Friday, November 14, 2008

East Coast Rocks:: Ten Artists to Watch

There are a lot of things to talk about on this Halifax Friday Morning. First, the handy post counter shows that this is our 2004th post. Hot damn.

Two thousand posts
that range from diatribes about women with holes in the ass of their jeans, personal vendettas against Raps writer Dave Feschuk, Sportsguy Bill Simmons and unfunny yutz Robin Williams, copious amounts of poorly written reviews that are usually about 1000 words too long, golden age rap jams, and more weather metaphors than you can shake a stick at.

We’ve been doing this for 5 years – which is equally impressive as it is pathetic – and we honestly thought by now we’d have way more traffic and people would care more about Canadian bands, but such is life. It seems that people would rather read a two sentence, copy and paste review (that still somehow is still laced with grammatical errors) that has been posted on countless other blogs than about a DIY Canadian band. Imagine that.

What else is new? Obvious to you non RSS readers, we have a new look and feel. You see, we had the whole Tyus Edney Coast-to-Coast thing all ready to roll when I still lived in Vancouver, but now the Hill is an East Coast operation. There are precious few Canadian blogs and while we are proud to rep Canada to the fullest, almost no one talks about the East Coast scene. So, as the handy header now clearly indicates... our goal is to get music fans talking about Maritime artists. Are you a Maritime act hoping to get some love? Just drop us an email - herohill [at] gmail [dot] com.

So, anyway, to get the ball rolling I’ve compiled a list of 10 bands from the Maritimes that I think you need to hear.

In-flight Safety
The boys from In-Flight Safety are set to unleash a new record - we are an empire, my dear - one that fans have been jonesing for. How will it stack up? I’ve only heard a few tracks (all of which sound terrific), but the songs they debuted at Summersonic were tighter than Mullane’s white pants… which is saying something. Comparisons to huge rock bands like U2 are destined, but these guys can pen some arena readyanthems and they are only going to get bigger and better.

MP3:: Crash Land (live @ Summersonic)

And as a special treat for you... how about some exclusive content. Take a listen to the early releases from the new record courtesy of a handy, ArtistXite player.

Old Man Luedecke
This has more or less become a personal agenda for me. Old Man Luedecke not only put out one of the best banjo records of the year, he put out one of the best records... period. He’s a quiet man, one who avoids the limelight but the time has come for people to start listening.

Folk artist and the year here in NS, and male artist of the year too. Look, we know we are old crusty blog-dads, so let us get into charcater here. "Don’t make me come back there. If you don’t start paying attention to Chris, I’ll turn this blog around and we’ll just go home." Plus, this song about breakfast with friends makes me happier than almost any other song I've heard this year.
MP3:: Big Group Breakfast

Rich Aucoin
Rich is the type of artist that doesn’t come along very often. I mean, you can look at the fact he syncs up film to his songs and constantly looks for ways to turn his live shows into an experience, but that is just one side of the coin. Simply put - he has a knack for writing amazing songs.

Brian Wilson is Alive is one of the best songs I’ve heard all year, and I would imagine with the number of guests he is throwing on his new record – blog favs Ruby Coast are just one of over 300 contributors – the reaction to his work is going to be terrific.

Here's the demo version of A.L.I.V.E. for you to enjoy.
MP3:: Brian Wilson is Alive

Memories Attack
It’s hard to think of noise rockers making a big splash outside of the confines of their home province, but with the help of some joint distribution, this Noyes act might just have the muscle to get heard.
MP3:: Peaks and Valleys

Myles Deck and the Fuzz
When I'm listening to new music, I tend to heed the words of Freedom Williams to stay objective. Hmmmmmmmmmmm. Are the Stooges still cool? You’re god damn right they are. Myles Deck and his trusty Fuzz make no apologies for loving the raw energy of the legendary Detroit rockers and with the extra boost of Halifax icon Joel Plaskett handling the production for their upcoming 7”, well, chances are they might go boom boom in ’09.
MP3:: Boom Boom

Christina Martin
Pop AND female artist of the year. That’s more than enough to get her on this list, but the female touch she adds to the Propsector’s Union and her contributions to the Olympic Symphonium record only strengthen her resume. I slept on her record - Two Hearts - and both Shane and I agree it is fantastic. With all the big female names coming out of Halifax, it's a shame more people don't mention Christina.
MP3:: Two Hearts

Olympic Symphonium
Not sure what else we can say about this NB-based trio that we didn’t say in our review of their new record?If that didn’t sell you, I don’t think a quick paragraph will either… oh, and you might hate music if you don’t like the folky sounds they craft.

Throw in the fact the record has more guests than an 6015 Willow St. party, and you can see why these guys made the list.
MP3:: Intentions Alone

Prospector’s Union
This one probably confuses a lot of music fans. You are probably more familiar with Matt Charlton working his ass off to get people listening to other artists – publicist of the year right thurr - but this left-handed strummer is a natural born story teller.

He seems to have found his Emmylou - getting vocal support at shows from Christina Martin – and as his set at HPX ’08 showed, he can turn his quiet tales into full fledged, roots rockers when people like Andrew Sisk, John Mullane, and Dan Ledwell unite like a plaid shirt wearing Voltron.
MP3:: Flaming Death

Boxer the Horse
Absolutely crushed the opening set of the IHM/Herohill showcase and their EP gets better with each listen. They took their name from one of my favorite books, and it seems that everyone who hears these PEI natives falls in love with them, so that is probably a good sign. Plus, they have the stage banter of a seasoned Vegas comic.
MP3:: Mousetrap

Ruby Jean & The Thoughtful Bees
Sweaty, dance floor bangers are not something you might expect coming from Halifax chanteuse Rebekah Higgs, but she and her band use programming and a voice box to create some tracks Turbo and Ozone could get down with. Think a female fronted MSTRKRFT and you are in the ballpark. Honestly, I hate to dance so you’d think I’d hate this, and I probably would if it wasn’t so damn good.
MP3:: You Don't Miss Me

And finally...The first annual Herohill Calling You Out award goes to:
The Just Barelys - This is just peer pressure really. I figure if I keep annoying them by writing posts that ponder their future recordings, they will get sick of it and just release an EP? Your move Stephen and Eleanor… your move.

Posted at 8:18 AM by ack :: 6 comments

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At 10:53 AM, Blogger naedoo did sayeth:

Here's to us and to 2004 posts, we're the best!

Also, big up to the ripped jeans lady.


At 12:16 PM, Blogger Rupert did sayeth:

here's to 2004 more.
go team.


At 4:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous did sayeth:

I think you're forgeting one very important East Coast band to watch: hey rosetta!. These boys, and girl, have been been making waves across the country, and in to the states (and I don't just mean the Marine Atlantic ferry!)


At 12:37 PM, Blogger naedoo did sayeth:

Oh, we haven't forgotten about Hey Rosetta!, as you can check our reviews for their first two albums here and here, but I think the Ack's intent was to profile acts on the come-up.

Hey Rosetta! blew up quite nicely in the last year or so.


At 8:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous did sayeth:

The reason your traffic is not what you thought it would be...the dimise of Greek content...


At 8:12 PM, Anonymous Anonymous did sayeth:

we have an EP! it's called top. it's old (2006) but we are rectifying that. slowly, in our home studio. sorry for the delay, but you can't rush this stuff!
well... we can't anyway. Thanks for the mention!

love, Stephen and Eleanor TJBs


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