On the Download 

I don't wanna bust all Bob Talbert here, but I'm outta my Wednesday moanin' mind! No, wait, what I meant was, there's a few stray digital notions floating around in the ether that I've been meaning to touch on that will now appear magically before your eyes in hopefully-not-too-scattershot fashion. To wit:

So, I'm flipping through the schedule for the generally-annual indie-pop fest Summer Smash coming up this weekend at the CAID (and, yes, if you ask them, they'll be glad to tell you about how they're still standing up for truth, justice and the American Way even after being raided by The Man). It's a weirdly-inspired bag of scene-loved usual suspects, genuinely awesome eclectiae (made up a word there), and boys with guitars lineup-filler sprinkled with intriguing sounding non-locals. There's no real "through-line." But that's alright. Here's the thing: I'm on the Web site, clicking through to bands about which I know nothing and I end up (by dint of mouse click) bursting my own chauvinistic claim from last week re: one-lady bands being rare-ish. On the bill for Summer Smash is one Whistling School for Boys from Athens, Ga. It's the handiwork of LeSabri (a lady named Sabrina, apparently) and she's all about the aural collage, noisy hook-flirting experimental tinkering. It's playful and hypnotic and analog and homemade — all that good stuff. Should be a swell way to start the afternoon. Check her out for yourself!


Also, I know I'm totally late to this particular party, but when the fuck did the Dead Bodies get so good? They are still a bit plagued by inconsistency, but the jams I've heard live and online confirm that I'm not hallucinating. They're a damned inventive band. Don't believe me? Go to their MySpace page and check out "Totally Destruction." Sounds like Love & Rockets re-creating "Stars on 45," right? Better still, go to their official site and get Cock Cock Cock Cock Xanadu Xanadu, the whole album from whence said jam came. It's free (or you can donate to their cause). If that sounds good to you, then we should be friends on the Facebooks, right? They're headlining Saturday night at the aforementioned Summer Smash.


From the North

Good news from the north country: The new issue of Copper Press is out. Haven't heard of Copper Press? Well, here's the skinny: It's a well-built, generally well-written, artful quarterly chronicling music and art from the indie underground — namely, that place in music culture that's not part of the blogspace hipsterati but sustains itself, rather, on word-of-mouth and is passed hand-to-hand, old-style. It's put out by a couple of libertarian-leaning truly independent-rockers living in Acme (hint: it's near Traverse City). Steve Brydges and Royce Dean have been keeping the tip of the mitten connected to the rest of the world for nigh-on-a-decade now. That the mag has survived is testament to the DIY-meets-quality-control-meets-business-plan sweet spot these dudes have found. Check out their site for exclusive online content at:


So what does this have to do with a music column ostensibly about finding local music online? Well, the pair also runs 54 40 or Fight Records, an imprint that has put out four dozen releases by nearly 30 artists. Granted, these artists hail from disparate corners of the continent and make a distinctly diverse racket when taken as a whole...but, hey, it's all sourced out of the Mitten State! It's one of those quiet sorts of victories of which we can humbly boast.

 And there's plenty of strong goods pouring out of that James K. Polk-honoring label. The latest release is Brooklyn-via-Austin-via-Ukraine folkesse Alina Simone's Everyone is Crying Out to Me, Beware. It's a dazzlingly raw, slinky and tough album of cover songs originally written and recorded in the late '80s by Siberian underground punk poet Yana Stanislavovna Dyagileva (aka "Yanka"). Hit up one of the below links to download the jam entitled "Half My Kingdom." Oh, and, of course, as always, you're welcome!


More by Chris Handyside

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