While January may be the technical start of each new year, those of us who can’t shake thinking of life in terms of school reserve September as the real start of the year, even if we’ve left behind textbooks and classes years ago. As the hot summer months turn colder with the arrival of autumn, September is when the expectation of change hangs in the air (or here in Southern California, we have to be satisfied with blistering heat turning to a medium heat as we enter fall). So if we think of September as a fresh start, music lovers have a lot to look forward to because autumn is set to bring an array of exciting new releases. Here is a rundown of albums, in no particular order, that you can look forward to:
Mumford & Sons are pleased to announce details of a series of Gentlemen of the Road Stopovers in the United States this August. The Stopovers combine the intimacy of a community celebration with the excitement of a world-class music festival. Featuring local vendors and activities, each Stopover will begin with a concert at a unique site and end with a series of smaller events involving local businesses, venues, and, most importantly, local people. Mumford & Sons will headline the main event, alongside an eclectic and energetic roster of artists curated by the band themselves.
Brooklyn-based artist Gabriel & The Hounds has joined the blossoming record label Communion, which is releasing this artist’s debut record in the UK at the end of February (released by Ernest Jennings Record Co. in US). Entitled Kiss Full of Teeth, musician and songwriter Gabriel Levine is the man behind the moniker “Gabriel & The Hounds,” and while Levine wrote all the songs on the album, it isn’t quite a solo effort, as he is joined by a variety of artists in an effort that is a perfect mix of solitary and communal. Among those who came together to record this album include performers who are in or have recorded with The National, Beirut, St Vincent, Sufjan Stevens, tUnE-yArDs, Bjork, and Jonsi (proving it pays to have friends in high places).
Hi there. If you’re reading this, then that means you made it through the second week of 2012. Congratulations! It was a busy week here at Project Rhythm Seed as we continue to gear up for another year of international music coverage. We have lots of new features, reviews and interviews that will be coming your way this year. Many of the bands that we present to you are either wrapping up recording, or preparing release of their new records. And others have already released and are getting ready to take off for a short warmup tour before this year’s SXSW in March.
The setting that comes to mind upon listening to Ben Howard’s debut full-length album is a bonfire on the beach, as one can easily imagine this talented musician strumming his guitar atop a log while the shadows of the flames dance upon the faces of a spellbound audience beneath a starry night with the sound of waves crashing in the background. Howard is both raw and intimate, and the beach vibe stems from a complete lack of pretense to his music, and if I hadn’t already known his nationality, I might guess he was from California (He’s not; Howard is English and from the West Country).
Michael Kiwanuka is pleased to announce details of his debut UK and Ireland tour this Autumn, as well as a tour of the US in support of Adele.
Michael will head out across the UK in late October and November for his first spate of headline shows in support of his forthcoming second EP, I’m Getting Ready.
The dates will be preceded by a previously announced EP launch night at London’s Bush Hall on the 21st of September, and a 10 date tour of the US in October.
By J. Brown
For our latest edition of Free Music Friday, we’d like to introduce you to the young and talented British singer/songwriter Fiona Sally Miller. She has been compared to folk superstar Laura Marling, who is also English; and while Miller has the chops lyrically and vocally to serve as a bright addition to the burgeoning folk and indie community in the UK, it’s hard to live up to comparisons to the genius that is Marling. Fiona Sally Miller is certainly a standout artist in her own right who should have a very bright future. Her music delves a bit more into pop-based folk, which is perfect for her stunningly sweet voice. Communion Records wrote the following of the Brighton-born singer: “Fiona Sally Miller’ brings her effortless and summer-fueled scope to the fold, that’s set to have you swooning and smiling all night long.”
By J. Brown
Kyla la Grange, Marcus Foster, Ben Lovett, Matthew & the Atlas, Ryan O’Reilly, Sarah Blasko, Beans on Toast, Mt. Desolation, Pete Roe, Damien Rice, The Staves, Lissie, Angus & Julia Stone, Alan Pownall: This list of artists might sound like the makings of a top-notch music festival, but actually these are just some of the musicians who appear on Communion’s newest release, a compilation album entitled The Flowerpot Sessions.
For today’s Free Music Friday we are pleased to offer you a magic bag of tracks from five different artists. All of these tracks were sent to us by Stayloose, a music PR company located in Bristol, England. We were introduced to Stayloose by Kevin Jones who, along with acclaimed producer Ian Grimble and Mumford & Sons, Ben Lovett, founded the London based Communion Records.
By J. Brown
Turning your back on modernity is no easy feat in this day and age, which makes it all the more admirable and noteworthy. It seems British singer/songwriter Ben Howard is one of the few who chooses to eschew social media, TV, cell phones and the plethora of technological objects that take up so much of our time and energy.