Soulful Sundays / Funky DL – The 4th Quarter (2008)

This week on Soulful Sundays, I’m showcasing a great concept album from Funky DL – The 4th Quarter.

Funky DL - The 4th Quarter

I really like this album because of the concept. Funky DL serves up four different styles of songs: soul, new age, jazz, and authentic, in four different sections of his album. I feel that it works out very well, and I hope you think so too. Enjoy!

Featured Album Fridays / Starlight Mints – Change Remains (2009)

This week on Featured Album Fridays, a little beat of an off-beat album, but a great album nonetheless, Starlight Mints and their 2009 album – Change Remains.

Starlight Mints - Change Remains

Here is the description of Starlight Mints from their Last.FM:

Starlight Mints are a group of beautiful pop mutants: four oddballs whose love for archetypal pop music and AM radio has provided a rock-solid foundation for a whole bunch of inspired weirdness. Allan Vest (vocals/guitar), Marian Love Nunez (keyboards), Javier Gonzales (bass), and Andy Nunez (drums) began jamming together in the ’90s, giving birth to their own funky brand of heavily instrumental, surrealistically worded pop sound. Maybe you could call it bubblegum psych. It all adds up to something very grand: one marvelous piece of orchestrated, catchy surrealism after another, in the form of 2006’s drowaton. The band has released two previous albums, the dream that stuff was made of (2000), and built on squares (2003), combining classic string arrangements, cheeky boyish vocals, and a feel good vibe to bring a glossy, fresh sound to indie rock.

The Starlight Mints is an indie pop band from Norman, Oklahoma. This quirky quintet is nationally renowned on the indie scene for their creative juxtaposition of classical and pop elements in their music. The band was formed in the ’90s and has varied in size between 5-7 members.
The current quartet consists of:
- Allan Vest (vocals, guitar)
- Andy Nunez (drums)
- Marian Love Nunez (keyboard)
- Javier Gonzales (bass).

Two previous members contributed to their sound on violin and cello. After releasing The Dream That Stuff Was Made Of in 2000 through the label See Thru Broadcasting, and Built on Squares in 2003 through Pias America. Similar bands include the Flaming Lips (who hail from the same area of Oklahoma), the Mayflies USA, the French Kicks and The Unicorns.

Pop mutants indeed! Hope you enjoy the album as much as I do, the stream is below!

Featured Album Fridays / Grammatics – Grammatics (2009)

This week on Featured Album Fridays, I am highlighting the self-titled album from a UK band called Grammatics – Grammatics.

Grammatics - Grammatics

Of course, here is the description of the Grammatis from their Last.FM:

Leeds-based Grammatics formed in April 2006 with best friends Owen Brinley and Dominic Ord deciding to form a band after the demise of Owen’s previous band Colour of Fire. The line-up was pieced together with the addition of Rebecca Dumican and Rory O’Hara and Michael Repeat. They spent the next few months writing and rewriting songs. Perfectionists to the last, the band waited until that October to begin playing live. This paid off and their live performances quickly gained them a reputation as a band to look out for on the Leeds scene. The inclusion of their track “The Shipping Forecast” as the opening track of Leeds label Dance To The Radio’s “Something I Learned Today” compilation saw them start to gain attention nationwide.

Meanwhile tensions within the band, who openly admit to their fondness for arguments, were making progress difficult and in May 2007 Michael left the band to work on other things.

Recently the band have continued to build on their already formidable reputation. A Japanese EP released in 2007 has now sold out, as with their debut 7” release on Dance To The Radio.

Current line-up is:

Owen Brinley – Vocals, Guitar, Sampler, Keys
Emilia Ergin – Vocals, Cello
Dominic Ord – Drums
Rory O’Hara – Bass

Great album, the stream is below, enjoy!

Soulful Sundays / Tony Stone – The Creation (2008)

This week on Soulful Sundays, I took a complete shot in the dark and found this album from Tony Stone, it is called The Creation.

Tony Stone - The Creation

It’s a great album, less jazzy than I’m used to, but it is a great listen to. Pretty similar feeling with Jurassic Five, so I definitely loved it. Listened to it three times by the time I made this posting, and it has definitely been a pick-me-up. The stream is below, enjoy!

Featured Album Fridays / Our Book And The Authors – Our Book And The Authors (2009)

This week on Featured Album Fridays, I’m showcasing a great band from Montreal, Our Book And The Authors, and their self-titled album – Our Book And The Authors.

Our Book And The Authors - Our Book And The Authors

Here is the description of the band from their Last.FM:

Our Book And The Authors is the project of lead singer, songwriter and keyboardist Gabriel D’Amour and programmer Jean-Christian Arod. Other members (live members) include Marc-André Petelle & Julien Simard. They have been compared to other pop acts such as Spoon, Devotchka, The Beatles, The Postal Service, Beirut among others. Their first full length album, a self-titled one, was officially released on May 13th 2009.

Having been compared to some of my favourite bands, I immediately knew this was going to be an awesome album – and I was right! The stream is below, enjoy!

Featured Album Fridays / Other Lives – Other Lives (2009)

This week on Featured Album Fridays, I’m showcasing a fantastic indie album that was a great listen, the 2009 self-titled album from Other Lives – Other Lives.

Other Lives - Other Lives

Here is the description of Other Lives from their Last.FM:

Kunek was a genre smoothie. Toss some indie, folk, post-rock, and ambient in a blender and set to awesome. In August 2008, Kunek announced via their Myspace that Kunek will live on only through their fantastic but lone album, Flight of the Flynns. 5 members of Kunek have transferred to a new band under the Other Lives moniker. The debut Other Lives album is finished as of August 2008, produced by Joey Waronker (Beck, REM) and will be released via TBD records (Radiohead, Underworld). The 5 members of Other Lives/Kunek are as follows:

Colby Owens Drums
Josh Onstott: Bass, Organ
Jonathan Mooney: Keyboards (Acoustic Guitar),
Jenny Hsu: Cello,
Jesse Tabish: Lead Vocals (Piano, Guitar)

As per usual, the stream is below, hope you really enjoy this album because I sure did! Enjoy.

Soulful Sundays / Samon Kawamura – Unfold (2008)

This week on Soulful Sundays, I am highlighting a fantastic album from a great producer and turntablist, Samon Kawamura. The album is called Unfold.

Samon Kawamura - Unfold

I really loved listening to this album because it is one of the few albums that really has that jazzy hip-hop feel to it that I am so into. I am quite glad I found this album, and I genuinely hope you guys enjoy it too! The stream is below, enjoy!

Featured Album Fridays / Great Bloomers – Speak Of Trouble (2009)

Today for Featured Album Fridays, I am showcasing a great Canadian band by the name of Great Bloomers, and their debut album – Speak Of Trouble.

Great Bloomers - Speak Of Trouble

Here is the description of Great Bloomers from MapleMusic:

Great Bloomers was formed when childhood pals Lowell Sostomi and Nate Hindle moved to Toronto and met Andrew Kekewich. The trio quickly formed a strong friendship based upon similar record collections— all three valued essential works from The Band, Fleetwood Mac, and Springsteen. The addition of bassist Ty Rowles, brought funk influences like Sly and the Family Stone—raising the energy level and reinventing the budding band. Within a couple of months, they had found their final member in drummer/pianist Shawn Dell, a classically trained pianist with a strong jazz background. The addition of a funk-influenced bassist and a jazz-influenced drummer added an entirely new dimension to the band — pulling from genres that most emphasize the importance of strong rhythm sections. In this they find the perfect backdrop for Lowell Sostomi’s arresting vocals, which alternate between an earnest twangy howl and a velvety low-range with the consistency of chocolate. Add to that Beach Boy-precise harmonies and the effect is almost unbearably good. Together, the 5 young bucks took to the stage with the natural poise, confidence and ease of seasoned veterans, despite the significant lack of years under their belts.

Support the Canadian bands, check out the album’s stream below, enjoy!