On Friday American Songwriter premiered the video for the Black Swans song “Mask from Memory,” from the band’s excellent new album, Occasion for Song. I talked to singer Jerry DeCicca quite a bit about the record for an Other Paper story, particularly how DeCicca has been processing the death of his friend and former Black Swans violinist Noel Sayre, and how that grieving process made its way into Occasion for Song.
DeCicca delved into a bit more detail about “Mask from Memory,” in particular, when speaking to American Songwriter, saying, “The song is story of process and dreams… imagining yourself creating a mask of your friend that died to see things through his eyes. The mask is the memory you see the world through; the construction is the song’s metaphor for engaging your own thoughts and feelings in hopes of learning something about yourself.”
Justin Kinkel-Schuster of St. Louis, MO band Theodore got together with Oxford, Miss. multi-instrumentalist Andrew Bryant to play some songs and record. Eventually a new project, Phantom Limb, was born — although another band named Phantom Limb already exists so the pair changed their name to Water Liars and titled their debut Phantom Limb.
Album opener “$100” kicks off with a big, sludgy guitar riff, then melds into a kind of rumpled folk-pop that fits in nicely alongside other artists who call Misra Records home, or have at one time: Centro-matic/South San Gabriel, Great Lake Swimmers, Phosphorescent, Southeast Engine. It’s also a good introduction to Kinkel-Schuster’s tenor, which the Riverfront Times once said was the best in St. Louis.
Phantom Limb is out Feb. 28 on Misra, which is now based in Dayton, Ohio.
After an annoying commercial, Athens, Ohio’s Southeast Engine plays a song at the 4th Ave/9th St. FGR. “Red Lake Shore” is off Canary, out March 29 on Misra Records.
MP3: Misra Legacy Comp feat. Southeast Engine’s “New Growth”
there’s water in the window frame it hasn’t been closing right
ever since the spring rain came and we gained more daylight
well just leave the window open, you know it’s just as well
and as the winter freeze is ending the whole town starts to swell
old growth framed these houses
and so what was is no more
oh but just as nature’s intended
new growth is what I’m looking for
On March 29, Athens, Ohio’s Southeast Engine will release Canary on the recently relaunched Misra Records. The first freebie from the album is a song called “New Growth,” and I can’t think of a more fitting soundtrack to this warmer-than-usual February week. I even saw a sprig yesterday.
Canary tells the story of a family living in a small Appalachian town in southeast Ohio (might as well call it Athens, right?) during the Great Depression, and it just may be the band’s tightest, best album yet. The brothers Remnant have never sounded so in sync on these rugged songs filled with ragged hope.
Preorders (including a limited-edition, canary-yellow cassette) here. Tour dates below, kicking off Friday at Casa Cantina: Continue reading
Download: Misra Legacy Compilation Volume I (zip)
This new Misra re-launch and compilation is a fitting bookend to some recent Columbus news. So, Lydia Loveless is now on Bloodshot. Bloodshot is now the distributor for Misra Records. Misra Records’ first signing is the Black Swans, whose new record Don’t Blame the Stars will be out in the spring. And the newly relaunched label is now artist-run, managed by Leo Deluca, drummer for Athens folk-rockers Southeast Engine.
Here’s the full press release and track listing for that free, artist-curated compilation, which includes previously unreleased tunes from Southeast Engine (“New Growth”) and the Black Swans (“I Forgot to Change the Windshield Wipers in My Mind”) from both bands’ upcoming releases: Continue reading
As the boss man mentioned, the Black Swans have a new album coming out on Misra and have delved into social media and streaming. Misra Records is releasing Don’t Blame the Stars digitally and such, but the band is raising funds for the vinyl on their own. Watch the video (Jerry DeCicca’s acting debut), read about the album and make a pledge. You can pledge at various levels to get a signed limited-edition 45, demos, have the band play at your house, have the band write a song about a topic of your choosing, etc.
Second, the Black Swans just released a new video for “Rooster,” off last year’s Words are Stupid. Watch below. It involves roosters. Sort of. Continue reading
Adam Remnant and company never disappoint. New album, Canary, out late Feb/early March on Misra Records (now run by SEE’s drummer, Leo DeLuca). Before that, be on the lookout for a Misra comp titled Misra Records Presents: An Artist-Curated Misra Legacy Compilation.