Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Try Harder, Mr. Rock-Star

When I was going through my regular sources for today's post, huddled in my little corner and enjoying my few minutes of freedom, it was particularly hard for me to connect with any of them.

It's probably fatigue, given my blood washed eyes (too many flights around Kalimodr...), but I just couldn't find someone who would stand out from all the others, talented as they may be.

Then, I put on UK's indie singer-songwriter Dean Austin track "Good Job Guns Are Illegal". The difference in charisma and presence was very evident. The lyrics and intonation, expressing genuine feeling I can empathize with, along with the rest of his material, just compounded the effect.

Check him out for yourselves. Dean Austin is on his website, MySpace and Facebook. His debut EP, Our Future in Spaceships, is available on his website.

Dean Austin - Good Job Guns Are Illegal {MP3} (from Our Future in Spaceships)

* The title of the post is a reference to lyrics from "Good Job Guns Are Illegal"

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Free Tinctures

So, how would you like to receive free (in spirit and in financial terms) catchy enthusiastic folk-pop songs on a weekly basis? Originally defined as "free sides", these b-sides tracks come from Donny Hue and the Colors, an NYC indie folk-pop band and their latest album, Letter from New Virginia.

A quick impression from the music, pictures and the videos of Donny and company, makes me want to get to know them better, especially in light of recent posts. Here's to New Virgina.

Form your own impression of Donny Hue and the Colors on their website, MySpace and label. The free sides are available on their label's website. The new LP, Letter from New Virginia, is coming out June 23rd.

Donny Hue and the Colors - Oh Lord {MP3}
Donny Hue and the Colors - I Speak of the Hayseed Cousins {MP3}

Bonus: Donny Hue and the Colors - Good Time Happening {Video}

Donny Hue and the Colors - Good Time Happening from The Kora Records on Vimeo.

Another great catch for a very limited time: New York indie singer-songwriter Jay Brannan has added a second performance in Tel Aviv tonight (May 26th). If you're in the area, check him out. The details are here.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Cherbourg's Sounds of Music

Attention music lovers: Cherbourg's second EP, Into the Dark, is about to be released on June 1st and is available for pre-order here. Listening to it, I can just say that this London, UK indie folk-rock band is destined for greatness. The band's first EP, Last Chapter of Dreaming, (covered here) was simply amazing and still totally blows me away. The second one continues the first in some ways but also turns into new directions, with a similar end result: a great EP that moves you and evokes feelings and thoughts best shared.

Obviously, I had to try and grab an interview:
Q. Cherbourg is composed of 4 unique members. Can you tell us a little about the group and its inner workings?

A. Well, I guess, we just try to be as open as possible to everyone in the band's suggestions and when it comes to making music it really is a full band process. We all come from pretty different musical backgrounds and that really helps to keeps the songs interesting but really we just try to compliment the songs in the best way possible.

Q. What inspires you to create and make music?

A. Everything really. I don't think any of us could put it down to a single band or an author or a person. I think that our inspiration lies all over the place and is very individual to each member of the band. I was watching the Sound Of Music yesterday and felt really inspired the whole way through. That film is amazing!

Q. Both Last Chapter of Dreaming and Into The Dark feature a kind of a dark and gloomy spirit about them. Is that your "niche" in the music world or are you trying to deliver a specific message?

A. I guess they both are dark in many ways. I also think that there is a lot of optimism in the songs as well. I just think that our songs are very honest and I don't think were afraid of confronting dark topics or bleak feelings but i believe our music is also very uplifting, if you want it to be.

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? Do you consider yourself a part of the British folk revival movement, if such a thing exists?

A. I don't really consider Cherbourg as part of a "folk revival movement". I think a movement kind of implies that that all the bands have a message and share the same message which i don't think is true. Our approach is just to enjoy it! We're just happy to play music and enjoy and respect the bands that play and write music for the right reasons.

To support the new EP, Cherbourg is doing a very extensive tour of England and Scotland. Here are some of the tour dates (must see):
May, 23 2009 10:00 PM - Mothers Ruin , Bristol
May, 24 2009 10:00 PM - Unit, Southampton
May, 25 2009 10:00 PM - The Cellar, Portsmouth
May, 27 2009 10:00 PM - Oakford Social, Reading
May, 29 2009 10:00 PM - John Kennedy Introducing @ Watershed, Wimbledon
May, 30 2009 10:00 PM - Escobar, Wakefield
June, 1 2009 10:00 PM - The Lamp, Hull
June, 2 2009 10:00 PM - The Basement, York
June, 3 2009 10:00 PM - Royal Park Cellers, Leeds
June, 4 2009 10:00 PM - The Royal, Derby
June, 5 2009 10:00 PM - Museum Courture Cafe, Manchester
June, 6 2009 10:00 PM - The End Bar, Newcastle
June, 7 2009 10:00 PM - Captains Rest, Glasgow
June, 8 2009 10:00 PM - Sneaky Petes, Edinburgh
June, 10 2009 10:00 PM - Korova, Aberdeen
June, 11 2009 10:00 PM - Roxy, Ulverston
June, 12 2009 10:00 PM - Mad Ferret, Preston
June, 13 2009 09:00 PM - Goldney Ball, Bristol
June, 14 2009 09:00 PM - Jericho Tavern, Oxford
July, 4 2009 08:00 PM - Blissfields Festival, Hampshire
July, 10 2009 05:00 PM - Lounge On The Farm Festival (10th - 12th ), Canterbury

Listen to Cherbourg on their official site, MySpace, Facebook and for more tracks and gig updates. Follow them on twitter here. Buy the EPs on iTunes, Rawrip, or Rough Trade.

Bonus: Cherbourg - Man (Live, from the new EP Into the Dark) {Video}

Thursday, May 21, 2009

The Seriousness of Being Labra

Last post I wrote about how I should lighten up and promised to write about the issue of being serious. More true to my word than I had originally intended, I skipped yesterday's post altogether. Tackling this post's artist, Labrador Labratories (a.k.a. Labra), seemed to have been just as problematic for me.

I was immediately enchanted by his MySpace tracks, imbued with Devendra-like charm and the very curious bio piece. I then proceeded with my admittedly lame and failed attempt at an interview:

Q. Can you tell us a little about you? What are you trying to convey with the bio you wrote on MySpace? How much truth is there in it?

A. Not much of an interview, man. But the story is true. Ask my grandma.

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

A. A lot of pretty girls i see in the street, and also being lonely, and my big mirror in my room.

Q. What's your dream performance/record?

A. Radio city, man. Naked. With Jimi Hendrix, but he plays rhythm guitar for me.

Q. Starting out as an indie artist in a world filled with other bands and artists can be very hard (but also a lot fun). What's your approach?

A. I go right for the kill.

This left me staggering for a while. Am I just too serious and stiff? Is Labra a weird post-modern cross of a Peter Pan lost boy and a street punk/indie rocker? Is there more to him than his San Francisco styled "man" and "dude" approach? Is it just a facade? I don't have the answers for these questions; I'm not sure Labra does either.

What I do know is that I like to be baffled by artists, to let them surprise me and face the unexpected. And here I got my treat: indie freak folk with classic rock roots that's genuine, kicking and screaming in its quieter moments, all wrapped in one mystery package.

And yeah, Tom. It's not much of a review either.

Listen to Labrador Labratories on MySpace and SoundClick. He also has a page on Facebook.

Labrador Labratories - Your Arms {MP3}
Labrador Labratories - Butterflies {MP3}

Bonus: Labrador Labratories - Butterflies {Video}

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Patience and Ryan Baxley

Patience was the keyword for today (though some of my work buddies might have guessed 'anger' or 'lash-out'). Patience to deal with my shortcomings, those of others around me and the constant sense of waiting for something interesting to happen around here. But perhaps I am being too serious about work (certainly for the pay I receive) and should lighten up about it and other stuff. More on that in tomorrow's post (with the appropriate music to go with it).

For now, the music that brought me peace of mind, moving and exciting, calming and focusing. You'll get it all from California's singer-songwriter Ryan Baxley. Aside for the regular difficulties of a struggling indie artist, he'd also had the misfortune of a record mix destroyed without leaving much of a trace. Still, he's moved on and created, so far, at least 3 LPs and an EP, some of which are available on his websites. So, the combination of patience and good music is not a bad thing at all.

Listen to Ryan Baxley on MySpace and, where tracks and albums may be freely downloaded.

Ryan Baxley - Pickin' On Dadgad {MP3} (from Bedtime Stories and Fairy tales)
Ryan Baxley - Someplace I've Never Been (Part 2) {MP3} (from Bedtime Stories and Fairy tales)
Ryan Baxley - All I See Is You {MP3} (from Bedtime Stories and Fairy tales)
Ryan Baxley - Fairytale Dreams {MP3} (from Bedtime Stories and Fairy tales)

Monday, May 18, 2009

Frozen Silence's Cold Colors

The creative moniker of Finnish Matti Paalanen, Frozen Silence, invokes a myriad number of images for me. From the quiet awkwardness of a small talk gone awry, a first date going to even worse places and the seemingly infinitely wide open scenes of the far north and south: majestic glaciers, huge tundras and snow covered trees.

The last image, somewhat resembling the picture on the right taken from Frozen Silence's profile on, can also be felt and perhaps even seen while listening to the music. It's as though the images are being drawn and shaped before your eyes, except that they use material partly from your own memories, so the result is distantly familiar. And charming.

Listen to Frozen Silence on MySpace, Jamendo and Some of his LPs can be downloaded on and Jamendo.

Frozen Silence - Childhood {MP3} (from Frozen Silence)
Frozen Silence - Loneliness {MP3} (from Frozen Silence)
Frozen Silence - Nightingle {MP3} (from Frozen Silence)

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Whatever Happened to The Joint Conspiracy?

Does evolution apply to the music industry? Can one say an artist evolved from his predecessors in the genetic sense or is there more to it? If I were to say that The Joint Conspiracy, a Southend, Sussex indie rock band, was the musical cousin of Kings of Leon, would that make any sense?

Wielding similar energies and hooks, both in gigs and recorded songs, The Joint Conspiracy creates a mix of updated old style rock, reverberating with a hidden sly smile and occasionally tapped depths.

With little web activity in the last year, I just hope The Joint Conspiracy isn't an evolutionary dead end. Considering the promised potential evident in its online material, that would be a pity. Where have you gone?

Listen to The Joint Conspiracy on their official site, MySpace and Their debut EP, Left at the Lights, is available for free download on

The Joint Conspiracy - Tomorrow {MP3} (from Left at the Lights)
The Joint Conspiracy - Where Have We Gone? {MP3} (from Left at the Lights)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Warm Facets

Michael Jack Patrick Donahue may have a name for each of his musical facets (and he probably has a lot more of those stashed in his bedroom drawers). Recording under monikers such as FEMALE, The Great American Airplane Chase and his own given name, this Connecticut based singer-songwriter has accumulated at least dozens of tracks of all flavors and styles.

Obviously influenced by the likes of Devendra Banhart, his songs generate a calm atmosphere to play by the fire or in a warm intimate gathering of friends.

Listen to Michael Jack Patrick Donahue on and his alternate personalities on MySpace here and here.

Michael Jack Patrick Donahue - When We Go Down {MP3}
Michael Jack Patrick Donahue - A Song for Nakomis {MP3}

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Old Woman Corn Mother

Whoever said that the album as a concept was dead and gone may have to re-evaluate his position after listening to Argentina based Old Woman Corn Mother's LP Born in the Mountain, Dead in the Sea.

I admit, in today's blogosphere share-a-track environment, I too was in the habit of collecting tracks rather than immediately procure entire records (unless I felt an immediate connection to the artist, like in the case of Shearwater or The Tallest Man on Earth). But, after stumbling upon this record, I feel I have missed something, that out of sequence and context torn tracks lose something when listened to individually. There are ups and downs in every record, but sometimes it's the overall landscape that matters.

Another net enigma, the moniker of Old Woman Corn Mother brings to my imagination a seasoned venerable native American woman sitting proudly in her tepee, dispensing wisdom upon younger members of her tribe, making the most fabulous corn bread in a 100 miles radius. The album, which must be listened to as a cohesive unit, brought certain fleeting images, some of personal nature. On occasion I sensed as if someone was playing memories, bringing forgotten things to life; memories of family and home, travel and longing. I was somehow reminded of the work of Nico Muhly, but from a somehow different angle, perhaps more personal.

It was a surprise and a pleasure to encounter these feelings again.

Listen to Old Woman Corn Mother on MySpace, and virb. The album, Born in the Mountain, Dead in the Sea, is available for free download on the page. The EP Goodbye [Letters from anywhere but home] is available for free download on virb.

Old Woman Corn Mother - Breeze on the Hills {MP3} (from Born in the Mountain, Dead in the Sea)
Old Woman Corn Mother - The Fallen Leaf {MP3} (from Goodbye [Letters from anywhere but home])

Monday, May 11, 2009

On George and Queen

"Nothing could go wrong, everything's under control". How many times has this line been used to bring about harrowing events upon the seemingly unsuspecting victims? And how many times were we lulled by our self confidence founded on ignorance into another of life's nasty little surprises?

Not so in this case. George and Queen, an Auckland, New Zealand band centered around married couple Immi Paterson and Neil Newton, whose line opens this post, offers a very pleasant surprise. In a musical body of work that varies between indie pop and post-rock and spans, thus far, two LPs, they create a haunting original and somehow distantly familiar sound.

It is an evocative experience, beyond control.

Check out George and Queen on their blog, MySpace and for updates and more tracks. Their CDs can be bought on

George and Queen - Private Paradise {MP3} (from City)
George and Queen - Loose like Legs {MP3} (from City)

Sunday, May 10, 2009

A Battle Cry of Sorts

Sometimes you don't realize a battle has been fought until you feel the fatigue that follows it. Then, after counting the remaining attached limbs and the people around you, you can begin to really appreciate how lucky you are. Of course, not all battles are fraught with blood and gore; some are internal, even imaginary for the casual observer. Some are but skirmishes or minor raids in comparison to total war, locked in eternal conflict.

Sometimes you lose. You may survive, physically, but too important parts of you are gone. And when you look back at yourself crying those battle cries and charging, you may wish only to curl up and weep in a small safe corner.

Some analogies go too far. My battle cry is a whisper; few will ever hear it. But for those who would listen: I will not surrender; bring it on. Come, then.

On that note, just two more things in this post: I will not post ads on this site. I know this blog will never be popular and I'm coming to terms with that. My terms also call for no sell out; if I can't connect or feel the music, I cannot endorse it with good conscience. I wish the artists all the best, but I will be a poor blogger and a poorer man to stand for what I don't believe in. Similarly, I focus on the spirit of the art, as it were, less so on its commercial aspects (a topic my understanding of which is very limited). So - no ads.

The second thing, obviously, is music. This post is dedicated to Gafyn Davies, an artists who despite having a personal site filled with content, remains shrouded with mystery and rhymes. A singer-songwriter who travels with his invisible band, appearing and disappearing between gigs and albums and tells sad tales about you and me.

So many battles, so little time.

Check out Gafyn Davies on his website and for more tracks and a rather enigmatic bio.

Gafyn Davies - I Didn't Want You To Go {MP3} (from The Invisible Band)
Gafyn Davies - The Rage {MP3} (from The Invisible Band)

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Up My Tree of Natrual Curiosity

As another week draws to its inevitable conclusion, I find myself increasingly withdrawing from some of my former life's highlights. Perhaps it is the constant haze caused by lack of sleep or the transmutation of long partially dormant feelings, but I just want to get out of here, my reality.

To aid me in this and help me imagine myself curled amid the branches of a huge green tree, just feeling the smooth bark, smelling the leaves and watching a green and golden world from above, requires a dream. And not just any kind of a dream: Jasmine Dreame Wagner, also known as Cabinet of Natural Curiosities. As her moniker implies, her works reveal a trove of natural curiosities and wonders, mainly of the folk-psychedelics kind, but not limited to it.

Check out Cabinet of Natural Curiosities on MySpace and for more tracks and a huge tour dates list for those lucky on the east coast. Get her albums on her store.

Cabinet of Natural Curiosities - For Sparrow {MP3} (from Searchlight Needles)
Cabinet of Natural Curiosities - Owllullaby {MP3} (from Searchlight Needles)
Cabinet of Natural Curiosities - Bees Over Seas {MP3} (from Black Bough)

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Choices: To Ad or Not to Ad

Sudden dilemmas, thrust upon you out of the blue, can have a certain awakening effect on you, if you choose to see them that way. Yesterday I received an e-mail which spurred my own dormant quandary. It came from a large commercial network which will remain unnamed, offering to add this blog to its lists in exchange for the placements of ads.

I must admit, I was flattered (even though it was probably scripted and automatically sent). The offer has a very strong allure as it has the potential to expose the blog and its content to a lot more people. After all, traffic-wise, this isn't even a minor blog - more of a nano one.

However, the commercialization and ads that are promised are not things I would gladly welcome. To maintain as true as indie spirit as I can, I rely on legal and free offerings by artists, using free and open tools that are available for all. I'm not sure I'd feel comfortable, poor aesthetics aside, seeing big company ads and slogans floating around here.

I know that there are blogs that allow ads and those that don't; you'll find both kinds in this blog's Links area. I just need to figure out what's right for me and this blog and I'd appreciate any helpful comment from any of you few but true readers have to offer.

Now for something that actually matters: good music. This post is dedicated to Ayla Nereo, a San Francisco folk singer-songwriter. For some reason I associate her with Joan Baez, perhaps inspired by certain physical similarities and voice qualities. Her own style is somewhat different, of course, and as her profile defines it as "quiet and luminous". Her current project, Beatbeat Whisper, is a duo with her brother, Davyd Nereo, and listening to their Daytrotter session, it seems to bring the best of them both.

Check out Ayla Nereo on her official site, MySpace and Her current project, Beatbeat Whisper, is here and on MySpace. All of their charming LPs and EPs can be found here.

Ayla Nereo - The Whistler {MP3} (from Play Me A Time)
Beatbeat Whisper - Old River {MP3} (Daytrotter session)
Beatbeat Whisper - Up the Long Tracks {MP3} (Daytrotter session)

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

I Love You

"I Love You" - simple, heartfelt and sometimes difficult to say (or even to think). We've probably all been in those situations, pain in chest, dry throat and burning in the eyes, when all we can see or feel is the other person. Someone you think so special that all others melt before her (or him, depends on who reads this). So you approach, somewhat timid, hold her hand and feel the words ripped out of you, hurrying to their acoustic destiny in the little space between you.

These feelings and emotions have somehow been personified and forged into a beautiful, somewhat dark, song by Texas' singer-songwriter Beau McDermott. As it is simple and direct so it is powerful and moving. If there's even a shred of the romantic left in you, you will feel it too.

Check out Beau McDermott on MySpace and More tracks are available on SoundClick.

Beau McDermott - I Love You {MP3}

Monday, May 04, 2009

Shelter From the Storm

It's windy, hot and hellish in here (and I'm not even talking about the crazy weather outside). All this inspires, aside from the occasional bad hair day, a need for something calm with an Americana flavor, to fit the rolling hay bails (and people), drifting in the storm.

The work of R. Mansfeld & Joseph James, as singer-songwriters in the Californian band Deathbot, certainly hits the spot.

Check out Deathbot on the official site, MySpace and for a lot more tracks and updates. Their debut LP, Cold Wind Revival (2008) is available for free download on their official site.

Deathbot - Shelter From the Storm {MP3}
Deathbot - My Oh My {MP3} (from Cold Wind Revival)

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Estobahn and My Day Job

With the more than usual much ado about nothing going on at work today and the ever encroaching fatigue, I'm not sure I'll be able to write much of a post today. This is a pity because Mansfield, UK's Estobahn, though mysterious and cryptic online, deserves some play time. It has a very desired calming effect that lends me some resources of patience and peace when otherwise there would be none. It's going to be a long day.

Check out Estobahn on the official site and for more tracks and info.

Estobahn - Lucid {MP3}
Estobahn - Blue Skies {MP3}
Bonus: Estobahn - Some Things Last a Long Time (a Daniel Johnston cover)

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Manson Family Picnic: An Interview

There are artists who leave an undefinable mark and feeling on you when you listen to their work. When you feel compelled to smile or get cheered up, even move your feet in a little dance but at the same time the lyrics are provoking or just plain fun. And through it all a certain feel of madness is in the air, of unpredictability. Yeah, that's my impression of Manson Family Picnic, whom I've posted about before. I couldn't just leave them like that though. Here's an interview.

Q. Manson Family picnic is composed of 5 unique members. Can you tell me a little about the group and its inner workings?

A. Definitely unique members, everyone of us is a little crazy in our own way, and we are from a bunch of different music backgrounds like noise, metal, r&b, and classical. We formed up in a wood shop in Bushwick, Brooklyn and we decided to play only acoustic instruments. Devlin use to bang on all sorts of spare machinery before we had anything that resembled drums. Some of us are trained musicians, some are not. Jeff (violin) likes to make strange sounds and noises at parties. Andrew (bass) seems to be a good driver. We all really like to cook food for each other. Arthur and I write the songs, and then we all collaborate on the arrangements, so I definitely feel that it is the intense collaboration that turns whatever we bring to the table into something that could only be expressed by the 5 individuals in this band.

Q. What inspires you to create and make music?

A. By playing and making music together we are celebrating and uplifting each others spirits. Touring has been fun and inspiring. I definitely think we are interested in the big questions... life, death and such.... suburban trauma.

Q. Is there a story behind the band's name?

A. We were playing the song "the mistakes" and we were just really getting to know each other. We started to think that we sounded kind of like a cult, like a Manson Family Picnic...ding ding ding! And it stuck. Also, I grew up in Chatsworth, Ca and used to hang around the Manson caves and play when I was a kid. Pretty weird place, Chatsworth, Ca. They use to shoot westerns a lot in the hills near the house where I grew up. Inspiring landscape! Now they make a lot of porn there.

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? Any funny/interesting anecdotes?

A. Well, it's know, scenes and all. They can be pretty narrow minded. But we have been able to play a lot of different kinds of scenes, and while not fitting in, I think we have been accepted. We once got kicked out of a venue because we played in the house's kitchen while the show was happening in the garage. I guess they were worried about the cops, but we only come with acoustic jingle jangle so WTF? Also, that night I think our bassist at the time was kind of a butt to the Vivian Girls. We apologize for that.

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

A. The music industry? I don't get it. But, I hope that if we keep making music that comes out of a true raw kind of collaborative effort, maybe folks will catch on.

Check out Manson Family Picnic on their website, MySpace and Facebook for streamable tracks and gig updates. Get their debut EP on CDBaby.

Manson Family Picnic - Kentucky Waltz {MP3} (from Manson Family Picnic)

Friday, May 01, 2009

Two Bicycles: A Special Interview

You may have noticed that at the headline of this blog lies the slogan "The music speaks for itself". But, like the tree falling in the forest, the music must have a listener for it to be what it's supposed to be: a creation, a work of art. Sometimes the creator is the only one who gets the opportunity to enjoy it. On other times, the lucky listeners will find something unique within themselves and the piece - and connect.

Jamison Dick, creating under the moniker of Two Bicycles, has managed to inspire such a connection for many people with his personal songs "Love Is" and "Love Is Not", as previously posted here. I wanted to find out more about him and how he works.

Q. Can you tell us a little about you and the music you create.

A. I'm 23 and I live in a town called Abbotsford, which is about an hour outside of Vancouver. It's cool, I know a lot of people would rather just live in the city but I like being a bit more in the country. I spent a few years living in the Prairies, which is like Canada's Midwest. I like the quiet life and that has a big effect on my songwriting.

Q. You said you're "not in it for the money". What inspires you to create and make music? What are your influences?

A. I started making music as "Two Bicycles" two years ago. I had been working on some more introspective, electronic songs and I felt it was about time I picked up my guitar and started writing songs. I wanted to encapsulate some of that Prairie life. Alt Country songwriters like Jeff Tweedy and Ryan Adams had a big influence on me too.

Q. "Love Is" and "Love Is Not" achieved tremendous popularity on the Hype Machine probably because people were able to personally connect with them. How do you balance your personal experiences and songwriting when you're writing a song?

A. I guess one of the main reasons I write this stuff is because it's become the main way I process things. Relational stuff, spiritual stuff, sometimes even political stuff; I work out a lot of this stuff in these songs. This new record deals a lot with me working out spiritual things, which has been really healthy for me.
I think my personal experiences are the main force behind my songwriting. I was thinking about this with the last question, and the reasoning behind writing songs. I sort of realized that songwriting is a way for me to process my experiences; to take those experiences and create through them "art". The whole thing is very much outside of myself.
You saying that people connected with both "Love Is" and "Love Is Not" is interesting to me, because I both those songs are very specific to my experience. That being said, there is something about a song, whether the lyrics are specific or not, that can allow it to be something that is easily empathized with. When I think of the music that I love, and I mean really love, I realize how often its something in my own life that is associated with it. Take Kid A by Radiohead, which is my favourite record. The reason it's my favourite record is because of the times, places and states of mind that I've listened to it in. Truthfully, and I'm sure I'm not alone on this one, I couldn't tell you, lyrically, what Thom Yorke is trying to say through that record. I can pick up on some themes, or a general idea, but I can't tell specifically. That being said, I still find that I connect with that record in a way that is deeper than most. I guess that's what I'm trying to do: create music that people will be able to associate with their own experiences. My friend Dave is a poet, and once told me that art doesn't exist until someone other than yourself experiences it. If a poem, or a song, or a painting, just sits on its own, without an audience, than what is it? Art needs to communicate, and I hope that I can accomplish that through my music.

Check out Two Bicycles on MySpace, tumblr, Facebook and the 61 for more tracks and updates. His latest LP, An Attempt to Be Alone, is a beautiful album that needs to be out there.

Two Bicycles - Clothe Me {MP3} (from An Attempt to Be Alone)
Two Bicycles - Ghost {MP3} (from An Attempt to Be Alone)