Song of the Day: Dream Police – Hypnotized

photo by Kevin Faulkner

photo by Kevin Faulkner

Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Today’s song, featured on the Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole, is “Hypnotized” by Dream Police from the 2014 album Hypnotized on Sacred Bones Records.

Dream Police – Hypnotized (MP3)

In between recordings from their other project, The Men members Mark Perro and Nick Chiericozzi began recording psychedelic-leaning rock songs under the moniker Dream Police. After finishing the touring cycle for 2013’s New Moon, Perro and Chiericozzi began writing and recording songs as a duo for the first time in years, eventually producing a batch of songs that didn’t fit in with The Men’s current direction. Teaming up with previous collaborator Kyle Keays-Hagerman for the recording process, the duo spent the next six months wrapping up the eight tracks that would ultimately make up their debut as Dream Police, Hypnotized. Built around a pounding Roland drum machine beat, “Hypnotized” builds a stockpile of hard rock riffs and Suicide-style fuzz into a swirling, furious cloud of melodic static. Perro’s calm, ghostly voice floats around, weaving in and out of twin, dueling guitars. “Hypnotized” is a stark contrast from the country and classic rock leanings that The Men have been increasingly tapping into lately, but the vibrancy of Perro and Chiericozzi’s new direction only underlines that the duo’s output is as compelling as it is unpredictable.

Dream Police are touring in support of Hypnotized for the next few weeks, including a stop at Black Lodge in Seattle on December 12th. Keep up with the band on their blog and The Men’s website. Below, watch a clip of the band playing at the David Lynch Foundation Benefit earlier this year.

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Live Video: Sloan

photo by Charina Pitzel (view set)

We knew an excellent in-studio session was in the cards when Canadian rock legends Sloan stopped by KEXP. On their eleventh studio album, Commonwealth, the Toronto quartet split the deck on an ambitious double album, with each band member taking a side represented by a playing card symbol. The foursome brought that democratic approach to our studios with each songwriter performing one of their songs — even drummer Andrew Scott performed a snippet of the 18-minute-long opus that he chose for his album side. No matter how you shuffle it, it’s a winning hand. Watch:

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Music That Matters Podcast: Bound To Earth

Check out some of the KEXP DJ’s favorite artists from the Pacific Northwest and around the world on-the-go. KEXP’s Music That Matters weekly podcast brings you an exclusive mix of new music from the world’s best independent artists.

The Shivas // photo by Amber Zbitnoff

Currently, you’ll hear:

Music That Matters, Vol. 435 – Bound To Earth
Afternoon Show host Kevin Cole brings a mix of poppy punk, hypnotic trance, and narcotic drifter ballads, with new songs from Meatbodies, The Young Evils, The Shivas and more.

1. The Young Evils – It Happens All the Time
2. Meatbodies – Mountain
3. Dream Police – Hypnotized
4. Hookworms – Radio Tokyo
5. HOLLY – Easy Company | Interlude
6. Atoms and Void – The Architect and the Atomizer
7. The Twilight Sad – Last January
8. The Shivas – Stalkin Legs
9. The Blind Shake – Old Lake
10. Restorations – Separate Songs
11. Smokey Brights – If I Can’t Change Your Mind
12. Weyes Blood – Land of Broken Dreams
13. Nude Beach – Yesterday
14. The Vaselines – Last Half Hour

Listen here: (MP3)

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Friday Music News

photo by Beth Eisgrau-Heller

  • Former frontman of The Walkmen, Hamilton Leithauser, may have release an album only a few months ago, but today he’s gifted us with a stunning, non-album track called “Room For Forgiveness”. It was previously only available as a 7″ single on his tour. [Stereogum]

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Live Video: Merchandise

photo by Dave Lichterman (view set)

Some frontmen were born to brood across the stage with enigmatic allure, but Merchandise‘s Carson Cox is not one of them. When the Tampa, Florida, quintet arrived in the KEXP studio in October, Cox’s loquacious charm outfitted the session with a series of one-liners, ad-libs, and shoutouts to fellow musicians, but despite the singer’s uncanny penchant for hilarious off-the-cuff remarks (“This song is for driving… so if you’re at home… get in your car and turn on the radio”), his charisma never overshadowed the music. Highlighting tracks from their latest album and 4AD debut, After The End, and a song from their split with Milk Music and Destruction Unit, the band just sounded as powerful and engaging during the early morning session as they had during their headline gig played just under twelve hours prior. Below, watch Cox and the band burn through tracks from After The End and discuss recording in a closet, evolving as a band, and the importance of caffeine when playing a gig early in the morning.

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Friday on My Mind: Happy Thanksgiving 2014!

It’s time again for Friday on My Mind. Our weekly blog post where we look at videos centered around one common theme. This is a collaborative effort between KEXP and King 5 News.

It’s Thanksgiving time again. Let the yearly gorging begin!!! While the very first Thanksgiving meal took place in 1621, it wasn’t declared an actual holiday for a long while after that feast. 200 years after the fact in 1863, Abraham Lincoln declared Thanksgiving a holiday and said that it would fall on the fourth Thursday of November every year. This was in part due a woman named Sarah Josepha Hale. Sarah Josepha Hale, who also happened to be the original songwriter of “Mary Had a Little Lamb”, spent 17 years working to have Thanksgiving designated as a national holiday. 17 years. Thats a true Thanksgiving groupie. In 1939, President Roosevelt bumped up the date of Thanksgiving by a week in an attempt to stimulate the economy during The Depression, but two years later we went back to celebrating on the fourth Thursday.

And now as the fourth Friday of November draws near for 2014, here are some food songs to listen to as you stuff your face:
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Song of the Day: Joseph Giant – First And The Last To Know

photo by Kelli Faryar

photo by Kelli Faryar

Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Today’s song, featured on the Midday Show with Cheryl Waters, is “First And The Last To Know” by Joseph Giant from the 2014 self-released Lucky Love EP.

Joseph Giant – First And The Last To Know (MP3)

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Live Review: Shakey Graves with Esmé Patterson and Rayland Baxter at Neumos 11/15/2014

All photos by Matthew B. Thompson

If you were anywhere in Seattle on the evening of November 15th, Neumos was the venue you’d count yourself lucky to spend it at. Those who ventured out to Capitol Hill, hopefully with tickets in hand, were treated to an outstanding sold-out performance by Shakey Graves. Alejandro Rose-Garcia who performs under that moniker, brought along with him two equally and distinct artists in support for a full night of, at times, raucous but indelible performances. Graves has been keeping busy with the release of his album, And the War Came, as well as a full schedule to which Saturday’s show marks the third time he has played the Northwest this past year. Judging from the size of the crowd, it will not be the last for quite some time.

Colorado native Esmé Patterson, formerly of the group Paper Bird, opened the show. Patterson has a new album out, titled Woman to Woman, which follows the conceptual perspective of women depicted by other well known artist from the likes of The Beatles (with songs like “Eleanor Rigby”), The Beach Boys and Elvis Costello, just to name a few. Patterson’s vocals were strident at times, reverberating throughout the audience, interspersed by the sustained of the guitar and drum accompaniment. The crowd was enthralled from the beginning.

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Thursday Music News

photo courtesy of the artist

  • The snowstorm that has hit the east coast has trapped both Interpol and their tourmates Hundred Waters in their bus. After 50+ hours stuck on the road, and two shows canceled, they started moving a little bit this Thursday morning, only to get stuck again in Buffalo. You can follow the band’s progress on Twitter, thanks to guitarist Daniel Kessler. Sending good thoughts to the bands, their crew, and everyone stuck in the snow in New York. [Pitchfork]

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Review Revue: Mark Lanegan – The Winding Sheet


I have a confession to make: I am just now listening to Mark Lanegan’s solo debut, The Winding Sheet, for the first time. I know, I should probably turn in my Seattle Rock Card (where did I put that damn thing, anyway?). I’m 38, I’ve lived here for 13 years; I have no excuse. Of course I’ve heard a lot of Lanegan over the years, from witnessing a transfixing live performance in Dublin (long story); to greatly enjoying his collaborations over the years with Queens of the Stone Age, Isobel Campbell, and others; to digging into at least a couple of the four solo albums he’s released in the past two years. Needless to say, Lanegan is a Seattle Rock institution, and well deserving of the title.

But in 1990 he was a different figure, known only for his career fronting the grunge godfathers Screaming Trees. KCMU DJs were understandably surprised to hear this deep, dark, personal record from someone they’d known only as a rock singer – and a label that they had not previously associated with acoustic guitars and contemplative lyrics. The surprise, overall, seems to have been a pleasant one. There’s a lot to enjoy in these comments; I particularly appreciate the parenthetical “(Nirvana)” after a reference to Kurt Cobain, which does a lot to place these comments at a certain point in rock history.

“Has more in common w/Nick Drake or Thin White Rope than his work w/The Screaming Trees. Produced by Endino & that surprised me, too. This leans more toward the folk side of the rock spectrum than the garage/grunge side. Less typical Sub Pop than the Walkabouts even.

“1-2 & 1-3 are very cool. The violin on 1-3 is great. No liner notes here [Here you go. -ed], but Mark Pickerel (Trees) is on drums, & Kurt Kobain (Nirvana) contributes guitar. I don’t know who plays on what tho’.

“Mark is not always the main songwriter in the Trees, & these songs are different – darker & more personal. His voice sounds great throughout.

“1-5 sounds a little like the Screaming Trees. I think Kurt plays guitar on this track. 1-6 is very sad. All of side 2 sounded good, esp. 2-5. 2-6 is a wierd & slightly disturbing piece that fades out fairly quickly & includes the phrase, “blow job.” You’ve been warned! That aside, this is excellent.”

“I like 1-6 & 1-4.”

“2-5 is a Leadbelly tune – cool!” [That Leadbelly tune is “Where Did You Sleep Last Night, which Nirvana of course went on to play on their hugely popular MTV Unplugged session.]

“‘Where Did U Sleep Last Night': Scrumtious goddam fujiyama-san makin’ my hair folicles sweat!!!”

“‘Undertow’ is compelling… compelling to listen very closely to.”

“This is great, we have it and I’ve listened to it often. Glad it’s in H!”

“Don’t forget, we’ve got the CD now.”

“This is really beautiful! So well orchestrated. This should be in H for a long time! P.S. Odd thing for Jack to produce.”

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