The Callas With Lee Ranaldo - NewTown - Mother Mink

The Callas With Lee Ranaldo - Acid Books.

Background - The Callas' latest single with Sonic Youth's Lee Ranaldo, "Acid Books" is out this week with its taut, post-punk grooves and hypnotic, scuzzed-up guitar lines, The Callas will find favor with fans of The Velvet Underground, The Horrors, and Neu!.

Meet The Callas…Led by brothers Lakis and Aris Ionas, the pair helm a Greek-based art, film and music collective, as well as hosting art and music events at their studio/performance space in Athens–the Velvet Room. As a band, The Callas feature Aris on guitar/vocals, Lakis on bass/vocals, as well as Chrysanthi Tsoukala on drums/vocals and Marilena Petridou on percussion. In 2016, the group collaborated with Lee Renaldo (Sonic Youth) on a soundtrack for their film The Great Eastern, and they have teamed up once again on The Callas upcoming LP Trouble and Desire due out October 26th via Inner Ear Records/Dirty Water Records. Discussing their work together, Ranaldo explains:

"Our collaboration took off quickly and was such a natural fit - we speak the same language and the performances we’ve done together have been a total blast! I love the community of artists that they have gathered around them, and I hope we will do more collaborations in the future”.

Acid Books” is our first listen in on The Callas upcoming album and it’s a post-punk burner brimming with frenzied energy. Opening with a swirl of droning ambiance and the rhetorical question, “Do you sleep at night?”, the track quickly launches headlong into a fever of activity. With the anxious pulse of a hard-driving bassline to lead the way, and punctuated by terse outbursts of guitar, The Callas pack a tightly wound sonic punch. Narrated by a vocal interplay between the group’s male and female members, and featuring the tumult of a shout-along chorus, the band’s dense gravity of sound will have you pumping your fist in triumph even as it drags you in a downward spiral with its dark undertow. WEBSITE.

A low key introduction with spoken words is the calm before the storm on 'Acid Books' which erupts into punk infused rock and roll with a battery of hooks to dig in deep, as the band deliver their lively brand of post art punk.


Newtown - Heart of Stone.

Background - NewTown continues to journey into their own progressive acoustic music with this stylistic Tyler Childers song, “Heart of Stone.”

Following the release of “Naomi Wise,” “Heart of Stone” is about a woman who does what she has to do to survive when hard times strike. The choppy, image-filled poetic lines sung by NewTown’s Kati Penn Williams paint a picture that leaves a mystery as to whether the “Heart of Stone” is one of cruelty, strength or both. Her delivery is both wayward and delicate and fitting to the restlessness of the lyrics from Childers, who is quickly becoming an acclaimed Roots Country songwriter.

This song continues the release of singles off the band’s upcoming release, NewTown, Old World, a selection of material that expresses the group’s talent for adding modern elements to traditional music. “Heart of Stone” is an example of how NewTown and their contemporaries are transforming and rejuvenating traditional southern music for the modern age. It’s a skilled blending of the conventional and the current.

“After I heard the song the first time, I couldn’t get the melody out of my head the rest of the day, so that put this one at the top of the list for me,” says Kati Penn Williams. “We hope you enjoy our groovy arrangement of this one.” WEBSITE.

Following on from 'Naomi Wise' a song we featured at the end of May we now have 'Heart Of Stone' another gorgeous slice of traditionally based Americana. Expect superb vocals and a fabulous musical backdrop, something NewTown do with seeming ease.


Mother Mink - Coconut.

Background - The new single Coconut is a Pina colada oozing psych indie explosion from theatric electro popband Mother Mink. "Experiment and hit making is not two separate issues for us", says Mother Mink.

As usual, when Mother Mink releases new material there are dozens of fresh influences baked into the mix. This time, the inspiration comes from the tropical paradises but the band's sound is still distinct with rough drum loops, bit crushed synthesizers and Johan Axelsson’s sub baritone saxophone. And like that wasn’t enough, on top of this Mother Mink also spices things up with the charismatic singer Fanny Wistrands’s soulful voice.

Coconut is all about the exotic dream of the tropics. The tune is a comment on the blown up expectations of the perfect vacation that prevails in today’s western society. The tune is about how tourism really can destroy a country.

In the end, it’s a heads up to seizing the day and be happy with what you have! Happiness is all around you, not only on a tropical beach at the other side of the world. WEBSITE.

In Beehive Candy land we have been enduring something of a very sunny heatwave for the past few weeks, and a song such as 'Coconut' seems quite appropriate, with it's compelling summer charm. It might not be the tropics here, but I will settle for the sentiments of the bands song, a stay at home vacation is hot enough anyway this year.