerns — “Dye It Blonde”


37. Danny Brown — “XXX”


38. Destroyer — “Kaputt”





39. A$AP Rocky — “LIVELOVEA$AP”


40. Cut Copy — “Zonoscope”



OKS in 2011 — Monday:  Your Most-Viewed Music Videos
OKS in 2011 — Tuesday:  The Year in Photos
OKS in 2011 — Wednesday: By the numbers
OKS in 2011 — Thursday: OKSee's Honorable Mention Albums of the Year
OKS in 2011 — Friday: OKSee's 30 Favorite Albums of 2011

by Matt Carney 12.22.2011 2 years ago
at 12:30 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
 

Black Canyon

Looking for some locally grown alt-country?


Music

Matt Carney
The subject of budding Okie videographer Nathan Poppe’s debut documentary, the foot-stomping Enid alt-country dudes in Black Canyon released their debut record “Battlefield Darlins” on Bandcamp.com last month, and — happy surprise! — they recruited Sherree Chamberlain to guest as the gal in this musical romance.
 
Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The gap

The bluegrass of Black Canyon bears roots darker than the rest. Proof is in the Oklahoma City act’s newest material.


Music

Joshua Boydston
Black Canyon with Beau Jennings & The Tigers and Defining Times
9 p.m. Friday
Blue Note Lounge
2408 N. Robinson
thebluenotelounge.com
600-1166
$5
 
Wednesday, June 27, 2012
 
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