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Genre > Rock > Alt & Grunge
Venus On Earth (Awaiting Repress)Three albums in the novelty has worn off, but Dengue Fever has smartly chosen to keep evolving. While that means their unquestionably unique offering no longer startles, it's no less riveting -- Venus on Earth is at once the band's most accessible and most varied release.
A recap: when first heard from in 2003 on their self-titled debut, Dengue Fever was like no other band, a bunch of L.A. hipsters fronted by a Cambodian-born woman, Chhom Nimol, who paid homage to that Asian nation's pre-Pol Pot cheesy psychedelic-cum-lounge-surf-garage pop sound of the '60s/early '70s, music obscure enough that only a tiny handful of Americans could honestly claim to have known the first thing about it -- certainly, the source material spun outside of the orbit of the so-called core world music audience.
By the second album, 2005's Escape from Dragon House, Dengue Fever had tossed in a few more disparate elements, and with Nimol's high-range vocals riding atop this internationalist admixture and a basic alt-rock sensibility as a guiding force (minus the faux alt-rock attitude), Dengue Fever attracted an audience and garnered critical praise. For Venus on Earth, the mainstream beckons, or comes as close to beckoning as it's ever going to for a band as non-mainstream as Dengue Fever.
Nimol's vocals are as beguiling as ever, Ethan Holtzman's Farfisa organ still swirls, Zac Holtzman's guitars still chime and chunk, and Paul Dreux Smith's drums clang happily along. With horns provided by David Ralicke and bass from Senon Gaius Williams, Dengue Fever has softened some of the rougher edges, injected some serious soul, and added more swing to their thing. "Oceans of Venus" could be an outtake from the first B-52's album, "Clipped Wings" a lost Blondie tune, and "Woman in the Shoes" is just one of the most cuddly pop songs in ages. The groovelicious Nimol-Zac Holtzman duet "Tiger Phone Card," a tale of a long distance Phnom Penh-NYC romance, is the pop smash Yoko Ono might have had in an alternate universe.
Drenched in reverb, soaked in sweat, marinated in some phantom historical moment yet tethered to the now, Dengue Fever is more innovative and resourceful than 99-percent of the bands that receive 99 times the publicity.
- Jeff Tamarkin (All Music Guide)1. Seeing Hands
2. Clipped Wings
3. Tiger Phone Card
4. Woman in the Shoes
5. Sober Driver
6. Monsoon of Perfume
8. Oceans of Venus
9. Laugh Track
10. Tooth and Nail
11. Mr. Orange
$15.99Vinyl LP - SealedAWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
The Deepest LakeThe Deepest Lake finds Dengue Fever expanding their trademark psych/surf/Cambodian pop sound with African percussion, vocals that would make Exene and John Doe proud, sweeping melodies and extended psychedelic jams of songs that often time out after five or six minutes. The band made a conscious decision to head into the studio looking to expand their sound while also following their instincts to explore jams that came out of demos recorded in their home studio where the album was produced entirely by the band themselves. The result is sound that showcases their musically adventurous side while still remaining faithful to the bands otherworldly sound.1. Tokay
2. No Sudden Moves
3. Rom Say Sok
4. Ghost Voice
5. Deepest Lake on the Planet
6. Cardboard Castles
7. Vacant Lot
8. Still Waters
$17.99Vinyl LP - SealedBuy Now
Stellar MotelLegendary wordsmith Mike Doughty's STELLAR MOTEL is Mike's first album of all-original tunes since 2011's acclaimed Yes and Also Yes.
STELLAR MOTEL is led by the tranced-out, banjo-driven single "Light WIll Keep Your Heart Beating in the Future.
Produced by DJ Good Goose, the album features a menagerie of guests, from the rappers Jay Boogs, HJA, Miss Eaves, and MC Frontalot, to drums and sax trio Moon Hooch, to long-time sideman Andrew "Scrap" Livingston, to Japanese rap star Kim Uhnellys.1. Light Will Keep Your Heart Beating in the Future
2. When the Night Is Long
3. Oh My God Yeah Fuck It (feat. Moon Hooch and Miss Eaves)
4. Raging On
5. Let Me Lie (feat. Big Dipper)
6. These Are Your Friends
7. Letís Go To The Motherfucking Movies
8. The Champion (feat. MC Frontalot)
9. Pretty Wild (feat. Ash Wednesday, Clara Bizna$$, and Uncle Meg from H.J.A.)
10. When You Come Home
11. (Somato - A Revolving Lantern) (feat. Kim from Uhnellys)
13. To See the Sun Come Down (feat. Jay Boogie and Andrew Scrap Livingston)
14. The Brightness
15. In the Rising Sun (feat. Laura Lee Bishop)
16. Better Days Come Around
$19.99Vinyl LP - SealedBuy Now
Dog Years / I Can Be One EPIncludes book.No Listing Available.$15.99Vinyl LP - SealedBuy Now
Memories & BirdsNorth Carolina based singer-songwriter Kenny Roby (6 String Drag) brings poetic art to well produced, stand alone, music pieces, in his new record, Memories and Birds. The list of contributing artists and number of well appointed instruments is noteworthy here, although Roby gets a lot of press for his very unique lyrics. Influenced by Randy Newman and Townes Van Zant, the philosophy that words in music don't always have to be upbeat, gives him permission to tell stories as dark and twisted as a T.S. Eliot meets Falkner poem. However, the score that flows behind the pieces is warm and inviting. The listener is held steady, as the imagery changes.
This 8 track collection is a monument of eclectic relativism, that expands as it plays. Each song is unique in its own right, but Roby's style comes through. The lyrics, honest and sometimes stark, also come around with a subtle moral of the story, that is positive and humane.
"Memories & Birds" was recorded between December 2011 and April 2012. Themes of Faulkner, O'Connor, Percy and McCarthy are noted as influence. I heard a range as wide as Tom Waits and Elvis Costello, but these artists are not that far from each other in conjuring up provocative subject lines. Where Kenny Roby stands out is the consistent honor of the lone soul, participant observer and quiet societal commentator.1. Memories & Birds
2. The Monster
3. The Craziest Kid Around
5. Tired Of Being In Love
6. A Short Mile
7. Me And The Monkey
8. Our Fading Fighter
$18.99Vinyl LP - SealedBuy Now
Alternative rock first emerged in Britain in the late 70s and early 80s, but it didn’t really hit its stride until the 90s with the arrival of bands like the Red Hot Chili Peppers and
Alternative rock first emerged in Britain in the late 70s and early 80s, but it didn’t really hit its stride until the 90s with the arrival of bands like the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Jane’s Addiction. That was also right around the time that Nirvana and Pearl Jam fueled the grunge rock explosion.
And when you want the full and real alt rock experience, you’ve gotta try it out on vinyl, and SoundStage Direct is your one-stop shop for all the best alternative rock vinyls.