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SoundTrax: Drive & Jive

Do you get really ticked-off when that youngster in a souped-up Toyota comes rolling down the block and you can feel the ground shake long before you even see the headlights? So much bass being pumped from the car that you can see it dripping from the door hinges? If so, this edition of SoundTrax is not for you.

This is a driving playlist designed to make you groove and wiggle in your seat, not incite a Billy Joel sing-a-long.  So crank your bass knob to eleven, throw your car in gear and buckle up…it’s gonna be a bumpy ride.

Drive & Jive from OurStage on 8tracks.

“We Can Make The World Stop” by The Glitch Mob
Glitch Mob popularized the style of melodic, downtempo, glitchy (duh!) bass music that works so well for this soundtrack, and you’ll hear their influence on a lot of the other songs. Let this track set the vibe for the playlist as you make your way to the open road.

“Defying Gravity” by Gramatik
Containing everything from horn samples, to bass-lines that would stump even the best upright players, Gramatik manages to merge jazz and swing sensibilities into a blisteringly bass heavy tune that is sure to get your head bobbing as you let your throttle open up on the highway.

“Groove Nasty” by Froland
Picking up the speed a bit now, OurStage’s Froland should get your blood pumping and senses tuned as you settle into the pace of traffic.

Continue reading ‘SoundTrax: Drive & Jive’

88 MPH: Goo Goo Dolls Are More Than Just Replacements

The Goo Goo Dolls have all the trademark characteristics of any generic, commercially-viable pop rock band: the numerous multiplatinum albums, the heavy radio play, the chart-topping monster singles. But behind these established markers of commercial success hides a specter from rock ‘n’ roll’s past. While the Goos have indeed become one of the most successful pop rock acts in the last twenty years, their sound is rooted in the influence of a band famous for its spectacular failure to gain widespread acceptance and its well-documented hatred of everything mainstream.

Continue reading ’88 MPH: Goo Goo Dolls Are More Than Just Replacements’

High Rises

Red Fox Grey Fox

The first thing you should know about Red Fox Grey Fox is that that girl singing is actually a guy. Singer Peter Miller’s voice is a high, keening falsetto—rare and singularly haunting. As for the rest of it, Red Fox Grey Fox is mercurial, layered indie rock with an emotional bent … and it’s good. With a title like “Up With Mittens, Down With Gloves” you expect twee, and you get a little. But you also get squashed drums, polyrhythms, shimmering guitars and vocals with the earnest intensity of Chris Carrabba from Dashboard Confessional. If emo power anthems about protecting your hands from the snow leaves you cold, give a listen to “Building a Building.” Miller’s eerie timber leads listeners through the story of construction, brick by brick. Hand claps and foot stomps, the sparkle of guitar, multiple time signatures—all add up to a towering monument of melody and hope. They’ve built something special here. Now it’s up to you to come listen.

Wanna Be Sedated?

aviette minneapolis minnesota

Killing You Softly: Aviette

Sometimes you want to be rocked and rolled all night, and some times you just want to lie there and be lulled into oblivion. For the latter, check out the etherizing songs of Minneapolis-based indie pop band Aviette. The trio, led by singer/guitarist Holly Muñoz, doesn’t often break from formula – thankfully it’s not a bad one. Expect high register guitars that yawn and reverberate, syncopated drums that sound just a touch overproduced and Muñoz’s sweet, gossamer voice, which spins around the arrangements like cotton candy. Though the synths may crunch and the guitars may rear up, for the most part the mood is even-keeled. Aviette’s songs run on the short side, but don’t fret. When the ether wears off after three minutes, there’s another dose on the way.

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50 STATES IN 50 WEEKS… WEEK 6: MINNESOTA

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Minnesota

The North Star State

Home of: Bob Dylan, Prince, Mystery Science Theater 3000, Judy Garland, The Mall of America, Hüsker Dü, Motion City Soundtrack, The Replacements, Atmosphere, World’s Largest Ball of Twine.

Fun Facts: State flower; lady slipper, state song; “Hail Minnesota,” state bird; common loon

The Venues: Boasting four days of music and camping, the annual 10,000 Lakes Festival (10KLF) is held every year at the Soo Pass Ranch in Detroit Lakes, MN. This year the festival lineup includes Dave Matthews Band, Widespread Panic, Wilco, Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings, and Ozomatli in addition to OurStage artists My Dear Disco, Roster McCabe and Colfax. The building known as First Avenue has been an integral part of the Twin Cities music scene for the past three decades. While artists from Jefferson Starship to Run DMC to Jimmy Cliff have played there, the club is best known as Prince’s regular venue and the setting for his iconic movie Purple Rain. To see local and national bands cut their teeth, and enjoy some kitchy retro decor, the Turf Club is the place to go.

The Music:

l_28a46d6ce6534e74b4d2f88a0f8e65ce1Clawthroat – St. Paul’s Clawthroat play honest, simple, straightforward folk rock. The sparse instrumentation on “Halifax” lets their smart lyrics shine. You can tell this band puts their hearts and souls into their music.

guaqpfvztuxq-520x5201Bella Ruse – Whether you think its folksy jazz with pop hooks or pop-folk with a jazz twist, Minneapolis duo Bella Ruse are definitely on to something. On their Myspace page, the band describes their sound as “Ella plus a little folk, Feist plus a little jazz, Yael [Naim] minus the accent.” A typical set can include jazz standards and Broadway staples along with their own original music. You can hear their song “Heart of Everyone” on their debut EP.

bhtauiwceokv-520x5201Aviette – Minneapolis-based Aviette play progressive, catchy indie rock. Vocalist Holly Munoz sings like a more subdued but no less sincere Emily Haines (Metric). “Ghost Town” won Aviette the #1 Channel Prize in Indie Pop for July 2008. Their third full length album We Never Make Mistakes will be available through local St. Paul artist collective Draw Fire Records this October.

get1Sam Keenan – According to his OurStage profile, Sam Keenan spends his time “…Trying to blend the rich history of rock, hip-hop, folk and improvised music.” He succeeds with “Rosie’s Door,” a laid back song with sweet melodies and acoustic guitar layered over a hip-hop beat. In addition to making music, Sam has worked as a recording engineer for artists like Regina Spektor, M.I.A. and Ted Leo and The Pharmacists. He is also a part of the Draw Fire Records collective.

Check out these acts and other great Minnesota artists in the playlist below!

Who are your favorite OurStage Minnesotans? Where do you like to see live music in Minnesota? Let us know in the comments!

Daily Download: Gold Standard

My high school days we’re filled with ska, jazz, and funk/jam bands, needless to say, brass sections please me immensely. Today we bring you 7-piece juggernaut, Gold Standard, from Minneapolis, Minnesota. Winners of a performance spot at 10K Lakes Festival this summer, they rocked the Soo Pass Ranch back in July. These guys bring the jam band goodness, but (thank god), leave the generic noodling behind, blending funk and prog-rock elements into a seriously dance-able union. I no longer wear hemp necklaces or have 10 inches of hair, so today we bring you Haircut by indestructible (seriously, click that link…), Gold Standard.

FREE DOWNLOAD: Gold Standard | Haircut
Need help downloading? Click HERE for step-by-step instructions.

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