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Promote This: Madly in Dub, SevenTrain & Jeremy Joyce

Posted by February 21st, 2014 No Comments »

When started in the late 90s we regularly highlighted emerging, unsigned bands in a series called “Promote This, Beeyatch.”   Our theory was that the major music rags were all writing about the same 50 new bands, so why not scour the masses for some hidden gems of our own?

This endeavor turned out to be equal parts rewarding and insufferable, due in large part to the fact that there are a lot of really crappy bands out there promoting their music.

A lot’s changed over the last fifteen years though, right? Digital technology has made it easier for artists to create and share music. The Internet has also lead to new national music publications: Paste, Pitchfork and Stereogum all got their start after we did. What’s stayed the same is the fact that, at any given moment, everyone’s writing about the same 50 hip emerging bands.

It is with this realization that we announce the return of this regular feature, now shortened to simply “Promote This.” Comments (including complaints from bands who don’t agree with our assessments and general insults toward us and our writers) are encouraged. Bands: Tweet us your track(s) at @nadamucho with the hash tag #promotethis.

Jeremy Joyce – “Ain’t Got No Love”

New Orleans singer-songwriter Jeremy Joyce (pictured above) presents a fine blueprint for a possible USO act circa World War II. “Ain’t Got No Love” comes with all the bells and whistles – a genuine big band feeling, backup vocals, inoffensively forgetful lyrics – but ends up feeling like a swirling photograph of Joyce’s influences without any distinctive element completely his own. The song is easy to like, catchy even, but maybe because it’s done well enough to hide that it’s a recycled formula. – Cameron Deuel

Listen to “Ain’t Got No Love” on Soundcloud

SevenTrain – “Rays of the Sun” & “Bittersweet Seduction”

The band name and song titles don’t bode well… and I guess you CAN judge some bands by their Ed Hardy-esque artwork. Here come the testosterone-soaked guitars, bass and “heavy” drums on “Rays of the Sun.” It’s a shame the production is so tinny, but otherwise the mix is polished to a high shine. Though serviceable, the vocals are as pedestrian as the lyrics – something about “wicked ways” and “misfortune.” Plodding mid-tempo 90s frat rock. Nice wheedle-dee-wheedle-dee guitar break, though!

OK wow. Just… wow. “Bittersweet Seduction” is medium-heaviness tempered with some “seductive” bottle-slide guitar work, popular in domestic-beer-stained dive bars around South Tacoma for the past 30 years. SevenTrain’s lyrics are a jumble of hard rock clichés (“storm over the horizon”, “lion running to the kill”, “whisper sweet nothings”) and you’d better believe he calls this seductress “lady.” Riff-tastic guitar here and there, but SO very tired. – Abe Beeson

Madly in Dub – “Tharsis”

Madly in Dub, the groove-obsessed Seattle duo consisting of Todd and Michelle Pruitt, have been releasing immersive, large-scale singles since early January, and full length albums since 2012. On “Tharsis”, the tone is decidedly dictated by world music fed through deep house methodology. In the six minute span, listeners are sonically transported through the dark voids of space, where Mars’ Tharsis mountain-rage exists for real. Some listeners may be turned off by how upfront Todd and Michelle are in terms of vibing out but their cover art, a rainbow filter cast over majestic Tharsis peaks should give fair warning. I’d imagine this track does well in a live setting, too. – Cameron Deuel

Listen to “Tharsis” on Bandcamp



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