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August 2014
A Sunny Day in Glasgow
"Sea When Absent
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mp3
Sea When Absent (Lefse Records) opens like a shoegaze-y car crash. The latest album from A Sunny Day in Glasgow doesn’t bother gradually layering melodic elements; they get right to business from millisecond one, hitting you with reverberating electronic tones, orchestral violins, and the crooning vocals of Jen Goma and Annie Fredrickson. It’s a weirdly aggressive move for such an intensely soulful LP, but it’s pretty emblematic of how the record works as a whole. For an album as focused at creating moments of subtle beauty, Sea When Absent doesn’t have the time to let you gradually pick up on it on your own. A Sunny Day in Glasgow is the rare type of band that takes beauty and emotional resonances and waves it around like a chair in a bar fight.
 
In the strictest possible sense, this is a shoegaze-psychedelic-electronica album with a particular emphasis on vocals. But the more you listen; the more you start to discover what a diverse series of musical influences are rattling around in there. Mixing the electronica stylings of Flying Lotus and Saltillo with the indie-pop elements of bands like Death Cab and Phantogram, the basis is a percussion of grungy electronic tones, topped with a combination of guitar and synth, adding just the right balance, while being mixed in with a cavalcade of classical instruments and outlandish effects.
 
But the crown jewel of the album is Goma and Fredrickson’s understatedly gorgeous vocals. They play off, sometimes bizarre, instrumentations perfectly, complimenting them while also adding a fulcrum of relative normalcy to Sunny Day’s outside-the-box compositions. This is what really gives the album its sense of slick melancholy, creating an ambience of stylish vulnerability in tracks like “Byebye Big Ocean (The End),” where there is a sense of crooning sorrow, while “Oh I’m A Wrecker” sees them go much farther into the indie-pop paradigm.
 
While this record maintains the complexity and delightful weirdness of past A Sunny Day in Glasgow albums, it also comes with a newfound sense of clarity, in great part due to the outside production of Jeff Zeigler (of The War on Drugs and Kurt Vile fame). Zeigler is able to successfully piece together the moving parts of this bi-continental band, with mastermind Ben Daniels orchestrating things from the other side of the world in Australia, making the album’s abrupt left turns from spacey psychedelics to grounded punk-pop a little easier to digest. The wealth of ideas rarely feels busy or forced. Sea When Absent is ultimately proof that weird doesn’t necessarily have to mean messy. 

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Friend Roulette

She Keeps Bees, Luke Temple, Friend Roulette, Teletextile and Edan play Braincave Series tomorrow (05.03)

Saturday night, Baby’s All Right will host the first installment of BrainCave Series, hosted by Paper Garden Records.  In the past few years BrainCave has brought us some truly memorable weekend-long festivals that included NYC artists like Peelander-Z, Shilpa Ray, Hooray for Earth, Caged Animals, The Suzan, Black Cobra and more, alongside live art and DJs. Saturday’s stacked bill promises to be just as exciting, and includes Luke Temple of Here We Go Magic, Friend RouletteTeletextile, Edan and She Keeps Bees (pictured), among others. Check out under-appreciated Brooklyn/D.C. alt folkers She Keeps Bees' latest single "Counter Charm" - after this show they'll be touring with Sharon Von Etten in May. - Bill Dvorak


Friend Roulette releases "Grow Younger" EP

Here at The Deli NYC we like bands that don't think "straight" - maybe because our scene has a tradition for rewarding acts with a unique vision. Friend Roulette definitely doesn't lack this feature, as testified once again by their new EP "Grown Younger," out today on Goodnight Records. The band plays a rather loud brand of orchestral/synth pop, where the aggressive wall of sound created by drums, horns, guitars and keys is only partially tamed by violinist's Julia Tepper's oblique vocal melodies. Check out preview single "I Guess" below, and stream the entire EP here.

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Friend Roulette unveils gorgeous new video for "Lie" + plays Mercury on 10.02

Friend Roulette, probably the most unusual chamber pop band in NYC, has just released with very cool video of their single "Lie" - enjoy on your monitor now, or live at Mercury Lounge on October 2.

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Friend Roulette, Xenia Rubinos, Blanche Blanche Blanche at Union Pool on 09.05

Union Pool on September 5th will host a perfect show to indulge your musical ADHD. With tribal sounding percussion, reminiscent of earlier Local Natives or Wild Beasts, Friend Roulette (pictured) mixes a plethora of genres, from pop to psych to folk, without ever sounding like a forced fusion. The band just released a new single entitled ViVa ZyPreXa (streaming below), belonging to the sparser and more experimental side of their repertoir. They’re playing with Xenia Rubinos, an eccentric and sultry vocalist who crafts jagged jumpy rhythms into danceable avant-pop tracks. Obscure post punk group Blanche Blanche Blanche will be joining the set as well, adding a dark flavor to this eclectic show. All bands are based in Brooklyn! - Paul Jordan Talbot


Friend Roulette announces release + plays Deli UN/OFF show in Austin on 03.15

Brooklyn's Friend Roulette sounds like an indie band formed by an established and constantly high Hollywood movie soundtrack composer. The band's instrumentation ranges from your regular electric guitars and drums to strings and other instruments quite foreign to the pop tradition like bass clarinet and EWI. Their music favors not exactly uplifting atmospheres ranging from the melancholic to the downright tense, but pop melodies lie in there, between the guitar and violin drones and the clarinet arabesques. Their sound is rather unique and their live shows very enjoyable, and that's why we decided to book them for our Deli UN/OFF party in Austin next week on March 15 at Rusty's (8pm). The band has recently released the first single "Earthrise" (streaming below) from the album "I'm Sorry You Hit Your Head," out in April on Goodnight Records.

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The Deli UN/OFF show in Austin: The Stone Foxes, Pearl & The Beards, Andre Obin, Avan Lava, Friend Roulette + more!

Music fans heading South,

The Deli will be in Austin on March 15 with a two stage night party hosted at Austin's legendary gay bar Rusty's. Great lineup of artists and even greater list of Special Guests who will be announced shortly. See here for more info + band links!

Mark your calendars!

The Deli's Staff


Deli CMJ Post-Chestral Stage at The Living Room with Cuddle Magic, Dangerous Ponies, Doe Paoro, You Bred Raptors? + more

DETAILS ABOUT THIS SHOW + STREAMING
COMPILATION OF ALL 14 BANDS HERE.

It took us a couple of weeks to come up with a title for this Deli official CMJ show. On Wednesday October 17 at The Living Room we'll have a fair amount of orchestral instruments on stage, from You Bred Raptors'? frantic cello to Cuddle Magic's gentle winds and xylophone, without forgetting the sparse piano lines of Doe Paoro and Starlight Girls' retro flute. But even though all these instruments are borrowed from the classical tradition, all the artists on this bill have a forward looking, at times even experimental attitude. This is why in the end we settled with the label "Post-Chestral", which is a term we are happy to notice nobody used before - at least not since Google was invented! This of course implies that we are either geniuses or terrible-new-word creators...

Early that evening we'll have the noir chamber pop of Friend Roulette , In One Wind's orchestrated experimentations, and DT Rotbot intricate post-rock. Later at night we'll be enterteined by the cinematic and atmospheric music of Industries of the Blind followed by cheerful Philadelphia based collective Dangerous Ponies(in the picture, Cuddle Magic and You Bred Raptors).


 
 


Weekly Feature: Friend Roulette plays Delinquency 9.14

There’s a perfectly hummable sentiment somewhere in Friend Roulette’s “Sailing Song” that keeps working its way back to the surface, but only after first progressing through all manner of uneven meter changes, brass fanfare and incidental thematic adventure. At times stepping boldly into a space usually exclusive to the imagination of score composers like Danny Elfman, the group essentially writes baroque pop pieces for an imagined Brechtian musical, casting its talented singers/songwriters Julia Tepper and Matthew Meade as the show’s unlikely protagonists. They will be performing at Bushwick's Delinquency next Friday (9.14). Meanwhile, read Mike Levine's interview with the band here.

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