Album of the Week: Moonstoners - Baywitch

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Maybe it's my incessant watching of Adventure Time or that I'm so desperate to keep hold of summer and every memory associated with it, but Baywitch's Moonstoner is seriously animated, summer-approved surf rock. During all my listens, I could see Finn and Jake listening to this as they head to the beach with Princess Bubblegum. 

Anyways, Lila Burns is the mastermind behind it all, describing Baywitch as a "guitar, some looping pedals and some magical spells."

Swirling those ingredients together in her pot of magical brew unveils a rainbow colored potion, a colorful concoction that's childlike and wondrous. Whether comparing a dangerous boy to an unseen shark in the waters ("Cosmic Zone") or letting repetitious twinkling effects carry us to a "Lazy River Galaxy," Moonstoners is a trip into the colorful mind of Burns. Space is often depicted as dark, solitary and quiet, but the Moonstoners galaxy created by Baywitch is inviting, a celestial party where you can slip on your Moon Shoes and leave behind the woes of the world. 

The Grey Estates Podcast: Steph Knipe (Adult Mom) & Karl Kuehn (Museum Mouth)

Imagine the funniest, sweetest people you know and then imagine spending an hour talking about Property Brothers, preschool blunders, whether you wet the bed as a child and your thoughts on karaoke. Sounds perfect, right? It was and is on this very special episode of The Grey Estates Podcast. Welcome Adult Mom's Steph Knipe and Museum Mouth's Karl Kuehn to the show and settle in cause you're gonna laugh. What's up? Bust a nut.

As always, subscribe to us on iTunes or Google Play and leave us reviews!

mp3: "Get It Right" - Magana

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Anger isn't always obvious. Sometimes it's a quiet, endless struggle and in the first single from Magana the singer fights back. "Get It Right," is a plea for someone to get it right, to quit lying through their teeth and make up their "damn mind." The smoky soprano, rising guitars and drums all back this cry and unfurl with a subtle force. Its desperation is felt in the magnitude of the cries, rising ever so slightly but never yelling. There's something beautiful in finding what you want and demanding it, and Magana perfectly captures that. Look for the EP when it drops next month on Audio Antihero.

mp3: "Wild Heart" - Katie Ellen

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"Wild Heart" is a beautiful, sincere farewell. Trinkets, thoughts and mementos of a lost relationship are kept purposefully, ruminated over and confessed. There's not a moment of hesitancy to be found in these packed few moments and its short sentiments are emotional and haunting. It's the briefest introduction to Ellen's upcoming full length and leaves you wanting so much more.

Pick up the 7" on Lauren Records.

Toon Tunes: Chowder

curated by Madeline of Yucky Duster

I used to babysit for a family when I was high school that had two adorable kids who were obsessed with the Cartoon Network TV show Chowder. I remember one day one of the kids, Isabella, came up to me and showed me her petition to keep Chowder on the air, because there had been recent news that the show was on its last season. We talked about Chowder for a while and she informed me that he was not a bear, but in fact a cat-bear-pig combination and went on to explain the importance of the show to her and her friends. I explained to her that Chowder needed to grow up and become a teenager, so that's why the show was cancelled. I didn't really need to go any further with that explanation, so I didn't. Too much potential for unanswerable questions....

So, as far as a synopsis goes, Chowder is first off adorable and cute and squishy and I love him. He's a cat-bear-pig who gets emotional about food (don't we all?) and often ends up in trouble because of his scatterbrained-ness. Chowder always does the moral thing in the end, even if he messed up big time. He has a pet fart named Kimchi and a girl bunny (?) named Panini who is obsessed with him and trying to always get married (I, personally, think Chowder is missing out..). One episode he even sang to her "I'M NOT YOUR BOYFRIEND", a song I would love to cover but have not been able to convince my bandmates to do so. Sigh. 

I put together a combination of songs about food, which I'm sure no matter what genre they are Chowder would listen to all of them, and songs that remind me of situations he has put himself through. "Mr. Tough" by Yo La Tengo is definitely a reference to an episode I watched recently ("The Sleep Eater") where Chestnut steals Chowder's Master Chef, Mung Daal, and claims he is Chestnut's dining room table. Can you tell I love this show?

Listen while eating a cake for maximum enjoyment!

video: "Wipe Down" - Infinity Crush

The secrets of Infinity Crush lend themselves to pure blue skies, cloudless and serene, and in the video treatment for new single "wipe down," we're invited into that world. Filmed and edited by Erik Cativo in Laurel Maryland, the visuals of laying in sunshine, losing yourself to the forest and finding the beauty that surrounds us in the every day is emboldened with the captivating and lovely " wipe down". For one brief moment we're all able to make our escape and follow Infinity Crush into a wonderland.

warmth equation is out 9/30.

mp3: "Goodbye, Breakup Diner" - Elephants

On the second single from their upcoming Dadstache release, Elephants tackle the fear of leaving someone behind head on. "Goodbye, Breakup Diner," is a complicated punk farewell to the place and a person you're so reluctant to forget about. Despite the warp speed of instrumentals, there's a soft sincerity to it all, with melodies weaving a heartfelt tale of fear and trepidation to return to a time and place that holds heartfelt memories.

Interview: Naked Giants

Naked Giants make some of the gnarliest sounds we've heard this year and their debut EP is set to drop next month. Ahead of R.I.P.'s release on Miscreant Records the band is hitting the road with Car Seat Headrest. Before that tour, Henry was kind enough to answer a few of our questions.

Photo: Sarah Cass

Photo: Sarah Cass

You're about to head out on tour with Car Seat Headrest! That's so exciting and sweet. Are you excited and what goes into preparations for tour?

Touring is a great opportunity to do what we do best: bleed rock and roll on stage and leave everything in that moment in each room, in each city, night after night. Prepping for tour is a very spiritual thing. Our minds and bodies must be ready if we wish to engage the minds and bodies of every soul we encounter. Push ups, metronomes, hydration, sleep, humor, routing, budgeting, practice, and careful wardrobe consideration so we look like we don't care about caring about what to wear. 

What can fans expect of a Naked Giants live performance and how do you bring to a stage audience the same energy and fast pacing of your EP? Is it hard to be rock stars every night ;) ? I saw on Facebook that poor Grant got injured!

Fans expectations of our live show should vary from person to person. Every night there are folks that have never heard of us standing next to folks that may have heard a single or two standing next to someone who has heard us since we started in the early days. You never know what goes through peoples' minds as they have sensory overload in the form of sweet rock and roll. We'd hope that every person in the room walks away with a new hope for our generation in our ability to bust guts, melt faces, and produce and reproduce sweet vibes that will one day bring peace on earth and good will in the international community. So far, we've just been doing the same thing we've been doing in the basement where it started, same energy, same intensity, same fun. Being rockstar is just like dancing alone in your room with headphones on and not caring what you look like while doing it...except now there's a lot more eyes on you. 

Let's talk a bit about the EP and the recording process. How long did it take to record and when did you first start writing songs? Is it exciting to have a completed debut EP and are you ready to get it out into the world?

The songs on R.I.P. EP were tracked in probably under 10 days in 2015. Yes, this is the first release we've had with a record label (Miscreant) and we are more than ready to take this sound "to the masses".

How did Naked Giants come together and how has the band evolved from when you started to now? When you started were you ever thinking you'd be going on tour or releasing any material?

Grant and myself (Henry) have been finding peace in the jam since we were 14/15 years old. We picked up Gianni shortly after sharing a bill with his old band, Lemonhead, in 2014. The dream has been to bring joy and hope to those who feel that rock and roll has been absent in our generation up until this point. Touring has been and I'm sure will continue to be a surreal privilege that I can not take for granted. Playing with a diverse group of musicians my whole life, one theme is common from jazz to jam-band to hip-hop to worship to indie rock: Every musician I've had the pleasure of drumming with wishes to travel and share their craft around the world. The fact I get to be a part of that still blows my mind. 

Is there a particular track on the EP that really strikes you as being a favorite or one that fans just have to start with? Is there any track with a special backstory? I love "Pyramids" but also everything.

My personal favourite is the track "Stoned" which will be released with the EP October 14. When in the studio, our producer Dylan Wall suggested we slow down the BPM like 10 clicks and really work on making it a groovy-ridin'- tune. That made a huge difference and I think really works nicely as a counter piece for the rest of the tracks on the record. There's also a lot of cool aux percussion happening that makes me smile too. 

Who are some of your influences and inspirations for this record or as a band? 

When we were putting together the songs for R.I.P. EP we had a lot of Thee Oh Sees, Ty Segall, White Stripes, Led Zeppelin, and Hendrix busting through our headphones... basically the quintessential rock and roll prophets to any teenagers in a basement. 

Seattle is killing it with the bands and has the city influenced your music in anyway?

Well, when it rains here in Seattle we like to play music that warms us up. We drink a healthy amount of coffee so the caffeine jitters are definitely present in the drum work (speaking for myself). Going to a show in Ballard or Capitol Hill or Belltown or SoDo will get you in the mood to meet some friends, take some pictures on your disposable camera, and get into whatever band is playing, even if you've never heard of them. I believe our live show has been well catered to the energy we wish would be present at only the best rock and roll shows. I'd like to think we don't travel and perform to show up and not be note worthy. We try our best to make everybody feel a little wiggle in their booties!

Now that the EP will be out and you're about to hit the road what's next? Are you working on anymore material?

Rock and roll is an american art form stemming from the jazz created by slaves in New Orleans roughly a century ago. It was an act of creative expression during dark times of struggle for a nation. We owe every piece of free form groove to those who wished that their was euphoria within musical collaboration. In that moment, nothing hurts. In that moment, you listen and react simultaneously with one another. In that moment, the performer, the listener, everybody feels together. The next piece of what Naked Giants brings to sound waves will be in recognition and admiration and experimentation of what humans can do to spark emotion and passion within one another. 

and for fun

Describe Naked Giants using emojis

If there was an emoji of Hendrix riding a phoenix into a bowl of Honey Bunches of Oates... that'd be pretty sweet. Either that or the slice of pizza.

What's the official Naked Giants pizza

This is awkward...Either the "Giovanni" from Tutta Bella, or the "Agog Primo" from Pagliacci.

You're curating a festival, what 5 bands would be on your lineup?

Vehicle Collector
Vulfpeck
Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio
Earth Wind and Fire
Rage Against the Machine circa 1993

What snacks are coming on tour?
Take 5 bars
Secret Aardvark Hot sauce

EP: 1 - Kew

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For 435 seconds Kew spews frustration at us and it's totally glorious. The days we want to shout at the world, throw out our worldly possession and tell every living soul we know to fuck off, comes tumbling out, fast and ferocious. It's whip smart and comes at you fast, so listen up, loud. When you're feel bored or alone and apprehensive about the state of things this is the album to play, even if it's the briefest moment of relief.

Album: Three - Diners

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words: Erika Delgado

Sometimes you need music that reminds you that the simple things in life are what makes it worth it. Those simple moments of being back in your hometown, and feeling safe along side your oldest friends. Those friends that even though you don’t talk much anymore, they tend to always be there when you need them. Music that makes you feel loved and like there’s still hope. Music you play when you feel hopeless, anxious, lost, and suddenly feel the opposite.

For me this is what Diners is. Tyler Broderick has created music that in pure simplicity makes you feel the same way a new crush makes you feel. That moment when having a crush isn’t crushing you, but reminding that everyone can be beautiful and everyone can make your life feel more beautiful. When a song by Diners comes on, my face lights up the same way as seeing my new favorite crush. I have a crush on their music.

Last time I saw Diners live, was at a little DIY fest thrown by some friends in Oakland called “no-dome.” I fed Tyler some cheeto puffs to try to repay them for all the times their music has been used in my life as an anti-anxiety. I’m a very anxious person, by nature, by bad chemical reactions, but when I find a band that just makes all that anxiety feel useless, I fall in love with the band.

The latest album Three perfectly holds true to the innocent beauty that is Diners’ music. Though calling it innocent is not the best term. It’s brave, it’s soft, it’s doing what a lot music avoids: singing about the good in life. It’s not about emotional heartbreak or how they want to die, but how the little things makes all those negatives irrelevant. It’s an album for coping.

“I believe in beauty and that’s good enough for me. /Learning to drift towards the good things.” - Beauty