Walter Martin - Newspoke - Jimmy Sweet

Walter Martin - I Can Run Now From The Hellhounds But I Can't Hide.

Background - Walter Martin (co-writer/multi-instrumentalist of The Walkmen) will release his new album Reminisce Bar & Grill on February 16th via Ile Flottante Music. His fourth solo record since The Walkmen's hiatus in 2013, Reminisce Bar & Grill was announced earlier this month with a surprise appearance on NPR Music's Tiny Desk in which he performed two of his new songs with a full band and a barbershop quartet.

Reminisce Bar & Grill is one that might throw fans of his two award winning kids' records (2014's We're All Young Together and 2017's My Kinda Music) for a loop. Listeners will still recognize the same affable narrator and quirky musical style as his previous solo work, but here the subject matter is shifted dramatically. With frankness and poignancy, Martin, now a 43-year-old married man with two young children, squarely tackles the subject of adulthood - specifically, his own.

"I think this is my mid-life crisis album," said Walter. "These days my friends and I all seem to be thinking the same dark thoughts - 'What the hell am I doing? What the hell's going on? I'm lost. I'm running out of time and I'm doing everything wrong. And I'm probably dying.' This is definitely an insane period," he continues, "but most of the time I kind of love it."

While Martin approaches these subject matters with candor and sincerity, he clearly also enjoys mining them for humor. "I wanted this album to be an entertaining discussion of marriage, fatherhood, work, fear, and weakness," he explained. "I'm definitely influenced by Woody Allen movies. No matter how serious or romantic or dark his story may be, there's always a strong undercurrent of comedy."

Reminisce Bar & Grill was recorded at various studios in Brooklyn and at Richard Swift's National Freedom Studio in Cottage Grove Oregon. The songs were mixed by D. James Goodwin (Bob Weir, Craig Finn), Richard Swift (The Shins, Foxygen) and Phil Ek (Fleet Foxes, Band of Horses). A nimble multi-instrumentalist, Martin handled guitar, piano, organ, bass and percussion duties, but he also relied on the services of a coterie of crafty players and singers: Brian Kantor (Fruit Bats) on drums, Josh Kaufman (Craig Finn, Josh Ritter) on guitar, and Jamie Krents (French Kicks) on bass. The soaring harmony vocals woven throughout the album are delivered by Clap Your Hands Say Yeah singer Alec Ounsworth. WEBSITE, FACEBOOK.

Musically 'I Can Run Now From The Hellhounds But I Can't Hide' is a rhythmic vibrant affair. The vocals add a little gravitas to the song, overall however this is a hook laden and very pleasing tease for next years album release.


Newspoke - Judas Tree.

Background - Anonymous New York City-based indie artist Newspoke has shared the video for "Judas Tree." It's a dark, tongue-in-cheek story of someone descending hell with visuals to match.

This is the lead single off Faces, Newspoke's forthcoming debut album due out February, 2017. Newspoke explores the contrast of lightness and darkness in Faces. 

The record was born out of failed relationships, life-threatening illness, and new beginnings. It's both dark and comedic. Standout tracks on the record include, "I Apologize For Dying On Your Shoes," "Normal," and "Heather."

Faces was mixed and mastered by Larry Crane (Elliott Smith, Sleater-Kinney, The Decemberists) in Portland, OR. It will be available on all digital distribution platforms February, 2017. FACEBOOK.

'Judas Tree' may start gently, however don't be fooled. The passion and energy soon builds, with gritty determined vocals and an increasingly layered musical arrangement, heart and soul is there in abundance.


Jimmy Sweet - You Say You Don't Love Me.

Background - You Say You Don’t Love Me is the debut single from Los Angeles singer / songwriter Jimmy Sweet, released earlier this month. The track is a melancholy take of the song by 70's British punk sensation Buzzcocks.

Jimmy Sweet is a singer / songwriter, but not in the typical sense. Yes, he writes love songs, but Sweet uses sweeping strings and a gospel choir to get his message through. "I have a place in my heart for the over dramatic" - Jimmy Sweet

A staple on the LA music scene for years, Jimmy also plays in a hugely popular cover band The Goodtimes Boys with members of Fleet Foxes, Hot Hot Heat, The Heavy and The Growlers. 

Jimmy Sweet got his start playing with Rolan Bolan (son of glam rock icon Marc Bolan of T.Rex) and legendary San Francisco garage rock band The Richmond Sluts. Jimmy Sweet and his band will be releasing a host of original material throughout 2018. FACEBOOK.

If you like your music to build into a sweeping, melodic mixture of vocals, harmonies, and orchestral flavours then 'You Say You Don't Love Me' ticks all those boxes, and does it with style.