12/29/15 9:52am
tk

Behold, your herald of spring

Half Waif is a Brooklyn band populated by Nandi Rose Plunkett (Vocals), Zack Levine (Percussion) and Adan Carlo (Bass) who are on the brink of releasing their second full-length album, Probable Depths in April 2016. Their latest single, and first taste of what’s to be expected from the new release, is a song called “Nest” that was recently premiered on Stereogum, and listening to it is as refreshing as splashing cold water in your face after waking up from a sweaty nap on the couch.

If in the right headspace, “Nest” can take you on a mental journey through those first few optimistic days of spring. And yeah, I know that for most of us this winter has been freakishly warm, but spring is still something to look forward to, for all the dewy newness that this song champions. The initial notes of the track conjure images of little chicky beaks poking out of an egg, or an unsuspecting worm inching its way out of wonderfully fresh smelling dirt. You could play this on a loop, take your shoes off, and roll around in the grass until you sprained something and then had to sit under a tree to collect yourself. That’s what I’m getting from this song. Don’t let me be the only one, have a listen and get there yourselves: (more…)

12/22/15 3:54pm
Huh

Huh-mans of New York

Have you heard of the band Huh? I had never heard of them until a few weeks ago. I was forwarded an email about them by one of my co-workers which mentioned that they were looking to land a premiere of their single “Burn” off of their upcoming debut EP. I listened to the track, liked it, and immediately wrote the band letting them know that I would be happy to premiere it on Brokelyn. They got back to me moments after my initial email to say that they’d already landed a premiere of it on another site, but that they’d love if I would post it as well. Double (or triple, who knows how many times they sent out the song) pitches to publications for premieres of this nature can often end in ruffled feathers if more than one publication expresses interest, but since I’m a happy-go-lucky person, it all worked out like roses. Huh is an ambitious new band, and that’s respectable. God speed, and good luck. You’re gonna need it.

Here’s the (not premiere) of “Burn” the first single off of Huh’s yet to be titled upcoming EP. (more…)

12/15/15 3:57pm
Wynne Greenwood tk

Sprint out of your apartment and see Wynne Greenwood’s new show right now

There was a time in my life where very little mattered more than Wynne Greenwood. Though I never got to know her personally, I attended enough Tracy + The Plastics shows that I feel as though I do. I feel as though I know Wynne Greenwood in that way where maybe you feel like you know Drake because you’ve listened to his albums 155 times. Or in that way where you feel like you’re dating Justin Bieber because you’ve kissed the back of your hand while drunk at a bar and something in your brain whispered “You’re doing it. You’re actually kissing Justin Bieber right now.” I do not actually know Wynne Greenwood, but I feel as though she must be out there somewhere liking me because how could I like someone so much, for so long, and not have it be mutual. Reading this back, I guess I’m more or less like that guy who camped out in Lana Del Rey’s garage, stole her book, and left some love poems behind for her.

Tracy + The Plastics was (and is) a very popular electro band masterminded 100% by Wynne Greenwood playing three different characters: Tracy (vocals), Cola (Drums), and Nikki (keyboard.) The “band” existed as a touring and recording thing for several handfuls of years before Wynne put an end to the project in 2006 to focus on other pursuits. Since that time Wynne has been showing her specific blend of multi-media art, mostly very video centered, at galleries around the United States. Her most recent exhibit is called “Kelly” (PLEASE NOTE THAT THAT IS MY NAME!) and it’s housed at New Museum until January 10. Here’s the description of the exhibit via the New Museum site: (more…)

12/08/15 9:54am
Diet Cig has none of the tar and all of the fun of your favorite cigarette. Photo by Andrew Piccone

Diet Cig has none of the tar and all of the fun of your favorite cigarette. Photo by Andrew Piccone

The other night I was at a bar with my wife because she was playing a show there that night. We, as people, and as a couple, smoke cigarettes, and we have a bad habit of smoking A LOT of cigarettes when we’re out at bars. Cigarettes are a thing that people like to partake in while drinking even if they’re not regular smokers, so imagine what it’s like to be drinking as a regular smoker, and how that would make you want to smoke until you basically break in half and seep tar juice all over an unsuspecting patio. So anyway, we were out behind this bar smoking and all of a sudden I got what I would describe as a sharp seizing pain in my left side that immediately made me think “damn, I need to quit smoking.”

I have, of course, not actually quit smoking yet, but I should. Everyone should. This is all a segue into me talking about this band, Diet Cig, that doesn’t have anything to do with smoking per se (though they did meet during a search for a lighter, or so the story goes) or the story I just told, other than the fact that they have the word “cig” in the name of their band. Diet Cig is populated by members Alex Luciano (guitar) and Noah Bowman (drums), and they live in New Paltz, NY. Do you guys smoke regularly? If you don’t, don’t start. If you do, you should quit, or at least do that thing that Obama was doing (or still does) where he only has one a day. I think JFK Jr. did that too. (more…)

12/01/15 9:58am
Put your phone down when she's talking

Put your phone down when she’s talking

Up until this point I’ve been pretty uptight about making sure that all of the bands that get written about in this column are from Brooklyn, or have at least one member who lives in Brooklyn, or are, at the very least, from New York, but I just can’t be bothered with any of that right now because since Erykah Badu released her But You Caint Use My Phone mixtape over Thanksgiving break, it’s all that I want to listen to. Location be damned.

If my facts are straight, Badu currently splits her time, residence wise, between Texas, and Fort Greene, which I actually just learned right now while Googling her name. I was under the impression that she just lived in Texas. I wonder how she chose Fort Greene out of all the different neighborhoods she could have chosen in Brooklyn. Well, I’m sure she had her reasons, and this is great news for me because now this particular column remains 100% legit. Giddy up! (more…)

11/24/15 12:49pm
tk

Too fresh. Almost.

Very Fresh is a Brooklyn based lo-fi/punk band that’s headed up by bassist Cindy Lou Gooden, formerly of Babement, the all-female (not like that matters) Pavement cover band. Very Fresh just released a new single on New Professor Records and it’s quite literally the perfect thing to listen to while you’re bustling around your apartment, doing whatever, enjoying the familiar/deadly smell of your space heater. It’s cold as shit outside. Listen to this and jump up and down a little. Jump on the bed for all anyone cares. You’re a grown ass person and you’re living your true life. (more…)

11/17/15 11:27am
tk

Their specific situation? Instant party

Faces of Weed isn’t a band so much as it’s a situation. They don’t have an album, and they update their social media sporadically, but chances are, if you live in Brooklyn, you’ve heard of them. And if you haven’t, well, why haven’t you?

Masterminded by the joined  vibes of Callie Watts (whose name you may already know from her role as Editor/Writer for Bust Magazine) and Vrose Sélavy (I don’t think that’s really a name), their weedy and witchy sound is an actual instant party. I have not been so lucky as to see them perform live, because by 9pm I can usually be found at home, organizing my notebook of grievances or something, but I can only imagine. Here’s some evidence: (more…)

11/10/15 10:43am
tk

Some people, like Mizan K, are just lucky we guess

Mizan K is a NYC based artist whose latest EP, Dark Blue, was just released on Terrible Records – a beloved label that’s also home to LE1F, Solange, and Empress Of. Recording soulful, dark, complex music that’s nearly impossible to tune out is Mizan’s primary focus, but we were tipped off to the little known fact that she’ll also soon be modeling for a fancy brand’s lookbook. Writers tend to focus way too much on the looks of any and all female performer, so I won’t do that here, but I will say that in the case of Mizan, having beauty, smarts, pipes, and creative ambition, makes for a unfuckwithable package. There’s something classic about her that’s both old and new.

Here’s her video for “Looking For” which is the first track off of the new EP, and which she made herself, with help from str8ngecreature. (more…)

11/03/15 11:38am
So intricate

So intricate, so vivid

Dwight from WASHA was referred to me by his friend Sven, who was formerly in the band Stranger Cat, which I wrote about at the early onset of this column. I like referrals. There’s something very intimate about them. A lot of people go through life not saying shit, and I personally prefer the people who say the shit. Even if it’s non-verbal shit saying, but the saying of shit via action or intent. Dwight from WASHA is already a winner in my mind because he reached out. He did something. He got the ball rolling, as it were.

WASHA’s latest project is called The Bright, Part II, and according to Dwight the album was heavily influenced by the intricacies of vivid colors and experiences, visual art from film director Terrence Malick, and emotional experiences in the past years from struggling with depression. He also says that his sound has been influenced by Sufjan Stevens to some extent, and the world at large already knows how much I love HIM. So this is all great. (more…)

10/27/15 4:01pm
Photo by Stephanie Griffin

Tiptoe, through the flowers, with Florist. Photo by Stephanie Griffin

How did people ever know about anything before the internet was invented? I mean, think about it. I can definitely, very easily recall a time when there wasn’t internet, and it sucked. People had to use maps that they bought from bookstores to figure out how the hell to get places. You had to wait months, sometimes YEARS to hear an album you wanted to hear because you had to wait for the damn thing to come out and then go buy it in a STORE. Sometimes once you got to the store they’d be like “we don’t have it” and then you’d have to fill out a special order for it and go back home and wait for them to CALL YOU and be like “okay, we have it now.” To learn about new things, like new bands or new movies, you had to seek out weirdo magazines and stuff. Shit was tough, let me tell you. But not any more! Since the invention of the internet we can all just sit around in our underwear Googling things like “bumpy ding dang music, etc” and something will come up. Something always comes up. The internet is a dark, endless tunnel of terror and discovery.

I learned about Florist on Stereogum.

Here’s “Cool and Refreshing,” the latest single off their upcoming EP Holdly which comes out on Friday 10/30. (more…)