Tag Archives: “turn up the volume”

Oh for you, I’d lose it all – Budapest

csdWeAllWin-avatarThis is going to seem like an odd start, but I’m a co-chair for the Christina School District Referendum Steering Committee along with the lovely Ms. Central West. She is a Grandma to students at Stubbs Elementary. I am a parents of three kiddos, two of which are at Keene Elementary.

In addition to trying to lead discussions and forums I’m also creating many of the communication pieces. I’m an Interactive Media Design major, well, I was for my Associate Degree, so it’ great to be back to designing something.

I created a video using still photos from all our schools and programs and I put it up on YouTube using music from The Script featuring will.i.am.  You can (and should) watch it here because I for one think it’s quite inspiring. Not that I made it, but that these students, every single one of them, are all amazing. Which leads me to this blog post, trying to get back to my music roots because after creating that video I realize how much I missed music and how therapeutic it is for me.

When I first started scrink.com it was mostly to talk about music. I’ve been writing more serious posts lately and they are all critically important to me so I put them up here online even if the audience who usually reads this came here looking for music.

So for you,  my fellow music lovers, let’s talk George Ezra.

I’d like to pretend I know why George Ezra has this deep voice that doesn’t sound at all British but I can’t. He is an English singer-songwriter and he has a very unique voice which I’m digging.  He is 21 years old, born in the UK, signed by Columbia House and Sony already. How does that happen? As far as I know he only has one LP album and it is called Wanted on Voyage. So check him out, he’s pretty awesome. I hope you like what you here.

From: www.georgeezra.com
From: www.georgeezra.com

This song “Budapest” is my current “TURN UP THE VOLUME” track while I’m driving around like a maniac with the kids. My daughter, Amelia, does a really fascinating wiggle dance while listening.

P.S. If you are local to be and live int he Christina School District go out on May 27 too VOTE YES for the operating referendum. There are 17,000 students counting in you!


Balanced on Barbed Wire

lyalstricklandEvery now and then while Lyal Strickland is singing I hear a bit of Sister Hazel’s Ken Block. Oh how I love Ken Block. I love Sister Hazel. I could very much like Lyal Strickland I think, ahaha.

Strickland’s new album, Balanced on Barbed Wire, available February 17th, is a “gripping, cinematic dispatch from small-town America – a series of stories in song where desperation is met with relentless determination,” according to Western Publicity, but I’ll be honest I don’t really know how that’s supposed to get anyone to want to listen to it.

What I hear is a folky, mellow rock with an occasional country flair, with the exemption of “Hard to Hold” which is ALL country. I think most people who really like the album will listen all the way through but if they skip one, it might be that one.  Hopefully not though.

Lately I’m all about songs that talk about saving the world because I fancy myself a modern day Wonder Woman you see and thus I need to be schooled on all things superhero. Who doesn’t want to hear a happy kind of song anyway?

Then you move onto  “Knocking Down Doors” and it’s just brutally honest and awfully painful.  I love the soulful composition at around 2:12 in the song.

Nobody knows what they’ve got
Til it’s gone and it’s
All gone now
But you got to keep growing
Keep going keep building
Til you’re on solid ground
Til you’re on solid ground
This house is stripped to the bone
Nobody left it a home

While I feel like these lyrics are a bit worn, songs like this have been written before, I like the music behind them. I’d love to see this man at a show, hear him live, see his face. It sounds like he’s really connected to his music, but I think it would mean more to actually see it. I’m not sure if I have ever considered needing that out of music I’m listening to before. I’ll have to contemplate why this one is different.

Lyal Strickland On Tour
1/15/15 St. Louis MO Evangeline’s
1/21/15 Bloomington IN Player’s Pub
1/23/15 Downers Grove IL Two Way Street
1/24/15 Goshen IN New Paradigm
1/29/15 Cleveland OH Barking Spider
2/6/15 Kansas City MO Knucklehead’s
2/17/15 Kansas City MO Tank Room
Feb 18-21 Kansas City MO Folk Alliance
2/26/15 Dallas TX Opening Bell

I pray that they come back to life

It’s Sunday morning and I’m drinking my coffee black. Been doing this for a little over a month now. It’s not bad…but it IS flavored coffee. Starbucks Caramel.

Sitting in”my spot” on the sofa, my UD quilted blanket draped over my cold feet. When I look to my left I see my boys, my daughter is still sleeping. When I look to my right I can see our backyard and the treeline. The snow is still on the ground here, because it’s cold here, it’s cold. Take that how you want to.

tumblr_n83qcsbb0e1qlxqdpo1_500I have the album “We Don’t Have Each Other” by Aaron West and The Roaring Twenties playing. The album released on July 8, 2014 through Hopeless Records. The frontman for the band is Dan Campbell also known from the Pennsylvania band The Wonder Years. I love when PA represents ;) The album was produced by Ace Enders of the Early November.

Their track “You Ain’t No Saint” is playing right now. The emotion in this song is palpable. The textured layers to this song playing through the first 55 seconds are amazing.  I’d dare someone to tell me they don’t appreciate that bass, that banjo, the trombone, the freaking trumpet A SAXOPHONE, seriously listen to all these details and how they meld together into perfection. My ears are happy.

Dan Campbell’s voice is raw, literally laced with hurt and pain and at times love…love lost. Like in the first track of the album, “Our Apartment.”  Now what you find out while listening to the album is the songs are all about one man and his relationship, his life. Campbell created a character and he built songs around this character’s life. The album unfolds like a story where the man’s wife gets pregnant and unfortunately they lose the baby. It’s heartbreaking. The song, “Grapefruit” brought me to tears, I can’t even imagine that kind of loss.

Aaron West and The Roaring Twenties have a fantastic backing band and they are what makes Campbell’s lyrics and his songwriting really hit home harder. He could do an acoustic set and still bring you to tears, but there’s something about the sadness in this album that leaves a lingering haunting feeling in the silence between each track.

So the entire album is wonderful though I wouldn’t recommend driving while listening to it if you are already feeling depressed. At least if you cry like I do where my eyes get all bloodshot, swollen and everything stays blurry for an hour. Ha.

I’m stuck on a memory,
Of you dancing in a backyard in North Jersey.
You’re holding sparklers,
And silhouetted by the porch lights on a summer evening.
So, while I’m pulling my gloves off with my teeth,
It occurred to me you used to be happy.

Tracks I enjoy the  most at this moment… I’ve only listened to the album three now so this will most likely change… “You Aint No Saint,” “Runnin’ Scared,” and “Our Apartment.”Beautifully written, amazing composition, wonderful chord changes and feeling…lots of feeling.

And YES for those of you wondering, I DO think it would sound wicked awesome on vinyl!

Follow Aaron West on Twitter: @thisisaaronwest
Follow Aaron West on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/aaronwestand…
Subscribe for more great videos: http://hopel.es/HRYouTube
Follow Hopeless Records on Twitter: @HopelessRecords

Idealism sits in prison, chivalry fell on its sword

a37f4e6e4033f86b16cbe8027757cd14Everyone and their brother has probably heard of Hozier by now, right? Because of their track “Take Me To Church” which is absolutely incredible. But I need you to know. Like I really NEED you to know that the entire album is absolutely amazing.

Here are some of the lyrics of “From Eden” .. Honey, you’re familiar like my mirror years ago
Idealism sits in prison, chivalry fell on it’s sword
Innocence died screaming, honey, ask me I should know
I slithered here from Eden just to sit outside your door

The tracks “From Eden” and “Sedated” are currently my favorites, but I can listen to the album straight through and completely fall into this amazing dreamy groove. If I smoked, I’d definitely sit on the hood of my car, lean back, cigarette in my mouth, music playing through the radio and stare up into the sky while humming along.

As it stands right now I’m sitting in an office at my desk trying to get work done, while tapping my boot to the beat and nodding my head every now and then.

Introducing the band, Grammar, from Boston

Grammar is the project of 24-year-old Barrie Lindsay. Lindsay grew up outside of Boston and studied music theory and composition at Wesleyan in Connecticut. She formed Grammar her senior year as part of her thesis, where it took the shape of a 15-piece orchestral chamber pop group.

grammar-bandAfter graduating, Lindsay worked as a studio assistant for the sculptor George Sherwood and continued to write music and score short films. She joined her older brother Jack’s band as a keyboardist. As the band changed members and changed directions, they started playing Barrie’s original songs and became Grammar. She started writing songs geared toward the instrumentation of the band, focusing on electric guitar. After a year, they started playing out in Boston. In June 2014, Lindsay started putting together an EP of new songs, slated for release October 14th.

Grammar’s sound moved towards a darker, dreamier, cerebral pop — always with an emphasis on melody. The texture is warm and full but intentionally sparse.

In live performance, Lindsay sings lead vocals and is backed by a group of four childhood friends, including her older brother Jack Lindsay on drums, Chris Hemberger on guitar and voice, Sammy Stewart on keyboard, and Ryan Boyer on bass and voice.

Artist –  Grammar
Album – Grammar
Release Date – October 14, 2014
Label – S/R
01. Summer Skin
02. Head Up
03. Cambridge
04. New World

05. Foxes

Like Grammar on the Facebook

The Starters are out to start a whole new sound

76972-Soul_Clap_Its_HandsWhen I think of contemporary motown music I think of Mayer Hawthorne and when I think of indie music I think of Postal Service. I think maybe it’s possible The Starters have found that niche. It’s definitely not easy to try and revive the 60’s soul sound and I can’t say The Starters were able to do that, but they do have some sweet bass lines.

The Starters claim to be an indie-Motown-rock band from Los Angeles, created by brothers John and Paul Ferrigno and Blakely Berger.  In 2007 they recorded their first self-titled album in their Santa Monica rehearsal room.

The 2013 release of the CD Soul Clap Its Hands takes the Motown and Memphis soul elements even further, both in writing style and production. The Starters recorded and mixed Soul with the talented Pierre de Reeder, bassist of Rilo Kiley, who has recording, mixing, and producing credits with Jenny Lewis, She & Him, Vampire Weekend, and Julian Casablancas.

One lucky Scrink.com reader will receive their album Soul Clap Its Hands.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Winner will be chosen using Rafflecopter from all valid entries and notified via email. Winner will have 48 hours to contact me before another winner is chosen. No PO Box address accepted. Open to the US.

Nothing to Lose But Your Head new video from Augustines

augustines_promo2_web-846Augustines are extremely excited to kick start 2014 with our new video for Nothing To Lose But Your Head.

Take a listen I think you’ll love it, it reminds me of something we’d hear from U2.

Pre-Order their new self-titled album on iTunes now and receive an instant free download of “Nothing To Lose But Your Head.”

The album hits shelves on February 3rd in the UK and on February 4th in the US.

In addition, the band will be touring beginning January 20 through April 14, 2014. There will be 30 shows and they will be sharing the stage with Seattle-based duo The Goodness.