Prince Rupert’s Drops ∆ “Follow Me”

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Living in New York City certainly has its benefits and drawbacks. Whether those come in the form of readily available bagel spots, high rent costs, or underground hair/nail salons operating in the apartment next door to you (a benefit to some, a drawback to others), there’s an infinite number of things that make you want to stick around, and just as many that make you want to pack up the U-Haul and get outta town in a moments notice. But something that you won’t find anywhere else, and will forever remain a part of New York’s fabric, are bands like Prince Rupert’s Drops.

Typically, these bands don’t stray too far from home and if you happen to live outside the New York locale there’s a good chance they’ve flown passed your radar. This sort of musical anomaly applies to bands like Endless Boogie, Invisible Familiars, and a whole legion of artists that exist largely within the confines of New York.

Prince Rupert’s Drops much anticipated sophomore LP, Climbing Light, is out this week on Beyond Beyond is Beyond. Fans of riff-heavy ’60s psych with a touch of British folk are sure to enjoy the array of sounds crafted by this eclectic musical collective. Have a listen to “Follow Me,” the album’s stunning folk-rocker that finds vocalist Leslie Stein channeling Fairport-era Sandy Denny.

Purchase Climbing Light from the good folks at Beyond Beyond is Beyond.

Prince Rupert’s Drops – “Follow Me”

A Farewell To BBIB on East Village Radio

 

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Photo by Andrea Carta

Five years back, I found myself going through a bit of an obsessive phase over legendary drummer Bill Bruford (Yes, King Crimson, Genesis, Earthworks) after having caught one of his jazz improv sets at Ronnie Scott’s in London, England. It was during this phase that, while on one of my tangential web surfing sessions, I came across an internet radio show that was announcing a live interview with ol’ Bill later that same day. The show was called Beyond Beyond is Beyond on East Village Radio.

Sitting in the study of my University apartment, I tuned in to hear the interview but was met with a cacophony of abstract sound instead. “Is it normal for weird sounds to be coming from my speakers?” I asked via tweet. “If by weird sounds you mean great music, then yes!” the host replied before slipping into Bubble Puppy’s “Road to St. Stephen’s.” That was my first interaction with Mike Newman, and it said a lot about the kind of person he is. Mike would soon become one of my most favourite people on this planet, as well as one of my dearest friends.

My second or third time tuning in to his show, I realized that Mike possessed a wizard-like gift for picking these magically obscure “jams”–those songs that send your mind to the cosmic zones right from the outset; the ones with those unique notes or riffs that make you go back and listen to them over, and over. The ones that take you on a journey every time.

I remember, while in University, hoping that I would one day meet someone who shared a similarly geekish level of interest for conversation topics like the specifics of “Steve Howe’s guitar solo on ‘Siberian Khatru,'” or “Bruford’s fills on ‘Heart of the Sunrise.'” I spent a lot of that time on my own, reading, playing guitar and listening to Mike’s show. Every time I tuned in, it was like I’d found that person.

When I finally made the decision to move to New York, I reached out to Mike and asked for some recommendations on record shops and cheap places to eat. A few weeks later, I remember buying him a burger at one of those places to thank him for introducing me to the Welsh band Man. We’ve since attended more uh-mazing concerts together than you can shake a stick at.

Sadly, Beyond Beyond is Beyond will broadcast from East Village Radio for the final time today as the station plans to close up shop by week’s end. It’s been a great ride listening along and hopefully I’ve managed to turn a few of you onto the show as well.

You can listen to the final broadcast today from 4-6PM on East Village Radio.

Also, be sure to check out the record label wing of Beyond Beyond Is Beyond.

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Devonian Gardens △ “Solar Shifting” (Video Premiere)

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Calgary psych-rock voyagers Devonian Gardens have released unto the world a new video set to the title track to their debut album, Solar Shifting. Recorded in the secluded forests of Nova Scotia with analog wizard Jay Crocker, the album first came out in digital form last year on Beyond Beyond is Beyond and is now available on compact disc. Watch the cosmically animated video below.

After playing a series of killer shows in The Great North, Devonian Gardens are now embarking on their first tour of the US (dates). This Sunday, they’ll be playing the Beyond Beyond is Beyond Showcase at Mercury Lounge in NYC featuring Steve Gunn, Prince Rupert’s Drops and Worthless with liquid light projections by Drippy Eye. RSVP for that event here.

Purchase Solar Shifting via BBIB.

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NEW MUSIC △ Kikagaku Moyo

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From the far east of Japan hails Kikagaku Moyo, a bohemian tribe of psychedelic rangers led by cheiftains Go Kurosawa and Tomo Katsurada. During the summer months of 2012, while sequestered among the foothills outside of Tokyo, the band was born out of a series of late-night jam sessions from which it seems they were able to tap into a uniquely cosmic domain of the Mind at Large. Inspired by the music of their forefathers in Acid Mothers Temple, Kikagaku’s trip expands its journey through ambling West Coast psych jams ala The Electronic Hole and Eastern-guided melodies like those of The Incredible String Band. We’re still coming down from their spellbinding performance at this year’s Austin Psych Fest.

Kikagaku Moyo’s sophomore album, Forest of Lost Children, comes out May 20th on Beyond Beyond is Beyond Records.

 

Jeffertitti’s Nile ∆ The Electric Hour

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A few years back, when I got the idea to first start hosting shows, I reached out to a few of my favourite local bands along with a little-known California psych act by the name of Jeffertitti’s Nile who happened to be making their way through town. Having only heard their seven song EP, Hypnotic River of Sound, I had no idea what their live performance would be like or even how they might look. But when they walked through the front gates of the Church of the Electric Dirt dressed halfway between pranksters and members of Hendrix’s band, it was plain to the eye that these individuals were not of this earthly realm.

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NEW MUSIC: New Electric Ride

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAA few month’s back, we shared with you the sounds of UK psych band New Electric Ride, who will release their debut full-length next week on Beyond Beyond is Beyond. Sunderland, England, where the band members hail from, is a river town situated at the mouth of the River Wear. It was here that these lads came to form their shared love of tampuras, leslie speakers and psychedelic sounds, likely inspired by the sound of the river. The artist L. S. Lowry, was similarly drawn to Sunderland’s river setting.

Much has been written about the connection between our natural surroundings and the music we create (see The Great Animal Orchestra: Finding the Origins of Music in the World’s Wildest Places), but one aspect of the natural world that has influenced perhaps more music than any other is the river. See, rivers have not only inspired the sound of music, but have also influenced its history. “When the Levee Breaks,” the song originally written by Kansas Joe McCoy and Memphis Minnie and later recorded by Led Zeppelin, chronicles the 1927 Mississippi flood that accelerated the great northward migration of African Americans to cities like Chicago, where the Delta Blues got plugged in and eventually became rock ‘n’ roll. The Tennessee River is said to have been a large part of why the legendary Muscle Shoals recording studio turned out the magic that it did. As Townes Van Zandt sings in the “Texas River Song,” “there’s many a river that waters a land.”

New Electric Ride’s Balloon Age, no doubt, taps into the energy of the river. Through twelve tracks, the album flows seamlessly through a library of genres, ala the West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band, with moments of Byrd-sian greatness and elements of Nektar-ian prog. Touching on both classic and contemporary psychedelic sounds, the name New Electric Ride seems perfectly fitting for the journey in which they provide.

Pre-order Balloon Age via Beyond Beyond is Beyond.

The Entrance Band – “Spider”

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“Spider,” the second track to come off The Entrance Band’s forthcoming Face the Sun LP, was presumably written before the band member’s collective journey towards sobriety. Singer Guy Blakeslee tells the drugged-out tale of his interaction with a particular spider, as sparse nylon-stringed guitar dances atop a Southwestern-style rhythm and an eery harpsichord lurks in the outer reaches. While much of the album’s lyrical content deals with the actual transformation from dark to light, this song seems to take place before the journey had ever begun.

Face the Sun comes out on November 19 via Beyond Beyond is Beyond. Pre-order the album now.

The Entrance Band – “Fire Eyes”

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It’s been four years since The Entrance Band released a new album unto the world, and during that time much has changed with its three members. From personal struggles to spiritual transformations, during the time between albums guitarist Guy Blakeslee, bassist Paz Lenchantin and drummer Derek James journeyed through the depths of the dark, only to reach the surface with a brighter and more inspired outlook than ever before. That process, along with all its joys and hardships, is documented on their forthcoming album, Face the Sun, which comes out on November 19 via new Brooklyn label Beyond Beyond is Beyond. You can hear the scorching first tune, “Fire Eyes,” below.

Pre-order the long-awaited Face the Sun via BBIB.

NEW MUSIC: Devonian Gardens

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From Canada’s prairie region hail Calgary, Albert’s Devionian Gardens—the latest addition to the already-stacked Beyond Beyond is Beyond roster. Formerly named Deadhorse, the group exudes a powerfully eclectic interplay between its members including hoodoo guitar master Danny Vescarelli, hand instrument mage Jennifer Crighton, paisley child Marie Sulkowski, tonal shaman Ryan Bourne and rarified pattern master Melissa McWilliams. Like their label brethren, Devonian show many faces throughout the album as they traverse through West Coast inspired psych-folk, raved-up blues rock and arena-size psych jams that venture into deep space–sometimes within a single song (“Night Beams”). For their forthcoming album, Solar Shifting, the group ventured to the secluded forests of Nova Scotia where they recorded along with analog wizard Jay Crocker. Solar Shifting, the second full-length album by Devonian Gardens, comes out October 1st via Beyond Beyond is Beyond.