Thursday, April 30, 2009

Archivist, Poison and Life

Sometimes it's not just the poppy laced melodies or rich literary depth that can be found in an artist's work that hooks you on your first few listens. Sometimes, the way the artist describe himself/herself on the bio section adds a few more dimensions to the sound.

This is the case, for me, with Montreal, Canada's Archivist (not to be confused with the mysterious The Archivist blogged here before). The lead man of the group, Ben McCarthy, aided by some talented friends (from The Dears, Pony Up, Sunset Rubdown and Land of Talk), has been creating some sort of unique and tantalizing indie pop/alternative sound. This, like the bio brief on the band's MySpace, may leave you wondering and thinking, trying to re-read and re-listen. Primarily the result of initial bedroom folk recording, Archivist is more than that now; these archives need to be explored.

Check out Archivist on MySpace for more tracks and interesting blog entries. Their debut LP, Learning to Live on Poison, is slated to be released on June 2nd.

Archivist - Sunday Morning {MP3} (from Learning to Live on Poison)
Archivist - Jagwagger {MP3} (from Learning to Live on Poison)
Archivist - Pop Litany {MP3} (from Learning to Live on Poison)

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

You, Of the Red Sea

Self recrimination can sometimes be based on an objective rather than subjective truth. Sometimes you are more responsible for your condition than you'd previously have liked to admit. A small degree of comfort can be attained, though, by finding songs that help you realize "You do it to yourself". The next few steps are up to you.

In the meantime though, take comfort in Newcastle, Australia's Of the Red Sea, a fast paced indie rock band with guitar riffs that bring back long lost memories and an overall sensation of urgency mixed with caring.

Check out Of the Red Sea on their official site, MySpace, and Facebook for gig updates and more tracks. Their EPs can be bought on iTunes or on their site.

Of the Red Sea - Escalators {MP3} (from the new Of the Red Sea EP)
Of the Red Sea - Pulling Teeth {MP3} (from Verona)

Monday, April 27, 2009

Come Abscond With Me

The need to get away from it all is strong in me today. I don't care much which way or how, I just want to see and feel the view passing quickly at the corner of my eyes, the gentle rocking of the vehicle; open sky before me. Evidently there's a name for it aside from the usual wanderlust - with the good music to accompany it.

"Abscondo", according to his blog, comes from "abscond", meaning "to run away, usually taking something or someone along". Originally from Seattle and true to his moniker, he's traveled himself, perhaps running from or towards something, finally settling in Slovakia to create music. He is also half of the indie duo Sungod Abscondo.

Check out Abscondo on his official site (for a free download of his latest LP, Stages) and You can also download many other tracks here.

Abscondo - Strangled Into Gray {MP3} (from Midnight Snow)
Abscondo - Tattoo Angel {MP3} (from Midnight Snow)
Abscondo - Midnight Snow {MP3} (from Midnight Snow)

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Don't Close Your Eyes (or ears)

"Stick around or say goodbye, just don't close your eyes". With this final line Findlay, Ohio's singer-songwriter Josh Woodward delivers a powerful message of compassion and caring. This particular song, "Don't Close Your Eyes", appears on his latest release of 2008, which is actually two albums in one; the first is upbeat and poppy and the second is more bare and exposed.

Woodward is unusual not only in his warm voice but also in his business approach: his entire collection of albums and tracks can be downloaded for free or be bought with a customer determined price. Given the quality of the music, any price would be a huge bargain.

Check out Josh Woodward on his website, MySpace and Facebook for a lot more tracks and updates. Get his latest LP, The Simple Life, on his website store.

Josh Woodward - Don't Close Your Eyes {MP3} (from The Simple Life)
Josh Woodward - I'm Letting Go {MP3} (from The Simple Life)

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Needs And What We Deserve

What do we really need in our lives? Why do we feel that we need it? Do we really deserve receiving our wishes? At what cost, to ourselves and to others? The questions are endless, especially as they touch upon every aspect of life, from relationships to diet, politics and the environment. How do we tackle them?

Let's start with a response from The March Greens, a Leeds, UK band formed around singer-songwriter Spencer Bayles (formerly of Last Night's TV). It is a very human, warm and calm approach which, like any good song, leaves room for more questions and a taste for more. I wrote about Last Night's TV in the past, and I'm glad to hear its former members continue to produce music.

Check out The March Greens on the official site, MySpace, and Facebook for more tracks and updates. The debut EP, You Shall Go to the Ball, is available on Amazon.

The March Greens - You Don't Need It Or Deserve It (from You Shall Go to the Ball EP)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

This Will Never Save The World

With the end of current work week, I've decided to deviate a bit from the usual tranquil music that usually possesses this place and loosen up. So, shed off your years and job related angst and come to a raw indie punk that doesn't apologize, only lives and hurts the moment.

"This will never save the world", Hobart, Australia's Chris Burrows screams. Perhaps. But music comes in many forms and flavors, just like people. And as long as the artist not only puts his soul but his body as well into it, there may be hope just yet.

Chris Burrows' many exploits can be found on MySpace. His Asking For It project is here and his new project, The Anorexic Olsen Twin, is here.

The Anorexic Olsen Twin - Sweet Dreams Rebecca {MP3} (from The Anorexic Olsen Twin EP)
Asking For It - Home Sweet Homeless {MP3}

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Where Do The Colours Run?

The relationships that bind us together make up a lot of our lives. However near or far physically, our rope burns arising from friction (or lack of) are an important part of that as well. But there's always a bind, a tether to keep us falling through the storms, each with its own facets and ambiguities.

Colours Run, a Manchester, UK indie rock/pop band, wrote a song about such a tether. So, whether it's a twisted, braided or hair-thin cord, it seems best to keep it knot free and close by.

Check out Colours Run on MySpace and for more tracks and info. Get their EP, The Sticks, on iTunes or CD Babay.

Colours Run - Tethers (Doghouse Demo) {MP3}

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

A Little Piece of Spring

Global warming aside, the thawing of the snow and ice come early spring is usually welcomed as a good sign. A shift from the grey, cold and forlorn view to the fresh green, clear delicate water ebbing joy that washes over stones and forests like an exuberant wave of bliss. Hope made into sight and sound.

That's how I feel by the end of the wonderful week long 'Found Songs' project by Iceland's Ólafur Arnalds. It should be listened to in order, as each piece, created daily (with some history behind it), also fits and develops the former and anticipates the latter. By the last one, "Ljósið", though saddened by the project's end and by the blue atmosphere the pieces inspire, something shines and dawns. Spring coming is the most obvious metaphor, but I suspect it can also be termed in much more personal images; to each his/her own.

This is also an opportunity to further explore this fascinating young artist, including his past releases: the debut LP Eulogy for Evolution and the following Variations of Static EP. They can also be bought on the Erased Tapes label store.

Check out Ólafur Arnalds on MySpace and for more great tracks and gigs info. The 'Found Songs' project can be downloaded here.

Ólafur Arnalds - Ljósið {MP3} (from 'Found Songs') For the full appreciation and experience, I recommend downloading and playing by order all 7 pieces.

Bonus: A live performance of "Himininn er ad hrynja, en stjörnurnar fara pér vel" (Ólafur translates it) from Variations of Static. The video was produced by Iceland Airwaves podcast, a must for Icelandic music lovers.

Monday, April 20, 2009

We Are The Underground

A lone man walks the dark, rain washed streets. Huddled in a long trench coat, he walks steadily onwards, determined. His sullen footsteps occasionally drop hints of a fractured life, repression and shadowy existence. These are but echoes now as he walks on.

A woman follows. And another man. And another. The streets are silently filling with hurrying individuals, forming subtly into a great mass, moving as one towards their goal.

The power of the mob, mesmerizing and terrifying, speaks loudly from the throat of the disenchanted person who works (or worked?) under the moniker of We Are The Underground . Is this a real person or could this be some government black project exploring a lonely bureaucrat's childhood dream of rock and rebellion?

Check out the cryptic We Are The Underground on MySpace and for a few more scraps of info and tracks.

We Are The Underground - The Start of Something {MP3}
We Are The Underground - We Are The Underground {MP3}

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Two Bicycles, One Love

I remember her eyes, big and grey. I thought they were always questioning me, measuring and sizing me up (or maybe it was just me). Not cold, but somehow distant; deep to dive in, with a strange twinkle that would leave me puzzled late at night - what does she mean? What did she mean to me?

The breadth between the Love that Is and the Love that Is Not can be very thin, lined with the smoky haze of broken hearts. British Columbia, Canada's Jamison Dick, working under the moniker of Two Bicycles, knows this well. Perhaps more importantly, he'll make you feel and recall what was, what could have been and what remains.

With the help of a few friends and a huge amount of talent, Two Bicycles has crafted a number of beautiful and personal EPs and a debut LP, An Attempt to be Lonely.

Check out Two Bicycles on MySpace, tumblr, Facebook and the 61 for more tracks and updates. The new album, An Attempt to be Lonely, is out and I have no idea how to get it (legally). Help, please?

Two Bicycles - Love Is {MP3}
Two Bicycles - Love Is Not {MP3}

Friday, April 17, 2009

Keeping tabs on The Haunted Mansions

I like to keep tabs on artists I was fortunate to encounter in my work on this blog. It enables a wider perspective of how the artist works and develops and how the sound evolves or in some unfortunate cases stops. In the case of The Haunted Mansions, the developments are all positive.

A 3 piece indie psychedelics/freak folk from the North West, I stumbled upon them about 3 months ago (post). In the meantime they've started working on a new album, which at least as the first single from it suggests, will not only be a continued evolution of their unique sound, but also promises to be very intriguing.

Check out The Haunted Mansions on MySpace for more tracks and updates. Their new album is being recorded as these lines are written. Can you hear them?

The Haunted Mansions - Oh, Samantha! {MP3} (from the new and untitled album)

Thursday, April 16, 2009

This Week's Realities

As you may have noticed, I took the last few days off of this reality and into delved another one. Actually, make that two realities, sometimes interacting with one another, but each also self contained with its own rules and wonders.

The first was World of Warcraft. As I mentioned before, I immersed myself in this fantasy driven world, getting totally hooked in the process while also trying, now desperately, to pause and think about the experience. It occurred to me there are a few basic principles underlying it:

1. It's a lot easier and much more fun to play and work as a group. It's also very much possible to retain your sense of individuality while working in consort.
2. There are no "Save" or "Load" buttons; since you can be brought back to life, there is no actual and permanent death - except, in a way, when you log out. That is the only way you stop existing in the world (or you just sit in some deserted corner AFK).
3. People come in all shapes and sizes, manners and behaviors. The variety can astound you at first, but after a few minutes you may wonder how it could be any different. You may try to categorize them by vocation, trait or skill, but each person is unique and will not come again. It may be a characteristic, but ultimately each persons defies categorization, unless to create his or her own genre.
4. It's always possible someone will surprise you and help you when you least expect it, for no reason other than to help and perform that random act of kindness.
5. The world is beautiful, stunning in every resolution and perspective, from mountain tops, forests and deserts to the fauna, flora and sentients that inhabit it.

I wonder if any of these can be carried over to my other realities.

The second reality was deep within the smoky blue atmosphere of Leonard Cohen's Live Concert in London CD I mentioned earlier. I may try to seek wisdom all my life and it would still not be so eloquently expressed in a single Cohen song.

A third reality is this, the blogosphere. I've come to perceive it as its own bubble of hype, feeding itself and the people writing and reading it, marked by its own rules of conduct, its own genres and personalities. So now I come back to it, ready to continue my work.

This post's featured artist is Eric Sarmiento, an indie pop singer-songwriter from New Jersey. Aside from his must-read bio on MySpace, Sarmiento creates curious tracks with a very distinct presence of their own, that has a sense of promise of much more to come. After a musical career spanning several groups, he has released his debut solo album, The Declaration of Independence, a few months ago.

Check out Eric Sarmiento on MySpace for more tracks and info and get his intriguing debut album on his home label, Alchemist Records.

Eric Sarmiento - Reptiles {MP3} (from The Declaration of Independence)
Eric Sarmiento - Alejandra Told Me {MP3} (from The Declaration of Independance)

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Leonard Cohen to the Rescue

It is no secret I love the forests, though from my perspective, given where I live, it's like the Inuit who loves the boiling desert. So when I got the opportunity to explore vast and timeless forests, massive trees with strange and numerous animals lurking about, I got sucked right in. Yes, I confess; in the usual tardiness of fashion I've succumbed to World of Warcraft. That is why I didn't post anything yesterday and why I woke up so early today. I got hooked.

But not all is lost. I received Leonard Cohen's fabulous album live performance in London the other day, and it has a magnetic pull on me that is equivalent to all the magic potions and copper coins I may care to collect on WoW. In fact, rumors of Cohen's eventual arrival to a show here have strangely broken the elvish hold in favor of an even older and venerable charmer. Leonard Cohen, count me in!

For a bit of that woodsy atmosphere, here's a beautiful instrumental piece by the Sleeping Tree (, music is art guest post).

The Sleeping Tree - Second Leaf (from Leaves and Roots) {MP3}

p.s. - If you happen to pass by a night elf priestess scurrying about in all sort of quests in the next few days, say hello. It might be me.

A glimpse of Leonard Cohen performing in Athens, 2008 {Video}

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Entertainment for the Braindead, a Life Saver

I'm writing this post from behind the churning curtain of a splitting headache, probably the result of too little drinking water and too much falling asleep with the iPod's uncomfortable headphones stuck in my ears. Whilst it's a very nice experience having The Tallest Man on Earth and Bright Eyes singing you to sleep, this kind of effect in the morning after leaves much to be desired. And quietly so.

So when I stumbled upon Entertainment for the Braindead, I knew I was heading in the right direction. Not only my hammering and fuzzy mind would be properly addressed, it would also get a calm, quiet and yet subtly invigorating music it so craves. At my current state, Cologne, Germany's Julia Kotowski, working under this moniker, was exactly what the doctor would have prescribed.

Check out Entertainment for the Braindead on her website, MySpace and for additional tracks and gigs info (Germany). Some of her recordings are available on her site here.

Entertainment for the Braindead - Colours {MP3} (from Hydrophobia)
Entertainment for the Braindead - Resolutions {MP3} (from Hydrophobia)
Entertainment for the Braindead - Prologue {MP3} (from Hydrophobia)
Entertainment for the Braindead - Run! {MP3} (from Hydrophobia)

On other news, I wrote my first contributer post on the wonderful Music is Art. This is a huge honor for me and I hope I'll be able to actually contribute something of my own there. This will also mean I'll have to devise some sort of a work plan to coordinate my efforts on these two blogs - I have no intention to stop writing this one or reduce its update frequency. I'll figure something out.

As a start up bonus, here's a video I was unable to share there (due to my limited Wordpress experience) and that features a beautiful instrumental version of a new song by Amit Erez from his coming album. Enjoy.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Magic Arm's Messy Pop

"I'm literally trying to write pop music but it never comes out that way. There's always a dark edge to it." With this rather curious and revealing statement, Magic Arm's Marc Rigelsford proceeds to create his own blend of electronics, folk, pop and rock.

But the poppy, sometimes chaotic exterior never really covers the darkish and troubled person beneath, occasionally displayed. Take his cover of "The Ballad of Melody Nelson", a Serge Gainsbourg classic which has now become a regular in his live show, for example.

Check out Magic Arm on his website and MySpace for additional tracks and gigs updates. Magic Arm's debut LP, Make Lists, Do Something, is due to be released on May 18th. Till then, get the Widths and Heights EP here.

Magic Arm - The Ballad of Melody Nelson {MP3} (from Widths and Heights)

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Jeff Zentner's Dying Days of Summer

Jeff Zentner is an enigma for me. He can be fairly easily described as dark folk/indie or alt-country, but perhaps too easily. For one thing, an artist is never a genre, no matter how closely his sound may appear. There is always room for surprises.

These surprises come in all shapes and sizes. For example, in Zentner's new to be released album, The Dying Days of Summer, the fifth track ("Light on the Hills") has a very distinct eastern-Indian feel to it. Other tracks, like "The Weight of Memory" feel like slowed down and hushed rock, even hard rock.

Give this haunting, oddly disturbing enigma a listen. You may be a little depressed at first, but as you go along some pretty interesting and beautiful images will surround you.

Check out Jeff Zentner on MySpace, Facebook and for additional tracks and updates. His previous album, Hymns to the Darkness, is available on CD Baby and his new album, The Dying Days of Summer, is expected to be released this spring.

Jeff Zentner - If this is to be Goodbye {MP3} (from The Dying Days of Summer)
Jeff Zentner - Your Siren Song {MP3} (from The Dying Days of Summer)

I'm also re-posting Kim Janssen's "The Wages of an Easy Life" due to some unknown problems in its encoding. The original post is here.

Kim Janssen - The Wages of an Easy Life {MP3} (from The Truth is, I am Always Responsible)

Monday, April 06, 2009

Traveling with Kim Janssen: A Special Q & A

"And I wish I was a character in a TV show, then the only thing I'd worry about would be relationships" (from "The Wages of an Easy Life"). Kim Janssen, a young indie singer-songwriter from the Netherlands, may have many things to worry about, like making the CD cover of his debut album by hand, but lack of talent or inspiration is not one of those things. Creating a beautiful collection of soulful and contemplating songs of travel and loss, Kim draws on his own experiences and translates them to music. I wanted to ask him a few questions to get his own perspective of things.

Q. Your bio mentioned you traveled a lot as a child with your parents across Asia. Can you tell us a little about it and how it may have affected your musical drive?

A. "I really liked all the traveling, I always found it very exciting. I felt home in the 'international world', I was always around people from all over the world who were also traveling. I built up great relationships in a lot of different places which was great but also hard sometimes because I often had to leave good friends behind. I found it hard to feel home in Holland when I moved back there at 16. Whenever I was on the road in an airplane or meeting people from different countries I felt home like I did when I was a kid. That whole theme about traveling and feeling lost on different levels (emotional, moral) is what the record is about".

Q. What inspires you to create and make music? What are your influences?

A. "My thoughts and experiences inspire me to make music. It's great to express ideas and feelings through music I think. I also like to create stories and other 'worlds' through songs and escape into them. I'm also inspired by other music like Sufjan Stevens, Iron and Wine, Red House Painters, Pedro the Lion, Loney Dear, The National, Damien Jurado, Band of Horses, Sigur Rós".

Q. What do you think of the music industry as you've encountered it? How does the indie artist relate to it?
A. "I've heard a lot of horror stories about the music industry. I've never really experienced it like that. I feel I've always been lucky in just meeting the right people who've inspired me and helped me with all the things you need to be able play music for a living: shows, records, promotion, distribution etc. I think as an indie artist you're a lot more self sufficient and independent".

Check out Kim Janssen on his website and MySpace for more tracks and updates. The release party of his debut album, The Truth is, I am Always Responsible, is on April 10th at Paradiso, Amsterdam.

Kim Janssen - The Wages of an Easy Life {MP3} (from The Truth is, I am Always Responsible)

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Another Kind of Fay

Their website says "It's not just a band, it's a way of life". After listening to a few of their songs and reading their bio and blog, I'm inclined to agree. L.A.'s The Bastard Fairies seem to create quirky and peculiar enough music to avoid being labeled as "cute" - because they're also thorny enough to swallow.

And there is much to digest - from love songs to political protest, lead singer Yellow Thunder Woman works the tension between the coy and the seductress, the girl and the woman, the shadow and the light. The result is indie pop with an after taste (and after thought).

Check out The Bastard Fairies on their website, MySpace and for more tracks and info.

The Bastard Fairies - The Greatest Love Song {MP3} (from Memento Mori)
The Bastard Fairies - Ode to the Prostitute {MP3} (from Memento Mori)
The Bastard Fairies - Memento Mori {MP3} (from Memento Mori)

On the L.A. note, I wanted to re-post Lemonwilde's track again as there seemed to have been some problems with it (my bad). I hope that re-encoding it did the trick. The track originally appeared (and still does) on the Lemonwilde special Q&A post (here), while the original Lemowilde post is here.

Lemonwilde - Nondeterministic Automation {MP3} (from Red Room)

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Into the Deepest Blue

"Hold your breath, it's time to dive"*. Quite a dramatic opening for a song whose title ("Baby Swimming") made me think at first about the baby swimming on the cover of Nirvana's Nevermind.

The singer, Finnish Bon Jouni, gave very little details about himself or why he has chosen to chart such dark disturbed waters in his music. He does it well, in a calm and confident voice that will lead you to the gallows, if you'll let him.

* Edit: When I wrote this post I mistook "die" for "dive" (see comments #1 and #2). The song is still rather dramatic in its sound, though not as morbid, perhaps. It seems my imagination has taken me to different places than the song's original intention.

Check out Bon Jouni on MySpace (in hopes for future updates).

Bon Jouni - Baby Swimming {MP3}

Friday, April 03, 2009

Lemonwilde's World: A Special Q & A

This week focused on listening to artists in more than the usual way of hearing their music, but also in peeking a little into their creative lives and struggles. To conclude it, for now, I wanted to return to the band which inspired me to ask these questions in the first place and that is still leaving its mark on my musical life. The members of L.A.'s Lemonwilde (original post here) were kind enough to answer a few my questions.

Q. Lemonwilde is composed of 4 unique members. Can you tell me a little about the group and its inner workings?

A. "We (Joe, Ter, Luke, Henry) create our music by individually bringing pieces of songs to the table. We then work as a group to hash out the sound, idea, emotion, and structure we are trying to convey. From there we work on our parts again individually and bring them back into the mix for final approval. Then we rehearse the hell out of the songs to confirm that we have them the way we want them".

Q. What inspires you to create and make music?

A. "Film, relationships (family, lovers, friends), daily occurrences, occasionally politics, and art in all forms."

Q. Is there a common theme for Red Room? Is there a story behind it and the band's name?

A. "Theme: to awaken those who have been sleep-walking through their lives, and are not trying to inspire anyone. Red room is the name of our studio, which we recorded the EP in. Lemonwilde: A name we gave our "WORLD" to represent tranquility!"

Q. Starting out as an indie band in a world filled with bands can be very hard (but also a lot fun, if you're with the right people). What's your approach?

A. "We spend about 5 to 10 hours daily acting as our own label, manager, booking agent, etc... It can be very exhausting, but since we are a tight knit group it is very rewarding as well. As for the music part of it, that is by far our favorite element (job)".

Are there any conclusions to draw, any similarities to find between how the different artists that have participated in the Q&A work and create musically? Perhaps. If anything, this experience made me appreciate even more the artists' fruits of labor of love and devotion.

Check out Lemonwilde on their official site and MySpace for streamable tracks and gig updates. Buy the Red Room EP on iTunes.

Lemonwilde - Nondeterministic Automation {MP3} (from Red Room)

Bonus: A video preview of Lemonwilde's live performance at Club Moscow (Hollywood)

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Stygian Testface

"My lips are desert", cries Testface on "Sounds Don't Come"; it's a desert teeming with life - and pain.

Creating under the moniker of Testface, David Snider from Oregon has been working in shadow for years. First writing and recording alone, then moving to working with friends until he's begun receiving underground following and acclaim.

His second LP, Doctor Won't You Get Us to Dawn (released in 2005), is a haunting work expressing the wounded reality of day to day life in an odd mixture of hook-laden melodies and hurtful lyrics. It may bring you down, only to stare at yourself in the mirror, and move on.

Check out Testface on his website and MySpace for more tracks and info. Get his Doctor Won't You Get Us to Dawn LP on CDBaby or MySpace.

Testface - Sounds Don't Come {MP3} (from Doctor Won't You Get Us to Dawn)
Testface - Go Calligraphers {MP3} (from Doctor Won't You Get Us to Dawn)
Testface - Picture Picture {MP3} (from Doctor Won't You Get Us to Dawn)

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

A North Sea Special: An Interview

A couple of days ago I discovered, quite by accident, the music of The North Sea. One of the songs in that post, "Ferns Pressed in Paper", a beautifully delicate piece, has since become very popular on the Hype Machine and made me curious about the unique individual behind it. Thankfully, he was willing to answer a few questions and reveal a little of the mystery around him.

Q. Can you tell us a little bit about you and your creative process.

A. "My name is Brad Rose. Most people probably know me as the person who runs the Foxy Digitalis webzine and Digitalis label. The North Sea is my solo guise and I also play in Ajilvsga (w/ Nathan Young) and Altar Eagle (w/ my wife, Eden), and also have started a new label/blog called Dial Square Tapes. My creative process is hard to pin down or describe... basically, I get sounds in my head and attempt to recreate them using whatever means I have at my disposal".

Q. You've started as more folk oriented and evolved in this new direction. What made you change course and what does it mean for you?

A. "The change happened about two years ago, right after I released my last album on Type Records. I felt at the time that I'd sort of reached my nexus with folk/acoustic-based music; that I'd exhausted the ideas I had and was beginning to feel stagnant and that the music was becoming stale. It was also around this time that Ajilvsga became to take on my prominence in my life, and as it is primarily based around darker sounds, electronics, and noise, it played a big role in the switch I made with The North Sea. I'm still finding my way through this approach and these ideas and it's been inspiring and frustrating in the best possible ways, and I feel like I've grown exponentially as an artist because of it".

Q. Other than the material in, where can people get your work?

A. "Digitalis is always the best place to come ( I release a fair bit of my own stuff, but I always get copies of releases on other labels and have them available as well. People can just drop me a line and I'll steer them in the right direction".

Q. What do you think of the music industry? How does the indie artist relate to it?

A. "Oh, I don't know. I try not to think about the music industry if I can help it. I think that things have certainly changed over the past 5-10 years - the internet has evened the playing field and those who don't adapt and find new ways to get their music out and about are doomed. In 2009, I'm having more fun than ever..."

I can only add that 2009 was made better for me and other thanks to the music of The North Sea.

The North Sea - European Champions {MP3} (from the now out-of-print TOTAL FOOTBALL double cassette)
The North Sea - Ferns Prssed in Paper {MP3}