Sunday, November 30, 2008

Thom Hell

"This perfect mix of instrumental pieces and honest vocals should'nt be missed"
I've been meaning to listen to Thom Hell's music earlier, but with the ever going list of new music, last week I had a first listen to his last album, and loved it! The album is full of catchy folk rock/pop songs, perfect for singer-songwriter lovers like me. Some of the songs have beautiful instrumental interludes, that give the album just that little extra. Recommended!
The Norwegian singer-songwriter Thom Hell ((birth name Thomas Helland) is a favourite with the critics as well as with the live audience. Influenced by artists like Paul McCartney, The Beach Boys, Nick Drake, Pink Floyd and Crowded House, Thom Hell proves himself a master of melancholy and good melodies, with a voice filled with nerve and passion, ranging from the highest to the deepest pitch. He has released t EPs and three albums. After using his backing band "The Love Connection" on the two first albums and the following tours, he has now formed a new band backing him as a solo artist. Hell also contributes on Norwegian singer-songwriter Marit Larsen's album Under the Surface where he joins Larsen in a duet for the song To An End.

@ ? , Norway
♫ Acoustic, Indie, Pop
Darling (mp3)
Official Website

Friday, November 28, 2008

The Bicycles

Back in 2006, The Bicycles' debut album was one of my favorites that year, full of catchy indie pop songs, never failing to better my mood, or to get me dancing on my seat, now they're back with their second album. A perfect opportunity to introduce this indie pop gem to you. Enjoy!
With the 2006 release of their highly acclaimed, chart topping debut album, The Good The Bad and The Cuddly, The Bicycles were appropriately coined as “pre-pubescent rock”. The cartoon-like troupe have toured North America rousing audiences of both kids and kids at heart with their jangly, melodic and super catchy bubble-gum pop, calling to mind the days of milkshakes and roller skates. And having a reputation for being very hands on and crafty, their merch table is a veritable cornucopia of creativity: various handmade felt B t-shirts, duffle bags made from track pants, little carrying cases for their cds, one of a kind buttons, and the clincher... their interactive DVD board game. This fall, with the release of their sophomore album, Oh No, It’s Love, Matt Beckett, Drew Smith, Dana Snell and Andrew Scott are found sharing duties on song writing, singing and trading off instruments on the fully charged album. At a whopping 19 tracks – The Bicycles are still kings and queen of the 2 minute power pop song, this time a little less twee a little, more rockin’, a touch of heavy heartedness, but still uber upbeat. Chocked full of goodies, Oh No It’s Love, serves up enough sweets to make up for past 2 years of low blood sugar pop!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Karli Fairbanks

Karli Fairbanks was recommended by someone from quite a while ago. The thing that immediately striked me when I listened to her music, is her soulful voice, sad, but hopeful at the same time. Singing beautiful songs you that want to sing along with!
Born and raised in the sleepy streets of Spokane, Washington Karli Fairbanks has been a well-known presence in the local music scene for the last three years, collaborating widely and playing alongside some of the talented and increasingly successful young musicians who are putting Spokane back on the music radar. A hard-working multi-instrumentalist, Karli cut her teeth on classical piano and now brings both a careful sensibility and very deliberate wistfulness to the folk and country music she has lately favored. Switching easily from guitar to melancholy piano ballads, accordion and delicately strummed banjo Karli Fairbanks is equally comfortable playing stripped down acoustic sets or taking lead on a crowded stage as she sings alongside some of the incredible musicians she calls collaborators and friends. The last few years have seen Karli Fairbanks collaborate with and play alongside an increasingly long-list of accomplished musicians including Josh Ritter, Nick Jaina, David Bazan, Norfolk and Western, Horse Feathers and Johanna Kunin. Extensive touring and the opportunity to work with such incredible musicians has had something of a hothouse effect on Karli’s music with three releases in the last two years tracking her swift progression as a gifted, young songwriter. Her recent five song EP, “Meet Me,” is an attempt to capture the intimate, stripped down sound so familiar to anyone who’s heard Karli play live recently. Following on from last year’s self-produced LP, “Bitter Blue,” “Meet Me,” will be available online and for purchase during Karli’s Fall tour of the West Coast and features the musician’s own beautiful hand-made artwork.

Monday, November 24, 2008

My Little Pony

"Catchiest indie pop, I've heard in ages"
It's been a while since I first listened to My Little Pony's first EP: Songs in A Major which I liked very much, but I needed more before blogging them. Last month, their debut album finally released and is even better than I expected! So, give them a listen! (especially for the ones of you that really like Camera Obscura and The School, this is a must!)
My Little Pony is a pretty new band on the friendly Oslo pop scene. Sometimes they play pop, sometimes it's afrojazz, sometimes it's bluegrass, and once in a while even reggae, but it is always within the generous framework of the genre known as indiepop. Allthough having existed for only a year, My Little Pony has allready become an experienced live band playing over 50 shows the past year. Both in Norway, Sweden, and even Spain, where they are the winners of this years Premio Pop-Eye for "European Revelation". Their first EP, "Songs in A major", was released in October 2007 and is available from a lot of record stores. The maxi-single "MacGyver Blues" has only been released as a CD-R, and in a limited edition. The compilation "Around the world with My Little Pony, vol.1" was also released by Spoon Train Audio this spring. It contains one new track from My Little Pony and nine tracks by My Little Pony's Myspace friends, including bands like Red Pony Clock, Cola Jet Set and Snippet. October 20th 2008 saw the release of My Little Pony's long awaited debut album "Think Too Much".

Heidi Happy

Heidi Happy's debut album was one of the great albums of last year, and I was very happy to see her release her second album "Flowers, Birds and Home" not so long ago. Which made me realize that she wasn't on LetMeLikeIt yet. A shame, because both her albums are really great, and worth a try!
Priska Zemp was born with a musical talent. Her mother is a classically trained soprano, her father sings in several choirs. Also her sister and brothers are busy in bands. During the last ten years Priska Zemp has gathered experience as a singer and composer in different bands. It more and more became the number one thing in her life. In April 2005 she started her solo career as Heidi Happy. Just two years later she has hit her peak. By the end of 2006 she won a reward from the city of Lucerne, Switzerland, wherewith she produced her first album "Back Together“ on Little Jig Records. Everything that Heidi sings has past her heart a million times. It’s all stories, that make her sad or happy, that made her sceam, cry or even puke. While she’s singing these stories, one has the feeling that her heart might soon fall out her mouth. No matter if you start being tired of all these singer-songwriters, or if you think the turquoise of her guitar doesn’t match with her shirt; the songs, her voice, the combination of beautiful melodies and unscrupulously personal lyrics make your heart dance in a different world.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Madi Diaz

Madi Diaz is Kyle Ryan and Madi Diaz. Kyle grew up in Nebraska. Madi grew up in western Pennsylvania. They were friends with fields and cows and ponies and corn and tobacco barns. They both tried to go cow tipping at one point or another. They both found their way to the big cities. Madi's first city love was Philadelphia. Two years later she found love again with Boston. Kyle and Madi ran circles around each other in different groups of friends and bands while trying to become affluent in the trade of music. They met and began to play together somewhere around the fall of 2006. They wrote their first song together somewhere around the early side of 2007. Kyle graduated. Madi ran away from school, books, and dirty looks but continued to reside in Boston. For another year they continued struggling to play gigs and hang with the cool kids and finally it paid off. They met Ty Stiklorius, current manager and friend in the fall of 2007. Immediately sweeping them off their feet, ty began to reach out and make major moves for the two writers connecting them with the esteemed publishing company Cherry Lane Music and letting them sleep on her couch when their new york city gigs ran late. Things grew and changed as they often do and most recently madi and kyle decided to say goodbye to their friends and lovers they had made and make the drive to Nashville. One 16 foot buget truck, one car trailer, 22 hours and many many boxes of sour patch kids later, there they were in the most musically dense city, like, ever. now they can make more music. and they do. all the time. and they love it. and they hope you do too. Madi Diaz released a solo EP in 2007 called "Skin and Bone" and recently released her first EP "Ten Gun Salute" with Kyle Ryan.

Sunday, November 16, 2008


Tristen, is a singer-songwriter from Nashville, a city full of talent thatI would love to visit one day! She released two albums (Among the Crowd and The Lightest Kind) and a EP (Something Good) so far. And is definitely a force to be reckoned with!
One such shining example is singer/songwriter Tristen who arrived recently by way of Chicago. The single-named songstress has been bandying a simple, straightforward pop influenced folk style around town for the past year now. Backed by a revolving door backing band, Tristen takes a classic approach to melody sounds neither modern nor retro, but rather takes on a timeless quality that seems it could have come about at any given year between now and 1972. Growing up in Chicago on a steady diet of radio oldies, Tristen started writing pop songs and playing shows at the ripe age of 14. After making a few records, she landed a publishing deal in L.A. and getting a few of her tunes in placed in television and film. It’s an impressive start at such a young age, but shortly she hit what she describes as a creative “glass ceiling” and knew it was time to move on. She started traveling to Nashville to write with a friend and recorded another pop album. Since arriving in Music City, Nashville, Tristen has long departed from her radio pop roots and done well at assembling a crew of capable musicians to accompany her new style. Work on her newest record is slated for this summer but Tristen says it feels like it’ll be her first. In the meantime, she’s been playing as often as possible around town and beginning to branch out into the regional south.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Fiction Family

Fiction Family is a new sideproject of Jon Foreman, lead singer of Switchfoot. Earlier this year he released 4 solo-EP's and a record. And this new project has already been in the works for 12 years. I don't know about you, but I'm excited to hear the album!
Fiction Family is Sean Watkins and Jon Foreman and we've been working on a record together for the last three years. "Officially, we met backstage at a music festival in downtown San Diego called Street Scene. Nickel Creek and Switchfoot were playing one after another. Anyhow, the record started as simple plan to co-write a song, which then then turned into a plan to make a EP, which was so fun we decided to make it a 5 song EP, which led to the idea of making it 7 songs. As soon as money entered the equation, it was all over folks. Anyway, it's coming out January 20th and we're very excited. It's really icing on the cake that this record is even being released properly. ATO none the less. Ideal, really. Most of the time while making this record, we were thinking that we'd probably end up just giving it away online and perhaps play a few shows. Just that sounded fun and fulfilling enough for the work we were putting into it. Thankfully ATO stepped in and agreed to release it which gave us motivation and a timeline for having it all finalized, turned in and done. The old adage that "you never finish a record, you just stop working on it" holds true. Whereas, we could have had endless fun adding and changing this record, it was nice to put it in the can and move toward getting out to you fine folks.

@ Cardiff, USA
♫ Indie, Acoustic, Folk, Pop
When She's Near (mp3)
Official Website

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Alva Leigh

One might assume that it must be pretty intimidating for a musician to hail from the state of Mississippi, a land made famous by the likes of B. B. King, Elvis Presley, and Muddy Waters; however, Alva Leigh, a musician whose home is in Gulfport, shows no sign of insecurity in her roots. Singing engaging songs drawn from the milieu of the American South, she is a voice for a significant yet oft-forgotten culture. When she opens her mouth to sing, her voice becomes dark and worldly, her vowels long and begging, her melodies moody, and sitting behind a piano, she is electric. The candid, dusty anecdotes within each song seem to suggest a Deep South from the time of Faulkner, of black coffee, worn church pews, and faded summer dresses, all steeped in earthy, sacred imagery. It is possesses that which so much music lacks: an organic honesty. With her charm and disarming youthfulness, Alva Leigh has managed to capture the hearts of countless audiences.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Thunder Power

When first listening to Thunder Power, there’s something familiar that you can’t quite pinpoint – or shake off. Their music draws you in with an earnestness that makes a dreary day a little less dreary. It swells from sweet to somber, from biting to just plain raucous, lofting in the realms of murky, folk-laden ballads and chamber pop soirees. Basically, Thunder Power never ceases to keep your toes tapping. This Omaha sextet features Kacynna Tompsett’s “old soul” vocals, backed by five longtime friends (Matt Hutton, Will Simons, Ian Simons, Jason Koba and Alex Boardman) who’ve been playing music together in various projects for the past decade. With multiple songwriters and the occasional instrument swap, the band is able to draw from a wide range of talents and influences and collectively craft their music. Sit them all down and you’ll likely laugh at all the jokes and good-natured insults flying about. Thunder Power has shared the stage with acts such as Tilly and the Wall, The Good Life, The Thermals, Scout Niblett, Pontiak, Eagle Seagull. “Love Yourself,” the group’s debut EP, brings together five animated tracks that radiate a youthful energy reminiscent of a time when pop music was pure. Through lyrics that range from bitter to bittersweet, Kacynna Tompsett’s smoky vocals reject the idea that succumbing to everyday societal pressures is the only way to make it in a world where sheen outshines substance.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Rachel Goodrich

Hailing from Miami Beach, FL, 24 Year Old Rachel Goodrich has been playing music and writing songs since age 12. She explores a variety of sounds,playing everything from the guitar to the ukulele, piano, kazoo, banjo, and autoharp. Creating this unique and exciting style, Rachel draws on some of her influences which include Joni Mitchell, The Grateful Dead, Tiny Tim, Dr. Seuss, The Lovin' Spoonful, Bob Dylan & The Band, and so many more. With an eclectic live show featuring a growing collection of band members and toys, Rachel has carved out her own genre she calls "shake-a-billy." Catch her on tour and make sure to download her debut album "Tinker Toys " available on itunes and other online stores October 29th, 2008.

Friday, November 7, 2008

The Honey Trees

The first time I stumbled on The Honey Trees, was when I visited Wesley Jensen's page. Their profile photo literally did if for me! I'm happy it did, because I immediately fell in love with their songs. And they got me even more after I found out that Becky Filip was the lead singer of the band, what a voice! Becky Filip used to be one of my friends, when I used MySpace two years ago. (Now I mostly use it to contact the artists, listen to their songs) And I was even more amazed by the fact that Becky Filip, and automatically The Honey Trees, has quite a following on hyves (a dutch network site like MySpace). So with any luck they'll be visiting us soon!
The Honey Trees are an indie band from Sacramento, California fronted by Becky Filip. The band also includes Jacob Wick and Jason Massey. They currently recorded their EP, “Wake The Earth” during the summer and is expected to be released shortly. "Thank you to everyone who has been so supportive and encouraging, you are all so wonderful, and we are so grateful to you and your kind words. Love!"

@ Sacramento, USA
♫ Indie, Acoustic, Pop
Orchard (mp3)
Edelweiss (mp3)

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

The Rescues

Sometimes the first 30 seconds of a song say enough for me, with The Rescues that certainly was the case. I instantly loved their sound, songs and lyrcis, and I am sure more of you will love their perfect blend of voices too! So don't hesitate and start listening!
The whole is greater than the sum of its parts. No band in recent history illustrates that notion better than LA newcomers, The Rescues. Comprised of three successful and critically acclaimed solo singer-songwriters in their own right - Adrianne, Kyler England and Gabriel Mann - The Rescues have more than 15 albums, dozens of songwriting awards, and thousands of miles on the road between them. The Rescues have awakened a dormant L.A. tradition of the best of the music scene joining together to make something greater than themselves. Some have called The Rescues an “Indie Supergroup,” but they’re just three friends singing honest, real, and seamlessly-crafted pop songs, in three-part harmony. Yet the making of this band was a long time coming. Enter a friend and fan of all three with a vision and an upcoming wedding. Said fan hired the three to perform a concert at his reception, and The Rescues were born. Since the January release of their debut EP, The Rescues have played to sold-out crowds on tour in the southeast and in their home base of Los Angeles. The Rescues’ full length album, “Crazy Ever After,” is released today!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Meaghan Smith

Here's another singer for you, perfect for late evenings and when you're having a retro moment/want to go back to the 20's, 3o's etc.
Meaghan Smith has always been a singer. Her mum was a piano teacher and her dad played bass in different bands. She grew up in London, Ontario, Canada. "When I was a teenager I started playing guitar, but my carefree childhood confidence quickly turned to stage fright. I opted to go to school for animation in pursuit of my drawing, but I couldn’t fight the urge to sing my songs. Eventually I worked up the courage to put on secret concerts for a few friends in the stairwells of the animation building. Someone encouraged me to use the school’s recording studio to make a demo CD. That’s when my love affair with the microphone began. Soon it came time to make an album. I had written a bunch of new songs, I just needed to find someone to produce them. I spent two months in Toronto bringing The Cricket’s Orchestra to life. I am greatly moved by the music of the ’20s, ’30s, and ’40s — times when things were pure and simple — so I wanted the music to recall those eras. We used Mellotron samples in place of a modern band because we loved the quirky, vintage vibe they brought to the songs, and topped it all off with some turntable scratches. The result is an ideal blend of old and new." The Cricket’s Orchestra is now available at her website and iTunes.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Les Singes

Les Singes, good friends, Rosa Ronsdorf and Julien Staartjes, compose smart popsongs, with english lyrics, but representing a clear love for French chansons. In short, french pop sung in english. Unintentionally, because Rosa does want to sing in French but can't yet. They're from Amsterdam, Julien is 19 Rosa's 20. Les Singes was founded this summer, after both members left their former bands. They love their minimal sound from two guitars and one piano. Resulting in smart and creative songs, ready to hit the musicscene! They're already named as "one to watch" by 3voor12.

@ Amsterdam, NL
♫ Indie, Pop, Acoustic
Addiction (mp3)
Mary (mp3)

Erin McCarley

"The beautiful and honest vocals singing the infectious pop-rock songs make this a hit!"
Erin McCarley is one of those artists that was still unsigned the first time I heard their music, a but are now signed with big labels, just like Lenka. So although she's not a new discovery, I still want to share her music with you before she's going to be a (massive) hit.
McCarley grew up in the Dallas suburb of Garland. In a way, her ideal childhood led to an unexpected wake-up call later in life. “It kind of gave me an unrealistic view of everything,” McCarley notes with a laugh. “That’s not how the world is, you know?” In McCarley’s music you can hear her charting the distance between fantasy and reality, as well as the heartbreak that inevitably accompanies its discovery. McCarley’s brand of honesty doesn’t come without the occasional flash of regret. Near the top of the list of McCarley’s favorite artists are names like Fiona Apple, Patty Griffin and Greg Laswell (the latter of whom co-wrote “Bobblehead”). “I just love how true and raw their lyrics are,” she explains. Listening to records by these musicians is more than enjoyable for McCarley—it’s inspiring. McCarley currently calls Nashville home, but she cut her musical teeth in San Diego, where she’d moved after college to pursue a life that didn’t feature music at its center. During her undergraduate days she’d spend weekends singing with a country cover band for extra cash, yet in San Diego, selling clothes in a boutique and hanging out on the beach, she began thinking not just like a singer, but as a songwriter, which satisfied a different artistic jones. Love, Save the Empty, her debut album will be released Jan 6, next year!

@ San Diego, USA
♫ Pop, Rock, Alternative
Pitter-Pat (mp3)
Official Website

The Love Willows

The Love Willows caught my interest after seeing their upcoming album on a releaselist. Good stuff for everyone who likes a good pop/rock song once in a while!
An Atlanta duo that wants young audiences to have fun, singer Hope Partlow and guitarist/vocalist Ryan Wilson have crafted a buoyant debut album, Hey! Hey! that is unabashedly upbeat. You might even smell the cotton candy in this collection of enjoyable pop/rockabilly tunes, like spinning through an amusement park where childlike pleasures can be found in even the simplest of rides. Not that The Love Willows doesn’t speak to young adults. In fact, most of Hey! Hey! tracks the evolution of their own relationship. “It’s all about fetishes, love and hate,” says Hope. “It’s a product of what we’ve gone through as a couple, the battles and the glories, everything that’s happened in the past few years.” The accessibility of their songs also belies their inventiveness and, oftentimes, their subtle sophistication. “I feel like we bring something different to the table,” says Ryan, who produced and engineered the album. The pair recorded Hey! Hey! in the attic studio of Ryan’s parents’ home outside of Atlanta, with Ryan playing every instrument and both of them songwriting. The tunes are brightly colored - much like Hope and Ryan when they perform live, with swaths of neon yellows, pinks and greens adorning their clothes and gear. Their debut album Hey! Hey! will be released the 29th January of next year. (after being postponed for the third time)

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Sarah Russell

The first few times I saw Sarah Russell's name and photo on MySpace, they looked so familiar, that I skipped looking at her page, assuming I already knew her. Fortunately, after all I decided to check her page. What I saw was a new talented singer-songwriter from the southcoast of England, definitely worth checking out!
She sings all her folky selfwritten songs with a very suiting and soft voice enrichened with a nice british edge, and also plays guitar. Her inspiration comes from all around life, love and everything in between including Jeff Buckley, Kate Bush, Nina Simone, Neil Young, Tori Amos, Nick Drake, The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Brian Wilson, Gemma Hayes and Fiona Apple. I wouldn't be surprised when she releases an album on a (big) label next year!

@ South, UK

Fileden account got deleted again...!

Sorry guys, but something is wrong with the filehost, again. My new fileden account got supspended again, that's the second fileden account that get's suspended, and another filehost that's not stable and reliable.
I just bought a PRO account at boxstr (that gives me 25GB bandwith/a day!!), so let's hope that works out! Although I still think it's better to start using a real filehostingservice, (anyone that can teach me how?)
I really hope everything gets settled now because this really starts to mess with all the motivation and fun I have by maintaining and updating this blog.